Chapter

The Artificiality of Rigorous Thought and the Artificial Dimensions of Reality

Jeremy Barris

in The Crane's Walk

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print April 2009 | ISBN: 9780823229130
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823235674 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5422/fso/9780823229130.003.0008
The Artificiality of Rigorous               Thought and the Artificial Dimensions of Reality

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The sixth idea basic to Plato is that the more rigorous thought is, the more artificial it is. That is, it is more redundant, adds less with respect to the truth of its subject matter, and to that degree is an unnecessary, artificial addition to what is naturally given. The main discussion in Plato's Sophist is motivated by the need to make sense of the idea that true speech or thought, no less than false, “is not” or involves “what is not,” since it “is not” what it speaks about. Accordingly, if rigorous speech or thought is to make sense, people need a way of talking about “what is not” as “what is”. The Sophist suggests, then, that if rigorous, truth-seeking speech or thought exists, its very substance involves a kind of fundamental nonsense.

Keywords: Plato; thought; subject; Sophist; speech

Chapter.  4961 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Language

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