Sunday, August 12, 2012

#23 The Tractatus

Tractatus Logico PhilosophicusTractatus Logico Philosophicus by Ludwig Wittgenstein
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A friend told me that someone bringing Wittgenstein up in a conversation was the very definition of pretentiousness. So I'm pretentious. Live with it. Even though part of the reason that I read this was to impress my friends, I also hoped to gain something from it. Wittgenstein, after all, is an interesting character. In the end, I'm not sure that I gained much from the book---I don't feel bad about this, since Wittgenstein told the philosophers of his day who had embraced the book that they totally missed the point---other than this one interesting way of looking at the Universe: the Universe does not consist of things. It's not made of a bunch of objects. What the Universe is, is a bunch of facts. The Universe is composed of truths. The things are there, but more fundamental than the things are the truths. Things can't exist at all, without facts. I'm not sure whether this point of view is right or wrong (or neither), but it is an interesting way of looking at things.

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