A situation in logic whereby two solutions can be derived from the same proof, but those conclusions contradict one another. However, taken individually, both cases are valid.

Borland's database product, targetted to the business desktop Windows user. Competes with Microsoft's Access product.

In Mage the Ascension, Paradox (with a capital P) is how reality responds to mages who decide that their will is how things should be done.

Paradox takes its toll on the mage in a number of ways...
  • Paradox Flaws screw with the mage's surroundings. People might suddenly become transparent, the walls might scream for vengeance because you nailed a picture on them, glass becomes sand and bubbles a bit, and the television might explode. These are generally the least harmful of the lot, but are never harmless.
  • Physical Backlash occurs when a mage accumulates a number of Paradox points at once. Energy burns through the mage's body, quite possibly causing him to explode in a bloody mess.
  • Pocket Realms entrap the mage (and those around him), quite nicely removing him from this reality. The mage who is responsible has to realize what he did wrong and seek how to renenge on his mistake. Escape from a realm can be as easy as walking out a door, or as strenuous as a whole game session's worth of soul-searching.
  • Paradox Spirits are the most dangerous of opponents. Invisible barring someone's skill in Spirit magic, they are the SWAT team of the reality police. As with all White Wolf spirits, they are almost unpredictable; sometimes, all they ask is a sincere apology, while other times, they drag the offender into an eternal torture chamber, and others they simply ensure that he was never born in the first place.
There are few ways to easily get rid of Paradox. Those mages who have familiars have a way to slowly bleed it off, but reality holds grudges for a long time... and the more Paradox you accumulate, the more problems you'll be having when it DOES go off.
This wu was moved here from another node. Hope it fits here.
The Metanode Paradox or the Paradox Metanode!

Trying to systemize and classify all our paradox nodes. Be sure to look here before adding yet another node about your favorite paradox. There are already duplicates of the most popular ones.

A poem:
The Paradox

The basics:
paradox theory
A Blather of Paradoxes by ModernAngel is a also collection of paradoxes

Everything paradoxes:
Everything Paradox
Paradox of ideas for improvements to everything

Famous paradoxes:

Olbers' Paradox

Bertrand Russel paradoxes:

Birthday Paradox

Albert Einstein paradoxes:

Zeno's Paradox

Time travelling paradox

Monty Hall Problem

The unexpected hanging

Game Show and gaming paradoxes:
Newcombe's Paradox
What to do in a game show with a prize hidden behind one of three doors.
St. Petersburg Paradox See also Betting Puzzle and Betting Puzzle Answer

Mathematical paradoxes:
Berry's Paradox - The largest number that can be described in 14 words or less
a paradox of probability
Simpson's paradox
- Statistical paradox Banach-Tarski Paradox - This one is not a paradox, but can really come in handy...
Exponent paradox - Not really a paradox...just paradoxial behavior, sort of.

Everyday paradoxes:
Peanut Butter Paradox
why strapping buttered toast to a cat's back will not produce infinite power
New York Pizza Paradox
Gothic Paradox
coffee paradox
The 2000 United States presidential election: a paradox
Voting Paradoxes

Socks paradoxes
Where do all the socks go that disappear - Solutions to the disappearing socks problem
If God wanted our socks to match, he wouldn't have created dryers. - why do we assume that socks are lost in the dryer?
old chestnut: shoes and socks in the dark - answer: shoes and socks in the dark
Ok...this had better not just be a repeat of socks metanode

Religion paradoxes
Almighty God Paradox
God can create a stone so heavy even he can't lift it
The Salad Bar Paradox
paradox of power
Pascal's wager
Erasmian paradox

Infinity and more paradoxes
filling an infinite urn with balls
Switching a lamp on and off infinitely many times
old chestnut: infinity balls in a bin - answer: infinity balls in a bin
infinite propositions paradox

Relationships paradoxes:
Paradox by the Dashboard Light - (Simpson's paradox)
The Girlfriend (SigOther) Paradox
The Paradox of Dating

Miscellaneous logic paradoxes and non-paradoxes:
Frameshift paradox
interesting whole number paradox
boy, girl and dog paradox
Levinthal paradox
A truth-value paradox
Sorites Paradox

Still under development of course, please /msg me with additions and corrections!

There are some who laugh off paradoxes and scorn the idea that serious harm can come from them. Well, let me warn you all: Paradoxes can be lethal. Just ask Philetas of Cos, who worried about the Liar Paradox so much that he wasted away until he had to put lead weights in his shoes to stop himself from blowing over in the wind. It killed him in the end. Allow me to suggest some guidelines for practicing safe paradoxing.

Paradox don’ts:
  • Don’t use paradoxes to confuse a computer that is also controlling the life support systems you rely on.
  • Don’t use a paradox (specifically a time paradox) to turn an interesting sci-fi into a dull and boring one.
  • Don’t cause your friends to waste away by forcing them to contemplate paradoxes (unless you own an otherwise struggling shoes-with-lead-soles factory).
  • If you travel back in time, don’t ever kill an ancestor before they’ve done the necessary with another ancestor of the opposite sex. Even then, be careful.
  • If you live in a fragile universe, try to move to one that doesn’t just cease to exist whenever a major paradox occurs.
  • Don’t confuse a simply difficult problem with a real paradox, or you’ll never work out which of the lying or truthful monsters is guarding the gate to safety.
  • Don’t ever give a tortoise a head start, no matter how small, in a race.

Paradox do’s:
  • Use a paradox to disprove interesting mathematical ideas – like “the square root of 2 is rational”, or more interestingly the halting dog problem. Some of these could win you fame.
  • Use a paradox to illustrate inconsistency in an opponents argument. Socrates is remembered for this. Actually now that I come to think about it, he also irritated everyone until he was executed for it. Perhaps this should be a “don’t”.
  • Use paradoxes to explain why you couldn’t possibly do your Maths homework.
  • Do use condensed paradoxes (oxymorons) to make satirical references to a certain office software package. This will win you friends. In fact, always be on the look out for oxymorons.

The Hangman's Paradox

Here is one of my favorite paradoxes:
A hangman is stationed on a road at the crest of a hill. He asks each passerby where he or she is going. If the passerby lies about his destination, he/she is hanged.
A man comes up to the hangman. The hangman asks "Where are you going? Answer truthfully or face the gallows."
The traveller replies, "I have come here to be put to death by you."

The traveller was replying truthfully. So the hangman shouldn't hang him. However, he had come to the hangman to be hanged. If the hangman let him go, the traveller would be lying, therefore he should be hanged.

Par`a*dox (?), n.; pl. Paradoxes (#). [F. paradoxe, L. paradoxum, fr. Gr. ; beside, beyond, contrary to + to think, suppose, imagine. See Para-, and Dogma.]

A tenet or proposition contrary to received opinion; an assertion or sentiment seemingly contradictory, or opposed to common sense; that which in appearance or terms is absurd, but yet may be true in fact.

A gloss there is to color that paradox, and make it appear in show not to be altogether unreasonable. Hooker.

This was sometime a paradox, but now the time gives it proof. Shak.

Hydrostatic paradox. See under Hydrostatic.


© Webster 1913.

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.