more from Peter Lipton

Single Idea 16815

[catalogued under 14. Science / D. Explanation / 2. Types of Explanation / g. Causal explanations]

Full Idea

Mathematical explanations are never causal, and philosophical explanations seldom are.

Gist of Idea

Mathematical and philosophical explanations are not causal


Peter Lipton (Inference to the Best Explanation (2nd) [2004], 03 'Fact')

Book Reference

Lipton,Peter: 'Inference to the Best Explanation (2nd ed)' [Routledge 2004], p.31

A Reaction

There may still be a 'direction' of explanation in mathematics, as when the nature of the triangle explains the Pythagoras Theorem, but the theorem may not give you the basic nature of triangles. Lipton suggests 'determination' for 'causation'.