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12/30/2017 11:57 am  #41

Re: Does the Munnchausen trilemma prove brute facts and disprove the PSR

And of course the rationalists never had any trouble with that. They all recognized self-evident truths such as the principle of non-contradiction and the principle of identity. It seems it is only contemporary thinkers who, for whatever reason, seem unable to grasp self-evidence and thus lock themselves into unecessary problems.


12/31/2017 12:18 pm  #42

Re: Does the Munnchausen trilemma prove brute facts and disprove the PSR

Callum wrote:

UGADawg wrote:

Probably not in the libertarian sense, though it's surely consistent with compatiblism.

Apologies for the late reply. Would you say Aquinas was a compatiblist? Feser's exposition of the will in 'Aquinas' sure did sound like compatiblism to me

I'm really not sure. From what I remember in reading The Cambridge Companion to Aquinas, one of the articles seems to endorse the view that Aquinas was at least something like a compatibilist. Feser seems to imply, in the book you mention, that the will is naturally ordered to what is recognized as good, so it's not clear how someone could choose what isn't good if this is recognized to be the case, which is actually fairly similar to the point I was making about a given preference function entailing a specific choice will always be made (given that the agent has the relevant information and means of achieving the action).


12/31/2017 12:21 pm  #43

Re: Does the Munnchausen trilemma prove brute facts and disprove the PSR

Miguel wrote:

I am frankly unimpressed by the Münchhausen trilemma. I see no problem whatsoever with self-evidence. There is no infinite regress involved, and no axiomatic postulation whatsoever. Rather, the proposition is self-evidently true.

The principle of non-contradiction is a self-evident truth. We know it is true with 100% certainty; it cannot be doubted and just by grasping its meaning we already know it describes a necessarily true fact. So?

I agree, I don't see what the problem is supposed to be. The writer the OP linked to just sort of took it as a given that anything that terminated the regress would be a brute fact, which seems to miss the point or beg the question against advocates of the PSR insofar as they'd likely hold that it was a necessary or self-explanatory fact. He should've anticipated that line of response and answered it if he wanted his argument to go through.


12/31/2017 6:25 pm  #44

Re: Does the Munnchausen trilemma prove brute facts and disprove the PSR

I don't think Aquinas is a compatibilist. It's very clear that in thomistic metaphysics the will is never determined towards any finite good. If the will is not determined towards either X or Y, how can he be a compatibilist? The will is always ordered towards the good and indeed can't help but desire what is good, but the will is not determined towards finite goods, because by their very nature, finite goods always have deficiencies in them that repel the will (different from what happens with an infinite good, in which we can't help but be determinately attracted to).

I believe in libertarian free will, anyway.


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