Monthly Archives: March 2018

Where idealism fails

If the mind (ideal world) supervenes the body (physical world) then there would be no need for the physical world whatsoever. That is, at any moment we can forego the physical and continue to exist in ideas.

The fact that we loathe to “let go” of this world must mean that we do not fully believe that such a world exists. And if we do it is has nothing to do this world, for no effect (paranormal or otherwise) upon it has ever been observed without questions being asked. There is nothing certain about the ideal world.

one, forty-two

everything real
has a positive
equal value
called existence

un-equivalence
is our choice
our preference
our bias
our privileging
of a thing
over others

be it god
the self
the soul
or whatnot

that
is the nature
of me
a human being

E=mc²

think about it –

energy
is matter
is space
is time

while god
maybe 0
the world
is an integer

and nietzsche
may have
proclaimed
“god is dead”

but to me
“god is ‘nothing’
& the world is
everything”

from the world
came god and gods,
not the other way
as we might believe

Physicalism, not atheism

I don’t like atheism.

I don’t like atheism because it drags God, god or gods in the conversation as if they exist. It assumes first that there is a god or gods then proceeds with the argument to deny it. Atheism is the trap that theists have set for the unsuspecting.

The better approach is physicalism. Conclude that everything is physical, then to proceed to see what is a god or gods means we can deal with it like the fiction that it is. The concept of god is then seen as ordinary like Harry Potter and purple unicorns. The verbalisation or iteration of these do not make them real. Physicalism allows us the possibility to deal with concepts.

The editorial error that became “metaphysics”

Did you know that the term “metaphysics” came about through an error by an editor? Not only that, but the entire project of trying to find the nature and origin of being and the universe is based upon this error.

The “meta” in metaphysical had meant “after” or “beyond”, which led it to be interpreted as meaning “beyond the physical world”. No such meaning was there, however, because the editor had only wanted to denote use the term to mean the chapter after the chapter on ‘physics’. So Western Civilisation has been chasing after God and the soul for over two-thousand years because of an error.

Consciousness is mundane

There is nothing special about consciousness. It is only the consciousness which wants to think so. In this sense I agree with Object-Oriented Ontologists.

But what I do not agree with OOO is that to think it is necessary (read: special) to be free (like a rock is) from subjectivity and objectivity.

I have found it gratifying to come to terms with my humanness and celebrate existence – without being anthropologically arrogant – as only a human being can.

The equality of objectivity

In objectivity everything has a value of 1. The problem is that it has a value. Choosing an equal value for everything is in itself a value-ladened choice, no different to choice unequal values.

To talk of nihilism is meaningless

If everything is meaningless (or if nothing has meaning) then to talk of nihilism is also meaningless. Is there not a tautological trap here?

“Philosophy”, East and West

Like all terms in any language there is no full presence of meaning.

Here are the three definitions of “philosophy” from LDOCE. They are distinct but related as all polysemy are.

1 [uncountable] the study of the nature and meaning of existence, truth, good and evil etc
2 [countable] the views of a particular philosopher or group of philosophers
3 [countable] the attitude or set of ideas that guides the behaviour of a person or organization

I think the first two terms are fairly straightforward (the first one at least) but it is the third which is of interest here.

One often uses the third meaning in sentences like, “my philosophy on life is …” or “his philosophy on the matter is that …”.

Interestingly this does not translate across languages.

When learners try to ask a question like “what is your philosophy on X” they often fail by literally translating the words.

In Japanese, for example, “X in taisuru anata no tetsugaku wa nan desu ka” sounds strange and unnatural. More natural would be “X ni kanshite wa dou omoimasu ka“, which would be literally close to “what do you think of X“, which would sound like asking for an opinion.

The term philosophy then entails some degree of objectivity, whatever that may be. This is not true of what do you think of X. The point being the possible structure of the language and the influence of it upon you must be taken into consideration.

Going back to the other two meanings too it would be hard to use the same structure as “the philosophy of Confucius” or “his management philosophy”. Different words would replace philosophy for this usage in Japanese and Chinese, and presumably in many other languages as well.

Physicalism

I believe everything is physical. I also believe that the physical is a priori. So I believe what are commonly called the mind, self and soul also derive from the physical and physical processes.

There are things. And there is space. Space is also seemingly a singular thing. These are the physical things. The physical processes is time or the measure of it.

Everyday and at every moment, I reaffirm this and see it as a kind of mysticism.

Religion is man-made

To me, religion is man-made, not god-made. It serves a purpose similar (if not identical) to that of philosophy and science, two other man-made concepts.

There is nothing “natural” to religion, philosophy or science. If the Christian God were natural then every person and culture would have naturally gravitated toward Christianity. That God is not known to people unless they are told about his existence is proof that God is a construct. If philosophy and being a philosopher is natural then it would have been of the same structure across all cultures. Again, the fact that Confucius is considered a philosopher is wholly a Western construct. The word and concept “philosophy” is Western, and completely foreign to Eastern thinking. Yet again, if science was natural it would have been the same across all cultures at all times. The fact we needed to discover and develop it means it is constructed.

The only thing not “man-made” is matter. We are part of the material world. We come from the material. So are we not part of nature? In other words, we are nature-made. And it is nature, ironically, which had made us to believe in things that are man-made and the god-made.

i like god

i like god but
only in the same way
that i like harry potter
or purple unicorns

if god makes someone
a better person, i am happy
but i am annoyed when god
tells me i have to believe in him

it seems easier for god
to tell me these things
through others, and never
to speak to me directly

i am not worthy (they say)
to hear god’s voice
or to be graced
with his presence

or is it just
his presence
is in the word,
and word alone

either way
i like god
and, yes, i “know”
he likes me

How to paint an object

“I paint objects as I think them, not as I see them.” (Pablo Picasso, 1959)

This statement by Pablo Picasso is telling. The object is no longer what matters. It is the way we think and can think of them that matters. And it is not longer necessary to be faithful to the “outer” object, but rather important to be faithful to “inner” one that does what it does – namely create art, or more generally, abstraction. After all, our human self is nothing but part of the creation of the world. So we should celebrate that by being faithful to who we are.

I know of no other existence

I know of no other existence other than this one. We may speak of souls and spirits but we may only speak of them from this existence, and none other. Whether souls or spirits exist or not is really not the point. What we should be noting is that the possible existence of or as souls and spirits has no direct bearing on this existence other than through that kind of thought and discourse.

Be, being, becoming

I don’t like the to in to be or to with any other infinitive for that matter. It entails movement when the infinitive indicates anything but movement or change. I am or it is are to indicate a state that in reality does not exist.

Being is to indicate a state over time. So this is closer to what is true of the reality.

Becoming is what is what we always do. But that too is an illusion. Becoming is what we perceive when the reality “sees” none. Becoming is therefore a value.