Conde Lucanor wrote:
We don't know who shot John F. Kennedy. Therefore, the case remains open.
Yanomami people don't know cars exist. Therefore, they find no use in gasoline.
Philosophers don't know noumena exists. Therefore, they cannot proclaim its existence.
I don't know that my senses are reliable. Therefore, I must put reliability on something else.
The above sentences show that you can make inferences based on the premise of not knowing something.
No they don't. The first just says the same thing twice.
In the second, saying the Yanomani people don't
know something is
to assert something. The correct parallel would be 'I cannot know if the Yanomami people know cars exist'
. If that was the case, then you could not go on to deduce whether they know of a use for gasoline.
The third is tautological, like the first. To 'not know' something means the same as 'being unable to proclaim it is (or isn't) the case.
The fourth is not reasonable, let alone logical. If I do not know that X is is true, it doesn't follow that I must find a Y to put my faith in. That sounds rather 'needy'!
However, you're confusing the form of logic with the content of the clauses in a set of propositions. In a classic form of logic, syllogism, each premise is a complete sentence with a meaningful proposition, that could be either true or false. Their content could be anything: "God is almighty", "the French are good kissers", etc. And then the logical connection between the premises leads to a conclusion.
That's right; so you agree with what I wrote; Logic is not about beliefs. It is only about the relationships between propositions.
You may be caught trying to deceive on what you really think, but for the deception to work as such, it must be based on the assumption that the content of the speech act conveys the state of mind of the speaker. In this case, people might think you are crazy or ignorant, until there's a clue from context or something else, that you don't really mean what you said, i.e. you might be joking.
This has nothing to do with logic; logic is nothing to do with 'deception' or 'ignorance' or 'joking'. Once again, logic is only about the relationships between propositions.
Me: Then let me be clear: I say there is no possibility of knowing - as an empirical fact - that there is a noumenal world (and if there is one its nature) - because empirical facts all relate to the phenomenal world.
That is a false argument for several reasons. First, you have defined the noumenal as that which is not reached by experience, an analytic proposition not known to be true. You have also defined phenomena as that which is reached by experience (actually the experience itself), an analytic proposition not known to be true.
definitions. I have explained what the words 'noumena' and 'phenomena' mean, with reference to Kant and other philosophers. You seemed to go along with it. If you now want to suggest an alternative meaning for those words then go ahead.
Then you advance the synthetic proposition that the noumenal can not be reached by experience because experience does not reach the noumena, only phenomena. Circular reasoning and you have actually said nothing.
No, it is still analytic. Experience/phenomena necessarily involve a subject; us. But the noumenal would be what things are independently of the subject. So since we are always a subject we can never know the noumenal. It is what these words mean.
Many philosophers have come up with alternative approaches, claims that we can approach the noumenal from another direction, or that we should understand both words in a different way. But as far as I can tell, you understand both words in the sense I have given, where the meaning of one excludes the other, yet you still want to say they are the same thing.
You're just confusing yourself unnecessarily. It's pretty obvious that the proposition is constructed grammatically from the point of view of the speaker, but this is completely irrelevant to the problem, as any pronoun could have been used and nothing would change.
That is not the case. (1) 'God (it) exists
' and (2) 'I believe God exists'
do not mean the same thing. You can tell this because (1) can be false but (2) can be true, and vice versa.
Me: Yes...more or less. So when you declare 'there is just the one-and-only-world' which is it? But you do not say!
In case you missed it, it's the physical world.
' refers to your comment: Here applies the distinction between analytic and synthetic propositions.
I was asking if your claim 'there is just the one-and-only-world'
was meant to be analytic or synthetic. Saying 'it's the physical'
is not enlightening!
The problem is not that you're a solipsist, but that you're a partial time solipsist, only being skeptical of objective truths when they don't fit your argument, and later positing other statements as truths when they do fit. In each instance, you avoid following the logical consequences. For example, if you really wanted to be the radical skeptic, to be consistent with that line of thought all you could have ended up saying was: "anything goes", but you refuse to follow the logical consequences.
I think that all claims of truth are contextual.
I think that there is no ultimate certainty about anything. So, for example, we can say that something is true in the context of science, meaning it is supported by the sort of evidence used within science.
So, 'anything goes
' is not
the case within
science. I cannot declare that the earth is flat. However, if I move outside
science by saying 'suppose we are all in the Matrix
' or 'suppose an evil demon is feeding us illusions
' then I can no longer be certain the earth is not flat. And if we refused to put a statement into any context at all
, then yes; 'everything goes'
But if you know better; if you are in possession of some ultimate metaphysical absolute certainty, so that when you say 'the grass is green'
there is no possibility that this could be questioned on any level, I look forward to hearing your argument.
That two or more things are part of the physical realm, does not mean they cannot be differentiated.
Exactly, and whether we do or not would be your choice. You can draw attention to the difference between a dog and a cat, or their similarities. There is no right answer, or rather which description was right would depend on the context of any discussion. I do not see how this helps.
Me: To talk at all about something 'representing', (the 'one and only world' being 'represented' in our heads) then you need something for it to be representing to. In that case we have a dualism;
No, as I said, there's no substance dualism in an object and its image.
So what did 'represent'
mean? If I say a landscape painting 'represents
' a view of trees, fields etc., I would not mean 'the landscape picture is the same substance as the trees, fields etc
.' And when I look at that landscape painting, I do not think that my brain is now full of trees, fields etc. - plus the canvas and pigment of the painting.
The way to avoid these absurdities is simply to acknowledge that when we say something is 'represented
', we are not making an absolute claim. The landscape painting resembles
the trees, field etc. It is like them in some ways, but not in others. So if we say it is a 'true
' representation, this is understood to be true in the context of paintings,
not in some absolute sense.
No, that's not what I said. My "internal" experiences are always subjective, but by way of such experiences themselves I can realize that they are determined by conditions independent and prior to my perception, thus becoming objective to my intellect.
So that is a dualism. There are the 'conditions independent and prior to my perception
' which are distinct from 'My "internal" experiences (which) are always subjective'.
I do not see how they can become 'objective to my intellect
'. If they are objective
, then they must be independent of your
In the case of the perception of colors, what is being perceived is one property of objects to reflect light with different wavelengths, all of which (objects and wavelengths) exist independent of my perception, but produce a sensation in which another set of conditions in my eyes participates. As personal as the sensation of color may be, it is always related to objects that exist independently of my perception, and still dependent of the physical conditions of the objects and the organ of perception (the eyes),...
This is still begging the question by using the word 'related
We can say that everything is 'related'
to everything at some level; all events are events, all objects are objects, all words are words, all ideas are ideas....We return to the same theme; if the word 'related'
is to have a meaning it must be given a context; 'related - how?
To return to the analogy of the landscape painting, if I am to say that it 'represents
' the scenery I would need to be able to say how, in what way. Similarly, if our personal sensation of colour is related
to what is 'independent of perception
' then we need to say how; if we just list all
the things involved in perception (light, pigments, the eye, the nerves, chemistry, physics...) we aren't describing a relationship.
...so much as to be able to determine what colors people get wrong when they present anomalies in their vision. That is possible because we can independently validate the results of viewing events with different observers and conditions.
Yes, validate - as understood in that context.
If somebody cannot distinguish red from green in the same way as most people it is valid to say they are 'colour blind'. But we do not mean they literally cannot see red things. Nor do we mean that everyone else can always
distinguish red from green (in the dark, for instance). We do not think their colour perception is wrong in the sense that they are telling lies. Nor that their internal sensation is not a real internal sensation. Nor that the range of colours most humans can distinguish are in some sense 'more valid' than the range of colours a bee can distinguish. 'Validate
' has no absolute meaning.
So, same old theme. If we are to claim we are in possession of TRUTH; some metaphysical standard that will apply in the same way to everything, irrespective of context, then we have to say where we got it. The answers usually involve the idea that something in our human nature is entirely different to the world of normal experience, an opening to a world-beyond-the world. This might be 'pure reason', it might be 'revelation' and so on. I think you have to come up with something along those lines.