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2 hours ago, Economic Freedom said:

>I'm just evaluating the questions being asked

No, you were evaluating the questioner, not the question itself. Difference.

Yes. Shouldn't one evaluate a questioner by the questions they ask? Viva la difference!

With a moniker of 'Economic Freedom', do you, perchance, have a preamble to compliment, or at least contrast with Fransisco's money speech?  

i know I'm going a bit off topic to ask this in this thread, but your demeanor, thus far, has resulted in more than one tributary being observed in your wake.

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11 hours ago, Economic Freedom said:

. . . .

In any case, Boydstun's example was arbitrary, too. Why jump to "perfect verticality" from a string suspending a bob? Why not, for example, pouring water from a bucket onto the ground? The stream of water is somewhat vertical, just as a string suspending a bob is only somewhat vertical. Boydstun failed to validate the conceptual jump from "somewhat vertical" to "perfectly vertical." And I maintain that it cannot be validated at all simply relying on percepts -- which are always "in the mind of the perceiver" anyway -- as being at the putative "base" of knowledge.

You construct a tower using the pour of water. I'll rely on the plumb-bob line. My tower is more likely to stand over time due to far better verticality. (Collapse will be perceptually discernible.) Did you understand Heron's definition of a straight line as a line stretched to the utmost? (Ever done any construction?) It works not only for straight line in a plane, but on other surfaces such as a sphere. Fits well with the much later work of Gauss in the area analytically too.

Edited by Boydstun
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EF, as a student of aesthetics, my research regularly leads me to thinkers like Schelling and Whitehead, which see nature as a living organism or super-subject, contra the so-called mechanistic or lifeless view.

Since I'm using the base of Objectivism to ground my thinking about subjects such as art, beauty and personal freedom, I always find myself thinking about how those who hold the view of nature-as-living would react to arguments about the primacy of existence, the derivation of concepts from percepts, and so on.

I can't pinpoint your overall worldview yet, but so far there seem to be some themes. You do seem to believe there is a world out there, albeit you claim that the sensations which reach you are integrated by an act of thinking, which was the fashionable view in Kantianism, but not much in line with the current science. In the Critique of Pure Reason, Kant claims that the manifold of mental contents must be seen as belonging to one single subject (my consciousness), that this necessitates distinguishing between what is subjective and what is objective in experience, and that this in turn depends on representing what is objective (from out there) according to rules which belong to the objects and not to your will: causality etc.

You also mention the double-slit experiement, which allegedly shows that consciousness affects the world in some way, and in another thread on this forum you mention a disagreement with a purely 'undirected' emergence of life. This would be more in line with a consciousness-first view, such as the one in the OP.

I am asking out of curiosity if you can describe your view in some essentials, especially: if the universe emerges out of a consciousness; or if a Nature-as-intelligence gives rise to all particles, chemistry, life and consciousness as it gropes (consciously or unconsciously) for some end goal, like self-consciousness.

It could also be that, for you, nature is an objective absolute, but it simply can't be known through perception, and for instance, the double-slit experiment is merely true for how things apppear to your mind and not indicative of some fact about nature.

In your opinion, does your view solve some inadequacies or 'evil' implications of materialism, biological evolution or Aristotelianism?

If there are some books on your worldview (it could be that it's actually an original view of yours), they might be of interest to future readers of this thread. It is a monumentally important topic, since all forms of departing from the existence-as-absolute view depend on showing that some ideas are innate or created by the mind, independent of perception.

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20 hours ago, KyaryPamyu said:

If I understand you correctly: perfection does not rely on measurement, because perfection is what is being measured.

If this is the case, then no, The ability to judge closeness or deviation from a set criteria precedes any instance of doing it, it is a mental faculty which is there whether it's being currently used or not.

Concepts of consciousness (measurement, perception, intensity of thought) are derived ostensively from observing those faculties in action.

The mind is part of reality. So is my ability to measure perfection. So is my thinking of a blue elephant, even if there is no actual blue elephant out there to match that concept.

>Concepts of consciousness (measurement, perception, intensity of thought) are derived ostensively from observing those faculties in action.

A circular argument based on Rand's arbitrary definitions regarding the mind as being the "observer" of a pre-existing world of entities. It's incorrect from a scientific point of view, and it's incorrect from a historical, linguistic point of view.

All we know today of human minds in antiquity comes from surviving written texts. What the texts show is that words denoting a mental state (a "concept of consciousness") simultaneously denoted a physical state in the "outside" world. For example, in Latin, "spiritus" meant simultaneously "spirit" and "wind". "Nous" in Greek meant simultaneously "mind" and "measure." This is true of all languages, eastern and western. The concept of consciousness, "express" (e.g., to express an opinion or idea) also meant, simultaneously, "to roll out" (i.e., what you do with a rolling pin and dough); the word "right" (e.g., "she is morally right to do that...") also meant "straight"; the word "wrong" (morally wrong...) also meant "sour." There's no evidence that people in those days first looked outward, to a physical event such as trees swaying in the wind (psyche or spiritus), and then through a process of linguistic metaphor, imported the word to describe some sort of mental stirring. No evidence for such a process at all. All we know today is that many words had both an "interior" (self) and "exterior" (not-self) meaning at the same time. So instead of corrupting that fact with a materialist-based assumption that the exterior preceded the interior, and that the interior therefore comprises nothing but exterior words original imported as metaphors (which is what the materialist-based notion assumes), why not just conclude the obvious: human minds in antiquity (at least, as revealed in surviving texts) did not distinguish between the so-called "outer" world and the so-called "inner" world, most likely because there is no clear metaphysical distinction between the two (i.e., it's a continuum), the distinction having been brought about later, mainly by means of language.

I'll point out, also, that there's zero evidence of any sort that human language began as a system of pure "signs", i.e., grunts, groans, pointing, etc. for the purpose of signifying physical objects, and then somehow the idea of "metaphor" -- using one grunt or groan to "stand for" or "represent" in a non-literal way -- was invented. In fact, the farther back in time one goes in the study of language, the less literal or denotational it becomes: early languages (again, from evidence of surviving texts) are all figurative, with many words having multiple meanings (inner/experience & outer) simultaneously. So-called "literal" meanings -- the word being a pure sign pointing to one thing only -- is a late invention (Emerson, by the way, has a famous essay about this, "On Language").

The "grunt-groan-point" hypothesis about early (i.e., pre-written-history) languages was invented by anthropologists in the 19th century, whose operative assumptions were all based on a philosophy of materialism: i.e., the so-called "outer" world of physical, material objects appeared in the universe first; that "somehow" gave rise to life; life "somehow" gave rise to mind; mind "somehow" invented language; and minds "somehow" understood that they could represent a physical object (e.g., a rock) to themselves and to other minds by 1) pointing at it, and 2) inventing a sound to consistently "stand for" or "represent" what they are pointing at. So by repeating the sound to themselves or to another mind, the "image" or "idea" of the original rock would appear.

There is NO evidence for such a process. It was all "ad hoc" assumption based on the prevailing philosophy of materialism: "matter appearing first; mind appearing later". There's zero evidence for that, either.

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8 hours ago, KyaryPamyu said:

EF, as a student of aesthetics, my research regularly leads me to thinkers like Schelling and Whitehead, which see nature as a living organism or super-subject, contra the so-called mechanistic or lifeless view.

Since I'm using the base of Objectivism to ground my thinking about subjects such as art, beauty and personal freedom, I always find myself thinking about how those who hold the view of nature-as-living would react to arguments about the primacy of existence, the derivation of concepts from percepts, and so on.

I can't pinpoint your overall worldview yet, but so far there seem to be some themes. You do seem to believe there is a world out there, albeit you claim that the sensations which reach you are integrated by an act of thinking, which was the fashionable view in Kantianism, but not much in line with the current science. In the Critique of Pure Reason, Kant claims that the manifold of mental contents must be seen as belonging to one single subject (my consciousness), that this necessitates distinguishing between what is subjective and what is objective in experience, and that this in turn depends on representing what is objective (from out there) according to rules which belong to the objects and not to your will: causality etc.

You also mention the double-slit experiement, which allegedly shows that consciousness affects the world in some way, and in another thread on this forum you mention a disagreement with a purely 'undirected' emergence of life. This would be more in line with a consciousness-first view, such as the one in the OP.

I am asking out of curiosity if you can describe your view in some essentials, especially: if the universe emerges out of a consciousness; or if a Nature-as-intelligence gives rise to all particles, chemistry, life and consciousness as it gropes (consciously or unconsciously) for some end goal, like self-consciousness.

It could also be that, for you, nature is an objective absolute, but it simply can't be known through perception, and for instance, the double-slit experiment is merely true for how things apppear to your mind and not indicative of some fact about nature.

In your opinion, does your view solve some inadequacies or 'evil' implications of materialism, biological evolution or Aristotelianism?

If there are some books on your worldview (it could be that it's actually an original view of yours), they might be of interest to future readers of this thread. It is a monumentally important topic, since all forms of departing from the existence-as-absolute view depend on showing that some ideas are innate or created by the mind, independent of perception.

>You also mention the double-slit experiement, which allegedly shows that consciousness affects the world in some way, 

No, I did not say that consciousness affects the world in some way. I said that observation affects the world in some way. Big difference.

To "observe" something means you have to interact with it in some way, perhaps by simply shining light on it. That won't affect very much something the size of a boulder (should you be interested in observing a boulder) but it affects something the size of an electron.

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>I always find myself thinking about how those who hold the view of nature-as-living would react to arguments about the primacy of existence

By "existence" you mean "matter" only? Or are you including the non-material, such as "mind."?

Does "existence" for you = "matter" and "mind", simultaneously, neither one preceding the other metaphysically or temporally?

Or does "existence" for you mean, "matter" appeared first, and through complex chemical/physical interactions, somehow a non-material thing appeared called "mind"?

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19 minutes ago, Economic Freedom said:

To "observe" something means you have to interact with it in some way,

So when Miss Rand wrote in Atlas Shrugged:

Quote

When the train stopped, when she got off and heard the concrete of the platform under her heels, she felt light, lifted, impelled to action. She started off, walking fast, as if the speed of her steps could give form to the things she felt. It was a few moments before she realized that she was whistling a piece of music—and that it was the theme of Halley's Fifth Concerto.
She felt someone looking at her and turned. The young brakeman stood watching her tensely.

The senses of the young brakeman interacted with Dagny in such a way as she could feel herself being looked at?

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Economic Freedom said:

By "existence" you mean "matter" only? Or are you including the non-material, such as "mind."?

The same way I use 'mankind' to denote every human being, I use 'existence' to denote everything that exists, including the material, immaterial and perhaps other classes of which we have no knowledge of.

1 hour ago, Economic Freedom said:

Does "existence" for you = "matter" and "mind", simultaneously, neither one preceding the other metaphysically or temporally?

Poet and philosopher Friedrich Hölderlin authored a brief philosophic fragment which makes the following case: an object of perception cannot exist outside of perception, and the perception of an object cannot exist without the object that is perceived. He then concludes that the world cannot arise out of the mind, and the mind cannot arise out of the world - neither subject or object can exist in isolation, they are two perspectives on an undivisible whole.

And he was right, but not in the sense he believed. Notice that whether you start with the mind, world, or an undivisible subject-object (like Hölderlin), you start with something. That is the common ground which materialists, immaterialists (and anybody inbetween) share.

Hölderlin claims that he looks at the subject and object, but he only really looks at one thing: perception. Object perceived, and the act of perceiving itI'm interested in something different: not what exists, but that it exists.

If you start with that which exists, the what becomes irrelevant. Whatever is, is not something else; it is not less or more than what it is.

Whether mind exists, or matter exists, or both, or neither, existence is the starting point to which no mind can lay claim of authorship.

If what is perceived does not exist prior to being perceived, it is not perceived, but conceived. You are contemplating a hallucination whilst still existing as a definite being (material or immaterial) through no fault of your own. To make matters worse, you are 'constructing' perceptions instead of actually perceiving what's out there, the you that actually exists (perhaps alongside other things).

Edited by KyaryPamyu
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I use 'existence' to denote everything that exists, including the material, immaterial ...

Good. So there's no "primacy of mind" vs. "primacy of matter." Mind and matter together comprise the totality we call "the universe". Therefore:

1) We cannot validly claim that if there were no minds at all, matter would still exist. It's a bit like saying "If there were no North Pole, the South Pole would still exist. No. "North Pole" and "South Pole" depend on each, as concepts and as geographical locations, for their mutual existence.

2) A more accurate way of characterizing the relationship between mind and matter is not that the former simply "observes" the latter, but rather that they "participate in each other"; as some have said, there's an "interpenetration" of mind in matter, and of matter in mind.

I might possibly grant the independent existence of so-called "fundamental particles" and "space"; but not the representation of those particles+space as processed by perception and higher conceptual thinking: i.e., trees, clouds, rocks, butterflies, etc. The entire "Qualitative World" of entities and things that have sensible qualities -- softness, hardness, length, scent, etc. -- is a participation between those fundamental particles (which Peikoff once called "Puffs of Meta-Energy") and mind.

Philosophers and psychologists who have studied creativity have suggested that the act of creation is an act of breaking down the artificial barrier (mainly accomplished through language) between so-called "object" and "subject." That might help to explain why many creations seem to have resulted when the person's mind was relaxed but not to the point of sleep; just focused on some small task: shaving, driving, etc. Suddenly an unexpected answer to some problem they were trying to solve just "popped into their head." It's similar to the phenomenon of "lucid dreaming," in which the dreamer is just awake enough to grasp that he's dreaming, but in which he's asleep enough so that the dream imagery -- often an actual narrative story -- goes on by itself without his conscious intervention.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Economic Freedom said:

there's an "interpenetration" of mind in matter, and of matter in mind.

Yes. Both exist, both are parts comprising the same world, and the absence of either has some consequences for the other, whatever those might be.

2 hours ago, Economic Freedom said:

is a participation between those fundamental particles (which Peikoff once called "Puffs of Meta-Energy") and mind.

In this example, the interaction is between the puffs that make up the external entities, plus the puffs that make up the perceptual apparatus (including the nervous system). The result is the experience of the world of three-dimensional objects possessing color, shape etc. We wouldn't perceive the primaries (puffs) but the perception would still be real since it's the product of an interaction that actually goes on in the world.

But in this example, consciousness is an effect of the puffs, and not itself a special kind of puff, hence its 'immateriality'. Being immaterial does not disqualify it from existing; it still is, but qua effect and not as substance.

The same way the body keeps itself alive by its own action, the brain perceives existence by its own action.

Edited by KyaryPamyu
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1 hour ago, KyaryPamyu said:

Yes. Both exist, both are parts comprising the same world, and the absence of either has some consequences for the other, whatever those might be.

In this example, the interaction is between the puffs that make up the external entities, plus the puffs that make up the perceptual apparatus (including the nervous system). The result is the experience of the world of three-dimensional objects possessing color, shape etc. We wouldn't perceive the primaries (puffs) but the perception would still be real since it's the product of an interaction that actually goes on in the world.

But in this example, consciousness is an effect of the puffs, and not itself a special kind of puff, hence its 'immateriality'. Being immaterial does not disqualify it from existing; it still is, but qua effect and not as substance.

The same way the body keeps itself alive by its own action, the brain perceives existence by its own action.

>n this example, the interaction is between the puffs that make up the external entities, plus the puffs that make up the perceptual apparatus (including the nervous system)...

Plus the integrative power of the non-material mind, which "converts" or "translates" the combined "puffs" into an integrated whole called a "percept."

You forgot to mention the non-material (non-puff-energy) contribution of mind.

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12 hours ago, KyaryPamyu said:

You do seem to believe there is a world out there, albeit you claim that the sensations which reach you are integrated by an act of thinking, which was the fashionable view in Kantianism

He takes a very Hume-ean approach here, which sometimes could look like Kantianism at first blush. So there are sensations, sure, but the very way in which we perceive the world is subjective or at least nonobjective. I don't know all the details here, but Kant answered or fixed what he saw as problems with Hume's view, not a completely new answer starting from scratch. Hume probably would say something about most of our thinking being nonobjective, with mere sensations underneath. And so of course the only completely objectively real things are particles and space, as EF said. Modernize that a bit, and we get some reductionism in there, where the mind is ultimately just particles, nothing else, the rest is fantasy or something of no particular causal nature.

Note the paragraph with all his 'somehow's, which more or less makes fun of seeking causal explanations of extremely complex systems or phenomena. I doubt he is going full Hume here, but as far as things like evolution and the mind, he seems to be suggesting that it is foolish to even claim that we have found a causal and objective explanation of any of these things - unless that explanation involves fundamental particles and things like that. All we have are actually just ad hoc explanations, at best narratives that we tell ourselves.

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Another possibility: it could be made into this or that coherent position, if fleshed out and clarified. But that's probably not it, it's probably just bullshit (in the Frankfurtian sense.)

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On 5/7/2022 at 8:36 PM, Economic Freedom said:

No. Percepts are results of thoughts. The only thing preceding thought is sensation, which is strictly physico-chemical. And yes, that has been established by scientific investigation. 

I already answered this with what you called a "nice save".  Did you limit your reply to calling it a "nice save" because you don't really know how to answer it?

 

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20 hours ago, Economic Freedom said:

I might possibly grant the independent existence of so-called "fundamental particles" and "space"; but not the representation of those particles+space as processed by perception and higher conceptual thinking: i.e., trees, clouds, rocks, butterflies, etc.

If there were no minds, trees would still photosynthesize, grow, and reproduce, clouds would still block light and in some cases produce raindrops, it would still take more force to break up a rock than as clod of dirt, butterflies would still move by flying and would still reproduce, etc.  They are not just creations of consciousness.

 

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20 hours ago, Economic Freedom said:

It's a bit like saying "If there were no North Pole, the South Pole would still exist. No. "North Pole" and "South Pole" depend on each, as concepts and as geographical locations, for their mutual existence.

If the planet, instead of being a spinning approximate sphere of limited extent, were a spinning approximate paraboloid of unlimited extent, there would be only one pole.  There are two poles, in a certain sense interdependent, because of the specific nature of the planet.

 

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20 hours ago, Economic Freedom said:

It's similar to the phenomenon of "lucid dreaming," in which the dreamer is just awake enough to grasp that he's dreaming, but in which he's asleep enough so that the dream imagery -- often an actual narrative story -- goes on by itself without his conscious intervention.

What I read about lucid dreaming indicated that in some cases the lucid dreamer can deliberately influence the dream.

 

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6 hours ago, Doug Morris said:

I already answered this with what you called a "nice save".  Did you limit your reply to calling it a "nice save" because you don't really know how to answer it?

 

>Did you limit your reply to calling it a "nice save" because you don't really know how to answer it?

No, I limited it to "nice save" because your intellectual dishonesty in conveniently stretching definitions to cover your weak arguments doesn't merit more of my time or effort.

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EF: "Give me one example of a thought on this board that contradicts Objectivism or any of the 'inerrant' scriptural texts of Miss Rand. I haven't found any so far."*

On 5/7/2022 at 2:06 PM, Boydstun said:

Keep looking: 123

On 5/7/2022 at 6:20 PM, Boydstun said:

4

 

5

On 9/1/2020 at 12:17 PM, Boydstun said:

“As a child, I saw a glimpse of the pre-World War I world, the last afterglow of the most radiant cultural atmosphere in human history (achieved not by Russian, but by Western culture). So powerful a fire does not die at once: even under the Soviet regime, in my college years, such works as Hugo’s Ruy Blas and Schiller’s Don Carlos were included in theatrical repertories, not as historical revivals, but as part of the contemporary esthetic scene. . . .

“[That period’s] art projected an overwhelming sense of intellectual freedom, of depth, i.e., concern with fundamental problems, of demanding standards, of inexhaustible originality, of unlimited possibilities and, above all, a profound respect for man. The existential atmosphere (which was then being destroyed by Europe’s philosophical trends and political systems) still held a benevolence that would be incredible to men of today, i.e., a smiling, confident good will of man to man, and of man to life.” (Romantic Manifesto 1971)

The two theatrical works Rand mentioned were, as evidenced below, not works trotting along without reins of the new communist regime.

Hugo

Pavel Vasilevich Samoylov was a distinguished actor who played the role of Ruy Blas, and in 1923 he was Honored Artist of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic.

Schiller

-- From Robert Stevens (2004)

“In his study, Russian and Soviet Theatre—Tradition and the Avant-Garde, Konstantin Rudnitsky recounts that Schiller’s plays held a special place in the theatre of the new revolutionary society of the Soviet Union.

“‘In the Civil War years, the plays of Friedrich Schiller enjoyed huge popularity. Their freedom-loving spirit, their characteristic opposition of heroism and villainy, their wealth of dramatically effective situations—all this guaranteed success with an unsophisticated audience. Intrigue and Love and The Robbers were enthusiastically acted by amateurs in numerous clubs. The Bolshoi Dramatic Theatre in Leningrad, led by Alaxander Blok, Maria Andreevna and Maxim Gorky, opened on February 5, 1919 with a production of Schiller’s Don Carlos’ (Russian and Soviet Theatre—Tradition and the Avant-Garde, page 75,).

“Rudnitsky continues, ‘The attraction of the broad masses to the classical repertoire was explained not only by the fact that the beauty and emotional richness of plays by Griboedov, Gogol and Ostrovsky, Shakespeare and Molier, Schiller and Beaumarchais and other great writers were revealed for the first time to audiences who had previously not had the opportunity of going to the theatre ... they served as it were to unite the distant past with the present day and instilled in the audience feelings and ideas close to and consonant with the Revolutionary struggle’ (ibid. 48).

“The Bolshevik revolutionary and literary figure Anatoli Lunacharsky noted of the play that ‘in this, according to Schiller’s idea, first apostle of the idea of freedom, we the people of the revolutionary avant-garde, can in a sense recognise our predecessor ... not for one moment does the audience doubt in the final triumph of Posa’s idea, a triumph which Posa himself, of course, could never have foreseen’ (ibid. page 49)”.

6 - next post

 

Edited by Boydstun
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On 7/31/2021 at 8:59 AM, Boydstun said:

Physical Existence, contra Kant, contra Rand

I had stated above in this thread, in the post Primacies of Existence:

Primacy of existence runs also against Kant when he writes that “apperception, and with it thought, precedes all possible determinate arrangement of presentations” (KrV A289 B345). Against Kant also, and in step with Aristotle, Rand writes: “‘Things as they are’ are things as perceived by your mind” (AS 1036). . . .

Rand spoke in that passage against Kant of “things as they are” and not of “things in themselves.” She was right to avoid the latter phrase because of the well-known shading of it. That latter phrase, down from Kant, intimates a systematic inaccessibility of mind-independent Existence with its Identities by our cognitive faculties. In the same vein, rightly she would reject talk of the transcendental object or talk of noumena and their comprehensive contrast to phenomena, . . .

Talk of “things in themselves” meaning things free of any situation is talk of nothing. “Things in themselves,” meaning merely all that they are, is a sound sense of the phrase and not Kant’s sense when he is contrasting things in themselves with those same things as they are in their external relations such as in their relation to human consciousness. Things in all that they are are what we know part of and know that our known is only part of the all there to be known. Further, existence of a thing is nothing more than—indeed, it is identically the same as—existence of all that a thing is.

Join with this extract from my paper "Existence, We" (83-84 )

If, on the other hand, the space coeternal with the conjectured God is conceived as an immaterial thing, as Platonist Henry More had conceived it, then that conception of space is wrong; physical space having some synthetic geometry or other is required for any apprehension of space(s) and for any intelligence. The conception of an immaterial cosmic intelligence alone with immaterial space is ruled out by need of mind-independent existence for any consciousness; ruled out, I say, provided Existence is most fundamentally physical existence, metaphysically and epistemologically at bottom physical existence.

Then space and time exist with the very necessity that Existence exists and vice versa. Contra Kant, space and time are existents not fundamentally dependent upon our experience or our intelligent existence (nor dependent upon the existence of any other intelligence). Space and time are belongings of Existence. The necessities of space and time are necessities-that, which we ourselves occasion and recognize. Physical necessities of space and time are commonplace; we are cognizant of them, for example, in design, manufacture, and performance of an internal combustion engine. Cognizance of formalities of the surface plane of still coffee in the mug is the stuff of Euclidean plane geometry, as articulated by Euclid or by Hilbert. Formalities of the physical are physical realities, even though formalities as formalities cannot be comprehended without recognition of their independence from indices of particular time and space, essential in physical existence. Formalities of the physical are the antidote to Kant’s transcendental doctrines of space and time.

. . .

Existence is most fundamentally physical existence, and although she declined that conception on occasion, Rand tacitly relied on it in her fundamental metaphysics and conception of consciousness (Rand in Binswanger and Peikoff 1990, 245–47, contra 157 . . . ). To Leibniz, Rand should join me in stressing his own dicta that truth is mentation; specifically, it is a recognition of reality. Eternal facts are logically prior to recognition of those realities. However, that is insufficient assertion of the primacy of existence over consciousness. Most fundamentally, metaphysically and epistemically, Herr Leibniz and Miss Rand, reality is physical existence (contra, for example, Leibniz 1702, 188–89). Rand wrongly held that one’s concept of the physical world is more advanced than one’s concept of existence in general.* To the contrary, I maintain that notion or concept of physical existence does not wait on either genetic or logical development out of a generalized existence that subsumes physical existence and its complement mental existence. We begin with physical existence. World, self, and other are the one and only sort of existence then grasped: physical existence. . . . Physical existence is our fundamental ontology, beginning to end.

And with this extract from EW (85 )

In one’s conscious and subconscious existence is resonance with existence in general, resonance with of-existence in general, and special of the latter, resonance with other person.

Existence exists implies existents existing among other existents. Further, the act of grasping the statement Existence exists implies performance of and grasp of acts, not only acts of consciousness, but acts of living body. There are no acts of and grasps of consciousness without acts of and intentional grasps with one’s living body . . . . There is no grasp of the externality of existence to subject without grasps of externality to one’s body. If one observes one’s consciousness, one is acquainted with one’s living body and one’s actions with it.

* Rand in Binswanger and Peikoff 1990, 245–47. Leonard Peikoff (1991) repeats this error: “The concept [existence] does not specify that a physical world exists” (5). Yes, it does. Rand should have treated growth of the concept of physical world in individual development as she treated growth of the concept man (1966–67, 43–45). A parallel error is found in Aquinas in his view that the first object of the intellect, the proper object of the intellect, is being in general and not primarily physical being, even though knowing physical being is chronologically first (Summa Theologica I.5.2, 84.7, in Aquinas [ca. 1265–73] 1911, 1997, 44, 808–9).

 

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On 5/8/2022 at 11:08 AM, Economic Freedom said:

>You also mention the double-slit experiement, which allegedly shows that consciousness affects the world in some way, 

No, I did not say that consciousness affects the world in some way. I said that observation affects the world in some way. Big difference.

To "observe" something means you have to interact with it in some way, perhaps by simply shining light on it. That won't affect very much something the size of a boulder (should you be interested in observing a boulder) but it affects something the size of an electron.

Observation entails detection, but the latter does not require observation or any consciousness. Iterference-distributions of particles, such as photons, can be recorded on a photographic plate and the result is there whether anyone looks at the plate or not. Else we are back to arguments with Berkeley in which navigating to the lab and doing experiments are trumped by armchair musings of philosophers.

PS - Quantization of the quantity ACTION and the Heisenberg indeterminacy relation for conjugate dynamical quantities in the quantum regime have nothing to do with observations physically jiggling the observed physical elements.

Edited by Boydstun
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On 5/7/2022 at 7:06 PM, Doug Morris said:

You are defining "senses" narrowly to include only the workings of the sense organs, and maybe not even all of that.  Epistemologically, the senses include the entire process, some of which probably takes place in the brain, by which perceptions are presented to consciousness.

In this post I made clear that I was talking about consciousness.  I stand by the entire post as true and valid.

Some of the other posts used the word "mind".  Perhaps the reason we have had trouble with this is that people are using the word "mind" in different senses.  Some have used it to mean consciousness, but EF may have been using it in a sense that includes non-conscious processes.

 

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