RE: MD Lila's Child (Bo's metaphysics part 1)

From: Paul Turner (
Date: Sat Aug 09 2003 - 17:18:29 BST

  • Next message: David Buchanan: "RE: MD Intellectually Nowhere"

    Hi Bo

    > I think the weakness of this argument lies in the use of speculative
    > interpretation of historical events and psychology as a premise for
    > your argument instead of empirical experience.

    If we aren't to talk about the past, because it's "speculative" the rest

    This is true, which is why I stated that there is merit in inventing
    history and prehistory (both of which I am interested in!)

    My criticism is that you first describe a time of which we have no
    empirical experience (correct me if I'm wrong) based on assumptions
    which purposely support your S/O thesis; then you take that DESCRIPTION
    as a premise to reach an inducted conclusion to "prove" your thesis.
    Logically speaking, induction begins with empirical premises, not
    hypothetical descriptions; otherwise we can "prove" anything. If there
    is an empirical basis for the "social level era" please share it with

    > When the levels are seen primarily as "real" epochs with a definite
    > historical "cut-over", the intellectual "epoch" is often described as
    > beginning in ancient Greece with the emergence of Greek philosophy. It
    > seems counter-intuitive that, up until the time of the ancient Greek
    > philosophers, people did not think; therefore Pirsig's definition of
    > intellect as "simply thinking" and "the same as mind" doesn't make
    > sense. One common solution to this is to redefine the intellectual
    > level and to introduce the notion of "social level mind" or "social
    > level thinking". This then restricts "intellectual thinking" to
    > substance based philosophy, reason, science and logic, as that is the
    > thinking which seems to have started in Greece.

    My only "speculation" is making the social epoch sound like Eden and
    intellect as an expulsion, otherwise I can't see that you have
    undermined it at all, and I am most pleased with your observations
    that in such a view the intellectual "epoch" starts with the Greeks, and

    it also looks as if you see the efforts to counter it as futile. Great!

    My statement was that "the intellectual "epoch" is often described as
    beginning in ancient Greece". I personally deny the metaphysical
    requirement for any such view to validate the MOQ definitions. I think
    that each level of value can be verified by experience here and now by
    anyone regardless of when we may speculate the levels "emerged". The
    definition of the MOQ levels from empirical experience comes first, then
    the interpretation of events or theories, such as Darwinism.

    2. "METAPHYSICS IS REALITY" argument.
    Me prev (to Rick).:
    > "Here we go again about the map metaphor. Is there a terrain that the
    > SOM and the MOQ are maps over? In my opinion not, a metaphysics IS the
    > ultimate reality and we end up in the infinite regress problem here
    > unless that is heeded."

    > By equating metaphysics with ultimate reality, you equate metaphysics
    > with Quality. As Quality is the empirical SOURCE of everything,
    > including metaphysics, metaphysics logically comes AFTER Quality, and
    > as such, cannot be synonymous, otherwise there would be no need to
    > make a distinction. You are postulating a Metaphysics of Metaphysics.

    I quit the map argument with Rick because I lost the tread and am not
    sure if I'm able to pick it up again, but in LC it takes this form:
    maintains that all is human experience (#37) which is as obvious as
    that all we say are words, but in #102 he says that DQ is outside it.
    You and Rick will say that this is the proof of the
    from-the-map argument, while I maintain that as DQ solely appears in
    the MOQ it means that the MOQ is no (integrated) intellectual pattern.
    Here we are on different premises.

    I wouldn't call DQ a terrain, Dynamic Quality is immediately apprehended
    and eludes intellectual description. A metaphysics is primarily an
    intellectual organisation of static experience, as such I'm not a fan of
    the map-terrain metaphor either, but to use it anyway, I think the only
    terrain that could be "mapped" is the differentiated, static quality.
    Even then, I think the mapping itself alters the terrain.

    Also, the Buddhist doctrines of Nagarjuna, Harivarman and Vasubandhu
    postulated philosophies which attempt to convey the relationship of
    Dynamic Quality to static quality over a thousand years ago.

    3. "MOQ IS NOT JUST A THOUGHT" argument

    > Paul:
    > I think you make this argument because you have misinterpreted
    > Pirsig's statement. Pirsig is stating that the main danger to the MOQ
    > is when S/O thinking tries to encase Quality and declare it to be
    > exclusively in objects or exclusively in thoughts, when it is prior to
    > and fundamental to both. Remember the "dilemma" in ZMM?

    It is the ZMM dilemma I remember when saying that "...defining
    intellect as "thinking" ...etc." becomes the very same danger that
    Pirsig warns against. If it is the "O" part you miss it follows suit
    the rest of the levels "objective".

    MOQ as a "thought" is a problem for an idealist in that the mind is the
    ultimate reality, but in the MOQ the thought is a static pattern of
    Quality which is secondary to Dynamic Quality. Thus, the MOQ idea is
    pre-intellectually "selected" aesthetically from an infinite number of
    potential explanations and is validated primarily by the intellectual
    harmony it produces whilst not being the "ultimate reality" itself. As
    such, solipsism is avoided.



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