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SpookyKitty

Everything is made of Nothing

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37 minutes ago, SpookyKitty said:

They are quite tricky entities, because unlike objects, they cannot be interacted with directly. They are not sensible. Every essence is in some object, and an essence cannot be separated from the object it is in.

So are you arguing that essence is a type of "substance"?  This relates to my statement above about the 14th Century.  Most people gave up the notion of Divine Substance (or Aristotelian Metaphysical "substance") around the 1600's.  Is your position religious in nature?

Edited by New Buddha

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2 hours ago, dream_weaver said:

In this particular instance, the issue is stemming from the choice of nomenclature, the choice of the vernacular vehicle to transmit the essence of the meaning, epistemologically, one to another.

 

1 hour ago, SpookyKitty said:

An essence is a metaphysical entity which is not an object.

They are quite tricky entities, because unlike objects, they cannot be interacted with directly. They are not sensible. Every essence is in some object, and an essence cannot be separated from the object it is in.

To put it simply, no, an essence cannot be "identified" in the same sense that an object can be "identified". You can never point to a thing and say "That's an essence." The existence of essences and the relation of an object's essences to their object can only be inferred.

This is where I need to exit this stationary playground roundabout (merry-go-round) you continue to keep pushing.

dsc08132.jpg

Paa.la-First-time-on-an-old-fashioned-me

Are there the beginnings of a rut circling around those rotating contraptions? Can you identify the metaphysical essence from which it (the rut) is comprised?

I'll leave you with a short tie-in to one of the three A's magnum opus'.

From page 563 of A.S.:

A circle, she thought, is the movement proper to physical nature, they say that there's nothing but circular motion in the inanimate universe around us, but the straight line is the badge of man, the straight line of a geometrical abstraction that makes roads, rails and bridges, the straight line that cuts the curving aimlessness of nature by a purposeful motion from a start to an end. (. . .) It is not proper for man's life to be a circle, she thought, or a string of circles dropping off like zeros behind him—man's life must be a straight line of motion from goal to farther goal, each leading to the next and to a single growing sum, like a journey down the track of a railroad, from station to station to—

 

Edited by dream_weaver

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1 hour ago, New Buddha said:

So are you arguing that essence is a type of "substance"?  This relates to my statement above about the 14th Century.  Most people gave up the notion of Divine Substance (or Aristotelian Metaphysical "substance") around the 1600's.  Is your position religious in nature?

No. A substance is often defined as either an object whose essence consists only of that substance, or as an object which has no essence, but nonetheless has properties and is somehow distinct from other substances.

An essence is not an object.

What arguments lead to the abondonment of essentialism?

EDIT: And no, my position is in no way religious in nature.

Edited by SpookyKitty

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28 minutes ago, SpookyKitty said:

No. A substance is often defined as either an object whose essence consists only of that substance, or as an object which has no essence, but nonetheless has properties and is somehow distinct from other substances.

An essence is not an object.

What arguments lead to the abondonment of essentialism?

EDIT: And no, my position is in no way religious in nature.

Do you believe that your position on essence is the commonly held one by philosophers other than Objectivist?  If so, which ones?

Edit:  If you are proposing something new, that's fine.  But I'm having trouble following your argument.  If you are not proposing something new, is it possible that you misunderstand the issue at hand.  That's why I wanted a clarification on religious notions of essence (such as Thomism).

Edited by New Buddha

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28 minutes ago, New Buddha said:

Do you believe that your position on essence is the commonly held one by philosophers other than Objectivist?  If so, which ones?

Edit:  If you are proposing something new, that's fine.  But I'm having trouble following your argument.  If you are not proposing something new, is it possible that you misunderstand the issue at hand.  That's why I wanted a clarification on religious notions of essence (such as Thomism).

I'm not sure that there even is a commonly held position on essence amongst non-Objectivist philosophers.

I think I am proposing something new.

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Also, in what sense is Objectivism considered Aristotelian?

That depends on who's view of Aristotle you agree with. Even Ms. Rand accepted certain things as representative of error in Aristotle that may have been mistaken.

Greg Salmieri has a great paper on Aristotle and an unconventional   take on his view of universals:

https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&pid=sites&srcid=ZGVmYXVsdGRvbWFpbnxncmVnb3J5c2FsbWllcml8Z3g6MTNhZTRjZWVlZDllZWYxNQ

This would make Aristotle much more Oist than Ms. Rand even thought...

Also, this entry from the SEP is a good read in relation to this thread:

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/mereology-medieval/#4

as well as:

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/aristotle-metaphysics/

Edited by Plasmatic

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On 4/30/2016 at 11:01 PM, SpookyKitty said:

An essence is a metaphysical entity which is not an object.

I think this might be part of the issue about the discussion with essences, as well as why you would reject substance theory but still accept that there is a "non-object" underlying all that exists. Personally, I think it is fine to talk about a null object - which is still an object, lacking constituents, but still an object much like an empty bag is still an object.

The question here is what you mean by "metaphysical entity" but not an object. In my mind, anything that is an entity has to be an object. Or do you mean entity as in "that which exists" in the way concepts exist, but they aren't objects in the world? If you mean the second, then maybe you mean the color red is a metaphysical entity, for example. Objectivism might say red is a mind independent aspect of an apple, and would say red could be an essence of apple. More specifically, it could be that red is the distinguishing characteristic of what makes something uniquely an apple as opposed to a pear. But red wouldn't be an object or an entity, it would not be seen as a "metaphysical entity". There is no red entity within an apple, even though the nature of an apple is to be red.

Rather than searching for the underlying metaphysical entity underlying all things, I propose that there is a metaphysical object overlaying all things. That metaphysical object is reality, a totality of all that exists. That's how there is regularity that gives something a nature in the first place. If everything is a subdivision of reality, then you will never get nothing, even if you might reach a null object where no more subdivisions are possible.

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1 hour ago, Eiuol said:

 

Rather than searching for the underlying metaphysical entity underlying all things, I propose that there is a metaphysical object overlaying all things. That metaphysical object is reality, a totality of all that exists. 

"Reality", like "existence", is a concept that economizes the referencing of all the multiplicity of bounded particulars that exist. There is no such metaphysical singularity. 

It should be made clear that what you say above is not the Objectivist view of metaphysics.

That's how there is regularity that gives something a nature in the first place. If everything is a subdivision of reality, then you will never get nothing, even if you might reach a null object where no more subdivisions are possible.

And this follows from what? 

Edited by Plasmatic

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2 hours ago, Plasmatic said:

"Reality", like "existence", is a concept that economizes the referencing of all the multiplicity of bounded particulars that exist. There is no such metaphysical singularity. 

Well, yeah, the concept is not a metaphysical singularity. I'm not even sure why you use the term metaphysical singularity - what do you mean by singularity? I am thinking about how the referents are still everything that exists, they connect into a whole that we refer to as reality. I don't think this is inconsistent with Objectivism. I'm not committed to the idea, though. There are indeed a multiplicity of bounded particulars, but all the multiple things that exist are still part of reality. It would be similar to saying an atom is made of many parts, distinct parts, but we still refer to a whole atom because the identity of an atom is the whole atom and any emergent properties.

When I say subdivision, I don't mean the act of subdividing, which is epistemological, I mean that anything that exists is a piece of reality, thus is a subdivision of reality.

 

Edited by Eiuol

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SK

Care to tell us what your journey into the universe of your own making has revealed to you?  Any profound transcendental epiphanies from beyond or within?

Now, having come in contact with what we mere mortals dare not speak of, can you pronounce to us once and for all that indeed all things are made of some nothing?

Edited by StrictlyLogical

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1 hour ago, StrictlyLogical said:

SK

Care to tell us what your journey into the universe of your own making has revealed to you?  Any profound transcendental epiphanies from beyond or within?

Now, having come in contact with what we mere mortals dare not speak of, can you pronounce to us once and for all that indeed all things are made of some nothing?

Wait your turn, please. I'm currently too busy responding to people who actually have something to say.

 

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8 hours ago, SpookyKitty said:

Wait your turn, please. I'm currently too busy responding to people who actually have something to say.

 

I'm awaiting your discovery, what you have to say, eagerly.

I'll try not to interrupt your progress but it is a very important subject and I can hardly wait to find out what your final conclusion is. 

 

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On ‎5‎/‎2‎/‎2016 at 7:05 PM, Eiuol said:

Well, yeah, the concept is not a metaphysical singularity. I'm not even sure why you use the term metaphysical singularity - what do you mean by singularity? I am thinking about how the referents are still everything that exists, they connect into a whole that we refer to as reality. I don't think this is inconsistent with Objectivism.

 

Concepts are integrations of particulars into a unity by the device of concrete substitution of a perceptual symbol. Even here it is possible to reduce a concept into its component parts (unless one drops the logical context of the integrating steps). Conceptual unity is not metaphysical singularity. We abstract "one" from "many". Multiplicity is axiomatic, implicit in every state of awareness. Multiplicity is metaphysically given. 

"I mean by "metaphysical singularity" the idea that there is only really one "whole" existent called "reality". Reality is an epistemological unity that refers to individual, particular things. The "wholeness" is epistemic. The ontology of systems is that they are comprised of individual entities interacting dynamically. The universe is not an organism just as society is not an entity.

On ‎5‎/‎2‎/‎2016 at 7:05 PM, Eiuol said:

There are indeed a multiplicity of bounded particulars, but all the multiple things that exist are still part of reality. It would be similar to saying an atom is made of many parts, distinct parts, but we still refer to a whole atom because the identity of an atom is the whole atom and any emergent properties.

When I say subdivision, I don't mean the act of subdividing, which is epistemological, I mean that anything that exists is a piece of reality, thus is a subdivision of reality.

Reality is a concept, what exists are things. You are making a category error by treating the unity achieved via integration as metaphysical.

 

Edited by Plasmatic
removed "We abstract "one" from "many" because it requires too much explanation.

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6 minutes ago, Plasmatic said:

 

Concepts are integrations of particulars into a unity by the device of concrete substitution of a perceptual symbol. Even here it is possible to reduce a concept into its component parts (unless one drops the logical context of the integrating steps). Conceptual unity is not metaphysical singularity. We abstract "one" from "many". Multiplicity is axiomatic, implicit in every state of awareness. Multiplicity is metaphysically given. 

"I mean by "metaphysical singularity" the idea that there is only really one "whole" existent called "reality". Reality is an epistemological unity that refers to individual, particular things. The "wholeness" is epistemic. The ontology of systems is that they are comprised of individual entities interacting dynamically. The universe is not an organism just as society is not an entity.

Reality is a concept, what exists are things. You are making a category error by treating the unity achieved via integration as metaphysical.

I agree with Plasmatic on this regarding the universe at large or any collection including insufficiently interacting entities. 

In specific contexts some systems of existents will form "wholes" with properties emerging from their configuration, arrangement etc., an rubber ball, a brain, a molecule.  In this respect Eiuol's example of an atom is correct, but wholeness does not apply to existents which do not interact in such a cohesive manner.

My nose, the base of the empire state building, and the moons of Mars, do NOT form a metaphysical whole, in any sense.  Even conceptually they are merely a disparate, random, unrelated juxtaposition...

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On 5/4/2016 at 0:44 PM, Plasmatic said:

Concepts are integrations of particulars into a unity by the device of concrete substitution of a perceptual symbol. Even here it is possible to reduce a concept into its component parts (unless one drops the logical context of the integrating steps). Conceptual unity is not metaphysical singularity. We abstract "one" from "many". Multiplicity is axiomatic, implicit in every state of awareness. Multiplicity is metaphysically given.

I'm not sure if this really gets at what my response is supposed to answer. I don't think it answers how despite also being understood conceptually as a system of objects, an atom is itself an object as well. If you are also proposing that atoms are not objects, and are rather only abstractions, that would be very different. Your point about society not being an entity is well taken, I will have to think about that one more. My initial thought is that society cannot be literally concrete, while reality can.

I plan to start writing up something today that would probably be five or more pages long where I will be able to explain each step of my thinking. It would be more productive that way. What I'm thinking about cannot be explained in a form post.

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4 hours ago, Eiuol said:

Your point about society not being an entity is well taken, I will have to think about that one more.

Society is not an entity, but it is an existent.

Edit:  All entities are existents, but not all existents are entities.

Edited by New Buddha

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11 minutes ago, New Buddha said:

Society is not an entity, but it is an existent.

Edit:  All entities are existents, but not all existents are entities.

All existents are entity dependent. There are no floating "existents" apart from entities.

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Louie said:

Quote

My initial thought is that society cannot be literally concrete, while reality can.

The relation is the same for both concepts. Thats the very error My post is addressing.

Louie said:

Quote


I'm not sure if this really gets at what my response is supposed to answer.

It gets at what is wrong with your response, while answering.

Louie said:

Quote

I don't think it answers how despite also being understood conceptually as a system of objects, an atom is itself an object as well. If you are also proposing that atoms are not objects, and are rather only abstractions, that would be very different.

Atoms are entities and the things that are irreducible are called fundamental entities.  There is no need to misuse the concepts "null" and "nothing", or make the synonymns object and entity into seperate concepts, to identify the distinction here. What is needed is the differentiation between parts and wholes and reducible and fundamental.

Null and nothing correspond to the concept "zero". Entity and object correspond to the concept "one".

 

Louie said:

Quote

I plan to start writing up something today that would probably be five or more pages long where I will be able to explain each step of my thinking. It would be more productive that way. What I'm thinking about cannot be explained in a form post.


Thats probably a sign that you haven't conceptualized what you are talking about and are still wrestling with implicit instances....

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27 minutes ago, Plasmatic said:

All existents are entity dependent. There are no floating "existents" apart from entities.

I have no idea what point it is that you think you are making, or why you felt it necessary to troll a comment.

From the Lexicon:  Existent

The building-block of man’s knowledge is the concept of an “existent”—of something that exists, be it a thing, an attribute or an action.

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10 minutes ago, New Buddha said:

I have no idea what point it is that you think you are making, or why you felt it necessary to troll a comment.

From the Lexicon:  Existent

The building-block of man’s knowledge is the concept of an “existent”—of something that exists, be it a thing, an attribute or an action.

You would have to understand the rest of the book that quote came from to understand why my post is not "trolling". Particularly what the metaphysical basis and starting point Ms. Rand lays out for the "base" of the CONCEPT existent in that very same chapter. 

Here is a hint, all attributes and actions are of ______...

Edited by Plasmatic

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35 minutes ago, Plasmatic said:

Atoms are entities and the things that are irreducible are called fundamental entities.  There is no need to misuse the concepts "null" and "nothing", or make the synonymns object and entity into seperate concepts, to identify the distinction here. What is needed is the differentiation between parts and wholes and reducible and fundamental.

If you read back, I referred to "null" as "empty set" as an adjective, not "emptiness". And that was just to phrase SK's idea so it was easier to comprehend. I don't think there's a such thing as a null object.

Atoms can't be irreducible, you can split them apart... You're talking about something else it looks like, not what I'm talking about. An apple is irreducible in a perceptual sense, but we know it can be reduced to distinct and distinguishable parts. Besides that, you really should expand what you wrote. You said too little for me to see what your point is.

EDIT: I think I likewise said too little for you to see what my point is. So you can look forward to my future larger post with a fuller explanation.

Edited by Eiuol

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