## Theory vs. Premise and Choosing Between the Two

November 16, 2011 by Bryce Laliberte

Alexander Pruss notes a general form of argument that states

- My theory cannot handle
*X*s.
- So, there are no
*X*s.

We might, also say that the theory F and the given data D have a relationship in this way;

F or D
If F, then ¬D
If D, then ¬F
How are we to choose between the theory and what is proposed as a given data? We would require recourse to more basic truths, and from them we would need to verify the theory and the proposed data to see if it is fitting to let go of the theory or the proposed data. But this seems to be that we would need some other theory meant to apply to these basic truths, and the application of those truths only follows from the interpretation given that theory, and the theory we are analyzing means to be just that theory…

The only reasonable route is to go down to logic, discounting absurdities, and taking into account a dynamic appreciation of just what is going on when we can discount of contradictions, and then apply that dynamic appreciation. Of course I take it that this is what I’m trying to do with my own metapsychical theory, but someone else would be trying to do the same with a different theory, and our theories might differ.

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