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Philosophy Midterm Review.docx

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University of Toronto Mississauga
Philip Goodman

Philosophy Midterm Review Non-Overlapping Magisteria A concept that science and religion do not overlap. Science is directed towards making existential/scientific claims and religion is directed towards faith. Hard Evidentialism Hard concrete evidence is required to have a belief in something. This concept is used as a method of avoiding consequences of actions which may have high stakes. Ungrounded beliefs are more likely to harm someone while true beliefs allow for us to make decisions which have the potential to avoid these consequences. Pragmatism/Prudential vs Epistemic/Pascal’s Wager Pragmatism is used as support for the belief in God. It is that the belief in something is recommended due to its side effects. Does the prudential reasoning outweigh the epistemic reasoning, i.e. if what you have to lose outweighs what you have to gain. Expected Utility The expectation of a given action can be calculated by a simple formula: for each state, multiply the utility that the action produces in that state by the state’s probability; then, add those numbers. Foundationalism (Descartes) Descartes foundationalism is a concept which consists of two possibilities, one of which must be met for knowledge to be acquired. The first is that knowledge is acquired if you have knowledge of something else which supports the belief. The second is that knowledge is acquired if there is some experience which directly contributes to the belief. Principle D The principle D concept is that knowledge requires absolute certainty so that there is zero chance of error. If it’s at all possible for the belief to be false then the belief is unjustified. This results in the method of doubt which is that any preposition that doesn’t meet Principle D must always be abandoned. Rationalist-idealist This theory consists of two components. First is rationalism, that there are certain types of truths which do not depend on perception such as a mathematics or logic; these simply depend on our ability to think. Second is perceptual idealism, which is that our perception towards certain objects is indirect and it is ideas of which we are immediately aware; it is the way things seem to us. Moore’s Proof of an External World Moore’s proof is that the conclusion follows the premises, and that both conclusion and premises are distinct (non- circular). The premises must also be known to be the case through demonstration. For the external world, knowing that he 1 hand, and 1 other hand, means that he has 2 hands. These are external and allow for external sensation such as touching an external object. Closure of Knowledge 1 Closure is that if a belief (p) entails another belief (q) and the belief (q) is not known, then the first belief (p) cannot be known either. In terms of skepticism, what you would believe if p was false is much different than what you would believe if q was false. Tracking Theory of Knowledge Nozick creates a set of rules which must be met for knowledge to be acquired. P is true. S believes that P. If P had been false, S wouldn’t believe P. If P were true, S would believe P. Knowledge involves your belief tracking the truth, and that this involves both responsiveness (3 rule) and sensitivity (4 rule). Real World Hypothesis and Inference to the Best Explanation (Vogel) The fact that p. According to which we experience perceptions caused by things in the real world external to us. RWH posits objects with familiar physical characteristics that explain their observed properties. The Brain in a Vat Scenario (why it threatens knowledge) The brain in a vat scenario threatens knowledge because the typical definition of knowledge is changed. If we truly are brains in a vat, we cannot truthfully say that we are brains in a vat nor can we believe that we are brains in a vat. To say that we believed we were brains in a vat would be self-refuting (if it were true, it must be false). Our knowledge of being brains in a vat is different from our knowledge (when we are not brains in a vat). The Metaphysical Hypothesis Consists of three parts: creation hypothesis, computational hypothesis, and mind-body hypothesis. In creation hypothesis, the physical world and its contents were created by beings outside of the physical world, who designed the processes that underlie the experienced physical world. Computational hypothesis is that all physical processes are computational algorithms. Mind-body hypothesis is that cognitive processes are non-physical, but they may interact with physical processes. The Problem of Heuristics We may imagine solid objects as a collection of particles, where the particles are understood on analogy with the objects with which we are familiar. However, simply because we say we know this does not indicate whether or not it is true. This is important to understanding whether we can believe in things which we cannot directly detect. The Problem of Sense Data Similarly to the problem of heuristics, with sense data we cannot prove that something exists outside of our senses. We also cannot be sure of what it is that our senses are per say. Since physical objects such as desks are made up of particles which we cannot directly detect, how can we be sure of the existence of the desk. Neurath`s Boat Sense Datum Sense datums are objects which external to the mind and therefore exist independently of its presence of experience. These sensations are mental images which are opposed to the direct awareness of physical phenomena. External vs Internal to Sense Experience 2 Internal objects do not exist within the world while external objects are a part of the world. These terms are important to understanding objects of experience which is whether or not an object which is present to us is part of the world or simply part of our experience or perception. The Argument from Hallucination It is possible that someone may perceive objects incorrectly to have properties that they do not have. In these cases of hallucination, perception is false. There is no relevant difference of an external object and a hallucinatory perception of a non-present object to the perceiver. The Argument from Illusion The argument from illusion supports the existence of sense data. Physical objects appear differently to observers, depending on how they`re related to the object. These consist of external (varying space) and internal (afterimages) differences. Rather than directly perceiving the object, we must perceive it indirectly by way of an image or sense data. Delusion vs Illusion According to Austin in delusion vs illusion, Ayer incorrectly uses the terms illusion, delusion and hallucination. Austin believes that these words should be used as commitment to the truth of what we are saying and that sense data adds nothing to our understanding or ability to talk about what it is that we see or are perceiving. Determinism All events are determined by the past state of the world and laws of nature. Knowing this, given the current state of the world and laws of nature, everything we do must already have been determined before we actually decided to it. In other words, everything is destiny and has been predetermined. This removes “free will”. Compatibilism Determinism and free will are in some way compatible. Causal and statistical laws are what predict events; however, they cannot fully explain all events. Quantum mechanics for example have no explanation beyond a statistical one. Freedom requires absence of constraint. If someone has a desire which is not under constraint and their desire to cause an action decides whether that action happens means that free will is available to a person. The Master Problem Consists of libertarianism and Compatibilism. Libertarianism be
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