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In his highly Farabian Arabic Treatise on the Art of Logic, Maimonides states, "Everything which experience (al-tajribah) brings forth … is certain (yaqīn)" and can consequently be used for forming the premises of demonstrative syllogisms (al-qiyās al-burhānī). This seems to be a consequence of Maimonides' view that "whatever is apprehended through perfect sensation … is undoubtedly certain (yaqīn bilā shaqq)." As this Treatise in its three 13th-14th century Hebrew translations became a standard primer for logic among medieval Jews, a lively debate sprung up among interpreters of this line. Some interpreters, possibly including Joseph Albo (Aragon, d. 1444), argued that Maimonides' statement must be modified to say that experience can be used to form the basis of demonstrative inductions (heqesh mofte haḥipus). Others, most notably Mordecai Comtino (Constantinople/Istanbul, d. ca. 1490), rejected Maimonides' statement entirely, arguing that experience can provide the basis only for dialectical syllogisms, i.e., experience cannot provide certainty. Others, including Abraham Farissol (Italy, d. ca. 1556), accepted Maimonides' statement, claiming that results from experience are, in fact, second intelligibles and so can form the basis of certain, demonstrative syllogisms. The commentary tradition treating Maimonides' Treatise on Logic thus provides a conceptual framework into how a range of thinkers between the 12th and 16th centuries saw the role of experience in forming scientific knowledge. In general, these interpreters provide summarizing accounts of larger arguments and highlight a broad range of views vis-à-vis the use of experience for gaining scientific certainty.
|State||Published - 2019|
|Event||Premodern Experience of the Natural World in Translation - Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin, Germany|
Duration: 26 Jun 2019 → 27 Jun 2019
|Conference||Premodern Experience of the Natural World in Translation|
|Period||26/06/19 → 27/06/19|
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Premodern Experience of the Natural World in Translation
Yehuda Halper (Participant)26 Jun 2019 → 27 Jun 2019
Activity: Participating in or organizing an event › Organizing a conference, workshop, ...