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Traditional Logic 1 chapter 2 confusion about comprehention

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    Traditional Logic 1 chapter 2 confusion about comprehention

    I'm confused about the idea "comprehention" in chapter 2. Is the Porphyrian Tree the only way to have comprehention of an object? Or does "comprehention" simply mean a way to catagorize? An animal is sentient, living, material, substance. However both cats and dogs are animals, but they are quite different. Can comprehention include deeper categorizing into say phylums, class, order, genus, species? What I comprehend by "cat" is very different than what I comprehend by "dog".
    IF comprehention is only the Porphyrian Tree, then why are we introducing this idea here when it will just confuse kids who know that even though "chair" and "flag" have the same notes, they are very different. Where in the book do we learn about differentiating things with the same notes? I get how chapters 1 and 3 (simple apprehension and signification/supposition) help us understand "Terms", but I don't get how chapter 2 gets us anywhere?
    Help!!!!
    Debbie- mom of 7, civil engineering grad, married to mechanical engineer
    DD, 25, BFA '17 graphic design and illustration
    DS, 23, BS '18 mechanical engineering
    DS, 21, chemistry major
    DS, 18, Physics major
    DD, 15, dyslexic, 10th grade customizednMP plus co-op
    DS, 12, super squirmy, possible dysgraphia, MP 7A
    DD, 6 , K- finally one who seems to like drawing and writing- first one since my oldest!

    #2
    Re: Traditional Logic 1 chapter 2 confusion about comprehention

    Momgineer,

    The Porphyrian Tree is an analysis or division of substance, the first of the Ten Categories of being (the ten ways something can exist). It is an ordering of the different kinds of substance.

    In regard to cats and dogs, you can further divide "animal" if you like. But the Porphyrian Tree only shows you the general kinds of substances according to the metaphysical differences that we can know--the different kind of natures. We can say metaphysically, what the difference is between a mere body and an organism (life); We can say what the difference is between a mere organism and an animal (sentience); etc. We think that cats and dogs also have different natures, but we do not know, metaphysically speaking, exactly what those are. The only manner of organization we could employ to divide them further is their physical or behavioral characteristics (which is like what you were proposing with the biological taxonomy (phylums, class, order, genus, species), which you can certainly do, but that does not quite get you to the difference in their natures, which we do not know enough to specify.

    In regard to the different kinds of things in each of the categories of things, that is not a question the Porphyrian Tree is meant to answer. The difference between chairs and flags is a difference in material construction and physical characteristics, which is another thing altogether.

    The understanding of the metaphysical order of the world (which is what the Porphyrian Tree is designed to show) is valuable in itself, simply because it shows you how reality is structured. But if you're looking for practical applications in the subject of logic, I would point out that it comes in quite handy later on when you start dealing with syllogisms and you are having to try to understand a statement like "All men are mortal" and the difference between such a statement and "Socrates is a man." When you start doing the Euler's Diagrams you will have to know that the circle for "Socrates" goes inside the circle for "men" and the circle for "men" goes inside the circle for "mortals" (which would include both animals and plants). It's just a way of helping you to think about the relationships between kinds of things according to their generality and specificity and how, as categories, they relate to one another.

    Also, when you get to material logic, you have to know this in order to understand the five predicables--which is why this chapter is repeated in that book. In fact, it is important enough to be the only chapter that is repeated twice in the program.

    I should also point out that the Porphyrian Tree is probably the division I use the most when I write about cultural issues. I used it in an article I did about whether Tilikum, the killer whale that killed its trainer, should be euthenized, and in a number of things I have written about animal rights and and other issues that involve the difference between brute animals and humans (like animal rights).

    Let me know if that doesn't help.

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      #3
      Re: Traditional Logic 1 chapter 2 confusion about comprehention

      Thank you, Martin. That was very helpful. I guess I'm frustrated because these first three chapters introduce ideas that are hardly ever referred to in the rest of the book. I'm not used to that. Usually the first part of a book prepares you for harder work later, but with this I feel like we are learning it and will soon forget it since it isn't used again in this book. I haven't used book 2 or material logic yet so I don't have a good grasp of where we are going.
      I will say my class enjoyed this chapter though. I was surprised. I started by playing twenty questions and then explaining how they asked questions that eliminated large chunks of options (is it edible? Is it a fruit?) and I related that to the Poryphrian tree and how it divides each level into two parts (living/non living, sentient/non sentient) and they seemed to like that analogy. They did better with this chapter than I expected.
      I will say that as a Catholic teaching at a Catholic co-op this was a very fun class to teach. We got to talk about how Angels were created by God and therefor have substance even though they are non material. We also talked about how man was created in the image and likeness of God which distinguishes us from animals. That helped them understand why animals are not considered rational. This was a very philosophical rather than logical chapter and it was great to be able to teach it from a common religious view. It would have been harder in a public school classroom where I couldn't help them make those connections.
      I'm enjoying teaching this class and I learned a lot from your videos. I'm sure I will have more questions as the year goes on. Thank you for making this forum available to get help!
      Debbie- mom of 7, civil engineering grad, married to mechanical engineer
      DD, 25, BFA '17 graphic design and illustration
      DS, 23, BS '18 mechanical engineering
      DS, 21, chemistry major
      DS, 18, Physics major
      DD, 15, dyslexic, 10th grade customizednMP plus co-op
      DS, 12, super squirmy, possible dysgraphia, MP 7A
      DD, 6 , K- finally one who seems to like drawing and writing- first one since my oldest!

      Comment


        #4
        Re: Traditional Logic 1 chapter 2 confusion about comprehension/Notes

        Hi Mr. Cothran from Jan in FL.
        I am just getting started, so I appreciate your additional insight into Comprehension in this thread from last year. I have a question about the definition of "Notes." Are the "Notes" the Categories down the middle of the Porphyrian Tree, or the Content down the left side? I'm finding both definitions in the text & video.
        Thank you sir!

        Comment


          #5
          Re: Traditional Logic 1 chapter 2 confusion about comprehention

          Notes indicate the level of complexity of the concept and we say that there is a note for every level. You can think of this either one of two ways, either of which will yield the same result. When we say a man is a rational (1), sentient (2), living (3), material (4), substance (5), we say he has five notes. Or you can observe that MAN is the fifth term down on the middle column. The "differences" on the left (rational, sentient, etc.) are the aspects of a thing that distinguish the next most complex thing (e.g. rationality for man) from the thing you are distinguishing it from (e.g. animal). Hope that helps.
          Last edited by martin; 08-25-2017, 08:31 AM.

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