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Topic: A priori

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In the News (Wed 20 Mar 19)

  A priori - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Descartes considered the knowledge of the self, or cogito ergo sum, to be a priori, because he thought that one needn't refer to past experience to consider one's own existence.
John Locke, in believing that reflection is a part of experience, gave a platform by which the entire notion of the "a priori" might be abandoned.
However, it is known a priori, because one metre was defined as the length of that bar, so the bar must have been one metre long (at the time it served as the standard) - it is a tautology.
en.wikipedia.org /wiki/A_priori   (688 words)

 A Priori and A Posteriori [Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy]   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-22)
The a priori/a posteriori distinction is epistemological and should not be confused with the metaphysical distinction between the necessary and the contingent or the semantical or logical distinction between the analytic and the synthetic.
An a priori proposition is one that is knowable a priori and an a priori argument is one the premises of which are a priori propositions.
Thus, to be a priori justified in believing a given proposition is to have a reason for thinking that the proposition is true that does not emerge or derive from experience.
www.utm.edu /research/iep/a/apriori.htm   (5580 words)

 apriori defined...
A priori is the basis for developing the mind's framework toward the motivation to exercise for the promotion of health and the improvement of physical performance.
A priori is the basis of the mind's framework that precedes innate physical ability for the "common sense" approach during interaction with exercise machines, sports objects, playing fields and competitors.
A priori is involved in the constant struggle to develop and conform to standards and tradition without detracting from discovery and creativity.
www.aprioriathletics.com /aprioridefn.html   (788 words)

His chief reason in favour of this view is that we seem to have a priori knowledge as to space and time and causality and comparison, but not as to the actual crude material of sensation.
The physical object, which he calls the 'thing in itself',{*} he regards as essentially unknowable; what can be known is the object as we have it in experience, which he calls the 'phenomenon'.
Thus our a priori knowledge, if it is not erroneous, is not merely knowledge about the constitution of our minds, but is applicable to whatever the world may contain, both what is mental and what is non-mental.
www.ditext.com /russell/rus8.html   (2461 words)

 What is A Priori?   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-22)
This rather paltry a priori truth is barely distinct from what could be known a priori about calcium or chromium—as what is a priori knowable about calcium and chromium could be encompassed in the same formulation, changing only the designated syntactic string which the relevant experts are said to have employed.
Although we may have contributed to an account of the a priori by bringing into somewhat better focus an importantly accessible component to the semantics of concepts, a component that might serve as the basis for reflection, we must insist that this in only part of what is needed for understanding of the a priori.
Within the broadly empiricist approach, a priori knowledge is construed as  knowledge whose contents are conceptually grounded necessary truths, and whose source is reflective inquiry that (i) draws directly upon one’s competence as a user of concepts and the terms that express them, and (ii) operates non-empirically—i.e., without experience figuring as evidence.
cas.memphis.edu /philosophy/dkhndrsn/What%20Is%20A%20Priori.htm   (10673 words)

 A priori
The phrase a priori is Latin for "from the former," but in modern philosophy it refers to any proposition that can be known to be true or false without any prior knowledge or experience.
Knowledge that is a priori is either self-evidently true or its truth can be derived directly from the meaning of the concepts or language involved.
For example, René Descartes proposed that knowledge about one's own existence is a priori (I think therefore I am) because to deny that you exist would lead to a contradiction, namely, a non-existence person cannot deny his own existence.
www.anatheist.com /Portals/apriori.html   (231 words)

First, I take ‘a priori’ to be an epistemological predicate, one that applies primarily to items of knowledge, so that the notion of a priori truth is derivative: a priori truths are those propositions that could be known a priori.
The account of a priori knowledge is embedded within a general approach to knowledge (the psychologistic approach) according to which whether or not a state of true belief counts as a state of knowledge depends on the causal process that generated that state.
Hence I explicate a priori knowledge by reference to the notion of an experience’s being sufficiently rich for p, that is that someone who had that experience could acquire the concepts needed to entertain p.
www.columbia.edu /~psk16/apkr.htm   (9660 words)

The adjectives "a priori" and "empirical" are, of course, ambiguous in the harmless sense that they are used in two different contexts with two obviously different meanings.
All a priori propositions are analytic in the sense defined.
All ostensibly a priori propositions are really synthetic empirical propositions of a certain kind, viz., announcements by the speaker of his present intention to use certain words and phrases in certain ways or statements about the current usage of certain words and phrases in a certain language.
www.ditext.com /broad/apriori.html   (4673 words)

 20th WCP: Rethinking the Synthetic A Priori de re
Still nowadays, ›a priori‹ is sometimes used in the sense of ›expressing ontological laws‹; or in Barry Smith's words: »The family of [ontological, PB] necessitation-relations extends […] to fill out the entire sphere of what, traditionally, had been seen as the domain of a priori knowledge« (Smith 1992, 309).
He claims that synthetic statements a priori are false just in case their subjectterms do not refer, i.e.
Either the synthetic a priori functions as a primitive or it is a consequence of primitives.
www.bu.edu /wcp/Papers/Meta/MetaBurg.htm   (3464 words)

 A Priori Knowledge   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-22)
A Priori is a philosophical term that is used in several different ways.
To this extent, the term A Priori is valid.
The consequences to accepting the claim that knowledge can be a priori is that it leads to faith.
www.importanceofphilosophy.com /Irrational_APriori.html   (552 words)

 Austrian Method, Praxeology I
It is this assessment of economics as an a priori science, a science whose propositions can be given a rigorous logical justification, which distinguishes Austrians, or more precisely Misesians, from all other current economic schools.
Synthetic a priori propositions are those whose truth-value can be definitely established, even though in order to do so the means of formal logic are not sufficient (while, of course, necessary) and observations are unnecessary.
It is true, as Kant says, that true synthetic a priori propositions are grounded in self-evident axioms and that these axioms have to be understood by reflection upon ourselves rather than being in any meaningful sense "observable." Yet we have to go one step further.
www.mises.org /esandtam/pes1.asp   (5073 words)

 20th WCP: What Anti-Individualists Cannot Know A Priori
First, I suggest that the incompatibilist a priori must be a stipulative one, since in none of the main philosophical traditions does knowledge of the contents of one’s thoughts count as a priori.
The logical positivist, for instance, takes a priori propositions to be those that cannot be denied without contradiction — viz., the propositions of logic and pure mathematics, and those that are true by virtue of the concepts alone.
Unfortunately, incompatibilists cannot take "a priori" to refer to the rationalist criterion, and the maneuver of tacitly switching to it (in order to get the absurd conclusion required by their reductio) is not available to them.
www.bu.edu /wcp/Papers/TKno/TKnoNucc.htm   (2633 words)

 Philosophical Dictionary: Antecedent-Aquinas
An a priori argument, then, is taken to reason deductively from abstract general premises, while an a posteriori argument relies upon specific information derived from sense perception.
The necessary truth of an a priori proposition can be determined by reason alone, but the contingent truth of an a posteriori proposition can be discovered only by reference to some matter of fact.
Kant argued that synthetic a priori judgments are preconditions for any experience and thus provide a basis for mathematical and scientific knowledge.
www.philosophypages.com /dy/a5.htm   (1112 words)

 A priori Info - Encyclopedia WikiWhat.com   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-22)
Pre-a priori thinkers included rationalists such as Rene Descartes and Gottfried Leibniz, who argued that knowledge is gained through reason, not experience.
However, modern a priori thought began with Immanuel Kant who brought up the contemporary distinction between a priori and a posteriori knowledge.
He argues that propositions known a priori are necessarily true, while propositions known a posteriori are contingent, because a priori knowledge has always been true, according to Kant.
www.wikiwhat.com /encyclopedia/a/a_/a_priori.html   (185 words)

 "What the Externalist Can Known A Priori" by Paul Boghossian
Since the conclusion is clearly not knowable a priori, one of the premises in Oscar's evidently valid reasoning had better either be false or not knowable a priori.
A fact may be a priori but very difficult to uncover, as the example of any number of mathematical or logical theorems might illustrate.
If that is correct, then the compatibilist is in a position to derive fully justified a priori knowledge to the effect that there is water, from the two premises that externalism and privileged access entitle him to.
www.nyu.edu /gsas/dept/philo/faculty/boghossian/papers/Externalist.html   (5748 words)

 Conference: Concepts and the A Priori
The guiding idea is that the link between concepts and a priori knowledge could not be more fundamental: the very identity conditions of concepts can be specified in terms of the possibility of associated a priori knowledge.
Kripkean examples of alleged contingent a priori truths are good cases to study relations between a priori knowledge and knowledge required for understanding, or concept-possession.
The account seems at first to take a rather traditional form: at least one form of a priori justification, one that has served as a model instance and that is exemplified in philosophical reflection turns on coming to appreciate conceptually grounded necessary truths by drawing on one's competence with the concepts involved.
www.uni-konstanz.de /FuF/Philo/Philosophie/Spohn/conferences/concepts   (1632 words)

 What is A Priori about Action   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-22)
Jackson and Chalmers seek to identify a class of a priori truths that can be arrived at by a kind of conceptual analysis.
What is a priori is what can be known by an individual epistemic agent to be true by way of competent reflection upon what is minimally required for the acquisition of the relevant concepts.
But, correct formulations are not epistemically accessible in a way that allows one to parlay this general point into a set of a priori truths reflecting the contents of correct formulations of P for particular concepts.
cas.memphis.edu /philosophy/dkhndrsn/ActionTalk.htm   (9480 words)

 A Priori - Search Results - ninemsn Encarta
A Priori (Latin, “from what comes before”), in philosophy, relating to knowledge that is acquired irrespective of experience, that is, by deductive...
Before the time of the German philosopher Immanuel Kant, metaphysics was characterized by a tendency to construct theories on the basis of a priori...
The German philosopher Immanuel Kant tried to solve the crisis precipitated by Locke and brought to a climax by Hume; his proposed solution combined...
au.encarta.msn.com /A_Priori.html   (103 words)

 Gustav Bergmann
The idea is that the truths called a priori are in some sense intermediate between formal truths, which are facts only in the broader sense, and those which are "merely" a posteriori.
To say that the truths some philosophers call a priori are "merely" more fundamental than those they call a posteriori is to say that the difference in question is "merely" one of degree.
The proponents of the "real" a priori account for that felt difference by so assaying these privileged facts that they alone contain an ingredient (I avoid 'constituent') which is a contribution of the minds that know them.
www.hist-analytic.org /BergmannApriori.html   (12496 words)

 Kant: Judgments
A priori judgments are based upon reason alone, independently of all sensory experience, and therefore apply with strict universality.
This is our first instance of a transcendental argument, Kant's method of reasoning from the fact that we have knowledge of a particular sort to the conclusion that all of the logical presuppositions of such knowledge must be satisfied.
In this case, the negative portion of Hume's analysis—his demonstration that matters of fact rest upon an unjustifiable belief that there is a necessary connection between causes and their effects—was entirely correct.
www.philosophypages.com /hy/5f.htm   (1819 words)

 A Priori Probability
A priori probabilities are most often used within the counting method of calculating probability.
This is because you must use logic to determine what outcomes of an event are possible in order to determine the number of ways these outcomes can occur.
Therefore, according to a priori probability, we can assume that there is a 1-in-3, or 33%, chance of one of the outcomes occurring (all else remaining equal).
www.investopedia.com /terms/a/apriori.asp   (252 words)

 a priori
Space, time, reality, and negation exist independently of experience and arguments from these are a priori.
Immanuel Kant asserts that we do not derive these concepts from experience, but that through their application we acquire experience.
In current usage, the term a priori refers to whatever seems not to derive from experience.
www.tiscali.co.uk /reference/encyclopaedia/hutchinson/m0006593.html   (262 words)

 On Argument.
It is natural to seek out and attack the weak points in an opponent's case, but this approach only leads your opponent to abandon or strengthen these parts of his case; it is always best, in an on going argument, to seek out and attack an opponent's case at its strongest.
While inductive reasoning, as a method of reasoning, is considered inferior to deductive reasoning, it is, in the final analysis, maybe, the only method open to us: defective as inductive reasoning maybe.
However, inductive reasoning, as a method, often proves to be attractive, for it gets one away from a priori thinking with its high-flown language and its imprecise ideas.
www.blupete.com /Literature/Essays/BluePete/Argument.htm   (5092 words)

 Oxford Scholarship Online: New Essays on the A Priori
Abstract: This collection of newly commissioned essays, edited by NYU philosophers Paul Boghossian and Christopher Peacocke, resumes the current surge of interest in the proper explication of the notion of a priori.
The authors discuss the relations of the a priori to the notions of definition, meaning, justification, and ontology, explore how the concept figured historically in the philosophies of Leibniz, Kant, Frege, and Wittgenstein, and address its role in the contemporary philosophies of logic, mathematics, mind, and science.
The editors’ Introduction familiarizes the reader with the issues that are to be explored in detail in later parts of the anthology.
www.oxfordscholarship.com /oso/public/content/philosophy/0199241279/toc.html   (261 words)

 A priori at opensource encyclopedia   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-22)
de:A priori A priori knowledge is propositional knowledge that can be had without experience.
Pre-a priori thinkers included rationalists such as René Descartes and Gottfried Leibniz, who argued that knowledge is gained through reason, not experience.
Saul Kripke argues in Naming and Necessity, contra Kant, that aprioricity is an epistemological property, and should not be conflated with the separate, metaphysical matter of necessity.
www.wiki.tatet.com /A_priori.html   (210 words)

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