Metaphysical Paradoxes

come in philosophy ppl, i came accross these paradoxes,

i will post them regularly, lets discuss them one by one,

1) Ship of Theseus

Story 1:

There once was a ship whose captain was named Theseus. This ship was made of a large number of parts. One day (we’ll call this day D1) Theseus and his crew set out on a long voyage. On D1, the Ship of Theseus consisted of a determinate set of physical parts. As the voyage moved along, the crew recognized that they would occasionally have to make repairs to the ship, sometimes throwing old planks overboard and replacing them with new planks. After a long while, on Day 9127, it turns out the crew had replaced every part of the ship and there were no longer any original parts left. The question that naturally arises here is whether the Ship of Theseus on D9127 is the same ship as the Ship of Theseus on D1, even though they share none of the same physical parts.

so the question is, if this remains the same ship on day 9127(x) as it was on the day it started its journey? if all the parts are eventually replaced with another.

throw away ur opinions.

Paradox 2 added in Post # 21

Very interesting to see somebody has interest in this. I'll try to give an answer by myself, instead of copy/paste from somewhere else.

First of all, let's see this (I am taking a famous figure that hopefully we all know about):

Who was Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah?

If you point to a body of Jinnah (if any of left of him) then it is the flesh of Jinnah, bones of Jinnah, clothes of Jinnah. If we see other belongings then they are shoes of Jinnah, smoking pipe of Jinnah etc. etc. If we look at a picture and try to figure out where is Jinnah?

Then we can see:

* eyes of Jinnah

* face of Jinnah

* hair of Jinnah

* clothes of Jinnah

* shoes of Jinnah

* hands of Jinnah

* legs of Jinnah

* etc. etc.

But where is "Jinnah"?

If you point out that Jinnah is his soul then it is "soul of Jinnah". We end-up with a perplexing question who is Muhammad Ali Jinnah? We can see and tell these are "parts" of Jinnah or "soul" of Jinnah but to which entity we should call "Jinnah"?

If you say that combine all this and we'll have Jinnah but by combing all parts and soul we have body of Jinnah and soul of Jinnah. The "Who is Jinnah?" is still a question.

If you think for few seconds on this then you'll realize that we name objects just for mere giving an reference.

In your "ship" question, "ship" is just a mere reference to an object on which all those sailors are sailing.

Even after replacing all parts of that "ship" it will remain same "ship" because it is just a reference to that "ship".

Removing or adding parts to ship doesn't change the reference.

If you are still confuse then try to ask your "Who are you?".

Everything is changing at all moments. So technically, nothing is ever the same. But as wampyr pointed out, it's the reference that matters. As long as the ship roughly maintains the same personality, shape, and unique features as it had on Day 1, I'd say it's the same ship.

So there are some sane people on this ship who love paradoxes! I like! *claps hands*

I'd say that the ship is no more the original ship. D1 != D9000 (or whatever it was) because D1 shows a specific state of the ship, whereas D9000-whatever shows another. That's like - you have a sheet of paper, and you continuously cut it. While it's still paper, it's formed into another thing: rubbish.

So in short (I know it's a paradox, but I'm still going to give my one-sided opinion... which negates the purpose of the paradox), the ship is not what it was. It's something else.

That said, this paradox is wrong :P (but I'd love to see more paradoxes).

I liked the Jinnah one too.

Your body's cells are eventually completely replaced by the new ones. Doesn't mean you become a different person. :P

How about the Problem of the Evil paradox.. :D

"The existence of evil seems to be incompatible with the existence of an omnipotent, omniscient, and morally perfect God."

9127 is the magical number

9+1+2+7+19, 1+9+10, 1+0=1 (brand new)

[quote=", post:, topic:"]

Your body’s cells are eventually completely replaced by the new ones. Doesn’t mean you become a different person. :P
[/quote]

Agreed. All human cells die and are replaced by new cells. From blood cells (replaced faster) to brain cells (replaced slower), all are replaced.

Furthermore, if we take shaheerk logic then if shaheerk wear a hat then he is not the shaheerk he was before wearing the hat :P

lol you guys need to open up your biology books again!

Brain cells never regenerate throughout your lifetime!

However there is some research showing brain cells do sometimes undergo mitosis but stating that they die and are replaced is definitely wrong!

BTW I'm a third year med student.

^ Exactly. Good to see that I won't be alone in future Biology related explanations on the forum :);).

Though Glial cells do repair/reproduce. And I believe neurons also can grow to some extent in two or three parts of Brain, but not like the usual repair process of rest of the cells.

If this was the case, then you would keep on becoming a 1 month old baby after a few months.

The ship is for SALE now,

as it has completed 25 yrs of it paper life.

Buyers will get 100% brand new parts.

Cant see when me eyes closed! need to click start to shutdown.

[quote=", post:, topic:"]

lol you guys need to open up your biology books again!

Brain cells never regenerate throughout your lifetime!

However there is some research showing brain cells do sometimes undergo mitosis but stating that they die and are replaced is definitely wrong!

BTW I’m a third year med student.

[/quote]

Biology was not my subject. When it was forced in syllabus, I got only 70% marks in it.

Therefore, I can’t discuss what you have said because of my low knowledge in this field. However, I’ll point few links here:

[quote=", post:, topic:"]
Most recently and unexpectedly, over the last five years our human brain studies have shown for the very first time that, contrary to well established dogma, the adult human brain has the potential to repair itself – it can make new brain cells throughout life and contains a special neurogenesis “motorway” for these new brain cells to travel to different regions of the brain and replace lost brain cells. These findings were published in Science in 2007 and provide new and exciting research opportunities for the development of new treatment strategies to promote brain cell repair and help patients suffering from brain diseases.
[/quote]

Source: http://www.fulbright.org.nz/news/quarterly/0802-faull.html

P.S. I don’t know the authenticity of above article. I just read it sometime ago.

i would say it is the same ship as was on day 1,

i context of humans we learn new methods and scrap old ones but we remain the same , so to me yes parts are replaced but same ship

and even parts are replaced the new ones are installed to perform the same function as intended by old ones

good to see some intelligent replies, one argument i've heard is the replica argument -- a museum has in its posession a very old historical antique. piece by piece, a theif steals it, replacing each removed piece with a different piece that is identical (fake), except for the fact that it has no historical relevance. The theif finally collects all the pieces, and assembles them in his house. Now, which one is the historical antique, and which the forgery? the museum or the theif's house??

but i agree with this argument that u can replace the physical parts as much as u like... the soul remains the same,and the true identity is in the soul.

[quote=", post:, topic:"]

good to see some intelligent replies, one argument i’ve heard is the replica argument – a museum has in its posession a very old historical antique. piece by piece, a theif steals it, replacing each removed piece with a different piece that is identical (fake), except for the fact that it has no historical relevance. The theif finally collects all the pieces, and assembles them in his house. Now, which one is the historical antique, and which the forgery? the museum or the theif’s house??

but i agree with this argument that u can replace the physical parts as much as u like… the soul remains the same,and the true identity is in the soul.

[/quote]

The problem of “antique” is different from “ship”. For an item to be “antique” needs two criteria:

1) The artist, builder or creator who original created it.

2) The date of creation.

Science has advance to some extent to calculate the authenticity of item (or creator) and measure its date of origin through carbon dating. Therefore, a “fake” can’t replace an “antique” item.

That’s why if somebody write a play and claim that it was written by Shakespeare then experts can look into that play and match the style of Shakespeare. Furthermore, scientists can measure the date of creation with carbon dating. Thus, days are over to just claim that it is by Shakespeare or remaining 11 to 20 commandments that were “lost” ;)

This scenario is totally different from case of ship.

wampyr, compare each antique with each part of the ship. u talked about soul, the soul of the ship also includes the soul of each part which started the journey with the ship and all its members. soul of each part represents the soul of the ship. i gave the museum example, the soul of the museum was its antiques and the historical background attached to it. hence, the museum lost its soul when the antiques were replaced.

[quote=", post:, topic:"]

wampyr, compare each antique with each part of the ship. u talked about soul, the soul of the ship also includes the soul of each part which started the journey with the ship and all its members. soul of each part represents the soul of the ship. i gave the museum example, the soul of the museum was its antiques and the historical background attached to it. hence, the museum lost its soul when the antiques were replaced.
[/quote]

In “case of ship”, I gave logic that ship is mere a reference to a floating platform on which sailors are sailing. Replacing whole ship part by part won’t change the reference to ship.

In “case of antique”, an antique is very different from “ship” because antique needs two things to be “authentic” or “same”. The “creator” who created it and the “time”.

If an antique painting Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci is replaced by an exact replica then it won’t be same painting because it need two things to be same. It should be made by Da Vinci and must have time (confirm by carbon dating) to match the time of Da Vinci. Thus, a replica won’t “replace” Mona Lisa.

However, in case of “ship”, the time and original creator doesn’t matter because people (maybe newer than original creator) are repairing it constantly.

Consider this, if everyday a new painter paint new things on Mona Lisa since the day Da Vinci painted the original painting then now after hundreds of years it won’t look same as the original one but it will be same. But then it won’t be “antique”.

However, you might know that experts do a “face lift” of old painting to remove dust/dirt collected on painting. But that doesn’t “change” an antique painting because it is still the same master piece painted by original painter and carbon dating still can measure an approximate date of painting.

why are we talking so much about soul in case of lifeless objects ship and antique, to me they don't have soul.

to me soul of ship could be its intended purpose mean travel so it soul will be still intact even parts replaced

in case of antique like painting soul could be message, creator wants to convey to people so as long as message is conveyed soul is intact

To clarify, I am not giving logic of soul. I am using logic of reference.