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Single Idea 21534

[catalogued under 8. Modes of Existence / A. Relations / 1. Nature of Relations]

Full Idea

It may be doubted whether relations can be adequately characterised by anything except the fact that they relate.

Gist of Idea

The only thing we can say about relations is that they relate


Bertrand Russell (Meinong on Complexes and Assumptions [1904], p.27)

A Reaction

We can characterise a rope that ties things together. If I say 'stand to his left', do I assume the existence of one of the relata and the relation, but without the second relata? How about 'you two stand over there, with him on the left'?

Book Reference

Russell,Bertrand: 'Essays in Analysis', ed/tr. Lackey,Douglas [George Braziller 1973], p.27