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2/04/2018 5:51 am  #1

Justification & PSR

I've noticed an interesting coincidence.

The PSR says that at least every contingent fact has an explanation, and the denial of that would commit one to the conclusion that reality is ultimately irrational. The fact of the existence of any contingent things would without reason or explanation.

Now turn to the human intellect and how it handles truth. It is impossible for something to be true and for there to be no reason to believe it. Not only is this the nature of our intellects, but it's also the nature of truth, since to know something or assent to it implies there being reasons for it, and because it's in the nature of truth to carry with it it's own justifications so-to-speak. And then let's compare this fact with a denial of PSR, which says that there is no reason why there is anything contingent. In other words, there is no justification. But truths, because they carry some sort of justification with them, cannot be like that. To say that something is without there being any reason for it is strikingly similar to saying that something is true without there being any justification for it whatsoever. Just as such a concept is incoherent and at the very least unrecognisable by the intellect if it were to ever occur, so a brute fact would be a truth without any justification.

The similarity here is certainly not a coincidence. Which means that the PSR implies that there is something analogous between the obtaining of a fact with explanations and the assenting of the intellect to a proposition with at least some sort of warrant. In fact, an argument could perhaps be made for the PSR on the basis of this to the effect that a denial of PSR implies that there are some truths for which there is no justification whatsoever.

What do you think?



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