# Précis of epistemology

Epistemology is the science of science (or the knowledge about knowledge). Science (or knowledge) is to give good proofs, with good principles, good observations, and logically correct reasoning. Good principles are recognized by their fruits. With this definition of science, even philosophy is a science. Ethics, epistemology and metaphysics are sciences.

- Reason, a manual
- How the spirit works
- The foundations of ethics
- What is knowledge?
- The search for reason
- Why is reality intelligible?

Good scientists do not say "I know more than you". They say "you can know as much as me, and more". Science is always to raise spirits. If we do not know how to teach science in a way that makes it accessible to all those who want to understand it, this is because we have not really understood it.

To become scientists, we must never forget our beginner's experience. It is the most fundamental experience for understanding science and making discoveries, because real knowledge must answer a beginner's questions and hesitations. To advance on the path of science, we must play by the imagination both the role of the beginner and the role of the scientist, because we recognize real science by its capacity to raise beginners. The hesitations of the beginning provide the criterion for the recognition of the most important knowledge, they germinate all the force of science.

This book is written to help beginners understand the most fundamental principles of science.

Epistemology is at the heart of the power of intelligence, because we must use our intelligence to develop our intelligence, if we want to fully benefit from its power. We must adopt good principles to recognize intelligence where it can be found and to recognize that it is not where it is not. Epistemological knowledge is precisely the good knowledge which provides the means to intelligently program oneself in order to acquire good knowledge. Epistemology is the most powerful knowledge, because it provides the means to appropriate the power of all sciences, those that already exist and those that do not yet exist.

Applications and complements :

- Logical principles
- The foundations of mathematics
- Spatio-temporal measurement devices
- Why is entropy real?
- Quantum theory of multiple destinies
- The origin and evolution of life and spirit
- Principles of psychiatry

**Detailed contents**

- Reason, a manual
- Learning through reasoning what good principles teach
- The most fundamental science of all is ethical
- The conditions of possibility of truth
- What do we know about good principles?

- How the spirit works
- Principles of psychology
- The connection between sensors and effectors
- Brain modules and routine activities
- Decision: a centralized administration without a central administrator
- The perception and imagination of the present
- Imagination and the simulation of perception
- Memory and invention
- Programming by the imagination
- Emotions
- Self-consciousness
- Voluntary self-control
- Meaning through imagination
- Meaning through principles
- Programming by the thought

- The foundations of ethics
- The original sin
- A good will is to will the good
- Living for the good of all spirits
- Good and bad schemas
- The good knowledge
- Emotions for a good life
- The extinction of dissatisfaction

- What is knowledge?
- Rational knowledge must be public and proven
- Conclusive justifications
- Justification of principles
- Justification of observations
- Foundationalism or coherentism?
- Knowing without knowing that we know
- Fallible justifications and the Gettier problem
- Justification of knowledge about knowledge

- The search for reason
- Knowing what to search for before finding it
- Searching without knowing what to search for
- The touchstones of reason
- What can we hope?

- Why is reality intelligible?
- Explanation
- What is a concept?
- Individuals and the binding of concepts
- The whole being of a being is its being in a whole, or its being a whole, or both
- The nature of matter and the truth of perception
- Logically possible worlds
- Nothing new under the sun
- Does Nature really obey laws?
- Naturally possible worlds
- The power of natural properties
- The totality of all beings

Applications and complements

- Logical consequence and logical possibility
- The truth of compound statements
- The fundamental rules of deduction
- Reasoning without hypothesis and the logical laws
- The derivation of logical consequences
- The interdefinability of logical connectors
- Why does reasoning enable us to acquire knowledge?
- Justification of logic
- The paradox of Lewis Caroll
- The logic of identity
- The diversity of names of the same being
- The principle of indiscernibility of identicals
- The identity of individuals in naturally possible worlds
- The identity of properties and relations
- Structures as properties
- Symmetrical structures

- Mathematical knowledge

- Natural numbers and Peano's axioms
- Zermelo's theory of sets
- Fraenkel's replacement axiom
- Russell's paradox
- Consistency proofs
- The truth of Peano's axioms
- The truth of Zermelo's axioms
- The incompleteness of the foundations
- The first incompleteness theorem of Gödel
- The uncountable infinite
- Tarski's theorem of the undefinability of truth
- How to prove the unprovable?
- The second incompleteness theorem of Gödel
- Are consistency proofs caught in a vicious circle?
- Theories, software and recursively enumerable sets
- Undecidable sets and problems
- Universal machines and theories
- The undecidability of the halting problem
- The undecidability of the set of all logical laws
- Universality is the cause of undecidability

- All lightlike intervals are equal

- The reality of thermodynamic entropy
- The three definitions of statistical entropy
- The reality of accessibility entropy
- Statistical ensembles, ergodicity and time averages
- The principle of polls and the Monte Carlo method
- Quantum decoherence
- Microscopic entropy
- The independence of microscopic constituents
- Lack of information, laisser-faire and equilibrium

- The difference between thermodynamic entropy and accessibility entropy
- Information as fuel
- Maxwell's demon
- Amount of information and work

- Why can not Maxwell's demon reduce total entropy?
- The conservation of the subjective entropy of an isolated system
- Why can entropy increase?
- Do irreversible computations always reduce the thermodynamic entropy of a computer?
- Maxwell's demon and the impossibility of a perpetual motion of the second kind
- Thermodynamics is a physics of observation
- Complements
- The perpetual motion of the second kind
- Entropy increase and the microcanonical distribution
- The reality of entropy increase
- Entropy is an extensive quantity when the parts are statistically independent
- The Szilard's engine

- Taking the Schrödinger equation seriously
- The existence theorem of multiple destinies is empirically verifiable
- One space-time for all parallel worlds
- Everett's theory is unified quantum theory

- Evolution through natural selection
- The molecules of heredity
- The spontaneous generation of life in the primitive ocean
- Autocatalytic networks
- Amphiphilic molecules and vesicles
- The first living cells
- The origin of DNA
- How to know if this theory is true?

- Life is at home in the universe
- Cooperation is more fundamental than competition
- The infinite tolerance of life
- The origin of spirit

- The dysfunctions of self-consciousness
- The unconscious is produced by repression and denial
- The fire of emotions
- The positive method in psychiatry
- Healing by the thought
- Three fundamental errors of psychoanalysis
- Forgiveness
- The effectiveness of prayer