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The Organon: The works of Aristotle on Logic Paperback – September 26, 2012
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About the Author
Aristotle was born in 384 B.C. in the town of Stagira in Macedonia (now called Stavros). At the age of 17 he entered Plato's Academy in Athens, where he remained until Plato's death nineteen years later. During this time he first thoroughly absorbed the ideas of Plato and then began to move apart on his own philosophical path. On the death of Plato Aristotle spent some time away from Athens including a period when he acted as tutor to prince Alexander, later to be Alexander the Great, returning to Athens at about 50 years in age to begin his most fruitful period as a philosopher. Close to Athens, Aristotle founded his own school, the Lyceum, and began the first of the great libraries. Here Aristotle remained until the death of Alexander in 323 B.C. after which a rise in anti-Macedonian feeling obliged him to leave. He died in 322 B.C. The surviving works of Aristotle date from this last period at the Lyceum, and were the academic textbooks of the time. Substantial, original, and broadly scoped, they were to dominate the intellectual history of Western Europe for over a thousand years, and remain of the greatest importance to this day.
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-Arthur Schopenhauer, The Art of Controversy
("a priori" is defined as deduced from self-evident premises)
Have you ever wondered why formal logic isn't taught in state controlled public schools? Ever wondered why the vast majority of the public seem to have no understanding of how to use formal logic to properly evaluate arguments in order to determine if they are sound or cogent? Why would the government of a supposedly free society suppress such a seemingly vital science? Isn't it important for the electorate to understand when they are being deceived with fallacious reasoning?
Read The Organon by Aristotle, compare it to the ideas of other great logicians, learn the a priori laws of formal logic, and begin to see the truth that has been hidden from us for many generations.
Like all important secrets, formal logic has its gatekeepers. These are the academics/authors that suppress and subvert vital concepts about formal logic. They would like to see the masses suspended in lies and ignorance forever.
Here are a few ideas from Aristotle and some others that I hope you will find helpful:
"All instruction given or received by way of argument proceeds from pre-existent knowledge."
-Aristotle, Posterior Analytics
"We ought in fairness to fight our case with no help beyond the bare facts: nothing, therefore, should matter except the proof of those facts."
"The truth or falsity of a statement depends on facts, not on any power on the part of the statement itself of admitting contrary qualities". - Aristotle, Categories
"Similarly with any other art or science. Consequently, if the attributes of the thing are apprehended, our business will then be to exhibit readily the demonstration. For if none of the true attributes of things had been omitted in the historical survey, we should be able to discover the proof and demonstrate everything which admitted of proof, and to make that clear , whose nature does not admit of proof".
- Aristotle, Prior Analytics
"We suppose ourselves to posses unqualified scientific knowledge of a thing, as opposed to knowing it in the accidental way in which the sophist knows, when we think that we know the cause on which the fact depends, as the cause of that fact and of no other, and further, that the fact could not be other than it is". - Aristotle, Posterior Analytics
"Ignorance is preferable to error; and he is less remote from truth who believes nothing, than he who believes what is wrong."
"Fallacious reasoning is just the opposite of what can be called cogent reasoning. We reason cogently when we reason (1) validly; (2) from premises well supported by evidence; and (3) using all relevant evidence we know of. The purpose of avoiding fallacious reasoning is, of course, to increase our chances of reasoning cogently."
-Howard Kahane, Logic and Contemporary Rhetoric, 1976, second edition
"Aristotle devides all conclusions into logical and dialectical, in the manner described, and then into eristical. (3) Eristic is the method by which the form of the conclusion is correct, but the premises, the material from which it is drawn, are not true, but only appear to be true. Finally (4) sophistic is the method in which the form of the conclusion is false, although it seems correct. These three last properly belong to the art of Controversial Dialectic, as they have no objective truth in view, but only the appearance of it, and pay no regard to truth itself; that is to say, they aim at victory."
-Arthur Schopenhauer, The Art of Controversy
"The fallacy of suppressed evidence is committed when an arguer ignores evidence that would tend to undermine the premises of an otherwise good argument, causing it to be unsound or uncogent. Suppressed evidence is a fallacy of presumption and is closely related to begging the question. As such, it's occurrence does not affect the relationship between premises and conclusion but rather the alleged truth of premises. The fallacy consists in passing off what are at best half-truths as if they were whole truths, thus making what is actually a defective argument appear to be good. The fallacy is especially common among arguers who have a vested interest in the situation to which the argument pertains."
-Patrick Hurley, A Concise Introduction to Logic (1985)
"The province of Logic must be restricted to that portion of our knowledge which consists of inferences from truths previously known; whether those antecedent data be general propositions, or particular observations and perceptions. Logic is not the science of Belief, but the science of Proof, or Evidence. In so far as belief professes to be founded on proof, the office of Logic is to supply a test for ascertaining whether or not the belief is well grounded."
- John Stuart Mill, A System of Logic
"From the proletarians nothing is to be feared. Left to themselves, they will continue from generation to generation and from century to century, working, breeding, and dying, not only without any impulse to rebel, but without the power of grasping that the world could be other than it is. They could only be dangerous if the advance of industrial technique made it necessary to educate them more highly; but, since military and commercial rivalry are no longer important, the level of popular education is actually declining. What opinions the masses hold, or do not hold, is looked upon as a matter of indifference. They can be granted intellectual liberty because they have no intellect."
-George Orwell, 1984
I honestly thought this translation was horrendously difficult to read. As I'm reading, I get the feeling that this translation is almost entirely word-for-word Greek-to-English, as if it went through Google Translate with a bit of editing and a lot of hard vocabulary added in. It seems to have little regard for English conventions, and only attempts to give a literal English translation for scholars.
There's probably a certain demographic of people that this translation is meant to appeal to. If these things don't bother you, then this is a good, cheap copy you should buy. If you want to read Aristotle in relatively modern, flowing, easy-to-follow English, don't buy this translation.
Each section of each work has a handy heading but there is no commentary and no glossary but a fine index. It's a solid student edition.