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The Success Of The Dialectic

The dialectic was initially (supposedly) formulated as an aid to the process of philosophical discussion. It was shown that in order to continue discussion (amongst a group with polarised views) that the method could "model" the discussion so that agreement could be reached and the discussion could continue without impasse.

However the dialectic has now found its way into almost every manner of thought today, and it has it's own method of logic which for all intents and purposes fulfills the requirement of philosophical discussion - it enables the use of logic as we would be used to it.

Rather than discuss the alternative arguments mirrored in the Holy Trinity that are distinguished by their nature as a "subgroup", restricting ourselves to the coset of a K4 group in the finite field GF(8) allows us to see quite how the dialectic has entered into philosophy so very easily.

The dialectic is successful because it permits logical debate in a setting where the "identiy" or absolute fixed position is able to shift with the discussion within the process: and resistance to the momentum of the discussion in favour of the fixed facts is passed over for the ability of the argument to offer an alternative: that the method of the dialectic itself is contradicted: The end result is that the dialectic is inconsistent, but the absolute or fixed viewpoint becomes an excluded principle in deference to it, and the dialectic method reasserts itself as a substitute for the absolute fact.

It was Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel that received recognition for first formulating the dialectic method as we know it today: Though he never used the phrase "thesis vs antithesis = synthesis", he was the first to put into words the method. It was later picked up by Karl Marx and it has found its way from philosophical discussion into every walk of life. What is actually in place with this method are the ways of reaching a logical conclusion - or the appearance of it - outside of the fixed viewpoint that there are absolute facts that can not be ignored.

The relativist would state "It doesn't mean that to me", and using the dialectic process he could be right: although the ability to discount the facts, taking them off the table to reach a group consensus does not alter the facts. When the ultimate athesist argument was looked at in the metaphysics area, I referenced the statement "I would prefer that the method was not contingent upon it's subject". However in this case, it is the absolute truth that is now contingent on the method. Can anyone not see the inconsistency in that also?

Of course, assuming these two statements as thesis-antithesis merely tricks the mind into another synthesis: the correct statement is that from both arise some falsity, one of the negation of the absolute non-negatable truth and another of the method used to state just that negation.

The dialecic method in its basic form is to arrive at a position where every logical disjunction is in principle agreed upon (each side equally valid) : but that different viewpoints arising from the disjunction have their conjunction in the synthesis of the two views. (One should not call these two "views" the "logical" sides of the disjunction: if that were truth they would now have an excluded middle, as found in the conjunction or synthesis itself.)

The dialectic gives the appearance of logic; It obeys the same familiar forms of thought we would associate with simple logic, yet it is a process that subtly shifts the fixed viewpoint from discussion (from which the "OR" statement arose) to another statement: that whether compromising on the strictness of logic for the continuation of the discussion is worth "more" than the truth. There is a possibility that such a synthesis may never arise: but in the case of thesis-antithesis, the synthesis would reduce to the discussion itself: and the method would take the place of the logical method of alternative necessity.

The ability of the dialectic to substitute its own methods of inference into strict logic is also a self-sustaining synthesis that would satisfy the purposes of an excluded middle, and this is at the heart of the method. If A and B are logically and incontrovertably opposite: Their excluded middle is found in the dialectic process that permits their debate; To the dialectic there is no validity of incontrovertible fact: The excluded middle A&B found in the dialectic itself is the method's own method from which both could be considered logical alternatives with equal value.

The move in society to be all inclusive and become an "all in one" community has picked up on the dialectic as a useful tool. It is no wonder in todays multicultural society we see the process used everywhere - its dialectic (logical) use is a shift to a new paradigm, one that permits all logical argument in a setting without the truth that would otherwise divide us.


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