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  • kcantekin 12:32 pm on February 9, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: argumentation, , ,   

    That talents are treacherous for the uneducated 

    Epictetus – Discourses Book 1
    I.8. That talents are treacherous for the uneducated

    We must not concentrate on learning about argumentation before sufficiently improving our character. In other words, we should not be distracted from the business of improving our character by dividing our attention for other studies at this point in our education.

    Proof and persuasion are important skills, but they become dangerous for the morally weak. They make people with weak character conceited and full of themselves.

    Being a philosopher means, first and foremost, having the right kind of moral character.

    Being good at arguing is a fine trait, but it is not the primary trait you have to master on the path of the philosopher.

  • kcantekin 12:56 pm on February 8, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: argumentation, , , hypotheses, , premises   

    On the utility of changing arguments, hypothetical arguments and the rest 

    Epictetus – Discourses Book 1
    I.7. On the utility of changing arguments, hypothetical arguments and the rest

    If you want to walk the path of the philosopher, you must learn how to logically differentiate true from false. You have to be able to distinguish a valid argument from fallacies and sophistry.

    Therefore you must learn the rules of consequence to know how conclusions follow premises:

    1. When considering an argument be careful that the premises you have admitted are not changed when the conclusion is reached.
    2. Put differently, you should not accept conclusions that change their premises.
    3. But if the premises are not changed and you have admitted them, you have the obligation to accept what flows from them.

    The same goes for hypotheses and hypothetical arguments:

    1. Once you grant an hypothesis, you should accept only what is consistent with it, and reject what is in conflict.
    2. You cannot grant an hypothesis and then accept another that is conflict with the latter.

    Learning and knowing these rules are crucial to tell valid proof from fallacy.

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