Another Philosophical Stab At Philosophy

I’m going to take another stab at talking about something strictly philosophical. It has to do with the previous post, The repost of seven ways to read philosophy with my commentary of how I read philosophy, how I go about it.

I’m going to give you the philosophy behind my reading of philosophy.

I am going to attempt to describe and give an example of the difference between what one is able to do, compared to what is being done.

Take the example of a philosophical work. It doesn’t matter what it is, I am going to read this philosophical work so I can understand it.

The first way that I can go about this has to do with what I am able to do as a human being that is involved with consciousness in someway. It doesn’t matter how we define consciousness because no matter how I would define it you are already understanding implicitly what consciousness is; that is to say, regardless of if we have the same definition, I may use of the word “consciousness” and you implicitly understand something of the nature of what I’m talking about. Just as if I say “dog”. “Rock” or “el hermano”

Any argument which would propose something different, as though you don’t understand what I mean by the word consciousness, is a contradiction. For, you would have no basis from which to ask me what ‘consciousness’ meant, or more precisely, what I mean by ‘consciousness’, if you did not already have an understanding of what it meant. But further; if we both already did not have a common understanding of what ‘consciousness’ means, we would not be able to have any conversation about what you mean or what I mean. Hence, I’m not beginning a philosophical conversation about what each of us might mean by consciousness, I am merely drawing upon the fact that we both already understand what it means. If you absolutely don’t understand what “consciousness” means, then you have simply to go find out. It doesn’t matter what definition you have because if indeed you are talking about consciousness, you must be talking about consciousness. If you are using the word consciousness but you were actually talking about the moon, then you would not actually be talking about consciousness, by the sheer fact that indeed you were talking about the moon. Again, it doesn’t matter what argument you make about all the possibilities involved in whatever you would want to talk about, because you would be relying upon the fact that I already understand what you were talking about in order to make the argument about how it is relative, how we make our own meaning, how symbols are arbitrary, etc.

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So here I go. I pick up a philosophical writing and I am going to be involved in understanding it.

I start to read it and I begin to notice that it is somewhat difficult to understand what this person, the author, is saying.

It is at this point in this philosophical essay that I make a notice to what consciousness is able to do.

Because the reader is involved with consciousness in someway, regardless of what way we are defining it, the reader is able to slow down and analyze word by word, clause by clause, sentence by sentence, put together and construct the meaning out of the text what the author is trying to say. My point here is entirely that people are able to do this.

My question would be, how am I able to be able to do this? From where is the contents of any piece of text taken from or located? Is it in my mind? Is it in the other persons mind, the author’s mind and she is bestowing or infusing the contents of the text (somehow ) into the symbols themselves such that the content can there by be extruded from the text, from the symbol, by the reader?

My question has to do with where the idea resides. Does it reside in some sort of energy or some sort of ethereal space between two individuals, such that each individual can summon and motivate particular energies that traverse the space between individuals? What is occurring that one person can have an idea and it can be moved across space such that another person can have the same idea, the idea which the first person has?

I’m just gonna leave that sit for a little bit. And while it’s sitting, I’m going to place that little tidbit of being “able” beside it. Indeed there is some ability going on, something that we can call an ‘ability’ that has something to do with what we are calling ‘consciousness’. And this ability has to do with me, or the reader, being able to dive deep, do a close reading, a close analysis of a text to find out what exactly the author is saying.

I make notice of an ability, to draw a distinction between what can actually occur despite ability, which is to say, accounting for that ability.

Again, making reference to the previous post about ways to go about reading Philosophy, The way that I read philosophy is that I start reading it, and if I don’t understand it I might take a few minutes and see if it starts to resonate after 5-10 or 20 pages, and if it doesn’t, I make no effort to try and understand it at all. In fact I set the book aside, and I come back to it at some random time in the future whether it be a few days a few weeks sometimes even years go by. De facto, I am not able to understand it.

So I pick up a different book, and I continue in this process until I find a book that poses Philosophy that is easy for me to understand. It takes no effort, and actually it is quite astounding as I’m reading it that I understand intuitively what the Philosopher is saying so easily.

I read that book, it makes perfect sense. I didn’t have to try to understand it, indeed I could say that I was not able to understand it, but I just understood it automatically.

I do this over and over again with different books. Some books make no sense to me at all and I set them inside. Other books make absolute instant sense to me, or with maybe some effort of pushing through then suddenly makes sense to me, say after 10 or 20 pages usually. It is through this method that I then go back eventually to encounter those first books that I did not understand, and often enough at some point I suddenly understand them as clear as day.

 I call this latter approach an encounter with what is already being done. And it is consistent with what Heidegger calls the work of art, as indeed the answer to the question of the “in-itself”, in response to the critique of pure reason and practical reason, among many other “impossible tasks”, that is: if we have indeed yet begun to think. 

But as well, we come to answer the question and solve the debate around Plato and his “remembrance”. 

Yet, We are totally able to continue the debate!

I’m just not sure that gets us anywhere. 😆. It might, but I’m not sure.

Are you sure? xx

Repost: Mark Solms’ theory of consciousness

I recently finished Mark Solms’ new book, The Hidden Spring: A Journey to the Source of Consciousness. There were a few surprises in the book, and it…

Mark Solms’ theory of consciousness

—- I am posting this mostly because anything that has to do with proposals about consciousness I am interested in and I feel like other people are probably interested in them.

also because this is like a bookmark for ideas that I want to come back to. I don’t know if I ever will, but at least I have this bookmark. And this guy and his book in this post has a link to the website where it has a bunch of other interesting articles on the various aspects of consciousness and neuroscience.

One in particular that I’ll mention: subjectivity and objectivity is not the same as subjectivity and object oriented ontology.

At least so far as my work is concerned with orientation upon objects, and that I only use Graham Harmons object oriented ontology as a sort of backstop from which I can begin to talk about Orientation, The idea of the subject and the object, I argue, I am beginning to argue, is based in phenomenology.

In short, everything empirical is all good for the modern religion, Be at phenomenology, which is self is an argument about empiricism, I support for it, or empirical science.

so when I read about neurology and about consciousness having to do with the brain and everything, it is difficult for me to read these as authority. Because I see that they are relying heavily upon phenomenology as the basis of such neurology empirical science.

In my work I’m beginning to develop this in the context of truth as opposed to reality. And this is to say that, first we have to understand the opposition as a unity, as an assumed unity, before we begin to really be able to contemplate the truth of the matter.

Anyways… Enjoy!!! 

x

The Meaning of All Things

I just stumbled upon the meaning of all things, life, living, the universe, absence, presence, totality, partiality, relativity, etcetera. The whole of everything that can possibly mean anything is represented in the following statement:

If I liked wearing scrubs, then I would’ve become a surgeon.”

Any meaning that can be come upon in any situation is represented in that phrase. The entirety of history, all recorded thinking and philosophies, every science and fantasy.

that is it.

Psychological Flexibility and Psychedelic Therapy

This was originally published on EntheoNation. It’s been said in a number of different ways, perhaps for as long as psychedelics have been around: …

Psychological Flexibility and Psychedelic Therapy

————- “We teach flexibility over rigid Ness.”

Lately, many people have been pondering the notion that mental issues and mental disorders Are brought about due to A fixed set of ideas of how things are supposed to be.

The most rigid of these ideas is what we know of as identity. The mechanism is not often easily understood, simply because we as human beings tend to consolidate this sense of self, this “I” as indeed “me” which is the locus whereby thoughts, emotions, and actions coalesce necessarily.

It is from this center of self, so to speak, from which then we assume to be able to negotiate or somehow compensate for what the world gives us. In essence, we are constantly reifying the notion that there is a self as opposed to the world, and so if something isn’t going correctly it’s either something that is wrong with me, or something that is wrong with the world.

The newer kind of approach breaks from this fixed ontological ideal.

At first, we tend to approach it from the outside. We tend not to approach from this “fixed center”. Because typically human beings are pretty much locked into this notion of real truth. And so millimeter by millimeter, layer by layer, we tend to try and work from the outside in to hopefully allow the “dysfunction” or the “issue” to resolve itself fundamentally, which is to say that the “innermost self” will flex a little bit, will change a little bit of it substance such that the issue will lessen or go away.

Upon the action of psychedelics, it seems this rigid fixed center might be more readily available and open to an understanding of itself that is less concrete, less attached to other aspects it encounters and draws into its orbit in order to create identity.

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The problem with a dip in productivity due to working from home

There is no problem. That is, a dip in productivity is against the idea that “we“ are in a race to get somewhere.

I’ve already dipped my Kierkegaardian cards. He asks, “where is everybody going so fast?”

First, where are we going? Where are “we” going? Where is humanity trying to get to? What are we trying to accomplish? Why?

Who is this “we”?

And I find myself asking that question for probably since I’ve been an adult. Does anyone ever ask why we have to get everything done so quickly? What are we trying to do?

Does anyone ever ask these questions?

What is being educated if no one ever considers or even thinks about these kinds of questions?



Essential Alcohol part 2

Think about it a moment…

Yes. There was Failed Prohibition in the early 20th century US. Why did it fail ?

… actually take this moment and think about the reason why liquor stores Are considered an essential business and are allowed to stay open.

And think about it’s because that people would freak out without their alcohol.

The reason why they are keeping the liquor stores open is because people would freak out if they were closed, and this is to say, that they would freak out if they could not have their alcohol.

And then think about those people —

You ask a person who drinks or smokes pot if they are addicted to it. What is their usual answer?

No. I’m not addicted to it, I just like it. I just want to do it.

And I’m not talking about alcoholics or chronic drug addicts here. I am talking about your regular run-of-the-mill person who works in a come home and they may have a couple beers or a glass of wine or a scotch after work.

Or the people who smoke pot recreationally.

These people will tell you they could take it or leave it but that they choose to partake.

Then the pertinent insignificant question is why is drinking alcohol and smoking pot Essential?

If they are not addicted then why do they not just not drink and not smoke pot?

Without going into the equivocal answers which really makes no sense when you think about it even a small amount…

When you think about society you have to come to the inevitable conclusion that everything that we think is rational and civilized is based on a huge number of people who are addicted to being intoxicated.

And that is the fact of the matter despite what anyone would want to say to argue the contrary. Because the only argument that one could make to the contrary it would be that it’s not making my life bad or it’s not interfering in me being able to support my family or etc.

So basically what they are saying that if I have enough cocaine and I can go to work every day and support my family and put food on the table then I am not addicted to cocaine.

Or we could say that the 1015 years of someone who is a heroin addict where they can hold a job and maybe they sell drugs on the side and they support themselves and pay rent and everything looks perfectly fine on the outside, that those people are not actually addicted because they are functioning well.

And despite what ignorance would want to imagine the contrary, there are many people who are addicted to intravenous heroin use who function quite well for a long time in society.

I wonder if the coronavirus epidemic will allow humanity to become a little bit more honest with themselves.

No Judgement. I am not saying alcoholism or drug addiction is necessarily bad. I am only pointing out facts that often people will want to wash away as not factual, ie. An opinion.

Maybe take a moment and ponder the history of White historicism’s turn toward the discrediting of moral facts.

But that is a Philosophicalexploration for another post.

Exhibit of Mental Health Compromised by Covid-19 Measures

apple.news/AheduBnEkSHaCcGnkhSGQ9w

This references the video posted on the Huffington article. And the protests in general.

Trump supporters Protest the stay at home orders.

It seems to me the only sensible way to view these protests is through the lens of mental health.

I do not think it is reasonable to say that these people are not intelligent or stupid or to politicize their behavior in anyway. It is not merely that they are Trump supporters; Rather, by not being a leader, Trump is taking advantage of a compromised community. Trump looks for those who are already weak and then takes advantage of them for his own profit. 

The reason why the protesters are behaving this way is because they are emotionally upset and are not able to deal with their emotions in a constructive way.

Of course they are emotionally upset. Of course their lives are being affected in a terrible way due to the virus. Their responses are perfectly reasonable in the sense of being upset and not knowing what to do, and so they act out. They are justifiably angry and scared, yet the coronavirus is an uncontrollable force of nature, and so instead of coming to terms with their relationship to this force and come together with the rest of humanity, They pull back and blame and lash out at what is around them. it’s pretty much a panic response. It is almost a textbook maxim of mental health problems.

They are unable to see the truth of the matter because, One could say and in a manner of speaking, they did not have a good mental hygiene.

 

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The Gift

on the non-fixity of world identity.

It is not a definitive world by which reality is understood as a singular and fixed truththat is significant. The various opinions, attitudes and mentalities based in subjective meaning upon the stable ground of reality are not the issue.  Rather, it is the relationship that we have with things which is truly significant. 

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I had a moment with a young individual today.

I don’t know how it is in the rest of the world, but in the US it is a strange kind of trend of adolescents who are depressed to self harm. I don’t know if this is a global thing but I know it is a United States thing.

It seems that there is a rash of depressed and or anxious young people who, lacking any particular sharp tool, such as a razor blade or perhaps a knife, will scratch themselves in one place with their own fingernail, often short, until The skin finally breaks and a wound develops. They will continue to scratch that one place longer and wider until some unknown threshold is achieved and then they will produce another one right next to it, often parallel and sometimes in squared or triangular designs. And they will do this, many of them, until their arms are covered with these kind of burn sores. When you get a bunch of these children together, it is at once striking and at the same time strangely of no concern; for in part, one might be just as inclined to wonder why a group of kids will start smoking tobacco or in our current situation, vaping. One has to admit there is a certain amount of fad or trend or whatever you would want to call it. Because anxiety and depression does not necessarily mean that you have to self harm, and indeed when I was young there was many kids my age, many who were depressed or had problematic families who were friends of mine, who never thought of self harming in the way that seems so trendy and ubiquitous for our children nowadays. It is sad and strange.

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My intention for this post was not to discuss the philosophical fixtures of mental health theories or to offer any sort of help necessarily to these young people.

I really brought it up because this one person I was talking to today used to self harm, and then stopped for a couple years and only recently had started again because of some sort of life event that was triggering.

This person was also depressed but having more issues with anxiety. I was talking to this person and they happen to mention how they are not suicidal because their best friend had committed suicide a few years prior, so they never contemplate killing themselves.

It struck me how they said this so matter-of-factly, for it is common with people who suffer from great and long lasting general anxiety as well as depression to have to also battle with intrusive suicidal thoughts.

And I said to this person:

You know, that’s kind of amazing, in a strange way, when you think about it. What you just said…

Your best friend died? I said.

And so you never think about killing yourself, you simply don’t have thoughts about killing yourself? I said.

Then I said, you know, in a strange way, your friend gave you a gift, for he gave you a reason to live.

And this person began to slowly tear up, as I did also, with compassion in my heart.

They were looking down but then they kind of looked up at me through the tops of their eyes and gave a sleight little smile On top of that kind of frown that you get when there’s a deep hurt that just quickly surged to the surface, when your face can’t help but strain into an childish ugly grimace. A kind of embarrassment and yet of connection.

Yeah; maybe… they said.



Sometimes we need a different way to look at things. Sometimes we can hold what seems as two opposing sentiments for the sake of at once mourning and yet celebrating, missing and yet respecting.  and yet, sometimes when we see it, it seems so obvious. Like, why didn’t I think of that.

I think some of it may be not so much that this person didn’t think of that, but they did not allow themselves to think of it because of the polemically reductive fashion by which we arrive with our ethical selves to the encounter with the world. We are often not permitted to think but in specific ways about specific things.

Often we just hold the sadness a certain way because we think that’s the only way that sadness is allowed to be, holding it so dear that we fear that person is going to be disrespected, as if it is this supremely fragile thing. Whereas actually it could be a source of the most profound strength and Resilliance. 

The modern ideological and ethical sense sometimes misleads us into seeing tragedy as one way, into what Kierkegaard calls the “either/or”, which is the mentality of fixation, of limit, of finitude. 

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How much does my identity depend upon this either/or reduction towards self and world, as if indeed they either have to be 100% intertwined and subjective, or 100% separate, psychological and objective?

Maybe the relationship changes under various conditions.  maybe it is both.