Thursday, October 28, 2010


Reading Aristotle, Organon, De Interpretatione is like reading computer code at the machine level, the code, e.g., in CMOS. Not that there aren't nuggets that jump out at me, like, "knowledge is always knowledge of some thing." Knowledge is limited to what is perceptible. Perceptible means that which is delivered by the five senses. This precept is well known and it dovetails nicely with Protagoras' "man is the measure of all things," also. It is the basic tenet of my epistemology.

He goes on to the conclusion "...that necessity and its absence are the initial principles of existence and non-existence, and that all else must be posterior to these." He then states "It is plain from what has been said that that which is of necessity is actual. Thus, if that which is eternal is prior, actuality also is prior to potentiality." I think he is in this building up to his later concept of entelechy which doctrine I have adapted to my own philosophy and have written of previously in this space. I have an idea that the Universe is infinitely malleable, which idea, I think, has its roots in the principles stated here. My notion that the Real is akin to a fractal, I think, is also bound up in these concepts. It is infinitely self-inventing, and every instantiation increases and enriches the pregnancy for ensuing evolution. All that will ever be is already actual in the "beginning" even though all that will ever be is an elaboration on the infinite stream of prior instances. Every new instance is a new beginning and a new boundary for the new. Every new instantiation is an elaboration of its predecessor. And, our heavens are self made as are our hells. It's all about individual responsibility and self-reliance. Belief in nothing gets you just that.

Here it all is in the language of mathematics:

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Original Sin

Genesis. They ate of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. This was forbidden them. What does it mean? The original sin is putting knowledge above faith. Man's knowledge is his alone and is limited and incomplete. A wise man is full of doubt and in that way keeps an open mind. The fool projects himself, and incidentally closes his mind, on the whole of creation; he takes the place of God. The bigger fool claims ownership of God, of the creative force or principle. Atheism is such a claim. It is the projection of the finite onto the infinite. While the whole of creation might be a kind of apotheosis, this can go horribly wrong. The beginning of true understanding is realizing that knowledge is always limited, always dependent on anthropomorphic modes of measurement. The biblical "knowledge that surpasseth understanding" is a way of stating this principle. It is got to by going into the "upper room." In another tradition, Raja Yoga, this meditative practice is described as focusing the breath between the eyebrows. What results is the discovery, ultimately an action of the unknown, that the "kingdom of heaven is within you." It is not a destination. And, the journey IS the destination. The journey IS the apotheosis, the transfiguration of existential mass into self-realized spirit. One might say that we exist so that "God" can have self experience. When we live within the guidance of virtue, Greek arete, our lives are conducive to its various components, such as beauty, truth, wisdom, courage, compassion, liberty, and love. These are like petals of a flower; the flowering of self-realized spirit. The end within, entelechy, is endless, the universe infinitely malleable. If you believe in nothing, that's likely what you'll get. Faith is the key. Knowledge without understanding is the bondage.