•  40
    Bohmian Holism
    In Petteri Limnell & Tero Vadén (eds.), Unfolding the Big Picture. Essays in Honour of Paavo Pylkkänen, Philosophical Studies From the University of Helsinki. pp. 7-18. 2021.
    This is a contribution to Paavo Pylkkänen's Festschrift. I discuss his relationship to Bohm's philosophy and a sense of holism that can be extracted from the Bohmian view.
  •  139
    Ground, essence, and modality seem to have something to do with each other. Can we provide unified foundations for ground and essence, or should we treat each as primitives? Can modality be grounded in essence, or should essence be expressed in terms of modality? Does grounding entail necessitation? Are the notions of ground and essence univocal? This volume focuses on the links—or lack thereof—between these three notions, as well as the foundations of ground, essence, and modality more generall…Read more
  •  133
    Unity of Science
    Cambridge University Press. 2021.
    Unity of science was once a very popular idea among both philosophers and scientists. But it has fallen out of fashion, largely because of its association with reductionism and the challenge from multiple realisation. Pluralism and the disunity of science are the new norm, and higher-level natural kinds and special science laws are considered to have an important role in scientific practice. What kind of reductionism does multiple realisability challenge? What does it take to reduce one phenomen…Read more
  •  612
    Ontological Dependence
    with E. J. Lowe
    Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 2020.
    Ontological dependence is a relation—or, more accurately, a family of relations—between entities or beings. For there are various ways in which one being may be said to depend upon one or more other beings, in a sense of “depend” that is distinctly metaphysical in character and that may be contrasted, thus, with various causal senses of this word. More specifically, a being may be said to depend, in such a sense, upon one or more other beings for its existence or for its identity. Some varieties…Read more
  •  489
    A Priori or A Posteriori?
    In Ricki Bliss & James Miller (eds.), , Routledge. pp. 353-363. 2020.
    This article discusses the role of a priori and a posteriori knowledge and methods in metaphysics and metametaphysics. Issues discussed include the viability of the distinction, the continuity of a priori and a posteriori methods, connections to modal epistemology, and the role of the distinction for science and naturalistic metaphysics.
  •  246
    In Michael J. Raven (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Metaphysical Grounding, Routledge. pp. 387-395. 2020.
    An exploration of ground’s connections to structure (joint-carving, naturalness). The notion of structure is often invoked in connection to ground, because grounding is understood to impose constraints on the ‘structure of reality’. There is another, technical sense of structure, sometimes captured with reference to the notion of ‘joint-carving’. Both of these senses of structure as well as their potential connections are discussed.
  •  331
    Bundle Theory with Kinds
    Philosophical Quarterly 69 (277): 838-857. 2019.
    Is it possible to get by with just one ontological category? We evaluate L.A. Paul's attempt to do so: the mereological bundle theory. The upshot is that Paul's attempt to construct a one category ontology may be challenged with some of her own arguments. In the positive part of the paper we outline a two category ontology with property universals and kind universals. We will also examine Paul's arguments against a version of universal bundle theory that takes spatiotemporal co-location instead …Read more
  •  493
    A Survey of Logical Realism
    Synthese 198 (5): 4775-4790. 2021.
    Logical realism is a view about the metaphysical status of logic. Common to most if not all the views captured by the label ‘logical realism’ is that logical facts are mind- and language-independent. But that does not tell us anything about the nature of logical facts or about our epistemic access to them. The goal of this paper is to outline and systematize the different ways that logical realism could be entertained and to examine some of the challenges that these views face. It will be sugges…Read more
  •  245
    Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 2018.
    The notion of fundamentality, as it is used in metaphysics, aims to capture the idea that there is something basic or primitive in the world. This metaphysical notion is related to the vernacular use of “fundamental”, but philosophers have also put forward various technical definitions of the notion. Among the most influential of these is the definition of absolute fundamentality in terms of ontological independence or ungroundedness. Accordingly, the notion of fundamentality is often associated…Read more
  •  1875
    Where Do You Get Your Protein? Or: Biochemical Realization
    British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 71 (3): 799-825. 2020.
    Biochemical kinds such as proteins pose interesting problems for philosophers of science, as they can be studied from the points of view of both biology and chemistry. The relationship between the biological functions of biochemical kinds and the microstructures that they are related to is the key question. This leads us to a more general discussion about ontological reductionism, microstructuralism, and multiple realization at the biology-chemistry interface. On the face of it, biochemical kind…Read more
  •  521
    Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 2018.
    Meta-metaphysics concerns the nature and methodology of metaphysics and metaphysical inquiry. The emergence of meta-metaphysics as a systematic area of study is relatively recent, going back to the late 1990s. But the issues pursued in meta-metaphysics are certainly not novel: an age old question about the nature of metaphysics is whether it is possible to obtain knowledge about metaphysical matters in the first place, and if it is, how this knowledge is obtained.
  •  1165
    Moderately Naturalistic Metaphysics
    Synthese 194 (7): 2557-2580. 2017.
    The present paper discusses different approaches to metaphysics and defends a specific, non-deflationary approach that nevertheless qualifies as scientifically-grounded and, consequently, as acceptable from the naturalistic viewpoint. By critically assessing some recent work on science and metaphysics, we argue that such a sophisticated form of naturalism, which preserves the autonomy of metaphysics as an a priori enterprise yet pays due attention to the indications coming from our best science,…Read more
  •  225
    Empiiriset elementit modaaliepistemologiassa
    In Ilkka Niiniluoto, Tuomas Tahko & Teemu Toppinen (eds.), Mahdollisuus, Philosophical Society of Finland. pp. 154-159. 2016.
    Title in English: "Empirical elements in modal epistemology". This article examines Peter van Inwagen's modal scepticism and argues that although van Inwagen is correct to criticise modal rationalism, there are tools in modal empiricism that are promising sources of modal knowledge.
  •  1659
    An Introduction to Metametaphysics
    Cambridge University Press. 2015.
    How do we come to know metaphysical truths? How does metaphysical inquiry work? Are metaphysical debates substantial? These are the questions which characterize metametaphysics. This book, the first systematic student introduction dedicated to metametaphysics, discusses the nature of metaphysics - its methodology, epistemology, ontology and our access to metaphysical knowledge. It provides students with a firm grounding in the basics of metametaphysics, covering a broad range of topics in metaon…Read more
  •  355
    Tropes: Properties, Objects, and Mental Causation. By Douglas Ehring (review)
    Philosophical Quarterly 63 (251): 379-382. 2013.
    Book review of 'Tropes: Properties, Objects, and Mental Causation' (2011, OUP). By DOUGLAS EHRING.
  •  2
    Studia Philosophica Estonica 7 (2): 1. 2014.
    Editorial for the SPE Special Issue on Aristotelian Metaphysics: Essence and Ground
  •  926
    Soames’s Deflationism About Modality
    Erkenntnis 78 (6): 1367-1379. 2013.
    One type of deflationism about metaphysical modality suggests that it can be analysed strictly in terms of linguistic or conceptual content and that there is nothing particularly metaphysical about modality. Scott Soames is explicitly opposed to this trend. However, a detailed study of Soames’s own account of modality reveals that it has striking similarities with the deflationary account. In this paper I will compare Soames’s account of a posteriori necessities concerning natural kinds with the…Read more
  •  604
    Commentary on Kathrin Koslicki’s The Structure of Objects
    Humana Mente 4 (19): 197-204. 2011.
    This is a critical commentary on Kathrin Koslicki's book The Structure of Objects (OUP, 2008).
  •  591
    Boundaries in Reality
    Ratio 25 (4): 405-424. 2012.
    This paper defends the idea that there must be some joints in reality, some correct way to classify or categorize it. This may seem obvious, but we will see that there are at least three conventionalist arguments against this idea, as well as philosophers who have found them convincing. The thrust of these arguments is that the manner in which we structure, divide or carve up the world is not grounded in any natural, genuine boundaries in the world. Ultimately they are supposed to pose a serious…Read more
  •  579
    The Metaphysical Status of Logic
    In Michal Peliš (ed.), The Logica Yearbook 2007, Filosofia. 2008.
    The purpose of this paper is to examine the status of logic from a metaphysical point of view – what is logic grounded in and what is its relationship with metaphysics. There are three general lines that we can take. 1) Logic and metaphysics are not continuous, neither discipline has no bearing on the other one. This seems to be a rather popular approach, at least implicitly, as philosophers often skip the question altogether and go about their business, be it logic or metaphysics. However, it i…Read more
  •  937
    In Defence of Aristotelian Metaphysics
    In Contemporary Aristotelian Metaphysics, Cambridge University Press. pp. 26-43. 2012.
    When I say that my conception of metaphysics is Aristotelian, or neo-Aristotelian, this may have more to do with Aristotle’s philosophical methodology than his metaphysics, but, as I see it, the core of this Aristotelian conception of metaphysics is the idea that metaphysics is the first philosophy . In what follows I will attempt to clarify what this conception of metaphysics amounts to in the context of some recent discussion on the methodology of metaphysics (e.g. Chalmers et al . (2009), Lad…Read more
  •  381
    The Scientific Inquisition
    The Philosophers' Magazine 74 86-89. 2016.
    Nobody expects the Scientific Inquisition!
  •  672
    On the Common Sense Argument for Monism
    In Philip Goff (ed.), Spinoza On Monism, Palgrave-macmillan. pp. 149-166. 2012.
    The priority monist holds that the cosmos is the only fundamental object, of which every other concrete object is a dependent part. One major argument against monism goes back to Russell, who claimed that pluralism is favoured by common sense. However, Jonathan Schaffer turns this argument on its head and uses it to defend priority monism. He suggests that common sense holds that the cosmos is a whole, of which ordinary physical objects are arbitrary portions, and that arbitrary portions depend …Read more
  •  878
    Fundamentality and Ontological Minimality
    In Ricki Bliss & Graham Priest (eds.), Reality and its Structure, Oxford University Press. pp. 237-253. 2018.
    In this chapter, a generic definition of fundamentality as an ontological minimality thesis is sought and its applicability examined. Most discussions of fundamentality are focused on a mereological understanding of the hierarchical structure of reality, which may be combined with an atomistic, object-oriented metaphysics. But recent work in structuralism, for instance, calls for an alternative understanding and it is not immediately clear that the conception of fundamentality at work in structu…Read more
  •  453
    The title of this paper reflects the fact truthmaking is quite frequently considered to be expressive of realism. What this means, exactly, will become clearer in the course of our discussion, but since we are interested in Armstrong’s work on truthmaking in particular, it is natural to start from a brief discussion of how truthmaking and realism appear to be associated in his work. In this paper, special attention is given to the supposed link between truthmaking and realism, but it is argued t…Read more
  •  749
    The Universe As We Find It. By John Heil (review)
    Mind 122 (488): 1095-1098. 2013.
    Book review of 'The Universe As We Find It' (2012, OUP). By John Heil.
  •  783
    In this paper I will offer a novel understanding of a priori knowledge. My claim is that the sharp distinction that is usually made between a priori and a posteriori knowledge is groundless. It will be argued that a plausible understanding of a priori and a posteriori knowledge has to acknowledge that they are in a constant bootstrapping relationship. It is also crucial that we distinguish between a priori propositions that hold in the actual world and merely possible, non-actual a priori propos…Read more
  •  1071
    Truth‐Grounding and Transitivity
    Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 2 (4): 332-340. 2013.
    It is argued that if we take grounding to be univocal, then there is a serious tension between truth-grounding and one commonly assumed structural principle for grounding, namely transitivity. The primary claim of the article is that truth-grounding cannot be transitive. Accordingly, it is either the case that grounding is not transitive or that truth-grounding is not grounding, or both
  •  1228
    Metaphysics as the First Philosophy
    In Edward Feser (ed.), Aristotle on Method and Metaphysics, Palgrave-macmillan. pp. 49-67. 2013.
    Aristotle talks about 'the first philosophy' throughout the Metaphysics – and it is metaphysics that Aristotle considers to be the first philosophy – but he never makes it entirely clear what first philosophy consists of. What he does make clear is that the first philosophy is not to be understood as a collection of topics that should be studied in advance of any other topics. In fact, Aristotle seems to have thought that the topics of Metaphysics are to be studied after those in Physics. In wha…Read more
  •  761
    Counterfactuals and Modal Epistemology
    Grazer Philosophische Studien 86 (1). 2012.
    What is our epistemic access to metaphysical modality? Timothy Williamson suggests that the epistemology of counterfactuals will provide the answer. This paper challenges Williamson's account and argues that certain elements of the epistemology of counterfactuals that he discusses, namely so called background knowledge and constitutive facts, are already saturated with modal content which his account fails to explain. Williamson's account will first be outlined and the role of background knowled…Read more