Category Archives: philosophy

I love Kant, the later Wittgenstein, Derrida, post structualism, postmodernism and the philosophy of language.

In the sense first

“nihil in intellectu nisi prius in sensu”

(Nothing is in the intellect unless first being in the senses.)

Knowledge is ordinary and has nothing to do with any metaphysical place or thing. Any implication that there is something beyond the senses needs to be questioned. Our knowledge of the world need not be given in any way. For the hunter-gatherer in the deepest of the most remote forest has knowledge that is beyond ours in the densest of of cities.

There is no vacuum from which knowledge comes from. There is no a-temporal a-spatial vacuum from which we begin to exist. We are the informed by from the time and place in which we come into being.

Identifying with the body

The question of “what happens after I die” really is a question of what is considered the “I”. If I identify with the mind then I must explain where I will remain or go. If I identify with the body then I remain as the corpse and no process of sentience or animation remains. If I identify with both body and mind I still have to explain what remains and what goes where. If identify with something else I must explain how I know this other substance.

For me, to identify with the body is to deal what is at least confirmable. All else are unanswerable questions.

Pan-naturalism

Man is wholly a part of the natural world. The perceived artificiality of being apart is a part of this system as well. Nothing escapes reality. Man is not independent of nature (the natural world).

No essence

The more I dig the less evidence I find for essence of any sort. In short, all things have no essences. I am content with this.

The (social) medium is the message

The medium is the message. It always has been. It always will be. There is no escape from the medium.

Do we have free will?

Someone pointed out that we must ask the question “are we free?” first before we can even ask “do we have free will?” I agree. To be truly free would be to be able to flit in and out of material existence. We do not and can not. Secondly, the will is not independent of the body. It is always a decision of or motivation from the body. That is to say, we are not free to will, but we are only free to imagine being free to will.

Love is a verb … and a noun

Love. Love is a verb. Love is a doing word. […]

Teardrop by Massive Attack

The opening lyrics of Teardrop by Massive Attack points to the verbal quality of ‘love’. What we call lemma or headwords in linguistics brings together meaning under one heading.

(1) He loves her.

make ‘love’ a verb. And the sentence

(2) ‘His love for her.’

turns ‘love’ into a noun.

Let me point out here that love “begins life” as a noun and, in fact, is turned into a verb in an act I call shall verbalisation. Pat Benatar famously sang

(3) Love is a Battlefield.

Clearly is talk of love as a thing in this usage.

But we can talk of love as an action as in

We love you. We love you. We love you. We’re going to do whatever it take to make you love me.

We Love You! by Regurgitator

I am not saying anything unusual. We do this so often that we almost do not notice it … almost. But let us take ‘run’. Run, like love, is both a verb and noun. But run is used more as a verb than love is (even though the strong collocation for love is as a verb ‘I love you’). Easiest is to look at example usages.

(4) He runs six miles everyday.
(5) The dog ran away again.

For (4) is a clearly a verb. In (5) run is part of the phrasal verb run away. But in

(6) The run is tomorrow.

it is a noun. And unlike love as a noun it can be specified by a determiner. When we try with

(7) The love of a mother for her child is unparalleled in the universe.

we must specify much more clearly. That is, love is a universal and a thing. So when Massive Attack sings love is a verb they want to highlight the fact that we sometimes forget that it has a verbal form, just as I am highlighting the fact run also has a nominal form, and that these forms tell us something about conceptualisation, and language.

Love and run are nouns (and they are verbs). But they are not things. My point is, conceptualisation is a tricky business that requires serious and careful study. As a child I was taught a noun is a person, place or thing. Later I was retaught to add ‘idea’ to the list definition. Much time was spent believing love and run were things. Often I must remind myself that ideas are not things even though they can both be nouns. Just because ‘run’ in

(8) The run was fun.

is given the determiner ‘the’ it does not make it a thing as ‘the’ in

(9) The car is in the driveway.

specifies a thing. That is the difference.