Meaning of Paralogism

What is Paralogism:

It is known as paralogism to false or incorrect reasoning made in good faith due to lack of awareness of its deception or falsehood. The word paralogism is of Latin origin "Paralogismus", and this from the Greek “παραλογισμός” or "reflection".

Immanuel Kant, gave it the name of transcendental paralogism, or psychological paralogism, the dialects by which they are called "rational psychology" supposes being able to demonstrate the following: the substantiality of the soul, simplicity, personality, and the problematic, doubtful character of all existence other than that of the thinking subject.

In relation to the above, for Kant a paralogism is reached with the confusion of the unity of the "I think" with the transcendental unity of the self as a simple entity and as a personality (soul). For his part, for Aristotle, any false syllogism corresponds to a paralogism due to its ambiguous premise.

As such, paralogism is invalid reasoning, not intended to deceive with the use of illogical, nonsensical language. In the field of law, paralogism has the form of a syllogism or enthymeme (major premise, minor premise and conclusion), by virtue of this, for the German lawyer, professor and politician Ulrick Klug, there are various types of paralogism, such as:

  • Semantic paralogism, occurs when there is a contradiction in the premises, and therefore, the conclusion does not derive from them.
  • Syntactic paralogism, arises from the ambiguity, darkness, vagueness, and lack of definition of the words that form the premises.
  • Pragmatic paralogism does not present incoherence between the premises and conclusion, but a lack of credibility due to the lack of justification for the premises.
  • Definition displacement paralogism, originates from the appearance in the premise of a word with two different meanings.

For more information, see the syllogism article.

Paralogism is the antithetical to sophism, the latter being used with a certain pejorative matrix, in which the intention to deceive is included, being an act produced with the consciousness of falsehood. And that is why, the importance of not falling into the error of establishing sophism as a synonym of paralogism, due to their difference in their way of acting.

For more information, see the sophistry article.

In English, the term paralogism is "Paralogism" or "False reasoning".

Tags:  Expressions-In-English Religion-And-Spirituality General