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Before there was something, there was nothing. Thought inspired nothing and became something. This is truth. But to say there was something before nothing would be falsehood.
As I said the truth is fluid. As another example:
1. In the 1960s, in the USA - the Soviet Union was the enemy. We would go to war with them if they did anything to us. We were prepared to wage war at the first sign of aggression. That was the truth.
2. In the 1990's, in the USA - the Soviet Union broke down, we helped them, we were their friends, we traded with them, we embraced them as brothers in democracy. That was the truth.
3. In this new century, in the USA. - The Russians are becoming the enemy, their government is rattling their sabers against the USA telling us to keep out of their internal affairs. They are the enemy now. That is the truth.
Originally posted by Astyanax
reply to post by euclid
You seek to prove that water can flow uphill - what Quixotic audacity! I salute you! - by invoking an observer in what you imagine to be a different frame of reference. Unfortunately the observer you cited occupies the same frame of reference. To someone in geosynchronous orbit around Earth, 'down' is still the direction in which the planet's centre lies. To such an observer, water on Earth still flows downhill.
As for your second example - the question of whether Russia is an ally or an enemy - it is not one to which there can ever be an absolute, invariable answer. There are many questions of this kind - for example, is it true to say that Mick Jagger is a great singer? To say that there are facts and absolute truths in the world is not to say that every possible question can be answered with absolute veracity. You remind me of some sad French postmodernist, trying to use the modalities of his favoured school of literary criticism to say something meaningful about catalytic chemistry or firefighting.
Originally posted by skoalman88
Does anyone else agree with my contention that the "truth" may not actually exist?
Originally posted by jackinthebox
Also, in ancient history Upper Egypt and Lower Egypt had nothing to with north and south. The Nile flows north. Is that downhill?
In this hand-out I treat the notation of truth-functional propositional logic and first-order predicate logic as a language, and give guidance on translating from English into this foreign language. In general, "logical" issues, such as methods for making use of the expressions once translated, are omitted here.
References to Irving Copi's Symbolic Logic are to the fifth edition, Macmillan, 1979.
Truth-Functional Propositional Logic
Originally posted by Astyanax
reply to post by SkipShipman
Would you now be so kind as to subject your post to the type of formal logical analysis you refer to, so that we can get a better idea of it through demonstration?
Though it got little public attention until the debates about "recovered" memories of sexual abuse in the early and mid 1990s, this avenue of research had begun at least two generations ago. It was 1956 when Solomon Asch published a classic series of experiments in which he and his colleagues showed cards with lines of different lengths to clusters of their students. Two lines were exactly the same size and two were clearly not - the mavericks stuck out like basketball players at a convention for the vertically handicapped. During a typical experimental run, the researchers asked nine volunteers to claim that two badly mismatched lines were actually the same, and that the actual twin was a total misfit. Now came the nefarious part. The researchers ushered a naive student into the room with the collaborators and gave him the impression that the crowd already there knew just as little as he did about what was going on. Then a white-coated psychologist passed the cards around. One by one he asked the pre-drilled shills to announce out loud which lines were alike. Each dutifully declared that two terribly unlike lines were perfect twins. By the time the scientist prodded the unsuspecting newcomer to pronounce judgement, he usually went along with the bogus acclamation of the crowd. Asch ran the experiment over and over again. When he quizzed his victims of peer pressure, it turned out that many had done far more than simply go along to get along. They had actually shaped their perceptions to agree, not with the reality in front of them, but with the consensus of the multitude.
To polish off the mass delusion, many of those whose perception had NOT been skewed became collaborators in the praise of the emperor's new clothes. Some did it out of self-doubt. They were convinced that the facts their eyes reported were wrong, the herd was right, and that an optical illusion had tricked them into seeing things. Still others realized with total clarity which lines were duplicates, but lacked the nerve to utter an unpopular opinion. Conformity enforcers had rearranged everything from visual processing to open speech, and had revealed a mechanism which can wrap and seal a crowd into a false belief.
Another experiment indicates just how deeply social suggestion can penetrate the neural mesh through which we think we see hard-and-solid facts. Students with normal color vision were shown blue slides. But one stooge in the room declared the slides were green. Only 32% of the students ended up going along with the vocal but misguided proponent of green vision. Later, however, the subjects were taken aside, shown blue-green slides and asked to rate them for blueness or greenness. Even the students who had refused to see green where there was none in the original experiment showed that the insistent greenies in the room had colored their perceptions. They rated the new slides more green than they would have otherwise. More to the point, when asked to describe the color of the afterimage they saw, the subjects often reported it was red-purple - the hue of an afterimage left by the color green. The words of one determined speaker had penetrated the most intimate sanctums of the eye and brain.