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30 votes
Accepted

What do you call the fallacy of thinking that some action A will guarantee some outcome B, when in reality B depends on multiple other conditions?

What do you call the fallacy of thinking that if A statistically causes B, then A implies B? For the original title quoted above, the closest is probably correlation implies causation, deducing a ...
Conifold's user avatar
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22 votes
Accepted

Is the idea that "Everything is energy" even coherent?

Memorably, Feynman in his Lectures on Physics states: It is important to realize that in physics today, we have no knowledge of what energy is. Energy, the Subtle Concept. The discovery of Feynman’s ...
sand1's user avatar
  • 3,704
20 votes

Is the idea that "Everything is energy" even coherent?

There are a number of quantities that physics has found to be conserved. "Conserved" means that if you take a situation, and you measure what is in it, then something happens in it (where ...
Yakk's user avatar
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15 votes

Why is mind interacting with matter any more problematic than matter interacting with matter?

Mainly because we have no idea how mind and matter are supposed to interact Causation is understood by many in a way that makes that problematic. This post gives a perfectly neutral definition which ...
Philip Klöcking's user avatar
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12 votes

What fallacy infers motivation from mere description?

The issue in the example seems to be that the word "dominate" is used in two different senses. When this is done in an argument (it is not clear that this is so here) the fallacy is called ...
Conifold's user avatar
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12 votes
Accepted

Why is mind interacting with matter any more problematic than matter interacting with matter?

The key difference between matter-matter interactions and mind-matter interactions is that we have been able to discover governing relationships (eg Newton's laws, Coulomb's law, General Relativity ...
Marco Ocram's user avatar
11 votes

What would reality be like without causality?

Conceivably, there is another way for a universe to be ordered rather being random and chaotic with invoking casuality: teleology. In a teleological universe things would do the things they do because ...
Jack Aidley's user avatar
10 votes

What would reality be like without causality?

I think this question cuts much deeper than most are giving it credit for. It is quite similar to free will versus determinism. Consider a simple universe consisting of a single snake and a sequence ...
usul's user avatar
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8 votes
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Is it a logical flaw to blame someone for an event if they were simply its causal factor?

This is well-known in ethics, but not as a flaw of argumentation, rather as the problem of causal resposibility. The problem is thorny because drawing the line depends on resolving highly ...
Conifold's user avatar
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8 votes

Do non physical causes exist?

To quote a cliche, the jury is still out on the question of the nature of the mind. There seems to be no doubt that thought and contemplation are somehow associated with physical processes in the ...
Marco Ocram's user avatar
7 votes
Accepted

If we imagine a world that functions without causality, how absurd could it be?

If the world were without causality then it need not change in any way. It might fortuitously behave exactly as it does now. This is certainly a logical possibility. If the world were without ...
Geoffrey Thomas's user avatar
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7 votes

Causation in physics equation

Physicists observe correlations. Physical laws explain observations by inventing physical concepts and clarifying their relation. These relations are often causal relations. Physical laws do not deal ...
Jo Wehler's user avatar
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7 votes

Can the absense of something be a cause?

I suppose what motivates your question is that often when we think of causes and effects we have in mind some kind of mechanism whereby some event or feature of a situation gives rise to another. ...
Bumble's user avatar
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6 votes

What fallacy infers motivation from mere description?

My interpretation is that the original statements are not necessarily fallacious, but rather a question of the semantics carried by the word "dominate." To dominate can mean colloquially that one ...
RaceYouAnytime's user avatar
6 votes

Does a biconditional necessarily imply a causal relationship?

No. If and only if [time passes] then [Uranium238 decays]. Time does not cause the decay, but it can't happen unless time passes. Another example is quantum entanglement. Given two entangled photons ...
Vogon Poet's user avatar
6 votes

Why is mind interacting with matter any more problematic than matter interacting with matter?

Not everyone has an "inner monologue" or ability to vividly imagine things: this is known as aphantasia. At an imaginary-angled diagonal from that, there are also people who are pain-...
Kristian Berry's user avatar
6 votes

Why is mind interacting with matter any more problematic than matter interacting with matter?

So there's this supposedly an 'interaction' problem for substance dualism, that isn't there for physicalism or idealism. I've never understood this. So as Hume pointed out, we see event a followed by ...
J D's user avatar
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6 votes

Why is mind interacting with matter any more problematic than matter interacting with matter?

I agree, the interaction problem is not unique to mind/body questions. For example, the original materialism posited everything was atoms colliding. However, now we know nothing collides, all ...
yters's user avatar
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6 votes

Causation in physics equation

Equations by definition simply equate, so if you state the laws of physics as equations, without any of the associated narrative, then you are not stating the laws of physics! Some equations express ...
Marco Ocram's user avatar
6 votes

Causation in physics equation

Granted that physicists have always been concerned about causation, I'd take exception to that, most physicist are expressely uninterested in metaphysical questions, at best they try to answer ...
Julio Di Egidio - inactive's user avatar
5 votes

Sketch of a proof for real free will?

I have read many contemporary philosophers and the mainstream view seems to be that real free will is an illusion in the sense that consciousness is an emergent phenomenon which is only set on top of ...
Chelonian's user avatar
  • 1,584
5 votes

Is causality a type of necessary and sufficient condition?

Simply put, causality would imply that the cause is a sufficient condition for the effect. That A caused B would only mean that A is a sufficient condition for B -- not that A is a necessary ...
virmaior's user avatar
  • 24.7k
5 votes

What do you call the fallacy of thinking that some action A will guarantee some outcome B, when in reality B depends on multiple other conditions?

The patient has confused necessary and sufficient conditions. Brushing one's teeth is necessary for good dental health, but is not sufficient to guarantee that outcome.
mander's user avatar
  • 59
5 votes

What's wrong with this reconstruction of Nagarjuna?

In his book The Fundalmental Wisdom of the Middle Way: Nagarjuna's Malamadhyamakakarika, Jay L. Garfield writes for his translation and commentary on this verse: The essence of entities Is ...
Swami Vishwananda's user avatar
5 votes

Kant on causation

This question is multi-faceted and I'll try to answer the aspects as shortly and succinct as possible. I think the main problem you are facing is that you in some sense did not quite fully understand ...
Philip Klöcking's user avatar
  • 14.2k
5 votes

Is the idea that "Everything is energy" even coherent?

In a nuclear explosion, we might say, "matter is converted into energy." But you can't exactly see energy or hold a piece of energy in your hand. It's not "glowy stuff" (as often ...
causative's user avatar
  • 13.6k
5 votes

What would reality be like without causality?

Random. If there is no causal relation then you'd have no fixed chain in which events do occur and so things just happen randomly. Now the question is whether there is local or short ranged causality ...
haxor789's user avatar
  • 6,152
5 votes

What would reality be like without causality?

In counterfactual scenarios, the more fundamental the counterfactual hypothesis, the more arbitrary the conclusion. If Kennedy had not be assassinated, presumably he would have run for a second term ...
Speakpigeon's user avatar
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5 votes
Accepted

What is this idea of causality being articulated?

The answer to this question is straightforward. Any metaphysical view of causation that imputes causal powers from the abstract domain of human thought to the physical world is known as mental ...
J D's user avatar
  • 27.7k
5 votes

Why is mind interacting with matter any more problematic than matter interacting with matter?

Mind is software, the brain hardware. Back in 1973, when I used to write drivers for hardware on an HP2100 minicomputer, we had hardware instructions that wrote to devices and read from them (I/O ...
Simon Crase's user avatar

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