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PhilosophyandLogic

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Philosophy103:IntroductiontoLogic
TheNatureofPhilosophyandLogic
Abstract:Thesubjectsofphilosophyandlogicarebroadlycharacterized.

I.WhatisPhilosophy?

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A.ThederivationofthewordisfromtheGreekroots:
1.philoloveof,affinityfor,likingof
Asinthewords...
philandertoengageinloveaffairsfrivolously
philanthropylovemankindingeneral
philatelytocollectpostagestamps
phileonehavingalovefor,e.g.anglophile
philologyhavingalikingforwords
2.sophiawisdom
Asinthewords...
sophistonewholovesknowledge
sophomoreonewhothinksheknowseverything
sophisticatedonewhoisknowledgeable
B.Asuggesteddefinition:philosophyisthesystematicinquiry
intotheprinciplesandpresuppositionofanyfieldofinquiry.
1.Psychologically,philosophyisanattitude,anapproach,ora
callingtoanswer,ortoask,oreventocommentuponcertain
peculiarproblems(i.e.,problemssuchasthoseusuallyinthe
mainbranchesofphilosophydiscussedbelow).
2.Eventuallywemustdespairofanabstractdefinitionandturn
towhatphilosophersdoi.e.,thepracticeofphilosophy
II.TheMainBranchesofPhilosophyaredividedastothenature
ofthequestionsaskedineacharea.Theintegrityofthesedivisions
cannotberigidlymaintained.
A.Axiology:thestudyofvaluetheinvestigationofitsnature,
criteriaandmetaphysicalstatus.
1.Characterizationofsomefeaturesofthedefinition:

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a.Natureofvalue:isvalueafulfillmentofdesire,pleasure,a
preference,orsimplysomekindofhumaninterest?
b.Criteriaofvalue:istherenoaccountingfortaste(de
gustibusnon(est)disputandum)orcanrulesandstandardsof
valuesbeset?
c.Statusofvalue:howarevaluesrelatedtoscientificfacts?
Whatultimateworthdohumanvalueshave,ifany?Isvalue
dependentuponthepresenceofhumanbeings?
2.Axiologyissubdividedinto...
a.Ethics:thestudyofvaluesinhumanbehaviorthestudyof
moralproblemswhichseekstodiscoverhowoneoughtto
act,nothowonedoesinfactactorhowonethinksone
shouldact.
b.Aesthetics:thestudyofvalueintheartsthestudyofthe
beauty,sublimity,andprinciplesoftaste,harmony,order,and
pattern.
B.Epistemology:thestudyofknowledge,inparticular,thestudy
ofthenature,scopeandlimitsofhumanknowledge.
1.Theinvestigationoftheorigin,structure,methods,and
validityofknowledge.

2.Asanexampleofordersofknowledge,considerthe
statement,"Theearthisround."Thiscanbesuccessively
translateddependinguponcontextas...
Theearthisspherical.
Theearthisanoblatespheroid(i.e.,it'sflattenedatthepoles).
Butwhatofthemountains,oceans,andsoforth?
Evenifwesurveyedexactlytheshape,theprocessof
surveyingwoulditselfmeasurablychangetheshapeofthe
earthe.g.,footprintsandindentationsformedbyour
measuringinstruments.Inpractice,cantheexactshapeever
beactuallyknown?(No,buteventhoughwecanprobably
neverknowtheexactshapeoftheearthatanygivenmoment,
wedoknowtheearthhasanexactshape.)
3.Considertwowellknownepistemologicalproblems:thefirst
notsolvable,thesecondsolvable.
a.Russell'sFiveMinuteWorldHypothesis:Supposetheearth
werecreatedfiveminutesago,completewithmemory
images,historybooks,geologicalrecords,etc.Thatis,atthe
momentofcreation,theuniversewouldhavealltheevidence
thatitwasbillionsofyearsoldalready"packedin."How
coulditeverbeknownthatthecreationoftheuniversedid
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notoccurfiveminutesago?
b.Supposeeverythingintheuniverseweretoexpand
uniformlysothateverythingwasonehundredtimeslarger.
Howwouldweeverknowit?
C.OntologyorMetaphysics:thestudyofwhatis"really"real.
Metaphysicsdealswiththesocalledfirstprinciplesofthenatural
orderortheultimategeneralizationsavailabletothehuman
intellect.
1.Whatkindsofthingsexist?Howdotheyexist?
a.E.g.,ideashavenosize,shape,color,etc.Myideaofthe
EmpireStateBuildingisquiteassmallasmyideaofabook.
Doideasexistinthesamemannerthatphysicalobjectsexit?
b.E.g.,considerthetruthsofmathematics:Howdogeometric
figuresexist?Doesapoint(Euclid's"thatwhichhasno
parts")existapartfromtheideaofit?
c.Whatisspiritmadeof?OrSoul?OrMatter?OrSpace?Or
avacuum?
III.Towhichofthesebranchesofphilosophydoyouthinklogic
belongs?
A.Logic:thestudyofthemethodsandprinciplesusedin
distinguishingcorrectfromincorrectreasoning.
B.Ourknowledgeisinterrelatedbylogic.Itformsthefabricof
thesciencesbyensuringtheconsistencyofthestatementsthat
composethem.
C.Hence,logicisusuallyconsideredasubdivisionof
epistemology,although,ofcourse,logicisusedinallareasof
philosophy.
RecommendedReading:
DefinitionsofPhilosophy:acollectionofproposeddefinitionsbyAndyStroble.
Logic:theentryfromthe11theditionoftheEncyclopediaBritannica.
Logic:subjectentryfromWikipedia.
Philosophy:theentryfromthe11theditionoftheEncyclopediaBritannica.

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