Page:Wittengenstein - Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, 1922.djvu/24

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INTRODUCTION

as a fact on its own account, may be a set of words which a man says over to himself, or a complex image, or train of images passing through his mind, or a set of incipient bodily movements. It may be any one of innumerable different things. The proposition as a fact on its own account, for example the actual set of words the man pronounces to himself, is not relevant to logic. What is relevant to logic is that common element among all these facts, which enables him, as we say, to mean the fact which the proposition asserts. To psychology, of course, more is relevant; for a symbol does not mean what it symbolizes in virtue of a logical relation alone, but in virtue also of a psychological relation of intention, or association, or what-not. The psychological part of meaning, however, does not concern the logician. What does concern him in this problem of belief is the logical schema. It is clear that, when a person believes a proposition, the person, considered as a metaphysical subject, does not have to be assumed in order to explain what is happening. What has to be explained is the relation between the set of words which is the proposition considered as a fact on its own account, and the "objective" fact which makes the proposition true or false. This reduces ultimately to the question of the meaning of propositions, that is to say, the meaning of propositions is the only non-psychological portion of the problem involved in the analysis of belief. This problem is simply one of a relation of two facts, namely, the relation between the series of words used by the believer and the fact which makes these words true or false. The series of words is a fact just as much as what makes it true or false is a fact. The relation between these two facts is not unanalysable, since the meaning of a proposition results from the meaning of its constituent words. The meaning of the series of words which is a proposition is a function of the meanings of the separate words. Accordingly, the proposition as a whole does not really enter into what has to be explained in explaining the meaning of a proposition. It would

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