From: Scott R (email@example.com)
Date: Sat Sep 13 2003 - 18:04:41 BST
[Matt:] > When I say that the analogy hinges on an ocular metaphor, I mean
that the representationalist takes the example and creates the existence of
a metaphysical Eye, that recognizes Truth when it sees it, as analoguous to
the physical eye we sense things with. That's why representationalists say
the truth is "justified _true_ belief": they think that our special Eye
tells us when a belief is true and not just justified. Pragmatists have no
idea how this is done. They don't accept the analogy between a sensory eye
and a metaphysical Eye.
[Scott:] You may be interested that Coleridge sees bad philosophy (aka SOM)
as coming about through what he calls "the despotism of the eye". While I
think he would agree with the above, in that he does not hold with Truth as
something "to be seen", actually (as in naive materialism -- what is real is
what is perceivable) or analogically, he also rails against it for another
reason. That is the tendency to simply give up thinking when the discussion
moves to the non-visualizable.
An example is the tendency to call quantum physics paradoxical, when it is
not at all. The mathematics is perfectly consistent (as it must be to be
mathematics). However, what we cannot do is visualize the goings on at the
quantum level which the mathematics indicates, since visualization requires
that things behave like particles or waves, but not both simultaneously,
that they have precise locations and momenta, etc.
Of course, he knew nothing of quantum mechanics, and what he had in mind is
his law of polarity, which cannot be visualized because it involves
self-contradictory identity. It requires, and indeed is, Imagination, in his
use of the word.
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