• Sam26
    2.5k
    These things are not beliefs but intimate and inevitable elements of human experience.Janus

    I'm not sure how you came to that conclusion. If you note the first sentence, it's beliefs about these things, hands, mountains, trees, etc. So we have primitive beliefs (animal beliefs) that are shown in our actions. I'm specifically referring to prelinguistic beliefs or nonlinguistic beliefs.
  • Janus
    15.7k
    I think 'beliefs' which carries the connotation of judgement is a less apt way of talking about the primordial (animal) features of human experience than 'elements'.
  • Sam26
    2.5k
    For me it seems misleading to refer to the background, consisting of those things which are necessarily involved in our everyday lives. like hands, feet, legs, arms, ears, eyes, mouths, hills, valleys, mountains, rivers, lakes, oceans, fish, clouds, sun, stars, moon, human technology in all its forms, architecture, music, painting, poetry, philosophy to name but a few in a list of countless numbers, as a system of beliefs.Janus

    You're completely misunderstanding what I'm saying. You're not even close.
  • Janus
    15.7k
    You're completely misunderstanding what I'm saying. You're not even close.Sam26

    OK, so what exactly am I misunderstanding?
  • FrancisRay
    400
    think your critique of Moore is a bit over the top.Sam26

    Perhaps you're right. I don't know him but am focusing on his argument about hands. If he cannot see the obvious flaws in this argument then I'm not tempted to read him.
  • Fooloso4
    5.6k
    The term 'hinge' occurs three times. The first:

    341. That is to say, the questions that we raise and our doubts depend on the fact that some
    propositions are exempt from doubt, are as it were like hinges on which those turn.

    Much of the discussion of hinges focuses on doubt and neglects the questions that we raise. He draws our attention to hinges not simply to address the problem of skepticism:

    342. That is to say, it belongs to the logic of our scientific investigations that certain things are in deed not doubted.

    The idea of hinges replace the ideas of foundationalism.

    343. But it isn't that the situation is like this: We just can't investigate everything, and for that reason we are forced to rest content with assumption. If I want the door to turn, the hinges must stay put.

    The "door" is our investigations. Rather than resting on foundations they turn on hinges.

    Wittgenstein only gives us one example of a hinge:

    655. The mathematical proposition has, as it were officially, been given the stamp of
    incontestability. I.e.: "Dispute about other things; this is immovable - it is a hinge on which your
    dispute can turn."

    The mathematical hinge is not pre-linguistic. Neither are others:

    298. 'We are quite sure of it' does not mean just that every single person is certain of it, but that we belong to a community which is bound together by science and education.

    142. It is not single axioms that strike me as obvious, it is a system in which consequences and premises give one another mutual support.

    152. I do not explicitly learn the propositions that stand fast for me. I can discover them
    subsequently like the axis around which a body rotates. This axis is not fixed in the sense that
    anything holds it fast, but the movement around it determines its immobility.

    It is the movement of the work of the community bound together by science and education by which our propositions, beliefs, and knowledge are held fast. The axis is not timeless or immutable, but change is not piecemeal.

    305. Here once more there is needed a step like the one taken in relativity theory.
  • Sam26
    2.5k


    What I'm saying is that our inherited background (that we live in a world with mountains, lakes, clouds, hands, feet, etc), which is not a system of beliefs, but informs what we believe, both linguistically and non-linguistically. So, there are, for example, prelinguistic beliefs (animal beliefs, bedrock beliefs, or basic beliefs), which are shown in our actions (OC 284, 285) alone, viz., digging a hole, using a hand, or even making a primitive tool. I'm not saying that the inherited background is a system of beliefs, but that the inherited background has a strong relation to what we believe, maybe it’s causal. So, if there were no hands, there would be no beliefs that correspond with the action of using our hands. The confusing part is parsing out the difference between the linguistic belief, “This is a hand,” as a statement, with an action alone that reflects a belief, they are quite different, and in many cases prior to language. This latter category of beliefs is foundational to language, which means bedrock (prelinguistic) beliefs are a prerequisite to language. Just as a chess board and pieces are a prerequisite to playing a game of chess.

    The point of course is that the inherited background gives rise to bedrock beliefs, and also gives rise to language itself. This means that without the inherited background the language-games of epistemology (justification and truth) wouldn’t get off the ground. In other words, knowing and doubting are necessarily dependent on prelinguistic beliefs. This is why both Moore and the skeptics are wrong. I believe that Wittgenstein identified something that no other philosopher, that I’m aware of, has identified, viz., the foundation of epistemology. The place where justification ends. It’s something prior to any talk of epistemology, something primitive. It’s the limit of epistemology in many respects.

    I want to say two final things. First, there are many kinds of bedrock beliefs, not just prelinguistic bedrock beliefs. There are bedrock beliefs that occur in language. For example, the rules of chess are bedrock beliefs, but they are linguistic.

    Second, Wittgenstein never edited OC, so whatever one believes about this or that text is speculation (at least in many cases), because we have no idea what Wittgenstein would’ve removed or added to the text. Although I and other philosophers have arrived at very similar conclusions.
  • schopenhauer1
    10.1k

    Shared intentionality- one way towards a theory of prelinguistic bedrock.
  • Sam26
    2.5k
    I don't see how that has much to do with I'm saying.
  • schopenhauer1
    10.1k
    I don't see how that has much to do with I'm saying.Sam26

    Prelingustic foundations for language? It’s necessary bedrock foundations without which, no language is possible.
  • Sam26
    2.5k
    Did you give me the correct link? That abstract is more about intentionality than bedrock beliefs? Much of what I'm referring to is bedrock beliefs and their relationship to our inherited background.
  • Fooloso4
    5.6k
    What I'm saying is that our inherited background (that we live in a world with mountains, lakes, clouds, hands, feet, etc), which is not a system of beliefs, but informs what we believe, both linguistically and non-linguistically.Sam26

    This is an odd and questionable use of the term 'inherit'. While it is true that we live in a world with mountains, lakes, and clouds, they are not ours to be transferred from person to person.

    The inherited background is a picture of the world:

    94. But I did not get my picture of the world by satisfying myself of its correctness; nor do I have it because I am satisfied of its correctness. No: it is the inherited background against which I distinguish between true and false.


    I'm not saying that the inherited background is a system of beliefs ...Sam26

    But, if I understand him, Wittgenstein is:

    298. 'We are quite sure of it' does not mean just that every single person is certain of it, but that we belong to a community which is bound together by science and education.

    142. It is not single axioms that strike me as obvious, it is a system in which consequences and premises give one another mutual support.

    152. I do not explicitly learn the propositions that stand fast for me. I can discover them
    subsequently like the axis around which a body rotates. This axis is not fixed in the sense that
    anything holds it fast, but the movement around it determines its immobility.
    Fooloso4

    the foundation of epistemology.Sam26

    I argued above that:

    The idea of hinges replace the ideas of foundationalism.Fooloso4

    298. 'We are quite sure of it' does not mean just that every single person is certain of it, but that we belong to a community which is bound together by science and education.

    142. It is not single axioms that strike me as obvious, it is a system in which consequences and premises give one another mutual support.

    152. I do not explicitly learn the propositions that stand fast for me. I can discover them
    subsequently like the axis around which a body rotates. This axis is not fixed in the sense that
    anything holds it fast, but the movement around it determines its immobility.

    It is the movement of the work of the community bound together by science and education by which our propositions, beliefs, and knowledge are held fast. The axis is not timeless or immutable, but change is not piecemeal.
    Fooloso4

    And, as I pointed out earlier in this thread, (repeating 94 cited above):

    94. But I did not get my picture of the world by satisfying myself of its correctness; nor do I have it because I am satisfied of its correctness. No: it is the inherited background against which I distinguish between true and false.
    95. The propositions describing this world-picture might be part of a kind of mythology. And their role is like that of rules of a game; and the game can be learned purely practically, without learning any explicit rules.
    96. It might be imagined that some propositions, of the form of empirical propositions, were
    hardened and functioned as channels for such empirical propositions as were not hardened but fluid; and that this relation altered with time, in that fluid propositions hardened, and hard ones became fluid.
    97. The mythology may change back into a state of flux, the river-bed of thoughts may shift. But I distinguish between the movement of the waters on the river-bed and the shift of the bed itself; though there is not a sharp division of the one from the other.
    99. And the bank of that river consists partly of hard rock, subject to no alteration or only to an
    imperceptible one, partly of sand, which now in one place now in another gets washed away, or deposited.
  • Sam26
    2.5k
    There's a pinch of truth in saying language games do not reflect the facts, since the facts, being truths, are a part of the language games around truth. Better perhaps to say that the games are embedded in the world – so the builder's game inherently involves slabs and blocks and cannot be played without them.Banno

    I disagree, if I understand you, that facts are truths. They are two different things. Truths are about propositions, and what makes a proposition true is that it reflects or mirrors a fact or state of affairs. I see this as a common mistake, viz., mixing up these two concepts. One could say that the language-game of truth is about facts, and whether a proposition say, "The Earth has one moon," is reflecting a fact.

    There's also the ill-informed supposition that language games only ever involve language, which even a cursory reading will evict.Banno

    I agree with this.
  • Sam26
    2.5k
    This is an odd and questionable use of the term 'inherit'. While it is true that we live in a world with mountains, lakes, and clouds, they are not ours to be transferred from person to person.Fooloso4

    Who in the world said this? Where did I even imply that the inherited background can be transferred from person to person? My point is exactly the same as how Wittgenstein uses it in OC 94. The inherited background is the world we find ourselves in, i.e., a world of mountains, trees, hands, etc. All of us inherit this background in virtue of the fact that we live in the same reality. Also, the inherited background is how we get our picture of the world.
  • Fooloso4
    5.6k
    My point is exactly the same as how Wittgenstein uses it in OC 94. The inherited background is the world we find ourselves in, i.e., a world of mountains, trees, hands, etc. All of us inherit this background in virtue of the fact that we live in the same reality.Sam26

    Once again:

    94. But I did not get my picture of the world by satisfying myself of its correctness; nor do I have it because I am satisfied of its correctness. No: it is the inherited background against which I distinguish between true and false.

    The inherited background is not the world but a picture of the world. Consider the "Mountains and Waters Sutra" of Zen Master Dogen:

    The green mountains are always walking ...
    (3)

    This is the inherited background picture he has inherited and gives to his disciples. To state the obvious, it is not our background picture.

    ... the inherited background is how we get our picture of the world.Sam26

    This is not what Wittgenstein says. "it", what is inherited, refers to the picture not the things pictured.
  • Banno
    23.5k
    I disagree, if I understand you, that facts are truths.Sam26
    I don't know what to make fo that. Are you claiming there are untrue facts? Or truths that are not facts?

    There is a recent tendency to take "fact" to mean "empirical evidence" or similar. I do not use "fact" in this way.
    Truths are about propositions,Sam26
    Nor this; it is propositions that are true, or not. A truth is a proposition.

    DO we differ in that you would suppose there to be truths that cannot be put into propositional form, whereas I would not call such things truths, but perhaps intuitions or sentiments?
  • Janus
    15.7k
    I have no argument with any of what you've said there, except I would not frame the background as a matter of belief, but as a matter of being, more akin to the idea of a "form of life" or "umwelt" than to the idea of "hinge propositions", That we have hands, mountains, oceans, planets and so on has, primordially speaking, nothing to do with propositions or beliefs, but these are simply attributes of the human-shaped lifeworld.
  • Sam26
    2.5k
    I disagree, if I understand you, that facts are truths.
    — Sam26
    I don't know what to make fo that. Are you claiming there are untrue facts? Or truths that are not facts?
    Banno

    If we go by the definition of a proposition in logic, then propositions/statements (which are not exactly the same, but close enough for our purposes) are either assertions that something is or is not the case. My e.g., "The Earth has one moon," is an assertion that something is the case. The assertion is making a claim about reality, viz., that there is a state of affairs that corresponds with the assertion. It mirrors reality. If it does mirror reality, then it's true, if not then it's false.

    Facts are neither true or false in themselves. It's assertions in the form of propositions/statements that are true or false. To say a fact is true or false is a misunderstanding of the concept. Facts are what make statements true or false. We check our statements against the facts, against the empirical observation that the Earth indeed has one moon. So, no, I'm not claiming there are "untrue facts." there are only untrue or false statements.

    And no, I would not say that there are truths cannot be put into propositional form. When we speak of true and false we are necessarily speaking about our claims (propositions/statements).

    I will be responding to @Fooloso4 and @Janus soon.
  • Banno
    23.5k
    Oh, I remember now. You take the picture theory seriously. That is, you carry it over into the PI, and presumably into On Certainty.

    As a question of exegesis, I remain unconvinced that this is right; But apart from exegesis, the picture theory is too close to what we might call 'conceptual schema' for my liking - after Davidson.

    So I don't see the distinction you seem to think sits between the fact that the moon is a satellite of Earth and that the moon is a satellite of Earth. It's as if you would say that "The moon is a satellite of Earth", apart from our language games about the moon and the Earth, or that "The moon is a satellite of Earth" requires no interpretation. On that view, truth is relative to this or that scheme. Better, I think, to give away the duality of scheme (picture) and world, and so "reestablish unmediated touch with the familiar objects whose antics make our sentences and opinions true or false".
  • Sam26
    2.5k
    No, that's still incorrect. I actually give up trying to explain myself. It's a useless endeavor. So I'll say goodbye, and let all of you hash it out. There will be no further responses from me. Don't get me wrong, I'm not angry, I just think this is a waste of time and effort. Let's see if I can make this my final goodbye. Take care people, but I must move on.
  • Banno
    23.5k
    fair call it all seems a bit useless. I’d join you if I had much choice.
  • creativesoul
    11.6k
    When someone's worldview is not possible until some particular state of affairs happens, that particular sequence of events is necessary for that worldview to emerge. That worldview is existentially dependent upon those events. Someone cannot believe that what so and so says at time t1 is true until it is first written by the author and then read by the reader/potential believer...

    Here we may have a proposition that acts like a hinge... opening the door of possibility to subsequent beliefs about the proposition... namely, whether or not it is true.
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