By Paul Helm
How will we shape and adjust our ideals concerning the international? whereas accepting that what we think relies on proof, and for this reason isn't at once below our keep an eye on, Professor Helm argues that no thought of data is whole with no criteria for accepting and rejecting proof as belief-worthy. those criteria, or belief-policies, should not themselves decided by means of facts, yet ascertain what counts as credible proof. in contrast to unmarried ideals, Helm argues, belief-policies are without delay topic to the need, and for that reason to weak spot of will and self-deception. Helm finds the significance of the belief of belief-policies in different parts of philosophy, particularly the philosophy of faith.
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To know that I am worried about the bees it is not sufficient to believe that I am, for I may believe mistakenly. I must also have certain evidence about myself. Otherwise self-deception would be impossible. Whatever the exact philosophical analysis of 17 Belief-policies knowledge ought to be, it is agreed on all hands that evidence and truth ought to figure in it. Knowledge is to be understood in terms of certain standards of evidence. Nothing that is knowledge could fail to meet these standards whatever the standards may be.
Such a requirement is obviously too strong. Not only is there always going to be some truth relevant to the truth of p that remains unconsulted, in order for the requirement knowingly to be fulfilled the person in question must know that all the evidence consulted to date is all the evidence that there is, and this generates a vicious regress. The person needs to know what the evidence for 'All the evidence that I have consulted to date that bears on the truth of p is all the evidence that there is', and precisely the same problem will arise in this case.
So whatever analysis of knowledge a philosopher is disposed to defend, it must also be recognised that there are beliefs fulfilling different standards. Yet it is not quite true to say that, while normative questions about what a person ought to believe can be raised, such questions can never be raised in connection with knowledge. For certain philosophers have explicitly raised these questions in attempting to construe the concept of knowledge as itself a normative concept. It is widely agreed that such attempts fail, but they are not without interest.
Belief Policies by Paul Helm