Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Judging Vantage Points

How do you judge vantage points? What is the criteria for a good vantage point? The obvious answer is, “does it help you reach your goals?” But suppose the goal is to believe things as they are. Then how do we judge vantage points for truth?

There are two questions we can ask of the vantage point. Does the resulting system contradict itself? Does the resulting system work with experience?

If we accept that contradictions are not possible, then a vantage point with fewer contradictions is better than one with a lot of contradictions.

If we accept that we are interacting with something real, then a vantage point that explains and predicts reality as we interact with it is better than a vantage point that seems at odds with our observations.

In this way, we can judge between more true and less true philosophies. As of yet, we can not judge philosophies according to the binary true-nontrue categories, only the gradient more true-lesstrue. And this only if we do indeed accept that contradictory truths are impossible and that experience is to some extent reliable. If we were to allow for contradictory truths and if we were to deny that experience has any merit, then all philosophies are equally true so far as any human being could tell.

No comments:

Post a Comment