The Furniture of the World: Essays in Ontology and Metaphysics

By Lazaroiu, George | Analysis and Metaphysics, January 1, 2012 | Go to article overview

The Furniture of the World: Essays in Ontology and Metaphysics


Lazaroiu, George, Analysis and Metaphysics


The Furniture of the World: Essays in Ontology and Metaphysics Guillermo Hurtado and Oscar Nudler (eds.) Amsterdam-New York: Rodopi, 2012, 335 pp. ISBN 978-90-420-3503-4

Aubenque maintains that Plato tries to resolve the paradox of the existence of a false discourse by recourse to the theory of the reciprocal participation of the kinds of being. Being is the most overarching notion that cannot be subsumed under a more universal concept. The ti, minimal determination, cannot be thought of as such without being thought of as a being determination or a determination of being. The doctrine of Aristotle is characterized by the affirmation of a non-exclusive complementariness among the different meanings of "to be." Hurtado offers a map of the paths of ontology, distinguishing five branches of this network of ontological paths: pure ontology, higher ontology, transcendental ontology, categorial ontology, and regional ontology. Smith remarks that, for Quine, the theories of the natural sciences are our best sources of knowledge as to what the world is like. Each natural science has its own preferred repertoire of types of objects to the existence of which it is committed. The language of first-order logic is the medium of canonical representation (this is the only clear form of language). Quine believes in a world beyond language and beliefs. Only the bound variables of a theory carry its definitive commitment to existence. The best we can achieve in ontology lies in the quantified statements of particular theories. Herrera Ibáñez emphasizes that, for Castañeda, at every moment of our "dealings" with the individual we deal with guises (aspects). The guises functions as superimposed layers (each guise is an individual). Rodriguez Larreta offers an empiricist and reductionist ontological theory ("Leibnizian"), purporting to reduce space and time to "internal" relations among particulars, positing an immaterialist monism, and adopting a bundle theory of particulars. Robles notes that, as More puts it, our quite large but finite universe is surrounded by an enormous spiritual extension which penetrates everything. Space is an enormous extension identifiable with God's immensity (Barrow holds that space is an enormous possibility).

Benitez observes that the ontology required by Newton is grounded on the principle of simplicity and on the necessity-contingency relation. Newton reserves the name "substantive" solely for God. Space and time are not accidents or attributes of a substance. Spirits and God possess extension. Space and time are indissolubly tied to the existence of the entities. Clarke argues that the necessity for being to exist of itself is a de re necessity which determines an exceptional existence. God's necessity cannot be deduced from His existence. Descartes establishes that the real qualities are mere abstractions, truly hidden qualities. Rodriguez-Pereyra stresses that a significant class of true propositions are made true by entities. Truthmakers of propositions like that ? is F are facts whose all and only constituents are resembling particulars. If a proposition is made true by something, it is made true by some thing. Truthbearers are propositions. A truthmaker is an entity in virtue of which a certain proposition is true. The truthmaker principle says that necessarily the members of an important class of synthetic true propositions have truthmakers. The idea that truth is grounded commits us to the idea that truths are made true by entities. Junqueira Smith posits that the ontological question is associated with the one regarding the "nature of truth." In ontological questions the contemporary skeptic is a kind of deflationist (the contemporary skeptic accepts the existence of many types of entities or objects and the occurrence of facts or events). The skeptic rejects that such entities, objects, facts and events have essences. The skeptic rejects the philosophical or scientific explanations of entities. …

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