ForumsWEPRFoundationalism, Basic Beliefs

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MageGrayWolf
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MageGrayWolf
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I've been trying to dig up more information on basic beliefs aka foundational beliefs. This started with watching a video talking about how presupposition apologetics basicly usurps the concept. (video here)

Here's a bit I was able to find on the subject on wiki.
"Foundationalism holds that all beliefs must be justified in order to be believed. Beliefs therefore fall into two categories:

Beliefs that are properly basic, in that they do not depend upon justification of other beliefs, but on something outside the realm of belief (a "non-doxastic justification&quot

Beliefs that derive from one or more basic beliefs, and therefore depend on the basic beliefs for their validity

Within this basic framework of foundationalism exist a number of views regarding which types of beliefs qualify as properly basic; that is, what sorts of beliefs can be justifiably held without the justification of other beliefs."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basic_belief

Overall I find the concept interesting but something about it doesn't quite sit right with me for reasons I can't quite place my finger one.

I did find a sample from a book title "An Introduction to the Theory of Knowledge" that gave opposition to foundationalism , with these premises.

"(1) Our nondoxastic experiences are either cognitive or noncognitive states.
(2) If they are cognitive states, then they can justify beliefs, but they themselves must be justified.
(3) If they are noncognitive states, then they do not need to be justified, but also can not give justification.
(4) Therefore our nondoxastic experiences either (a) can not give justification or (b) they must themselves be justified."

I look forward to hearing your thoughts on the concept.

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FishPreferred
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FishPreferred
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However, you have touched on a crucial point here dealing with coherentism. If I'm a foundationalist, then beliefs that are incompatible with my basic beliefs can't amount to knowledge. First off, they wouldn't be justified. Second (depending on your theory of truth) they wouldn't be properly factive. But a coherentist has the option of rejecting either belief. This, of course, isn't what the Reformed Epistemologist wants - she wants these properly basic beliefs to stand without question. Her response would be that we are talking past her rather than engaging in her position. Or, at least, that's how the dialectic would go. How it comes out in another matter entirely!

It seems like someone using the coherentist approach you've described would be easy prey for circular reasoning, where a very large network of interrelated beliefs is assumed to be self-sufficient. The Koreshans, for example, appear to have relied upon such a network to support their model of the universe.

On a side note, gender specification pops up in some of the most unusual places.

MageGrayWolf
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MageGrayWolf
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I'm not sure what you mean by a utilitary function. I'm guessing that these beliefs bring with them some sort of utility (e.g. pleasure, happiness, welfare). But I've never picked up on any sort of theme like that in foudationalism, broadly construed.


For instance the belief that the world around us exists and isn't just a figment of our imagination. There is a utilitary function in that belief. For example you stand in the middle of the road with a car coming at you. There is a use to believe that car is real and not a figment of your imagination.

Perhaps a better example would be to contract with people with the rare condition known as Walking Corpse Syndrome aka Cotard delusion, where the person no longer believes they actually exist any more, that they have died. This has lead to people with this condition to starve to death among other things. So there is a utilitary function to hold the belief "I exist".

In fact, making a move like this might actually strengthen the overall foundationalist position!


That's interesting, in what way?
Kennethhartanto
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Kennethhartanto
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btw, what is the definition of coherentism? i don't really understand philosophical words, also what is Reformed Epistemology? am i really talking about coherentism or foundationlism?

coz i'm neither a philosophist or a wise old man or someone that knows this things inside out

MageGrayWolf
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MageGrayWolf
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btw, what is the definition of coherentism? i don't really understand philosophical words, also what is Reformed Epistemology?


Here are some wiki pages to get you started. I will leave Moegreche to answer you further as he could do a better job than me.

Coherentism
Reformed epistemology
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