Ontology Introduction

So what's really going on?

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Skepdick
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Re: Ontology Introduction

Post by Skepdick » Sun Jul 07, 2019 5:02 pm

RCSaunders wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 4:36 pm
Are you serious? Actually, I'm not interested in learning any more than I already know about either.

[By "What methodology would you resort to in order to," do you mean, "how would you?"]
You really aren't very good at playing "join the dots" are you? So you choose to strawman me instead of acknowledging your own mistake.

So fine. I will treat you like a 2 year old.

You agree with me that everything exists.
I am sure that you would also agree that the colloquial phrase for "everything that exists" is "The Universe".

But we already have the disciplines of cosmology to learn more about The Universe at large (cosmos) scale, and we have physics to learn about The Universe at the small (quantum) scale. And then there are all the other sciences in between.

Could you help me out where metaphysics fits in this picture?

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RCSaunders
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Re: Ontology Introduction

Post by RCSaunders » Sun Jul 07, 2019 6:14 pm

Skepdick wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 5:02 pm
You agree with me that everything exists.
I am sure that you would also agree that the colloquial phrase for "everything that exists" is "The Universe".
No I would not agree that, "the universe," means the same thing as, "everything." "Universe," today usually means, "All spacetime, matter, and energy, including the solar system, all stars and galaxies, and the contents of intergalactic space, regarded as a whole," or all physical existence. Everything includes much more than the universe, such as all fiction, history, the sciences themselves, literature (the content, not the artifacts). That was the point I was making about you and the tooth fairy both existing, but existing in different manners (also called modes of existence). You both exist, you as an ontological fact, a living organism, the tooth fairy as a fiction invented to entertain children, but you both exist.
Skepdick wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 5:02 pm
But we already have the disciplines of cosmology to learn more about The Universe at large (cosmos) scale, and we have physics to learn about The Universe at the small (quantum) scale. And then there are all the other sciences in between.

Could you help me out where metaphysics fits in this picture?
It doesn't, nor should it. Neither does the study of English, or history or poetry. The physical sciences only deal with physical existence, that which is directly consciously perceived. Philosophy deals with what cannot be directly perceived. Metaphysics, which includes ontology, identifies the difference and their relationships. At least it ought to.

I hope this helps.

Skepdick
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Re: Ontology Introduction

Post by Skepdick » Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:09 pm

RCSaunders wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 6:14 pm
No I would not agree that, "the universe," means the same thing as, "everything."
Uhh. OK. I didn't realise this was a matter of choice...
RCSaunders wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 6:14 pm
Everything includes much more than the universe
This is rather absurd. You are effectively saying that there is more to existence than The Universe...
RCSaunders wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 6:14 pm
such as all fiction, history, the sciences themselves, literature (the content, not the artifacts).
Fiction, history, science and literature (content OR artefacts) are all phenomena which occur WITHIN the universe.

Surely you have heard of the Anthropic principle?
RCSaunders wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 6:14 pm
That was the point I was making about you and the tooth fairy both existing, but existing in different manners (also called modes of existence).
You both exist, you as an ontological fact, a living organism, the tooth fairy as a fiction invented to entertain children, but you both exist.
But both the tooth fairy AND me exist WITHIN THE UNIVERSE.

Hence, so far you have failed to provide a convincing argument as to why "The Universe" DOES NOT mean "everything that exists".
RCSaunders wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 6:14 pm
It doesn't, nor should it. Neither does the study of English, or history or poetry.
English, history, poetry. Phenomena which are occurring WITHIN THE UNIVERSE.
RCSaunders wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 6:14 pm
Philosophy deals with what cannot be directly perceived.
:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: You can't be fucking serious.

Can you give me an example of something that you can't perceive?

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RCSaunders
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Re: Ontology Introduction

Post by RCSaunders » Mon Jul 08, 2019 12:19 am

Skepdick wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:09 pm
Can you give me an example of something that you can't perceive?
You really cannot think of a single thing that you cannot see, hear, feel, smell, or taste?

If you really can't, I'll be glad to give you examples.

Skepdick
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Re: Ontology Introduction

Post by Skepdick » Mon Jul 08, 2019 7:28 am

RCSaunders wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 12:19 am
You really cannot think of a single thing that you cannot see, hear, feel, smell, or taste?

If you really can't, I'll be glad to give you examples.
I can think of many things I can't see, hear, feel, smell or taste.

I can't think of a single thing I can't perceive, since my mind is a measurement apparatus and everything that is knowable can be measured.

Like information. Which is ontological.

PeteJ
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Re: Ontology Introduction

Post by PeteJ » Mon Jul 08, 2019 12:34 pm

RCSaunders wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 12:19 am
You really cannot think of a single thing that you cannot see, hear, feel, smell, or taste?

If you really can't, I'll be glad to give you examples.
I suspect you're wasting your time. Your point is basic, ontology 101, but on this forum there seems to be a great deal of dogmatic incomprehension. I don't really underrstand it, and don't see nearly so much of it on other philosophy forums.

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Re: Ontology Introduction

Post by Nick_A » Mon Jul 08, 2019 2:45 pm

rcsaunders
You really cannot think of a single thing that you cannot see, hear, feel, smell, or taste?
How about "NOW?"

I can think about the existence of NOW but cannot see, hear, feel, smell, or taste it.

Skepdick
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Re: Ontology Introduction

Post by Skepdick » Mon Jul 08, 2019 2:50 pm

PeteJ wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 12:34 pm
I suspect you're wasting your time. Your point is basic, ontology 101, but on this forum there seems to be a great deal of dogmatic incomprehension. I don't really underrstand it, and don't see nearly so much of it on other philosophy forums.
The fucking irony in this post.

The taxonomy of ontology/metaphysics/epistemology is dogma. It's 2500 year old dogma at that.

To insist that it needs to be 'understood' hints at your own inability to comprehend any other philosophical position or epistemic foundation. Perhaps you reject perspectivism?

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Re: Ontology Introduction

Post by RCSaunders » Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:33 pm

Skepdick wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 7:28 am
RCSaunders wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 12:19 am
You really cannot think of a single thing that you cannot see, hear, feel, smell, or taste?

If you really can't, I'll be glad to give you examples.
I can think of many things I can't see, hear, feel, smell or taste.
Since that is what I mean by perception, those many things are things you cannot perceive.
Skepdick wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 7:28 am
I can't think of a single thing I can't perceive,
Your inability to think of something is not evidence of anything except a deficiency on your part, but I suspect you are using the word, "perception," to identify something other than seeing, hearing, feeling (including interoception) smelling and tasting.
Skepdick wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 7:28 am
... since my mind is a measurement apparatus and everything that is knowable can be measured.
Shades of Ayn Rand.

If your mind was only capable of measuring things, you could not know very much. Before you can measure something you must identify it, and before you can identify it you must at least suspect that it exists, but if you cannot see, hear, smell, taste, of smell it, you could not possibly know it exists to measure.

Even at the physical level most things cannot be measured. I call the superstitious notion that everything can be reduced to measurement the Pythagorean fallacy. When the Pythagoreans discovered everything could not be measured, because many physical things have incommensurable magnitudes, (e.g. the sides and hypotenuse of an isosceles right triangle, the diameter and circumference of a circle) many of them committed suicide.

Even when things have commensurable measurable attributes, almost nothing can be measured by any specific unit of measure perfectly. The best measurements are still approximations. If you really think the mind is mathematical in nature, perhaps you should say, "the mind is an approximation apparatus."

When strange attractors and the whole field of fractal math were discovered, it was also discovered than many physical phenomena cannot be described in measurable terms, and even though fractal events are determined physically, they cannot be mathematically predicted.

Almost nothing we know is measurable.

Either/or attributes liquid, solid, gas, plasma, dead, living, pregnant, lie. Something is either dead or alive, there are no degrees or measurement. One is either pregnant or they are not.

Things humans use, such as food, poison, clothing, medicine, tools, machines, books, computers. Sure food can be weighed, the lethality of poison estimated, but whether something is food or poison is not determined by any measurement, but by what it is used for.

mind attributes and functions, such as reason, concept, percept, memory, imagination. None of these can be described mathematically or measured.

philosophy and its branches, such as metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, politics, aesthetics, logic. There is no commensurable unit of measure for epistemology.

language, its parts and structures such as verbs, nouns, pronouns, prepositions, adjectives, adverbs, conjunctions, declension, conjugation, subject, predicate, participle, gerund, infinitive, spelling, and alphabet, cannot be defined or known mathematically.

adjectives, such as mysterious, lost, found, important, funny, true, and false are all immeasurable.

relationships like father, sister, cousin, uncle, grandmother, leader, employee. There are no degrees of fatherness, or brotherness.

percepts sweetness, bitterness, greenness, heaviness, coldness, smoothness, loudness, acridness, pain. Especially pain. The fact that pain cannot be measured is why doctors must depend on a patient's testimony to asses pain on the imaginary scale of one to ten.

I know you'll not be interested in this, but others may be interested in understanding the absurdity of claiming the mind is, in some sense, "mathematical." Since mathematics, and the methods of measurement were invented by man, man's invention would have to have existed before the means for inventing it (the mind) existed.

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RCSaunders
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Re: Ontology Introduction

Post by RCSaunders » Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:50 pm

Nick_A wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 2:45 pm
rcsaunders
You really cannot think of a single thing that you cannot see, hear, feel, smell, or taste?
How about "NOW?"

I can think about the existence of NOW but cannot see, hear, feel, smell, or taste it.
That is an interesting example. I like it, but Skepdick won't.

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Re: Ontology Introduction

Post by Skepdick » Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:53 pm

RCSaunders wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:33 pm
Since that is what I mean by perception, those many things are things you cannot perceive.
And why should my perceptive abilities be dependent on your meaning?

Have you ever heard the idiom of Wittgenstein's Ruler?

Unless you have confidence in the ruler’s reliability, if you use a ruler to measure a table, you may also be using the table to measure the ruler.
RCSaunders wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:33 pm
but I suspect you are using the word, "perception," to identify something other than seeing, hearing, feeling (including interoception) smelling and tasting.
And you would be correct. By 'perception' I mean: Perception (from the Latin perceptio) is the organization, identification, and interpretation of sensory information.

Damn. That pesky 'information' keeps popping up.
RCSaunders wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:33 pm
If your mind was only capable of measuring things, you could not know very much. Before you can measure something you must identify it
That's an interesting proposition. You seem to be claiming that identification is a different process to measurement.

How would you identify a lepton without measuring its spin?
How would you identify an Oxygen atom without measuring the number of protons in its nucleus?
Last edited by Skepdick on Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:57 pm, edited 5 times in total.

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RCSaunders
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Re: Ontology Introduction

Post by RCSaunders » Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:55 pm

PeteJ wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 12:34 pm
I suspect you're wasting your time. Your point is basic, ontology 101, but on this forum there seems to be a great deal of dogmatic incomprehension. I don't really underrstand it, and don't see nearly so much of it on other philosophy forums.
Alas, I'm afraid you are right. Still it is an opportunity to see how well I can clarify and express what I know is true. I have no illusions about convincing anyone else.

I'd be interested in knowing what other philosophy forums you have found that are more mature.

Skepdick
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Re: Ontology Introduction

Post by Skepdick » Mon Jul 08, 2019 4:00 pm

RCSaunders wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:55 pm
Alas, I'm afraid you are right. Still it is an opportunity to see how well I can clarify and express what I know is true.
Seems we are at an impasse. You think that what you know is true. I think what I know is true.

There seem to be two truths. So either I am right (multiple truths exist). Or one of us is wrong...

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Re: Ontology Introduction

Post by RCSaunders » Mon Jul 08, 2019 4:18 pm

Skepdick wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:53 pm
You seem to be claiming that identification is a different process to measurement.
Not at all. For those few things which are identified, wholly or in part, by their measurable qualities, measurement may be part of or their entire identification. For everything else, measurement is not involved in their identification at all.

If measurement were necessary for identification, no child (or many adults) who have not learned what measurement is or how to used it would ever be able to identify anything. I'm pretty sure most children can identify their own parents, home, and toys without measuring them.
Skepdick wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:53 pm
How would you identify a lepton without measuring its spin?
A lepton is, any of a class of six elementary fermions, two in each of the three generations of fundamental fermions (one negatively charged and one neutral), and including the electron, electron neutrino, muon, muon neutrino, tauon, and tauon neutrino, together with their associated antiparticles, the antileptons. Leptons participate in weak interactions, but not strong interactions, and have masses generally less than those of mesons and baryons.
Skepdick wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:53 pm
How would you identify an Oxygen atom without measuring the number of protons in its nucleus?
An Oxygen atom is a single atom of the chemical element oxygen, a nonmetallic element constituting 21 percent of the atmosphere by volume that occurs as a diatomic gas, O2, and in many compounds such as water and silica, and in iron ore. It combines with most elements, is essential for plant and animal respiration, and is required for nearly all combustion. Ozone, O3, is an allotrope of this element. Atomic number 8; atomic weight 15.9994; melting point -218.79°C; boiling point -182.9°C; gas density at 0°C 1.429 grams per liter; valence 2.

Skepdick
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Re: Ontology Introduction

Post by Skepdick » Mon Jul 08, 2019 4:25 pm

RCSaunders wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 4:18 pm
Not at all. For those few things which are identified, wholly or in part, by their measurable qualities, measurement may be part of or their entire identification. For everything else, measurement is not involved in their identification at all.
Measurement is involved in EVERY SINGLE IDENTIFICATION. EVERY time.

An unidentified object before you could be any number of things. In order to nail it down to a single conclusion you need to disambiguate e.g dismiss alternative classification.

Disambiguation requires measurement.
RCSaunders wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 4:18 pm
If measurement were necessary for identification, no child (or many adults) who have not learned what measurement is or how to used it would ever be able to identify anything. I'm pretty sure most children can identify their own parents, home, and toys without measuring them.
Nonsense. You never had to learn what 'breathing' is before you could perform it. You never had to learn pattern-recognition before your visual cortex handled it for you.

Competence does not require comprehension.
RCSaunders wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 4:18 pm
A lepton is, any of a class of six elementary fermions, two in each of the three generations of fundamental fermions (one negatively charged and one neutral), and including the electron, electron neutrino, muon, muon neutrino, tauon, and tauon neutrino, together with their associated antiparticles, the antileptons. Leptons participate in weak interactions, but not strong interactions, and have masses generally less than those of mesons and baryons.
I am not asking you for the textbook definition. I am asking you for the actual process.

If any particular lepton is any one of six elementary fermions, then you have a 6:1 possibility of correctly guessing which one you have before you.

How would you identify it (e.g reduce your uncertainty from 6:1 down to 1:1) without taking any measurements?

RCSaunders wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 4:18 pm
An Oxygen atom is a single atom of the chemical element oxygen, a nonmetallic element constituting 21 percent of the atmosphere by volume that occurs as a diatomic gas, O2, and in many compounds such as water and silica, and in iron ore. It combines with most elements, is essential for plant and animal respiration, and is required for nearly all combustion. Ozone, O3, is an allotrope of this element. Atomic number 8; atomic weight 15.9994; melting point -218.79°C; boiling point -182.9°C; gas density at 0°C 1.429 grams per liter; valence 2.
Again. You are giving me the textbook definition. I am asking you HOW you are going to identify an arbitrary atom as being an "Oxygen atom" without taking any measurements.

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