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Fwd:KJ FORUM TA32 C34 Haselhurst&Muller : DESCRIBING REALITY, C35 McCormick to Jarvilehto : SUBJECTS, OBJECTS, SOCIETY

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  • cyrano@aqua.ocn.ne.jp
    The experience comes first, scientific physiological and physical explanations as objective methods come later. The science is a specialization (involving
    Message 1 of 1 , May 29, 2001
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      "The experience comes first, scientific physiological and physical
      explanations as objective
      methods come later. The science is a specialization (involving
      structure formations and uses) within experience, not vice
      versa, and that is why neither you, nor anyone else, can
      explain experience, and not only of red." :

      >Return-Path: <hmller@...>
      >Date: Tue, 29 May 2001 10:20:20 -0400
      >From: Dr Herbert FJ Muller <hmller@...>
      >Reply-To: hmller@...
      >To: Herbert FJ Muller <hmller@...>
      >Subject: KJ FORUM TA32 C34 Haselhurst&Muller : DESCRIBING REALITY, C35
      McCormick to
      > Jarvilehto : SUBJECTS, OBJECTS, SOCIETY
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      >
      >
      >KARL JASPERS FORUM
      >TA32 (Muller)
      >
      >Commentary 34
      >
      >( ON DESCRIBING REALITY )
      >by Geoff Haselhurst
      >23 May 2001, posted 29 May 2001
      >
      >[ The following is an introduction to a treatise by GH on the
      >"Metaphysic of Space and Motion", a long paper, not posted
      >here but available from the author. Paragraph numbers in
      ><brackets> are added by me. I also include my reply at the
      >end. - HFJM ]
      >
      >----------------------------
      >
      ><1>
      >This is a first draft, though it is the result of five years work,
      >and several years of writing! (Because email is large (about
      >40 pages) I send it to several people at a time, my following
      >introductory comments are largely directed to Dr Muller, but
      >they are important and I should include them somewhere in
      >this work.)
      >
      ><2>
      >This Treatise claims to truly describe Reality. An
      >extraordinary claim! that is almost impossible to believe. Yet
      >I am quite certain that you are now reading about what you
      >actually are as a Human in the Universe! I know you shall be
      >skeptical, but I also know this theory's extraordinary logical
      >power combined with a good dose of common sense - that
      >obviously something exists for us to exist in and have
      >thoughts.
      >
      ><3>
      >Let us briefly consider this claim to the discovery of Reality
      >for it can be taken in two important ways.
      >
      >1. Idealistically like Kant, that Space Time and the Causal
      >Motion of Matter in Space are our own mind constructions.
      >Kant still agrees that there is a physical reality, but it is
      >always separate from our ideas of it. Einstein was similar, and
      >mathematically represented matter as a changing (time)
      >spherical field (both force and ellipsoidal shape change) with
      >motion and near other matter in Space. Einstein believed in a
      >rigid fundamental Space (the spherical shape of matter gives
      >space its three dimensions) and that matter was a structure
      >of Space. He was correct other than he used the wrong
      >language (of electromagnetic force fields) rather than
      >spherical standing waves in Space. As this Treatise explains,
      >the Wave-Center obviously creates the point-like / particle
      >effect of matter, and once you understand the theory you will
      >realise that a change in velocity of the Spherical In-Waves, as
      >they interact with other wave structures, causes the
      >acceleration of the particle/wave-center. This, most
      >profoundly, explains Newton's Fundamental Law of Inertia
      >F=m.a and thus explains the 'Necessary Connexion' between
      >'What Exists' .
      >
      ><4>
      >This is the fundamental cause of the force field which misled
      >Einstein. And as you shall see, then solves all his problems,
      >unites relativity with Quantum Theory (obviously explains
      >particle/wave duality), Wolff deduces both QT's de Broglie
      >Wavelength and Einstein's Relativistic Mass increase, both are
      >phenomena of relative MOTION. BOTH deduced from the
      >ONE wave equation - absolutely remarkable to do this if this
      >language were not true. Further, the same logic applied to
      >Cosmology solves ALL their major problems also - absolutely
      >remarkable.
      >
      ><5>
      >So firstly, you can read this treatise and determine for
      >yourselves - does this language of Matter existing as
      >Spherical Standing Waves in Space logically deduce what we
      >sense in the motion of matter in the Space around us. I can
      >answer as a Philosopher and Scientist that it explains most
      >things perfectly (but that there are still many things to explain
      >- similar to how I view Darwinian Evolution, but with more
      >precise mathematical logic to support it, and it explains more
      >things with less things).
      >
      ><6>
      >But at this stage we are still purely idealistic - both our senses
      >and our logical language exist in the mind. Nonetheless - the
      >discovery of the correct language for describing reality within
      >our mind would be a remarkable and profound human
      >achievement, and would in itself radically change our world
      >view - please think on this.
      >
      ><7>
      >Let us turn now to the second very interesting question of
      >Reality
      >
      >2. Does this Language of Spherical Standing Waves in Space
      >merely exist in our mind, and Reality is something separate
      >that we represent with our mind.
      >Or
      >Does this Language of Spherical Standing Waves in Space
      >actually describe what physically exists, not as a
      >representation but as a direct description.
      >
      ><8>
      >I am quite certain that Space does actually exist, and is
      >spherically vibrating like I say, and that I exist in this Space
      >as a Structure of many trillions of Wave-Centers all trapped in
      >complex interconnected 'orbits/oscillating wave functions'
      >about one another that have evolved my enormous
      >complexity. This is sensible and logical to me for the
      >following reasons;
      >
      ><9>
      >1. We all agree something must exist
      >2. We all agree that human mind and ideas require human
      >bodies and brains to exist.
      >3. We all agree there must be some necessary connection
      >between the matter of our brain and body and other matter
      >in the universe (for us to be able to see it, move it around)
      >4. We all agree that our Representation of Reality is not direct
      >from our senses, but is constructed by the mind (and this is
      >limited to sensing only a tiny fraction of 'What Exists'. So for
      >example we only see a half moon (we are deceived it is still a
      >whole moon) because we only sense a tiny 'visible' frequency
      >of light (resonant coupling) compared with the many other
      >possible frequencies that our technology uses. Thus an Infra-
      >red telescope would still see the whole moon)
      >
      ><10>
      >Now I argue that the Wave Structure of matter in Space
      >agrees with all of this. We do represent the world, a red
      >apple is not really a red apple, it is a structure of many
      >trillions of Spherical Standing Waves the size of the universe,
      >whose wave-centers have evolved into this complex structure
      >that has electrons/wave-centers trapped in particular
      >frequency 'orbits' that resonantly couple with electrons in my
      >eye due to oscillating interactions of their In and Out Waves.
      >This particular frequency is represented to my mind as red. I
      >cannot explain this representation, but I can explain the
      >Cause of the Representation. This is important, and I would
      >like you to directly address this point - for me to BE ABLE TO
      >represent this apple, requires points 1 to 3 above - which I
      >explain quite perfectly with the Metaphysics of Space and
      >Motion and the Wave Structure of Matter.
      >
      ><11>
      >Thus we see that the Metaphysic of Space and Motion agrees
      >that our mind represents the real world of which we have
      >limited senses. But what I stress, is that neither Space, nor
      >(Wave) Motion are Representations, but are in fact What
      >Exists such that you can exist and have a mind that
      >'represents' these spherical standing wave motions in Space.
      >
      >I look forward to your reply and I will continue to think about
      >this and develop these ideas, for it is a most intriguing form
      >of skepticism that the idealist poses. But I believe in the
      >power of truth to explain all things....
      >
      ><12>
      >PS
      >On Mind Independent Reality - Before humans existed,
      >there still existed reality. Thus in this sense, mind
      >independent reality exists. I argue that Space has always
      >existed and been spherically vibrating - this is completely
      >reasonable and logical.
      >
      >On Mind Independent from Reality - The mind must exist as
      >a structure of Reality (the relative motions of trillions of
      >Wave-centers, both internal and external to the body) thus
      >the mind depends upon reality for its existence
      >
      >Your comments?
      >
      >-------------------------------------
      >
      >Geoff Haselhurst
      > e-mail <geoffh@...>
      >
      >-------------------------------------
      >
      >[13]
      >REPLY
      >by Herbert FJ Müller
      >
      >In this reply, I will only answer to your introduction. I have
      >not yet had the time to go through your treatise. But it
      >seems that some of the most central questions, namely your
      >underlying assumptions, appear here. I hope you don't mind
      >if I am somewhat repetitive at times.
      >
      >As you will no doubt have expected, I have a problem with
      >your endorsement of mind-independently pre-structured
      >reality (MIR, ontology, is-ness) belief. Although <in 9
      >above> point 1 "We all agree that something must exist"
      >there is no clarification of the meaning of "exist", in <6> you
      >write that "The mind must exist as a structure of reality ?
      >thus the mind depends on reality for its existence". And in
      ><7> "2. Does this Language of Spherical Standing Waves in
      >Space merely exist in our mind, and Reality is something
      >separate that we represent with our mind. Or Does this
      >Language of Spherical Standing Waves in Space actually
      >describe what physically exists, not as a representation but as
      >a direct description". Both alternatives you mention in this
      >statement imply MIR-belief. But the premise "we all agree"
      >which you present as justification for MIR is not correct. I
      >vote for a third alternative : that we build reality from
      >scratch inside our ongoing mind-nature experience.
      >
      >[14]
      >I do not agree with MIR-belief, because it turns things on
      >their head : reality depends on subjective experience ("the
      >mind") for its existence, and not vice versa. Piaget and
      >others showed that reality is our construction : the self
      >(mind), others, and the world, and particularly also the split
      >between them, are our doing, and as experiencing subjects
      >we are and remain a constituent component of all structures,
      >which means that they are not mind-independent (see also
      >TA17 by E von Glasersfeld). We need structures indeed, but
      >they are not "given" to us in a pre-assembled (ontological)
      >form, which could possibly be re-presented or described, they
      >are built from no given structure (zero-derivation, 0-D). This
      >position does not imply ontological solipsism, since (a) its
      >basis is mind-nature experience as a whole rather than only
      >the subject, and (b) it therefore does not permit (neither
      >MIR- nor subject-) ontology which would be based on the
      >assumption of a primary (ontological) subject-object split.
      >
      >[15]
      >Thus in response to "This Treatise claims to truly describe
      >Reality" <2> : you can structure experience (or perhaps if
      >you prefer you "structure reality", though this formulation
      >introduces an ambiguity), but you cannot describe a fictional
      >MIR-nature. Kant <3> went beyond his well known views in
      >his later writings (opus postumum; see TA28 C13), though
      >Einstein remained an ontologist. Working reality and truth
      >result from structure-building within subjective experience; or
      >more specifically, and in answer to your second point in <7>
      >: from investing belief and trust in the "merely" created
      >structures (money is a particularly clear example : man-
      >made, accepted, believed in, and used; it would be difficult to
      >argue that it is not real). That "something must exist" then
      >changes to mean that : we need mental tools for thinking,
      >and to believe in. We should not become passive victims of
      >word-concept-dynamics (see TAs 24 & 32). And further, we
      >like certainty, the absence of doubt, because it makes us feel
      >safe. But doubt should not be abandoned (at least not in
      >principle, though it may be so in practice) : not in favor of
      >internally- nor of supposedly-externally-warranted certainties.
      >Call it creative doubt, perhaps, or conscience; static certainty
      >can be counter-productive.
      >
      >[16]
      >Thus when you say that you are describing a mind-
      >independent reality, I would reply that this is the traditional
      >error of static metaphysics. For instance, you would have to
      >explain by what means you propose to describe such a reality
      >which is both fictional and inaccessible to our mind. What
      >you are doing is, rather : work out new procedures for
      >dealing with experience. <12> "Reality existed before
      >humans" - you have to say something like that, if your basis
      >is a static-objective (MIR) frame of thinking. However, this
      >frame is our doing to start with, and uses backward
      >extrapolation, starting from present-experience-structures,
      >first created inside ongoing experience. The past keeps
      >changing like the present and the future : who did what last
      >week, where did what kind of humans come from, and maybe
      >the big bang was not and should be replaced by floating no-
      >bang-11-dimensional-space-membranes (Science 292, p.189-
      >191, 13 April 2001). An accomplished (unchanging) past
      >reality is an aspect of a static-MIR-phantasy.
      >
      >[17]
      >All this implies nothing about the usefulness of the theoretical
      >structures, ideas, or language <6> you describe. Whether
      >they are more, or less, helpful than other working-structure
      >proposals, for dealing with physics or with other aspects of
      >experience has to be decided by trying them out. This is of
      >course what happens in practice : when accepted beliefs and
      >other techniques are found to be insufficient or counter-
      >productive, new ones are elaborated. Why else would you
      >want to develop a new metaphysic ? From here follows,
      >among many other things, that the notion of one ultimate
      >static structure is illusory (nor would it actually be desirable,
      >because it would be yet another exclusive truth-claim,
      >aspiring to displace not only other physical theories but most
      >likely also other systems of belief). On the other hand,
      >theory building is compatible with a far-reaching convergence
      >of methods.
      >
      >[18]
      >" <8> I am quite certain that Space does actually exist, and
      >is spherically vibrating like I say ? " This is fine as your
      >belief, but one can probably also maintain a working belief in
      >vibrating space without making it MIR-absolute. I prefer to
      >think of such structures (or better : of beliefs in existence of
      >such structures) as possible (non-or-pre-Cartesian) mind-
      >nature tools or instruments. This view makes them more
      >flexible. "Space" is then an instrument for dealing with the
      >extension aspect of experience, and the relevant
      >mathematical tools, including (spatial) "dimension", help with
      >that. Animals experience extension too, without having word-
      >or number-concepts of space. Similar considerations apply to
      >"time", to deal with the flow of experience, and "numbers", to
      >deal with iteration. My question here is whether you might
      >see such a functional or working (as opposed to static) notion
      >of time, space, dimensions, and mathematics as desirable -
      >but it would interfere with your idea of space as fundamental.
      >Concepts and ideas in general, as for instance in "idealism"
      ><3,11>, are such mind-nature tools as well.
      >
      >[19]
      >"<10> ? This particular frequency is represented to my mind
      >as red. I cannot explain this representation, but I can explain
      >the Cause of the Representation. This is important, and I
      >would like you to directly address this point - for me to BE
      >ABLE TO represent this apple, requires points 1 to 3 above -
      >which I explain quite perfectly with the Metaphysics of Space
      >and Motion and the Wave Structure of Matter. "
      >
      >[20]
      >Subjective experience (SE) differs from objective explanations
      >: SE is not a re-presentation of a pre-existing MIR-apple-
      >structure or of an MIR-frequency. Instead it involves building
      >and using mental entities (including not only spatially formed
      >structures, but also qualia such as color or pain) inside that
      >experience. We (and animals too) experience red also
      >without knowing or speculating about brains, electromagnetic
      >frequencies, or standing waves. The experience comes first,
      >scientific physiological and physical explanations as objective
      >methods come later. The science is a specialization (involving
      >structure formations and uses) within experience, not vice
      >versa, and that is why neither you, nor anyone else, can
      >explain experience, and not only of red. The necessary
      >conditions ("causes") for seeing an apple are many. For
      >instance that it has grown on a tree, that you have your eyes
      >open, that there is some light, that it has not yet been eaten,
      >etc. Also the market forces, which made it come to your
      >table, and (if you like) that God created it plus you, and made
      >you think about standing waves and red apples. The
      >sequence depends on what you take for fundamental. In my
      >opinion, the unformed experience is the first condition.
      >
      >[21]
      >The strongest argument for traditional MIR-belief is probably
      >that everyone sees a red apple as a red apple. For concrete
      >objects the experience may support only one or a few
      >structures (in contrast to some more ambiguous social
      >situations, for instance). But (a) this does not eliminate the
      >requirement of 0-D structure-building in individual subjective
      >experience. Also (b) the MIR is not permanent, this red apple
      >was not last year, although others were, and if you eat it now
      >it is no longer, though you can still think about it, and if you
      >took its picture you can continue to look at that. And (c) the
      >apple can be mistaken for another object, and vice versa.
      >Etc. Despite its inherent limitations, MIR is a practical way of
      >talking about object-experiences (which is why you use it),
      >but I suggest that in principle an as-if-MIR-with-0-D provision
      >is still better, because it outlines the conditions of the MIR-
      >assumption.
      >
      >[22]
      >Experience does not require MIR (points 1 to 3 in <9>),
      >quite the opposite [14], but physiology and physics do -
      >though as mentioned I suggest that working metaphysics (as-
      >if-MIR) is more helpful here than MIR. (Static MIR may be
      >understood as a special case of as-if-MIR, for the situations
      >where one can get away with it, such as in many exclusively
      >objective studies.) The "as-if" does not make reality unreal
      >but maintains us subjects and our doubt inside the
      >experience. I do not want to suggest that doubt (or
      >skepticism) is particularly pleasant, but, like pain, it is
      >important for survival. If you abolish pain, as during
      >anaesthesia, someone (or something) else has to take charge
      >and responsibility, and the situation is analogous in the case
      >of doubt-free certainty which is supposedly guaranteed by
      >fictitious outside agents. But it is probably more appropriate
      >to compare doubt to conscience. The practical requirement is
      >a seasoned balance between doubts and auxiliary (essentially
      >temporary even if of long duration) certainties.
      >
      >[23]
      >"<11> ? I believe in the power of truth to explain all things
      >...." Go forth and develop better tools, and more power to
      >you ! You may come up with some universal instrument,
      >perhaps, which can handle much of physical experience in a
      >contradiction-free way. But as mentioned, I don't think you
      >will "explain" subjective experience by reduction to something
      >objective. And as for the power of reasoning, let us not
      >forget Paul Feyerabend's ocean of irrationality (whence 0-D
      >starts, and on which we therefore are, together with, and
      >perched on, our floating islands of rationality). PF was here
      >talking not about Freud's unconscious but about scientific
      >theory.
      >
      >-------------------------------------
      >
      >Herbert FJ Muller
      > e-mail <hmller@...>
      >
      >
      >KARL JASPERS FORUM
      >TA32 (Muller)
      >
      >Commentary 35 (to C32 by Jarvilehto)
      >
      >( SUBJECTS, OBJECTS, AND SOCIETY )
      >by Brad McCormick
      >16 May 2001, posted 29 May 2001
      >
      >
      >( NOTE : Quotations from Jarvilehto's C32 are in "quotation
      >marks", responses to them by McCormick are in [brackets]. The
      ><paragraph numbers> are those from C32. - HFJM )
      >
      >I wish to reply to the following item, which I found interesting
      >because it seems to "capture" succinctly how difficult it is in our
      >society to escape "metaphysics" in the form of scientific (or
      >scientistic) reification of human existence, etc. I argue this has
      >global practical implications for the whole shape of our life, as well
      >as being "a philosophical issue".
      >
      >" <1> I share many basic ideas developed by Herbert Muller in his
      >target article, especially in respect to criticism of MIR beliefs, or to
      >the search for consciousness in the brain. <2> However, the main
      >problem with radical constructivism (which Muller seems to
      >represent in the target article) is that it absolutizes the subjective
      >experience, and in this way represents only an opposite position to
      >physicalism or objectivism. Or, to be more exact, physicalism and
      >radical constructivism are only variants of the same position (which
      >may also explain why they are such enemies) of starting with the
      >basic separation of the organism and environment. Physicalism
      >sets the origin of thoughts, etc., into the environment, radical
      >constructivism into a subject separated from all his relations. "
      >
      >[ My "background" is Husserl et al. It seems to me that <2> above
      >does not distinguish between "a subject" as part of an empirical
      >universe, and "a subject" as the event of a world in which an
      >empirical universe finds its place. The empirical (what Husserl
      >called: psychologistic) self is indeed just part of the universe, but
      >both that self and that universe are part of the event of there being
      >a world with a universe in it (I am aware that this is awkward, but
      >the word "consciousness" seems to be politically incorrect these
      >days...). ]
      >
      >" <3> I agree with Muller that the mainstream of the studies on
      >the neural basis of thinking or consciousness is flawed in taking a
      >priori the brain as the basis of consciousness. In its stead, one
      >should see that it is consciousness which makes possible the
      >concept of the brain: "Thinking does not come from the brain, but
      >the brain comes from thinking" [Muller, TA32 [2]]. Thus, the
      >mainstream studies take the condition created by consciousness as
      >a determinative of consciousness itself. This circularity will
      >certainly prevent all progress in the study of consciousness, and
      >leads to an endless amount of empirical studies which cannot be
      >properly interpreted. "
      >
      >[ <3> seems to me to be "right on the mark". Indeed, it is stated
      >better than I have been able to do myself. *However*: I propose
      >that <3> is not consistent with <2> or, more precisely, with <4>.]
      >
      >" <4> But does this mean that the reality is only our construct
      >within the subjective experience? No, because neither
      >consciousness nor physical reality are in some sense primary.
      >When thinking about the world we start, of course, with our
      >subjective experience. "
      >
      >[ This is ambiguous: In thinking about the world (or is it in
      >thinking about the universe?), "we start with our subjective
      >experience". I take this to mean that we start by imagining
      >ourselves as localized lumps of stuff situated in an infinite
      >geometrical, i.e., object, space. But this is not the same as
      >endeavoring rigorously [like, e.g., Husserl...] to think about the
      >event of thinking in its wholeness (both the knowing and the
      >known -- see <3>). The latter is very difficult for those of us who
      >were child-reared into objectivistic reification, as I think most of us
      >in our society have been. ]
      >
      >" However, this experience is not existing as such, but it is possible,
      >because it has a long evolutionary history. "
      >
      >[ Here is where I see a direct contradiction to <3>: "evolutionary
      >history" seems to me to be just as much object-stuff as "the brain",
      >and therefore to be just as much a target of the incisive critique in
      ><3>! Perhaps the author means by "evolutionary history" a
      >hermeneutical exegesis of the history of science and
      >historiography, and, if that is the case, I apologize for imputing
      >objectivism where it is not present -- but then the exposition surely
      >could have been clearer, especially since the danger of
      >misunderstanding is so great in a culture where "Darwin" has
      >largely replaced G-d. ]
      >
      >" We have subjective experience, because we are parts of the
      >human species and human communities, "
      >
      >[ Once again, isn't "species" a construct of the event of signifying
      >(AKA "consciousness")? "Human communities" is, I think, more
      >interesting, as I hope to show forthwith .... ]
      >
      >" and it is this context, in which the subjective experience is
      >possible. This point was well formulated by Bruce Kirchoff: "Rather
      >they [consciousness and the brain] exist as intrinsic parts of a
      >system with a community of people who credit the type of
      >consciousness that is sustained by the physical reality that this
      >consciousness is creates" (Kirchoff, 1999). "
      >
      >[ What does "system" mean, if not some object-constellation?
      >Unless "system" means the event of signification, which Husserl
      >called (after Kant, et al.) "transcendental [inter]subjectivity".
      >Again, perhaps it is too easy to misread the text here? ]
      >
      >" <5> This idea could perhaps be expressed also by saying that
      >consciousness and matter cannot be separate or in a causal
      >relation, because they belong to the same system. On one hand,
      >matter may not be separated into some kind of basic substance
      >with absolute existence, the properties of which would exist also
      >without any living being. "
      >
      >[ "The properties of which would exist without any living being."
      >What can this mean except for some kind of "object"-in-itself,
      >which, of course, cannot be any kind of ob-ject, since an ob-ject is
      >precisely an object-of/in-consciousness (as Kant argued, although,
      >perhaps it goes back as far as Heraclitus, with his assertion that the
      >limits of the Logos are so vast that no matter how far you travel,
      >you will never reach its limits?). ]
      >
      >" On the other hand, consciousness does not produce matter as a
      >some kind of "subjective construction", because the properties of
      >matter are not something "fictional" or an outcome of negotiation
      >(cf. social constructivists), but real properties of the world which
      >are concretized by living beings, giving by their actions to these
      >aspects of the "stuff" of the universe their significance and meaning
      >in a community of organisms. "
      >
      >[ It does seem, lamentably, to be the case that we *are* objects in
      >the world *as well as* being the subjects of/for/... the world.
      >People die and some people make this happen to other people by
      >putting bullets into their skull cavities, etc.
      >
      >(But, as Sartre said: "We die only for others.")
      >
      >These are mysteries for understanding and hermeneutics (etc.), but
      >philosophy is a luxury for times when we can afford to reflect on
      >experience rather than trying [however philosophically naively!] to
      >"save our necks". On the other hand, perhaps Buddhist
      >"enlightenment" is an ultimate carrying through of what Husserl
      >called "reduction" -- perhaps the enlightened sage is able to
      >differentiate the event of meaning (AKA "consciousness", etc.) from
      >its object-content even while he is being roasted in the
      >Phylarian(sp?) bull?
      >
      >" It is consciousness and the sharing of the world that makes
      >possible the existence of material objects, and the description of
      >the properties of matter, but only from the point of the human
      >beings. "
      >
      >[ Here is where I think the most radical and difficult break is
      >needed to escape from the category mistakes which pervade our
      >society, including, apparently, the world of scientists as well as "the
      >man in the street". There are two kinds of "community": (1)
      >denumerable aggregations of person-lumps (AKA "citizens",
      >"people", "human resources", etc.). There is also: (2) the
      >community of enumerators -- as, for example, exists in the event of
      >two or more teachers discussing the disposition of one or more
      >student-lumps.
      >
      >I would argue (following Husserl et al.) that human existence in an
      >emphatic or normative sense is the event of conversation, which,
      >from the perspective of objectivity, is *pre-personal*. In a real
      >conversation, what "I" say and what "you" say is a vital unity of
      >meaning in which "who said what" is not relevant, but rather the
      >object being discussed is the "object pole" of what we might call
      >loosely and easily mis-interpretably(!) a "we subject".
      >
      >The objects which enter into this event of meaning as things-meant
      >are not human, even if they are taxonomically classifiable as
      >"anthropoid bipeds". This sounds bizarre, but I propose the
      >evidence for it is painfully close at hand: Just imagine the
      >difference between participating in a juridical proceeding as (1) the
      >defendant vs as (2) "a member of" the jury. To borrow a
      >Heidegger term (apart from his use of it...), I would argue there is
      >an "ontological difference". The phrase "alienated labor" is also
      >helpful for illuminating this.
      >
      >The pediatrician/psychoanalyst Donald Winnicott beautifully
      >described how the infant constructs *both* self and other,
      >"together", out of pre-personal experience (yes, even Winnicott's
      >descriptions are all too easily subject to objectivistic
      >misinterpretation as describing the adventures of object-of-
      >consciousness-lumps AKA "infants"!). Husserl said that
      >"transcendental subjectivity is intersubjectivity", by which I
      >understand he meant that the event of meaning (AKA
      >"consciousness" as having a world, etc.) is intrinsically *universal*,
      >and that attributions of "self" and "other" are empirical constructs,
      >just like billiard balls and quarks, etc.
      >
      >The event of meaning is apodictically given, but that "I said this"
      >whereas "you said that" (etc.) are empirical hypotheses about
      >"consciousness" as an empirical or psychologistic construct.
      >
      >There is a "practical payoff" from all this, which, mythologically, is
      >expressed in such Biblical statements as: "When two or three are
      >gathered together in my name, then I am among them", or the
      >words from an Episcopal hymn: "God's whole will will not be done,
      >till all mankind is one". In a *real* democracy, as opposed to the
      >objectivism of voting, there is a living and "unified" event of
      >conversation, not an aggregation of voter-lumps which are
      >arithmetical objects [for the, in that case, real community: the
      >community of *vote counting*]. ]
      >
      >" <6> In conclusion, the main problem with Muller's approach is
      >his neglecting of the contribution of other human beings to the
      >subjective experience of the individual. "
      >
      >[ "the subjective experience of the individual" can be understood in
      >an objectivistic way, and then the above statement is a true
      >sociologistical statement about such object. But if "the individual"
      >is understood as the event of meaning, then "other human beings",
      >like every-thing else, is a meaning structure "constituted in
      >consciousness", but not "my" i.e.: "Bradford McCormick, SSN XXX-
      >XX-XXXX"'s consciousness (<3>, again!), whereas the event of
      >meaning is "wherein" that meaning structure ('"Bradford
      >McCormick, SSN XXX-XX-XXXX"'s consciousness', i.e.), like every
      >meaning structure, has its place. ]
      >
      >" No concept may be created by the individual alone, but
      >presupposes a community and a culture, in which relations
      >between the individuals and the world may be abstracted by the
      >help of the concepts. The existence of concepts themselves, is
      >precisely a strong support for the idea that we do not live in the
      >solipsistic prisons of our subjective experiences, but in a shared
      >world which is shaped according to the action possibilities of the
      >human beings. "
      >
      >[ It seems to me that the problem of "solipsism" is addressed by
      >observing that "consciousness" is implicitly *universal*. Even if
      >there was no other empirical "being" in the universe, even if "I"
      >was empirically alone in the whole world, "my thoughts" would be
      >structurally even though (obviously!) not empirically *universal* --
      >and one part of the evidence for this is that we often worry "that
      >somebody else might read our thoughts", etc. [Psychoanalysts
      >speak of "introjects", etc.] Empirical "self" and "other" are
      >empirical articulations of the living event of meaning ? articulations
      >which, presumably, the infant starts making to "explain" why "my
      >hands" behave differently than "the other person's" hands, etc. and
      >thereby keep from going mad. In a world without "frustration",
      >perhaps there would be no reason to differentiate "self" from
      >"other"?
      >
      >These issues seem to me to be very difficult. I would hope the
      >reader would think about the text on which I have commented
      >(and which I have included in toto for the reader's reference), and
      >ask him or herself if part of it does not speak against ("contra-dict")
      >the rest of it. ]
      >
      >---------------------------------
      >
      >[ I acknowledge that there are *both*: (1) ways in which we are in
      >the world, and also (2) ways in which the world is in us. Only
      >when the dead are raised will the project of "consciousness" be
      >fulfilled (and I'm not betting on that...).
      >
      >Aristotle spoke of "that condition the god is in always but man is in
      >only sometimes". Jean de Coras, the Inquisitor of Martin Guerre,
      >anticipated Husserl by almost 400 years, when he said:
      >
      > For the spirit alone lives; all else dies. ]
      >
      >"Yours in discourse...."
      >Respectfully,
      >brad mccormick
      >
      >--------------------------------------
      >
      > Let your light so shine before men,
      > that they may see your good works.... (Matt 5:16)
      >
      > Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. (1 Thes 5:21)
      >
      >Visit my website ==> http://www.users.cloud9.net/~bradmcc/
      ><![%THINK;[SGML+APL]]>
      >
      >---------------------------------------
      >
      >Brad McCormick, Ed.D. /
      > e-mail <bradmcc@...>
      > 914.238.0788
      > 27 Poillon Rd, Chappaqua NY 10514-3403 USA
      >
      >
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      Une injustice faite à un seul est une menace faite à tous

      Montesquieu (1689-1755)
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