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The necessary truth of any truth

 
 
kennethamy
 
  3  
Reply Fri 11 Jun, 2010 11:17 am
To say that a belief (or a statement, or a sentence, or a proposition; depending on what you think is the truth-bearer) is true is to say that there is a relation, and that one term of the relation is the truth-bearer (belief, if you like) and the other term of the relation is something not the belief (etc.) namely some fact, or some state of affairs in the world. So truth is the name of a dyadic relation between what is true, and a truth-maker, as I just said, a fact, or a state of affairs. Of course, just what that relation is requires more (a lot more) specification. Philosophers often call that relation, "correspondence" and so, that vies of truth is called the "correspondence theory" of truth.
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Jun, 2010 11:21 am
That is about speaking the truth. Not the same as the truth.
0 Replies
 
guigus
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Jun, 2010 12:55 pm
@ACB,
ACB wrote:

So would it be appropriate to think of 'truth' as a kind of interface between a true belief and an actual state of affairs? A kind of bipolar abstract object linking the two, such that when its subjective 'belief' pole is in the 'on' position (i.e. registering 'true') its objective 'state of affairs' pole is also in the 'on' position (registering 'actual'), and vice versa? When one pole is 'on', the other is automatically also 'on', but nevertheless the two poles are distinct?

Or is that too fanciful an analogy?
a contradiction between difference and identity
guigus
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Jun, 2010 01:10 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy wrote:

To say that a belief (or a statement, or a sentence, or a proposition; depending on what you think is the truth-bearer) is true is to say that there is a relation, and that one term of the relation is the truth-bearer (belief, if you like) and the other term of the relation is something not the belief (etc.) namely some fact, or some state of affairs in the world. So truth is the name of a dyadic relation between what is true, and a truth-maker, as I just said, a fact, or a state of affairs. Of course, just what that relation is requires more (a lot more) specification. Philosophers often call that relation, "correspondence" and so, that vies of truth is called the "correspondence theory" of truth.
truth-bearer and the fact that makes it true to objects: its concept of necessity is external and an unary operator that applies to whatever is true as a propertyneedsnecessity. Once you see this, you realize that what we need is not to specify this necessity (which by the way admits no further specification), but reflexively follow the contradiction it implies.
guigus
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Jun, 2010 01:23 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy wrote:

I would have thought it was simply true that I believed there were elephants there last year. All beliefs are, I guess, subjective in the sense that they are things of the mind (mental). But how would that mean that it was subjectively true that I had such a believe last year? It is true, of course, that I believe that I had such a belief last year. Is that what you mean. But if I did believe that there were elephant on the Savannah last year, then it is true that I believed that there were elephants on the Savannah last year. Whether or not I actually believed something is just a fact. Either I held that belief or I did not hold that belief. That beliefs themselves are subjective (in the sense that they are mental "object") is irrelevant. I think you confuse two things. 1. the fact that I believed something, with, 2. that the fact was itself, a belief. Just because the fact I believed was about what is subjective, does not make the fact that I believed it, subjective. What I believed is one thing. That I believed it, is quite a different thing. You are confusing the what with the that. Just because what I believed was subjective doesn't mean that i believed it was subjective. Another example. I believe that I am in pain. My pain is (I suppose) subjective. But that I do believe I am in pain is obviously, objective.


What you believe to be true, insofar as it is true, is objective. Your belief on it, on the other hand, is subjective. However, for whatever belief you have to be a truth, it must be true, that is, it must get its truth from something there in the world: a true being. You will never succeed in isolating either one of these two: a truth and its being true. One cannot exist without the other.
0 Replies
 
ACB
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Jun, 2010 04:26 pm
@guigus,
guigus wrote:
However, we must extract all consequences of this understanding: it all means that truth holds within itself a contradiction between difference and identity


I am reluctant to allow contradictions, as I believe they undermine the basis of rational thought. I would prefer to say that truth is a complex object which is not "different from itself" but possesses 'poles' (or aspects) that are different from each other, although they necessarily have the same truth-values.

Would you say there is a similar necessary connection between false beliefs and non-actual (i.e. counterfactual) states of affairs? Is there an equivalent complex object called 'falsity'? Or is falsity only a negative, i.e. the absence of truth?
fresco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Jun, 2010 04:45 pm
@ACB,
.....O the joys of seminar philosophy divorced from the dynamics of " real life" !

The USE of "truth" and "falsity" is about what happens next. (re Wittgenstein "meaning is use")

Think about it !
0 Replies
 
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Jun, 2010 05:17 pm
@ACB,
You must mean that if I believe that some proposition is true, and if that proposition is true, then my belief is objective. Well yes, I agree. However if I believe some proposition is false, and that proposition is false, then that belief is objective. After all, for a proposition to be either true or false irrespective of that what anyone believes is for that proposition to be objective, because the truth value of the proposition does not depend on what anyone believes.
0 Replies
 
davidm
 
  2  
Reply Fri 11 Jun, 2010 06:33 pm
@kennethamy,
I haven't read this whole thread, but this sums it up:

kennethamy wrote:

You really ought to distinguish between necessarily every truth is true, and every truth is necessarily true. All you have to do is to notice where the necessarily operator appears. It is a matter of simple ambiguity. (Example: it is necessarily true that if Obama is president, then Obama is president. But it is not true at all (let alone necessarily true) that if Obama is president then necessarily, Obama is president, let alone that if Obama is president then Obama is necessarily president).


guigus, you should look at some essays on modal logic.
Extrain
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Jun, 2010 11:40 pm
@Mad Mike,
Mad Mike wrote:
kennethamy wrote:

What you say about tautologies is quite true, only what you say does not appl9 to the statement, "every truth must be true" because that statement is not a tautology. If is, in fact, false, as I (among others) have explained. It looks like a tautology to you because you mix it up with a different statement that is a tautology. That statement you mix it up with is the statement, "It must be that every truth is a truth". That statement is a tautology. I really don't know how to put your mistake any clearer. It should be easy to see how the two different statements are different simply by inspection.

What I'm arguing is that a true statement must be true, but the thing the statement describes may not be necessarily true. In your Quito example, if the statement "Quito is the capital of Ecuador" is to be true, then Quito necessarily must be the capital of Ecuador. But that doesn't mean that the statement "Quito is necessarily the capital of Ecuador" is true in any other context.


The "necessarily must" in red is highly ambiguous. Obviously, Quito is not necessarily the Capital of Ecuador. So what you say is false, namely that Quito "necessarily must" be the capital of Ecuador for "Quito is the capital of Ecuador" to be true. You only mean that: Necessarily, "Quito is the capital of Ecuador" is true if and only if Quito is, in fact, the capital of Ecuador.

The classic modal fallacy, here, is your confusion of a linguistic thesis, namely,

Necessarily, "P" is true if and only if P--which is true, with the falsehood, namely,

(a)"P" is true if and only if necessarily that P. Or,
(b) If "P" is true, then it must be the case that P.
--both of which are false.

Your modal operators are sometimes incorrectly placed with respect to what you are trying to say.

Mad Mike wrote:
Slow down, dude. We're talking about two things, and I don't think we're really disagreeing, we just have to separate the two issues. The truth of the statement "Quito is the capital of Ecuador" is not dependent on the truth of the statement "Quito is necessarily the capital of Ecuador."


True.

Mad Mike wrote:
For the first statement to be true, Quito must in fact be the capital of Ecuador, so in that sense, it's necessary that Quito be the capital of Ecuador for the statement to be true.


This is actually false. Ken is right. It is necessarily the case that if Quito is, in fact, the capital of Ecuador, then it is true that Quito is the capital of Ecuador. This is just another tautologous way of saying "'P' is true if and only if P." But it is false that Quito "must" be the capital of Ecuador for the propostion <Quito is the capital of Ecuador> to be true, simply because Quito is not necessarily the capital of Ecuador.
0 Replies
 
fresco
 
  1  
Reply Sat 12 Jun, 2010 12:03 am
Rolling Eyes
Wittgenstein will rise from the dead and haunt you lot !
0 Replies
 
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Sat 12 Jun, 2010 12:31 am
@guigus,
I think I'll stick to correspondence. At least I understand that.
guigus
 
  1  
Reply Sat 12 Jun, 2010 11:03 pm
@davidm,
davidm wrote:
I haven't read this whole thread, but


If you didn't read it all, please do it.
0 Replies
 
guigus
 
  2  
Reply Sat 12 Jun, 2010 11:04 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy wrote:

I think I'll stick to correspondence. At least I understand that.


For the same reason, many people stick with creationism.
guigus
 
  1  
Reply Sat 12 Jun, 2010 11:16 pm
@ACB,
ACB wrote:
I am reluctant to allow contradictions, as I believe they undermine the basis of rational thought. I would prefer to say that truth is a complex object which is not "different from itself" but possesses 'poles' (or aspects) that are different from each other, although they necessarily have the same truth-values.

Would you say there is a similar necessary connection between false beliefs and non-actual (i.e. counterfactual) states of affairs? Is there an equivalent complex object called 'falsity'? Or is falsity only a negative, i.e. the absence of truth?


Think: if being rational depends on a previous decision to reject contradiction based on belief, then rationality depends on an irrational decision. This is a contradiction, but unfortunately it is also something else: inconsistency.
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Sat 12 Jun, 2010 11:36 pm
@guigus,
guigus wrote:

kennethamy wrote:

I think I'll stick to correspondence. At least I understand that.


For the same reason, many people stick with creationism.
0 Replies
 
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Sat 12 Jun, 2010 11:37 pm
@guigus,
guigus wrote:

kennethamy wrote:

I think I'll stick to correspondence. At least I understand that.


For the same reason, many people stick with creationism.


Well, I am certainly not going to adopt any view that makes no sense.
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Sat 12 Jun, 2010 11:39 pm
@guigus,
guigus wrote:

ACB wrote:
I am reluctant to allow contradictions, as I believe they undermine the basis of rational thought. I would prefer to say that truth is a complex object which is not "different from itself" but possesses 'poles' (or aspects) that are different from each other, although they necessarily have the same truth-values.

Would you say there is a similar necessary connection between false beliefs and non-actual (i.e. counterfactual) states of affairs? Is there an equivalent complex object called 'falsity'? Or is falsity only a negative, i.e. the absence of truth?


Think: if being rational depends on a previous decision to reject contradiction based on belief, then rationality depends on an irrational decision. This is a contradiction, but unfortunately it is also something else: inconsistency.


Why would the decision not to accept contradictions be an irrational decision? It seems to me to be a highly rational decision,
guigus
 
  1  
Reply Sun 13 Jun, 2010 04:19 am
@Mad Mike,
Mad Mike wrote:
Left something out earlier, namely what I think is confusing me about "necessary" truth. What I'm arguing is that a true statement must be true, but the thing the statement describes may not be necessarily true. In your Quito example, if the statement "Quito is the capital of Ecuador" is to be true, then Quito necessarily must be the capital of Ecuador. But that doesn't mean that the statement "Quito is necessarily the capital of Ecuador" is true in any other context.


This is the closest you got from what I am saying, and I will try now to show you exactly where the problem arises: your assertion that “a true statement must be true” is a particular case of mine that “every truth must be true.” But your corrective addition that “the thing the statement describes may not be necessarily true” is just unnecessary, and shows that you are misreading your own assertion. You are perfectly right in that if “Quito is the capital of Ecuador” is true, then Quito must be the capital of Ecuador. Of course that doesn't mean that the statement “Quito is necessarily the capital of Ecuador” is true, but why should it? More importantly, where did this last statement come from, after all? Our statement was “Quito must be the capital of Ecuador for the statement 'Quito is the capital of Ecuador' to be true.” The necessity we are talking about does not concern only the statement or only the thing it refers to, but rather the relation between them insofar that statement is true. First you correctly see the necessity of Quito actually being the capital of Ecuador for the statement “Quito is the capital of Ecuador” to be true. But then you incorrectly confine that necessity to the statement itself or to its target itself, confusing them and creating a totally different statement out of nowhere – according to which “Quito is necessarily the capital of Ecuador.” The correct statement is “for 'Quito is the capital of Ecuador' to be true Quito must be the capital of Ecuador” – which is a correct interpretation of “every truth must be true” – in which necessity has an entirely different meaning. The necessity we are talking about concerns a relation between the statement and the thing it describes, not either one alone: the fallacy here consists in a surreptitious and unjustifiable change on what “necessity” means.
0 Replies
 
guigus
 
  1  
Reply Sun 13 Jun, 2010 04:21 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy wrote:

guigus wrote:

kennethamy wrote:

I think I'll stick to correspondence. At least I understand that.


For the same reason, many people stick with creationism.


Well, I am certainly not going to adopt any view that makes no sense.


The fact that it makes sense to you does not mean you are right. We believed for thousands of years that the earth was flat, remember? It just made sense, but it was false. And it just makes sense to believe the sun goes around the earth, because it is what you see every day with your naked eyes, but it is the other way around.
0 Replies
 
 

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