March 23, 2020

On abortion

The abortion debate goes on and on; after a period of liberalization, in some countries, abortion laws become stricter again. The search goes on to find the balance between its practical inevitability and its fundamental immorality. In his insightful book The Ethics of Killing, Jeff McMahan deals with many aspects of abortion: the unborn child’s development, the balance of interest […]
June 2, 2020

Knowledge and reality

What is knowledge? Does it mirror reality, or is our idea of reality dependent on the way we ourselves are? Epistemological conflicts Epistemology offers lots of theories of knowledge as well as their refutations. These theories practically all focus on knowledge as private. This far, definitions of knowledge as residing in private minds have been rather disappointing. One of the […]
June 9, 2020

Knowledge and facts

In Knowledge and Truth, I wrote that knowledge is supposed to refer to facts. But what are facts? Possible meanings of “fact” In ordinary language, the word fact has a strong connotation of truth. Sentences like “it is a fact that p” or “p is true” seem to mean the same – p stands for a proposition.  But “p is true because […]
June 13, 2020

Coincidence, determinism and free will

A man leaves his office, unsuspectingly walks past a house where a roof tiler accidently drops a tile, killing the man. Fred sits quietly in his room when a sudden gust of wind slams his window shut. That evening they call to tell him that his best friend has had a fatal car accident. In the course of some party […]
June 23, 2020

Truth and history

History has been called “more or less bunk”, “fluid prejudice”, and “a version of the past people decided to agree upon.” History’s only lesson is said to be “that we never learn very much from it.” It is “a gallery of pictures in which there are few originals and many copies,” as Alexis de Tocqueville wrote. Whence history’s dubious reputation? […]
July 11, 2020

Truth and identity

Trying to understand the world, we enter into a complex network of representations, both of ourselves and of the outside world, of relations between our self as we perceive it and as perceived by others and of differences across time. Since reality is not as it is, but as we humans see it – see Knowledge and reality – our […]
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