Single Idea 8014

[catalogued under 1. Philosophy / F. Analytic Philosophy / 2. Analysis by Division]

Full Idea

Hobbes took his method from Galileo, of resolving any complex situation into its logically primitive, simple elements and then using the simple elements to show how the complex situation could be reconstructed.

Gist of Idea

Resolve a complex into simple elements, then reconstruct the complex by using them


report of Thomas Hobbes (Leviathan [1651]) by Alasdair MacIntyre - A Short History of Ethics Ch.10

Book Reference

MacIntyre,Alasdair: 'A Short History of Ethics' [Routledge 1967], p.132

A Reaction

Reverse engineering of reality. This idea, wherever it comes from, strikes me as the key to the advance of human understanding. No one has yet improved on it as a method, in science or philosophy. Reconstruction needs the mechanism.