forum 3: week of 23 Jan - Lewis II
I agree with you that the rules put forth by Lewis are self-referential, and do not provide much substantive support for his theories. In the limited context of his contextualism, the rules do seem to work and provide some guidance on the proper methods of acquisition of knowledge. However, if one steps back from it all, and examine the rules together as though one had never heard of Lewis or contextualism in the first place, the rules do not make sense no matter how hard or long one looks at them. I think G. E. More was brought up in class recently (I can't remember as a reference to what exactly), and I think his criticisms of philosophical musings apply especially well to Lewis's theories. It's not unlike the ontological argument for God. If you're eased into it one step at a time, the individual steps seem reasonable (as do Lewis's rules and premises of argument). But by the end of it all, you realize this can't be right - these rules can't even be guidelines for gaining good knowledge, and God definitely can't exist by way of logic. There's something just not right in the argument themselves, without necessarily being able to pinpoint exactly what is wrong with it.