Metaphysics, Nature Of - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Philosophy

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Metaphysics, Nature Of

Almost everything in metaphysics is controversial, and it is therefore not surprising that there is little agreement among those who call themselves metaphysicians about what precisely it is that they are attempting. In beginning a discussion of the nature and validation of metaphysical arguments and theories, the best course we can follow is to list some of the standing preoccupations and ambitions of metaphysicians. For this purpose we need to make the assumption that there is a distinct class of metaphysical philosophers, a class into which such thinkers as Plato, Thomas Aquinas, René Descartes, Benedict de Spinoza, and G. W. F. Hegel would fall and from which purely critical or analytic philosophers like the later G. E. Moore would be excluded. It has to be admitted, however, that the line between metaphysical and nonmetaphysical philosophy is exceedingly hard to draw, for many...

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This section contains 7,450 words
(approx. 25 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Metaphysics, Nature Of Encyclopedia Article
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Metaphysics, Nature Of from Macmillan. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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