Accord re the Reality of ‘the Tao’ with a Philosopher-Friend
thanks for your thoughtful response. it is a rare pleasure for me to receive comments such as yours. it seems that many if not most of my correspondents, while some may be interested in exploring the philosophical and psychological underpinnings of language and thought, hesitate to go there, for one reason or another (i.e. are more energized to receive and consider, than to interactively engage).
with respect to what we refer to as ‘reason’, I admit that there is some ambiguity here which begs for clarity in what we mean by ‘reason’ with respect to the ‘logical’ underpinnings. since my reading is limited, I would propose this distinguishing of two types of reason by the names ‘ontic logic’ and ‘fluid logic’. in classical physics the logic used is ‘ontic logic’ or the EITHER/OR logic of the excluded medium (I have chosen to change the traditional words ‘middle’ as in ‘excluded middle’ and/or ‘third’ as in ‘excluded third’ which are ‘ontically biased’, to ‘medium’ which doesn’t prejudice the mind against the fluid interpretation where ‘boil’ in ‘flow’ can be understood in the sense that the flow is the all-including ‘medium’ as in wave-field based understanding.
these terms refer to distinguishing between the EITHER/OR logic of the excluded medium and the BOTH/AND logic of the included medium. In my terms ‘ontic logic’ and ‘fluid logic’. These distinctions become important in distinguishing between the appearance versus reality in wave phenomena such as ‘resonance’ (an example is ‘duning’ as in desert dynamics).
Poincaré approached this distinction differently by labelling the opposing factions in mathematics ‘Cantorian realists’ and ‘pragmatists’. In my terms, the Cantorians employ ontic logic while Pragmatists employ fluid logic. Still, today, we use the word ‘reason’ which makes some of us think in terms of ontic logic based concepts while others think in terms of fluid logic based concepts. Thus, if we speak of the ‘boil’ in the ‘flow’, those employing ontic logic will interpret these two words (‘boil’ and ‘flow’) as reflecting separate ontologies which opens the door to the basic Western culture adherent psyche-splitting that divides those that understand the boil as sourcing the flow and those others that understand the flow as sourcing the boil. This is a problem because there is no such thing as ‘sourcing’ in the wave-field understanding where boil and flow are distinguished only by ‘appearance’ and without ontic splitting into two separate things-in-themselves. This ‘splitting’ occurs in the psyche although we project in on what is showing up in our voyeur viewing of ‘what’s out there’ (note that our sensory experience of inclusion in the Tao is RELATIONAL and does not make this ONTIC SPLIT between the BOIL and the FLOW.
Ok, here is an excerpt from one of my recent essays on this ‘mix-up’ in our manner of expressing ‘resonance’; i.e. the mix-up in our language-based reduction of wave-field dynamics. Note that our sensory experience understands what it feels like to be included in ‘resonance’ and we don’t need to experience being in an earthquake to acknowledge that we are included in something greater than ourselves, although it is convenient to forget about such ‘complications’ when we are talking about ourselves, in ‘figure-ground’ terms as if we are ‘figures’ that are ‘independent of ground’.
Anyhow, here is a blurb by Poincaré on the topic of how our choice of ‘logic’ (an underpinning of ‘reason’) divides people on the basis of their employing different, mutually contradictory types of logic. Poincaré gives the users distinguishing labels (Cantorians and pragmatists) whereas I am labelling the types of logic (ontic and fluid). My point is that ‘ontic’ logic does not capture ‘resonance’ without reducing its ‘dimensionality’ (from 4+ dimensions to 3 dimensions). I am using the abstraction of ‘dimensions’ just to make the point (i.e. as Wittgenstein ladders). One needs more than 3 dimensions to capture ‘duning’ as a resonance phenomenon aka ‘wave dynamic’. If one begins from the abstract concept of ‘a dune’, one’s attempt to get from there to the phenomena of our sensory experience it PROCLUDED by the incompetence of the ontic language and grammar platform employed. A fluid platform (wave-field) is needed in order to render ‘resonance’ in an ontology-independent manner.
This split in which type of logic we bring to bear in our ‘reasoning’ is what divides Western culture adherents into ‘conservative’ and ‘liberal’ understandings of realty; i.e. one bad apple spoils the barrel, … versus, … it takes a whole community to raise a [good/bad] child. Accepting the reality of ‘resonance’ (something we experience by virtue of our inclusion in the wave-field aka Tao) puts us into a ‘higher dimensional’ reality than the 3 dimensional ontic pseudo-reality. So, here-below (4 paragraphs below) is how Poincaré describes the psychological ‘splitting’ that associates with what I would call ‘the embrace of 3-dimensional ontic reality’ which, at the same time, occludes and casts aside, access to the 4+ dimensional fluid-reality (wave-dynamic reality) of our actual sensory experience of inclusion in the Tao (wave-field).
First, a word on ‘resonance’;
‘Resonance’ can be ambiguously interpreted as (1) an unembodied relational phenomenon that induces the development of multiple non-independent forms (as in topology rather than geometry). This is a topological form of relations that we understand from pre-lingual infancy which tends to be superseded, during Western culture acculturation, by intellectual conceptualizing in terms of (2), the solid closed form ‘things-in-themselves bodies of geometry. The logic of the included medium (wherein the understanding is that ‘duning’ is a process within the dune spawning sand-sea medium) prevails rather than the logic of the excluded medium (wherein the understanding is that the dune is independent of the sand-sea medium).
In the latter assumption, it may appear to make sense to describe the development and movement of ‘the dune’ in the manner that one might mention the development and movement of a large wave in the ocean or the action of an avalanche in the mountains. However, what is ‘really’ going on is relational transformation yet our language and grammar are capable of reducing this by way of the ‘double error’ of using ‘naming’ to invent ‘things-in-themselves’ and conflating this with grammar to impute to the name-instantiated thing-in-itself the powers of sourcing actions and development.
This is a philosophical and psychological problem that has plagued Western culture in particular, that shows up in the Western culture social division into ‘conservatives’ and ‘liberals’ based on the philosophical division of perceiving ‘reality’ into two opposing camps termed ‘’realists’ and ‘pragmatists’. It has plagued Western culture in particular because Western culture has incorporated the ‘double error’ into language based constructions of ‘reality’; i.e. the INVENTED REALITY of Western culture.
Poincaré has the following to say about this very deep and persisting psychological ‘divide’ in Western culture in his ‘Dernières Pensées’, Ch. V, ‘Les Mathematiques et la Logique’, distinguishing the ‘opposing camps with their respective very different understandings of reality by the names Cantorian-realists, versus ‘pragmatists’ (Poincaré is a ‘pragmatist’);
—“But the Cantorians are realists even where mathematical entities are concerned. These entities seem to them to have an independent existence; the geometer does not create them, he discovers them. These objects therefore exist so to speak without existing, since they can be reduced to pure essences. But since, by nature, these objects are infinite in number, the partisans of mathematical realism are much more infinitist than the idealists. Infinity to them is no longer a becoming since it exists before the mind which discovers it. Whether they admit or deny it, they must therefore believe in actual infinity.”
— “At all times, there have been opposite tendencies in philosophy and it does not seem that these tendencies are on the verge of being reconciled. It is no doubt because there are different souls and that we cannot change anything in these souls. There is therefore no hope of seeing harmony established between the pragmatists and the Cantorians. Men do not agree because they do not speak the same language, and there are, Languages which cannot be learned.
And yet in mathematics men ordinarily understand one another; but it is due precisely to what I have called proofs. These proofs pass judgment without appeal and before them the entire world bows. But wherever these proofs are lacking, mathematicians are no better off than simple philosophers. When it is necessary to know if a theorem can have meaning without being capable of proof, who can judge, since by definition we forbid ourselves to prove it ?
There would be no other resource but to corner one’s adversary with a contradiction. But the experiment has been attempted and it has not succeeded. Many antinomies have been pointed out, and the discord has remained; no one has been convinced. It is always possible to extricate oneself from a contradiction by a change of arguments ; I mean by a distinguo.”
—” Let us attempt therefore to study the psychology of the two opposing schools [‘Cantorian realists’, ‘pragmatist-idealists’] from a purely objective point of view just as if we ourselves were not a member of these schools, as if we were describing a war between two ants’ nests. We shall first of all observe that there are two opposite tendencies among mathematicians in their manner of considering infinity. For some, infinity is derived from the finite; infinity exists because there is an infinity of possible finite things. For others, infinity exists before the finite; the finite is obtained by cutting out a small piece from infinity.” — Henri Poincaré
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Ok, here we go again, on this same theme of how different people see ‘reality’ differently, in regard to whether or not they opt for an ontic reality first, because where they do, their ontic constructions of ‘reality’ occlude and ‘wallpaper over’ any/all access to ‘fluid reality’ aka the Tao.
Nietzsche describes this ‘optional choice’ in the very basics of our method of ‘reasoning’ in the following excerpt from Twilight of the Gods. Here, he is talking about the decline of the absoluteness of reason as if decreed by the Gods. In other words, he is talking about the same thing as Poincaré, the ambiguity between ontic and fluid reality, as in the Zen wind and flag koan where we find that it is impossible (contradictory) to impart ontic status to both wind and flag, suggesting that our imparting of ontic status through language and grammar is abstraction that we impose on the relational forms of our sensory experience (relational forms in the transforming relational continuum aka the Tao aka the wave-field).
ok, here [IN FOOTNOTE] is Nietzsche’s discussion on the choice of interpretations underlying what we call ‘reason’ and how we have ‘grounded’ ‘reason’ in ‘being’, so that in using ‘reason’ to construct ‘reality’, we deliver forth an ‘ontic reality’ rather than a ‘fluid reality’, which is, in effect, a ‘dumbing down’ from 4 and higher dimensional reality (resonance that manifests as ‘duning’) to a 3 dimensional ontic reality that we ‘re-animate’ with grammar (e.g. ‘the dune is growing larger and longer and is shifting to the East’).
What I am saying is that Nietzsche, in my view, is on target with his charge that the ontic absolutism we build into our language and grammar based reduction of the sensory experiencing (resonance or wave based experiencing) of reality of inclusion in the Tao, is a reduction rather than an ‘elevation’ of our conceptualizing of the reality of our sensory experience.
POSTSCRIPT (sent the following day)
… just to observe that where Nietzsche (or myself) rejects the EITHER/OR logic of the excluded medium, it is not a simple ‘logic of the excluded medium based rejection, … it is rejection of the [unjustified] psychological acceptance of binary logic as something with experience-grounded meaning, as would be required in using such logic to capture real-world relational experience based understanding. Modern physics has rejected the applicability of binary logic in the capture/modeling of relational experience based phenomena (i.e. in capturing our experience of inclusion in a transforming relational continuum), EMPLOYING, INSTEAD, THE ‘BOTH/AND’ LOGIC OF THE INCLUDED MEDIUM (where the boil and flow are differentiated only by ‘appearance’ and NOT by ontological separateness.
The rejection of binary logic rejects with it, the binary concept of ‘life-and-death’. Life and death is essentially an abstract means of rendering effable the ineffable Tao. In other words, ‘life and death’ is ‘unreal abstraction’ while the natural reality is the Tao (the transforming relational continuum). Life and death are abstract concepts that have no place in a transforming relational continuum but they are a visual ‘fit’ with our sensory experience of emergence/birth and subduction/death. The ‘boil’ in the ‘flow’ appears to have a ‘life-cycle’ that goes from emergence (birth) to subduction (death) and if we go with ‘visual appearance’ and language (naming and grammar), we can reduce relational transformation wherein the boil that emerges and subducts is ‘the manner in which relational transformation manifests’. Of course, the ‘onto-logification of the boil allows us to think of it in terms of a birth and death cycle. Religious ceremonies can be developed to explain this ‘binarization’ of the relational dynamics in the continuum. What this does is render the ineffable effable. That is, this binarization reduces nonlocal spacetime phenomena to phenomena that is LOCAL in SPACE AND TIME. That is, imputing a birth and death cycle reduces the ineffable to the effable by reducing nonlocal spacetime phenomena (relational transformation) to thing-based dynamics that are local in both space and time; e.g. while ‘duning’ is purely relational resonance (wave-dynamic) that is nonlocal in spacetime, the ‘double error’ reduces this to an explicit thing-in-itself (the dune) that is local in both space and time, notionally with ITS OWN powers of sourcing actions and development. That’s what language and grammar can impress on our intellect/psyche. Inclusion in the Tao is meanwhile our sensory experience informed ineffable understanding.
So, it seems to me that the belief in ‘life-and-death’, which provide the means of ‘effable-izing the ineffable by breaking notional ‘explicit-thing-in-themselves’ out of the Tao (i.e. reducing relational forms in the Tao to ‘local things-in-themselves) and imputing local powers of sourcing actions and developments to them, is a psychological ‘tool for kluging effable-ness out of the ineffable Tao. I would see as Emerson expresses it; in terms of the ‘tool’ that has ‘run away with the workman, the human with the divine’.
Modern physics wave-dynamical understanding of reality does not support the abstract double error concepts which support ‘things-in-themselves’ that ‘are born’, live for a brief period, and die’. All of this can be understood in terms of the Tao with the names removed. It is the naming of emerging and submerging flow-forms that we use (that our ‘intellectual abstracting’ uses) as a ‘stub’ to impute ‘thing-in-itself being’ to them and it is grammar that conflates this thing-in-itself-being by notionally endowing it with incipient power of sourcing its own birth, life and death. This abstract intellectual impressionism obscures our sensory experience understanding of reality as inclusion in the transforming relational continuum. It is a tool that renders the ineffable effable (local, material, explicit) whereas the Tao (wavefield, resonance) is nonlocal, non-material, implicit) or in other words, ineffable.
The abstractions of ‘life and death’ let ‘localize’ (‘digitize’) the ineffable Tao and re-render it in a reduced ‘digital’ (piecemeal) and thus effable formulation. Such binary abstraction is a tool that has run away with the workman, the human with the divine. This ‘reconstituting’ of reality with the language-and-grammar based reduction to ‘birth, life, death’ hijacks (occludes in our intellect) the purely relational emerging and submerging formings of the Tao. This is what is going on in the mind-shifting from the local, explicit material dynamics of Newtonian physics to the wave-field resonance forms of modern physics. As Schroedinger puts it, our actual embodying of an understanding of ‘self’ as a relational form within the transforming relational continuum is a ‘spiritual experience’ and not just an ‘intellectual exercise’; i.e. by including ourselves in ‘the all’ this is like ‘becoming one with everything’ (aka becoming ‘one with the Tao’, ‘God’). Nevertheless this subsuming of all forms within a field of resonance (the wave field) ‘fits’ with the modern physics understanding of ourselves as relational forms in the wave-field. The continually transforming relational self is not ‘lost’ in this way of understanding ‘self’-and-‘other’, it is only that the name-instantiated ‘ontological self’ (an intellectual abstraction) is subsumed; i.e. the ‘boil’ and ‘flow’ are understood as ‘one’ with the ‘appearance of two’ rather than as a binary logical ontological two. Schroedinger describes this ‘shift’ in understanding in ‘What is Life?’;
… In Christian terminology to say: ‘Hence I am God Almighty’ sounds both blasphemous and lunatic. But please disregard these connotations for the moment and consider whether the above inference is not the closest a biologist can get to proving God and immortality at one stroke.
In itself, the insight is not new. The earliest records to my knowledge date back some 2,500 years or more. From the early great Upanishads the recognition ATHMAN = BRAHMAN (the personal self equals the omnipresent, all-comprehending eternal self) was in Indian thought considered, far from being blasphemous, to represent the quintessence of deepest insight into the happenings of the world. The striving of all the scholars of Vedanta was, after having learnt to pronounce with their lips, really to assimilate in their minds this grandest of all thoughts.
Again, the mystics of many centuries, independently, yet in perfect harmony with each other (somewhat like the particles in an ideal gas) have described, each of them, the unique experience of his or her life in terms that can be condensed in the phrase: DEUS FACTUS SUM (I have become God).
To Western ideology the thought has remained a stranger. – Erwin Schroedinger, ‘What is LIfe’, ‘Epilogue: On Determinism and Free Will’
‘Resonance’ as manifests in ‘duning’ belongs to the overall wave-field and is an innately greater reality than ‘the dune’. Obviously, we cannot deliver a language based understanding that is local and explicit and effable in terms of ‘duning’ (resonance) since it is inherently nonlocal in space and time (spacetime). Duning/resonance is ineffable in that respect. However, we can ‘dress up a dune’ in Emperor’s new clothes and employ a double error to make the dune out to be a thing-in-itself with its own powers of sourcing actions and developments. Likewise, we can do the same in the case of ‘humaning’ in the wave-frield. ‘Birth and death’ become part of the language and grammar abstracting apparatus in this regard. Indigenous aboriginal cultures, Taoism/Buddhism and Advaita Vedanta have no problem with understanding reality as the transforming relational continuum (the Tao, the wave-field).
That is puzzling is the impression we Western culture adherents have, of the huge advances Western civilization has made in technology. However, the Western culture ‘reality’ in which we see all these ‘advances’ is a pseudo-reality . The skyscraper is not a ‘real’ thing-in-itself, what is real is the transforming relational continuum. Visual impressions are voyeur image based and are limited to three dimensions. The resonance we share inclusion in (the Tao) is 4 dimensions and more and while we can sense our inclusion in it as we can sense inclusion in resonance, we cannot see it ‘out there in front of us’ as with our visual sensing. Our mistake is in subordinating our 4+ dimensional sensing of inclusion in the resonance (the Tao, the wave-field, the stuff of the evolving world) to our 3D visual sensing, just because the latter fits into our language and grammar constructs making it ‘effable’ and thus ‘shareable’.
Just because our ineffable experience of inclusion in the Tao is not effable and not shareable in an unreduced form doesn’t mean that it is NOT the legitimate ‘reality’. No matter what any one else knows or says, our ineffable experience cannot be dismissed as ‘unreal’ just because we cannot articulate and share it, and/or because some voyeur observers believe that they can know and understand OUR experience as well or better that we, the actual experient know and understand our experience.
Of course, we can easily be fooled, ourselves, by confusing our own ‘head-talk’ (intellection) for ‘reality’. If we are in touch with our sensory experience of inclusion in the Tao; i.e. if we are ‘one with everything’ then we are in touch with reality, however, that is impeded rather than helped by language based chatter whereby our intellect hijacks the helm of self from our ineffable sensory experience of inclusion in the Tao.
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DISCUSSION: The above comments are circling around the core issue, that Nietzsche takes up specifically in the FOOTNOTE below, of how we Western culture adherents have built into language and grammar a shift from ‘sensory appearance’ to intellectual ‘ontic certainty’, as we do in moving from the quantum physics “BOTH/AND logic of the included medium” to the “EITHER/OR logic of the excluded medium”. For example, how do we get from understanding the distinction of ‘boil’ and ‘flow’ or ‘figure’ and ‘ground’ as ‘appearance’ based duality to an ‘ontic’ (being-based thing-in-itself) distinction or binary reality?
THIS IS A CULTURE-DIVIDER. In modern physics (of Bohm, Schroedinger et al) as in the indigenous aboriginal cultures, Taoism/Buddhism and Advaita Vedanta, the distinction between ‘boil’ and ‘flow’ i.e. ‘figure’ and ‘ground’ is ‘appearance’ as in BOTH/AND logic. Classical physics, which as Benjamin Whorf points out ‘borrowed from early language and grammar development’, imposed an absolute binary EITHER/OR split on ‘boil’ and ‘flow’ i.e. on ‘figure’ and ‘ground’.
In the quote from Nietzsche cited below, Nietzsche points out that it is the PREJUDICE OF REASON that seduces us into ‘hardening’ relational ‘appearance’ into certainty grounded in hard-core ontic ‘being’;
” … in India, as in Greece, the same mistake was made: “We must once have been at home in a higher world (instead of a very much lower one, which would have been the truth); we must have been divine, for we have REASON!” Indeed, nothing has yet possessed a more naive power of persuasion than the error concerning being, “ … Nietzsche (see full quote in appendix).
The point that Nietzsche is making is that ‘reason’ … (“everywhere it sees a doer and doing”) … draws from the intellectual leap-frogging over ‘appearance’ where our senses make a ‘soft relational distinction’ between ‘boil’ and ‘flow’, … to intellectual abstraction featuring a hard (ontic) distinction between ‘boil’ and ‘flow’.
Once we ‘liberate’ boil from flow and flow from boil and impute to both ‘boil’ and ‘flow’ (double error based) status of ‘doer’ with the power of ‘doing’ (‘doer-and-deed’, ‘producer-and-product’) we occlude the reality of relational transformation and create the ambiguity that manifests as the ‘conservative’ – ‘liberal’ split and more broadly as Western culture endemic ‘schizophrenia’. That is, in the reality of our actual relational experience in the Tao (the transforming relational continuum), there is no such thing as ‘the sourcing of actions and developments’, … that is a double error of language-and-grammar based abstraction. That is why the conservative – liberal split has been compared, in Gulliver’s Travels, to people splitting over which end (the roundy or pointy end) of a hard-boiled egg is the correct end to open; i.e. the concept of a binary ontology is our own intellectual abstraction and is not a binary ontology that exists ‘out there’.
The ‘double error’ confuses our intellectualizing in the manner of the story of tar-baby and brere rabbit or the ’tilting at windmills in Don Quixote. There is an allegation of wrong-doing; i.e. we complain that the CEO is NOT ENTITLED to taking compensation that is 1000 times the average worker compensation, but in launching this attack, we are implicitly making a ‘double error’ wherein (first error) we assign a ‘name’ or ‘title’ to a form within a web of relations and conflate this by (second error) imputing the power of sourcing actions and developments to the name-instantiated ‘thing-in-itself’. The abstract concept of jumpstart origination of actions and developments is now available for use in our language and grammar ‘constructions of reality’.
We sense something radically wrong with attributing to the CEO the power of sourcing actions and developments THAT IS 1000 TIMES THE AVERAGE WORKER’S POWER OF SOURCING ACTIONS AND DEVELOPMENTS!
What we have just done by such protest is to SECURE THE ABSTRACT DOUBLE ERROR CONCEPT OF “SOURCING OF ACTIONS AND DEVELOPMENTS”. If we are ‘successful’, the result may be to lower the rewarding of the CEO and increasing the rewarding of the average worker, for their respective contributions of sourcing actions and development.
But the double error abstraction of ‘SOURCING OF ACTIONS AND DEVELOPMENTS’ is the basic problem which is not even on the radar screen of our identifying of problems and solutions. As Wittgenstein observes, we picture a ‘crime’ in doer-of-deed terms, and not in the Robin Hood terms of relational balance/imbalance wherein an affluent subset gorges and fattens themselves as an impoverished complement starves and withers. Our habit of picturing things in ‘doer-of-deed’ terms is culturally ‘locked-in’;
A picture held us captive. And we could not get outside it, for it lay in our language and language seemed to repeat it to us inexorably. –-Wittgenstein
The revolt of the poor against the rich falls into the ‘double error’ trap where the poor identify the problem in terms of the ‘unfairness’ in how ‘sourcing’ is being attributed. This is a degenerate view (based on the double error in the ‘doer-and-doing’ abstraction) that also infects parts of ‘feminism’ and other minority inequality complaints.
The real problem is not ‘unfair attribution of credits for sourcing actions and developments, the problem is the ‘double error’ abstract assumption of the ‘sourcing of actions and developments’. There is no such thing as the ‘sourcing of actions and developments’ in the Tao (the transforming relational continuum aka the wave-field). The ‘doer-deed’/producer-product concept of ‘sourcing of actions and developments’ (the ‘double error’) is an intellectual abstraction captured in language and grammar that serves to impute local incipience to that which is inherently nonlocal-relational (the Tao) so as to render the ineffable effable.
This expedient reduction is the so-called by Emerson ”the tool that is running away with the workman, the human with the divine’. Meanwhile, it is a concept we Western culture adherents have built into the foundations of our intellectual reality constructing that we are using not as a ‘poetic inference’ or as an inferential guide, as in modern physics, indigenous aboriginal cultures, Taoism/Buddhism and Advaita Vedanta, but as our Western culture adherent ‘operative reality’. We call it ‘reason’ and we place it on the highest level of our methods of understanding ‘reality’ which as Nietzsche points out, is a mistake (… in India, as in Greece, the same mistake was made:) .
As Nietzsche points out, this ‘doer-and-doing’ picture is otherwise known as “…reason’ … (“everywhere it sees a doer and doing”). We Western culture adherents are still in the mode of ‘accepting’ the ‘reality’ of the double error ‘doer-and-doing’ (producer-and-product) illusion and are thus still struggling with a ‘fair system of attribution’ of ‘sourcing attribution credits’ that give fair recognition to workers relative to managers, females relative to males, blacks relative to whites and other colours, even while modern physics is denying the legitimacy of the concept of ‘sourcing of actions and developments’.
It’s true that when we use our voyeur visual sensing together with our rational language and grammar based intellection to understand ‘the building of a skyscraper’, we cannot, at the same time focus on our sensory experiencing of the transforming of the space we are included in, but after visually observing all of this ‘new construction’ over a lifetime, we may become aware of our continuing sensory experiencing of inclusion in some sort of transformation that is no longer ‘out there’ as in our visual observations but is a kind of resonance-based immanence in which we can sense ‘inclusion’ which had always been available to us, but which we had demoted to something lesser than our visual observations because our visual observations could be reduced to effable and thus shareable terms. So, we can observe the ‘doer-and-deed’ (reason-based) development of our city and concretize and preserve this visual perspective with language by ‘talking about it’ and ‘writing many subjective articles about it’ and even producing filmed documentaries’ about it, but all the while we are subjectizing the ongoing creative ‘construction’, the overall landscape we are included in is transforming, and this is the ‘real reality of our included sensory experience’ and not just a lot of subjective, visual perspective based talk.
Relational experience-wise, we understand we are included in a transforming relational continuum, however, insofar as we are in ‘voyeur visualizing mode’, observing what is going on ‘out there’, we are trapped in our reduction of the ineffable to the ‘effable’.
A picture held us captive. And we could not get outside it, for it lay in our language and language seemed to repeat it to us inexorably. –-Wittgenstein
In this picture, we see ourselves by way of ‘reason’, as the ‘sorcerers’ of actions and developments, not as inclusions within the transforming relational continuum (the Tao).
In pride, in reas’ning pride, our error lies; — Alexander Pope, ‘An Essay on Man: Epistle I’
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FOOTNOTE: Nietzsche quote (in English and German) on the deceptiveness of ‘reason’ in philosophy — (Proposition 5 in Chapter 5 (Reason in Philosophy) of Twilight of the Idols. (Götzen-Dämmerung). In German the sense of Götzen is ‘false Gods’ or ‘Idols’.
“Reason” in Philosophy’ [Editing Note: All instances of ‘REASON’ have been highlighted so they will not be missed.]
At long last, let us contrast the very different manner in which we conceive the problem of error and appearance. (I say “we” for politeness’ sake.) Formerly, alteration, change, any becoming at all, were taken as proof of mere appearance, as an indication that there must be something which led us astray. Today, conversely, precisely insofar as the prejudice of REASON forces us to posit unity, identity, permanence, substance, cause, thinghood, being, we see ourselves somehow caught in error, compelled into error. So certain are we, on the basis of rigorous examination, that this is where the error lies.
It is no different in this case than with the movement of the sun: there our eye is the constant advocate of error, here it is our language. In its origin language belongs in the age of the most rudimentary form of psychology. We enter a realm of crude fetishism when we summon before consciousness the basic presuppositions of the metaphysics of language, in plain talk, the presuppositions of REASON. Everywhere it sees a doer and doing; it believes in will as the cause; it believes in the ego, in the ego as being, in the ego as substance, and it projects this faith in the ego-substance upon all things–only thereby does it first create the concept of “thing.” Everywhere “being” is projected by thought, pushed underneath, as the cause; the concept of being follows, and is a derivative of, the concept of ego. In the beginning there is that great calamity of an error that the will is something which is effective, that will is a capacity. Today we know that it is only a word.
Very much later, in a world which was in a thousand ways more enlightened, philosophers, to their great surprise, became aware of the sureness, the subjective certainty, in our handling of the categories of REASON: they concluded that these categories could not be derived from anything empirical–for everything empirical plainly contradicted them. Whence, then, were they derived?
And in India, as in Greece, the same mistake was made: “We must once have been at home in a higher world (instead of a very much lower one, which would have been the truth); we must have been divine, for we have REASON!” Indeed, nothing has yet possessed a more naive power of persuasion than the error concerning being, as it has been formulated by the Eleatics, for example. After all, every word and every sentence we say speak in its favor. Even the opponents of the Eleatics still succumbed to the seduction of their concept of being: Democritus, among others, when he invented his atom. “REASON” in language–oh, what an old deceptive female she is! I am afraid we are not rid of God because we still have faith in grammar.
Die »Vernunft« in der Philosophie.
– Stellen wir endlich dagegen, auf welche verschiedne Art wir (– ich sage höflicher Weise wir…) das Problem des Irrthums und der Scheinbarkeit in’s Auge fassen. Ehemals nahm man die Veränderung, den Wechsel, das Werden überhaupt als Beweis für Scheinbarkeit, als Zeichen dafür, daß Etwas da sein müsse, das uns irre führe. Heute umgekehrt sehen wir, genau so weit als das Vernunft-Vorurtheil uns zwingt, Einheit, Identität, Dauer, Substanz, Ursache, Dinglichkeit, Sein anzusetzen, uns gewissermaaßen verstrickt in den Irrthum, necessitirt zum Irrthum; so sicher wir auf Grund einer strengen Nachrechnung bei uns darüber sind, daß hier der Irrthum ist.
Es steht damit nicht anders, als mit den Bewegungen des großen Gestirns: bei ihnen hat der Irrthum unser Auge, hier hat er unsre Sprache zum beständigen Anwalt. Die Sprache gehört ihrer Entstehung nach in die Zeit der rudimentärsten Form von Psychologie: wir kommen in ein grobes Fetischwesen hinein, wenn wir uns die Grundvoraussetzungen der Sprach-Metaphysik, auf deutsch: der Vernunft, zum Bewußtsein bringen. Das sieht überall Thäter und Thun: das glaubt an Willen als Ursache überhaupt; das glaubt an’s »Ich«, an’s Ich als Sein, an’s Ich als Substanz und projicirt den Glauben an die Ich-Substanz auf alle Dinge – es schafft erst damit den Begriff »Ding«… Das Sein wird überall als Ursache hineingedacht, untergeschoben; aus der Conception »Ich« folgt erst, als abgeleitet, der Begriff »Sein«… Am Anfang steht das große Verhängniß von Irrthum, daß der Wille Etwas ist, das wirkt, – daß Wille ein Vermögen ist… Heute wissen wir, daß er bloß ein Wort ist…
Sehr viel später, in einer tausendfach aufgeklärteren Welt kam die Sicherheit, die subjektive Gewißheit in der Handhabung der Vernunft-Kategorien den Philosophen mit Überraschung zum Bewußtsein: sie schlossen, daß dieselben nicht aus der Empirie stammen könnten, – die ganze Empirie stehe ja zu ihnen in Widerspruch. Woher also stammen sie? – Und in Indien wie in Griechenland hat man den gleichen Fehlgriff gemacht: »wir müssen schon einmal in einer höheren Welt heimisch gewesen sein (– statt in einer sehr viel niederen: was die Wahrheit gewesen wäre!), wir müssen göttlich gewesen sein, denn wir haben die Vernunft!«… In der That, Nichts hat bisher eine naivere Überredungskraft gehabt als der Irrthum vom Sein, wie er zum Beispiel von den Eleaten formulirt wurde: er hat ja jedes Wort für sich, jeden Satz für sich, den wir sprechen! – Auch die Gegner der Eleaten unterlagen noch der Verführung ihres Seins-Begriffs: Demokrit unter Anderen, als er sein Atom erfand… Die »Vernunft« in der Sprache: oh was für eine alte betrügerische Weibsperson! Ich fürchte, wir werden Gott nicht los, weil wir noch an die Grammatik glauben…
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