I accept the other sense, but all I am asking for is textual evidence for the above sense as being more, something ontologically fundamental and at the same time "abstract" according to Aristotle, than merely the commonsensically obvious fact that every particular form or pattern can be reproduced, copied or visualized. — Janus
As a scientific perspective, Monism could be construed as reductionist in that it reduces complexity & plurality down to a single principle, as in Spinoza's single substance "god sive natura". But as a philosophical worldview Monism is Holistic, in that it combines many parts into a single integrated system. Some call that system "universe" (implying all-encompassing), and others call it "Nature" (implying reality as opposed to super-natural), but more poetic scientists, such as Einstein, dare to refer that unity-of-all-things as "God"*1.As Art48 started by pointing out, Monism is reductionist, or you can derive the complex from the simple. — Mark Nyquist
Ironically, Time Reversal has been interpreted from observations of experiments. But they don't know how that glitch might affect our perception of forward flowing time. Time reversal is an abstract mathematical phenomenon that doesn't seem to be translated into concrete physics. So, why would it be worth mentioning in a discussion of Monism?Have you or anyone come across Feynman diagrams showing forward and backward flowing time. My interpretation is physical existence has some duration relative to clock time. It's worth mentioning in a discussion of Monism.
I don't get to deep into the quantum stuff because you should understand the math first before you even have an opinion and, beware, a lot of the people writing about this for mass audiences are clueless. — Mark Nyquist
There you go again : accusing me of accusing you of something nefarious. Rather than "unwarranted assumptions," my rephrasing of your posts is an attempt put them into words that I can understand. If your words were clear to me, I wouldn't have to make assumptions. If my interpretation is wrong, please correct my "assumptions". This kind of re-phrasing is common in philosophical dialog. The "warrant" is in the ambiguity. :smile:Again, you are making unwarranted assumptions about me. — Janus
Since I came late to this thread, I haven't directly commented on the OP. So here goes.:Monism: the idea that only one supreme reality exists. Why posit monism? — Art48
In this broad and sweeping argument, Gerson contends that Platonism identifies philosophy with a distinct subject matter, namely, the intelligible world, and seeks to show that the Naturalist rejection of Platonism entails the elimination of a distinct subject matter for philosophy. Thus, the possibility of philosophy depends on the truth of Platonism. From Aristotle to Plotinus to Proclus, Gerson clearly links the construction of the Platonic system well beyond simply Plato's dialogues, providing strong evidence of the vast impact of Platonism on philosophy throughout history. Platonism and Naturalism concludes that attempts to seek rapprochement between Platonism and Naturalism are unstable and likely indefensible.
:clap: :fire: Excellent synopsis!As I remember it (it's a while since I read the book) Pierre Hadot in Philosophy as a Way of Life understands the various ancient Greek philosophical systems as sets of ideas designed to live by, not consisting of claims to be critiqued and argued over. Philosophy under that conception has a different purpose: to provide ways of living designed to free practitioners from the unruly desires, petty concerns, existential anxieties, and worldly attachments that can make life a misery.
A modern equivalent would be Cognitive Behavior Therapy or Gestalt Therapy: if you undertake that practice, you are not there to argue about their different metaphysical or phenomenological claims, but rather to accept the set of ideas that constitute the therapy and practice in accordance with them to (hopefully) gain the result.
So, as Hadot points out Stoicism, Skepticism, Cynicism, Epicureanism, Platonism and Neoplatonism all had very different sets of metaphysical ideas, but they were all similar in there status as philosophical and ethical practices designed to live in better ways. Epicureanism, for example, explicitly rejects the idea of afterlife.
So, I don't think you can cite Hadot to support any contention that it was the metaphysical ideas in the ancient philosophies that were of primary importance: it is more likely that such ideas were as diverse within the systems as were the different kinds of people with their different mindsets, that they sought to attract. — Janus
A modern equivalent would be Cognitive Behavior Therapy: if you undertake that practice, you are not there to argue about its metaphysical or phenomenological claims, but rather to accept the set of ideas that constitute the therapy and practice in accordance with them. — Janus
Askesis of Desire
For Hadot, famously, the means for the philosophical student to achieve the “complete reversal of our usual ways of looking at things” epitomized by the Sage were a series of spiritual exercises. These exercises encompassed all of those practices still associated with philosophical teaching and study: reading, listening, dialogue, inquiry, and research. However, they also included practices deliberately aimed at addressing the student’s larger way of life, and demanding daily or continuous repetition: practices of attention (prosoche), meditations (meletai), memorizations of dogmata, self-mastery (enkrateia), the therapy of the passions, the remembrance of good things, the accomplishment of duties, and the cultivation of indifference towards indifferent things (PWL 84). Hadot acknowledges his use of the term “spiritual exercises” may create anxieties, by associating philosophical practices more closely with religious devotion than typically done (Nussbaum 1996, 353-4; Cooper 2010). Hadot’s use of the adjective “spiritual” (or sometimes “existential”) indeed aims to capture how these practices, like devotional practices in the religious traditions (6a), are aimed at generating and reactivating a constant way of living and perceiving in prokopta, despite the distractions, temptations, and difficulties of life. For this reason, they call upon far more than “reason alone.” They also utilize rhetoric and imagination in order “to formulate the rule of life to ourselves in the most striking and concrete way” and aim to actively re-habituate bodily passions, impulses, and desires (as for instance, in Cynic or Stoic practices, abstinence is used to accustom followers to bear cold, heat, hunger, and other privations) (PWL 85). These practices were used in the ancient schools in the context of specific forms of interpersonal relationships: for example, the relationship between the student and a master, whose role it was to guide and assist the student in the examination of conscience, in identification and rectification of erroneous judgments and bad actions, and in the conduct of dialectical exchanges on established themes.
I don't think one's metaphysical views have any bearing on one's spiritual practice; on one's ability to realize equanimity, non-attachment, peace of mind or whatever you want to call it. — Janus
Nāgārjuna said that all spiritual teachings are like a stick you use to poke the fire. When the fire is well alight you can thrown the stick in with it. But only then. — Wayfarer
As the Buddha travelled around delivering his teachings, he gathered many followers who set aside their worldly life to follow him.
One of these men was an intellectual named Malunkyaputra, who had been inspired by the Buddha’s deep insight. However, Malunkyaputra eventually grew frustrated with the Buddha, who seems to have avoided answering basic metaphysical questions, like “is there an afterlife?” and other grasping at understanding the universe its purposes.
One day Malunkyaputra confronted the Buddha about it, and declared that, unless the Buddha answered his questions, Malunkyaputra would give up the Buddhist life and return to his old life within society.
The Buddha responded with a story:
Suppose a man has been shot with a poison arrow. His friends and family that were with him rush to call a doctor to remove the arrow and administer an antidote to the poison. But, before they’re able to, the man who was shot stops them, shouting “I will not let this arrow be removed until I know — who shot me? How tall was he? Of what material was his bow made?”
Then the Buddha asked Malunkyaputra what he thought of the man in his story, who refused treatment for his injury until his questions about the man that shot him were answered. Malunkyaputra responded: “He is a fool — his questions are not relevant to treating his injury, and he will die before he gets them answered.”
“Similarly,” said the Buddha, “I do not teach whether or not there is an afterlife and what it is like and such. I teach only how to remove the arrow of your suffering, by revealing its origin, and the Eightfold Path to its end.”
We all seem to enjoy thrashing out these issues, maybe by way of diversion. I don't see any profoundly important moral battle going on between metaphysical materialism and spiritualism in modernity.
The only form of materialism I find ethically and spiritually compromising is the kind of materialism that consists in attachment to excessive material profit, wealth and status, and I think that exists equally among people of all kinds of metaphysical persuasions. — Janus
In any case, I don't think one's metaphysical views have any bearing on one's spiritual practice; on one's ability to realize equanimity, non-attachment, peace of mind or whatever you want to call it.
Whether you believe in an afterlife, in resurrection, rebirth or reincarnation or you don't believe in any afterlife at all is irrelevant. I find it most plausible to think that people are simply attracted to systems that accord with their personal views. — Janus
I would say the form of the oak is inherent within, immanent to, the acorn, and I think Aristotle thought the same. — Janus
ou seem to be claiming it is something "abstract" that comes from "somewhere else". I don't believe Aristotle would agree with this (although Plato might, depending on how you interpret him). — Janus
Today we know about something Aristotle didn't: DNA. So, the form of the oak is encoded within the DNA in the acorn. But that DNA comes from previous oaks, and there is no reason to think the DNA itself has not changed, evolved, over time from ancestor trees, precursors to the oaks and other types of trees that evolved along different lines.. — Janus
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