• The structure of a moral claim to truth

    My parents went into a serious hole paying for the house I grew up in, and the land included with it. My first reenlistment check would have paid for it three times over. Now, that amount would only partially pay for a decent used car.

    My dad gave me a quarter once, for not lying about wearing this ungodly stupid rain hat when I got off the bus. I gave my son $10 for raking leaves, and people used to give me $100 just to walk through their door.

    The more things change, the more they stay the same.
  • The structure of a moral claim to truth

    HA!!! What’s the average human worth? 23 cents, or some such? Inflation....19?
  • The structure of a moral claim to truth
    Not a statement known or judged to be true or false, so, not a statement (is there any other); the idea of a declaration is more appropriate, announcing to everyone that it is me staking myself to this truth.Antony Nickles

    In the same way that a statement could have no meaning to the subject receiving it as it may to the subject constructing it, to stake a claim to a moral truth by a subject, could have no meaning to the subject receiving that declaration. I don’t care what truth you stake yourself to, but at the same time, recognize the necessity of a truth you stake yourself to. But I sure as hell might care how you express it.

    a moral claim-ing can be general, which means anyone can do it, which is certainly a true moral statement.

    I meant general, as not specific (see discussion above re Wittgenstein), but also that I claim it to be a truth for all of us, which is a claim to community as much as it is to truth.
    Antony Nickles

    Ok, I see. Your statement, “Diamond proposes that a moral claim can be general, as universally claimed (...), most importantly, is that I am claiming it”, merely indicates the declaration that a universally claimed moral truth is also claimed by you. You are declaring your pledge of responsibility to a moral truth generally claimed by everyone, or, claimed universally.

    Yeah, but if there was a universally claimed moral truth, you saying you’d also claim it, is superfluous. It’s’ve already claimed it. You’re advocating a tautological condition, from which withdrawal is impossible. That’s herd mentality writ large, at the expense of the very intrinsic human condition of moral autonomy, is it not?

    Your responsibility is your own, but I hold this truth to be available to both of us, acceptable to both of us, but that you must come to it yourself or reject it, and, though, your reasons may be yours alone, that you are categorically answerable to them.Antony Nickles

    What truth? The truth Diamond proposed, or the truth that my responsibility is my own. For dialectical consistency, I shall suppose the former, the latter of course being uncontested.

    This is to have cake and eat it too, which are mutually exclusive. For any universally claimed moral truth, such as Diamond proposed, the reasons for the claiming of it are irrelevant, insofar as the judgement arising from those reasons, will always and only end in responsibility for claiming of that truth, no matter what it is. Otherwise, it is not universally claimed, hence, self-contradictory.

    Furthermore, there inhabits a categorical error: in the first there is said to be a universally claimed general moral truth, the rejection of which would be impossible, in the second there is the assertion of the availability of a possible general moral truth, but universality is not found in it, which permits its rejection. That I am categorically responsible for my reasons and by association my judgements given from them, does not immediately demand I am categorically responsible for accepting a general moral truth.

    If I must come to a truth of my own accord, under the auspices of my own reason, and that necessarily a priori, how is it possible for you to claim it must be acceptable to me? The only way you can know whether or not I accept, is the action I exhibit in response to it. But I can act as if in acceptance, but rationally reject the truth asserted as available to me.

    So, inevitably, we arrive at the Kantian rabbit hole, as all proper philosophy seems to do:

    “The old question with which people sought to push logicians into a corner, so that they must either have recourse to pitiful sophisms or confess their ignorance, and consequently the vanity of their whole art, is this: "What is truth?"...”


    no principle can be itself a judgement... it's easy to lay claim to a principle without ever considering the source of it, and consequently, the truth of its necessity.
    — Mww

    There is no necessity for it except that which you see in it, or are willing to be answerable for in its rejection,
    Antony Nickles

    Absolutely. The necessity contained in principles is as we see it, as we understand them, insofar as they are born from us. From that, it follows that granting the exception is negation of universality (of a general moral truth). Willingness to be responsible for rejection is negation of validity (of truth).

    Universal claiming of a general moral truth is not impossible. There can be a moral truth available and acceptable to everyone, although I argue its possibility is vanishingly small. The onus is on those advocating that it isn’t, to present, not a mere claiming of, but a justification for, why it isn’t.
  • The structure of a moral claim to truth
    Before getting started here, let me reiterate my appreciation for your philosophical acumen. I consider you as one of the few actually doing philosophy, even while disagreeing with, or perhaps not fully understanding, the philosophy you do. That being said, going back to the beginning....

    the structure of a moral claim is not a statement (known to be true)Antony Nickles

    .....does that mean not a known true statement, or, not a statement at all? I took it to mean not a statement at all, insofar as I hold the structure of moral claims to be grounded in the moral feeling alone. The expression of my poverty or well-being is also derived from feelings, but the pledge respecting that expression is a statement, and because it expresses a subjective condition a priori, it must be known by me to be true.

    Then you continue with.....

    the structure of a moral claim is not a statement (known to be true), but that it is a claim that expresses my/our poverty or wellnessAntony Nickles

    ...which appears to say, the structure of a moral claim is not a statement but it is a claim that expresses. But a claim that expresses can very well be a statement known to be true. Continuing....

    a claim that expresses my/our poverty or wellness(...). My claim is not a theory but my pledge to be responsible for its stateAntony Nickles must be assumed my poverty or wellness regards a moral condition, for it is certain the moral condition is the only condition for which full responsibility can be pledged.

    But still, the structure of a moral claim......not a statement, an expression by pledge, a pledge of acceptance, acceptance of responsibility, responsibility of my poverty or wellness, my moral poverty or wellness.

    Diamond proposes that a moral claim can be general, as universally claimed (...), most importantly, is that I am claiming itAntony Nickles

    This is what happens when language philosophy is treated as something useful. That a moral claim can be general, is very far from the claiming of it, and is the root of the haphazardness of the entire discussion. Diamond.....or you.....should have said, a moral claim-ing can be general, which means anyone can do it, which is certainly a true moral statement. Everyone DOES claim his morals, comes implicit in being a moral agent.

    When you say, “I am claiming it”, you intend to be understood as staking a claim on, taking possession of, subscribing to....some personal moral dictation. Which is what every moral agent already does; it is how he IS a moral agent in the first place. The claiming you’re doing, the claim you stake, the subscription to which you hold, is merely the principle of your responsibility for your moral poverty or wellness. All well and good, couldn’t be otherwise. But to say you are claiming responsibility for mine, or that I pledge anything about yours, is outside the realm of moral consideration. Hence, the question concerning the relation between morals to ethics.

    It’s easy to lay claim; it’s impossible to lay claim without thinking about it. Given enough thought, a theory falls out naturally, and from that, it is clear....

    The claim of a moral principal and an aesthetic judgment are expressed in a similar structureAntony Nickles only superficially true, insofar as aesthetic judgements are grounded in a subjective condition with respect to empirical predicates, re: the beautiful, but the claim of a moral principle, claim here taken from your implication of staking a claim in a moral principle, claim-ing a moral principle, taking possession of it implicitly re: the sublime, in your case apparently, responsibility, are grounded in a subjective condition predicated on pure practical reason. Similar structure in subjective condition, but nonetheless very different in their respective expressions, the former being a judgement expresses as a cognition, the latter being necessary ground for the judgement, expressed as a feeling.

    Even language philosophers, with all the needless verbiage of context and usefulness and whatnot, must acknowledge that no principle can be itself a judgement. Still, without a theory to show how, which Everydayman doesn’t care about but still feels, while the philosopher must because he feels, it’s easy to lay claim to a principle without ever considering the source of it, and consequently, the truth of its necessity.

    The structure of a moral claim to its principle.
  • What do we mean by "will"? What should we mean by "will"?
    That is one of the reasons underlying this thread.Michael Zwingli


    I’m just happy the subject here doesn’t have “free” attached to it.
  • The structure of a moral claim to truth
    ...what right do I have to pledge to be responsible on behalf of everyone?
    — Mww

    It is, as Kant would say, expressed in a universal voice (the 3rd critique)
    Antony Nickles

    At first glance, that’s a confusion of aesthetic judgements with strictly moral judgements. Are you saying the willingness to be responsible is an aesthetic quality?

    the moral realm, and its claim on us, is when we are lost as to what to doAntony Nickles

    Are you saying it would be better if moral claims did contain truths, and from that, given the general inclination to follow the law contained in truths, we’d be less lost as to what to do?

    Compliments on the infusion of the third critique. Can you say what percentage of your philosophy with respect to this thread is influenced by it? I mean, you did bring it up.......
  • 'Philossilized' terms in Philosophy
    terms, or sets of terms, that have a habit of stagnating discussions in philosophyI like sushi

    Take the guy making the greatest impression of his time, find the premier terms he uses....done deal.

    Regarding Western philosophy, Classical: matter/form; Medieval: mind/body; Enlightenment: synthetic/analytic; Modern: meaning/use.

    Loosely speaking.
  • The structure of a moral claim to truth
    I agree with Diamond in that the structure of a moral claim is not a statement (known to be true), but that it is a claim that expresses my/our poverty or wellnessAntony Nickles

    Yep. Me too. Except.....

    My claim is not a theory but my pledge to be responsible for its state (its life or death), ready to act in its defense, to explicate what is summarized.Antony Nickles

    ......if it is my claim, and expresses that pledge, why isn’t it only my poverty or wellness my claim expresses? Furthermore.....

    And the claim is not my individual thought, but in the terms of, and in it's place in, our history, our culture, our means of judgment, (all) our interests embodied in life, etc. It is not made just (only) for myself, but on behalf of everyoneAntony Nickles

    .....if it is my (moral) claim, how can it not be from my (moral) thought? And if that is the case, what right do I have to pledge to be responsible on behalf of everyone, for that which only expresses only my (moral) poverty or wellness?

    The problem he worried on was the fear of relativism.Antony Nickles

    “He” being the author critiquing Diamond, sounds a lot like the opening comment. It looks like spreading MY moral claims, or the personal claims of individuals represented as each “my”, over everybody, is fear of moral relativism. I must say I admit to making no moral claims for anyone else, and reject the notion of anyone making any moral claims I must regard without self-counsel, which makes explicit moral relativism.

    Do you think there is an intrinsic gap between moral claims and ethical claims?
  • Can physicalism and idealism be reconciled in some way?
    rather than trying to reconcile physicalism with idealism (...) can what we consider to be physical and what we consider to be mental (consciousness) actually be identical?Paul Michael

    On the one hand, that just seems like the ultimate reconciliation, doesn’t it? I doubt they’d be considered identical to each other, on the other, so the implication is they each would be identical to something else. But that’s merely extending the rabbit’s hole, from that which we don’t yet know, to that which we have much less chance of ever knowing.

    Why not leave them separate? Maybe there’s a clue in the fact no one has been able to sufficiently meld them, logically or empirically.

    Dunno....maybe someday.
  • What do we mean by "will"? What should we mean by "will"?
    what would seem to be the best, most unique (lacking semantic overlap) definition of the term?Michael Zwingli

    Best, most unique definition presupposes there is one. Yet.....

    the term has been used to mean different things by different people at various times.Michael Zwingli

    ....suggests there isn’t.

    Each be satisfied with what each thinks? It’s what we do anyway, so......
  • What do we mean by "will"? What should we mean by "will"?
    What is meant by will depends on how it is understood, either as a determining faculty (pace Kant), or as a determined identity (pace Schopenhauer), or something other than these. The first informs as to what I should do, the second informs as to what I am, the third is neither of those.

    What should we mean by it, follows from all that.
  • Can physicalism and idealism be reconciled in some way?
    Could we consider consciousness to be entirely physical in nature.....Paul Michael

    Yep. Been considered as, but not provably so.

    under this view all that exists is physical, but the physical is itself one whole ‘field’ of consciousnessPaul Michael

    All that exists is physical, which means one whole field of consciousness necessarily presupposes physicalism.

    The second part of the compound proposition has “physical” as subject, the copula “is”, and predicate as “field”. So the physical is one whole field (of consciousness) doesn’t necessarily mean the whole field, which permits fields of consciousness to contain something of non-physicalism nature. In order to reconcile this, some definition of existence, or of consciousness, would be required to eliminate such possible non-physical content.

    So....physicalism is reconcilable with idealism if consciousness exists, insofar as idealism is falsified, but not reconcilable if consciousness does not physically exist but is nonetheless real, insofar as idealism is obtained.

    Physicalism is reconcilable with idealism if the entire field of consciousness is existentially physical, the possibility of abstract field content, is falsified.

    Plus....what said.
  • Emotion as a form of pre-linguistic and non-conceptual meaning? (honours thesis idea)
    Devil’s advocate.

    This is to say that emotions aren't merely feelings (...) but rather that emotional processing (...) can cohere with and use imagination, just like reason does.intrapersona

    Doesn’t this reduce to the possibility I am merely imagining my anger or joy?

    If this process does what, or does as, reason does....why isn’t it just as much reason as reason itself?

    how can meaning be non-conceptual? (...) An example I would give is that when you look at a sunset, it is beautiful because of an emotional connection to visual imagery.intrapersona

    The sunset is beautiful prior to the concept of what a sunset it.intrapersona

    While this may show visual imagery is antecedent to conceptualization, it still leaves to show the meaning of beautiful is non-conceptual, or that the meaning in imagery in general is pre-conceptually emotional.

    Two words: aesthetic judgement.

    This type of processing would be pre-linguistic in nature (as reason is) and it would also be pre-conceptual (in a similar way to how logic is).intrapersona

    Granting that reason is pre-linguistic, pre-conceptual implies being generally aware that, but antecedent to being particularly conscious of, insofar as to be conscious of a thing is think a conception belonging to it. If emotional processing is, as stated, “a possible means to make sense of the world”, how can sense be made of that for which no conception has been thought? That there is a world, and that we are affected by it, is certainly given pre-conceptually, but that says nothing about making sense.

    Nothing wrong with thinking outside the box, so....good for you on that.
  • An analysis of the shadows
    Philosophy is a battle against the bewitchment of our intelligence by means of language"Janus

    Yep. In other words, in order to do philosophy proper.....stop talking.

    Doesn’t mean we shouldn’t philosophize as best we can.
  • An analysis of the shadows

    I know. Offering proof of agreement.
  • An analysis of the shadows

    Interesting, yes, and thanks for that.

    Still, that we used to grunt over who gets to sit where around the campfire, but now we talk about parallel universes....doesn’t say much more than evolution is a natural occurrence.
  • An analysis of the shadows
    Ehhhh....reason can’t tell us what not to think. It does a fine job of telling us how silly our thinking might be.

    To say I think about myself thinking myself, is easy, considering myself thinking myself is merely the object the subject thinks about. It is, however, the premier transcendental illusion, insofar as me thinking about me thinking about myself, is the same as me thinking me that thinks. To say I think myself, is to have the subject that thinks, “I”, and the object thought about, “me”, be identical. And at least as far back as Aristotle, a subject cannot be an object, for all objects of thought are either phenomena or conceptions, which makes “me” as the object I think either derived from sensibility, in which case I must have an intuition of “me”, an impossibility in that all intuitions are sensuous, or derived from understanding, which is the source of conceptions. But that which is derived from understanding must always inhere with the categories, which, while transcendentally deduced, are only empirically employed. Hence, either way, the “me” that the “I” thinks, ends as being impossible to cognize, hence, a transcendental illusion, or, an example of one of the “Paralogisms of Pure Reason“, when it is claimed to be a legitimate object of thought.

    “...From all this it is evident that rational psychology has its origin in a mere misunderstanding. The unity of consciousness, which lies at the basis of the categories, is considered to be an intuition of the subject as an object; and the category of substance is applied to the intuition. But this unity is nothing more than the unity in thought, by which no object is given; to which therefore the category of substance—which always presupposes a given intuition—cannot be applied. Consequently, the subject cannot be cognized. The subject of the categories cannot, therefore, for the very reason that it cogitates these, frame any conception of itself as an object of the categories; for, to cogitate these, it must lay at the foundation its own pure self-consciousness—the very thing that it wishes to explain and describe. In like manner, the subject, in which the representation of time has its basis, cannot determine, for this very reason, its own existence in time. Now, if the latter is impossible, the former, as an attempt to determine itself by means of the categories as a thinking being in general, is no less so....”

    We can think thinking in general, the fundamental ground of speculative metaphysics; we just cannot think our own thinking.
  • An analysis of the shadows
    When a word for tree was developed and applied to many kinds of trees, the recognition of the patterns of configuration that trees manifest must already have been in place.Janus

    True enough, but what if the care isn’t for words, but the origins of them, be what they may? Even to say words are mere inventions, they are always invented in reference to something. The word tree may very well refer to an object of experience, but what of words that refer to immaterial objects? And furthermore, what of immaterial objects that have words, which cannot be experienced at all, as opposed to immaterial objects that have words and we then physically construct their objects in order to acquire experience of them? In any case, because of the manifest distinctions in the references words represent, there must be something in common to them all, and at the same time, must be sufficient causality for their invention.

    it isn’t recognition of patterns we want to know about, it being common across species; it’s word development, which is not common at all.

    We are not born with the ability to count and calculate, even though we are obviously born with the capacity to develop these abilities in our interaction with the perceived diversifies and similarities of the environments we inhabit.Janus

    And we’re back to development, this time, abilities. Sounds like we’re justifying Locke’s notion of human tabula rasa, insofar as we’re all mentally empty when we arrive in the world. Which raises the question....if we’re empty and have to develop everything, how is that possible without the innate means to develop? Because the means for experience is necessary, and given the logical necessity of time, it follows there must be something like a first experience. How is....for convenience...our earliest experience possible in the first place, without that which is already present to make it possible? It is contradictory, or at least abysmally circular, to suppose we develop the means for experience, when it is the means for experience claimed to make them possible.

    But no abstract universal or notion of an abstract universal needs to be there for that. That comes later with the elaborate abstract analysis made possible by symbolic language.Janus

    If all the above is the case, this part cannot be true. There must be abstract universals, having nothing whatsoever to do with language, in order to make human experience possible, and in order to make it possible for humans to develop language.

    Now, back to Plato and by association, Kant, which in both are found the conceptions of universals and forms, albeit of different configurations and locations. Not sure about Plato, but in Kant, universals and forms are found in the human mind, more accurately, in human pure reason a priori, and exactly, forms are found in intuition and universals are found in understanding. Forms relate to what we sense, universals relate to what we think.

    (...are you ready hey are you ready for this
    Are you hangin’ on the edge of your seat?...)

    These abilities, I think it most plausible to believe, are developed in our concrete embodied interactions with the world; they could not be developed in abstraction.Janus

    How can the contingency of concrete embodied interactions with the world, EVER serve in the development of necessary (analytic, irreducible) truth, which formal logic and mathematics ALWAYS gives? Again....Hume’s mistake. Relying on empirical inference derived from mere habit, to justify that of which the contradiction is impossible.

    Nahhhh....the justifications for our developments are found in their conformity to experience, insofar as we can’t buck Mother Nature, but the development themselves must always arise from abstractions antecedent to experience.

    A = A no matter what A is.

    That this is caused by that says nothing whatsoever about every possible this.

    1 + 1 will always equal 2 no matter what 1’s and 2’s look like or stand for.

    That's my take on it anyhow.Janus

    Yep, me too. It’s all good. Something to pass the time, waiting or football to come on the talkin’ picture box.
  • An analysis of the shadows
    Doesn't the synthetic a priori, according to Kant, require prior actual experience to be able to then realize what is necessary to all possible experience?Janus

    Man, get ready to dodge the tomatoes.....bringing Kant into a discussion analyzing strictly Platonic shadows. Much of Plato is found in Kant, to be sure, but not this.

    Yes, we need experience of objects. We need something for synthetic a priori cognitions, principles and such, to have a bearing on, something to which they relate, as a means to understand reality. But the objects.....reality...... don’t give us either those principles or the numbers we use them on.

    Iff mathematical principles are created by human reason in response to observations, then the grounds for them must already subsist in reason. Observation isn’t sufficient, in that there is no cognition in perception. Even if mathematical principles are contained in reality, some rational human methodology must still subsist in reason in order to first make sense, then make use, of them. Parsimony suggests they arise in us, not reality, from which the sense of them is given immediately. Which is why I brought up primes. There is no way for us to derive the limitations contained in a number, just from the number itself.

    Mathematics is proof of the possibility of synthetic a priori cognitions, but not the only use of them, once their validity is proved. Hume’s mistake.
  • An analysis of the shadows
    So the qualities of divisibility of six objects is immediately perceptually apparent.Janus

    I suppose. From a further metaphysical reduction, however, any quantity that has been assembled can be disassembled. So the divisibility of some quantity of objects is only immediately perceivable iff an aggregate of them has already been assembled.

    But as long as I’m speaking number, and you’re speaking number of objects, we’re passing in the dark. I have no problem with the claim that math needs immediate perception to verify its principles, but I’m talking about the source of those principles a priori, which is why I started out with primes.

    Anyway......I’m ready to let this rest if you are.
  • How would you define 'reality'?
    if we (neuroscience!!) could figure us out, or how we can't see the real world, then we will understand how we are certain, or could compensate for our imperfection, or, as you say:

    What ground do we have to prove certainty, when what we use to prove it, isn’t certain.
    — Mww
    Antony Nickles

    The root of the whole problem, isn’t it. Neuroscience wants to be able to figure us out, insofar as we are composed of that which adheres to natural law, but if and when it does figure us out with the certainty of natural law.....will “I” disappear? Even if proved illusory, not needed in conformity to law, superfluous with respect to determinism writ we then relinquish relative truths?

    Beat the clock: shitcan “humanity” by proving roboticism? Yeahhhh-no, that’s just never going to work.
  • An analysis of the shadows
    do we begin with that which is given to us, or do we begin with that which is in us, that it is given to.
    — Mww

    I tend to think that what is in us is given to us as much as what is external.

    Yes, agreed, at first glance. We all are given the same kind of brain, all brains work the same way, reason manifests as brain function, therefore we all reason the same way. Nevertheless, while Nature may have seen fit to equip all of us equally, she has not seen fit to cause the manifestations of its use, to be equal across its capacity in each of us.

    My point was that we can arrange them in all the ways necessary such as to show the attributes that go to define the quantity six.Janus

    I don’t understand how merely arranging six objects in various ways shows the attributes that defines the quantity “six”. Arranged as a four-sided figure, arranged as a pyramid, arranged with each other as a succession of points.....there’s still just a quantity of objects represented by some number. A quantity can be conceived a priori as a mere succession of aggregates, a particular number just indicates a place in such succession. No need to arrange anything.

    And we couldn’t even conceive succession without antecedent relation, so....that takes care of that.

    All in good fun.
  • An analysis of the shadows
    Generally being affected by feelings is considered as being irrationally affected.Janus

    Agreed, but qualified by circumstance. Feelings getting in the way of reductionist empiricism, that is, the study of our relation to and understanding of the external world, is irrational, but feelings are nonetheless the necessary determinant factor in moral judgements.

    I understand categories as being abstracted from perceived differences of material and form, so I think of them rather as material than immaterial.Janus

    Such may be common practice, yes, and may be true under the auspices of certain cognitive theories. It’s all a matter of answering the age-old question......where to begin with metaphysical inquiries: do we begin with that which is given to us, or do we begin with that which is in us, that it is given to.

    Eenie, meenie, miney, moe......

    Are you saying that one example of say five objects cannot ground our understanding of number?Janus

    Yessiree, bub, exactly what I’m saying. I’m of the opinion we must already have the concept of “quantity” resident in understanding, or if you prefer, resident in basic human intelligence. As such, objects don’t ground our understanding of number, but number grounds our understanding of objects. What five represents would have precious little meaning if its place in a series of units didn’t relate to something beyond itself. It must be easy to see all particular numbers, therefore number itself in general, presupposes quantity. A bunch represents quantity, as well as a group, or a set, even a bucketful, but none of those make numbers necessary, which is sufficient reason to authorize something common to all of them.

    There is further reduction, if you’re interested. There is a logical proof that knowledge of anything is impossible, if represented by a single conception. In other words, I can never know what a thing is, if I can relate to it only a single word. It is from that proof, that quantity must be both naturally intrinsic to, and a necessary speculative constituent of, human intellect.

    So all the abstract attributes of the number six can be perceptually shown.Janus

    Certainly. What this shows, is empirical proofs for logical conditions. This in turn shows “quantity” in not the only concept naturally resident in human understanding. So saying, there is nothing contained in the mere perception of six objects, that some relation exists between them. There must be a relation between the objects and us, but when we perform operations on numbers, it is the relation between them alone that makes possible the operations we perform.

    There is nothing whatsoever given from, e.g., 29, alone, that says it is a prime number. That is it a prime, can only arise from some relation it must have. That it must have that relation comes from us, and what that relation is, can THEN be perceptually shown.

    Hopefully I'm not misunderstanding you and addressing something you weren't talking about.Janus worries. Hopefully I’m not over-analyzing. A vain hope, cuz I usually do, which explains why folks usually back gently towards the exists. (Grin)
  • An analysis of the shadows

    “...Thus transcendental and transcendent are not identical terms....”

    Not to let a silly -al ruin a good acquaintance.
  • An analysis of the shadows

    No. This is true.

    Look closer. Your other one is......different.
  • An analysis of the shadows
    but some Platonic immaterial objects are real insofar as we are affected by them.
    — Mww

    This is an important point, as it implies that the immaterial has causal power over us
    Metaphysician Undercover

    Which illustrates with perfect clarity, that the principle of cause and effect is not necessarily bounded by phenomenal constituency. The misunderstanding of which the Renaissance empiricists incorporating the newly-founded scientific method generally were guilty, and subsequent Enlightenment metaphysics remedied, even while maintaining that very same method.
  • An analysis of the shadows
    There are diverse instances of horses, instantiation of five and examples of the good, so I'm not seeing the difference you are attempting to refer to?Janus

    I have to keep this short, in that this is a thread concerned with Greek philosophy, of which I am rather less than proficient. When I say we are affected by immaterial objects, I mean to indicate, on the one hand rationally by feelings, and on the other epistemically by the categories. Of the former we are immediately conscious, of the latter we are not. The former is given, the latter must be synthetically derived.

    The argument ensues from the notion that the common understanding overlooks that when we speak of A number, or THE horse, or SOME good, and also irrespective of the extent of the series of any of those, there must be that which underpins each instance or series thereof. You hinted at it when you said “we are discussing number”, but then you went on to give an example with A number. Exhibition of an empirical example cannot ground the validity of immaterial objects, re: it doesn’t mean anything to discuss number by invoking five, because any congruent representation would be sufficient, and any example of anything is always reducible to that which it is an example of.

    But I don’t think I’m telling you anything you didn’t already know. I’m just offering an exposition of what I meant by being affected.

    I prefer the sense in which Kant and Husserl characterise the transcendent as 'that which constitutes experience but is not itself given in experience.'Wayfarer

    I would never be so presumptuous as to impinge on your preferences, but I wonder if you might want to re-think that. Or, to be fair, show me why I should.
  • An analysis of the shadows
    It's a squabble although I think to call it 'intellectual' is flattering it.Wayfarer

    Point. From respect, perhaps....squabble of intellectuals?

    I think it's incorrect to say the noumenal realm - numbers and universals - exists, but it is nevertheless real.Wayfarer


    Universals, and the like, do not exist, but are real as the constituents of rational thoughtWayfarer


    By immanent I just mean that we have every reason to think there is real difference in the world, real patterns or repetitions, if you like, that would explain our perception of a world teeming with different species. landforms, and elements.Janus

    Fine by me. Immanent refers to that which is possible to experience, guaranteeing distinction from the transcendent. As such “immanent existence” refers to a thing, but does not describe the domain in which it is found.

    So I don't say there are real numbers; immaterial platonic objects or ideas, I say that there is real number, shown to us in the diversity of the world of similarities and differences that we perceive.Janus

    I think there may be a problem with your characterizations, because some Platonic immaterial objects are real because they can be empirically represented, but some Platonic immaterial objects are real insofar as we are affected by them. Then it must be the case that empirical diversity and quantitative relations are not sufficient in themselves for describing them.

    Anyway, thanks for clearing that up for me.
  • What is philosophy? What makes something philosophical?

    That I like. I might have used axiomatic principles, but I didn’t come up with it, so.....
  • How would you define 'reality'?
    I don’t care what anybody says, just gotta appreciate a guy who has an answer for a question, that doesn’t do anything but make another question inevitable, and this......

    radical skepticism differs from regular doubt in that it is not just: how to identify a goldfinch from a robin, but: how do we know that is (an instance of) a table, or a piece of wax?Antony Nickles

    ....answers my question unmistakably. And it follows, that if no further query is necessary for some sufficient understanding of an original, the way is left open for a counterpoint consistent with the answer to it. So saying, initially at least, the distinction between radical skepticism and mere doubt may be characterized as a matter of degree. The degree is, of course, knowledge, insofar as there would be little additional knowledge needed to differentiate between like kinds, re: finch/robin, but much more to differentiate between kinds, re: table/wax.

    Skepticism is, at bottom, the consciousness of ignorance, and ought, instead of forming the conclusion of my inquiries, to be the strongest motive to the pursuit of them. All ignorance is either ignorance of things or of the limits of knowledge. If my ignorance is accidental, in which case I may not know a thing, or if my ignorance is necessary, in which case I have not the capacity to know a thing, it must incite me, in the first case, to a dogmatical inquiry regarding the objects of which I am ignorant; in the second, to a critical investigation into the limits of knowledge itself.

    But I understand that’s not what you intend for me to derive from your answer. Just my preliminary counterpoint. The main point is here.....

    Once we get to that question (taken from your “how do we know that is (an instance of) a table”), the fear is that there needs to be an answer or we end up in a place where we are asking how do we know what is real at all.Antony Nickles which I would counter with, superficially, it’s easy: in the first place, we know an instance of a thing from experience, and in the second, we know a real thing from the affect it has on us. Care must be given to temporal separations here, nonetheless, in that if an object has a word representing it, like table, the experience of it is not necessarily mine, but is necessarily the experience of the subject that assigned that representation objectively to it. It follows that I know an instance of a table because I already know what a table is, because somebody else gave it that name and I merely carried on with it. On the other hand, if it was possible I never had any experience whatsoever, in any way, shape or form, of this object otherwise represented as a table, it would be my first instance of it, its first affect on me, and as such, wouldn’t even be a table, to me. It would be nothing more than an “undetermined object of perception”. The implication of my radical skepticism regarding the “table” is invalid, insofar as I don’t even know it as anything.

    Now it is the question becomes, to whom does the fear intrinsic to radical skepticism belong? It cannot be the subject that represented the object as “table”, because he said it was that, and it makes no sense for him to be skeptical of that which he himself declares to be the case. It cannot be he who is subsequently affected by the same object, because it has already been established that that thing is a table, which will serve as the consistent representation in all its instances, and it makes no sense for that subsequent perceiver to represent it as anything else, for if he does, he is more irrational than radically skeptical.

    That which makes radical skepticism a valid conception, is epistemic certainty combined with the logic of the human cognitive system. We can think radical skepticism without contradiction, but it does nothing for us except stretch reason beyond its proper limits.

    Wittgenstein and others found is that the skeptic's abstraction from tables and goldfinchs to generalized terms like appearance and particular and meaning and true, stripped away our criteria for each thing and a context in which to apply them.Antony Nickles

    All the more substance for demurring from skepticism in general, and radical skepticism certainly, for they got the proverbial horse on the wrong end of the cart. We don’t abstract from, we assign to. Finches don’t inform us as to what they are, but only provide the data from which we tell them how they are to be known. That feat is accomplished with such speculative metaphysical predicates as appearances, particulars, meanings and truths, along with that which unites them all under a logical system, which doesn’t strip away, but PROVIDES our criteria for each thing and the context under which they are applied. All found out long before W and the others, and stemmed from Hobbes and Hume, moreso than others.

    All we should ever be radically skeptical of, is the incantation of absolutes, which no proper rational agency does anyway.

    What I was tracking was that if we want to ensure that the world is "real" (certain), then the fallible part must be me, my perspective, my individuality, my irrationalityAntony Nickles

    That agreeable. Although, on another note, I must say your “real” is not my “certain”. My certain is true, from which arises the possibility that the world can be very real without me being knowledgeable about the certainty of it.

    Math and formal logic and science are grounded within themselves.Antony Nickles

    That seems to be the current paradigm, but it overlooks the intrinsic necessity for human reason. What if the human cognitive system is itself a logical system? If that is the case, how could the certainty of math and logic occur, if not by that which is of its own kind? Maybe math and logic broke no falsity because they arise from a system that cannot permit it. Maybe we use math and logic as a standard for any truth because our system is mathematically logical. Maybe there’s only mathematical objects in Nature because we put them there. And so on......

    There’s your groundlessness and radical skepticism writ large. What ground do we have to prove certainty, when what we use to prove it, isn’t certain.

    Toljaso.....we’re not so far apart.
  • An analysis of the shadows
    I was backtracking for context, and it became apparent that if I was to comment on the dialogue you’re engaged in with , I’d first have to find out how you intend the term “immanent” to be understood, insofar as it asks “of patterns, of species and kinds”, in which “existence” they are contained, or perhaps, to which “existence” do they relate.

    immanent existence of patterns, of species and kindsJanus

    The answer to that determines the domain of, on the one hand, and to whether or not the criteria for and thus the viability of, universals in modern thought, has any consistency with the ancestral origins and employment of them on the other. All that has bearing on this....

    The drift of it was simply that all phenomenal objects (1) are composed of parts and (2) come into and go out of existence (i.e. they're temporally delimited). (....) Then I saw that numbers don't fall under this description.Wayfarer

    .....because there is sufficient reason, depending on what “immanent” is meant to indicate, for saying “numbers don’t fall” under the description of phenomenal objects. So if your “immanent existence” in not the same as the existence his phenomenal objects go “in and out of”, you’re each talking past the other. You’re not on the same page, which makes the entire dialogue a mere intellectual squabble, which, as we all know, is......he said, in his sternest possible (fake) Prussian accent.......“quite unbecoming to the dignity of philosophy”. which “existence” are patterns, species and kinds immanent?
  • What is philosophy? What makes something philosophical?
    There are as many answers as there are those that answer, but here’s one:

    “....Of all the a priori sciences of reason, therefore, mathematics alone can be learned. Philosophy—unless it be in an historical manner—cannot be learned; we can at most learn to philosophize. Philosophy is the system of all philosophical cognition. We must use this term in an objective sense, if we understand by it the archetype of all attempts at philosophizing, and the standard by which all subjective philosophies are to be judged. In this sense, philosophy is merely the idea of a possible science, which does not exist in concreto, but to which we endeavour in various ways to approximate, until we have discovered the right path to pursue—a path overgrown by the errors and illusions of sense—and the image we have hitherto tried in vain to shape has become a perfect copy of the great prototype. Until that time, we cannot learn philosophy—it does not exist; if it does, where is it, who possesses it, and how shall we know it? We can only learn to philosophize; in other words, we can only exercise our powers of reasoning in accordance with general principles, retaining at the same time, the right of investigating the sources of these principles, of testing, and even of rejecting them.

    In this view philosophy is the science of the relation of all cognition to the ultimate and essential aims of human reason, and the philosopher is not merely an artist—who occupies himself with conceptions—but a lawgiver, legislating for human reason. In this sense of the word, it would be in the highest degree arrogant to assume the title of philosopher, and to pretend that we had reached the perfection of the prototype which lies in the idea alone....”
    (CPR A838-9/B866-7)
  • How would you define 'reality'?
    Sorry for the delay; duties of everyday life, doncha know.

    the fear of the conclusions of the radical skeptic creates the need to answer him with a particular kind of solution, ignoring the ordinary means of judgment we already live within, because they are not a solution.Antony Nickles

    Hmmmm. I grant the need to answer the radical skeptic with a solution (rebuttal? refutation?) of a particular kind. But first, what does it mean to “fear” the conclusions of a radical skeptic? How would that conclusion manifest? Without understanding these, what kind of answer would I be able to formulate? If ordinary means of judgement result in truth, why wouldn’t that answer the radical skeptic, as a legitimate solution?

    I was going to ask before, but didn’t, so I’ll ask now: what is an ordinary means of judgement? Are there extraordinary means? I’m guessing you have an explanation for what judgement is, in order to distinguish the ordinariness of it we already live within, from something other than that.

    The ultimate groundlessness of knowledge is not an exception but our human condition, without an intellectual solution.Antony Nickles

    I grant the contingency of empirical knowledge is a human condition, but reject the groundlessness of it. Knowledge is an intellectual process giving a solution in itself, which suffices as necessary ground. There is irreducible certainty in human rationality, therefore knowledge is possible. That which is possible must have a ground.

    we want to ensure our being understood......Antony Nickles


    we want our knowledge to guaranty our acts beforehand.......Antony Nickles


    relinquish us from responsibility for failure.Antony Nickles

    Perhaps, insofar far as the failure is not mine, but the other’s. I try my best to be understood, and that I have tried relinquishes me from responsibility for you not understanding me. Nevertheless, I hold with no “overcompensation to an insecurity”. If I am not responsible, for having tried, there’s no insecurity for which overcompensation is a remedy.

    and so we save the world and internalize the failure as our own.....Antony Nickles

    Yes, in the case where it is not a human-to human relation, but human-to-world relation, where one mis-judges something about the world.

    we take responsibility to avoid being responsible.Antony Nickles

    I can see taking responsibility FOR avoiding being responsible, but if I do take responsibility, something I’m responsible for is presupposed. It would seem I cannot, then, take responsibility TO avoid being responsible. If I take responsibility I AM responsible for taking it, hence haven’t avoided being responsible at all.
  • Fitch's paradox of Knowability
    To know S is a proposition, it is not necessary to know S.

    Why is this so difficult?

    Because on the face of it, the sentence is a ridiculous contradiction, for to say “to know S is a proposition, it is not necessary to know S (is a proposition). Only when understood that the S known as a proposition is not the S it is not necessary to know, does the difficulty disappear. But that understanding is not implicit in the sentence itself, it must be deduced from it, in order to reconcile the contradiction. It follows that the only relevant deduction can be that the S to know is a form, the S not necessary to know, is a content. What remains is, to know S is a proposition, it is not necessary to know what is contained in S.

    Some people, not difficult; most people, irrelevant.

    Also not the difficulty to which I directed my comment.
  • Plato's Metaphysics

    It’s fascinating how much of that carries over to subsequent metaphysical renditions.

    Just goes to show....humans haven’t changed that much, from then to now.
  • Fitch's paradox of Knowability
    It makes no difference whatsoever to my argument that there is no such thing as an unknown propositionOlivier5

    I must agree. If there was a proposition that was not known, what would make it a proposition? The idea of propositions in general, not created, hence not known, is fine, but the idea cannot be its own object.

    Furthermore, it is true all propositions are known, iff the negation....
    1.) is a contradiction, in the form all propositions are not known. “All propositions are known” is itself a known proposition, therefore the contradiction holds, or,
    2.) is an impossibility, in the form not all propositions are known. In which case, some proposition not known must be proved, and the proof of it necessarily manifests as that proposition, which is then known, therefore the impossible unknown holds.

    Another way to look at it is, the truth of P as such, relates a conception to itself. Any proposition in which the subject and predicate are subsumed under the principle of identity, cannot be falsified. If there is P, or when there is P, it is analytically true P is. Here too, the negation is also true, insofar as if or when there is no P, then P isn’t. It follows that to suppose it cannot be known whether or not P is or isn’t, is patently irrational, bordering on the pathologically stupid.

    Mike drop, exit stage right.......

    (Or maybe.....enter giant hook, yank speaker by the neck stage right)
  • How would you define 'reality'?
    Tell that to Descartes.Antony Nickles

    Are you suggesting fear is synonymous, or compatible, with doubt? Either or, Rene was explicit in his doubt, but it can’t be said with sufficient justice, that he was afraid of it. In fact, it might be said he used it as a weapon. And if not a weapon, then certainly a most unconditioned judgement.

    Even that rascally demon, which is nothing but a means for fear-mongering, with respect to Descartes’ metaphysics at least, was merely the other of a pair of extremes, in accordance with the human system of rational complementary. As such, he didn’t fear it, or its potential, but rather accepted its formal necessity, for without it, his idea of god would be meaningless.

    And we do not succumb.....Antony Nickles

    ....making the inherent potential for failure and uncertainty seem like (the) only state (left to us)Antony Nickles

    .....IS to succumb. It just makes no sense to me, to argue the validity in fearing a mere potential, or in doubting the possibility of avoiding it. Why would anybody even get out of bed in the morning, if he was constantly wracked with fear for making potential failure the rule of the day? profit whatsoever in allowing the exception to the rule to become the expectation.

    If, as you say....

    capable of telling us its secrets,Antony Nickles

    ...and if, as The Esteemed Professor says....

    “...approach nature with the view, indeed, of receiving information from it...”

    .....then how exactly does this relate?

    The problem is the projection of realityAntony Nickles

    As regards reality, if we always receive, who or what is projecting? I submit or your consideration, we don’t project anything upon, nor do we tell reality or Nature in general, anything at all, but always and only tell ourselves how reality appears to be. As soon as this is understood as the fundamental condition of the human state of affairs, there is no legitimate reason to fear, or doubt, the inherent potential for failure and uncertainty in the “ inability to manage with the imperfect criteria of our lives”. As a matter of due course, it is to be given, for without mistakes resulting from failures, learning is impossible, other than by sheer accident, the occurrence of which can never be itself a fear nor a failure.

    On the other hand, you might be indicating by “projection of reality”, a relative behaviorism, in that once reality is understood in a certain way, it is then the ground for the treatment of its other inhabitants, supporting your “otherwise groundlessness”. In which case, I understand “projection of reality” as a euphemism for projecting oneself as a reflection of a particular reality, which is common practice, yes. Then, perhaps the fear of failure and uncertainty is with respect to how one will be received by his projection, which, rather than a fear of one’s own understanding, is a fear of being misunderstood.

    Perhaps we’re closer to each other’s theories than first appears. I make the case for wishing to be understood BUT NOT holding with any fear of failing in my own understanding, you make the case for the fear of not being understood BECAUSE of the potential for failure in one’s own understanding.

    Or not.....
  • How would you define 'reality'?
    Our compulsion for certainty is from our fear of the failure of our ordinary means of judgmentAntony Nickles

    Only the common, or the uninformed, succumb to such disaster. Everyone makes mistakes; no need to fear anything. The human compulsion for certainty is merely a reflection of our nature as rational agents to seek truth, and we seek truth because anything else is reducible to it. Simple as that.

    Kant's imposition of the terms of judgment as what blinds us to the vast variety of criteria of every different thingAntony Nickles

    We’re only to the remaining vast variety of criteria, after having determined the ones that fit. Every different thing already implies a vast array of criteria, but each thing has its own. Of course I’m blind to any variety of criteria that doesn’t fit my cognition of “water buffalo”, if that is what under judgement.

    All this just seems like a solution in need of a problem.
  • How would you define 'reality'?
    Wittgenstein will say we are compelled (to strip our world of any measure and replace it with a requirement for certainty).Antony Nickles

    As overblown as W makes that sound, it is actually what the human system attempts to do, if not attain to certainty, at least have some certainty by which to judge our comprehensions a priori. Hence, the three Aristotelian laws of logical thought, from which all proper deductive inference follows. Schopenhauer is credited for establishing the principle of sufficient reason to the three from the Ancients, but it is merely supplemental to the irreducible axiomatics.

    Still, to be compelled implies the limitless, insofar as it demands an end even if it be contradictory or absurd, the very epitome of irrationality, but to merely wish implies its own limit, and it is always better to be unsatisfied that irrational.

    I understand what you mean with....

    capable of telling us its secrets........Antony Nickles

    ....but I like this as much more fluent.....

    “.....(We) must approach nature with the view, indeed, of receiving information from it, not, however, in the character of a pupil, who listens to all that his master chooses to tell him, but in that of a judge, who compels the witnesses to reply to those questions which he himself thinks fit to propose....”

    ....found close to the bottom of the pile excavated from that 240yo hole.

    .....but not if we require that it be certain knowledge or necessarily stem from a cause.Antony Nickles

    Wait. Wha??? W says we’re compelled to certainty, but we should at the same time disregard the first principle of certainty, re: cause and effect?

    You’re one of those few hereabouts not liable to self-contradiction, so.......what did I mistake?