What are examples of analogical reasoning?


Quick Answer

One example of analogical reasoning is as follows: since the world is similar to a clock in the respect that it has complexity and a clock has a maker, the world must also have a maker. Arguments from analogy are inductive arguments.

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Full Answer

Arguments from analogy have the following form: (1) P has properties A, B, and C in common with Q, (2) P also has property D, (3) therefore, Q probably also has property D. The strength of arguments from analogy depends on the relevance of similarities A, B and C; the number and variety of the similarities; and the number of characteristics that P and Q share. Arguments from analogy are some of the most commonly used arguments. One everyday example of an argument from analogy is as follows: since Bob does not enjoy the taste of lettuce, Bob does not think he will enjoy the taste of spinach either, because both lettuce and spinach are leafy greens, are healthy and are both used to make salads. This example follows the form of arguments from analogy. Lettuce corresponds to P, Spinach corresponds to Q, being a leafy green corresponds to A, healthiness corresponds to B, being used in salads corresponds to C and Bob's liking corresponds to D.

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