"I'd like you to prove first that a majority holds a particular absolute to be true."
I think it is safe to say that since a majority of people believe in a religion, they believe in something non-physical, such as a diety, if we generalize it enough (http://www.adherents.com/Religions_By_Adherents.html
). Sure the religions vary greatly, even from person to person, but as you say:
"and while absolutes may govern the base processes, the interaction between absolutes in human experience will bring about unique non-absolute phenomena mostly as a function of time"
I think it could be argued that the human desire to address the "gap" in which Solomon discusses is a base process, and though the base process is not 100% absolute in everyone, brings about more unique non-absolute phenomena... the way in which each person views that "plug" that fills in the "gap".
The historical context of the knowledge of the shape of the world over time, I believe, is irrelevant to my argument, so I will attempt to avoid distraction. I still stand by my point, that it is the minority of any debate that has the greater burden of proof (unless in the case of our judiciary; supposedly).
"There are vastly more non-absolutes than absolutes"
I am not sure about this, and I think it depends greatly on one's definition of absolute. I think this is the most relevant definition I could find (from www.dictionary.com
viewed independently; not comparative or relative; ultimate; intrinsic
Thinking about it, the word "absolute" is probably extremely inappropriate for this discussion, as I feel it is more in the realm of philosophical "absolute truth", or scientific/mathematical ideal values, in which case, I would have to agree with you. I think "universal" is better:
applicable everywhere or in all cases; general
Perhaps someone who is more settled in their position could defend it better than I, but this is what is going through my head.
> Subject: Re: [questioningrel-83] Stop talking about absolutes...
> From: [address removed]
> To: [address removed]
> Date: Mon, 12 Jul[masked]:20:44 -0400
> " I will see your burden of proof, and I will raise you... burden of proof.
> The person saying that no universal/absolute aspect exists is required to
> prove such a statement just as the FJr's of the world would be. Actually,
> the burden lies on the minority, and I would say more people most likely
> align to the idea that "something" exists (since most of the world is
> religious). If you say the world is round why everyone else believes it to
> be flat, the burden of proof lies with the "rounders", whether it is "fair"
> or not".
> I'd like you to prove first that a majority holds a particular
> absolute to be true. Also "everyone believed the world is flat" is
> another bit of revisionism. "Everyone" didn't, a small subset of
> various populations at various times in history did and were quickly
> disabused of their notions. See also:
> "How so? Physically, we are hardly any different, and by your own "beliefs",
> we are governed by very physical and real things that exist and are
> quantifiable, so how could we be "that" much different? I don't understand
> how a materialist could believe any different, please explain."
> I'm not saying absolutes don't exist, I'm saying that the privileging
> the "it's probably an absolute" starting point over "it's probably not
> absolute" is unproductive when trying to figure out whether something
> is in fact absolute. There are vastly more non-absolutes than
> absolutes, and while absolutes may govern the base processes, the
> interaction between absolutes in human experience will bring about
> unique non-absolute phenomena mostly as a function of time. Just
> because the phenomena are predictable in my belief model doesn't mean
> they're absolute.
> " So, how would one go about proving that a universal exists? So if this is
> categorically the wrong piece of literature to use, what is the right one,
> and how does one know?"
> I believe this is the point of biology, neurobiology, psychology,
> behavioral science, anthropology and many other scientific fields. And
> they've been doing a fair job so far of answering the fundamental
> questions of what it is that makes us who we are and what it is that
> we all have in common. To start with, I'd take anything that does not
> involve the opinions of only one person, though preferably a study.
> Anecdote is not data and all that.
> There's also the question of what you're willing to accept as
> absolute. Is 99% close enough or must it be 100% because I don't think
> you're ever going to hit 100% with most of the things about
> humans(that ever present outlier). For every statement that we think
> to be absolute regarding people we keep finding outliers disproving
> the 100% absolute. While I don't know of anyone without a heart, there
> is a man with no brain as we would colloquially define it:
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