RE: MD Irrationality

From: Kevin (
Date: Wed Sep 18 2002 - 20:19:35 BST


Recall that Pirsig set criteria for truth in Chapter 8:

"The tests of truth are logical consistency, agreement with experience,
and economy of explanation. The Metaphysics of Quality satisfies
these." (8)

So I don't think that one is precluded from "transcending to the next
higher level" (whatever that may be) by sticking to these criteria. At
least there's no suggestion from Pirsig to that effect that I know of.
Islamic societies haven't evolved to the intellectual level and thus
closed all discussion of truth criteria as you rightly point out. Modern

societies depending on scientific criteria for establishing truth
positivism) are within the MOQ paradigm (as shown in the quote from
Chap. 5) and are unlike Islam in that they are more open to changing
their notions of truth when presented with new evidence. Pirsig praises
science for its "eraser," its standard of provisional truth. (Science
other problems, but that's another story.)


With all respect, I find that you consistantly ignore the part about
"agreement with experience".

As Matt has so eloquently articulated, the position of Rorty and
pragmatism is that "experience" is not ahistorical and never can be,
n'est-ce pas?

Appeals to building shared vocabulary and solidarity are exactly the
exercise necessariy to define the "experience" that we must compare our
ideas with.

You would rescue "individual freedom" from "selfish solidarity", but
isn't this just Anarchy and Social Darwinism at it's basest form or pure
Egoism at it's highest? Shouldn't the "experience" by which we measure
an Idea for Quality be as inclusive and collective as possible?

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