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  1. #211
    TOL Legend Clete's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nihilo View Post
    Clete calls it the Law of Identity. I call it tautology. This is the bottom; the trivial bottom. Triviality doesn't mean false, nor necessarily insignificant. It's the bottom of math (there called "equation"), and the bottom of logic (tautology or W.'s "logical proposition," if I'm remembering correctly, which I may not be---I need to confirm) and the bottom of language. Maybe other things, but those three anyway, and my opinion is that there is really only language, and maths and logic are contained within and compose language---they just have special vocabularies and symbologies or systems of symbols or signs; and special, as regards what we colloquially know as language. A lexicon or dictionary is a type of straddling between these---in some sense, artificial---divisions.
    Theologically.
    What do you mean? Do I believe in causation? How do things work? Are you asking about divine providence?
    The Law of Identity is a logical tautology (of which there are many) but is in not a rhetorical tautology which is an altogether different thing, at least not in the pejorative sense in which it is typically meant.

    Typically, unless you are discussing logic in a very formal setting, the use of the word 'tautology' would be confusing at best and flat out wrong at worst. The normal use of the term 'tautology' is still consistent with the original Greek use of the word which refers to a statement that is true based solely on the fact that it says the same thing twice using different words. "The boss is in charge." is a good example of what people usually mean when they use the term 'tautology'. A logical tautology, on the other hand, is a statement that is true regardless of the interpretation or variation of variables. All three of the laws of reason are, in that sense, tautological but saying that is only grounds for confusion unless someone takes the time to draw the distinction between logical vs rhetorical tautologies.

    You could say that the expression, A is A, is both a logical and rhetorical tautology and I supposed that is where the use of the term in logic circles was derived. The point being that the use of the term is, in my view, only a high minded, ivory tower sort of way to say that all logical "tautologies" are derivations of the Law of Identity.
    Last edited by Clete; March 16th, 2016 at 02:38 PM.
    "The [open view] is an attempt to provide a more Biblically faithful, rationally coherent, and practically satisfying account of God and the divine-human relationship..." - Dr. John Sanders

  2. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Clete For Your Post:

    Arsenios (March 16th, 2016),steko (March 16th, 2016)

  3. #212
    Over 1500 post club Arsenios's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nihilo View Post
    Simpler. Language rests upon and in fact works at all, because of tautology, the Law of Identity, or equation. Words or units of meaning, mean something, and at their most basic, they mean at the very least themselves. In math any number n is equal to itself. n=n, whatever n may be.

    In language (colloquially) words mean themselves, and we also define words, so we construct a linguistic equation, where a single word (or phrase) is equal to a set of words (the definition).

    In the beginning, Adam gave names to the animals, thus one of the very first things that Adam did was to "define by pointing," or "ostensive" definition. He pointed to a tiger and said, "Tiger." A tiger is a tiger. Tautology.

    Without recognizing tautology, we risk talking endlessly about words that may refer to nothing more than themselves, and this is what W. accused philosophy, as a methodology or practice, of doing for centuries, and that is what I meant by putting the cart before the horse. The horse is tautology, and everything else that we say is the cart. Philosophers and other thinkers have been talking and talking without acknowledging how language works, what supports it, what gives it its unique ability to be useful in not only communication but in thought itself.
    how does this get one out from the Cartesian Box? You still have the dualism of knower and known, and tautology is first about the thought itself, and secondly about the object of the thought itself and the relationship is still not bridgable...

    In Christianity, the identity of perceiver with perceived is attained without words in union with God...

    This identity is knowledge... One becomes one with that which one knows... God gives it...

    eg You will KNOW what a person is experiencing by co-experiencing it with him by God's Grace...

    Hence knowledge is neither verbal nor conceptual but experiential by Grace...

    Arsenios
    Arsenios

  4. #213
    LIFETIME MEMBER Desert Reign's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clete View Post
    As I said, thinking is not automatic. You can choose to blur your mind and refuse to think but you CANNOT choose to avoid the consequences of doing so. The Law of Identity CANNOT be avoided - period! It can be ignored but that isn't the same thing. A thing is what it is whether we focus on it, ignore it, like it or lump it. It makes no difference what we do, think, say, want or wish. A thing is what it is - period. There can be no other law, whether natural or otherwise without the law of identity. No thought is even possible without the law of identity, even if the thinker has no understanding or awareness of the law.

    While it is not a perfect analogy (no analogy ever is), I most certainly am not committing any logical fallacy by comparing the law of identity to the law gravity. You can ignore the law of gravity if you want but you cannot avoid the consequences of doing so. You can refuse to see the abyss but that will not make it go away or prevent you from falling in.
    Clete, thanks for your answer.
    However, you still seem to be avoiding the issue which I have asked about plainly.
    I may never have heard of the law of gravity. But gravity makes me stick to the earth. I can't avoid that. There are two things here:
    1, Gravity
    2. A law of gravity.
    It is not the law of gravity that pulls me down to earth but gravity that pulls me down.

    What you are doing is this: Because you know that gravity operates all over the earth, let us say 'universal', because it is unavoidable, you transfer that unavoidability to the law of gravity. You then say that the law itself is unavoidable. Laws are forms of words. The reason why you call it a law is because gravity itself is unavoidable. But the first law of gravity was 'What goes up must come down.' This law was proven wrong. The second law of gravity was formulated by Newton, which I stated before. That law, too, was wrong. It was supposed to be universally applicable, but it wasn't. The fact that these laws were wrong has no effect on the power of gravity. Gravity still operates whether the law of gravity is right or wrong. Please tell me that you understand this distinction, because everything you have said in your post indicates to me me that either you don't understand it or you don't accept it.

    And in the case of the Laws of Reason, the issue is even more pronounced than ignoring a law of nature because in order to deny the veracity of a law of reason, you MUST use the laws of reason to communicate the denial! You CANNOT deny, flout, ignore nor even object to a law of reason without contradicting yourself. The very first word you utter in any attempt to undermine the laws of reason, uses the laws of reason in order to have meaning. The laws of reason are therefore utterly irrefragable.
    1) reason itself is not the same thing as a law of reason. What you mean is that reason itself is irrefragable.

    2) According to what you have just written, the law of reason is not absolute. You say it has the form 'This law cannot be denied without resulting in self-contradiction.' So it can indeed be denied. Nothing stops you from denying it. You may have to contradict yourself, but that isn't an obstacle to denying it. Earlier, you said that there were laws of reason which govern the mind. They simply don't. You have this problem because whilst reason itself proves that you have just contradicted yourself, the law of reason, as a law, can be broken. It is your equating law with what the law points to, which is your mistake. The same is true for gravity. You think it is absolute, but it can be broken easily. It was broken when the first space vehicle left earth orbit. Newton's laws were broken when gravitational lensing was discovered. Einstein's laws do not hold at galactic level as far as we can tell. Your insistence that if I jump into a chasm I will pay for it is irrelevant. All you are doing is creating one example that suits your point. All it does is illustrate that gravity is real. It does not prove that the law of gravity is correct.
    Total Misanthropy.
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  5. #214
    TOL Subscriber Nihilo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clete View Post
    The Law of Identity is a logical tautology
    Is that so? Or is it that a logical tautology is an example of the Law of Identity?
    Quote Originally Posted by Clete View Post
    (of which there are many) but is in not a rhetorical tautology which is an altogether different thing, at least not in the pejorative sense in which it is typically meant.
    In the pejorative sense, right, which is more of a connotation, while I think that even the pejorative rhetorical sense denotes precisely what I've been referring to, so long as the repetition is a genuine repetition and not inadvertent equivocation.
    Quote Originally Posted by Clete View Post
    Typically, unless you are discussing logic in a very formal setting, the use of the word 'tautology' would be confusing at best and flat out wrong at worst. The normal use of the term 'tautology' is still consistent with the original Greek use of the word which refers to a statement that is true based solely on the fact that it says the same thing twice using different words.
    Yes, I have only been using tautology in the logical sense because while I had been aware of its rhetorical sense, I have never personally either used it that way nor heard or read anyone else do so, and I presumptuously supposed that this was the case for most everybody else. My bad.
    Quote Originally Posted by Clete View Post
    "The boss is in charge." is a good example of what people usually mean when they use the term 'tautology'. A logical tautology, on the other hand, is a statement that is true regardless of the interpretation or variation of variables. All three of the laws of reason are, in that sense, tautological but saying that is only grounds for confusion unless someone takes the time to draw the distinction between logical vs rhetorical tautologies.
    "The boss is in charge" is a definition. Do you take definitions to be instantiations of the Law of Identity, as I take them to be tautologous?
    Quote Originally Posted by Clete View Post
    You could say that the expression, A is A, is both a logical and rhetorical tautology and I supposed that is where the use of the term in logic circles was derived.
    I don't know. I know that Wittgenstein latched onto the word and popularized its use in that field.
    Quote Originally Posted by Clete View Post
    The point being that the use of the term is, in my view, only a high minded, ivory tower sort of way to say that all logical "tautologies" are derivations of the Law of Identity.
    I didn't know I was being offensive, my apologies. Can you suggest another word instead, that denotes exactly the same things? I'm not stuck on tautology, I considered platitude, but they platitudes are not all derivations of the Law of Identity. And do you equate derivations and instantiations of the Law of Identity, or are they different things?

    Thanks.
    "To be deep in history, is to cease to be Protestant"---Newman

    Matthew 16:18 AENT "I say also to you that you are Keefa, and on this Keefa I will build my assembly, and the gates of Sheol will not subdue it." (BR, emphasis mine)

  6. #215
    TOL Subscriber Nihilo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arsenios View Post
    how does this get one out from the Cartesian Box? You still have the dualism of knower and known, and tautology is first about the thought itself, and secondly about the object of the thought itself and the relationship is still not bridgable...

    In Christianity, the identity of perceiver with perceived is attained without words in union with God...

    This identity is knowledge... One becomes one with that which one knows... God gives it...

    eg You will KNOW what a person is experiencing by co-experiencing it with him by God's Grace...

    Hence knowledge is neither verbal nor conceptual but experiential by Grace...

    Arsenios
    My understanding is that the single highest mountain we can climb in regard to truly experientially knowing our Maker, is in the Eucharist. Is this in line with the Holy Orthodox view?
    "To be deep in history, is to cease to be Protestant"---Newman

    Matthew 16:18 AENT "I say also to you that you are Keefa, and on this Keefa I will build my assembly, and the gates of Sheol will not subdue it." (BR, emphasis mine)

  7. #216
    Over 1500 post club Arsenios's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nihilo View Post
    My understanding is that
    the single highest mountain we can climb
    in regard to truly experientially knowing our Maker,
    is in the Eucharist.
    Is this in line with the Holy Orthodox view?
    Ask Paul:

    2Co 12:2-6
    I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago,
    (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth
    such an one caught up to the third heaven.
    And I knew such a man,
    (whether in the body, or out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth
    How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words,
    which it is not lawful for a man to utter.
    Of such an one will I glory:
    yet of myself I will not glory, but in mine infirmities.
    For though I would desire to glory, I shall not be a fool;
    for I will say the truth:
    but now I forbear,
    lest any man should think of me above
    that which he seeth me to be,
    or that he heareth of me.

    Or ask Iakovos, Peter and John:

    Mat 17:1-8 And after six days Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John his brother,
    and bringeth them up into an high mountain apart,
    And was transfigured before them:
    and his face did shine as the sun,
    and his raiment was white as the light.
    And, behold, there appeared unto them
    Moses and Elias talking with him.
    Then answered Peter, and said unto Jesus,
    Lord, it is good for us to be here:
    if thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles;
    one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias.
    While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them:
    and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said,
    This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased;
    hear ye him.
    And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their face, and were sore afraid.
    And Jesus came and touched them, and said, Arise, and be not afraid.
    And when they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no man, save Jesus only.

    The Eucharist is Food and Drink...
    Unto Union in the Marriage of the Lamb...

    It is the Marriage that describes...
    The Millieu of the Saints...

    I have no idea what the experience of a Saint receiving Communion might be...

    Arsenios
    Arsenios

  8. #217
    TOL Subscriber Nihilo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arsenios View Post
    Ask Paul:

    2Co 12:2-6
    I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago,
    (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth
    such an one caught up to the third heaven.
    And I knew such a man,
    (whether in the body, or out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth
    How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words,
    which it is not lawful for a man to utter.
    Of such an one will I glory:
    yet of myself I will not glory, but in mine infirmities.
    For though I would desire to glory, I shall not be a fool;
    for I will say the truth:
    but now I forbear,
    lest any man should think of me above
    that which he seeth me to be,
    or that he heareth of me.

    Or ask Iakovos, Peter and John:

    Mat 17:1-8 And after six days Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John his brother,
    and bringeth them up into an high mountain apart,
    And was transfigured before them:
    and his face did shine as the sun,
    and his raiment was white as the light.
    And, behold, there appeared unto them
    Moses and Elias talking with him.
    Then answered Peter, and said unto Jesus,
    Lord, it is good for us to be here:
    if thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles;
    one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias.
    While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them:
    and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said,
    This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased;
    hear ye him.
    And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their face, and were sore afraid.
    And Jesus came and touched them, and said, Arise, and be not afraid.
    And when they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no man, save Jesus only.
    OK, but short of actually being an Apostle in Judea on the holy mount with our Lord physically, and being taken up into the third heaven, here is more what I'm referring to:
    I speak as to wise men; judge ye what I say. The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ? For we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread. 1st Corinthians 10:15-17
    Quote Originally Posted by Arsenios View Post
    The Eucharist is Food and Drink...
    Unto Union in the Marriage of the Lamb...

    It is the Marriage that describes...
    The Millieu of the Saints...

    I have no idea what the experience of a Saint receiving Communion might be...
    Nor I.
    Quote Originally Posted by Arsenios View Post
    Arsenios
    Best regards.
    "To be deep in history, is to cease to be Protestant"---Newman

    Matthew 16:18 AENT "I say also to you that you are Keefa, and on this Keefa I will build my assembly, and the gates of Sheol will not subdue it." (BR, emphasis mine)

  9. #218
    TOL Subscriber Nihilo's Avatar
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    Arsenios, I also was thinking about this:
    1324 The Eucharist is the source and summit of the Christian life. The other sacraments, and indeed all ecclesiastical ministries and works of the apostolate, are bound up with the Eucharist and are oriented toward it. For in the blessed Eucharist is contained the whole spiritual good of the Church, namely Christ himself, our Pasch.
    "To be deep in history, is to cease to be Protestant"---Newman

    Matthew 16:18 AENT "I say also to you that you are Keefa, and on this Keefa I will build my assembly, and the gates of Sheol will not subdue it." (BR, emphasis mine)

  10. #219
    Over 1500 post club Arsenios's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nihilo View Post
    Arsenios, I also was thinking about this:
    1324 The Eucharist is the source and summit of the Christian life. The other sacraments, and indeed all ecclesiastical ministries and works of the apostolate, are bound up with the Eucharist and are oriented toward it. For in the blessed Eucharist is contained the whole spiritual good of the Church, namely Christ himself, our Pasch.
    All of which is true -
    But the Holy Transfiguration of our Lord on Mt. Tabor was not Holy Communion...
    Nor was Paul's ascent to the 3rd heaven...
    Nor was the ascent of Moses...
    Nor Elijah's ascent as he passed from this earth bodily...
    Nor Elisha's reception of the Mantle and the parting of the Jordan...
    And on and on and on...
    We partake of the Divine Body and Blood UNTO the Marriage of the Lamb...

    And AFTER that Marriage, we are both clueless as to what the experience of the partaking of the Holy Gifts might be...

    Arsenios
    Last edited by Arsenios; March 18th, 2016 at 11:33 AM.
    Arsenios

  11. #220
    TOL Legend Clete's Avatar
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    Sorry for the delayed response! I've had family over for the last week and haven't had any opportunity to post.

    Quote Originally Posted by Desert Reign View Post
    Clete, thanks for your answer.
    However, you still seem to be avoiding the issue which I have asked about plainly.
    I may never have heard of the law of gravity. But gravity makes me stick to the earth. I can't avoid that. There are two things here:
    1, Gravity
    2. A law of gravity.
    It is not the law of gravity that pulls me down to earth but gravity that pulls me down.

    What you are doing is this: Because you know that gravity operates all over the earth, let us say 'universal', because it is unavoidable, you transfer that unavoidability to the law of gravity. You then say that the law itself is unavoidable. Laws are forms of words. The reason why you call it a law is because gravity itself is unavoidable. But the first law of gravity was 'What goes up must come down.' This law was proven wrong. The second law of gravity was formulated by Newton, which I stated before. That law, too, was wrong. It was supposed to be universally applicable, but it wasn't. The fact that these laws were wrong has no effect on the power of gravity. Gravity still operates whether the law of gravity is right or wrong. Please tell me that you understand this distinction, because everything you have said in your post indicates to me me that either you don't understand it or you don't accept it.
    I use the law of gravity as an analogy and if you like you can drop the word 'law' if you wish. I am not talking about ink on paper or any description of reality but rather reality itself. No understanding of which is at all possible unless A is A. And in the same sense that you cannot walk off a cliff and expect not to fall to the bottom, you CANNOT reject, ignore or undermine the fact that A is A without a similar fate.

    Now, you can write it down or not; you can call that a law or not, it is what it is because A is A regardless of what we call it or whether we call it anything or even bother to acknowledge it.

    All of which, by the way, I am quite certain you agree with so I still can't figure out what your point is.

    1) reason itself is not the same thing as a law of reason. What you mean is that reason itself is irrefragable.
    No, I mean both. A is A. Attempt to refute that and you'll have to use it as though it were true in order to make your argument. It is utterly, totally, completely and in all ways and in all contexts irrefragable - period.

    2) According to what you have just written, the law of reason is not absolute. You say it has the form 'This law cannot be denied without resulting in self-contradiction.' So it can indeed be denied. Nothing stops you from denying it. You may have to contradict yourself, but that isn't an obstacle to denying it. Earlier, you said that there were laws of reason which govern the mind. They simply don't. You have this problem because whilst reason itself proves that you have just contradicted yourself, the law of reason, as a law, can be broken.
    That's what makes it a law, DR! There are people who insist that they are aliens from another planet, that doesn't it true! You know why it doesn't make it true? It's because no amount of irrational stupidity can counteract 'A is A'! No amount of blurring your mind and refusing to see reality for what it is, changes reality in the slightest! Reality is real and we don't get any say in the matter. Therefore A is A is a LAW. It doesn't have to be acknowledged, understood, used or even thought about to be true. It is true because reality is real. Just because someone thinks that they can out think reality and attempts to make some argument that refutes the laws of reason, only means that the arguer is either ignorant or stupid or both. Making an argument that attempts to refute the laws of reason is not the same thing as actually refuting the laws of reason. The laws of reason cannot be refuted. You can try but the point is you WILL fail - every time. This is the reason it can be rightly called a law.

    It is your equating law with what the law points to, which is your mistake. The same is true for gravity. You think it is absolute, but it can be broken easily. It was broken when the first space vehicle left earth orbit. Newton's laws were broken when gravitational lensing was discovered. Einstein's laws do not hold at galactic level as far as we can tell. Your insistence that if I jump into a chasm I will pay for it is irrelevant. All you are doing is creating one example that suits your point. All it does is illustrate that gravity is real. It does not prove that the law of gravity is correct.
    Nature is not self-contradictory. It does not break its own laws because it cannot break its own laws. The law of gravity is merely an analogy. If Newton was wrong, which he wasn't by the way, the only way you could ever discover his error is because A is A. The law of gravity, in all it's various incarnations have only examples of man's use of the laws of reason in an attempt to understand the available data. If our understanding of gravity is wrong, (I submit without argument that our current understanding of gravity is further from the truth than it was 100 years ago,) then either there was an error or omission in the data or there was an error in our logic or perhaps both. The point being that just as the law of gravity (i.e. the fact that gravity works) remained intact despite our misunderstanding of it, so too do the laws of reason survive our misuse of them. This is because they are aspects of the reality in which we exist and are as such, laws we must obey or die.

    ---------------

    Now, having said all that, all of which you agree with, what's the point?

    I get that Fg = G x ((m1 x m2)/ R2) is not gravity itself but merely an idea expressed to describe it. The laws of reason are a bit different though because they are ideas not objects or forces of nature. 'A is A' PERFECTLY communicates the law of identity and cannot be wrong in any context. I'm not sure that I understand what the actually difference is between the words 'A is A' and the meaning those words convey. Ideas cannot be communicated except through language so what's the point of even making the distinction? Whether I write it down or simply understand conceptually that A is A, what's the difference?


    Resting in Him,
    Clete
    "The [open view] is an attempt to provide a more Biblically faithful, rationally coherent, and practically satisfying account of God and the divine-human relationship..." - Dr. John Sanders

  12. #221
    TOL Legend Clete's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nihilo View Post
    Is that so? Or is it that a logical tautology is an example of the Law of Identity?
    Fascinating question!

    I guess you could say that both are true but its sort of ridiculous to say the latter. I mean, everything that is true is an example of the law of identity (or one of it's corollaries) and so it would be making a distinction without a difference.

    Yes, I have only been using tautology in the logical sense because while I had been aware of its rhetorical sense, I have never personally either used it that way nor heard or read anyone else do so, and I presumptuously supposed that this was the case for most everybody else. My bad.



    "The boss is in charge" is a definition. Do you take definitions to be instantiations of the Law of Identity, as I take them to be tautologous?
    It is not a definition, it is a self-repetitive statement (see what I did there?). The definition of the word "Boss" would be slightly different. It would be, "The person who is in charge." The difference being subtle to be sure but quite important, at least in a discussion where tautologies are the subject.

    A rhetorical tautology is a statement that is true MERELY based on the fact that it is stating the same thing twice with different words. The Greeks made fun of it because it simply amounts to repeating yourself and acting as if you've said something important. It's like describing someone as being a dark-haired brunette or explaining how you visually saw something or how a statement is "self-repetitive". It's just kind of a silly thing to say.

    The law of identity is quite a different thing. It's stating that existence is real, which, as you can readily see, looks tautologous except that it is stating a first principle and as such is stating something meaningful and not merely repetitive. This is the difference between a logical tautology and a rhetorical one.


    I don't know. I know that Wittgenstein latched onto the word and popularized its use in that field.
    The Wikipedia article goes into it in some detail.

    I didn't know I was being offensive, my apologies.
    No offense! Just potential confusion, that's all.

    Can you suggest another word instead, that denotes exactly the same things? I'm not stuck on tautology, I considered platitude, but they platitudes are not all derivations of the Law of Identity.
    The term is fine. I suggest simply adding the word 'logical' or 'rhetorical' to the term depending on which sense of the word 'tautology' you are using.

    And do you equate derivations and instantiations of the Law of Identity, or are they different things?
    I think logical tautologies are very specific things and while 'A is A' fits the definition (as do all the laws of reason), I can't say that all logical tautologies are derivations of the law of identity, although they may well be. It's a sort of confusing question because I've never heard the term 'logical tautology' used outside the context of formally stated formulas and truth tables.

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    Clete

    What about the old dilemma, I forget what it is called:

    If, over time you replace, all the planks,and all the nails and all the sails and all the ropes and rigging on a ship over time, is it still the same ship?

    What if you used the original parts of the ship to make a completely new ship. Is the new ship the same ship as the old ship?
    But i should probably warn you, that every once in awhile, I actually do speak the Truth! - Arsenios

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    Quote Originally Posted by TIPlatypus View Post
    Clete

    What about the old dilemma, I forget what it is called:

    If, over time you replace, all the planks,and all the nails and all the sails and all the ropes and rigging on a ship over time, is it still the same ship?

    What if you used the original parts of the ship to make a completely new ship. Is the new ship the same ship as the old ship?
    The more classic form of the same question is...

    Consider a candle flame. It's obviously the same flame from one moment to the next but its constantly changing, does that make it a different flame?

    The answer depends on what the person giving the answer means by the word "change". Given a specific meaning of all the terms in the question, there is only one true answer, thus the law of excluded middle holds.
    "The [open view] is an attempt to provide a more Biblically faithful, rationally coherent, and practically satisfying account of God and the divine-human relationship..." - Dr. John Sanders

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nihilo View Post
    Arsenios, I also was thinking about this:
    1324 The Eucharist is the source and summit of the Christian life. The other sacraments, and indeed all ecclesiastical ministries and works of the apostolate, are bound up with the Eucharist and are oriented toward it. For in the blessed Eucharist is contained the whole spiritual good of the Church, namely Christ himself, our Pasch.
    Thomas Watson, The Lord's Supper - pages 1 and 2.
    "'The celebration of the Lord's Supper is the commemoration of the greatest blessing that ever the world enjoyed', says Chrysostom. A sacrament is a visible sermon. And herein the sacrament excels the Word preached. The Word is a trumpet to proclaim Christ, the sacrament is a glass to represent Him."

    I take Watson to mean that by "herein the sacrament excels" to mean "in this particular way." Not in any or every way. And Watson further explains the way he has in mind: as a trumpet cannot show what the glass is capable of showing in its own inimitable way.

    I am sure Watson would set the preached word as the most indispensable of the divine gifts, Christ himself excepted. But there is one advantage to a foundation and a thing of immense utility; and another kind of special advantage to a tool of special utility that reaches its object after the effort of the first. In just that way, the latter "excels" the first. It is not "greater" in the sense that it could be used whether or not for the first. There is a connection.

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