In the article by Barry Smith and David Mark, Do Mountains Exist? Towards Ontology of Landforms, a philosophical argument is posed concerning the very existence of geographic features as well as other facets of nature that humans regularly interpret. The method of philosophy that underlays the argument of this essay is called ontology, or as the Princeton University web dictionary defines it: "the metaphysical study of the nature of being and existence." Essentially, the essay makes a few key points that I caught on to while reading, they include:
1. Philosophical ideas and particularly ontological ones, have and will continue to change as scientific thought progresses.
2. Ontology is made up of a primary and field based interpretations, by both average people and scientists; creating a basic level of interpretation of the environment all the way through a very advanced one.
3. People use different methods of interpretation to validate what they see in nature. From children's stories to advanced mathematics, many methods are used by humans to compartmentalize and arrange their environment. This is done in turn as an effort to maximize mankind's relationship with its surroundings and to gain peace of mind while considering the meaning of existence.
I am not 100% confident of my interpretation of this essay and I would appreciate anyone who felt they grasped the concepts of the essay to let me know if my insight into the essay was on track.