One of my favorite things I learned when reading about logic recently is that logic describes the relationship between statements.
A person’s argument can still be logically valid even if it is built on erroneous premises.
The conclusion may not be a correct one, but you can’t fault the logic for that.
Or to put it in simper terms: sound arguments can be used to support idiotic premises and causes. The thing they’re supporting may be faulty, but the arguments themselves can be air-tight.
Logic is not a “what”, it’s a “how”.
You put garbage in, you get garbage out.
My question though, is “is there any such thing as a correct premise?”
Can a statement even embody the quality of “truthfulness”?
..and can you even..? (‘cos I still can’t) How on earth some of these motherfuckers even is beyond all of my powers of grokitude..
It used to bother me, as a teenager, when first confronted with these grandiose systems of thought.. sitting there in class one day being told “this is true because this is true”.
Well how do we know that that’s true?
“Well, that’s true because this other thing is true…”
It was turtles all the way down and my brain was seriously fucked for a hot minute there.
All of it – from calculus to medicine, chemistry, physics, math, philosophy and so on and so forth – they all just struck me as Castles in the Clouds.
But we were taught, later on in the higher maths, to begin calculating our margin or error along with the solution to the problem.. because apparently real life will never actually reflect the simplicity and purity of a construct such as numbers on a page. Nothing is ever that black and white, but all that mattered in the real world was to minimize that margin of error down to a magnitude where you could be reasonably sure that the shuttle wouldn’t explode.
And then a few days later the shuttle exploded.
Look at the story of modern calculus itself: You’re all familiar with Euclid’s Axioms?
An axiom is a “self-evident” principle, something which is intrinsically true, fundamentally true, so clearly and obviously and universally and always true that it need not even be questioned – nay, can not even be questioned.
The fields of mathematics, logic, and philosophy all define an “axiom” as “an assumption that serves as a basis for deduction of theorems”.
Okay, an assumption .. and Mr. Euclid most certainly did make an ASS out of U and ME and the rest of western civilization for about 2,150 years….
Until something very strange happened. In the early 1800s, almost at the exact same time but independently of one another [clearly ALIENS] a man named Bolyai and a man named Lobachevski (a Hungarian and a Russian) decided to see what would happen if they reversed one of Euclid’s postulates and built their own system using the reversal.
Lobachevski specifically reversed the one based off the assumption that parallel lines can never intersect. He wanted to see how silly the results would be if humanity had tried to build a system of thought based on the idea that parallel lines can in fact intersect.
This was initially supposed to be a fun but irrelevant thought experiment to waste away another boring afternoon, but the results were staggering and ghastly: they weren’t wrong.
There was nothing in the system he’d build that was an inherent contradiction within the paradigm he’d created. His new system of geometry (based off of “clearly erroneous” fundamental assumptions) was neither no more or no less valid than the system western civilization had been using for the past two millennia.
Not only did we now have two different systems of mathematics and geometry that were equally universally “true” and “provable” but also contradicted one another, but furthermore Lobachevskian Geometry immediately began to yield real world practical application and technology.
Later in that century, a German mathematician named Bernhard Riemann took their work one step further and built his own unshakable system of geometry based off of reversing Euclid’s first axiom.
The resulting Riemann Geometry was described by Albert Einstein as being the “best description of the world we live in.”
So I ask you, good people, what is an “IS”?
And what is ‘it’?
People laugh that sound arguments can be constructed out of garbage and fluff .. but what makes their fundamental assumptions any better than yours?
How do we really gnow anything?
Have you figured out how to even yet?
We all know the map is not the territory, the menu is not the meal and the finger pointing to the moon is not the moon, but what if there is no moon?
Is it possible, that the “Thing Itself” really is just ΧÁΟΣ? That for once, we actually can get away with applying principles found in quantum physics to the macro world and that the entire cosmos and any moon to which you might point exists in a primeval state of void until an observer perceives it?