Re: MD About Quality.

From: jhmau (
Date: Fri Feb 21 2003 - 18:40:26 GMT

  • Next message: Wim Nusselder: "Re: MD Metaphysics and Pragmatism"

    Hi Matt, Squonk and All,

    On 18 Feb 2003 at 10:41 AM "Matt the Enraged Endorphin writes:"

    > Matt:
    > But if you wanted one example of what I think I may have helpfully pointed
    > out to some people, it is that Quality is not an essence. It is an
    > anti-essence. The thought following from that is that, if metaphysics is
    > the search for essences, then we should stop doing metaphysics because we
    > will never find any essences. When Pirsig historicized Quality in Lila,
    > made explicit that Quality was an existent, he made it something that
    > evolves over time. In this way, he resembles Dewey who suggested that we
    > think of experience and nature as quasi-synonymous and that when we ask,
    > "What evolves?" we answer "experience."

    joe: i agree "Quality is not an essence." I deny essence so "anti-essence"
    seems to be tilting at windmills. My personality is contained in something.
    Be real! is a phrase I have heard. I do not know that I would call my
    trained instincts to be an essence. In some way I inform my awareness. I
    have always felt that metaphysics is knowledge on the most basic level of
    "what" we know based on "how" we know.

    Thomas Op de Coul in "Herds of Platypi?" at the end of his essay asks: "2)
    Is knowledge possible in MOQ? If it is, how? And: what does it mean in MOQ
    to know anything?"

    In a theory of knowledge which uses an instinctive sensing of reality
    instead of abstraction as its foundation, what are "words?" They are not
    the representation of the abstracted essence of an image as proposed by SOM.
    "Static Quality" is a description of what words are based on, but Persig
    does not investigate a particular difference between knowing dq or sq. A
    baby senses dq and seems to create a "pattern" to retain the experience. I
    think this "pattern" is a description of sq. The "pattern" is formed to
    "static-latch" the experience. In this sense sq follows dq. It is as
    though dq is instinctively sensed through the brain, and sq appears in my
    awareness as though it is composed of something. Can my instinct and memory
    combine to form "patterns?"

    Others teach me things. I am taught many "patterns." I then have to
    "recontextualize" to see how the patterns fit my dq instinct. In this way
    sq moves to dq. Some stories and art are so dynamic, that to change them
    ruins them. I think the story of the Tower of Babel is such a story. How
    can I "recontextualize" quality, existence, purpose? I know, I am, I act.

    Are the dimensions of the moral orders instinctively sensed by a baby or are
    they the result of training the instincts to observe more closely? I would
    say that the dimensions between moral orders are instinctively sensed, and
    the instincts have to be trained to look for them. My memory compares
    different experiences and remembers the differences? Many "patterns" in my
    awareness are lopsided, for my awareness is as individual as my fingerprint.
    For example, I do not think it is moral to war. My instinct can be trained
    to increase my awareness.

    Is ritual a form of training? Ritual seems to be an action. I stretch my
    instinct to apprehend the meaning of a ritual. I form an intellectual
    awareness "pattern." "Intellectual awareness" is not a growth in evolution
    but simply a realization that my machine has worn down exposing worn parts.
    I know they are worn since they don't work as well as they did historically.
    I have to pay attention to them so that I don't make mistakes. Also there
    is more to experience. When I pay attention it is easier to train my
    instincts. Of course, some instincts I simply ignore. Unfortunately when I
    pay attention, I sense only what I focus on. I miss the context, and I am


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