Thursday, October 2, 2008
While listening to today's class lecture regarding "language games," which we analyzed the use of language within each "game." We focused on a quote from Wittengenstein which he stated "Philosophy may in no way interfere with the actual use of language; it can in the end only describe it. For it cannot give it any foundation either. It leaves everything as it is." So, I began to ponder: philosophers are namely expressing and defining objects and ideas, not creating them. So, who authorizes the definitions of words and ideas to be "true?" Why are certain dictionaries used with such authority? For example, the Oxford American Dictionary defines "god" as "(a) (in many religions) superhuman being or spirit worshipped as having power over nature, human fortunes, etc. (b)image, idol, animal, or other object worshipped as divine or symbolizing a god." So, what if I disagree with their definition? What if I think god is found in ideas, not objects. I think that even when the philosopher tries to describe or define the language of a particular subject, the definitions can still be unstable, especially when dealing with intangible ideas.