7/ 12/ 11

Science was able to make more progress since it based itself on definitions phenomena confirmable in particular cases, that is, definitions that could be evident in the concrete particular. This required a dialectical method and stipulative definitions, since what we know first is not concrete or particularized but vague and certain.


  1. Peter said,

    July 12, 2011 at 10:14 am

    Could you expand on this? At first I thought it was clear, but now it seems fuzzy:

    What do you mean by “progress” (in number of theories or statements affirmed? technology?)? And when you say “more progress”, more than what? (Earlier science? Science that didn’t use similar definitions? Religion? Philosophy?…. How do we make progress in philosophy in a sense that it could be compared with science anyway?)

    Just wondering…

    • July 12, 2011 at 6:09 pm

      More quickly than it had progressed in the centuries from Aristotle to Galileo. Here I’m just interested in physical science – I don’t know how contemporary science would compare to the expansion of learning in Scholasticism from Anselm to John of St. Thomas (and Scholasticism has only been dormant since the seventies anyway – it will catch fire again soon).

      Dialectics (not the question and answer method, but the subject) turn on the endoxical, that is, what is commonly held and accepted, or at least easily accepted by many when heard. This is why dialectics is better at building a community. Oddly enough, the first things we know are not endoxical or commonly accepted, but take a good deal of dialectics to get a clear view of. I think of Aristotle’s axioms about the more knowable to us and the more knowable in themselves, accidental predication, substance and accident, etc. All these are the first things we know, but none are endoxical.

  2. Peter said,

    July 13, 2011 at 4:21 am

    The 70’s? You mean the 1670’s? Hehehe.

    Speaking of dialectic and axioms: How do you understand the axiom of proceeding from the known (or from the more known) to the unknown (or to the less known) with regard to dialectics? After all, it proceeds conjecturally and stipulatively, which is opposed to knowingly.

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