Metaphysical Knowledge

  1. Philosophy Forum
  2. » Metaphysics
  3. » Metaphysical Knowledge

Get Email Updates Email this Topic Print this Page

hue-man
 
Reply Wed 3 Mar, 2010 08:30 pm
What is the epistemological status of the field of metaphysics if indeed metaphysical questions or claims are not subject to empirical testing or logical argumentation?
 
ughaibu
 
Reply Wed 3 Mar, 2010 09:00 pm
@hue-man,
hue-man;135716 wrote:
What is the epistemological status of the field of metaphysics if indeed metaphysical questions or claims are not subject to empirical testing or logical argumentation?
Where did you get the idea that "metaphysical questions or claims are not subject to [. . . . ] logical argumentation"?
 
jack phil
 
Reply Wed 3 Mar, 2010 09:08 pm
@hue-man,
What can be said at all can be said clearly; and whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.

The disappearance of magic is a sort of magic itself.

The difficulty of philosophy is in shewing the fly out of the fly bottle.

....

You cannot write anything about yourself that is more truthful than you yourself are. That is the difference between writing about yourself and writing about external objects. You write about yourself from your own height. You don't stand on stilts or a ladder but on your bare feet.
L.W. C&V

....

I hope that was all clear, if a bit repetitious. The point is, we can be clear even if we cannot argue. It isn't so much that we mustn't utter nonsense, but that we be aware of it. Why not think out loud or maybe on paper? One must then come in contact with grammar.

....

I wanted to speak an analogous question to the one you raised but am having difficulty in creating one. Something like: a religion without a church, or a church without followers... It is hard to nail down. A school without textbooks, maybe?

Regards,
John
 
jeeprs
 
Reply Wed 3 Mar, 2010 09:20 pm
@hue-man,
hue-man;135716 wrote:
What is the epistemological status of the field of metaphysics if indeed metaphysical questions or claims are not subject to empirical testing or logical argumentation?


What makes you say that metaphysical questions are not subject to logical argumentation? Do you have any examples? Otherwise, you seem to be arguing from a conclusion rather than a premise.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Wed 3 Mar, 2010 09:26 pm
@hue-man,
hue-man;135716 wrote:
What is the epistemological status of the field of metaphysics if indeed metaphysical questions or claims are not subject to empirical testing or logical argumentation?


In my view, metaphysics provides the foundation of logic and empiricism. Metaphysics is ground-level science of science, as any ontology will presumably entail a theory of knowledge.

---------- Post added 03-03-2010 at 10:28 PM ----------

jack;135726 wrote:
What can be said at all can be said clearly; and whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.

He strikes me as a poet here. Clarity is relative, one might argue, but is equivalent to beauty. Witt implies a preference of silence to the failing of this ideal beauty. But that's an indulgent interpretation....

---------- Post added 03-03-2010 at 10:30 PM ----------

jack;135726 wrote:

The difficulty of philosophy is in shewing the fly out of the fly bottle.

Whether he meant it to or not, this statement hints at transcendental philosophy. The fly must become aware of the glass that impedes his flight....

---------- Post added 03-03-2010 at 10:31 PM ----------

jack;135726 wrote:

The disappearance of magic is a sort of magic itself.

And perhaps a sort of evolution of magic, of contingent myth toward synthetic universal science, driven by the same motive toward a cleaner manifestation...
 
jack phil
 
Reply Wed 3 Mar, 2010 11:51 pm
@hue-man,
hue-man;135716 wrote:
What is the epistemological status of the field of metaphysics if indeed metaphysical questions or claims are not subject to empirical testing or logical argumentation?


Is it is dead and decomposed?

"If Christianity is the truth then all the philosophy written on it is false."
W.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Wed 3 Mar, 2010 11:55 pm
@jack phil,
jack;135783 wrote:
Is it is dead and decomposed?

I guess we humans don't need an explicit ground for our epistemology, but it does seem that humans are always somewhat metaphysical. Even a suspicion of metaphysics could be described as an ontology. Perhaps a negative or dynamic ontology, that denies the possibility of representing "truth"?
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2010 01:12 am
@hue-man,
hue-man;135716 wrote:
What is the epistemological status of the field of metaphysics if indeed metaphysical questions or claims are not subject to empirical testing or logical argumentation?


It ain't good. Why?
 
hue-man
 
Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2010 10:29 am
@kennethamy,
Just to be clear I am not making an argument here. I'm simply asking if metaphysical knowledge is possible. Many philosophers, from Hume to Wittgenstein, have had trouble with the epistemological status of metaphysics. I'm simply curious to know what you guys think about the epistemological status of this field.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2010 10:32 am
@hue-man,
hue-man;135962 wrote:
Just to be clear I am not making an argument here. I'm simply asking if metaphysical knowledge is possible. Many philosophers, from Hume to Wittgenstein, have had trouble with the epistemological status of metaphysics. I'm simply curious to know what you guys think about the epistemological status of this field.



I know that unless something is possible, it cannot be actual. And, if that is metaphysical knowledge, I have it
 
jeeprs
 
Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2010 03:47 pm
@hue-man,
Well in that case, I definitely think there is, but I think the term needs to be carefully understood and defined. It really is only meaningful in the context within which it was coined, namely, traditional Western philosophy, up until the period which began when Hume 'consigned it to the flames'. Now of course, by definition, the modern philosophical outlook is inclined to believe that it has been superseded or made obsolete, but I don't necessarily agree. But it takes an act of 'sympathetic imagination' to really appreciate the metaphysical depths, and it is difficult, or even impossible, to immerse oneself in the perspective from the viewpoint of the skeptical modern.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2010 03:58 pm
@jeeprs,
jeeprs;136091 wrote:
Well in that case, I definitely think there is, but I think the term needs to be carefully understood and defined. It really is only meaningful in the context within which it was coined, namely, traditional Western philosophy, up until the period which began when Hume 'consigned it to the flames'. Now of course, by definition, the modern philosophical outlook is inclined to believe that it has been superseded or made obsolete, but I don't necessarily agree. But it takes an act of 'sympathetic imagination' to really appreciate the metaphysical depths, and it is difficult, or even impossible, to immerse oneself in the perspective from the viewpoint of the skeptical modern.


All I require is one case of metaphysical knowledge to show there is such a thing. I think that even the Chinese think that if something is actual, then it must be possible. Or the Tunisians. If someone were to ask either of them whether it was possible that there were such animals as horses, I could see them as replying, "What do you mean possible that there are horses? There are horses" How could there be horses unless horses are possible?"
 
jeeprs
 
Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2010 04:03 pm
@hue-man,
So, what if there were a mathematical proof which you were incapable of demonstrating due to your limited mathematical ability. Kurt Godel, however, assures you that the proof is sound. Do you believe him or not, and on what do you base your decision?
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2010 04:10 pm
@jeeprs,
jeeprs;136098 wrote:
So, what if there were a mathematical proof which you were incapable of demonstrating due to your limited mathematical ability. Kurt Godel, however, assures you that the proof is sound. Do you believe him or not, and on what do you base your decision?


I would base my decision on the fact that Godel was an eminent mathematician. Why should I not believe him?

May I ask you, where did this question come from? I mean, what does it have to do with the conversation we are having? I especially point you to the first word of your post, "so".
 
jeeprs
 
Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2010 04:13 pm
@hue-man,
Because I would propose that the nature of metaphysical knowledge, in the Western philosophical tradition, is far more analogous to mathematical knowledge, than to knowledge of corporeal beings, such as horses.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2010 04:20 pm
@jeeprs,
jeeprs;136104 wrote:
Because I would propose that the nature of metaphysical knowledge, in the Western philosophical tradition, is far more analogous to mathematical knowledge, than to knowledge of corporeal beings, such as horses.


I see (actually I don't). What I said has nothing to do with horses or knowledge about them. For example I could have used numbers. "Are numbers possible? Of course, since they are actual".

But why did you ask me that question about Godel? You lost me on that.
 
jeeprs
 
Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2010 04:26 pm
@hue-man,
Well, because you said:
kennethamy;136096 wrote:
All I require is one case of metaphysical knowledge to show there is such a thing.

What kind of 'thing' do you mean? You gave the example of 'horses'. And I responded that the objects of metaphysical knowledge are much more like numbers, than they are like 'corporeal beings', such as horses.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2010 04:30 pm
@jeeprs,
jeeprs;136110 wrote:
Well, because you said:

What kind of 'thing' do you mean? You gave the example of 'horses'. And I responded that the objects of metaphysical knowledge are much more like numbers, than they are like 'corporeal beings', such as horses.


Anything. Numbers, for instance. As I just showed. And you thought that math was fine. For any X, if X is actual, then X is possible, is a necessary truth. Even in East Timor. (Is East Timor possible? Hell, yes. It is actual).
 
jeeprs
 
Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2010 04:54 pm
@hue-man,
OK then, the example I gave of Kurt Godel was to show that, in this case, you would be inclined to believe a mathematical proof attested by Godel, because of his reputation, even though you couldn't understand (or 'see') the proof.

In the case of a metaphysical claim, would you consider it possible that an expert might possess the discriminative ability to see a metaphysical proof that is beyond our ability to understand?
 
prothero
 
Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2010 07:26 pm
@hue-man,
Is an assertion which is "true" but which can not be demonstrated or proven "knowledge".
Did those who claimed "the earth is round" in the age when everyone believed it was flat have knowledge?

Metaphysics is almost by definition rational specualtion but some of those speculations may be shown to be "true" in the future. A lot of rational speculation occurs in science as well. When does a "true belief" become knowledge? I suppose someone will respond "true belief" only becomes knowledge after it is shown to be "justified belief" or some such assertion?
 
 

 
  1. Philosophy Forum
  2. » Metaphysics
  3. » Metaphysical Knowledge
Copyright © 2020 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.02 seconds on 04/01/2020 at 11:39:46