Well Founding Grounding Grounding
- 1.1k Downloads
Those who wish to claim that all facts about grounding are themselves grounded (“the meta-grounding thesis”) must defend against the charge that such a claim leads to infinite regress and violates the well-foundedness of ground. In this paper, we defend. First, we explore three distinct but related notions of “well-founded”, which are often conflated, and three corresponding notions of infinite regress. We explore the entailment relations between these notions. We conclude that the meta-grounding thesis need not lead to tension with any of the three notions of “well-founded”. Finally, we explore the details of and motivations for further conditions on ground that one might add to generate a conflict between the meta-grounding thesis and a well-founded constraint. We explore these topics by developing and utilizing a formal framework based on the notion of a grounding structure.
KeywordsGround Metaphysical dependence Well-founded Infinite regress Foundationalism Grounding grounding
Thanks for helpful comments and discussion to Karen Bennett, Jonathan Cusbert, Louis deRosset, Kit Fine, Holger Thiel, Daniel Nolan and participants in Karen Bennett’s metaphysics seminar at NYU in autumn 2010. Thanks also to audiences at the Conference on the Philosophy of Kit Fine, Sinaia, Romania, May 2012, the 2012 meeting of the Australasian Association of Philosophy in Dunedin, New Zealand, and the “Fundamentality and Metaphysical Infinitism” Workshop at the University of Helsinki, June 2014.
- 2.Audi, P. (2012). A clarification and defense of the notion of grounding. In F. Correia, B. Schneider (Eds.), Metaphysical grounding: understanding the structure of reality. Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
- 5.Cameron, R. (2008a). Turtles all the way down: regress, priority and fundamentality. The Philosophical Quarterly, 58(230), 1–14.Google Scholar
- 8.Dasgupta, S. (forthcoming). The possibility of physicalism. The Journal of Philosophy.Google Scholar
- 9.deRosset, L. (2013). Grounding explanations. Philosophers’ Imprint .Google Scholar
- 10.Dixon, S. (forthcoming). What is the well-foundedness of ground? Mind.Google Scholar
- 12.Fine, K. (2001). The question of realism. Philosopher’s Imprint, 1, 1–30.Google Scholar
- 13.Fine, K. (2012). A guide to ground. In F. Correia, B. Schneider (Eds.), Metaphysical grounding: understanding the structure of reality. Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
- 16.Rosen, G. (2010). Metaphysical dependence, grounding, and reduction. In B. Hale, A. Hoffman, (Eds.), Modality: metaphysics, logic, and epistemology. Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- 18.Schaffer, J. (2009). On what grounds what. In D. Chalmers, D. Manley, R. Wasserman, (Eds.), Metametaphysics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- 21.Sider, T. (2012). Writing the Book of the World, Oxford University Press.Google Scholar