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Midterm

PP111 Study Guide - Midterm Guide: Melissus Of Samos, Eliminative Materialism, Ludwig Wittgenstein


Department
Philosophy
Course Code
PP111
Professor
Rockney Jacobsen
Study Guide
Midterm

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Philosophy Notes up to Midterm
Constancy and Flux
Theseus` Ship
Is the ship in which Theseus arrives at his destination the same ship on which he departed?
“No: They’re not the same ship.”
Something can’t change and still be the same
Rationale:
(1) Nothing can change without becoming different than it was
(2) But “different” and “same” are opposites
(3) Therefore, nothing can change and still be the same
“Yes: They are the Same Ship
Rationale:
(1) Some changes are so small or insignificant that they don’t prevent it from being the same object
after it changes: Make the daily changes that small or insignificant
(2) Then, the ship on Day (1)= Day (2).
And the ship on Day (2)= Day (3)
And the ship on Day (3)= Day (4)
(3) Identity is transitive (i.e. if A=B and B=C, then A=C)
(4) So, the ship on Day (1)= ship on Day (n)

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Visualizing the Rationale
Day (1)= Day (2)
Day (2)= Day (3)
Day (1) = Day (3)
Day (3)= Day (4)
Day (1) = Day (4)
Day (4)= Day (5)
Day (1) = Day (5)
And so on, until...
Day (1) = Day (n)
The views of Change and Sameness
(1) The cannot be reconciled: if an object changes, then it becomes different in some way, then it
isn`t the same object
(2) They can be reconciled: Some changes in an object can be so insignificant that they do not
prevent it from being the same object after it has undergone such changes
“Now if it should become different by one hair in 10000 years, it will all perish in all of time”
(Melissus, pg. 26)
All “change” is really destruction and creation; so nothing persists through change
The Early Materialists: The Flux
Thales (625-545 B.C.E)
Heraclitus (535-475 B.C.E)
Only matter (Earth, Air, Water, and Fire) and what is composed of matter, exists

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Materialism: The Four Elements
Thales (Water)
Everything is made of water
Philosophers of Nature
There is a single, unified explanation of a great variety of different phenomena
The explanation does not rely on the supernatural (e.g. the Gods)
The explanation can be grasped by the human intellect.
Materialism: The Four Elements Heraclitus(Fire)
Fire
↓↑
Air
↓↑
Water
↓↑
Earth
Creation and Destruction:
(How “new” is the sun every day?)
Heraclitus: “Fire lives in the death of earth and air lives in the death of fire” (19)
So...There is a “different” sun every day, because each day’s sun ceases to exist and a new one is
created in its place
Heraclitus: The Logos
Logos
The root of logic, study of “ “.
The rational pattern (‘Logic’) in the flux.
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