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How do we know our right hand from our left hand when there is literally nothing that can be said about one which cannot be said about the other? -ace

Two important historical discussions of this problem. First, Leibniz in the Third Letter to Clarke, par.5. Interestingly, Leibniz asks whether the entire cosmos could be reversed (its handedness changed). Second, Kant, Prolegomena , par. 13, where he calls handed object 'incongruent counterparts'. In both cases, the question is on what grounds, if any, the distinction could be made.

Some years ago I heard one of the Beatles in the course of a conversation about his career opine that 'after all I might easily have been someone else, mightn't I'. I remember not being sure about this proposition. One half knows what is being got at but on the other hand, it seems barely intelligible. Could I easily have been someone else? Ian g

Well, not easily , or everyone would be doing it. This expression might mean one of several things. Here are just three possibilities: (1) That the person I am, what has happened to me, seems accidental, a result of small 'twists of fate' which, my experience of similar events tells me, could 'easily' have turned out differently. The implication might be that the particular identity we happen to have is fragile and to some extent out of our control. (2) That I do not deserve to be who I am or have what I have; that there is no moral reason or principle of justice by means of which I deserve all this. This raises an interesting question in ethical and political thought: to what extent is it just to allow someone to profit from their luck, or even from their talent (or suffer their bad luck or lack of talent)? 'Luck' and 'Talent' are defined as good or bad things that happen do you that are out of your control and not a result of the decisions you have made. (A system of the partial redistribution...