Phil 1 - Week 5 Notes
Phil 1 - Week 5 Notes
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Date Created: 05/02/14
Philosophy 1 Introduction to Philosophy Week Four Lecture Notes Reader Notes and Study Guide Lecture Notes Second Level of Doubt 0 How do you know you re not dreaming 0 Like the matrix 0 You still know that you exist 0 The concepts of colors and shapes exist 0 Motion exists Third level of doubt 0 Deceptive demon tricking you 0 The world doesn t exist 0 Cogito o I think therefore I am 0 Even if your thoughts are wrong then you must think Certainty Argument 0 No one is ever certain about anything in the external world 0 If S knows that p then S is absolutely certain that p 0 Therefore no one knows anything about the extemal world Possibility of Error 0 For any belief p S has about the external world S could be mistaken 0 If a belief could be mistaken then it is not a case of knowledge 0 Therefore S does not know anything about the external world The Cartesian Theater 0 The idea is what we immediately perceive are imagessensations are not physical objects 0 It s like we are getting a movie scene 0 Russell argues that there is an external world and it is as it appears to us sensations are not just sense data but caused by external physical objects 0 Persistence of unobserved objects 0 Talking to other people 0 Objects from Different perspectives o Instinctive belief Problem 0 1 The Matrix scenario seems to equally well explain all the systematic elements of our experiences that Russell mentions 0 2 Russell claims that an external world is the simplest explanation o Probably false 0 The physical world is a very complex thing 0 3 Perhaps Russell means that an external world is the best explanation of our experiences 0 But you would need to spell out what makes one explanation better than another Certainty and Error 0 One thing Russell seems right about is that we don t need certainty in order to know something 0 In fact even Descartes grants this 0 The proof 0 No one is ever certain of anything about the external world 0 If S knows that p then S is absolutely certain that p 0 Therefore no one knows anything about the extemal world 0 The possibility of error argument 0 For any belief p S has about the external world S could be mistaken o If a belief could be mistaken then it is not a case of knowledge 0 Therefore S does not know anything about the external world 0 It seems very easy to base conclusions even without certainty Transmissibility 0 If I know that p is true and I also know that p entails q then I can know that q is true 0 I can t know that I am not in the Matrix 0 If there is a table here then I am not in the Matrix 0 If I know that there is a table here and I also know that this is incompatible with being in the Matrix then I can know I m not in the Matrix 0 Therefore I can t know there is a table here 0 I cant know that I am not a BIV o If I have hands then I am not a BIV o If I know that I have hands and I also know this is incompatible with being a BIV then I can know I m not a BIV 0 Here is a hand 0 Here is another hand 0 Hands are external objects 0 Therefore external objects exist 0 Three conditions for a rigorous proof 0 The premises are different from the conclusion no question begging or circular reasoning One must know that the premises are true The conclusion is validly deducible from the premises 0 A similar proof 0 I don t believe my roommate when he tells me there is beer in the fridge 0 He can properly prove me to be mistaken by going to the fridge and pointing out a couple of beers o Similarity if we doubt that there are external objects all that is needed is for us to produce one 0 Dissatisfaction with the proof 0 The skeptic s argument wants to show that one cannot know things such as that one has hands 0 So Moore can t use hands 0 Begging the question 0 But Moore seems to beg the question against the skeptic I How do we know hands exist 0 Moore s Response 0 Equally guilty 0 Modus Ponens o Skeptical Argument condensed I I cannot know that I am not a BIV I If I know that I have hands then I can know that I m not a BIV I I cannot know that I have hands 0 Moorean Argument I I know I have hands I If I know that I have hands then I can know that I am not a BIV I Therefore I can know I m not a BIV o Thinks that both these arguments have plausible premises 0 TwoAnti Skeptical projects 0 Ambitious AntiSkeptical Project Refute a skeptic on his own terms Show to the satisfaction of the skeptic that one knows about the external world 0 Modest AntiSkeptical Project Convince on our own terms 0 A paradox remains o More has shown that the following three claims are inconsistent 0 He may even be right that most of us won t give up on 3 as the skeptic demands Bouwsma 0 Even if we are being deceived we re not actually being deceived 0 Refer to reader notes Reader Notes Feldman Richard Skepticism 0 Varieties of skepticism 0 Global skepticism no one knows anything at all 0 Limited skepticism denies knowledge in certain areas 0 Almost everyone is some sort of limited skeptic for example we may think that we don t know the meaning of life or know the number of grains of sand in the sahara 0 There are different versions of skepticism due to the strength of the claim they make 0 Skepticism about the future 0 It is impossible for anyone to know anything about the future impossibility o No one is able to know anything about the future person s capability o No one does know anything about the future 0 Skepticism on existence of life 0 There are ethical truths but we cannot know what they are I We are incapable of knowing the ethical truths 0 There are no ethical truths so we cannot know any facts about ethics I We can t know what doesn t exist 0 Argument about the ancients older people 0 The ancient s belief that the earth was at was false 0 Therefore the ancients did not know that the earth was at 0 Analogous 0 Our belief that the earth is round might be false 0 Therefore we do not know that the earth is round 0 Errors 0 For almost every belief that any person has about the external world then the belief could be mistaken o If a belief could be mistaken then it is not a case of knowledge 0 The Introspective In distinguishability Argument 0 If a person can have knowledge on the basis of fallible evidence then there can be cases of knowledge that are introspectively indistinguishable from cases of knowledge 0 But there cannot be cases of knowledge that are introspectively indistinguishable from cases of nonknowledge o A person cannot have knowledge on the basis of fallible evidence 0 But all the evidence we have for any propositions about the extemal world is fallible 0 We cannot have any knowledge about the external world 0 The certainty argument 0 Most simple 0 Is skepticism self refuting Moore Chapter 2 Proof of an External World 0 There are multiple ways to prove the existence of an extemal world 0 Now I have two hands right now 0 Past There were hands not too long ago 0 He should be able to prove his proofs withyou areout extra proofs the problem he thinks people will have against it Chapter 3 Four Forms of Scepticism 0 Logically possible it is logically possible there is a demon 0 There are things you can immediately know Chapter 4 Certainty 0 There is some chance you aren t certain 0 It is possible that you are both dreaming while you are awake 0 He agrees you don t know you re dreaming but the content of your dream you must have experienced before that you are certain of Bouwsma Descartes Evil Genius 0 He discusses the Demon Doubt that Descartes talks about in his Second Meditation 0 The Demon evil genius has two ways to carry out this deception 0 To make everything in the world an illusion 0 To make us believe that the world isn t an illusion 0 However the evil genius needs admiration for this deception in order for him deceiving us to mean something 0 But the evil genius would not be able to deceive anymore because his creation are causing us not to be deceived therefore he has failed