A Conversation for Rainbows End - Fact and Fiction

Optical illusion

Post 21

easyjacksn

Recumbentman said:

"Is it to wind me up you ask "which entry"? Clicking the blue letters at the top of the page bring you to the entry for which this thread is a discussion forum."

__________

smiley - winkeyeJust trying to be a little provocative; and when I read "entry" for some reason I saw "post". My mistake.


I'd like to continue the debate, but I'll have to ask(politely, of course) for you to start addressing my arguments directly. It seems to me that you have simply denied every argument I've made without good reason.

We can start with the most recent one:

According to Leibniz's Law, x and y are identical iff they share all the same properties. Every single property they have must be the same for them to be identical. This includes spatiotemporal location. IF the spatiotemporal location of a rainbow is dependent on the spatiotemporal location of the subject viewing it, THEN a subject must share the same spatiotemporal location as you to see the rainbow you are seeing. IF two people cannot share the same spatiotemporal location, THEN it is IMPOSSIBLE for anyone else to see the rainbow you are seeing. They may see a very similar rainbow, but it is IMPOSSIBLE for them to see the SAME rainbow.

or

P1: Leibniz's Law
P2: The spatiotemporal location of a rainbow depends on the spatiotemporal location of its subject
P3: Multiple subjects cannot share the same spatiotemporal location

C1: Only one subject can view any given rainbow

I doubt you'll have any success refuting P1 or P3. P2 is empirical, so you may have a chance there.


Optical illusion

Post 22

Recumbentman

I apologise for not answering each point; I prefer short posts, and dread escalating the length of each reply. However, I may get into more detail tomorrow (it's midnight now) and in the meantime, the idea of the single universal rainbow might just evade the trap of Leibniz's law.


Optical illusion

Post 23

easyjacksn

Recumbentman said:

"I apologise for not answering each point; I prefer short posts, and dread escalating the length of each reply. However, I may get into more detail tomorrow (it's midnight now)"

__________

Not a problem.smiley - smiley This is a site that focuses more on lighter conversation then heavy philosophical debate, anyway.

__________

Recumbentman said:

"the idea of the single universal rainbow might just evade the trap of Leibniz's law."

__________

That it would.

...and if you're thinking about equating rainbows to clouds, just remember -- rainbows and clouds have different properties. Libniz's Law would still apply.


Optical illusion

Post 24

Recumbentman

I don't equate rainbows to clouds, in any way other than to say that they are both made visible by the effects of sunlight on water.

Your objection, as I understand it, is to comparing rainbows, whose esse is percipi, with clouds and other things which have additional tactile properties, weight, volume, sometimes smell and taste as well.

My whole thrust is to *challenge* the concept of what is actual. I never used the word 'actual', at least I don't think I did in the Entry; it just doesn't seem to me, as it evidently does to you, a useful category in this context. My point is that rainbows are no more illusory than other reliable features of our world. They have a shape in three dimensions, and though ephemeral (they leave no residue) they are entirely predictable.


Optical illusion

Post 25

easyjacksn

I'd still like a response to my last argument, but it might take you some time so I'll respond to this in the meantime.

__________

Recumbentman said:

"rainbows, whose esse is percipi"

__________

You say here that rainbows consist of perception. This means that all of their properties are subjective.smiley - erm I agree, and this corresponds to the problem my last argument presents.

__________

Recumbentman said:

"clouds and other things which have additional tactile properties, weight, volume, sometimes smell and taste as well."

__________

Not exactly. Physical objects have (1)spatiotemporal extension and (2)causative effects on other physical phenomena. I think I have shown that rainbows have neither. Unless you can show how they do, your position is untenable.

__________

Recumbentman said:

"My whole thrust is to *challenge* the concept of what is actual. I never used the word 'actual', at least I don't think I did in the Entry; it just doesn't seem to me, as it evidently does to you, a useful category in this context."

__________

Well, I'll continue to use the word "physical" instead of "actual". At least that is a word (I hope) we can agree on.

__________

Recumbentman said:

"My point is that rainbows are no more illusory than other reliable features of our world. They have a shape in three dimensions, and though ephemeral (they leave no residue) they are entirely predictable."

__________

I think I've shown the opposite. You'll have to show how this is true.


Optical illusion

Post 26

Recumbentman

>You say here that rainbows consist of perception.

Consist of, I didn't say. In their makeup I also (you will recall) include the sun, water vapour, and photons; nor does that necessarily exhaust the list.

>This means that all of their properties are subjective.

This must be where we misunderstand one another most. To be in perception does not mean to be subjective, as I see it.

>Physical objects have (1)spatiotemporal extension and (2)causative effects on other physical phenomena. I think I have shown that rainbows have neither.

Rainbows, as I have described them, have a shape and a size and cause (for instance) chemical changes in the retina.

>"My point is that rainbows are no more illusory than other reliable features of our world. They have a shape in three dimensions, and though ephemeral (they leave no residue) they are entirely predictable." . . . I think I've shown the opposite. You'll have to show how this is true.

I have not seen your demonstration that rainbows do not have a shape in three dimensions, nor your demonstration that they are unpredicatable, nor anything in your posts touching on those straightforward claims at all. All I have seen is your insistence that they are not physical; despite your inclusion of photons among physical things.

We are missing each other's targets in every way possible.


Optical illusion

Post 27

Recumbentman

To answer specifically what I see as your two major points:

>Physical objects have (1)spatiotemporal extension and (2)causative effects on other physical phenomena.

and

>If all life capable of perception was wiped out, an *actual* object would continue to exist

Suppose a death event simultaneously removes all life capable of perception from the universe, without upsetting the rest of the physical stuff. Someone has just set up a camera to photograph a rainbow. The timer ticks on through the annihilation event, and the photograph is taken automatically. At that place and time the effects of the rainbow are chemically imprinted on the film, or it causes a physical change in the electronic storage.


Optical illusion

Post 28

easyjacksn

Recumbentman said:

"In their makeup I also (you will recall) include the sun, water vapour, and photons; nor does that necessarily exhaust the list."

__________

You seem to be confusing "causes" with "properties". It makes absolutely no sense to say that part of a rainbow is the sun. By saying that the sun is "in their makeup" you are claiming it is a property of them. The sun is one *cause* of rainbows -- not a property of them. You could similarly claim that since all of the matter in our bodies originated in stars that there are stars in our bodies. Clearly this is false.

__________

Recumbentman said:

"This must be where we misunderstand one another most. To be in perception does not mean to be subjective, as I see it."

I understand you just fine. You are simply mistaken. To be in perception is to be subjective. This is not a matter of debate or opinion. Perception is an internal process. It doesn't get more subjective than perception. You *can* claim that all objects are nothing more than perception; you would then be a trancendental idealist(which is fine, but you would be agreeing with me in a roundabout way as you would be taking the position that the rainbow-in-itself must be unknowable).

__________

Recumbentman said:

"Rainbows, as I have described them, have a shape and a size..."

__________

This is begging the question. You must establish that they do indeed have a shape and size(spatial extension) without claiming that they have a shape and size.

__________

Recumbentman said:

"...and cause (for instance) chemical changes in the retina."

__________

Photons cause chemical changes in the retina. Again, (like the sun)photons are a *cause* of rainbows -- not properties of them. If rainbows were made up of photons, rainbows would be flying around the universe at the speed of light. Since rainbows appear stationary(when the subject is stationary) they can't be flying around the universe at the speed of light.

__________

Recumbentman said:

"My point is that rainbows are no more illusory than other reliable features of our world. They have a shape in three dimensions..."

Begging the question

__________

"and though ephemeral (they leave no residue) they are entirely predictable."

__________

I'm not sure what you mean by "they leave no residue". As for being predictable, in what way?

__________

Recumbentman said:

"I have not seen your demonstration that rainbows do not have a shape in three dimensions..."

__________

I have shown that the properties of a rainbow have no referent in physical realty. This is the same as showing that rainbows have no spatial extension.

__________

Recumbentman said:

"...nor your demonstration that they are unpredicatable"

__________

Reread post 7

__________

Recumbentman said:

"All I have seen is your insistence that they are not physical; despite your inclusion of photons among physical things."

__________

I think this is one of the more glaring problems with your position. It is simply untrue that photons are parts of objects. Photons are objects themselves separate from the objects they allow us to see. They are carriers of visual information *about* the objects we see. This is not my claim -- it is simply basic physics. To claim that basic physics is mistaken is an extraordianry one; and extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Where is your extraordinary evidence?

__________

Recumbentman said:

"Suppose a death event simultaneously removes all life capable of perception from the universe, without upsetting the rest of the physical stuff. Someone has just set up a camera to photograph a rainbow. The timer ticks on through the annihilation event, and the photograph is taken automatically. At that place and time the effects of the rainbow are chemically imprinted on the film, or it causes a physical change in the electronic storage."

__________

Photons cause a physical change in the film/storage. This effect would happen whether or not rainbows physically exist, because rainbows are superfluous to the causative chain. Photons leave the sun, are refracted by water droplets, and hit the film at various wavelengths causing a pattern of colors on the film that represent the wavelengths of the photons. Nowhere in that causative chain is there some mysterious object that no one else can see or experience in any way(remember, only the camera can see its own rainbow per Liebniz's Law). Where is this mysterious object? Why does it play no role in this causative chain? Ockham's Razor alone is enough to refute your claims.


Optical illusion

Post 29

Recumbentman

I contest your assertion that I beg the question of size and shape: these have been established in the Entry. If I had been able to include a diagram, it would have been a head seen from above, with parallel lines for the sun's rays coming from the person's back and reflecting back at the critical angle to enter the eyes. On the page the corners in these rays make a V which can be developed in imagination into a cone.

I regard this conversation as now closed. I really don't see any future in continuing past "I understand you just fine. You are simply mistaken."

So long and thanks for all the stimulating conversation smiley - rainbow


Optical illusion

Post 30

easyjacksn

I apologize if you've taken offense to anything I've said. None was intended.

The statement, "You are mistaken"(or variations) is a common one in philosophical debate and is not meant as a slight. It is simply a tag pointing to errors in reasoning or factual mistakes.

That being said, if you'd like to discontinue the debate, that's fine(it's certainly no fun debating with someone who doesn't particularly want to).


As for your last point, you are correct. I had forgotten about that part of your entry -- you were not begging the question(of course, I still disagreesmiley - winkeye).


Optical illusion

Post 31

Recumbentman

Thank you for your apology, I accept that you were using over-enthusiastic debating rhetoric or whatever. It is neither persuasive nor convincing, though, to say "I understand you and you're wrong"; in a debating context such a shot aims to impress the voters, not the opponent.

All the same, I don't think we're going to get anywhere; you say tomaito and I say tomahto.

I say a rainbow leaves a mark on a film, you say photons do. Is this a disagreement?


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Optical illusion

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