Arguments for/against Parallelism?

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ufotofu
 
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 01:57 pm
I'm writing a paper on Parallelism for my Metaphysics class, using the topic of Leibniz's pre-established harmony. I'm having a really hard time making an argument that isn't completely flawed, does anyone have any arguments for and against his theory? I have his Monadology, and I am very familiar with his theory, so you don't need to be very detailed.. Just need to be pointed in the right direction. Particularly philosophers who battled against pre-established harmony.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 04:08 pm
@ufotofu,
ufotofu;148879 wrote:
I'm writing a paper on Parallelism for my Metaphysics class, using the topic of Leibniz's pre-established harmony. I'm having a really hard time making an argument that isn't completely flawed, does anyone have any arguments for and against his theory? I have his Monadology, and I am very familiar with his theory, so you don't need to be very detailed.. Just need to be pointed in the right direction. Particularly philosophers who battled against pre-established harmony.


I would have thought that the main criticism of pre-established harmony is that there is no reason to think it is true. It is a way of salvaging the appearance of mind-body interaction without mind-body interaction, but that is not enough to think it is plausible.
 
VideCorSpoon
 
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 04:41 pm
@kennethamy,
ufotofu;148879 wrote:
I'm writing a paper on Parallelism for my Metaphysics class, using the topic of Leibniz's pre-established harmony. I'm having a really hard time making an argument that isn't completely flawed, does anyone have any arguments for and against his theory? I have his Monadology, and I am very familiar with his theory, so you don't need to be very detailed.. Just need to be pointed in the right direction. Particularly philosophers who battled against pre-established harmony.


In my own opinion, Leibniz is essentially a standalone rationalist as far as his unique stance on metaphysics. And taking into account you are familiar with the monodology, I can just go into the meat of the matter instead of the longer explanations (just a review of the essentials). The first thing to consider are the issues raised by Leibniz's predecessors. Descartes for example did not fully resolve the interaction of mind and matter. Spinoza reasoned that it was self-evident that the soul is not an attribute, in essence the crux of his indivisibility of infinite extension (one substance, etc.). Malebranche supposed occasionalism, wherein opposition is opposed to extension. Now take that as the basis point for what is coming next. Leibniz is essentially arguing for substance as being completely self sufficient, that is, it entails its own property. This is due to the all encompassing notion of PSR (Principle of Sufficient Reason) inherent in the rationalistic mindset. PSR essentially dictates that everything has to have a complete explanation, that there is nothing that cannot fully be explained, that there is a cause and effect and the cause necessarily precedes the effect. Though you probably know this, it is imperative to include PSR in any examination of Leibniz's monodology.

Now Leibniz supposes that a complete explanation (sub-quanta PSR) must be contained within the substance. Completeness comprises inherent necessary and sufficient predicates. And if there is some level of self-sufficiency, there must be some activity inherent in the substance. And of course, within Leibniz's notion of activity, any change of that given substance must be explained within that given substance. Any subsequent properties must be explained by itself and nothing else. Thus, Leibniz infers Phenomena bene fundatumhttp://i42.tinypic.com/9qwrc4.jpg
 
trismegisto
 
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 04:52 pm
@VideCorSpoon,
VideCorSpoon;148926 wrote:
In my own opinion, Leibniz is essentially a standalone rationalist as far as his unique stance on metaphysics. And taking into account you are familiar with the monodology, I can just go into the meat of the matter instead of the longer explanations (just a review of the essentials). The first thing to consider are the issues raised by Leibniz's predecessors. Descartes for example did not fully resolve the interaction of mind and matter. Spinoza reasoned that it was self-evident that the soul is not an attribute, in essence the crux of his indivisibility of infinite extension (one substance, etc.). Malebranche supposed occasionalism, wherein opposition is opposed to extension. Now take that as the basis point for what is coming next. Leibniz is essentially arguing for substance as being completely self sufficient, that is, it entails its own property. This is due to the all encompassing notion of PSR (Principle of Sufficient Reason) inherent in the rationalistic mindset. PSR essentially dictates that everything has to have a complete explanation, that there is nothing that cannot fully be explained, that there is a cause and effect and the cause necessarily precedes the effect. Though you probably know this, it is imperative to include PSR in any examination of Leibniz's monodology.

Now Leibniz supposes that a complete explanation (sub-quanta PSR) must be contained within the substance. Completeness comprises inherent necessary and sufficient predicates. And if there is some level of self-sufficiency, there must be some activity inherent in the substance. And of course, within Leibniz's notion of activity, any change of that given substance must be explained within that given substance. Any subsequent properties must be explained by itself and nothing else. Thus, Leibniz infers Phenomena bene fundatumhttp://i42.tinypic.com/9qwrc4.jpg


By all means, go further. This is fun stuff.
 
VideCorSpoon
 
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 05:09 pm
@trismegisto,
trismegisto;148931 wrote:
By all means, go further. This is fun stuff.


Sure! It depends on where you would like to go from here. You can go into the principles of knowledge and subsequently Leibniz's cosmological argument, the dominant monad and free will, etc. I have always found Leibniz to be one of the more interesting and intricate of the rationalists.
 
trismegisto
 
Reply Tue 6 Apr, 2010 05:59 pm
@VideCorSpoon,
VideCorSpoon;148942 wrote:
Sure! It depends on where you would like to go from here. You can go into the principles of knowledge and subsequently Leibniz's cosmological argument, the dominant monad and free will, etc. I have always found Leibniz to be one of the more interesting and intricate of the rationalists.


Please continue with whatever you enjoy most or what is most pertinent to this thread I suppose is a better answer. Its fun to hear the modern version of philosophy. Thanks again.
 
ufotofu
 
Reply Wed 7 Apr, 2010 04:26 pm
@VideCorSpoon,
This is very helpful and very insightful! Thank you very much!
 
VideCorSpoon
 
Reply Wed 7 Apr, 2010 05:11 pm
@ufotofu,
No problem (as far as my part)! But do tell us when your paper is all done and graded what you decided to talk about. It would be great to discuss this very fascinating part of Leibniz's metaphysics.
 
Deckard
 
Reply Thu 8 Apr, 2010 11:28 pm
@VideCorSpoon,
VideCorSpoon;148926 wrote:


http://i42.tinypic.com/9qwrc4.jpg


Obviously, a great post. A quick question about the illustration: On the Leibnitz illustration you have a bar that goes across the two clocks before it gets to the clocks. Shouldn't it be that the only connection between the two clocks is at God. So the picture should look like this?

http://www.philosophyforum.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=110&stc=1&d=1270790842

I don't mean to be nit picking here. I'm just wondering what that bar represented?
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Fri 9 Apr, 2010 06:41 am
@Deckard,
Deckard;149859 wrote:
Obviously, a great post. A quick question about the illustration: On the Leibnitz illustration you have a bar that goes across the two clocks before it gets to the clocks. Shouldn't it be that the only connection between the two clocks is at God. So the picture should look like this?

http://www.philosophyforum.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=110&stc=1&d=1270790842

I don't mean to be nit picking here. I'm just wondering what that bar represented?


Isn't it God who is supposed to set up the original coordination, and let everything just work? So, God does not actually intervene at all, except sets it all up at the start. The bar is discussed at the site below.

Pre-established harmony - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

As I said, the main objection to it is that there isn't the slightest reason to think it is true.
 
VideCorSpoon
 
Reply Fri 9 Apr, 2010 08:58 am
@Deckard,
Deckard;149859 wrote:
Obviously, a great post. A quick question about the illustration: On the Leibnitz illustration you have a bar that goes across the two clocks before it gets to the clocks. Shouldn't it be that the only connection between the two clocks is at God. So the picture should look like this?

http://www.philosophyforum.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=110&stc=1&d=1270790842

I don't mean to be nit picking here. I'm just wondering what that bar represented?


You are certainly not nitpicking, and I think you have a very good point. Also, I could not link through to your picture, so if you could repost it I would appreciate it. I definitely would like to see you work!

http://i43.tinypic.com/xkslty.jpg

In the case of the Leibniz illustration, you have at the very bottom god, which in turn leads to the sequential statements "A-->B-->C" which represents the programming as it were. And then this direct programming affects the pendulums which move in tandem yet unconnected. The bar which goes through the arrows is Gods hand in the placement of the preprogramming.

The picture is intended to, as well as demonstrate pre-established harmony in general via the clocks, show the level of involvement in which God takes in substantial operation (what the bar represents). In the case of Malebranche, God is essentially fixing something to fit with the best possible operation of the world. In the case of Leibniz, God and the innate ideas (the programming) are injected into the subject (the monad) at creation. God's "partition" for lack of a better work culminates in the innate idea (dependant on PSR).

In a way, the question you brought up ties directly to what follows next in understanding the picture more accurately. In the case of the picture, we could go on to attribute the fact that each clock is a monad in itself, which has its own inherent properties. Monads are qualitative, inherently active, a mutually exclusive concept, etc. Monads are innate, where every property we could have is within us (i.e. God's hand in the preprogramming). But also, to go a little further, in a full explanation in conjunction with Leibniz's theory, each clock is essentially a dominant monad of that particular clock, reflecting the universe most accurately. Whereas Malebranche (his God) is constantly fixing a broken machine, Leibniz suggests that that a dominant monad reflects the universe most accurately in the form of a clock who works in perfect tandem with another (each for their own mind you).

If it would be easier to think of it this way, think of Leibniz's pre established harmony compared to Malebranche's harmony as a whole composite of possible configurations of the clock doing what it could do, but what we see is the dominant monad, the perfect tandem which reflects the world most accurately. Gods connection is in the clocks in the form of the innate idea, which in turn =is reflected in the dominant monad

http://i44.tinypic.com/opr79d.jpg
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Fri 9 Apr, 2010 09:06 am
@VideCorSpoon,
VideCorSpoon;149923 wrote:
You are certainly not nitpicking, and I think you have a very good point. Also, I could not link through to your picture, so if you could repost it I would appreciate it. I definitely would like to see you work!

http://i43.tinypic.com/xkslty.jpg

In the case of the Leibniz illustration, you have at the very bottom god, which in turn leads to the sequential statements "A-->B-->C" which represents the programming as it were. And then this direct programming affects the pendulums which move in tandem yet unconnected. The bar which goes through the arrows is Gods hand in the placement of the preprogramming.

The picture is intended to, as well as demonstrate pre-established harmony in general via the clocks, show the level of involvement in which God takes in substantial operation (what the bar represents). In the case of Malebranche, God is essentially fixing something to fit with the best possible operation of the world. In the case of Leibniz, God and the innate ideas (the programming) are injected into the subject (the monad) at creation. God's "partition" for lack of a better work culminates in the innate idea (dependant on PSR).

In a way, the question you brought up ties directly to what follows next in understanding the picture more accurately. In the case of the picture, we could go on to attribute the fact that each clock is a monad in itself, which has its own inherent properties. Monads are qualitative, inherently active, a mutually exclusive concept, etc. Monads are innate, where every property we could have is within us (i.e. God's hand in the preprogramming). But also, to go a little further, in a full explanation in conjunction with Leibniz's theory, each clock is essentially a dominant monad of that particular clock, reflecting the universe most accurately. Whereas Malebranche (his God) is constantly fixing a broken machine, Leibniz suggests that that a dominant monad reflects the universe most accurately in the form of a clock who works in perfect tandem with another (each for their own mind you).

If it would be easier to think of it this way, think of Leibniz's pre established harmony compared to Malebranche's harmony as a whole composite of possible configurations of the clock doing what it could do, but what we see is the dominant monad, the perfect tandem which reflects the world most accurately. Gods connection is in the clocks in the form of the innate idea, which in turn =is reflected in the dominant monad

http://i44.tinypic.com/opr79d.jpg


Epicycles within epicycles.And all to defend the view that it is merely an accident that when someone's arm is cut off that he feels pain.
 
VideCorSpoon
 
Reply Fri 9 Apr, 2010 09:39 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;149930 wrote:
Epicycles within epicycles.And all to defend the view that it is merely an accident that when someone's arm is cut off that he feels pain.


Leibniz is less cyclical than many tend to think. Leibniz wouldn't really subscribe to the notion of accidents I would think. Innate ideas which are inherent in the monad (and subsequently the dominant monad) are the best of all possible worlds. The world we experience is the fullest world with no possibilities left unrealized (yet many not actualized considering that they can be contained within the all encompassing monad). An accident is not an accident in Leibniz's view, but merely the best occurrence of an given result... even if that result is being squashed by a acme-sized paino. If we could change things, the accident would be a lot worse.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Fri 9 Apr, 2010 09:48 am
@VideCorSpoon,
VideCorSpoon;149941 wrote:
Leibniz is less cyclical than many tend to think. Leibniz wouldn't really subscribe to the notion of accidents I would think. Innate ideas which are inherent in the monad (and subsequently the dominant monad) are the best of all possible worlds. The world we experience is the fullest world with no possibilities left unrealized (yet many not actualized considering that they can be contained within the all encompassing monad). An accident is not an accident in Leibniz's view, but merely the best occurrence of an given result... even if that result is being squashed by a acme-sized paino. If we could change things, the accident would be a lot worse.


But, according to the PEH, if my arm is cut off, and I feel pain, it is not that I feel pain as a result of my arm being cut off. Isn't that true?
 
VideCorSpoon
 
Reply Fri 9 Apr, 2010 03:21 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;149948 wrote:
But, according to the PEH, if my arm is cut off, and I feel pain, it is not that I feel pain as a result of my arm being cut off. Isn't that true?


Suppose the basic factors of pre-established harmony. Everything is fit together at creation (monads), God being the perfect clockmaker, appetition and perception, source of its own changes, the works. The modus of the 3 "souls" (the animal, rational, and entelechies) are such that one event follows from another inherent to the monad itself (the basis of the "filmstrip analogy." I mentioned this briefly in an earlier post. Essentially, each state of a thing is a result of its previous state. One cell follows from its previous cell. Thus, assuming the fundamental aspects of PSR outlined by Leibniz earlier in his work, the pain in Alice's head (from the hilarious wiki article) is the B of A -->B. The next state comes from the previous one. Here is an illustration to show the "filmstrip" analogy.

http://i44.tinypic.com/r7w4l0.png

In your own example, if you cut off your arm and you feel the pain, you are feeling the next state from the previous one. You are following the filmstrip from A to B. So half of your example is somewhat right and relevant. The rest is somewhat problematic. The pain is the result of the arm cutting off. The rest of what you say may fit into the erroneous assumption that there is something coming from the outside, perhaps in this case that a new chain is beginning (i.e. a new filmstrip).
 
 

 
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