Wednesday, September 15, 2004


I'm having trouble with the concept that two distinct identities can share parts but not coincide. In the story of Tib and Tibbles you have tib and tibbles at the begining and they aren't technically coinciding but tib is completley within Tibbles. So in my view they are at least partially coinciding. If Tib weighs 30 pounds and tibbles weighs 35 when you put them up on the table you get 35 pounds not 75. Can this paradox start with a "partial" coincidence?"


Blogger d.x. said...

trippy, dude.

September 17, 2004 at 9:10 AM  
Blogger Steve said...

I think this may have something to do with what we mean when we say "object." To me, an object is just an abstraction of our perception of the world, in the same sense that a geometric line is. A line doesn't exist in real life, only things that closely resemble a line. The same holds true with objects. Objects don't exist in the abstract sense, but things that resemble objects do. We are imagining Tibs as an object, but Tibs can't really exist in the world. For one, the object which we call "Tibs" could never So in my eyes, it's not paradoxical to have Tibs and Tibbles distinct but partially coincident, because as far as I'm concerned Tibs doesn't exist. Tibs is just an idea, not something real. (By my reasoning, I should maybe reject the fact that Tibbles exists... but Tibbles seems to have more of a right to exist than Tibs)

September 17, 2004 at 9:44 AM  
Blogger Ben said...

I think this is a lot about what Mark Heller said. It is the same thing, just named differently. I liked his wall analogy. His dinning room and living room share a wall, but that doesnt make the dinning room wall and the living room wall are coincident. They are one in the same. Just described differently.

September 19, 2004 at 12:53 PM  
Blogger Chris Tillman said...

So what would Heller (or someone in his position) say to the putting-things-on-the-table-and-seeing-how-much-they-weigh argument given above?

As for problems with the concept of two distinct things sharing a part and not coinciding, consider siamese twins who share a hand. The twins are not, strictly speaking, identical, but the thing made up out of both of them, the aggregate of molecules that is where they are, is three-handed. One of the hands is both a part of twin A and twin B.

Does that help?

If so, then let me make things messier again: Does each twin have two hands? If each does, then how can their aggregate be three-handed?

September 19, 2004 at 7:31 PM  
Blogger Howeman said...

Just a quick thing. Actually imagine siamese twins that share a hand. Don't just skip over it because you get the point. Maybe I'm just an evil person, but that is a really funny picture.

So, I'm going to change to three legs, because I can imagine that happening.

My take on the argument, is that one is used to seeing people with two legs. So, one can picture each of the halfs having two legs by just blocking out the other head. But in reality, there are really three legs, and two heads. This is where the "no parts" ideology looks really appetizing. The entity is one part, and so you can't say there are two bodies there that show a leg, merely one person with an extra head and leg.

September 27, 2004 at 9:08 PM  

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