jacassidy2

Apples are not apples.

3 posts in this topic

I was asked to comment on this statement, and used it as an excuse to educate:

Apples are not apples.

Then asked to answer true, false, neither, or both.

I wanted my answer to be judged by Objectivists.

Assuming you are not physically indicating an item when you make the statement, that the statement stands alone - apple is a word that stands for a concept that is represented by the word. The concept includes all the characteristics of the existents it subsumes, that is, all apples in existence and all the apples in the past, present, and future. The concept exists in human cognition and its reality exists in every apple you discover.

A valid concept is a cognitive and contextual step in the hierarchy of human knowledge. A valid definition of apple tries to summarize apple attributes into two groups - the idea that links all apples as a class and the idea that differentiates that class from all other similar things in existence in the context of current knowledge and no further by human speculation.

When we get the total characterization and the definition correct, the discovery of a new apple as new knowledge, still fits the definition and the word - showing the hierarchical nature of human knowledge.

Based on the above and in the context of the original question, you are asking to judge the statement "A is non-A." It's plural and there is a logic trick in the sense of the statement using the "not." But it's still the same, "a thing is not itself." So the answer is the statement is false.

Thanks for any time you spend on this. Jack

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was asked to comment on this statement, and used it as an excuse to educate:

Apples are not apples.

Then asked to answer true, false, neither, or both.

I wanted my answer to be judged by Objectivists.

Assuming you are not physically indicating an item when you make the statement, that the statement stands alone - apple is a word that stands for a concept that is represented by the word. The concept includes all the characteristics of the existents it subsumes, that is, all apples in existence and all the apples in the past, present, and future. The concept exists in human cognition and its reality exists in every apple you discover.

A valid concept is a cognitive and contextual step in the hierarchy of human knowledge. A valid definition of apple tries to summarize apple attributes into two groups - the idea that links all apples as a class and the idea that differentiates that class from all other similar things in existence in the context of current knowledge and no further by human speculation.

When we get the total characterization and the definition correct, the discovery of a new apple as new knowledge, still fits the definition and the word - showing the hierarchical nature of human knowledge.

Based on the above and in the context of the original question, you are asking to judge the statement "A is non-A." It's plural and there is a logic trick in the sense of the statement using the "not." But it's still the same, "a thing is not itself." So the answer is the statement is false.

That is a pretty good theoretical answer to what you assumed was being asked, but I would approach the statement differently.

The statement strikes me as odd and the first thing I would do would ask the person who said it "Whatever do you mean? What are you referring to? Why did you bring this up?"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yup, I see your point and it's the category of premise I thought I might get by asking the question here. Thank you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites