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Question 9: Is An 'undefined' Explanation A Real Explanation?

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Posted by Harvey on December 7, 2004 02:54:47 UTC

Let me your last two answers in terms of postulates and axioms:

Axiom I: "an explanation is that which explains physical things"

Postulate I: "How and when does the listener know when he/she understands the explanation? Why, when his/her expectations are consistent with their experiences."

Postulate II: "Then arn't (sic) all expectations of a physical nature? Not if 'a physical nature' has not been defined!"

If an explanation is dependent on expectations that are consistent with experiences (Postulate I), and all explanations are that which explain physical things (Axiom I), however 'physical nature' can be undefined (Postulate II), then it would appear that you can have explanations which are undefined if the 'physical things' of an explanation is undefined. Would you agree with that statement?

Question 9: If an explanation is undefined, then what property does an undefined explanation have that makes it an explanation? That is, how can you consider an explanation that is undefined as an explanation in the first place?

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