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Logic as a Way of Knowing

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Jim Scott

on 22 September 2014

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Transcript of Logic as a Way of Knowing

Logic: is the formal systematic study of the principles of valid inference and correct reasoning.
Logic is often divided into two parts, inductive reasoning and deductive reasoning.
Reason is a mental faculty (or ability) found in humans, that is able to generate conclusions from assumptions or premises.
often contrasted not only with the ways in which non-human animals appear to make decisions, but also with decisions based upon authority, intuition, emotion, mysticism, superstition, and faith.
Reason and logic often contrasted not only with the ways in which non-human animals appear to make decisions, but also with decisions based upon authority, intuition, emotion, mysticism, superstition, and faith.
Law of the excluded middle
Nothing that is true can be not true.
The Law of Non-Contradiction states that both a proposition, A, and its denial, not-A, cannot be true within the domain of a single "theory", within the domain of validity of the law of identity, "A = A". This law is indeed fundamental to formal logic.
The Law of Excluded Middle states that if a proposition A is not true then its denial "not-A" is true.
This system includes syllogistic
thought processes as well as the scientific/empirical process
Journal #1
Answer the following:

Sense perception: Describe what you see and hear through the course of the video. Do not describe what you think is happening, only what you see happening.
Emotion: How does this video make you feel? What feelings do you think the elephants have? How does the music affect your feelings?
Language: Does the body language of the elephants communicate ideas? Emotions? Does the narrator influence your perceptions?
Reason: Using what you know, what can you logically conclude has happened in this video? What truths can you state about elephant's actions/emotions?
Now, of the ways of knowing. Which do you
think is the most important for understanding the scene?
Which ways of knowing seem to be dependent on other ways of knowing?
What way(s) of knowing cause you to believe or not believe in a God or Higher power? Do these beliefs rise to the level of "fact" or "truth"?
Ahlum, William
Vass, Grayson
Shim, Yoon
Riley, Kathryn
Hare, Virginia
Shipp, Gianna
Laughlin, Julia
Williams, Madison
Stover, Helen
Sridharan, Sriramkumar
Patel, Sheena
Landess, Lee
Horton, Emmett
Little, Jane
Meyer, Jacob
Pellarin, Tyler
Halter, Alison
Christensen, James
Bacon, Erin
Hobson II, Kenneth
Gourley, Alexander
Swaim, Catherine
Nicholson, Dalton
Becker, Genevieve
Carr, Allison
Banny, Lucia
Bellamy, Rosanne
Bridges, Benjamin
Booth, Susanna
Metzler, Robert
Flakoll, Derrick
Goldstein, Alice
Bang, In-Jun
Davidson, Spencer
Lowry, Elise
Giggey, Thomas
Payerpaj, Sonia
Maloney, Miriam
Journal 5
Do you view the world from a classical or romantic perspective (or both)? To what extent does this point of view dictate your tastes in music? Art? Hobbies? Political Affiliation? Do you think this type of categorization is a flawed attempt at labeling a personality? Are personality tests useful?
Journal #4
Read "Differing Definitions..." Describe the
problems associated with defining justice. After reviewing, provide a definition of justice and an explanation description of a war that is just (or explain why a war cannot be just). Also, develop a major premise, minor premise and conclusion that answers the following, "Was the Iraq war a just war"?
Compose major and minor premises that outline the logic of the Declaration of Independence. Your response should include:
Two premises (one major, one minor)
A conclusion. This must first be expressed with symbols (provide a key), then written as sentences.
Journal 5
Is morality relative to context? Are their moral absolutes? Explain
Deductive reasoning works from the more general to the more specific. Sometimes this is informally called a "top-down" approach.
Inductive reasoning works the other way,
moving from specific observations to broader
generalizations and theories. Informally,
we sometimes call this a "bottom up" approach
General to specific
Specific to general
Major premise: When government deliberately seeks to reduce
the people under absolute despotism, the
people have a right, indeed a duty, to alter
or abolish that form of government and to
create new guards for their future security.

Minor premise: The government of Great Britain has
deliberately sought to reduce the American
people under absolute despotism.

Conclusion: Therefore the American people have a right,
indeed a duty, to abolish their present form
of government and to create new guards for
their future security.
Journal 5 or 6?
Are animal cruelty laws logical? Just?
Why? Why not?
Should the meat industry be subjected
to animal cruelty laws? Explain.

Also, what other laws can you name that have
inconsistencies in their logic or are emotionally based
Aristotle's Logical approach to
according to Aristotle, what is happiness?

Happiness is the ultimate end and purpose of human existence
Happiness is not pleasure, nor is it virtue. It is the exercise of virtue.
Happiness cannot be achieved until the end of one’s life. Hence it is a goal and not a temporary state.

Happiness is the perfection of human nature. Since man is a rational animal, human happiness depends on the exercise of his reason.

Happiness depends on acquiring a moral character, where one displays the virtues of courage, generosity, justice, friendship, and citizenship in one’s life. These virtues involve striking a balance or “mean” between an excess and a deficiency.

Happiness requires intellectual contemplation, for this is the ultimate realization of our rational capacities
Journal 13
What surprised you about your research? What limitations exist in applying logic to economic systems? Is there an emotional reason one would have for selecting one economic system over another? Why do you think the capitolism/socialism debate is typically an emotionally charged one

Describe what happened in the film clip. What do you think the director was trying to say about the
evolution of man? Consider the ways of knowing: emotion, logic, sense perception and language. Which of these were used is your understanding of the clip?

Journal #2
Utilitarianism dictates that ethical decisions should be made based upon a generalized concept of the "greater good." In other words, that which is best for the most people is the most ethical. This is a logic based inductive process. Do you agree with the precept? Are there moral absolutes that do not fit with utilitarianism? Is war utilitarian? Is our health care system?
Journal #3
Read "Plato's Allegory of the Cave"
Describe the cave and explain the metaphor. What figures from history have exited the cave?
What figures have been puppet masters?
What do you think the sun represents?

Journal #3

Many of you have expressed in your "cave" that your education has been a puppet show.
You present yourselves as prisoners who have seen the lie but do not want to break from the chains. Why not? Why do we have grades and should we eliminate them? What would a better educational system look like?

Please provide brief responses on a separate sheet of paper.
1. Define Classic and Romantic thought using the Pirsig’s train metaphor (not the trolley car).
2. Describe the metaphor of the bull and his horns. What is between the horns?
3. Explain deductive and inductive logic using Pirsig’s motorcycle
4. Name and explain two trinities from this novel.
5. How does Pirsig eventually define Quality?

“You are never dedicated to something you have complete confidence in. No one is fanatically shouting that the sun is going to rise tomorrow. They know it's going to rise tomorrow. When people are fanatically dedicated to political or religious faiths or any other kinds of dogmas or goals, it's always because these dogmas or goals are in doubt.”
Explain the above in the context of the book and life. What does it say about the difference between justified true belief and faith? How does it relate to the differences between classic and romantic thinking? Is the quote making a value judgment about those that are dogmatic? Do you agree?

“But to tear down a factory or to revolt against a government or to avoid repair of a motorcycle because it is a system is to attack effects rather than causes; and as long as the attack is upon effects only, no change is possible. The true system, the real system, is our present construction of systematic thought itself, rationality itself, and if a factory is torn down but the rationality which produced it is left standing, then that rationality will simply produce another factory. If a revolution destroys a systematic government, but the systematic patterns of thought that produced that government are left intact, then those patterns will repeat themselves in the succeeding government. There’s so much talk about the system. And so little understanding.”
― Robert M. Pirsig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry Into Values
Explain the above quote? Do you agree? What does it imply about are desire to change the world? How does it relate to the Gettier problem and the concepts of apriori and aposteriori knowledge?
Read "On The Improvement..."
According to Spinoza, what is life's purpose? How does he propose we achieve life's purpose?
What are the four ways Spinoza says we know know what we know?

Read "Utilitarianism" and "Spinozasummarize in your notes.

Do you agree with Mill that happiness is most logical goal of life? Why/Why not? In what ways might this philosophy contradict traditional protestant values? What constitutes "happiness" for you? Is there a logical way to achieve happiness?

What ethical concerns do you have about
cloning animals to make pharmacuticals?
What about for military usage?
If we develop the technology, do you think
cloning humans would be ethical? Explain
Have you ever cheated? Why or why not? How do you define cheating?. Why do you think people are more likely to justify taking a pencil from work, for example, but not taking money? What role does emotion play in deciding to cheat? According to Kant, is cheating ever justified? Mill?
According to research, the more wealthy a person is, the more likely they are going to cheat/steal. Why? What are some solutions to cheating in school?

Read "The Questionable..." We have
regulation and laws that protect individuals from themselves (drug laws, prostitution, seat belts, etc.) yet sports such as football and auto racing are legal and a large part of their appeal is the danger. Is it ethical to support such activities by paying them to perform dangerous acts for entertainment? Is it ethical for a parent to allow a child to participate in them? Explain.
Creat a syllogism to "prove" your point of view.

With whom do you agree, Nye or Hamm? What impact might teaching creationism as a science on science education? What logical fallacies did you find for each?
Write a syllogism in which you choose one of the sides of the argument and defend it.
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