NYIT-Nanjing / Philosophy 110 / Introduction to Philosophy / Spring 2012 Exam 2 / Final Exam Review Sheet I. Terms: Plenum: The most obvious example of this is Descartes? vortex theory, which attempts to explain the motion of the earth around the sun in terms of a whirlpool-like mechanism that locks the earth in its orbit as a result of the universal presence of tiny, invisible particles throughout all space—the plenum. Newton?s view, by contrast, is that forces are an inexplicable ontological part of nature that are capable of being precisely characterized mathematically. That is to say, Newton merely accepted that their existence is a fact about nature and that the role of the scientist is simply to describe them quantitatively. Ontology: Empiricism: Empiricism = def. The general philosophical view that experience has primacy in human knowledge and justified belief (--sometimes thought of as the basis from which all claims of knowledge are to be derived). Rationalism: Descartes Eliminativism: Eliminativism about a concept F is the view that the meaning of F is irrelevant to any correct explanation of a given physical phenomenon and hence ought to be eliminated from scientific discourse. An example of this is the concept of demonic possession, which was once thought necessary to explain symptoms associated with the physical illness of epilepsy. With the development of brain science, scientists gradually eliminated any talk of demons and demonic possession and replaced the concept of demonic possession with the concept of epileptic seizure. Other examples in the history of science are the eliminations of the concepts of caloric and phlogiston. For more information about these, you can read about them online. Reductionism: reductionism about a concept F is (roughly) the view that the meaning of F is best explained only in terms 1 of some other concept G that is about (only) physical events occurring in accordance with physical laws. An example of reductionism in contemporary science is the current view of heat, which is explained in terms of the mean kinetic energy of the motion of molecules in a substance. That is to say, in physics, heat is not explained in terms of subjective sensations of hotness or burning, or something of that sort; rather, it is explained in terms of non-mental physical events acting in accordance with physical laws. Heat, one might say, is nothing but the motion of tiny, invisible particles in space. Descartes? vortex theory is similar: What appears to be mysterious forces acting in nature is nothing but tiny, invisible particles interacting in accordance with causal laws in space. Irreducibility: For Newton, forces are irreducible: they cannot be explained in terms of any other more basic, or more primitive, concepts, but they cannot be eliminated from scientific discourse either. They are considered necessary for any correct, comprehensive description of natural phenomena, such as gravitation. For contemporary examples of concepts that might be considered “irreducible,” it helps to consider the so-called “base quantities” of physics. By convention, physical quantities are organized in a system built upon base quantities, each of which is regarded as having its own dimension. Idea (Locke): Idea =def. whatsoever the mind perceives in itself, or is the immediate object of perception, thought, or understanding; i.e., sensations or perceptions in our understanding. Quality (Locke): Quality = def. the power to produce an idea in our mind. Primary quality: Those that are utterly inseparable from the body, regardless of its state, regardless of the alterations or changes it suffers. For instance: solidity, extension, figure, motion or rest, and number. Secondary quality: Those qualities which are not actually in the objects themselves, but which are powers to produce various sensations in us by their primary qualities—which sensations might be color, sound, taste, etc. That is to say, it is the particular arrangement of primary qualities that gives the objects in which they inhere additional powers to invoke certain sensations in us; these additional powers are the secondary qualities. Philosophical idealism: An idealist is a person who believes that matter does not exist, and that the only things there are, are minds and ideas. Hence, in this view, to exist or be, is to be perceived or conceived in a mind. The essence of this doctrine is captured in the famous Latin phrase esse est percipe aut percipere: to be is to be perceived or a perceiver. It is
There are other forms of reductionism in philosophy, but this version is perhaps most commonly understood.
NYIT-Nanjing / Philosophy 110 / Introduction to Philosophy / Spring 2012 important to realize in this regard that Berkeley does not intend to reject the work of science. Rather, idealism is intended to reconstruct science. Berkeley suggests that we rethink the foundations of science, so that we eliminate from it fundamentally nonsensical notions, such as “matter”. Doing this, we find that the whole business about matter existing apart from our minds is grounded in obscurity. When the obscurity is eradicated, we no longer need to talk about nonmental, material things. We find that a language of science based on idealist principles offers the most perspicuous representation of reality. Finally, it is important to note that idealism is an empiricist doctrine, not a rationalist one: Our ideas are based not on reason, but on what we gather from the senses: what we see, feel, hear, taste, and smell. So our ideas are based on experience. Unlike Locke, however, Berkeley insists that there is nothing outside the mind that is responsible for causing our sense experiences. relation of ideas: 具有直观和演绎确定性的知识 matter of fact: 以经验推理为特征的或然性知识 analytic proposition: 分析命题 ；解析命题 synthetic proposition: 综合命题 a priori: A sentence is a priori if its truth can be determined independently of experience a posteriori: It is a posteriori if its truth cannot be determined independently of experience. esse est percipe aut percipere：to be is to be perceived or a perceiver.
II. Questions: A. Descartes and Newton 1. What is the meaning of “cause” according to Descartes? mechanical philosophy? Ans：Everything that occurs in the world can be explained in terms of mechanistic principles. What sort of causal explanation would Descartes consider adequate to explain the motion of an inanimate object? Ans：physical contact How were the motions of the planets explained on this model? (I.e., how did Descartes attempt to account for the motions of the planets in terms of the plenum and vortices?) Ans：The most obvious example of this is Descartes? vortex theory, which attempts to explain the motion of the earth around the sun in terms of a whirlpool-like mechanism that locks the earth in its orbit as a result of the universal presence of tiny, invisible particles throughout all space—the plenum.
2. Compare and contrast Descartes and Newton on the matter of forces. Be able to explain your answers in terms of the concepts of reductionism and/or eliminativism, and irreducibility. (Also be able to recognize different examples of reductionistic and eliminativistic explanations; see class handout for information.) Ans： In the views of the mechanical philosophers, forces are simply NOTHING. They don?t exist independently of particles of matter in motion. Mechanical philosophers didn?t accept the existence of forces in nature and attempted to explain the relationship between the earth and the sun in terms of mechanical causes. In philosophy, reductionism about a concept F is (roughly) the view that the meaning of F is best explained only in terms of 2 some other concept G that is about (only) physical events occurring in accordance with physical laws. An example of reductionism in contemporary science is the current view of heat, which is explained in terms of the mean kinetic energy of the motion of molecules in a substance. Newton?s view, by contrast, is that forces are an inexplicable ontological part of nature that are capable of being precisely characterized mathematically. That is to say, Newton merely accepted that their existence is a fact about nature and that the role of the scientist is simply to describe them quantitatively. Newton?s view, by
There are other forms of reductionism in philosophy, but this version is perhaps most commonly understood.
NYIT-Nanjing / Philosophy 110 / Introduction to Philosophy / Spring 2012 contrast, is non-reductionistic. We can identify non-reductionistic theories by the concept of IRREDUCIBILITY. For Newton, forces are irreducible: they cannot be explained in terms of any other more basic, or more primitive, concepts, but they cannot be eliminated from scientific discourse either. They are considered necessary for any correct, comprehensive description of natural phenomena, such as gravitation.
3. How does Newton differ from the animistic philosophers that preceded him? In what ways are his views similar? Ans： He was not an animistic philosopher, either. This is because he considered forces to be general features of nature, law-like, and capable of precise mathematical description—quite unlike the animistic philosophers, who considered forces to be unpredictable and individualized to particular objects, with each one possessing its own unique life-spirit. It is also important to recognize that Newton?s conception of science shifted rather radically away from the ideals conceived by both the mechanistic and animistic philosophers. This is partly because he thought that the purpose of science is description and prediction, NOT explanation of basic ontological categories. His idea was to take the world of experiential phenomena as simply GIVEN, and use the data of experience to give a precise description of the way things are. 4. Describe Newton?s general conception of the purpose and role of science. Ans：Science should not, in his view, try to explain what is behind the veil of appearances, as the mechanistic philosophers tried to do in their rationalist distrust of the data of the senses. In general, the scientist should “I feign no hypotheses.” Should science provide explanations of observable events? Ans：No. What does Newton mean when he says “I feign no hypotheses”? Ans：牛顿认为他的动力学体系来源于经验，不含有假设成分。这句话是牛顿对于那些公开挑战他对重力原因的解释的回 答。
5. Why do you think Newton accepted the existence of forces in nature, if their ultimate reality is something not capable of being comprehended? Ans：One answer is that Newton saw it necessary for an exact quantitative description of phenomena. In particular, Newton recognized that without the concept of force, the law of universal gravitation would be inconceivable. Moreover, Newton?s admittance of forces allowed for a far more comprehensive theory than anything that had been proposed up to that time. How did the acceptance of forces contribute to the explanatory merits of Newton?s Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy? (Use the law of universal gravitation to discuss some of the general benefits of accepting the existence of forces.) Ans：For Newton was able to see that the law of universal gravitation applies to a huge variety of phenomena that otherwise had to be treated separately. This is compelling reason for positing the existence of forces, if it is indeed the case that such phenomena cannot be accounted for without them, and this can be seen more clearly when we consider some of the main parts of Newton?s most famous work
B. Locke 1. What is the thesis of empiricism, as discussed in class? What features about Locke?s philosophy make it empiricist? Ans： An important consequence of this view is that there can be no absolute certainty in our knowledge; all knowledge occurs in degrees of certainty based on experience. Locke is a rather extreme empiricist in that he rejects the rationalist notion that we have innate ideas. Instead, he thinks that the mind at birth is a “blank slate” completely devoid of characteristics until it receives sense impressions. Sense impressions are the basis from which all our knowledge of the world develops.
NYIT-Nanjing / Philosophy 110 / Introduction to Philosophy / Spring 2012 Our ideas are NOT innate ideas. It is sufficient to disprove the theory if it can be shown that all knowledge is capable of being produced without the aid of any innate knowledge. The doctrine of innate ideas cannot be supported on the assumption that there are certain propositions whose truth is accepted universally.
2. What are ideas, according to Locke, and where do they come from? What is a quality, according to Locke? Ans：Idea =def. whatsoever the mind perceives in itself, or is the immediate object of perception, thought, or understanding; i.e., sensations or perceptions in our understanding. Ideas of whiteness, hardness, sweetness, thinking, motion, man, elephant, army, etc. originate from experience of some kind. ? External sensible objects: objects outside the mind, which are responsible for sensation, and which gives us ideas of yellow, white, heat, cold, soft, etc. ? Internal operations of the mind: responsible for our internal sense or capacity for self-reflection. Through perception of the internal operations of the mind we have knowledge of the acts of the mind, perception, thinking, doubting, believing, reasoning, knowing, willing, and so on. Quality = def. the power to produce an idea in our mind.
3. What does Locke have to say on the matter of abstract ideas? (How are human beings distinguished from animals, according to Locke?) Ans：Abstract ideas: Given his empiricist views that all knowledge arises out of experience, Locke feels compelled to explain how it is possible for human beings to have abstract ideas. If all our knowledge originates from particular sensations in experience, how is it possible that we may have general or abstract ideas? Abstract ideas, being general in content, don?t appear to be dependent on particular sensations in experience. To explain this, Locke suggests that we have a capacity to consider particular ideas independently of their contexts, contexts of circumstance, time, place, and any other concomitant ideas. The process by which we do is that we call “abstraction.” The abstract ideas that result become general representatives of all of the same kinds.
4. What are secondary qualities, according to Locke? Be prepared to recognize examples. Ans：Those qualities which are not actually in the objects themselves, but which are powers to produce various sensations in us by their primary qualities—which sensations might be color, sound, taste, etc. That is to say, it is the particular arrangement of primary qualities that gives the objects in which they inhere additional powers to invoke certain sensations in us; these additional powers are the secondary qualities.
5. What are primary qualities, according to Locke? Be prepared to recognize examples. Ans：Those that are utterly inseparable from the body, regardless of its state, regardless of the alterations or changes it suffers. For instance: solidity, extension, figure, motion or rest, and number.
6. On the basis of what criterion does Locke distinguish primary and secondary qualities? (Hint: resemblance.) Ans：In the process of arguing for the distinction between primary and secondary qualities, Locke proposes a Resemblance Criterion for primary qualities. He suggests that while our ideas of primary qualities resemble the objects themselves, our ideas of secondary qualities do not. e.g.- Consider a simple object such as a rose. We observe that it is solid, extended, has figure, and so forth, but it also appears red and odorous. In Locke?s view our ideas of solidity, extension, and figure here actually resemble the rose, but our ideas of its redness and odor do not: the rose is not red or odorous in itself, but it has certain primary qualities which give it the capacity to produce in us the ideas of redness and odor. 7. What is knowledge, according to Locke? What sort of skeptical objection can be raised against his account of knowledge? Would Locke accept the statement “If I know that P is true, then I know that I know that P is true”? * Ans：Locke?s general account of knowledge is empiricist, where knowledge is built up from ideas which are derived from, or based on, or originate out of, experience. One has knowledge when three things obtain: (a) an idea (b) an object corresponding to that idea (note that if the idea is primary, then it resembles the object; if it is secondary, then it resembles nothing)
NYIT-Nanjing / Philosophy 110 / Introduction to Philosophy / Spring 2012 (c) a relation of causality (note that if the idea is of a primary quality, then there is a quality in the object which corresponds to that idea and which causes it; if the idea is of a secondary quality, then there is a particular arrangement or configuration of primary qualities in the object that causes it) First, in Locke?s view, there is no necessary connection between the object and its idea, so it is always possible for one to have an idea of an object that doesn?t exist, or to be in the presence of an object—causally connected to it—without having an idea of it. This lack of necessary connection compels us to ask about the possibility of having knowledge of the circumstances in which we have knowledge. The problem with Locke?s account is that we know something is the case only in virtue of having an idea of that something. So how do with know when we have knowledge? Ultimately we don?t—but then we have nothing else on which to rely, so we have no choice but to merely acquiesce to the assumption that the human faculties of sense are indeed reliable!
C. Berkeley 1. What is the thesis of philosophical idealism, as discussed in class? Ans：An idealist is a person who believes that matter does not exist, and that the only things there are, are minds and ideas. Hence, in this view, to exist or be, is to be perceived or conceived in a mind. Is idealism empiricist or rationalist? Ans：Idealism is an empiricist doctrine, not a rationalist one: Our ideas are based not on reason, but on what we gather from the senses: what we see, feel, hear, taste, and smell. So our ideas are based on experience. What is the meaning of the Latin phrase esse est percipi aut percipere? Ans： esse est percipi aut percipere means that to be is to be perceived or a perceiver. 一个观念在心中出现、彰显、 形成和产生的原因是心外对象被心灵感知
2. How does Berkeley argue that heat is not a substance independent of the mind? Ans： (1) One?s sensation of intense heat is a simple, uniform sensation consisting of both heat and pain. Therefore, an intense heat must be identical to the pain. The same follows when the heat is not intense, but is of a lesser degree: heat in this case equals warmth. (2) It is the case that vehement, intense heat is the same as a very great pain. But no unperceiving thing is capable of pain. Therefore, no unperceiving thing is capable of heat. Therefore, heat cannot be a quality inhering in a material thing. (3) Reduction: Neither heat nor cold can be qualities inhering in material things. For suppose they were: Suppose one of your hands is hot, and the other is cold, and you put both in the same water of room temperature. If both heat and coldness were really in the water, then the water would be both hot and not hot at the same time—an absurdity. (4) Analogy: A pin pricks your finger, and you sense pain. One would not say that the pain is in the pin. Likewise with heat burning your hand from a hot stove: One would not say that the heat is in the stove. 【同人异手触温】
3. What thesis does Hylas give for the idea that sounds exist independently of the mind? Ans：According to Hylas, however, sounds exist in the air, external to the mind—for bells struck in vacuums do not produce sounds. It is this very motion in the external air that produces in the mind the sensation of sound, when they strike the drum of the ear and cause a vibration. This is different from the sensation of sound. Hylas suggests that it is necessary to distinguish the sound-as-it-is-perceived-by-us from the sound-as-it-is-in-itself. The former is a particular kind of sensation; the latter is a vibrative or undulatory motion in the air. How does Philonous respond to that thesis? Ans：Philonous? response to this (speaking for Berkeley) is to suggest that if this is the case, then “real” sound must be attributed to motion. But motion as perceived by us belongs to the faculties of sight and touch. If that?s the case, then “real” sound can be seen or touched, but not heard—which Philonous finds paradoxical. Real sounds cannot therefore have being without a mind.
NYIT-Nanjing / Philosophy 110 / Introduction to Philosophy / Spring 2012 4. Hylas thinks that if there is no problem in the idea of conceiving a tree existing by itself, independent of, and unperceived by, any mind whatsoever, then we have a basis for thinking that there are objects existing independent of the mind. How does Berkeley argue that this supposition leads to a contradiction? (I.e., present and discuss Berkeley?s “Master Argument.”) Ans：Mind-independent objects do not exist because it is impossible to conceive of them. The argument is against intuition and has been widely challenged. … I am content to put the whole upon this issue; if you can but conceive it possible for one extended moveable substance, or in general, for any one idea or anything like an idea, to exist otherwise than in a mind perceiving it, I shall readily give up the cause…. But say you, surely there is nothing easier than to imagine trees, for instance, in a park, or books existing in a closet, and no body by to perceive them. I answer, you may so, there is no difficulty in it: but what is all this, I beseech you, more than framing in your mind certain ideas which you call books and trees, and at the same time omitting to frame the idea of any one that may perceive them? But do not you yourself perceive or think of them all the while? This therefore is nothing to the purpose: it only shows you have the power of imagining or forming ideas in your mind; but it doth not shew that you can conceive it possible, the objects of your thought may exist without the mind: to make out this, it is necessary that you conceive them existing unconceived or unthought of, which is a manifest repugnancy. When we do our utmost to conceive the existence of external bodies, we are all the while only contemplating our own ideas. But the mind taking no notice of itself, is deluded to think it can and doth conceive bodies existing unthought of or without the mind; though at the same time they are apprehended by or exist in it self. (Principles of Human Knowledge, 22-23) 5. How would Berkeley define what an “object” is, based on class discussion? * Ans：a mind-dependent one.
6. How does Berkeley differ from Locke on the matter of abstract ideas? How are they similar? Ans： 贝克莱同意洛克关于人的一切观念都是来自经验的看法，但不同意洛克的第一性的质和第二性的质的学说。他 认为，根本没有第一性的质，只存在洛克所谓的第二性的质，因为一切知识都是正在经验着或知觉着的人的一种机 能。 Locke may be regarded as a “commonsense” philosopher because his views seem to reflect (although perhaps in a more perspicuous way) the views about the relationship between the mind and world that is most likely to appeal to physicists and other scientifically-minded people. On the other hand, it?s also obvious that as you investigate more thoroughly some of the presuppositions at the bottom of Locke?s views, you will uncover certain assumptions that make you question whether or not it really ought to be called “commonsense.” The philosopher George Berkeley was aware of this, and this prompted him to replace Locke?s indirect realism with the philosophical doctrine knowledge as idealism. It is worth noting that George Berkeley, the philosopher considered in the next unit, disputes these ideas, claiming that it is impossible to form any general idea independently of any particular ideas or their contexts. abstract ideas are conceived not separately from their contexts, but only by means of them. The mind apprehends a general rule by applying it uniformly in all contexts that are relevantly similar. Similarity -【Though they disagree, note that Locke and Berkeley are still both empiricists. Yet empiricism may have even more fundamental problems than the ones suggested here. For example, there are some ideas we have that do not seem to be based on any experience at all.】 7. How are Berkeley?s views about the relativity of extension similar to Einstein?s views on extension? How are they different? What two assumptions does Einstein adopt at the beginning of his 1905 paper on Special Relativity? How does Einstein explain the contraction of objects in space as they get faster and faster, approaching the speed of light? Ans：Berkeley argues that extension (measurement of length) cannot be a mind-independent quality of objects. Rather, it must be mind-dependent quality that changes as our conditions of perception change. If we reconceive “conditions of perception” in terms of “frames of reference,” then we have the view that Albert Einstein proposed in his famous 1905 paper on Special Relativity. Einstein was not an idealist, it should be noted, but his views agree precisely with Berkeley?s on this one important point: there is no such thing as absolute extension; measurement of extension must recognize relativistic conditions. (1) Physical laws are the same in all coordinate systems moving uniformly, relative to each other. (2) The velocity of light always has the same value in all frames of reference, regardless of whether the source of light moves, and regardless of how it moves.
NYIT-Nanjing / Philosophy 110 / Introduction to Philosophy / Spring 2012 To maintain the constancy of the speed of light when objects are measured as they move through space, it is necessary to consider both their spatial position and their time, relative to a given frame of reference. The movement of an object through space cannot be meaningfully considered independently of its time. This forces us to consider space and time together, as space-time. When we consider time as the fourth dimension of space, along with length, width, and height, it follows (given the constancy of the speed of light) that the extension of an object will vary as it moves faster and faster, approaching the speed of light itself. 8. If Berkeley were alive today, how might he use the results of Einstein?s relativity theory to support his views on the relativity of extension, based on class discuss? Ans：
9. Berkeley denies that objects exist independently of the mind. Since physics is generally held to be a science of laws that pertain to objects existing independently of the mind, is it the case that Berkeley intends to abandon physics altogether? If not, then how does he hope to recover it? * Ans：
D. Hume 1. All of our ideas or thoughts are what, according to Hume? What is the difference between an impression and an idea? How does Hume account for complex ideas, such the idea of a golden unicorn standing atop a golden mountain? Ans： All of our ideas or thoughts are nothing more than copies of impressions. Impressions for Hume are very similar to Berkeley?s experiences or sensations: they are based on the senses and provide us with feelings of pain and pleasure. For example, the pain of excessive heat is an impression, and so is the pleasure of the experience of moderate warmth. Ideas for Hume are simply less lively copies of impressions. This analysis suggests that ideas are in some way categorically different from impressions, but it is important to note that Hume doesn?t think about the difference in this way. The difference between ideas and impressions is not a matter of kind; it is a matter of degree. Impressions are merely more lively mental states than ideas, but there is no discernable boundary separating the two. In the first place, he suggests that whenever we analyze our thoughts or ideas, we always find that we can resolve them into simple ideas compounded from some previous feeling or sentiment. This is so regardless of the complexity of the idea: God, meaning an infinitely intelligent, wise, and good being, arises from reflecting on the operations of our own mind, “and augmenting, without limit, those qualities of goodness and wisdom.” Secondly, whenever one is lacking in a particular faculty of sense, we always find that one is “as little susceptible of the correspondent ideas.” A blind man, for example, can form no notion of colors, nor can a deaf man form any idea of sounds. 2. What are “relations of ideas”, according to Hume, and how are they different from “matters of fact”? Be able to recognize different examples of each. Ans： RELATIONS of IDEAS: Propositions whose negations imply contradictions MATTERS of FACT: Propositions whose negations do not imply contradictions Examples of relations of ideas are the Pythagorean Theoream and the logical formula (A ? B) ? ((A ? B ) ? B) (“If A implies B, then if either A or B is true, then B is true”). Matters of fact do not carry the intuitive or demonstrative certainty that we recognize in relations of ideas. This is because the negation of every matter of fact is always possible, according to Hume, and so does not imply a contradiction. Examples of matters of fact are “The sun will rise tomorrow” and “All bachelors are lonely.” 3. What is Hume?s “constant conjunction theory” of causation, as discussed in class? How does this theory explain how we arrive at our knowledge of cause and effect? Be prepared to recognize examples here (e.g., a magnet and its attraction of iron, water and the nourishment of the body, etc.) What role does habit play in this? *
NYIT-Nanjing / Philosophy 110 / Introduction to Philosophy / Spring 2012 Ans：Hume suggests at least two different analyses of causation in writings. The standard CONSTANT CONJUNCTION THEORY suggests that sentences of the form ?A causes B? are to be analyzed in terms of conditional sentences of the form ?If A happens, then B happens?, or, more simply, ?If A, then B?. 4. What is Hume?s “counterfactual theory” of causation, as discussed in class? Be prepared to recognize examples. Ans：The more sophisticated COUNTERFACTUAL THEORY proposes that we analyze causation in terms of subjunctive conditionals of the form ?B would not have happened if A had not happened?. (This is equivalent to “If not A, then not B.”) 5. According to Hume, can we know with necessity that Newton?s law of universal gravitation must obtain? Why or why not? * Ans：
E. Kant 1. What makes a proposition synthetic, according to Kant? What makes it analytic? Be able to recognize examples. Ans：Kant?s analytic / synthetic distinction is a distinction about meaning. A sentence is analytic if the meaning of the predicate is “conceptually contained” within the meaning of the subject. It is synthetic if the meaning of the predicate is not “conceptually contained” in the meaning of the subject. To determine whether a sentence is either analytic or synthetic, according to Kant, you first need to analyze the meanings of the concepts associated with the sentence?s subject and predicate. 2. Be able to recognize different examples of synthetic a priori propositions. Ans： (1) Relations of Ideas: a priori, uninformative (vacuous in content), necessarily true (2) Matters of Fact: a posteriori, informative (significant in content), contingently true
Kant?s a priori / a posteriori distinction is a distinction about truth: A sentence is a priori if its truth can be determined independently of experience; it is a posteriori if its truth cannot be determined independently of experience. To determine whether a sentence is a priori or a posteriori, according to Kant, you need to ask yourself whether you could know its truth independently of experience, simply by analyzing the concepts associated with its subject and predicate. 3. According to Kant, how is synthetic a priori knowledge supposed to provide a solution to Hume?s skeptical objections about the possibility of certainty in our knowledge of the world? Is there necessity inherent in our scientific knowledge of the world? Ans： Our experience and understanding of the world is only possible in virtue of a cognitive apparatus that is the basis of specific faculties of sense and reason. Such faculties must have a nature. This nature, Kant argues, is to
NYIT-Nanjing / Philosophy 110 / Introduction to Philosophy / Spring 2012 impose order onto the raw and chaotic material of the senses in the course of its apprehension of experience, and it does this by arranging, interpreting, organizing, and categorizing the raw data of experience. If this is the case, then there is necessity inherent in our knowledge of the world, if it is true that whatever we Experience must conform to certain faculty-based preconditions or constraints that determine what we can know. That is, if it is the case that specific faculties of sense and reason are necessary for our experience and understanding of the world, without which our experience and understanding of the world would not even be possible, then there must be certain things we know about the world (implicitly) with necessity.
4. In what way did Kant view his philosophy as a foundation for fundamental scientific principles? For instance, how is the principle of inertia supposed to be justified, according to Kant? Also, how is the principle of the conservation of matter supposed to be justified, according to Kant? Ans：
5. How does Kant argue that Hume is wrong in his account of the causal relationship between, say, a magnet and a piece of iron? Ans：