Some forms of defining PNC in Aristotle’s works are as follows: a) Everything must be either affirmed or denied (φάναι ἢ ἀποφάναι). (Met., B, 996b28-29) or: it will not be possible to assert and deny the same thing truly at the same time. (Met., Γ, 1008a36-b1) In other words, ‘contradictory statements (ἀντικειμένας φάσεις) are not at the same time true. (Met., Γ, 1011b13-14) Also, ‘It is impossible that contradictories (ἀντίφασιν) should be at the same time true of the same thing.’ (...) (Met., Γ, 1011b15-16) Also, ‘Opposite statements (ἀντικειμένας φάσεις) can never be true of the same subjects.’ (Met., K, 1062a33-34; 1063b15-17) Also, ‘Of all affirmation or negation one is impossible. (PsA., A, 11, 77a22) b) A thing cannot at the same time be and not be. (Met., B, 996b30-31; Γ, 1006a3-5) This can also be extended to many other similar pairs of opposites: ‘The same thing cannot at the same time be and not be, or admit any other similar pair of opposites.’ (Met., K, 1061b34-1062a2) Also, ‘It will be possible for the same thing to be and not to be, except in virtue of an ambiguity.’ (Met., Γ, 1006b18-19) This is also asserted in another similar way: it is impossible that it should be at the same time true to say the same thing is a thing and is not a thing.’ (Met., Γ, 1006b33-34) c) ‘The same attribute cannot at the same time belong (ὑπάρχειν) and not belong to the same object in the same respect.’ (Met., Γ, 1005b19-21) d) Those positive and negative propositions are said to be contradictory which have the same subject and predicate. (OI, I, 7, 17a33-35) The opposition between an affirmation and a denial makes contradictories (ἀντίφασεως). (PsA., A, 2, 72a11-14) Based on Aristotle’s definition, ‘An affirmation is opposed to a denial in the sense which I denote by the term ‘contradictory’ (ἀντίφατικως), when, while the subject remains the same, the affirmation is of universal character and the denial is not.’ (OI., I, 7, 17b16-19) 1) Characteristics of PNC a) It is the most certain (Met., Γ, 1005b22-23 and b11) and the most indisputable (Met., Γ, 1006a5-6) of all principles. b) It is impossible: to believe its contrary (Met., Γ, 1005b24-30); to be really in that position (Met., Γ, 1008b11-13); and to defend it. (OI, I, 9, 18b17-19) Nonetheless, Aristotle thinks that many of the writers about nature assert the contrary of PNC and use a language opposite to it. (Met., Γ, 1005b35-1006a3) c) It is the starting point of all the other axioms. (Met., Γ, 1005b32-34) d) It is not hypothetical. (Met., Γ, 1005b13-17) e) Contradictories are extremely opposed to each other. (Met., Γ, 1007a1-4) f) Believing in PNC saves substance and essence and not believing in it makes all attributes accidents and there will be nothing as being essentially something. The reason is that something which essentially is a being cannot avoid being that thing. (Met., Γ, 1007a20-29 and b16-18) g) PNC supports plurality of things because otherwise all things will be one: ‘If all contradictories are true of the same subject at the same time, evidently all things will be one. For the same thing will be a trireme, a wall, and a man, if it is equally possible to affirm and deny anything of anything.’ (Met., Γ, 1007b18-22) In fact, PNC supports difference: ‘For if contradictories can be predicated alike of each subject, one thing will in no wise differ from another; for if it differs, this difference will be something true and peculiar to it.’ (Met., Γ, 1008a25-27) h) To accept truth and falsity, whether in an absolute sense (e.g. A is more true than B; or C is less true than D) entails PNC. (Met., Γ, 1008b2-7 and b31-35; 1009a2-5) In fact, PNC is entailed by accepting true affirmation. (Met., K, 1062b7-11) i) Judging and choosing between at least two things entails PNC: you cannot choose one as better than another without a previous judging that one is A and the other not A. (Met., Γ, 1008b18-24) The same is true about avoiding. (Met., Γ, 1008b24-29) j) PNC guarantees speaking and saying anything intelligible because otherwise e.g. saying ‘yes’ means both yes and no. (Met., Γ, 1008b7-13) k) Contradictories do not accept intermediates that means we must either affirm or deny a predicate on a subject and there is no third option. (Met., Γ, 1011b23-24; Met., I, 1055b1-2; PsA., A, 2, 72a11-14; Met., I, 1057a33-36) l) PNC is applicable also to the future time. (OI., I, 9, 19a28-29) m) PNC is presupposed by the least semantic of words. If we accept that each word has a meaning and, thus, signifies something definite, we cannot accept that it has the contradictory meaning and signies contradictory things and this approves PNC. Thus, Aristotle asks the opponent of PNC to say just one word, a significant word and takes this as the demonstration of PNC because by saying the word e.g. ‘man’ you have already signified man and not-man. (Met., Γ, 1005a11-13 and a18-22; 1006a28-31 and b13-15) Therefore, signification entails PNC: ‘He, then, who says this is and is not denies what he affirms, so that what the word signifies, he says it does not signify; and this is impossible. Therefore, if ‘This is’ signifies something, one cannot truly assert the contradictory.’ (Met., K, 1062a16-20) He says again: ‘If the word signifies something and this can be truly asserted of it, it necessarily is this; and it is not possible that that which is necessary should ever not be: it is not possible therefore to make the opposed assertions truly of the same subject.’ (Met., K, 1062a20-23; cf. Met., K, 1062a24-31) n) At Met., 4, 3, 1005b9-10 (check???) PNC is called as principle of things (ἀρχὰς τοῦ πράγματος). (quoted from B215, 517) . (shrink)
In Metaphysics Γ, Aristotle argues against those who seem to accept contradictions. He distinguishes between the Sophists, who deny the principle of non-contradiction through arguments, and the Natural Philosophers, whose physical investigations lead to the acceptance of objective contradictions. Heraclitus’ name appears throughout the discussion. Usually, he is associated with the discussion against the Sophists. In this paper, I explore how the discussion with the Natural Philosophers may illuminate both the interpretation of Heraclitus by Aristotle and Heraclitus’ own worldview. To (...) refute the Natural Philosophers, Aristotle proposes a general reconstruction of their reasoning. Roughly, relying on sensory evidence (A1), they see that the same thing changes from one opposite to another (A2). Such a change appears to characterize a generation out of non-being, which a Natural Philosopher does not accept (A3). To solve the problem, despite their different worldviews, Natural Philosophers hint at a state in which opposites co-occur, characterizing an objective contradiction (C). Looking at the discussion in Metaphysics Γ and Heraclitus fragments, sections 1–3 show how assumptions A1, A2, and A3 easily apply to Heraclitus. The case of the conclusion is more challenging. In the case of the Pluralists, the co-existence of opposites characterizes a state in which there is no generation. Such a view does not fit Heraclitus’ mobilism. To argue that Aristotle’s argument is general enough to encompass dynamic views, I examine his problematization of accepting the change of change in Metaphysics K and Physics V. There, after re-stating several points that appear in Metaphysics Γ, Aristotle argues that accepting the becoming of another becoming leads to a state of contradiction in which the becoming is perishing. Heraclitus’ B8, cited in Nicomachean Ethics, gives evidence that, for Aristotle, Heraclitus puts a process at the origin of an opposite process. Moreover, after examining the expression ‘living the death/dying the life’ in B62, I argue that Heraclitus was aware that his worldview implied a dynamic objective contradiction. Finally, an analysis of elemental changes in B36 proves that accepting objective contradictions does not make Heraclitus’ worldview less attractive. (shrink)
The aim of this paper is to show how the invention of imaginary logic by Nikolaj A. Vasil’ev, forerunner of various logical and metaphysical theories appeared in the 20th century, is grounded on a revaluation of Aristotelian ontology. I shall introduce the reason why Aristotle believes that the study of the principle of contradiction is part of ontology (§ 2); I shall explain why Vasil’ev considers the law of contradiction an empirical law, and not a logical one (§ 3.1). I (...) will show his conception of contradiction (§ 3.2) and I will discuss how he believes that it’s possible to renounce this law; (§ 3.3). I shall then explain the fundamental features of imaginary logic (§ 4.1 and § 4.2); and, finally I shall claim how, in spite of a convergence from the logical point of view (§ 5.1), the incompatibility of the two authors takes place on an ontological level (§ 5.2). In order to do so, I shall implement the analysis of the Aristotelian syllogistic conducted by the Polish logician and philosopher Jan Łukasiewicz, together with a crucial distinction between two concepts: the one of ‘law’ and the one of ‘principle’. -/- . (shrink)
This book examines the birth of the scientific understanding of motion. It investigates which logical tools and methodological principles had to be in place to give a consistent account of motion, and which mathematical notions were introduced to gain control over conceptual problems of motion. It shows how the idea of motion raised two fundamental problems in the 5th and 4th century BCE: bringing together being and non-being, and bringing together time and space. The first problem leads to the exclusion (...) of motion from the realm of rational investigation in Parmenides, the second to Zeno's paradoxes of motion. Methodological and logical developments reacting to these puzzles are shown to be present implicitly in the atomists, and explicitly in Plato who also employs mathematical structures to make motion intelligible. With Aristotle we finally see the first outline of the fundamental framework with which we conceptualise motion today. (shrink)
Some of Aristotle’s statements about the indemonstrability of the Principle of Non-Contradiction (PNC) in Metaphysics Γ 4 merit more attention. The consensus seems to be that Aristotle provides two arguments against the demonstrability of the PNC, with one located in Γ 3 and the other found in the first paragraph of Γ 4. In this article, I argue that Aristotle also relies upon a third argument for the same conclusion: the argument from truth. Although Aristotle does not explicitly state this (...) argument, it is the best argument that he could use to defend some of his statements in the second paragraph of Γ 4. Since the argument relies on only a few of Aristotle’s core views about truth, I propose that it is faithful to his considered position throughout his corpus, and it may be the strongest argument he could offer for the indemonstrability of the PNC. (shrink)
In his Metaphysics Γ.4, Aristotle defends the principle of non-contradiction (PNC). The PNC says that all contradictions are false. So if some contradictions are true, then PNC is false. Even if PNC’s contrary is false, PNC’s contradictory might still be true. But it’s been noted in the literature for over a century that Aristotle seems to be exclusively interested in attacking PNC’s contrary (‘All contradictions are true’) rather than PNC’s contradictory (‘Some contradictions are true’). So his defense of PNC seems (...) to fail. This would be a surprising error from the inventor of formal logic. It is especially puzzling because we have plenty of evidence showing that Aristotle is keenly aware of the distinction between contraries and contradictories, and because Aristotle distinguishes between PNC’s contradictory and PNC’s contrary in Γ.4. I defend Aristotle against these charges: (1) I explain that one important reason for Aristotle’s focus on PNC’s contrary is that he took it to be deeply connected to views held by thinkers such as Anaxagoras, Cratylus, Democritus, Empedocles, Heraclitus, Parmenides, Protagoras, and Xenophanes; (2) Aristotle’s defense of PNC must be a particular kind of indirect defense rather than a direct demonstration; (3) I argue that if Aristotle’s defense of PNC is read as centering around his argument for what counts as a thing that is determinate, Aristotle demonstrates the reliance of coherent communication on non-contradiction. Read this way, he gives a fairly compelling case to reject not just PNC’s contrary but also PNC’s contradictory. (shrink)
The belief that Aristotle opposes potency (dunamis) to actuality (energeia or entelecheia) has gone untested. This essay defines and distinguishes forms of the Opposition Hypothesis—the Actualization, Privation, and Modal—examining the texts and arguments adduced to support them. Using Aristotle’s own account of opposition, the texts appear instead to show that potency and actuality are compatible, while arguments for their opposition produce intractable problems. Notably, Aristotle’s refutation of the Megarian Identity Hypothesis applies with equal or greater force to the Opposition Hypothesis. (...) For Aristotle, then, potency and actuality are compatible. (shrink)
In Metaphysics Γ 4-6 Aristotle argues that Protagoras is committed not just to denying the PNC, but also to asserting its contrary. In this paper, I offer an analysis of this commitment. I try to show that Aristotle is working with a specific idea in mind: a Protagoreanism ontologically linked to the flux doctrine, as Plato suggested in Theaetetus 152-160.
O presente trabalho constitui-se de uma breve análise dos trechos que vão de 1005b 35 à 1006a 27 do capítulo quatro do livro Gama da Metafísica de Aristóteles e pretende fornecer uma leitura alternativa àquela feita pela tradição acerca da defesa do princípio de não-contradição elaborada nesse texto por Aristóteles. Com a ideia de um roteiro refutativo, pretendemos mostrar que argumentação em defesa do princípio encontra seu sucesso no seguimento desse roteiro provando, via demonstração elêntica, a validade e universalidade deste.
This article is intended to examine the structure and scope of the argumentation drawn in Metaphysics Γ 4, 1006a18-b34. As we shall see, though this passage does not bring a complete proof of the Principle of Non-Contradiction, it corresponds to its first step, which consists in determining the conditions of meaning necessary for discourse. That passage encloses in nuce the reasons which underlie Aristotelian conviction con- cerning the conventional nature of names and also brings to light the way this conven- (...) tional nature of names must be understood according to Aristotle. (shrink)
Platão trata no Parmênides das formas ideais e do seu modelo de identidade relacionando-o ao modelo de ser eleata através da noção de um. Tendo concluído a incompatibilidade entre este modelo de atribuição e os seres mutáveis em uma realidade múltipla, ele percebeu que a noção de não-ser deveria ser desvinculada do entendimento de Parmênides através da nova noção de não-ser como diferença apresentada no Sofista. Paralelamente, Aristóteles apresenta um ordenamento parecido através da sua teoria física sobre o movimento, baseada (...) na ideia de contrários, e do princípio de não- contradição e identidade desenvolvidos na Metafísica. Em Aristóteles, contrariedade, contradição, movimento, mudança e identidade são conceitos fundamentais para se compreender em um nível elementar como ele trata o problema da relação entre conhecimento e contingencia. (shrink)
This essay deals with a selected part of an epistemological controversy provided by Tūsī in response to the skeptical arguments reported by Rāzī that is related to what might be called "intellectual skepticism," or skepticism regarding the judgments of the intellect, particularly in connection with self-evident principles. It will be shown that Rāzī has cited and exposed a position that seems to be no less than a medieval version of empiricism. Tūsī, in contrast, has presented us with a position that (...) rejects such empiricism. The comparative aim of this essay is to draw attention to some similarities as well as some points of divergence between the kind of skeptical debate we are focusing on here, and some relevant epistemological discussions in the later traditions in the West. ". (shrink)
In both Metaphysics Γ 4 and 5 Aristotle argues that Protagoras is committed to the view that all contradictions are true. Yet Aristotle’s arguments are not transparent, and later, in Γ 6, he provides Protagoras with a way to escape contradictions. In this paper I try to understand Aristotle’s arguments. After examining a number of possible solutions, I conclude that the best way of explaining them is to (a) recognize that Aristotle is discussing a number of Protagorean opponents, and (b) (...) import another of Protagoras’ views, namely the claim that there are always two logoi opposed to one another. (shrink)
In this contribution, I explore the treatment that Plato devotes to Protagoras’ relativism in the first section of the Theaetetus (151 E 1–186 E 12) where, among other things, the definition that knowledge is perception is put under scrutiny. What I aim to do is to understand the subtlety of Plato’s argument about Protagorean relativism and, at the same time, to assess its philosophical significance by revealing the inextric¬ability of ontological and epistemological aspects on which it is built (for this (...) latter aspect, I refer to contemporary discussions of relativism, mainly to Margolis’ robust relativism). I then turn to Aristotle’s treatment of Protagoras’ relativism in Metaphysics Γ, sections 5 and 6, in order to show that Plato and Aristotle surprisingly share the same view as regards the philosophical content of Protagoras’ relativism (in doing so, I take position against the standard opinion among scholars that Plato and Aristotle understand Protagoras’ relativism in different, even incompatible, ways). What I ultimately aim to demonstrate is that Protagoras’ relativism, as understood by both Plato and Aristotle, is a coherent, even attractive, philosophical position. (shrink)
The question of whether the Pyrrhonist adheres to certain logical principles, criteria of justification, and inference rules is of central importance for the study of Pyrrhonism. Its significance lies in that, whereas the Pyrrhonist describes his philosophical stance and argues against the Dogmatists by means of what may be considered a rational discourse, adherence to any such principles, criteria, and rules does not seem compatible with the radical character of his skepticism. Hence, if the Pyrrhonist does endorse them, one must (...) conclude that he is inconsistent in his outlook. Despite its import, the question under consideration has not received, in the vast literature on Pyrrhonism of the past three decades, all the attention it deserves. In the present paper, I do not propose to provide a full examination of the Pyrrhonist’s attitude towards rationality, but to focus on the question of whether he endorses the law of non-contradiction (LNC). However, I will also briefly tackle the question of the Pyrrhonist’s outlook on both the canons of rational justification at work in the so-called Five Modes of Agrippa and the logical rules of inference. In addition, given that the LNC is deemed a fundamental principle of rationality, determining the Pyrrhonist’s attitude towards it will allow us to understand his general attitude towards rationality. (shrink)
This paper deals with the strategy of defence that Aristotle dedicates to the principle of contradiction; the analysis is concentrated on passages of Metaphysics Gamma 4. The main thesis of the paper is that Aristotle’s strategy is an ontological, and therefore not only a logical, one: the principle is defended on the basis of the, from an ontological point of view, unacceptable consequences which would arise in case of the absence of the principle itself. These consequences are, for instance, the (...) disappearance of properties, of essences, of individual entities and of the plurality of essentially distinguishable entities, since the contents of the properties, the role of properties as essences and the constitution of the individual entities cannot hold, if the principle of contradiction does not hold. The principle of contradiction is, therefore, not only a logical principle: it is the ontological presupposition of the whole reality; without it there is no entity. (shrink)
A rational interpretation is proposed for two ancient Indian logics: the Jaina saptabhaṅgī, and the Mādhyamika catuṣkoṭi. It is argued that the irrationality currently imputed to these logics relies upon some philosophical preconceptions inherited from Aristotelian metaphysics. This misunderstanding can be corrected in two steps: by recalling their assumptions about truth; by reconstructing their ensuing theory of judgment within a common conceptual framework.
The goals of this paper are two-fold: I wish to clarify the Aristotelian conception of the law of non-contradiction as a metaphysical rather than a semantic or logical principle, and to defend the truth of the principle in this sense. First I will explain what it in fact means that the law of non-contradiction is a metaphysical principle. The core idea is that the law of non-contradiction is a general principle derived from how things are in the world. For example, (...) there are certain constraints as to what kind of properties an object can have, and especially: some of these properties are mutually exclusive. Given this characterisation, I will advance to examine what kind of challenges the law of non-contradiction faces; the main opponent here is Graham Priest. I will consider these challenges and conclude that they do not threaten the truth of the law of non-contradiction understood as a metaphysical principle. (shrink)
In Book IV of the Metaphysics Aristotle argues that first philosophy investigates not only being qua being but also the axioms or principles of demonstration. In the same place he establishes which principles are first. The first among these is the principle of contradiction. The thesis I defend in my communication is that the principle of contradiction in Aristotle is not merely formal in the style of modern symbolic logic, but is the constituent law of all discourse. As such, the (...) most precise sense in which it is a 'first principle' is that of a condition of the possibility of significance: terms and judgments have significance if they comply with the condition; if they violate it they signify nothing and are vacuous. If my interpretation is correct, various consequences will be derivable from a first principle, of which the most important is its link with essence and substance. (shrink)
The so called “elenctic” defense of the principle of non-contradiction in Metaphysics Γ4 will succed if only the opponent will say something. The strategy consists in showing that, in speaking, the opponent has al- ready accepted the principle. Given the structure of the argument, the only way to avoid begging the question is not to ask from the opponent any commitment exceeding the conditions of mere meanigfullness of speech. In particular, it is specially important to avoid any reliance on Aristotelian (...) essentialism. A reading which is in accordance with these requirements will hold that the core of the proof consists in showing that meaning something amounts to singling out a meaning. The mere aim of telling what is within from what is without the bounds imposed on speech of any complexity is enough to show that the speaker accepts the principle of non-contradiction. One is thereby not required to commit oneself to any particular description of reality. Nonetheless, the extention of this result to the conditions of predication will pave the way for the develop- ment of the science of being as being. (shrink)
Un paralogisme semble commis dans la démonstration par Aristote du principe psychologique de non-contradiction : à partir d’un principe performatif d’assertion (dire quelque chose, c’est le croire), une approche moderne nous incline à prétendre qu’Aristote présuppose une transparence référentielle des contextes opaques de croyance afin de corréler les versions psychologique et logique. Nous tenterons de restituer la preuve du principe (I). Au moyen de la formalisation moderne, nous appliquerons cette explication à quelques paradoxes (II). Nous en conclurons la nature de (...) la non-contradiction (III), avant de proposer une "dissolution" syntaxique du problème d'opacité des contextes d'attitudes propositionnelles. Cette dissolution exprimera un certain scepticisme face aux approches formelles de l'intentionnalité. (shrink)
My object is Aristotle's discussion of principle of non-contradiction in the first stretch of Metaphysics IV.4. My main focus rests on the connections between Aristotle's discussion of the principle and some key notions of his (explicit or implied) semantics.
Łukasiewicz distinguishes three formulations of the principle of contradiction in Aristotle’s works: ontological, logical, and psychological. The first two formulations are equivalent though not synonymous, but neither of them is equivalent to the psychological one, which expresses not a principle but only an empirical law. Furthermore, the principle of contradiction is neither a simple and ultimate law nor is it necessary for conducting an inference, because the syllogism is independent of it. The further explanation of this concept leads Łukasiewicz to (...) formulate the idea of a non-Aristotelian logic, that is, a logic operating without the principle of contradiction. If the principle of contradiction shall be valid, it must be proved. A proof can be supplied only on the basis of a definition of object, as something that cannot have and not have the same property at the same time. However, this definition does not hold for all objects, i.e., for contradictory objects. In virtue of its ontological character the Aristotelian principle of contradiction is then different from that of symbolic logic. (shrink)
Jan Łukasiewicz distinguished three various formulations of the law of contradiction in Aristotle's considerations concerning axiomatic foundations of philosophia prima in the book Γ of Methaphysics. Łukasiewicz referred to these formulations as „ontological”, „logical”, and „psychological”, respectively. The author focuses his attention on the last of them, namely to the so called psychological approach. He finds this approach to be an inadequate interpretation of Aristotle's views and tries to show that the most appropriate interpretation is pragmatic-logical.
O princípio ontológico por excelência é o princípio chamado de não--contradição. Tal princípio é formulado por Aristóteles em termos modais: ser é a exclusão da impossibilidade. Mas isso implica a posterioridade da impossibilidade relativamente à sua exclusão. /// Le premier principe ontologique est le principe de non-contradiction. Aristote le formule selon la modalité: être exclut l'impossibilité. Ceci entraîne que l'impossibilité soit postérieure à son exclusion. /// The ontological principle "par excellence" is the principle of noncontradiction. This principle is formulated by (...) Aristotle in terms of modais: being is the exclusion of impossibility. However this implies that impossibility is posterior to its exclusion. (shrink)
Aristotle shares with Plato the attitude that the world, ‘the all,’ is a kosmos, a well-ordered and beautiful whole which, as such, can be rendered intelligible, or understood, by the intellect. One understands things, generally speaking, by tracing them back to their sources, origins or principles and causes or explanatory factors, and seeing in what manner they are related to these principles. We know, or understand, a thing when we grasp ‘the why’ or cause. Consequently, understanding is systematic. Some things (...) we understand through themselves - these are the first principles and as such are not understood by tracing them back to causes. We understand other things by systematically relating them in appropriate ways to what is known through itself. These other things are known through, or by means of, their causes and principles. (shrink)
In what follows I will say little if anything about the animadversions vis-à-vis Irwin and Lukasiewicz and Owen, because there is so much of such greater interest in what Code has told us about Aristotle, the great preponderance of which, in my opinion, is true. I will review some of this truth, specify one place where I have trouble reconciling his account with the evidence, and then try to give a better account that I think is entirely compatible with the (...) rest of what he has given us. (shrink)
RECENT attempts to explain and justify Aristotle's principle of non-contradiction have focused to a great extent on the dialectical dimension of Aristotle's account. For example, T. Irwin maintains that Aristotle justifies the PNC by arguing that there is a sub-set of dialectical opinions which no one can rationally give up. J. Lear supports the importance of the dialectical dimension by summarizing Aristotle's defense of the PNC as follows: The opponent of the PNC tries to argue dialectically that one should not (...) accept it. "Aristotle's point is that there is no conceptual space in which such a rational discussion can occur." By appealing to the limits of rationally, externally, expressible discourse as the basis of the PNC, Irwin and Lear fail to take seriously the more explicitly psychological and metaphysical bases of the PNC. C. Kirwan, and most recently, R. Smith also either argue against or ignore the role of the psychological and metaphysical bases. Smith goes so far as to argue that common axioms like the PNC are simply empty statement schemata of universal validity, i.e., general verbal forms or patterns which no one can deny with intelligibility. (shrink)