Home Page of Dennis J. Darland's Philosophy
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My Philosophy

  1. General Remarks, Meta philosophy, and Method

    1. The ideas presented here are all preliminary. I am just working them out. I prefer to do it on web pages, as they have a greater persistence than email, etc.. I hope to get feedback and have been sending emails with links to these web pages. I hope to be able to improve them from feedback that I could not with just email (without the persistence), or publication in a journal (where I would for the most part have to produce a final product before getting feedback).
    2. (6/25/2014) Explanatory NOTE: The concepts represented in my definitions are not to be taken as any way ultimate. Belief, understanding, symbolizing are very complex (at least partly psychological) relations. They are not at all primitive metaphysical relations. But I think that they are relations that are approximations (sort of like Newtonian mechanics is in physics) to truer laws. Also many of the arguments against them contain mistakes. I believe that the mistakes can be seen from what I have already written. Anyway, for now, I am on other projects. I may work more on this someday, but I feel that if anyone seriously studies the ideas here they will see I am correct.
    3. I have been thinking more. I think there are only fields or something related to fields which theoretically correspond to real or complex numbers. There is not actually anything discrete or digital. All is continuous or analog, but anything discrete or digital can be approximated very closely (though perhaps not arbitrarily closely) by things continuous or analog. Discrete and analog are products of the human mind through evolution and are actually falsifications of what is real. The real we know through intuition rather than from intellect. But intellect can give answers in any particular area as close as we need. This is similar to Henri Bergson, but I need to re-read him. Also I think there is nothing to life irreducible except its complexity.
    4. On my method and a very brief introduction to Prolog.My Philosophical Method.(P)(Revised May 9/2011)
    5. Some background information.Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy on "incomplete symbols".
    6. Some general thoughts on philosophy - tentative - although stated assertively.
  2. Favorite (or otherwise important) relevant quotations

    1. A favorite quote - relevant to my philosophy:
      "A proposition is just a symbol It is a complex symbol in the sense that it has parts which are also symbols: a symbol may be defined as complex when it has parts that are symbols. In a sentence containing several words, the several words are each symbols, and the sentence containing them is therefore a complex symbol in that sense. There is a good deal of importance to philosophy in the theory of symbolism, a good deal more that at one time I thought. I think the importance is almost always negative, i.e. the importance lies in the fact that unless you are fairly self-conscious about symbols, unless you are fairly aware of the relation of the symbol to what it symbolizes, you will find yourself attributing to the thing properties which only belong to the symbol. That, of course, is especially likely in very abstract studies such as philosophical logic, because the subject-matter that you are supposed to be thinking of is so exceedingly difficult and elusive that any person who has ever tried to think about it knows you do not think about it except perhaps once in six months for half a minute. The rest of the time you think about the symbols, because they are tangible, but the thing you are supposed to be thinking about is fearfully difficult and one does not often manage to think about it. The really good philosopher is the one who does once in six months think about it for a minute. Bad philosophers never do."
      ---- Bertrand Russell in "The Philosophy of Logical Atomism" - Volume 8 of The Collected Papers of Bertrand Russell, page 166.
    2. From page xli of the CPBR volume 5 - in a letter of 13 June 1905 to Lucy Donnelly BR wrote:

      "For a long time I have been at intervals debating this conundrum: If two names or descriptions apply to the same object, whatever is true of the one is true or the other. Now George IV wished to know whether Scott was the author of Waverly. Hence, putting "Scott" on the place of "the author of Waverly", we find that George IV wished to know whether Scott was Scott, which implies more interest in the Laws of Thought than was possible for the First Gentleman of Europe. This little puzzle was quite hard to solve; the solution, which I have now found, throws a flood of light on the foundations of mathematics and the whole problem of the relation of thought to things."

      The solution was published on "On Denoting".

    3. From "On Denoting" - page 423 of CPBR volume 4, BR wrote:

      'According to the view which I advocate, a denoting phrase is essentially part of a sentence, and does not, like most single words, have any significance on its own account. If I say "Scott was a man", that is a statement of the form "x was a man", and it has "Scott" for its subject". But if I say "the author of Waverly was a man", that is not a statement of the form "x was a man", and does not have "the author of Waverly for its subject. ... , we may put, in place of "the author of Waverly was a man" the following: "One and only one entity wrote Waverly, and that one was a man".
      ... And speaking generally, suppose we wish to say that the author of Waverly had the property F, what we wish to say is equivalent to "One and only one entity wrote Waverly, and that one had the property F."
      ... "Scott was the author of Waverly" (i.e. "Scott was identical with the author of Waverly") becomes "One and only one entity wrote Waverly, and Scott was identical with that one"; or reverting to the wholly explicit form: "It is not always false of x that x wrote Waverly, that it is always true of y that if y wrote Waverly y is identical with x, and that Scott is identical with x."
    4. From Quine - Word and Object page 142:
      "(1) 'Tully was a Roman' is trochaic.
      When a singular term is used in a sentence purelt to specify its object, and the sentence is true of the object, then certainly the sentence will stay true when any other singular term is substituted that designates the same object. Here we have a criterion for what may be called purely referential position: the position musy be subject to the substituitivity of identity. That position of 'Tully' in (1) is not purely referential is reflected in the falsity of what we get by supplanting 'Tully' in (1) by 'Cicero'.

  3. My Philosophy

    1. Important Revision of Main Ideas on Telling, Belief, and Truth(March 5-7, 2013)
    2. New Ideas on Analysis of Sense Language(March 7, 2013)
    3. Important Note on definition of belief and opacity.(P)(revised May 9, 2011)
    4. The Illusion of Opacity (July 21, 2013)
    5. Determinism vs Free Will (October 3, 2013)
    6. Intelligent Goal Directed Systems (October 4, 2013)
    7. On going on the same way.(P)(revised May 13, 2011)
    8. Note on identity beliefs.(P)(revised May 10, 2011)
    9. Belief_r in plain English - As best I can explain.(P)(revised May 9, 2011)
    10. A revision to my definition of belief On Variables(P)(added Sept. 26, 2007)(revised May 10, 2011)
    11. A sample of a complex belief(P)(revised May 10, 2011)
    12. Note on definite descriptions and opacity.(P)(Revised May 10, 2011)
    13. Note on why opacity matters.(P)(revised May 11, 2011)
    14. Note on the logic of belief.(P)(revised May 13, 2011)
    15. Note on Symbolism(P)(revised May 13, 2011)
    16. Note on Quantifying into belief contexts.(P)(revised May 9, 2011).
    17. On Intensional Functions of Functions(P) (revised May 13, 2011)
    18. Note on Understanding.(P)(revised May 9, 2011)
    19. Note on what Propositions are.(P) (revised May 9, 2011)
    20. More on Intension.(P)(revised May 16, 2011)
    21. On Truth and Wittgenstein"s Objection to Russell"s Theory of Knowledge. On Truth.(P)(revised May 9, 2011)
    22. On Explaining Symbols(P).(revised May 16, 2011)
    23. On Symbols and Existence.(P)(revised May 16, 2011)
    24. PM Definitions of "the" and classes (P)(revised May 16, 2011)
    25. The trouble with Incomplete Symbols.(P)(revised May 16, 2011)
    26. Predicates, Intension, and Induction: Grue.(P)(revised May 16, 2011)
    27. More (less developed) ideas.
  4. Philosophy in Prolog or Life

    1. My philosophy in Prolog.(P)(revised May 16, 2011)
    2. More of my philosophy in Prolog.(P)(revised May 16, 2011)
    3. More Philosophy - including Perception in Prolog(T)
    4. Principia Mathematica Class Definitions in Prolog(P)(revised May 16, 2011)
    5. Concerning: Stich, Stephen - From Folk Psychology to Cognitive Science: The Case Against Belief [1983] (re-read 5/2/2014 to page 16 of 246 pages)
      I am re-reading with the intent of writing prolog code to illustrate how each example would be handled by my philosophy.
      Prolog programs to reply to Stich's examples
  5. Remarks of mine on other philosophers, etc.

    1. I have done an Anatomy of a proof in Principia Mathematica
    2. Reaction to Stich.(P) (March 22, 2013)
    3. Reaction to Fodor.(P) (July 14, 2013)
    4. Fodor, me and Propositional Attitudes (P) (July 14, 2013)
    5. On Kripke (P) (revised December 19, 2007)
    6. On Landini on LW's criticism of BR's multiple relation theory of belief (P) (revised December 18, 2007)
  6. Remarks of other philosophers on my philosophy

    1. A Discussion with W. M.(H)
  7. Some Confused Ideas I have had

    1. Confused Ideas (April-May, 2014) Philosophical Ideas.(H)
    2. Actually it all just depends on the scope given to the definite descriptions.
    3. The scope of the quantifiers is affected.
    4. The "confused" philosophy applies gives the definitions a greater scope. It is not "wrong", but rather not what I intended - so I was "confused".