• Shamshir
    741
    Perhaps the issue lies with this 'direct experience'? As I've not spoken of direct or indirect, but merely experience - and without experience, naming and explaining is impossible, as the very acts entail experience.

    And to discuss an 'unknown possibility' - an unknown possibility is required, discerned through a shared border with known possibility.

    It appears to me as though you've got the problems backwards?
  • AJJ
    621


    I’d say we do have experience of possibility, of an indirect sort: the sense that things could have been different and the often unpredictable nature of events. The only problem I see is nominalism and conceptualism’s account of these apparent possibilities; I have no other problem to get it backwards with.
  • Shamshir
    741
    I’d say we do have experience of possibility, of an indirect sort: the sense that things could have been different and the often unpredictable nature of events.AJJ
    That's known possibilities of retrospect.
    That's what Conceptualism focuses on - missing links via rearrangement. Hence it views Past and Present.

    Whereas Nominalism focuses entirely on the Present, disregarding not experienced rearrangements.

    In simple terms:
    Nominalism is merely an accounting. Present
    Conceptualism mixes and matches. Dealing with present and past.

    But neither accounts for the unknown future possibilities. That's the myopia.

    The unknown can neither be physically nor mentally represented, but it can be accepted.
    Does it seem clear now?
  • AJJ
    621


    It strikes me that you’re making a rather nebulous point which doesn’t address what I’ve been saying. Nominalism and conceptualism can accept possibilities all they want, but they don’t to my knowledge give adequate accounts of them. I don’t think we need to know every possibility, past and future, in order to do that - to account for conceived possibilities is to account for those we haven’t conceived as well, i.e. they’re being accounted for in general, not case by case.
  • Terrapin Station
    12.5k
    That wouldn’t fit my understanding of each view in this context. Nominalism denies possible worlds exist apart from the world, conceptualism denies they exist independently of contingent minds and realism claims they exist objectively in the abstract. Beyond thinking about them it seems possible worlds that remain only potential are inaccessible on each view.AJJ

    Again, this seems a bit misleading. I'm an example of a conceptualist nominalist (so that's a type of nominalism), and while I'd say that counterfactual possible worlds talk is simply a way of thinking and talking about possibilities that could have been the case, I'd not at all say that the possibilities in question were only mental.
  • Terrapin Station
    12.5k
    That's known possibilities of retrospect.
    That's what Conceptualism focuses on - missing links via rearrangement. Hence it views Past and Present.

    Whereas Nominalism focuses entirely on the Present, disregarding not experienced rearrangements.

    In simple terms:
    Nominalism is merely an accounting. Present
    Conceptualism mixes and matches. Dealing with present and past.
    Shamshir

    Where are you getting that from?
  • Shamshir
    741
    Nominalism and conceptualism can accept possibilities all they want, but they don’t to my knowledge give adequate accounts of them.AJJ
    As established, they cannot.

    to account for conceived possibilities is to account for those we haven’t conceived as well, i.e. they’re being accounted for in general, not case by case.AJJ
    It isn't.
    But I wish to ask, do you mean as in if there are conceived possibilities it follows that there are unconceived ones as well?
  • AJJ
    621
    As established, they cannot.Shamshir

    Well there you go.

    But I wish to ask, do you mean as in if there are conceived possibilities it follows that there are unconceived ones as well?Shamshir

    As in possibilities that no one has thought of, yeah,
    I figure there must be. I think perhaps we’re talking past each other here - the OP sums up where I’m coming from with all this.
  • Shamshir
    741
    Fair enough.
    I'll just add not necessarily, and leave it at that.
  • AJJ
    621


    No problem :up:
  • Shamshir
    741

    Page one.
    This is why we say, by the way, that nominalists about abstracts/abstractions reject that there are any real abstracts. ("Real" there amounts to "objective" or "external to mind.")Terrapin Station
  • Terrapin Station
    12.5k


    How are you getting past/present from that?
  • Janus
    8.2k
    Thanks, I'll take a look. :smile:

    Edit: so I looked at the article, and I agree with the idea there that potentials are real (and not merely abstract or logical) but not actual or existent. The problem for a physicalism that allows that only physical existents are real is that potentials cannot be physical existents, which means the physicalist is then committed to saying that potentials are not real. This is just the problem of incoherence I find with Terrapin's view: he wants to say that potentials are non-actual, which I agree with, but he also wants to say that potentials are concrete facts, which is a straight contradiction. And of course he cannot give a coherent account of this, but does not want to admit it.
  • Shamshir
    741
    Internal to mind, meaning aspect, which includes retrospect.
  • Terrapin Station
    12.5k
    Internal to mind, meaning aspect, which includes retrospect.Shamshir

    What? What's internal to mind? What does the word "aspect" refer to in this context? And what does "retrospect" have to do with it?
  • Shamshir
    741
    You said they reject the external to mind. Aspects are the internal to mind, and retrospect is an aspect of the past.
  • Terrapin Station
    12.5k
    You said they reject the external to mind.Shamshir

    Are you talking about conceptualists? They reject that abstracts and universals (types) are external to mind. Not other things.
  • Shamshir
    741
    And the future is an external to mind abstract.

    Hence present aspects and retrospection are their limit.
  • Terrapin Station
    12.5k
    And the future is an external to mind abstract.Shamshir

    Well, unless we were talking about an eternalist (re philosophy of time). Eternalism/presentism and nominalism (including conceptualist nominalism) have no implications for each other. In other words, you could have a (conceptualist) nominalist eternalist, or a (conceptualist) nominalist presentist, or an eternalist or presentist who isn't a nominalist as well.

    Whether an eternalist or presentist (or any other possibility re philosophy of time), nominalists (including conceptualists) aren't necessarily going to think that possibilities aren't real. For example, I'm a conceptualist nominalist who thinks that possibilities are real--it's just that I don't think that possibilities are independent things (just as I don't think that space or time are independent things).

    The same thing goes for the past.

    And of course, even if presentists, (conceptualist) nominalists will say that the past was real, and the future will be real.
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