Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

59750Re: [existlist] Re: shaping nothing

Expand Messages
  • eduardathome
    May 3, 2013
    • 0 Attachment
      I think one has to take into account the social and personal culture of the person making the statement.

      --- "The question looms in moments of great despair when things tend to lose all their weight and all meaning becomes obscured. It is present in moments of rejoicing, when all things around us are transfigured and seem to be there for the first time...The question is upon us in boredom when we are equally removed from despair and joy, and everything about us seems so hopelessly commonplace that we no longer care whether anything is or is not." (Heidegger)

      I don't know that much about Heidegger and perhaps my reaction is for a quote out of context, but I would suggest that it is perhaps over the top to say that things around us may be so hopelessly commonplace that we no longer care. Would such a statement be made by anyone in this age and time??

      eduard

      -----Original Message-----
      From: Mary
      Sent: Wednesday, May 01, 2013 5:00 PM
      To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: [existlist] Re: shaping nothing

      Two of the quotes that jump out at me from my notes. This first relates to what Sartre considered as the anxiety created by nothingness.

      "The question looms in moments of great despair when things tend to lose all their weight and all meaning becomes obscured. It is present in moments of rejoicing, when all things around us are transfigured and seem to be there for the first time...The question is upon us in boredom when we are equally removed from despair and joy, and everything about us seems so hopelessly commonplace that we no longer care whether anything is or is not." (Heidegger)

      "He who has not, as it were, looked into the abyss of absolute Nothing will completely overlook the eminently positive content of the realization that there is something rather than no things." (Max Scheler)

      This seems to jibe with what I grasp of Zizek's thought such as these from his latest book:

      ...the task is not to denounce them [appearing things] as "merely illusory
      appearances"...but that of discerning the conditions of possibility of this
      appearing of things, of their "transcendental genesis": what does such an
      appearing suppose, what must always-already have taken place for things to
      appear to us the way they do? (p.9)

      ...how can appearance emerge in reality?...Insofar as the gap between essence
      and appearance is inherent to appearance, in other words, insofar as essence is
      nothing but appearance reflected into itself, appearance is appearance against
      the background of nothing—everything that appears ultimately appears out of
      nothing (or, to put it in terms of quantum physics, all entities arise out of
      the quantum vacillations of the void). Appearance is nothing in itself; it is
      just an illusory being, but this illusory being is the only being of essence...
      (p.37)

      ...The answer to "Why is there Something rather than Nothing" is thus that there
      IS only Nothing, and all processes take place "from Nothing through Nothing to
      Nothing." (p.38)

      ...beyond the veil of appearances, there is only what the subject puts there...
      (p.168)...
      [Zizek's ideas about subject-self) are also very interesting.]

      ...with regard to the tension between essence and appearance, the fact that
      essence has to appear not only means that essence generates or mediates its
      appearances, but that the difference between essence and appearance is internal
      to appearance: essence has to appear within the domain of appearances, as a hint
      that "appearances are not all" but are "merely appearances." (p..469)...

      Nothing implies freedom to not only script our lives, as eduard suggests, but how to better organize our society and institutions. Responsibility for how we shape Nothing is ours.

      Mary

      --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "Jim" <jjimstuart1@...> wrote:
      >
      > Mary et al,
      >
      > I have got as far as page 86 of Jim Holt's book, so I'll offer a few simple thoughts.
      >
      > First I am enjoying reading Holt's book, but I do find it a bit uneven, as he seems to jump about from philosophy to science and back again as he tackles different aspects of the subject in a rather disjointed way.
      >
      > I did however like his clear distinction between nothing and nothingness on page 47:
      >
      > << As the logicians remind us, nothing is not a name; it is mere shorthand for "not anything." To say, for example, that "nothing is greater than God" is not to talk about a super-divine entity; it is simply to say that there is not anything greater than God. "Nothingness," by contrast, is indeed a name. It designates an ontological option, a possible reality, a conceivable state of affairs: that in which nothing exists. >>
      >
      > I was interested in his account of how the dominant view before about 1940 was that the universe was eternal, i.e. it had no beginning, and had been much the same `forever'. When the first evidence of a `big bang' to start the universe was published many scientists and atheists were unhappy – only the Pope seemed pleased about it! Now, we just accept the idea of the Big Bang without batting an eyelid.
      >
      > One thing Holt wrote was that our universe may have `popped' out of another universe. Perhaps it makes more sense to talk of our universe popping out of another universe, than our universe with (our) space and time popping out of literally nothing.
      >
      > Given space and time are part of our universe, it doesn't strictly make sense to talk of other universes existing `before' ours. However if the concept of other universes causally independent of ours, each with their own `space and times', then perhaps the idea of something existing forever – the old eternal idea – can be resurrected.
      >
      > Certainly to me, it makes more sense to conceive of our universe popping out of something else, than popping out of nothing at all.
      >
      > Jim
      >
      >
      >
      > --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "Mary" <josephson45r@> wrote:
      > >
      > > Jim,
      > >
      > > Any estimate on how soon we'll be able to discuss Nothing from various philsophical and scientific perspectives?
      > >
      > > Mary
      >




      ------------------------------------

      Please support the Existential Primer... dedicated to explaining nothing!

      Home Page: http://www.tameri.com/csw/existYahoo! Groups Links




      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Show all 67 messages in this topic