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(Meta-philosophy) Where to (begin) Philosophy?


If you wish to think/write about many dimensional things like the world,
persons, consciousness, human thinking etc, you should at least think multi-
dimensional and many levelled.
Ulrich de Balbian PhD
Independent
Director
Meta-Philosophy Research Center

Introduction

Questioning the purpose, the subject-matter and the methodology, methods of


the discipline. I have already dealt in detail about the disappearance of different
subject from the philosophical discourse with the differentiation of other
disciplines, as well as the involvement in philosophy in inter-disciplinary areas
such as cognitive sciences, the creation of experimental philosophy and the
philosophies of other discourses, eg art, religion, science, mathematics, sport
and every subject possible.
What remains as philosophy appears to subscribe to some ism, which really is
some kind of dogma and even an ideology. One further notices the employment
of terms that traditionally form part of the discourse of philosophy in other
disciplines, for example in social theory or sociology and the fact that almost
everything, such as essays and theses, have an ontology, epistemology and
methodology.
Philosophy has/is often interpreted as consisting of logic, that has its own
discourse, while other aspects or forms of logic really form part of mathematics.
The doing of philosophy as the doing of (usually informal) logic is in some way
related to this belief. As far as the method of philosophy goes, it is always seen
as employing arguments, argumentation and reasoning. But all kinds of writing
and talking employ arguments, argumentation, reasoning and informal logic
not just philosophy.
These characteristics of philosophy of the doing of philosophy is merely one
of many kinds of thought, thinking, cognition and consciousness. Take as an
example critical thinking this is a discipline or area of study of its own, like
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the other cognitive approaches, tools, techniques, models, theories, frameworks


and practices I describe and/or list.
I conclude with a discussion from theoretical physics (in the past associated
with the philosophical discourse) that provides us with ontologies as philosophy
used to do. Against that background I present articles on the multiverse, more
conventional articles on our universe, our world, our physical reality and the
origins of life.
I think these are some of the many things that it is necessary that philosophy
should take note of and consequently question itself, its aims, objectives,
subject-matter and methodologies. We might then have something different than
one-levelled and one-dimensional thinking and more many layered and levelled
and multi-dimensional thinking. Is this not how our consciousness functions?
On many levels, layers and dimensions simultaneously? So should this not be
the manner in which we conceive of it, its nature and functioning?

We, philosophy, should at least be thinking (instead of individual concepts, or


statements, linear thinking - we should simultaneously think in many layers, on
many levels and in several dimensions) in terms of 3D, for example 3D scatter
plots. By this I mean the many different aspects of the person (mentally and
physically, socially, culturally, as well as our environment, planetary and
universe context should be included in every concept we employ; each concept
should therefore be at least like a 3D scatter plot image, including all these
levels and information)

(This is the type of presentation that every word, each concept, used in a
philosophical sentence or statements should look like. It should present all
implicit assumptions explicitly, for example those of the thinking person,
mentally, physically, socially, culturally, biologically, etc, as well as those of the
medium, language, he employs, etc as well as those dimensions of the subject
or object he expresses his statements about.) In other words in the form of 3D
scatter plots, at a minimum! More on this in the last section.
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http://www.jmp.com/support/help/Scatterplot_3D.shtml

Scatterplot 3D
Create a Rotating Three-Dimensional View of Data
The Scatterplot 3D platform shows the values of numeric columns in the
associated data table in a rotatable, three-dimensional view. Up to three columns
that you select from the associated data table are displayed at one time. See
Example of a 3D Scatterplot.
To help visualize variation in higher dimensions, the 3D scatterplot can show a
biplot representation of the points and variables when you request principal
components. The most prominent directions of data are displayed on the 3D
scatterplot report.
Example of a 3D Scatterplot
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Alexander Kremling has compiled a vast argument map of Descartes Meditations,


which he presented at the 9th conference of the German Association of Analytic
Philosophy.

We post Alexanders report below:

At the GAP.9 in Osnabrck (conference of the Gesellschaft fr Analytische Philosophy) I


presented a big argument map using Gregors arguments in his commentary on Decartes
Meditationes. It was called DenkWelt Descartes and was handmade with YEd to show all
arguments unfolded with all premises at once and graphs pointing not at whole arguments but
at the premises or conclusions itself. The resulting map (2,5x4m) was added to the poster
session of the conference. Some looked at it from distance taking it more as a piece of art
and a representation of philosophical complexities. Some tried to figure out parts of the
Meditiationes they knew (especially the cogito-argument and the arguments for the existence
of God), asked for a brief introduction into the idea of argument maps or simply wondered if
they were meant to read it all.
Both was fine for me, since it was originally made as an exhibit for DenkWelten
(www.denkwelten.net), an association of several young German philosophers to found the
first museum of philosophical ideas, trying to combine exactly visual work with
philosophical ideas. In any case a little help and commentary was needed to get into the map.
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Finding a good layout was hard, since automatic layouting couldnt cope with the text or
made the many inferential connections hard to track. So I stuck to the idea to make the graphs
as easy to follow as possible. This way God exists and he is perfect ended up right in the
middle connecting many arguments, what made the argumentative goal of Descartes harder to
detect which might not be what Mr. R.D. (and even Mr. G.B.) originally intended but
what can at least now be discussed fully stretched out on PVC.
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Argument Mapping and Discourse Analysis


by Gregor Betz, Friday, February 6th, 2015

Can we use argument mapping techniques to enhance empirical discourse analysis? In a


recent talk at KITs Science Media Communicaton Lab, I presented our experience in
merging argumentation-theoretic and empirical discourse analysis so far

https://youtu.be/jkY5ijuCI4Q

Going live: Using argument maps for debate


moderation
by Christian Voigt, Thursday, August 21st, 2014

How can argument maps be used for debate moderation? In this post three short live
reconstruction case studies from 2007, 2011 and 2014 are presented. These cases show
that the challenges of the approach are not so much of a technical but of a
methodological nature. Even if the technology works perfectly it is difficult to get the
conditions right so that the live reconstruction is more than just a nice gimmick.
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A live reconstruction at the future conference of the German green part

Three Online Tutorials on Argument Analysis


by Gregor Betz, Monday, July 22nd, 2013

Do you ponder using argumentation software such as Argunet, but have not taken a course in
argumentation theory or logic yet? Or do you just want to refresh you argument analysis
skills? Theres plenty of learning material on the web that helps you to improve you critical
thinking skills. This post features and comments on three free online courses.
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http://www.argunet.org/2013/10/13/engaging-the-audience-climate-engineering-
talks-and-videos/#more-173

How To Reconstruct Linked, Convergent and Serial


Arguments with Argunet
by Gregor Betz, Wednesday, June 12th, 2013

Linked, convergent and serial argumentation are basic notions of argument structure in
Critical Thinking and Informal Logic. This post describes how these argument patterns
translate into Argunet argument maps.
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Continue reading

Mapping the Climate Engineering Controversy: A Case


of Argument-Analysis Driven Policy Advice
by Gregor Betz, Monday, May 13th, 2013

Argument mapping represents a powerful framework for providing policy advice. This post
describes how Argunet has been used in a recent project on so-called climate engineering
methods.
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Climate engineering (CE) refers to large-scale technical interventions into the earth system
that seek to offset the effects of anthropogenic GHG emissions. CE includes methods which
shield the earth from incoming solar radiation (solar radiation management) and methods
which take carbon out of the atmosphere (carbon dioxide removal).

In 2010, the German Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) commissioned six
individual scoping studies on different aspects of CE. Eventually, these individual studies
were to be integrated into a single, interdisciplinary assessment. Sebastian Cacean and myself
have been charged with compiling a report on ethical aspects.
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Our overall aim in writing the study was to provide value-free, neutral policy advice on
ethical issues of CE. To achieve this goal, weve decided to carry out an analysis of the
various (moral) arguments pro and con climate engineering methods. More specifically, we

compiled a comprehensive commented bibliography of the CE discourse


with a focus on ethical arguments (including scientific articles, policy
statements, media reports, popular science books, etc.);

we sketched the overall dialectical structure and the individual arguments


with Argunet, which gave us a first argument map;

we presented the preliminary argument map at project workshops to get


feedback;

and, finally, we revised our interpretation and reconstructed the


arguments in detail (with Argunet).

An immediate result of this procedure was a comprehensive argument map, visualized in the
following poster high-resolution poster. (Technically, weve exported the Argunet map as a
graphml file, post-edited the map with yEd, and exported it as a PDF, which was finally
included in a Powerpoint poster.)
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Weve then used the CE argument map in the BMBF project

1. to compile the report Ethical Aspects (download);

2. to assist policy makers in acquiring a coherent position (by evaluating


alternative core positions proponents and policy makers may adopt);

3. to merge the various disciplinary studies in a final assessment report


(download).

Ad 1.): The scoping study on ethical aspects of climate engineering contains a macro map of
the debate that structures the entire report. Each chapter is devoted to a sub-debate of the
controversy. The chapters in turn feature micro maps that display the internal structure of the
sub-debates and visualize the individual arguments plus their dialectic relations. The
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arguments are then discussed in detail in the chapter texts. Central arguments are
reconstructed as premiss-conclusion structures.

Ad 2.) Weve also used the argument map to assist stakeholders in acquiring a coherent
position.
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Thus, weve identified alternative core positions the ministry, or another stakeholder, may
adopt. Such a core position might, e.g., consist in saying that CE should be researched into so
as to have these methods ready for deployment in time. Weve than visualized the core
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position in the argument map and calculated the logico-argumentative implications of the
corresponding stance. The map shows, accordingly, which arguments one is required to refute
and which theses one is compelled to accept if one adopts the corresponding core position. By
spelling out such implications we tried to enable stakeholders to take all arguments into
account and to develop a well-considered position.

Ad 3.) The argument map proved also helpful in integrating the various discipline-specific
studies into a single, interdisciplinary assessment report. So, the assessment report, too, starts
with a macro map, which depicts the overall structure of the discourse, and lists the pivotal
arguments. Most interestingly, though, all the empirical chapters of the assessment report (on
physical and technical aspects, on sociological aspects, on governance aspects, etc.)
consistently refer to the argument map and make explicit to which arguments the empirical
discussion unfolded in the chapter is related. This allows one to trace back sophisticated
empirical considerations to the general debate and hence to the key questions of the
controversy.

In sum, we found that argument mapping techniques are very helpful in compiling
assessment reports. Accordingly employed, the impact of argument mapping on societal
discourse and policy deliberation clearly depends on whether the reports are actually read.
So, one requirement that has been highlighted by this project is to develop ways for engaging
recipients more actively with an argument analysis, e.g. through talks, videos or an interactive
website. Other posts summarize our experience with such active involvement.

Tags: argunet deployment, evaluation, project, publication, reconstruction

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Data_visualization#Other_perspectives
Data presentation architecture (DPA) is a skill-set that seeks to identify, locate, manipulate,
format and present data in such a way as to optimally communicate meaning and proper
knowledge. DPA has two main objectives:

To use data to provide knowledge in the most efficient manner possible (minimize
noise, complexity, and unnecessary data or detail given each audience's needs and
roles)

To use data to provide knowledge in the most effective manner possible (provide
relevant, timely and complete data to each audience member in a clear and
understandable manner that conveys important meaning, is actionable and can affect
understanding, behavior and decisions)

Scope

With the above objectives in mind, the actual work of data presentation architecture consists
of:
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Creating effective delivery mechanisms for each audience member


depending on their role, tasks, locations and access to technology

Defining important meaning (relevant knowledge) that is needed by each


audience member in each context

Determining the required periodicity of data updates (the currency of the


data)

Determining the right timing for data presentation (when and how often
the user needs to see the data)

Finding the right data (subject area, historical reach, breadth, level of
detail, etc.)

Utilizing appropriate analysis, grouping, visualization, and other


presentation formats

Related fields

DPA work shares commonalities with several other fields, including:

Business analysis in determining business goals, collecting requirements,


mapping processes.

Business process improvement in that its goal is to improve and


streamline actions and decisions in furtherance of business goals

Data visualization in that it uses well-established theories of visualization


to add or highlight meaning or importance in data presentation.

Graphic or user design: As the term DPA is used, it falls just short of design
in that it does not consider such detail as colour palates, styling, branding
and other aesthetic concerns, unless these design elements are
specifically required or beneficial for communication of meaning, impact,
severity or other information of business value. For example:

o choosing locations for various data presentation elements on a


presentation page (such as in a company portal, in a report or on a
web page) in order to convey hierarchy, priority, importance or a
rational progression for the user is part of the DPA skill-set.

o choosing to provide a specific colour in graphical elements that


represent data of specific meaning or concern is part of the DPA
skill-set

Information architecture, but information architecture's focus is on


unstructured data and therefore excludes both analysis (in the
statistical/data sense) and direct transformation of the actual content
(data, for DPA) into new entities and combinations.
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Solution architecture in determining the optimal detailed solution,


including the scope of data to include, given the business goals

Statistical analysis or data analysis in that it creates information and


knowledge out of data

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Among the bewildering array of isms in philosophy where does one begin?

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Should one read through the tradition of the history of Ideas of Western
Philosophy? And then select those that seem to appear to one as meaningful?
Chalmers, by the way, suggests that it is in the careful reading with what and
how the philosopher thinks and expresses himself in writing, that some of the
value and pleasure of philosophy lies (my words), but this is similar to the
reading of a novel and all sorts of other disciplines. For example Edward Pillar
here http://www.edwardpillar.com/?p=420 writes that that is also the case with the
reading of theology. When we study theology, that is: when we engage in the learning
process, acquiring knowledge about the writing of a particular theologian, theology is no
longer simply an objective reality. To some degree at least we are engaging with the
theology of someone. We are thinking about the reflections of theologians. How can we best
describe this process? Certainly we are learning. We are learning about theology. We may
think that we are doing theology that is we are actively engaged in thinking deeply and
richly about God, but I doubt it. Most often we are thinking about thinking about God. Now,
without a doubt this is important. To draw on the insight of those on whose shoulders we
stand. But, this often regarded as academic theology is not authentic active theology.

It seems to me that theology comes into its own when it is incarnated. This is when it become
real, and purposeful. When it is engaged. When it is responding. This is theology as a verb.
This is theology as an active, engaged process

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Or, should one scan the field of the Contemporary Philosophy of ones own
time and commit oneself to the isms that appear to one as meaningful and for
which there exist excellent reasoned arguments and few criticisms?
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Or, should one explore ones own thoughts and try to identify the isms into
which ones own attitudes and beliefs fit?
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How about following this ism explained in the "CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA:
Naturalism". 21 November 2009. Retrieved 6 March 2012. Naturalism is not so
much a special system as a point of view or tendency common to a number of
philosophical and religious systems; not so much a well-defined set of positive
and negative doctrines as an attitude or spirit pervading and influencing many
doctrines. As the name implies, this tendency consists essentially in looking upon
nature as the one original and fundamental source of all that exists, and in
attempting to explain everything in terms of nature. Either the limits of nature
are also the limits of existing reality, or at least the first cause, if its existence is
found necessary, has nothing to do with the working of natural agencies. All
events, therefore, find their adequate explanation within nature itself. But, as the
terms nature and natural are themselves used in more than one sense, the term
naturalism is also far from having one fixed meaning.
If one were to find this appealing one will subscribe to the "idea or belief that
only natural (as opposed to supernatural or spiritual) laws and forces operate in
the world." That is, according to The Oxford English Dictionary Online; definition
of naturalism
One will then, with fellow adherents of naturalism (i.e., naturalists) assert that
natural laws are the rules that govern the structure and behavior of the natural
universe, that the changing universe at every stage is a product of these laws.
"CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: Naturalism". 21 November 2009. Retrieved 6 March
2012.
But, according to the distinction made by Papineau, David (22 February 2007).
"Naturalism". Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy one can commit oneself to an
ontological and/or a methodological naturalism.
If one were to accept the former one is well on the way to subscribe to
materialism. The philosopher Paul Kurtz argues that nature is best accounted for
by reference to material principles. These principles include mass, energy, and
other physical and chemical properties accepted by the scientific community.
Further, this sense of naturalism holds that spirits, deities, and ghosts are not
real and that there is no "purpose" in nature. Such an absolute belief in
naturalism is commonly referred to as metaphysical naturalism.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naturalism (philosophy); Kurtz, Paul (Spring 1998).
"Darwin Re-Crucified: Why Are So Many Afraid of Naturalism?". Free Inquiry. 18
(2).
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But of course nothing is ever that simple in philosophy as Schafersman, Steven


D. (1996). "Naturalism is Today An Essential Part of Science" states:
Methodological naturalism is the adoption or assumption of naturalism in
scientific belief and practice without really believing in naturalism. Assuming
naturalism in working methods is the current paradigm, without the unfounded
consideration of naturalism as an absolute truth with philosophical entailment,
called methodological naturalism. The subject matter here is a philosophy of
acquiring knowledge based on an assumed paradigm, without committing
oneself to ontological naturalism.
Some philosophers were so impressed that they got carried away with the notion
of naturalism, as a methodology, so that, Willard Van Orman Quine, George
Santayana, and other philosophers argued that the success of naturalism in
science meant that scientific methods should also be used in philosophy. Of
course others found this unacceptable, so either one stops short of committing
one self to a belief in this specification of naturalism, or one attempts to defend
ones dogma.
Methodological naturalism
Methodological naturalism is concerned not with claims about what exists but
with methods of learning what nature is. It is the idea that all scientific
endeavors, hypotheses, and events are to be explained and tested by reference
to natural causes and events. This second sense of naturalism seeks to provide a
framework within which to conduct the scientific study of the laws of nature.
Methodological naturalism is a way of acquiring knowledge. It is a distinct system
of thought concerned with a cognitive approach to reality, and is thus a
philosophy of knowledge. Studies by sociologist Elaine Ecklund suggest that
religious scientists in practice apply methodological naturalism. They report that
their religious beliefs affect the way they think about the implications - often
moral - of their work, but not the way they practice science. Belief Net, "What
do scientists say" Elaine Ecklund's book "Science versus Religion: What do
scientists really think" and Wikipedia.

In a series of articles and books from 1996 onward, Robert T. Pennock wrote using the term
"methodological naturalism" to clarify that the scientific method confines itself to natural
explanations without assuming the existence or non-existence of the supernatural, and is not
based on dogmatic metaphysical naturalism (as claimed by creationists and proponents of
intelligent design, in particular Phillip E. Johnson). was cited by the Judge in his
Memorandum Opinion concluding that "Methodological naturalism is a 'ground rule' of
science today"Kitzmiller v. Dover: Whether ID is Science.

Wikipedia presents us with a few views on natural

Alvin Plantinga, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at Notre Dame,[24] and a Christian, has
become a well-known critic of naturalism.[25] He suggests, in his evolutionary argument
against naturalism, that the probability that evolution has produced humans with reliable true
beliefs, is low or inscrutable, unless their evolution was guided (for example, by God).
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Plantinga argues that together, naturalism and evolution provide an insurmountable "defeater
for the belief that our cognitive faculties are reliable", i.e., a skeptical argument along the
lines of Descartes' Evil demon or Brain in a vat.[29]

Take philosophical naturalism to be the belief that there aren't any supernatural entities - no
such person as God, for example, but also no other supernatural entities, and nothing at all
like God. My claim was that naturalism and contemporary evolutionary theory are at serious
odds with one another - and this despite the fact that the latter is ordinarily thought to be one
of the main pillars supporting the edifice of the former. (Of course I am not attacking the
theory of evolution, or anything in that neighborhood; I am instead attacking the conjunction
of naturalism with the view that human beings have evolved in that way. I see no similar
problems with the conjunction of theism and the idea that human beings have evolved in the
way contemporary evolutionary science suggests.) More particularly, I argued that the
conjunction of naturalism with the belief that we human beings have evolved in conformity
with current evolutionary doctrine... is in a certain interesting way self-defeating or self-
referentially incoherent.

Alvin Plantinga, Naturalism Defeated?: Essays on Plantinga's Evolutionary Argument


Against Naturalism, "Introduction

Robert T. Pennock contends that as supernatural agents and powers "are above and beyond
the natural world and its agents and powers" and "are not constrained by natural laws", only
logical impossibilities constrain what a supernatural agent could not do. He states: "If we
could apply natural knowledge to understand supernatural powers, then, by definition, they
would not be supernatural". As the supernatural is necessarily a mystery to us, it can provide
no grounds on which to judge scientific models. "Experimentation requires observation and
control of the variables.... But by definition we have no control over supernatural entities or
forces." Science does not deal with meanings; the closed system of scientific reasoning
cannot be used to define itself. Allowing science to appeal to untestable supernatural powers
would make the scientist's task meaningless, undermine the discipline that allows science to
make progress, and "would be as profoundly unsatisfying as the ancient Greek playwright's
reliance upon the deus ex machina to extract his hero from a difficult predicament." Robert
T. Pennock, Supernaturalist Explanations and the Prospects for a Theistic Science
or "How do you know it was the lettuce?"

Naturalism of this sort says nothing about the existence or nonexistence of the supernatural,
which by this definition is beyond natural testing. As a practical consideration, the rejection
of supernatural explanations would merely be pragmatic, thus it would nonetheless be
possible, for an ontological supernaturalist to espouse and practice methodological
naturalism. For example, scientists may believe in God while practicing methodological
naturalism in their scientific work. This position does not preclude knowledge that is
somehow connected to the supernatural. Generally however, anything that can be
scientifically examined and explained would not be supernatural, simply by definition.

: Naturalized epistemology

W. V. O. Quine describes naturalism as the position that there is no higher tribunal for truth
than natural science itself. In his view, there is no better method than the scientific method for
judging the claims of science, and there is neither any need nor any place for a "first
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philosophy", such as (abstract) metaphysics or epistemology, that could stand behind and
justify science or the scientific method.

Therefore, philosophy should feel free to make use of the findings of scientists in its own
pursuit, while also feeling free to offer criticism when those claims are ungrounded,
confused, or inconsistent. In Quine's view, philosophy is "continuous with" science and both
are empirical. Lynne Rudder (2013). Naturalism and the First-Person Perspective.
Oxford University Press. p. 5. ISBN 0199914745. Naturalism is not a dogmatic belief
that the modern view of science is entirely correct. Instead, it simply holds that science is the
best way to explore the processes of the universe and that those processes are what modern
science is striving to understand. However, this Quinean Replacement Naturalism finds
relatively few supporters among philosophers. Feldman, Richard (2012). "Naturalized
Epistemology". In Zalta, Edward N. The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Summer 2012
ed.). Retrieved 2014-06-04. Quinean Replacement Naturalism finds relatively few supporters.
"The Humanist Hour #101: Exploring Naturalism with Tom Clark". The Humanist. 4
June 2014. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
Meissner, Ted (25 February 2011). "Episode 53 :: Tom Clark :: Encountering
Naturalism". Secular Buddhist Association. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
"Perspectives on Naturalism". The Institute on Religion in an Age of Science.
Retrieved 20 October 2016.

Drobny, Sheldon (25 May 2011). "Free Will and Naturalism". Huffington Post. Retrieved
20 October 2016.

Karl Popper equated naturalism with inductive theory of science. He rejected it based on his
general critique of induction (problem of induction), yet acknowledged its utility as means for
inventing conjectures.

A naturalistic methodology (sometimes called an "inductive theory of science") has its value,
no doubt.... I reject the naturalistic view: It is uncritical. Its upholders fail to notice that
whenever they believe to have discovered a fact, they have only proposed a convention.
Hence the convention is liable to turn into a dogma. This criticism of the naturalistic view
applies not only to its criterion of meaning, but also to its idea of science, and consequently to
its idea of empirical method.Karl R. Popper, The Logic of Scientific Discovery,
(Routledge, 2002), pp. 5253, ISBN 0-415-27844-9.

Popper instead proposed that science should adopt a methodology based on falsifiability for
demarcation, because no number of experiments can ever prove a theory, but a single
experiment can contradict one. Popper holds that scientific theories are characterized by
falsifiability.

Thomas W. (Tom) Clark created the website naturalism.org naturalism.org in 1998 "to raise
awareness of worldview naturalism and its positive implications, and to develop and promote
policies consistent with a naturalistic understanding of ourselves."Clark, a research associate
at the Heller School for Social Policy and Management, argues that for atheists,
"understanding our full causal connection to the world engenders compassion and gives us
greater practical control. The naturalistic view of ourselves thus has progressive, humanistic
implications for interpersonal attitudes and social policy.
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So it is clear that if and when we commit ourselves to some idea, that idea has been
differentiated into many others, and one would have to select from the seemingly endless
offspring of that idea between ever more specific ideas. And the above views on naturalism
are not exhaustive and they also lead to many other networks of ideas.

One of these ideas are https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Materialism.

Materialism is a form of philosophical monism which holds that matter is the fundamental
substance in nature, and that all phenomena, including mental phenomena and consciousness,
are results of material interactions.

Materialism is closely related to physicalism, the view that all that exists is ultimately
physical. Philosophical physicalism has evolved from materialism with the discoveries of the
physical sciences to incorporate more sophisticated notions of physicality than mere ordinary
matter, such as: spacetime, physical energies and forces, dark matter, and so on. Thus the
term "physicalism" is preferred over "materialism" by some, while others use the terms as if
they are synonymous.

When exploring the idea of materialism we can pursue it in a number of directions for
example new materialism,

New materialism has now become its own specialized subfield of knowledge,
with courses being offered on the topic at major universities, as well as
numerous conferences, edited collections, and monographs devoted to it. Jane
Bennetts book Vibrant Matter (Duke UP, 2010) has been particularly
instrumental in bringing theories of monist ontology and vitalism back into a
critical theoretical fold dominated by poststructuralist theories of language and
discourse.[11] Scholars such as Mel Y. Chen and Zakiyyah Iman Jackson, however,
have critiqued this body of new materialist literature for its neglect in considering
the materiality of race and gender in particular. [12][13] Other scholars such as
Hlene Vosters have questioned whether there is anything particularly new
about this so-called new materialism, as Indigenous and other animist
ontologies have attested to what might be called the vibrancy of matter for
centuries.[

or,

Many current and recent philosopherse.g., Daniel Dennett, Willard Van Orman Quine,
Donald Davidson, and Jerry Fodoroperate within a broadly physicalist or materialist
framework, producing rival accounts of how best to accommodate mind, including
functionalism, anomalous monism, identity theory, and so on.[15]

Scientific "Materialism" is often synonymous with, and has so far been described, as being a
reductive materialism. In recent years, Paul and Patricia Churchland have advocated a
radically contrasting position (at least, in regards to certain hypotheses); eliminativist
materialism holds that some mental phenomena simply do not exist at all, and that talk of
those mental phenomena reflects a totally spurious "folk psychology" and introspection
illusion. That is, an eliminative materialist might believe that a concept like "belief" simply
has no basis in fact - the way folk science speaks of demon-caused illnesses would be just
one obvious example. Reductive materialism being at one end of a continuum (our theories
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will reduce to facts) and eliminative materialism on the other (certain theories will need to be
eliminated in light of new facts), Revisionary materialism is somewhere in the middle.[15]

Some scientific materialists have been criticized, for example by Noam Chomsky, for failing
to provide clear definitions for what constitutes matter, leaving the term "materialism"
without any definite meaning. Chomsky also states that since the concept of matter may be
affected by new scientific discoveries, as has happened in the past, scientific materialists are
being dogmatic in assuming the opposite

So in response to that the nature and definition of matter were investigated

The nature and definition of matter - like other key concepts in science and philosophy - have
occasioned much debate.[17] Is there a single kind of matter (hyle) which everything is made
of, or multiple kinds? Is matter a continuous substance capable of expressing multiple forms
(hylomorphism),[18] or a number of discrete, unchanging constituents (atomism)?[19] Does it
have intrinsic properties (substance theory),[20][21] or is it lacking them (prima materia)?

One challenge to the traditional concept of matter as tangible "stuff" came with the rise of
field physics in the 19th century. Relativity shows that matter and energy (including the
spatially distributed energy of fields) are interchangeable. This enables the ontological view
that energy is prima materia and matter is one of its forms. On the other hand, the Standard
Model of Particle physics uses quantum field theory to describe all interactions. On this view
it could be said that fields are prima materia and the energy is a property of the field.

According to the dominant cosmological model, the Lambda-CDM model, less than 5% of
the universe's energy density is made up of the "matter" described by the Standard Model of
Particle Physics, and the majority of the universe is composed of dark matter and dark energy
- with little agreement amongst scientists about what these are made of.[22]

With the advent of quantum physics, some scientists believed the concept of matter had
merely changed, while others believed the conventional position could no longer be
maintained. For instance Werner Heisenberg said "The ontology of materialism rested upon
the illusion that the kind of existence, the direct 'actuality' of the world around us, can be
extrapolated into the atomic range. This extrapolation, however, is impossible... atoms are not
things." Likewise, some philosophers[which?] feel that these dichotomies necessitate a switch
from materialism to physicalism. Others use the terms "materialism" and "physicalism"
interchangeably.[23]

The concept of matter has changed in response to new scientific discoveries. Thus
materialism has no definite content independent of the particular theory of matter on which it
is based. According to Noam Chomsky, any property can be considered material, if one
defines matter such that it has that property

The exploration of physicalism lead among other ideas to physicalism

George Stack distinguishes between materialism and physicalism:


26

In the twentieth century, physicalism has emerged out of positivism. Physicalism restricts
meaningful statements to physical bodies or processes that are verifiable or in principle
verifiable. It is an empirical hypothesis that is subject to revision and, hence, lacks the
dogmatic stance of classical materialism. Herbert Feigl defended physicalism in the United
States and consistently held that mental states are brain states and that mental terms have the
same referent as physical terms. The twentieth century has witnessed many materialist
theories of the mental, and much debate surrounding them

Some modern day physicists and science writerssuch as Paul Davies and John Gribbin
have argued that materialism has been disproven by certain scientific findings in physics,
such as quantum mechanics and chaos theory. In 1991, Gribbin and Davies released their
book The Matter Myth, the first chapter of which, "The Death of Materialism",

Davies' and Gribbin's objections are shared by proponents of digital physics who view
information rather than matter to be fundamental. Their objections were also shared by some
founders of quantum theory, such as Max Planck, w

Materialism as methodology

Some critics object to materialism as part of an overly skeptical, narrow or reductivist


approach to theorizing, rather than to the ontological claim that matter is the only substance.
Particle physicist and Anglican theologian John Polkinghorne objects to what he calls
promissory materialism claims that materialistic science will eventually succeed in
explaining phenomena it has not so far been able to explain.[42] Polkinghorne prefers "dual-
aspect monism" to faith in materialism.

And then explorations of these ideas

Sociological naturalism is a theory that states that the natural world and social world are
roughly identical and governed by similar principles. Sociological naturalism, in sociological
texts simply referred to as naturalism, can be traced back to the philosophical thinking of
Auguste Comte in the 19th century, closely connected to positivism, which advocates use of
the scientific method of the natural sciences in studying social sciences

Antimaterialism - beliefs that are opposed to materialism

Crvka

Christian materialism

Critical realism

Cultural materialism

Dialectical materialism

Economic materialism

Eliminative materialism
27

Existence

French materialism

Grotesque body

Historical materialism

Hyle

Immaterialism

Madhyamaka - a philosophy of middle way

Material feminism

Marxist philosophy of nature

Metaphysical naturalism

Model-dependent realism

Naturalism (philosophy)

Postmaterialism

In sociology, post-materialism is the transformation of individual values


from materialist, physical, and economic to new individual values of
autonomy and self-expression. This idea again leads to the exploration of
many other ideas

Antonio Gramsci

Postmodernity

Reflexive modernization

Self-expression Values

Consumerism

Affluenza

To Have or to Be?

Gross National Happiness

Abraham Harold Maslow

John Kenneth Galbraith


28

Anthony Giddens

World Values Survey

Material feminism

Neo-Marxism

Historical revisionism

Integral Theory

Generational Replacement

Physical ontology

In philosophy, physicalism is the ontological thesis that "everything is physical", that


there is "nothing over and above" the physical,[1] or that everything supervenes on the
physical.[2] Physicalism is a form of ontological monisma "one substance" view of
the nature of reality as opposed to a "two-substance" (dualism) or "many-substance"
(pluralism) view. Both the definition of "physical" and the meaning of physicalism
have been debated.

Physicalism is closely related to materialism. Physicalism grew out of materialism


with the success of the physical sciences in explaining observed phenomena. The
terms are often used interchangeably, although they are sometimes distinguished, for
example on the basis of physics describing more than just matter (including energy
and physical law). Common arguments against physicalism include both the
philosophical zombie argument[3] and the multiple observers argument,[4] that the
existence of a physical being may imply zero or more distinct conscious entities.

Definition of physical

The use of "physical" in physicalism is a philosophical concept and can be


distinguished from alternative definitions found in the literature (e.g.
Popper defined a physical proposition to be one which can at least in
theory be denied by observation[5]). A "physical property", in this context,
may be a metaphysical or logical combination of properties which are
physical in the ordinary sense. It is common to express the notion of
"metaphysical or logical combination of properties" using the notion of
supervenience: A property A is said to supervene on a property B if any
change in A necessarily implies a change in B.[6] Since any change in a
combination of properties must consist of a change in at least one
component property, we see that the combination does indeed supervene
on the individual properties. The point of this extension is that physicalists
usually suppose the existence of various abstract concepts which are non-
physical in the ordinary sense of the word; so physicalism cannot be
defined in way that denies the existence of these abstractions. Also,
29

physicalism defined in terms of supervenience does not entail that all


properties in the actual world are type identical to physical properties. It
is, therefore, compatible with multiple realizability.[7]
From the notion of supervenience, we see that, assuming that mental, social, and biological
properties supervene on physical properties, it follows that two hypothetical worlds cannot be
identical in their physical properties but differ in their mental, social or biological properties.
[2]

Two common approaches to defining "physicalism" are the theory-based and object-based
approaches. The theory-based conception of physicalism proposes that "a property is physical
if and only if it either is the sort of property that physical theory tells us about or else is a
property which metaphysically (or logically) supervenes on the sort of property that physical
theory tells us about".[2] Likewise, the object-based conception claims that "a property is
physical if and only if: it either is the sort of property required by a complete account of the
intrinsic nature of paradigmatic physical objects and their constituents or else is a property
which metaphysically (or logically) supervenes on the sort of property required by a complete
account of the intrinsic nature of paradigmatic physical objects and their constituents".

Physicalists have traditionally opted for a "theory-based" characterization of the physical


either in terms of current physics,[8] or a future (ideal) physics.[9] These two theory-based
conceptions of the physical represent both horns of Hempel's dilemma[10] (named after the late
philosopher of science and logical empiricist Carl Gustav Hempel): an argument against
theory-based understandings of the physical. Very roughly, Hempel's dilemma is that if we
define the physical by reference to current physics, then physicalism is very likely to be false,
as it is very likely (by pessimistic meta-induction[11]) that much of current physics is false. But
if we instead define the physical in terms of a future (ideal) or completed physics, then
physicalism is hopelessly vague or indeterminate.[12]

While the force of Hempel's dilemma against theory-based conceptions of the physical
remains contested,[13] alternative "non-theory-based" conceptions of the physical have also
been proposed. Frank Jackson (1998) for example, has argued in favour of the
aforementioned "object-based" conception of the physical.[14] An objection to this proposal,
which Jackson himself noted in 1998, is that if it turns out that panpsychism or
panprotopsychism is true, then such a non-materialist understanding of the physical gives the
counterintuitive result that physicalism is, nevertheless, also true since such properties will
figure in a complete account of paradigmatic examples of the physical.

David Papineau[15] and Barbara Montero[16] have advanced and subsequently defended[17] a
"via negativa" characterization of the physical. The gist of the via negativa strategy is to
understand the physical in terms of what it is not: the mental. In other words, the via negativa
strategy understands the physical as "the non-mental". An objection to the via negativa
conception of the physical is that (like the object-based conception) it doesn't have the
resources to distinguish neutral monism (or panprotopsychism) from physicalism.[18]

Supervenience-based definitions of physicalism


30

Adopting a supervenience-based account of the physical, the definition of physicalism as "all


properties are physical" can be unravelled to:

1) Physicalism is true at a possible world w if and only if any world that is a physical
duplicate of w is also a duplicate of w simpliciter.[19]

2) Physicalism is true at a possible world w if and only if any world that is a


minimal physical duplicate of w is a duplicate of w simpliciter

3) Physicalism is true at a possible world w if and only if any world that is a


physical duplicate of w is a positive duplicate of w.[28

Additional objections have been raised to the above definitions provided


for supervenience physicalism

Closely related to supervenience physicalism, is realisation physicalism,


the thesis that every instantiated property is either physical or is realised
by a physical property

Token physicalism is the proposition that "for every actual particular


(object, event or process) x, there is some physical particular y such that x
= y". It is intended to capture the idea of "physical mechanisms". [2] Token
physicalism is compatible with property dualism, in which all substances
are "physical", but physical objects may have mental properties as well as
physical properties. Token physicalism is not however equivalent to
supervenience physicalism. Firstly, token physicalism does not imply
supervenience physicalism because the former does not rule out the
possibility of non-supervenient properties (provided that they are
associated only with physical particulars). Secondarily, supervenience
physicalism does not imply token physicalism, for the former allows
supervenient objects (such as a "nation", or "soul") that are not equal to
any physical object.

There are multiple versions of reductionism.[2] In the context of physicalism, the reductions
referred to are of a "linguistic" nature, allowing discussions of, say, mental phenomena to be
translated into discussions of physics. In one formulation, every concept is analysed in terms
of a physical concept. One counter-argument to this supposes there may be an additional class
of expressions which is non-physical but which increases the expressive power of a theory.[33]
Another version of reductionism is based on the requirement that one theory (mental or
physical) be logically derivable from a second.[34]

The combination of reductionism and physicalism is usually called reductive physicalism in


the philosophy of mind.

There are two versions of emergentism, the strong version and the weak
version. Supervenience physicalism has been seen as a strong version of
emergentism, in which the subject's psychological experience is
considered genuinely novel.[2] Non-reductive physicalism, on the other
side, is a weak version of emergentism because it does not need that the
subject's psychological experience be novel. The strong version of
emergentism is incompatible with physicalism. Since there are novel
31

mental states, mental states are not nothing over and above physical
states. However, the weak version of emergentism is compatible with
physicalism.

Physicalists hold that physicalism is true. A natural question for


physicalists, then, is whether the truth of physicalism is deducible a priori
from the nature of the physical world (i.e., the inference is justified
independently of experience, even though the nature of the physical world
can itself only be determined through experience) or can only be deduced
a posteriori (i.e., the justification of the inference itself is dependent upon
experience). So-called "a priori physicalists" hold that from knowledge of
the conjunction of all physical truths, a totality or that's-all truth (to rule
out non-physical epiphenomena, and enforce the closure of the physical
world), and some primitive indexical truths such as "I am A" and "now is
B", the truth of physicalism is knowable a prior..

Galen Strawson's realistic physicalism (or "realistic monism") entails


panpsychism or at least micropsychism.[47][48][49] Strawson argues that
"manyperhaps mostof those who call themselves physicalists or
materialists [are mistakenly] committed to the thesis that physical stuff is,
in itself, in its fundamental nature, something wholly and utterly non-
experiential... even when they are prepared to admit with Eddington that
physical stuff has, in itself, a nature capable of manifesting itself as
mental activity, i.e. as experience or consciousness". [47] Because
experiential phenomena allegedly cannot be emergent from wholly non-
experiential phenomena, philosophers are driven to substance dualism,
property dualism, eliminative materialism and "all other crazy attempts at
wholesale mental-to-non-mental reduction"

Philosophy of mind

Quantum energy

Rational egoism

Reality in Buddhism

Substance theory

Transcendence (religion)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Physicalism

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientism

Scientism is a belief in the universal applicability of the scientific method and approach, and
the view that empirical science constitutes the most authoritative worldview or the most
valuable part of human learningto the exclusion of other viewpoints. Accordingly,
32

philosopher Tom Sorell provides this definition of scientism: "Scientism is a matter of putting
too high a value on natural science in comparison with other branches of learning or
culture."[1] It has been defined as "the view that the characteristic inductive methods of the
natural sciences are the only source of genuine factual knowledge and, in particular, that they
alone can yield true knowledge about man and society".[2] The term "scientism" frequently
implies a critique of the more extreme expressions of logical positivism[3][4] and has been used
by social scientists such as Friedrich Hayek,[5] philosophers of science such as Karl Popper,[6]
and philosophers such as Hilary Putnam[7] and Tzvetan Todorov[8] to describe (for example)
the dogmatic endorsement of scientific methodology and the reduction of all knowledge to
only that which is measurable.[9] Philosophers such as Alexander Rosenberg have also
appropriated "scientism" as a name for the view that science is the only reliable source of
knowledge.[10]

Scientism may refer to science applied "in excess". The term scientism can apply in either of
two senses:

1. To indicate the improper usage of science or scientific claims.[11] This usage


applies equally in contexts where science might not apply, [12] such as when
the topic is perceived as beyond the scope of scientific inquiry, and in
contexts where there is insufficient empirical evidence to justify a
scientific conclusion. It includes an excessive deference to claims made by
scientists or an uncritical eagerness to accept any result described as
scientific. This can be a counterargument to appeals to scientific authority.
It can also address the attempt to apply "hard science" methodology and
claims of certainty to the social sciences, which Friedrich Hayek described
in The Counter-Revolution of Science (1952) as being impossible, because
that methodology involves attempting to eliminate the "human factor",
while social sciences (including his own field of economics) center almost
purely on human action.

2. To refer to "the belief that the methods of natural science, or the


categories and things recognized in natural science, form the only proper
elements in any philosophical or other inquiry", [13] or that "science, and
only science, describes the world as it is in itself, independent of
perspective"[7] with a concomitant "elimination of the psychological
dimensions of experience".[14][15]

The term "scientism" is also used by historians, philosophers, and cultural critics to highlight
the possible dangers of lapses towards excessive reductionism in all fields of human
knowledge.[16][17][18][19][20]

For social theorists in the tradition of Max Weber, such as Jrgen Habermas and Max
Horkheimer, the concept of scientism relates significantly to the philosophy of positivism, but
also to the cultural rationalization of the modern West.[9][21] British writer and feminist thinker
Sara Maitland has called scientism a "myth as pernicious as any sort of fundamentalism."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hylomorphism#Modern_physics

Hylomorphism (or hylemorphism) is a philosophical theory developed by Aristotle, which


conceives being (ousia) as a compound of matter and form.
33

According to Nick Herbert, the idea of hylomorphism can be said to have been reintroduced
to the world when Werner Heisenberg invented his duplex world of quantum mechanics.[70]

In the experiments about atomic events we have to do with things and facts, with phenomena
that are just as real as any phenomena in daily life. But atoms and the elementary particles
themselves are not as real; they form a world of potentialities or possibilities rather than one
of things or facts ... The probability wave ... mean[s] tendency for something. It's a
quantitative version of the old concept of potentia from Aristotle's philosophy. It introduces
something standing in the middle between the idea of an event and the actual event, a strange
kind of physical reality just in the middle between possibility and reality

Exploring hylomorphisms will lead to an investigation of ideas such as these

Endurantism

Hyle

Hylozoism

Identity and change

Inherence

Materialism

Substance theory

Substantial form

Vitalism

Moderate realism

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Science_studies

Science studies is an interdisciplinary research area that seeks to situate scientific expertise
in broad social, historical, and philosophical contexts. It uses various methods to analyze the
production, representation and reception of scientific knowledge and its epistemic and
semiotic role.

Similar as in cultural studies, science studies are defined by the subject of their research
and encompass a large range of different theoretical and methodological perspectives
and practices. The interdisciplinary approach may include and borrow methods from the
humanities, natural and formal sciences, from scientometrics to ethnomethodology or
cognitive science. Science studies have a certain importance for evaluation and science
policy. The field added technology in the last decade, and using science, technology and
society, started to involve the interaction of expert and lay knowledge in the public realm

http://www.stswiki.org/index.php?title=Main_Page
34

January 21, 2017 Science and technology studies (STS) examines the influence of society on
science and technology, and the influence of science and technology on society. STS Wiki is
an experiment in the public production of free, open-source knowledge concerning STS. Our
mission is simple: To make STS knowledge, perspectives, and resources available for free,
worldwide.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_construction_of_technology

Social construction of technology (also referred to as SCOT) is a theory within the field of
Science and Technology Studies. Advocates of SCOTthat is, social constructivistsargue
that technology does not determine human action, but that rather, human action shapes
technology. They also argue that the ways a technology is used cannot be understood without
understanding how that technology is embedded in its social context. SCOT is a response to
technological determinism and is sometimes known as technological constructivism.

SCOT draws on work done in the constructivist school of the sociology of scientific
knowledge, and its subtopics include actor-network theory (a branch of the sociology of
science and technology) and historical analysis of sociotechnical systems, such as the work of
historian Thomas P. Hughes. Its empirical methods are an adaptation of the Empirical
Programme of Relativism (EPOR), which outlines a method of analysis to demonstrate the
ways in which scientific findings are socially constructed (see strong program). Leading
adherents of SCOT include Wiebe Bijker and Trevor Pinch.

Legacy of the Strong Programme in the sociology of science


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strong_programme

The strong programme or strong sociology is a variety of the sociology of scientific


knowledge (SSK) particularly associated with David Bloor,[1] Barry Barnes, Harry Collins,
Donald A. MacKenzie,[2] and John Henry. The strong programme's influence on Science and
Technology Studies is credited as being unparalleled (Latour 1999). The largely Edinburgh-
based school of thought has illustrated how the existence of a scientific community, bound
together by allegiance to a shared paradigm, is a prerequisite for normal scientific activity.

The strong programme is a reaction against "weak" sociologies of science, which restricted
the application of sociology to "failed" or "false" theories, such as phrenology. Failed theories
would be explained by citing the researchers' biases, such as covert political or economic
interests. Sociology would be only marginally relevant to successful theories, which
succeeded because they had revealed a true fact of nature. The strong programme proposed
that both "true" and "false" scientific theories should be treated the same way. Both are
caused by social factors or conditions, such as cultural context and self-interest. All human
knowledge, as something that exists in the human cognition, must contain some social
components in its formation process.

In order to study scientific knowledge from a sociological point of view, the


strong programme has adhered to a form of radical relativism. In other words, it
argues that in the social study of institutionalised beliefs about "truth" it
would be unwise to use "truth" as an explanatory resource. That would be to
35

include the answer as part of the question (Barnes 1992), not to mention a
thoroughly "whiggish" approach towards the study of history that is an
approach seeing human history as an inevitable march towards truth and
enlightenment. Alan Sokal has criticised radical relativism as part of the science
wars, on the basis that such an understanding will lead inevitably towards
solipsism and postmodernism. Markus Seidel attacks the main arguments
underdetermination and norm-circularity provided by Strong Programme
proponents for their relativism.[6] Strong programme scholars insist that their
approach has been misunderstood by such a criticism and that its adherence to
radical relativism is strictly methodological.

1.1 Symmetry

2 Core concepts

2.1 Interpretative flexibility

o 2.1.1 Relevant social groups

o 2.1.2 Design flexibility

o 2.1.3 Problems and conflicts

2.2 Closure

2.3 Relating the content of the technological artifact to the wider


sociopolitical milieu

3 Criticism

In 1993, Langdon Winner published an influential critique of SCOT entitled "Upon Opening
the Black Box and Finding it Empty: Social Constructivism and the Philosophy of
Technology."[5] In it, he argues that social constructivism is an overly narrow research
program. He identifies the following specific limitations in social constructivism:

1. It explains how technologies arise, but ignores the consequences of the


technologies after the fact. This results in a sociology that says nothing
about how such technologies matter in the broader context.

2. It examines social groups and interests that contribute to the construction


of technology, but ignores those who have no voice in the process, yet are
affected by it. Likewise, when documenting technological contingencies
and choices, it fails to account for those options that never made it to the
table. According to Winner, this results in conservative and elitist
sociology.

3. It is superficial in that it focuses on how the immediate needs, interests,


problems and solutions of chosen social groups influence technological
choice, but disregards any possible deeper cultural, intellectual or
economic origins of social choices concerning technology.
36

4. It actively avoids taking any kind of moral stance or passing judgment on


the relative merits of the alternative interpretations of a technology. This
indifference makes it unhelpful in addressing important debates about the
place of technology in human affairs.

Other critics include Stewart Russell with his letter in the journal "Social Studies of Science"
titled "The Social Construction of Artifacts: A Response to Pinch and Bijker".

http://www.stswiki.org/index.php?title=Core_literature

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mapping_controversies

Mapping controversies (MC) is an academic course taught in science studies,[1] stemming


from the writings of the French sociologist and philosopher Bruno Latour.[2] MC focuses
exclusively on the controversies surrounding scientific knowledge rather than the established
scientific facts or outcomes. Thus, it helps sociologists, anthropologists and other social
scientists get insights not into scientific knowledge per se, but rather into the process of
gaining knowledge. Thus, MC sheds light on those intermediate stages corresponding to the
actual research process and pinpoints the connections between scientific work and other types
of activities.

The term "mapping controversies" was first suggested in relation to analysis of scientific and
technological controversies,[3] and then lately re-affirmed as a widely applicable
methodological approach going beyond the boundaries of Science Studies.[4] It is usually used
for the methodology that identifies and tracks down the polemics or debate surrounding a
scientific fact, and utilises various visualisation tools to present the problem in its complexity.

Recently Latour initiated the project "Mapping Controversies on Science for Politics
(MACOSPOL)".[5] The showcase website is mappingcontroversies.net [6]

In 2008-2009 several universities in Europe and USA started teaching "Mapping


Controversies" courses for students in political sciences,[7] engineering,[8][9] and architecture.
[10]

An earlier attempt to stage controversies in museum settings took place at the Gallery of
Research in Vienna in 2005.[11]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technology_dynamics

Technology dynamics is broad and relatively new scientific field that has been developed in
the framework of the postwar science and technology studies field. It studies the process of
technological change. Under the field of Technology Dynamics the process of technological
37

change is explained by taking into account influences from "internal factors" as well as from
"external factors". Internal factors relate technological change to unsolved technical problems
and the established modes of solving technological problems and external factors relate it to
various (changing) characteristics of the social environment, in which a particular technology
is embedde

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Actor%E2%80%93network_theory

Actornetwork theory (ANT) is an approach to social theory and research, originating in


the field of science studies, which treats objects as part of social networks. Although it is best
known for its controversial insistence on the capacity of nonhumans to act or participate in
systems or networks or both, ANT is also associated with forceful critiques of conventional
and critical sociology. Developed by science and technology studies (STS) scholars Michel
Callon and Bruno Latour, the sociologist John Law, and others, it can more technically be
described as a "material-semiotic" method. This means that it maps relations that are
simultaneously material (between things) and semiotic (between concepts). It assumes that
many relations are both material and semiotic.

Broadly speaking, ANT is a constructivist approach in that it avoids essentialist explanations


of events or innovations (i. e. ANT explains a successful theory by understanding the
combinations and interactions of elements that make it successful, rather than saying it is
true and the others are false). However, it is distinguished from many other STS and
sociological network theories for its distinct material-semiotic approach.

1 Background and context

2 A material-semiotic method

Although it is called a theory, ANT does not usually explain why or "how" a
network takes the form that it does.[3] Rather, ANT is a way of thoroughly exploring
the relational ties within a network (which can be a multitude of different things). As
Latour notes,[4] "explanation does not follow from description; it is description taken
that much further." It is not, in other words, a theory "of" anything, but rather a
method, or a "how-to book" as Latour [3] puts it.

The approach is related to other versions of material-semiotics (notably the work of


philosophers Gilles Deleuze, Michel Foucault and feminist scholar Donna Haraway).
It can also be seen as a way of being faithful to the insights of ethnomethodology and
its detailed descriptions of how common activities, habits and procedures sustain
themselves. Similarities between ANT and symbolic interactionist approaches such as
the newer forms of grounded theory like situational analysis, exist,[5] although
Latour[6] objects to such a comparison.

Although ANT is mostly associated with studies of science and technology and with
the sociology of science, it has been making steady progress in other fields of
38

sociology as well. ANT is adamantly empirical, and as such yields useful insights and
tools for sociological inquiry in general. ANT has been deployed in studies of identity
and subjectivity, urban transportation systems, and passion and addiction.[7] It also
makes steady progress in political and historical sociology

3 The actor-network

As the term implies, the actor-network is the central concept in ANT. The term
"network" is somewhat problematic in that it, as Latour [3][4][9] notes, has a number of
unwanted connotations. Firstly, it implies that what is described takes the shape of a
network, which is not necessarily the case. Secondly, it implies "transportation
without deformation," which, in ANT, is not possible since any actor-network
involves a vast number of translations. Latour,[9] however, still contends that network
is a fitting term to use, because "it has no a priori order relation; it is not tied to the
axiological myth of a top and of a bottom of society; it makes absolutely no
assumption whether a specific locus is macro- or micro- and does not modify the tools
to study the element 'a' or the element 'b'." This use of the term "network" is very
similar to Deleuze and Guattari's rhizomes; Latour [4] even remarks tongue in cheek
that he would have no objection to renaming ANT "actant-rhizome ontology" if it
only had sounded better, which hints at Latour's uneasiness with the word "theory".

Actornetwork theory tries to explain how materialsemiotic networks come together


to act as a whole; the clusters of actors involved in creating meaning are both material
and semiotic. As a part of this it may look at explicit strategies for relating different
elements together into a network so that they form an apparently coherent whole.
These networks are potentially transient, existing in a constant making and re-making.
[3]
This means that relations need to be repeatedly performed or the network will
dissolve. They also assume that networks of relations are not intrinsically coherent,
and may indeed contain conflicts. Social relations, in other words, are only ever in
process, and must be performed continuously.

Actants denote human and non-human actors, and in a network take the shape that
they do by virtue of their relations with one another. It assumes that nothing lies
outside the network of relations, and as noted above, suggests that there is no
difference in the ability of technology, humans, animals, or other non-humans to act
(and that there are only enacted alliances). As soon as an actor engages with an actor-
network it too is caught up in the web of relations, and becomes part of the entelechy.

If taken to its logical conclusion, then, nearly any actor can be considered merely a
sum of other, smaller actors. A car is an example of a complex system. It contains
many electronic and mechanical components, all of which are essentially hidden from
view to the driver, who simply deals with the car as a single object. This effect is
known as punctualisation, and is similar to the idea of encapsulation in object-
oriented programming.
39

When an actor network breaks down, the punctualisation effect tends to cease as well.
In the automobile example above, a non-working engine would cause the driver to
become aware of the car as a collection of parts rather than just a vehicle capable of
transporting him or her from place to place. This can also occur when elements of a
network act contrarily to the network as a whole. In his book Pandoras Hope, Latour
likens depunctualization to the opening of a black box. When closed, the box is
perceived simply as a box, although when it is opened all elements inside it becomes
visible.

4 Human and non-human actors

ANT is often associated with the equal treatment of human and non-human actors.
ANT assumes that all entities in a network can and should be described in the same
terms. This is called the principle of generalized symmetry. The rationale for this is
that differences between them are generated in the network of relations, and should
not be presupposed.

Intermediaries and mediators

The distinction between intermediaries and mediators is key to ANT sociology.


Intermediaries are entities which make no difference (to some interesting state of
affairs which we are studying) and so can be ignored. They transport the force of
some other entity more or less without transformation and so are fairly uninteresting.
Mediators are entities which multiply difference and so should be the object of study.
Their outputs cannot be predicted by their inputs. From an ANT point of view
sociology has tended to treat too much of the world as intermediaries.

For instance, a sociologist might take silk and nylon as intermediaries, holding that
the former means, reflects, or symbolises the upper classes and the latter the
lower classes. In such a view the real world silknylon difference is irrelevant
presumably many other material differences could also, and do also, transport this
class distinction. But taken as mediators these fabrics would have to be engaged with
by the analyst in their specificity: the internal real-world complexities of silk and
nylon suddenly appear relevant, and are seen as actively constructing the ideological
class distinction which they once merely reflected.

For the committed ANT analyst, social thingslike class distinctions in taste in the
silk and nylon example, but also groups and powermust constantly be constructed
or performed anew through complex engagements with complex mediators. There is
no stand-alone social repertoire lying in the background to be reflected off, expressed
through, or substantiated in, interactions (as in an intermediary conception).

o 4.1 Intermediaries and mediators


40

5 Other central concepts

o 5.1 Translation

o 5.2 Tokens, or quasi-objects

6 Actor network theory and specific disciplines

o 6.1 ANT and international relations

o 6.2 ANT and design

7 Criticism

Actornetwork theory insists on the capacity of nonhumans to be actors or participants in


networks and systems. Critics including figures such as Langdon Winner maintain that such
properties as intentionality fundamentally distinguish humans from animals or from things
(see Activity Theory).[21] ANT scholars[who?] respond with the following arguments:

They do not attribute intentionality and similar properties to nonhumans.

Their conception of agency does not presuppose intentionality.

They locate agency neither in human subjects nor in non-human


objects, but in heterogeneous associations of humans and nonhumans

8 See also

9 References

10 External links

o 10.1 Bibliographies and resources

o 10.2 Further reading

o http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/fass/centres/css/ant/ant.htm

http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/fass/centres/css/ant/ant.htm

www.normalizationprocess.org/

This site - normalizationprocess.org - was created by Carl May, Elizabeth Murray,


Tracy Finch, Frances Mair, Shaun Treweek, Luciana Ballini, Anne Macfarlane,
Melissa Girling and Tim Rapley - with help from growcreate.

Like all theories, NPT is a work in progress, it has grown and developed as people
have used and criticized it, and its scope has expanded as it has been applied to
different problems. That process continues.
41

http://www.normalizationprocess.org/theory-behind-npt/what-is-a-theory/

What is a theory?

There's nothing so practical as a good theory. A theory is a set of conceptual tools that enable
us to describe, explain, and make claims about aspects of the world we live in. Theories
enable us to do three kinds of conceptual work:

1. Accurate description. A theory must provide a taxonomy or set of definitions that


enable the identification, differentiation, and codification of the qualities and properties of
cases and classes of phenomena.

NPT systematically establishes and differentiates the phenomena with which it is concerned
by defining actors, objects and contexts, and the processes that govern them. It therefore
permits a rational foundation for explanations of observed events and processes pertaining to
the implementation of new technologies and complex interventions in health care systems.

2. Systematic explanation. A theory must provide an explanation of the form and


significance of the causal and relational mechanisms at work in cases or classes of the
phenomena defined by the theory, and should propose their relation to other phenomena.

NPT offers a systematic explanation of the operation of those processes and conditions by
referring to patterns of action that can be empirically shown to affect their outcomes, and by
defining the causal mechanisms and relations that underpin these. It may thus be reasonably
employed to make predictions about the normalization potential of proposed technologies or
interventions, and about the possible outcomes of other implementation processes.

3. Knowledge claims. A theory must lead to knowledge claims. These may take the form
of abstract explanations, analytic propositions, or experimental hypotheses. They may also
map relations with other phenomena that are believed to possess similar qualities and
properties.

NPT permits verifiable knowledge claims about process and action, and proposes a set of
analytic propositions that can inform empirical investigation. This means that it not only
accounts for outcomes of implementation processes, but can also account for differences
between expected and observed outcomes of new technologies or complex interventions in
real health care settings.

A fourth, but not mandatory, component of a theory is that it proposes a means of testing its
knowledge claims. A theory must be testable. Such tests may be abstract (i.e. formal logical
representations, simulations, or thought experiments); or concrete (empirical investigations).

Core Propositions of NPT


NPT is a formal theory - there's a logic to what a theory is and does - we now want to provide
some information about the three formal propositions behind NPT.

We have already described the constructs that go together to make up NPT. We've explained
how NPT provides a set of tools that help us to understand and explain what goes on when
42

we work to implement a new technology or other complex intervention. Because NPT is a


formal theory - there's a logic to what a theory is and does - we want to provide some
information about this too. NPT starts with the formal proposition that:

(a) Complex interventions become routinely embedded (implemented and integrated) in their
organizational and professional contexts as the result of people working, individually and
collectively, to implement them.

On the face of it, this doesn't seem remarkable. But it's important because it says that the
routine embedding of a complex intervention is the product of action (the things that people
do), not necessarily people's attitudes (how they feel about what they do), or
their intentions (what they say they are going to do). Explaining implementation (process)
and integration (structure) is about explaining action. So, to understand the embedding of a
complex intervention we must look at what people actually do and how they work. In this
context, the NPT proposes that:

(b) The work of implementation is operationalized through four generative mechanisms


(coherence; cognitive participation; collective action;reflexive monitoring).

Here, NPT is concerned with identifying and understanding the ways that people make sense
of the work of implementing and integrating a complex intervention (coherence); how they
engage with it (cognitive participation); enact it (collective action); and appraise its effects
(reflexive monitoring). These are expressed through organized and organizing agency, and
the theory therefore proposes that:

(c) The work of integration of a complex intervention requires continuous investment by


people in ensembles of action that carry forward in time and space.

It is not enough to adopt and diffuse a complex intervention, people need to keep investing in
it or it will atrophy. Continually investing in sense-making, commitment, effort, and appraisal
is part of the routinization of a complex intervention. A complex intervention that is routinely
embedded in practices ceases to be a 'complex intervention' at all, and instead disappears into
the everyday world of normal activities, the things that people just get on and do.
Normalization Process Theory focuses our attention down on how the work gets done - the
everyday business of getting on with the job in hand - and the often very creative work that
managers, professionals, patients and their families, do to normalize a set of tasks in a health
care setting.

NPT is a sociological toolkit that we can use to understand the dynamics of implementing,
embedding, and integrating some new technology or complex intervention.

Everyone is interested in innovation in healthcare. Innovation promises better ways of


organizing and delivering treatment, improvements in the clinical and cost-effectiveness of
services, and reductions in the burdens of illness - especially chronic illness.

Most research on healthcare innovation focuses on the outcomes of innovations - measuring


their impact and exploring their effects - but this doesn't always tell us the things that we need
43

to know. Researchers try to help healthcare providers by quantifying outcomes and


comparing the effects of these innovations. But it is also understood that outcomes
evaluations are not enough, and that we need to perform process evaluations that help us to
understand how these effects come about. Identifying and adopting an innovative health
technology, or a new way of organizing professional work, is the beginning of the story, not
the end. Down the line, policy-makers, managers, professionals, and patients all face two
important problems as they try to get innovations into practice.

Process problems: about the implementation of new ways of thinking,


acting and organizing in health care

Structural problems: about the integration of new systems of practice


into existing organizational and professional settings.

These are important problems for researchers and evaluators too. To


understand implementation and integration, we need focus on the dynamic processes that lead
to innovations becoming embedded in everyday work. Normalization Process Theory is an
explanatory model that helps managers, clinicians, and researchers understand these
processes.

There's nothing so practical as a good theory, and this website will guide you through the uses
of NPT, and some of the theory's basic concepts. Not only that, but we also provide a simple
toolkit to enable you to think through implementation and integration problems using NPT.

NPT helps us disassemble the human processes that are at work when we encounter a new set
of practices - whether they're bundled around a large randomized controlled trial across many
sites, or in a falls prevention program on a single hospital ward. NPT has a robust theoretical
basis - but we don't discuss that in detail on this website (although we do discuss what a
theory is and does, and the formal propositions that are the basis of NPT). That's because this
website is intended to translate the formal theory into something you can use, in practice,
right now.

Like all theories NPT is build up around a set of constructs - organizing ideas that represent
human processes that really happen in the world. But it also presents these in an idealized and
abstract form. That's so they can be transported from one problem to another in a stable way.
Let's look at the core constructs of NPT, and their specific components. Details about the
underlying theory and its development have been published in open access papers.

NPT Core Constructs

Coherence

Cognitive Participation

Collective Action

Reflexive Monitoring
44

We saw one example where an explicit or implicit assumption to a certain


ism can lead one. Of course I did not include, or rather excluded, the
endless other side tracks one could have been led to. This example shows
us what philosophy has come to or arrived at or being realized as a
seemingly endless differentiation of ideas, notions and concepts. We
sometimes read or see the question asked: does and did philosophy
progress? To me that question appears so, far too, general to be answered,
unless one specifies what one means by progress in this sentence. If one
were to look at the beginnings of Western philosophy and its unfolding, for
example as it lost many of its original subject-matter to other disciplines,
went through one ism after another, many methods, ontological; ideas
and epistemological positions, one wonders what to make of, or how to
understand what philosophy has come to, what its self-perception and
definition are this moment in time? Where does it see itself heading to?
Continuations of so-called Continental and Analytic ways of doing
philosophy? The development of a philosophy of everything and all
possible disciplines, eg art, sciences, history, politics, everyday life, etc?
Part of inter-disciplinary sciences and projects such as cognitive sciences?
Attempting to become a science by the development of Experimental
philosophy? Some kind of literature or poetic form following some of the
Continental ideas, movements or schools? The handmaiden of social
theory (as Habermas and the other generations of his schule use, misuse
and abuse what they call philosophy, when they use certain philosophical
terms such as ontology, epistemology, first philosophy, etc) and other
theories and discourses? Identifying questions, problems, issues and
notions in the sciences so as to be provided with philosophical subject-
matter, projects and problems?

Numerous things, or activities, that are viewed as typically philosophical


are in fact found in all sorts of domains, talking, thinking, reflecting,
discussion, etc. These things are frequently employed as norms for the
doing of philosophy and/or standards to assess philosophizing,
philosophical talking, writing, discussions, expression, etc although they
are not exclusive to the discourse or discipline of philosophy. One of these
things are logic, especially informal logic. Others are, taking the question
and finding whats essential about the problem and working it into an
argument with explanations and reasons, use knowledge and apply
thinking to new problems in alternative ways, very different nature of
types of evidence, which sometimes gives a complementary picture, while
in others it may be contradictory, rhetorical and intellectual skills, extent
of intellectual curiosity, capacities for critical engagement by broadening
questioning out to be more conceptually orientated, make comparisons
between things, ability to engage and develop ideas, recognise when
changing a viewpoint, such awareness could indicate aptitude for
sustained, careful reflection rather than a 'scattergun' effect of lots of
different points that aren't developed or considered in a probing way,
(http://www.ox.ac.uk/news/2016-10-11-why-do-older-siblings-do-better-iq-
tests-their-younger-counterparts-oxford-interview) , ask useful clarifying
45

questions, probes selection criteria including problem-solving, critical


thinking, intellectual curiosity, communication skills, ability to listen and
take note of the idea of others and compatibility, draw out ability to think
carefully and precisely about a familiar concept, evaluating proposals,
coming up with counter-examples, disentangling considerations, and being
creative in proposing alternative approaches. be creative in coming up
with examples and suggestions, and can think critically and carefully
through their implications, ideas that involve other ideas and implications,
test out more sophisticated proposals, test by looking for counter-
examples, generate all kinds of interesting and revealing discussions that
show a ability for analytical thought, abstract away all the unimportant
information, try to model the situation, think about lots of different
aspects, gradually add more information, arrive at a conclusion, new
explanations, the kinds of reasoning, etc.

https://www.google.com/url?
q=http://health.nmmu.ac.za/health/media/Store/documents/EthicsandRese
archCapacityDevelopment/RCD-Workshops-
2008.doc&sa=U&ved=0ahUKEwjlndvDuN_RAhVFJcAKHewUDOcQFggQMAU
&client=internal-uds-cse&usg=AFQjCNHlDWoCaUeKMse1uCBUfpeQFxAinA

Critical Thinking for Research Purposes


Workshop hosted by Department of Research Capacity Development, NMMU
8 May 2008

Presenter: Andrea Hurst, Philosophy, NMMU. E-mail:


andreahurst@axxess.co.za

This workshop takes a critical, philosophical look at both the research process in
general, and the specific interests and passions that motivate researchers.
Critical thinking for research purposes must entail reflection upon precisely what
it might mean to say that critical thinking itself is quintessentially re-search; that
is, an endless repetition of the search for wisdom. In this workshop we will first
work towards gaining theoretical insight into the nature of research with the aid
of Plato's cave-myth and Heideggers notion of care. We will also investigate
the complex nature of the object of research, namely wisdom. It should
become clear from this that research is never essentially dis-interested or value
neutral. Not only philosophical presuppositions, but specific cognitive interests
and personal passions lie behind every research project. We will therefore turn
our attention towards developing and applying a complex critical framework of
cognitive interests and personal passions in order to understand what motivates
specific researchers. All of this is intended to sharpen our critical faculties so that
we no longer approach research, including our own, in a nave or innocent way.

https://question-skills.wikispaces.com/Questioning+Links

https://question-skills.wikispaces.com/home

http://malayresearchfoundation.blogspot.co.za/2008/08/research-
proposal.html
46

A research proposal usually consists of the following elements:

A title

A problem statement/question

A subproblem statement

Hypotheses statement

Demarcation of the terrain of study (assumptions, limitations and delimitations)

Definition of terminology

Indication of the importance/significance of the study

Review of related literature

A careful and detailed analysis of the proposed research procedures

A time schedule

A budget (where applicable)

Researcher's qualifications

A resource list

Are there skills, practices, techniques, tools, approaches, ways of thinking,


arguing, critical thinking, etc that are typically philosophical and not employed in
other discourses?

J W Gray writes as Conclusion at the end of his eBook How to become a


philosopher. https://jwgray.wordpress.com/2011/10/10/i-updated-my-ebook-how-
to-become-a-philosopher/

Philosophical thought starts out small and simple, but it builds based on the various questions
and answers we find relevant. Arguments have assumptions, logical implications,
terminology, justifications, and strategies that should be discussed in detail. Finally, we must
be careful how we use language and what we claim to prove with our arguments.
Here he asks if Philosophy is Important? https://jwgray.wordpress.com/2013/02/08/is-
philosophy-important-2012/ He obviously does think it is as he suggests that it should be
taught and be a requirement at both college and at school.
ttps://ethicalrealism.wordpress.com/the-philosophy-campaign/philosophy-should-be-an-
educational-requirement-in-high-school-college/ He also suggest that High schools need
more critical thinking, here - https://jwgray.wordpress.com/2011/10/05/high-schools-need-
more-critical-thinking/ https://jwgray.wordpress.com/2011/10/08/colleges-need-more-
critical-thinking/
47

An unprecedented study that followed several thousand undergraduates through four years of
college found that large numbers didn't learn the critical thinking, complex reasoning and
written communication skills that are widely assumed to be at the core of a college education.

Richard Arum, whose book "Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses"
(University of Chicago Press).
Gray asks - What is philosophy? It is the attempt to reason well about certain
traditional domains of study: logic (the study of good reasoning), epistemology
(the study of knowledge), metaphysics (the study of reality), and ethics (the
study of morality). https://ethicalrealism.wordpress.com/the-philosophy-
campaign/why-philosophy-is-important/ He gave 11 reasons why it is important
here - https://ethicalrealism.files.wordpress.com/2011/03/11-reasons-philosophy-
is-important.pdf

On page 7 he writes: There is some scientific evidence that philosophy can benefit people
(mainly in the form of statistical information). Statistics have shown philosophy majors to do
well in a variety of standardized test scores, and even children around the age of ?, often
were found to have benefited from philosophy education
Recently an applied logic class was found to significantly help high school
students. The study was conducted by Dan Bouhnik and Yahel Giat from the
Jerusalem College of Technology (in Jerusalem, Israel) and information about the
study was published online in a PDF file entitled, Teaching High School
Students Applied Logical Reasoning. (You can download it for free
here.
4) I discussed the study in more detail in A Study Finds That Formal Logic Can Help High
School Students. http://jite.org/documents/Vol8/JITEv8IIP001-016Bouhnik681.pdf
Historical Evidence
Perhaps the strongest evidence that philosophy helps people is found in the real-
life impact it has had throughout history. It lead to formal logic, improvements in
mathematics, computers, and natural science. The fact that philosophy was
involved in the progress of these fields is a matter of historical fact.
Aristotle and the Stoics developed formal logic.
Formal logic is used by mathematicians and computers. Natural science is the most reliable
method of discovery other than logic and mathematics and it was originally a branch of
philosophy called natural philosophy.
There are various objections people give against philosophy. In particular, (a)
people argue that philosophy doesn't lead to knowledge because even
philosophers disagree and (b) people confuse argumentation with unproductive
hostile human interaction.
You don't have to agree with the philosopher's conclusions, but the arguments philosophers
give are relevant to what we should believe.
Second, I think philosophy can lead to knowledge. I have discussed philosophical
knowledge concerning reasonableness and morality
Third, knowledge might be more than we need..
One philosophical domain in particular that I think we should all agree has
practical importance for everyday life is critical thinking (and logic by extension).
For example, consider the research that shows that people tend to lack in critical
thinking skills, and the link between logic-oriented critical thinking education and
critical thinking skills.
48

Finally, the reasons that logic education is important can also be refined based
on all the specific things it can teach us, such as logical form, logical validity, and
informal fallacies. Each of these things have unique lessons to teach us, as was
discussed in Why Logic is Important.
https://ethicalrealism.wordpress.com/the-philosophy-campaign/why-philosophy-is-important/

Gray feels that we can know about - https://ethicalrealism.wordpress.com/2013/04/19/can-


we-know-anything-about-philosophical-issues/
Here is his argument

Consider the following beliefs:

1. Philosophers arent experts. (Philosophers dont know more than the rest of us
concerning philosophical domains.)

2. Everyones opinion is equal concerning philosophical issues. (No philosophical


belief is more justified than another.)

3. We cant know anything about philosophical issues. (We cant know if one
philosophical statement is better than another.)

None of these beliefs are scientific and they arent self-evident. They are beliefs that fall
within the philosophical domain. Again, the main philosophical domain at interest here
concerns the nature of knowledge. The first belief listed is not plausible if its possible for
some people to know more about philosophical issues than other people. The second and
third beliefs about philosophy are self-defeating because they are such strong statements
against philosophy, but they are philosophical beliefs.

If we can know philosophers arent experts, then how can we know that we can know
philosophers arent experts? Perhaps everyone is an equally good philosopher, but that
seems unlikely.

Logic

We think we know that a belief cant be factually true and false at the same time. If I say,
Its raining and you are in another place and say, Its not raining, we are not actually
contradicting one another because we are merely saying its raining where I am. However,
to say that there is life on another planet in the universe and that there isnt life on another
planet in the universe would be to give contradictory statements. When two factual
statements contradict one another, at least one of the statements must be false.

I think this belief is plausible. If I am right that this belief is plausible, then we can know
something about a philosophical issue (that at least one philosophical belief is plausible).
However, anyone who thinks we cant know anything about philosophical issues cant
consistently believe it to be plausible.

Epistemology

We think that we can know something about the future by knowing about the past. For
example, you can know that rocks that are dropped two seconds from now (on our planet)
49

will fall to the ground based on the fact that all similar objects that were dropped in the past
also fell to the ground.

I find this belief to be plausible. If I am right that its plausible, then we can know something
about philosophy (because we can know that a philosophical belief is plausible). However,
anyone who rejects philosophy will not be able to consistently believe it to be plausible .

An argument using this belief as a premise is the following:

1. All cats observed by scientists throughout history were mammals.

2. We can know something about the future by knowing about the past.

3. If we can know something about the future by knowing about the past and all cats
observed by scientists throughout history were mammals, then all cats are probably
mammals.

4. Therefore, all cats are probably mammals.

This argument could very well be one given by a scientist, but notice that one of the premises
is a philosophical one. Sometimes scientists rely on philosophical premises. There is no
absolute boundary between science and philosophy.

It is inconsistent for scientists to assume any philosophical belief is justified while


simultaneously claiming that we cant know anything about philosophical facts.

The way he responds to criticism of philosophy, logic and epistemology is interesting because
that is the technique he employs through the whole of his book -
https://jwgray.wordpress.com/2011/10/10/i-updated-my-ebook-how-to-become-
a-philosopher/
He assumes and explicitly states that the domain of logic form part of
philosophy, partly because philosophy employs logic and logic is taught in
departments of philosophy. I object to this as I consider logic and mathematics
to be separate disciplines from philosophy. Logic does not need to be taught in
departments of philosophy and the informal logic, premises that are true,
conclusions that are true and valid, sound argumentation, etc are employed in
many discourses and all types of serious writing and discussions, not just
philosophy. Such things alone can therefore not be employed as standards to
decide what is philosophy or that what is written is philosophical.

Table of Contents
Part I:
Introduction...........................................................................................................................
..........7
Chapter 1: Philosophy &
Sophistry.......................................................................................................7
What is
sophistry?.............................................................................................................................
7
50

What is
philosophy?.........................................................................................................................8
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
..........10
Chapter 2: Philosophy is
Important.....................................................................................................11
1. Philosophy can help improve critical thinking
skills..................................................................11
2. Philosophy is a good way to know certain
things.......................................................................12
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
..........15
Chapter 3: Can We Know Anything About Facts of Philosophical
Issues?........................................16
Introduction...........................................................................................................................
.........16
More examples of philosophical beliefs and
arguments.................................................................18
What is philosophical knowledge
like?..........................................................................................21
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
..........22
Chapter 4: Intellectual Virtues, Dogmatism, Fanaticism, &
Terrorism...............................................23
Good
Reasoning.............................................................................................................................
.23
Intellectual
Virtues..........................................................................................................................24
Intellectual
Vices............................................................................................................................24
Dogmatism...........................................................................................................................
...........25
Fanaticism.............................................................................................................................
..........26
Terrorism...............................................................................................................................
..........26
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
..........26
Part II: Argument
Mapping......................................................................................................................27
Chapter 5: Introduction to Argument
Mapping...................................................................................27
Chapter 6: The distinction between premises and
conclusions...........................................................28
Chapter 7: The distinction between arguments with one and multiple
premises................................29
Chapter 8: The distinction between multiple arguments and multiple
premises.................................30
Chapter 9: The distinction between simple and extended
arguments.................................................31
Chapter 10: The distinction between supporting arguments and
objections.......................................33
Chapter 11: The distinction between objections to conclusions, premises, and forms of
reasoning. .35
Part III: Formal
Logic..............................................................................................................................39
Chapter 12: What is
Logic?.................................................................................................................39
51

Formal
logic....................................................................................................................................3
9
Informal
logic.................................................................................................................................40
What's the difference between logic and
epistemology?................................................................42
What is the essence of
logic?..........................................................................................................43
Chapter 13: Why Logic is
Important...................................................................................................44
What is a good
argument?..............................................................................................................44
What characteristics do good arguments
have?..............................................................................44
Why is good argumentation
important?.........................................................................................46
Chapter 14: Valid Argument
Forms.....................................................................................................47
What are valid
arguments?.............................................................................................................47
Why deductive arguments need to be
valid....................................................................................48
Examples of valid argument
forms.................................................................................................49
How to improve our
arguments......................................................................................................50
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
..........51
Chapter 15: Validity &
Counterexamples............................................................................................52
What are formal
counterexamples?................................................................................................52
How do we create formal
counterexamples?..................................................................................53
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
..........53
Chapter 16: Unstated
Premises............................................................................................................54
What are unstated
premises?..........................................................................................................54
Identifying unstated
premises.........................................................................................................54
How to determine unstated
premises..............................................................................................56
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
..........58
Part IV: Informal
Logic............................................................................................................................59
Chapter 17: The Critical Thinking
Attitude.........................................................................................59
Chapter 18: Why Arguments Are
Important.......................................................................................61
Chapter 19: What are Good
Arguments?.............................................................................................63
What are good
arguments?.............................................................................................................63
Why good arguments are
important...............................................................................................65
52

Criteria of good
arguments.............................................................................................................65
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
..........68
Chapter 20: Not All Good Arguments are Logically
Sound................................................................69
What are good
arguments?.............................................................................................................69
What does it mean for an argument to be logically
sound?............................................................69
What's the difference between inductive and deductive
arguments?.............................................71
Proof that not all arguments are logically
sound............................................................................72
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
..........72
Chapter 21: Not All Good Arguments Are Logically Sound Part
2....................................................73
Chapter 22: How To Have a Rational
Debate.....................................................................................75
Initial
arguments.............................................................................................................................
76
Objections.............................................................................................................................
..........76
Defenses...............................................................................................................................
...........77
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
..........78
Chapter 23: Advice for Better
Debates................................................................................................79
1.
Charity...................................................................................................................................
.....79
2.
Relevance.............................................................................................................................
.......80
3.
Clarity....................................................................................................................................
.....80
4.
Modesty.................................................................................................................................
.....81
5.
Justification...........................................................................................................................
......81
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
..........82
Chapter 24: Nonrational Forms of
Persuasion....................................................................................83
Nonrational forms of
persuasion....................................................................................................
Forms of Cognitive
Bias.................................................................................................................85
Manifestations of unreasonable
thought.........................................................................................86
Why does it
matter?........................................................................................................................87
53

What we should
do.........................................................................................................................88
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
..........88
Chapter 25: Manipulative
Tactics........................................................................................................90
Types of manipulative
tactics.........................................................................................................90
There's no major difference between manipulative tactics and
fallacies........................................93
Accusing people of using
manipulation.........................................................................................94
Chapter 26: Cognitive
Biases..............................................................................................................95
What are cognitive
biases?.............................................................................................................95
Examples of biases and
fallacies....................................................................................................96
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
..........99
Chapter 27: Extraordinary
Claims.....................................................................................................100
Extreme................................................................................................................................
.........100
Potentially
impossible...................................................................................................................100
What about ordinary
claims?........................................................................................................101
There a burden of proof against extraordinary
claims..................................................................102
Do extraordinary claims require extraordinary
evidence?............................................................103
Chapter 28: Four Requirements for Good
Arguments......................................................................104
1. Supporting
evidence.................................................................................................................104
2. Relevant
evidence.....................................................................................................................106
3. Consider all viable
options.......................................................................................................107
4.
Charity...................................................................................................................................
...108
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
........108
Chapter 29: Four Types of
Justifications...........................................................................................109
1. Appeal to
Authority..................................................................................................................109
2. Argument from
Analogy...........................................................................................................110
3.
Generalization.......................................................................................................................
....110
4. Personal
Experience..................................................................................................................111
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
........111
54

Chapter 30: Four Terrible Ways to


Argue..........................................................................................112
1. Appeal to
Ignorance..................................................................................................................112
2.
Equivocation.........................................................................................................................
....112
3. Begging the
Question................................................................................................................113
4. Reversal of Burden of
Proof.....................................................................................................114
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
........114
Chapter 31: Four Argument
Strategies..............................................................................................115
1. Argument from
analogy............................................................................................................115
2. Thought
experiment..................................................................................................................116
3. Argument from
absurdity..........................................................................................................117
4. Inference to the best
explanation..............................................................................................120
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
........121
Part V: Philosophy of
Knowledge..........................................................................................................122
Chapter 32: Is Knowledge
Impossible?.............................................................................................122
1. What is
knowledge?..................................................................................................................122
2. What if knowledge is
impossible?............................................................................................124
3. The Munchhausen
Trilemma....................................................................................................125
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
........126
Chapter 33: Three Types of
Evidence...............................................................................................128
Observation..........................................................................................................................
.........128
Introspective
experience...............................................................................................................129
Intuition.................................................................................................................................
.......129
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
........131
5
Chapter 34: Arguments for
Intuition.................................................................................................132
1. What is
intuition?......................................................................................................................132
2. Arguments to prefer intuition to
revisionism............................................................................134
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
........137
Chapter 35: Three Types of Intuitive
Arguments..............................................................................138
55

1. Intuitive Arguments that conclude beliefs to be sufficiently


rational.......................................138
2. Intuitive arguments that conclude that a belief is better than the
alternatives..........................139
3. Intuitive arguments that conclude that a belief is rationally
required......................................140
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
........141
Part VI: How to Create Philosophical
Arguments.................................................................................142
Chapter 36: Writing Philosophical
Arguments..................................................................................142
1. Make your argument
explicit....................................................................................................142
2. Consider the evidence for your
argument.................................................................................145
3. Consider relevant objections and
counterarguments..........................................................................149
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
.................150
Chapter 37: An Example of a Philosophical
Objection.....................................................................151
Step 1: What's Tina's
argument?...................................................................................................151
Step 2: Why disagree with the
premises?.....................................................................................152
Step 3: Presentation of the
objection............................................................................................153
Step 4: Consider
counterarguments..............................................................................................155
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
........157
Chapter 38: Example of a Philosophical Supporting
Argument.......................................................158
What's a supporting
argument?.....................................................................................................158
Step 1: Initial
thoughts..................................................................................................................158
Step 2: Find your
assumptions......................................................................................................159
Step 3: Why agree with the
premises?..........................................................................................159
Step 4: Presentation of the
argument............................................................................................160
Step 5: Consider
counterarguments..............................................................................................162
Conclusion............................................................................................................................
........163
He wrote an ebook on logic - What You Need From Propositional
Logic (March 20, 2013) The focus of this book is propositional
logic. I discuss the meaning of logic, the importance of logic,
logical connectives, truth tables, natural deduction, and rules of
inference. https://ethicalrealism.files.wordpress.com/2013/03/what-you-need-
from-propositional-logic-03202013.pdf
56

In his Ebook How to Become a Philosopher


https://ethicalrealism.files.wordpress.com/2010/03/how-to-
become-a-philosopher-james-gray-11252013.pdf he employs
logic, premises, conclusions as illustrated above, to show and
prove that philosophy does exist, is meaningful and possible.
He assumes that employing those tools he is making out a case
for the fact that philosophy is possible, valid, exists and can be
done. What he does is reducing philosophy to logic or
identifying logic, the doing of logic, with philosophy and the
doing of philosophy its subject-matter and its methods.
To these assumptions I object as Logic is a separate discipline
from philosophy and it does not require or depend on
philosophy. Logic is not a necessary or essential domain of
philosophy. The logical tools, forms, arguments, argumentation,
reasoning and reasons employed by philosophy are similar to
those employed by many other discourse and disciplines and
any serious discourse, writing and discussion not necessarily
philosophical.
He states this concerning critical thinking - Some people have
thought that philosophy automatically helps improve critical
thinking skills as a by product, and no special attention is
required for it to do so. There might be some truth to this, but
non-critical-thinking-oriented philosophy classes dont seem to
be so much better than various other classes in the humanities.
Perhaps writing argumentative essays in any field of study can
help improve critical thinking skills. According to a meta-
analysis by Claudia Mara lvarez Ortiz, Does Philosophy
Improve Critical Thinking Skills? (PDF), the most effective
classes at improving critical thinking skills are those devoted to
critical thinking, and the analytic philosophy tradition in
particular is effective at teaching these classes.
2 Ortiz, Claudia Mara lvarez. Does Philosophy Improve Critical
Thinking Skills? (Aushink. Originally Published in 2007). 86.
Gray states that Alvarez found that critical thinking is best
taught in the context of philosophy, or by philosophy
departments. She tells us what she thinks what it is to study
philosophy on pages 9-10.
2.1.1.2 Studying Philosophy at University
57

What is it to study philosophy, in the sense relevant for investigating the assumption? Since
the assumption most commonly surfaces as part of an attempt to convince undergraduates that
they should enrol as philosophy students, the notion of studying philosophy must be something
close to what these people would actually do if they did enrol. Thus we can say that to study
philosophy is to do pretty much what a standard undergraduate would do in the context of a
philosophy subject at a typical US, English or Australian university.
We limit ourselves here to US, English or Australian university courses in philosophy,
because we shall be concerned to examine the effects of Anglo-American analytic philosophy,
rather than philosophy more broadly considered, on the improvement of critical thinking skills.
This said, the study of philosophy is taken to mean the usual methods of study for virtually any
academic discipline:
Attending lectures
Reading primary and secondary texts
Writing essays
Attending tutorials and participating in discussions
These activities would be undertaken at approximately the level of intensity that would be typical
of a reasonably conscientious student. And, in the case of philosophy, they would be concerned to inculcate
in the students the three things which, as we have said, set philosophy apart as a
discipline: reflection on fundamental problems, the use of arguments as the main
methodological tool and the disposition to engage in critical reflection.
Importantly, this means that studying philosophy should not be understood as some kind of
quite exceptional activity, whether at a very high level, or a high degree of intensity, or in some
quite special educational context. It may be true that studying in Oxfords small tutorial system,
or studying as a PhD student in some first-rate US program, improves critical thinking skills, but
these types of study are far more intensive than what people generally have in mind when they
say or assume that studying philosophy improves critical thinking. If it turned out that studying
philosophy only improved critical thinking skills if you study at Oxford, or as a postgraduate
student at Princeton or Pittsburgh, then the assumption as it is generally made would be false
Then she tells us what Critical Thinking is
2.1.2 Critical Thinking
A common expression to be found in the body of literature about critical thinking (CT) is that
there is no established consensus over its definition. However, we can refer to those general
approaches that have generated relevant paradigms, in order to delimit the conceptual
framework that will be used in applying the term CT within the present project. Two approaches
have attempted to delimit the conceptual framework of critical thinking: the traditional approach
of logical analysis of information and a new approach called the second wave of critical thinking.
This second wave approach adds to the idea of a critical thinker as one who applies
methods of logical analysis, the use of imagination, intuition and the active participation of
emotions and values (Thayer-Bacon, 2000; Walters, 1994). In doing this, it attempts to bring into
consideration what are undoubtedly interesting elements of human cognition. However, its
proponents have yet to provide both the pedagogical methods for teaching CT in this manner
and, even more crucially, clear empirical evidence that it is a better way to do CT.
Conversely, there are four strong reasons for sticking with the traditional approach. First, this
approach reflects the most common practice of CT in schools and universities. Second, the
characteristics that identify this approach are closer with those used in the standard tests used
to measure CT. Third; it has the consistent methodological principles needed to build a theory in
any discipline. Fourth, it provides the basis for being able to transfer the skills in question into
other domains. Indeed, it has provided core tools and resources for good thinking in existing
successful disciplines of inquiry (Ennis, 1991).
Even within the traditional approach to critical thinking, i.e. logical analysis of information,
58

there are a variety of definitions of what actually constitutes critical thinking (see Table 1).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Keller_Plan
http://teorije-ucenja.zesoi.fer.hr/doku.php?id=learning_theories:the_keller_plan
http://courses.cs.vt.edu/~cs4624/s95/cs4984Format/subsection3_2_1.html
Keller Plan

In the 1960's, Fred S. Keller, J. Gilmour Sherman, and others developed a synthesis of
educational methods and practices that has often been called the Keller Plan or the
Personalized System of Instruction (PSI) [3][2]. Key aspects of this teaching method include
[1]:

go-at-your-own-pace
so students can proceed according to their abilities, interests, and
personal schedules;
unit-perfection requirement
which means students must demonstrate mastery of a unit before
proceeding to other units;
lectures and demonstrations for motivation
instead of for communication of critical information;
stress on the written word for teacher-student communication
which helps develop comprehension and expression skills; and
tutoring/proctoring
which allows repeats on exams, enhanced personal-social interaction, and
personalized instruction.

Research studies have shown PSI to have a number of advantages over conventional
educational methods, and few disadvantages. Students, especially those who would normally
perform at the lower or middle levels, learn significantly more, as measured by final
examinations and by tests of long-term retention (given years later). They like the classes and
tutoring, and develop good habits that carry over to other courses and learning activities.
Disadvantages are mostly concerning extra effort being required by the instructor, a higher
drop rate in some courses (especially by students who cannot break their habits of
procrastination), and extra room requirements.

fox@cs.vt.edu
Mon Jan 16 04:19:35 EST 1995
http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/Keller-plan.html
http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1007&context=physicspsikeller

2.1.2.1 The Prevailing View of Critical Thinking


The predominant view, then, is that critical thinking has become almost synonymous with the
methods of informal logic (Kurfiss, 1988). Informal logic is defined as the study of arguments as
59

presented in ordinary language, as contrasted with the presentations of arguments in an


artificial, formal, or technical language. Reasoning and logical analysis in general have, of
course, played a central role in the critical thinking tradition (Norris & Ennis, 1990), Walters,
1994,(A. Fisher, 2001). CT, in this sense, is analytical, abstract, universal and objective
(Walters, 1994). Thus, many CT definitions focus on how to review and carefully evaluate
judgments (Dewey, 1910; Harris, Hodges, 1981; B. N. Moore & Parker, 1991) and on the
analysis and evaluation of arguments (Kurfiss, 1988, A. Fisher & Scriven, 1997). All this clearly
sets this general approach apart from the inclinations of second wave theorists.
The use of reasoning as the core of CT entails three constituents: knowledge, attitudes and
skills (Watson & Glaser, 1980). The critical thinker requires not only knowledge of the methods
of logical analysis, but also of the domain (for example, History, Medicine) in which the critical
thinking is being done. A long and often polemical debate is still developing around whether
good CT requires only the knowledge of methods of logical analysis, or also demands domain
specific knowledge (McMillan, 1987; McPeck, 1981; Norris, 1992b; Pascarella, 1989; Siegel,
1988). There appears to be somewhat less controversy among the experts regarding the
requisite skills and attitudes.
Various attempts have been made to operationalize CT, making it a set of well-defined and
testable skills, rather than simply a somewhat vague set of dispositions and attitudes. Notably,
in 1988-89, 46 experts articulated a definition of CT skills in what is known as the Delphi Report
(see Table 1). This has become widely known and used for research purposes. It has promoted
the design of tests to guide, foster and evaluate CT skills. For instance, it became the template
for the design of two commercial tests to evaluate CT skills and dispositions: the California
Critical Thinking Skills Test, and the California Critical Thinking Dispositions Inventory.
Other such attempts to design good tests of CT skills have also been made. In general,
those tests have focused on the evaluation of CT skills, rather than the attitudes or dispositions
underlying them. They seem to agree in identifying the critical thinker as a person able to
interpret the meaning and analysis of inferences, observations, judgments and arguments;
undertake deductive and inductive reasoning; and evaluate the validity of claims and arguments
(Ennis, Millman, & Tomko, 1985; Facione, 2006; A. Fisher, 2001; Paul & Scriven, 2004; Watson
& Glaser, 1980). Paul has included the idea that the critical thinker has also the ability to
evaluate his or her own thoughts (Paul, Binker, & Willsen, 1994).
These are the results of her study - The results of our review
of the standard arguments, informal review of the literature, and
meta-analysis, suggest four basic conclusions. First, there is insufficient
evidence to be confident that studying philosophy improves critical thinking
skills any more than studying other academic disciplines. Second, the results
indicate that studying philosophy appears to be less
effective than studying critical thinking in its own right. Third, there appear to
be techniques which, if introduced into philosophy teaching, could improve the
extent to which studying
philosophy improves critical thinking. Fourth, further research is desirable to
gather better evidence in a number of areas. In the light of these findings,
though it may sound bold to suggest it, perhaps philosophers themselves more
fully live up to their own ideals, by leading the search for more and better
evidence regarding the impact of their discipline on the development of critical
thinking skills.(page iii)
The argument mapping approach has distinctive features that are necessary to mention:
60

students practice argumentation skills, involving the use of a software programe (Rationale)
that
permits the visual representation of arguments. Such representation is encouraged on the
basis
that the brain can economize on cognitive effort where much of what it seeks to comprehend
is
visually cued. Use of a good deal of practice in argument mapping is based on the hypothesis
that reasoning is a skill and that, as with any skills, deliberate practice (Van Gelder, Bissett,
& Cumming, 2004) is crucial to the development of the skill. The effect size of the Group
Lots of Argument Mapping (LAMP) is greater (0.78 of an SD) than for the Group Some
Argument Mapping (0.68 of an SD), suggesting that the more practice the better. This,
however, requires further investigation, since the confidence intervals for the two Groups
overlap greatly.
The difference is significant not only between Groups 3 and 4 (argument mapping within
philosophy) and Group 1 (philosophy without CT), but between Groups 3 and 4, on the one
hand, and Groups 2, 5, 6 and 7 on the other. This is the single most striking finding of the
metaanalysis.
Prima facie, it suggests that argument mapping within philosophy is the best way to
improve CT. It is not clear, though, that it needs to be within philosophy any more than
Logic does, or any more than the Keller Plan need be a teaching method confined to
philosophy departments. What remains to be explored is how great an improvement in CT
would be generated by teaching CT using argument mapping outside the context of
philosophy.
It is, of course, just these results, in Groups 3 and 4, which actually explain the finding that,
over all, philosophy departments appear to be better at teaching CT skills than Non-
philosophy
Departments. What follows from this is that it is argument mapping that is the key variable. It
makes no discernible difference whether you teach traditional CT in or outside of a
philosophy Department; the results are much the same. Yet when you teach CT within a
philosophy Department using argument mapping, the results seem to be strikingly better.
Plainly, this compels the question, is it the context of a philosophy department or the use of
argument mapping (or perhaps the combination) that is decisive? The context, clearly, is
insufficient on its own; but is argument mapping sufficient on its own? We cannot yet say
with confidence. Further research is needed to pin this down.
To summarize all that can be concluded from the data with respect to our third
question:
Anglo-American analytic philosophy, in itself, is not a particularly effective
way to improve CT skills, when it is compared to other subjects, or to CT
courses. Equally, traditional CT makes no real difference, compared with
Anglo-American analytic philosophy, to the improvement of CT
skills. Philosophy departments are more effective than otherwise at teaching CT
skills when it is done using argument mapping. Argument Mapping courses are
by far the most effective way to improve CT skills. But there are a number of
loose ends to tie up here.
Additional considerations emerge from our interpretation of the data, in this
regard. CT courses taught using lots of argument mapping (LAMP) with the
support of software tools, and concentrating on exercises that call only on
general knowledge, seem to be the most effective of
61

all current methods for improving CTS. Conversely, and perhaps surprisingly,
traditional CT courses, whether or not these are offered by Philosophy
departments, prove to be more
effective than other courses at improving CTS, but only marginally and not to
anything like the
extent seen with LAMP. These basic findings, important in themselves, serve as
the point of
departure for the final conclusions and implications for future research, which
are set out in the following section of the thesis.

We set out to test whether philosophy, specifically, improved CT skills and to


establish if it
was the most effective way to improve them a widely held assumption, among
philosophers.
We have found that although it marginally improves CT skills, it is not the most
effective way to
do it. Two reasons support this claim. First, there is, simply, insufficient
evidence to support the
claim that it is any more effective than other standard methods or other subjects.
Second, the
study of philosophy appears to be less effective than the study of critical
thinking skills in their own right, although the evidence is not altogether
conclusive. Third, the available evidence
strongly suggests that philosophy as such is strikingly less effective than LAMP
(Lots of Argument Mapping Practice) an innovative approach to teaching CT;
with the caveat that no one has yet tested LAMP outside the context of
philosophy
.

There are also some indications in the findings of the thesis that both
specifically what is taught (Logic, for instance, as compared with philosophy
subjects less directly concerned with reasoning skills in themselves) and how it
is taught (Keller Plan or LAMP) are the crucial considerations

Given the striking evidence that LAMP delivers dramatically better results than
philosophy, CT courses or other subjects, but that it has, thus far, only been
taught within the context of
philosophy courses and only to first year under-graduates over a single
semester, further studies are called for. Such studies should include further
examination of the impact of LAMP in
philosophy courses; but they should broaden to include experimental use of
LAMP in a range of other disciplines and on its own.
62

We need studies of the impact of LAMP on various groups of philosophy


students, testing
different variables. We also need studies of students over more than a single
semester; and on
students beyond first year university. We need similar differentiation in the
studies of students in
contexts other than philosophy courses. Finally, all further studies badly need to
use a
consistent and rigorous research and reporting methodology, if they are to be
reliable and
useful. There has been an immense wastage in studies conducted to date, owing
to the deficiencies in their design and reporting procedures.

. http://www.criticalthinking.org/pages/a-brief-history-of-the-idea-of-critical-thinking/408

The Common Denominators of Critical Thinking Are the Most Important By-
products of the History of Critical Thinking

We now recognize that critical thinking, by its very nature, requires, for example, the
systematic monitoring of thought; that thinking, to be critical, must not be accepted at
face value but must be analyzed and assessed for its clarity, accuracy, relevance,
depth, breadth, and logicalness. We now recognize that critical thinking, by its very
nature, requires, for example, the recognition that all reasoning occurs within points
of view and frames of reference; that all reasoning proceeds from some goals and
objectives, has an informational base; that all data when used in reasoning must be
interpreted, that interpretation involves concepts; that concepts entail assumptions,
and that all basic inferences in thought have implications. We now recognize that
each of these dimensions of thinking need to be monitored and that problems of
thinking can occur in any of them.

The result of the collective contribution of the history of critical thought is that the
basic questions of Socrates can now be much more powerfully and focally framed
and used. In every domain of human thought, and within every use of reasoning
within any domain, it is now possible to question:

ends and objectives,

the status and wording of questions,

the sources of information and fact,


63

the method and quality of information collection,

the mode of judgment and reasoning used,

the concepts that make that reasoning possible,

the assumptions that underlie concepts in use,

the implications that follow from their use, and

the point of view or frame of reference within which reasoning takes place.

In other words, questioning that focuses on these fundamentals of thought and


reasoning are now baseline in critical thinking. It is beyond question that intellectual
errors or mistakes can occur in any of these dimensions, and that students need to
be fluent in talking about these structures and standards.

Independent of the subject studied, students need to be able to articulate thinking


about thinking that reflects basic command of the intellectual dimensions of thought:
"Lets see, what is the most fundamental issue here? From what point of view should
I approach this problem? Does it make sense for me to assume this? From these
data may I infer this? What is implied in this graph? What is the fundamental concept
here? Is this consistent with that? What makes this question complex? How could I
check the accuracy of these data? If this is so, what else is implied? Is this a credible
source of information? Etc." (For more information on the basic elements of thought
and basic intellectual criteria and standards, see Appendices C and D).

With intellectual language such as this in the foreground, students can now be taught
at least minimal critical thinking moves within any subject field. What is more, there is
no reason in principle that students cannot take the basic tools of critical thought
which they learn in one domain of study and extend it (with appropriate adjustments)
to all the other domains and subjects which they study. For example, having
questioned the wording of a problem in math, I am more likely to question the
wording of a problem in the other subjects I study.

As a result of the fact that students can learn these generalizable critical thinking
moves, they need not be taught history simply as a body of facts to memorize; they
can now be taught history as historical reasoning. Classes can be designed so that
students learn to think historically and develop skills and abilities essential to
historical thought. Math can be taught so that the emphasis is on mathematical
reasoning. Students can learn to think geographically, economically, biologically,
chemically, in courses within these disciplines. In principle, then, all students can be
taught so that they learn how to bring the basic tools of disciplined reasoning into
every subject they study. Unfortunately, it is apparent, given the results of this study,
that we are very far from this ideal state of affairs. We now turn to the fundamental
concepts and principles tested in standardized critical thinking tests
64

Critical thinking is the intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully


conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and/or evaluating information gathered
from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication, as
a guide to belief and action. In its exemplary form, it is based on universal intellectual values
that transcend subject matter divisions: clarity, accuracy, precision, consistency, relevance,
sound evidence, good reasons, depth, breadth, and fairness.

It entails the examination of those structures or elements of thought implicit in all


reasoning: purpose, problem, or question-at-issue; assumptions; concepts; empirical
grounding; reasoning leading to conclusions; implications and consequences;
objections from alternative viewpoints; and frame of reference. Critical thinking in
being responsive to variable subject matter, issues, and purposes is incorporated
in a family of interwoven modes of thinking, among them: scientific thinking,
mathematical thinking, historical thinking, anthropological thinking, economic
thinking, moral thinking, and philosophical thinking.

Critical thinking can be seen as having two components: 1) a set of information and
belief generating and processing skills, and 2) the habit, based on intellectual
commitment, of using those skills to guide behavior. It is thus to be contrasted with:
1) the mere acquisition and retention of information alone, because it involves a
particular way in which information is sought and treated; 2) the mere possession of
a set of skills, because it involves the continual use of them; and 3) the mere use of
those skills ("as an exercise") without acceptance of their results.

A Definition

Critical thinking is that mode of thinking about any subject, content, or problem
in which the thinker improves the quality of his or her thinking by skillfully analyzing,
assessing, and reconstructing it. Critical thinking is self-directed, self-disciplined,
self-monitored, and self-corrective thinking. It presupposes assent to rigorous
standards of excellence and mindful command of their use. It entails effective
communication and problem-solving abilities, as well as a commitment to overcome
our native egocentrism and sociocentrism.

To Analyze Thinking

Identify its purpose, and question at issue, as well as its information, inferences(s),
assumptions, implications, main concept(s), and point of view.

To Assess Thinking

Check it for clarity, accuracy, precision, relevance, depth, breadth, significance, logic, and
fairness.

http://www.criticalthinking.org/pages/research-in-critical-thinking/577
65

LOGIC AS THEORY OF VALIDATION: AN ESSAY IN PHILOSOPHICAL


LOGIC

by Dr. Richard Paul

Dissertation submitted to the University of California at Santa Barbara in partial


fulfillment for the degree of Ph.D. in Philosophy

View Abstract - View Full Dissertation (Adobe Acrobat PDF)

CRITICAL THINKING IN THE OXFORD TUTORIAL

Critical thinking is widely lauded as one of the most vital educational goals today. Oxfords
tutorial system, in turn, is a historically celebrated and influential approach to teaching. Yet,
to date, little is known with regards to which critical thinking skills and traits, if any, are
being systematically fostered by teachers and learned or developed by students in the tutorial.
The primary purpose of this study is to break ground in this important and under-researched
area. It is a small scale exploratory study based on qualitative interviews with three tutors and
seven students, including four tutorial observations within the Department of Politics.

The tentative results show that, with regards to critical thinking, tutors are primarily
concerned with students ability to clarify central questions, define key terms, and question
important assumptions within the writing of their tutorial essays. Participating tutors seem
less focused on students approach to evaluating important intellectual treatises or constructs,
with the manner in which they understand and learn new ideas, or with their development
of intellectual traits of mind, all of which tutors seemed to believe would develop naturally.

Students, for their part, articulated their approach to writing essays, including clarifying
central questions, defining key terms, and questioning important assumptions. They
expressed no clear approach to intellectual evaluation or the understanding of new ideas, nor
did they appear to have deeply considered the intellectual traits they considered most
important. The main provisional hypothesis is that students appear to internalize that which is
explicit and required, and to largely miss those aspects which are more implicit and optional.
This suggestion, if justified, has implications for tutorial pedagogy.

Thus, in keeping with this literature, we can divide critical thinking into the
following broad dimensions:

Skilled intellectual analysis: the ability to divide important intellectual


constructs into constituent parts so as to internalise and evaluate them.

Skilled intellectual evaluation: the ability to determine the quality of intellectual


constructs and their parts.

66

Intellectual improvement: the ability to creatively devise strategies aimed at


correcting weaknesses and improving strengths (which have been identified
through analysis and evaluation).

Intellectual traits: characteristics of mind necessary for developing fair-minded


critical thinkers, such as: intellectual perseverance, intellectual integrity, intel-
lectual courage, intellectual empathy, intellectual autonomy. It is argued that
such traits guard against the development of sophistic or self-deceptive thinking.

Knowledge of the problematics of thinking: including intrinsic tendencies such


as egocentrism and sociocentrism, which trap the mind in oversimplified and
prejudiced mental states. (BIASED)
Furthermore, these dimensions need be applied to various contexts:

To thinking generally (ones own thinking, the thinking of a professor,


colleague, friend, parent, lover ...);

To subject disciplines (each of which have specific and sometimes unique forms
of analysis and evaluation);

To personal life, both with regard to significant decisions (buying a car or house,
making career decisions ...) as well as day-to-day activities (such as health, diet
and exercise, parenting, voting and politics, managing finances ...).

by Rush Cosgrove
Thesis submitted to the University of Oxford in partial fulfillment for the degree
of M.Sc. in Higher Education

View Abstract - View Full Dissertation (Adobe Acrobat PDF)

CRITICAL THINKING IN THE OXFORD TUTORIAL: A CALL FOR AN


EXPLICIT AND SYSTEMATIC APPROACH
This paper summarises a study focusing on the extent to which the Oxford
tutorial fosters critical thinking in students. In doing so, it aims to contribute to a
largely ignored area of research regarding teaching pedagogy and classroom
practice. The results of this study successfully reveal that participating tutors
were primarily concerned with fostering students abilities to clarify central
questions, define key terms and question important assumptions (principally
within the writing of essays). Participating tutors were less focused on fostering
other essential critical thinking skills and dispositions including: (1) intellectual
analysis and the internalisation of new ideas, (2) intellectual evaluation and (3)
intellectual traits of mind. The primary hypothesis suggested by this study is that
students are more likely to internalise those intellectual skills and dispositions
that are explicitly and systematically discussed and required than those that
remain implicit (and seem optional).
67

To get the article, go to Higher Education Research & Development, the Journal of
Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia.

http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/07294360.2010.487259

by Rush Cosgrove
A research study focused on the extent to which the Oxford Tutorial promotes
critical thinking

View Abstract - View Full Article

A CRITICAL ANALYSIS OF RICHARD PAUL'S SUBSTANTIVE TRANS-DISCIPLINARY


CONCEPTION OF CRITICAL THINKING

by Enoch Hale, Ph.D.

Union Institute & University - Cincinnati, Ohio - October 2008

View Abstract Dissertation Table of Contents

https://sites.google.com/site/timvangelder/publications-1/critical-thinking--reasoning-and-
communicating-with-rationale

Critical Thinking: Reasoning and Communicating with Rationale

ter Berg, T., van Gelder, T., Patterson, F., & Teppema, S. (2009) Critical Thinking:
Reasoning and Communicating with Rationale. Amsterdam: Pearson Education
Benelux.

This book is a compilation, by Timo ter Berg and Sytske Teppema, of some of the
core teaching materials developed for use in teaching critical thinking using
Rationale at the University of Melbourne, plus additional material by Timo and
Sytske. The bulk of this slim volume consists of 26 "Topics," 1-2 page treatments
of key concepts in critical thinking, reasoning and argumentation, such as
68

Knowledge, Proposition, Reason, etc..

Publisher's description: "Critical Thinking is not an innate skill. However, it is a


skill you can nurture.
The unique Critical Thinking with Rationale method can help you with that.
Rationale is the name of the software programme that helps you organize
information, visualize argumentation, and subsequently build a strong and well-
founded argument. You will also learn how to identify, analyze and evaluate
argumentation presented by others. This book focuses on the basic concepts of
critical thinking, and provides insight into the theory behind the method.
Software and book are therefore inseparable. This method is suitable for
students in higher education who want to develop a critical, inquisitive attitude.
And it is also an ideal tool for professionals who are looking to improve their
reasoning and arguing skills. The Critical Thinking with Rationale method,
developed at the University of Melbourne through years of research, was
introduced in the Netherlands in 2007, and was awarded the Zilveren
Innovatieprijs by the HBO-raad in 2008."

https://sites.google.com/site/timvangelder/publications-1/teaching-critical-thinking

Teaching Critical Thinking - Some Lessons from Cognitive Science

van Gelder, T. J. (2005). Teaching critical thinking: some lessons from cognitive
science. College Teaching, 53, 41-6.

Abstract This article draws six key lessons from cognitive science for
teachers of critical thinking. The lessons are: acquiring expertise in critical
thinking is hard; practice in critical thinking skills themselves enhances skills;
the transfer of skills must be practiced; some theoretical knowledge is required;
diagramming arguments ("argument mapping") promotes skill; and students
are prone to belief preservation. The article provides some guidelines for
teaching practice in light of these lessons.
Comment

This paper has been surprisingly popular; I have been contacted about it by
numerous college teachers, particularly in the US. It was originally
commissioned by Dr. Joe Lau at Hong Kong University as part of a major critical
thinking project he directed there.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Critical_thinking

Critical thinking is described by Richard Paul as a movement in two waves (1994).[1] The
"first wave" of critical thinking is often referred to as a 'critical analysis' that is clear,
rational thinking involving critique. Its details vary amongst those who define it. According
to Barry K. Beyer (1995), critical thinking means making clear, reasoned judgments.
69

During the process of critical thinking, ideas should be reasoned, well thought out, and
judged.[2] The National Council for Excellence in Critical Thinking[3] defines critical
thinking as the "intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing,
applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and/or evaluating information gathered from, or
generated by, observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication, as a guide
to belief and action."[4]

1 Etymology

2 Definitions

Traditionally, critical thinking has been variously defined as:

"the process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying,


analyzing, synthesizing, and evaluating information to reach an answer
or conclusion"[6]

"disciplined thinking that is clear, rational, open-minded, and informed


by evidence"[6]

"reasonable, reflective thinking focused on deciding what to believe or


do"[7]

"purposeful, self-regulatory judgment which results in interpretation,


analysis, evaluation, and inference, as well as explanation of the
evidential, conceptual, methodological, criteriological, or contextual
considerations upon which that judgment is based" [8]

"includes a commitment to using reason in the formulation of our


beliefs"[9]

the skill and propensity to engage in an activity with reflective


scepticism (McPeck, 1981)

disciplined, self-directed thinking which exemplifies the perfection of


thinking appropriate to a particular mode or domain of thinking (Paul,
1989, p. 214)

thinking about one's thinking in a manner designed to organize and


clarify, raise the efficiency of, and recognize errors and biases in one's
own thinking. Critical thinking is not 'hard' thinking nor is it directed at
solving problems (other than 'improving' one's own thinking). Critical
thinking is inward-directed with the intent of maximizing the rationality
of the thinker. One does not use critical thinking to solve problemsone
uses critical thinking to improve one's process of thinking. [10]

"an appraisal based on careful analytical evaluation" [11]

Contemporary critical thinking scholars have expanded these traditional definitions to


include qualities, concepts, and processes such as creativity, imagination, discovery,
reflection, empathy, connecting knowing, feminist theory, subjectivity, ambiguity, and
70

inconclusiveness. Some definitions of critical thinking exclude these subjective practices.[12]

3 Logic and rationality

The ability to reason logically is a fundamental skill of rational agents, hence the study of
the form of correct argumentation is relevant to the study of critical thinking.

First wave logical thinking consisted of understanding the connections between two
concepts or points in thought. It followed a philosophy where the thinker was removed
from the train of thought and the connections and the analysis of the connect was devoid of
any bias of the thinker. Kerry Walters describes this ideology in her essay Beyond
Logicism in Critical Thinking, A logistic approach to critical thinking conveys the
message to students that thinking is legitimate only when it conforms to the procedures of
informal (and, to a lesser extent,, formal) logic and that the good thinker necessarily aims
for styles of examination and appraisal that are analytical, abstract, universal, and objective.
This model of thinking has become so entrenched in conventional academic wisdom that
many educators accept it as canon (Walters, 1994, p. 1). The adoption of these principals
parallel themselves with the increasing reliance on quantitative understanding of the world.

In the second wave of critical thinking, as defined by Kerry S. Walters (Re-thinking


Reason, 1994, p. 1 ), many authors moved away from the logocentric mode of critical
thinking that the first wave privileged, especially in institutions of higher learning. Walters
summarizes logicism as the unwarranted assumption that good thinking is reducible to
logical thinking (1994, p. 1).

A logistic approach to critical thinking conveys the message to students that thinking is
legitimate only when it conforms to the procedures of informal (and, to a lesser extent,,
formal) logic and that the good thinker necessarily aims for styles of examination and
appraisal that are analytical, abstract, universal, and objective. (Walters, 1994, p. 1) As the
second wave took hold, scholars began to take a more inclusive view of what constituted
as critical thinking. Rationality and logic are still widely accepted in many circles as the
primary examples of critical thinking.

o 3.1 Inductive versus deductive thinking

o 3.2 Critical thinking and rationality

Kerry S. Walters (Re-thinking Reason, 1994) argues that rationality demands more than just
logical or traditional methods of problem solving and analysis or what he calls the calculus
of justification but also considers cognitive acts such as imagination, conceptual
creativity, intuition and insight (p. 63). These functions are focused on discovery, on
more abstract processes instead of linear, rules-based approaches to problem solving. The
linear and non-sequential mind must both be engaged in the rational mind.

The ability to critically analyze an argument to dissect structure and components, thesis
and reasons is important. But so is the ability to be flexible and consider non-traditional
71

alternatives and perspectives. These complementary functions are what allow for critical
thinking; a practice encompassing imagination and intuition in cooperation with traditional
modes of deductive inquiry.

4 Functions

The list of core critical thinking skills includes observation, interpretation, analysis,
inference, evaluation, explanation, and metacognition. According to Reynolds (2011), an
individual or group engaged in a strong way of critical thinking gives due consideration to
establish for instance:[13]

Evidence through reality

Context skills to isolate the problem from context[clarification needed]

Relevant criteria for making the judgment well

Applicable methods or techniques for forming the judgment

Applicable theoretical constructs for understanding the problem and the


question at hand

In addition to possessing strong critical-thinking skills, one must be disposed to engage


problems and decisions using those skills. Critical thinking employs not only logic but
broad intellectual criteria such as clarity, credibility, accuracy, precision, relevance, depth,
breadth, significance, and fairness.[14]

5 Procedure

Critical thinking calls for the ability to:

Recognize problems, to find workable means for meeting those problems

Understand the importance of prioritization and order of precedence in


problem solving

Gather and marshal pertinent (relevant) information

Recognize unstated assumptions and values

Comprehend and use language with accuracy, clarity, and discernment

Interpret data, to appraise evidence and evaluate arguments

Recognize the existence (or non-existence) of logical relationships


72

between propositions

Draw warranted conclusions and generalizations

Put to test the conclusions and generalizations at which one arrives

Reconstruct one's patterns of beliefs on the basis of wider experience

Render accurate judgments about specific things and qualities in


everyday life

In sum:

"A persistent effort to examine any belief or supposed form of knowledge in the light of the
evidence that supports or refutes it and the further conclusions to which it tends."[15]

6 Habits or traits of mind

The habits of mind that characterize a person strongly disposed toward critical thinking
include a desire to follow reason and evidence wherever they may lead, a systematic
approach to problem solving, inquisitiveness, even-handedness, and confidence in
reasoning.[16]

According to a definition analysis by Kompf & Bond (2001), critical thinking involves
problem solving, decision making, metacognition (Metacognition is "cognition about
cognition", "thinking about thinking", or "knowing about knowing" and higher order
thinking skills. It comes from the root word 'meta', meaning beyond.[1] It can take many
forms; it includes knowledge about when and how to use particular strategies for learning
or for problem solving.[1] There are generally two components of metacognition: knowledge
about cognition, and regulation of cognition),*

*Metacognition is classified into three components:[10]

Metacognitive knowledge (also called metacognitive awareness) is what


individuals know about themselves and others as cognitive processors.

Metacognitive regulation is the regulation of cognition and learning


experiences through a set of activities that help people control their
learning.

Metacognitive experiences are those experiences that have something to


do with the current, on-going cognitive endeavor.

Metacognition refers to a level of thinking that involves active control over the process of
thinking that is used in learning situations. Planning the way to approach a learning task,
monitoring comprehension, and evaluating the progress towards the completion of a task:
73

these are skills that are metacognitive in their nature.

Metacognition includes at least three different types of metacognitive awareness when


considering metacognitive knowledge:[11]

Declarative knowledge: refers to knowledge about oneself as a learner


and about what factors can influence one's performance. [2] Declarative
knowledge can also be referred to as "world knowledge". [12]

Procedural knowledge: refers to knowledge about doing things. This


type of knowledge is displayed as heuristics and strategies. [2] A high
degree of procedural knowledge can allow individuals to perform tasks
more automatically. This is achieved through a large variety of strategies
that can be accessed more efficiently.[13]

Conditional knowledge: refers to knowing when and why to use


declarative and procedural knowledge.[14] It allows students to allocate
their resources when using strategies. This in turn allows the strategies
to become more effective.[15]

Similar to metacognitive knowledge, metacognitive regulation or "regulation of cognition"


contains three skills that are essential.[2][16]

Planning: refers to the appropriate selection of strategies and the


correct allocation of resources that affect task performance.

Monitoring: refers to one's awareness of comprehension and task


performance

Evaluating: refers to appraising the final product of a task and the


efficiency at which the task was performed. This can include re-
evaluating strategies that were used.

Similarly, maintaining motivation to see a task to completion is also a metacognitive skill.


The ability to become aware of distracting stimuli both internal and external and sustain
effort over time also involves metacognitive or executive functions. The theory that
metacognition has a critical role to play in successful learning means it is important that it
be demonstrated by both students and teachers.

Metacognologists are aware of their own strengths and weaknesses, the nature of the task at
hand, and available "tools" or skills. A broader repertoire of "tools" also assists in goal
attainment. When "tools" are general, generic, and context independent, they are more
likely to be useful in different types of learning situations.

Another distinction in metacognition is executive management and strategic knowledge.


Executive management processes involve planning, monitoring, evaluating and revising
one's own thinking processes and products. Strategic knowledge involves knowing what
(factual or declarative knowledge), knowing when and why (conditional or contextual
knowledge) and knowing how (procedural or methodological knowledge). Both executive
management and strategic knowledge metacognition are needed to self-regulate one's own
74

thinking and learning.[19]

Finally, there is no distinction between domain-general and domain-specific metacognitive


skills. This means that metacognitive skills are domain-general in nature and there are no
specific skills for certain subject areas. The metacognitive skills that are used to review an
essay are the same as those that are used to verify an answer to a math question.[20]

Metacognitive experience is responsible for creating an identity that matters to an


individual. The creation of the identity with metacognitive experience is linked to the
identity-based motivation (IBM) model. The identity-based motivation model implies that
"identities matter because they provide a basis for meaning making and for action."[21] A
person decides also if the identity matters in two ways with metacognitive experience. First,
a current or possible identity is either "part of the self and so worth pursuing"[22] or the
individual thinks that the identity is part of their self, yet it is conflicting with more
important identities and the individual will decide if the identity is or is not worth pursuing.
Second, it also helps an individual decide if an identity should be pursued or abandoned.

Usually, abandoning identity has been linked to metacognitive difficulty. Based on the
identity-based motivation model there are naive theories describing difficulty as a way to
continue to pursue an identity. The incremental theory of ability states that if "effort matters
then difficulty is likely to be interpreted as meaning that more effort is needed."[23] Here is
an example: a woman who loves to play clarinet has come upon a hard piece of music. She
knows that how much effort she puts into learning this piece is beneficial. The piece had
difficulty so she knew the effort was needed. The identity the woman wants to pursue is to
be a good clarinet player; having a metacognitive experience difficulty pushed her to learn
the difficult piece to continue to identify with her identity. The entity theory of ability
represents the opposite. This theory states that if "effort does not matter then difficulty is
likely to be interpreted as meaning that ability is lacking so effort should be suspended."[23]
Based on the example of the woman playing the clarinet, if she did not want to identify
herself as a good clarinet player, she would not have put in any effort to learn the difficult
piece which is an example of using metacognitive experience difficulty to abandon an
identity.[24]

Relation to sapience

Metacognologists believe that the ability to consciously think about thinking is unique to
sapient species and indeed is one of the definitions of sapience.[citation needed] There is evidence
that rhesus monkeys, apes, and dolphins can make accurate judgments about the strengths
of their memories of fact and monitor their own uncertainty,[25] while attempts to
demonstrate metacognition in birds have been inconclusive.[26] A 2007 study has provided
some evidence for metacognition in rats,[27][28][29] but further analysis suggested that they
may have been following simple operant conditioning principles,[30] or a behavioral
economic model.[31]

Strategies

Metacognitive-like processes are especially ubiquitous when it comes to the discussion of


self-regulated learning. Being engaged in metacognition is a salient feature of good self-
75

regulated learners.[citation needed] Reinforcing collective discussion of metacognition is a salient


feature of self-critical and self-regulating social groups.[citation needed] The activities of strategy
selection and application include those concerned with an ongoing attempt to plan, check,
monitor, select, revise, evaluate, etc.

Metacognition is 'stable' in that learners' initial decisions derive from the pertinent facts
about their cognition through years of learning experience. Simultaneously, it is also
'situated' in the sense that it depends on learners' familiarity with the task, motivation,
emotion, and so forth. Individuals need to regulate their thoughts about the strategy they are
using and adjust it based on the situation to which the strategy is being applied. At a
professional level, this has led to emphasis on the development of reflective practice,
particularly in the education and health-care professions.

Recently, the notion has been applied to the study of second language learners in the field
of TESOL and applied linguistics in general (e.g., Wenden, 1987; Zhang, 2001, 2010). This
new development has been much related to Flavell (1979), where the notion of
metacognition is elaborated within a tripartite theoretical framework. Learner
metacognition is defined and investigated by examining their person knowledge, task
knowledge and strategy knowledge.

Wenden (1991) has proposed and used this framework and Zhang (2001) has adopted this
approach and investigated second language learners' metacognition or metacognitive
knowledge. In addition to exploring the relationships between learner metacognition and
performance, researchers are also interested in the effects of metacognitively-oriented
strategic instruction on reading comprehension (e.g., Garner, 1994, in first language
contexts, and Chamot, 2005; Zhang, 2010). The efforts are aimed at developing learner
autonomy, interdependence and self-regulation.

Metacognition helps people to perform many cognitive tasks more effectively.[1] Strategies
for promoting metacognition include self-questioning (e.g. "What do I already know about
this topic? How have I solved problems like this before?"), thinking aloud while performing
a task, and making graphic representations (e.g. concept maps, flow charts, semantic webs)
of one's thoughts and knowledge. Carr, 2002, argues that the physical act of writing plays a
large part in the development of metacognitive skills.[32]

Strategy Evaluation matrices (SEM) can help to improve the knowledge of cognition
component of metacognition. The SEM works by identifying the declarative (Column 1),
procedural (Column 2) and conditional (Column 3 and 4) knowledge about specific
strategies. The SEM can help individuals identify the strength and weaknesses about certain
strategies as well as introduce them to new strategies that they can add to their repertoire.[33]

A regulation checklist (RC) is a useful strategy for improving the regulation of cognition
aspect of one's metacognition. RCs help individuals to implement a sequence of thoughts
that allow them to go over their own metacognition.[33] King (1991) found that fifth-grade
students who used a regulation checklist outperformed control students when looking at a
variety of questions including written problem solving, asking strategic questions, and
76

elaborating information.[34]

Metacognitive strategies training can consist of coaching the students in thinking skills that
will allow them to monitor their own learning.[35] Examples of strategies that can be taught
to students are word analysis skills, active reading strategies, listening skills, organizational
skills and creating mnemonic devices.[36]

Walker and Walker have developed a model of metacognition in school learning termed
Steering Cognition. Steering Cognition describes the capacity of the mind to exert
conscious control over its reasoning and processing strategies in relation to the external
learning task. Studies have shown that pupils with an ability to exert metacognitive
regulation over their attentional and reasoning strategies used when engaged in maths, and
then shift those strategies when engaged in science or then English literature learning,
associate with higher academic outcomes at secondary school.

Metastrategic knowledge

"Metastrategic knowledge" (MSK) is a sub-component of metacognition that is defined as


general knowledge about higher order thinking strategies. MSK had been defined as
"general knowledge about the cognitive procedures that are being manipulated". The
knowledge involved in MSK consists of "making generalizations and drawing rules
regarding a thinking strategy" and of "naming" the thinking strategy.[37]

The important conscious act of a metastrategic strategy is the "conscious" awareness that
one is performing a form of higher order thinking. MSK is an awareness of the type of
thinking strategies being used in specific instances and it consists of the following abilities:
making generalizations and drawing rules regarding a thinking strategy, naming the
thinking strategy, explaining when, why and how such a thinking strategy should be used,
when it should not be used, what are the disadvantages of not using appropriate strategies,
and what task characteristics call for the use of the strategy.[38]

MSK deals with the broader picture of the conceptual problem. It creates rules to describe
and understand the physical world around the people who utilize these processes called
higher-order thinking. This is the capability of the individual to take apart complex
problems in order to understand the components in problem. These are the building blocks
to understanding the "big picture" (of the main problem) through reflection and problem
solving.[39]

Characteristics of theory of mind: Understanding the mind and the "mental world":

False beliefs: understanding that a belief is only one of many and can be
false.

Appearancereality distinctions: something may look one way but may


be something else.

Visual perspective taking: the views of physical objects differ based on


77

perspective.

Introspection: children's awareness and understanding of their own


thoughts.

Action

Both social and cognitive dimensions of sporting expertise can be adequately explained
from a metacognitive perspective according to recent research. The potential of
metacognitive inferences and domain-general skills including psychological skills training
are integral to the genesis of expert performance. Moreover, the contribution of both mental
imagery (e.g., mental practice) and attentional strategies (e.g., routines) to our
understanding of expertise and metacognition is noteworthy.[40] The potential of
metacognition to illuminate our understanding of action was first highlighted by Aidan
Moran who discussed the role of meta-attention in 1996.[41] A recent research initiative, a
research seminar series called META funded by the BPS, is exploring the role of the related
constructs of meta-motivation, meta-emotion, and thinking and action (metacognition).

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

.rationality, rational thinking, reasoning, knowledge, intelligence and also a moral


component such as reflective thinking. Critical thinkers therefore need to have reached a
level of maturity in their development, possess a certain attitude as well as a set of taught
skill

7 Research

Edward M. Glaser proposed that the ability to think critically involves three elements:[15]

An attitude of being disposed to consider in a thoughtful way the


problems and subjects that come within the range of one's experiences

Knowledge of the methods of logical inquiry and reasoning

Some skill in applying those methods.

Educational programs aimed at developing critical thinking in children and adult learners,
individually or in group problem solving and decision making contexts, continue to address
these same three central elements.

Contemporary cognitive psychology regards human reasoning as a complex process that is


both reactive and reflective.[17]

The relationship between critical thinking skills and critical thinking dispositions is an
empirical question. Some people have both in abundance, some have skills but not the
disposition to use them, some are disposed but lack strong skills, and some have neither. A
measure of critical thinking dispositions is the California Measure of Mental Motivation.[18]
78

8 Education

John Dewey is one of many educational leaders who recognized that a curriculum aimed at
building thinking skills would benefit the individual learner, the community, and the entire
democracy.[19]

Critical thinking is significant in academics due to being significant in learning. Critical


thinking is significant in the learning process of internalization, in the construction of basic
ideas, principles, and theories inherent in content. And critical thinking is significant in the
learning process of application, whereby those ideas, principles, and theories are
implemented effectively as they become relevant in learners' lives.

Each discipline adapts its use of critical thinking concepts and principles. The core concepts
are always there, but they are embedded in subject-specific content. For students to learn
content, intellectual engagement is crucial. All students must do their own thinking, their
own construction of knowledge. Good teachers recognize this and therefore focus on the
questions, readings, activities that stimulate the mind to take ownership of key concepts and
principles underlying the subject.

Historically, teaching of critical thinking focused only on logical procedures such as formal
and informal logic. This emphasized to students that good thinking is equivalent to logical
thinking. However, a second wave of critical thinking, urges educators to value
conventional techniques, meanwhile expanding what it means to be a critical thinker. In
1994, Kerry Walters[20] compiled a conglomeration of sources surpassing this logical
restriction to include many different authors research regarding connected knowing,
empathy, gender-sensitive ideals, collaboration, world views, intellectual autonomy,
morality and enlightenment. These concepts invite students to incorporate their own
perspectives and experiences into their thinking.

In the English and Welsh school system, Critical Thinking is offered as a subject that 16- to
18-year-olds can take as an A-Level. Under the OCR exam board, students can sit two
exam papers for the AS: "Credibility of Evidence" and "Assessing and Developing
Argument". The full Advanced GCE is now available: in addition to the two AS units,
candidates sit the two papers "Resolution of Dilemmas" and "Critical Reasoning". The A-
level tests candidates on their ability to think critically about, and analyze, arguments on
their deductive or inductive validity, as well as producing their own arguments. It also tests
their ability to analyze certain related topics such as credibility and ethical decision-making.
However, due to its comparative lack of subject content, many universities do not accept it
as a main A-level for admissions.[21] Nevertheless, the AS is often useful in developing
reasoning skills, and the full Advanced GCE is useful for degree courses in politics,
philosophy, history or theology, providing the skills required for critical analysis that are
useful, for example, in biblical study.

There used to also be an Advanced Extension Award offered in Critical Thinking in the UK,
open to any A-level student regardless of whether they have the Critical Thinking A-level.
79

Cambridge International Examinations have an A-level in Thinking Skills.[22]

From 2008, Assessment and Qualifications Alliance has also been offering an A-level
Critical Thinking specification.[23]

OCR exam board have also modified theirs for 2008. Many examinations for university
entrance set by universities, on top of A-level examinations, also include a critical thinking
component, such as the LNAT, the UKCAT, the BioMedical Admissions Test and the
Thinking Skills Assessment.

In Qatar, critical thinking was offered by AL-Bairaq which is an outreach, non-traditional


educational program that targets high school students and focuses on a curriculum based on
STEM fields. The idea behind AL-Bairaq is to offer high school students the opportunity to
connect with the research environment in the Center for Advanced Materials (CAM) at
Qatar University. Faculty members train and mentor the students and help develop and
enhance their critical thinking, problem-solving, and teamwork skills.[

o 8.1 Efficacy

In 1995, a meta-analysis of the literature on teaching effectiveness in higher education was


undertaken.[25] The study noted concerns from higher education, politicians and business
that higher education was failing to meet society's requirements for well-educated citizens.
It concluded that although faculty may aspire to develop students' thinking skills, in practice
they have tended to aim at facts and concepts utilizing lowest levels of cognition, rather
than developing intellect or values.

In a more recent meta-analysis, researchers reviewed 341 quasi- or true-experimental


studies, all of which used some form of standardized critical thinking measure to assess the
outcome variable.[26] The authors describe the various methodological approaches and
attempt to categorize the differing assessment tools, which include standardized tests (and
second-source measures), tests developed by teachers, tests developed by researchers, and
tests developed by teachers who also serve the role as the researcher. The results
emphasized the need for exposing students to real-world problems and the importance in
encouraging open dialogue within a supportive environment. Effective strategies for
teaching critical thinking are thought to be possible in a wide variety of educational
settings.[26]

9 Importance in academia

Critical thinking is an important element of all professional fields and academic disciplines
(by referencing their respective sets of permissible questions, evidence sources, criteria,
etc.). Within the framework of scientific skepticism, the process of critical thinking
involves the careful acquisition and interpretation of information and use of it to reach a
well-justified conclusion. The concepts and principles of critical thinking can be applied to
80

any context or case but only by reflecting upon the nature of that application. Critical
thinking forms, therefore, a system of related, and overlapping, modes of thought such as
anthropological thinking, sociological thinking, historical thinking, political thinking,
psychological thinking, philosophical thinking, mathematical thinking, chemical thinking,
biological thinking, ecological thinking, legal thinking, ethical thinking, musical thinking,
thinking like a painter, sculptor, engineer, business person, etc. In other words, though
critical thinking principles are universal, their application to disciplines requires a process
of reflective contextualization.

Critical thinking is considered important in the academic fields (NOT just the discipline of
philosophy) because it enables one to analyze, evaluate, explain, and restructure their
thinking, thereby decreasing the risk of adopting, acting on, or thinking with, a false belief.
However, even with knowledge of the methods of logical inquiry and reasoning, mistakes
can happen due to a thinker's inability to apply the methods or because of character traits
such as egocentrism. Critical thinking includes identification of prejudice, bias, propaganda,
self-deception, distortion, misinformation, etc.[27] Given research in cognitive psychology,
some educators believe that schools should focus on teaching their students critical thinking
skills and cultivation of intellectual traits.[28]

Critical thinking skills can be used to help nurses during the assessment process. Through
the use of critical thinking, nurses can question, evaluate, and reconstruct the nursing care
process by challenging the established theory and practice. Critical thinking skills can help
nurses problem solve, reflect, and make a conclusive decision about the current situation
they face. Critical thinking creates "new possibilities for the development of the nursing
knowledge."[29] Due to the sociocultural, environmental, and political issues that are
affecting healthcare delivery, it would be helpful to embody new techniques in nursing.
Nurses can also engage their critical thinking skills through the Socratic method of dialogue
and reflection. This practice standard is even part of some regulatory organizations such as
the College of Nurses of Ontario - Professional Standards for Continuing Competencies
(2006).[30] It requires nurses to engage in Reflective Practice and keep records of this
continued professional development for possible review by the College.

Critical thinking is also considered important for human rights education for toleration. The
Declaration of Principles on Tolerance adopted by UNESCO in 1995 affirms that
"education for tolerance could aim at countering factors that lead to fear and exclusion of
others, and could help young people to develop capacities for independent judgement,
critical thinking and ethical reasoning."[31]

Critical thinking is used as a way of deciding whether a claim is true, partially true, or false.
It is a tool by which one can come about reasoned conclusions based on a reasoned process(
(This was/is often mistaken as the essence of philosophizing, alone)..

10 See also
81

Cognitive bias mitigation

Critical theory

Dialectic

Discourse analysis

Freedom of thought

Freethought

Outline of human intelligence topic tree presenting the traits,


capacities, models, and research fields of human intelligence

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Outline_of_human_intelligence

1 Traits and aspects

2 Emergence and evolution

3 Augmented with technology

4 Capacities

5 Types of people, by intelligence

6 Models and theories

7 Related factors

8 Fields that study human intelligence

9 History

10 Organizations

11 Publications

12 Scholars and researchers

13 See also

14 Further reading

15 External links

Outline of thought topic tree that identifies many types of thoughts,


82

types of thinking, aspects of thought, related fields. Thought (also called


thinking) the mental process in which beings form psychological
associations and models of the world. Thinking is manipulating
information, as when we form concepts, engage in problem solving,
reason and make decisions. Thought, the act of thinking, produces
thoughts. A thought may be an idea, an image, a sound or even an
emotional feeling that arises from the brain.

1 Nature of thought

2 Types of thoughts

3 Types of thought (thinking)

Human thought
Main article: Human thought

Analysis

Awareness

Calculation

o Estimation

Categorization

Causal thinking

Cognitive restructuring

Computational thinking

Convergent thinking

Counterfactual thinking

Critical thinking

Divergent thinking

Evaluation

Integrative thinking

Internal monologue (surface thoughts)

Introspection
83

Learning and memory

Parallel thinking

Prediction

Recollection

Stochastic thinking

Strategic thinking

Visual thinking

Classifications of thought

Bloom's taxonomy

Dual process theory

Fluid and crystallized intelligence

Higher-order thinking

Theory of multiple intelligences

Three-stratum theory

Williams' taxonomy

Creative processes

Brainstorming

Cognitive module

Creativity

Creative problem solving

Creative writing

Creativity techniques

Design thinking

Imagination

Lateral thinking
84

Noogenesis

Six Thinking Hats

Speech act

Stream of consciousness

Thinking outside the box

Erroneous thinking
See also: Error and Human error

Black and white thinking

Catastrophization

Cognitive bias

Cognitive distortions

Dysrationalia

Emotional reasoning

Exaggeration

Foolishness

Fallacies (see also List of fallacies)

o Fallacies of definition

o Logical fallacy

Groupthink

Irrationality

Linguistic errors

Magical thinking

Minimisation (psychology)

Motivated reasoning

Rationalization (psychology)
85

Rhetoric

Straight and Crooked Thinking (book)

Target fixation

Wishful thinking

Problem solving
Main article: Problem solving

Problem solving steps

o Problem finding

o Problem shaping

Process of elimination

Systems thinking

o Critical systems thinking

Problem-solving strategy steps one would use to find the problem(s)


that are in the way to getting to ones own goal. Some would refer to this
as the problem-solving cycle (Bransford & Stein, 1993). In this cycle one
will recognize the problem, define the problem, develop a strategy to fix
the problem, organize the knowledge of the problem cycle, figure-out the
resources at the user's disposal, monitor one's progress, and evaluate
the solution for accuracy.

o Abstraction solving the problem in a model of the system before


applying it to the real system

o Analogy using a solution that solves an analogous problem

o Brainstorming (especially among groups of people) suggesting a


large number of solutions or ideas and combining and developing
them until an optimum solution is found

o Divide and conquer breaking down a large, complex problem into


smaller, solvable problems

o Hypothesis testing assuming a possible explanation to the


problem and trying to prove (or, in some contexts, disprove) the
assumption

o Lateral thinking approaching solutions indirectly and creatively

o Means-ends analysis choosing an action at each step to move


86

closer to the goal

o Method of focal objects synthesizing seemingly non-matching


characteristics of different objects into something new

o Morphological analysis assessing the output and interactions of


an entire system

o Proof try to prove that the problem cannot be solved. The point
where the proof fails will be the starting point for solving it

o Reduction transforming the problem into another problem for


which solutions exist

o Research employing existing ideas or adapting existing solutions


to similar problems

o Root cause analysis identifying the cause of a problem

o Trial-and-error testing possible solutions until the right one is


found

o Troubleshooting

Problem-solving methodology

o 5 Whys

o Decision cycle

o Eight Disciplines Problem Solving

o GROW model

o How to Solve It

o Learning cycle

o OODA loop (observe, orient, decide, and act)

o PDCA (plandocheckact)

o Problem structuring methods

o RPR Problem Diagnosis (rapid problem resolution)

o TRIZ (in Russian: Teoriya Resheniya Izobretatelskikh Zadatch,


"theory of solving inventor's problems")

Reasoning
87

Main article: Reasoning

Abstract thinking

Adaptive reasoning

Analogical reasoning

Analytic reasoning

Case-based reasoning

Critical thinking

Defeasible reasoning from authority: if p then (defeasibly) q

Diagrammatic reasoning reasoning by means of visual representations.


Visualizing concepts and ideas with of diagrams and imagery instead of
by linguistic or algebraic means

Emotional reasoning (erroneous) a cognitive distortion in which


emotion overpowers reason, to the point the subject is unwilling or
unable to accept the reality of a situation because of it.

Fallacious reasoning (erroneous) logical errors

Heuristics

Historical thinking

Intuitive reasoning

Lateral thinking

Logic / Logical reasoning

o Abductive reasoning from data and theory: p and q are


correlated, and q is sufficient for p; hence, if p then (abducibly) q
as cause

o Deductive reasoning from meaning postulate, axiom, or


contingent assertion: if p then q (i.e., q or not-p)

o Inductive reasoning theory formation; from data, coherence,


simplicity, and confirmation: (inducibly) "if p then q"; hence, if p
then (deducibly-but-revisably) q

o Inference

Moral reasoning process in which an individual tries to determine the


difference between what is right and what is wrong in a personal situation by
88

using logic.[4] This is an important and often daily process that people use in an
attempt to do the right thing. Every day for instance, people are faced with the
dilemma of whether or not to lie in a given situation. People make this decision
by reasoning the morality of the action and weighing that against its
consequences.
Probabilistic reasoning from combinatorics and indifference: if p then
(probably) q
Proportional reasoning using "the concept of proportions when analyzing
and solving a mathematical situation."[5]
Rational thinking
Semiosis
Statistical reasoning from data and presumption: the frequency of qs
among ps is high (or inference from a model fit to data); hence, (in the right
context) if p then (probably) q
Synthetic reasoning
Verbal reasoning understanding and reasoning using concepts framed in
words

Visual reasoning process of manipulating one's mental image


of an object in order to reach a certain conclusion for example,
mentally constructing a piece of machinery to experiment with
different mechanisms

4 Aspects of the thinker

Aspects of the thinker which may affect (help or hamper) his or her thinking:

Attitude

Cognitive style

Common sense

Experience

Instinct

Intelligence

Metacognition

Mind's eye

Mindset
89

Rationality

Wisdom

o Sapience

5 Properties of thought

Accuracy

Cogency

Dogma

Effectiveness

Efficacy

Efficiency

Freethought

Frugality

Meaning

Prudence

Rights

Skepticism

Soundness

Validity

Value theory

Wrong

6 Fields that study thought

Linguistics

Philosophy
90

o Logic

o Philosophy of mind

Neuroscience

o Cognitive science

o Psychology

Cognitive psychology

Social psychology

o Psychiatry

Mathematics

Operations research

7 Thought tools and thought research

Cognitive model

Design tool

Diagram

o Argument map

o Concept map

o Mind map

DSRP

Intelligence amplification

Language

Meditation

Six Thinking Hats

Synectics


91

Cognitive model

Design tool

Diagram

o Argument map

o Concept map

o Mind map

DSRP

Intelligence amplification

Language

Meditation

Six Thinking Hats

Synectics

8 History of thinking

Main article: History of reasoning

History of artificial intelligence

History of cognitive science

History of creativity

History of ideas

History of logic

History of psychometrics

9 Nootropics (cognitive enhancers and smart drugs)

10 Teaching methods and skills

Active learning
92

Classical conditioning

Directed listening and thinking activity

Discipline

Learning theory (education)

Mentoring

Operant conditioning

Problem-based learning

Punishment

Reinforcement

Awareness and perception


Main articles: Awareness and Perception

Attention

Cognition

Cognitive dissonance

Cognitive map

Concept

Concept map

Conceptual framework

Conceptual model

Consciousness

Domain knowledge

Heuristics in judgment and decision making

Information

Intelligence

Intuition
93

Knowledge

Memory suppression

Mental model

Metaknowledge (knowledge about knowledge)

Mind map

Mindfulness (psychology)

Model (abstract)

Percept

Perception

Self-awareness

Self-concept

Self-consciousness

Self-knowledge

Self-realization

Sentience

Situational awareness

Understanding

Learning and memory


Main articles: Education, Learning, and Memory

Autodidacticism

Biofeedback

Cognitive dissonance

Dual-coding theory

Eidetic memory (total recall)

Emotion and memory


94

Empiricism

Feedback

Feedback loop

Free association

Heuristics

Hyperthymesia

Hypnosis

Hypothesis

Imitation

Inquiry

Knowledge management

Language acquisition

Memorization

Memory and aging

Memory inhibition

Memory-prediction framework

Method of loci

Mnemonics

Neurofeedback

Neuro-linguistic programming (NLP)

Observation

Pattern recognition

Question

Reading

Recall
95

Recognition

Recollection (recall)

Scientific method

Self-perception theory

Speed reading

Study Skills

Subvocalization

Transfer of learning

Transfer of training

Visual learning

Miscellaneous

Adaptation

Association of Ideas

Attacking Faulty Reasoning

Autistic thinking (see Glossary of psychiatry)

Backcasting

Causality

Chunking (psychology)

Cognition

Cognitive biology

Cognitive computing

Cognitive deficit

Cognitive dissonance

Cognitive linguistics

Cognitive module
96

Cognitive psychology

Cognitive science

Cognitive space

Cognitive style

Communicating

Comparative cognition

Concept-formation

Conceptual metaphor

In cognitive linguistics, conceptual metaphor, or cognitive metaphor, refers to the


understanding of one idea, or conceptual domain, in terms of another. An example of this is
the understanding of quantity in terms of directionality (e.g. "the price of peace is rising").

A conceptual domain can be any coherent organization of human experience. The regularity
with which different languages employ the same metaphors, which often appear to be
perceptually based, has led to the hypothesis that the mapping between conceptual domains
corresponds to neural mappings in the brain.[1][2] This theory has gained wide attention,
although some researchers question its empirical accuracy.[3]

This idea, and a detailed examination of the underlying processes, was first extensively
explored by George Lakoff and Mark Johnson in their work Metaphors We Live By. Other
cognitive scientists, for example Gilles Fauconnier, study subjects similar to conceptual
metaphor under the labels "analogy", "conceptual blending" and "ideasthesia".

1 Mappings

There are two main roles for the conceptual domains posited in conceptual metaphors:

Source domain: the conceptual domain from which we draw


metaphorical expressions (e.g., love is a journey).

Target domain: the conceptual domain that we try to understand (e.g.,


love is a journey).

A mapping is the systematic set of correspondences that exist between constituent elements
of the source and the target domain. Many elements of target concepts come from source
domains and are not preexisting. To know a conceptual metaphor is to know the set of
mappings that applies to a given source-target pairing. The same idea of mapping between
source and target is used to describe analogical reasoning and inferences.[5]

A primary tenet of this theory is that metaphors are matter of thought and not merely of
97

language: hence, the term conceptual metaphor. The metaphor may seem to consist of
words or other linguistic expressions that come from the terminology of the more concrete
conceptual domain, but conceptual metaphors underlie a system of related metaphorical
expressions that appear on the linguistic surface. Similarly, the mappings of a conceptual
metaphor are themselves motivated by image schemas which are pre-linguistic schemas
concerning space, time, moving, controlling, and other core elements of embodied human
experience.

Conceptual metaphors typically employ a more abstract concept as target and a more
concrete or physical concept as their source. For instance, metaphors such as 'the days [the
more abstract or target concept] ahead' or 'giving my time' rely on more concrete concepts,
thus expressing time as a path into physical space, or as a substance that can be handled and
offered as a gift. Different conceptual metaphors tend to be invoked when the speaker is
trying to make a case for a certain point of view or course of action. For instance, one might
associate "the days ahead" with leadership, whereas the phrase "giving my time" carries
stronger connotations of bargaining. Selection of such metaphors tends to be directed by a
subconscious or implicit habit in the mind of the person employing them.

The principle of unidirectionality states that the metaphorical process typically goes from
the more concrete to the more abstract, and not the other way around. Accordingly, abstract
concepts are understood in terms of prototype concrete processes. The term "concrete," in
this theory, has been further specified by Lakoff and Johnson as more closely related to the
developmental, physical neural, and interactive body (see embodied philosophy).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Embodied_cognition

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Embodied_cognition

Embodied cognition is the theory that many features of human, or other types of, cognition
are shaped by aspects of the body beyond the brain. The features of cognition include high
level mental constructs (such as concepts and categories) and human performance on
various cognitive tasks (such as reasoning or judgment). The aspects of the body include the
motor system, the perceptual system, the body's interactions with the environment
(situatedness) and the assumptions about the world that are built into the body and the
brain.

The embodied mind thesis challenges other theories, such as cognitivism,


computationalism, and Cartesian dualism.[1][2] It is closely related to the extended mind
thesis, situated cognition and enactivism. The modern version depends on insights drawn
from recent research in psychology, linguistics, cognitive science, dynamical systems,
artificial intelligence, robotics, plant cognition and neurobiology.

1 Embodiment thesis

Embodiment thesis

In philosophy, embodied cognition holds that an agent's cognition is strongly influenced by


aspects of an agent's body beyond the brain itself.[1] In their proposal for an enactive
98

approach to cognition Varela et al. defined "embodied":[3]

"By using the term embodied we mean to highlight two points: first that
cognition depends upon the kinds of experience that come from having a
body with various sensorimotor capacities, and second, that these
individual sensorimotor capacities are themselves embedded in a more
encompassing biological, psychological and cultural context."
Eleanor Rosch, Evan Thompson, Francisco J. Varela: The Embodied
Mind: Cognitive Science and Human Experience pages 172173

The Varela enactive definition is broad enough to overlap the views of extended cognition
and situated cognition, and indeed, these ideas are not always carefully separated.[4] For
example, according to Michael Dawson, the relationship is tangled:[5]

"In viewing cognition as embedded or situated, embodied cognitive


science emphasizes feedback between an agent and the world. We have
seen that this feedback is structured by the nature of an agent's
body...This in turn suggests that agents with different kinds of bodies can
be differentiated in terms of degrees of embodiment...Embodiment can
be defined as the extent to which an agent can alter its environment."
[Citations have been omitted]
Michael Dawson: Degrees of embodiment; The Routledge Handbook of
Embodied Cognition, page 62

Some authors explain the dependence of cognition upon the body and its environmental
interactions by saying cognition in real biological systems is not an end in itself but is
constrained by the system's goals and capacities. However, they argue, such constraints do
not mean cognition is set by adaptive behavior (or autopoiesis) alone, but cognition requires
some kind of information processing...the transformation or communication of incoming
information, the acquiring of which involves "exploration and modification of the
environment".[6]

"It would be a mistake, however, to suppose that cognition consists


simply of building maximally accurate representations of input
information...the gaining of knowledge is a stepping stone to achieving
the more immediate goal of guiding behavior in response to the system's
changing surroundings."
Marcin Mikowski: Explaining the Computational Mind, p. 4

The separation of embodied cognition from extended cognition and situated cognition can
be based upon the embodiment thesis, a narrower view of embodiment than that of Varela et
al. or that of Dawson:[1]

Embodiment thesis: Many features of cognition are embodied in that


they are deeply dependent upon characteristics of the physical body of
an agent, such that the agent's beyond-the-brain body plays a significant
causal role, or a physically constitutive role, in that agent's cognitive
processing.
99

RA Wilson and L Foglia, Embodied Cognition in the Stanford


Encyclopedia of Philosophy

This thesis omits direct mention of some aspects of the "more encompassing biological,
psychological and cultural context" included by Varella et al. The Extended mind thesis, in
contrast with the Embodiment thesis, limits cognitive processing neither to the brain nor
even to the body, but extends it outward into the agent's world.[1][7] Situated cognition
emphasizes that this extension is not just a matter of including resources outside the head,
but stresses the role of probing and modifying interaction with the agent's world.[8]

2 Philosophical background

In his Universal Natural History and Theory of Heaven (1755).[9] philosopher Immanuel
Kant advocated a view of the mindbody problem and the subjectobject problem with
parallels to the embodied view.[10] Some difficulties with this interpretation of Kant include
(i) the view that Kant holds the empirical, and specifically knowledge of the body, cannot
support a priori transcendental claims,[11] and (ii) the view that Kant holds that
transcendental philosophy, although charged with the responsibility of explaining how we
can have empirical knowledge, is not itself empirical.[12]

Jos Ortega y Gasset, George Santayana, Miguel de Unamuno, Maurice Merleau-Ponty,


Martin Heidegger and others in the broadly existential tradition have proposed philosophies
of mind influencing the development of the modern 'embodiment' thesis.[13]

The embodiment movement in artificial intelligence has fueled the embodiment argument
in philosophy and a revised view of ethology:[14]

"Species-typical activity patterns must be thought of as emergent


phenomena in three different senses of the word. They have
emerged...through natural selection, ....by a process of maturation
and/or learning, ...and from interactions between the creature's low-level
activities and its species-typical environment."
Horst Hendriks-Jansen Catching Ourselves in the Act, p. 10

These developments have also given emotions a new status in philosophy of mind as an
indispensable constituent, rather than a non-essential addition to rational intellectual
thought. In philosophy of mind, the idea that cognition is embodied is sympathetic with
other views of cognition such as situated cognition or externalism. This is a radical move
towards a total re-localization of mental processes out of the neural domain.[15]

3 Connections with the sciences

Embodied cognition is a topic of research in social and cognitive psychology, covering


issues such as social interaction and decision-making.[16] Embodied cognition reflects the
argument that the motor system influences our cognition, just as the mind influences bodily
100

actions. For example, when participants hold a pencil in their teeth engaging the muscles of
a smile, they comprehend pleasant sentences faster than unpleasant ones, while holding a
pencil between their nose and upper lip to engage the muscles of a frown has the reverse
effect.[17]

George Lakoff (a cognitive scientist and linguist) and his collaborators (including Mark
Johnson, Mark Turner, and Rafael E. Nez) have written a series of books promoting and
expanding the thesis based on discoveries in cognitive science, such as conceptual
metaphor and image schema.[18]

Robotics researchers such as Rodney Brooks, Hans Moravec and Rolf Pfeifer have argued
that true artificial intelligence can only be achieved by machines that have sensory and
motor skills and are connected to the world through a body.[19] The insights of these robotics
researchers have in turn inspired philosophers like Andy Clark and Horst Hendriks-Jansen.
[20]

Neuroscientists Gerald Edelman, Antnio Damsio and others have outlined the
connection between the body, individual structures in the brain and aspects of the
mind such as consciousness, emotion, self-awareness and will.[21] Biology has also inspired
Gregory Bateson, Humberto Maturana, Francisco Varela, Eleanor Rosch and Evan
Thompson to develop a closely related version of the idea, which they call enactivism.[22]
The motor theory of speech perception proposed by Alvin Liberman and colleagues at the
Haskins Laboratories argues that the identification of words is embodied in perception of
the bodily movements by which spoken words are made.[23][24][25][26][27]

More detail is provided in the sections that follow.

4 Psychology

o 4.1 Visual search

o 4.2 Distance perception

o 4.3 Perspective

o 4.4 Language comprehension

o 4.5 Memory

5 Reasoning

A series of experiments demonstrated the interrelation between motor


experience and high-level reasoning. For example, although most
individuals recruit visual processes when presented with spatial problems
such as mental rotation tasks[37] motor experts favor motor processes to
perform the same tasks, with higher overall performance. [38] A related
study showed that motor experts use similar processes for the mental
101

rotation of body parts and polygons, whereas non-experts treated these


stimuli differently.[39] These results were not due to underlying confounds,
as demonstrated by a training study which showed mental rotation
improvements after a one-year motor training, compared with controls.
[40]
Similar patterns were also found in working memory tasks, with the
ability to remember movements being greatly disrupted by a secondary
verbal task in controls and by a motor task in motor experts, suggesting
the involvement of different processes to store movements depending on
motor experience, namely verbal for controls and motor for experts. [41]

o 5.1 Approach and avoidance

o 5.2 Self-regulation

As part of a larger study, one experiment randomly assigned college undergraduates to 2


groups.[44] In the "muscle-firming" condition participants grasped a pen in their hand, while
in the "control" condition participants held the pen in their fingers. The participants were
then asked to fill out donations to Haiti for the Red Cross in sealed envelopes. They were
told to return the envelope regardless of whether they donated. They also filled out
questionnaires about their feelings about the Red Cross, their tendency to donate, their
feelings about Haiti, what they thought the purpose of the study was, etc.[44]

Significantly more participants in the "muscle-firming" condition than in the "control"


condition donated money.[44] Condition did not affect the actual amount donated when
participants chose to donate. As the researchers predicted, the "muscle-firming" condition
helped participants get over their physical aversion to viewing the devastation in Haiti and
spend money. Muscle-firming in this experiment may also be related to an increase in self-
control, suggesting embodied cognition can play a role in self-regulation.[44]

Another set of studies was conducted by Shalev (2014), indicating that exposure to physical
or conceptual thirst or dryness-related cues influence perceived energy and reduce self-
regulation. In Study 1, participants primed with dryness-related concepts reported greater
physical thirst and tiredness and lower subjective vitality. In Study 2, participants who were
physically thirstywere less persistent in investing effort in an unsolvable anagram task. In
Study 3, images of arid land influenced time preference regarding when to begin
preparation to make a monetary investment. Finally, in Studies 4a and 4b, exposure to the
names of dryness-related products influenced impressions of the vitality of a target person.
[45]

Some suggest that the embodied mind serves self-regulatory processes by combining
movement and cognition to reach a goal.[46] Thus, the embodied mind has a facilitative
effect. Some judgments, such as the emotion of a face, are detected more quickly when a
participant mimics the facial expression that is being evaluated.[29] Individuals holding a pen
in their mouths to freeze their facial muscles and make them unable to mimic the
expression were less able to judge emotions. Goal-relevant actions may be encouraged by
embodied cognition, as evidenced by the automated approach and avoidance of certain
environmental cues.[29] Embodied cognition is also influenced by the situation. If one moves
in a way previously associated with danger, the body may require a greater level of
102

information processing than if the body moves in a way associated with a benign situation.
[46]

o 5.3 Social psychology

Some social psychologists examined embodied cognition and hypothesized that embodied
cognition would be supported by embodied rapport.[47] Embodied rapport would be
demonstrated by pairs of same-sex strangers using Arons paradigm, which instructs
participants to alternate asking certain questions and to progressively self-disclose. The
researchers predicted that participants would mimic each others movements, reflecting
embodied cognition. Half the participants completed a control task of reading and editing a
scientific article, while half the participants completed a shortened version of Arons self-
disclosure paradigm.[47]

There is a significant correlation between self-disclosure and positive emotions towards the
other participant.[47] Participants randomly assigned to the self-disclosure task displayed
more behavioral synchrony (rated by independent judges watching the tapes of each
condition on mute) and reported more positive emotions than the control group.[47] Since
bodily movements influence the psychological experience of the task, the relationship
between self-disclosure and positive feelings towards one's partner may be an example of
embodied cognition.[47]

o 5.4 Evolutionary view

o Embodied cognition may also be defined from the perspective of


evolutionary psychologists.[48] Evolutionary psychologists view
emotion as an important self-regulatory aspect of embodied
cognition, and emotion as a motivator towards goal-relevant
action.[48] Emotion helps drive adaptive behavior. The evolutionary
perspective cites language, both spoken and written, as types of
embodied cognition.[48] Pacing and non-verbal communication
reflect embodied cognition in spoken language. Technical aspects
of written language, such as italics, all caps, and emoticons
promote an inner voice and thereby a sense of feeling rather than
thinking about a written message.[48]

6 Cognitive science and linguistics

George Lakoff and his collaborators have developed several lines of


evidence that suggest that people use their understanding of familiar
physical objects, actions and situations (such as containers, spaces,
trajectories) to understand other more complex domains (such as
mathematics, relationships or death). Lakoff argues that all cognition is
based on knowledge that comes from the body and that other domains
are mapped onto our embodied knowledge using a combination of
103

conceptual metaphor, image schema and prototypes.

o 6.1 Conceptual metaphor

o 6.2 Image schema

o 6.3 Prototypes

7 Artificial intelligence and robotics

o 7.1 History of artificial intelligence

o 7.2 Moravec's paradox

o 7.3 Approach to artificial intelligence

7.3.1 Solving problems of perception and locomotion


directly

8 Neuroscience

One source of inspiration for embodiment theory has been research in cognitive
neuroscience, such as the proposals of Gerald Edelman concerning how mathematical and
computational models such as neuronal group selection and neural degeneracy result in
emergent categorization.

Rohrer (2005) discusses how both our neural and developmental embodiment shape both
our mental and linguistic categorizations. The degree of thought abstraction has been found
to be associated with physical distance which then affects associated ideas and perception
of risk.[64]

The embodied mind thesis is compatible with some views of cognition promoted in
neuropsychology, such as the theories of consciousness of Vilayanur S. Ramachandran,
Gerald Edelman, and Antonio Damasio.

The modeling work of cognitive neuroscientists such as Francisco Varela and Walter
Freeman seeks to explain embodied and situated cognition in terms of dynamical systems
theory and neurophenomenology, but rejects the idea that the brain uses representations to
do so (a position also espoused by Gerhard Werner)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neuropsychology#Approaches

9 Criticisms
104

George Lakoff and his collaborators have developed several lines of


evidence that suggest that people use their understanding of familiar
physical objects, actions and situations (such as containers, spaces,
trajectories) to understand other more complex domains (such as
mathematics, relationships or death). Lakoff argues that all cognition is
based on knowledge that comes from the body and that other domains
are mapped onto our embodied knowledge using a combination of
conceptual metaphor, image schema and prototypes.

o 9.1 Infants as examples

o 9.2 Overinterpretation?

10 Six views of embodied cognition

o 10.1 Criticism of the six claims

11 See also

12 References

13 External links

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

One manifestation of this view is found in the cognitive science of mathematics, where it is
proposed that mathematics itself, the most widely accepted means of abstraction in the
human community, is largely metaphorically constructed, and thereby reflects a cognitive
bias unique to humans that uses embodied prototypical processes (e.g. counting, moving
along a path) that are understood by all human beings through their experiences.

2 Language and culture as mappings

3 Family roles and ethics

4 Linguistics and politics

5 Literature

6 Education

7 Language learning
105

8 Conceptual metaphorical mapping in animals

9 See also

10 Notes

11 References

12 Further reading

13 External links

Conceptual thinking

Conscience

Consciousness

Constructive criticism

Conversation

Criticism

Dereistic thinking (see Glossary of psychiatry)

Design (and re-design)

Dialectic

Discovery (observation)

Distinction (philosophy)

Distributed cognition

Distributed multi-agent reasoning system

Educational assessment

Emotion

Empirical knowledge

Empiricism

Epistemology
106

Evidential reasoning (disambiguation)

Evidential reasoning approach

Expectation (epistemic)

Experimentation

Explanation

Extension (semantics)

Facilitation (business)

Fantasy

Fideism

Figure Reasoning Test

Fuzzy logic

Fuzzy-trace theory

Generalizing

Gestalt psychology

Group cognition

Heuristics in judgment and decision making

Holism

Human multitasking

Human self-reflection

Hypervigilance

Identification (information)

Inductive reasoning aptitude

Intellect

Intelligence (trait)

Intentionality
107

Inventing

Judging

Kinesthetic learning

Knowledge management

Knowledge representation and reasoning

Language

Linguistics

List of cognitive scientists

List of creative thought processes

List of emotional intelligence topics

List of emotions

List of organizational thought processes

List of perception-related topics

Mathematics Mechanization and Automated Reasoning Platform

Mental function

Mental model theory of reasoning

Meta-analytic thinking

Meta-ethical

Methodic doubt

Mimesis

Mind

Models of scientific inquiry

Morphological analysis (problem-solving)

Natural language processing

Nonduality
108

Nous

Object pairing

Pattern matching

Personal experience

Personality psychology

Persuasion

Philomath

Philosophical analysis

Philosophical method

Planning

Po (term)

Practical reason

Preconscious

Prediction

Procedural reasoning system

Pseudoscience

Pseudoskepticism

Psychological projection

Psychology of reasoning

Qualitative Reasoning Group

Rationality and Power

Reasoning Mind

Reasoning system

Recognition primed decision

Reflective disclosure
109

Scientific method

SEE-I

Self-deception

Semantic network

Semantics

Semiotics

Sensemaking

Situated cognition

Situational awareness

Skepticism

Source criticism

Spatial Cognition

Speculative reason

Spiral: The Bonds of Reasoning

Storytelling

Stream of consciousness (psychology)

Subconscious

Substitution (logic)

Suspicion (emotion)

Theories

Thinking processes (theory of constraints)

Thought disorder

Thought sonorization (see Glossary of psychiatry)

Translation

Truth
110

Unconscious mind

Understanding

VPEC-T

wikt:entrained thinking

wikt:synthesis

Working memory

World disclosure

11 Awards related to thinking

12 Organizations

13 Media

14 Persons associated with thinking

15 Related concepts

16 See also

17 References

18 External links

Sapere Aude

11 References

12 Further reading

13 External links

https://sites.google.com/site/timvangelder/publications-1

https://sites.google.com/site/timvangelder/publications-1/dynamic-approaches-to-cognition
111

https://sites.google.com/site/timvangelder/publications-1/mapping-an-argument

https://sites.google.com/site/timvangelder/publications-1/using-argument-mapping-to-
improve-critical-thinking

https://sites.google.com/site/timvangelder/publications-1/argument-mapping

https://sites.google.com/site/timvangelder/publications-1/enhancing-our-grasp-of-complex-
arguments

https://sites.google.com/site/timvangelder/publications-1/learning-to-reason

How are general informal reasoning skills acquired? Little research has been done on this
topic. Two hypotheses dominate. According to the strong situated learning hypothesis, there
are no general informal reasoning skills (only context- or domain specific skills) and so
nothing can be done to improve them. According to the practice hypothesis, general informal
reasoning can be improved through intensive quality practice. These hypotheses were
evaluated in the context of a one-semester undergraduate reasoning course based on Reason!,
a software environment for quality practice. Results provide tentative support the practice
hypothesis.

https://sites.google.com/site/timvangelder/publications-1/reason---improving-informal-
reasoning-skills

https://sites.google.com/site/timvangelder/publications-1/does-philosophy-improve-
reasoning-skills

I was not an author of this thesis (Claudia Alvarez was the sole author). I am nevertheless
including it on this site because

1. The thesis draws heavily on research in which I was involved.

2. The thesis is I believe very important for higher education and should be made widely
avaiable.

The thesis presents an extensive meta-analysis of critical thinking skill gains over one
semester among undergraduate students. It provides what is to my knowledge the first
rigorous estimate of the extent to which undergraduates' critical thinking skills actually
improve in the course of undergraduate education - about 0.1 of a standard deviation over a
semester.

This constitutes a baseline against which to compare other approaches to inculcating critical
thinking skills. Of crucial importance for the Reason Project, the meta-analysis indicates that
the Reason Method, properly deployed, can produce gains of around 0.8 SD.
112

https://sites.google.com/site/timvangelder/publications-1/the-roles-of-philosophy-in-
cognitive-science

What does philosophy contribute to cognitive science? This question is


addressed indirectly, by describing some of the many roles philosophers play.
These include pioneer, building inspector, Zen monk, cartographer, archivist,
cheerleader and gadfly. As a preparatory exercise, philosophers are
characterized in terms of their primary methods: argument, conceptual analysis
and historical perspective. The various roles philosophers in fact play are seen to
follow naturally from this way of characterizing the philosopher.
Roles of Philosophy in Cognitive Science - Philosophical Psychology 1998.pdf
(1456k)
Tim van Gelder,
Roles of Philosophy in Cognitive Science updated 2009.pdf
(156k)
Tim van Gelder,
Jul 20, 2015, 1:27 PM
http://www.argunet.org/2013/04/03/so-what-exactly-is-an-argument-map/

So, what exactly is an argument map?


by Christian Voigt, Wednesday, April 3rd, 2013

This is a quick introduction into argument maps: How to create them, how to read them
and what you can expect to get out of it.

An Argunet argument map visualises the structure of complex argumentations and debates as
a graphical network. In this network all nodes are either sentences or arguments and all
relations between them are either attack or support relations.

The reconstruction and visualisation with argument maps can be useful in many ways:

Argument maps can give you a fast overview over the state of a debate

Argument maps help you to remember complex argumentation structures

The logical reconstruction allows a detailed analysis and evaluation of


arguments and dialectic strategies

Argument maps help to keep focused on relevant parts of the debate by


filtering out irrelevant or redundant information

Argument maps help concentrate on a rational, fair debate

Argument maps can guide and structure live discussions.


Misunderstandings, repitition and unfair persuasion techniques can be
avoided.
113

Argument mapping can be used for presentations or whole seminars

How do I read an argument map?

Argument Maps contain two elements: Sentences and Arguments.

Sentences

Sentences are visualised as small framed white boxes.

Arguments

Arguments are visualised as small colored boxes

Reconstructed Arguments

If an argument has been logically reconstructed, the argument is visualised as a small framed
colored box. You can open the logical reconstruction by clicking on it.

Logically an argument consists of nothing else but sentences. But these sentences play
different roles in an argument. Every argument has one inferred sentence (the conclusion) and
at least one sentence from which the conclusion is inferred (a premiss). This premiss-
conclusion structure is visualised as a sentence list: First all premisses of the argument are
listed. Each horizontal line symbolizes an inference. Under the line the conclusion is listed
(sometimes there are preliminary conclusions). Under the last line stands the main conclusion
of the argument.
114

Support relations
If an argument supports a sentence of another argument, a green arrow is drawn from the
former to the latter.

If the arrow is drawn-through, the support relation has been logically reconstructed.
Logically, an argument supports another argument, if the conclusion of the supporting
argument is equivalent to a premiss of the supported argument (Socrates is mortal,
Socrates will die).

If you click on the arrow, you can see which sentences are defined as equivalent.

If the arrow is dashed, the support relation is only sketched and not logically reconstructed.
115

Attack relations

If an argument attacks a sentence of another argument, a red arrow is drawn from the former
to the latter.

If the arrow is drawn-through, the attack relation has been logically reconstructed. Logically,
an argument attacks another argument, if the conclusion of the supporting argument is
contrary to a premiss of the supported argument (Socrates is mortal, Socrates will never
die).

If you click on the arrow, you can see which sentences are defined as contrary.

If the arrow is dashed, the support relation is only sketched and not logically reconstructed.

Reading tips

Start from the center of the debate. Look for the central thesis (sometimes
there are more than one). Open and read all reconstructed arguments that
support or attack the central thesis. Proceed by going from the center to
the periphery.

An attack does not necessarily mean, that the attacked argument is a bad
argument. A support does not necessarily mean the argument is good. It
all depends on your evaluation: How plausible do you find the premisses of
116

the attacking/supporting argument? Where are the weak points of the


argumentation?

Are the reconstructed arguments really valid? Does the conclusion follow
from the premisses? If the argument is valid and the premisses are true,
the conclusion has to be true, too. Is there a counter-example?

Naturally, no argument map can contain every argument. The authors


have always made a selection. Are there important arguments missing?

Please read the introduction of the Argunet Editor Help for further information.

Do argument maps tell me, what I should believe?

No, they dont. Argument maps are just a tool you can use for making up your mind. The
better an argument map is, the more unbiased and neutral it is.

Every argument presupposes premisses. How good the arguments in the argument map are
depends on how plausible their premisses are. The attack and support relations of the
argument map do not determine the plausibility of the premisses, they only limit the
possibilities by relating the plausibilities of different sentences to one another.

So, it is really up to you. Argument maps can show you, which questions you have to answer
to make up your mind. They can not answer these questions for you.

Just download Argunet Editor for free. Start Argunet and click on Create a new debate. You
can create local debates on your computer or start an online debate to collaborate with others.

How can I create an argument map?

Follow the instructions in our first Tutorial (All tutorials come with your Argunet installation,
so you do not have to read them online). It wont take long and will teach you the Argunet
basics.

Is there any difference to mind-mapping?

Yes, there are many differences. Argument maps may remind you of mind maps, because they
look similar. But thats about it. Mind maps have a different methodology, serve different
purposes and are used by different people. Here are just some important differences:

Mind maps are used for brainstorming, i.e. the collection of subjective
associations, opinions, ideas of all sorts. Argument maps are used for the
logical reconstruction and analysis of controverse debates. In most cases
these debates will take place between different people with different
perspective and not in your mind alone.

In mind maps the visualisation means to you, what you want it to mean.
That may be great for you, but it is not so great if you want to share the
products of your mind with others. In every Argunet argument map the
meaning of all elements always stays the same and is well defined by logic
or argumentation theory. This precision is not only necessary if you want
117

to assess complex arguments and argumentations. It gives you also the


opportunity to share your insights with others in a common visual
language.

There are no real rules in mind-mapping. You can do what you want.
Nobody can say what is right and what is wrong. In contrast, giving and
taking reasons is a rule guided practice. There are rules about good and
bad reasoning. Argument maps can not guarantee good reasoning. But
they can restrict the users options in a way that makes it more probable.
This rule-guided reconstruction makes it possible to collaborate on
argument maps even if the participants have opposing views in the
reconstructed debate.

https://philpapers.org/rec/BETAAV

Argunet. A virtual argumentation platform for rule-


guided reasoning
http://www.reasoninglab.com/
http://www.jostwald.com/ArgumentMapping/ARGUMENT%20MAPPING.pdf
https://www.rairarubiabooks.com/related-pdf-argument-mapping.html
http://www.austhink.com/critical/

1. Argument Mapping Tutorials. Six online tutorials in argument mapping, a


core requirement for advanced critical thinking.

2. The Skeptic's Dictionary - over 400 definitions and essays.

3. The Fallacy Files by Gary Curtis. Best website on fallacies.

4. Butterflies and Wheels. Excellent reading - news, articles, and much


more.

5. Critical Thinking: What It Is and Why It Counts by Peter Facione. Good


overview of the nature of critical thinking. (pdf file)

6. Of the Liberty of Thought and Discussion by John Stuart Mill. Classic


chapter, densely packed with wisdom about thinking.

7. Chance - best resource for helping students think critically about issues
involving probability and statistics

8. Psychology of Intelligence Analysis, by Richards Heuer. A good overview of


how to improve thinking in the light of insights from cognitive psychology.

9. A Handbook on Writing Argumentative and Interpretative Essays by Ian


Johnston
118

10.Baloney Detection Part 1 and Part 2 - by Michael Shermer. 10 step guide.

Argument Mapping
Art
Assessing
Bibliographies
Blogs
Cognitive Biases and Blindspots
Critical Reading and Writing
Definitions
Email Lists and Newsletters
The Enlightenment
Experts and Expertise
Fallacies
General Resources
Great Critical Thinkers
Group Thinking
Guides
Health & Medicine
Hoaxes, Scams and Urban Legends
Institutes, Centers and Societies
Intelligence (military, etc.)
Language and Thought
Logic
Magazines & Journals
The Media
Miscellaneous & Fun
Numeracy
Nursing
Podcasts
Postmodernism and all that
Political Correctness
Skepticism
Software
Specialists
Statistics & Probability
Teaching
Terrorism
Textbooks
Theory & Research
Tutorials
Vendors
Web Page Evaluation
What is critical thinking?

Nobody said it better than Francis Bacon, back in 1605:

For myself, I found that I was fitted for nothing so well as for the study of Truth; as having a
mind nimble and versatile enough to catch the resemblances of things and at the same
time steady enough to fix and distinguish their subtler differences; as being gifted by nature
119

with desire to seek, patience to doubt, fondness to meditate, slowness to assert, readiness to
consider, carefulness to dispose and set in order; and as being a man that neither affects
what is new nor admires what is old, and that hates every kind of imposture.

A shorter version is the art of being right.

Or, more prosaically: critical thinking is the skillful application of a repertoire of validated
general techniques for deciding the level of confidence you should have in a proposition in
the light of the available evidence.

More definitions...

http://research.omicsgroup.org/index.php/Argument_map

n informal logic and philosophy, an argument map is a visual representation of the structure
of an argument. It includes the components of an argument such as a main contention,
premises, co-premises, objections, rebuttals, and lemmas. Typically an argument map is a
"box and arrow" diagram with boxes corresponding to propositions and arrows corresponding
to relationships such as evidential support.

Argument maps are commonly used in the context of teaching and applying critical thinking.
[1]
The purpose of mapping is to uncover the logical structure of arguments, identify unstated
assumptions, evaluate the support an argument offers for a conclusion, and aid understanding
of debates. Argument maps are often designed to support deliberation of issues, ideas and
arguments in wicked problems.

An argument map is not to be confused with a concept map or a mind map, which are less
strict in relating claims.

http://research.omicsgroup.org/index.php/Concept_map

A concept map or conceptual diagram is a diagram that depicts suggested relationships


between concepts.[1] It is a graphical tool that designers, engineers, technical writers, and
others use to organize and structure knowledge.

A concept map typically represents ideas and information as boxes or circles, which it
connects with labeled arrows in a downward-branching hierarchical structure. The
relationship between concepts can be articulated in linking phrases such as causes, requires,
or contributes to.[2]

The technique for visualizing these relationships among different concepts is called concept
mapping. Concept maps define the ontology of computer systems, for example with the
object-role modeling or Unified Modeling Language

Information mapping

Topics & fields


120

Business decision mapping

Cognitive map

Conceptual graph

Data visualization

Decision tree

Educational psychology

Educational technology

Graphic communication

Information design

Information graphics

Interactive visualization

Knowledge visualization

Mental model

Morphological analysis

Visual analytics

Visual language

Tree-like approaches

Cladistics

Argument map

Cognitive map

Concept mapping
121

Conceptual graphs

Dendrogram

Graph drawing

Hyperbolic tree

Layered graph drawing

Mental model

Mind mapping

Object-role modeling

Organizational chart

Radial tree

Refined concept map

Semantic network

Sociogram

Timeline

Topic Maps

Tree structure

See also

Diagrammatic reasoning

Entity-relationship model

Geovisualization

List of concept- and mind-mapping


122

software

Olog

Semantic web

Treemapping

Wicked problem

http://research.omicsgroup.org/index.php/Mind_map

A mind map is a diagram used to visually organize information. A mind map is often created
around a single concept, drawn as an image in the center of a blank landscape page, to which
associated representations of ideas such as images, words and parts of words are added.
Major ideas are connected directly to the central concept, and other ideas branch out from
those.

Mind maps can be drawn by hand, either as "rough notes" during a lecture, meeting or
planning session, for example, or as higher quality pictures when more time is available.

Mind maps are considered to be a type of spider diagram.[1] A similar concept in the 1970s
was "idea sun bursting"

http://research.omicsgroup.org/index.php/Spider_diagram

In mathematics, a unitary spider diagram adds existential points to an Euler or a Venn


diagram. The points indicate the existence of an attribute described by the intersection of
contours in the Euler diagram. These points may be joined together forming a shape like a
spider. Joined points represent an "or" condition, also known as a logical disjunction.

A spider diagram is a boolean expression involving unitary spider diagrams and the logical
symbols <math>\land,\lor,\lnot</math>. For example, it may consist of the conjunction of
two spider diagrams, the disjunction of two spider diagrams, or the negation of a spider
diagram.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Argument_map

In informal logic and philosophy, an argument map or argument diagram is a visual


representation of the structure of an argument. An argument map typically includes the key
components of the argument, traditionally called the conclusion and the premises, also called
contention and reasons.[1] Argument maps can also show co-premises, objections,
counterarguments, rebuttals, and lemmas. There are different styles of argument map but they
123

are often functionally equivalent and represent an argument's individual claims and the
relationships between them.

Argument maps are commonly used in the context of teaching and applying critical thinking.
[2]
The purpose of mapping is to uncover the logical structure of arguments, identify unstated
assumptions, evaluate the support an argument offers for a conclusion, and aid understanding
of debates. Argument maps are often designed to support deliberation of issues, ideas and
arguments in wicked problems.[3]

An argument map is not to be confused with a concept map or a mind map, which are less
strict in relating claims.

1 Key features of an argument map

2 Representing an argument as an argument map

3 History

o 3.1 The philosophical origins and tradition of argument mapping

o 3.2 Anglophone argument diagramming in the 20th century

4 Applications

o 4.1 Difficulties with the philosophical tradition

o It has traditionally been hard to separate teaching critical thinking


from the philosophical tradition of teaching logic and method, and
most critical thinking textbooks have been written by philosophers.
Informal logic textbooks are replete with philosophical examples,
but it is unclear whether the approach in such textbooks transfers to
non-philosophy students.[18] There appears to be little statistical
effect after such classes. Argument mapping, however, has a
measurable effect according to many studies. [37] For example,
instruction in argument mapping has been shown to improve the
critical thinking skills of business students. [38]

o 4.2 Evidence that argument mapping improves critical thinking


ability

o There is empirical evidence that the skills developed in argument-


mapping-based critical thinking courses substantially transfer to
critical thinking done without argument maps. Alvarez's meta-
analysis found that such critical thinking courses produced gains of
around 0.70 SD, about twice as much as standard critical-thinking
courses.[39] The tests used in the reviewed studies were standard
critical-thinking tests.

o 4.3 How argument mapping helps with critical thinking


124

The use of argument mapping has occurred within a number of disciplines, such as
philosophy, management reporting, military and intelligence analysis, and public
debates.[33]

Logical structure: Argument maps display an argument's logical structure more


clearly than does the standard linear way of presenting arguments.

Critical thinking concepts: In learning to argument map, students master such key
critical thinking concepts as "reason", "objection", "premise", "conclusion",
"inference", "rebuttal", "unstated assumption", "co-premise", "strength of evidence",
"logical structure", "independent evidence", etc. Mastering such concepts is not just a
matter of memorizing their definitions or even being able to apply them correctly; it is
also understanding why the distinctions these words mark are important and using that
understanding to guide one's reasoning.

Visualization: Humans are highly visual and argument mapping may provide students
with a basic set of visual schemas with which to understand argument structures.

More careful reading and listening: Learning to argument map teaches people to read
and listen more carefully, and highlights for them the key questions "What is the
logical structure of this argument?" and "How does this sentence fit into the larger
structure?" In-depth cognitive processing is thus more likely.

More careful writing and speaking: Argument mapping helps people to state their
reasoning and evidence more precisely, because the reasoning and evidence must fit
explicitly into the map's logical structure.

Literal and intended meaning: Often, many statements in an argument do not


precisely assert what the author meant. Learning to argument map enhances the
complex skill of distinguishing literal from intended meaning.

Externalization: Writing something down and reviewing what one has written often
helps reveal gaps and clarify one's thinking. Because the logical structure of argument
maps is clearer than that of linear prose, the benefits of mapping will exceed those of
ordinary writing.

Anticipating replies: Important to critical thinking is anticipating objections and


considering the plausibility of different rebuttals. Mapping develops this anticipation
skill, and so improves analysis.

5 Standards

o 5.1 Argument Interchange Format

o 5.2 Legal Knowledge Interchange Format


125

6 See also

7 Notes

8 References

9 Further reading

10 External links

o 10.1 Argument mapping software

o 10.2 Online, collaborative software

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inquiry

An inquiry is any process that has the aim of augmenting knowledge, resolving doubt, or
solving a problem. A theory of inquiry is an account of the various types of inquiry and a
treatment of the ways that each type of inquiry achieves its aim.

Inquiry Theories

1.1 Induction

1.2 Abduction

The locus classicus for the study of abductive reasoning is found in Aristotle's Prior
Analytics, Book 2, Chapt. 25. It begins this way:

We have Reduction (, abduction):

1. When it is obvious that the first term applies to the middle, but that
the middle applies to the last term is not obvious, yet is
nevertheless more probable or not less probable than the
conclusion;

2. Or if there are not many intermediate terms between the last and
the middle;

For in all such cases the effect is to bring us nearer to knowledge.

By way of explanation, Aristotle supplies two very instructive examples, one for each of the
two varieties of abductive inference steps that he has just described in the abstract:

1. For example, let A stand for "that which can be taught", B for
"knowledge", and C for "morality". Then that knowledge can be
taught is evident; but whether virtue is knowledge is not clear. Then
if BC is not less probable or is more probable than AC, we have
126

reduction; for we are nearer to knowledge for having introduced an


additional term, whereas before we had no knowledge that AC is
true.

2. Or again we have reduction if there are not many intermediate


terms between B and C; for in this case too we are brought nearer
to knowledge. For example, suppose that D is "to square", E
"rectilinear figure", and F "circle". Assuming that between E and F
there is only one intermediate term that the circle becomes equal
to a rectilinear figure by means of lunules we should approximate
to knowledge. (Aristotle, "Prior Analytics", 2.25, with minor
alterations)

Aristotle's latter variety of abductive reasoning, though it will take some explaining in the
sequel, is well worth our contemplation, since it hints already at streams of inquiry that
course well beyond the syllogistic source from which they spring, and into regions that Peirce
will explore more broadly and deeply.

2 Inquiry in the pragmatic paradigm


In the pragmatic philosophies of Charles Sanders Peirce, William James, John
Dewey, and others, inquiry is closely associated with the normative science of
logic. In its inception, the pragmatic model or theory of inquiry was extracted by
Peirce from its raw materials in classical logic, with a little bit of help from Kant,
and refined in parallel with the early development of symbolic logic by Boole, De
Morgan, and Peirce himself to address problems about the nature and conduct of
scientific reasoning. Borrowing a brace of concepts from Aristotle, Peirce
examined three fundamental modes of reasoning that play a role in inquiry,
commonly known as abductive, deductive, and inductive inference

n rough terms, abduction is what we use to generate a likely hypothesis or an initial diagnosis
in response to a phenomenon of interest or a problem of concern, while deduction is used to
clarify, to derive, and to explicate the relevant consequences of the selected hypothesis, and
induction is used to test the sum of the predictions against the sum of the data. It needs to be
observed that the classical and pragmatic treatments of the types of reasoning, dividing the
generic territory of inference as they do into three special parts, arrive at a different
characterization of the environs of reason than do those accounts that count only two.

These three processes typically operate in a cyclic fashion, systematically operating to reduce
the uncertainties and the difficulties that initiated the inquiry in question, and in this way, to
the extent that inquiry is successful, leading to an increase in knowledge or in skills.

In the pragmatic way of thinking everything has a purpose, and the purpose of each thing is
the first thing we should try to note about it.[1] The purpose of inquiry is to reduce doubt and
lead to a state of belief, which a person in that state will usually call knowledge or certainty.

2.1 Art and science of inquiry


127

the first feature to note in distinguishing the three principal modes of


reasoning from each other is whether each of them is exact or
approximate in character. In this light, deduction is the only one of the
three types of reasoning that can be made exact, in essence, always
deriving true conclusions from true premises, while abduction and
induction are unavoidably approximate in their modes of operation,
involving elements of fallible judgment in practice and inescapable error in
their application

2.2 Zeroth order inquiry

3 Example of inquiry

3.1 Once over quickly

3.2 Looking more closely

4 Citations
5 Bibliography

6 See also

https://question-skills.wikispaces.com/

We have known for years that questioning is an important life skill and a major learning and
thinking skill.
Many schools are now becoming convinced that facilitating students' questioning skills is a
major aspect that their classroom programmes should be addressing. It also follows that if
this is a major goal then we need to have some form of suitable assessment tools that allow us
to determine if the learning experiences and teaching practices we put in place are having a
positive impact on student skills. There seem to be a number of questions we need to answer
and some resources we need to develop if we are serious about impacting on our students'
questioning skills

http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2012/04/has-physics-made-philosophy-and-
religion-obsolete/256203/

We tend to think of our time as one uniquely shaped by the advance of technology, but more
and more I suspect that this will be remembered as an age of cosmology-as the moment
when the human mind first internalized the cosmos that gave rise to it.

science has quietly begun to sketch the structure of the entire cosmos, extending its
explanatory powers across a hundred billion galaxies, to the dawn of space and time itself. It
is breath taking to consider how quickly we have come to understand the basics of everything
from star formation to galaxy formation to universe formation. And now, equipped with the
predictive power of quantum physics, theoretical physicists are beginning to push even
128

further, into new universes and new physics, into controversies once thought to be squarely
within the domain of theology or philosophy..

In January, Lawrence Krauss, a theoretical physicist and Director of the Origins Institute at
Arizona State University, published A Universe From Nothing: Why There Is Something
Rather Than Nothing, a book that, as its title suggests, purports to explain how something
and not just any something, but the entire universecould have emerged from nothing,

Andersen: I want to start with a general question about the relationship between philosophy
and physics. There has been a fair amount of sniping between these two disciplines over the
past few years. Why the sudden, public antagonism between philosophy and physics?

Krauss: That's a good question. I expect it's because physics has encroached on philosophy.
Philosophy used to be a field that had content, but then "natural philosophy" became physics,
and physics has only continued to make inroads. Every time there's a leap in physics, it
encroaches on these areas that philosophers have carefully sequestered away to themselves,
and so then you have this natural resentment on the part of philosophers. This sense that
somehow physicists, because they can't spell the word "philosophy," aren't justified in talking
about these things, or haven't thought deeply about them

Andersen: Is that really a claim that you see often?

Krauss: It is. Philosophy is a field that, unfortunately, reminds me of that old Woody Allen
joke, "those that can't do, teach, and those that can't teach, teach gym." And the worst part of
philosophy is the philosophy of science; the only people, as far as I can tell, that read work by
philosophers of science are other philosophers of science. It has no impact on physics what so
ever, and I doubt that other philosophers read it because it's fairly technical. And so it's really
hard to understand what justifies it. And so I'd say that this tension occurs because people in
philosophy feel threatened, and they have every right to feel threatened, because science
progresses and philosophy doesn't.

Andersen: On that note, you were recently quoted as saying that philosophy "hasn't
progressed in two thousand years." But computer science, particularly research into artificial
intelligence was to a large degree built on foundational work done by philosophers in logic
and other formal languages. And certainly philosophers like John Rawls have been
immensely influential in fields like political science and public policy. Do you view those as
legitimate achievements?
Krauss: Well, yeah, I mean, look I was being provocative, as I tend to do every now and then
in order to get people's attention. There are areas of philosophy that are important, but I think
of them as being subsumed by other fields. In the case of descriptive philosophy you have
literature or logic, which in my view is really mathematics. Formal logic is mathematics, and
there are philosophers like Wittgenstein that are very mathematical, but what they're really
doing is mathematicsit's not talking about things that have affected computer science, it's
mathematical logic. And again, I think of the interesting work in philosophy as being
subsumed by other disciplines like history, literature, and to some extent political science
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insofar as ethics can be said to fall under that heading. To me what philosophy does best is
reflect on knowledge that's generated in other areas.
Andersen: I'm not sure that's right. I think that in some cases philosophy actually generates
new fields. Computer science is a perfect example. Certainly philosophical work in logic can
be said to have been subsumed by computer science, but subsumed might be the wrong word

Krauss: Well, you name me the philosophers that did key work for computer science; I think
of John Von Neumann and other mathematicians, and
Andersen: But Bertrand Russell paved the way for Von Neumann.
Krauss: But Bertrand Russell was a mathematician. I mean, he was a philosopher too and he
was interested in the philosophical foundations of mathematics, but by the way, when he
wrote about the philosophical foundations of mathematics, what did he do? He got it wrong.
Andersen: But Einstein got it wrong, too
Krauss: Sure, but the difference is that scientists are really happy when they get it wrong,
because it means that there's more to learn. And look, one can play semantic games, but I
think that if you look at the people whose work really pushed the computer revolution from
Turing to Von Neumann and, you're right, Bertrand Russell in some general way, I think
you'll find it's the mathematicians who had the big impact. And logic can certainly be claimed
to be a part of philosophy, but to me the content of logic is mathematical.
Andersen: Do you find this same tension between theoretical and empirical physics?
Krauss: Sometimes, but it shouldn't be there. Physics is an empirical science. As a theoretical
physicist I can tell you that I recognize that it's the experiment that drives the field, and it's
very rare to have it go the other way; Einstein is of course the obvious exception, but even he
was guided by observation. It's usually the universe that's surprising us, not the other way
around.
Andersen: Moving on to your book A Universe From Nothing, what did you hope to
accomplish when you set out to write it?
Krauss: Every time I write a book, I try and think of a hook. People are interested in science,
but they don't always know they're interested in science, and so I try to find a way to get them
interested. Teaching and writing, to me, is really just seduction; you go to where people are
and you find something that they're interested in and you try and use that to convince them
that they should be interested in what you have to say.
The religious question "why is there something rather than nothing," has been around since
people have been around, and now we're actually reaching a point where science is beginning
to address that question. And so I figured I could use that question as a way to celebrate the
revolutionary changes that we've achieved in refining our picture of the universe. I didn't
write the book to attack religion, per se. The purpose of the book is to point out all of these
amazing things that we now know about the universe. Reading some of the reactions to the
book, it seems like you automatically become strident the minute you try to explain
something naturally.
Richard Dawkins wrote the afterword for the bookand I thought it was pretentious at the
time, but I just decided to go with itwhere he compares the book to The Origin of Species.
And of course as a scientific work it doesn't some close to The Origin of Species, which is
one of the greatest scientific works ever produced. And I say that as a physicist; I've often
argued that Darwin was a greater scientist than Einstein. But there is one similarity between
my book and Darwin'sbefore Darwin life was a miracle; every aspect of life was a miracle,
every species was designed, etc. And then what Darwin showed was that simple laws could,
in principle, plausibly explain the incredible diversity of life. And while we don't yet know
the ultimate origin of life, for most people it's plausible that at some point chemistry became
biology. What's amazing to me is that we're now at a point where we can plausibly argue that
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a universe full of stuff came from a very simple beginning, the simplest of all beginnings:
nothing. That's been driven by profound revolutions in our understanding of the universe, and
that seemed to me to be something worth celebrating, and so what I wanted to do was use this
question to get people to face this remarkable universe that we live in.

"Philosophy hasn't progressed in two thousand years."

Andersen: Your book argues that physics has definitively demonstrated how something can
come from nothing. Do you mean that physics has explained how particles can emerge from
so-called empty space, or are you making a deeper claim?
Krauss: I'm making a deeper claim, but at the same time I think you're overstating what I
argued. I don't think I argued that physics has definitively shown how something could come
from nothing; physics has shown how plausible physical mechanisms might cause this to
happen. I try to be intellectually honest in everything that I write, especially about what we
know and what we don't know. If you're writing for the public, the one thing you can't do is
overstate your claim, because people are going to believe you. They see I'm a physicist and so
if I say that protons are little pink elephants, people might believe me. And so I try to be very
careful and responsible. We don't know how something can come from nothing, but we do
know some plausible ways that it might.
But I am certainly claiming a lot more than just that. That it's possible to create particles from
no particles is remarkablethat you can do that with impunity, without violating the
conservation of energy and all that, is a remarkable thing. The fact that "nothing," namely
empty space, is unstable is amazing. But I'll be the first to say that empty space as I'm
describing it isn't necessarily nothing, although I will add that it was plenty good enough
for Augustine and the people who wrote the Bible. For them an eternal empty void was the
definition of nothing, and certainly I show that that kind of nothing ain't nothing anymore.
Andersen: But debating physics with Augustine might not be an interesting thing to do in
2012.
Krauss: It might be more interesting than debating some of the moronic philosophers that
have written about my book. Given what we know about quantum gravity, or what we
presume about quantum gravity, we know you can create space from where there was no
space. And so you've got a situation where there were no particles in space, but also there
was no space. That's a lot closer to "nothing."
But of course then people say that's not "nothing," because you can create something from it.
They ask, justifiably, where the laws come from. And the last part of the book argues that
we've been driven to this notion---a notion that I don't like---that the laws of physics
themselves could be an environmental accident. On that theory, physics itself becomes an
environmental science, and the laws of physics come into being when the universe comes
into being. And to me that's the last nail in the coffin for "nothingness."
Andersen: It sounds like you're arguing that 'nothing' is really a quantum vacuum, and that a
quantum vacuum is unstable in such a way as to make the production of matter and space
inevitable. But a quantum vacuum has properties. For one, it is subject to the equations of
quantum field theory. Why should we think of it as nothing?
Krauss: That would be a legitimate argument if that were all I was arguing. By the way it's a
nebulous term to say that something is a quantum vacuum in this way. That's another term
that these theologians and philosophers have started using because they don't know what the
hell it is, but it makes them sound like they know what they're talking about. When I talk
about empty space, I am talking about a quantum vacuum, but when I'm talking about no
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space whatsoever, I don't see how you can call it a quantum vacuum. It's true that I'm
applying the laws of quantum mechanics to it, but I'm applying it to nothing, to literally
nothing. No space, no time, nothing. There may have been meta-laws that created it, but how
you can call that universe that didn't exist "something" is beyond me. When you go to the
level of creating space, you have to argue that if there was no space and no time, there
wasn't any pre-existing quantum vacuum. That's a later stage.
Even if you accept this argument that nothing is not nothing, you have to acknowledge that
nothing is being used in a philosophical sense. But I don't really give a damn about what
"nothing" means to philosophers; I care about the "nothing" of reality. And if the "nothing" of
reality is full of stuff, then I'll go with that.
"But I don't really give a damn what "nothing" means to philosophers; I care about the
"nothing" of reality."
But I don't have to accept that argument, because space didn't exist in the state I'm talking
about, and of course then you'll say that the laws of quantum mechanics existed, and that
those are something. But I don't know what laws existed then. In fact, most of the laws of
nature didn't exist before the universe was created; they were created along with the universe,
at least in the multiverse picture. The forces of nature, the definition of particlesall these
things come into existence with the universe, and in a different universe, different forces
and different particles might exist. We don't yet have the mathematics to describe a
multiverse, and so I don't know what laws are fixed. I also don't have a quantum theory of
gravity, so I can't tell you for certain how space comes into existence, but to make the
argument that a quantum vacuum that has particles is the same as one that doesn't have
particles is to not understand field theory.
Andersen: I'm not sure that anyone is arguing that they're the same thing
Krauss: Well, I read a moronic philosopher who did a review of my book in the New York
Times who somehow said that having particles and no particles is the same thing, and it's not.
The quantum state of the universe can change and it's dynamical. He didn't understand that
when you apply quantum field theory to a dynamic universe, things change and you can
go from one kind of vacuum to another. When you go from no particles to particles, it
means something.
Andersen: I think the problem for me, coming at this as a layperson, is that when you're
talking about the explanatory power of science, for every stage where you have a
"something,"even if it's just a wisp of something, or even just a set of lawsthere has to be
a further question about the origins of that "something." And so when I read the title of your
book, I read it as "questions about origins are over."
Krauss: Well, if that hook gets you into the book that's great. But in all seriousness, I never
make that claim. In fact, in the preface I tried to be really clear that you can keep asking
"Why?" forever. At some level there might be ultimate questions that we can't answer, but if
we can answer the "How?" questions, we should, because those are the questions that matter.
And it may just be an infinite set of questions, but what I point out at the end of the book is
that the multiverse may resolve all of those questions. From Aristotle's prime mover to the
Catholic Church's first cause, we're always driven to the idea of something eternal. If the
multiverse really exists, then you could have an infinite objectinfinite in time and space as
opposed to our universe, which is finite. That may beg the question as to where the
multiverse came from, but if it's infinite, it's infinite. You might not be able to answer that
final question, and I try to be honest about that in the book. But if you can show how a set of
physical mechanisms can bring about our universe, that itself is an amazing thing and it's
worth celebrating. I don't ever claim to resolve that infinite regress of why-why-why-why-
why; as far as I'm concerned it's turtles all the way down. The multiverse could explain it by
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being eternal, in the same way that God explains it by being eternal, but there's a huge
difference: the multiverse is well motivated and God is just an invention of lazy minds.
Andersen: In the past you've spoken quite eloquently about the Multiverse, this idea that our
universe might be one of many universes, perhaps an infinite number. In your view does
theoretical physics give a convincing account of how such a structure could come to exist?
Krauss: In certain ways, yesin other ways, no. (BECAUSE YOU WOULD REQUIRE AN
OTHER TYPE OF PHYSICS. OUR physics deals with our universe only it arosed from
our universe, context).There are a variety of multiverses that people in physics talk
about. The most convincing one derives from something called inflation, which we're pretty
certain happened because it produces effects that agree with almost everything we can
observe. From what we know about particle physics, it seems quite likely that the universe
underwent a period of exponential expansion early on. But inflation, insofar as we understand
it, never endsit only ends in certain regions and then those regions become a universe like
ours. You can show that in an inflationary universe, you produce a multiverse, you produce
an infinite number of causally separated universes over time, and the laws of physics are
different in each one. There's a real mechanism where you can calculate it.
And all of that comes, theoretically, from a very small region of space that becomes infinitely
large over time. There's a calculable multiverse; it's almost required for inflation---it's very
hard to get around it. All the evidence suggests that our universe resulted from a period of
inflation, and it's strongly suggestive that well beyond our horizon there are other universes
that are being created out of inflation, and that most of the multiverse is still expanding
exponentially.

An artist's rendering of the multiverse.

Andersen: Is there an empirical frontier for this? How do we observe a multiverse?


Krauss: Right. How do you tell that there's a multiverse if the rest of the universes are
outside your causal horizon? It sounds like philosophy. At best. But imagine that we had a
fundamental particle theory that explained why there are three generations of fundamental
particles, and why the proton is two thousand times heavier than the electron, and why there
are four forces of nature, etc. And it also predicted a period of inflation in the early universe,
and it predicts everything that we see and you can follow it through the entire evolution of the
early universe to see how we got here. Such a theory might, in addition to predicting
everything we see, also predict a host of universes that we don't see. If we had such a theory,
the accurate predictions it makes about what we can see would also make its predictions
about what we can't see extremely likely. And so I could see empirical evidence internal to
this universe validating the existence of a multiverse, even if we could never see it directly.
Andersen: You have said that your book is meant to describe "the remarkable revolutions
that have taken place in our understanding of the universe over the past 50 yearsrevolutions
that should be celebrated as the pinnacle of our intellectual experience." I think that's a
worthy project and, like you, I find it lamentable that some of physics' most extraordinary
discoveries have yet to fully penetrate our culture. But might it be possible to communicate
the beauty of those discoveries without tacking on an assault on previous belief systems,
especially when those belief systems aren't necessarily scientific?
Krauss: Well, yes. I'm sympathetic to your point in one sense, and I've had this debate with
Richard Dawkins; I've often said to him that if you want people to listen to you, the best way
is not to go up to them and say, "You're stupid." Somehow it doesn't get through.
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It's a fine line and it's hard to tell where to fall on this one. What drove me to write this book
was this discovery that the nature of "nothing" had changed, that we've discovered that
"nothing" is almost everything and that it has properties. That to me is an amazing discovery.
So how do I frame that? I frame it in terms of this question about something coming from
nothing. And part of that is a reaction to these really pompous theologians who say, "out of
nothing, nothing comes," because those are just empty words. I think at some point you need
to provoke people. Science is meant to make people uncomfortable. And whether I went too
far on one side or another of that line is an interesting question, but I suspect that if I can get
people to be upset about that issue, then on some level I've raised awareness of it.
The unfortunate aspect of it is, and I've come to realize this recently, is that some people feel
they don't even need to read the book, because they think I've missed the point of the
fundamental theological question. But I suspect that those people weren't open to it anyway. I
think Steven Weinberg said it best when he said that science doesn't make it impossible to
believe in God, it just makes it possible to not believe in God. That's a profoundly important
point, and to the extent that cosmology is bringing us to a place where we can address those
very questions, it's undoubtedly going to make people uncomfortable. It was a judgment call
on my part and I can't go back on it, so it's hard to know.
Andersen: You've developed this wonderful ability to translate difficult scientific concepts
into language that can enlighten, and even inspire a layperson. There are people in faith
communities who are genuinely curious about physics and cosmology, and your book might
be just the thing to quench and multiply that curiosity. But I worry that by framing these
discoveries in language that is in some sense borrowed from the culture war, that you run the
risk of shrinking the potential audience for themand that could ultimately be a disservice to
the ideas.
Krauss: Ultimately, it might be. I've gone to these fundamentalist colleges and I've gone to
Fox News and it's interesting, the biggest impact I've ever had is when I said, "you don't have
to be an atheist to believe in evolution." I've had young kids come up to me and say that
affected them deeply. So yes it's nice to point that out, but I actually think that if you read my
book I never say that we know all the answers, I say that it's pompous to say that we can't
know the answers. And so yeah I think that maybe there will be some people who are craving
this stuff and who won't pick up my book because of the way I've framed it, but at the same
time I do think that people need to be aware that they can be brave enough to ask the question
"Is it possible to understand the universe without God?" And so you're right that I'm going to
lose some people, but I'm hoping that at the same time I'll gain some people who are going to
be brave enough to come out of the closet and ask that question. And that's what amazes me,
that nowadays when you simply ask the question you're told that you're offending people.
Andersen: But let me bring that back full circle. You opened this conversation talking about
seduction. You're not giving an account of seduction right now.
Krauss: That's true, but let me take it back full circle to Hitchens. What Christopher had was
charm, humor, wit and culture as weapons against nonsense, and in my own small way what I
try and do in my books is exactly that. I try and infuse them with humor and culture and that's
the seduction part. And in this case the seduction might be causing people to ask, "How can
he say that? How can he have the temerity to suggest that it's possible to get something from
nothing? Let me see what's wrong with these arguments." If I'd just titled the book "A
Marvelous Universe," not as many people would have been attracted to it. But it's hard to
know. I'm acutely aware of this seduction problem, and my hope is that what I can do is get
people to listen long enough to where I can show some of what's going on, and at the same
time make them laugh.
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WHERE DID THE UNIVERSE COME FROM? WHAT WAS THERE BEFORE IT?
WHAT WILL THE FUTURE BRING? AND FINALLY, WHY IS THERE
SOMETHING RATHER THAN NOTHING?

Lawrence Krausss provocative answers to these and other timeless questions in


a wildly popular lecture now on YouTube have attracted almost a million viewers.
The last of these questions in particular has been at the center of religious and
philosophical debates about the existence of God, and its the supposed
counterargument to anyone who questions the need for God. As Krauss argues,
scientists have, however, historically focused on other, more pressing issues
such as figuring out how the universe actually functions, which can ultimately
help us to improve the quality of our lives.

Now, in a cosmological story that rivets as it enlightens, pioneering theoretical


physicist Lawrence Krauss explains the groundbreaking new scientific advances
that turn the most basic philosophical questions on their heads. One of the few
prominent scientists today to have actively crossed the chasm between science
and popular culture, Krauss reveals that modern science is addressing the
question of why there is something rather than nothing, with surprising and
fascinating results. The staggeringly beautiful experimental observations and
mind-bending new theories are all described accessibly in A Universe from
Nothing, and they suggest that not only can something arise from nothing,
something will always arise from nothing.

With his characteristic wry humor and wonderfully clear explanations, Krauss
takes us back to the beginning of the beginning, presenting the most recent
evidence for how our universe evolvedand the implications for how its going to
end. It will provoke, challenge, and delight readers as it looks at the most basic
underpinnings of existence in a whole new way. And this knowledge that our
universe will be quite different in the future from today has profound implications
and directly affects how we live in the present. As Richard Dawkins has described
it: This could potentially be the most important scientific book with implications
for supernaturalism since Darwin.

A fascinating antidote to outmoded philosophical and religious thinking, A


Universe from Nothing is a provocative, game-changing entry into the debate
about the existence of Go
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/25/books/review/a-universe-from-nothing-by-lawrence-m-
krauss.html
On the Origin of Everything

A Universe From Nothing, by Lawrence M. Krauss


By DAVID ALBERT MARCH 23, 2012

David Albert is a professor of philosophy at Columbia and the author of Quantum


Mechanics and Experience.

Lawrence M. Krauss, a well-known cosmologist and prolific popular-science writer,


apparently means to announce to the world, in this new book, that the laws of quantum
mechanics have in them the makings of a thoroughly scientific and adamantly secular
explanation of why there is something rather than nothing. Period. Case closed. End of story.
135

I kid you not. Look at the subtitle. Look at how Richard Dawkins sums it up in his afterword:
Even the last remaining trump card of the theologian, Why is there something rather than
nothing?, shrivels up before your eyes as you read these pages. If On the Origin of Species
was biologys deadliest blow to supernaturalism, we may come to see A Universe From
Nothing as the equivalent from cosmology. The title means exactly what it says. And what it
says is devastating.

Well, lets see. There are lots of different sorts of conversations one might want to have about
a claim like that: conversations, say, about what it is to explain something, and about what it
is to be a law of nature, and about what it is to be a physical thing. But since the space I have
is limited, let me put those niceties aside and try to be quick, and crude, and concrete.

Where, for starters, are the laws of quantum mechanics themselves supposed to have come
from? (The developed with and apply to our one known universes. But there might well be a
multiverse, with other universes having other types of laws of physics.) Krauss is more or
less upfront, as it turns out, about not having a clue about that. He acknowledges (albeit in a
parenthesis, and just a few pages before the end of the book) that everything he has been
talking about simply takes the basic principles of quantum mechanics for granted. I have no
idea if this notion can be usefully dispensed with, he writes, or at least I dont know of any
productive work in this regard. And what if he did know of some productive work in that
regard? What if he were in a position to announce, for instance, that the truth of the quantum-
mechanical laws can be traced back to the fact that the world (this one world or universe that
we are sort of familiar with, not all universes, worlds of the multiverse.) has some other,
deeper property X? Wouldnt we still be in a position to ask why X rather than Y? And is
there a last such question? Is there some point at which the possibility of asking any further
such questions somehow definitively comes to an end? How would that work? What would
that be like?

Never mind. Forget where the laws came from. Have a look instead at what they say. It
happens that ever since the scientific revolution of the 17th century, what physics has given
us in the way of candidates for the fundamental laws of nature have as a general rule simply
taken it for granted that there is, at the bottom of everything, some basic, elementary,
eternally persisting, concrete, physical stuff. Newton, for example, took that elementary stuff
to consist of material particles. And physicists at the end of the 19th century took that
elementary stuff to consist of both material particles and electromagnetic fields. And so on.
And what the fundamental laws of nature are about, and all the fundamental laws of nature
are about, and all there is for the fundamental laws of nature to be about, insofar as physics
has ever been able to imagine, is how that elementary stuff is arranged. The fundamental
laws of nature generally take the form of rules concerning which arrangements of that stuff
are physically possible and which arent, or rules connecting the arrangements of that
elementary stuff at later times to its arrangement at earlier times, or something like that. But
the laws have no bearing whatsoever on questions of where the elementary stuff came from,
or of why the world should have consisted of the particular elementary stuff it does, as
opposed to something else, or to nothing at all

The fundamental physical laws that Krauss is talking about in A Universe From Nothing
the laws of relativistic quantum field theories are no exception to this. The particular,
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eternally persisting, elementary physical stuff of the world, according to the standard
presentations of relativistic quantum field theories, consists (unsurprisingly) of relativistic
quantum fields. And the fundamental laws of this theory take the form of rules concerning
which arrangements of those fields are physically possible and which arent, and rules
connecting the arrangements of those fields at later times to their arrangements at earlier
times, and so on and they have nothing whatsoever to say on the subject of where those
fields came from, or of why the world should have consisted of the particular kinds of fields
it does, or of why it should have consisted of fields at all, or of why there should have been a
world in the first place. Period. Case closed. End of story.

What on earth, then, can Krauss have been thinking? Well, there is, as it happens, an
interesting difference between relativistic quantum field theories and every previous serious
candidate for a fundamental physical theory of the world. Every previous such theory
counted material particles among the concrete, fundamental, eternally persisting
elementary physical stuff of the world and relativistic quantum field theories,
interestingly and emphatically and unprecedentedly, do not. According to relativistic quantum
field theories, particles are to be understood, rather, as specific arrangements of the fields.
Certain arrangements of the fields, for instance, correspond to there being 14 particles in the
universe, and certain other arrangements correspond to there being 276 particles, and certain
other arrangements correspond to there being an infinite number of particles, and certain
other arrangements correspond to there being no particles at all. And those last arrangements
are referred to, in the jargon of quantum field theories, for obvious reasons, as vacuum
states. Krauss seems to be thinking that these vacuum states amount to the relativistic--
quantum-field-theoretical version of there not being any physical stuff at all. And he has an
argument or thinks he does that the laws of relativistic quantum field theories entail
that vacuum states are unstable. And that, in a nutshell, is the account he proposes of why
there should be something rather than nothing.

But thats just not right. Relativistic-quantum-field-theoretical vacuum states no less than
giraffes or refrigerators or solar systems are particular arrangements of elementary
physical stuff. The true relativistic-quantum-field-theoretical equivalent to there not being any
physical stuff at all isnt this or that particular arrangement of the fields what it is
(obviously, and ineluctably, and on the contrary) is the simple absence of the fields! The fact
that some arrangements of fields happen to correspond to the existence of particles and some
dont is not a whit more mysterious than the fact that some of the possible arrangements of
my fingers happen to correspond to the existence of a fist and some dont. And the fact that
particles can pop in and out of existence, over time, as those fields rearrange themselves, is
not a whit more mysterious than the fact that fists can pop in and out of existence, over time,
as my fingers rearrange themselves. And none of these poppings if you look at them aright
amount to anything even remotely in the neighborhood of a creation from nothing.

Krauss, mind you, has heard this kind of talk before, and it makes him crazy. A century ago, it
seems to him, nobody would have made so much as a peep about referring to a stretch of
space without any material particles in it as nothing. And now that he and his colleagues
think they have a way of showing how everything there is could imaginably have emerged
from a stretch of space like that, the nut cases are moving the goal posts. He complains that
some philosophers and many theologians define and redefine nothing as not being any of
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the versions of nothing that scientists currently describe, and that now, I am told by
religious critics that I cannot refer to empty space as nothing, but rather as a quantum
vacuum, to distinguish it from the philosophers or theologians idealized nothing, and he
does a good deal of railing about the intellectual bankruptcy of much of theology and some
of modern philosophy. But all there is to say about this, as far as I can see, is that Krauss is
dead wrong and his religious and philosophical critics are absolutely right. Who cares what
we would or would not have made a peep about a hundred years ago? We were wrong a
hundred years ago. We know more now. And if what we formerly took for nothing turns out,
on closer examination, to have the makings of protons and neutrons and tables and chairs and
planets and solar systems and galaxies and universes in it, then it wasnt nothing, and it
couldnt have been nothing, in the first place. And the history of science if we understand
it correctly gives us no hint of how it might be possible to imagine otherwise.

And I guess it ought to be mentioned, quite apart from the question of whether anything
Krauss says turns out to be true or false, that the whole business of approaching the struggle
with religion as if it were a card game, or a horse race, or some kind of battle of wits, just
feels all wrong or it does, at any rate, to me. When I was growing up, where I was growing
up, there was a critique of religion according to which religion was cruel, and a lie, and a
mechanism of enslavement, and something full of loathing and contempt for everything
essentially human. Maybe that was true and maybe it wasnt, but it had to do with important
things it had to do, that is, with history, and with suffering, and with the hope of a better
world and it seems like a pity, and more than a pity, and worse than a pity, with all that in
the back of ones head, to think that all that gets offered to us now, by guys like these, in
books like this, is the pale, small, silly, nerdy accusation that religion is, I dont know, dumb.

A UNIVERSE FROM NOTHING

Why There Is Something Rather Than Nothing

By Lawrence M. Krauss

Illustrated. 202 pp. Free Press. $24.99.

David Albert is a professor of philosophy at Columbia and the author of Quantum


Mechanics and Experience.

A version of this review appears in print on March 25, 2012, on Page BR20 of the Sunday
Book Review with the headline: On the Origin of Everything. Today's Paper|Subscribe
138

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multiverse

The multiverse (or meta-universe) is the hypothetical set of possible universes, including
the universe in which we live. Together, these universes comprise everything that exists: the
entirety of space, time, matter, energy, and the physical laws and constants that describe
them.

The various universes within the multiverse are called "parallel universes", "other universes"
or "alternative universes."

1 Origin of the concept

2 Explanation

3 Search for evidence

4 Proponents and skeptics

5 Arguments against multiverse theories

6 Classification schemes

o 6.1 Max Tegmark's four levels

6.1.1 Level I: An extension of our Universe

6.1.2 Level II: Universes with different physical constants

6.1.3 Level III: Many-worlds interpretation of quantum


mechanics

6.1.4 Level IV: Ultimate ensemble

o 6.2 Brian Greene's nine types

o 6.3 Cyclic theories

7 M-theory

8 Black-hole cosmology

9 Anthropic principle
139

10 Occam's Razor

11 Modal realism

12 Trans-world identity

13 See also

14 References

15 Bibliography

16 External links

http://www.space.com/18811-multiple-universes-5-theories.html

http://www.space.com/31465-is-our-universe-just-one-of-many-in-a-multiverse.html

http://www.physicsoftheuniverse.com/

http://www.physicsoftheuniverse.com/topics.html

The Big Bang and the Big Crunch

Special and General Relativity

Black Holes and Wormholes

Quantum Theory and the Uncertainty Principle

The Beginnings of Life

Main Topics

- The Big Bang and the Big Crunch

Most scientists now believe that we live in a finite expanding universe which has not existed
forever, and that all the matter, energy and space in the universe was once squeezed into an
infinitesimally small volume, which erupted in a cataclysmic "explosion" which has become
known as the Big Bang.

Thus, space, time, energy and matter all came into being at an infinitely dense, infinitely hot
gravitational singularity, and began expanding everywhere at once. Current best estimates
140

are that this occurred some 13.7 billion years ago, although you may sometimes see
estimates of anywhere between 11 and 18 billion years.

The Big Bang is usually considered to be a theory of the birth of the universe, although
technically it does not exactly describe the origin of the universe, but rather attempts to
explain how the universe developed from a very tiny,
dense state into what it is today. It is just a model to
convey what happened and not a description of an
actual explosion, and the Big Bang was neither Big (in
the beginning the universe was incomparably smaller
than the size of a single proton), nor a Bang (it was
more of a snap or a sudden inflation).

In fact, explosion is really just an often-used analogy


and is slightly misleading in that it conveys the image (Click for a larger version)
that the Big Bang was triggered in some way at some The Big Bang and the expansion
particular centre. In reality, however, the same pattern of the universe
of expansion would be observed from anywhere in the (Source: HETDEX:
universe, so there is no particular location in our http://hetdex.org/dark_energy/index.php)

present universe which could claim to be the origin.

It really describes a very rapid expansion or stretching of space itself rather than an explosion
in pre-existing space. Perhaps a better analogy sometimes used to describe the even
expansion of galaxies throughout the universe is that of raisins baked in a cake becoming
more distant from each other as the cake rises and expands, or alternatively of a balloon
inflating.

Neither does it attempt to explain what initiated the creation of the universe, or what came
before the Big Bang, or even what lies outside the universe. All of this is generally considered
to be outside the remit of physics, and more the concern of philosophy. Given that time and
space as we understand it began with the Big Bang, the phase before the Big Bang is as
meaningless as north of the North Pole.

Therefore, to those who claim that the very idea of a


Big Bang violates the First Law of Thermodynamics
(also known as the Law of Conservation of Energy)
that matter and energy cannot be created or
destroyed, proponents respond that the Big Bang does
not address the creation of the universe, only its
evolution, and that, as the laws of science break down
anyway as we approach the creation of the universe,
there is no reason to believe that the First Law of
Thermodynamics would apply.

The Second Law of Thermodynamics, on the other


hand, lends theoretical (albeit inconclusive) support to
the idea of a finite universe originating in a Big Bang (Click for larger version)
type event. If disorder and entropy in the universe as a The cosmological principle is
whole is constantly increasing until it reaches supported by pictures of different
thermodynamic equilibrium, as the Law suggests, then parts of the universe by the
it follows that the universe cannot have existed forever, Hubble Space Telescope
otherwise it would have reached its equilibrium end (Source: Hubble Site:
http://hubblesite.org/newscenter/
state an infinite time ago, our Sun would have archive/releases/1996/01/)
exhausted its fuel reserves and died long ago, and the
constant cycle of death and rebirth of stars would have
141

ground to a halt after an eternity of dissipation of energy, losses of material to black holes,
etc.

The Big Bang model rests on two main theoretical pillars: the General Theory of Relativity
(Albert Einsteins generalization of Sir Isaac Newtons original
theory of gravity) and the Cosmological Principle (the
Topic Index:
assumption that the matter in the universe is uniformly
distributed on the large scales, that the universe is
homogeneous and isotropic). - Introduction

The Big Bang (a phrase coined, incidentally, by the English - The Expanding
astronomer Fred Hoyle during a 1949 radio broadcast as a Universe and Hubbles
Law
derisive description of a theory he disagreed with) is currently
considered by most scientists as by far the most likely
scenario for the birth of universe. However, this has not - Cosmic
always been the case, as the following discussion illustrates. Background Radiation

- Dark Matter

Next Page: The Expanding Universe and Hubbles Law >>


- Cosmic Inflation

THE EXPANDING UNIVERSE AND HUBBLE'S LAW - Timeline of the


Big Bang
When Albert Einstein was formulating his ground-breaking theory of
gravity in the early 20th Century, at a time when astronomers only - Accelerating
really knew of the existence of our own galaxy, he necessarily used Universe and Dark Energy
the simplifying assumption that the universe has the same gross
properties in all parts, and that it looks roughly the same in every - Antimatter
direction wherever in the universe an observer happens to be located.
Like Sir Isaac Newton two hundred years before him, he assumed an
- The Big Crunch,
infinite, static or steady state universe, with its stars suspended
the Big Freeze and the Big
essentially motionless in a vast void.
Rip

However, when Einstein tried to apply his General Theory of Relativity


- Superstrings
to the universe as a whole, he realized that space-time as whole must
and Quantum Gravity
be warped and curved back on itself, which in itself would cause
matter to move, shrinking uncontrollably under its own gravity. Thus,
- Conclusion
as early as 1917, Einstein and others realized that the equations of
general relativity did not describe a static universe. However, he never
quite came to terms with the idea of a dynamic, finite universe, and so
he posited a mysterious counteracting force of cosmic
repulsion (which he called the cosmological constant) in
order to maintain a stable, static universe. Adding
additional and arbitrary terms to a theory is not something that
scientists do lightly, and many people argued that it was an
artificial and arbitrary construct and at best a stop-gap solution.

As we have noted, up until that time, the assumption of a static


universe had always been taken for granted. To put things
into perspective, for most of history (see the section on
Cosmological Theories Through History), it had been
taken for granted that the static earth was the centre of the
entire universe, as Aristotle and Ptolemy had described. It was
only in the mid-16th Century (Click for a larger version) that Nicolaus Copernicus
showed that we were not the Geocentric universe of Aristotle centre of the universe at all (or
and Ptolemy
(Source: Cartage.org:
http://www.cartage.org.lb/en/
themes/sciences/mainpage.htm)
142

even of the Solar System for that matter!). It was as late as the beginning of the 20th Century that
Jacobus Kapteyns observations first suggested that the Sun was at the centre of a spinning galaxy of
stars making up the Milky Way. Then, in 1917, humanity suffered a further blow to its pride when
Curtis Shapely revealed that we were not even the centre of the galaxy, merely part of some
unremarkable suburb of the Milky Way (although it was still assumed that the Milky Way was all there
was).

Some years later, in 1925, the American astronomer Edwin Hubble stunned the scientific community
by demonstrating that there was more to the universe than just our Milky Way galaxy and that there
were in fact many separate islands of stars - thousands, perhaps millions of them, and many of them
huge distances away from our own.

Then, in 1929, Hubble announced a further dramatic discovery which completely turned astronomy on
its ear. With the benefit of improved telescopes, Hubble started to notice that the light coming from
these galaxies was shifted a little towards the red end of the spectrum due to the Doppler effect
(known as redshift), which indicated that the galaxies were moving away from us. After a detailed
analysis of the redshifts of a special class of stars called Cepheids (which have specific properties
making them useful as standard candles or distance markers), Hubble concluded that the galaxies
and clusters of galaxies were in fact flying apart from each other at great speed, and that the universe
was therefore definitively growing in size. In effect, all the galaxies we see are slighly red in colour due
to redshift.

Hubble showed that, in our expanding universe, every galaxy is rushing away from us with a speed
which is in direct proportion to its distance, known as Hubbles Law, so that a galaxy that is twice as
far away as another is receding twice as fast, one ten times as far away if receding ten times as fast,
etc. The law is usually stated as v = H0D, where v is the velocity of recession, D is the distance of the
galaxy from the observer and H0 is the Hubble constant which links them. The exact value of the
Hubble constant itself has long been the subject of much controversy: Hubble's initial estimates were
of the order of approximately 500 kilometres per second per megaparsec (equivalent to about 160
km/sec/million light years); the most recent best estimates, with
the benefit of the Hubble Telescope and the WMAP probe, is
around 72 kilometres per second per megaparsec. (It should
perhaps be pointed out that the Hubble constant is technically
a parameter, not a constant, because it will actually change
over long periods of time.)

This expansion, usually referred to as the "metric expansion" of


space, is a broad-brush effect in that individual galaxies
themselves are not expanding, but the clusters of galaxies into
which the matter of the universe has become divided are
becoming more widely separated and more thinly spread
throughout space. Thus, the universe is not expanding (Click for a larger version)

"outwards" into pre-existing space; space itself is expanding, Artist's impression of the "metric
defined by the relative separation of parts of the universe. expansion" of the universe
(Source: Wikipedia:
Returning to the image of the expanding universe as a balloon http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Bang)
inflating, if tiny dots are painted on the ballon to represent
galaxies, then as the balloon expands so the distance between
the dots increases, and the further apart the dots the faster they move apart.

In such an expansion, then, the universe continues to look more or less the same from every galaxy,
so the fact that we see all the galaxies receding from us does not necessarily mean that we are at the
very centre of the universe: observers in all other galaxies would also see all the other galaxies flying
away according to the same law, and the pattern of galactic dispersal would appear very much the
same from anywhere in the cosmos.
143

The old model of a static universe, which had served since Sir Isaac Newton, was thus proved to be
incontrovertibly false, but Hubbles discovery did more than just show that the universe was changing
over time. If the galaxies were flying apart, then clearly, at some earlier time, the universe was smaller
than at present. Following back logically, like a movie played in reverse, it must ultimately have had
some beginning when it was very tiny indeed, an idea which gave rise to the theory of the Big Bang.
Although now almost universally accepted, this theory of the beginnings of the universe was not
immediately welcomed by everyone, and several strands of
corroborating evidence were needed, as we will see in the following Topic Index:
sections.
- Introduction
In the face of Hubbles evidence, Einstein was also forced to abandon
his idea of a force of cosmic repulsion, calling it the biggest blunder
- The Expanding
he had ever made. But others, notably the Russian physicist
Universe and Hubbles
Alexander Friedmann and the Belgian priest and physicist Georges
Law
Lematre, had already used Einsteins own theory of prove that the
universe was in fact in motion, either contracting or expanding. It is
now recognized that Einsteins description of gravity as the curvature - Cosmic
of space-time in his General Theory of Relativity was actually one of Background Radiation
the first indications of a universe which had grown out of much
humbler beginnings. - Dark Matter

And, as we will see later, Einsteins biggest blunder may actually turn - Cosmic Inflation
out to have been one of his most prescient predictions.
- Timeline of the
ACCELERATING UNIVERSE AND DARK ENERGY Big Bang

Like dark matter, cosmic inflation (even if it is not actually proven - Accelerating
beyond all doubt) is now usually seen as part of the standard Big Universe and Dark Energy
Bang theory, and to some extent the two additional concepts rescue
the Big Bang theory from being completely untenable. However, other - Antimatter
potential problems still remain.
- The Big Crunch,
The universe has continued to expand since the Big Bang, albeit at a the Big Freeze and the Big
slower rate since the period of inflation, while at the same time the Rip
gravity of all the matter in the universe is working to slow down and
eventually reverse the expansion. Two main possibilities therefore - Superstrings
present themselves: either the universe contains sufficient matter and Quantum Gravity
(known as the "critical mass") for its gravity to reverse the expansion,
causing the universe to collapse back to what has become known as - Conclusion
the Big Crunch, a kind of mirror image of the initial Big Bang; or it
contains insufficient matter and it will go on expanding forever.

According to General Relativity, the density parameter, Omega, which is defined as the average
density of the universe divided by the critical density (i.e. that required for the universe to have zero
curvature) is related to the curvature of space. If Omega equals 1, then the curvature is zero and the
universe is flat; if Omega is greater than 1, then there is positive curvature, indicating a closed or
spherical universe; if Omega is less than 1, then there is negative curvature, suggesting an open or
saddle-shaped universe.

The cosmic inflation model hypothesizes an Omega of exactly 1, so that the universe is in fact
balanced on a knifes edge between the two extreme possibilities. In that case, it will continue
expanding, but gradually slowing down all the time, finally running out of steam only in the infinite
future. For this to occur, though, the universe must contain exactly the critical mass of matter, which
current calculations suggest should be about five atoms per cubic metre (equivalent to about 5 x 10-30
g/cm3).
144

This perhaps sounds like a tiny amount (indeed it is much


closer to a perfect vacuum than has even been achieved by
scientists on Earth), but the actual universe is, on average,
much emptier still, with around 0.2 atoms per cubic metre,
taking into account visible stars and diffuse gas between
(Click for a larger version)
galaxies. Even including dark matter in the calculations, all the
Graph of how critical density
matter in the universe, both visible and dark, only amounts to
affect the expansion of the
about a quarter of the required critical mass, suggesting a
universe
continuously expanding universe. (Source: Northern Arizona University
Lectures: http://www4.nau.edu/meteorite/
Meteorite/Book-GlossaryD.html)
However, in 1998, two separate teams of astronomers
observing distant type 1a supernovas (one led by the American
Saul Perlmutter and the other by the Australians Nick Suntzeff and Brian Schmidt) made parallel
discoveries which threw the scientific community into disarray, and which also has important
implications for the expanding universe and its critical mass. The faintness of the supernova
explosions seemed to indicate that they were actually further away from the Earth than had been
expected, suggesting that the universes expansion had actually speeded up (not slowed) since the
stars exploded. Contrary to all expectations, therefore, the expansion of the universe actually seems
to be significantly speeding up - we live in an accelerating universe!

The only thing that could be accelerating the expansion (i.e. more than countering the braking force of
the mutual gravitational pull of the galaxies) is space itself, suggesting that perhaps it is not empty
after all but contains some strange dark energy or antigravity currently unknown to science. Thus,
even what appears to be a complete vacuum actually contains energy in some currently unknown
way. In fact, initial calculations (backed up by more recent research such as that on the growth of
galaxy clusters by NASA's Chandra x-ray space telescope and that on binary galaxies by Christian
Marinoni and Adeline Buzzi of the University of Provence) suggest that fully 73 - 74% of the universe
consists of this dark energy.

If 74% of the total mass of the universe consists of dark


energy, and about 85% of the remaining actual matter
(representing about 22% of the total) is dark matter (see the
section on Dark Matter for more discussion of this), then this
suggests that only around 4% of the universe consists of what (Click for a larger version)
we think of as "normal", everyday, atom-based matter such as Estimated distribution of dark
stars, intergalactic gas, etc. As of 2013, based on cosmic energy, dark matter and normal
microwave background radiation data from the Planck satellite, matter in the universe
the latest figures are closer to 68%, 27% and 5% respectively. (Source: Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dark_energy)
Nowadays, this is generally accepted as the "standard model"
of the make-up of the universe. So, for all our advances in
physics and astronomy, it appears that we can still only see, account for and explain a small
proportion of the totality of the universe, a sobering thought indeed.

Incorporating dark energy into our model of the universe would neatly account for the "missing" three-
quarters of the universe required to cause the observed acceleration in the revised Big Bang theory. It
also makes the map of the early universe produced by the WMAP probe fit well with the currently
observed universe. Carlos Frenk's beautiful 3D computer models of the universe resemble
remarkably closely the actual observed forms in the real universe (taking dark matter and dark energy
into account), even if not all scientists are convinced by them. Alternative theories, such as Mordehai
Milgrom's idea of "variable gravity", are as yet poorly developed and would have the effect of radically
modifying all of physics from Newton onwards. So dark energy remains the most widely accepted
option.

Further corroboration of some kind of energy operating in the apparent vacuum of space comes from
the Casimir effect, named after the 1948 experiments of Dutch physicists Hendrik Casimir and Dirk
Polder. This shows how smooth uncharged metallic plates can move due to energy fluctuations in the
145

vacuum of empty space, and it is hypothesized that dark energy, generated somehow by space itself,
may be a similar kind of vacuum fluctuation.

Unfortunately, like dark matter, we still do not know exactly what this dark energy is, how it is
generated or how it operates. It appears to produce some kind of a negative pressure which is
distributed relatively homogeneously in space, and thereby exerts a kind of cosmic repulsion on the
universe, driving the galaxies ever further apart. As the space between the galaxies inexorably
widens, the effects of dark energy appears to increase, suggesting that the universe is likely to
continue expanding forever, although it seems to have little or no influence within the galaxies and
clusters of galaxies themselves, where gravity is the dominant force.

Although no-one has any idea of what dark energy may actually be, it appears to be unsettlingly
similar to the force of cosmic repulsion or cosmological constant discarded by Einstein back in 1929
(as mentioned in the section on The Expanding Universe and Hubbles Law), and this remains the
most likely contender, even if its specific properties and effects are still under intense discussion. The
size of the cosmological constant needed to describe the accelerating expansion of our current
universe is very small indeed, around 10-122 in Planck units. Indeed, the very closeness of this to zero
(without it actually being zero) has worried many scientists. But even a tiny change to this value would
result in a very different universe indeed, and one in which life, and even the stars and galaxies we
take for granted, could not have existed.

Perhaps equally worrying is the colossal mismatch between


the infinitesimally small magnitude of dark energy, and the
value predicted by quantum theory, our best theory of the the
very small, as to the energy present in apparently empty
space. The theoretical value of dark energy is over 10120 times
smaller than this, what some scientists have called the worst
failure of a prediction in the history of science! Some scientists
have taken some comfort about the unexpectedly small size of
dark energy in the idea that ours is just one universe in an
unimaginably huge multiverse. Out of a potentially infinite
number of parallel universes, each with slightly different
properties and dark energy profiles, it is not so unlikely that
ours just happens to be one with a dark energy that allows for
the development of stars and even life, an example of the
anthropic principle.

There has been some speculation that dark energy may be


connected to the still little understood Higgs field. According to
the theoretical work of the English physicist Peter Higgs and
others in the 1960s, the vacuum of space is actually permeated (Click for a larger version)
by what has become known as a Higgs field. It is the Representation of the Higgs
interactions with this field that gives the other elementary mechanism and particle
particles their mass, as it stops them from flying off at the (Source: ThinkQuest:
speed of light by clustering around them and impeding their http://library.thinkquest.org/C004707/
wmhm.php3)
progress.

Excitations of the Higgs field form particles known as Higgs bosons, an essential component of the
current Standard Model of particle physics. Up until 2012, though, such a particle remained entirely
theoretical and unproven. But experiments in 2012, at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, were
finally able to create and isolate a particle which gives every indication of being the elusive Higgs
boson, although more detailed tests are still ongoing.

Another possible candidate for dark energy arises from the theoretical work on supersymmetry, which
effectively doubles the number of elementary particles in the current Standard Model with the
146

postulation of massive unknown super-partners for each particle, whose spin differs by . Yet other
candidates are so-called quintessence and so-called phantom energy, although these ideas are
essentially still at the hypothesis stage.

Neither is it clear whether the effects of dark energy are constant or changing over time, although
research using data from the Hubble Space Telescope suggests that it was already at work boosting
the expansion of the universe as much as nine billion years ago.

<< Previous Page: Timeline of the Big Bang Next Page: Antimatter >>

- Special and General Relativity

- Black Holes and Wormholes

- Quantum Theory and the Uncertainty Principle

- The Beginnings of Life

What are the origins of life on Earth? How did things go from non-living to living, from
something that could not reproduce to something that could? How can a collection of
inanimate atoms become animate? How did organic molecules achieve a high enough level
of complexity to be considered as living? The short answer is: we do not really know how life
originated on this planet. The longer answer, however,
is much more interesting.

The study of the origin of life on Earth or, more


specifically, how life on Earth began from inanimate
matter, is technically known as abiogenesis (as
opposed to biogenesis, which is the process of
lifeforms producing other lifeforms, and as opposed to
evolution, which is the study of how living things have
changed over time since life first arose).

The modern definition of abiogenesis, however, is


concerned with the formation of the simplest forms of
life from primordial chemicals, rather than the old (Click for a larger version)
Aristotelian concept of abiogenesis, which postulated Illustration and comparison of of
the formation of fully-formed complex organisms by RNA and DNA molecules
spontaneous generation. It becomes, then, the search (Source: National Human Genome Research
for some kind of molecule (along the lines of RNA or Institute:
http://www.genome.gov/Pages/Hyperion/
DNA) that is simple enough that it can be made by DIR/VIP/Glossary/Illustration/rna.cfm)
physical processes on the young Earth, yet
complicated enough that it can take charge of making
more of itself, which is probably what most people would recognize as constituting life.

The first living things on Earth, single-celled micro-organisms or microbes lacking a cell
nucleus or cell membrane known as prokaryotes, seem to have first appeared on Earth
almost four billion years ago, just a few hundred million years after the formation of the Earth
itself. By far the longest portion of the history of life on Earth, therefore, has involved the
biochemical evolution of these single-celled micro-organisms, bacteria and archaea: we can
147

find individual fossilized microbes in rocks 3.4 billion years old, yet we can only conclusively
identify multi-celled fossils in rocks younger than 1 billion years.

It is presumed that, over a few hundred million years of evolution, pre-biotic molecules
evolved into self-replicating molecules by natural selelction. While some aspects of the
subject are well understood, others remain clouded in mystery and are the source of much
contention among scientists. Although much progress has been made, there is still no single
definitive theory.

Life, for all its complexity, is woven out of just 30 or so different molecules, constructed from
some of the most abundant elements in the universe: oxygen, hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen,
sulphur and phosphorus. However, no one has yet succeeded in synthesizing a protocell
using basic components which would have the necessary properties of life (something which
has been made much of by religious creationists and anti-evolutionists), although recent work
work, such as that of Jack Szostak at Massachusetts General Hospital and the Howard
Hughes Medical Institute, may be about to change that.

The beginnings of life is, strictly speaking, a matter of biology Topic Index:
not physics, and essentially unrelated to most of the rest of
the content of this website. I have included a brief discussion - Introduction
of it here, however, partly because it is another aspect of
modern science which many people find confusing and - The Early Earth
puzzling, partly just because I find it really interesting (for and the Building Blocks of
which I made no apologies!), and partly because we are, after Life
all, made of stardust.
- Early Theories
THE EARLY EARTH AND THE BUILDING BLOCKS OF
LIFE - The Primeval
Soup Theory
The Earth was formed about 4.5 billion years ago from the swirling
dust and gas remnants of an old stars supernova explosion. As the - Other Terrestrial
molten mass settled and cooled, a solid crust soon formed, probably Theories
within as little as about 150 million years, along with a rudimentary
atmosphere composed largely of carbon dioxide, water vapour and - Exogenesis
nitrogen.
- Conclusion
After a near-catastrophic
collision with another planet
soon after the Earth's formation (which created the Moon in the
process), it is thought that warm oceans gradually formed,
from steam escaping from the crust and from volcanic activity
and icy meteorites, relatively soon after the Earths
formation, perhaps within 750 million years of Earth's
formation (about 3.8 billion years ago).

Although the environment at that time (including the


constant bombardment by (Click for a larger version)
asteroids and prodigious
volcanic activity) would have Artist's impression the Earth's been highly hazardous to life,
the necessary ingredients were early atmosphere and oceans all present in some form or
another: liquid water, chemical (Source: Lunar and Planetary Institute: building blocks (usually taken
to be the six elements: oxygen, http://www.lpi.usra.edu/education hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen,
/timeline/gallery/slide_17.html)
sulphur and phosphorus) and some kind of energy source.
148

Liquid water is considered essential to the initial development of life because many chemicals
dissolve easily in water allowing them to mix together and react, because liquid water is the right
temperature for chemical reactions to happen, and also because many chemicals have parts which
are attracted to water and parts which are repelled by it (which also helps reactions happen). Carbon
is important because of its ability to form long chain-like molecules (carbon chains form the backbone
of organic molecules). Hydrogen and oxygen (the two elements that make up water molecules) as
well as nitrogen can all bond with carbon in many different ways, and large molecules made from
carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen also tend to be very stable. All chemical reactions need an
energy source to drive them, whether it be ultraviolet light from the Sun or electrical energy from
lightning or chemical energy from deep-sea vents, all of which would have been available on the early
Earth.

Cyanobacteria (also known as blue-green algae), one of the earliest types of prokaryotic bacteria,
formed into colonies or mats called stromatolites, and fossilized remains of these have been found in
Australia dating back to between 3.4 and 2.8 billion years ago. Ancient as their origins are, these
bacteria (which are still around today) were already biologically complex, with cell walls protecting
their protein-producing DNA, so scientists think it likely that life actually began much earlier, perhaps
as early as 3.8 billion years ago.

These early cyanobacteria were the first oxygen-producing, evolving, phototropic organisms, and they
were responsible for the initial oxygenation of the Earth's atmosphere, as they produced oxygen while
sequestering carbon dioxide in organic molecules during the
period from 2.7 to 2.2 billion years ago. Photosynthesizing
plants evolved later and continued this process, leading to the
build up of increasing levels of oxygen in the atmosphere, as
well as the release of nitrogen into the atmosphere as the
oxygen reacted with ammonia. Eventually, a layer of ozone (an
allotrope of oxygen) formed in the atmosphere, which better
protected early lifeforms from ultraviolet radiation. While
oxygen was apparently not needed for the origination of life on
Earth (indeed it is thought by many that the absence of oxygen
was a necessary condition), the rapid explosion of life began
only after oxygen became abundant.

The first eukaryotic cells (organisms with one or more complex


cells, each of which contains a nucleus and is surrounded by a
membrane that holds the cells genetic material) evolved
sometime between 2.5 and 1.7 billion years ago, perhaps
(Click for a larger version)
coincident with the rise in atmospheric oxygen to a level able to
Diagrams of a eukaryotic and a
support this more complex life. The nucleus in these cells was
prokaryotic cell
able to hold and protect complex molecules such as RNA and (Source: Windows to the Universe:
DNA. http://www.windows2universe.org/earth/
Life/cell_organelles.html)

Throughout the Proterozoic era, from about 2.3 billion years


ago until around 600 million years ago, life on Earth was mostly single-celled and small, consisting of
bacteria, archaea and eukaryotic algae. The first multi-cellular life probably arose around 1.2 billion
years ago, in geological terms almost overnight, while the landmass of the Earth was still a single
continent called Rodinia. It presumably started out as a sort of symbiosis, a loose cooperation
between single cells that gradually became more and more complex. Recent research on single-
celled organisms called choanoflagellates has yielded the rather surprising fact that single-celled
organisms began communicating with each other (and effectively working together as a single unit)
due to a random mutation in a single gene, a fascinating illustration of how a tiny genetic change can
have huge repercussions. Evolution appeared to speed up again about 550 million years ago with the
sudden appearance of the first hard-bodied animals in the fossil record.
149

As recently as the 1970s, a whole new group of single-celled organisms known as archaea was
discovered, which is now recognized as a third domain of life, completely separate from both
prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Many scientists believe archaea to be the common ancestor of both
prokaryotes and eukaryotes, and as such may represent the oldest form of life on earth.

Important Dates and Discoveries

Important Scientists

Cosmological Theories Through History

The Universe By Numbers

Glossary of Terms

A Few Random Facts

Sources

http://www.lukemastin.com/history/

http://philosophyideas.com/search/themes_alpha.asp

http://philosophyideas.com/search/philosophers.asp?order=alpha

http://philosophyideas.com/search/Texts.asp?order=author

http://philosophyideas.com/select/index.asp

http://www.philosophybasics.com/

http://www.philosophybasics.com/branch.html

http://www.philosophybasics.com/historical.html
150

http://www.philosophybasics.com/movements.html

http://www.philosophybasics.com/philosophers.html

http://www.lukemastin.com/

10

http://philosophyideas.com/search/response_idea_theme.asp?
find=theme&visit=1&ThemeNumber=125&return=yes&area=Philosophy&area_no=1

1. Philosophy / D. Nature of Philosophy / 3. Philosophy Defined


[attempts to define the whole subject of philosophy]
25 ideas

57 Philosophy has different powers from dialectic, and a different life from
2 sophistry [Aristotle]

609 Philosophy is a kind of science that deals with principles [Aristotle]

624 Absolute thinking is the thinking of thinking [Aristotle]

266 Carneades' pinnacles of philosophy are the basis of knowledge (the criterion
6 of truth) and the end of appetite (good) [Cicero on Carneades]

620 What fills me with awe are the starry heavens above me and the moral law
7 within me [Kant]

417 Philosophy considers only the universal, in nature as everywhere else


1 [Schopenhauer]

418 Everyone is conscious of all philosophical truths, but philosophers bring


6 them to conceptual awareness [Schopenhauer]

1945 Philosophy is distinguished from other sciences by its complete lack of


6 presuppositions [Feuerbach]

527 Philosophy is no more than abstractions concerning observations of human


8 historical development [Marx/Engels]

6118 Philosophy is logical analysis, followed by synthesis [Russell]


151

536 Philosophy verifies that our hierarchy of instinctive beliefs is harmonious


8 and consistent [Russell]

251 Philosophy is a battle against the bewitchment of our intelligence by means


2 of language [Wittgenstein]

708 The main problem of philosophy is what can and cannot be thought and
5 expressed [Wittgenstein]

687 I say (contrary to Wittgenstein) that philosophy expresses what we thought


0 we must be silent about [Ansell Pearson on Wittgenstein]

5196 Philosophy is a department of logic [Ayer]

670 Suicide - whether life is worth living - is the one serious philosophical
7 problem [Camus]

A philosopher is one who cares about what other people care about
7421
[Foucault]

7426 Critical philosophy is what questions domination at every level [Foucault]

251 Traditionally philosophy is an a priori enquiry into general truths about


0 reality [Katz]

2516 Most of philosophy begins where science leaves off [Katz]

1264 Who cares what 'philosophy' is? Most pre-1950 thought doesn't now count
4 as philosophy [Fodor]

8217 Philosophy is a concept-creating discipline [Deleuze/Guattari]

9778 There is no dialogue in philosophy [Zizek]

921 Maybe what distinguishes philosophy from science is its pursuit of


8 necessary truths [Sider]

15357 Philosophy is the most general intellectual discipline [Horsten]

http://philosophyideas.com/search/response_idea_theme.asp?
find=theme&visit=1&ThemeNumber=1184&return=yes&area=Philosophy&area_no=1

1. Philosophy / F. Analytic Philosophy / 5. Against Analysis


[analysis is the wrong way to do philosophy]
23 ideas

164 The desire to split everything into its parts is unpleasant and
5 unphilosophical [Plato]

1331 Even philosophers have got bogged down in analysing tiny bits of
3 language [Seneca]
152

188 You cannot divide anything into many parts, because after the first division
7 you are no longer dividing the original [Sext.Empiricus]

1416 Analysis falsifies, if when the parts are broken down they are not
5 equivalent to their sum [Russell]

519 Critics say analysis can only show the parts, and not their distinctive
5 configuration [Ayer]

1766 If you know what it is, investigation is pointless. If you don't, investigation
3 is impossible [Armstrong]

548 Essentialism says metaphysics can't be done by analysing unreliable


6 language [Ellis]

255 Analytical philosophy seems to have little interest in how to tell a good
7 analysis from a bad one [Rorty]

1703 Analyses of concepts using entirely different terms are very inclined to fail
4 [Kripke]

247 It seems likely that analysis of concepts is impossible, but justification can
4 survive without it [Fodor]

248 Despite all the efforts of philosophers, nothing can ever be reduced to
1 anything [Fodor]

1708 Paradox: why do you analyse if you know it, and how do you analyse if you
2 don't? [Ruben]

295 No one has ever succeeded in producing an acceptable non-trivial analysis


8 of anything [Lockwood]

335 Analytical philosophy analyses separate concepts successfully, but lacks a


2 synoptic vision of the results [Benardete,JA]

997 Analytic philosophy focuses too much on forms of expression, instead of


8 what is actually said [Tait]

688 Analytic philosophy studies the unimportant, and sharpens tools instead of
1 using them [Mautner]

Concern for rigour can get in the way of understanding phenomena


10571
[Fine,K]

9297 You can't understand love in terms of 'if and only if...' [Svendsen]

We can't presume that all interesting concepts can be analysed


9184
[Williamson]

685 Interesting philosophers hardly every give you explicitly valid arguments
5 [Martin,M]

913 The paradox of analysis says that any conceptual analysis must be either
6 trivial or false [Sorensen]
153

1489 Why think that conceptual analysis reveals reality, rather than just how
9 people think? [Ladyman/Ross]

1114 Naturalistic philosophers oppose analysis, preferring explanation to a priori


7 intuition [Margolis/Laurence]

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find=theme&visit=1&ThemeNumber=1661&return=yes&area=Philosophy&area_no=1

1. Philosophy / E. Nature of Metaphysics / 5. Metaphysics as Conceptual


[metaphysics as study of our conceptual schemes]
18 ideas

1211 Metaphysics is just the oversubtle qualification of abstract names for


2 phenomena [Comte]

1921 Metaphysical reasoning is simple enough, but the concepts are very hard
9 [Peirce]

1387 Syntactic category which is primary and ontological category derivative.


6 [Wright,C on Frege]

1110 We aren't stuck with our native conceptual scheme; we can gradually
3 change it [Quine]

631 Enquiry needs a conceptual scheme, so we should retain the best available
0 [Quine]

1580 Many philosophers aim to understand metaphysics by studying ourselves


1 [Chisholm]

792 Descriptive metaphysics concerns unchanging core concepts and


2 categories [Strawson,P]

6979 Serious metaphysics cares about entailment between sentences [Jackson]

231 Metaphysics is the clarification of the ontological relationships between


9 different areas of thought [Kim]

1521 Philosophy devises and assesses conceptual schemes in the service of


5 worldviews [Harr/Madden]

421 Maybe such concepts as causation, identity and existence are primitive and
4 irreducible [Lowe]

1391 Philosophy aims not at the 'analysis of concepts', but at understanding the
9 essences of things [Lowe]

1500 It seems unlikely that the way we speak will give insights into the universe
154

3 [Sider]

1516 Metaphysics is clarifying how we speak and think (and possibly improving
9 it) [Sidelle]

921 Modern empirical metaphysics focuses on ontological commitments of


7 discourse, or on presuppositions [Loux/Zimmerman]

1625 Kant survives in metaphysics as analysing our conceptual system, which is


7 a priori [Maudlin]

1489 Modern metaphysics pursues aesthetic criteria like story-writing, and


8 abandons scientific truth [Ladyman/Ross]

1883 Logic doesn't have a metaphysical basis, but nor can logic give rise to the
5 metaphysics [Rumfitt]

http://philosophyideas.com/search/response_idea_theme.asp?
find=theme&visit=1&ThemeNumber=1662&return=yes&area=Philosophy&area_no=1

1. Philosophy / E. Nature of Metaphysics / 6. Against Metaphysics


[rejections of metaphysics as a worthwhile activity]
14 ideas

1276 Kant exposed the illusions of reason in the Transcendental Dialectic


7 [Fraassen on Kant]

330 On the continent it is generally believed that metaphysics died with Hegel
1 [Benardete,JA on Hegel]

14767 The demonstrations of the metaphysicians are all moonshine [Peirce]

694 Metaphysics does not rest on facts, but on what we are inclined to believe
7 [Peirce]

14860 Kant has undermined our belief in metaphysics [Nietzsche]

686 Metaphysics is having to find bad reasons for what we believe upon instinct
4 [Bradley]

The empiricist says that metaphysics is meaningless, rather than false


13737
[Schlick]

Metaphysics uses empty words, or just produces pseudo-statements


16252
[Carnap]

791 Humeans rejected the a priori synthetic, and so rejected even Kantian
9 metaphysics [Macdonald on Ayer]

1232 Philosophy has been relieved of physics, cosmology, politics, and now must
5 give up ontology [Badiou]
155

1505 'Quietist' says abandon metaphysics because answers are unattainable (as
4 in Kant's noumenon) [Fine,K]

17713 After 1903, Husserl avoids metaphysical commitments [Mares]

1627 Wide metaphysical possibility may reduce metaphysics to analysis of


6 fantasies [Maudlin]

1641 Science has discovered properties of things, so there are properties - so


3 who needs metaphysics? [Hofweber]

http://philosophyideas.com/search/response_idea_theme.asp?
find=theme&visit=1&ThemeNumber=1181&return=yes&area=Philosophy&area_no=1

1. Philosophy / D. Nature of Philosophy / 5. Hopes for Philosophy


[optimistic views of what philosophy can achieve]
12 ideas

164 Socrates opened philosophy to all, but Plato confined moral enquiry to a tiny
9 elite [Vlastos on Socrates]

174 If all laws were abolished, philosophers would still live as they do now
9 [Aristippus elder]

117 Guardians are philosopher-rulers who understand the Forms, especially the
6 Good [PG on Plato]

55 Even people who go astray in their opinions have contributed something


9 useful [Aristotle]

15624 Free thinking has no presuppositions [Hegel]

19227 Philosophy is a search for real truth [Peirce]

1486 Philosophy is more valuable than much of science, because of its beauty
2 [Nietzsche]

A well-posed problem is a problem solved [Deleuze/Guattari on


8226
Bergson]

If a question can be framed at all, it is also possible to answer it


2944
[Wittgenstein]

976 For a good theory of the world, we must focus on our flabby foundational
3 vocabulary [Quine]

919 It is no longer possible to be a sage, but we can practice the exercise of


8 wisdom [Hadot]

9408 Science studies phenomena, but only metaphysics tells us what exists
156

[Mumford]

http://philosophyideas.com/search/response_idea_theme.asp?
find=theme&visit=1&ThemeNumber=345&return=yes&area=Philosophy&area_no=1

1. Philosophy / D. Nature of Philosophy / 6. Despair over Philosophy


[view of the whole enterprise as hopeless]
40 ideas

6321 Vulgar people are alert; I alone am muddled [Lao Tzu]

5863 Reason is eternal, but men are foolish [Heraclitus]

Our ancient beliefs can never be overthrown by subtle arguments


9283
[Euripides]

Is a gifted philosopher unmanly if he avoids the strife of the communal


125
world? [Plato]

118 The philosopher is the 'true navigator' who is neglected by stupid captains
1 and crew [PG on Plato]

Philosophers are always switching direction to something more interesting


2056
[Plato]

Most people are readier to submit to compulsion than to argument


112
[Aristotle]

7281 Don't even start, let's just stay put [Chuang Tzu]

8138 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy [Paul]

681 Instead of prayer and charity, sinners pursue vain disputes and want their
4 own personal scripture [Mohammed]

865 For there was never yet philosopher/ That could endure the toothache
8 patiently [Shakespeare]

Philosophy is like a statue which is worshipped but never advances


6602
[Bacon]

3601 Most things in human life seem vain and useless [Descartes]

Almost every daft idea has been expressed by some philosopher


3602
[Descartes]

219 The observation of human blindness and weakness is the result of all
6 philosophy [Hume]

563 In ordinary life the highest philosophy is no better than common


157

5 understanding [Kant]

14854 Deep thinkers know that they are always wrong [Nietzsche]

Pessimism is laughable, because the world cannot be evaluated


7196
[Nietzsche]

713 Is a 'philosopher' now impossible, because knowledge is too vast for an


7 overview? [Nietzsche]

1487 Philosophy is always secondary, because it cannot support a popular


6 culture [Nietzsche]

14878 It would better if there was no thought [Nietzsche]

14881 Why do people want philosophers? [Nietzsche]

1871 Philosophers express puzzlement, but don't clearly state the puzzle
0 [Wittgenstein]

414 What is your aim in philosophy? - To show the fly the way out of the fly-
8 bottle [Wittgenstein]

The 'Tractatus' is a masterpiece of anti-philosophy [Badiou on


9810
Wittgenstein]

19620 Great systems of philosophy are just brilliant tautologies [Cioran]

1961 I abandoned philosophy because it didn't acknowledge melancholy and


8 human weakness [Cioran]

19621 Originality in philosophy is just the invention of terms [Cioran]

1960 The mind is superficial, only concerned with the arrangement of events,
7 not their significance [Cioran]

To an absurd mind reason is useless, and there is nothing beyond reason


9245
[Camus]

1597 People generalise because it is easier to understand, and that is mistaken


0 for deep philosophy [Feynman]

1909 If we can't check our language against experience, philosophy is just


0 comparing beliefs and words [Rorty]

804 Philosophy has been marginalised by its failure in the Enlightenment to


7 replace religion [MacIntyre]

12772 Philosophy is a value- and attitude-driven enterprise [Fraassen]

295 There is nothing so obvious that a philosopher cannot be found to deny it


6 [Lockwood]

9208 Philosophers with a new concept are like children with a new toy [Fine,K]

1849 Using a technical vocabulary actually prevents discussion of the


4 presuppositions [Heil]

16227 Philosophers are good at denying the obvious [Hawley]


158

927 Human knowledge may not produce well-being; the examined life may not
1 be worth living [Gray]

657 Philosophy may never find foundations, and may undermine our lives in the
5 process [Fogelin]

http://philosophyideas.com/search/response_idea_theme.asp?
find=theme&visit=1&ThemeNumber=1846&return=yes&area=Philosophy&area_no=1

1. Philosophy / D. Nature of Philosophy / 4. Aims of Philosophy / e. Philosophy as


reason
[philosophy explores where reason take us]
12 ideas

15447 We shouldn't always follow where the argument leads! [Lewis on Plato]

5891 Philosophy is the collection of rational arguments [Cicero]

17240 Definitions are the first step in philosophy [Hobbes]

5631 Reason is only interested in knowledge, actions and hopes [Kant]

6184 Consistency is the highest obligation of a philosopher [Kant]

An idea on its own isn't an idea, because they are continuous systems
19241
[Peirce]

1764 Discoveries in mathematics can challenge philosophy, and offer it a new


1 foundation [Russell]

Philosophers should abandon speculation, as philosophy is wholly critical


5189
[Ayer]

1520 Like disastrous small errors in navigation, small misunderstandings can


9 wreck intellectual life [Harr/Madden]

9808 Philosophy aims to reveal the grandeur of mathematics [Badiou]

685 We overvalue whether arguments are valid, and undervalue whether they
1 are interesting [Monk]

959 Progress in philosophy is incremental, not an immature seeking after drama


3 [Williamson]
159

http://philosophyideas.com/search/response_idea_theme.asp?
find=theme&visit=1&ThemeNumber=1661&return=yes&area=Philosophy&area_no=1

1. Philosophy / E. Nature of Metaphysics / 5. Metaphysics as Conceptual


[metaphysics as study of our conceptual schemes]
18 ideas

1211 Metaphysics is just the oversubtle qualification of abstract names for


2 phenomena [Comte]

1921 Metaphysical reasoning is simple enough, but the concepts are very hard
9 [Peirce]

1387 Syntactic category which is primary and ontological category derivative.


6 [Wright,C on Frege]

1110 We aren't stuck with our native conceptual scheme; we can gradually
3 change it [Quine]

631 Enquiry needs a conceptual scheme, so we should retain the best available
0 [Quine]

1580 Many philosophers aim to understand metaphysics by studying ourselves


1 [Chisholm]

792 Descriptive metaphysics concerns unchanging core concepts and


2 categories [Strawson,P]

6979 Serious metaphysics cares about entailment between sentences [Jackson]

231 Metaphysics is the clarification of the ontological relationships between


9 different areas of thought [Kim]

1521 Philosophy devises and assesses conceptual schemes in the service of


5 worldviews [Harr/Madden]

421 Maybe such concepts as causation, identity and existence are primitive and
4 irreducible [Lowe]

1391 Philosophy aims not at the 'analysis of concepts', but at understanding the
9 essences of things [Lowe]

1500 It seems unlikely that the way we speak will give insights into the universe
3 [Sider]

1516 Metaphysics is clarifying how we speak and think (and possibly improving
9 it) [Sidelle]

921 Modern empirical metaphysics focuses on ontological commitments of


7 discourse, or on presuppositions [Loux/Zimmerman]
160

1625 Kant survives in metaphysics as analysing our conceptual system, which is


7 a priori [Maudlin]

1489 Modern metaphysics pursues aesthetic criteria like story-writing, and


8 abandons scientific truth [Ladyman/Ross]

1883 Logic doesn't have a metaphysical basis, but nor can logic give rise to the
5 metaphysics [Rumfitt]

http://philosophyideas.com/search/response_idea_theme.asp?
find=theme&visit=1&ThemeNumber=154&return=yes&area=Philosophy&area_no=1

Philosophy / D. Nature of Philosophy / 1. Philosophy


[general remarks about philosophy]
26 ideas

Can we understand an individual soul without knowing the soul in general?


162
[Plato]

For relaxation one can consider the world of change, instead of eternal
326
things [Plato]

All philosophy begins from wonder, either at the physical world, or at ideas
549
[Aristotle]

179 He studied philosophy by suspending his judgement on everything [Diog.


8 Laertius on Pyrrho]

177 When shown seven versions of the mowing argument, he paid twice the
1 asking price for them [Diog. Laertius on Zeno of Citium]

3600 Slow and accurate thought makes the greatest progress [Descartes]

17016 Philosophy must abstract from the senses [Newton]

8095 We must think with our entire body and soul [Joubert]

19583 Philosophy only begins when it studies itself [Novalis]

8927 Philosophy moves essentially in the element of universality [Hegel]

783 Great philosophies are confessions by the author, growing out of moral
4 intentions [Nietzsche]

4424 A warlike philosopher challenges problems to single combat [Nietzsche]

784 Philosophy begins in the horror and absurdity of existence [Ansell Pearson
161

8 on Nietzsche]

Thinking has to be learned in the way dancing has to be learned


2909
[Nietzsche]

452 I don't want to persuade anyone to be a philosopher; they should be rare


0 plants [Nietzsche]

784 Nietzsche thinks philosophy makes us more profound, but not better
6 [Ansell Pearson on Nietzsche]

5361 Philosophers must get used to absurdities [Russell]

What we cannot speak about we must pass over in silence


2937
[Wittgenstein]

2626 A philosopher is outside any community of ideas [Wittgenstein]

326 If your life is to be meaningful as part of some large thing, the large thing
9 must be meaningful [Nagel]

Philosophy is the childhood of the intellect, and a culture can't skip it


3242
[Nagel]

7973 There is no longer anything on which there is nothing to say [Baudrillard]

978 Philosophers working like teams of scientists is absurd, yet isolation is hard
6 [Cartwright,R]

3695 Philosophy is a priori if it is anything [Bonjour]

8220 Philosophy is in a perpetual state of digression [Deleuze/Guattari]

160 You have to be a Platonist to debate about reality, so every philosopher is a


6 Platonist [Roochnik]

http://philosophyideas.com/search/response_idea_theme.asp?
find=theme&visit=1&ThemeNumber=1050&return=yes&area=Philosophy&area_no=1

1. Philosophy / H. Continental Philosophy / 1. Continental Philosophy


[key shared characteristics of continental modern philosophy]
14 ideas

690 Modern philosophy begins with Descartes' abstraction from sensation and
4 matter [Feuerbach]

693 Empiricism is right about ideas, but forgets man himself as one of our
1 objects [Feuerbach]
162

7423 Philosophy and politics are fundamentally linked [Foucault]

684 Some continental philosophers are relativists - Baudrillard, for example


1 [Critchley on Baudrillard]

822 The plague of philosophy is those who criticise without creating, and defend
3 dead concepts [Deleuze/Guattari]

898 Two marxist ideas have dominated in France: base and superstructure, and
8 ideology [Scruton]

707 To meet the division in our life, try the Subject, Nature, Spirit, Will, Power,
5 Praxis, Unconscious, or Being [Critchley]

7069 The French keep returning, to Hegel or Nietzsche or Marx [Critchley]

683 German idealism aimed to find a unifying principle for Kant's various
5 dualisms [Critchley]

683 Since Hegel, contintental philosophy has been linked with social and
7 historical enquiry. [Critchley]

683 Continental philosophy fights the threatened nihilism in the critique of


6 reason [Critchley]

Continental philosophy is based on critique, praxis and emancipation


6838
[Critchley]

684 Continental philosophy has a bad tendency to offer 'one big thing' to explain
5 everything [Critchley]

685 Analytic philosophy has much higher standards of thinking than continental
9 philosophy [Williamson

1 1
Continental Philosophy
4 .

2
7 Phenomenology
.

3
5 Hermeneutics
.

4
2 Linguistic Structuralism
.

5
3 Critical Theory
.
163

1. Philosophy / H. Continental Philosophy / 6. Deconstruction


[wisdom can only draw attention to human presuppositions]
6 ideas

821 Deconstructing philosophy gives the history of concepts, and the


0 repressions behind them [Derrida]

821 The movement of 'diffrance' is the root of all the oppositional


1 concepts in our language [Derrida]

684 Derrida came to believe in the undeconstructability of justice, which


0 cannot be relativised [Critchley on Derrida]

8216 Deconstruction is not neutral; it intervenes [Derrida]

898 On the surface of deconstructive writing, technicalities float and then


7 drift away [Scruton]

899 Deconstruction is the last spasm of romanticism, now become hopeless


2 and destructive [Scruton

http://philosophyideas.com/search/themes_1.asp?
area_no=2&area=Reason#Reason

A. Nature of Reason

28 1. On Reason

15 2. Logos

11 3. Pure Reason

23 4. Aims of Reason

13 5. Objectivity

24 6. Coherence

15 7. Status of Reason

6 8. Naturalising Reason

22 9. Limits of Reason

B. Laws of Thought

9 1. Laws of Thought

19 2. Sufficient Reason

18 3. Non-Contradiction

8 4. Contraries

6 5. Opposites
164

-11

In section 10 I posted a number of concepts that are or were used in philosophy. I would prefer that they are
presented in another visual form for example as a mind map and by means of other tools for example argument
visualization tools

We, philosophy, should at least be thinking ( instead of individuals concepts, or statements, linear thinking - we
should simultaneously think on many layers, on many levels and in several dimensions) in terms of 3D, for
example scatter plots -=By this I mean the many different aspects of the person (mentally and physically, socially,
culturally, as well as our environment, planetary and universe context should be included in every concept we
employ; each concept should therefore be at least like a 3D scatter plot image, including all these levels and
information)

(This is the type of presentation that every word, each concept, used in a philosophical
sentence or statements should look like. It should present all implicit assumptions explicitly,
for example those of the thinking person, mentally, physically,socially, culturally,
biologically, etc, as well as those of the medium, language, he employs, etc as well as those
dimensions of the subject or object he expresses his statements about.)

http://www.jmp.com/support/help/Scatterplot_3D.shtml

Scatterplot 3D
Create a Rotating Three-Dimensional View of Data
165

The Scatterplot 3D platform shows the values of numeric columns in the


associated data table in a rotatable, three-dimensional view. Up to three columns
that you select from the associated data table are displayed at one time. See
Example of a 3D Scatterplot.
To help visualize variation in higher dimensions, the 3D scatterplot can show a
biplot representation of the points and variables when you request principal
components. The most prominent directions of data are displayed on the 3D
scatterplot report.
Example of a 3D Scatterplot

Contents
Example of a 3D Scatterplot
Launch the Scatterplot 3D Platform
The Scatterplot 3D Report
Spin the 3D Scatterplot
Change Variables on the Axes
Adjust the Axes
Assign Colors and Markers to Data Points
Assign Colors and Markers in the Data Table
Scatterplot 3D Platform Options
Normal Contour Ellipsoids
Nonparametric Density Contours
Context Menu
166

Additional Examples of the Scatterplot 3D Platform


Example of an Ungrouped Normal Contour Ellipsoid
Example of Grouped Normal Contour Ellipsoids
Example of a Grouped Nonparametric Density Contour

https://www.mathworks.com/help/matlab/ref/scatter3.html?requestedDomain=www.mathworks.com

https://cran.r-project.org/web/packages/scatterplot3d/index.html

https://cran.r-project.org/web/packages/scatterplot3d/scatterplot3d.pdf

http://www.cs.uu.nl/docs/vakken/ivls/literatuur_files/ECAI06_Long_Paper_BraakEtAl.pdf

http://www.arg-tech.org/index.php/projects/online-argument-visualisation/

http://www.argunet.org/working-with-argunet/ch04.html

http://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-540-89639-5_13#page-1

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v511/n7510/full/511408a.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Visualization

The term visualization may refer to:

Mental image
167

Creative visualization (sports visualization)

o Motor imagery

Flow visualization

Geovisualization

Illustration

Information graphics, visual representations of information, data, or


knowledge

Information graphics or infographics are graphic visual


representations of information, data or knowledge intended to present
information quickly and clearly.[1][2] They can improve cognition by utilizing
graphics to enhance the human visual systems ability to see patterns and
trends.[3][4] Similar pursuits are information visualization, data visualization,
statistical graphics, information design, or information architecture.[2]
Infographics have evolved in recent years to be for mass communication,
and thus are designed with fewer assumptions about the readers'
knowledge base than other types of visualizations. Isotypes are an early
example of infographics conveying information quickly and easily to the
masses.

Contents

1 Overview

2 History

o 2.1 Early

o 2.2 20th century

o 2.3 21st century

3 Analysis

4 Data visualization

o 4.1 Time-series

o 4.2 Statistical

o 4.3 Maps

o 4.4 Hierarchies

o 4.5 Networks

5 Tools
168

6 See also

7 References

8 Further reading

9 External links

Information visualization

Interactive visualization

Music visualization, a feature found in some media player software


applications

Scientific visualization

Security visualisation

Software visualization

Visualization (computer graphics)

Visulation

Guided imagery

See also

All pages with titles containing Visualization

List of graphical methods

Image

Mental image, as with imagination

Previsualization

Spatial visualization ability, the ability to mentally manipulate 2-


dimensional and 3-dimensional figures

Visual communication

Visual perception

Visual perception and data visualization


169

A human can distinguish differences in line length, shape orientation, and color (hue) readily
without significant processing effort; these are referred to as "pre-attentive attributes." For
example, it may require significant time and effort ("attentive processing") to identify the
number of times the digit "5" appears in a series of numbers; but if that digit is different in
size, orientation, or color, instances of the digit can be noted quickly through pre-attentive
processing.[13]

Effective graphics take advantage of pre-attentive processing and attributes and the relative
strength of these attributes. For example, since humans can more easily process differences in
line length than surface area, it may be more effective to use a bar chart (which takes
advantage of line length to show comparison) rather than pie charts (which use surface area
to show comparison).[13]

Human perception/cognition and data visualization

There is a human side to data visualization. With the "studying [of] human
perception and cognition ..." we are better able to understand the target of
the data which we display. [14] Cognition refers to processes in human
beings like perception, attention, learning, memory, thought, concept
formation, reading, and problem solving.[15] The basis of data visualization
evolved because as a picture is worth a thousand words, data displayed
graphically allows for an easier comprehension of the information. Proper
visualization provides a different approach to show potential connections,
relationships, etc. which are not as obvious in non-visualized quantitative
data. Visualization becomes a means of data exploration. Human brain
neurons involve multiple functions but 2/3 of the brain's neurons are
dedicated to vision.[16] With a well-developed sense of sight, analysis of
data can be made on data, whether that data is quantitative or qualitative.
Effective visualization follows from understanding the processes of human
perception and being able to apply this to intuitive visualizations is
important. Understanding how humans see and organize the world is
critical to effectively communicating data to the reader. This leads to more
intuitive designs.

Visual system

Visual thinking

Visualization of technical information

Fields
Biological data visualization

Chemical imaging

Crime mapping

Data visualization
170

Educational visualization

Flow visualization

Geovisualization

Information visualization

Mathematical visualization

Medical imaging

Molecular graphics

Product visualization

Scientific visualization

Software visualization

Technical drawing

User interface design

Visual culture

Volume visualization

Imag
e Chart
types
Diagram

Engineering drawing

Graph of a function

Ideogram

Map

Photograph

Pictogram
171

Plot

Schematic

Statistical graphics

Table

Technical drawings

Technical illustration

User interface

Peopl
e Jacques Bertin

Stuart Card

Thomas A. DeFanti

Michael Friendly

George Furnas

Nigel Holmes

Alan MacEachren

Jock D. Mackinlay

Michael Maltz

Bruce H. McCormick

Charles Joseph Minard

Gaspard Monge

Otto Neurath

Florence Nightingale

Clifford A. Pickover
172

William Playfair

Adolphe Quetelet

George G. Robertson

Arthur H. Robinson

Lawrence J. Rosenblum

Ben Shneiderman

Edward Tufte

Fernanda Vigas

Howard Wainer

Relat
ed Cartography
topic
s Chartjunk

Computer graphics

o in computer science

Graph drawing

Graphic design

Graphic organizer

Imaging science

Information graphics

Information science

Mental visualisation

Misleading graph

Neuroimaging
173

Patent drawing

Scientific modelling

Spatial analysis

Visual analytics

Visual perception

Volume cartography

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Data_visualization

There are different approaches on the scope of data visualization. One common focus is on
information presentation, such as Friedman (2008) presented it. In this way Friendly (2008)
presumes two main parts of data visualization: statistical graphics, and thematic cartography.
[1]
In this line the "Data Visualization: Modern Approaches" (2007) article gives an overview
of seven subjects of data visualization:[20]

Articles & resources

Displaying connections

Displaying data

Displaying news

Displaying websites

Mind maps

Tools and services

All these subjects are closely related to graphic design and information representation.

On the other hand, from a computer science perspective, Frits H. Post (2002) categorized the
field into a number of sub-fields:[7]

[21]

Information visualization
174

Interaction techniques and architectures

Modelling techniques

Multiresolution methods

Visualization algorithms and techniques

Volume visualization

Data presentation architecture

A data visualization from social media

Data presentation architecture (DPA) is a skill-set that seeks to identify, locate, manipulate,
format and present data in such a way as to optimally communicate meaning and proper
knowledge. (This is the type of presentation that every word, each concept, used in a
philosophical sentence or statements should look like. It should present all implicit
assumptions explicitly, for example those of the thinking person, mentally,
physically,socially, culturally, biologically, etc, as well as those of the medium, language, he
employs, etc as well as those dimensions of the subject or object he expresses his statements
about.)

Historically, the term data presentation architecture is attributed to Kelly Lautt:[22] "Data
Presentation Architecture (DPA) is a rarely applied skill set critical for the success and value
of Business Intelligence. Data presentation architecture weds the science of numbers, data
and statistics in discovering valuable information from data and making it usable, relevant
and actionable with the arts of data visualization, communications, organizational psychology
and change management in order to provide business intelligence solutions with the data
scope, delivery timing, format and visualizations that will most effectively support and drive
operational, tactical and strategic behaviour toward understood business (or organizational)
goals. DPA is neither an IT nor a business skill set but exists as a separate field of expertise.
Often confused with data visualization, data presentation architecture is a much broader skill
set that includes determining what data on what schedule and in what exact format is to be
presented, not just the best way to present data that has already been chosen (which is data
visualization). Data visualization skills are one element of DPA."
175

Objectives

DPA has two main objectives:

To use data to provide knowledge in the most efficient manner possible


(minimize noise, complexity, and unnecessary data or detail given each
audience's needs and roles)

To use data to provide knowledge in the most effective manner possible


(provide relevant, timely and complete data to each audience member in
a clear and understandable manner that conveys important meaning, is
actionable and can affect understanding, behavior and decisions)

Scope

With the above objectives in mind, the actual work of data presentation architecture consists
of:

Creating effective delivery mechanisms for each audience member


depending on their role, tasks, locations and access to technology

Defining important meaning (relevant knowledge) that is needed by each


audience member in each context

Determining the required periodicity of data updates (the currency of the


data)

Determining the right timing for data presentation (when and how often
the user needs to see the data)

Finding the right data (subject area, historical reach, breadth, level of
detail, etc.)

Utilizing appropriate analysis, grouping, visualization, and other


presentation formats

Related fields

DPA work shares commonalities with several other fields, including:

Business analysis in determining business goals, collecting requirements,


mapping processes.

Business process improvement in that its goal is to improve and


streamline actions and decisions in furtherance of business goals

Data visualization in that it uses well-established theories of visualization


to add or highlight meaning or importance in data presentation.

Graphic or user design: As the term DPA is used, it falls just short of design
in that it does not consider such detail as colour palates, styling, branding
and other aesthetic concerns, unless these design elements are
176

specifically required or beneficial for communication of meaning, impact,


severity or other information of business value. For example:

o choosing locations for various data presentation elements on a


presentation page (such as in a company portal, in a report or on a
web page) in order to convey hierarchy, priority, importance or a
rational progression for the user is part of the DPA skill-set.

o choosing to provide a specific colour in graphical elements that


represent data of specific meaning or concern is part of the DPA
skill-set

Information architecture, but information architecture's focus is on


unstructured data and therefore excludes both analysis (in the
statistical/data sense) and direct transformation of the actual content
(data, for DPA) into new entities and combinations.

Solution architecture in determining the optimal detailed solution,


including the scope of data to include, given the business goals

Statistical analysis or data analysis in that it creates information and


knowledge out of data

---------------------------------------------------------------------

This is how our embodied consciousness and brains perceive and experience so
if we wish to express it conceptually, talk about it or explore it we should
express ourselves in at least such three (or multi)-dimensional ways and that
in every word we employ, so as to include, explicitly, all the variables (mentally,
physically, chemically, biologically, psychologically, etc) that are involved.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Visualization_(graphics)

Visualization or visualisation (see spelling differences) is any technique for creating images,
diagrams, or animations to communicate a message. Visualization through visual imagery has
been an effective way to communicate both abstract and concrete ideas since the dawn of
humanity. Examples from history include cave paintings, Egyptian hieroglyphs, Greek
177

geometry, and Leonardo da Vinci's revolutionary methods of technical drawing for


engineering and scientific purposes.

Visualization today has ever-expanding applications in science, education, engineering (e.g.,


product visualization), interactive multimedia, medicine, etc. Typical of a visualization
application is the field of computer graphics. The invention of computer graphics may be the
most important development in visualization since the invention of central perspective in the
Renaissance period. The development of animation also helped advance visualization.

1 Overview

2 Applications of visualization

o 2.1 Scientific visualization

A scientific visualization of a simulation of a RaleighTaylor instability


caused by two mixing fluids

http://www.cc.gatech.edu/scivis/tutorial/tutorial.html

http://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/

Conceptual Image Lab


NASA's CI Lab is an award-winning studio with artists who work closely with astronomers,
scientists and engineers to bring scientific theory, design and concepts to life in an accurate,
yet visually compelling way.
178

Scientific Hyperwall Presentations

The Hyperwall is a big beautiful wall" of high-definition screens used to display NASAs
latest and greatest data visualizations, images, videos, and other presentation material, and is
a primary outreach platform for NASAs Science Mission Directorate. Existing Hyperwall
stories highlight themes in Earth science, heliophysics, planetary science, and astrophysics.
The Scientific Visualization Studio developed the Hyperwall software.

NASA Visualization Explorer


is your portal to the coolest stories about NASAs exploration of Earth, the sun,
moon, planets and universe. A new story is released every Tuesday and
Thursday. Download the app now and get stories delivered right to your iOS
device.

Our Mission
The Scientific Visualization Studio wants you to learn about NASA programs through
visualization. The SVS works closely with scientists in the creation of visualizations,
animations, and images in order to promote a greater understanding of Earth and Space
Science research activities at NASA and within the academic research community supported
by NASA.

All the visualizations and multimedia products created by the SVS, CI Lab, and Goddard
Media Studios are accessible to you through this web site, and free to download! Please note
179

that this is not an all-inclusive repository of NASA images and movies. You are welcome to
try NASA's Data Portal.

o 2.2 Educational visualization

o 2.3 Information visualization

o 2.4 Knowledge visualization

o 2.5 Product visualization

o 2.6 Visual communication

o 2.7 Visual analytics

3 References

4 Further reading

5 External links

--------------------------------------------------------

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Visual_thinking

Visual thinking, also called visual/spatial learning or picture thinking is the


phenomenon of thinking through visual processing.[1]

Visual thinking has been described as seeing words as a series of pictures.[citation needed] It
is common in approximately 60%65% of the general population.[1]

"Real picture thinkers", those persons who use visual thinking almost to the exclusion
of other kinds of thinking, make up a smaller percentage of the population. Research
by child development theorist Linda Kreger Silverman suggests that less than 30% of
the population strongly uses visual/spatial thinking, another 45% uses both
visual/spatial thinking and thinking in the form of words, and 25% thinks exclusively
in words. According to Kreger Silverman, of the 30% of the general population who
use visual/spatial thinking, only a small percentage would use this style over and
above all other forms of thinking, and can be said to be true "picture thinkers".[2]

1 Research and theoretical background

2 Non-verbal thought

Thinking in mental images is one of a number of other recognized forms of


non-verbal thought, such as kinesthetic, musical and mathematical
thinking.
180

o 2.1 Linguistics

o 2.2 Multiple intelligences

o Gardner's multiple intelligences theory recognises various forms of


intelligence, namely spatial, linguistic, logical-mathematical, bodily-
kinesthetic, musical, interpersonal, intrapersonal, naturalistic.
Gardner's theory is discussed and cited in many of David A Sousa's
'How the Brain learns' series of books, including 'How the Gifted
Brain learns' and 'How the Special Needs Brain Learns'. Areas of
competence may be reinforcing, but also mutually exclusive. In
today's society the link between IQ and education has weakened,
but the idea of educated and intelligent has become synonymous,
interchangeable; reinforced by verbalizers being better able to
internalize information, advocate systems and design jobs that
monetarily reward strengths, a cycle that is self-perpetuating

o 2.3 Split-brain research

According to Roger Sperry the left hemisphere and the right hemisphere
perform different tasks. The left and right hemisphere may be
simultaneously conscious in different, even mutually conflicting, mental
experiences that run in parallel. (As is the case with me) The right
[non-verbal] hemisphere perceives, thinks, remembers, reasons, wills and
emotes, all at a characteristically human level

o 2.4 Spatial-temporal reasoning and spatial visualization ability

Spatial-temporal reasoning is the ability to visualize special patterns and mentally


manipulate them over a time-ordered sequence of spatial transformations.[1] Spatial
visualization ability is the ability to manipulate mentally two- and three-dimensional
figures.[1]

Spatial-temporal reasoning is prominent among visual thinkers as well as among


kinesthetic learners (those who learn through movement, physical patterning and
doing) and logical thinkers (mathematical thinkers who think in patterns and systems)
who may not be strong visual thinkers at all.[1]

o 2.5 Photographic memory

o Eidetic memory (photographic memory) may co-occur in visual


thinkers as much as in any type of thinking style as it is a memory
function associated with having vision rather than a thinking style.

o 2.6 Learning styles

o The acknowledgement and application of different cognitive and


learning styles, including visual, kinesthetic, musical, mathematical
181

and verbal thinking styles, are a common part of many current


teacher training courses

3 Concurrency with dyslexia and autism

o 3.1 Dyslexia

o 3.2 Autism

4 Art and design education

Concepts related to visual thinking have played an important role in art and design
education over the past several decades, but this has not always been the case.[13] In
Ancient Greece, Plato tended to place an emphasis on music to aid cognition in the
education of heroes because of its mathematical tendencies and "harmonies of the
cosmos". On the other hand, visual images, paintings in particular, caused the
reliances on "illusionary images"[14] However, in the Western world, children begin
primary school with abstract thought and shapes, but as we grow older, according to
Rudolf Arnheim, "arts are reduced to a desirable supplement"[14] The general world
trend in the late twentieth century caused an emphases towards scientific,
mathematical, and quantitative approach to education, and art education is often
refuted because it is based on perception. It is qualitative and subjective which makes
it difficult to measure and evaluate.

However, fundamentals in visual thinking lay the ground work for many design
disciplines such as art and architecture. Two of the most influential aspects of visual
composition in these disciplines are patterns and color. Patterns are not only prevalent
in many different aspects of everyday life, but it is also telling about our interpretation
of the world. In addition, there are now studied approaches to how color should be
used in design where "the functional aesthetics of colour can be reduced to a small
number of guidelines and lists the main properties needed to make design decisions
leading to visual clarity".[15]

At the same time, techniques in art and design can open up pathways to stimulate the
thought process. Sketches offer an unrestrained way to get thoughts down on paper
through the "abstract representations of ideas and idea structures".[15] It is also an
effective means of communication, especially for architects, for translating ideas from
designer to client. Despite all the advantages of integrating art and visuals into
education, it is a difficult skill to master. Those who can are well versed in visual
analysis. It takes a lot of practice to have sketches evolve from "meaningless
scribbles" to a complex "thinking tool".[15]

5 See also

Aphantasia
182

Concept map

Image schema

Intellectual giftedness

Intellectual giftedness is an intellectual ability significantly higher than average. It is


a characteristic of children, variously defined, that motivates differences in school
programming. It is thought to persist as a trait into adult life, with various
consequences studied in longitudinal studies of giftedness over the last century. There
is no generally agreed definition of giftedness for either children or adults, but most
school placement decisions and most longitudinal studies over the course of
individual lives have been based on IQ in the top 2 percent of the population, that is
above IQ 130.

The various definitions of intellectual giftedness include either general high ability or
specific abilities. For example, by some definitions an intellectually gifted person may
have a striking talent for mathematics without equally strong language skills. In
particular, the relationship between artistic ability or musical ability and the high
academic ability usually associated with high IQ scores is still being explored, with
some authors referring to all of those forms of high ability as "giftedness," while other
authors distinguish "giftedness" from "talent." There is still much controversy and
much research on the topic of how adult performance unfolds from trait differences in
childhood, and what educational and other supports best help the development of
adult giftedness.

While many people believe giftedness is a strictly quantitative difference,


measurable by IQ tests, some authors on the "experience of being" have
described giftedness as a fundamentally different way of perceiving the
world, which in turn affects every experience had by the gifted individual.

Multiple intelligences has been associated with giftedness or overachievement of


some developmental areas (Colangelo, 2003).[28] Multiple intelligences has been
described as an attitude towards learning, instead of techniques or strategies (Cason,
2001).[29]

There are said[by whom?] to be eight Intelligences, or different areas in which people
assimilate or learn about the world around them: interpersonal, intrapersonal, bodily-
kinesthetic, linguistic, logical-mathematical, musical, naturalistic, and spatial-visual.
If the Theory of Multiple Intelligences is applied to educational curriculum, by
providing lesson plans, themes, and programs in a way that all students are
encouraged to develop their stronger area, and at the same time educators provide
opportunities to enhance the learning process in the less strong areas, academic
success may be attainable for all children in a school system.

Howard Gardner proposed in Frames of Mind (Gardner 1983/1994) that intellectual


giftedness may be present in areas other than the typical intellectual realm. The
183

concept of multiple intelligences (MI) makes the field aware of additional potential
strengths and proposes a variety of curricular methods.

Gardner suggests MI in the following areas: Linguistic, logico-mathematical, musical,


spatial, kinesthetic, interpersonal, intrapersonal, naturalistic and existential.

Identification of gifted students with MI is a challenge since there is no simple test to


give to determine giftedness of MI. Assessing by observation is potentially most
accurate, but potentially highly subjective. MI theory can be applied to not only gifted
students, but it can be a lens through which all students can be assessed. This more
global perspective may lead to more child-centered instruction and meet the needs of
a greater number of children (Colangelo, 2003).[28]

This perspective has been criticized on the grounds that it is ad hoc: that Gardner is
not expanding the definition of the word "intelligence", but rather denies the existence
of intelligence as traditionally understood, and instead uses the word "intelligence"
where other people have traditionally used words like "ability" and "aptitude".

Mental image

Mind map

New Epoch Notation Painting

Picture dictionary

Rich pictures

Rudolf Arnheim

Visual language

6 References

7 Sources

8 Further reading

9 External links

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184
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