[Serious Phil] Predicates Without Properties
walterhorn at yahoo.com
Wed Aug 1 06:13:23 CDT 2012
--- In Phil-Sci-Mind at yahoogroups.com, Joseph Polanik <Philscimind at ...> wrote:
> if I assert, "res extensa is a substance" I am ascribing a predicate to
> the subject of predication, res extensa; but, I am not ascribing any
> property to it; and, I am most certainly not attributing to res extensa
> the property of being a substance instead of a property.
> similarly for 'phenomenon'.
> >And in , by 'x is' do you mean 'x exists'?
> that depends on whether you mean by 'x exists' what I mean by 'x is'.
> according to Parmenides, what is not is not and can not be spoken of.
> consequently, to say of x, 'x is' implies that x is not nothing at all
> (or something to that effect).
What prevents us (other than Parmenides' proscription) from speaking of what does not exist? People thought, e.g., that phlogiston and the fountain of youth existed: they were wrong, weren't they?
> consequently, I take 'x is' to be identical in meaning to 'x is not
> nothing at all'.
I have no problem with that, but, while the "consequently" may be ok, it's a one-way implication. From "x is" implying "x is not nothing at all" we cannot infer Meinongian flotsam.
> do you mean by 'x exists' exactly what I mean by 'x is not nothing at
> >And is there an implicit quantifier? That is, are you are referring to
> >some predicate P such that (x) (Ex <-> Px)
> I would express it as (x)(Px) read as 'for any x that is, Px' where P is
> 'not nothing at all' or some other predicate defined to mean 'not
> nothing at all'. I suspect that most people would prefer a universally
> applicable predicate that is not phrased as a negative; and, that's fine
> with me as long as it means just 'not nothing at all'.
That would probably be ok with everybody, so long as it isn't used to infer the Parmenidean baloney above.
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