Re: MD Time

From: Scott Roberts (
Date: Thu May 26 2005 - 17:30:49 BST

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    Scott said
    The phrase "intellectual convenience" presupposes the modernist, nominalist
    point of view to which I object ... The word for [creating value-based
    distinctions] is intellect.

    Ian said:
    Not sure why you say modernist, but nominalist yes - it's about
    taxonomy - choosing to name some sub-set of everything. Where you
    reject it - I say use with caution (cos it's never black and white).
    But, if I've summarised you correctly in [..] above, then we agree
    about what intellect is.

    Well, here we are at a 'tis/'taint impasse, namely, it appears that you hold
    with the modernist belief that consciousness and intellect emerged from a
    universe without them, while I reject that. Here, again, are my reasons for
    rejecting it:

    1. The irreducibility of a semiotic event (necessarily ternary: sign,
    interpretant, and referent) to some combination of non-semiotic events
    (binary, e.g., force acting on a particle).
    2. That the experience of "now" is extended in space and time, and there is
    no way that a fundamentally spatiotemporal universe could produce such an
    extended experience, given the separation in space and/or time of each
    fundamental event from every other event. Hence, given that we already know
    that color, boundaries, tones, touch are produced in the perceptive act, it
    makes sense to include space and time as also produced in the perceptive
    act. Hence, the fundamental level is eternal (non-spatiotemporal), which
    makes the modernist view untenable.
    3. (1) and (2) are, in themselves, not proofs, but just arguments or
    intuitions. However, in the experience of mystics (e.g., Plotinus, Rudolf
    Steiner, Franklin Merrell-Wollf), they are givens, not arguments. Add to
    this Barfield's arguments that the modernist consciousness is something that
    is evidentially different from pre-modern consciousness (original
    participation), and that for the pre-modern consciousness, the Intellect
    behind the wordly appearances was experienced, then one can conclude that
    modern consciousness is a stage toward further development, so what is now
    called mystical becomes normal (final participation).

    So those are my reasons. Unless you can counter them, I'll stick to them,
    and consider your position that of a poor deluded modernist.

    Ian said:
    Not sure how we got from intellect to intelligent creation. The
    intellect (of intelligent participants in the world) is simply
    classifying the messy world (out there) for pragmatic reasons - to
    live life - creatively.

    I would say we get from creativity to intellect (and value and awareness).
    Intellect creates new forms as well as classifying existing forms. You
    apparently believe in something like Northorp's "undifferentiated aesthetic
    continuum" that exists prior to classification. I would argue that that is a
    contradiction in terms, in that there is no aesthetic without

    Ian said:
    In the DQ (formless) / sq (form) split you quote
    "form is not other than formlessness, formlessness is not other than form."

    I say - is / is not - this is the doubt in my shades of grey. Things
    have form and formless aspects, but apart from intellectual
    constructions, no one thing is entirely one or the other.

    If you think LCI is a better model than MoQ - then I'd better shut up
    for a bit and read about it.

    Just for example, the LCI, recall, is a rephrasing of the age-old Buddhist
    tetralemma, which you violate above. It would go:

    One cannot say it (whatever) is form
    One cannot say it is formless
    One cannot say it is form and formless
    One cannot say it is neither form nor formless.

    So when you say "Things have form and formless aspects" you are violating
    the third horn of the tetralemma.

    Ian said:
    (Although I espouse classification - I'm very wary of the destructive
    power of the analytic knife - things fall apart in your hands under
    analysis. I prefer to be synthetic rather than analytic - to build
    something better, from the best bits of what we already have - not
    discard or destroy something because it's not 100% perfect to start
    with - ie I hope I'm a constructive pragmatist - like evolution

    Right: intellect is creative. Hence the MOQ is wrong to say that intellect
    merely "responds" to DQ. As creativity it *is* DQ/SQ.

    - Scott

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