On the Self Consistency of Reductive Materialism / Über die Selbstkonsistenz des reduktiven Materialismus (Unten)

On the Self Consistency of Reductive Materialism


Reductive Materialism (RM) is the belief that everything which is real is identical to interacting particles.


It is most likely the most popular form of atheism among Western elites.

The existence of truth has always been a problem for Reductive Materialism (RM), but I think a specific, obvious example suffices to show its self-defeating character.

My argument is described below.

1| everything which is real is identical to interacting articles(premise for the reduction)

2| the fact of RM is real

3| therefore the fact of RM is IDENTICAL to a specific set of particles in energy fields

4| not only can we not conceive of this, but the very idea of seeking for such a bunch of particles in the universe sounds utterly absurd

5| therefore RM is an utterly absurd worldview

Now I’m trying to consider all possible objections.

A proponent of RM might reject 2) but then her own worldview would become meaningless.

My guess is that all attacks will be concentrated on step 4|, she will tell me that there does exist a set of elementary particles identical to the truth of RM.

The best answer I could think of would be that the fact of RM is identical with all the matter in the entire universe. But there is a huge problem here: all the particles of the universe (or of the multiverse for that matter) do not contain in themselves the information they are alone and lonesome.


For the existence of all this particles forbids us by no means to think there are transcendent universes with transcendent laws of nature.

Therefore the (alleged) fact everything which is real is identical interacting particles cannot be identical to all existing material things because this don’t make the existence of other realms unlikely.

Now materialists might respond that the fact of reductive materialism is real and can be identified with a bunch of processes going on within human brains.

I would gladly accept the fact that the truth of materialism only exists within the brains of materialists.


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Über die Selbstkonsistenz des reduktiven Materialismus


Der reduktive Materialismus (RM) ist der Glaube, dass alles, was real ist, mit wechselwirkenden Teilchen identisch ist.

Das ist höchstwahrscheinlich die beliebteste Form des Atheismus unter der westlichen Elite.


Die Existenz der Wahrheit ist immer ein Problem für den Reduktiven Materialismus (RM) gewesen, aber ich denke, dass ein besonderes, offensichtliches Beispiel seinen selbstzerstörenden Charakter offenlegt.

Mein Argument beschreibe ich in den folgenden Zeilen.

1| alles, was real ist, ist mit wechselwirkenden Teilchen identisch (Annahme für die Reductio Ad Absurdum)

2| die Wahrheit des RM ist real

3|deswegen ist die Wahrheit des RM mit einem spezifischen Satz von Partikeln in Energiefeldern identisch

4|wir können das gar nicht auffassen und die Idee selbst, nach einem solchen Haufen von Partikeln im Universum zu suchen, scheint völlig absurd zu sein

5| deshalb ist der RM eine völlig absurde Weltanschauung.

Nun versuche ich, all die möglichen Einwände zu berücksichtigen.

Eine Anhängering vom RM könnte 2| ablehnen, aber dann würde ihre eigene Weltanschauung sinnlos werden.

Ich errate, dass alle Einwände sich auf den vierten Schritt 4| konzentrieren werden, sie wird mir sagen, dass es wirklich einen solchen Satz von Partikeln gibt, der mit der Wahrheit des RM identisch ist.

Die beste Antwort, die mir eingefallen ist, wäre, dass die Wahrheit von RM mit der ganzen Materie des gesamten Universums identisch ist.
Aber es gibt ein riesiges Problem hier: all die Teilchen des Universums (oder des Multiversums, wenn man so will) enthalten nicht in ihnen die Information, dass sie allein und einsam sind.

Denn die Existenz all dieser Partikel verbietet uns keineswegs, zu denken, dass es transzendente Universen mit transzendenten Naturgesetzen gibt.


Deswegen kann die vermeintliche Wahrheit „Alles, was real ist, ist mit wechselwirkenden Teilchen identisch“ nicht mit allen existierenden materiellen Dingen identisch sein, weil  sie uns keinesfalls zeigen, dass die Existenz von anderen, transzendenten Welten unwahrscheinlich wäre.

Nun könnten Materialisten darauf antworten, dass die Wahrheit des reduktiven Materialismus real ist und mit einer gewissen Anzahl von Hirnprozessen identifiziert werden kann.

Ganz froh akzeptiere ich die Tatsache, dass die Wahrheit des Materialismus nur in den Gehirnen von Materialisten existiert.



Homepage of Lotharlorraine: link here

My other controversial blog: Shards of Magonia (link here)


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Mein anderer umstrittener Blog: Scherben von Magonia.



11 thoughts on “On the Self Consistency of Reductive Materialism / Über die Selbstkonsistenz des reduktiven Materialismus (Unten)

  1. If you should ever read my book, The Eternal Fountain of Youth, you would even more clearly see the foolhardiness of reductive materialism views. A profound holistic perspective — that most all of the so-called expert scientists seem to be lacking — tears apart their (already) fragmented methodologies!

  2. Just saw this site via your comment on Randal Rauser’s blog. My question is about your statement that “all the particles of the universe … do not contain in themselves the information that they are (the only things that exist).”

    They don’t have to contain the information, do they? Materialists only claim that the material world exists – not that it must be self-aware.

    When you consider the universe as a whole, there’s no way we can symbolize it, because any such symbol would have to stand apart from the thing it symbolizes. The symbol would have to be outside the universe, but nothing exists outside the universe (according to the materialists).

    Just because we can’t symbolize it, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. It could simply exist in and of itself.

    • Thanks for your comment!

      If the fact of materialism “EVERYTHING which exists is material” is real, it must be identical to a bunch of interacting particles.
      What are those particles?

      • Facts exist as abstract entities which are substrate neutral- they can be a string of ASCII characters or a string of numerals, in a computer or a human memory, or on paper. But they also exist, in a way, as the relationships between matter and energy in the universe that instantiate them.

  3. “all the particles of the universe…”

    please let me know what this means?

    you know something about all the particles in the universe?

  4. Hi Marc,

    You may like this recent comment, in which I show that if our faculty of “reason” satisfies the postulates of Gödel’s second incompleteness theorem, the employer of “reason” cannot know that it is sufficient for dealing with all of reality. Furthermore, if one wishes to reject the most likely postulate—”reason” being reducible to a formal system with recursively enumerable axioms—then one has probably broken from naturalism. This may raise specters similar to those raised by Thomas Nagel in Mind and Cosmos (75ff).

    What is perhaps new is the addition of these bits from Gregory W. Dawes’ Theism and Explanation, in which a kind of rationality which is ‘unformalizable’ is explored. It is found by Dawes to be something which can indeed be responsible for causation, but not the kind of causation typically thought of when one thinks of the laws of nature.


    P.S. In terms of my taking to Andy again, see here. Sometimes the best way to deal with a gnat is to swat it, not ignore it.

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