Ideas from 'Laws in Nature' by Stephen Mumford [2004], by Theme Structure

[found in 'Laws in Nature' by Mumford,Stephen [Routledge 2006,0-415-40782-6]].

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1. Philosophy / D. Nature of Philosophy / 5. Hopes for Philosophy
Science studies phenomena, but only metaphysics tells us what exists
1. Philosophy / E. Nature of Metaphysics / 1. Nature of Metaphysics
Maybe analysis seeks the 'nominal essence', and metaphysics seeks the 'real essence'
2. Reason / A. Nature of Reason / 1. On Reason
Many forms of reasoning, such as extrapolation and analogy, are useful but deductively invalid
7. Existence / A. Nature of Existence / 1. Nature of Existence
For Humeans the world is a world primarily of events
8. Modes of Existence / C. Powers and Dispositions / 2. Powers as Basic
Properties are just natural clusters of powers
8. Modes of Existence / E. Nominalism / 1. Nominalism / a. Nominalism
A 'porridge' nominalist thinks we just divide reality in any way that suits us
8. Modes of Existence / E. Nominalism / 2. Resemblance Nominalism
If properties are clusters of powers, this can explain why properties resemble in degrees
9. Objects / D. Essence of Objects / 14. Knowledge of Essences
How can we show that a universally possessed property is an essential property?
26. Natural Theory / C. Causation / 3. General Causation / b. Nomological causation
Singular causes, and identities, might be necessary without falling under a law
26. Natural Theory / C. Causation / 3. General Causation / c. Counterfactual causation
We can give up the counterfactual account if we take causal language at face value
26. Natural Theory / C. Causation / 3. General Causation / d. Causal necessity
It is only properties which are the source of necessity in the world
26. Natural Theory / D. Laws of Nature / 1. Laws of Nature
There are four candidates for the logical form of law statements
26. Natural Theory / D. Laws of Nature / 4. Regularities / a. Regularity theory
Would it count as a regularity if the only five As were also B?
Regularities are more likely with few instances, and guaranteed with no instances!
Pure regularities are rare, usually only found in idealized conditions
Regularity laws don't explain, because they have no governing role
26. Natural Theory / D. Laws of Nature / 4. Regularities / b. Best system theory
If the best system describes a nomological system, the laws are in nature, not in the description
The best systems theory says regularities derive from laws, rather than consituting them
26. Natural Theory / D. Laws of Nature / 5. Laws from Universals
Laws of nature are necessary relations between universal properties, rather than about particulars
If laws can be uninstantiated, this favours the view of them as connecting universals
26. Natural Theory / D. Laws of Nature / 8. Scientific Essentialism / c. Essence and laws
Laws of nature are just the possession of essential properties by natural kinds
26. Natural Theory / D. Laws of Nature / 8. Scientific Essentialism / d. Knowing essences
To distinguish accidental from essential properties, we must include possible members of kinds
26. Natural Theory / D. Laws of Nature / 12. Against Laws of Nature
There are no laws of nature in Aristotle; they became standard with Descartes and Newton
The Central Dilemma is how to explain an internal or external view of laws which govern
You only need laws if you (erroneously) think the world is otherwise inert