Re: MD Is the MoQ still in the Kantosphere?

From: Sam Norton (
Date: Sat Dec 11 2004 - 22:04:06 GMT

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    Hi Joe,

    Thanks for the further thoughts. You say:

    > My professor of scholasticism 43 years ago proposed to me a theory of
    > knowledge called abstraction based on real (the object) and intentional (the
    > subject) existence. The mind is different in existence from matter. IMO the
    > 'Kantian problematic' uses this theory of abstraction proposed by Aristotle.


    > Phenomena is mind- subjective, and noumena is outside the mind-objective. I
    > accepted the abstraction theory until I read Pirsig. The MOQ proposes a
    > better explanation of knowledge, Everything is Quality.

    Can you spell out why? That is, that's exactly what I used to believe too. Now I think that there is
    a bit of a problem that needs to be looked at again - hence the essay.

    > I have not read Schleiermacher. I reacted to the quotes you proposed from
    > Grace Jantzen. I interpreted from those quotes that Schleiermacher simply
    > proposed a new faculty 'immediate consciousness or feeling'. If that is a
    > wrong interpretation I am sorry! IMO He does not deny the Kantian
    > abstraction, only that Kant didn't see deeply enough.

    I agree, but that's my point. Put differently, the 'perennial philosophy' as currently formed - and
    which Pirsig seems to subscribe to (see his note on the Copleston annotations) seems quite
    thorough-going Kantian.

    I haven't read Schleiermacher either, although I have read James, and I recognise the conceptual
    shape. I talked about Schleiermacher simply because it made the link to Kant clear, and I have a lot
    of respect for Jantzen.

    > The MOQ denies the Kantian abstraction. The mind, outside the mind split
    > occurs through evolution within the inorganic order.

    This is what I think needs to be defended more explicitly. Do you want to have a go?

    > It is your opinion that
    > 'the MOQ parallels Schleiermacher'.


    > I have a different opinion that they
    > come to a seemingly same solution from different directions.

    Well if it's the same solution then it is vulnerable to the same criticisms.

    > The 'mind' of
    > the MOQ has different characteristics, and may well be a creation of
    > 'awareness' by the Intellectual level. Scott Roberts has done yeoman work in
    > explaining Intellect/intellect. The criticisms of Schleiermacher might apply
    > to Scott's proposal, but that is bad procedure to carry criticisms across
    > metaphysical lines. The metaphysics changes the application of the
    > observation.

    I've said a lot - probably too much - about why the 'standard' conception of mind in the MoQ is

    > IMO Pirsig proposes an idealism in awareness, not in evolution.

    It's the link with idealism where the Kantian inheritance seems clearest IMHO. More broadly, I think
    the emphasis and link which Pirsig makes with empiricism (I think he says explicitly in Lila at one
    point that the MoQ is empirically based) implicitly draws on SOM, and therefore compromises the MoQ.

    > I find it interesting that 'feeling' and 'emotion' are suggested as the
    > origin of the mystical experience. IMO the awareness of evolution of the
    > social level creates an experience expressed by Struan's 'emotivism'. I
    > prefer to see the social level as order. IMO Existence determines order. I
    > find no contradiction in a mystical experience of inorganic, organic, social
    > (emotional) .........absolute, intellectual level. The absolute as creative
    > is an acceptable experience of order in the social level. It is dogma in the
    > other levels. IMO creation in the intellectual order is acceptable
    > experience as personality and awareness. Are order and creative awareness
    > different? What comes to mind is the real thing and an image of the real
    > thing. In evolution creation comes after order and is a higher level.

    Sorry, can't see the relevance of this to the point I'm making.

    > The Edge of Chaos, The Sweet Spot, has been in my thoughts, and I felt it
    > applied the experience of 'emanation' outside an evolutionary framework. To
    > me it seems 'emanation' is valuable in a line of thought that 'embodies?'
    > mystical experience in the discrimination between levels. (I didn't say that
    > bery well, but I hope you cee tyhe analogy.)

    What sort of 'mystical experience' are you assuming - that's the point of my concern.


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