E. The Nature of Knowing

1. Knowing a statement to be true involves:

a. the fact that in some sense or by some criterion the statement is actually true.

b. the belief that it is true

c. evidence to support that belief

2. The problem of evidence

a. If evidence is complete, then knowing is certain.

b. If evidence is partial, knowing is probable

3. The problem of certainty

Can empirical knowledge ever be certain?

What evidence, and how much evidence, is required for any degree of certainty?

F. Theories of the a priori

1. Theory of the intrinsic a priori

Certain principles or ideas are believed to be self-evident; that is, they are known intuitively because of their distinctness and clarity. Example: "I think, therefore I am." -- Rene Descartes

2. Presuppositional theory of the a priori

The a priori is understood as the necessary condition of the possibility of intelligible experience or knowing.

3. Analytical theory of the a priori

The a priori constitutes rules or postulates arbitrarily posited or agreed upon in advance as the basis for reasoning. That is, what we propose to mean by certain words.