Why is the Law of Contradiction so important to Philosophers? Can its truth be proven? What are the consequences for philosophy of an answer to the question, what's at stake?
Thanks so much for your help.
Here's what I said to an earlier question asking why contradictions are bad (November 23). As you'll see, my answer implies that it's not just philosophers for whom the avoidance of contradiction is important. It's important for anybody who is aiming at the truth. "A simple answer is that sentences of the form 'A and not-A' cannot be true. So if you're aiming at truth, such sentences should not be endorsed. (And if other claims led you 'A and not-A' by valid reasoning (reasoning that never goes from truths to falsehood) they cannot all be true either, and so similarly shouldn't all be endorsed.) Why can't sentences of the form 'A and not-A' be true? Because of the meanings of 'not' and 'and'. The classical semantic analysis of 'not' is that prefixing it to a sentence ('A') gives you a new sentence ('not-A') that is true in just those circumstances where A is not true. The analogous analysis of 'and' is that placing it between two sentences gives you a new sentence that is true just in...