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The quote appears at the beginning of Chapter VI of James's Principles of Psychology, and is preceded by a sentence that gives important context: "The reader who found himself swamped with too much metaphysics in the last chapter will have a still worse time of it in this one, which is exclusively metaphysical. Metaphysics means nothing but an ...


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Very few fragments extant. The source is Aristotle, De Caelo, II, 13: [295b10-296a21] there are some, Anaximander, for instance, among the ancients, who say that the earth keeps its place because of its indifference. Motion upward and downward and sideways were all, they thought, equally inappropriate to that which is set at the centre and indifferently ...


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How do you know your left hand exists? Or more generally, since everything is mediated by our own personal experience, how can we know anything for certain? Short Answer So, you've come to the right site because you can be advised that both questions are textbook examples of questions related to metaphysics, and that depending on the answers to your ...


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The problem is not just scientific, but moreover philosophical (philosophy being the mother of all sciences). Classical science dismissed the subject as if it would not exist. The perspective of the subject was considered always as an absolute truth, which implies that no other truths are valid, and that there's almost no subject, assuming that any ...


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Metaphysics is a rather unfashiinable term and branch of philosophy nowadays. It is probably unwise to judge all philosophy by it. Wittgenstein suggested philosophy is more like therapy, that helps us dispense with confusion & contradictions that arise due to language (mis)use. He saw it as identifying 'whereof we must remain silent', in which he ...


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This is a basic, but good, philosophy question. Philosophers take things that start out as poetry and try to make them rigorous. Eventually if it's made so rigorous as to be fully analytic, or testable, it becomes mathematics or science respectively. It may also make it into law or policy making, as lawyers and policy makers also need rigorous ways to think ...


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Short answer: no, statements in physics don't always assume an observer. There are many perfectly legitimate statements in physics that do not (and often cannot) assume an observer. I'll give two examples. The Schrodinger equation tells us how the quantum state evolves in time. But there is no way to observe the full quantum state. So the Schrodinger ...


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Metaphysics has come to mean what can be known about the first principles of things through introspection, in the way mathematical idealists consider mathematics to be. Ontology, the nature of being, coming to be, and change, has always been a central metaphysical topic. Dreams have been a topic for philosophy since Zuangzhi in the 4th C. BC, who wondered if ...


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it depends on what you mean by "Logical". Do you mean whether the laws hold regardless of any changes in circumstances such as Newton's Law of Gravitation? OR that the laws are derived via logical means? Philosophers sometimes differ on their conception of meaning and there have been arguments in the Philosophy of Logic about how much logic there ...


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Building off of @Conifold 's comment, here is a list of SEP articles which seem to contain contemporary off-shoots of the original "Problem of Universals". If anyone has a suggestion to add to the list, that would be awesome! Abstract Objects Types and Tokens Tropes Nominalism in Metaphysics Platonism in Metaphysics Properties Objects Ontic ...


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Buddhism can be described as defined by it's acceptance of change, called there anicca or impermanence, and considered within that body of thought one of the Three Marks of existence, a core inextricable quality of being which cannot be avoided or ended. Buddha was a contemporary or near-contemporary of Heraclitus. Buddhist thought avoids the problems of ...


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Meanings come from being aware of causal relations. You might walk down a trail and notice nothing of significance. An expert tracker on the same trail might notice all sorts of indications of wildlife which indicated an animal went this way or that, what kind of animal and whether it was hunting prey or was in heat. All the little disturbances, tracks and ...


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"foster-mothers and nurses to suckle and bathe and wash the children, but in no ways to prattle or speak with them; for he would have learnt whether they would speak the Hebrew language (which he took to have been the first), or Greek, or Latin, or Arabic, or perchance the tongue of their parents of whom they had been born. But he laboured in vain, for ...


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