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Re: [existlist] Re: Relevance of NDEs to Existentialism

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  • Aija Veldre Beldavs
    ... i would think that should a strong reason arise to think these terms entangled, in the spirit of scientific openness, there would be room even in a
    Message 1 of 26 , Mar 2, 2008
      mary.jo11 wrote:
      > Joe,
      >
      > I realize that in a different conversation we might deconstruct the
      > terms existence and essence. But seriously, in an existentialism
      > forum, the burden is on you to show 1) that essence precedes
      > existence, and 2) its relevance.
      >
      > Mary
      >
      > Joseph Polanik <jPolanik@...> wrote:
      >
      > and, what 'existence/essence unity' would that be?

      i would think that should a strong reason arise to think these terms
      "entangled," in the spirit of scientific openness, there would be room
      even in a strongly committed existentialism forum to acknowledge that.:)

      aija
    • bhvwd
      ... the ... terms ... room ... that.:) ... fruit salad. Entanglement can be a scientific term of sub atomic origin. There is no reason to extend any of that
      Message 2 of 26 , Mar 2, 2008
        --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, Aija Veldre Beldavs <beldavsa@...>
        wrote:
        >
        > mary.jo11 wrote:
        > > Joe,
        > >
        > > I realize that in a different conversation we might deconstruct
        the
        > > terms existence and essence. But seriously, in an existentialism
        > > forum, the burden is on you to show 1) that essence precedes
        > > existence, and 2) its relevance.
        > >
        > > Mary
        > >
        > > Joseph Polanik <jPolanik@> wrote:
        > >
        > > and, what 'existence/essence unity' would that be?
        >
        > i would think that should a strong reason arise to think these
        terms
        > "entangled," in the spirit of scientific openness, there would be
        room
        > even in a strongly committed existentialism forum to acknowledge
        that.:)
        >
        > aija
        >Now slow down Aija, a few apples ,a few oranges and you serve up a
        fruit salad. Entanglement can be a scientific term of sub atomic
        origin. There is no reason to extend any of that science to
        essance/existance discussions. Are you going to speak as a
        scientist? I can see little relevance in science to what is
        essentially a metaphysical foolishness about spirit. In a strongly
        committed existential forum there is no talk of spirit, soul, or any
        of the putrid concepts of faith. That is why Jim is the master of
        talking at tangents about god. Now you blast in with some quasi
        relevant material derived from quantum physics. What are you trying
        to say? Do some good and teach us some physics or serve your salid to
        the faithful. Jim can be relied on for some english wallnuts. Bill
      • Joseph Polanik
        ... if you speak of an existence/essence unity; then, the burden is on you to demonstrate the existence of an essence. Joe ... -- Philosophy is, after all,
        Message 3 of 26 , Mar 2, 2008
          mary.jo11 wrote:
          > Joe,
          >
          > I realize that in a different conversation we might deconstruct the
          > terms existence and essence. But seriously, in an existentialism
          > forum, the burden is on you to show 1) that essence precedes
          > existence, and 2) its relevance.

          if you speak of an existence/essence unity; then, the burden is on you
          to demonstrate the existence of an essence.

          Joe










          >
          > Joseph Polanik <jPolanik@...> wrote:
          >
          > and, what 'existence/essence unity' would that be?
          >
          >
          >
          > Please support the Existential Primer... dedicated to explaining nothing!
          >
          > Home Page: http://www.tameri.com/csw/exist
          > Yahoo! Groups Links
          >
          >
          >
          >


          --
          Philosophy is, after all, done ultimately in the first person for the
          first person. --- H-N Castaneda

          @^@~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~@^@
          http://what-am-i.net
          @^@~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~@^@
        • eupraxis@aol.com
          Joe, You wrote: if you speak of an existence/essence unity; then, the burden is on you to demonstrate the existence of an essence. I know that the irony of
          Message 4 of 26 , Mar 2, 2008
            Joe,

            You wrote: "if you speak of an existence/essence unity; then, the burden is
            on you to demonstrate the existence of an essence."

            I know that the irony of your statement escapes you. Much the pity, that. The
            "existence precedes essence" phrase is famously (it is one of the most famous
            of blurbs) from Sartre, Being and Nothingness. I am quite sure that Mary
            assumed that you were familiar with all of this.

            When Sartre (that's Jean Paul Sartre) writes that existence precedes essence,
            he is precisely putting the notion of essence under erasure, returning it to
            its root 'esse', or "to be".

            Wil

            In a message dated 3/2/08 1:07:05 PM, jPolanik@... writes:


            >
            >
            >
            > mary.jo11 wrote:
            > > Joe,
            > >
            > > I realize that in a different conversation we might deconstruct the
            > > terms existence and essence. But seriously, in an existentialism
            > > forum, the burden is on you to show 1) that essence precedes
            > > existence, and 2) its relevance.
            >
            > if you speak of an existence/essence unity; then, the burden is on you
            > to demonstrate the existence of an essence.
            >
            > Joe
            >
            >
            >




            **************
            Ideas to please picky eaters. Watch video on AOL Living.

            (http://living.aol.com/video/how-to-please-your-picky-eater/rachel-campos-duffy/
            2050827?NCID=aolcmp00300000002598)


            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • louise
            Wil, I like Joe s idea of a cooperative enterprise, in the effort to philosophise to some purpose. The irony of his statement, if such it was, also escaped
            Message 5 of 26 , Mar 2, 2008
              Wil,

              I like Joe's idea of a cooperative enterprise, in the effort to
              philosophise to some purpose. The irony of his statement, if such it
              was, also escaped me. Are you suggesting that Sartre's dictum is
              equivalent to the statement that existence abolishes essence?
              One starting-point for a Sartre neophyte like myself might be
              reference to the lexicon provided by CSW, in which existence is
              defined thus:

              ~ Existential thinkers write of existence as it is in its factuality
              as opposed to idealistic philosophy (such as Hegelianism) which
              equated essence with existence to the detriment of existence. ~

              In fact, such was the starting-point I decided upon, as evidenced by
              this post. I choose, therefore I am. Childlike, but relevant.
              Observing oneself, and all that.

              Louise

              --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, eupraxis@... wrote:
              >
              > Joe,
              >
              > You wrote: "if you speak of an existence/essence unity; then, the
              burden is
              > on you to demonstrate the existence of an essence."
              >
              > I know that the irony of your statement escapes you. Much the pity,
              that. The
              > "existence precedes essence" phrase is famously (it is one of the
              most famous
              > of blurbs) from Sartre, Being and Nothingness. I am quite sure that
              Mary
              > assumed that you were familiar with all of this.
              >
              > When Sartre (that's Jean Paul Sartre) writes that existence
              precedes essence,
              > he is precisely putting the notion of essence under erasure,
              returning it to
              > its root 'esse', or "to be".
              >
              > Wil
              >
              > In a message dated 3/2/08 1:07:05 PM, jPolanik@... writes:
              >
              >
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > > mary.jo11 wrote:
              > > > Joe,
              > > >
              > > > I realize that in a different conversation we might deconstruct
              the
              > > > terms existence and essence. But seriously, in an existentialism
              > > > forum, the burden is on you to show 1) that essence precedes
              > > > existence, and 2) its relevance.
              > >
              > > if you speak of an existence/essence unity; then, the burden is
              on you
              > > to demonstrate the existence of an essence.
              > >
              > > Joe
              > >
              > >
              > >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              > **************
              > Ideas to please picky eaters. Watch video on AOL Living.
              >
              > (http://living.aol.com/video/how-to-please-your-picky-eater/rachel-
              campos-duffy/
              > 2050827?NCID=aolcmp00300000002598)
              >
              >
              > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              >
            • eupraxis@aol.com
              Louise, I haven t looked at CS s lexicon, and I will leave aside any remarks that interpret Hegel as an otherworldly theorist for now (no, thank me later).
              Message 6 of 26 , Mar 2, 2008
                Louise,

                I haven't looked at CS's lexicon, and I will leave aside any remarks that
                interpret Hegel as an otherworldly theorist for now (no, thank me later). But,
                yes, I am "suggesting" that Sartre, as it were, 'abolishes' essence in favor of
                existence. It is called "Existentialism"; you might check it out sometime.

                In other words, Sartre is contending against Platonic Realism (or what is
                usually called Idealism).

                In any case, if I should explain the irony of Joe's statement and thoroughly
                beat the dead horse to a pulp, the point would be that the demonstration of
                'the existence of an essence', besides being terminologically redundant, is also
                precisely what an existentialist would NOT think possible.

                Wil

                In a message dated 3/2/08 1:59:52 PM, hecubatoher@... writes:


                >
                >
                >
                > Wil,
                >
                > I like Joe's idea of a cooperative enterprise, in the effort to
                > philosophise to some purpose. The irony of his statement, if such it
                > was, also escaped me. Are you suggesting that Sartre's dictum is
                > equivalent to the statement that existence abolishes essence?
                > One starting-point for a Sartre neophyte like myself might be
                > reference to the lexicon provided by CSW, in which existence is
                > defined thus:
                >
                > ~ Existential thinkers write of existence as it is in its factuality
                > as opposed to idealistic philosophy (such as Hegelianism) which
                > equated essence with existence to the detriment of existence. ~
                >
                > In fact, such was the starting-point I decided upon, as evidenced by
                > this post. I choose, therefore I am. Childlike, but relevant.
                > Observing oneself, and all that.
                >
                > Louise
                >
                >
                >




                **************
                Ideas to please picky eaters. Watch video on AOL Living.

                (http://living.aol.com/video/how-to-please-your-picky-eater/rachel-campos-duffy/
                2050827?NCID=aolcmp00300000002598)


                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • bhvwd
                ... burden is ... that. The ... most famous ... Mary ... precedes essence, ... returning it to ... always assumed Sartre put up essence as a bogeyman and then
                Message 7 of 26 , Mar 2, 2008
                  --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, eupraxis@... wrote:
                  >
                  > Joe,
                  >
                  > You wrote: "if you speak of an existence/essence unity; then, the
                  burden is
                  > on you to demonstrate the existence of an essence."
                  >
                  > I know that the irony of your statement escapes you. Much the pity,
                  that. The
                  > "existence precedes essence" phrase is famously (it is one of the
                  most famous
                  > of blurbs) from Sartre, Being and Nothingness. I am quite sure that
                  Mary
                  > assumed that you were familiar with all of this.
                  >
                  > When Sartre (that's Jean Paul Sartre) writes that existence
                  precedes essence,
                  > he is precisely putting the notion of essence under erasure,
                  returning it to
                  > its root 'esse', or "to be".
                  >
                  > Wil
                  > I pine for the good old days when we held forth on nothingness. I
                  always assumed Sartre put up essence as a bogeyman and then grabbed
                  his bat and beat the shit out of it. Such a fine, french concept to
                  abuse, Jean Paul really must have hated the spirits, the essance. It
                  was as if he stood and screamed" I am alive and you are the smell of
                  death" When the French speak about smell it is getting serious. In
                  Being and Nothingness Sartre takes it back to the nihilism posturing
                  as an essence in life. But it is nothing as long as beings like you
                  live to affront it. Bill
                  > In a message dated 3/2/08 1:07:05 PM, jPolanik@... writes:
                  >
                  >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > > mary.jo11 wrote:
                  > > > Joe,
                  > > >
                  > > > I realize that in a different conversation we might deconstruct
                  the
                  > > > terms existence and essence. But seriously, in an existentialism
                  > > > forum, the burden is on you to show 1) that essence precedes
                  > > > existence, and 2) its relevance.
                  > >
                  > > if you speak of an existence/essence unity; then, the burden is
                  on you
                  > > to demonstrate the existence of an essence.
                  > >
                  > > Joe
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > **************
                  > Ideas to please picky eaters. Watch video on AOL Living.
                  >
                  > (http://living.aol.com/video/how-to-please-your-picky-eater/rachel-
                  campos-duffy/
                  > 2050827?NCID=aolcmp00300000002598)
                  >
                  >
                  > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  >
                • louise
                  Wil, I am more sceptical than to take your statements for some kind of gospel truth, and it is no disrespect to your own learning. The fact is, that I
                  Message 8 of 26 , Mar 2, 2008
                    Wil,

                    I am more sceptical than to take your statements for some kind of
                    gospel truth, and it is no disrespect to your own learning. The fact
                    is, that I consider myself to have been an existentialist for nigh on
                    three decades, and deem it reasonable to expect open discussion on
                    the very topic of this list, which founds and develops itself in the
                    work of various authors. It is an emotional matter, yes, for those
                    of us who care about discourse, and its particular responsibilities,
                    toward the countless life-forms on this planet. I am not a
                    utilitarian, yet I acknowledge the reality of consequence. The
                    questions at issue seem to me philosophically complex. Surely the
                    Platonic Realism against which Sartre was contending does not exhaust
                    the relevant meanings of the term, 'essence'? I agree with you about
                    the inapposite wording, 'existence of an essence', yet in my opinion
                    Joe's questioning of Mary's original statement in #43828 is perfectly
                    legitimate. The patience with which we think, as human beings, takes
                    a long time to evolve. I suppose that a quality like 'patience' is
                    itself an essence. Some human existences exemplify it more than
                    others. Probably there are sound, impatient answers you might put to
                    what could be digressive and muddled on my part, but I do trust the
                    messy kind of progress.

                    Louise

                    --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, eupraxis@... wrote:
                    >
                    > Louise,
                    >
                    > I haven't looked at CS's lexicon, and I will leave aside any
                    remarks that
                    > interpret Hegel as an otherworldly theorist for now (no, thank me
                    later). But,
                    > yes, I am "suggesting" that Sartre, as it were, 'abolishes' essence
                    in favor of
                    > existence. It is called "Existentialism"; you might check it out
                    sometime.
                    >
                    > In other words, Sartre is contending against Platonic Realism (or
                    what is
                    > usually called Idealism).
                    >
                    > In any case, if I should explain the irony of Joe's statement and
                    thoroughly
                    > beat the dead horse to a pulp, the point would be that the
                    demonstration of
                    > 'the existence of an essence', besides being terminologically
                    redundant, is also
                    > precisely what an existentialist would NOT think possible.
                    >
                    > Wil
                    >
                    > In a message dated 3/2/08 1:59:52 PM, hecubatoher@... writes:
                    >
                    >
                    > >
                    > >
                    > >
                    > > Wil,
                    > >
                    > > I like Joe's idea of a cooperative enterprise, in the effort to
                    > > philosophise to some purpose. The irony of his statement, if such
                    it
                    > > was, also escaped me. Are you suggesting that Sartre's dictum is
                    > > equivalent to the statement that existence abolishes essence?
                    > > One starting-point for a Sartre neophyte like myself might be
                    > > reference to the lexicon provided by CSW, in which existence is
                    > > defined thus:
                    > >
                    > > ~ Existential thinkers write of existence as it is in its
                    factuality
                    > > as opposed to idealistic philosophy (such as Hegelianism) which
                    > > equated essence with existence to the detriment of existence. ~
                    > >
                    > > In fact, such was the starting-point I decided upon, as evidenced
                    by
                    > > this post. I choose, therefore I am. Childlike, but relevant.
                    > > Observing oneself, and all that.
                    > >
                    > > Louise
                    > >
                    > >
                    > >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > **************
                    > Ideas to please picky eaters. Watch video on AOL Living.
                    >
                    > (http://living.aol.com/video/how-to-please-your-picky-eater/rachel-
                    campos-duffy/
                    > 2050827?NCID=aolcmp00300000002598)
                    >
                    >
                    > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    >
                  • eupraxis@aol.com
                    Louise, You wrote: I am more skeptical than to take your statements for some kind of gospel truth, and it is no disrespect to your own learning. The fact is,
                    Message 9 of 26 , Mar 2, 2008
                      Louise,

                      You wrote: "I am more skeptical than to take your statements for some kind of
                      gospel truth, and it is no disrespect to your own learning. The fact is, that
                      I consider myself to have been an existentialist for nigh on three decades,
                      and deem it reasonable to expect open discussion on the very topic of this
                      list, which founds and develops itself in the work of various authors. It is an
                      emotional matter, yes, for those of us who care about discourse, and its
                      particular responsibilities, toward the countless life-forms on this planet."

                      Response: 'Kay. Assuming that you are contending with my understanding of
                      Sartre's B&N, show me. Sartre denies any kind of transcendence or
                      otherworldliness. As Bill has put it, he goes right to edge of nihilism. [end]

                      You wrote: "I am not a utilitarian, yet I acknowledge the reality of
                      consequence. The questions at issue seem to me philosophically complex."

                      Response: And this has something to do with what? How does that seem to you
                      to be a question currently at issue? A consequence is something that comes
                      after, as a result of. The "reality of a consequence" wouldn't be an essence,
                      then, would it? If you use a nomological rendering of essence (say, an act is
                      preceded by its potential penalties, etc.), then you are still playing the same
                      Platonic card: only a god could guarantee in time such a moral law. I don't
                      think that is what you mean, though. Otherwise, if a consequence is said to 'have
                      a reality' in the essential sense of the term, that would be like saying
                      "down" exists so that falling can happen. Any of these ways of thinking are
                      anathematic to existentialism. [end]

                      You wrote: Surely the Platonic Realism against which Sartre was contending
                      does not exhaust the relevant meanings of the term, 'essence'?

                      Response: It most certainly does exhaust the meaning of the term under
                      discussion, as we were discussing precisely Sartre. [end]

                      You wrote: I agree with you about the inapposite wording, 'existence of an
                      essence', yet in my opinion Joe's questioning of Mary's original statement in
                      #43828 is perfectly legitimate.

                      Response: I was defending Mary's claim that, "in an existentialism forum, the
                      burden is on you to show 1) that essence precedes existence, and 2) its
                      relevance." The second part (the relevance part) is moot, of course. [end]

                      You wrote: "The patience with which we think, as human beings, takes a long
                      time to evolve. I suppose that a quality like 'patience' is itself an essence.
                      Some human existences exemplify it more than others. Probably there are sound,
                      impatient answers you might put to what could be digressive and muddled on my
                      part, but I do trust the messy kind of progress."

                      Response: I suppose you could understand patience in a Heideggerian way, as
                      one of a kind of existentialia or basic existential categories of experience;
                      something like Care, etc., although he prefers boredom and impatience. Do the
                      existentialia precede existence, though? They can be said to logically precede
                      Dasein's experience of the world, not unlike Kant's categories, but they have
                      no reality outside of Dasein and are thus consanguine or coeval with presence.
                      So I think we are back to the same place.

                      Thus Spoke,
                      WS


                      In a message dated 3/2/08 2:40:20 PM, hecubatoher@... writes:


                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > Wil,
                      >
                      > I am more sceptical than to take your statements for some kind of
                      > gospel truth, and it is no disrespect to your own learning. The fact
                      > is, that I consider myself to have been an existentialist for nigh on
                      > three decades, and deem it reasonable to expect open discussion on
                      > the very topic of this list, which founds and develops itself in the
                      > work of various authors. It is an emotional matter, yes, for those
                      > of us who care about discourse, and its particular responsibilities,
                      > toward the countless life-forms on this planet. I am not a
                      > utilitarian, yet I acknowledge the reality of consequence. The
                      > questions at issue seem to me philosophically complex. Surely the
                      > Platonic Realism against which Sartre was contending does not exhaust
                      > the relevant meanings of the term, 'essence'? I agree with you about
                      > the inapposite wording, 'existence of an essence', yet in my opinion
                      > Joe's questioning of Mary's original statement in #43828 is perfectly
                      > legitimate. The patience with which we think, as human beings, takes
                      > a long time to evolve. I suppose that a quality like 'patience' is
                      > itself an essence. Some human existences exemplify it more than
                      > others. Probably there are sound, impatient answers you might put to
                      > what could be digressive and muddled on my part, but I do trust the
                      > messy kind of progress.
                      >
                      > Louise
                      >
                      >
                      >




                      **************
                      Ideas to please picky eaters. Watch video on AOL Living.

                      (http://living.aol.com/video/how-to-please-your-picky-eater/rachel-campos-duffy/
                      2050827?NCID=aolcmp00300000002598)


                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    • louise
                      ... some kind of ... fact is, that ... decades, ... of this ... authors. It is an ... and its ... this planet. ... understanding of ... nihilism. [end] ...
                      Message 10 of 26 , Mar 2, 2008
                        --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, eupraxis@... wrote:
                        >
                        > Louise,
                        >
                        > You wrote: "I am more skeptical than to take your statements for
                        some kind of
                        > gospel truth, and it is no disrespect to your own learning. The
                        fact is, that
                        > I consider myself to have been an existentialist for nigh on three
                        decades,
                        > and deem it reasonable to expect open discussion on the very topic
                        of this
                        > list, which founds and develops itself in the work of various
                        authors. It is an
                        > emotional matter, yes, for those of us who care about discourse,
                        and its
                        > particular responsibilities, toward the countless life-forms on
                        this planet."
                        >
                        > Response: 'Kay. Assuming that you are contending with my
                        understanding of
                        > Sartre's B&N, show me. Sartre denies any kind of transcendence or
                        > otherworldliness. As Bill has put it, he goes right to edge of
                        nihilism. [end]
                        >

                        No, I cannot show you. Am being honest, in declaring myself a Sartre
                        neophyte; though I did read B&N many years ago, it has left virtually
                        no trace. Many readers of this list will not have read the text. I
                        am interested in the possibility that, besides the kind of erudite
                        discussion you most prefer, there may be benefit and interest in
                        other forms of posting. It should present no difficulty, if there be
                        tolerance and adherence to the rules of the list, for precise debate,
                        robust argument, inventive literary efforts, personal existential
                        narratives, suggested reading lists, and good-humoured banter, to
                        find place here. Though that is simply my own interpretation of what
                        existlist is about, and it is not exhaustive, even from my own point
                        of view. With regard to the specific point you make above, I am
                        still seeking to understand the meanings and context of terms
                        like 'transcendence' or 'otherworldliness'. I believe that the more
                        one questions, if the enquiry be free, that is, conducted without
                        aggression, the more may appear to view. Nature is everywhere, in a
                        sense, including in the practice of philosophy, an apparently
                        abstruse intellectual art, and will reveal most where respect for her
                        mysteries prevail. If this seems too mushy for you, so be it. My
                        own attitudes have mellowed through sustaining new experiences, and
                        my scepticism has evolved and continues to do so. I intend to answer
                        only one or two points in each e-mail, for clarity's sake.

                        Louise
                      • louise
                        ... of ... complex. ... seem to you ... that comes ... an essence, ... an act is ... playing the same ... I don t ... You re right. I did not make clear the
                        Message 11 of 26 , Mar 2, 2008
                          --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, eupraxis@... wrote:
                          >
                          > Louise,

                          > You wrote: "I am not a utilitarian, yet I acknowledge the reality
                          of
                          > consequence. The questions at issue seem to me philosophically
                          complex."
                          >
                          > Response: And this has something to do with what? How does that
                          seem to you
                          > to be a question currently at issue? A consequence is something
                          that comes
                          > after, as a result of. The "reality of a consequence" wouldn't be
                          an essence,
                          > then, would it? If you use a nomological rendering of essence (say,
                          an act is
                          > preceded by its potential penalties, etc.), then you are still
                          playing the same
                          > Platonic card: only a god could guarantee in time such a moral law.
                          I don't
                          > think that is what you mean, though.

                          You're right. I did not make clear the context. It was a general
                          point, about the consequences of posting any statement at a public
                          forum like this. Whatever one writes, is multiply interpreted.
                          Perhaps I was just encouraging myself, to take care in saying as
                          exactly as possible what I mean. As opposed to the dubious practice
                          of considering a general welfare, a form of liberalism to which I
                          might be susceptible, and which I distrust extremely. I am, though,
                          as you recall, a Nooist, and, as Eduard has recently stated, if you
                          want a god you may have one to believe in. Existential
                          responsibility, though, might urge caution, about whether or no you
                          really know what you are doing, in finding, or choosing, such a god.
                          Philosophical discipline is desirable, in order to avoid narrowly
                          cultic affiliations which prove destructive. I have confidence in
                          Nooism, because of my empiricism, and my respect for learning and
                          wisdom.

                          Louise


                          Otherwise, if a consequence is said to 'have
                          > a reality' in the essential sense of the term, that would be like
                          saying
                          > "down" exists so that falling can happen. Any of these ways of
                          thinking are
                          > anathematic to existentialism. [end]
                        • louise
                          ... contending ... under ... wording, existence of an ... statement in ... forum, the ... its ... course. [end] Let s see, first of all you say we were
                          Message 12 of 26 , Mar 2, 2008
                            --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, eupraxis@... wrote:
                            >
                            > Louise,

                            > You wrote: Surely the Platonic Realism against which Sartre was
                            contending
                            > does not exhaust the relevant meanings of the term, 'essence'?
                            >
                            > Response: It most certainly does exhaust the meaning of the term
                            under
                            > discussion, as we were discussing precisely Sartre. [end]
                            >
                            > You wrote: I agree with you about the inapposite
                            wording, 'existence of an
                            > essence', yet in my opinion Joe's questioning of Mary's original
                            statement in
                            > #43828 is perfectly legitimate.
                            >
                            > Response: I was defending Mary's claim that, "in an existentialism
                            forum, the
                            > burden is on you to show 1) that essence precedes existence, and 2)
                            its
                            > relevance." The second part (the relevance part) is moot, of
                            course. [end]

                            Let's see, first of all you say we were discussing precisely Sartre,
                            then you quote Mary's response to Joe which invokes existentialism in
                            general. Am I missing something here, or is this not at least
                            implying that Sartre is the only permitted authority regarding the
                            interpretation of essence/existence? In regard to his own works,
                            fair enough, but the original post referred to an existence/essence
                            unity (without even mentioning Sartre) which, so far, sounds to me
                            like an unexplained, unexamined article of faith. I should really
                            like to understand its provenance. Perhaps that should be a question
                            to Mary, except that she already replied to Joe as if he should do
                            the work of understanding what she meant.

                            Louise
                          • eupraxis@aol.com
                            Let s see, first of all you say we were discussing precisely Sartre, then you quote Mary s response to Joe which invokes existentialism in general. Am I
                            Message 13 of 26 , Mar 2, 2008
                              "Let's see, first of all you say we were discussing precisely Sartre, then
                              you quote Mary's response to Joe which invokes existentialism in general. Am I
                              missing something here, or is this not at least implying that Sartre is the
                              only permitted authority regarding the interpretation of essence/existence? 'In
                              regard to his own works, fair enough, but the original post referred to an
                              existence/essence unity (without even mentioning Sartre) which, so far, sounds to
                              me like an unexplained, unexamined article of faith. I should really like to
                              understand its provenance."
                              ----
                              Response: No, I think you're missing something here. Can you name another
                              existentialist author who uses that dyad who is either not referring to Sartre,
                              or who is using the dyad in some other novel way? And in any case, whenever
                              such a dyad ("existence/essence") is used without any special proviso, wouldn't
                              one understand those terms in their usual sense, especially in a philosophical
                              list? Finally, can you show me another meaning to these terms that would be
                              readily understandable?

                              I don't think you would have an easy task with any of that. [end]

                              Wil


                              In a message dated 3/2/08 5:06:40 PM, hecubatoher@... writes:


                              > Let's see, first of all you say we were discussing precisely Sartre,
                              > then you quote Mary's response to Joe which invokes existentialism in
                              > general. Am I missing something here, or is this not at least
                              > implying that Sartre is the only permitted authority regarding the
                              > interpretation of essence/existence? In regard to his own works,
                              > fair enough, but the original post referred to an existence/essence
                              > unity (without even mentioning Sartre) which, so far, sounds to me
                              > like an unexplained, unexamined article of faith. I should really
                              > like to understand its provenance. Perhaps that should be a question
                              > to Mary, except that she already replied to Joe as if he should do
                              > the work of understanding what she meant.
                              >
                              > Louise
                              >




                              **************
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                              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                            • louise
                              ... Sartre, then ... general. Am I ... Sartre is the ... essence/existence? In ... referred to an ... far, sounds to ... really like to ... another ...
                              Message 14 of 26 , Mar 2, 2008
                                --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, eupraxis@... wrote:
                                >
                                > "Let's see, first of all you say we were discussing precisely
                                Sartre, then
                                > you quote Mary's response to Joe which invokes existentialism in
                                general. Am I
                                > missing something here, or is this not at least implying that
                                Sartre is the
                                > only permitted authority regarding the interpretation of
                                essence/existence? 'In
                                > regard to his own works, fair enough, but the original post
                                referred to an
                                > existence/essence unity (without even mentioning Sartre) which, so
                                far, sounds to
                                > me like an unexplained, unexamined article of faith. I should
                                really like to
                                > understand its provenance."
                                > ----
                                > Response: No, I think you're missing something here. Can you name
                                another
                                > existentialist author who uses that dyad who is either not
                                referring to Sartre,
                                > or who is using the dyad in some other novel way? And in any case,
                                whenever
                                > such a dyad ("existence/essence") is used without any special
                                proviso, wouldn't
                                > one understand those terms in their usual sense, especially in a
                                philosophical
                                > list? Finally, can you show me another meaning to these terms that
                                would be
                                > readily understandable?
                                >
                                > I don't think you would have an easy task with any of that. [end]
                                >
                                > Wil

                                Wil,

                                I'm finding your response helpful, in determining which of my
                                questions appear to be based on lack of necessary knowledge, such
                                that no useful answers will be forthcoming, and which are worth
                                investigating further. It does look to me at present as though the
                                territory involved would be Platonic Realism and theistic
                                existentialism, if there be any genuine relation between the two
                                which admits of description by means of the dyad.

                                Louise
                              • eupraxis@aol.com
                                Louise Most (all actually) of the religiously oriented existential literature that I know, from Kierkegaard through to Ricoeur, conspicuously avoids the
                                Message 15 of 26 , Mar 2, 2008
                                  Louise

                                  Most (all actually) of the religiously oriented existential literature that I
                                  know, from Kierkegaard through to Ricoeur, conspicuously avoids the
                                  metaphysical analyses one would otherwise expect from a theist; to wit, some proof that
                                  God exists. Yet we have sin, fallibility, self-loathing, etc. -- and I am not
                                  without my sense of depth -- I have heard the bay of the wolf during the
                                  night, have undergone attacks of dread and regret, have lost myself (my Self) in
                                  the infinity of nothingness, and the rest of it.

                                  Some have applied a kind of reverse Anselmian argument to assuage all of
                                  this; they proffer God by means of the overwhelming vacuity of the eternal. If it
                                  is that absurd, God must exist. Hence 'Plato' lives on, or has always.

                                  But I go another route. The only God (Absolute) for me is (at best) Hegel's,
                                  and it is entirely mundane and apparent. One derives no comfort from Hegel,
                                  only context. I am probably alone here when I say that Hegel is the first
                                  existentialist. But I digress.

                                  Lacan tells us that what we most desire is an illusion. He means that
                                  reflexively: We want an illusion; and what we think we want is itself illusory.
                                  Essences and eternal verities are what we most desire; thus they are necessarily
                                  imaginary. It is like Nietzsche's insight that logic is inherently optimistic.
                                  From an existentialist point of view, that is a profound idea. Logic may limit
                                  thought to rationality, but 'belief' in logic means that one lives in a dream,
                                  nevertheless.

                                  That is the sense of transcendence that I decry and that Sartre deconstructs.
                                  To say that existence precedes essence is to say just this.

                                  Wil



                                  In a message dated 3/2/08 6:45:45 PM, hecubatoher@... writes:


                                  > Wil,
                                  >
                                  > I'm finding your response helpful, in determining which of my
                                  > questions appear to be based on lack of necessary knowledge, such
                                  > that no useful answers will be forthcoming, and which are worth
                                  > investigating further. It does look to me at present as though the
                                  > territory involved would be Platonic Realism and theistic
                                  > existentialism, if there be any genuine relation between the two
                                  > which admits of description by means of the dyad.
                                  >
                                  > Louise
                                  >




                                  **************
                                  Ideas to please picky eaters. Watch video on AOL Living.

                                  (http://living.aol.com/video/how-to-please-your-picky-eater/rachel-campos-duffy/
                                  2050827?NCID=aolcmp00300000002598)


                                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                • louise
                                  Wil, Thanks, Louise ... literature that I ... wit, some proof that ... and I am not ... during the ... (my Self) in ... all of ... eternal. If it ... always.
                                  Message 16 of 26 , Mar 3, 2008
                                    Wil,

                                    Thanks,

                                    Louise

                                    --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, eupraxis@... wrote:
                                    >
                                    > Louise
                                    >
                                    > Most (all actually) of the religiously oriented existential
                                    literature that I
                                    > know, from Kierkegaard through to Ricoeur, conspicuously avoids the
                                    > metaphysical analyses one would otherwise expect from a theist; to
                                    wit, some proof that
                                    > God exists. Yet we have sin, fallibility, self-loathing, etc. --
                                    and I am not
                                    > without my sense of depth -- I have heard the bay of the wolf
                                    during the
                                    > night, have undergone attacks of dread and regret, have lost myself
                                    (my Self) in
                                    > the infinity of nothingness, and the rest of it.
                                    >
                                    > Some have applied a kind of reverse Anselmian argument to assuage
                                    all of
                                    > this; they proffer God by means of the overwhelming vacuity of the
                                    eternal. If it
                                    > is that absurd, God must exist. Hence 'Plato' lives on, or has
                                    always.
                                    >
                                    > But I go another route. The only God (Absolute) for me is (at best)
                                    Hegel's,
                                    > and it is entirely mundane and apparent. One derives no comfort
                                    from Hegel,
                                    > only context. I am probably alone here when I say that Hegel is the
                                    first
                                    > existentialist. But I digress.
                                    >
                                    > Lacan tells us that what we most desire is an illusion. He means
                                    that
                                    > reflexively: We want an illusion; and what we think we want is
                                    itself illusory.
                                    > Essences and eternal verities are what we most desire; thus they
                                    are necessarily
                                    > imaginary. It is like Nietzsche's insight that logic is inherently
                                    optimistic.
                                    > From an existentialist point of view, that is a profound idea.
                                    Logic may limit
                                    > thought to rationality, but 'belief' in logic means that one lives
                                    in a dream,
                                    > nevertheless.
                                    >
                                    > That is the sense of transcendence that I decry and that Sartre
                                    deconstructs.
                                    > To say that existence precedes essence is to say just this.
                                    >
                                    > Wil
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > In a message dated 3/2/08 6:45:45 PM, hecubatoher@... writes:
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > > Wil,
                                    > >
                                    > > I'm finding your response helpful, in determining which of my
                                    > > questions appear to be based on lack of necessary knowledge, such
                                    > > that no useful answers will be forthcoming, and which are worth
                                    > > investigating further. It does look to me at present as though the
                                    > > territory involved would be Platonic Realism and theistic
                                    > > existentialism, if there be any genuine relation between the two
                                    > > which admits of description by means of the dyad.
                                    > >
                                    > > Louise
                                    > >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > **************
                                    > Ideas to please picky eaters. Watch video on AOL Living.
                                    >
                                    > (http://living.aol.com/video/how-to-please-your-picky-eater/rachel-
                                    campos-duffy/
                                    > 2050827?NCID=aolcmp00300000002598)
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                    >
                                  • jimstuart51
                                    Wil, I have enjoyed reading your exchange of posts with Louise. I think you both make some good points and you both write with decisiveness and passion. I am
                                    Message 17 of 26 , Mar 3, 2008
                                      Wil,

                                      I have enjoyed reading your exchange of posts with Louise. I think you
                                      both make some good points and you both write with decisiveness and
                                      passion.

                                      I am not in complete agreement with what you write about Sartre.

                                      My understanding is that Sartre's famous expression "existence
                                      precedes essence" was to apply to human beings, and only human beings.
                                      He introduced this expression in order to contrast human beings with
                                      all other entities in the world.

                                      Because human beings have absolute freedom, they cannot have an
                                      essence as to have an essence is to lack absolute freedom. I (and
                                      other human beings who grasp their freedom) choose how to act, and in
                                      this choice I create myself anew at each moment of choice. By
                                      contrast, animals, plants, trees, chairs, tables, buildings, etc.,
                                      lack choice and in these cases we can justifiably speak of such
                                      entities having essences.

                                      So, on my reading of Sartre, he does not deny essences in toto, he
                                      just denies that free individuals like you or me have essences.

                                      In this regard Nietzsche is different to Sartre. Nietzsche did, I
                                      think, deny essences across the board, even to scientific entities
                                      like gold, lead, water, etc. For Nietzsche, human beings were not
                                      essentially different to animals, plants, trees, etc., in that all
                                      lacked essences.

                                      I don't think an existentialist has to deny essences to scientific
                                      entities. I view existentialism as a philosophy concerned with the
                                      human being and her choices in an inhospitable, purposeless world. I
                                      don't think such a view necessarily excludes a belief in logic, nor a
                                      belief that scientific entities have essences.

                                      Jim
                                    • eupraxis@aol.com
                                      Jim, Thanks. No, I think it is clear, and not just from B&N, that Sartre denies any kind of transcendent reality, except for the Imaginary itself. This is
                                      Message 18 of 26 , Mar 3, 2008
                                        Jim,

                                        Thanks.

                                        No, I think it is clear, and not just from B&N, that Sartre denies any kind
                                        of transcendent reality, except for the Imaginary itself. This is fundamental
                                        to his phenomenology and his artistic work, in my opinion. However, the
                                        consequences of "existence preceding essence", which was meant as a slight on the
                                        lingering scholasticism of the Academy, is just as you describe it.

                                        By the way, there have been all kinds of stories about Sartre's supposed
                                        conversion to religion during his decline. They are nonsense, and I know that by
                                        the best anecdotal evidence available to me: to wit, I know someone, a great
                                        friend and mentor, who was in that loop. To the end, Sartre was a committed
                                        atheist.

                                        Wil

                                        In a message dated 3/3/08 7:05:17 AM, jjimstuart1@... writes:


                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > Wil,
                                        >
                                        > I have enjoyed reading your exchange of posts with Louise. I think you
                                        > both make some good points and you both write with decisiveness and
                                        > passion.
                                        >
                                        > I am not in complete agreement with what you write about Sartre.
                                        >
                                        > My understanding is that Sartre's famous expression "existence
                                        > precedes essence" was to apply to human beings, and only human beings.
                                        > He introduced this expression in order to contrast human beings with
                                        > all other entities in the world.
                                        >
                                        > Because human beings have absolute freedom, they cannot have an
                                        > essence as to have an essence is to lack absolute freedom. I (and
                                        > other human beings who grasp their freedom) choose how to act, and in
                                        > this choice I create myself anew at each moment of choice. By
                                        > contrast, animals, plants, trees, chairs, tables, buildings, etc.,
                                        > lack choice and in these cases we can justifiably speak of such
                                        > entities having essences.
                                        >
                                        > So, on my reading of Sartre, he does not deny essences in toto, he
                                        > just denies that free individuals like you or me have essences.
                                        >
                                        > In this regard Nietzsche is different to Sartre. Nietzsche did, I
                                        > think, deny essences across the board, even to scientific entities
                                        > like gold, lead, water, etc. For Nietzsche, human beings were not
                                        > essentially different to animals, plants, trees, etc., in that all
                                        > lacked essences.
                                        >
                                        > I don't think an existentialist has to deny essences to scientific
                                        > entities. I view existentialism as a philosophy concerned with the
                                        > human being and her choices in an inhospitable, purposeless world. I
                                        > don't think such a view necessarily excludes a belief in logic, nor a
                                        > belief that scientific entities have essences.
                                        >
                                        > Jim
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >




                                        **************
                                        Ideas to please picky eaters. Watch video on AOL Living.

                                        (http://living.aol.com/video/how-to-please-your-picky-eater/rachel-campos-duffy/
                                        2050827?NCID=aolcmp00300000002598)


                                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                      • mary.jo11
                                        Although uncomfortable with notions of orthodoxy, I accept this one. The other is nothingness, since it also binds and liberates existential thought. Legal
                                        Message 19 of 26 , Mar 3, 2008
                                          Although uncomfortable with notions of orthodoxy, I accept this one.
                                          The other is nothingness, since it also binds and liberates
                                          existential thought. Legal definitions of when life begins and ends
                                          are less relevant to the existentialist than personal situation. Mary

                                          eupraxis@... wrote:

                                          To the end, Sartre was a committed atheist.
                                        • Exist List Moderator
                                          ... Not my lexicon, in general. It is a recovery of The New Dictionary of Existentialism, a text from the late 1960s. I have expanded some entries and continue
                                          Message 20 of 26 , Mar 5, 2008
                                            On Mar 02, 2008, at 14:13, eupraxis@... wrote:

                                            > I haven't looked at CS's lexicon, and I will leave aside any remarks
                                            > that
                                            > interpret Hegel as an otherworldly theorist for now (no, thank me
                                            > later).


                                            Not my lexicon, in general. It is a recovery of The New Dictionary of
                                            Existentialism, a text from the late 1960s. I have expanded some
                                            entries and continue to do so with quotes directly from the thinkers
                                            profiled so as to avoid any notion that the definitions are mine or
                                            any other "expert's" because it is always best to let the author
                                            define his or her own terms.

                                            I also note that the same terms were often used in different ways, to
                                            different ends, by the authors.

                                            Also... I never read anywhere that someone suggested Sartre renounced
                                            atheism. That was a curious mention on the list that I skimmed. Wil is
                                            definitely correct on this matter, based on the contacts I have had
                                            with historians and biographers. I cannot imagine Sartre as anything
                                            other than an atheist... just as I can't imagine him ever humble. I
                                            would cite "Adieux" as my primary source for Sartre's finals days.

                                            - C. S. Wyatt
                                            I am what I am at this moment, not what I was and certainly not all
                                            that I shall be.
                                            http://www.tameri.com - Tameri Guide for Writers
                                            http://www.tameri.com/csw/exist - The Existential Primer
                                          • bhvwd
                                            ... remarks ... me ... of ... thinkers ... or ... to ... renounced ... is ... had ... anything ... I ... all ... year they appear and youn have seen what you
                                            Message 21 of 26 , Mar 5, 2008
                                              --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, Exist List Moderator
                                              <existlist1@...> wrote:
                                              >
                                              > On Mar 02, 2008, at 14:13, eupraxis@... wrote:
                                              >
                                              > > I haven't looked at CS's lexicon, and I will leave aside any
                                              remarks
                                              > > that
                                              > > interpret Hegel as an otherworldly theorist for now (no, thank
                                              me
                                              > > later).
                                              >
                                              >
                                              > Not my lexicon, in general. It is a recovery of The New Dictionary
                                              of
                                              > Existentialism, a text from the late 1960s. I have expanded some
                                              > entries and continue to do so with quotes directly from the
                                              thinkers
                                              > profiled so as to avoid any notion that the definitions are mine
                                              or
                                              > any other "expert's" because it is always best to let the author
                                              > define his or her own terms.
                                              >
                                              > I also note that the same terms were often used in different ways,
                                              to
                                              > different ends, by the authors.
                                              >
                                              > Also... I never read anywhere that someone suggested Sartre
                                              renounced
                                              > atheism. That was a curious mention on the list that I skimmed. Wil
                                              is
                                              > definitely correct on this matter, based on the contacts I have
                                              had
                                              > with historians and biographers. I cannot imagine Sartre as
                                              anything
                                              > other than an atheist... just as I can't imagine him ever humble.
                                              I
                                              > would cite "Adieux" as my primary source for Sartre's finals days.
                                              >
                                              > - C. S. Wyatt
                                              > I am what I am at this moment, not what I was and certainly not
                                              all
                                              > that I shall be.
                                              > http://www.tameri.com - Tameri Guide for Writers
                                              > http://www.tameri.com/csw/exist - The Existential Primer
                                              >I would go througe the ancient broyhers of the north. In a cold
                                              year they appear and youn have seen what you as yet do not recognise.
                                              Will they keep you ? This place has its merits if you can fite ice,
                                              Bill
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