EAI OnSkepticMaterialismEverything we do and say thereby denotes a commitment into the existence of Reality, and we may without hesitation postulate the presence of an underlying objective Universe, with an absolute truth, in which things "really" are, "really" happen. However, of this Universe, we may only know what our senses can tell us. As far as relevant information goes, the universe in which "we", as individual sentient beings, live is the intersubjective universe of what we may know.
If we take this point of view to its natural conclusion, we obtain hard skeptic materialism, whereby only what's "effectively" observable exists at all. it can be put in parallel with the intuitionist school in formal logic, that considers only what's "effectively" provable to be true at all. Both stem from the same skeptic approach to knowledge. They oppose classical materialism and classical logic respectively, that readily admit the existence of some "absolute" material (resp. logical) substratum, in which things exist or don't (resp. are true or false). Nevertheless, these skeptic and unquestioning approaches to knowledge are both mostly interpretable one in the other, and lead to the same behavior with respect to basic (resp. "ground") observations and actions. The skeptic and classical ways may thus be considered as two different point of views on the same thing, using identical vocabularies with different meanings to describe different aspects of the same observable world.
Certainly, the hard skeptic materialistic approach is no more "absolutely true" than other approaches; but it is a as rational point on view on the world as another, since it provides the very same information on the physical world and how to behave in it as any other one. The fact that it be equivalently expressive as other approaches as far as thinking about possible worldly actions go might give us some insight as to what is or isn't relevant in other approaches.
This page is linked from: Ethics and Information