• Banno
    1.8k
    You appear to be suggesting that we could take a language, and use that language to get outside of language.Metaphysician Undercover

    But that is exactly what we do when we talk about the rules of chess. we step outside of those rules.

    We can't step outside of language as a whole, but we might be able to step outside any part of it.
  • Metaphysician Undercover
    3.2k
    never said those propositions were examples of hinge-propositions. We've been talking about this stuff for years. You'd think by now you will know my position.Sam26

    Are you serious Sam26? Must I reprint your entire post?

    I'm suggesting based on my understanding of Wittgenstein, that it's senseless for anyone to doubt Moore's proposition, and that it's not an arbitrary decision, but one that's rooted in the nature of Moore's proposition. What is this nature? Certain propositions have at their core something basic, foundational, or bedrock, which makes doubting them nonsensical. This is rooted in the language-game of doubting.
    ...
    Correct usage can be seen in particular contexts, but it's not the context itself driving correct usage.
    ...
    So is there a general principle that dictates whether some statement is doubtable?
    ...
    There are statements that are necessarily correct. For example, triangles have three sides, or bachelors are unmarried. There are many necessarily correct statements. And I would disagree that this would validate Platonic Realism. There are also statements that are contingently correct, for example, the Earth has one moon.
    Sam26

    So you produce all this talk about "basic, foundational, or bedrock" propositions, which it would be nonsensical to doubt. Then you give a couple examples, "triangles have three sides", and "bachelors are unmarried" which are "necessarily correct". Now you say that these examples are not examples of hinge-propositions.

    Earlier you said:
    However, the claim is that this is generally the case, because as Wittgenstein points out, there are cases where it would makes sense to doubt that this is my hand. Thus not every statement of the form "I know this is a hand," would fall into the category of being outside of our epistemological conversations.Sam26

    So I assume that "I know this is a hand" cannot be a hinge proposition because it makes sense to doubt such propositions in some cases.

    What I see is "the category of being outside of our epistemological conversations" as a defining feature of a hinge-proposition. But how does it make sense to say that such a statement is beyond doubt? Often we doubt statements if we have no faith or trust in the speaker of the statement, and this is not an epistemological matter, it is a matter of faith.

    This is how I understand the situation here. You have given me examples of statements which it would be unreasonable to doubt, but since these statements are of epistemological concerns, they do not qualify as hinge-propositions. Now can you explain how there could be a statement which has no epistemological bearing, yet it would be unreasonable to doubt it. Are these statements of faith? But how could it be, that it is unreasonable to doubt a statement of faith?
  • Banno
    1.8k
    Frustrating, isn't it? To the extent that sometimes I simply stop responding to Meta.

    But in this thread I am having some fun in explaining and tightening the argument. It is getting to the point were I might give it a miss, though, based on diminishing returns.
  • Sam26
    414
    I can't reply to him any more, it's useless. I'm beginning to wonder if he has any background in philosophy, or he just pulls this stuff out of the air. This has been going on for years. I think I know what I'm saying, but he wants to tell me what I'm saying, as though I don't know my own thoughts. It's just crazy. I was watching his responses to Michael in another thread, and it's the same bull, so it's not just me.
  • Banno
    1.8k
    I think I know what I'm saying, but he wants to tell me what I'm saying, as though I don't know my own thoughts.Sam26

    X-) Yep. It's not just you. Borderline crackpot. Still has some use, though.

    I suggest we go back to working out exactly where you and I differ on the nature of hinge propositions?

    Where was that...
  • Sam26
    414
    I suggest we go back to working out exactly where you and I differ on the nature of hinge propositions?

    Where was that...
    Banno

    I posted a paper earlier in the thread about states of mind. Did you have a chance to read it? It's on page 11, the very first post. I provided a link.
  • Metaphysician Undercover
    3.2k
    A language learner combines a large but limited vocabulary to develop novel utterances using a large but limited grammar. If the language had an unlimited vocabulary, a new word for each situation, it wold be unlearnable. If it had an unlimited grammar, such that words could be arranged in any way, it would be unusable.Banno

    As I said, we have very distinct models, and I think yours is deficient. How could a person learn the first word?

    It's not bout the desire to learn, but the capacity to learn.Banno

    The capacity to learn is useless without the desire to learn.

    This is exactly the account that Wittgenstein shows to be faulty; here you do no more than blandly assert its truth.Banno

    Yes, I clearly disagree with Wittgenstein on this matter. But Wittgenstein doesn't show my account as faulty or inept, he just proposes his as more simple, easier, less complex. I can go forward producing endless examples and evidence as to how my position is a more accurate description of what really occurs in rule following, such as the example I just gave, the New Year's resolution. But you do not want examples.

    I can explain to you why Wittgenstein's perspective on this matter is insufficient though. He defines "correct" as acting according to the rule. This leaves no principle by which to judge rules as correct or incorrect. Therefore when different groups of people have different conflicting, or contradicting rules, each group is correct so long as they are following their rules. Following Wittgenstein's principles, such conflicts are, in principle, unresolvable because each of the conflicting sides is correct. This would require referring to something outside of correct or incorrect, to resolve the issue, like good and bad. But that would be nonsense because it renders correct and incorrect totally impotent and meaningless. Correct and incorrect would have no real value because correct might still be bad.

    That is the problem with defining correct and incorrect in relation to the rules, instead of producing rules in relation to a determination of correct and incorrect., where 'correct" is determined in relation to some further principles, other than rules. In the end, we have to refer to the further principle anyway to establish which rules are more acceptable when there is conflict.

    We can't step outside of language as a whole, but we might be able to step outside any part of it.Banno

    If you think that you can step outside of any part of the language that you're already using, then you are delusional. What do you propose, that one forget the words which one already knows?

    I think I know what I'm saying, but he wants to tell me what I'm saying, as though I don't know my own thoughts. It's just crazy.Sam26

    If this is the case, then you haven't expressed your thoughts very well, because I still don't know what you were trying to say..

    It's quite evident that using language is not a matter of following rules, isn't it? There is the matter of trying to best represent what you are thinking, in words, and the matter of having those words interpreted in the way that you were thinking that they would be. There's no rules to consult. Using language is not the simple matter which you, Banno, or Wittgenstein present it as.
  • Banno
    1.8k
    No, I hadn't, but will do so soon.
  • Banno
    1.8k
    But Wittgenstein doesn't show my account as faulty or inept, he just proposes his as more simple, easier, less complex.Metaphysician Undercover

    Rubbish. The first 250 paragraphs in PI are a series of arguments against your position.
  • Sam26
    414
    What exactly is your background in philosophy MU? The reason I ask is that you talk using philosophical jargon, but it's as though it's generally not connected with what I would call good philosophy. And this has nothing to do with agreeing with me, because there are members that I don't agree with, but I respect their arguments. You can tell by the way they write that they aren't just blowing smoke.
  • Banno
    1.8k
    If you think that you can step outside of any part of the language that you're already using, then you are delusional.Metaphysician Undercover

    Here again is that odd refusal you have to read what was actually written.

    Bah. Time to give it a rest, Meta. Thanks for the discussion; despite what I have said, I do usually enjoy your posts. But responding is eventually too much like beating my head on the table.
  • Banno
    1.8k
    I've given the article a quick read. I must say at the outset that the neuroscience it sets out is beyond my keen.

    I take it that the idea is a certain belief will in some way correspond to a measurable "synchronised neuronal activity in a specific frequency". Is that correct?

    Well, it might be true. But I suspect that there is some misunderstanding here about the nature of belief.

    Taking Moore's example, how does my belief that I have a hand manifest? Occasionally, in waving my hands in front of a group of philosophers, or writing about them. More often, in picking up a glass or a pen, or in scratching my nose, or the myriad other activities that depend on that belief.

    It seems to me a long stretch to suggest that behind all such cases, there is one "synchronised neuronal activity in a specific frequency" that in some sense corresponds to the belief.
  • Metaphysician Undercover
    3.2k
    What exactly is your background in philosophy MU?Sam26

    BA Hons, plus some post grad courses, and lots of reading. I may have idiosyncratic interpretations of the work I read, but I don't think you can say that my interpretations are wrong. I did pass my courses, and some with quite good marks. My mind tends to focus on different aspects of the work from what other people tend to focus on. With respect to Wittgenstein I did an undergraduate course dedicated solely to the Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, and I've read thoroughly Philosophical Investigations and On Certainty.

    The reason I ask is that you talk using philosophical jargon, but it's as though it's generally not connected with what I would call good philosophy. And this has nothing to do with agreeing with me, because there are members that I don't agree with, but I respect their arguments. You can tell by the way they write that they aren't just blowing smoke.Sam26


    Ever consider that your capacity to distinguish between "good philosophy" and "blowing smoke" isn't as objective as you think? Perhaps you are swayed more by what "agrees" with you, than you think you are. Consider your reference to LR Hubbard. Clearly what he has written is not as you say, gibberish, because he has millions of followers. I suggest that you simply do not agree with him, like you do not agree with me. And, since I need to repeatedly point to the same weakness in your belief, over and over again, because you refuse to acknowledge this weakness, this irritates you.

    Rubbish. The first 250 paragraphs in PI are a series of arguments against your position.
    ...
    Here again is that odd refusal you have to read what was actually written.
    Banno

    I've read all PI. most of it numerous times. Remember when we did that debate, all the direct references I made. There is no coherent argument against my position, just a demonstration that the true reality concerning this issue is within the mind, and because of that it is veiled, inaccessible to observation. So an alternative was proposed, that we ignore all of this in the mind stuff and focus on what is accessible to observation. As I said, it's just a proposal for an easier way. But of course, it skirts the real issue.
  • Banno
    1.8k
    I've read all PI. most of it numerous times. Remember when we did that debate, all the direct references I made. There is no coherent argument against my position, just a demonstration that the true reality concerning this issue is within the mind, and because of that it is veiled, inaccessible to observation. So an alternative was proposed, that we ignore all of this in the mind stuff and focus on what is accessible to observation. As I said, it's just a proposal for an easier way. But of course, it skirts the real issue.Metaphysician Undercover

    I'm nonplussed by this; so I will say no more about it.
  • Sam26
    414
    Ever consider that your capacity to distinguish between "good philosophy" and "blowing smoke" isn't as objective as you think? Perhaps you are swayed more by what "agrees" with you, than you think you are. Consider your reference to LR Hubbard. Clearly what he has written is not as you say, gibberish, because he has millions of followers. I suggest that you simply do not agree with him, like you do not agree with me. And, since I need to repeatedly point to the same weakness in your belief, over and over again, because you refuse to acknowledge this weakness, this irritates you.Metaphysician Undercover

    None of us are probably as objective as we think; and we are all probably swayed more by arguments we tend to agree with, so nothing new there. Now just consider the statement you just made, viz., "Clearly what he has written is not as you say, gibberish, because he has millions of followers." I would not associate good thinking or good arguments in terms of having millions of followers. There are millions of followers of astrology, but I surely don't think there is any logic to astrology, or any way one can coherently justify such a belief. So having millions of followers doesn't do anything to lend support to your criticism of my remark. This is an example of the kind of basic mistake that a beginner would make.

    What irritates me is not that you supposedly point out some weakness in my argument. It's your constant misunderstanding of basic things; and it's not just what your saying to me, but this is a hallmark of many of your posts with others. Your remarks with Michael in another thread show an inability to understand basic things. People have to continuously correct what your saying, and you seem to change the meanings of words based on private interpretations.

    Ahhh, I feel much better now that I got that off my chest.
  • Metaphysician Undercover
    3.2k
    None of us are probably as objective as we think; and we are all probably swayed more by arguments we tend to agree with, so nothing new there. Now just consider the statement you just made, viz., "Clearly what he has written is not as you say, gibberish, because he has millions of followers." I would not associate good thinking or good arguments in terms of having millions of followers. There are millions of followers of astrology, but I surely don't think there is any logic to astrology, or any way one can coherently justify such a belief. So having millions of followers doesn't do anything to lend support to your criticism of my remark. This is an example of the kind of basic mistake that a beginner would make.Sam26

    If it is gibberish, this means that it is unintelligible, meaningless, nonsense. If it is meaningless, unintelligible, nonsense, then people would not be able to follow it. Therefore if the person has millions of followers, it is extremely unlikely that what the person wrote is gibberish, because these people would not be able to follow it if it were. They might be following for other reasons, but that is not likely.

    So the issue is that you are seeing what the person wrote as gibberish (meaningless), while millions of others are seeing it as meaningful, and good. You are in no position to judge it as good or bad until you see it first as meaningful, and then take the time to understand it.

    You can take the time to understand arguments, judging premises and conclusions for soundness and validity, but to simply dismiss something offhandedly as gibberish, indicates that you have not done that. I have no problem with you dismissing what I write as gibberish in this way, because there is no reason for you to believe that anything I would write would be meaningful. So you might dismiss it as gibberish, not being inclined to take the time to try to understand it, and having no reason to make the effort. But when you dismiss someone like Hubbard in this same way, or something like astrology in this way, as some atheists dismiss religion in this same way, when the evidence is clear that these things are meaningful because they have millions of followers, then I think that this is a problem for you. And this leads me to think that you dismissing me as gibberish is probably an extension of this problem which you have.

    What irritates me is not that you supposedly point out some weakness in my argument. It's your constant misunderstanding of basic things; and it's not just what your saying to me, but this is a hallmark of many of your posts with others. Your remarks with Michael in another thread show an inability to understand basic things. People have to continuously correct what your saying, and you seem to change the meanings of words based on private interpretations.Sam26

    Look, I asked you to justify your claim that there are hinge-props which are outside of knowledge, which it is unreasonable to doubt. I explained that if they are outside of knowledge, then it is clearly reasonable to doubt them. Now, I reposted a large part of your reply just above. You started to talk about bedrock propositions, and how they are correct, and not doubtable, then you ended with some example like "triangles have three sides". Then you came right back and said that you never meant this as an example of a hinge-prop.

    Sure, I've misunderstood you, but this is not to be blamed on me. You gave me an example of a hinge-prop, then came right back to say "I never said" that was an example of a hinge-prop. In order for me to understand what you are trying to say, you must state it and explain it clearly, and stick by your examples. Double-talk is not conducive to understanding. And the fact that there are numerous others around this sight who employ double-talk and various other forms of sophistry does not justify your mistakes.
  • Metaphysician Undercover
    3.2k

    The problem seems to be that you think you can use terms like "hinge-proposition", which have no real referent because there is no such thing as a hinge-proposition in the real world, only some vague definition or description of what one would be like, and expect to have people understand what you are talking about.
  • Sam26
    414
    I'm not going to argue with you anymore. First, because it's not going to solve anything. Second, we've argued these points before, several years ago, and I just don't see any point in going over the same issues over and over again. Others have also tried to point out where you thinking goes astray, but you're in your own philosophical world. If you want to argue these points further start up your own thread. At some point, there isn't any reason to keep arguing, and I think we have reached that point.
  • creativesoul
    2k
    You said that a belief must be stateable. However, OC 284 and 285 implies that beliefs can simply be shown in the actions of people. Why does a belief have to be stateable? It's true that within language beliefs do get stated, but that doesn't mean they have to be stateable or stated, which seems to further imply that beliefs aren't beliefs unless they're linguistic.Sam26

    Being stateable doesn't require that the believer do the stating. If the content of belief is propositional, then it only follows that it can be stated. Earlier I address the linguistic aspect when talking about the coherency aspect of JTB(epistemologists). If propositions are not existentially contingent upon language, then belief can be propositional in it's content, stateable, and not linguistic.

    I do not hold such a view. However, it is consistent with the notion that belief content is propositional. I say that Witt worked from that tenet because ihe talked about hinge "propositions" as beliefs that need no justification. I've read nothing of his, early or late, that would suggest that he did not hold that the content of belief is propositional. The limits of my language is the limit of my world. Whereof one cannot speak. All doubt is belief based. When one doubts a proposition, let's call it 'X', upon what grounds does the doubter of 'X' rest their disbelief upon? Doubting 'X' is to doubt that 'X' is true; is the case; is the way things are/were, etc.

    Belief that this or that places the truth of the proposition into question.



    Also, does this mean that if the actions of "rooting around," as W. puts it, never get stated, that it doesn't imply a belief. It doesn't seem to me that W. held that beliefs (necessarily (my words))have propositional content, some do, but others do not.Sam26

    Well, it is clear that Witt was working through some things in OC. On a whole, it seems to me that he offered alternative explanations for all sorts of metaphysical notions including meaning, intention, and everything else. However, he doesn't balk at the notion of belief. Why would that be the case? I put it to you that his acceptance of the notion of belief followed from his epistemological stance(s). Belief has propositional content is what nearly all of his contemporaries held as well. Stating one's beliefs is what one does when making assertions/statements... assuming sincerity, of course.

    Thus, his struggle was with how to come up with a notion of belief which was stateable, but did not require being justified, because of it's being the foundational bedrock for all sorts of other beliefs which hinged upon it/them(followed from it/them).


    Anyway Creative, that's my take on it. I understand though that you seemed to leave open the possibility that beliefs are not necessarily propositional.

    That's all good Sam. We're working through some difficult and quite nuanced veins of thought. You're spot on with the bit about what I leave open. On my view, all belief content is correlation. That's not for this thread though.

    It may be worth getting into how doubt, certainty, and justification play into all this... particularly with regard to Moore's proof of an external world and how Witt just could not allow himself to call it knowledge.

    P.S.

    Ah, nice... just saw that Banno has suggested something along those lines as well.

    P.S.S.

    Nevermind an interlocutor who refuses to follow the first rule of critical analysis... granting the terms. It's waste of time and emotion.
  • creativesoul
    2k
    The very ability to doubt whether or not Moore's shewing of his hands prove that an external world exists is a metacognitive endeavor. Metacognition requires language.

    How can one doubt that another has hands given that...

    1. All doubt is belief based
    2. We acquire language
    3. Language acquisition is existentially upon shared meaning
    4. At conception we are utterly void of all thought and belief?

    I do not think that Witt doubted that Moore was external to him and had hands. I'm confident we all agree there.

    Witt was doubting whether or not it made sense for us to say that Moore knew what he was talking about when he claimed "Here is one hand, and here is yet another", or words to that effect/affect.

    Why would it be the case that we cannot have justified true belief that we have hands?

    Upon what ground does one doubt our ability to know that "we have hands" is a true statement, given the above?

    I know 'X' is true, if first I believe 'X', and 'X' is also both, well-grounded and true.

    I know that these are(called) "hands".

    If one talks in any sensible fashion whatsoever, s/he has no basis for denying an external world except ignorance regarding what language acquisition is - itself - existentially contingent upon(what their own doubt requires).

    Is that taking things too far, or would Witt agree?

    Do you? If not, please explain...
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