Ancient Philosophy · Basics · Epistemology · Metaphysics

Q&A: Ancient Philosophy

How does the image of the tripartite soul in Plato’s Phaedrus differ from that in the Republic? The imagery of the tripartite soul in Plato’s Phaedrus and Republic differ in terms of scene setting, dynamism and directedness. In the Phaedrus, Plato likens the soul “to the natural union of a team of winged horses and… Continue reading Q&A: Ancient Philosophy

Cosmology · Epistemology · Metaphysics

Possible Worlds – David Lewis

The American philosopher David Lewis (1941 – 2001) argued that, beyond this world, the actual world, there are countless possible worlds of a certain nature. These possible worlds exist and are as real as the actual one. The inhabitants of this world are only a few compared to all the inhabitants of all the worlds.… Continue reading Possible Worlds – David Lewis

Basics · Epistemology · Metaphysics

Laplacean Determinism

More than a century after the publication of Newton’s Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica, the French scholar Pierre-Simon Laplace (1749-1827) introduced a form of metaphysical determinism which Popper, due to its commitment to the laws of nature, referred to as ‘scientific determinism’ (Popper 1982, Chapter II). In 1820, Laplace wrote: We may regard the present state… Continue reading Laplacean Determinism

Basics · Epistemology · Metaphysics

Metaphysical Determinism & Laws of Nature

Theological determinism is the doctrine that God determines every event that occurs in the history of the world (Vicens). To arrive at a version of metaphysical determinism that is more palatable to a secular rather than a religious audience, divine law can be easily replaced by generic laws of nature. The advantage: God is often… Continue reading Metaphysical Determinism & Laws of Nature

Basics · Epistemology · Metaphysics

Causation – Hume’s Fork

As one of the British Empiricists of the Early Modern period, David Hume (1711 – 1776) holds that all knowledge comes from experience, a standard he rigorously applies to the subject of causation. There are no innate ideas. Everyone starts out in life with a tabula rasa, a clean slate. Hume’s central empirical axiom is known… Continue reading Causation – Hume’s Fork

Basics · Epistemology

Goldman’s Causal Theory of Knowledge

Gettier cases are characterised by a gap between the source of a justification (e.g. looking at a dog that looks like a sheep) and the fact that makes a corresponding belief true (e.g. there is a real sheep hidden right behind the sheep-like dog on the meadow). As is typically the case with Gettier examples, justification… Continue reading Goldman’s Causal Theory of Knowledge

Epistemology · Uncategorized

Mentalism – A Rival to Accessibility Internalism

Another prominent form of internalism, one that challenges ‘orthodox’ accessibilism, holds that internal states are mental states, a view known as mentalism. Mental states include first-person access phenomena such as beliefs and sensory experiences but also hopes, fears or longings and other neuro-physiological events and conditions. The basic idea is that some or all of these mental states… Continue reading Mentalism – A Rival to Accessibility Internalism