Re: [FOM] Falsify Platonism
James M
jamesthebod at hotmail.com
Thu Apr 29 03:42:47 EDT 2010
It seems to me that the contributors to this discussion are missing the
main point. The Platonist assumes that there are mathematical real
objects, with precise unalterable properties, and he further believes
that these properties cannot lead to any inconsistency. And while he may
use certain definitions that he thinks are a good description of these
real objects, which enables him to make statements about these objects,
he will never commit to agreeing that these definitions are absolutely
correct definitions of the real objects of his Platonism. The result is
that if any inconsistency (or indeed, any undesired outcome) is found to
result from any such definition, then, as far as the Platonist is
concerned, then it is the definition that is at fault, not the real
objects of his Platonism.
It follows that any attempt to falsify
Platonism is bound to fail. Since a Platonist refuses to commit to
define precisely what he means by, for example,
a natural number, then it is quite immaterial if one could demonstrate
an inconsistency in some definition of natural numbers - such as Peano
arithmetic - because the Platonist position enables the Platonist to
simply state that it simply shows that the definition isn't a correct
description of the real objects that are
natural numbers.
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