Evidence versus Proof

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Emil
 
Reply Mon 16 Nov, 2009 01:09 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;103882 wrote:
I also agree that we are fallible. I just don't agree we need some fancy term like "epistemically certain" to remind us of such. Unless a new term clarifies, instead of confuses, it is useless. In other words, I see no reason to use "e-certain". I'll stick with my commonsense, without showy, intellectual rapages.


Commonsense can go terribly wrong at times. Especially with modal logic (Wiki, SEP). That's the problem. Try discussing epistemology only using commonsense. You will get into trouble. Especially with the dread modal fallacy.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 16 Nov, 2009 01:09 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;103889 wrote:
Here, did you mean "certain" as in certain (to be sure - ie. I'm certain he will come to the party), or certain (specificity - ie. I picked a certain dress to wear this evening)? I think you meant the latter, but I just wanted to make sure.



I often times don't know that I know something. I often doubt myself, but then find out later that I knew all along. I often times don't know how I feel, or what mental state I'm in. And, even after intense introspection, I still don't think I know any more than I did. Well, not e-certainly, that's for sure.

Basically, I don't think I can trust my sanity enough to claim that I'm e-certain (using it as we've addressed it) about anything. But, I suppose others can...


He means "certain" in the first sense.

I generally believe I know that p when I know that p. But not all the time. Sometimes I knew that p all along, but I did not believe I knew that p. And, of course, sometimes I believe I know that p, and it turns out that I did not know that p, either because p was false, or because my justification for p was insufficient. Or both.

As I pointed out, many philosophers would claim that when I believe I am in pain, I cannot be mistaken. And that, therefore, when in pain, I am e-certain that I am in pain.
 
Emil
 
Reply Mon 16 Nov, 2009 01:10 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;103887 wrote:
I think the point of using "e-certain" is to distinguish between psychological or subjective certainty, and objective certainty. The former refers to one's feeling or conviction that some belief one holds is true. It does not imply truth, since one can be convinced that what one believes is true, and be mistaken. The latter refers not to feeling or conviction of truth, but to the impossibility of mistake. If my belief must be true, then I am e-certain. The question is whether I am e-certain about any proposition I believe is true. Some people, for instance, think that I cannot be mistaken if I believe that I am in pain; or that I exist.


That's right. That is the idea of distinguishing.

---------- Post added 11-16-2009 at 08:11 PM ----------

Zetherin;103893 wrote:
What is ambigious about the contradiction, X exists and X does not exist? I suppose the answer lies in paraconsistent logic?


Nothing. You are confusing matters. That's not the sentence that fast was referring to. This is:
[INDENT][INDENT] "Is it possible to believe that one exists, and one does not exist?"[/INDENT][/INDENT]

---------- Post added 11-16-2009 at 08:12 PM ----------

Zetherin;103889 wrote:
Here, did you mean "certain" as in certain (to be sure - ie. I'm certain he will come to the party), or certain (specificity - ie. I picked a certain dress to wear this evening)? I think you meant the latter, but I just wanted to make sure.


I did mean the latter, though I see the source of confusion. I should have used some other word, say "specific".

Zetherin;103889 wrote:
I often times don't know that I know something. I often doubt myself, but then find out later that I knew all along. I often times don't know how I feel, or what mental state I'm in. And, even after intense introspection, I'm still not e-certain about my feelings.

I don't think I can trust my sanity enough to claim that I'm e-certain (using it as we've addressed it) about anything. But, I suppose others can...


Maybe. Unlikely.

---------- Post added 11-16-2009 at 08:14 PM ----------

kennethamy;103895 wrote:
He means "certain" in the first sense.

I generally believe I know that p when I know that p. But not all the time. Sometimes I knew that p all along, but I did not believe I knew that p. And, of course, sometimes I believe I know that p, and it turns out that I did not know that p, either because p was false, or because my justification for p was insufficient. Or both.

As I pointed out, many philosophers would claim that when I believe I am in pain, I cannot be mistaken. And that, therefore, when in pain, I am e-certain that I am in pain.


This is the sentence that he is talking about:
[INDENT]Some people seem to think that we are indeed e-certain about certain things.

[/INDENT]The "certain" that he is talking about is the second one at the end of the sentence. Not the one qualified with "e-" (epistemic). You seem to think that he was talking about the first "certain".
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Mon 16 Nov, 2009 01:28 pm
@fast,
kennethamy wrote:

As I pointed out, many philosophers would claim that when I believe I am in pain, I cannot be mistaken. And that, therefore, when in pain, I am e-certain that I am in pain.


Well, I think they would be wrong. There are many cases of the phantom limb phenomenon in which I would say that that person was wrong about actually being in pain - at least pain associated with the nervous system.

Emil wrote:

Commonsense can go terribly wrong at times. Especially with modal logic (Wiki, SEP). That's the problem. Try discussing epistemology only using commonsense. You will get into trouble. Especially with the dread modal fallacy.


I never said that one should only discuss matters using commonsense. I don't know why you inferred this from what I wrote.

Quote:

Nothing. You are confusing matters. That's not the sentence that fast was referring to. This is:
[INDENT][INDENT]"Is it possible to believe that one exists, and one does not exist?"
[/INDENT][/INDENT]


I'm sorry, but I still don't understand how I'm confusing matters. How is what you typed different from what I typed? If one believes that one exists and also believes one does not exist, and we meant the latter belief to be the negation of the former belief, I don't see how this wouldn't be a contradiction or how it would be ambiguous.

--

Now, back onto this e-certainty thing:

kennethamy wrote:

If my belief must be true, then I am e-certain.


What does this mean? When must a belief be true?
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 16 Nov, 2009 01:35 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;103902 wrote:
Well, I think they would be wrong. There are many cases of the phantom limb phenomenon in which I would say that that person was wrong about actually being in pain.






What does this mean? When must a belief be true?


The fact that the limb does not exist does not mean that the person is not in pain. In fact, the pain is "referred pain". The pain is (of course) not in the non-existent limb, but the person cannot be mistaken about feeling pain. The pain does not have to be where the cause of the pain is.

An example of a belief having to be true is my belief that I exist, since I could not believe it unless it was true. Of course, that I exist need not be true, but what must be true is that I exist if I believe I exist.
 
Emil
 
Reply Mon 16 Nov, 2009 02:13 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;103902 wrote:
I never said that one should only discuss matters using commonsense. I don't know why you inferred this from what I wrote.


I didn't. I inferred some possible hate against something that goes against commonsense:[INDENT]"I'll stick with my commonsense, without showy, intellectual rapages."[/INDENT]My emphasis. I wanted to point out that commonsense often goes wrong.

Besides what does "rapages" mean? I found no entries on Wiktionary.

Zetherin;103902 wrote:
I'm sorry, but I still don't understand how I'm confusing matters. How is what you typed different from what I typed? If one believes that one exists and also believes one does not exist, and we meant the latter belief to be the negation of the former belief, I don't see how this wouldn't be a contradiction or how it would be ambiguous.


It is very different. There was a comma in my sentence and it was not a grammatical error on my part (this time). It was to signal that the predicate was NOT to be applied to the following part too as you are doing. The predicate is "one believes" (or "to believe" in my original sentence). Notice the formalization of the sentence that I wrote in the post where I wrote the sentence. if you consider that formalization there is no other interpretation of my sentence since I already showed which one is correct. It is not the contradiction one.

For even more clarity. Here is the sentence again and formalization:[INDENT]Sentence. Is it possible to believe that one exists, and one does not exist?
Is it possible (to believe that one exists, and one does not exist)?
[/INDENT]
Zetherin;103902 wrote:
What does this mean? When must a belief be true?


It is a shorthand for saying that what is believed must be true, that is, that what is believed is a necessary truth. Formally:[INDENT](Bx(p)∧□p)⇒Cx(p).
[/INDENT]Where Bx(p) means x believes that p, and Cx(p) means x is e-certain that p. So translating to english:[INDENT](That x believes that p, and that p is necessarily true) logically implies that x is e-certain that p.
[/INDENT](I'm omitting the quantifiers for sake of simplicity.)

---------- Post added 11-16-2009 at 09:17 PM ----------

kennethamy;103904 wrote:
The fact that the limb does not exist does not mean that the person is not in pain. In fact, the pain is "referred pain". The pain is (of course) not in the non-existent limb, but the person cannot be mistaken about feeling pain. The pain does not have to be where the cause of the pain is.

An example of a belief having to be true is my belief that I exist, since I could not believe it unless it was true. Of course, that I exist need not be true, but what must be true is that I exist if I believe I exist.


Oh. I see that I misunderstood you about that one. I thought you used it as a shorthand. You usually do that. You saying this:
[INDENT]□(Bi(Ei)→Ei)
[/INDENT](Same formalizations as earlier, "i" is "I" and "Ex" is x exists..)
In english:
[INDENT]It is necessary that (if I believe that I exist, then I exist).
[/INDENT]Isn't that right?
 
fast
 
Reply Mon 16 Nov, 2009 03:07 pm
@fast,
Some people think that we really don't know what we think we do because we might be mistaken, but that we might be mistaken (we contend) is no good reason to think either that we are mistaken or that we don't in fact know what we think we do.

We are fallible (yes), yet we have knowledge, but some people think those two notions are incompatible. They think that because we are fallible and thus subject to err, we therefore can never truly know much of anything. However, the possibility of error doesn't imply the actuality of error. Kind of like the possibility of a quarter landing on tails doesn't imply that it won't land on heads.



The underlying mistake people make is in holding the belief that knowledge requires certainty-or the impossibility of error. As far as mistakes themselves go, they are anything but lonely creatures; there are usually others lurking nearby. For example, there is often the confusion between the possibility of error and an actual error.

Now, let's turn to an example to bring all this together:

When I leave my cat chained to the top of the kitchen table and walk outside, I do know (and not merely think I know-although I think I know as well, of course) that my cat is on the table even though (get this, even though) it is possible (logically possible) that the cat got loose despite the heavy chains and locks.

Yes, it's possible that I'm mistaken and that the cat is on the floor, but I'm not mistaken, and that's what's important-that I'm not mistaken despite the possibility I could have been. I don't have to be certain that the cat is on the table in order to know the cat is on the table. In other words, I don't have to know to the extent that it's impossible that I could have been mistaken.

So, Emil, there you have it. No multiple notions of certainty from me. Just one. Of course, I agree that the term is ambiguous, but I don't think I need to disambiguate it since context seems to have accomplished that just fine.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Mon 16 Nov, 2009 03:29 pm
@fast,
fast wrote:

Yes, it's possible that I'm mistaken and that the cat is on the floor, but I'm not mistaken, and that's what's important-that I'm not mistaken despite the possibility I could have been. I don't have to be certain that the cat is on the table in order to know the cat is on the table. In other words, I don't have to know to the extent that it's impossible that I could have been mistaken.


Fast, you bring up that great distinction, and kennethamy has pointed it out earlier. I understand, and agree, with all you have written.

How does e-certainty fit into all this, from your perspective, though? That's what I'm not quite grasping.

--

Emil wrote:

I didn't. I inferred some possible hate against something that goes against commonsense:
[INDENT]"I'll stick with my commonsense, without showy, intellectual rapages."
[/INDENT]


Sorry for being unclear. There was no hate implied against those things which go against commonsense. I was merely noting that those things I do regard as commonsense, I don't see the need to use a technical term for, unless I'm given a good enough reason to do so (for instance, if it help clarifies an issue).

I made rapage up. It simply refers to when an intellectual rapes language, creating technical terms for no good reason, often times just to sound intelligent or flaunt aptitude for a particular subject. Those technical terms created in this fashion are called rapages. There's a verb "rapaging", too, but I don't like it, so I don't think I'm going to condone its usage.

As for the rest of your post: Since I am not versed in formal logic, it's going to take me more time to respond. The links you keep handing me can best be understood by having some grasp on the subject matter, and I don't. So, I can read and interpret the information you're providing me, but I just don't have the... context, to conceptualize everything, ya know? I don't really understand the theory behind it. Bottom line: Don't think I'm ignoring you; it's just a lot to take it in for a noob logician. I'm trying, though.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 16 Nov, 2009 03:57 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;103930 wrote:
Fast, you bring up that great distinction, and kennethamy has pointed it out earlier. I understand, and agree, with all you have written.

How does e-certainty fit into all this, from your perspective, though? That's what I'm not quite grasping.

--



Sorry for being unclear. There was no hate implied against those things which go against commonsense. I was merely noting that those things I do regard as commonsense, I don't see the need to use a technical term for, unless I'm given a good enough reason to do so (for instance, if it help clarifies an issue).

I made rapage up. It simply refers to when an intellectual rapes language, creating technical terms for no good reason, often times just to sound intelligent or flaunt aptitude for a particular subject. Those technical terms created in this fashion are called rapages. There's a verb "rapaging", too, but I don't like it, so I don't think I'm going to condone its usage.



Do you, perhaps mean, "rampage" and "rampaging"?


rampage definition pāj′; for v., also ram pāj)
intransitive verb rampagedrampagingramp

noun
an outbreak of violent, raging behavior chiefly in on the (or a) rampage on the (or a) rampage
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Mon 16 Nov, 2009 04:00 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;103931 wrote:
Do you, perhaps mean, "rampage" and "rampaging"?


rampage definition pāj′; for v., also ram pāj)
intransitive verb rampagedrampagingramp

noun
an outbreak of violent, raging behavior chiefly in on the (or a) rampage on the (or a) rampage


Nope, I meant "rapage", as in, the word I just stated I made up.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 16 Nov, 2009 04:14 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;103932 wrote:
Nope, I meant "rapage", as in, the word I just stated I made up.


But then, aren't you, yourself, "rapaging" by using the non-word, "rapage"?
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Mon 16 Nov, 2009 04:17 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;103933 wrote:
But then, aren't you, yourself, "rapaging" by using the non-word, "rapage"?


Yes, that was the irony. I'm glad someone discovered it. :a-ok:

As we speak I'm reading an article on e-certainty, so hopefully this will help me understand why it (e-certainty) is worth using.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 16 Nov, 2009 05:01 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;103934 wrote:
Yes, that was the irony. I'm glad someone discovered it. :a-ok:

As we speak I'm reading an article on e-certainty, so hopefully this will help me understand why it (e-certainty) is worth using.


What article is that? There is certainly a difference between being certain and feeling certain, if that is what you mean.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Mon 16 Nov, 2009 08:08 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;103944 wrote:
What article is that? There is certainly a difference between being certain and feeling certain, if that is what you mean.


Certainty and Irrevisability

Does this guy know what he's talking about (admittedly, I don't know if this guy is a reliable source), or am I just confusing myself more?
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Tue 17 Nov, 2009 08:33 am
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;103965 wrote:
Certainty and Irrevisability

Does this guy know what he's talking about (admittedly, I don't know if this guy is a reliable source), or am I just confusing myself more?



I don't recognize his name, but I have perused it (quickly) and it seems sensible enough. He certainly begins by making the crucial distinction. The latter part seems to be about the notion of certainty and faith, but that's all right. Anyway, I'll take a closer look at it, and if I have anything intelligent to say, I'll let you know. Thank you for the link.
 
fast
 
Reply Tue 17 Nov, 2009 09:06 am
@kennethamy,
[QUOTE=kennethamy;103944]What article is that? There is certainly a difference between being certain and feeling certain, if that is what you mean.[/QUOTE]In this context, being certain comes across to me as ambiguous. John may be certain [being certain], but that is different than whether some proposition (p) is certainly true [being certain]. It sounds to me that John being certain is equivalent to John feeling certain since in both cases, it's John that is certain--as opposed to something that is not John (like p).

In other words, John is certain that p is true (in this case, John is certain ... feeling certain), and that is different than whether or not p is certainly true (where in this case, p is certain--or certainly true).

So yes, there is certainly a difference; that's one thing we can always count on.
 
Emil
 
Reply Tue 17 Nov, 2009 09:36 am
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;103930 wrote:
Sorry for being unclear. There was no hate implied against those things which go against commonsense. I was merely noting that those things I do regard as commonsense, I don't see the need to use a technical term for, unless I'm given a good enough reason to do so (for instance, if it help clarifies an issue).

I made rapage up. It simply refers to when an intellectual rapes language, creating technical terms for no good reason, often times just to sound intelligent or flaunt aptitude for a particular subject. Those technical terms created in this fashion are called rapages. There's a verb "rapaging", too, but I don't like it, so I don't think I'm going to condone its usage.


Ok.

I love when people use the phrase "Stop raping language!". It's a bloody inconsistent performative. That phrase is a case of misusing language. You did not use that but you made me think of it. Smile

Zetherin;103930 wrote:
As for the rest of your post: Since I am not versed in formal logic, it's going to take me more time to respond. The links you keep handing me can best be understood by having some grasp on the subject matter, and I don't. So, I can read and interpret the information you're providing me, but I just don't have the... context, to conceptualize everything, ya know? I don't really understand the theory behind it. Bottom line: Don't think I'm ignoring you; it's just a lot to take it in for a noob logician. I'm trying, though.


Well. I did tell you to learn logic first, and then discuss things. You're doing it backwards. Since I used predicate logic, modal logic and doxastic logic it is not surprising that you did not understand the formalizations. But as you can see the formalizations are necessary for clarity since you people (:p) keep interpreting my words another way that I meant them to be interpret. :p

Don't worry about it.

---------- Post added 11-17-2009 at 04:46 PM ----------

Zetherin;103965 wrote:
Certainty and Irrevisability

Does this guy know what he's talking about (admittedly, I don't know if this guy is a reliable source), or am I just confusing myself more?


I did not agree with everything that he said, but I read up to (iii) and it was ok. He wrote about the same thing about the psychological, epistemic certainty distinction that I did. Though he did not make it entirely clear that psychological certainty is a continuum and epistemic certainty is not. Neither did he clarity the e-certainty with symbols.

It seems that that essay does not help the discussion in this thread much since the issue is about the multiple different meanings of e-certainty.

---

Side note. I updated my article on certainty to take into account some of the things mentioned in this thread.

That and I divided my blog into an english blog and a danish one. And moved it to emilkirkegaard.dk. This should make it appear more serious. This blogging business is serious business. :b
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Tue 17 Nov, 2009 09:57 am
@fast,
fast;104056 wrote:
In this context, being certain comes across to me as ambiguous. John may be certain [being certain], but that is different than whether some proposition (p) is certainly true [being certain]. It sounds to me that John being certain is equivalent to John feeling certain since in both cases, it's John that is certain--as opposed to something that is not John (like p).

In other words, John is certain that p is true (in this case, John is certain ... feeling certain), and that is different than whether or not p is certainly true (where in this case, p is certain--or certainly true).

So yes, there is certainly a difference; that's one thing we can always count on.


I think it is people who are either certain or not certain. (Infallible or fallible). Propositions can be certain only (it seems to me) in the sense of being necessary. So, it seems to me confusing to say a proposition is certain, rather than just, necessary. For John to be certain that p, is for it to be impossible that John is mistaken that p. And for John to feel certain that p, is for John to feel (believe) that he is not mistaken about p. (To be very confident that p is true).
 
Emil
 
Reply Tue 17 Nov, 2009 10:22 am
@fast,
fast;104056 wrote:
In this context, being certain comes across to me as ambiguous. John may be certain [being certain], but that is different than whether some proposition (p) is certainly true [being certain]. It sounds to me that John being certain is equivalent to John feeling certain since in both cases, it's John that is certain--as opposed to something that is not John (like p).

In other words, John is certain that p is true (in this case, John is certain ... feeling certain), and that is different than whether or not p is certainly true (where in this case, p is certain--or certainly true).

So yes, there is certainly a difference; that's one thing we can always count on.


I think it's close to being a category error to say that a proposition is certain. The only thing I can imagine that to mean is that the proposition is necessarily true.
 
fast
 
Reply Tue 17 Nov, 2009 11:24 am
@kennethamy,
This post is just to note another difference between being infallibly certain and confidently certain.

1. Certain (infallible): I am certain means I am infallible.
2. Certain (confident): I am certain means I am confident.
3. Certain (particular): another discussion

Observation 1: In regards to number 1 above, Amy is either certain or she isn't. In other words, she's either infallible or she isn't. There's no in between--no degrees of certainty; hence, no degrees of fallibility.

Observation 2: In regards to number 2 above, Bob is confident, but not as confident as Amy, yet more confident than Charles. In other words, there are varying degrees of confidence; hence, there are varying degrees of certainty.

Conclusion:
1. Certain (infallible): no varying degrees of certainty or fallibility.
2. Certain (confidence): varying degrees of certainty and confidence.
 
 

 
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