Ideas from 'works' by William of Ockham [1335], by Theme Structure

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2. Reason / B. Laws of Thought / 6. Ockham's Razor
Do not multiply entities beyond necessity
                        Full Idea: Do not multiply entities beyond necessity.
                        From: William of Ockham (works [1335])
                        A reaction: This is the classic statement of Ockham's Razor, though it is not found in his printed works. It appears to be mainly aimed at Plato's Theory of Forms. It is taken to refer to types of entities, not numbers. One seraph is as bad as a hundred.
8. Modes of Existence / D. Universals / 5. Universals as Concepts
Species and genera are individual concepts which naturally signify many individuals
                        Full Idea: In his mature nominalism, species and genera are identified with certain mental qualities called concepts or intentions of the mind. Ontologically they are individuals too, like everthing else, ...but they naturally signify many different individuals.
                        From: William of Ockham (works [1335]), quoted by Claude Panaccio - William of Ockham p.1056
                        A reaction: 'Naturally' is the key word, because the concepts are not fictions, but natural responses to encountering individuals in the world. I am an Ockhamist.
27. Natural Reality / D. Time / 1. Nature of Time / h. Denying time
The past has ceased to exist, and the future does not yet exist, so time does not exist
                        Full Idea: Time is composed of non-entities, because it is composed of the past which does not exist now, although it did exist, and of the future, which does not yet exist; therefore time does not exist.
                        From: William of Ockham (works [1335], 6:496), quoted by Richard T.W. Arthur - Leibniz 7 'Nominalist'
                        A reaction: I've a lot of sympathy with this! I favour Presentism, so the past is gone and the future is yet to arrive. But we have no coherent concept of a present moment of any duration to contain reality. We are just completely bogglificated by it all.
28. God / A. Divine Nature / 6. Divine Morality / d. God decrees morality
William of Ockham is the main spokesman for God's commands being the source of morality
                        Full Idea: The most notable philosopher who makes God's commandment the basis of goodness, rather than God's goodness a reason for obeying him, is William of Occam.
                        From: William of Ockham (works [1335]), quoted by Alasdair MacIntyre - A Short History of Ethics Ch.9
                        A reaction: Either view has problems. Why choose God to obey? Obey anyone who is powerful? But how do you decide that God is good? How do we know the nature of God's commands, or the nature of God's goodness? Etc.
29. Religion / B. Monotheistic Religion / 4. Christianity / c. Angels
Even an angel must have some location
                        Full Idea: Ockham dismisses the possibility of non-location out of hand, remarking that even an angel has some location.
                        From: report of William of Ockham (works [1335]) by Robert Pasnau - Metaphysical Themes 1274-1671 14.4