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On the Necessity of Conditional Philosophy

By Roy D. Follendore III

Copyright (c) 2003 by RDFollendoreIII


March 5, 2003


Things can be entities or processes involving entities. A logical "object" can be defined as an instance of a "class of things" that stands outside of time. "Things" change with respect to time but objects don't. A thing changes not only because of its tangible consistency, but because of its identity. Things are relative to other things such that conditions around it change. When this happens, identities change. Because of the existence of time, as we think of a single "thing," we are therefore always actually considering variations of that thing. We may choose to focus our attention on a single "object" as representative of a thing, but in doing so we are merely ignoring, though never excluding, the existence of all the other relevant "objects" that are constantly redefining its identity. Greater complexity occurs as we consider that objects are made of objects and things are made of things.

Logically, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." represents a multipart statement that can be represented in mathematical logic. Object "X" can be represented as the unchanged standard "it" and the action of "fixing" is represented by the object process "Y." We may then say then that "if not X then not Y," is the logical representation of our statement. What we are saying is that as an object, the potential non-existence of Y depends on the potential non-existence of X as an object. This is the point where mathematics does not necessarily relate to logic: The rational inverse "if X then Y" is true only if our universe were to exist only with respect for X and Y. In the natural physical universe of things, Y could also exist or not exist for Zn; that is Y could exist or not exist for any thing.

To put this another way, the whole purpose of the statement is represented by the probability of the absolute physical existence of X as a thing, and some possibility of the existence of a change in identity of X as a thing. However, we also know that as objects, X and Y have unchanging identities as long as X and Y are being represented consistently through logic. In the world of logical objects, it is we, not things who must induce change. We know that X and Y as simplified objects are logically consistent and therefore X and Y must be said to either absolutely exist or not exist. This statement is consistent with our "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" statement as we have said that if X does not exist then Y does not exist. Since we are things, we things are defining the identity of objects. In other words, we are essentially injecting the improbabilities of things on logical objects. In the world of things, if the absolute existence of thing X is uncertain, then the existence of Y is uncertain. What we have subtlety done is to translate from the certainty of logical objects to the rational probability of the identity of things.

Since things change, to say "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" ( not X then Y) in the universe of things is the same as making the statement "Y." The absolute identity of X as a thing becomes irrelevant. (This is the same as "Fix it regardless.") The logical problem we face in this observation through the translation is that since we know that X is in fact relevant by virtue of the fact that we created it and because X is being specified as a standard, we must therefore expect some logical potential of its existence and therefore some potential of "not Y." Our statement of "things" therefore becomes "Y (not Y)," or "Y with a probability of not Y." Y must both exist and not exist as a thing. Otherwise, there would be no logical or rational justification for Y with respect to our standard so that the expression "not X then not Y" would be moot.

On the other hand, as a "thing" the potential existence of absolute X is not defined or constrained through the statement "if X then not Y." This means that the statement (if X or not X then Y or not Y) is true of our "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." statement. Because of the necessity of translation to the universe of reality, the rationality of our statement becomes a paradox. The root mathematical and logical implications of this can be found in the theories of Kurt Gödel. What we are discussing indirectly here is the implications of basing a physical philosophy on a logical absolute object based statement. Conditional implications are a necessity of philosophical decision-making, not an option.




Copyright (c) 2001-2007 RDFollendoreIII All Rights Reserved