Re: virus: Logic

Tadeusz Niwinski (
Mon, 06 Oct 1997 19:34:10 -0700

David McF wrote:
>The MS Weapon thread has raised some important questions around the
>role of logic. Is it "just" a tool? What is its scope and limits?

It depends on what you mean by "logic"? Is it "rationality", "logical
thinking" as opposed to "mysticism"?

You've mentioned "intuition" as another tool. Intuition seems to be a good
source of inspiration, but the final word belongs to the rational mind --
unless we decide to abandon it. So, logic *is* -- or *may* be -- applied
every time we make a decision, every time we interact with reality.

Someone pointed out that one has to "set goals" without logic. We may be
talking about different "logic", but I don't see how one can set goals
*without* logic. I would like to see an example of a situation where
setting goals without logic is better than with logic. That's why it's
important to define what we mean by "logic".

I think logic in the meaning of rationality is the only tool we have. If we
abandon logic we can just follow our instincts as animals do. They seem to
be doing fine. Why don't we?... [MS Flip alert! :-)]

>Do we need means outside of logic to determine when it is appropriate
>to use it?

What would those means be?

>Can a logical argument say anything about reality, or is
>it (as one contributor put it recently) just "smoke and mirrors"?
>I have a few ideas, but I'd like to hear from others first.

How do we learn about reality?

(1) Our senses and logical thinking.

(2) Intuition (which is probably a result of unconscious data processing),
excellent source of inspiration, which has to be tested with experiments and
logic afterall.

(3) Random guessing. Creative people have this ability to have wild ideas,
which may lead to great discoveries. Excellent tool, except, as with
intuition, logic has to be implemented sooner or later.

(4) Social metaphysics: what others say reality is. Here come:
4a) Religions with a deity used as a supreme source of information;
except for questioning the deity (and her representatives on Earth), logic
seems to be welcome in religions.
4b) Political leaders may use supremacy of a given race or skin color or
social class (eg. proletariat) instead of logic, the world view is based on
this assumption, although in technology logic is used freely (to build
airplanes for example).
4c) Mind-flippers may not like logic for obvious reasons (and they don't
build planes or anything else for that matter).

Can anybody think of more reality learning tools?

Regards, Tadeusz (Tad) Niwinski from planet TeTa (604) 985-4159