Ideas from 'Writing the Book of the World' by Theodore Sider [2011], by Theme Structure

[found in 'Writing the Book of the World' by Sider,Theodore [OUP 2011,978-0-19-969790-8]].

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1. Philosophy / E. Nature of Metaphysics / 2. Possibility of Metaphysics
Your metaphysics is 'cheating' if your ontology won't support the beliefs you accept
1. Philosophy / E. Nature of Metaphysics / 3. Metaphysics as Science
Metaphysics is not about what exists or is true or essential; it is about the structure of reality
Extreme doubts about metaphysics also threaten to undermine the science of unobservables
1. Philosophy / E. Nature of Metaphysics / 5. Metaphysics as Conceptual
It seems unlikely that the way we speak will give insights into the universe
1. Philosophy / F. Analytic Philosophy / 2. Conceptual Analysis
Conceptual analysts trust particular intuitions much more than general ones
2. Reason / D. Definition / 12. Against Definition
It seems possible for a correct definition to be factually incorrect, as in defining 'contact'
Philosophical concepts are rarely defined, and are not understood by means of definitions
3. Truth / A. Truth Problems / 3. Value of Truth
We don't care about plain truth, but truth in joint-carving terms
3. Truth / B. Truthmakers / 5. What Makes Truths / b. Objects make truths
Orthodox truthmaker theories make entities fundamental, but that is poor for explanation
4. Formal Logic / D. Modal Logic ML / 7. Barcan Formula
The Barcan schema implies if X might have fathered something, there is something X might have fathered
4. Formal Logic / G. Formal Mereology / 1. Mereology
'Gunk' is an object in which proper parts all endlessly have further proper parts
4. Formal Logic / G. Formal Mereology / 3. Axioms of Mereology
Which should be primitive in mereology - part, or overlap?
5. Theory of Logic / A. Overview of Logic / 1. Overview of Logic
There is a real issue over what is the 'correct' logic
'It is raining' and 'it is not raining' can't be legislated, so we can't legislate 'p or p'
5. Theory of Logic / A. Overview of Logic / 6. Classical Logic
Classical logic is good for mathematics and science, but less good for natural language
5. Theory of Logic / B. Logical Consequence / 1. Logical Consequence
Modal accounts of logical consequence are simple necessity, or essential use of logical words
5. Theory of Logic / E. Structures of Logic / 2. Logical Connectives / a. Logical connectives
Define logical constants by role in proofs, or as fixed in meaning, or as topic-neutral
5. Theory of Logic / H. Proof Systems / 4. Natural Deduction
'Tonk' is supposed to follow the elimination and introduction rules, but it can't be so interpreted
7. Existence / C. Structure of Existence / 5. Supervenience / a. Nature of supervenience
Supervenience is a modal connection
7. Existence / C. Structure of Existence / 6. Fundamentals / b. Types of fundamental
Is fundamentality in whole propositions (and holistic), or in concepts (and atomic)?
Tables and chairs have fundamental existence, but not fundamental natures
7. Existence / C. Structure of Existence / 8. Stuff / a. Pure stuff
Unlike things, stuff obeys unrestricted composition and mereological essentialism
7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 8. States of Affairs
We must distinguish 'concrete' from 'abstract' and necessary states of affairs.
7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 10. Ontological Commitment / d. Commitment of theories
Accept the ontology of your best theory - and also that it carves nature at the joints
8. Modes of Existence / B. Properties / 3. Types of Properties
A property is intrinsic if an object alone in the world can instantiate it
8. Modes of Existence / B. Properties / 10. Properties as Predicates
Predicates can be 'sparse' if there is a universal, or if there is a natural property or relation
9. Objects / D. Essence of Objects / 15. Against Essentialism
Essence (even if nonmodal) is not fundamental in metaphysics
10. Modality / C. Sources of Modality / 1. Sources of Necessity
Humeans say that we decide what is necessary
Modal terms in English are entirely contextual, with no modality outside the language
10. Modality / C. Sources of Modality / 3. Necessity by Convention
If truths are necessary 'by convention', that seems to make them contingent
Conventionalism doesn't seem to apply to examples of the necessary a posteriori
10. Modality / C. Sources of Modality / 4. Necessity from Concepts
Humeans says mathematics and logic are necessary because that is how our concept of necessity works
10. Modality / C. Sources of Modality / 5. Modality from Actuality
The world does not contain necessity and possibility - merely how things are
14. Science / B. Scientific Theories / 2. Aim of Science
A theory which doesn't fit nature is unexplanatory, even if it is true
14. Science / B. Scientific Theories / 8. Ramsey Sentences
If I used ramsey sentences to eliminate fundamentality from my theory, that would be a real loss
14. Science / C. Induction / 5. Paradoxes of Induction / a. Grue problem
Problem predicates in induction don't reflect the structure of nature
Two applications of 'grue' do not guarantee a similarity between two things
14. Science / C. Induction / 6. Bayes's Theorem
Bayes produces weird results if the prior probabilities are bizarre
14. Science / D. Explanation / 1. Explanation / a. Explanation
Explanations must cite generalisations
14. Science / D. Explanation / 3. Best Explanation / b. Ultimate explanation
If the ultimate explanation is a list of entities, no laws, patterns or mechanisms can be cited
15. Nature of Minds / B. Features of Minds / 4. Intentionality / a. Nature of intentionality
Intentionality is too superficial to appear in the catalogue of ultimate physics
19. Language / A. Nature of Meaning / 6. Meaning as Use
Prior to conventions, not all green things were green?
19. Language / E. Analyticity / 2. Analytic Truths
Conventions are contingent and analytic truths are necessary, so that isn't their explanation
19. Language / E. Analyticity / 4. Analytic/Synthetic Critique
Analyticity has lost its traditional role, which relied on truth by convention
26. Natural Theory / D. Laws of Nature / 11. Against Laws of Nature
Many of the key theories of modern physics do not appear to be 'laws'
The notion of law doesn't seem to enhance physical theories
27. Natural Reality / A. Space-Time / 1. Space / d. Substantival space
Space has real betweenness and congruence structure (though it is not the Euclidean concepts)
27. Natural Reality / A. Space-Time / 2. Time / a. Time
The central question in the philosophy of time is: How alike are time and space?
27. Natural Reality / A. Space-Time / 2. Time / g. Eternalism
The spotlight theorists accepts eternal time, but with a spotlight of the present moving across it