Wednesday, November 02, 2005


Pluralitas non est ponenda sine neccesitate.

So sayeth Franciscan Friar William of Ockham in the 1300s. Simply stated, it means that if you have two theories that are otherwise equal, choose the simpler one. In the law, start with the statute and get more complicated as needed. In life, start with the answer that is most straightforward and only add complication as needed.

By the way, William of Ockham was called to Avignon to answer to charges of heresy, then wrote a document indicating that Pope John XXII was a heretic. He ended up under the protection of Louis IV of Bavaria, and died in Bavaria, possibly having been excommunicated.


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