Aphilosophy, Convention, Faith and God.

They have sat down for dinner. The philosophers are at the first table, the conventional methodogists at another. The philosophers are having bread and water that are hardly distinguishable from prime rib and Cabernet Sauvignon, and they are having a wonderful time. The methodologists have the best of the house and their conversation revolves up and down and meanders around the length of their noses, so fond they are of humbling themselves before the lack of their banquet. Now, all ears have turned to the host. We have joined the party.

“Let us begin,” a voice rises from the din, “this episode with a philosophical proposition, and see what unfolds.”

– From Table 1: “All human beings fall but under one maxim, that they are human, and thus accountable only to their being so. There is no other.”

– From Table 2: “What do you mean when you say that human beings are accountable to being human ?”

– 1: “As different than being accountable to God.”

– 2: “But, to what, or to whom is a human being accountable? And for what? The word ‘accountable’ implies a standard. It suggests that, as a human being, there is a way I should be. If I’m not accountable to God, to what or whom am I accountable? And, as a human being, for what am I accountable? Can you be more descriptive than ‘being so’?”

– 1: “What is God? Or what do you mean ‘God’?”

– 2: “Ah, but it was you who mentioned God – but we’re game, though I think it derailing to the instigating statement; but say when I refer to God, I’m referring to the God of The Bible.”

A philosopher shoots the tube and scoops up the strayed attentions.

“I understand that we are having a little sub-conversation in these messages, and much of how I would respond to your line of questioning is already addressed, is being addressed, and will be addressed in my Constructive Undoing. I also know that there are those who akin themselves to philosophy and have a certain grasp on the methods involved, of logical argument and the like, as well as the arguments upon ideas great and small as put forth by thinkers of history. But I submit, unfortunately for some, such methods do indeed lack but only so much as they are caught and founded in a limited and rather planar way of thinking upon such things. It is a basis of resistance against being presented with instead of to. So, its a little trying for me, because I feel we might communicate better if you had been listening to and partaking in the movement of my letter; Mozart can not be underestimated, nor Morrison, even Mr. Cave and many others. But, in so much as I have been accused by other people of the same thing I am accusing you of, I will try a short version here.

When we speak of truth, we can no longer, in good faith, speak about the true object, but the effects of truth, for it is the effect by which we might succumb. Besides, the project of revealing the true object and the attempt to assert or explain its re-appropriation has, as we speak, for history’s sake, already failed, except as one may have faith, and the hope of faith, as well as maybe lately in as much as, at least, post-modernists were merely describing rather than prescribing a motion that was already occurring – these are the possibility presented us as it is re-presented. Having purportedly entered into multiplicity, complexity, the fractalized ontological view, if you will, the true object is already seen for what it is, or was, but the intensity or saliency of its meaning has merely been added to or allowed for the ‘new’ matrix of objects; to be blunt, the faithful have usurped the meaning of the decentralized, diversified, or multiplicated object and invested it into another object – the centralized object called decentralization, the equivocal object called multiplicity – that remains just as true as the old one, just as real. The linguistic turn of pre-twenty-first century thinkers was just as insufficient for its purpose as any other moment, however it may be adequate, but at least necessary for presentation. It is the Idea re-presented that lay at the heart of the issue; the capitalization upon it has failed where the history of ideas is tagged as a substrative, progressive analysis. The re-presentations that exemplify the new succeed only where they are presented simultaneously, hence the issue also concerns this progress in difference. If we are to get anywhere must speak of truth as effect.

Another angle is required; this is the aphilosophical approach. This manner places the justification of reality firmly in faith, and by this situation is able to speak of effects of truth, rather than further attempting to justify a true object that perpetually eludes grasps even as it has been presented sufficiently, or rather, is perpetually announced as gained and overcomed (?) somehow in the abandonment of monolinguistic, modern-ideological proclamations, through advocating spiritual remedies and or activating activist political approaches for ‘better’, ‘neo-modernist’, more freedom supporting, agendas. If re-presentation is routinely mistaken for presentation, then we need also at some point to address this apparent marriage of philosophy and ideology, and how his might constitute a religious basis of reality, for it seems the only thing we can really speak of anymore is how an idea can be used to socially activate. So, admitting this imperative, aphilosophy presents in irony, again a retreat from this ‘neo-modernist-post-modernist’ repetition; irony, which is, in the last, the eternal repetition that admits while it avoids.

My notion of ‘faith’ can be situated by the result that occurs within the statement of the question and the answer: What do you mean by God ~ I am referring to the God of the Bible. Though it would not have mattered what I had said to be accountable to; the result would be the same: Either, I have not specified sufficiently what I mean by the question, and you have not answered my question, or, you have not answered sufficiently the question I posed; no communication has occurred. Only if we had a reasonable symmetry between our meanings of the term in question, in this case God, would the possibility of communication take place. Symmetry is present when the same outcome is supposed as a basis of the discussion; for example, that there is a real possibility involved with God that reduces to yes or no. When the situation that allows for the possibility is itself questioned, that is, when one party is playing the either-or game and the other is not, which is to say here that the answer does not lay in affirming or denying God, the discussion may be said to be asymmetrical. There being no such symmetry evidenced in our situation by the simple fact that I may question your answer without offering a replacement suitable to your reply, i.e. a rebut upon the veracity of the Bible, and if I am merely being obstinate then it is all the more asymmetrical, so then I could ask: What is ‘the God of the Bible’? Here, the question concerns not whether God exists, nor whether the Bible is a credible or suitable criterion. Based in the assumption of symmetry, in the same way God responded to Moses when he asked what he is to say to the people when they will ask ‘what is his name’, such as Exodus 3:14-15, “I am that I am” would be quickly referred to the objective qualifier and you might respond: “The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham…Issac…Jacob…”. Still, I do not know what God is but a sort of belief that some ancestors had, that you have. You could go on; you could tell me some things from the Old Testament and the New, and you could tell me about Jesus. In fact, you could tell me a bunch of stuff, and still I would be able only to think of some object of belief that is the center of an ethics. You might direct me to some ‘inner’ thing of my own feelings, but while I could identify with such ideas, I would have no need to refer them to any relation as ‘of, relating to or otherwise indicating God’. Synchronicity, déjà vu, dreams, coincidences in life, seemingly miraculous bennefactuous happenings, healings, ‘spiritual’ experiences – to none of these things referred would answer my question sufficiently, nor necessarily cause me to have to relate them to God. Your answer to my question ultimately relies upon not only your faith in some common aspect of humanity, but your faith that I will be able, through considering such avenues of thought and feeling and experience and ideas, to have the faith that you do – probably, likewise does it not take into account the possibility that I have indeed encountered or experienced such happenings with reference to ‘God’, and still am able to speak as if I may have not. Such a faith completely assumes a unilaterally correspondent meaning to dishonesty due to its basis upon a real true object, namely, God.

To elaborate; in this event described above, God, which can only be considered by and is thus limited in the term ‘God’, if I may take your answer as an indication of belief, your position upon things, has only been investigated partially, and then ended with faith. Now, I am not saying that there is no God of your belief. I am saying that when you go to communicate it to me, you are relying upon a truth granted by the faith that partials out meaning to subsequent categories as if these categories were substantial, basic, or otherwise referring to absolute true objects between us; for example, your faith tells you that I have the same quality of ‘self’, Being, or maybe consciousness, as you do, the same capacity, and or, the same basic foundation of being human. Your faith negates the possibility that my ‘faith’ may be true – and more, because I may use different terms for its expression. As I have said recently, the issue is the term, which is, the terming of such categories.

Hence, I do not say that I believe in God. The term God is or has become nearly a useless idiom, that is, unless I seek only to justify myself against or by another, and by extrapolative inclusion, the world; if i seek to justify another, then i must speak very, very carefully and completely reject myself in the face of that other by a move of infinite compassion, if such a move is indeed possible. Yet, if I am looking for truth that includes every possibility that can be presented within my interaction with the world, concordant with what I have already just pondered, the term God is an ambiguous determination to say the least. Accordingly, admitting that I may appear to contradict myself, I say that God does not exist, but may be real; and this is to say that reality is exactly of faith. In this way, the operation of faith makes true reality, by stopping investigation at certain limits or parameters of consideration. From these limits, of faith, are construed individuals who rest at their limitation for personal identity.

Likewise it is the faith that communication takes place and that individuals may be convinced of universal truths based in a negotiation of definitions, aka. conventional discussion, that establishes what is real: reality. In certain avenues of conventional reality, God does not exist: atheism; in others, God does exist: theism. And we should see that these real truths function or have the effect of being true for the believer, but such that their belief resides in convention they are thus compelled to argue their validation, sometimes at the risk of conversion of their own belief. In theism, various discussions ensue about what God’s role is, what and how truth is ordered, how people are supposed to behave and live, etcetera. Within atheism, there are discussions about the same ideas, i.e. what the role of humanity is in the universe, what or how the universe is ordered and how people should behave and live, etc. Between theism and atheism there are discussions that basically attempt to disprove the other, but they are really a power play of what one can easily say are religious ideologies. Agnosticism also involves these discussions. In fact, every aspect of reality comes into play along various lines, at certain points, in the real discussion. But none reveal any truth except that there is a negotiation of reality, and a faith that through the negotiation truth will be found. The negotiation, the ‘rules’ by which it may develop and or proceed, amounts thus to a proper method for the discernment of true things, a conventional method. The particulars are only localized at particular places, at particular times; the discussion gets nowhere beyond a justification of the particular event occurring at the time of the discussion. The progress imbued in the situation is real; the justification only working to place the individual, ironic.

Further; reality denoting a progressive stature or motion is due to the ‘infinity’ that lay beyond the limits of investigation, the terms of faith, to coin a phrase, the infinity behind which faith establishes or knows of … God, or whatever object of faith is placed in the ‘un-investigated beyond the limit’, such as, the ‘physical universe’ for science. Progress is thus the real movement of existence as purpose. Thus in every conventional arena progress is understood to be made, or not being made as a ‘progress’ that ‘retreats’ or works against the ‘preferred’ progress that lay at the base of the particular discussion, the particular object, or subject-object, as the case may be.”

Unsettled mumbling can be heard from the conventionalists’ table. “Yes, yes,” a self appointed spokesperson of the conventionalists speaks up, “but the initial statement mentioned being accountable; to what or whom then are we accountable, and for what? Sounds like you are splitting hairs; what conscientious citizen of the world would say that we must not be accountable to each other, and by extension, a larger group of humanity? And just as well, one must be accountable for or to themselves at minimum to be accountable for or to others. Is it so terrible if we hold our actions and beliefs in these regards accountable to a power higher or greater than our admittedly lacking knowledge? Is it so unreasonable? May not we designate this idea and call it ‘God’? Yours sounds like so much atheism, and pompous.” The timbre from the table of methodologists resonates the point scored.

Undaunted, the philosopher takes a long relishing draft of his water, and rejoins.

“Conventional reality gains credence against the limit of faith when that limit is denied, whether as itself, the veracity of the limit, or as a marker of faith, to denote that there is no limit, basically to establish that reality is just reality, regardless of labels, conventional or otherwise, and that there is nothing other than reality. But this, as I have said, is to assert a ‘proper’ or absolutely true reality, one that finds itself in relativity, in negotiation. This is why people can equate ‘faith’ with ‘belief’: Because we can talk about them as a negotiation of ideas. Such denial allows such a statement “I believe in God” to be of equal stature or real quality as the statement “I believe that chairs have legs”: both can be debated – and likewise the statement that equates them can be debated. Kant dealt with such discursive features with his analytical and synthetical, and his imperatives, but here I am indicating what he called a neumena, which is what I call a ‘true object’, but should just as easily be called an ‘absolutely true object’ because the effect of terms, or role of terms, in a conventional discussion is to indicate a fixed element. If I say, ‘the tree is green’, I am indicating an absolutely true object, a tree, relating it to another true object, green, and implicating a particular position that is also an absolutely true thing, a point in time, the absolutely true object called eternity, as well as the place in the world, there across the yard, by the fence, as well as indicating the truth of the situation we are about to discuss, the true thing that is the assumption or presumption of our common human understanding. These features can be framed as: the addressor, the addressee, the referent, and the sense, where the addressor and addressee is implicated as you there, the tree is green, I say; or more simply: I say,the tree is green, to you. I will not continue along this expository here, one that will concern a differend of dialectics, but for preliminary orientation, I merely point to their function and effect in communication as true objects. Nevertheless, all of these elements of discussion cannot be defined absolutely at one instance in a discussion; and this means that in order for there to be a series of true objects in relation, at least one of the elements must remain transcendent to the object of the discussion for the discussion to operate, at least one term must remove or loosen itself from its definitional baring, and that this must be ignored. This situation is ironic, through the question which element? The answer then further emphasizes the situation we are treating here of the initial statement.

Memory, in this respect, is not sufficient, for the term would have to be privy to a true object for the mind to have reference to; this is of course to say that the object to which memory holds is a conventional object. Beyond convention we are incapable of saying anything about memory itself for likewise memory becomes a true object capable of attaining or detaining absolutely true, fixed ideas; this is not the memory of psychology or neuroscience. As to our example: If we were to argue of its color, the fact of the tree being a tree is left alone; the argument proceeds upon if that tree is green. We thus discuss the green-ness in relation to the tree being green, as the tree becomes a given – never minding the green-of-the-tree also being given – an object of faith for the discussion. It is impossible to fully and simultaneously explore and be presented with each object in the discussion. As one object is explored, discussed or considered, that object relies upon the given contextual relation of terms that have been effectively left behind in a transcendental state for knowing; it has been re-presented not as an elaboration or deconstruction of itself, but as an object of different meaningful contextual relations of terms. The overcoming of this transcendency is achieved through faith.

This is to say that it is the conventional orientation upon reality that equivocates the objective quality of terms throughout the discussion to justify progress; conventional reality relies upon true objects. The discussion begins upon common true bases or a state of knowing, and proceeds along lines that build meaning as if such subsequent meanings, stages in the discussion, have now been revealed as reflecting a progressed state of knowing. Only if none of the terms ‘leave’ the conventional reality can such a progress occur. But it has been shown by other philosophers that in the assumption of a progressing communication at least one term in every phrase must occupy a placement of meaning that behaves or acts as a given that is unknown, undefined; every phrase. If one wishes to place God in that transcendent position, as if to say there is where God acts, so be it, but the effect is the same that perpetuates and is perpetuating in that very moment the motion and situation of the discussion as we have come upon it here. God may be said to be of that ‘passive’ or what I have said, given moment or element of the discussion, the object as might be to memory, an effective transcendent element, or, God might be said to be involved with the ‘active’ moment, and thereby acts as an immanent catalyst for the conversation, if you will. Similarly one could treat the passive moment as immanent, as objects are held in place, so to speak, and the transcendent as that which compels, impels or otherwise motivates the discussion as the object towards which the discussion moves. But these moments are not to be compartementalized to their situations prior or posterior to analytical or synthetical consequences. Such an analysis is enacted when the point of contention is misunderstood, and the truth of reality is thus sought in an extrapolating of meaningful repercussions of each moment that, when delineated and compared, is supposed to reveal which is actually true. Such route reifies the conventional method as a means to escape or redirect reality, but ironically, the result reveals the repetition inherent of reality: the mistake inherent to faith in the true object.

Hence I have explained faith and its relationship to God. The term functions for conventional reality through an incomplete investigation that denies the ‘remainder of the term’, which is that which eternally links with it ad infinitum stopped in faith so as to ‘produce’ the remainder, and stakes its reality upon a transcendent aspect, be it called ‘God’ or ‘physical universe’, for the purpose of allowing for and establishing a truth, which is in effect the justification of the individual, subject-object, in the world. And, within the functioning of the phrase in discussion, at least one term must become transcendent in meaning. What is immanent is thus that which brings symmetry in the discussion. Together, faith is relied upon and required for the purposes of the real individual in the world. In other words, when the quality of discursive features are denied of their inherent quality as existent, that is, when the otherwise transcending and immanent operation of terms is mitigated and equivocalized into a negotiated reality, the effect for consciousness is a true object. A true object is that which is displaced from the human being of knowledge to account for or justify the individual in reality; hence, conventional reality, conventional truth, conventional faith, etcetera. The individual thus is accountable to and for whatever true object(s) is situated to justify the individual, i.e. God, the world, the government, my son, my school, my church, community, country, nation, humanity, that song, that signal, that satellite, NASA, science, the universe, my self, my interests, my mind, his or her whims, their motives, her or his dictates, etc. The individual exists for reality through a scheme of meaning that relates true objects; thus, I may be accountable to my boss, but I am accountable for my work, or, I may be accountable to God, and accountable for spreading His message.

Yet, when discourse is included as existent, existence being the only knowable thing that may account for all reality as it is presented, then one can begin to see that such true objects are merely ‘aspects’ or ‘elements’, ‘features’ of existence appearing and or presenting to me in the only manner through which I likewise can exist: I am accountable to my knowledge as existent, and I am accountable for my self as I am constituted in reality through a situation of terms, and vice-versa. Such real true objects are, in effect, thus me in existence. Here then we can describe the conventional world as universal as ethical, for our existent situation does not prescribe an ethical Law, but the only reasonable course a person can take being one who has accepted every possible ramification of knowing through doubting, who accepts his or her existence and thus cannot any longer live for dying in fear, so to speak: That as I move to proclaim a truth of a true object I only do so against another object’s failure, and in so doing I only damage myself and maintain and establish the problems of reality I see around me in the world. But also that I cannot overestimate this knowing due to the same situation; the only possibility that results is an ironic one: that I am that I am, and can only do what I do in existence.

Thereby again duality speaks of the conventional orientation that presents reality as a problem to be overcome.”

The silence that marked the end to the talk deepened in the awareness of table two. A glass was set down, a cough, a fork clinked on a plate, a hiccup, a smile, some looks, a voice from a philosopher “well, that went well…” a relieving reply, a reconciling sit, clearing throats, a sipping, a couple chairs slide back from the table, some napkins on plates, a slurry of a glass filling, the smoke of a cigarette, of a cigar, a pipe, the scent of medicine, and the table conversation churned up the motors of company again. We were all glad you are here.

Overheard from the conventionalists’ table:

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The Problem of the Dialectic: Convention, Reality and Irony.

The dialectic, as I have said earlier, cannot be taken too seriously. For when it is, the break that has perspective finds the levity that brings the truth of the matter over the impending doom. Yet when things have become so serious, it is only because I have been presented with my self and the truth and I wish to hold to my faith, my salvation of true things. When I try to suck from the matter something so thick with seriousness, the moves I have reduce the possibility that I have come wrong, and I am squeezed with apprehension. It is then what I do with it is significant; but the state of affairs often shows that what is significant does not matter, so what is really significant is that I proceed even when no one is looking or cares. If I had a choice then I would probably care and the whole thing would become a circus; but perhaps I’m not realizing just what a master of ceremonies I am, or have become.

*

One problem in reading a true critical exegesis of reality and truth through the dialectic, has to do with the tendency of people to read argument as if there is an absolutely true object to be discerned, that this discerning must be of an ‘either/or’ nature, that indicates a decision. This decision occupies, or is situated within a singular and particular horizon. The difficulty, then, in reading essays such as this one, but any writing really, is that the meaning taken is offensive to this orientation. The situation is this: The points I bring appear to contradict what is apparently obvious, and so the individual either sees the points as exteraneous to their activity, interest or ability, like I am involved in a division of labor, i.e. computer science speaks a certain jargon that has nothing directly applicable to mowing lawns, and so I leave what involvement their talk has to do with me in their capable hands, or, they see what I am talking about as complete nonsense.

I should point out that there is no manner of speaking that can remove the reality of, say, a rock. I can of course, as I suggest in an earlier post, talk about how there is no amount of descriptive talking that will ever gain the rock. These two statements show how the problem of the previous paragraph takes place. People want to find either the first or the latter as true; if both are included, then the assumption is that the operation of the first is accounted for by the second and the second involves a division of labor. Yet, if one is taken as true, then the other must be not true, or ridiculous nonsense. In both of these meanings, the nature of facts is misunderstood. The fact of the rock is that it is there; another fact of the rock is we cannot know of it in-itself. The orientation that involves facts with the discussion founded upon a division of labor is of the conventional methodology, of conventional reality.

Reality is real. There is no more or less real reality, and what is not real is real in so much as what is not real is really a part of giving us what is real. There is nothing more or less real than reality but that which is real. Within reality (we cannot but move within reality) situations are presented. Outside of what is presented is that which has meaning, and this meaning discerns what is real and not real. Meaning is not before or after reality, but reality cannot but involve meaning. In so much as I then have been presented with something not real in this regard, i can only situate it by real terms. It is confusion or mistake that excludes by virtue of what is real, the true and false by absolute measure. This is all also to say that situations are posed, or posited, or are posed as they are presented but we do not know what is posed until they are posited. This situation is situated by Immanuel Kant as having to do with ‘the Idea’, ‘intuition’, and ‘the concept’.

Perhaps, a little Kant primer.

I will admit, right off, that mine will be a quite brief synopsis of his formulations, one that considers what is pertinent to this process here.

Kant was attempting to reconcile what he saw as superstitious ideas to what might be called more rational thinking; he was attempting to develop a more true metaphysics. His “Critique of Pure Reason” lays out the problem as well as the conventional solution in its title. His base is that there must be a type of reasoning, or ‘reason’ as in rational thinking, that is ‘pure’. There must be a type or way of thinking that discerns what is actually true of the real world, and he presents this ideal idea as “pure reason”. Keep in mind that his intent as a writer exhibited no particular consideration of irony in his theses, and this (ironically) set the stage for the possibility of convention, as I develop the term. Nevertheless, his ‘Critique’ can be read from opposing camps: (1) Kant was critiquing the very notion that there might be a ‘pure reason’. This stems from the apparency that every one has an aptitude for ‘reason’, though it may seem ‘irrational’ (for now, we set aside the more current ideological, modernist and post-modernist assertions that developed after Kant), and that everyone has a ‘pure reasoning’ behind their assertions of truth, even those ‘irrational superstitious’ ones. In this respect, he can be understood as bringing into question this assumption not only as it might be understood of unique individuals, but more so as the capacity of individuals might be captured under an umbrella of a common human capacity or ability, an ‘absolute’ Pure Reason. (2) The basic presumption of ‘rationality’ is upon a ‘Pure Reason’; his theses can likewise be a critique from this rational ‘purity’; he is thereby staking a true world upon refuting the ‘superstitious’ reasoning. See also that the term ‘reason’ can mean purpose, as in the reason we are discussing… as well as ability or capacity, as in listen to reason.

All of these approaches in reading his “Critique” includes his analysis, at least what is necessary; what is sufficient of his theses reveals his limitation, which is the noumena. The noumena is proposed as the object in-itself; his thesis sufficiency is a reconciling of the noumena and knowledge.

His proposal that is relevant here; If there is a ‘pure reason’ of any sort, then we human beings must have access to it, for if we cannot, then there is no speaking about it. Such access can be implied in experience and this, for Kant, is ‘the Idea’. Because such an Idea is only intuited, he brings in another notion, that by which we can infer the Idea in experience ‘through the senses’, which is then ‘intuition’. Then, the inferred and the inference comes together for knowledge in the ‘concept’. He proceeds to critically explicate the implications of meaning upon this base. He develops what ‘a priori’ and ‘a posteriori’ can mean involving also ‘analytical’ and ‘synthetical’ modes of knowing. The analytical has to do with ‘analyzing’ what is already given, supposedly by the ‘pure reason’, through the Idea, intuition and concept; the synthetical has to do with ‘synthesizing’ what has been derived from analysis of the given, the logical consequences of merging two ideas. Kant situates these activities through possibilities of their arrival ‘prior to’ or ‘after which’. Eventually he comes upon ‘imperatives’ that can be ‘hypothetical’ or ‘categorical’. A categorical imperative amounts to ‘what can only be done according to the pure reason’; a hypothetical imperative are those situations in which we may have an option, such as if I am thirsty I may get a drink of water. But, we come upon his limitation as his qualifiers of both these imperatives is contained within moral contingencies of activity, which is to say, of choice. The Idea is then that which is inferred by the intuition, which are then implied retrograde by the concept. The (small ‘i’) idea is that everyone has something ‘inside’ like a thought, but these thoughts do not come into actual play, in the real world, the ethical world, until they form a concept. The whole world thus concerns the object, the thing, the concept thereof, and so far as this world is an ethical world, that is, a world that exists as an interplay of activities but primarily as such activities involve behavior, such activities of human beings concern moral qualifiers of what one does or how one situates knowledge.

As an individual in the real world, it is not difficult to understand Kant’s motives nor his conclusions. It is commonplace that we have thoughts, these thoughts can be localized in ‘me’ or ‘you’, ‘I’ have thoughts that orient me in reality and the world; it makes sense that there might be a intangible Idea that has to do with an object, that I know of the object through an intuitive aspect of the mind that forms thus concepts. But part of the problem lay in the overdetermination of his (our) presentations, which is particularly conventional. His intentions were based in a type of brutal honesty that is not too often seen; he was not afraid of the potential that might contradict his preconceptions, and so his product ended up serving existence more that reality. The conventionalist – and I mean to point to the ‘philosophers’ of Laruelle, the conventional methodologists, the ‘philosophy of…’ people – would have Kant be giving us a method by which to dissect the ‘true objects’ of reality. Like learning math, they carefully and studiously learn how to discern analytical a priori statements from a posteriori synthetical statements and likewise hypothetical and categorical imperatives as if (1) the statements are really reflecting possibilities of true ‘out-there’ things, (2) that the mind is limited by its also being founded of an object (the brain or body), that knowledge is an aspect of information of an object, and (3) that the truth of reality (the true organization of the universe) can be found through applying Kant’s methods and other critically formed methods, such as the method evident with Lyotard’s ‘phrasing’ (see below). This latter application, by the way, was (maybe still is) responsible for much post-modern nonsense: the conventional misunderstanding of the point of contention activating catalyzing the intentive activities involved in discovering the truth by application of the method.

What Kant achieved though despite himself, is a cleft, a break, a ‘scandalous’ destruction of the world he was attempting to (re-)build. By undertaking a critical project based upon ‘conventional truths derived from Pure Reason’, he revealed that ethics is insufficient to establish the truth of the whole world through of the possibility of that world reduced to discourse itself. Hence, his critique that was intended to establish a particular rational base for activity in the world, not only disrupted the very Idea of rationality (pure reason), but did so through the assumption of a common rationality that ultimately lead to the disruption. This feat of existential motion that disrupts what it establishes in its establishing is called transformation, but for reality, it is called irony.

*

The issue lay exactly here: there is indeed a thing there, say, a rock, and I cannot but speak about it. Lyotard goes even further by saying that even a silence speaks, he thus reduces the issue to the phrase, that even though a person may not actually vocalize about the thing, something about the thing is still being ‘said’.

Hence, we can situate Kant’s Idea, intuition, and concept. The problem inherent with his proposal had to do with thought, as thought is seen to be prior to, a priori, the world. A whole priority of ordering is thus established of reality, as what is real also designates the true world. Thought is central to this world. Thought, by this situation, appropriates all reality (this statement in itself is problematic, but), the inner and outer, and reality, due to this orientating placement of the individual subject, is thereby set in a true real duality of the ‘thinker’ and the ‘world’, a duality that calls for ethics and morality.

Now; it is just this type of stating of the facts that results in a reader being offended. It says to him, “here is the problem of the situation”, and the ‘problem’ means something must be wrong with the object of the situation, or the conclusions I state. In this case, I am taken to be saying that there is in reality no ‘thinker’, let alone ‘thought’, and no ‘world’ separate of the thinker, as well that the call for ethics must be somehow incorrect. But I am not saying this; I am saying that such an orientation, that is offended of this case, is real, but it is not true. By this I mean that reality is determined through a conventional methodology; conventional methodology is not ‘wrong’ but is absolutely necessary. What is mistaken is the placement of the idea of thought within the conventional scheme of meaning; the placement is real because the scheme says its necessary for there to be thought in such a manner in that placement, that thought can only be so in this way to be true. This necessity is then exactly what presents its fault – because, how could it not be necessary? The mistake of conventional reality is to answer: The methodology relies upon no knowable absolute base, and because this base is unknowable, the methodology that addresses or seeks the ‘ability’ is absolutely true, though through the methodology we can determine if the results of the method are false. Significantly enough, the conventionalist would deny that there is any absolute method, and would point to particular methods to show this, i.e. the mathematicians’ method, the plumbers’ method, the teachers’ method, the dialecticians’ method, the surfer’s method, the surgeon’s method, etcetera. But the base that is conventionally ‘unknowable’ is merely a situation of the term, because convention would have little problem with ‘knowing’ that the unknowable base arises with the human being existing in the world, indeed, that it is existence that allows for our ‘seeking’ as well as our ability to ‘seek’ – the seeking appears to have paid off with the absolute truth once again, as neuroscience, psychology, astrophysics and other sciences have determined and are determining, beyond a reasonable doubt, to know things beyond our ability to know (exactly: the true object of faith, the true relation of subject and object).The aggravation here is that these statements are typically read through one lens, so to speak, the conventional lens of truth, as Plato marks it, ‘of the greater position’. So we have a conventional situation where what is real is equivocal with knowing about an unknown, where a term (unknowable) is designated as real, which is to indicate a condition of reality, through the meaning of another term that is knowable (existence); together they form a conventional truth, to wit, existence is what informs humanity to what is real because reality accounts for existence. Another redundancy is found if we continue: Reality is that which allows for our knowing of existence, as existence unfolds in process to grant us reality. Knowledge, here, is always seen as a conducting catalyst of identity between the individual and the true object. The containing operation that equivocates reality with existence poses its limitation as ‘not-limited’ through designations of ‘true/false’, ‘either/or’, and this very limitation can be exhibited in many if not all real situations. The greater truth is founded in limitation, which, when addressed by the “phrase”, reveals only a conventional context.

This is not confronting any necessary context of meaning, since that by which context has meaning is the necessity of conventional method; the operations of the method have no necessary base of relations but that of the world, its object, and the world is real. So long as context is limited to a particular meaning of an object, to a particular (absolute) way of coming upon what is true, we have the redundancy that occurs with the ‘phrase’, that then necessarily moves into a specific temporal context, i.e. the ‘true universe’, that becomes, in one instance, the explication of the present existence, often known as ideological structure or a ‘meta-linguistic’ analysis, but can also at times venture out into the ‘spiritual’ or ‘scientific’ realms of matter, particles, waves, minds, souls, parallel universes and planes of existence (metaphysics and mythology), and in another, cultural critique that seeks to explain a proper course of activity, both thoughtful and behavioral, which then is the moral world that Kant Begins and ends with. Since ‘what is moral’ likewise is made into an object in this way (non-philosophy’s philosophical object), the individual becomes caught in an eternal negotiation of intent and motives based in momentary circumstances. The problem thus becomes intensified and increasingly localized as one attempts to circumscribe the world within these psychic and behavioral (discursive) realms. In the last conventional resort, the problem persists as a ‘world’ that perpetuates the transcending and immanent operations that was or is first proposed to be overcome.

Hence, we have problematized, again, duality, but reduced to its significant bases: the world or universe, and the method by which we engage with it, that is, the object and the subject, respectively. More so, we have reduced this duality to another duality (the non-philosophical quadripartite?), where the only object that exists is one confined the the dictates of an ethical situation. What this means has to do with what I have called the ‘subject-object’, the human being centered upon a true world that is discerned through thought, and ultimately the differend that is indicated by the division of faith from knowledge. For what we mean when we speak of the subject cannot but exclude or include the object in question. We cannot reduce the whole world to a single rhetoric of reality (ah, but we do!) and this is to say, where reality is reduced to a one universe, there we have exclusion, faith, and where there is at least two realities, there we have knowledge. But knowledge then can be that the subject is the meaning of the object as well as the topic of discussion, and as these conflate, the individual human being. Therefore, in so much as we have distinguished the significance of reality, we also find that knowledge tends toward an establishment of the truth where it might lack (of these realities), and is then again usurped by convention.

The issue is not about discourse as a bracketed phrase or context; Lyotard is speaking less of method and more of existence, of the necessary categories that extrapolate from any situation; which is, in his case, as well as mine, the point of contention. The dialectic is crucial here: Where the phrase may be operative for any reality, by contrast, context is a relation of meaning that defies convention while using it as a means; the point of contention can be said to be that base from which meaning springs out of context: the term. Lyotard offers us thus a rendition of the point of contention, reducing ‘reality’ to the present within or of or to discourse itself, showing how the ‘phrase’ can either encompass or lack its supposed subject, but including these motions into a proposed ‘non-lack’ or truth of reality (singular); his point thus presents convention. He leaves the differend to itself with reference to discourse, as discourse (the phrase) implicates existence. As a motion before the court, I beg to differ, and submit that, though Lyotard has fully explored conventional reality, its existential destructive motion, he comes very close but misses irony; the issue concerns the term, and a person’s orientation upon its reality.

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For those who might be where a full understanding of the issue begins, I wish to admit two things:

(1) Nothing has been discovered anew. In the same way that any object can begin the reduction to the same issues at hand, every ‘good’ philosopher worth its salt deals with the point of contention.

This is why I do little citing or relating of ideas; every other sentence I wrote would be filled with at least another sentence if not paragraph of citing and bibliography. Of course, this blog is mainly a working space, and future books and essays will most probably report the redundancy of authors’ ideas.

(2) Where I may differ is where every thinker differs in the discussion after the point of contention; but where I go further, I do so only upon the necessary results of the premises given in time.

It is not so much then that I may discover a new synthesis based upon a considerate analysis of the ideas of other authors, rather, it is that such authors deal with the point of contention, and so in reading I find out what has already been said of it, that in repeating, reiterating or ‘re-phrasing’ it, I may thus present something ‘new’. This motion can be said, thus, to be of the differend of the dialectic, which is, in every case, ironic. The reader, if s/he is keen, will then inevitably proceed to ‘throw out the ladder’.

Thoughts of God, the Dialectic of Faith and the Conventional Bias.

As we move into the process of constructively undoing the presumptions of method that present to us the problem-filled world of reality we all know, for which we recourse to hope, it may be well that you need not venture into that heart of darkness all alone. Otherwise, at minimum, you should see that it is only on the precipice that the abyss seems endless; we need no longer cringe back into the bliss of faith. One may proceed as in a liturgy, but where the call and response of priest and congregants are removed from any hierarchical or proper structure, the hymnal and ‘Good Book’ consigned to discourse, the priest extraneous, its voice from the outside, an unnecessary element, and the congregants likewise lose their imperative compulsion to supplicate. Neither does the arrogance of righteousness cloud the firmament of heaven.

Considered much, and ventured far from civility, it is often difficult not to speak the truth; I am sure it is with you. Bias is only mitigated through faith, so we have first to deal with situating the conventional bias.

The truth exists through the dialectic, as one is thereby placed within it. So, we should situate what is meant here by the dialectic; here I tend away from Aristotle, more toward Hegel. I call into play here an idea developed by Jean-Francois Lyotard: the differend. We might see that his is an extrapolation or possibly re-presentation, a re-iteration of what Hegel presented; yet i would go so far to say that most, what is called, Continental philosophy, if not all philosophy in general, is merely a re-presentation of the point of contention.

Lyotard’s moves and layout of the necessary reprecussions of his designation are not entirely pertinent here; this is because his project exhibits problematic limitations (which I will more thoroughly address) that can be discerned by his situating the dialectic as part of a total phrasing by which he poses the differend. Breaking with his inherent boundary, a boundary that forces significance in polemical fashion ( a differend of itself), I shall call the differend that aspect of discourse that cannot be accounted for within conventional discussion, but nevertheless is involved ironically. It is not a basis of such discussion, nor a given, nor a ‘decision’ of the like of Francois Laruelle; in fact it is the converse of the philosophical decision, and not un-akin to the non-philosophical method, so to speak. A differend is that which stands ‘in the way’ of discussion; it grants the discussion from the person that reaches out to an other in order to establish a common ground. A differend is that by which a discussion about the nature of reality and existence may take place and have credence beyond the division of labor. It is also the assumption of what is common between participants where the assumption carries no weight for the discussion due to the differend allowing for faith by its absence. A differend is a means for accounting for truth; it is a way ‘I’ can account for ‘you’ as well as you, I, as well as we, the world. Thus, complicit yet skew to Lyotard’s situation, we should see that a true dialectic occurs, not between two parties in an attempt to locate or discover truth, the process based in faith (bad faith), rather, it occurs of the first party in relation with the differend of the presented discussion, such that the differend is the only ‘thing’ that remains constant through the real scheme of negotiated truths, that which brings the discussion of two parties indeed to a common ground. In this way or effect, the differend is what likewise presents, in relief, what I have termed the conventional methodology for truth, that which supplies the ‘true object’.

“Be not discouraged” is operative. In the dialectic, we come to terms with this, for an object is an obstacle that brings in its relief the irreconcilable damages that then require the reasonable doubt for which faith is demanded, the judgement of the court.

The philosopher Bertrand Russell has given us a pretty good rendition of the issue of the ‘true object’, but I shall attempt my own. I present an object, and ask, “what is it; that thing there in front of us? How shall I define it?” Maybe I begin by describing its functions, then its characteristics. Have I succeeded in granting what, say, a chair is? The person next to me says, well, you have given me qualities of that thing there, but im not sure you have conveyed what a chair is; I know what it is, but i wish to communicate what it is. So then maybe I go to a dictionary, maybe an encyclopedia. Still, the person is not convinced. We are looking at a chair, we both call it a chair, but I have not succeeded in granting to him what a chair is, beyond an incomplete description of that thing that somehow is common between us. In fact, I can continue to describe aspects of that thing and I will never get to a complete description of it. Then, besides whether or not the thing ‘the chair’ can be described enough to grant it, there are also questions that bring into question that there is really a thing that corresponds with the label ‘chair’. For example, if I say ‘a chair has four legs’, one may ask if a table qualifies as a chair, and I could say, yeah, if I sit on it then it could be a chair. But if you don’t sit on it, can it still be a chair?

This is the situation of every object. It is not a situation of subjective, personal or individual realities, but neither is there an absolute qualifier for what a ‘chair’ is beyond knowledge. This is the idea Kant expounded upon when he concluded there is no knowable object “in-itself”, that objects exist entirely within or of knowledge. His analysis goes much further in depth, situating terms and discussing the outcomes of the apparently logical ordinances that then arise, than our discussion here requires. Yet, we should see that his analysis involves a differend that implicates at least two ‘things’, an object in-itself, the chair in our example, as well as a ‘brain’ or ‘mind’ (a subject, un-problematized) that is deduced as incapable of overcoming the epistemological wall (the object problematized); this situation, then, presents a fundamental duality, a given that then allows for its own denial, a forgetting, so as to allow his presentation. Though his effort concerned establishing a ‘better’, less superstitious, metaphysics, he succeeds ironically in perpetuating the same (see my subsequent post).

The key to breaking this epistemological nightmare, though, where what surely appears to me as a true thing is actually not so true, at least, in so much as I might want to convey it to another person, is the third party. In the third party lay the responsibility of truth, there resides truth’s criterion. It is the problem of the third party that reveals one’s orientation upon the object. Orientation concerns the differend. In contrast to the dialectic as I situate it above, but projected toward what Lyotard calls “the referent”, what can be called the object, where the thing or object is taken as self-evident, as containing aspects of itself that human beings through some method can then know as true (for example, the proposed objects of conventional dialectic and discourse in general) as well, where the subject is localized by the individual for the sake of the substantiation of the individual – in other words, where there is no deferend worth mentioning – we have then the ‘true object’. Where the situation of knowledge concerning communication is mitigated or denied for the sake of having a true thing, due to the ‘displacement’ of the individual into reality, there we also have faith.

The overlay of ideas that accounts for the dialectic of faith concerns the subject as the subject no longer is distinguished through the conventional methodology as equivocal to the individual. What then emerges through this differend is a real assertion of the priority of the individual that henceforth can be called the ‘subject-object’.

Hence; what we deal with can be understood through the following possibilities:
(1) Faith: The relation between transcendent-immanent (God) and human involving a total reality of the created universe (of objects);
(2) Faith: The relation between (1) and the subject-object, which is to say, the individual of conventional reality;
(3) The effective differend of (1) and (2).

* *

With the foregoing in mind, I begin with a quote from an ongoing discussion of comments for the previous post “Issues and Existence”:

– “For example: I discover I have terminal cancer. I have heard that God loves me, and I have heard that God is all-powerful. Given these “truths,” I can’t imagine why God would not cure me of cancer, so I ask him to cure me.
Why does a request like this not get answered with a cure 100 percent of the time?

If I understand The Bible’s rendition of our story, this world is no longer the world that God created or intended. God has a plan to restore creation, but His Death-to-Life Project moves directly through death.

So, I think a short answer to the question is that God is leading humanity on a difficult — but hopeful — route through a ruined world“.
.”

Since the idea of faith is so tied up with Christian ideology and cosmology, I’m gonna give a list of ideas mentioned in the excerpt that I have difficulty with:

– god intends.
– god loves
– god restores creation
– god is leading humanity through a ruined world

These above statements present most poingnoantly the problem I’m treating. The statements indicate one statement. I’m going to skip over that it relies and implicates a ‘Divine Power’ (obviously), and go to what is most significant: It exactly ‘presents’ a proposed absolutely true object, God, and beckons the human being away from the world. It confirms the problems of humanity, that a human being cannot but have problems, that is, that the ‘problems’ are universal (again, a proposed ‘true object’) and so all human beings deal with problems the same way; which is to say, they have a common mode of psyche that defines humanity as such – saying this without a speck of irony. God thus ‘intends’ better for ‘all’ humanity because humanity is taken as another common true object amoung other objects of a true universe (God at the ‘top’ as creator of true objects) with absolute definitive qualities and having ‘difficulty’ being such because it is human nature in-intself, as human nature is defined by the ability to choose out of thier (problematic) sinful condition through ‘repentance’ and belief, this idea being totally misconstrewed in the idea of free will. The correspondence between these two true objects (the ‘equal’ and common true object called the human being and the true object ‘God’ that intends and tends for that humanity) must indeed be one of faith as I have described, and bridged in Christianity by belief in Jesus, instead of relieved through knowledge of what is said of him. I would suggest reading, or re-reading Nietzsche.

I would prefer to say “God is love”. If there is a heavenly or divine aspect that human beings can be involved with, it must be love. But this has nothing to do with “why God would not cure me”, except that one is involved with an orientation upon the world that requires of him (the individual), for the sense that one can have of it, to think of oneself as partial to oneself essentially, that is, as having elements of themselves that can be separate from other parts, such as, my self, what people like to call ‘ego’ (which is a most appropriate idea here), separate from God. Only through this type of denial can ‘a God’ love, and by extension or retraction, love the individual.

We can begin to situate how conventional reality lacks in irony by considering what
Slavoj Zizek has said about love:

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=hg7qdowoemo&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3Dhg7qdowoemo
(You can also google ‘Slavoj Zizek on love’, if the link doesn’t work.)

In listening to Zizek, one should see that how he frames his bit is the same that frames the differend with its referent, so to speak, that the universe is contained or accounted for as a totality in this framing. Thereby, if there is a ‘good’, as one might inscribe a whole universe, ‘inclusivity maxima’, where all is ‘come over’ by a total ethics, where the impetus (non-impetus?) is toward or completed, resolved, in ‘goodness’, then it is what can be understood as a ‘beginning-and-but-end’, or perhaps, a ‘creation’, and ‘good’ is the purpose or reason in a ‘returning to’ (reckoning). Love is then the proposed motion of this return. Against the ‘beginning’, as what has begun thereby separates what has set out from its beginning, and what at one time began is now separated from, Zizek says, “love is evil”.

We are situated in a world that we supposedly all know. Some people who proclaim themselves as a sort of activist, or maybe spiritual advocate for whole-ness, of a whole world, say they love the world, while others of a more pessimistic nature might say they hate the world. But these postures reflect the very position of ‘being set out’, of having the inherent ability gained by their being ‘not whole’. By the fact of the phrase, as Lyotard might put it, such sayings present the world as separated, as ‘not good’, as ‘evil’. By the sayings or assertions of position (presented presentations: representations), those seek to overcome the discrepancy involved in the having to say ‘I love…’ or ‘I hate…(the world)’. The sayings present thus a ‘longing’ that cannot be resolved – except through faith. Thus Zizek is saying “We do not love the whole world…(rather) we pick and choose what we love” through the phrases as they indicate a referent (the true object); the condition of such referent is, though, insolvent, and is thus termed expressions of the evil that resides in the world.

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If ‘creation’ means its most exstistant meaning, as opposed to its existing meaning, then there is nothing to restore; rather, every moment restores what was lost through itself. This is the dialectic, the truth found within. To bring in ‘a God’ destroys so it might redeem; when one reads many Gnostic texts, we get a glimpse of how they situated this possibility in discourse. (By the way, Laruelle attempts to reiterate this meaning without reifying the Gnostic dogma or the textual form of analysis {hermeneutics}.) In most religious-type systems, such ideas typically are found in ‘secret”; this includes Judaism. The God who creates the world or universe is seen to have revolted from an earlier ‘God’ from which the ‘creator’ came. If I recall, at least in one Gnostic text, this creator-god is seen to hold the world in a lie, and proclaims upon his creation “you will have no other Gods before me”.

From another angle, if you think about it, one must ask, why would a god who created all the heavens and the earth need to make a law, to command his creation not to have any other gods?

The ‘ruined world’ must be that human situation where such a commandment is necessary. So it is that with the presentation of the commandments we have already the ruined world. But there has been no ‘progress’. There has only been the situation of the ‘one and the others’: the one, such as Moses or Jesus, who has knowledge, and the others, who need or have faith. The ones of knowledge need no faith, they know the truth; creation is manifest; creation exists. Only for those of faith does creation need to be restored, because ruination is their own, but denied for the sake of faith. The restoration never occurs because the situation is the situation of existence, not of conventional history, not of the true past toward a fulfilled future. The movement of such history is entirely of knowledge, spoken synchronously, the subject separated from the individual projected into humanity and extended as hope in time. Thus the movement of history is the movement of humanity involved in this dialectic, the discussion founded upon the responsibility of the third party, and how this is situated for meaning; there is nothing beyond this aspect. This is to say, the movement of what is beyond is ironic; so much as history is extended in time as the discrepancy and dynamic of knowledge and faith, what is beyond is beyond distinction in this way: It is contradiction in truth and paradox in meaning. It is that which contradicts while affirming that is existence, and in this way, is offensive to conventional truth: the truth is absurd. That which contradicts and is offensive to conventional faith is that we merely are meaning-making creatures; what is absurd is that this reduction allows for meaning that arises from such meaninglessness, the truth of reality in faith: the double voice.

What we can have of the differend is the distinction between knowledge and faith, instead of the relation that is revealed of knowledge and faith that tends toward a speculative metaphysics of conventional reality. The difference is located in whether all the facts are accounted for without offense or not. What is not offensive to the conventional method, the reason why metaphysics is so alluring, is that it is involved with, indeed, making progress. Whether such progress is marked by technological, scientific, economic, emotional, mental, religious or other objective genres makes no difference because they are all motions of the conventional methodology of reality, of the individual of objects, all motions posited in faith. I submit that humanity, the conglomerate or constituency of human beings, of faith is being lead nowhere. What is ‘difficulty’ is being free and alone in a hostile world, and this then beckons a faith in hope as purpose. But likewise, what is difficult is the knowledge of what is true against the multitude of faith. The one of knowledge thus is not alone in a hostile world, but free against the hostility founded through the ones of faith. His difficulty is that he knows the truth and thereby is lead; the problem then is how to come to terms with the people of faith. The problem here then, is how the differend is situated in reality. The differend has to do with absolute presentation of the situation, not so much the phrase or its existant or substantive role in context, but rather as i have said, the issue is the term.

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