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# Need help with Correspondence Theory

Fri 4 Sep, 2009 07:35 am
Truth is a correspondence between a statement and what is.

No, a correspondence between a statement and what is, is a point of view.

The fact that there are other distinct points of view suggests that truth is something else.

For instance, when a leaf becomes detached from the tree, it falls to the ground.

Not if you're on the leaf... then the earth comes toward the leaf.

The idea that the leaf doesn't change trajectory... it's just that the space around it is curved near the earth. Isn't that Einstein's idea of relativity?
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kennethamy

1
Fri 4 Sep, 2009 07:43 am
@Arjuna,
Arjuna;88015 wrote:
Truth is a correspondence between a statement and what is.

No, a correspondence between a statement and what is, is a point of view.

The fact that there are other distinct points of view suggests that truth is something else.

For instance, when a leaf becomes detached from the tree, it falls to the ground.

Not if you're on the leaf... then the earth comes toward the leaf.

The idea that the leaf doesn't change trajectory... it's just that the space around it is curved near the earth. Isn't that Einstein's idea of relativity?

No. It is correspondence between a sentence and a fact or a state of affairs. What makes you think it is correspondence with a "point of view". The points of view may be in correspondence with the fact, or not, but that is a different matter.As for the leaf, Einstein's theory tells us that those two different descriptions express the very same fact. It is like the difference between Mary is taller than John, and John is shorter than Mary. Different sentences (points of view?) but the very same fact, nevertheless.
jgweed

1
Fri 4 Sep, 2009 08:32 am
@Arjuna,
Arjuna;88015 wrote:
Truth is a correspondence between a statement and what is.

No, a correspondence between a statement and what is, is a point of view.

The fact that there are other distinct points of view suggests that truth is something else.

A true statement is one that can be verified by Others. I say Peter is taller than Paul. You can ask Peter and Paul to stand beside each other and see if he is taller (what is the case).

What IS a point of view (perspective) is that a true statement must correspond to fact (what is the case).

The fact that there are differing perspectives (rules and definitions) about Truth might only indicate that we want to use Truth to cover a wide variety of examples, or that there are different KINDS of truth. So we have to ask ourselves, what do we really mean in each example when we say "X is true."
Arjuna

1
Fri 4 Sep, 2009 08:50 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;88018 wrote:
No. It is correspondence between a sentence and a fact or a state of affairs. What makes you think it is correspondence with a "point of view". .

No, I said the correspondence is point of view. In order to have a point of view you have to have the point, the viewer and the thing viewed.

kennethamy;88018 wrote:

The points of view may be in correspondence with the fact, or not, but that is a different matter.As for the leaf, Einstein's theory tells us that those two different descriptions express the very same fact. It is like the difference between Mary is taller than John, and John is shorter than Mary. Different sentences (points of view?) but the very same fact, nevertheless.

I think you just described my own idea of truth.

The leaf falls to the earth.
The earth comes toward the leaf.
Neither one moves, the space between them collapses.

Three distinct statements at variance with one another: one fact.

It appears to me that correspondence between a sentence and what is, is a partial truth. If the correspondence theory just ignores the 'partial' aspect of it, that's ok with me. Is that the situation? I'm asking.

Mary is taller than John and John is shorter than Mary. These statements aren't at variance with each other. Give me a while and I can tell give you an alternate point of view on Mary's tallness.
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kennethamy

1
Fri 4 Sep, 2009 08:53 am
@jgweed,
jgweed;88021 wrote:
A true statement is one that can be verified by Others. I say Peter is taller than Paul. You can ask Peter and Paul to stand beside each other and see if he is taller (what is the case).

What IS a point of view (perspective) is that a true statement must correspond to fact (what is the case).

The fact that there are differing perspectives (rules and definitions) about Truth might only indicate that we want to use Truth to cover a wide variety of examples, or that there are different KINDS of truth. So we have to ask ourselves, what do we really mean in each example when we say "X is true."

There are lots of true statements that cannot be verified at all. For instance the statement that there is life on other planets, and the statement that there is no life on other planets. One of those is true, but neither can be verified by anyone.

I guess it is a point of view that a true statement must correspond to a fact. And it is a true point of view since it corresponds to a fact.

There may be different views about what truth is, but that does not mean that there isn't a correct view. I think it is that truth is correspondence.

Don't you think that Peter is taller than Paul, and that Paul is shorter than Peter, correspond to the same fact if both are true? Why not? (Of course, they may each express a different point of view. But that makes no difference. If one is true, than so is the other: And is one is false, then so is the other. In other words, they are equivalent statements).
Arjuna

1
Fri 4 Sep, 2009 09:31 am
@kennethamy,
jgweed;88021 wrote:
The fact that there are differing perspectives (rules and definitions) about Truth might only indicate that we want to use Truth to cover a wide variety of examples, or that there are different KINDS of truth. So we have to ask ourselves, what do we really mean in each example when we say "X is true."

Is there a name given to this way of thinking?

kennethamy;88027 wrote:
I guess it is a point of view that a true statement must correspond to a fact. And it is a true point of view since it corresponds to a fact.

All points of view can be said to give rise to truth.

kennethamy;88027 wrote:

Don't you think that Peter is taller than Paul, and that Paul is shorter than Peter, correspond to the same fact if both are true? Why not? (Of course, they may each express a different point of view. But that makes no difference. If one is true, than so is the other: And is one is false, then so is the other. In other words, they are equivalent statements).

They are equivalent statements: they're from the same point of view.
If our point of view is directly above them, then their heights are the lengths of their heads starting from the bottom of our point of view.

We don't have to actually move to contemplate different points of view. We move around in our minds. It's possible to become 'stuck' in a certain point of view, so I become blind to alternate points.
kennethamy

1
Fri 4 Sep, 2009 09:54 am
@Arjuna,
Arjuna;88045 wrote:
Is there a name given to this way of thinking?

All points of view can be said to give rise to truth.

They are equivalent statements: they're from the same point of view.
If our point of view is directly above them, then their heights are the lengths of their heads starting from the bottom of our point of view.

We don't have to actually move to contemplate different points of view. We move around in our minds. It's possible to become 'stuck' in a certain point of view, so I become blind to alternate points.

Well, of course, both statements must use words in the same way. Otherwise, there is no agreement or disagreement. That doesn't have anything to do with points of view. If someone who wanted to take the point of view of Susan, he might say, Susan is taller than John. But someone who did not want to take the point of view, might just say, John is shorter than Susan. But that has nothing to do with the fact that both statements are logically equivalent, and they both must be true or false together. And, what it will take to verify the one, will also verify the other. That's logic, not psychology. Point of view is about psychology. One is subjective, the other is objective.
Arjuna

1
Fri 4 Sep, 2009 11:07 am
@kennethamy,
Both statements are logically equivalent. They're not from different points of view. If we measure them both and compare our findings: we come up with an answer about who's taller and who's shorter. Through all of this, there is one point of view from which height is defined as the distance from foot to head.

That's the commonly held point of view about a person's height. The weight of that common view binds us to it and blocks out other points of view: for instance, as I mentioned, the height of their heads looking from the top. Who define's a person's height that way? Nobody. That's the problem with this analogy. We have to imagine unused points of view.

So a better place to see the situation might be with leftism vs rightism in the political scene. The leftist point of view is that the health of the state should be a higher priority than the health of a single individual, because if the state is sick, all individuals suffer.

The rightist viewpoint is that if you restrict the freedom of the individual to pursue his/her dreams, you're constricting the life blood of the society. The state's only purpose is to facilitate this flow of energy by protecting the rights of the individual... especially property rights.

Two directly opposing points of view. Both true. But you can only see that they're both true if you move from one to the other. Some people aren't going to move. From their point of view, what I just said is idiotic. Some people naturally ramble from one point of view to the next. From their point of view, there must be some purpose to being stuck.... but apparently their job isn't to fulfill that purpose. That's why they wander.
jgweed

1
Fri 4 Sep, 2009 12:27 pm
@Arjuna,
Arjuna;88045 wrote:
Is there a name given to this way of thinking?

This represents the view of ordinary language philosophy, some Existentialists, some lebensphilosophie philosophers, and some modern thinkers interested in hermeneutics. But one could also say that this kind of approach was taken by Sokrates when he would examine definitions of, for example, justice.

When we talk about Truth (as one example) we are often mislead by looking only a one set of examples- - - and these are often physical ("taller than")--- and then applying what seems to work for this kind of example, to all examples. Or: we fail to look at all the various examples first, and see the differences as well as any similarities. This is an application of Wittgenstein's doctrine of "family resemblances."
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kennethamy

1
Fri 4 Sep, 2009 02:18 pm
@Arjuna,
Arjuna;88057 wrote:
Both statements are logically equivalent. They're not from different points of view. If we measure them both and compare our findings: we come up with an answer about who's taller and who's shorter. Through all of this, there is one point of view from which height is defined as the distance from foot to head.

That's the commonly held point of view about a person's height.

What is a different view about a person's height?
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Reconstructo

1
Fri 27 Nov, 2009 06:51 pm
@Arjuna,
Facts themselves are made of sentences. A fact is a description (of other descriptions) with the weight of consensus behind it. Nothing more.

This is not to deny that there is a world outside of language, but how can we explain the correspondence of language and the "world?"

We live this collision, and certain descriptions are useful for this collision. So we keep them around.
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kennethamy

1
Fri 27 Nov, 2009 07:42 pm
@Arjuna,
Arjuna;88015 wrote:
Truth is a correspondence between a statement and what is.

No, a correspondence between a statement and what is, is a point of view.

The fact that there are other distinct points of view suggests that truth is something else.

For instance, when a leaf becomes detached from the tree, it falls to the ground.

Not if you're on the leaf... then the earth comes toward the leaf.

The idea that the leaf doesn't change trajectory... it's just that the space around it is curved near the earth. Isn't that Einstein's idea of relativity?

It is true both that the leaf falls to the ground, and that the ground comes up toward the leaf. Why cannot both be true, and correspond with the fact? As a matter of fact, it is their correspondence with the same fact that makes both statements true. Another case of this is, it is also true both that the glass is half full, and the glass is half empty. And it is the very same fact that makes both true. Both "the glass is half full" and, "the glass is half empty" are true because they correspond to the same fact.

---------- Post added 11-27-2009 at 08:45 PM ----------

Reconstructo;106497 wrote:
Facts themselves are made of sentences. A fact is a description (of other descriptions) with the weight of consensus behind it. Nothing more.

.

I don't see that can be true. In the Middle Ages it was a fact that germs caused disease. But in the Middle Ages, there was no sentence like, "Germs cause disease", was there. So there was the fact, but not the sentence.
dan b

1
Tue 29 Dec, 2009 12:07 am
@kennethamy,
In this world everything comes in trinityies. Be, do, have. First you have to be(exist), then if you do something, you can have something. Even if you just think a thought, you can then have an idea.

Start, change, stop, or esistence-activity-thought
Man, woman, child is the inevitable human situation
The past, the present and the future
earth, water, and air

So this world is entierly composed of situations and material substance that seems to all comform to a trinity pattern. So any attempted correspondences in this world should take that into account. dan b
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Owen phil

1
Tue 29 Dec, 2009 07:04 am
@Arjuna,
Arjuna;88015 wrote:
Truth is a correspondence between a statement and what is.

This only (sometimes) works for empirical truth, but it never works for analytic truths.

There is no correspondence to show that 2+2=4, or (p v ~p), is true.

Truth is that which can be shown to be the case.

Sometime we can show that such and such is the case by 'correspondence', sometimes not.
kennethamy

1
Tue 29 Dec, 2009 07:28 am
@Owen phil,
Owen;115261 wrote:
This only (sometimes) works for empirical truth, but it never works for analytic truths.

There is no correspondence to show that 2+2=4, or (p v ~p), is true.

Truth is that which can be shown to be the case.

Sometime we can show that such and such is the case by 'correspondence', sometimes not.

Of course the correspondence theory is true only of synthetic (not necessarily empirical) propositions. Analytic truths are not "about the world" but are expressions of what Hume called, "relations of ideas". But, in the case of Quine's radical empiricism, the distinction between the analytic and the the synthetic is erased, so it is all correspondence.
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