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Thread: eating whale meat... OFFTOPIC about logic

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    There's nothing abstract about logic, although I congratulate you on your adaptation of George W. Bush's "fuzzy math" defense.

    My response would be the same for your comment as it was for Bush's during the presidential debate with Al Gore:

    "It's only abstract (fuzzy) to you because you don't understand it."

    Try to argue at a level above my country's dimwitted president next time, would you Bossel?

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    Relevant parts of the preceding posts:

    Quote Originally Posted by Reiku
    By the way: There is only one definition for logic, sadly it's often misused or misunderstood. I suppose that makes sense--as one must use logic in order to understand it.
    Quote Originally Posted by bossel
    M-W:
    1 a (1) : a science that deals with the principles and criteria of validity of inference and demonstration : the science of the formal principles of reasoning (2) : a branch or variety of logic <modal logic> <Boolean logic> (3) : a branch of semiotic; especially : SYNTACTICS (4) : the formal principles of a branch of knowledge b (1) : a particular mode of reasoning viewed as valid or faulty (2) : RELEVANCE, PROPRIETY c : interrelation or sequence of facts or events when seen as inevitable or predictable d : the arrangement of circuit elements (as in a computer) needed for computation; also : the circuits themselves
    2 : something that forces a decision apart from or in opposition to reason <the logic of war>
    Cambridge ALD:
    logic (REASONABLE THINKING)
    noun [U]
    a particular way of thinking, especially one which is reasonable and based on good judgment
    logic (FORMAL THINKING)
    noun [U]
    a formal scientific method of examining or thinking about ideas
    Looks like more than one definition.
    Quote Originally Posted by Reiku
    Likewise, you can post as many definitions of the word logic as you please, logic itself is a thing, not the verbal or written symbols we use to represent it, and indeed has only one definition--or to be more accurate: Only one correct definition.
    Quote Originally Posted by bossel
    Logic is an abstract concept & hence completely reliant on the symbols we use to specify it. The one & only correct definition you propose is probably your favoured definition, but surely not the only one.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Reiku
    There's nothing abstract about logic,
    Maybe because you not only favour one (& only) simplistic definition of logic but also of abstraction. Could you please define logic & abstract as you understand it?

    although I congratulate you on your adaptation of George W. Bush's "fuzzy math" defense.
    Since you like to play the teacher, you could hold a lesson about this, too? I can't remember anything about this episode.

    "It's only abstract (fuzzy) to you because you don't understand it."
    Hmm, does that mean that fuzzy to you is a synonym of abstract?

    Try to argue at a level above my country's dimwitted president next time, would you Bossel?
    That could be hard, because I usually have a tendency to adapt to my discussant's level.

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    Wow.
    So what really is logic?
    Aaargh! My brain is going to explode!
    Bossel posted a number of dictionary definitions.
    The one which I normally associate with when I'm referring to 'logic' is "a formal scientific method of examining or thinking about ideas".
    But really, of course, it's not as simple as that...

    I guess when I think about 'logic' I think more about a process than as one single 'object' or concrete thing. For example, rather than 'logic' itself, I tend to pin my definition to such combinations as 'thinking logically' or 'arguing logically', in which case it takes on another meaning and really I am defining 'logically' rather than 'logic' itself.

    When I say to think about/discuss something 'logically', what I am meaning, in my mind, is to make an argument or thought process that (a) is as little as possible clouded or skewed by emotions/feelings, (b) progresses in easy-to-follow stages that proceed one from the other, that if you can understand the first step, you can understand the next one, and so on, and so on, so that eventually more complex things become graspable from the steps of the simpler things. Does that make any sense?

    'Logic' is of course also the process of undertaking mental reasoning. In that sense it needn't actually make any sense, for example you sometimes hear people say "He (she, it) has his own logic" or words to that effect, indicating that mental reasoning as a process is taking place in a way that is 'logical' in a certain sense of having a form and order, but which might seem illogical to outside observers.

    Quote Originally Posted by bossel
    Logic is an abstract concept & hence completely reliant on the symbols we use to specify it.
    Golly gosh, and you are right. How difficult does that make it?! Abstract concepts are always so hard to discuss.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kinsao
    So what really is logic?
    According to some? A simple thing.
    But really, of course, it's not as simple as that...
    True. That's why I think it's worth its own thread. Particularly for the philosophers among us. I'm not one of those & hence my contributions will probably be scarce.

    I guess when I think about 'logic' I think more about a process than as one single 'object' or concrete thing.
    Pretty much as I see it.

    (b) progresses in easy-to-follow stages that proceed one from the other, that if you can understand the first step, you can understand the next one, and so on, and so on, so that eventually more complex things become graspable from the steps of the simpler things. Does that make any sense?
    Of course it makes sense, but I disagree about the "easy-to-follow stages". Easy is very relative, what's easy for you may be very hard for Reiku. Therefore, I would substitute easy-to-follow with verifiable or perhaps coherent.

    Abstract concepts are always so hard to discuss.
    Esp. since we all have different mindsets. That we don't even speak the same lingo doesn't really make it easier. (That is, except for those of us who believe in their personal concepts as the one & only truth.) All humans have their own particular grammar, even if the language they speak is essentially the same. To discuss we have to find a certain common definition, & even if we have such a definition there is still the question if all really understand it the same way.
    That's why I prefer to stay out of philosophical debate.

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    Nani?

    I guess it got moved...

    Honestly, I really shouldn't have painted myself into a corner like that--I set myself up to be asked a question I couldn't answer.

    Regarding the nature of logic:

    Like many words, the term itself is a linguistic symbol for something seperate from the actual word. Since most people develop the habit of thinking in whatever their primary language is, it becomes very hard to discuss something we don't have a word for.

    Unfortunately, spoken language (or at least U.S. english, since that is the only language I am thoroughly familliar with) is much too limited to accurately express the vast range of thoughts the human brain is capable of. Often, we are forced to "chip away" at the edge of a concept becuase we don't have the right words to describe it...

    ...that is the way it is with logic. There are many definitions in the dictionary, but these are all small pieces of what the word "logic" actually represents--an incomplete outline formed by words.

    I suppose it is not unlike what Michelangelo reffered to when he was asked how he carved the statue of David.

    "I just chip away anything that doesn't look like David."

    After all, the word "logic" is just a symbol--it's meaning is entirely dependant on what we attach that particular symbol to.

    So when it comes right down to it, how do I describe the definition of logic, when the only language at my command is insufficient?

    For that matter, how do I even know we are talking about the same thing?

    With these imperfect symbols being our only means of communication, there's really no way to be certain two people saying the same word are referring to the same concept.

    Take the english word "No" and the Nihingo word "No", for example.

    Even among two people who supposedly speak the same language, there can be differances like this...

    ...come to think of it, even if one could read minds--there'd be no garruntee that there wouldn't be a mistranslation.

    ...so I guess I'm screwed.

    Ah well, it's what I get for letting my anger get the better of me.

    For someone who complains so much about there being no opportunities for intellegent debate anymore, I certainly made a classic mistake--I must be getting rusty...

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