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2014-02-10

Philosophy of Time

The nature of time has had extensive attention in part down through the ages, such as Plato, St. Augustine, Pascal, Leonardo, Newton etc. For example, Newton considered time to flow uniformly, as if it were a separate manifold (1-surface) from the 3-surface of his mechanics described universe.

‘Absolute, true, and mathematical time, of itself, and from its own nature, flows equably without relation to anything external…’  Newton’s Principia

For a 3-manifold, this would give a product space description M^3 x M^1, the simplest fiber bundle description. Hence such description would be universal; that is the same common time for throughout the universe. Subsequently, the relativistic model refers to time as the interval between events, wherein clocks are associated with respective observers. However an event such as the Big Bang, and concomitant Big Expansion of our manifold (i.e. 3-surface), does not have such a General Relativistic Theory description; nor is ‘initial’ 3-ex ... (read more)

Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/8088 Reply

2013-09-12
Hi Jack,

Nice paper!. However, if I may, I wasn't convinced by your response to objection five. The objection, I take it, is that the intuitions you are marshaling about incoherence derive from a non-moral standpoint, that is, they are intuitions that arise when one is doing metaethics and not when one is actually moralizing.  And it seems undeniable that Moore paradoxical sentences are straightforwardly bizarre when uttered by persons in the context of actual moralizing (just imagine actually having the relevant conversation). At the outset of your paper, you correctly note that expressivism is a theory about actual moralizing, so it seems like this is one objection to which you should be very sensitive.  You respond:

This is not really a rejection of C3, but a rejection of C1, since it admits that it is not always the case that affective or conative attitudes are expressed by moral assertions. If non-cognitive mental states are only sometimes expressed by moral assertions, then the clai ... (read more)

Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/7909 Reply

2013-08-09

Methodologically speaking, I wonder why Matilal and S's article has not been enough for  further studies of this sort to be the rule on Mind (and other philosophical journals). Does this failure depend on their style? (Or should we just start working as a task-force and submit many articles of this kind?)

Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/7866 Reply

2013-08-09

Can there be linguistics without ontology?

The context principle and some Indian controversies over Meaning is a milestone in Indian studies, and in the history of their interaction with mainstream (i.e. Western) philosophy. Since it was published in 1988 on Mind (one of the top-5 journals in Philosophy, inaccessible for most authors), virtually everyone (in Indian philosophy) has read it.

Have you also re-read it?

I re-read it after some years this Summer and I have to admit that it was again a surprise. The article starts with a discussion of the Context principle in Frege and Quine (does the principle mean that words HAVE no meaning outside a sentence, or that their meaning can only be UNDERSTOOD within a sentence?). In this connection, Matilal and Sen discuss a strong and a weak interpretation of the Context principle (according to whether it should answer the first or the second question). They end up saying that the strong interpretation clashes with Frege's later work (see belo ... (read more)

Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/7865 Reply

2013-08-08
Reification is considered a fallacy but why is so little written on this topic? Specifically,
I am interested in the reification of terms such as Being, Nothingness (in Sartre's work) and especially in Heidegger's Being and Time. I agree with the critics who argue that these terms, and much of these books are exemplary examples of reification. Can one then argue that existentialism and some phenomenology are extensively fallacious? Defenders of  Heidegger, Sartre, Marcel and others would say that analytic reason is inapplicable to their philosophies, but I think this is nonsense.
Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/7859 Reply

2013-07-25
All comments are welcome!
Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/7858 Reply

2013-07-11
Your article is very interesting.

In the same spirit I propose a more modal formalism to speak about "true announcements" and "learning" : http://philpapers.org/rec/MARFPS

This representation allow to make the difference between a world before and after the learning act. Then it becomes easier to deal with expression about knowledge and learning.




2013-06-14
Here's the place to be critical!  Anything that can help me develop this argument is much appreciated.  This is something I develop a bit in my dissertation and the hope is to develop it more here and eventually have something worthy of publication.
Latest replies:
  • Jim Stone, 2013-06-23 : Here are some comments. Thanks for t 1. It will help your reader to say early on what nonreductive physicalism is, and w... (read more)
  • John Altmann, 2013-06-24 : I just wanted to say first and foremost before I go any further that I am not a Professor of Philosophy nor have I ever... (read more)
  • Andrew Russo, 2013-06-24 : First of all, thanks for taking the time to read my paper and provide me with comments.  This is what I hoped would... (read more)
  • Andrew Russo, 2013-06-24 : Thank you for reading my paper and commenting on it.  Whatever comments you give, whether or not they are from some... (read more)
  • Jim Stone, 2013-06-24 : Thanks for answering. The dialectic between us is for me now a little complicated. I follow this protocol in commenting... (read more)
Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/7816 Reply

2013-02-24
You are definitely right in your skepticism about the possibility of the unification of many micro-consciousnesses into macro-consciousness. However, it is surprising for me that overhelming majority of philosophers ignore the possibility that human consciousness is among these micro-consciousnesses. In my paper http://philpapers.org/rec/ARGNCO I argue that even a single electron might contain the whole current human experience (without long- and mid-term memory). I suggest a hypothesis, where such electrons might be located in a real brain

2013-01-11
First, thank you to the authors for providing their paper online!

            The problem with most forms of representationalism is that they do not actually close the explanatory gap. “Tracking representationalism” does not seem to be an exception. Beside the various possible objections explored in the paper, there remains the further objection that tracking representationalism, like its cousins, simply does not do what it aims to. It does not explain phenomenal consciousness, or why there is anything it is like to be in a mental state. The reason for this is that “what it is like” is a first-person experience, whereas talk of mental states, intentionality, tracking, etc., are third-person descriptions of events in the world, not of the phenomenal experience to which they correspond. What is missing is some strategy that can bridge the gap from third to first-person accounts—some way to “walk in the shoes of the brain”. To explain ... (read more)


2012-11-12
I am delighted that someone of Kitcher's ability has tackled the meta-ethical implications of understanding morality as an evolutionary adaptation. Further, Christine Clavien has advanced that good cause by providing an inspiringly insightful and clear review of important implications of his work. 

However, the science of the matter actually supports a much stronger hypothesis than Kitcher's "morality evolved to overcome altruism failures".That stronger hypothesis may have different meta-ethical implications.

Relevant criteria for scientific truth regarding morality as an evolutionary adaptation Include explanatory power for descriptive facts and puzzles, no contradiction with known facts, simplicity, and integration with the rest of science. By these criteria, a superior hypothesis can be stated as "morality overcomes a universal cooperation-exploitation dilemma by motivating or advocating altruistic cooperation strategies". That is, morality is composed of assemblies of biolog ... (read more)

Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/7433 Reply

2012-09-24

Your work is technically very interesting neverthless I have some remarks.

1/ I don't always understand the claim that the Fitch Paradox threatens Anti-Realist philosophy.
If everybody accepts the Knowability Principle restricted to basic propositions,
it sounds more like a victory than a defeat for the knowability advocates.
It seems that what is threatened is more the capacity of modal logic to represent the knowability.

2/ In your intuitionistic frame, as you say in proposition 5.8, it is impossible to have 'A' and 'not K A' in the same world.
So the Fitch Paradox is avoided but the result is a very poor epistemic logic where you cannot express that some truths are unknown.

3/ more technically in the figure below the proposition 5.7
I don't understand what happens in the world y.
You have      y Rk y ;    y Rk z ;    y: p   z: not p
but you have not    'y: not K p' .
Does it stand that 'y: not not K p' ?
It is very counterintuitive.

Else I wrote a dissertation on these points.
I have published a - maybe insufi ... (read more)

2012-08-08
Excellent paper first and foremost Mr. MacLeod! As I was reading your thoughts on plurality and the nature of the individual conscious, it made me think of the ideal of Solipsism. For those who don't know, Solipsism is defined as: The view or theory that the self is all that can be known to exist. Would you say that your case for a plurality of consciousness "immediately present." defeats the ideal of a Solipsistic Philosophy? 
Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/7182 Reply

2012-07-08
The metaphysical context of normative issues, public policy, etc, from the time that Darwin had just published and Christianity was only constructively recollecting what it feared it would lose, was provided by The Two Sources of Morality and Religion (Bergson 1932). The extent to which cognitive characteristics can be affected by policies, in his view, if I am correct, is determined by our "duality of origin", in which the knowing organism and the sensed environment reflect- and independently confirm each other. 

The evolution of human cognition or creative evolution as Bergson calls it, is like the intertwining of electricity and magnetism in light, reflectively sensing what is sensed and knowing what is reflectively known, unfolding in realization (know what is sensed) and intuition (sense what is known), valuing (intuit what is realized) and trying (realize what is intuited) and acting (try what is valued) and reacting (value what is tried), in interaction. This is mainly my own inte ... (read more)

2012-05-07
I have a question...

A classical, Tarskian system standardly contains homophonic definitions as the base clauses, e.g.,

'G' denotes Gs.

This is understood to be a sentence of the metalanguage (ML) which defines a predicate of the object language (OL). And when ML contains OL, the standard assumption is that the expression 'G' used on the right-hand side is identical to the expression mentioned on the left...so that numerically one expression, 'G', is an expression of both ML and of OL.

However, if homophonic definitions are admissible, then (given the compositionality of negation) the following sentence also seems admissible into the system as a definition:

'G' denotes x iff x is ~G.

But such an interpretation suffices for paradox in OL. For instance,  'Socrates is G' will be true in OL iff it is not true in OL (contra PNC). So apparently the second definition is not admissible in a classical system. But (again by the compositionality of negation) that means the former cannot b ... (read more)
Latest replies:
  • Panu Raatikainen, 2012-05-14 : Yes, it can... The essential point is that languages in the Tarskian setting must be interpreted languages. Hence, if yo... (read more)
  • T. Parent, 2012-05-15 : Thanks very much Panu! I will read your paper in the next few days. I will post again if furBest, Ted
  • T. Parent, 2012-06-10 : Dear Panu (and anyone else who may be reading), I enjoyed your paper very much. Your most helpful thought was the one yo... (read more)
Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/6843 Reply

2012-04-07

Many of you would have been aware of the increasing use of randomised evaluations in Social Science research and for public policy reasons. Taking an epistemological look, I give a robust argument on why the claims of randomised evaluations actually evade the problem of induction. Hope to get your thoughts. Thanks in advance !


1. Introduction

The usage of randomised evaluations in social inquiry has been recent and responses to them have been wide ranging. Some have described it as the “gold standard” in empirical research, (Duflo, Glennerster,&Kremer, 2006) while others though have been more critical of their value in making predictions. (Deaton, 2009)

Randomised evaluations[1] (REs) seek to make predictions on the impact of an intervention, when it is attempted in a new situation. REs work by first determining the impact of the intervention. Subsequently, for the new situation it is expected that the impact would be similar.

To determine an intervention’s impact, numerous subjects are ... (read more)

Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/6709 Reply

2012-04-07
Hello

Please could someone help me with the above question.

For example, is there a difference between the propositions:

Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland.

and 

The proposition 'Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland' is true.
?

Given that the second proposition is a proposition about the first proposition, it seems to me that they can't be the same proposition.

Derrick
Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/6699 Reply

2012-03-12
Another point that I brought up and then discussed later with Mohan had to do with the multiple senses of space and time that might be relevant to the discussion. It is normally thought that space and time serve as a sort of matrix for experience, but it would not be true to say that this matrix serves as the glue to all experience since we sometimes have experiences outside of a space-time matrix. That is, experiences may be "here" and "now" without being experienced as at a particular time or at a particular spatial location. They have extension in space and time but not location. If we are talking about this second sense of space and time then I might agree that experience is held together by such extension. However, I did not get the sense that this difference was appreciated by the discussants. I suspect that the "here-ness" and "now-ness" of experience will be best defined with respect to the experiencer, or subject of experience, rather th ... (read more)
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2012-03-08
Here's an argument that you can't suppose the Liar, where the Liar is, basically, "this very sentence is false."

If you can't suppose the liar, then one common way of setting forth the argument leading to paradox won't work--since it requires you to suppose the liar.

(It's more common, probably, for it to require you to suppose the liar is true. Whether the below argument successfully extends to that supposition isn't something I've thought through yet.)

What do you think of the argument?

I worry about line 4. What do we know (or what do different people think they know) about how to individuate thoughts?

Should I be worrying about any of the other three premises?

Thanks for any comments. It's outside my field (as you can probably tell!) and doesn't really engage directly, as far as I can see, with any of the technical material people usually (need to) discuss when dealing with the liar paradox--which is probably a bad thing I'm afraid.


1.   A =­def  A is false. (definition)<?xml:namespace prefi ... (read more)

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