By John Hospers
This booklet presents an in-depth, problem-oriented advent to philosophical research utilizing an exceptionally transparent, readable process. The Fourth version doesn't purely replace assurance in the course of the publication, but in addition restores the introductory chapter—Words and the World—the such a lot distinctive, extensively acclaimed characteristic of the 1st variants.
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Extra resources for An Introduction to Philosophical Analysis (4th Edition)
I think, therefore, our present investigation had better begin with an enquiry whether Materialism can possibly be true. I say 'can be true' rather than 'is true,' because, though dogmatic Materialists are rare, the typical Agnostic is one who is at least inclined to admit the possibility of Materialism, even when he does not, at the bottom of his mind, practically assume its truth. The man who is prepared to exclude even this one theory of the Universe from the category of possible but unprovable theories is not, properly speaking, an Agnostic.
This is a line of argument which I hope to develope further when I come to examine the bearing upon the religious problem of what is as real a part of our experience as any other—our moral experience. I will remind you in conclusion, that our argument for the existence of God is at present incomplete. I have tried to lead you to the idea that the ultimate Reality is spiritual, that it is a Mind which knows, or is conscious of, matter. I have tried to lead you with the Idealist to think of the physical Universe as having no existence except in the mind of God, or at all events (for those who fail to follow the idealistic line of thought) to believe that the Universe does not exist without such a Mind.
Now can a relation exist except for a mind? As it seems to me, the suggestion is meaningless. Relatedness only has a meaning when thought of in connection with a mind which is capable of grasping or holding together both terms of the relation. The relation between point A and point B is not in point A or in point B taken by themselves. It is all in the 'between': 'betweenness' from its very nature cannot exist in any one point of space or in several isolated points of space or things in space; it must exist only in some one existent which holds together and connects those points.
An Introduction to Philosophical Analysis (4th Edition) by John Hospers