Precision, Ideal and Real

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Greta phil
 
Reply Sun 6 Jun, 2010 12:40 am
@wayne,
A perfection of point - yes! And this could be arrived at from many directions. Bring them all to that one very fine point. Even many sentences from many people. Link up common meanings and draw it all together. And then take it forward. Life has one ultimate direction!!
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sun 6 Jun, 2010 12:43 am
@wayne,
wayne;173720 wrote:
I am beginning to see precision as a certain smallness, a perfection of point if you will. Aren't we discussing a 4th dimension of infinity?


I'm not sure what you mean. Possibly. I think our experience of number is not fundamentally spatial, although we apply to space. In this sense, number (and concept in general) would have its own dimension, and one could call this the fourth. Personally, I think time is a byproduct of concept. Not only physics time but Hegelian human time, which is related to human desire and fear about the imagined future and the remembered past.

We can conceive of potential infinity, in my opinion, but not actual infinity. As far as perfect precision goes, we can imagine a number like 3 and get absolutely perfect precision, in our minds. In Nature, there are probably nowhere too identical things. But we project this perfect quantity nevertheless. We have a dozen eggs. As eggs, they are different. But they all count as exactly one egg. And this oneness is perfect.

The other precision would be, in my mind, our ability to imagine perfect circles or perfectly straight lines. Smile

---------- Post added 06-06-2010 at 01:44 AM ----------

Greta;173722 wrote:
A perfection of point - yes! And this could be arrived at from many directions. Bring them all to that one very fine point. Even many sentences from many people. Link up common meanings and draw it all together. And then take it forward. Life has one ultimate direction!!


I agree with you. To quote a great band, the Seeds: "everybody's searching for Love." And the other point at which we meet is our intuition of unity, or mathematics..
 
wayne
 
Reply Sun 6 Jun, 2010 12:47 am
@Greta phil,
Greta;173722 wrote:
A perfection of point - yes! And this could be arrived at from many directions. Bring them all to that one very fine point. Even many sentences from many people. Link up common meanings and draw it all together. And then take it forward. Life has one ultimate direction!!


Hmmm... I think I see something of your point, sounds like collective thought?
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sun 6 Jun, 2010 12:49 am
@Greta phil,
Greta;173718 wrote:
are you one of these mathematicians?


Not professional, and I have not even been to college for it. But I got obsessed, read all sorts of books, live it and think it constantly, especially as it connects to philosophy. I do think I have a very clear grasp of the parts that appeal to me. Of course math is a huge huge field, and the guys in different fields w/ Phds don't understand one another. The subject is that big and that specialized. I'm most concerned with the relationship between the continuous and the discrete, which is fundamental to the human experience in many many ways. In my opinion, of course. In fact, I think the absolute concept or the proto-number is prior and more real than our conception of the self and every other concept. I think that every linguistic concept has a numerical-logical core. It's a unity. It's a dirty dirty one. Mathematics just scrubs the word being into a number. Abstract being is systematically arranged by means of positional notation. Smile
 
Greta phil
 
Reply Sun 6 Jun, 2010 12:52 am
@Reconstructo,
...so it is not just maths or logic. It is also language and psychology!! Understanding a persons mind and the way they think and are likely to go.....It is life!! It is exciting!!!

---------- Post added 06-06-2010 at 07:08 PM ----------

wayne;173726 wrote:
Hmmm... I think I see something of your point, sounds like collective thought?

it is collective thought if we are all thinking the same - pick those thoughts up and put them in a basket!!
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sun 6 Jun, 2010 01:22 am
@Greta phil,
Greta;173728 wrote:
...so it is not just maths or logic. It is also language and psychology!! Understanding a persons mind and the way they think and are likely to go.....It is life!! It is exciting!!!

---------- Post added 06-06-2010 at 07:08 PM ----------


it is collective thought if we are all thinking the same - pick those thoughts up and put them in a basket!!



Yes, it all connects in my opinion. As different as our lives our, there is a universal structure to human thought. In my opinion. Our thoughts are unities. Our pet cat is a unity of all that it has been and done. That's how we experience it. Time is made of concept. We remember. We learn. We unify experience, and then unify these unities. Well, that's my theory. Smile
 
Greta phil
 
Reply Sun 6 Jun, 2010 11:12 pm
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;173727 wrote:
Not professional, and I have not even been to college for it. But I got obsessed, read all sorts of books, live it and think it constantly, especially as it connects to philosophy. I do think I have a very clear grasp of the parts that appeal to me. Of course math is a huge huge field, and the guys in different fields w/ Phds don't understand one another. The subject is that big and that specialized. I'm most concerned with the relationship between the continuous and the discrete, which is fundamental to the human experience in many many ways. In my opinion, of course. In fact, I think the absolute concept or the proto-number is prior and more real than our conception of the self and every other concept. I think that every linguistic concept has a numerical-logical core. It's a unity. It's a dirty dirty one. Mathematics just scrubs the word being into a number. Abstract being is systematically arranged by means of positional notation. Smile

Everything in life is maths. Numerical reprsentation is captures such a tiny portion of it all.
 
manored
 
Reply Sun 13 Jun, 2010 11:39 pm
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo wrote:

Hurts like being in bed w/ a beautiful woman. :detective:
Well im gonna go buy some diamonds before someone else finds out and the stocks start rising.

Reconstructo wrote:

Of course sensation and emotion and embodiment just are. They are unquestionable. But to sew these together is to make an abstraction. Now this abstraction is justified in practice but not in theory. Really, one's self is all of one's experience, and not just that small part of it we usually call the self. The TLP is like the Tao, or something. It's a logical book with a spiritual purpose.
Hum, as far as I know, all of one's experience is what we usually call the self. Is that not so?

Greta phil wrote:

A perfection of point - yes! And this could be arrived at from many directions. Bring them all to that one very fine point. Even many sentences from many people. Link up common meanings and draw it all together. And then take it forward. Life has one ultimate direction!!
But no ultimate ending, im afraid =)

And, consequently, any direction is good as any, although some certainly are more pleasant.

Reconstructo wrote:

Yes, it all connects in my opinion. As different as our lives our, there is a universal structure to human thought. In my opinion. Our thoughts are unities. Our pet cat is a unity of all that it has been and done. That's how we experience it. Time is made of concept. We remember. We learn. We unify experience, and then unify these unities. Well, that's my theory. Smile
I wouldnt say that is a teory, but a way of seeing the world. In that sense, you cant be wrong =)

Reconstructo wrote:

I think that every linguistic concept has a numerical-logical core. It's a unity. It's a dirty dirty one. Mathematics just scrubs the word being into a number. Abstract being is systematically arranged by means of positional notation. Smile
I think that the unrational is the motor that keeps the rational going. Everything can be expressed in mathematics, but we can never comprehend, grasp, the math of ourselves, although we maybe be able to grasp the math of others, and of computers and simulations we create.

Computers are purely rational beings. They do nothing unless they receive the programming of a being that has, ultimately, no logical reason to do what they are doing. I mean, is there a logical reason to live? no, technically there is no logical reason to live. Consequently, there is no logical reason to program computers =)
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Mon 14 Jun, 2010 11:09 am
Recon: Good to see you made the transition, my time will now be better spent.

My comment is on the sociocultural adoption of the digital and mechanical in general.

To create a perfected point/line/cone/triangle whatever only requires that someone considers it perfect. They also depend on what criteria one is using to judge them perfect. is a perfect line perfectly straight? The obvious is now out of the way.

In the mad post enlightenment scientific rush to classify, quantify, rheify, and measure anything and everything by hook or crook, society has assumed a mistrusting of quality and assumed the crutch of quantity. the mechanical world has produced precision that humans cannot equal. Thus mechanical, computer, digital representation surficially removes the qualifiable humanity of the process making the result less suspect to human bias.

I think, however, that the whole post enlightenment drive to quantify and trust on that which can be quantified is a hypocrissy as it is still based from an axiom of quality. Tha being "It is better to have a measurable something that can reproduced exactly the same everytime than a non measurable something that cannot."
 
Theaetetus
 
Reply Mon 14 Jun, 2010 11:18 am
@GoshisDead,
Recon hasn't made the transition yet. His last post was the day before the changeover. Someone had made a comment on one of his posts.

I sent Recon a message hoping that he may join us in the near future. I miss his philosophical attitude.
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Mon 14 Jun, 2010 11:31 am
@Theaetetus,
Well dang it all
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Mon 28 Jun, 2010 02:13 am
@GoshisDead,
Hi there, Gosh. Good post. I think I agree with all of that. It's somewhat tangent to what I mean by ideal precision, but it does fit into the thread well.

True, "perfect" is used in many ways. And as to the perfect line being perfectly straight, I would say yes. And as you say this is obvious. And this obviousness is even fascinating, because have humans ever seen an ideally perfect line? You have probably heard of the point without extension. An ideal point is so precisely placed that it's not even there. My interest in all this is similar I think to Zeno's. Our concept of number and our visualization of space seem to be fundamentally different. A true "ontological" split.

On the quality issue, we are probably more in agreement than you might think. In fact, quality as opposed to quantity would function in recon-speak as the discrete and the continuous. Quality is that which eludes quantification. Concept seems to be a mixture of both, as we learn abstractions in the midst of sensation and emotion which are not conceptual in themselves but interpreted conceptually. It's as if we live these two aspects of being but don't notice the split. Therefore post-enlightenment man embraces superstitions like matter or energy as genuine explanations or a satisfactory ontology/metaphysics/dialectic. Matter and energy (and the rest) aren't superstitious until man forgets they are merely organizing concepts applied to quality...sensation/emotion. To me this is serious problem. The world is experienced as a boring place, an explained place, a reduced place. And all because abstractions were taken as fundamental reality, which is absurd, because these abstractions, from physics to theology, are all created in relation to something non-conceptual. And this non-conceptual element is difficult to point at, because language is made of concepts/universals/essences. Red is red. Take the word away and redness remains. It's the same with a toothache or the emotion caused by a pretty girl's smile. This sort of experience is every bit as fundamental as any concept. Of course I can only point at at by means of the concept. The experience of it is private. Music and visual arts, because they deal directly in sensation-emotion, can say what the philosopher can not say. I suppose I have rambled long enough.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Mon 28 Jun, 2010 02:21 am
@manored,
On the self. Do you call your perception of another's smile the self? If so, we are probably in agreement. But most limit the self in some way. Wittgenstein argues that life and the world are one. In the same way the self and the other are one. But "self" is one of those variously deployed concepts. At times, it's convenient for us to narrow this concept down to our body or our current emotion or our property. At other moments, we forget to conjure the concept, and become absorbed in our experience. I think the notion of overlapping selfworlds is more accurate than most. Selves are worlds and they inter-penetrate. And this interpretation has a certain structure. We generate our notion of objectivity from intersubjective consensus. But one thinker still lives in a different reality than another thinker, because his sensation/emotion is structure differently, by means of a different system of concepts. The man who believes passionately in a personal god lives in the different world than the man who has utterly abandoned such a belief. And then one can think about thinking until all concepts seem like toys, tools, temptations to idolatry, and one moves through language differently than most. One is always hearing/seeing the good and bad points of an abstraction. No abstraction is or can be final in my opinion. Some have proved their practical uses just like certain genes have. But this practical use is not necessarily dialectical cohesion to one who seeks such for erotic-aesthetic reasons. Of course we philosophers are supposed to be grim and cold, right? I don't think so. I think Plato was right about the Eros involved.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Mon 28 Jun, 2010 02:22 am
@Theaetetus,
It's good to be missed. Thanks, T.
 
Arjuna
 
Reply Mon 28 Jun, 2010 06:24 am
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo wrote:

Therefore post-enlightenment man embraces superstitions like matter or energy as genuine explanations or a satisfactory ontology/metaphysics/dialectic. Matter and energy (and the rest) aren't superstitious until man forgets they are merely organizing concepts applied to quality...sensation/emotion. To me this is serious problem. The world is experienced as a boring place, an explained place, a reduced place. And all because abstractions were taken as fundamental reality, which is absurd, because these abstractions, from physics to theology, are all created in relation to something non-conceptual. And this non-conceptual element is difficult to point at, because language is made of concepts/universals/essences. Red is red. Take the word away and redness remains.
This has been on my mind lately. A fair number of people operate with the assumption that somebody's working in a lab somewhere, and soon they'll come forward with their findings and finally establish human thought on its proper foundation of good old logic and common sense. What explains this conviction?

I'm wondering if the explanation is emotion.

Has western thought for the last few centuries been shaped by a wave of emotion made of rage toward the Church, grief about the inquisition and a longing to establish freedom of thought with the hope that if we could only learn to govern our affairs with a little intelligence, the world would be a little closer to perfection?

This would explain why it's been so important to find a logical or empirical foundation for knowledge: because the Church demanded that there are things you just know... things that can't be proven. Since the Church owned the mystery, in order to defeat the church, all mystery needed to be destroyed. This made otherwise intelligent people blind to what's pretty obvious, I think: there are some things you just know.

If this is true, where are we in this wave of emotion? Where is it headed? I think there are a lot of religious people who would testify that Hawthorne's images in the Scarlet Letter are correct... that intellectual tyranny is a disease on the spirit of a community. I think these religious people want to improve things. But their efforts are viewed by others as a quest to bring back the power of the Church... to bring another inquisition.

When will freedom of thought be established well enough that we can stop being afraid of something that happened several centuries ago?
 
jeeprs
 
Reply Mon 28 Jun, 2010 06:34 am
@Arjuna,
Quote:
Has western thought for the last few centuries been shaped by a wave of emotion made of rage toward the Church


Isn't the effort to be free from religious authority one of the most important drivers of modern western philosophy? I think this is a hugely important point. And I think a lot of the consciousness of that is actually repressed so it is kind of like a complex, like a massive collective sorrow. The God Complex. Actually a better idea for a book than the wretched God Delusion.

But on the other hand, the attempt to completely deny the mystical, the metaphysical, and completely ground our understanding in the Scientific Method, is also driven by a kind of quasi-religious mentality. I personally find the effort to analyze the human psyche in terms of the workings of neurological matter utterly misguided. There are plenty of good reasons for studying neurobiology, but explaining the soul ain't one of them.
 
Arjuna
 
Reply Mon 28 Jun, 2010 08:26 am
@jeeprs,
jeeprs wrote:

Quote:
Has western thought for the last few centuries been shaped by a wave of emotion made of rage toward the Church


Isn't the effort to be free from religious authority one of the most important drivers of modern western philosophy? I think this is a hugely important point. And I think a lot of the consciousness of that is actually repressed so it is kind of like a complex, like a massive collective sorrow. The God Complex. Actually a better idea for a book than the wretched God Delusion.

But on the other hand, the attempt to completely deny the mystical, the metaphysical, and completely ground our understanding in the Scientific Method, is also driven by a kind of quasi-religious mentality. I personally find the effort to analyze the human psyche in terms of the workings of neurological matter utterly misguided. There are plenty of good reasons for studying neurobiology, but explaining the soul ain't one of them.
Exactamundo! I'm reading this book focusing on the nature of personal identity. It's written by an analytically minded dude named John Perry. I keep thinking: man you're forcing yourself to ride a tricycle when there are several Lamborghinis on your shelf. Ever heard of Jung? I have to admit, I'm still learning stuff... I've known for a long time that logic isn't my strength. I'm learning that again. But for one thing, he keeps binding personal identity to having a personal name. I want him to go down to a petting zoo and feed a sheep. Notice what happens to the importance of your human name then.

Why that sort of thing doesn't seem to register for some people is why I started thinking about it in the same terms you mentioned: a kind of analytical blindness. My first thought was that logical anaylsis is just a whole lot of fun for some people. Then I started thinking it's more than that... there's some harsher emotions on the scene... well, behind the scene.
 
manored
 
Reply Mon 28 Jun, 2010 04:30 pm
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo wrote:

On the self. Do you call your perception of another's smile the self? If so, we are probably in agreement. But most limit the self in some way. Wittgenstein argues that life and the world are one. In the same way the self and the other are one. But "self" is one of those variously deployed concepts. At times, it's convenient for us to narrow this concept down to our body or our current emotion or our property. At other moments, we forget to conjure the concept, and become absorbed in our experience.
To me, the "self" is my mind, this "place" where my thoughts happen and my senses lead to. But thinking on it now, it does seem confusing. Isnt the mind, then, just a blank sheet of paper where someone writes? Who is writing? Is the information I receive from the "external world" part of me?

Thinking like this, the "self" feels like an unreachable point, just like the beggining of the universe. Perhaps they are the same question: "Why is there something rather than nothing?"

In the end we cant sticky with any teorical concepts, we always have to come back down to what is pratical =)

Arjuna wrote:

This has been on my mind lately. A fair number of people operate with the assumption that somebody's working in a lab somewhere, and soon they'll come forward with their findings and finally establish human thought on its proper foundation of good old logic and common sense. What explains this conviction?

I'm wondering if the explanation is emotion.

Has western thought for the last few centuries been shaped by a wave of emotion made of rage toward the Church, grief about the inquisition and a longing to establish freedom of thought with the hope that if we could only learn to govern our affairs with a little intelligence, the world would be a little closer to perfection?
I think the driver is also the desire for safety. We tend to shy away from ideas that are unconfortable and stick to those who are confortable. So scientists, naturally, tend to ignore the fact of that their discoveries and teories dont have that much philosophic basis.

This reminds me of a part of one book from Douglas Adams called "Dirk Gently's Holistic detective agency". An starship enginner is so anxious to get to his destination that even though he must check if the engine needs repairs before the trip can continue or not, he is afraid of checking it and learning that it does need repairs. So he sends an eletronic monk to check the engine for him (A robot built to have the capacity of believing in something independently of the unlikelyness of the belief, used for moral raising purposes). The eletronic monk, off course, states that everything is alright and there is no reason for concern. Shortly after, the ship desintegrates =)
 
jeeprs
 
Reply Mon 28 Jun, 2010 04:42 pm
@Arjuna,
I have been investigating this question for a long time, because when I went to university, I couldn't help but notice how non-PC my naive hippie spirituality was. Nobody in philosophy could even mention the 'G' word, unless with a deprecating cough. All kinds of clever ideas had been melded into the hole where 'G' used to be. So that's why I ended up in Comparative Religion, rather than philosophy, although they have a common border.

Anyways, there is a rather good book I have read on this recently, called The Theological Origins of Modernity, by M A Gillespie. Highly illuminating historical analysis of the origins of the secular mindset. I recommend it. Also have a look at this much shorter but very important essay by Buddhist academic David Loy: http://www.dynamicdata.com.au/TerrorInHole.pdf
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Mon 28 Jun, 2010 04:53 pm
@jeeprs,
But doesn't belief in the metaphysical make us naive, delusional, and stupid?
 
 

 
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