Triadic Philosophy believes thinking is the paramount and essential activity
TRIADIC PHILOSOPHY 595 Aphorisms: http://buff.ly/1S11AyO
There are two senses one gets from reading Peirce’s passionate warning below.
One is that probability is more than an actuary’s guesses. It is positive knowledge.
(I take it that chance will be accepted as a matter of course and so exclude it from this discourse.)
The second sense is the more dramatic. I do not pretend to have a solution. It is Peirce’s remarkable suggestion that false thinking alone is more harmful than the worst of plagues!
This comes close to what went through my mind when I propounded Triadic Philosophy. We must move past the binary or perish.
Let me quote Peirce’s exact words:
When the philosophy of probability has once been put upon a sure footing, the question of inverse probabilities gives no serious difficulty. Nobody can go further than I in condemnation of this way of using probability, which completely vitiates the theory and practice of Inductive and Abductive reasoning, has set back civilization, and has corrupted ideals, to an extent so far beyond what anybody would believe possible without careful examination of the facts, that I know I must be laughed at for what seems a most ridiculous judgment.
I’m not laughing.
Now let me dial this back to a wavelength where I can articulate Triadic Philosophy in terms easily grasped if not pressed to the bosom.
Triadic Philosophy believes thinking is the paramount and essential activity and that conscious thinking is both possible and necessary to a life lived well.
Triadic Philosophy believes that we can be candid in saying what we can sense and perceive and what we cannot. There is a great deal in the latter category. But there is enough in the former to make creative thinking valuable and pertinent.
The upshot is that we can and should be the masters of our fate to the extent possible in every case.
How do we have positive knowledge of the validity of our thinking process? In life, knowledge can never be utterly certain.. But it can have positivity to the extent that we can draw a positive line between our expressions and actions and their reality insofar as we can measure it.
If I determine to say Reality is all and have a platform to utter it on, it is an expression pure and simple as I can make it.
If I publish a novella called Reality Is All, it has a certain heft even if it is only available in virtual format. More and more, the reality of what we do will be technically virtual. Still it has as much reality as a physical bit of handiwork does.
This morning as I lay in bed I was convinced there was a tiny red light visible by the window. I got up and went there and it was gone. It is not hard in the era of Dylan lyrics and cyber proliferation to understand that reality is all. And the implication of that statement is stupendous.
It makes our fallibility obvious and our mastery possible. We can be limited and universal. We can defy everything and accept everything.
I do not know if this makes any sense. But it does as these fingers fly.
Peirce: CP 2.101 Cross-Ref:††
101. I next take up †1 that immensely important branch of deductive logic, the doctrine of chances, which has been called, with little exaggeration, the logic of the exact sciences. This involves several difficult questions, of which the two chief are on the one hand, the foundation of the doctrine, together with the nature of probability, and on the other hand, the admissibility of inverse probabilities. Both of these are matters of practical importance to us all; for although few have occasion to make numerical computations of probabilities, the use of the ideas and propositions of the calculus is most widely extended, and to great advantage, while, at the same time, even the greatest mathematicians †2 have fallen into fatal practical errors both in the theory and in the application of it. The first of the two questions mentioned is by no means one to be settled at one blow. A whole nest of fallacies is hidden in it. This is why I cannot here in a few words approximately define my position so that a person acquainted with the state of discussion can get a general idea of where I stand. I may, however, say that I am one of those who maintain that a probability must be a matter of positive knowledge, or confess itself a nullity. Yet I do not go to such an extreme length of empiricism as Mr. Venn.†3 On the other hand, some very acute, but in my opinion quite untenable,positions of Mr. F. Y. Edgeworth †4 will receive examination. It is of the extremest importance to distinguish entirely different qualities commonly confounded under the name of probability. One of these, which I term “likelihood” is the most deceptive thing in the world, being nothing but the degree of conformity of a proposition to our preconceived ideas. When this is dignified by the name of probability, as if it were something on which vast Insurance Companies could risk their hundreds of millions, it does more harm than the yellow fever ever did. The probability proper is also an essentially inaccurate idea, calling for every precaution of pragmatism in the use of it, in which its inductive origin must be steadily kept in view as the compass by which we are to steer our bark safely on this ocean of probability. Induction might be accurately defined as the virtual inference of a probability, if probability could be defined without the idea of induction. When the philosophy of probability has once been put upon a sure footing, the question of inverse probabilities gives no serious difficulty. Nobody can go further than I in condemnation of this way of using probability, which completely vitiates the theory and practice of Inductive and Abductive reasoning, has set back civilization, and has corrupted ideals, to an extent so far beyond what anybody would believe possible without careful examination of the facts, that I know I must be laughed at for what seems a most ridiculous judgment. The reader would perhaps at length go with me if I could in this work enter into the history of current beliefs.