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15. Nature of Minds / C. Capacities of Minds / 5. Generalisation by mind

[uniting similarities in reality into single propositions]

30 ideas
Skill comes from a general assumption obtained from thinking about similar things [Aristotle]
Aristotle distinguishes two different sorts of generality - kinds, and properties [Frede,M on Aristotle]
Perception creates primitive immediate principles by building a series of firm concepts [Aristotle]
A perception lodging in the soul creates a primitive universal, which becomes generalised [Aristotle]
Linguistic terms form a hierarchy, with higher terms predicable of increasing numbers of things [Aristotle]
We understand the general nature of things by ignoring individual peculiarities [Aquinas]
Very general ideas (being, oneness, potentiality) can be abstracted from thought matter in general [Aquinas]
The mind abstracts generalities from images, but also uses images for understanding [Aquinas]
Particular instances come first, and (pace Plato) generalisations are abstracted from them [Aquinas]
Species are abstracted from appearances by ignoring individual conditions [Aquinas]
People love (unfortunately) extreme generality, rather than particular knowledge [Bacon]
A triangle diagram is about all triangles, if some features are ignored [Arnauld,A/Nicole,P]
The mind creates abstractions by generalising about appearances of objects, ignoring time or place [Locke]
General words represent general ideas, which are abstractions from immediate circumstances [Locke]
Abstraction attends to the general, not the particular, and involves universal truths [Leibniz]
Only words can introduce general ideas into the mind [Rousseau]
General ideas are purely intellectual; imagining them is immediately particular [Rousseau]
Generalization is the true end of life [Peirce]
Generalisation is the great law of mind [Peirce]
The 'highest' concepts are the most general and empty concepts [Nietzsche]
If concepts are just recognitional, then general judgements would be impossible [Geach]
General truths are a type of negative truth, saying there are no more ravens than black ones [Armstrong]
Predicates are a source of generality in sentences [Davidson]
The very concepts of a particular power or nature imply the possibility of being generalised [Harré/Madden]
Generalization seems to be more fundamental to minds than spotting similarities [Lehrer]
Mathematics generalises by using variables [Coffa]
If green is abstracted from a thing, it is only seen as a type if it is common to many things [Fine,K]
Only particulars exist, and generality is our mode of presentation [Heil]
'Humility is a virtue' has an abstract noun, but 'water is a liquid' has a generic concrete noun [Laycock]
Mathematical generalisation is by extending a system, or by abstracting away from it [Colyvan]