What is Appeal to the Stone?

What is appeal to the stone? What is it’s purpose? What does it even mean?

In order to explain this project, we have to go back over 2300 years to a man that defined philosophy; Aristotle created a way of thinking that has reverberated throughout history and changed the way great thinkers approach their existence. One of the things that Aristotle created in his philosophical tool set was a list of logical fallacies. These fallacies served as a set of laws that clearly define what are good and bad arguments and over the centuries this list has grown. Much like laws that govern physics, logical fallacies govern a correct way of thinking; simply put an argument that breaks a logical fallacy is always to be considered a bad argument. For example the Ad Hominum fallacy occurs when a person insults their opponent rather than dealing with the argument their opponent has presented. In this case the person hurling insults is guilty of creating a bad argument.

In the 1700’s a man by the name of George Berkeley came up with the theory that nothing actually exists. Everything around us, said Berkeley, has been constructed in our minds; the only things that truly exist are our minds, and the idea’s that inhabit them. Another man name Samuel Johnson , finding the idea completely absurd, reportedly kicked a stone simply stating “I refute it thus”. In that moment the Appeal to the Stone fallacy was born. What Samuel failed to realize is that he had broken a fundamental law of logic;  by ignoring his opponents position and blindly declaring it as stupid he had failed to dismiss Georges argument in an intelligent fashion.

In today’s world it’s easy to dismiss things as absurd and move on. We all commit the fallacy daily, and as long as we’re surrounded with enough people who agree with us we feel justified in this wrong belief. Our mission is to present a reasonable defense of logical fact aimed at the Facebook generation. It’s easy to condense an opinion, slap it on a cat picture, present it to your friends and garner 100,000 likes; We aim to provide a fresh perspective.  We hope to provide valuable resources that simplify an enormous amount of historical, scientific, and philosophical resources created by some of the worlds top scholars. Our goal is to take that information, and present it in a condensed format to be used in defense of the fact. If we’re successful it won’t be so easy to appeal to the stone.