Questions tagged [metaphilosophy]

Metaphilosophy is the philosophical study of philosophy itself — its goals, methods, scope, and relationship to other intellectual disciplines or human projects.

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Internet Fora and Metaphilosophy

Prologue Given a look at the history of philosophy, one can argue that philosophical methods have evolved from those of the Pre-Socratics to contemporary methods which rely heavily on citations and ...
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Identity of concepts' intentional content

I have recently read some articles about (lexical) concepts. Philosophers tend to think that, in order for two speakers to be able to communicate successfully, they must associate the exact same ...
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Why do we call “A or B Theories of Time” instead of “A or B Hypotheses of Time”?

Why do we call "A or B Theories of Time" instead of "A or B Hypotheses of Time" when the concepts are not yet proven by empirical evidence? We know, hypothesis: a supposition or ...
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Concepts possession conditions

As a consequence of my growing interest in epistemology, I recently read some articles about concepts. The authors were originating from different fields, such as philosophy of mind, language and ...
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Why do many attach great significance to having read the original writings by philosophers?

Many of my conversations go like this. I express an opinion on a philosopher, and my friends ask, have you read the original work? I say no, but I have read many discussions and interpretations by ...
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Are there philosophical problems for which there's only a trivial solution?

I can't really think of a philosophical example, but in mathematics, it would be something like 'find the x where f(x) = 0 given that f(x) = x', and the solution would be 'x = 0', which is trivial. Is ...
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A material-constitution model of truth

On one end, let there be the correspondence model of truth, that S is true if and only if S corresponds to the appropriate fact. On the other, let there be the identity model, that S is true if it IS ...
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Which aspects of consciousness are most often addressed by philosophers of mind?

What are the most discussed parts of consciousness according to philosophers? Epistemologists cite perception, memory, reason, and testimony as frequent objects of philosophical discourse in respect ...
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When did philosophers decide philosophy was not useful, and why? [closed]

Academics treat philosophy like more of a discipline one does simply because one can. If you were to ask an academic what the purpose of philosophy is, they're likely to be confused by the question. ...
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Why all the dismissal for Circular Reasoning? [duplicate]

In my studies of Mathematics and (mostly) Theoretical Computer Science I've encountered what is known as Munchhausen's Trilemma which purports to demonstrate nothing can be actually be proved because ...
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Do philosophers generally reject that philosophical reasoning relies on axioms?

The way I've always thought that philosophy worked is that philosophers have a certain set of tools (deduction, laws of thought, basic sources of knowledge) which they use to come to reasoned answers ...
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Which philosophers have left sucessful academic careers to pursue other work?

I'm looking for (names of) philosophers who had successful careers in academia but, for whatever set of reasons, chose to leave and pursue work outside of academia, even if only temporarily. For this ...
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Are there any points of convergence between analytical and traditional concept based philosophy?

In many questions, answers and in comments, there appear to be differences in the type of answers and comments which fall into two roughly delineated trains of thought and exemplify the fault line ...
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Wittgenstein and theology

Wittgenstein noted that we engage in language games and quite often we borrow words from different games and misuse them such as using words with scientific connotations in religious discourse or ...
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Is philosophy primarily about proving things to the best of our ability?

I would have assumed that philosophy is in the business of proving things, or doing so as best as the philosopher can. But Ryle 1959 says Obviously both can't be true, unless Ryle is talking about ...
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Is human thought a Continuum?

Plato probably would not have existed had it not been for Pythagoras and Socrates. Augustine would not have produced his writings had it not been for Plotinus and Aristotle. Einstein would not have ...
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Has science ever disproved philosophical theories?

I am aware that science and philosophy, in their modern guise, are two separate beasts that never cross the same domains but sometimes it happens that philosophy influences science and that science ...
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Philosophy of concepts - can it be (gradually) expressed in type theory?

Reasoning in mathematics is simple and subject to automation and discipline/system, because every concept (e.g. integer number, real number, derivative, integral, differential equation and its ...
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Is the concept of Aporia the same as the Zen concept of A Beginners Mind?

Is the concept of Aporia the same as the zen concept of A Beginners Mind, or related to it, or a completely different concept?
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Are some expressions such as 'In my opinion', 'I think', 'In my view' philosophical?

All of us went through some periods where he philosophized. When we philosophise, we use normally, and naturally, expressions like: In my opinion, In my point of view, I think, I propose, I suppose ...
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What is the logical distinction between “the same” and “equal to?”

We all understand that Given A = C, and B = C, Then A = B. However, A is not “the same as” B. Example: A is the question, “What animals have feathers and can fly?” B is the question, “What was the ...
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Which books do you recommend for me?

I read a lot about philosophy but it’s so huge that I stand confused. I am not sure which branch of philosophy suits me. I request your help. I don’t believe in god or spirituality. I want to live ...
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Trichotomy in philosophy

In many philosophical works and ideas*, it seems like the number 3 gets a major, unexplained emphasis (mostly as a trichotomy). One of the major ideas that uses trichotomy is the Thesis-Antithesis-...
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How does contemporary analytic philosophy reply to the late Wittgenstein's injunction against theory?

In the In Our Time episode on Wittgenstein philosopher Ray Monk says the following: It's a central view of the later Wittgenstein that there can be no such thing as a philosophical theory. I think ...
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Extent of hypotheticals in applied philosophy?

It is not uncommon to find a huge emphasis on thought experiments in applied philosophy. Much of the hypotheticals thrown around in applied philosophy are usually an extreme hypothetical similar to ...
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What are some examples of x=f(x) type questions

I was wondering of examples where authors examine their own framework using their framework. I'm especially interested in 'larger' examples where an author may put their reasoning for creating a ...
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Why has modern physics not permeated throughout all of philosophy?

Modern physics seems to agree that both time and space are not really fundamental - they are emergent properties. This is articulated well in the IEP article on time. However, it seems that much of ...
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What is the goal and toolset of philosophy?

I'm beginning to realize that I might have misconseptions about philosophy in general. Is it to question and contend indefinitely or is there a goal? I thought the goal was truth. While I'm at it, ...
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Why doesn't philosophy have higher standards for its arguments?

Mathematical systems are an excellent model for organizing and conducting thought: In the mathematics community, any argument in support of a conjecture, that deviates from "sound argument" never ...
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Is there a word for the type of rhetorical strategy where you distract from the point in order to seem authoritative?

Is there a word for distracting someone from the topic of the argument, and using the authority they have established in the mean time to (fallaciously) prove their original point? An example I ...
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Can mathematics and physics be thought of as branches of philosophy?

I think that they can be viewed like that, with some suitable definition of philosophy. Then mathematics could be defined as one of the branches of philosophy in which theories are built on ...
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What does it mean to have an “account” of something?

It seems like many of the papers I've read and the goal of many fields in Philosophy is to come up with an "account" for something. For example, one of the goals of Epistemology is to come up with an ...
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What properties does “intuition” need in order to be counted as philosophical evidence?

Timothy Williamson (2008) has argued that we should not construe philosophical evidence as consisting of intuitions. Do intuitions generate philosophical evidence? And, if so, what sort of evidence ...
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What does 'philosophical study of' something mean?

Because there are many philosophical studies at present, like philosophical study of education, philosophical study of judgement, etc. Therefore, please explain to me what the philosophical study of ...
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What's the role of certainty in discussions about philosophical positions?

Karl Popper was one of the twentieth century’s preeminent philosophers of science. He was an avowed realist who was dedicated to the correspondence theory of truth. In his seventh decade of life, ...
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Is everything that exists an actual entity?

My professor asked us to think about this question as we go through the unit but I am not sure what the question means. I would greatly appreciate if you could help me understand the question or give ...
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What am I missing in texts that say things that are so obvious as to seem pointless?

I'm currently taking a course in early modern philosophy. The focus is on psychology, morality, and aesthetics. I've taken philosophy courses in the past, but I'm having a lot of trouble with this one,...
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Of Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, who is generally considered the better philosopher?

Of Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, who is generally considered the better philosopher? My apologies if too up for debate for any philosopher to have ever answered, as I can only find the answers of ...
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Can Philosophy explain itself?

This question is prompted by recent questions: A short, understandable definition of philosophy and Do you need to know what philosophy is to study it? Sciences are usually well defined, and the task ...
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Do you need to know what philosophy is to study it?

Do you need to know what philosophy is to study it? The question was prompted by one about literature, but I'll ask here. Poets tell me that you need to know what post-modernism and modernism are to ...
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What is a philosophical question?

Are there criteria for what a philosophical question consists in? Clearly they are not factual nor mathematical - even though they can be influenced and often discuss facts, and on Plato's academy ...
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Collingwood, existence of God and its relation to natural science

I am reading Collingwood's essay in metaphysics and I have hard time in understanding his argument to the conclusion that Catholic Faith consists in (part) of absolute presuppositions of Greek thought ...
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What is the order of questions?

I have heard the importance of "The order of questions" mentioned a few times by for example Bernard Stiegler in one of his seminars. I am working on a Phd, and it is being drummed into me framing the ...
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Is there really a “right” answer?

If Philosophy is a broad subject, and each and everyone of us have different beliefs, perspective, how do you guys actually deem an "answer" the right one in this site? Is it because what the "right" ...
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Does Psychology benefit Philosophy?

This question got me thinking: It is widely held that Philosophy precedes the Sciences, birthing them. and continue to inform them. It is also evident that there are times when science has informed ...
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How can I do my philosophy privately and independently? [closed]

I'm an Indian currently in class 12th which means after this year I shall be able to enter university. I'm 16 years old. I want to do philosophy without anyone and the main reason being alone is that ...
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Can you adequately discuss Philosophy, without doing philosophy?

In order to convey a philosophical idea, a speaker must regularly interpret an original work. Not only that, but subsequent to the all to frequent 'discussion', he must interpret the listener's point ...
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Can philosophy make predictions? [closed]

Philosophy, one may state, is a field where one makes descriptive statements about the world - whether it's in ethics, metaphysics, logic, or any other philosophical study. For example "the world is ...
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Can / Should Philosophy be made more 'accessible'?

Metallica and Philosophy: A Crash Course in Brain Surgery edited by William Irwin "...metal up your ass!" - I kid you not, that's a quote from a purportedly serious philosophical work (ref. above)....
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How are the assumptions underlying logic chosen?

Logic works based on certain assumptions about its rules. How are these axiomatic assumptions selected in the first place, given that a system of logic does not exist prior to the point of selection? ...

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