Tagged: solipsism

Rene Descartes

Descartes’ dream paradox

Descartes, viewed in history of philosophy as the founder of modern philosophy, starts his Meditations with a paradox that has beguiled philosophers since. In very simplistic terms, Descartes points towards the doubts we should have from occurrences we have perceived through our sense. Because our senses can deceive us, we should try to find something else that may substitute for our understanding (knowledge): All that I have, up to this moment, accepted as possessed of...

Solipsism, image from Angelopoulos' Ulysses Gaze

Solipsism, or towards a moral framework

After ending one post on solipsism, it seems that some form of qualification is necessary in order for it not to be regarded as paradoxical. A general argument for a solipsist inconsistency is that upon making his (usually his!) statement, the solipsist returns home to his loving wife / children / family. There is, in other words, some paradoxical relation between the statements of a solipsist and his behavior. However, this seems to be an...

Heinlein signing autographs

The Grandfather Paradox – “I’m My Own Grandpaw!”

The grandfather paradox is quite straightforward, and has many varieties. In the simplest version: if you were to build a time machine and use it to travel back in time and kill your grandfather before your parents (usually one of them) were consummated, you wouldn’t have been born in order to build a time machine – and thus travel back in time in order to kill…. Now for the less straightforward version, and for this...