Sunday, July 22, 2012

Is there an Apriori Realm? Existentialism, Essence, and Existence

We must not, therefore, wonder whether we really perceive a world, we must instead say: the world is what we perceive.
M. Merleau-Ponty

Perception…. is the background from which all things stand out.
M. Merleau-Ponty

More Merleau-Ponty: "….doubt….could never finally tear us away from truth. …in so far as we talk about illusion, it is because we have identified illusions, and done so solely in the light of some perception which at the same time gave assurance of its own truth. We are in the realm of truth and it is the experience of truth which is self evident. The experience of truth is self evident. To seek to ground this in a more pervasive claim, such as Descartes’ doctrine of doubt, would prove unfaithful to my experience of the world; one should be looking for what makes that experience possible instead of looking for what it is. The self evidence of perception is not adequate thought or apodeictic self-evidence. The world is not what I think, but what I live through."

To be limited is in turn to be a limit because it is not possible to say which defines a thing/limit more, its definition of itself or its definition in the terms of that which it limits.

Consciousness I see as non ego and if I am only conscious then I am living in the original image of man in the the world, i.e., everything is equally conscious. The advent of ego awareness makes consciousness ‘mine’ but not really because ‘I am of the universe’ and to say something is ‘mine’ is therefore absurd, tautological - it says the universe owns itself.

If consciousness is truly passive it can’t be affected. It is the background –as passive- for change, and change appears intelligible by virtue of the passiveness of the illuminating nature of consciousness.

So the void (consciousness) is like a mirror that stands, as it were, ‘behind’ the ego and functions as a perfect mirror – it reflects (illuminates) absolutely indiscriminately and equally whatever is immediate to the ego. And since the void is infinite, consciousness will be the same for any possible ego, i.e., infinite.

Since consciousness is coextensive with the void then an explanation of consciousness in physical terms would be an explanation of vacuum in physical terms, i.e., there is nothing physical about it.

By virtue of the infinite quality of consciousness I can abstract my “self’ and go, with abstraction, anywhere to do anything. That is to say, I can ‘picture’ in my mind the configuration of the sun, moon, from above/outside. I can visualize being outside, at an almost infinite distance, the whole cosmic reality, seeing the ALL as a mere luminous dot/unity. I had this dream/experience/vision while a child.  Must I not have already been there in some sort of way to do this?

Valence: clinging by vectors/same energy levels/inclination/tendency

People participating in religious, artistic, musical, scientific, etc. activities participate in a movement of mind/matter spread over space and time. The direction of these endeavors depends on the valencies of the participating people, in their thinking and doing being combined in a total historical movement, e.g., communism, etc. How can the world shake these patterns? How can we be free of harmful tendencies/habits? Just by seeing and doing….?

..and again how does one articulate in a vacuum? Easy! Out of an utter sense of newness, freshness, vitality, and the assurance that nothing whatever is in our way, finally speaking. We will go wherever our inclination takes us. The only choice we have is how we will be inclined. And isn’t that just seeming as well?

At the center of all inclination/intention is the thirst for the real. This is irreducible…..and untouchable in the sense that you can’t see yourself, who and what exactly you are without first relaxing the process generating that end. This is the first thing, the beginning of true life. This is the state of vulnerability. It is where the first and last risks are taken. If you learn properly to take a risk, if you can relax to a deep enough level, you can act on what you see laid out before you with certainty and precision. You know your acts go to their mark, because you have seen everything there is to be seen.

Repeated acts are volitional to their own repetition. Deeds of a kind attract, ergo, bad doing equates to bad company; ergo, its possible to attract “higher beings” good and bad.  Every "doing" generates and is sustained by its own spirit/life force.  Go once to charity or love or compassion and it is easier to do so again.  The same is true for the opposite.  Spirits grows by participation.

Whatever is, whether one or many, participates in the Real. This participation provides one commonality. Allow that it may be that the only way objects can appear to be separate is in part because they really are not.

Our own perceptions are among the class of external objects as well as ideas, knowledge, sensation, etc.

Consciousness is primordial, I think. In the sense that it is a universal principle that the “One” should be awakened as we awaken (to our godliness), “God” rises to self consciousness in human awareness; on the emergence of sentience.

About gestalt versus sequential views of the Real: Perhaps some see the universe as a gestalt, perhaps a very young child, for instance, but “man” sees the same universe in terms of sequential images in his vain attempt to rationalize with propositional relations what Camus calls the absurd realm, that realm outside our consciousness. To accomplish this ominous task would presume the necessity, and even the possibility, of placing in one to one correlation, an abstract, verbal (or mathematical) proposition with every atomic proposition and every possible combination of all atomic propositions. Our universe will probably be approaching inclusion in this particular pulse of its symbiotic, onomatopoeic existence. Man should recognize, as a pragmatic fact, that the universe is a tautology and that each thing that is will continue to be, only in different space and time. Man should learn, therefore, to function temporally, but from an eternal perspective… Strive to see the whole instead of its nebulous parts as the ground of reality.

Existentialism has two schools. The christian school of Jaspers, Marcel and the Atheist one of Sartre, Heidegger.

Atheistic existentialists have in common the belief that existence precedes essence or that subjectivity is the starting point.

Your Christian existentialist holds that production precedes existence. To build the first table the artisan had to have conceived its image, its essence, before setting to work. God is considered a superior sort of artisan.

And again, the atheist view is that man is the only being in which existence precedes essence. Consciousness precedes thought, for instance. Man appears, defines himself and all other things. He makes himself what he is, as the essence he defines is, by a necessity of language, subjectivity. He is responsible for himself and, at the same time, all other men.

Say that man is chained to human subjectivity, this is the essential meaning of existentialism. By choosing his own will man chooses mankind's will as he always picks the good over the evil. There is not an apriori realm, and there is nothing for man to cling to either within or without himself.  When clinging arises wisdom is shut out.

Those unfortunates who spend their lives waiting on God sadly miss the point that God is waiting on them.  Many live in hope of getting a better gig in "heaven".  Really, we already have a gig in heaven.