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Saturday, January 07, 2017


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Thanks for this. Nearly bedtime, but briefly:

>>Now if 'H' and 'P' designate one and the same entity, then what appears to be of the form a = b, reduces to the form a = a.

This is the nub of it, as I pointed out in a later email. There is a subtle and covert appeal to Substitutivity/Inid. It is true that H and P are 'one and the same entity'. It is true that H=P. It is true that 'H' designates H. But how do you derive 'H' designates P? I.e.

1. H=P
2. 'H' designates H
3 Therefore 'H' designates P.

You need Substitutivity/Inid! I blogged about this on Trinities earlier.

>>I also assumed that when we use terms like 'H' and 'P' we are referring to things in reality with all their properties and relations and not to items like sense data or Husserlian noemata or Castanedan guises or any sort of incomplete object or epistemic deputy.

I would argue, but this is a separate point, that my intralinguistic theory of reference implies the contingency of identity. On the one hand, I hold that the statement ‘Nabu refers to Nabu’ is true, and that it is false that the proper name refers to a sense-datum, or an idea, or Husserlian noemata or Castanedan guise or whatnot. ‘The idea of Nabu’ refers to the idea of Nabu, and not to Nabu himself.

On the other hand, I hold that what makes ‘Nabu refers to Nabu’ true is an intralinguistic relation, namely the fact the name as used refers back to the name as mentioned in the Babylonian text. But ‘Nabu refers to Nebo’ is false, because the name as used by the Babylonian does not refer back to any name as used in Jeremiah. So:

the IL theory implies contingent identity
Surely you will by happy with this, given ‘one man’s modus ponens’? I like the IL theory, and I like the fact it implies contingent identity, because I don’t like necessary identity. You by contrast don’t like contingent identity, which is also fine because its falsity implies (by modus tollens) the falsity of the IL theory! Everyone should be happy.

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