Philosophy and Logic (2022)

Philosophy and Logic (2)

The Nature of
Philosophy and

Abstract: The disciplines of philosophy and logic are defined and briefly described with mention of some representative problems.

  1. What is Philosophy?
    1. The derivation of the word “philosophy” is from the Greek roots:

      philolove of, affinity for, liking of.

      As in the words …

      philander — to engage in love affairs frivolously

      philanthropy — to love helping others

      philately — to “love” collecting postage stamps

      —phile — one having a love for, e.g. an anglophile as one who loves English culture.

      philology — having a liking for words

      sophia — wisdom

      As in the words …

      sophist — one who loves knowledge

      sophomore — one who thinks he's wise

      sophisticated — one who is knowledgeable

    2. A suggested definition for “philosophy”:

      Philosophy is the systematic inquiry into the principles and presuppositions of any field of inquiry.

      1. Psychologically, philosophy is an attitude, an approach, or a calling to answer, or to ask, or even to comment upon certain peculiar problems (i.e., problems such as those usually in the main branches of philosophy discussed below).
      2. Eventually we must despair of an abstract definition and turn to what philosophers do — i.e., explore the practice of philosophy.
  2. The Main Branches of Philosophy are divided as to the nature of the questions asked in each area. The integrity of these divisions cannot be rigidly maintained since many problems encompass more than one area of inquiry.
    1. Axiology

      close ×

      The analysis of values to determine their meaning, characteristics, origins, types, criteria, and epistemological status.
      Peter A. Angeles, A Dictionary of Philosophy (London: Harper, 1981), 22.

      (Video) How to Argue - Philosophical Reasoning: Crash Course Philosophy #2

      the study of value; the investigation of its nature, criteria and metaphysical status.

      1. Characterization of some features of the definition:

        Nature of value: is value a fulfillment of desire, pleasure, a preference, or simply some kind of human interest?

        Criteria of value: is there no accounting for taste

        (de gustibus non (est) disputandum)

        close ×

        “There is no disputing about tastes.” This Latin phrase implies that a person's values cannot be logically justified.

        or can rules and standards of values be set?

        Status of value: how are values related to scientific facts? What ultimate worth do human values have, if any? Would the universe have any value if human beings did not exist?

      2. Axiology is sub-divided into …


        close ×

        The study of the concepts involved in practical reasoning: good, right, duty, obligation, virtue, freedom, rationality, choice.

        (Video) Chapter 1.1: Introduction to logic

        Simon Blackburn, The Oxford Dictionary of Philosophy (London: OUP, 1994), 126.

        The study of value in human behavior; the study of moral problems which seeks to discover how one ought to act, not how one does in fact act or how one thinks one should act

        Usually, in philosophy, morals or mores (customs of a society) are viewed as the descriptive practices of a society: what people actually believe about morality.

        Ethics, then, is considered prescriptive or normative: what people really ought to do, apart from what they usually do.

        What is the nature of the life of excellence?

        What is the ultimate worth of the goals you seek? (Once you obtain your goals, so what?)

        What specific courses of conduct, in keeping with the goals you seek, will help lead to a life of excellence? What are the roles of pleasure, duty, self-realization, usefulness, goodness, justice, or acting in accordance with your (biological) nature?


        close ×

        The study of the feelings, concepts, and judgments arising from out of appreciation of the arts or of the wider class of objects considered moving, or beautiful, or sublime.

        Simon Blackburn, The Oxford Dictionary of Philosophy (London: OUTP, 1994), 8.

        the study of value in the arts — the study of the beauty, sublimity, and principles of taste, harmony, order, and pattern.

        Are beautiful shapes and sounds describable mathematically as Pythagoras thought?

        Does art relate to ethics? Is there a truth in aesthetic representation?

        Is emotion an essential part of artistic appreciation?

      3. Epistemology:

        close ×

        The Theory of knowledge. Its central questions include the origin of knowledge; the place of experience in generating knowledge, and the place of reason in doing so; the relationship between knowledge and certainty, and between knowledge and the impossibility of error, the possibility of universal scepticism; and the changing forms of knowledge that arise from new conceptualizations of the world.

        Simon Blackburn, The Oxford Dictionary of Philosophy (London: OUP, 1994), 123.

        (Video) Branches of Philosophy - Logic (What is Logic?) (See link below for more video lectures in Logic)

        the study of knowledge, in particular, the study of the nature, scope,and limits of human knowledge.

        1. Epistemology is the investigation of the origin, structure, methods, and validity of knowledge.
        2. As an example of orders of knowledge, consider the statement:
          “The earth is round.”
          This can be successively translated depending upon context as …

          The earth is spherical.

          The earth is an oblate spheroid (i.e., it's flattened at the poles).

          But what of the height of mountains, the depth of oceans, and so forth? Even if we surveyed exactly the earth's shape, the process of surveying would itself measurably change the shape of the earth — e.g., footprints and indentations formed by our measuring instruments.

          In practice, can the exact shape ever be actually known? (No, but even though we can probably never know the exact shape of the earth at any given moment, we do know the earth has an exact shape.)

        3. Consider two well-known epistemological problems: the first is not solvable, the second is solvable.

          Philosophy and Logic (3)First: Bertrand Russell's Five Minute World Hypothesis: Suppose the earth were created from scratch five minutes ago, complete with memory images, history books, geological records, etc. That is, at the moment of creation, the universe would have all the evidence that it was billions of years old already “packed in.”

          How could it ever be known that the creation of the universe did not begin five minutes ago? Russell writes:

          “There is no logical impossibility in the hypothesis that the world sprang into being five minutes ago, exactly as it then was, with a population that ‘remembered’ a wholly unreal past. There is no logically necessary connection between events at different times; therefore nothing that is happening now or will happen in the future can disprove the hypothesis that the world began five minutes ago.

          Hence the occurrences which are called knowledge of the past are logically independent of the past; they are wholly analysable into present contents, which might theoretically, be just what they are even if no past had existed. I am not suggesting that the non-existent of the past should be entertained as a serious hypothesis. Like all sceptical hypotheses, it is logically tenable, but uninteresting.” [Bertrand Russell, The Analysis of Mind (rpt. 1922 London: George Allen & Unwin, 1921), 159-160.]

          Russell states that he is not suggesting that this is a serious hypothesis. As a skeptical hypothesis, he says it is possible, but quite uninteresting.

          Another way of explaining Russell's hypothesis is to consider that there is no way to disprove scientifically that the universe is being created ex nihilio (i.e., from nothing) moment-by-moment by an all-powerful God.

          Second: Suppose everything in the universe were to expand uniformly so that eventually everything in existence was one hundred times larger in size. How could we ever know it?

          At first glance, it might seem that this problem of scale would be unsolvable. As objects proportionally increase in size their volume and mass increase by the cube. So, roughly speaking, if the laws of chemistry and physics remain the same, objects on earth one hundred times greater in size would be crushed by their own weight.

          Philosophy and Logic (4)
          So, on earth, there's a limit to the size animals of animals as well as a limit to the height of skyscrapers. (For example, the blue whale, the largest animal on earth, could not survive without the buoyancy provided by the sea.) If such an expansion of size and weight were possible, then the scientific laws of the universe would have to change.

      4. Ontology

        close ×

        (1) The study of the essential characteristics of Being in itself apart from the study of particular existing things … (2) the order and structure of reality in the broadest sense possible … (3) the nature of ultimate Being … (4) asks the question “What does ‘to be, ’ ‘to exist mean?’ … Ontology has been used as a synonym for metaphysics …

        Peter A. Angeles, A Dictionary of PhilosophyLondon: Harper & Row, 1981), 198.

        (Video) Philosophy and Logic | Timothy Williamson | Methods of Philosophy: Lecture 6

        close ×

        Any enquiry that raises questions about reality that lie beyond or behind those capable of being tackled by the methods of science.

        Simon Blackburn, The Oxford Dictionary of Philosophy (London: OUP, 1994), 240.

        the study of what is “really” real. Metaphysics deals with the so-called first principles of the natural order or the ultimate generalizations available to the human intellect.
        1. E.g. Since ideas actually have no size shape, color, and so forth, my idea of the Empire State Building is quite as small as my idea of a book.

          Do ideas exist in the same manner that physical objects exist?

        2. Consider the truths of mathematics. How and where do they exist?

          In what manner does a geometric figure exist? — After all, points have no size and lines have no width.

        3. What is spirit or soul made of? Or matter? Or space? Or a vacuum?
      5. To Which of these branches of philosophy do you think logic belongs?
        1. Logic:

          close ×

          The general science of inference. Deductive logic, in which a conclusion follows from a set of premises is distinguished from inductive logic, which studies the way in which premises may support a conclusion without entailing it.

          Simon Blackburn, The Oxford Dictionary of Philosophy/cite> (London: OUP, 1994), 221.

          the study of the methods and principles used in distinguishing correct from incorrect reasoning.
        2. Our knowledge is interrelated by logic. It forms the fabric of the sciences by ensuring the consistency of the statements that compose them.
        3. Hence, logic is usually considered a subdivision of epistemology, although, of course, logic is used in all areas of philosophy.
      6. Recommended Reading

        Lee Archie and John G. Archie, “The Nature of Philosophical Inquiry,” in Reading for Philosophical Inquiry (Greenwood, SC: Open Source, 2006). 31 pp. Philosophical questions are characterized, many ways of thinking are discussed, and the main divisions of philosophy are outlined with some some typical philosophical problems illustrated. (This website).

        Wikipedia contributors, “Types of Logic,” Wikipedia. Logic is defined and the main types types of logic are characterized. (accessed September 1, 2020).

        Wikipedia contributors, “Branches of Philosophy,” Wikipedia. A general overview of a collection of a number of types of philosophy is outlined The branches of philosophy are characterized with examples. (accessed September 1, 2020).

        (Video) Logic | Philosophy Tube


Philosophy and Logic? ›

Philosophy of logic is the area of philosophy that studies the scope and nature of logic. It investigates the philosophical problems raised by logic, such as the presuppositions often implicitly at work in theories of logic and in their application.

What is relationship between logic and philosophy? ›

Philosophy is based on reasoning, and logic is the study of what makes a sound argument, and also of the kind of mistakes we can make in reasoning. So study logic and you will become a better philosopher and a clearer thinker generally."

What is the difference of philosophy and logic? ›

Logic is the study of reasoning, whereas philosophy is better characterized as a study of general problems. Both of these disciplines involve using reasoning, but the rules of reasoning in logic are sometimes independent from the rules of reasoning in philosophy.

Does philosophy include logic? ›

philosophy of logic, the study, from a philosophical perspective, of the nature and types of logic, including problems in the field and the relation of logic to mathematics and other disciplines. The term logic comes from the Greek word logos.

Why do we study philosophy and logic? ›

The study of philosophy enhances a person's problem-solving capacities. It helps us to analyze concepts, definitions, arguments, and problems. It contributes to our capacity to organize ideas and issues, to deal with questions of value, and to extract what is essential from large quantities of information.

What is the purpose of logic in philosophy? ›

The aim of logic is the elaboration of a coherent system that allows us to investigate, classify, and evaluate good and bad forms of reasoning.

What logic means? ›

1 : a proper or reasonable way of thinking about something : sound reasoning. 2 : a science that deals with the rules and processes used in sound thinking and reasoning. More from Merriam-Webster on logic.

Whats does philosophy mean? ›

Quite literally, the term "philosophy" means, "love of wisdom." In a broad sense, philosophy is an activity people undertake when they seek to understand fundamental truths about themselves, the world in which they live, and their relationships to the world and to each other.

What branch of philosophy is logic? ›

Logic is the branch of philosophy that seeks to organize reasoning. Students of logic learn how to think in a structurally sound manner. Logic has two types: deductive and inductive reasoning.

Is philosophy possible without logic? ›

Philosophy requires logic. It is very difficult to even conceive of how an idea could be expressed independently of logic. Most philosophy is written in language that uses logic implicitly, rather than explicitly/formally. The absence of explicit formulas does not entail absence of logic.

Is logic a philosophy or math? ›

Logic is an ancient area of philosophy which, while extensively beein studied in Universities for centuries, not much happened (unlike other areas of philosophy) from ancient times until the end of the 19th century.

What are the examples of logic in philosophy? ›

In logic, the standard of goodness is not effectiveness in the sense of persuasiveness, but rather correctness according to logical rules. For example, consider Hitler. He persuaded an entire nation to go along with a variety of proposals that were not only false but downright evil.

Why studying logic is important? ›

Studying Logic Develops Critical Thinking Skills

Finally, it's important to study logic to become an effective communicator. After all, logic is also the backbone necessary for crafting compelling arguments in speech and writing that point others toward truth.

Why is logic important to our life? ›

Logic shapes every choice of our daily lives. Logical thinking enables someone to learn and make decisions that affect their way of life. People would all be running around like chickens with their heads hacked off if no one thought sensibly, and nothing would make sense.

What is the benefits of studying logic? ›

Training ourselves to construct effective arguments and to spot weak ones is a skill that is useful in just about every field of endeavor, as well as in everyday life. It helps steer us in the direction of truth and away from falsehood.

What is the nature of logic in philosophy? ›

As a discipline which evaluates arguments of different kinds, logic is the study of how a concluding statement logically follows from another statement or statements (termed premises) either with some probability or with certainty.

What are the 4 types of logic? ›

There are four basic forms of logic: deductive, inductive, abductive and metaphoric inference.

What is logic in psychology? ›

n. 1. the branch of epistemology that is concerned with the forms of argument by which a valid conclusion may be drawn from accepted premises. As such, it is also concerned with distinguishing correct from fallacious reasoning (see fallacy).

What is logic theory? ›

In mathematical logic, a theory (also called a formal theory) is a set of sentences in a formal language. In most scenarios, a deductive system is first understood from context, after which an element of a deductively closed theory is then called a theorem of the theory.

What are the 3 concepts of philosophy? ›

Explain and differentiate three main areas of philosophy: ethics, epistemology and metaphysics.

What is another word for philosophy? ›

What is another word for philosophy?
217 more rows

What are the 3 philosophical theories? ›

THREE MAJOR AREAS OF PHILOSOPHY. Theory of Reality : Ontology & Metaphysics. Theory of Knowledge: Epistemology--from episteme and logos. Theory of Value: Axiology--from the Greek axios (worth, value) and logos.

What is logic according to Socrates? ›

The Greek word logos ("logic")

[Socrates] had one simple criterion. If a man knew anything, he could "give an account (logos)" of it [to others], and in his hands that maid-of-all-work among Greek words takes on the meaning "definition" or something closely approaching it. (

Who is the father of logic? ›

As the father of western logic, Aristotle was the first to develop a formal system for reasoning.

How do we know logic is true? ›

A statement is logically true if, and only if its opposite is logically false. The opposite statements must contradict one another. In this way all logical connectives can be expressed in terms of preserving logical truth.

Is logic a science or an art? ›

Logic is one of the seven liberal arts, which include the Trivium of grammar, logic, and rhetoric. These arts are the skills which are essential for a free person (liberalis, “worthy of a free person”) to take an active part in daily life, for the benefit of others.

What subject does logic fall under? ›

Logic is the formal science of using reason and is considered a branch of both philosophy and mathematics and to a lesser extent computer science.

What is the relationship between logic and psychology? ›

Logic, it is said, is a branch of philosophy concerned with the nature and formal relations of the objects of thought and with the conditions for the validity of inference : as Johnson defines it, it is " the analysis and criticism of thought." Psychology, on the other hand, is concerned, as analytic or philosophical ...

What is logic in philosophy of education? ›

Logic. Logic is the branch of philosophy that seeks to organize reasoning. Students of logic learn how to think in a structurally sound manner. Logic has two types: deductive and inductive reasoning.

What logic means? ›

1 : a proper or reasonable way of thinking about something : sound reasoning. 2 : a science that deals with the rules and processes used in sound thinking and reasoning. More from Merriam-Webster on logic.

Is logic a subset of philosophy? ›

So, in a case including them all, it can be said that sciences are dependent on mathematics, which is part of logic, which is part of philosophy.

Are psychology and philosophy related? ›

Psychology and philosophy share the same roots: both study primarily of human beings, although one revolves around what the human condition is (philosophy), while the other tries to understand why the human condition is what it is (psychology) and how it functions exactly, given particular contextual locations.

What is logic and ethics? ›

Ethics are the basic principles which lays the foundation for the structure to be built; whereas the logic is the practical and feasible option for constructing the designed structure. Ethics is the basic moral background which makes a person lay specific guidelines on which the life is to be spent.

What is the study of psychology called? ›

Psychology is the scientific study of the mind and behavior. Psychologists are actively involved in studying and understanding mental processes, brain functions, and behavior.

Why is logic so important? ›

Studying Logic Develops Critical Thinking Skills

Finally, it's important to study logic to become an effective communicator. After all, logic is also the backbone necessary for crafting compelling arguments in speech and writing that point others toward truth.

What is the nature of logic in philosophy? ›

As a discipline which evaluates arguments of different kinds, logic is the study of how a concluding statement logically follows from another statement or statements (termed premises) either with some probability or with certainty.


1. An Overview of Logic
(A Little Bit of Philosophy)
2. Logic: The Structure of Reason
(Philosophy Overdose)
3. What is Logic? (Philosophical Definition)
4. The philosophical method - logic and argument
(Oxford University Department for Continuing Education)
5. Existence and Logic | Attic Philosophy
(Attic Philosophy)
6. What is Philosophy?: Crash Course Philosophy #1

You might also like

Latest Posts

Article information

Author: Dong Thiel

Last Updated: 11/03/2022

Views: 5503

Rating: 4.9 / 5 (59 voted)

Reviews: 90% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Dong Thiel

Birthday: 2001-07-14

Address: 2865 Kasha Unions, West Corrinne, AK 05708-1071

Phone: +3512198379449

Job: Design Planner

Hobby: Graffiti, Foreign language learning, Gambling, Metalworking, Rowing, Sculling, Sewing

Introduction: My name is Dong Thiel, I am a brainy, happy, tasty, lively, splendid, talented, cooperative person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.