Epistemology Archives - Simply Philosophy

Rationality is something that we do not always understand. Inquiry is something that everyone uses at some point or other. But rationality is more than grammatically correct form and some combination of truthfulness or truth-aptness. Rationality is a presupposition of all inquiry. In other words, every question presupposes that there is a rational answer to … Continue reading Rationality and Inquiry – Simply Philosophy

Selfless Reasons to Support Free Speech | Simply Philosophy

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I have explained why free speech is a good idea if you wish to convince other people of the truth of your position. But it is also something that you should support even if you do not know what the true position is. Free speech helps those who do not know the correct position because … Continue reading Selfless Reasons to Support Free Speech | Simply Philosophy

Sentences and Definitions | Simply Philosophy

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I have finished my discussion of self-evident concepts. Concepts do not do anything except refer to things in our experience. They must be combined in order to be of any use. There are exactly two ways to combine concepts. They may be combined as a definition or as a sentence. The difference between a definition … Continue reading Sentences and Definitions | Simply Philosophy

Particulars and Universals | Simply Philosophy

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The problem with names is that they can always be applied to more than one thing. But the existence of unique individuals is self-evident. It is these two facts that create a puzzle for philosophers. Anything that can be applied in many cases is a universal. But something that is unique is a particular. But … Continue reading Particulars and Universals | Simply Philosophy

One of the early questions that I asked is whether or not self-evident truths are sufficient to build a proper philosophy on. I whether or not there is a method to determine self-evident truths. I think that these questions are related. There is no a priori method to determine whether or not self-evident truths are … Continue reading Are Self-Evident Truths Sufficient? | Simply Philosophy

Sometimes people disagree over whether or not a truth is self-evident. Some people that the statement is true, but not self-evident. Others believe that the statement is false. In either case, they do not believe that the statement is self-evident. Unless there is a fair and logical way to adjudicate this disagreement, it will not … Continue reading Disagreement and Self-Evident Truth | Simply Philosophy

Comparing Theories of the World | Simply Philosophy

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Comparing Theories of the World In my previous post, I showed that there is no experiences or appearances of our world that are not also theories of the world. This means that a way is needed to compare these theories. There must be theoretical virtues such as simplicity and explanatory power that mean that one … Continue reading Comparing Theories of the World | Simply Philosophy

Theories and the Blank Slate

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In my previous post, I explained that modern theories of the mind usually assume that the mind begins as a blank slate. But we cannot choose between various theories of the world if our mind is a blank slate. All of those theories already include our knowledge of appearances, so there is no evidence that … Continue reading Theories and the Blank Slate

Skepticism and the Blank Slate

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In my previous post, I explained that we should not solve the problem of skepticism by beginning with a method or with a representative selection of truths. We begin instead with a knowledge of appearances. If our minds are blanks slates, then this knowledge is not sufficient to solve the problem of skepticism. There are … Continue reading Skepticism and the Blank Slate

Right Method or Truth: Which is First?

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In my previous post, I discussed the difference between imagining something and knowing something. But we can only be certain of our knowledge of appearances. So we wish to have true beliefs. But if we want true beliefs, then we find a way of distinguishing true beliefs from false beliefs. This will gain us the … Continue reading Right Method or Truth: Which is First?