Epistemology is the study of knowledge, acquisition thereof, and the justification of belief in a given claim.

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How to understand Nozick's response to Descartes's Skeptical Argument?

Consider the following Skeptical Argument: P1. You do not know that you are not a brain in a vat. P2. You know that if you have hands, then you are not a brain in a vat P3. If you know that A, and ...
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Introductory books on epistemology for someone interested in artificial intelligence

It was suggested to me, as someone who is interested in going into the field of AGI (artificial general intelligence) that I read up on epistemology (a field in which I am rather unfamiliar). Are ...
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What is the connection between temporal and epistemic knowledge?

Recently I read all kinds of work from logic scientists in which epistemic logic was the main topic. Where epistmic change refers to change in knowledge of some agent in a multi-agent system (in a ...
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What is the “simple logical truth” that makes omniscience self-contradictory?

Patrick Grim claims in "Problems with Omniscience" that there is a "simple truth well established as a logical theorem", which shows that omniscience is a contradictory concept. I am failing to see ...
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Questions on the second meditation by Descartes

Upon reading the second meditation of Descartes, I am perplexed by an illustration Descartes presents involving wax. For reference, this illustration, or argument, is contained within the 11th and ...
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Can your attitude towards a proposition P be that P is false or do you actually believe ~P?

Started reading about beliefs and propositions, and the working definition I have of X believes P is that X thinks P is true. So suppose I don't believe P. Would it be more accurate to say I think P ...
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Is it possible to argue against a person who is skeptical about the meaning of all words?

Such person would consider the meaning of all words to be vague (including the meaning of the word "vague" ), and think that actually we do not know what we are talking about (including this sentence ...
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What does Schopenhauer mean by etiology?

Schopenhauer in Will and Representation writes: What is the use of explanations that ultimately refer us to something whose inner nature is quite as unknown as the thing we started with? Do we in ...
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Carl Hempel's covering law model of explanation in history

According to Carl Hempel in "The Function of General Laws in History" (The Journal of Philosophy, Vol. 39, No. 2, 1942, pp. 35-48), explanation in history consists of the "derivation of the ...
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The Opposite Point of Positivist Epistemology

In the philosophy of science, I wanted to know what is the exact opposite point of the positivist epistemology? Actually I'm not from the philosophy area and thus not familiar with different ...
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What is the meaning of “There are questions that science can't answer”?

I've recently come across several statements to the effect "there are questions science can't answer", mostly from proponents of religion and mysticism, but also from scientists and secular ...
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Connection between Kant's defense of the belief in God and Kant's categories?

Kant states in the Critique of Pure Reason (English translation) that Thus the entire armament of reason, in the undertaking that one can call pure philosophy, is in fact directed only at the ...
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The Copernican Principle and the Giant Void [closed]

Daniel Holz writes on a popular science blog Cosmic Variance:"The Copernican principle is a guiding foundation of cosmology. In short, it states that we are not in a privileged place in the Universe. ...
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Mathematical theorems and science

We know mathematics is applied constantly in science to solve problems, even if sometimes (e.g: modern physics) there is not always a intuition of why such theorems can be applied (since there isn't ...
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129 views

Should scientific theories be self-consistent?

Bridgeman writes in A Physicist's Second Reaction to Mengenlehre:"The feeling that actually existing things are not self-contradictory is so elemental as to almost constitute a definition of what we ...
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200 views

Why does philosophy exist?

If Philosophy is the study of general and fundamental problems, such as those connected with reality, existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind and language. As defined by Wikipedia. Then if ...
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119 views

How do modern metaphysicians respond to Kant and Wittgenstein?

As far as I've understood, Kant argued that metaphysical knowledge is impossible because the human mind is not capable enough to acquire it. Wittgenstein, on the other hand, claimed that metaphysical ...
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71 views

What is meaningful?

Which propositions are considered meaningful and on what grounds? In other words, when is it correct to predicate 'meaningfulness' of the propositions?
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Does Math, or analogically Language really have any impact on our “Thoughts”?

Here I see many say, language has an important impact on our thoughts. But according to this question, Foucault in the preface to The Order of Things wrote how he 'laughed out loud' when he ...
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Type theory and metaphor

In my experience, textbooks and introductory material on type theory (or constructive logic systems) are remarkably devoid of metaphor. I never found any introductory text in those fields that ...
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Challenges to the principle of deductive closure

Consider the principle of deductive closure: PDC. K(p) ∧ K(p → q) ⊢ K(q) Informally (and roughly) this means that we know the logical consequences of the things we know. Despite ...
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80 views

Are all sufficient conditions necessary?

If x is the necessary condition of A, then it doesn't follow that x is sufficient. However, if it were a sufficient condition, would it also follow that x is a necessary condition? Put otherwise, is a ...
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Skeptical hypothesis as undecidable statement

Does anybody support the idea that the skeptical hypothesis (like the possibility that we are brains in a vat) is not assessable? By that I mean that the skeptical hypothesis may resemblance the sort ...
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186 views

If you're the smartest person on earth, how do you know if you're making logic errors? [closed]

In any logical argument, there is the practical step of verifying that it is sound. When there are experts in that particular area, they can check the argument for soundness. For two examples: A ...
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How can I know that I know something? [closed]

This also a question about what is the definition of knowledge.
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240 views

Can we know the fundamental nature of space and time?

Can you please point me to an argument by a notable contemporary philosopher arguing why we may know the fundamental (metaphysical) nature of space and time? In a recent answer to a question I wrote ...
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Missing Shade of Blue in An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding by David Hume

I was reading An Enquiry concerning Human Understanding by David Hume, and came across (a couple days ago) a part wherein Hume draws a counterexample towards his epistemological theory and drops it. ...
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Thermodynamics of Occam's Razor

Occam's Razor states, essentially, that among hypotheses with similar explanatory power, the simplest hypothesis should be favored as the most plausible. Thermodynamics states, at zero temperature, ...
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Can we tell we are not fictional characters of someone who exists in the same world as us?

There might be two or more writers, who are also the characters in another writer's story. That is, A is a character in B's story, and B is a character in C's story, ... finally X is a character in ...
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Philosophical critiques of neoclassical economics?

Background Information In his article on Neoclassical economics in The Library of Economics and Liberty, E.Weintraub articulates the following: Neoclassical economics rests on three assumptions, ...
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Is it possible to prove the invalidity of logic without using logic?

Is it possible to validly invalidate logic without using logic? Mere assertion gives rise to the question, "How do you know?". At that point, you end up having to use logic to justify the thesis ...
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66 views

How does one measure the world?

Suppose one took our universe and divided everything in half; mass, space, time and so on - would we notice? And if we don't doesn't this mean that there is no intrinsic notion of length - despite ...
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Is there a theory in philosophy which holds that “ignorance is bliss”?

What is the philosophical view of believing that ignorance is bliss, or that knowledge of yourself or the world is bad for you?
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Why is love included in Badiou's enumeration of truth procedures?

Admittedly I have not read the actual Badiou. So will someone brief me: Why is "love" included in Badiou's list of the four "truth procedures" of which philosophy is necessarily independent--rather ...
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To which of Badiou's four conditions does religion belong?

I was tempted to ask "Why didn't Badiou include religion among his conditions?," but we will never know the answer to that. So instead I will ask if there are instances in Badiou's work, or in the ...
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Is God subject to logic?

If someone claims that God is beyond logic then how do we know he is beyond logic ? (as we lose all the methods to know whether the claim is true or not?) Logic is the use and study of valid ...
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Are Hume's “relations of ideas” the same as analytic a priori judgments?

In his Enquiry concerning human understanding, Hume provides the following definition: All the objects of human reason or enquiry may naturally be divided into two kinds, to wit, Relations of ...
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are Wittgensteins propositions analytic or synthetic?

Wittgenstein provides a logical analysis of propositions in the Tractatus; does he there admit the Kantian distinctions between analytic/synthetic and a priori/a postereroi divisions; or does his ...
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Does fallibilism carry an ontological commitment?

When I was a grad student in psychology, I audited a 20th century philosophy of science course. I did my best to absorb all the great discussions, but one remark the professor made continues to bother ...
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Does everything have a cause/reason?

I was reading on arguments for the existence of God and came across the Principle of Sufficient Reason (PSR) which describes that everything must have a sufficient cause/reason to exist. Looking at ...
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Would a logical positivist consider a proposition about objects outside of the earth's light cone to be meaningful?

The logical positivists' basic premise was that for any statement to be meaningful, one had to be able to confirm its truth or falsehood using formal logic and empirical observation. Any statement ...
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What does a justified disbelief in theism imply?

If one can justify disbelief in theism, what repercussions does this have on the monotheistic faiths? Is justifying disbelief in theism enough to warrant disbelief in Islam, Christianity and Judaism, ...
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Is an Anarchosocialist a philosophical term or a political term?

I heard the term used by Noam Chomsky to describe himself. Is this his own term or a mash up. Came very late to philosophy, and I see possible links to the under pinnings of Anarchism and Socialism.
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What is the general relationship between Intelligence and Information?

I will take the definition of "information" used in the field of Information Theory, which according to my understanding of Information Theory, information is the loss of uncertainty(e.g. while a coin ...
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How objective can morality be? [closed]

We all make assumptions, but there are assumptions that we are forced to make if we want to interact with any part of reality. The first is that the universe exists. The second is that the universe is ...
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A Neo-Kantian View on Causality?

Quantum non-determinism seems incompatible with Kant’s defense of causality in his Second Analogy. Stephen R. Palmquist however provides an interesting and appealing case against this supposition, ...
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Popper, Nietzsche and knowledge

In many works of Karl Popper, he says, quoting Xenophanes, that all human knowledge is only conjectural, that modern science will never produce a true knowledge. The german philosopher, Friedrich ...
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Aside from logical representations, what are other ways philosophers approach representing knowledge?

Of course different arguments can be neatly spelled out in logical symbols, but logic isn't sufficient for all kinds of knowledge. I know the issue is represented in different ontologies in the ...
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How to justify the use of logic?

I would like to hear some Philosophical arguments which justify the use of logic. Additionally, if a justification of logic takes the form of an inference, this inference itself makes use of logic. ...
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Hierarchical Reductionism vs Emergentism [closed]

How does Hierarchical Reductionism (as coined by Richard Dawkins) differ from Emergentism exactly? Edit: Dawkins' definition of hierarchical reductionism: ...