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Every now and then through some strange coincidence I come across a book I had never heard of, but which turns out to be very important in my continuing education. Some months ago in a very vivid and pleasant post-prandial discussion with Stewart Wolf he used The Philosophy of 'As If' to bolster an argument. I challenged him vigorously from the very well guarded vantage point of ignorance. Nonetheless, I was interested enough in what he said to look up Vaihinger and find out what it was all about. To be sure the argument as I recall it turned out to be more Stewart Wolf than Vaihinger, but nonetheless, to read Ogden's translation of this book was a choice excursion into philosophy. I then called it to the attention of some of my friends here who are devotees of the philosophy of General Semantics and found that this was old
Bean WB. The Philosophy of 'As If,' A System of the Theoretical, Practical and Religious Fictions of Mankind. Arch Intern Med. 1961;107(5):784–785. doi:10.1001/archinte.1961.03620050150017
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