I’ve latched onto the idea of Deflationary Thinking quite recently – the past year? – rightly or wrongly linking it to my move to the meta, to abstractions over details … (The devil, etc …)
Weirdly I was prompted to revisit Bulgakov “Master & Margarita” after Philip Goff shared a PhilPapers link with a quip about Jesus answering Pilate in his defence with “there’s no such thing as truth”.
‘Nothing is true’. Finally we have the answer Jesus should have given to Pontius Pilate!https://t.co/fM6Hb0a9mB
— Philip Goff (@Philip_Goff) July 10, 2023
Why any serious “philosopher” would debate “alethic nihilism, the theory that nothing is true” beyond the academic exercise, is beyond me entirely. All that says to me is that conception of truth must clearly be useless to humanity. On a par with nothing really exists.
10/10 useless. Move along, nothing to see here.
“Alethic nihilism strikes many
as silly or obviously false,
Count me in. Anyway, that paper abstract also says:
“Deflationists maintain that
the utility of the truth predicate
is exhausted by its expressive role.”
Expressive role? I’ll say! Sure it’s a word we use to express how much something is worth believing. That’s its value to humanity even though we’ve been lost in language since the linguistic turn. Time for pragmatists to move on and show nihilists the contempt they deserve?
Still, I’ll need to unpick that use of “deflationary”. Add to the pile.
[Post Note: And talking of pragmatists, here
a piece on Wm James’ Tough vs Tender-minded thinking.]