Re: Definitions

Daniel Fabulich (
Sun, 14 Jun 1998 17:07:25 -0400 (EDT)

On Sun, 14 Jun 1998, Ian Goddard wrote:

> IAN: "My definition" of atomism is the Three
> Law of Thought. The Three Laws of Thought are
> not properly defined as "my definition."
> Your definition is new and IS properly defined
> as "your definition," which redefines atomism
> in a holist context by adding "with respect to."
> You're REdefining the standard then you're
> portraying the standard as my definition that
> is totally my own and is unlike what most
> people use. That is the opposite of the truth.

You assert, then, that most people use YOUR definition and not mine?

> The 3 Laws define a crisp boundary around A
> that says the identity of A is exclusive to A
> by 100%. Adding to A is A "with respect to 0"
> turns atomism into a holistic relation.

So, let me get this straight: The 3 Laws are the right definition, and
therefore my definition is wrong.

<sigh> It's hopeless, Ian.

> That such relation is the truth does not mean it
> is atomism. You've assumed "atomism" = "truth."

No. I'm simply asserting what most everyone ELSE knew already: that all
"atomist" Newtonians agree that nothing is defined without a frame of
reference, but that within a frame of reference, properties can vary

> That you attempt to show examples of relations
> that are what they are free from other relations,
> means your saying that relation-A is A free from
> -A, and thus you still deploy the very traditional
> atomist definition that you seek to redefine.

Hardly. To rephrase it in terms of holism, using the partial difference
between A-0 and B-0 allows us to derive the rest of the identity chart; we
lose no information by describing identity in terms of this relation.

> IAN: You'll know it still by its relation to external
> features. Your trying to say that A is A free from
> not-A even as you try to redefine atomism not to
> say that. Just ask yourself, why is it necessary
> for you to add the words "with respect to 0" to
> the 3 Laws? What do they change? What do they stop?
> They stop the clearly stated definition of atomism,
> the definition that you continue to attempt to use
> by arguing that relation-A is A free from -A.

A is NOT free from not-A. You can't have an A free from at least one
other thing: in this case, 0. However, you can have A free from B, if we
define identity as the relation between A and 0.

> IAN: Then 1 also has no identity because
> there is no difference between 1 and 1.

Not unless you're defining your universe with respect to 1.

> IAN: Your redefining atomism to be holism.
> A relation is a holism. A universe with 3
> things defines 1 thing as 1 of 3. I've
> already shown how your example of two
> things relating to zero is holism by
> 100% since the changing relation was
> change relative to the not-change.

Of COURSE it's holism. I'm arguing that atomism IS holism. You
persistently argue that my definition of atomism is not atomism because it
is holism. I KNOW it's holism; that doesn't prove that it's not atomism.

> IAN: A may be larger, faster,... than B,
> and yes, all with respect to 0. Just observe
> that 3 is 5 relative to -2 and we see that
> non-zero identities acquire identity attributes
> from non-zero identities... as well as from 0.

Consider thinking of it this way: When we say that 3 is 5 relative to -2,
that means that we are saying that -2 is 0 relative to -2. So the fact
that 3 is 5 relative to -2 does not mean that 3 has an identity which
comes from -2, but that 3 has an identity which comes from zero; when we
change reference frames, -2 is the 0.

> IAN: But half is not free from the whole,
> and the cause of the half is the whole.

So? A can change relative to 0 independently from B relative to 0, and
that's all I'm trying to prove.