Jeff, List:

Thanks for your comments; Gary R. and I are both big fans of "The Logic of
Mathematics, an attempt to develop my categories from within."  Although it
is usually dated to c.1896, what you quoted--which, by the way, is CP
1.480, not CP 1.515--already hints at the concept of three worlds or
universes that correspond to the three categories.

What kind of necessity (if any) would you attribute to the laws of
quality?  Peirce says that "they all simply determine systems of qualities"
(CP 1.482) and identifies three clauses--"every quality is perfect and in
itself such as it is," pairs of qualities are either "independent of one
another" or in a relation where one is "merely a further determination of
the other," and concerning "the respects, or third qualities, in which two
compared qualities agree or differ," which he defines as hue, intensity,
and purity (CP 1.484).  He also divides the laws of fact into those that
are logically necessary, logically contingent but metaphysically necessary,
and both logically and metaphysically contingent (CP 1.483); so at least
some of them apparently do not have a *completely *fixed sort of necessity,
according to Peirce.

I would appreciate it if you could elaborate on your last remark.  I hardly
see it as a mere "side note," since this whole thread was prompted by
Peirce's cosmological "hints" at "the pragmaticistic definition of *Ens
necessarium*" in CP 6.490, and there has already been some debate about
what he meant by the three Universes of Experience in "A Neglected


Jon Alan Schmidt - Olathe, Kansas, USA
Professional Engineer, Amateur Philosopher, Lutheran Layman -

On Thu, Oct 13, 2016 at 11:08 AM, Jeffrey Brian Downard <> wrote:

> Hello Jon S, Gary R., List,
> What more might we say about Peirce's account of what "would-be"--where
> the focus is on the conceptions of of generality, potentiality and
> possibility--when we consider Peirce's suggestion that continuity is
> *relational* generality?
> It helps, I think, to consider the difference between Peirce's account of
> the operation of different kinds of generals in genuine triadic relations
> in "The Logic of Mathematics, an attempt to develop my categories from
> within." There, he distinguishes between those genuine triads that have the
> character of a law of qualitative similarity, versus those that have the
> character of a law of metaphysics, or a law of space or time, versus those
> triadic relations that have the character of thoroughly genuine
> triads--i.e., the laws governing processes of representation.
> Here is what he says about the difference between triadic relations that
> are genuine, such as the laws of quality and the laws of fact, versus those
> that are thoroughly genuine:
> Genuine triads are of three kinds. For while a triad if genuine cannot be
> in the world of quality nor in that of fact, yet it may be a mere law, or
> regularity, of quality or of fact. But a *thoroughly *genuine triad is
> separated entirely from those worlds and exists in the universe of
> *representations. *Indeed, representation necessarily involves a genuine
> triad. For it involves a sign, or representamen, of some kind, outward or
> inward, mediating between an object and an interpreting thought. Now this
> is neither a matter of fact, since thought is general, nor is it a matter
> of law, since thought is living. CP 1.515
> The laws of fact govern what would-be with a "fixed" sort of necessity.
> That is, they are necessary laws or, if we move to the second order, they
> may be necessarily necessary in some respects. The laws governing processes
> of representation are, at the second, contingent as necessities. In virtue
> of these features of how continency and necessity come together in what is
> thoroughly genuine in its triadic character as representation, these forms
> of order have the character of what is final and not merely efficient. That
> is, they are living and growing as forms of order.
> As a side note, these richer modal notions gives us a very different sense
> of what might be at work in Peirce's understanding of how possibility,
> actuality and necessity might be *related* as prominent characteristics
> of the three universes--and how the conception of what is an *ens
> necessarium *might be thought of as creator of all three.
> --Jeff
> Jeffrey Downard
> Associate Professor
> Department of Philosophy
> Northern Arizona University
> (o) 928 523-8354
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