Are Unicorns Greater Than Dragons?

I can prove that they are. Look at the following:

The UNIX sort command is a formal system, and it orders things based on the '>' symbol. And when it compared unicorns and dragons, unicorns turned out to be greater than dragons!

Of course this is silly nonsense. To determine whether unicorns really are greater than dragons one would first have to determine if unicorns and dragons really exist. Then one has to determine how one is going to test for "greater than," in reality.

As silly as claiming that because another formal system (ZFC) treats the formal symbols ℵ0, 2, ^, and > so that:

20 > ℵ0

makes a true statement in that formal system, as meaning that some infinities really are bigger than other infinities.

To determine if there really are infinities bigger than other infinities, one first would have to determine if, in reality (and not just in some formal system), there really is anything infinite. Then one would have to determine that, in reality there really is more than one such thing. Than one would have to determine a means, in reality, of comparing at least two of them to see which is bigger.

UPDATE: And note, I am not criticizing these formal systems. They are fine, if recognized for what they are. The UNIX sort command is a great thing! It just can't be used to prove that, in reality, unicorns are greater than dragons!

1 comment:

  1. Yes. I'd been mulling over your original post for a while, and came to this very conclusion last night.