Epistemology

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kennethamy
 
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 08:18 am
@Emil,
Emil;96230 wrote:
I do not think statements/sentences are true or false, or are synthetic or a priori or analytic etc. It is propositions that are that. Some people think that sentences/statements are the bearers of truth/falsity, but I don't. That gets one into all kinds of trouble and confusion.

Given that it is propositions that are bearers of truth/falsity, then both the propositions you talk about are contingent, unless you think that the universe itself is a thing and thus "something exists" is true. But you'd need to clarify what "universe", "world", "thing" means in that case. Everything depends on definitions. Is it possible that there is no universe? Maybe. That depends on definitions.

Surely no statement exists in an empty universe, but is it true that no statement could be stated in such a universe? I don't think so. But in my view even though no statement has ever been made in such a universe, some things are still true or false. Propositions exist even in empty universes. (I think universes have to do with contingent facts/objects, and propositions are non-contingent.



I don't know what Kant's view was but I think all pure mathematical propositions are analytic.


If there are propositions in an empty universe, then how is that universe empty? Particularly if, as I think, there can be no empty universes since there is no principle of individuation, or criterion of identity for such a universe. As Quine said, "no entity without identity".

but I think all pure mathematical propositions are analytic.

Maybe, but I would not like to have to argue that.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 08:27 am
@Yogi DMT,
"Empty universe" seems oxymoronish.

If it's empty, how can it be a universe? Empty universes don't exist, because, well, they're empty. Something needs to exist for a universe to exist.

Are we just trying to play with words here? Let's get out of the sandbox.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 08:40 am
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;96237 wrote:
"Empty universe" seems oxymoronish.

If it's empty, how can it be a universe? Empty universes don't exist, because, well, they're empty. Something needs to exist for a universe to exist.

Are we just trying to play with words here? Let's get out of the sandbox.



I agree. But, they seem to be thinking of the universe as a kind of container, but with nothing inside. That may be, "playing with words" as you put it, but it would be interesting to see how that works, and what words are being played with. I don't think it is a matter of "playing with words". I think it is a matter of having a misconception (or a kind of picture) of a universe as a container with either something in it, or nothing in it. It is very much as Newton had an empty container view of space and time. If a universe is defined in terms of its laws of nature, then there can be no empty universe. And, as I pointed out, on a logical level, suppose there were two (or three) empty universes. How could be tell whether there were one, two, or three, and how could we tell whether one universe was the same as a different universe? What would be the difference between there being one or two empty universes (except in words)?
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 09:03 am
@Yogi DMT,
kennethamy wrote:

I think it is a matter of having a misconception (or a kind of picture) of a universe as a container with either something in it, or nothing in it.


It's not a container. "Universe" is simply a term we use to conceptually understand all the space that we currently think exists. And it still expands to this day: Metric expansion of space - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

There's nothing to expand into, except itself. There is no container.

I guess if there were a universe that only had space, but no matter, we could call that an empty universe. Just like we could call a sock drawer with no socks in it, empty. Still, I don't really understand the point, and it's really a rough analogy since the universe isn't a container like a sock drawer. I think the concept just confuses.

Quote:

If a universe is defined in terms of its laws of nature, then there can be no empty universe. How could be tell whether there were one, two, or three, and how could we tell whether one universe was the same as a different universe? What would be the difference between there being one or two empty universes (except in words)?


I guess you're getting into some sort of Multiverse theory. I don't know exactly how they differentiate or conceptualize other universes (namely how one universe doesn't "blend" into the other). Sorry, can't help you.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 09:18 am
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;96248 wrote:
It's not a container. "Universe" is simply a term we use to conceptually understand all the space that we currently think exists. And it still expands to this day: Metric expansion of space - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

There's nothing to expand into, except itself. There is no container.

I guess if there were a universe that only had space, but no matter, we could call that an empty universe. Just like we could call a sock drawer with no socks in it, empty. Still, I don't really understand the point, and it's really a rough analogy since the universe isn't a container like a sock drawer. I think the concept just confuses.

I guess you're getting into some sort of Multiverse theory. I don't know exactly how they differentiate or conceptualize other universes (namely how one universe doesn't "blend" into the other). Sorry, can't help you.


I did mention, I think, that the container picture was a misconception, but that I think that is the misconception that those who think there are empty universes have. When I call it a "misconception" I am not endorsing it. On the contrary.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 09:31 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;96251 wrote:
I did mention, I think, that the container picture was a misconception, but that I think that is the misconception that those who think there are empty universes have. When I call it a "misconception" I am not endorsing it. On the contrary.


Sorry, didn't mean to make it appear you were endorsing it. Perhaps I should have just explained why I believe it's a misconception without quoting that first part.

Either way, when you type "empty universe" what are you conceptualizing? Or were your prior questions just to poke fun at the misconception?
 
Emil
 
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 03:00 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;96233 wrote:
If there are propositions in an empty universe, then how is that universe empty? Particularly if, as I think, there can be no empty universes since there is no principle of individuation, or criterion of identity for such a universe. As Quine said, "no entity without identity".


As I said it depends heavily on definitions. I see the universe as (sort sort of) totality of contingent things. Propositions are non-contingent things. They do not exist 'in' universes (because they are not spatio-temporal). They exist 'outside' universes (but in worlds). At least that's how I see it. I have not spent much time thinking about this.

kennethamy;96233 wrote:
Maybe, but I would not like to have to argue that.


Me neither. :p

---------- Post added 10-09-2009 at 11:02 PM ----------

Zetherin;96237 wrote:
"Empty universe" seems oxymoronish.

If it's empty, how can it be a universe? Empty universes don't exist, because, well, they're empty. Something needs to exist for a universe to exist.

Are we just trying to play with words here? Let's get out of the sandbox.


That depends what "empty universe" means. If the universe 'contains' only space-time but no things besides that, it seems to me that it can rightfully be called empty.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 03:04 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;96254 wrote:
Sorry, didn't mean to make it appear you were endorsing it. Perhaps I should have just explained why I believe it's a misconception without quoting that first part.

Either way, when you type "empty universe" what are you conceptualizing? Or were your prior questions just to poke fun at the misconception?



Well, as I said, I don't think there can be an empty universe, since it would be impossible to distinguish one from another, and impossible to count them. And unless something is distinguishable, and countable, it is not conceptualizable. So, I cannot be conceptualizing anything that is an empty universe.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 03:35 pm
@Yogi DMT,
Emil wrote:
That depends what "empty universe" means.


Absolutely, it does.

Quote:
If the universe 'contains' only space-time but no things besides that, it seems to me that it can rightfully be called empty.


Yes, I noted that later. However, I think that's still a misnomer. Because, there's nothing with which to be empty. There is no container. So, what exactly is empty? Nothing, because there would be nothing in an empty universe. Empty universe is a confused notion. Unless, of course, you conceptualize the universe is a container. In that case, we could rightfully call the universe empty, just as we could rightfully call a water jug empty. But that's not how the universe is, from the information we currently know, so why go down that path? I can conceptualize that the sun is made of red marbles, too, but why would I?

kennethamy wrote:
Well, as I said, I don't think there can be an empty universe, since it would be impossible to distinguish one from another, and impossible to count them. And unless something is distinguishable, and countable, it is not conceptualizable. So, I cannot be conceptualizing anything that is an empty universe.


You could conceptualize the universe as an empty water jug. Isn't this analogous to the idea "empty universe" these people were using? In this case, you don't have to distinguish or count water jugs to conceptualize an empty water jug, do you? But, again, as we both noted, it's silly to do this.
 
Emil
 
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 04:15 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;96371 wrote:
Absolutely, it does.
Yes, I noted that later. However, I think that's still a misnomer. Because, there's nothing with which to be empty. There is no container. So, what exactly is empty? Nothing, because there would be nothing in an empty universe. Empty universe is a confused notion. Unless, of course, you conceptualize the universe is a container. In that case, we could rightfully call the universe empty, just as we could rightfully call a water jug empty. But that's not how the universe is, from the information we currently know, so why go down that path? I can conceptualize that the sun is made of red marbles, too, but why would I?


Why do you think that is not the the universe is? AFAIK, no one knows how the boundaries look/work, if there are any boundaries of the universe.

How did we define "universe" again? Suppose I define it, in this context (stipulative definition) as the container of all contingent things. Anything wrong with that? I don't see any problems with it.

This has nothing to do with epistemology.
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 05:00 pm
@Yogi DMT,
Emil wrote:
This has nothing to do with epistemology.


It doesn't, you're right. I'm derailing the thread.

If you would like to speak to me in further detail concerning the matter, let's take it to another thread.
 
Emil
 
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 08:50 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin;96392 wrote:
It doesn't, you're right. I'm derailing the thread.

If you would like to speak to me in further detail concerning the matter, let's take it to another thread.


Another thread.

Wink
 
 

 
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