• Corvus
    3k
    But I'm sure someone could come up with a better interpretation and criticism of his work than me, too. So take this uncited pile of nonsense as what it is, an athiest waxing lyrical about faith on the internet.fdrake
    Great explanation. Very informative and nicely put. :up:

    Why "unfortunately"?

    'cos he's sexist as hell.
    fdrake
    Was he? Never knew that. Any particular reason for him had been so? Or just a social trend at the time?
  • fdrake
    5.9k
    Any particular reason for him had been so?Corvus

    I think you can speculate that he had resentment from romantic misfortune, with some evidence. But, at least in Sickness Unto Death, he finds women of a weaker spiritual constitution than men. He definitely was a kind of... advanced sexist... he had a theory for it.

    Woman has neither the selfishly developed conception of the self nor the intellectuality of man, for all that she is his superior in tenderness and fineness of feeling. On the other hand, woman’s nature is devotion (Hengivenhead), submission {Hengivelse), and it is unwomanly if it is not so. Strangely enough, no one can be so pert (a word which language has expressly coined for woman), so almost cruelly particular as a woman—and yet her nature is devotion, and yet (here is the marvel) all this is really the expression for the fact that her nature is devotion For just because in her nature she carries the whole womanly devotion, nature has lovingly equipped her with an instinct, in comparison with which in point of delicacy the most eminently developed male reflection is as nothing. This devotion of woman, this (to speak as a Greek) divine dowry and riches, is too great a good to be thrown away blindly; and yet no clear-sighted manly reflection is capable of seeing sharply enough to be able to dispose of it rightly Hence nature has taken care of her instinctively she sees blindly with greater clarity than the most sharp-sighted reflection, instinctively she sees where it is she is to admire, what it is she ought to devote herself to. Devotion is the only thing woman has, therefore nature undertook to be her guardian. Hence it is too that womanliness first comes into existence through a metamorphosis; it comes into existence when the infinite pertness is transfigured in womanly devotion But the fact that devotion is woman’s nature comes again to evidence in despair. By devotion [the word literally means giving away] she has lost herself, and only thus is she happy, only thus is she herself, a woman who is happy without devotion, that is, without giving herself away (to whatever it may be she gives herself) is unwomanly. A man also devotes himself (gives himself away), and it is a poor sort of a man who does not do it, but his self is not devotion (this is the expression for womanly substantial devotion), nor does he acquire himself by devotion, as in another sense a woman does, he has himself, he gives himself away, but his self still remains behind as a sober consciousness of devotion, whereas woman, with genuine womanliness, plunges her self into that to which she devotes... — Kierkegaard, The Sickness Unto Death

    Edit: you can read that as a critic's regurgitation of gender norms at the time, but honestly I think we should hold our alleged Great Men to higher standards.
  • frank
    14.6k
    I think you can speculate that he had resentment from romantic misfortune, with some evidence.fdrake

    He broke up with her and then wrote his greatest works trying to come to terms with what he'd done to her. He didn't resent women.
  • Corvus
    3k
    I think you can speculate that he had resentment from romantic misfortune, with some evidence. But, at least in Sickness Unto Death, he finds women of a weaker spiritual constitution than men. He definitely was a kind of... advanced sexist... he had a theory for it.fdrake

    I read K. many years ago, but haven't come across anything on sexism at all at the time of my reading K.  He is known to have broken the marriage promise to his fiancee Regina for some reason.  I am not sure what the reason for breaking the promise was.

    The other philosophers who are publicly known to have been sexists are Schopenhauer and Nietzsche.  For their reason for being sexists seem to be their personal experiences and situations with the opposite sex folks?  Just guessing.

    It is interesting to note that both Schopenhauer and Nietzsche were positing Will as the significant element in human values and the foundation of the mental operation and actions. Recall The World as Will and Representation and Will to Power?

    Anyhow, I am not sure if the claim that K was sexist is an objective and fully accepted justified fact just from referring to some commentaries on his works or passages in his books.

    From the existentialism's point of view, sexism would be the most inauthentic mode of thought, especially for a thinker like K.  He propounded the most meaningful status for a being is the lone being standing in front of God facing him directly one to one.  Discriminating or debasing the other races or sex in the system of thought of K doesn't seem to have a place in the K's system of ideas.

    But your idea in the post sounds confident that K was. If so, how does sexism fit in the frame of existentialism? Can someone who are biased and prejudiced against the other people on the bases of sex or race be qualified as an existentialist? What would be the arguments on the point from the Ethics or Morality of Existentialism?
  • fdrake
    5.9k
    The other philosophers who are publicly known to have been sexists are Schopenhauer and Nietzsche.  For their reason for being sexists seem to be their personal experiences and situations with the opposite sex folks?  Just guessing.Corvus

    It might be ahistorical of me, but I'm going to read someone who believes women's natures are "devotion" and "submission" as a sexist. Regardless of why K believes it.

    am not sure what the reason for breaking the promise was.Corvus

    Me neither!
  • Ludwig V
    784
    The notion of essence as qualities grafted on to existence is a rationalizing of moral agency in a light we consider most favorable.Arne
    There is a great deal packed into this sentence.
    It does seem to me that the Humean separation of fact and value should really be considered more carefully. It seems inescapable that fact and value, although distinct, are interwoven in language in order to serve human interests and capacities. What would be the point of language if that were not so? It does seem that it would be more helpful to articulate the ways in which they interact rather than simply trying to separate them into separate discourses.
    The notion of essence as qualities grafted on to existence is a metaphor that applies a model that may work quite well up to a point, but can seriously mislead us. We need to resist the tendency to apply the same model to all concepts and to be much more alive to the differences between them. for example, I've always wondered whether the Kantian claim that existence is not a predicate is consistent with the way that we talk about essence and existence in the context of existentialism. I can't believe that either Heidegger or Sartre were unaware of Kant. Are they contradicting him?

    Heidegger says our existence is our essence and Sartre misinterprets Heidegger as saying existence precedes essence and now we all proceed as if if "existence precedes essence" is an existential given.Arne
    That's quite true. Though perhaps it is more true in Anglophone philosophy than elsewhere. I've encountered the claim before, but somehow I've missed the argument that shows that it is true. I feel I'm left with a blind choice, so I'm not happy. Thinking about it, I'm inclined to understand Sartre's "precedes" as a metaphor; but he doesn't seem to give us much to interpret it. Since the concept of bare existence seems incomprehensible, Heidegger's formulation seems more plausible, so I'm inclined to go with that. But I don't believe that I really understand either concept.

    Heidegger, Sartre, and Nietzsche are saying that existence is our essence, i.e., being-in-the-world is our essence, freedom is our essence, will to power is our essence.180 Proof
    Intuitively, I feel that there;s a good point here. These do seem to be inter-related concepts, But we need to think of essence as dynamic, constantly changing. The difficulty here is that if we regard essence as what endures through change, which, if I've understood correctly, was what Aristotle was after - in oder to reconcile Heraclitus with Parmenides. But it seems entirely appropriate, not only to the Heraclitean river, but also to human life.

    Free will and choice are the only essence in existence.Chet Hawkins
    I assume you mean "in the existence of humans as people".
  • Chet Hawkins
    233
    Free will and choice are the only essence in existence.
    — Chet Hawkins
    I assume you mean "in the existence of humans as people".
    Ludwig V
    No, indeed, I am never so prosaic as that.

    The ONLY thing in all of existence, including physical matter, is the state of free will, inflicting every particle in the universe with the burden of choice. Free standing free will, all that is, perfection, is well aware of ... everything. The existence of that background truth of perfection is the origin of fear, anger, and desire; the only parts of free will.

    What we call the act of creation is an intentional process for sure that is not creation at all, because all there is is still free will and nothing new is created. But what is there is a set of internal choices to become something amid nothing, and according to the 'rules'. These 'rules' are what we typically refer to as laws of nature, and that designation is fine, as is. The interaction between those three emotions is the only thing happening anywhere, anywhen.

    It is part of perfection that perfection is not static. That part is hard to understand, especially for us, who are now so far removed from that state. Perfecting a dimension is fine. That is what is being called perfection here. But there is always more perfecting to be done. And that takes effort. Effort implies flux, change. So even a specific dimension of perfection must change and then ... it's risking being not perfect in order to earn its way to transcend the next dimension.

    So this process writ large and small across the metaverse is the whole becoming its parts to transcend its delusional wholeness. That could be called 'evolution' but let's face it that the idea transcends what the colloquial definition of the term intends, even if all the parts of the idea are analogous.

    I will stop there to see if there is any interest in this tack. And of course it would probably be a new thread, so ....
  • Chet Hawkins
    233
    It seems inescapable that fact and value, although distinct, are interwoven in language in order to serve human interests and capacities. What would be the point of language if that were not so? It does seem that it would be more helpful to articulate the ways in which they interact rather than simply trying to separate them into separate discourses.Ludwig V
    I agree entirely. And these interactions, to be meaningful, must extend past the colloquial local time scope. That means they have to be eternal or laws to be 'of value'. Memorizing and truly creating delusional non-laws does not help us, and has led to entire eons of 'misinformation' as a dynasty. It is dynastic because investment, once made, seems to personal and deep to let go of. The increasing chaos these days is eroding this tendency and people are vacillating back and forth with no basis other than day to day whim and comfort. It's just survival mode, if you follow.

    Our values have eroded precisely because they are not attached to objective aims. This is distinct from facts though, which are only beliefs, although that is a matter of debate for some. So when YOU say fact above, I would instead say truth-seeking. That implies we are not done yet. That implies that 'facts' are not the end of the work. And it implies that truth seeking as a process must relate to existing beliefs. I like all of that.
  • Chet Hawkins
    233
    Heidegger says our existence is our essence and Sartre misinterprets Heidegger as saying existence precedes essence and now we all proceed as if if "existence precedes essence" is an existential given.
    — Arne
    That's quite true. Though perhaps it is more true in Anglophone philosophy than elsewhere. I've encountered the claim before, but somehow I've missed the argument that shows that it is true. I feel I'm left with a blind choice, so I'm not happy. Thinking about it, I'm inclined to understand Sartre's "precedes" as a metaphor; but he doesn't seem to give us much to interpret it. Since the concept of bare existence seems incomprehensible, Heidegger's formulation seems more plausible, so I'm inclined to go with that. But I don't believe that I really understand either concept.
    Ludwig V
    I have related insight into BOTH these perspectives and WHY the confusion arises.

    Essense as a concept just means essential, foundational, base. It's the earliest part, the starting part(s). So the divide exists because of the trouble of whether what is essence is physical or otherwise. The divide exists because meaning and the physical world have not yet been properly combined.

    Existence IS essence is a tacit nod to the physical world, practical, almost comfortable. But we are still AFFLICTED with meaning and value, so 'What then must we do?' It the 100,000 years of living dangerously! How do we relate meaning to the physical world? It does seem clear in the interactions, but not the ... essence ... of the physical world. I argue that lack of clarity is only for the willfully blind.

    I am NOT saying awareness is easy. Like all virtues, maintaining the strength of that virtue takes effort. In the parlance of wisdom we would say, 'Wisdom is only earned through suffering!' We must then suffer our awareness. The Garden of Eden is delusional. Prefect awareness IS NOT a lack of awareness. And we just covered, awareness is suffering and takes effort. So perfection is a very violent thing. It is a change flux of perfect capacity and enormity.

    So the other side of the essence argument is where I am. And apparently the 'precedes' argument is from more like my model, my belief set. That is to say, the physical world, all its essences, are not THE THING. Real essence is meaning. So meaning precedes and allows for the physical via its more fundamental essence. The 'laws of nature' of course play out to be causal to physical essence but only after or at least during (at the same time as) non-physical essence and its interactions.

    So defining that non-physical realm of Plato's forms is much more important and essential, than our keen grasp of the obvious insistence on practical physical matters in the world today all about us would easily show. It takes real courage to pursue meaning beyond the physical and to have the balance amid that pursuit to resist temptations in the realm of imagination and forms only. That is because it SEEMS that we can have anything we want without 'negative' consequences. But that is only for the unwise, who want Truth without effort. What is worthy in essence takes perfectly maximal effort. That is wisdom.

    And then of course, even if we believe this, the physical MUST match it. So, the physical allows us to glean insight into the preceding non-physical. And by the way, the model does not forbid the eternal physical. That is to say, when we say 'precedes' we are alluding to the dimension of time and that too may be in some way delusional. In such a case the essence ALWAYS included the physical by way of those very laws. So then to speak of 'preceding' essence is incorrect. Once the laws are known, ANY state could exist at any time but whether or not it does or does not is based on those laws. What are those laws becomes the critical matter of effort. Define wisdom! Define perfection! Define the GOOD!
  • 180 Proof
    14.1k
    You've quoted @Arne, not me.
  • Ludwig V
    784


    Profuse apologies.

    I'm afraid I haven't understood properly how the software the works when one quotes a quotation.

    In any case, "being-in-the-world", "freedom" and "will-to-power" do not seem to me, according to primary sources, either synonymous with each other or equivalent to "existence".180 Proof

    Of course you are right. But that leaves me with three possibilities and no way of choosing between them or assessing which of them is correct. Actually, I expect that all of them are correct on their own terms. But that doesn't help very much. I'm just trying to work out how to deal with that. An existential (arbitrary) commitment doesn't seem very satisfactory.

    That's why I said that they are inter-related. What I meant is something like this. Freedom is nothing without the power to do what you want. The power to do what you want is what makes freedom real. Both pre-suppose a world as the possibilities and hindrances that you choose from and act within.
  • Ludwig V
    784
    No, indeed, I am never so prosaic as that.Chet Hawkins
    I can see what you mean in what you write.
    "Prosaic" is a complex idea, and quite annoying for those in a poetic or transcendental state of mind. Those are much more exciting.
    Nonetheless, what is ordinary, everyday, and commonplace is what we start from and will return to. More than that, what is extraordinary and exciting, if prolonged, will become prosaic. We cannot do without poetry and we cannot do without prose.
    I would rather say that I find it necessary to keep my feet (or at least one foot or toe) on the ground. You say: -
    So defining that non-physical realm of Plato's forms is much more important and essential, than our keen grasp of the obvious insistence on practical physical matters in the world today all about us would easily show.Chet Hawkins
    But Wittgenstein finds that the ideal, logical forms are indeed perfection and consequently are like a smooth, frictionless surface. He observes:-
    "We have got on to slippery ice where there is no friction and so in a certain sense the conditions are ideal, but also, just because of that, we are unable to walk. We want to walk: so we need friction. Back to the rough ground!" (Philosophical Investigations Section 107).

    The ONLY thing in all of existence, including physical matter, is the state of free will, inflicting every particle in the universe with the burden of choice.Chet Hawkins
    If you had said that every particle in the universe was free, I could have more or less followed you. What it means to say that every particle in the universal is burdened with choice escapes me entirely.
    Communication requires a shared context. Given this starting-point, I'm afraid that we have a serious communication problem.
  • Chet Hawkins
    233
    No, indeed, I am never so prosaic as that.
    — Chet Hawkins
    I can see what you mean in what you write.
    Ludwig V
    :evilgrin

    "Prosaic" is a complex idea, and quite annoying for those in a poetic or transcendental state of mind. Those are much more exciting.
    Nonetheless, what is ordinary, everyday, and commonplace is what we start from and will return to. More than that, what is extraordinary and exciting, if prolonged, will become prosaic. We cannot do without poetry and we cannot do without prose.
    I would rather say that I find it necessary to keep my feet (or at least one foot or toe) on the ground. You say: -
    So defining that non-physical realm of Plato's forms is much more important and essential, than our keen grasp of the obvious insistence on practical physical matters in the world today all about us would easily show.
    — Chet Hawkins
    But Wittgenstein finds that the ideal, logical forms are indeed perfection and consequently are like a smooth, frictionless surface. He observes:-
    "We have got on to slippery ice where there is no friction and so in a certain sense the conditions are ideal, but also, just because of that, we are unable to walk. We want to walk: so we need friction. Back to the rough ground!" (Philosophical Investigations Section 107).
    Ludwig V
    I agree with your sentiment, but, it is the need factor that is the thing to doubt in the sense of wisdom.

    Amid perfection we would possibly say, 'We do not now NEED this rough surface. We are beings of will alone, and travel via desire or whim, in balance with the rules because otherwise inertia, speed, ... kills.' You are ONLY saying for us (or Wittgenstein and you, less me as a dread assertion) these training wheels of 'safe frictioned ground' are still needed. Ok! Come on in boo! The water is fine! Seek the internal balance to put off these fears, and skate when it is slippery. Less effort required (in one sense) if one only has earned the skill (effort in the balancing sense).

    The ONLY thing in all of existence, including physical matter, is the state of free will, inflicting every particle in the universe with the burden of choice.
    — Chet Hawkins
    If you had said that every particle in the universe was free, I could have more or less followed you. What it means to say that every particle in the universal is burdened with choice escapes me entirely.
    Communication requires a shared context. Given this starting-point, I'm afraid that we have a serious communication problem.
    Ludwig V
    Do not let this pass so easily. You give up and run at first blush? Let me be brazen enough to ask for the benefit of the doubt. You did not comment on ALL THAT OTHER information. So the topic was ... a) not addressed, or b) read but deemed altogether to unaddressable. It's kind of unknown.

    You didn't JUST call me a quack so, on we go.

    The seeds of moral agency are not amenable to the arbitrary science that in its failing cannot explain why the universe is alive. I mean science admits that SOME parts are alive. But in understanding unity and belonging, the real understanding is that anything IS anything else in the final sense. That means the essence of what is includes life ALWAYS, ... AT EVERY LEVEL. That is whether or not the current science is aware enough yet to agree with truth. That is because current science IS current awareness. But perfection (truth) is an objective delivery of all awareness. So seeking the higher patterns of wisdom, includes awareness but vice versa IS NOT true. This means wisdom >> intelligence.
  • 180 Proof
    14.1k
    An existential (arbitrary) commitment doesn't seem very satisfactory.Ludwig V
    How about 'subjective commitment' instead?
  • Ludwig V
    784
    How about 'subjective commitment' instead?180 Proof

    I'm not sure what you're getting at. But it's not about the commitment, thought there's plenty to say about that. It's about which of three/four possible commitments to make and what would be good reasons to prefer one over another.
  • Ludwig V
    784
    How do we relate meaning to the physical world? It does seem clear in the interactions, but not the ... essence ... of the physical world.Chet Hawkins
    Perhaps it is enough to understand the interactions.

    You are ONLY saying for us (or Wittgenstein and you, less me as a dread assertion) these training wheels of 'safe frictioned ground' are still needed.Chet Hawkins
    Not quite the intended meaning. Wittgenstein was saying that the ideal world seems more comprehensible, but that is largely illusion. In order to make progress, we need resistance, and that requires the rough ground. For him, it is the ideal that has the training wheels, and the rough ground is where the work gets done.

    The seeds of moral agency are not amenable to the arbitrary science that in its failing cannot explain why the universe is alive. I mean science admits that SOME parts are alive. But in understanding unity and belonging, the real understanding is that anything IS anything else in the final sense.Chet Hawkins
    I can sort of follow the first two sentences here - except that the reason science cannot explain why the universe is alive is that not all of the universe is alive. But the fact that science cannot explain something doesn't tell us very much at all. The last sentence here is beyond my understanding, as is the rest of the paragraph. I can see that you are arguing that wisdom is more than intelligence. I wouldn't disagree with that. But I don't see where it gets us.
  • Arne
    815
    I've always wondered whether the Kantian claim that existence is not a predicate is consistent with the way that we talk about essence and existence in the context of existentialism. I can't believe that either Heidegger or Sartre were unaware of Kant. Are they contradicting him?Ludwig V

    Heidegger was well aware of Kant. However, Heidegger defines existence in a non-traditional manner. For Heidegger, "existence" is one of three modes of being (existence, ready (or unready) to hand, and present to hand.). In turn, existence is that mode of being that belongs to Dasein and only to Dasein There is no such thing as a non-existing Dasein and no such thing as an existing entity that is not a Dasein. So the least we can say is that Heidegger does not mean the same thing as Kant when he uses the term "existence." And Sartre uses the term in much the same way as Heidegger. And I am unaware of the degree to which Sartre was aware of Kant.

    So for existentialism in general, "existence" applies to a much smaller domain of entities than it does for Kant. And even if Heidegger, Sartre, and Nietzsche agree in what they mean by existence, they do not agree regarding the ontological bottom line for those entities whose mode of being is existence. Though Being-in-the-world (Heidegger) freedom (Sartre), and will to power (Nietzsche) are respective ontological bottom lines, they are not the same.

    In some sense and for existentialists, existence is the predicate.
  • Arne
    815
    Thinking about it, I'm inclined to understand Sartre's "precedes" as a metaphor;Ludwig V

    I agree. And it may be something he would rather not have said. It neither adds to nor detracts from his fundamental argument. But it does distract.
  • Ludwig V
    784
    In some sense and for existentialists, existence is the predicate.Arne

    I'm clutching at straws here. At first sight, you may be saying that existence is the "is" in any predicate.
    Do you mean something like "existence is the possibility of attaching any predicate to something" or maybe something along the lines that if you apply any predicate to something, that something exists.

    In turn, existence is that mode of being that belongs to Dasein and only to DaseinArne
    Does that mean that Dasein is the only thing that exists? I suppose if Da sein means something like "there is", that would make some sense. "exists" is a bastard concoction, and I wish it could be abolished in favour of "there is". But it would make it a lot harder to formulate a lot of philosophy. Perhaps that's a good thing.
  • Arne
    815
    I'm clutching at straws here. At first sight, you may be saying that existence is the "is" in any predicate.
    Do you mean something like "existence is the possibility of attaching any predicate to something" or maybe something along the lines that if you apply any predicate to something, that something exists.
    Ludwig V

    No. Existence is a mode of being always belonging to and only belonging to Dasein. Applying any predicate to any entity not having the characteristics of Dasein will not cause that entity to "exist."

    Does that mean that Dasein is the only thing that exists?Ludwig V

    Yes. Dasein is the only entity that "exists" within the Heideggerian sense of the term. The ontological status of entities not having the characteristics of Dasein are ready-to-hand or present to hand.
  • Arne
    815
    I wish it could be abolished in favour of "there is". But it would make it a lot harder to formulate a lot of philosophy. Perhaps that's a good thing.Ludwig V

    Exactly. And that is why Heidegger went to great lengths to give existence a precise meaning within the context of his philosophy. And so long as Heidegger tells you "this" is what I mean by existence and he then employs existence consistent with what he means by existence, then there is no confusion regarding existence as used within the context of his philosophy. Existence is Dasein's and only Dasein's mode of being. All entities not having the characteristics of Dasein have a mode of being other than Existence.
  • Corvus
    3k
    It might be ahistorical of me, but I'm going to read someone who believes women's natures are "devotion" and "submission" as a sexist. Regardless of why K believes it.fdrake

    It sounds a contradiction. Another contradiction with K. is his emphasis on human relationship with God. From what I read about existentialism, the existentialist don't believe in God. Most of them seem to reject God. They would rather believe in Freedom of individuals, absurdity and isolation. If that is the major character of existentialism, then K. seem to had been an anti-existentialist or different type of existentialist.
  • ENOAH
    288
    inflicting every particle in the universe with the burden of choiceChet Hawkins

    Or, there is no "choice." Everything is interconnected. Every action is a reaction to a trigger(s); the same principle applying to each trigger.

    Is this not so from subparticles to suicide? a triggered b triggered c triggered molecular bonding. x triggered y triggered z triggered suicide. Even when the free act of choosing seems indisputable, like in difficult decisions where one wishes one had no choice, the difficulty, the process, and the final action were each reactions to triggers.

    Choice is the illusion which arises when we (humans uniquely) construct and superimpose meaning retroactively (albeit often with lightning speed) onto the autonomous activities of Nature (said construction and superimposition also caused by triggers).


    It takes real courage to pursue meaning beyond the physical and to have the balance amid that pursuit to resist temptations in the realm of imagination and forms onlyChet Hawkins

    Or does it take no courage at all, but only imagination and forms? Is meaning also autonomously constructed and superimposed as part of an evolved system we have come to think of as directed by the Subject, "I"; and to "know" as our Mind?

    Where in Nature is there striving for meaning? Where outside of human minds is meaning pursued?
  • 180 Proof
    14.1k
    What I mean is that the difference between "arbitrary" (as you put it) and "subjective", IMO, is the difference between nihilism and existentialism, respectively.

    :up:
  • Chet Hawkins
    233
    How do we relate meaning to the physical world? It does seem clear in the interactions, but not the ... essence ... of the physical world.
    — Chet Hawkins
    Perhaps it is enough to understand the interactions.
    Ludwig V
    Well, it is a classical backwards walk, baby steps to glory! But, yes, I suppose any path can meander around and find its way finally to the end of the maze. Hand to left wall and go.

    So, what I mean is when YOU say understanding, I get the impression you actually mean awareness only, which is not all of understanding. That was what the comment wisdom >> intelligence also infers. To me the term understanding implies wisdom as a consequence whereas observation and analysis only imply intelligence as a consequence. If that is a reset of sorts for us in the conversation, so be it.

    You are ONLY saying for us (or Wittgenstein and you, less me as a dread assertion) these training wheels of 'safe frictioned ground' are still needed.
    — Chet Hawkins
    Not quite the intended meaning. Wittgenstein was saying that the ideal world seems more comprehensible, but that is largely illusion. In order to make progress, we need resistance, and that requires the rough ground. For him, it is the ideal that has the training wheels, and the rough ground is where the work gets done.
    Ludwig V
    Regardless of what he meant, I would say that any such assertion is LAUGHABLE in its obvious wrongness. The implication being, again, that Not(wisdom >> intelligence){my point}. That is to say, the idea realm is the ostensible correct aim, the destination. And this (fool) very educated man deigns to suggest that it's enacting is easy?

    So, I do UNDERSTAND that confusion. He MEANS to say that exemplars of the ideal path, idealists, often tend to not do the work, to not be aware of the impediments that are part of the path they want. Yes, that is true. It is fundamental to the very nature of the two chosen and juxtaposed paths of fear and desire. Fear is all order, all thought, all analysis, all logic, all structure. I am not saying it represents those things. It literally IS those things. Likewise, desire is all freedom, chaos, becoming, etc. These are the two most easily acknowledged forces in the universe. It is the reason for the false duality of existence, polarization, right and left wings, etc. But all of that is only one axis, order versus chaos.

    I would then offer that Wittgenstein is clearly in the order camp. The fear path is analysis paralysis. It is static and dead but reliable in most ways. But it's only one third of wisdom in terms of understanding the right path to the GOOD. You seem to concur and nominally prefer that path.

    Granted, generic idealism is only another one third approach. That is the wild open free desire and Utopian vision, including then your criticism, the criticism of the order camp, that so much is being blithely stepped aside or wished away in that approach. I agree. That too is not the path of wisdom. But in saying this there is a backhanded win for order only. The order path is also NOT THE WAY.

    The axis of good and evil is unlike the other one. With order and chaos, balance is the right way. That is ... understanding, wisdom. But there is no BALANCE in the axis of GOOD and evil. It is actually only rising amounts of GOOD, so evil is nothing special, only less GOOD.

    This setup gives rise, my model, to the more apt trinary nature of reality. The only way to get here is to add in a third force, the emotion of anger. Anger demands that fears and desires recede, that confidence amid being is sufficient. From that balance, which is just an infringement on order and chaos, if you will, a bending into another dimension, wisdom is finally something we can work with. From that balance, any path, any imbalance, any choice, may be briefly explored and a return to balance, real balance is not that hard or costly. No other path can say this. That is wisdom.

    So wisdom ... SHOULD ... if it is worthy of the name, refute the SOLE or lopsided dedication to the orderly (pragmatic) path. Wisdom ... SHOULD ... if it is worthy of the name, refute the SOLE or lopsided dedication to the chaotic (ideal) path. Wisdom ... SHOULD ... instead promote with great force (belief) the erroneous parts of each of those paths and remain resolute on the perfect union of the two, the properly bent intent of wise choice.

    It is fairly hard for me to say that any BETTER. Alas, I still have room to grow in understanding.

    The seeds of moral agency are not amenable to the arbitrary science that in its failing cannot explain why the universe is alive. I mean science admits that SOME parts are alive. But in understanding unity and belonging, the real understanding is that anything IS anything else in the final sense.
    — Chet Hawkins
    I can sort of follow the first two sentences here - except that the reason science cannot explain why the universe is alive is that not all of the universe is alive.
    Ludwig V
    Au contraire. How is it that life comes from not life? Science thinks it knows. But I say instead that life comes because it can do nothing else. It is not predestined so much as it is intrinsic. For something to be predestined it would have to be missing at some point. It never was missing.

    Animism was always more correct than religion. Anthropomorphization of the universe is a CORRECT tendency. If we erased what we THINK we know, and we cannot know really so even that is crazy to have to say, we would say of something planted that later grew that it was always alive. Behold, the universe. You can claim no confusion or derision. Are the details needed? Not in this case. If we do not allow for an external scope, the reasoning is sound. Any example you offer to the contrary will have a familiar external scope. That is your only way to 'cheat'. Clearly things grow here, in this universe. I believe Ian Malcom said it quite well in Jurassic Park, 'Life will find a way'. He could have said 'Love will find a way'. He could have just said, 'There is a way.'

    But the fact that science cannot explain something doesn't tell us very much at all.Ludwig V
    Oh yes it does! It tells us that science is NOT THE ONLY WAY. It hints that science is insufficient in much of our efforts to help us be wise, to even answer its little corner (one third) of the universe, awareness. Wisdom is so much more. Understanding is so much more. We need that ... more ... to function RIGHTLY in every now. And overt and improper dedication to the single path of order amid fear is cowardly. That is the primal all encompassing sin of fear.

    Lest you think me simply argumentative and without a salient point, the single path of desire is EQUAL and opposed, its sin, self-indulgence. And even anger, the third force, has a sin, and this completes our set of only three sins at the highest level in existence, laziness. The unwillingness or inability to balance these truths is lack of effort. I am NOT denigrating fear and awareness. I am only seeking that it maintain a proper posture towards wisdom.

    And this modelling is SUPPOSED to be an appeal to the order types to understand. That IS it's purpose.

    The last sentence here is beyond my understanding, as is the rest of the paragraph. I can see that you are arguing that wisdom is more than intelligence. I wouldn't disagree with that. But I don't see where it gets us.Ludwig V
    Certainty is an absurd goal. Anger demands you stand to the mystery. Desire pulls you towards perfection and only a living universe can respond, so it is alive, and it does. Evolution towards greater moral agency is a law of the universe.
  • Chet Hawkins
    233
    inflicting every particle in the universe with the burden of choice
    — Chet Hawkins

    Or, there is no "choice." Everything is interconnected. Every action is a reaction to a trigger(s); the same principle applying to each trigger.
    ENOAH
    If the experience of it does not lead to it again, is that accurate? Idempotency must be ... the thing. Meaning proceeds endlessly from meaning. Which was the cause and which the effect? The balance is that each is both. That is the only thing that could be a balance.

    Maybe we agree in an odd way. I am down for that. Strange unity! But the thing is, from balance, which is the elusive goal of perfection, or at least perfection-aiming, ANY other tilt is easy, and if taken in smaller doses, easy to return to balance.

    The point being only perfectly free will ensures the 'right' burden of choice. That does not mean the burden of choice does not exist. The TRAP of fear and order would see this deterministically. The silliness of desire and chaos would refuse that and explode, particles flying in every direction. But 'right' balance shows the ... Truth. So, determinism is wrong. Free will is the only possible final perfection. So, it is what is, and it stands alone, perfect. It is all of us and we delude ourselves otherwise, more is the pity.

    If you are the E-Noah, you must part this Red Sea with me!

    Is this not so from subparticles to suicide? a triggered b triggered c triggered molecular bonding. x triggered y triggered z triggered suicide. Even when the free act of choosing seems indisputable, like in difficult decisions where one wishes one had no choice, the difficulty, the process, and the final action were each reactions to triggers.ENOAH
    You confuse inertia with truth. Really? Why so drawn?

    Imbalance is convincing. Watch out! It takes great effort to overcome investment.

    Choice is the illusion which arises when we (humans uniquely) construct and superimpose meaning retroactively (albeit often with lightning speed) onto the autonomous activities of Nature (said construction and superimposition also caused by triggers).ENOAH
    And yet nature is the entity anthropomorphized that we most ascribe to as having balance. I love it that you went there. It seems you wish to be convinced! On-on!

    As the 'highest' beings, those imbued with the most facile of moral agency, apart from those damn pan-dimensional mice and dolphins, we pretend to understand. We DO understand BETTER than they do, in most cases, at least our exemplars. Agency is an absolute value, so humans can deliver the least in understanding right along with the best. You know like thinking everything is predestined so we can blame our bad choices on the universe. Hilarious!

    Speed racer will see it through, even if the odds are stacked against him and that is for sure dangerous work!

    Triggered is never a good thing. Balance! Wisdom, ... stands, to all comers.

    It takes real courage to pursue meaning beyond the physical and to have the balance amid that pursuit to resist temptations in the realm of imagination and forms only
    — Chet Hawkins

    Or does it take no courage at all, but only imagination and forms? Is meaning also autonomously constructed and superimposed as part of an evolved system we have come to think of as directed by the Subject, "I"; and to "know" as our Mind?
    ENOAH
    And the heart has no say? Does the heart ALLOW the mind free reign? What of the body? Does it offer no constraint upon this mind? Or on the heart? These three are compelling are they not? Why is it these three in humanity the greatest moral exemplar we know of? Is Homo Sapiens Sapiens deserving of that moniker? You counsel from the path of mind alone (as do many an most academics and their groupies). But Noah had to prepare humanity for a RIDICULOUS tragedy that no one else foresaw. What is/was the predetermined source of that? And if not Noah then let's ignore your happenstance name and use someone like the Wright Brothers.

    There were PHDs in physics busily writing paper on why it was determined as nonsense that man should want to fly, when powered flight happened. The path of fear and determination is Voltaire's and my nightmare (certainty). The need for certainty is only fear. Cowardice is no way to face the world's mystery. If you wish to say largely predetermined mystery then you neglect the evolved agency of humanity all around you. Rocks and winds you might predict. Good luck with an evolved human. Such agency is at least asymptotic to tipping those scales. I mean ... that's the whole purpose of being alive, being in general.

    Where in Nature is there striving for meaning? Where outside of human minds is meaning pursued?ENOAH
    What dread demand requires an atom hold itself to an identity? Just physics right? Not at all. The atom is a moral agent. It 'knows' what it is, and let there be no doubt, it is wrong. It can be other. This demand, this consistency, is order. Order is meaning (chaos and balance are meaning also. Order IS NOT alone as meaning). What will it want? If it's a noble thing, maybe not much. But the most of us, of them, get all 'busy' interacting by choice. Notice I did not put choice in quotes.

    Why is this chaotic thing here in the world? This random interaction of atoms? They present a certain type of chaos. Their energetic side is balanced with their stable side. It is a realm from which choice is eventually more possible. Some stability is had. But some chaos and interaction, becoming, is still there. The outer shells, the electrons as a whole, are the chaos part. And their position is not known entirely because they are literally exploring divergent futures. Desire is only the pull into the future. You see another atom coming and its got the right attitude and vector to collide with us, this atom, the right way, and you call their combination pre-determined.

    What you do not see is the percentage that defied that choice. Every experiment is slightly off. Why? If it is not you do not measure with enough granularity. Life is the negentropy in growth mode. Life must excel to the position of balance with entropy. I suppose just prior to that exultant universal orgasm, you might convert and believe. Until then, my friend! Two by two, hands of blue!
  • ENOAH
    288
    Firstly, I sincerely admire your writing, at least in this particular response. And whether I fully understand/follow/agree or not, it is inspiring in a way which transcends the topics being discussed. There are others like you in this forum, but it merits mentioning. I'll read your response more thoughtfully (likely a few times) and will let you know if I have any comments relating to this post.

    But for now:


    determinism is wrong. Free will is the only possible final perfectionChet Hawkins

    Is it possible that this interconnectedness of all things "idea" which inspires my submission that, to keep it simple, there is nowhere a real burden of choice, but only the illusion that a deliberate being is deliberately choosing (and the suffering which is concomitant with that illusion)...is it not possible that that is not determinism, but only seen as determinism from a perspective which also sees free will and the burden of choice.

    Again, to keep it simple. When x triggers y triggers z triggers suicide, the suicide was not predetermined. X could have triggered b instead, and y could have triggered quitting one's job. "Choice" is built into that process, but it is an illusion, in that the "choice" was triggered.

    Sure call that chaos, call it meaningless. But is it not possible that from the perspective of the "order" we have constructed; a thing necessarily working with/making meaning, things like meaning, order, balance, and perfection matter. While really, Nature is before/beyond that "order" and (only because we have to assess its function do I say this:) it "functions" as a whole--not with design or predetermination--where each part has an effect upon the other(s) including, ultimately, that whole.

    Being before/beyond the order (human Mind) of course we will impose order upon it as part of our dominion over Nature. That is, as part of human Mind displacing Reality.

    Anyway, I fear tge complexity of my thoughts about this far exceed my capacity to express it briefly in this forum. I find, the best I can do is offer morsels with the hope, not just that someone bites, like you; but that someone is able to digest it, that's my biggest challenge. Do not, from that, feel obligated to continue biting. I do appreciate your input already.
  • ENOAH
    288
    You counsel from the path of mind aloneChet Hawkins

    Actually, I submit Body alone. Mind, though it exists, is a system of empty signifiers displacing the Body with its empty Fiction.
    ButChet Hawkins

    your happenstance nameChet Hawkins

    It happily amuses me that you think my name has any relation to the Ark builder. That's part of what i meant by your writing having an inspirational tone. I am tempted not to correct you. But alas, no.

    The need for certainty is only fear. Cowardice is no way to face the world's mystery.Chet Hawkins

    Perhaps, now you see I am not purporting a predetermined reality; but an interconnected one where even our "choices" have been triggered, even by structures of Reasoning and logic autonomously arising to the task, having been input into our minds at some point(s) in our local and universal history.

    In fact, my intuition is that those who push free will do so out of fear and wishful thinking; a conceited desire for our constructions to be real etc.

    What will it want? If it's a noble thing, maybe not much. But the most of us, of them, get all 'busy' interacting by choice. Notice I did not put choice in quotes.Chet Hawkins

    This is nice. Like you, I like to think about the possibilities of morality or nobility of an atom. But.

    You mention "desire" a few times but I'm unsure of its role. For me, there are drives, and feelings, but desire is like meaning, order, and choice: constructs of the Mind which superimposes itself on Nature and displaces it with Narratives. Desire evolved in the system of Mind (not by design or predeterminedly, but by chance) to keep the Signifiers growing and constructing.

    Ah, here I am again. Far too much to say, to little room to elaborate.

    I am interested in how desire fits in for you as used in your reply above.
  • Ludwig V
    784
    Applying any predicate to any entity not having the characteristics of Dasein will not cause that entity to "exist."Arne
    I think I understand the rest of what you say. But this suggests to me that applying any entity having the characteristics of Dasein will cause that entity to exist. ???

    Existence is Dasein's and only Dasein's mode of being.Arne
    .. and H. acknowledges only three modes of being, one of which is true of everything that is. (Is that the right word to use here?
    That's makes it all clear enough. Take it or leave it.

    Assuming we allow every other philosopher the same license, it seems that each philosophy exists in its own silo. How does an outsider choose between them? On grounds of internal consistency? Is that enough?
  • Ludwig V
    784
    What I mean is that the difference between "arbitrary" (as you put it) and "subjective", IMO, is the difference between nihilism and existentialism, respectively.180 Proof
    I can see that.
    It seems to me that the difference between nihilism is that the nihilist is committed to not being committed and the existentialist is not yet committed, but will be. Would that be right?
    There seems to be a difference between Kierkegaard and Sartre/Camus. Kierkegaard bewails his inability to make the leap of faith, which suggests that when the leap is made, it is a voluntary action. But whether one can make that leap does not solely depend on whether one wants to or not. Sartre and Camus don't seem to recognize that ambivalence - their heroes don't bewail their uncommitted status, and Mathieu's final commitment seems to happen to him without his co-operation or resistance. Would that be correct?
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