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Austin Williams

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All logic and reasoning is circular.

Let's say a child asks you a question. You answer him, and he questions your answer with "why?" The child continues to do this until, eventually, you are unable to give him an additional answer. The logic or reasoning ends, and you can only repeat giving him the same answer over and over. So even though logic does get you from A to B, all logic eventually comes to a circular Z.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circular_reasoning

So the idea is, no matter what your beliefs are, all of your logic will come to some sort of circle at some point.

And if a child played the "why game" with you, what would be your circular/final answer? Would the answer depend on what the original question was, or not? Do you have multiple circular logics?

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    Jun 10 2013: “So even though logic does get you from A to B, all logic eventually comes to a circular Z.” A to Z implies linearity. Since you are asking about circularity, I presume that you mean after Z the system of reasoning will start at A again. I think Fritzie wanted this clarified.

    “So the idea is, no matter what your beliefs are, all of your logic will come to some sort of circle at some point.” Not necessarily. It is dependent on intent and context. The Aristotelian concept of establishing a truth solely on the basis of pure reason is not acceptable in modern times. Establishment of a postulate to be functionally true requires supplementation with observation and empirical evidence. You can call this approach a belief if you like but it is different from what we mean loosely by the word ‘belief’ in that it is testable and falsifiable. Circular reasoning is a fallacy (often leading to paradoxes) that arises when intent for using the logic and the context are overridden by the logic itself.

    I think it is necessary for us to remember that logic is a mind prosthetic in as much as it is an aid for critical thinking but not thinking itself.

    For example if we take the sentence: “This statement is false” without a context, it leads to a circular reasoning paradox (If the statement is true it cannot be false and vice verse).


    ‘Why’ questions may not be sincere always. When it is so, one way is to keep the circle as small as possible to save energy and time. An example below:

    Q. Why the sun rises in the east?
    A. Because the direction from where the sun rises is called the east.
    Q. Why the direction from where the sun rises is called the east?
    A. Because the sun rises in the east.
    • Jun 10 2013: I wasn't thinking of Z reverting all the way back to A, but that is also a possibility.
      I was thinking of Z as being more of either a final answer, which all of the previous logic is based on. So Z is the foundation of it all.
      Or that Z would be circular, going back to Y, going back to Z, and so on.

      I posted this conversation on my Facebook also, and someone commented with
      "Valid logic is based on an axiom.

      http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/truth-axiomatic/ "

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