Home » Sye Ten Bruggencate’s Games

Sye Ten Bruggencate’s Games

Sye Ten Bruggencate is a christian who attempts to argue that non-theists “borrow” from his worldview when practicing rationality. This post addresses this desperate attempt to hijack rationality now that blind faith and evidentialism fail in today’s arena of debate where less than logically rigorous ideas are quickly dispatched. Its good to see theism has reached this point. They must now promote the very logic that renders their ideologies dead.

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Advanced Commentary

Consider someone who wants to calibrate their Geiger counter. They must consider the degree of reliability in all of the following.

  • The Geiger counter manual (Were the writers correct?)
  • Their ears (Do they actually hear the beep correctly?)
  • Their eyes (Do they actually see the calibration correctly?)
  • Their degree of mental acuity (Are they processing things logically?)
  • Logic (Is logic still working?)

All of these are part of the full equation, and none of them require a presupposition. They are all introduced to the epistemic equations as provisional sub-absolute variables.
Sye is pulling his assertion that we need a presupposition out of either the cranial cavity of his ignorance, or the rectum of deceit. It does not smell like ignorance.

I’ll keep this page updated with various attempted responses.

The following is part of a dialog subsequent to my posting the graphic above on a thread on Eric Hovind’s Facebook page. It is a good case study of presuppositionalist attempts at equivocation and evading questions after their own have been answered.

  • Phil: Sye either does not understand rationality, or he is intentionally lying in a desperate effort to inoculate his bankrupt ideology from criticism.
  • Sye: Erm, do you presuppose that induction is provisionally valid? Do you presuppose that your reasoning is valid? You really should stop making a fool out of yourself Phil.
  • Phil: Sye, you were told to pay attention. You didn’t, and now you are embarrassing yourself.

    The answer, of course is, no. I don’t assume anything since I only have conventional knowledge (which you wrongly claim requires a presupposition). I could be wrong.

    But I’m not wrong because I don’t presuppose I’m absolutely right. I’ll be wrong only when you demonstrate that I’m wrong.

    You’d better get busy. You have a lot of work in front of you.

  • Sye: //” I’ll be wrong only when you demonstrate that I’m wrong.”//

    Erm, but you only have conventional knowledge of THAT right? This would be funny if it were not so sad.

  • Phil: Finally you seem to be getting it…or are you?

    You don’t have absolute knowledge in anything, nor does anyone else. All you have is access to the same conventional knowledge I have.

    Sad is correct…just not in the way you suppose.

  • Sye: //”You don’t have absolute knowledge in anything, nor does anyone else. “//

    Except THAT right Phil?

  • Phil: Sye! You’re embarrassing yourself!
    All that I pen is conventional knowledge, and the next time you suggest I think differently, you become a liar since I have made this abundantly clear.
    All we both have is conventional knowledge. If you disagree, demonstrate that. Bald affirmations don’t cut it.

  • Sye: So, you are not certain that I can’t have certainty right?
  • Phil: Sye, are you really that dense?
    I don’t have absolute certainty just as you don’t have absolute certainty.
    Stop dwelling on my slight uncertainty, and get to the task of demonstrating that you have absolute knowledge. You might actually change my mind since I (unlike you) are committed to the evidence and coherency of the arguments.
    But rest (conventionally) assured, your current position is irrational since you claim to have absolute knowledge, a logical impossibility for subjective minds. Now demonstrate I’m wrong.

  • Sye: Just answer the question Phil. You are not certain that I can’t have certainty right?
  • Phil: Show you’re grown up enough to dialog with me and do the easy extrapolation.
    Since there I’ve clearly said there is nothing I have absolute knowledge about, what do you think that means for your question? (Or are you also attempting to intentionally equivocate on “absolute certainty” and conventional certainty”? If you attempt to savage any dignity and respect, I most certainly hope you are not.)
    Don’t be stupid.

  • Phil: But to demonstrate I’m wrong, you’ll have to demonstrate logic is wrong.
    Based on my inductive experience, logic is quite reliable, and you’ll have a difficult time overturning it.
    But good luck on that.

  • Sye: Just answer the question Phil. Yes, I can extrapolate from your folly, but I want you to say it: So, you are not certain that I can’t have certainty right?
  • Phil: I am highly certain you are wrong. Not absolutely certain. I don’t do “absolute” as I’ve clearly told you time and time again.
    (You’d better read the line above a dozen times based your your prior inability to absorb what I’m telling you.)
    Now, all that remains if for you to demonstrate that I am wrong.
    What are you waiting for?

  • Sye: So, you are not absolutely certain that I can’t have absolute certainty right?
  • Sye: //”Now, all that remains if for you to demonstrate that I am wrong. “//

    And you aren’t absolutely certain that “all that remains for is for me to demonstrate that you are wrong” right?

  • Sye: Sorry man, but I have better things to do than deal with your arbitrary opinions.
  • Phil: What is wrong with you? Can you not read?
    I am not absolutely sure about anything.
    I could be wrong about everything.
    Now, get to work. Demonstrate I’m wrong.
    I don’t think you can, and that you’ll just point out the obvious fact that I, like you, don’t have absolute knowledge.
    Do tautologies fascinate you or something?
    Do something interesting and demonstrate how you acquire absolute knowledge in violation of the very logic you claim to have been authored by your silly god.

  • Sye: Phil, it is obvious why you are avoiding answering my question directly. I have posed it a number of times now, but you must dance around it because it (further) exposes the folly of your view. Watch:

    Are you absolutely sure that you are not absolutely sure about anything?

  • Phil: Yes. That question lies within my subjectivity.
    On subjective feelings and epistemic dispositions, I have absolute certainty…as do you.
    Is this new to you?

  • Sye: So… you are subjectively absolutely sure?
  • Phil: I am absolutely sure only about what transpires within my subjectivity.
    Now you are finally asking coherent and honest questions.
    Continue.
    When you are finished, I want you to answer my questions.

  • Sye: So you cannot be absolutely sure about whether anyone else can have absolute certainty correct?
  • Phil: Correct. I am only as certain in this as logic is reliable. Get to the task of demonstrating otherwise. Logic is not on your side, and I’ve found logic quite reliable. I have questions for you on this as soon as you are done questioning me. Are you finished?
  • Sye: No, it’s okay, I’m fine with that. Cheers.
  • Phil: 1. On what propositions do you have absolute knowledge?
  • Phil: 2. Through what mechanism do you acquire absolute knowledge?
  • Phil: 3. Through what mechanism do you assess the reliability of the mechanism through which you acquire absolute knowledge?
  • Phil: Sye either does not understand rationality, or he is intentionally lying in a desperate effort to inoculate his bankrupt ideology from criticism.
  • Sye: Erm, do you presuppose that induction is provisionally valid? Do you presuppose that your reasoning is valid? You really should stop making a fool out of yourself Phil.
  • Phil: Sye, you were told to pay attention. You didn’t, and now you are embarrassing yourself.

    The answer, of course is, no. I don’t assume anything since I only have conventional knowledge (which you wrongly claim requires a presupposition). I could be wrong.

    But I’m not wrong because I don’t presuppose I’m absolutely right. I’ll be wrong only when you demonstrate that I’m wrong.

    You’d better get busy. You have a lot of work in front of you.

  • Sye: //” I’ll be wrong only when you demonstrate that I’m wrong.”//

    Erm, but you only have conventional knowledge of THAT right? This would be funny if it were not so sad.

  • Phil: Finally you seem to be getting it…or are you?

    You don’t have absolute knowledge in anything, nor does anyone else. All you have is access to the same conventional knowledge I have.

    Sad is correct…just not in the way you suppose.

  • Sye: //”You don’t have absolute knowledge in anything, nor does anyone else. “//

    Except THAT right Phil?

  • Phil: Sye! You’re embarrassing yourself!
    All that I pen is conventional knowledge, and the next time you suggest I think differently, you become a liar since I have made this abundantly clear.
    All we both have is conventional knowledge. If you disagree, demonstrate that. Bald affirmations don’t cut it.

  • Sye: So, you are not certain that I can’t have certainty right?
  • Phil: Sye, are you really that dense?
    I don’t have absolute certainty just as you don’t have absolute certainty.
    Stop dwelling on my slight uncertainty, and get to the task of demonstrating that you have absolute knowledge. You might actually change my mind since I (unlike you) are committed to the evidence and coherency of the arguments.
    But rest (conventionally) assured, your current position is irrational since you claim to have absolute knowledge, a logical impossibility for subjective minds. Now demonstrate I’m wrong.

  • Sye: Just answer the question Phil. You are not certain that I can’t have certainty right?
  • Phil: Show you’re grown up enough to dialog with me and do the easy extrapolation.
    Since there I’ve clearly said there is nothing I have absolute knowledge about, what do you think that means for your question? (Or are you also attempting to intentionally equivocate on “absolute certainty” and conventional certainty”? If you attempt to savage any dignity and respect, I most certainly hope you are not.)
    Don’t be stupid.

  • Phil: But to demonstrate I’m wrong, you’ll have to demonstrate logic is wrong.
    Based on my inductive experience, logic is quite reliable, and you’ll have a difficult time overturning it.
    But good luck on that.

  • Sye: Just answer the question Phil. Yes, I can extrapolate from your folly, but I want you to say it: So, you are not certain that I can’t have certainty right?
  • Phil: I am highly certain you are wrong. Not absolutely certain. I don’t do “absolute” as I’ve clearly told you time and time again.
    (You’d better read the line above a dozen times based your your prior inability to absorb what I’m telling you.)
    Now, all that remains if for you to demonstrate that I am wrong.
    What are you waiting for?

  • Sye: So, you are not absolutely certain that I can’t have absolute certainty right?
  • Sye: //”Now, all that remains if for you to demonstrate that I am wrong. “//

    And you aren’t absolutely certain that “all that remains for is for me to demonstrate that you are wrong” right?

  • Sye: Sorry man, but I have better things to do than deal with your arbitrary opinions.
  • Phil: What is wrong with you? Can you not read?
    I am not absolutely sure about anything.
    I could be wrong about everything.
    Now, get to work. Demonstrate I’m wrong.
    I don’t think you can, and that you’ll just point out the obvious fact that I, like you, don’t have absolute knowledge.
    Do tautologies fascinate you or something?
    Do something interesting and demonstrate how you acquire absolute knowledge in violation of the very logic you claim to have been authored by your silly god.

  • Sye: Phil, it is obvious why you are avoiding answering my question directly. I have posed it a number of times now, but you must dance around it because it (further) exposes the folly of your view. Watch:

    Are you absolutely sure that you are not absolutely sure about anything?

  • Phil: Yes. That question lies within my subjectivity.
    On subjective feelings and epistemic dispositions, I have absolute certainty…as do you.
    Is this new to you?

  • Sye: So… you are subjectively absolutely sure?
  • Phil: I am absolutely sure only about what transpires within my subjectivity.
    Now you are finally asking coherent and honest questions.
    Continue.
    When you are finished, I want you to answer my questions.

  • Sye: So you cannot be absolutely sure about whether anyone else can have absolute certainty correct?
  • Phil: Correct. I am only as certain in this as logic is reliable. Get to the task of demonstrating otherwise. Logic is not on your side, and I’ve found logic quite reliable. I have questions for you on this as soon as you are done questioning me. Are you finished?
  • Sye: No, it’s okay, I’m fine with that. Cheers.
  • Phil: 1. On what propositions do you have absolute knowledge?
  • Phil: 2. Through what mechanism do you acquire absolute knowledge?
  • Phil: 3. Through what mechanism do you assess the reliability of the mechanism through which you acquire absolute knowledge?

My responses seem to have confused Sye since they deviated from his script. He therefore asks no less than 10 times whether I have absolute knowledge in something outside my subjectivity, apparently unable to comprehend my continued assurances that I have no presuppositions..
He has yet to respond to my 3 questions.


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