• Fundamentals of Metaphysics
  • Our beliefs are kind of like maps and the World is the territory of the map
    • Realist view: we can know about the World that exists external to us (realism)
  • Anachronistic
  • Basic components of the World
    • Particulars
      • Things you can interact with
    • Cause and effect
    • Properties and relations
      • Relations could be seen as properties of pairs, triples, etc.
      • Provide structure to reality
      • What Plato called the Form
    • Propositions
    • Possible states of affairs
      • Including facts
  • Propositions vs. properties
    • Related
    • Both conceptual, or intelligible, components of reality
    • Can one be derived from the other?
  • Propositions use internal objects
    • Meanings are components of one's subjective world
    • Relating this to maps...
      • Towns on a map are not the actual towns in the world
    • So, propositions appear to exist mostly in the mind
Mind World
Subjective Objective
Map Territory
Proposition (statement, thought) Possible state of affairs
True proposition Fact (actual state of affairs)
Internal object (idea) External object
Concepts Properties
Epistemic probability Objective chance
  • Realism vs. anti-Realism

  • Natural kinds

    • Some human concepts that are more "real" than others
    • Capture real divisions of reality better
  • So, what is truly objective?

    • To a realist
      • The actual world
      • The "totality of facts"
  • Dividing the actual world into bite size facts may be a human construct

    • Even if so, the World determines whether or not a given proposition is true or false
  • Psychologism

    • Laws of logic
  • Are propositions psychological?

    • If they were, they could change over time
  • What is existence?

  • What turns a state of affairs into a fact?

    • Facts seem to have an extra ingredient of real existence
      • Concreteness
      • A concrete object is one that can be causes and effects
        • Contrasted with abstract objects that are non-causal (accessible only to the mind)
    • Is this extra ingredient a property?