• Language

    DIFFERENTIATING CONCEPTS AND IDEAS

    Concepts and ideas are often used interchangeably. The Oxford Advanced Dictionary describes a concept as an idea or a principle connected with something abstract, for example, the concept of social status, or goodness. And describes an idea as a picture or an impression in your mind of what somebody/something is like. Merriam Webster Dictionary describes a concept as an idea of what something is or how it works. And describes an idea as something that you imagine in or picture your mind. Concepts are for thinking. When one ascribes a thought, such as ‘God is good’ one typically assumes that the bearer of that thought has a concept God and…

  • Language

    ANALYZING CONCEPTS AND IDEAS

    To clarify is to make something clearer or easier to understand, while to analyze is to use logical method of thinking about something in order to understand it, especially by looking at all the parts separately. Analysis is the reduction of complex ideas or explication of human situation into understandable, relational concepts. Through analysis, essential concepts are extracted from experience, so that they may be more easily understood and debated. More so, analysis is analogous to definition. Definitions are explicitly about giving the meaning of words, analyses are explicitly about giving the necessary and sufficient conditions for concepts and idea. Since word expresses concepts and idea, definitions are the linguistic…

  • Language

    CONCEPT OF EXPLANATION

    The purpose of an argument is to help the questioner who doesn’t understand something. Thus, the concept of explanation, like that of argument, is based on dialogue in the sense that it involves a conversational exchange between two participants. In the case of the offering of an explanation by a proponent to respondent, a certain function should be performed. If the explanation is to be helpful, it should help the respondent to come to understand something that he did not understand something before. A useful explanation should make the thing suspicion clearer for the respondent by expressing it in terms he is familiar with or already understands. In a dialogue,…

  • Language

    LOGIC AND LANGUAGE

    Logic is an “organ” or “tool” used to acquire rational claim. Wrong or poor uses of language could constitute serious obstacles to good, clear reasoning. Logic is intended to enable us reason in any area of rational discourse, in a rigorous, clear, exact and unambiguous way. In doing this, logic studies various features of the weaknesses of ordinary language and prescribe ways of overcoming them. Moreover, unlike ordinary language that is a collection of an almost infinite number of tongues with innumerable variations of general problems of clarity and precision, logic is a universal language which finds ready use in any linguistic community or language group. A study of some…

  • Language

    CLARIFICATION

    Some basic categories in societies are unclear in the popular debates because we often take for granted or assume that humans have common experiences that leads to commonly held understandings that we communicate to each other. The opposing/rejecting, or favouring/conceding of terms like ‘de-regulating’, ‘re-structuring’, ‘animal-right’, ‘climate-change’, ‘gun-control’ largely determine by different (and much broader) way we conceive it. When issues get difficult, dictionaries may be less helpful. Dictionary definition often just use synonyms for one term. Dictionaries usually give multiple definitions so that you have to choose among them. Shockingly enough, sometimes the dictionary is wrong. My Merriam Webster Dictionary for example defines ‘headache’ as ‘a pain in the…

  • Language

    STIPULATING MEANINGS

    Sometimes the term in question is not merely unclear but actually is contested. That is people are arguing over the term, not just confused about what it means. In this case, you cannot simply stipulate a meaning –for people who disagrees over what the term ought to mean, and dictionary wisely staying out of some issues, seldom more that suggest synonyms. You’re to formulate a definition that: 1, Include all things that the term clearly fits; 2, excludes all the things that the term clearly does not fit; and 3, draws the plainest possible line somewhere in between and explain why the line belongs there and not somewhere else. In…