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essence and idea

Discuss any topics related to metaphysics (the philosophical study of the principles of reality) or epistemology (the philosophical study of knowledge) in this forum.
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Lemgruber
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essence and idea

Post by Lemgruber » September 3rd, 2018, 11:13 pm

Essence:
a property or group of properties of something without which it would not exist or be what it is.
plural noun: essences
Idea:
The term idea is used in two meanings: as a synonym for concept or, in a broader sense, as an expression that implies a presence of intentionality. The word derives from the Greek idea or eidea, whose etymological root is eidos - image.
Concept:
The concept, while what-is-is the expression of a predicate common to all things of the same species. One arrives at these common predicates or attributes by analyzing various things of the same species.

As it turns out, idea and essence have very similar definitions. Let's work with the definition of idea as concept to get to the point that we want to demonstrate.
The definition says that the idea is made up of predicates common to something of the same species.

I ask: is it possible to generate an idea that has common predicates drawn from two other ideas. From what we define no, because each idea represents a different species, then there is no way for a species to encompass other two, if this happens the first two ideas are actually a particular case of the true species.

Let us extend the reasoning to the realm of numbers to arrive at a conclusion which, if not unpublished, at least clarifies the question better.

If we intend to get the idea of real numbers, for example, we will find all the predicates in common - or in other words: Properties - present in real numbers. We will leave aside all that is accidental to these numbers.

In short, we are within the definitions seen above.

If we think of the idea of integers and rational numbers, and we want to extract the idea of real numbers, we will see that in reality only the idea of a real number is really the true idea, the other two cases being only particular cases of the latter case.
Where we want to arrive: There isnt also in the case of the idea of numbers how to give rise to an idea that has predicates in common of other two ideas of numbers. Thus, the numbers are defined, for example: 1,2,3,4. can not be considered ideas, because if they were the idea of real number would be an idea fruit of other ideas.

When Plato, Pythagoreans and so on. say that numbers as defined (numerals) have meaning are making an error, because such abstract entities are not ideas, they are not concepts.

We will show later that in fact the first set to be considered is not the number, but the set of ideas, which has a preponderance over the numerals.
we will show that ideas can not be the result of an empirical abstraction as derived from the Aristotelian tradition and finally we want to demonstrate that the set of ideas is limited, constituting a totality and possessing a character of perfection and primacy.

Thanks

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Lemgruber
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Re: essence and idea

Post by Lemgruber » September 5th, 2018, 12:39 pm

By the definition of concept given above as being a sum of predicates of a species (or collection), we must admit that species always refers to a grouping.
If the concept definition starts from an empirical basis, a problem arises.
Let's imagine that something happens or something that has only one element, in this case we can not conceptualize this element, because its concept would be its own description, which does not correspond to the definition of concept as a result of predicates of a grouping. This suggests that an idea can not be originated from an observation of experience. because if this were so, we would consider the conceptualization of only one element.
Soon an idea or a concept has to be something already existing before the experience

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ThomasHobbes
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Re: essence and idea

Post by ThomasHobbes » September 5th, 2018, 3:30 pm

Nope.

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Re: essence and idea

Post by ThomasHobbes » September 5th, 2018, 6:28 pm

Your articulation of the "problem" assumes essence. It is articulated with essences. Yet our first apprehension is empirical by necessity and the ideas we have of the world created "essential" categories in our minds which are not absolute nor primary by wholly contingent on our perceptions.

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Lemgruber
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Re: essence and idea

Post by Lemgruber » September 5th, 2018, 10:26 pm

That is exactly the problem, if our empirical apprehension generates the idea, then it would be possible to generate an idea of a single object.
Suppose, for instance, that we are presented with a singular object in the empirical realm, as you said, if the empirical apprehension was the generator of the idea, then there would be an idea of that singular object, would it not?
But how is this possible if the definition of idea implies grouping?
The definition of the idea here is taken from wikipedia. I am questioning that if this definition is valid then it can not be drawn from our empirical perception.
Actually an idea of a singular object would contain all the predicates of this object would be itself idea and thing in itself at the same time.
Thank you for your participation and I urge you to explore this subject, which is actually my real intention.

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Re: essence and idea

Post by ThomasHobbes » September 6th, 2018, 5:54 am

Lemgruber wrote:
September 5th, 2018, 10:26 pm
That is exactly the problem, if our empirical apprehension generates the idea, then it would be possible to generate an idea of a single object.
Suppose, for instance, that we are presented with a singular object in the empirical realm, as you said, if the empirical apprehension was the generator of the idea, then there would be an idea of that singular object, would it not?
But how is this possible if the definition of idea implies grouping?
I see no problem here since we all know and accept that ideas, even of singular objects are understood in RELATION to our experience of other objects.
I can't see what your problem is really , and certainly would reject the primacy of essence, since there would need to be an extrasomatic force to maintain such an "idea".
The definition of the idea here is taken from wikipedia. I am questioning that if this definition is valid then it can not be drawn from our empirical perception.
Actually an idea of a singular object would contain all the predicates of this object would be itself idea and thing in itself at the same time.
I think not. The object cannot be the idea. The idea can only be a representation and approximation.
Thank you for your participation and I urge you to explore this subject, which is actually my real intention.

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DragonflyRider
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Re: essence and idea

Post by DragonflyRider » September 6th, 2018, 10:28 am

The assumption that ideas are bound to be created based exclusively on "various examples of the same species" seems odd... That is, it relies very heavily on essence, and the grouping of objects of similar essences. In referring to common predicates, you imply common essences, correct?
Supposing that the platonic understanding of essence is valid, would ideas be reduced to the grouping of similar essences? Are ideas nothing more than macro-essences?
Lets suppose that we took an object, and came to learn that the essence of the object was X. I find that it would make sense to be able to elaborate on the qualities or abstract subdivisions of X, and derive further concepts and ideas, distinct from an initial idea based on the "object".
Does this make sense or does it have holes in it?

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Lemgruber
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Re: essence and idea

Post by Lemgruber » September 6th, 2018, 3:29 pm

It is precisely the fact that we can not abstract anything if in fact we have as base a singular object, that caught my attention.
The movement of abstraction is precisely a movement to ignore what is accidental in the grouping. If there is no grouping then we have to consider the whole object by idealizing it, which by definition there is no way.
I would like to correct a little overcoming the issue of essence, and to focus more on the definition of idea as concept, although the definition of essence is basically the same as that of idea.
Thank you very much Dragon for your placement, who knows together we can better elucidate this question.

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Re: essence and idea

Post by DragonflyRider » September 8th, 2018, 1:39 pm

I see. Abstraction is a certain form of idealization, though. Even the idea of grouping is simply a matter of determining where the boundaries are for your analysis. The "whole" of your object is then whatever you determine will be within your spectrum of contemplation, which blurs the division of the unit and the group. In any case, what I am trying to get at is that we might not need to have worry about having a group to follow through the movement of abstraction, since groups are projections that are determined by the observer.

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Lemgruber
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Re: essence and idea

Post by Lemgruber » September 8th, 2018, 5:58 pm

essence and accident coincide when the object
is singular.

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Re: essence and idea

Post by DragonflyRider » September 8th, 2018, 7:33 pm

I see. That is a bit tricky though... I don't put much faith into the definition of essence. Can you actually determine the essence of something? I'd say no, you can not. You can determine certain characteristics that most often are present in a given object, but even then, mutation is possible. To define something's essence seems to be wishful thinking. Essence is completely pertinent in the realms of language and mathematics, which are products of our intellects that simplify reality so that we can achieve certain goals, without dealing with excessive epistemological issues. Essence is the abstraction of existence, where we intentionally close off any further questions of what and how things are.

For example, lets take the color green. The color green is an idea that represents a wide spectrum of color hues, that all have "greenness" in common. All of these colors share the essence of being green. This seems satisfying enough, until you run into a given hue that is ambiguously placed between green and blue. Does it share two essences simultaneously? Is it neither? In fact, pre-historic and archaic dynasties of what is now China did not differentiate the colors blue and green. Both the color of the skies and the trees were portrayed as "Ch'ing".

Essence is volatile, and subject to our projections. Essence is more of a definition of the point at which we are satisfied with an explanation than what things really are, in my perception, at least.

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Re: essence and idea

Post by Lemgruber » September 9th, 2018, 4:10 am

My criticism is basically in the definition of idea, as you said, she might not be as firm as she seems. If we get out of this definition, the discussion really does not make sense.
I just wanted to debate this definition and find something new in the discussion of intrusion and estrangement, something not clarified since Plato and Aristotle.

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Re: essence and idea

Post by Lemgruber » September 10th, 2018, 1:59 pm

we come to a conclusion: a singular object would be unintelligible, so any object that occurs in the empirical world (ie the physical universe) must necessarily have at least one characteristic in common with another object.

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