• Banno
    2.7k
    In so far as a belief might provide a motive, that motive remains inscrutable. But that does not rule out premeditation.
  • frank
    776
    I wasnt thinking that belief provides a motive. Belief would appear to be necessary to the existence of motive.

    And if motive "remains" inscrutable, does that mean that you think it usually is? The rest of the world tends to assume it's very scrutable.
  • creativesoul
    2.5k
    A distinction needs to be drawn between belief statements and belief,
    — creativesoul

    Perhaps; remind me of how you do this.
    Banno

    All statements are predication. All predication is correlation. Not all correlation is predication. All correlation is belief. Not all belief is predication. Not all belief is belief statements.
  • Banno
    2.7k
    All correlation is belief.creativesoul

    because...?
  • creativesoul
    2.5k
    That's just the way it is.

    Oddly worded question my friend. Would you ask the same if I had asserted all belief presupposes it's own truth?

    Are you asking me how I arrived at that claim?
  • Banno
    2.7k
    it’s just that your conclusion is at odds with the fact that any and every belief can be put in the form of a propositional attitude. So you have gone wrong somewhere.
  • creativesoul
    2.5k
    Remember that distinction between reports of belief and belief. Putting a belief into the form of a propositional attitude does two remarkable things. It changes the form of belief while reporting upon it.

    To quite the contrary my friend, it's others who've gone wrong.
  • creativesoul
    2.5k
    Remember Jack has belief but no capability to have an attitude towards a statement/proposition. That is one of the problems with the earlier conception of "belief". Belief as propositional attitude cannot admit of pre-linguistic and/or non-linguistic belief.

    Animals without written language have belief. That conception of "belief"(as propositional attitude) contradicts the way things are. There is no stronger justificatory ground for dismissal. That's a misconception.
  • creativesoul
    2.5k
    What needs done here is painstaking. Taxonomy.

    I would agree that belief statements can be put in form of propositional attitude. Not all belief consists of predication. As before...

    There's more nuance than the discussion has gleaned thus far. It has been hinted at and skirted around...

    It's a matter of complexity.
  • Banno
    2.7k
    I would agree that belief statements can be put in form of propositional attitude. Not all belief consists of predication. As before...creativesoul

    You don't see this as contradictory. OK. You think a belief can be both an attitude towards a proposition and yet not consist in a predication, as if a proposition need not be a predication. And yet you also say
    All statements are predication.creativesoul
    .

    I don't find that at all helpful.
  • Banno
    2.7k
    An individual's belief is inscrutable
    I tried to defend the notion that to believe something is to act as if it is true. It didn't work, because one can act in ways contrary to one's beliefs. It's a result of the lack of symmetry between beliefs and actions mentioned above - Beliefs explain but do not determine actions. Thanks due to Hanover.

    Any belief can be made to account for any action, by adding suitable auxiliary beliefs.
    Banno

    The parallel here is of course with the Quinean notion of the inscrutability of reference. Undetached rabbit-part.

    https://www.rit.edu/cla/philosophy/quine/inscrutability_reference.html

    Now as Davidson noted, we make maximum sense of the words and thoughts of others when we interpret in a way that optimises agreement. So we also make maximum sense of the beliefs of others when we interpret in a way that optimises agreement.

    So even though as @Hanover pointed out we may never get it right, we might get close enough to make no difference.
  • Banno
    2.7k
    what would turn a desire to find my keys into a desire to look for them in the kitchen?Srap Tasmaner

    Perhaps remembering that you last say them in the kitchen.

    We have beliefs because we sometimes hold things to be true that are actually not true - we are sometimes wrong. It turns out to be useful to be able to say that "I searched the kitchen because I believed the keys were there", as opposed to "I searched the kitchen because the keys were there".

    Yeah, because he believed that there was a good chance his keys were there.Sapientia

    Probability?

    I don't think so. I think we are using belief here simply to mark the fact that the keys might not be in the kitchen.
  • Hanover
    3.6k
    So even though as Hanover pointed out we may never get it right, we might get close enough to make no difference.Banno

    Then meaning is not use. Meaning is your internal idea approximated in the picture you paint through utterances, gestures, or an actual picture. Some are better at painting pictures and are easily and accurately understood and some are better at interpreting and understanding what is being conveyed, but others not.

    Pragmatically, as you point out, it probably overall doesn't matter terribly. We do, in the end, generally communicate well. But to your linguistic theory that hinges on the idea that the use of the word is its public meaning, does not this concession do much violence? Aren't we now admitting that "rock" means my phenomenal impression of rocks, and my public use of that term is not its meaning, but just a close approximation?
  • frank
    776
    Then meaning is not use.Hanover

    When seeking meaning it's wise to look to use. Where "meaning is use" is used as shorthand for behaviorism, it's wrong.
  • Hanover
    3.6k
    When seeking meaning it's wise to look to use.frank

    Sure, but who disagrees with this? Is all we're saying now is that meaning isn't use, but use is just one thing to consider when trying to figure out what someone means?
  • frank
    776
    Sure, but who disagrees with this?Hanover

    Yes it's pretty obvious.
  • Banno
    2.7k
    Then meaning is not use. Meaning is your internal idea approximated in the picture you paint through utterances, gestures, or an actual picture. Some are better at painting pictures and are easily and accurately understood and some are better at interpreting and understanding what is being conveyed, but others not.Hanover

    Nice. But just as meaning is a construal from use, belief is a construal from use. What we can get closer to is agreement, not meaning.
  • creativesoul
    2.5k
    I would agree that belief statements can be put in form of propositional attitude. Not all belief consists of predication. As before...
    — creativesoul

    You don't see this as contradictory. OK. You think a belief can be both an attitude towards a proposition and yet not consist in a predication, as if a proposition need not be a predication. And yet you also say
    All statements are predication.
    — creativesoul
    .

    I don't find that at all helpful.
    Banno

    Try drawing and maintaining the distinction between belief and belief statements. That would be most helpful.

    Belief can be put into the form of an attitude towards a proposition. That is not to say that all belief can be. Belief statements can be. Not all belief are belief statements.

    The interesting thing about putting belief into the form of a propositional attitude is that in doing so we're changing the form...
  • creativesoul
    2.5k


    So...

    We have belief, belief statements, and belief reports...

    Reports account for that which existed prior to the report. "I believe" is always followed by belief statement(when uttered by a sincere speaker). "S/he believes" is always followed by a belief report.

    Belief statements are statements uttered by a sincere speaker, whether just talking or reporting upon their own and/or another's belief. Belief reports take an account of belief. Belief statements can be false if they contradict fact. Belief reports can be false if they contradict the belief being reported upon.

    An insincere speaker offers a false account of his/her own belief(for what is stated is not what is believed). Your earlier account of Jack's belief conflated your report(which consisted of statements) with Jack's belief(which does not; cannot).

    Is that helpful enough?
  • creativesoul
    2.5k
    It may be worth noting that some belief(particularly those about the rules of language) may be nothing more than an attitude towards a proposition.

    I'm being reminded of Gettier and unnecessary complexity. When the simplest explanation suffices, it would behoove us all to place a measure of good value upon such. Where complexity increases with regard to belief hierarchy, so too does possibility for mistake.
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