Monday, March 2, 2015

Introductory Summary for the "On Avi Sion's works" blog

Avi Sion is a logician-philosopher (Ph. D.), an independent researcher and writer now residing in Switzerland.

The present blog at blogger.com, avi-sion.blogspot.com, is meant to inform people on Avi Sion’s works, showing the Abstracts and Tables of Contents of his 21 published books on logic, philosophy and spirituality. Each blog post details one of the books. The present post provides an introductory summary. It lists the 21 books in the order in which the posts have been published. 

All of Avi Sion’s published books can be purchased at Amazon.com (in paperback or kindle/.mobi form), and at Lulu.com (in hardcover, paperback or e-book/.epub form), as well as other online stores.

They can also be read online free of charge, chapter by chapter, at www.TheLogician.net and, in '3D flipbook' format, at www.AviSionBooks.com, as well as in Google Books and other Internet locations. They are also available in many university and public libraries.


Introductory Summary

Future Logic is an original and wide-ranging treatise of formal logic. It deals with deduction and induction, of categorical and conditional propositions, involving the natural, temporal, extensional, and logical modalities. This is the first work ever to strictly formalize the inductive processes of generalization and particularization, through the novel methods of factorial analysis, factor selection and formula revision. This is the first work ever to develop a formal logic of the natural, temporal and extensional types of conditioning (as distinct from logical conditioning), including their production from modal categorical premises.

List prices: hardcover (in Lulu.com only) = $40; paperback = $25; e-book = $5.
Judaic logic engages in a formal analysis of Biblical, Talmudic and Rabbinic logic. It is an original inquiry into the forms of thought determining Jewish law and belief, from the impartial perspective of a logician. Judaic Logic attempts to honestly estimate the extent to which the logic employed within Judaism fits into the general norms, and whether it has any contributions to make to them.

List prices: hardcover (in Lulu.com only) = $40; paperback = $25; e-book = $5.
Buddhist Illogic engages in a critical analysis of Nagarjuna's arguments. The 2nd Century CE Indian philosopher Nagarjuna founded the Madhyamika (Middle Way) school of Mahayana Buddhism, which strongly influenced Chinese, Korean and Japanese Buddhism, as well as Tibetan Buddhism. His writings include a series of arguments purporting to show the illogic of logic, the absurdity of reason. He considers this the way to verbalize and justify the Buddhist doctrine of “emptiness” (Shunyata). The present essay demonstrates the many sophistries involved in Nagarjuna’s arguments.

List prices: paperback = $12; e-book = $2.
Phenomenology is the study of appearance as such. It is a branch of both Ontology and Epistemology, since appearing is being known. By an ‘appearance’ is meant any existent which impinges on consciousness, anything cognized, irrespective of any judgment as to whether it be ‘real’ or ‘illusory.’ The evaluation of a particular appearance as a reality or an illusion is a complex process, involving inductive and deductive logical principles and activities. Opinion has to earn the status of strict knowledge.

List prices: paperback = $20; e-book = $2.50.
Volition and Allied Causal Concepts is a work of aetiology and metapsychology. Aetiology is the branch of philosophy and logic devoted to the study of causality (the cause-effect relation) in all its forms; and metapsychology is the study of the basic concepts common to all psychological discourse, most of which are causal. This is a work of ambitious scope, intent on finally resolving philosophical and logical issues that have always impeded progress in psychology.

List prices: paperback = $20; e-book = $2.50.
Ruminations is a collection of sundry notes and essays on Logic. These complement and enrich the author’s past writings, further analyzing or reviewing certain issues. Some important new insights are included here, such as the inductive understanding of negation.

List prices: paperback = $20; e-book = $2.50.
Meditations. A meditation is a voluntary exercise intended to increase awareness, sustained over some time. The main purpose of this book is to inspire and assist readers to practice meditation of some sort, and in particular ‘sitting meditation’.

List prices: paperback = $12; e-book = $2.
Logical and Spiritual Reflections is a collection of six shorter philosophical works, including: Hume’s Problems with Induction; A Short Critique of Kant’s Unreason; In Defense of Aristotle’s Laws of Thought; More Meditations; Zen Judaism; No to Sodom.

List prices: hardcover (in Lulu.com only) = $40; paperback = $25; e-book = $5.
No to Sodom is an essay against homosexuality, using biological, psychological, spiritual, ethical and political arguments.

List prices: paperback = $6; e-book = $1.
Zen Judaism is a frank reflection on the tensions between reason and faith in today’s context of knowledge, and on the need to inject Zen-like meditation into Judaism. This work also treats some issues in ethics and theodicy.

List prices: paperback = $10; e-book = $1.50.
More Meditations is a sequel to the author’s earlier work, Meditations. It proposes additional practical methods and theoretical insights relating to meditation and Buddhism. It also discusses certain often glossed over issues relating to Buddhism – notably, historicity, idolatry, messianism, importation to the West.

List prices: paperback = $10; e-book = $1.50.
In Defense of Aristotle’s Laws of Thought addresses, from a phenomenological standpoint, numerous modern and Buddhist objections and misconceptions regarding the basic principles of Aristotelian logic.

List prices: paperback = $10; e-book = $1.50.
A Short Critique of Kant’s Unreason is a brief critical analysis of some of the salient epistemological and ontological ideas and theses in Immanuel Kant’s famous Critique of Pure Reason. It shows that Kant was in no position to criticize reason, because he neither sufficiently understood its workings nor had the logical tools needed for the task.

List prices: paperback = $10; e-book = $1.50.
Hume’s Problems with Induction is intended to describe and refute some of the main doubts and objections David Hume raised with regard to inductive reasoning. It replaces the so-called problem of induction with a principle of induction.

List prices: paperback = $10; e-book = $1.50.
The Self is an inquiry into the concepts of self, soul, person, ego, consciousness, psyche and mind – ranging over phenomenology, logic, epistemology, ontology, psychology, spirituality, meditation, ethics and metaphysics. This book is a thematic compilation drawn from past works by the author over a period of eighteen years.

List prices: paperback = $12; e-book = $2.
Ethics is a collection of thoughts on the method, form and content of Ethics. This book is a thematic compilation drawn from past works by the author, over a period of thirteen years.

List prices: paperback = $20; e-book = $2.50.
Theology is about God and Creation, or more precisely perhaps about our ideas of them, how they are formed and somewhat justified, although it is stressed that they can be neither proved nor disproved. This book is a thematic compilation drawn from past works by the author over a period of thirteen years.

List prices: paperback = $10; e-book = $1.50.
The Logic of Causation is a treatise of formal logic and of aetiology. It is an original and wide-ranging investigation of the definition of causation (deterministic causality) in all its forms, and of the deduction and induction of such forms. The work was carried out in three phases over a dozen years (1998-2010), each phase introducing more sophisticated methods than the previous to solve outstanding problems.

List prices: hardcover (in Lulu.com only) = $40; paperback = $25; e-book = $5.
Logical Philosophy is a compendium of five works by Avi Sion published in 2002-06, namely: Phenomenology (2003), Volition and Allied Causal Concepts (2004), Meditations (2006), Ruminations (2005), and Buddhist Illogic (2002). These works together define what may be termed ‘Logical Philosophy’, i.e. philosophical discourse distinguished by its steadfast reliance on inductive and deductive logic to resolve epistemological and ontological issues.

List prices: hardcover (in Lulu.com only) = $50; paperback = $30; e-book = $7.
The Laws of Thought is an exploration of the deductive and inductive foundations of rational thought. The author here clarifies and defends Aristotle’s Three Laws of Thought, called the Laws of Identity, Non-contradiction and Exclusion of the Middle – and introduces two more, which are implicit in and crucial to them: the Fourth Law of Thought, called the Principle of Induction, and the Fifth Law of Thought, called the Principle of Deduction. This book is a thematic compilation drawn from past works by the author over a period of eighteen years.

List prices: paperback = $16; e-book = $1.50.
A Fortiori Logic is a wide-ranging and in-depth study of a fortiori reasoning, comprising a great many new theoretical insights into such argument, a history of its use and discussion from antiquity to the present day, and critical analyses of the main attempts at its elucidation. Its purpose is nothing less than to lay the foundations for a new branch of logic, and greatly develop it; and thus to once and for all dispel the many fallacious ideas circulating regarding the nature of a fortiori reasoning.

List prices: hardcover (in Lulu.com only) = $50; paperback = $30; e-book = $7.

  




Sunday, March 1, 2015

A FORTIORI LOGIC - by Avi Sion

A FORTIORI LOGIC:
Innovations, History and Assessments.

Avi Sion,  Ph. D.



First published, 2013.

Abstract


A Fortiori Logic: Innovations, History and Assessments is a wide-ranging and in-depth study of a fortiori reasoning, comprising a great many new theoretical insights into such argument, a history of its use and discussion from antiquity to the present day, and critical analyses of the main attempts at its elucidation. Its purpose is nothing less than to lay the foundations for a new branch of logic and greatly develop it; and thus to once and for all dispel the many fallacious ideas circulating regarding the nature of a fortiori reasoning.

The work is divided into three parts. The first part, Formalities, presents the author’s largely original theory of a fortiori argument, in all its forms and varieties. Its four (or eight) principal moods are analyzed in great detail and formally validated, and secondary moods are derived from them. A crescendo argument is distinguished from purely a fortiori argument, and similarly analyzed and validated. These argument forms are clearly distinguished from the pro rata and analogical forms of argument. Moreover, we examine the wide range of a fortiori argument; the possibilities of quantifying it; the formal interrelationships of its various moods; and their relationships to syllogistic and analogical reasoning. Although a fortiori argument is shown to be deductive, inductive forms of it are acknowledged and explained. Although a fortiori argument is essentially ontical in character, more specifically logical-epistemic and ethical-legal variants of it are acknowledged.

The second part of the work, Ancient and Medieval History, looks into use and discussion of a fortiori argument in Greece and Rome, in the Talmud, among post-Talmudic rabbis, and in Christian, Moslem, Chinese and Indian sources. Aristotle’s approach to a fortiori argument is described and evaluated. There is a thorough analysis of the Mishnaic qal vachomer argument, and a reassessment of the dayo principle relating to it, as well as of the Gemara’s later take on these topics. The valuable contribution, much later, by Moshe Chaim Luzzatto is duly acknowledged. Lists are drawn up of the use of a fortiori argument in the Jewish Bible, the Mishna, the works of Plato and Aristotle, the Christian Bible and the Koran; and the specific moods used are identified. Moreover, there is a pilot study of the use of a fortiori argument in the Gemara, with reference to Rodkinson’s partial edition of the Babylonian Talmud, setting detailed methodological guidelines for a fuller study. There is also a novel, detailed study of logic in general in the Torah.

The third part of the present work, Modern and Contemporary Authors, describes and evaluates the work of numerous (some thirty) recent contributors to a fortiori logic, as well as the articles on the subject in certain lexicons. Here, we discover that whereas a few authors in the last century or so made some significant contributions to the field, most of them shot woefully off-target in various ways. The work of each author, whether famous or unknown, is examined in detail in a dedicated chapter, or at least in a section; and his ideas on the subject are carefully weighed. The variety of theories that have been proposed is impressive, and stands witness to the complexity and elusiveness of the subject, and to the crying need for the present critical and integrative study. But whatever the intrinsic value of each work, it must be realized that even errors and lacunae are interesting because they teach us how not to proceed.

This book also contains, in a final appendix, some valuable contributions to general logic, including new analyses of symbolization and axiomatization, existential import, the tetralemma, the Liar paradox and the Russell paradox.


Buy it or read it online


All of Avi Sion’s published books can be purchased at Amazon.com (in paperback or kindle/.mobi form), and at Lulu.com (in hardcover, paperback or e-book/.epub form), as well as other online stores.

They can also be read online free of charge, chapter by chapter, at www.TheLogician.net and, in '3D flipbook' format, at www.AviSionBooks.com, as well as in Google Books and other Internet locations. They are also available in many university and public libraries.


Contents in brief


Foreword

PART I - FORMALITIES
1.         The standard forms
2.         More formalities
3.         Still more formalities
4.         Apparently variant forms
5.         Comparisons and correlations

PART II – ANCIENT AND MEDIEVAL HISTORY
6.         A fortiori in Greece and Rome
7.         A fortiori in the Talmud
8.         In the Talmud, continued
9.         Post-Talmudic rabbis
10.     A fortiori in the Christian Bible
11.     Islamic ‘logic’
12.     A fortiori in China and India

PART III – MODERN AND CONTEMPORARY AUTHORS
13.     Moses Mielziner
14.     Adolf Schwarz
15.     Saul Lieberman
16.     Louis Jacobs
17.     Heinrich Guggenheimer
18.     Adin Steinsaltz
19.     Jonathan Cohen
20.     Michael Avraham
21.     Gabriel Abitbol
22.     Hyam Maccoby
23.     Alexander Samely
24.     Lenartowicz and Koszteyn
25.     Abraham, Gabbay and Schild
26.     Stefan Goltzberg
27.     Andrew Schumann
28.     Allen Wiseman
29.     Yisrael Ury
30.     Hubert Marraud
31.     Various other commentaries
32.     A fortiori in various lexicons
33.     Conclusions and prospects

APPENDICES
1.         A fortiori discourse in the Jewish Bible
2.         A fortiori discourse in the Mishna
3.         A fortiori discourse in the two Talmuds
4.         A fortiori discourse by Plato and Aristotle
5.         A fortiori discourse in other world literature
6.         Logic in the Torah
7.         Some logic topics of general interest

Main References / Bibliography


Contents in detail


FOREWORD
1.         Innovations
2.         History
3.         Assessments

Part I - Formalities

1.         THE STANDARD FORMS
1.         Copulative a fortiori arguments
2.         Implicational a fortiori arguments
3.         Validations
4.         Ranging from zero or less
5.         Secondary moods

2.         MORE FORMALITIES
1.         Species and Genera   
2.         Proportionality
3.         A crescendo argument
4.         Hermeneutics
5.         Relative middle terms

3.         STILL MORE FORMALITIES
1.         Understanding the laws of thought
2.         Quantification
3.         A fortiori through induction
4.         Antithetical items
5.         Traductions

4.         APPARENTLY VARIANT FORMS
1.         Variations in form and content
2.         Logical-epistemic a fortiori
3.         Ethical-legal a fortiori
4.         There are no really hybrid forms
5.         Probable inferences
6.         Correlating ontical and probabilistic forms

5.         COMPARISONS AND CORRELATIONS
1.         Analogical argument
2.         Is a fortiori argument syllogism?
3.         Correlating arguments
4.         Structural comparisons
5.         From syllogism to a fortiori argument
6.         From a fortiori argument to syllogism
7.         Reiterating translations
8.         Lessons learned

Part II – Ancient and Medieval History

6.         A FORTIORI IN GREECE AND ROME
1.         Aristotle’s observations
2.         The Kneales’ list
3.         Aristotle in practice
4.         Relation to syllogism
5.         Cicero
6.         Alexander of Aphrodisias
7.         Historical questions

7.         A FORTIORI IN THE TALMUD
1.         Brief history of a fortiori
2.         A brief course in the relevant logic
3.         A fresh analysis of the Mishna Baba Qama 2:5
4.         A logician’s reading of Numbers 12:14-15
5.         A critique of the Gemara in Baba Qama 25a
6.         A slightly different reading of the Gemara

8.         IN THE TALMUD, CONTINUED
1.         Natural, conventional or revealed?
2.         Measure for measure
3.         The dayo principle in formal terms
4.         The human element
5.         Qal vachomer without dayo
6.         Three additional Gemara arguments
7.         Assessment of the Talmud’s logic
8.         The syllogistic Midot
9.         Historical questions

9.         POST-TALMUDIC RABBIS
1.         Logic and history issues
2.         Philo of Alexandria
3.         Sifra
4.         The Korach arguments
5.         Saadia Gaon
6.         Rashi and Tosafot
7.         Kol zeh assim
8.         Maimonides
9.         More on medieval authors
10.     Moshe Chaim Luzzatto
11.     More research is needed

10.       A FORTIORI IN THE CHRISTIAN BIBLE
1.         In the Christian Bible
2.         Jesus of Nazareth
3.         Paul of Tarsus
4.         In later Christian discourse
5.         Additional findings

11.       ISLAMIC ‘LOGIC’
1.         Logic in the Koran
2.         About the Koran
3.         Logic in the hadiths
4.         A fortiori in fiqh, based on Hallaq
5.         Other presentations and issues
6.         The dayo principle and more
7.         The essence of Islamic discourse

12.       A FORTIORI IN CHINA AND INDIA
1.         Zen logic in general
2.         A fortiori use in Zen
3.         The Indian kaimutika

Part III – Modern and Contemporary Authors

13.       MOSES MIELZINER
1.         Description of the argument
2.         Structural analyses
3.         Concerning the jus talionis
4.         Restrictions and refutations

14.       ADOLF SCHWARZ
1.         Equation to syllogism
2.         Jacobs’ critique
3.         Kunst’s critique
4.         Wiseman on Schwarz
5.         Why a fortiori is not syllogism

15.       SAUL LIEBERMAN
1.         Hermogenes
2.         Influences on rabbis
3.         Reassessment
4.         Cicero

16.       LOUIS JACOBS
1.         The simple and complex types
2.         Deficiencies in Jacobs’ forms
3.         More comments on Jacobs’ work
4.         A more recent contribution

17.       HEINRICH GUGGENHEIMER
1.         Tout un programme
2.         Theory of a fortiori
3.         A faulty approach

18.       ADIN STEINSALTZ
1.         Qal vachomer and dayo
2.         A recurrent fallacy
3.         Lack of formalism

19.       JONATHAN COHEN
1.         Formula for a fortiori
2.         Fallacy of diverse weights
3.         No effort of validation

20.       MICHAEL AVRAHAM
1.         Model of a fortiori
2.         Outlook on a fortiori
3.         On Baba Qama 2:5

21.       GABRIEL ABITBOL
1.         Name and functioning
2.         Tabular representation
3.         Treatment of dayo
4.         Refutations
5.         Closing remarks

22.       HYAM MACCOBY
1.         Purely a fortiori argument
2.         A crescendo argument
3.         Baba Qama 25a
4.         Faulty qal vachomer

23.       ALEXANDER SAMELY
1.         General definition
2.         Descriptive formula
3.         Three alleged techniques
4.         Bava Kamma 25a-b
5.         Samely’s online database
6.         My critical researches

24.       LENARTOWICZ AND KOSZTEYN
1.         The form of the argument
2.         The dayo principle
3.         Epistemic substitution

25.       ABRAHAM, GABBAY AND SCHILD
1.         Their opinion of past work
2.         Their erroneous basic premise
3.         Some errors of logic
4.         Mixing apples and oranges
5.         Quid pro quo

26.       STEFAN GOLTZBERG
1.         Source of his definition
2.         Soundness of the argument
3.         The dayo principle
4.         His “two-dimensional” theory

27.       ANDREW SCHUMANN
1.         Interpretation of Baba Qama 25a
2.         Syllogism as a fortiori
3.         Grandiosity without substance
4.         Logic custom-made
5.         Not logic, but lunacy

28.       ALLEN WISEMAN
1.         Definition and Moods
2.         Inductive a fortiori
3.         Abduction and conduction
4.         Proportional a fortiori
5.         The dayo principle
6.         The scope of dayo
7.         Miriam and Aaron
8.         Summing up

29.       YISRAEL URY
1.         An ingenious idea
2.         Diagrams for a fortiori argument
3.         No a crescendo or dayo
4.         Kol zeh achnis

30.       HUBERT MARRAUD
1.         Warrants and premises
2.         The main form of a fortiori
3.         So-called meta-arguments
4.         Paulo minor argument
5.         Legal a fortiori argument

31.       VARIOUS OTHER COMMENTARIES
1.         H. S. Hirschfeld
2.         H.W.B. Joseph
3.         Moshe Ostrovsky
4.         Pierre AndrĂ© Lalande
5.         David Daube
6.         Meir Zvi Bergman
7.         Strack and Stemberger
8.         Meir Brachfeld
9.         Gary G. Porton
10.     Mordechai Torczyner
11.     Ron Villanova
12.     Giovanni Sartor
13.     And others still

32.       A FORTIORI IN VARIOUS LEXICONS
1.         The Jewish Encyclopedia
2.         Encyclopaedia Judaica
3.         Encyclopedia Talmudit
4.         How to define a fortiori
5.         Various dictionaries and encyclopedias
6.         Wikipedia

33.       CONCLUSIONS AND PROSPECTS
1.         My past errors and present improvements
2.         Historical research into logic
3.         Assessing contemporaries
4.         Perspectives

APPENDICES
1.         A fortiori discourse in the Jewish Bible
2.         A fortiori discourse in the Mishna
3.         A fortiori discourse in the two Talmuds
4.         A fortiori discourse by Plato and Aristotle
1.         Plato
2.         Aristotle
5.         A fortiori discourse in other world literature
1.         Ancient literature
2.         More recent literature
6.         Logic in the Torah
7.         Some logic topics of general interest
1.          About modern symbolic logic
2.          The triviality of the existential import doctrine
3.          The vanity of the tetralemma
4.          The Liar paradox (redux)
5.          The Russell paradox (redux)

Main References / Bibliography