Philosophy Lexicon of Arguments

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David K. Lewis: a thought experiment concerning two omniscient gods (omniscient with respect to propositions). None of them knows who he is because that is not comprehensible in propositions. Self-knowledge is not propositional knowledge. (D.K. Lewis Philosophical Papers Vol. I 1983, p 139ff)

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Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

 
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IV 139
Two Omniscient Gods/2 Gods/Lewis: the example is to show that objects of attitudes should not be identified with propositions as sets of possible worlds - E.g. both know exactly the world they inhabit - i.e. they know every true proposition - but do not know who they are themselves - Solution: self-attribution of a property, not a proposition - (see above spatial (not logical) localization is not propositional knowledge).
LewisVsCastaneda: Solution: de se: we just need to find a case where the editor of soul knows which world is his without knowing if he is among the millionaires - de se: self-identification, self-localization - de dicto: self-localization in logical space (which proposition one believes).
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IV 141
Two omniscient gods/Lewis: E.g. assuming a variant with two pairs of two gods in two possible worlds W and V, who swapped places - Assuming God 1 knows that the proposition "I’m on the highest" is true in W - and he knows that he lives in W! - It does not follow that he knows that he is on the highest! - Because if he had been on the coldest, the same sentence would have expressed a different proposition, one that is true in V and wrong in W - one of which he knew that it is false.


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Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.

LW I
D. Lewis
Die Identität von Körper und Geist Frankfurt 1989

LW II
D. Lewis
Konventionen Berlin 1975

LW IV
D. Lewis
Philosophical Papers Bd I New York Oxford 1983

LW V
D. Lewis
Philosophical Papers Bd II New York Oxford 1986

LwCl I
Cl. I. Lewis
Mind and the World Order: Outline of a Theory of Knowledge (Dover Books on Western Philosophy) 1991


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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2017-11-18