Wednesday, June 28, 2006

The Logic Museum

The Logic Museum is a collection of source material, much of it Latin and medieval, on logic and metaphysical writing, and particular on the "big questions" like, does existence exist, for how long, and, is it open on Sundays sort of thing. Links below.

Logic Museum Home

The latest set of pages (July 2006) is on connotation.

Some other of the big subjects:

Time and Eternity
Traditional Logic

Plus lots of other stuff, which you can access easily from the main page.

In June 2006 I will be working on a translation of the commentaries of Abelard, Boethius and Aquinas of the De Interpretatione.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

On Miracles

Alan Rhoda has found a link to a fascinating debate here, on whether there is "Historical Evidence for the Resurrection of Jesus?" between William Lane Craig and Bart D. Ehrman.

All these have more of the theatrical and gladiatorial than the logical and rational. One feels that a hatchet or a knife or even a gun should be issued at a suitable point in the proceedings so they can get down to the real business. And what is always so fascinating, is the irrationality of the argument increases with the obvious intelligence of the participants. But interesting all the same.

Both sides misrepresented Hume. Hume's point, in the essay On Miracles, is that in considering the evidence for an extremely implausible event (which is what the word 'miracle' really implies, namely something amazing or to be wondered at, something which is scarcely believable), we must always consider which is more implausible, the miraculous event itself, or the possibility that the evidence for it is flawed in some way, however small.

Also no one mentioned the possibility that the evidence is flawed is greatly increased, is when the person producing the evidence have some interest in what it is evidence for. I don't know much about what motivated the authors of the gospels to write them. If the motive for writing the gospels were in any way correlated (think of official histories) with the need to prove them correct, we might deservedly be suspicious.

Some of the sillier quotes.

"Hume had an excuse for his abject failure: the probability calculus hadn’t yet been developed in his day.".

"everybody’s read The DaVinci Code" (false - I haven't).

"In order to show that that hypothesis is improbable, you’d have to show that God’s existence is improbable. But Dr. Ehrman says that the historian cannot say anything about God. Therefore, he cannot say that God’s existence is improbable."