Thursday, November 21, 2019

Gifford Lectures

On this blog, I've long kept a list of Gifford Lectures and a project of reading them. But it's surprisingly difficult to compile and keep an adequate list of them. The usual lists are those of Davidson and Jaki; both are imperfect even for the time they cover, and, of course, they only do the Lectures up to the time they made their list. Sometimes it's uncertain whether a lecturer who was appointed actually lectured; sometimes it's uncertain whether a book they published actually gives the content of their Gifford Lectures, rather than just being a work they published after them. In addition, some lectures get published versions immediately; some slowly; some (like Daube's, which were only recently published) long after the death of the lecturer, which adds an additional complication. The published versions also may or may not share the same title as their lectures. So I was not hugely surprised to read ombhurbhuva's post on Paton's Gifford Lectures and realized that it wasn't on any of my lists, although it is listed on the Gifford Lectures website. Given this, and since I've read a few more since 2016, when I last updated, and also have read Mildred Cranston's comments on the older list, it's time for an update.

The Gifford Lectures are one of the most prestigious honors in the philosophical world. Provided for at four Scottish universities by Lord Gifford in his will after his death in 1887, they are intended to be broadly popular lectures on subjects relevant to natural theology (in the broad sense of the term) and the foundations of ethics, and lecturers can lecture on any topic of their choice as long as it has some kind of relevance to those topics. The general expectation is that the lectures will themselves serve as a foundation of a book on the same topic.

Bold indicates that I have read it; ambiguous cases (e.g., I've only read parts, or don't remember if I actually read it), I have simply not bolded. * indicates that, for whatever reason, I have it on my own shelves. If you notice any omissions or errors, let me know; there are definitely gaps in the past decade for them all, and Edinburgh's tendency over the past years to divide up the lectures have made it exponentially more difficult to keep track. There is a great deal of confusion about dates for Gifford Lectures, because some sources give year of appointment, some year of delivery, and some year of publication. In addition, sometimes the dates in the sources turn out to be impossible.

1888-1890 J. H. Stirling, Philosophy and Theology
1890-1892 G. G. Stokes, Natural Theology
1892-1893 O. Pfleiderer, Philosophy and Development of Religion
1894-1896 A. C. Fraser, Philosophy of Theism
1896-1898 C. P. Tiele, Elements of the Science of Religion, Volume I; Volume II
1900-1902 W. James, *The Varieties of Religious Experience
1903-1904 H. M. Gwatkin, The Knowledge of God and Its Historical Development
1905-1906 S. S. Laurie, On God and Man
1908-1909 R. Flint
1909-1910 W. W. Fowler, The Religious Experience of the Roman People
1910-1912 B. Bosanquet, The Principle of Individuality and Value ; The Value and Destiny of the Individual
1913-1914 H. Bergson
1915-1916 W. M. Ramsay, Asianic Elements in Greek Civilization
1919-1921 G. F. Stout, Mind and Matter, God and Nature
1921-1923 A. Pringle-Pattison, The Idea of God in the Light of Recent Philosophy ; The Idea of Immortality
1926-1927 A. S. Eddington, The Nature of the Physical World
1927-1928 A. N. Whitehead, *Process and Reality
1928-1929 J. Dewey, The Quest for Certainty
1930-1931 N. Soderblom, *The Living God
1932-1934 E. R. Bevan, Symbolism and Belief ; Holy Images
1934-1935 A. Schweitzer
1937-1938 C. S. Sherrington, Man on His Nature
1938-1940 R. Niebuhr, *The Nature and Destiny of Man
1940-1941 O. Kraus
1947-1949 C. Dawson, Religion and Culture ; Religion and the Rise of Western Culture
1949-1950 N. Bohr
1950-1952 C. E. Raven, Natural Religion and Christian Theology
1952-1953 A. J. Toynbee, An Historian's Approach to Religion
1954-1955 R. Bultmann, History and Eschatology
1956-1957 A. Farrer, The Freedom of Will
1957-1959 W. Kohler
1959-1960 R. D. Maclennan
1961-1962 J. Baillie, The Sense of the Presence of God
1962-1964 D. Daube, *The Deed and the Doer in the Bible; *Law and Wisdom in the Bible
1964-1966 D. M. Mackinnon
1966-1968 H. D. Lewis, The Elusive Mind ; The Elusive Self ; Freedom and Alienation
1968-1970 W. H. F. Barnes
1970-1971 E. L. Mascall, The Openness of Being
1971-1973 PANEL (A. Kenny, H. C. Longuet-Higgins, and C. H. Waddington) The Nature of Mind ; The Development of Mind
1973-1974 O. Chadwick, The Secularization of the European Mind
1974-1976 S. L. Jaki, The Road of Science and the Ways to God
1976-1977 J. P. Jossua, Pierre Bayle ou l'obsession du mal
1977-1979 J. C. Eccles, The Human Mystery ; The Human Psyche
1979-1980 N. R. Smart, Beyond Ideology
1980-1981 S. H. Nasr, Knowledge and the Sacred
1981-1982 I. Murdoch, *Metaphysics as a Guide to Morals
1982-1983 D. Daiches, God and the Poets
1983-1984 M. A. Arbib and M. Hesse, The Construction of Reality
1984-1985 J. Moltmann, God in Creation
1985-1986 P. Ricoeur, Oneself as Another
1986-1987 J. H. Hick, An Interpretation of Religion
1987-1988 A. MacIntyre, *Three Rival Versions of Moral Enquiry
1988-1989 R. Panikkar, The Rhythm of Being
1989-1990 M. Douglas; M. Midgley, Science as Salvation
1990-1991 J. Barr, Biblical Faith and Natural Theology
1991-1992 A. Schimmel, Deciphering the Signs of God
1992-1993 M. Nussbaum, Upheavals of Thought
1993-1994 J. Polkinghorne, Faith of a Physicist
1995-1996 G. A. Cohen, If You're an Egalitarian, How Come You're So Rich?
1996-1997 R. Sorabji, Emotion and Peace of Mind
1997-1998 H. R. Roston III, Genes, Genesis, and God
1998-1999 C. M. Taylor, Living in a Secular Age
1999-2000 D. Tracy, This Side of God
2000-2001 O. O'Neill, Autonomy and Trust in Bioethics
2001-2002 M. Arkoun, The Unthought in Contemporary Islamic Thought
2002-2003 M. Ignatieff, The Lesser Evil
2003-2004 J. W. van Huyssteen, Alone in the World?
2004-2005 @ S. Toulmin; M. Anstee; N. Chomsky, Illegal but Legitimate
2005-2006 J. B. Elshtain, *Sovereignty: God, State, and Self
2006-2007 S. Conway Morris; J. Riley-Smith
2007-2008 A. Nehamas, On Friendship; R. M. Veatch, Hippocratic, Religious, and Secular Medical Ethics
2008-2009 D. Eck; J. Sacks
2009-2010 P. Churchland, Braintrust; M. S. Gazzaniga; T. Eagleton
2010-2011 G. Brown; P. Harrison, The Territories of Science and Religion
2011-2012 S. Sutherland; D. MacCulloch; J. Al Khalili
2012-2013 B. Latour, Facing Gaia; S. Pinker, The Better Angels of Our Nature; R. Williams, The Edge of Words
2013-2014 O. O'Neill; R. D. Williams; C. O'Regan
2014-2015 J. Waldron; H. Nowotny
2015-2016 K. Tanner; S. Jasanoff
2016-2017 R. English; J. Stout
2017-2018 A. Fuentes; E. H. Ecklund
2018-2019 M. Beard
2019-2020 M. Welker

1888-1892 F. M. Muller, Natural Religion ; Physical Religion ; Anthropological Religion ; Theosophy or Psychological Religion
1892-1894 W. Wallace, Lectures and Essays
1894-1896 J. Caird, The Fundamental Ideas of Christianity
1897-1898 A. B. Bruce, The Providential Order of the World ; The Moral Order of the World
1900-1902 E. Caird, The Evolution of Religion ; The Evolution of Theology
1903-1905 E. Boutroux, Science and Religion in Contemporary Philosophy+
1907-1908 A. C. Bradley, Ideals of Religion
1910-1912 J. Watson, The Interpretation of Religious Experience
1913-1915 A. J. Balfour, Theism and Humanism
1916-1918 S. Alexander, Space, Time and Deity
1919-1921 H. Jones, A Faith that Enquires
1922-1923 A. J. Balfour, Theism and Thought
1923-1925 W. P. Paterson, The Nature of Religion
1927-1928 J. S. Haldane, The Sciences and Philosophy
1929-1931 J. A. Smith
1932-1933 W. Temple, Nature, Man and God
1935-1937 W. M. Dixon, The Human Situation
1937-1938 W. E. Hocking
1938-1940 J. Laird, Theism and Cosmology ; Mind and Deity
1946-1948 R. B. Perry, *Realms of Value
1949-1950 H. H. Farmer, Revelation and Religion ; Reconciliation and Religion
1952-1954 J. Macmurray, The Self as Agent ; Persons in Relations
1955-1956 L. Hodgson, For Faith and Freedom
1959-1961 C. F. Weizsacker, The Relevance of Science
1962-1963 C. W. Hendel
1965-1967 H. Butterfield
1971-1972 R. W. Southern
1974-1975 B. G. Mitchell, Morality, Religious and Secular
1979-1980 S. Brenner
1981-1982 S. Clark, From Athens to Jerusalem
1981-1982 C. J. Larner, The Thinking Peasant
1982-1983 A. J. Sanford, Models, Mind and Man
1982-1983 P. Drew
1983-1984 A. D. Galloway
1984-1985 C. Sagan, The Varieties of Scientific Experience
1985-1986 D. M. MacKay, Behind the Eye
1986-1987 PANEL [N. Spurway, ed., Humanity, Environment, and God]
1989-1990 G. Steiner, Grammars of Creation
1991-1992 M. Warnock, Imagination and Understanding
1993-1994 J. S. K. Ward, Religion and Revelation
1995-1996 J. H. Brooke and G. Cantor, Reconstructing Nature
1997-1998 R. J. Berry, God's Book of Works
1999-2000 R. McInerny, Characters in Search of an Author
2000-2001 PANEL [A. Sanford, ed., The Nature and Limits of Human Understanding]
2002-2003 S. Blackburn, *Truth
2004-2005 L. E. Goodman; J. Hare; Abdulaziz Sachedina
2007-2008 D. Fergusson, Faith and Its Critics
2008-2009 C. Taylor
2009-2010 G. Vattimo, Of Reality
2012-2013 V. Ramachandran
2014-2015 J. Marion, *Givenness and Revelation
2015-2016 P. Schmidt-Leukel
2016-2017 S. Carroll
2018-2019 J. Butler

1888-1890 A Lang, The Making of Religion
1890-1891 E. Caird
1894-1896 L. Campbell, Religion in Greek Literature
1899-1901 R. A. Lanciani, New Tales of Old Rome
1902-1904 R. B. Haldane, The Pathway to Reality
1907-1909 J. Ward, The Realm of Ends
1911-1913 J. G. Frazer, The Belief in Immortality and the Worship of the Dead
1914-1916 J. A. Thomson, The System of Animate Nature
1917-1919 W. R. Inge, The Philosophy of Plotinus
1919-1920 L. R. Farnell, Greek Hero Cults and Ideas of Immortality
1926-1928 A. E. Taylor, The Faith of a Moralist
1929-1930 C. Gore, The Philosophy of the Good Life
1932-1933 R. R. Marett, *Faith, Hope and Charity in Primitive Religion ; Sacraments of Simple Folk
1935-1936 H. H. Henson, Christian Morality
1936-1937 W. Jaeger, The Theology of the Early Greek Philosophers
1937-1938 W. G. De Burgh, From Morality to Religion
1938-1939 J. Bidez, Eos
1939-1940 R. Kroner, The Primacy of Faith
1946-1948 E. Brunner, Christianity and Civilization
1948-1949 A. M. Macbeath, Experiments in Living
1949-1950 H. J. Paton, The Modern Predicament
1951-1953 B. Blanshard, Reason and Goodness ; Reason and Belief
1953-1955 C. A. Campbell, On Selfhood and Godhood
1955-1956 W. C. Heisenberg, *Physics and Philosophy
1956-1958 V. A. Demant
1958-1960 G. H. von Wright, Norm and Action
1960-1962 S. Runciman, The Church in Captivity
1962-1963 H. Chadwick
1964-1966 J. N. Findlay, The Discipline of the Cave ; The Transcendence of the Cave
1967-1969 R. C. Zaehner, Concordant Discord
1970-1971 W. H. Thorpe, Animal Nature and Human Nature
1972-1973 A. J. Ayer, The Central Questions of Philosophy
1975-1976 R. Hooykaas, Fact, Faith, and Fiction
1977-1978 D. Stafford-Clark
1980-1981 G. Vlastos
1982-1983 D. G. Charlton
1983-1984 J. Macquarrie, In Search of Deity
1984-1985 A. Grunbaum
1986-1987 A. Flew, The Logic of Mortality
1988-1989 W. Burkert, Creation of the Sacred
1990-1991 H. Putnam, Renewing Philosophy
1992-1993 A. Peacocke, Theology for a Scientific Age
1994-1995 N. Wolterstorff, Thomas Reid and the Story of Epistemology
1996-1997 M. Dummett, Thought and Reality
1998-1999 M. M. Adams, Christ and Horrors
2000-2001 S. M. Hauerwas, With the Grain of the Universe
2001-2002 P. van Inwagen, The Problem of Evil
2004-2005 A. Plantinga, Science and Religion
2006-2007 M. Rees
2010-2011 R. Scruton, *The Face of God
2012-2013 D. Alexander, Genes, Determinism and God
2014-2015 L. Zagzebski, Exemplarist Moral Theory
2016-2017 M. Rea
2018-2019 M. Johnston

1889-1891 E. B. Tylor$
1891-1892 A. M. Fairbairn, The Philosophy of the Christian Religion +
1896-1898 J. Ward, Naturalism and Agnosticism
1898-1900 J. Royce, The World and the Individual
1900-1902 A. H. Sayce, The Religions of Ancient Egypt and Babylonia
1905-1906 J. Adam, The Religious Teachers of Greece
1907-1909 H. Driesch, The Science and Philosophy of Organism
1909-1910 W. Ridgeway
1911-1913 A. Pringle-Pattison
1913-1915 W. R. Sorley, *Moral Values and the Idea of God
1917-1919 C. C. Webb, God and Personality ; Divine Personality and Human Life
1921-1922 E. W. Hobson, The Domain of Natural Science
1924-1926 W. Mitchell, The Place of Minds in the World
1927-1929 E. W. Barnes, Scientific Theory and Religion
1930-1932 E. Gilson, *The Spirit of Medieval Philosophy
1935-1936 W. D. Ross, Foundations of Ethics
1936-1938 K. Barth, The Knowledge of God and the Service of God according to the Teaching of the Reformation
1938/39, 1946/47 A. D. Nock
1947-1948 J. Wisdom
1948-1950 G. Marcel, The Mystery of Being
1951-1952 M. Polanyi, Personal Knowledge
1952-1954 P. Tillich, Systematic Theology
1956-1958 H. A. Hodges
1960-1962 H. H. Price, Belief
1963-1965 A. C. Hardy, The Living Stream ; The Divine Flame
1965-1966 R. Aron
1966-1968 T. M. Knox, Action ; Layman's Quest
1969-1970 A. T. van Leeuwen, Critique of Heaven ; Critique of Earth
1972-1974 H. Arendt, The Life of the Mind
1975-1977 J. Z. Young, Programs of the Brain
1979-1980 F. C. Copleston, Religion and the One
1981-1983 A. Hultkrantz
1983-1984 R. Swinburne, The Evolution of the Soul
1984-1985 F. J. Dyson, Infinite in All Directions
1987-1988 A. Plantinga, Warrant: The Current Debate ; Warrant and Proper Function ; Warranted Christian Belief
1989-1990 I. G. Barbour, Religion in an Age of Science ; Ethics in an Age of Technology
1992-1993 J. Pelikan, Christianity and Classical Culture
1994-1995 A. Broadie, The Shadow of Scotus
1997-1998 R. Stannard, The God Experiment
2000-2001 J. S. Habgood, The Concept of Nature
2002-2003 E. Stump, Wandering in the Darkness
2003-2004 J. Haldane, Mind, Soul, and Deity
2007-2008 S. Pattison, Seeing Things
2009-2010 A. McGrath, A Fine-Tuned Universe
2012-2013 S. Coakley, Sacrifice Regained
2014-2015 D. Livingstone, Dealing with Darwin
2015-2016 M. Siddiqui
2018-2019 N. T. Wright, Discerning the Dawn
2019-2020 L. Sideris

+ Mildred Cranston, in her The Teleological Argument in the Gifford Lectures, argues that there's no evidence that Fairbairn's The Philosophy of the Christian Religion and Boutroux's Science and Religion in Contemporary Philosophy actually overlap their Gifford Lectures.
$ Cranston notes that while Tylor never published his Lectures, they were abstracted in Balfour, et al., Anthropological Essays Presented to Edward Burnett Tylor.
@ E. Said was originally appointed, but died before he could deliver them; Toulmin, Anstee, and Chomsky instead delivered a series in memoriam.

Of course, not all of them 'stick' equally well; and there are some that I really didn't like, although perhaps a few of them would improve on second reading. Some of the ones I liked quite a bit, and would recommend quite generally, are (in no particular order):

William James, The Varieties of Religious Experience
Nathan Soderblom, The Living God
H. D. Lewis, The Elusive Mind and The Elusive Self
Stanley Jaki, The Road of Science and the Ways to God
Iris Murdoch, Metaphysics as a Guide to Morals
David Daiches, God and the Poets
Alasdair MacIntyre, Three Rival Versions of Moral Enquiry
Arthur Balfour, Theism and Humanism and Theism and Thought
George Steiner, Grammars of Creation
R. R. Marett, Faith, Hope, and Charity in Primitive Religion
Warren Heisenberg, Physics and Philosophy
Etienne Gilson, The Spirit of Medieval Philosophy
Jaroslav Pelikan, Christianity and Classical Culture
William Wallace, Lectures and Essays on Natural Theology and Ethics
Otto Pfleiderer, Philosophy and the Development of Religion

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Abyss & Sea 5


Disan returned to his rooms, elegant but sparsely furnished. He looked around as he readied for bed and felt vaguely unsettled. Perhaps it was the discussion, perhaps it was the room itself, which seemed familiar to him, somehow. He did not expect to get to sleep easily, but he must have been more tired than he had thought, because he went to sleep almost immediately. But when he woke in the middle of the night, reflected on the earlier discussion. The essentials need to be held close to the chest. Yes, and what essentials were the High King and the Princess hold close so that Disan himself would not see them? There is a feature of certain conversations whereby they flow around gaps without acknowledging them, and Disan had had the clear impression throughout of something being unmentioned.

Antaran had mentioned the Court of Night earlier that day, and it had arisen again; and Elea's pendant was, she had said, something from the Court of Night. And we laid this rule and this alone on them: that they should not take from the Court of Night anything unless we permitted it. Disan's mind went back to the stories his grandfather, Belan, had told him of those days, and they rose like tableaux in his imagination: the Golden Dragon and the Black Dragon fighting in the distant sky, with the lightning around them and their voices like thunder and the wind of their wings gusting everywhere like a storm; the Unicorn-King rearing on the hill, silver against the dark night, a blazing light seeming to pour from his head and reach to the stars; charging and retreating in shifts during the days and nights of fighting against an enemy that seemed never to tire and to be endless in number; the chanters, too, chanting in endless shifts until they were hoarse, spreading over the land an enervating mist, sending glamors here and there to disorient the foe, and, finally, cracking the ground and walls around the Unbreachable Gate so that it fell outward with a noise like the screaming of a great beast. But in all of the stories King Belan had told, Disan could not recall one that said what had happened when they had won.

Musing on such things, Disan drifted off to second sleep.

The morning fast-breaking consisted of strawberries and cream. The strawberries were such as only grow in Tala, as large as a fist, yet firm and vibrantly red, with small achenes and a taste finely balanced between tart and sweet and a scent that was intensely fresh in the way only the best strawberries are. Disan liked them so much that before heading out to meet the High King, he hunted down the steward to arrange to buy a crate and send them to those of his men who had stayed with the ship.

The primary event for the day was a visit to the great amphitheater that Antaran had recently finished building to see the games, but, of course, the involvement of a royal court makes any such thing vastly more complicated. An entire procession had to be organized, complete with relevant protocols. Antaran and Disan, as reigning kings, took the forefront of the procession, Disan having the honor of riding as passenger in the chariot of the High King himself. It was a splendidly crafted two-wheeled vehicle of bronze and copper, brightly gleaming in the sun, and drawn by two high-stepping and long-legged steeds. There was room in it for three, but Antaran had an impatience with being driven, so insisted on driving it alone with Disan; they were followed by two chariots in parallel carrying the guards of the kings. After them came another chariot of similar design, carrying the Princess of Tavra and two of her guards, one driving and the other, one supposes, on watch. Then came a long line of notables of various kind and eminence, each in their place.

The procession went out to the Oracle of the Sun, where the kings, the princess, and various high nobles left it to enter the domed building. It was cylindrical, supporting a large coffered dome of concrete and shining orikhalh rising above its cella, the largest such dome in the world. At the top of the dome was an oculus to the sky, into which the sun would directly shine in the middle of the day. It was an old building, possibly older than the Porphyry Mountain itself, and its style of architecture was old enough to be foreign; it was impressive, but from the outside seemed small and oddly proportioned in comparison to the kinds of buildings that had since come to be preferred. Inside there was no furniture on the floor at all; it was simply a round room. But it was the most holy of all the places in the Great Realm. The Orikhalh Tablets, the highest of high laws, adorned the walls all around. The air seemed full of the air of higher things. Here the pacts and the covenants were formed. Here the first High King had sworn before Illimitable Heaven and the Powers of the world to uphold the law of the Tablets. Here was the place where each and every king and queen of the Great Realm became king or queen, anointed in the noonday sun before the laws writ in imperishable orikhalh. Disan had last been here for his own anointing as king. Baia too had been anointed as queen here, two years later, although Disan had not been able to attend -- it was written in the Orikhalh Tablets that at least one anointed king or queen, as long as there was one, must be within the borders of each kingdom.

Every anointed king or queen visiting the Oracle of the Sun renewed their vows before the Tablets, so this is what Antaran and Disan. Another time, it might have been moving, but recalling the discussion of the night before and Antaran's dismissal of the Tablets made the holy vow seem profaned and cheapened, and made Disan himself feel low and hypocritical.

Afterward, they proceeded to the amphitheater. Disan had never seen it finished before, and he was staggered at the size of it; it could easily have held fifty or sixty thousand spectators, perhaps more. When he mentioned this to Antaran, the High King beamed.

"Yes," he said, "it is as splendid as my father and I could make it. We wanted it to be an omen for the great things that we will achieve in the future."

The kings and the princess had the best seats of all, the royal pavilion, which, though small, gave them more room than the ordinary spectators had. People had been arriving since early morning, and inside there was a large a tightly packed crowd. It was crowded enough that it would no doubt become very hot as the day went on; the royal pavilion had an awning, and high above the vast stadium there was an awning mounted on an elaborate rigging that Disan, Sorean and lover of ships by nature, could not help admiring, but during midday many of the seats with a better view would no doubt be directly in the sun. The place was also very noisy, not only from the crowd but from the music. There were musicians in every tier of the amphitheater; those in the highest seats surely could not see the arena itself very well, nor hear much of anything at all, but they had trumpets and drums and other musical instruments of strange kinds we no longer have in our degenerate days, and as events happened below the musicians played according to cues that were signaled up the stands by flags. Those too far away to have much of the experience could nonetheless capture some if it by sign, in the reactive sounds of the crowds below, in the flags, the different signals of which the the regular attendees knew by heart, in the musical accompaniment.

When they entered, there had been some sort of chariot racing going on below; as the kings and princess sat, some trumpets rang out, apparently as a signal to finish, because in a few minutes the arena had cleared. Then a deep sound resounded forth, not a trumpet but a great shawm, rumbling through the stadium. There was a moment of silence and then a flurry of similar flags, all large and red and shaped like a long isosceles triangle, sprang across the tiers like a leaping fire from signaler to signaler. Brightly sounding trumpets began echoing in response.

"Ah, the hunt!" shouted Antaran above the noise, clapping his hands. A number of armored archers and spearthrowers came out on the field; there was a pause; and then there was a roar of enthusiasm from the crowd as large sleek shapes suddenly darted out of the gate, blurs of orange and white and black, great tigers roaring with rage. Swiftly ran the cats; swiftly flew the arrows; then flew the spears. The arrows struck home again and again, but it usually required several arrows to bring down one, and one of the tigers, swifter than the rest, had almost reached one of the archers before brought down by a spearthrower's spear. A steady stream of animals followed, with the hunters and weapons occasionally changing: lions, jaguars, wild boars, wolves. One of the most popular contests pitted a bear against three men with nets and long spears. But the one the crowd loved most was a hippopotamus against a dozen men with assorted weapons. The hippopotamus severely wounded two of the men before it was taken down, although not fatally; when, with the help of their companions, they rose and limped off the arena, the cheers and shouts of approval from the crowd rose to deafening volume.

Eventually the music shifted, becoming richer and more complex. Square yellow flags began springing up the tiers. Servants brought the royals wine cooled in special pots and roasted chickpeas and pastries. The entertainment moved from hunt to fight. First there were individual and small group fights. The fighting was intense and complicated, although from his excellent seat Disan, familiar with real fights, could tell that some of it was choreographed. After the small fights, a great battle was staged. Here and there throughout there were men with lion masks, from which Disan guessed that the battle was representing the defeat of the Rogue King of Andra, who was said to have, over a thousand years ago, raised an army against his fellow kings.

After the battle, there were dancers and acrobats, signaled by blue rectangles and a music that was much more leaping. Then the shawn rumbled out again and green trapezoids were raised, and the crowd, while not quiet, became much more hushed. Fighters came out and fought, and Disan could see that it was not choreographed; they were competent but clumsy, the blows were much more like what you would see in a real fight, and the movements of the fighters carried an air of intensity. Then one of the fighters ran the other through with his sword. Disan, mouth open, half-rose from his seat, but as the crowd roared with approval and excitement, he sank back down.

"What is this?" he shouted to Antaran over the noise.

"The fights of the condemned," Antaran shouted back. "Murderers and rapists and the like in fights to the death."

Disan watched with a sick feeling in his stomach as a succession of men fell to their deaths to the enthusiastic screaming of the crowd. That they were criminals did not console him at all, because when a murderer dies, he does not die with 'murderer' blazed across him, but simply dies as a man dies. After the twelfth man fell, the shawm rumbled out again, and there was a pause on the floor. Then golden equilateral triangles raced up the tiers and the music became much more festive and enthusiastic.

"Prize fight between volunteers," shouted Antaran to Disan. "The survivor gets a wagon full of gold and a small pension for life."

Indeed, they brought out, under heavy guard, precisely such a wagon, displaying its contents to those in the crowd close enough to see. Two fighters came out and began to fight. They were both clearly well trained and the fight went on quite long, to the great pleasure of the crowd. Eventually, however, the sword of one crossed the neck of the other, who then fell face down, his blood soaking into the sand that covered the arena floor. The survivor raised his sword and a considerable portion of the crowd rose in a kind of standing ovation, shouting their excitement. The day had reached its thrilling consummation.

As they went back to the Porphyry Mountain, Disan was heavy with thought, enough so that Antaran, even though busy driving the chariot, asked him what was wrong.

"How long have men been dying in the amphitheater?"

Antaran seemed surprised at the question. "Almost since it was finished. The opening was a great hunt in the morning -- you should have seen it, over a thousand animals died -- followed in the afternoon by a mock naval battle. But it was not long afterward that the fights of the condemned began; those condemned to death anyway were given the option of mortal combat in the arena, with their family being paid for it, and paid more the more fights they survived. The prize fights are new, but they have become the most popular attraction." After a few minutes of silence from Disan, he said, "Why do you ask?"

"I did not know that we killed men for entertainment in the Great Realm."

"It is all quite decent, I assure you. Nobody enters unless they consent; it is all voluntary, even the murders and rapists. And, as I said, we pay the families very well. The family of the man who lost the prize fight will receive almost as much as the man who won it. A man of skill who is not afraid to die can make his family quite wealthy, and if he can survive and do more than one, become wealthy himself. The man who won it today was fighting his third; he has wealth enough now to last a dozen lifetimes." When Disan said nothing, Antaran looked at him strangely. "I do not understand you, Disan. You have been to war abroad. Of all the people in that amphitheater, you are almost certainly the one who has killed the most men."

"As you say, that was in war," said Disan, "to defend allies who might otherwise be destroyed by marauders. To do it in an arena for a crowd, seems...." He struggled a moment to find a word to express what he wanted to say, could not, and finished lamely, "...inappropriate for the greatness and glory of which we boast."

Antaran freed one of his hands and put it firmly on Disan's shoulder a moment. "You are not alone in thinking this, my friend," he said. "Our ancestors fought dragon and khalkythra. They faced the terrors of the night-world, did deeds of immemorial glory. Our grandparents fought no less than the Court of Night itself and won. And here I am," he continued, with perhaps a bit of bitterness, "and the best I can do is preside over games. At least you have seen the world. But we will change things, you and I and Elea; we will do things such as to astound even those who came before us."

At the Porphyry Mountain, Disan took his leave from the High King and the princess and went to bed early, without eating. He did not sleep, however, but tossed and turned for a very long time, unable to settle his mind. Finally, he rose again and lit a lamp. Something about the room still unsettled him, and he stared at a tapestry hanging on the wall for a long while before walking over to it and pulling it back. At least, that is the way it seemed at the time, and perhaps that was the way it was; but Disan later did not know whether anything that followed had been real or a dream. Behind the tapestry was a door.

So Still, So Chill, So Fair

Maiden and Moon
by Julia Stockton Dinsmore

Once in a dream I saw the full moon fall
Like a dead leaf adown the dusky air,
Blown to the outer darkness otherwhere;
And stormy nights like this the dream recall,
When from the black clouds' silver-broidered pall
The white disk gleams, so still, so chill, so fair.
Dead! in her youth, perhaps, but wandering there,
A ghost that nightly haunts our living ball.
Pale sister moon, what broke thy virgin heart
And left thee wrecked and desolate in space?—
Love of some central sun too far above,
Too ardent, else? Silent and cold thou art,
Shrouded in mystery; but thy pure face
Is radiant with the lingering light of love.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Cringe and Cope

Perhaps a little on the paraphrastic side.

Cringe of cringe, saith the Preacher,
cringe of cringe; everything is cringe.
What do you get from hustling everywhere?
Generation comes, generation goes,
the earth keeps staying.
Sun rises, sun sets;
exhausted, it ends up at the beginning.
Wind goes south, wind goes north;
it blows around, and is back again.
Rivers flow to the sea, the sea's never full;
the water cycles back.
Everything is hustling,
more than words can tell,
more than eye can see,
more than ear can hear.
What was, will be.
What was done, will be done.
Nothing's new anywhere.
Have you heard the buzz,
"This is the new thing"?
It's long been old hat.
We don't remember the way things were;
new generations won't remember the way they are.

I, the Preacher, was king over Israel in Jerusalem.
I studied to learn all about everything.
God has given everyone some pointless job.
I have seen everything everywere,
and, you know what?
Everything is cringe and cope.
What is broken can't be fixed.
What is missing can't be figured out.

I told myself, "I've learned a lot,
maybe more than anyone else in Jerusalem,"
and became a man in the know,
and I set out to know intelligence and stupidity.
I found that this is just cope.
Being smart is cope,
learning is frustration.

I told myself, "I'll try out pleasures."
You know what? This is also cringe.
I said of laughter, "This is crazy,"
and of pleasure, "This is pointless."
I thought about how to get drunk --
I was still being smart --
and about how to be stupid,
so I could find what would be worth doing.
I built great things.
I built houses and planted vineyards for myself.
I built myself gardens and parks, planted with fruit trees;
I built myself ponds to water them.
I had servants, more and more,
and more wealth than anyone else in Jerusalem.
I got silver and gold and the world's treasures.
I got live music and an entourage.
So I was greater than anyone else in Jerusalem,
and I was still being smart.
What I wanted, I got.
I didn't deny myself anything,
and I enjoyed the challenge.
And when I looked at what I had gained,
and all that I had hustled to get,
I found that it was all cringe and cope,
with nothing worth getting anywhere.

Monday, November 18, 2019

The Structure of Apologizing

Some people have been discussing this paper on apologizing, which notes that there is some (limited) evidence that apologies don't tend to result in less punishment, and may in fact lead people to want to increase the punishment. This is actually consistent with a number of other things we know; there is a lots of evidence that in one way or another suggests something like this. If your goal is to avoid punishment, or to reduce it, apologizing is not a way to do that. What I've found surprising is that so many people find this surprising whenever a new bit of evidence shows this to be the case.

Apologizing always has the following logical structure, which can be done in lots of different ways but are all conditions for it to be a genuine apology:

(1) You admit that you have done something that deserves punishment.
(2) You recognize that the person to whom you are apologizing has the right or authority to punish you.
(3) You 'turn yourself in', so to speak, to be punished.

That's it. It's why you should never, ever apologize if you are not genuinely willing to be punished; apologizing is giving people permission to punish you. It always has been. It's also why a certain kind of toxic personality is always trying to force people to apologize: once you've apologized to them, you've given them power. It's the venomous dialectic of our day, in fact, that people who want power over you are always trying to get you to apologize for something; they will even make something up for you to apologize about, if that's what it takes.

So why, then, do people so often assume that apologizing will naturally lead to lessening of punishment? In reality, you would obviously expect that refusing to apologize would tend to deter people from bringing the full force of punishment, by making clear that if they want to punish you, they have to fight you, while you'd expect apologies, which make clear that you are open to being punished and will not fully resist, to lead to more and harsher punishment. And this is exactly we find in many cases. So what's the reason people are astonished that permitting people to punish you often leads to more and harsher punishment?

Of course, it depends on the audience. People are sometimes mind-boggled by the willingness some have shown in the past for forgiving televangelists for their indiscretions when they apologize. But they know their audience, a broadly evangelical group who have been raised to believe that repentance is very, very important, that it takes some courage to do and therefore can in that sense be admirable, and that mercy to those who repent is a duty. In such a context, apologies are brave expressions of repentance which require that one act mercifully; in that context, apologies are obviously to be encouraged and so obviously you want people to be punished more harshly if they don't apologize than they do. Things can get a little more complicated when we insist on sincerity of repentance, but in fact the kind of people who believe all these other things are also inclined to think that we have a duty to give people the benefit of the doubt. Outside that context, people will take apologies for what they are: confessions of wrongdoing in which the wrongdoer agrees to be punished, and thus either not affecting the punishment or giving more reason to punish.

If you want a society in which apologies are taken seriously rather than being ignored or being treated as reasons for intensifying punishment, you have to build it. People have to be raised to stay their hand in the face of apology. I suppose the fact that so many people are surprised by the ineffectiveness of apology to reduce punishment is a sign that many still are. But you have only to look around to see that this seems to be a dwindling minority. In such a society, the rules are: Don't apologize unless you are genuinely sorry; never apologize to someone you don't want to have power over you; do not tolerate people demanding apologies for minor or made-up reasons. It's the only way to survive.

The Solacing Cerulean of the Sky

November's Ruth
by Julia Stockton Dinsmore

O mother earth! the autumn hours fly;
While yet 'tis warm I lean upon thy breast;
In failing grass with more than springtime zest,
Feel for the violets short-stemmed and shy;
The motley leaves lisp their last lullaby,
The sunshine seems the light of peace and rest
And over me extends from east to west
The solacing cerulean of the sky.
As some fond friend who says farewell and goes,
Seeing the loved one left begin to grieve,
Turns back to give one smile, one last caress,—
After the frosts and ere the fall of snows,
The parting season grants this brief reprieve,
Days whose strange sadness seems like happiness.

This is some very skillful use of alliteration.

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Fortnightly Book, November 17

Irving Stone (born Irving Tennenbaum) is most famous for his intensively researched biographical novels. While I was puzzling over what book to pick for the next fortnightly book, my happened to light on his Love Is Eternal, a book which was in my grandparents' library and which I hadn't really looked at. It sounds like a love story, I thought, and apparently it is, but it is also, somewhat improbably, a novel about Abraham Lincoln and Mary Todd. I suppose that makes it rather distinctive, so we'll see if the awkward and homely Illinois lawyer and his short and emotionally troubled wife is the stuff of eternal romance. The reviews for it are actually quite favorable, so it might well be an interesting fortnight.

Saturday, November 16, 2019

Charlotte M. Yonge, The Heir of Redclyffe


Opening Passage:

The drawing-room of Hollywell House was one of the favoured apartments, where a peculiar air of home seems to reside, whether seen in the middle of summer, all its large windows open to the garden, or, as when our story commences, its bright fire and stands of fragrant green-house plants contrasted with the wintry fog and leafless trees of November. There were two persons in the room—a young lady, who sat drawing at the round table, and a youth, lying on a couch near the fire, surrounded with books and newspapers, and a pair of crutches near him. Both looked up with a smile of welcome at the entrance of a tall, fine-looking young man, whom each greeted with 'Good morning, Philip.'

'Good morning, Laura. Good morning, Charles; I am glad you are downstairs again! How are you to-day?'

Summary: Guy Morville is from a family that has always had a greater share of competence than morals. Intensely and sometimes darkly passionate, the main line of the family has a long history of wrongdoing. Guy's grandfather repented in his old age of some of his wild deeds, and, as Guy's father is dead, he takes him in and makes something of an effort to raise him appropriately on the family's remote estate of Redclyffe. When his grandfather also dies, Guy, now a quiet, bookish boy who feels that his family heritage guarantees his moral doom, comes to live at Hollywell with the Edmonstone family, who are distant cousins through Mrs. Edmonstone. The family includes Charlie, crippled from a diseased hip-joint, sarcastically intelligent and frank, qualities that he gets from the combination of mild bitterness and over-pettedness given to him by his illness; Laura, who is mature for her age, intelligent and levelheaded; Amabel, often called Amy, who is young for her age, and often thought soft and silly by herself as well as others, although, as it turns out, there is much more to her than meets the eye; and Charlotte, the youngest, who is perhaps getting a little too much of Charlie's influence. Although the adjustment is awkward, many of the family come to like Guy, who, once he begins to be comfortable brings a great deal of joy to others. Guy also meets his cousin Philip Morville, who happens to be the second in line for Redclyffe if Guy has no male children, and their personalities immediately clash. Philip is cool, levelheaded, inclined to take charge, and insufferably aware of his own reasonableness. (You get a lot of what he is when you know that he thinks Le Morte d'Arthur is a poor piece of literature nobody could seriously enjoy, and that this is something that any reasonable person could discover just by a cursory skimming of the book, a position that brings one of his early clashes with Guy.) It doesn't help that Guy is born to wealth and Philip is not, and very aware that, however close to being wealthy by being in line for Redclyffe, he never will be. Philip, worrying that Laura might get caught up with Guy, who is, after all, from the dangerous and sometimes violent line of the Morvilles, realizes that he loves her, and they both come to an agreement that constitutes an almost-but-not-quite engagement, one that they keep secret.

The work is extremely good in terms of its characterizations; almost everything at every step contributes to giving us a better understanding of characters, sometimes in clever ways. At one point all the cousins play a game in which everyone has to write on a strip of a paper their favorites for the categories of historical character, fictional character, flower, virtue, and time. They then have to guess who wrote it. Much is made of the fact that Philip's (Lavender—steadfastness—Strafford—Cordelia in ‘King Lear’—the late war) and Laura's (Honeysuckle—steadfastness—Lord Strafford—Cordelia—the present time) share three of the same entries, which leads to a great deal of teasing. But the teasing hides something from the characters that the perceptive reader might catch, namely, that Guy's (Heather—Truth—King Charles—Sir Galahad—the present time) shares two entries with Amy's (Lily of the valley—truth—Joan of Arc—Padre Cristoforo—the present time), and that his fictional character has a sort of affinity with her historical character. Guy and Amy in fact become somewhat sweet on each other.

Trouble begins dividing the family when Guy goes off to Oxford and Philip begins collecting evidence that Guy is dissipating his funds through gambling, which comes to a head when Guy asks Mr. Edmonstone for a thousand pounds and will not say what it is for. It's his own money, but it seems to clinch the argument: Guy is following in the dissipated footsteps of his ancestors. In fact, he is not; Guy wants the money to fund a school, but needs to do it quietly, and Philip is getting some of his information through his sister, who is jealous of the young women who would be running the school. Guy is not allowed to return to Hollywell and Amy is told she must give him up. This will eventually work itself out, but when Guy and Amy meet up with Philip while on their honeymoon things become darker; Philip gets into an argument with Guy about whether the peasants are exaggerating the danger of an epidemic in a particular part of Italy they had originally planned to visit (guess which of the two is certain that superstitious Italian peasants must be exaggerating), and Philip goes and visits anyway, falling terribly ill because of it.

The book on occasion pulls out all the emotional stops, and the illness and its aftermath is one of those occasions. In Alcott's Little Women there's a scene in which Meg comes across Jo crying over The Heir of Redclyffe, and anyone who has read the latter knows exactly what scenes made Jo cry.

Being something of a Charlie by temperament, I, like Charlie, often wanted to strangle Philip, but this is a book without villains. Precisely the problem is that Philip is a generally decent, generally intelligent, generally reasonable man. He is the kind of man on whom you can rely. It's just that, like every other generally decent, generally intelligent, generally reasonable person, he has a dangerous capacity to argue himself into believing that he is being decent, intelligent, and reasonable, when his choices are really being distorted by his emotions, in this case a kind of sense of inferiority to the wealthy and surprisingly charming Guy that he can't stand feeling. The desire to show your superiority to another is dangerous in general; combined with a feeling that you might actually be inferior, it can lead to horrible things done with (one convinces oneself) the best of intentions. And it results also in an abundance of excuses. Philip's secret agreement with Laura is wrong, but of course, he would be open about it if he had the kind of money Guy will have. It is also made worse by the fact that, because he is the kind of person who is well-educated, intelligent, and reasonable, nobody can really outargue him. Sarcastic Charlie, for instance, who takes Guy's side, will always sound, to Philip's own ears and occasionally to the ears of others, more petty and less sensible than Philip. Philip's disaster comes step by step, every single step avoidable, and yet each one comes with a kind of inevitability, because this is what happens when you are smart enough to convince yourself of the falsehood that you are always right.

Guy is an extremely admirable and sympathetic character, and Charlie, Amy, and Charlotte all start out likable and have grown more so by the end. It is a powerfully moving book, because it's a book in which the author clearly cares for her characters, and in such a way that the reader can come to care for them, too.

Favorite Passage:

They went to the strangers’ corner of the grave-yard, for, of course the church did not open to a member of another communion of the visible church; but around them were the hills in which he had read many a meaning, and which had echoed a response to his last chant with the promise of the blessing of peace.

The blessing of peace came in the precious English burial-service, as they laid him to rest in the earth, beneath the spreading chestnut-tree, rendered a home by those words of his Mother Church—the mother who had guided each of his steps in his orphaned life. It was a distant grave, far from his home and kindred, but in a hallowed spot, and a most fair one; and there might his mortal frame meetly rest till the day when he should rise, while from their ancestral tombs should likewise awaken the forefathers whose sins were indeed visited on him in his early death; but, thanks to Him who giveth the victory, in death without the sting.

Recommendation: Highly Recommended.

Friday, November 15, 2019

Poor, Unfortunate Souls

It's always hilarious when people try to rationalize their aesthetic likes as moral excellences on the basis of purely arbitrary associations. "The Little Mermaid Was Way More Subversive than You Realized", in the Smithsonian:

While teaching young Ariel how to “get your man,” Ursula applies makeup, exaggerates her hips and shoulders, and accessorizes (her eel companions, Flotsam and Jetsam, are gender neutral)—all standard tropes of drag. “And don’t underestimate the importance of body language!,” sings Ursula with delicious sarcasm. The overall lesson: Being a woman in a man’s world is all about putting on a show. You are in control; you control the show. Sells added, “Ariel learns gender, not as a natural category, but as a performed construct.” It’s a powerful message for young girls, one deeply threatening to the King Tritons (and Ronald Reagans) of the world.

In short, Ursula represents feminism, the fluidity of gender, and young Ariel’s empowerment....

The only response to this is: LOL. I suppose, if anybody had actually been thinking about this at the time, that making feminism the villain of the story, feeding a young girl lies in an attempt to steal her voice and destroy her family, from whom the girl needs to be saved by her father and her potential husband, would indeed have been a subversive story; I somehow doubt that this is exactly what Sells has in mind, though.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Samuel Drew

The soul of man must either be material, or it must not. If it be material, it must be capable of divisibility; and if with this capacity it be divided, I would ask, Does consciousness survive this division, or expire? If it survive, then the adhesion of the different parts of the soul is not necessary to its existence; and we are led to this absurd conclusion, that consciousness is dependent for its being, on a concrete substance, which is not necessary to its existence. But if consciousness expire, then it must have depended for its existence, not upon the component parts of the soul, but upon the adhesion of these component parts, because nothing but adhesion is now destroyed: but in admitting a mere adhesion of parts to be capable of producing what the parts themselves had no power of communicating, is to ascribe agency to mere adhesion. It therefore must follow, that consciousness, volition, &c. cannot inhere in any adhesion of a material substance; and if so, a substance which is immaterial must necessarily be admitted.

[Samuel Drew, An Original Essay on the Immateriality and Immortality of the Soul, p. 89.]

I was reminded of this work by Edith Hall's fine essay on the extraordinary historical importance of classical education and self-education in the classics to the British working class. Samuel Drew (1765-1833) was a shoemaker from Cornwall from a dirt-poor family who was known by his friends as a good-natured man who would be glad to argue any topic. When he published An Original Essay on the Immateriality and Immortality of the Soul, it became a worldwide bestseller, and for the best of reasons -- it is without any doubt the single best examination of the titular topic in the early modern period, and still holds up quite well today as a model of philosophical analysis. The widespread popularity of the work eventually allowed him to retire from the cobbler shop and devote his time to philosophical and theological writing.

It is perhaps worthwhile to get some advice from the admirable Drew; from a letter he wrote to a friend in 1816 (emphasis in the original):

When you write me, let me know what books you have been reading, and what proficiency you have made in metaphysics. Your last letter was written with too much hesitation, diffidence, and perplexity. You must not be afraid of me. You saw me a plain, blunt fellow, in London, who was mistaken for a blacksmith. Do not be afraid of committing yourself. Remember this rule—The person who never made a blunder never made a discovery. If you always tread near the central parts of a circle, you will never obtain much accurate knowledge of its circumference; and, consequently, you will never widen the horizon of knowledge. It is on the extremity of the circle that metaphysicians must walk; and they must not be terrified, if they sometimes slip their feet, and fall.

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Evening Note for Tuesday, November 12

Thought for the Evening: The Internal Moralities of Law and Medicine

In the 1950s and 60s, the philosopher of law, Lon Fuller, attempted to find a middle road between natural law theory and legal positivism, or at least find a version of either that committed one to much less than the usual forms, and his book, The Morality of Law (1964), became a significant influence in the field. Technically, what Fuller presents could be considered a natural law theory (and often is), but it is an extremely minimalist one that is missing standard components usually associated with natural law theories. A natural law theorist could easily incorporate it and a legal positivist generally would have more difficulty, but Fuller's theory does not appeal to a more fundamental law than positive law, nor does it root anything directly in reason or common good. Rather, it attempts to identify the intrinsic moral conditions of law, principles of legality, without which you can have no law at all.

Fuller proposed eight principles of legality. To work as a law at all, a law must be (1) sufficiently general, (2) promulgated, (3) applicable to the future rather than the past, (4) in a basic way intelligible, (5) coherent, (6) stable, (7) such that it can be obeyed, (8) applied in a way that can be determined from its meaning. Hart criticized this as not any sort of morality at all, since it all has to do with the appropriate of means to ends, but this criticism seems never to have been widely accepted and, indeed, seems to show a common problem with legal positivism, namely, that their view is often based on a very narrow understanding of how morality works, in this case assuming that efficacy of means to ends in matters of choices is not any kind of moral question. (It may, of course, be a relatively minor one, as we find in etiquette, but many questions of morality clearly are concerned with choosing appropriate means to ends in matters directly touching on choice.)

More interesting is Hart's claim that by the same standards you could have an 'internal morality' of poisoning, but contrary to what he claims, this is not absurd at all. We would have to be considering poisoning not as a solitary act, but as a kind of practice, but if you do, to talk about its internal morality is entirely comprehensible. Indeed, fantasy stories are filled with 'guilds of assassins' and people are endlessly fascinated by the deadly games of Renaissance courts for precisely this reason. If you are poisoning not in a random act but in a practice of poisoning, there are indeed principles of poisoning structuring it. We don't take poisoning itself to be moral, of course, because poisoning, even as a practice, is not standalone, but part of a larger system with its own internal morality, one with which poisoning tends to conflict. Now, this is true of positive law, as well, that it has a larger context, despite Fuller's attempt to work around that, but this doesn't affect the question of whether law has an internal morality, and in any case, a legal positivist is of all people the one who can least afford to make this criticism of Fuller.

The relative success of Fuller's account has led some to try to see if you could come up with an internal morality of medicine; the attempt to do this has, I think, been much more unevenly successful. Part of the problem is that sometimes philosophers of medicine just use 'internal morality' to mean 'morality based on the actual phenomena of medicine', which is a somewhat broader notion than we are dealing with here. More of the reason, I think, is that there is a sense in which calling Fuller's account an internal morality of law is in English misleading: it is not an internal morality of all legal actions but of a specific one, legislation. As legislation is the principal legal action, it affects everything else, but you could also have an internal morality of ruling on law, an internal morality of enforcing law, etc. And likewise, you would really not want to talk about the internal morality of medicine, if 'medicine' here is taken to cover everything we usually to take it to cover, but the internal morality of diagnosis, the internal morality of clinical treatment, the internal morality of prescription, etc. When philosophers and practitioners focus on these kinds of typical activities, they often get accounts of the internal morality of medicine that are more substantive and fruitful than when they stay at too general a level.

Since you can have internal moralities for for law and for medicine, one could on the same principles work them out for clerical ministry, education, and the like, although I don't know anyone who has actually done this explicitly. This all, in fact, closely relates to previous posts I have done on humanitarian traditions in general.

Previous Evening Notes on Humanitarian Traditions
- Humanitarian Traditions
- Prima Facie Duties and Humanitarian Traditions
- Humanitarian Traditions and Cliental Privilege
- Perversion in the Context of Humanitarian Traditions

Various Links of Interest

* Craig Stern, A Mistake of Natural Law: Sir William Blackstone and the Anglican Way (PDF)

* Oscar Schwartz discusses Leibniz and Llull

* Marnie Hughes-Warrington, Wonder Works

* Thomas Moynihan, Enlightenment and the Discovery of Human Extinction

* David Chapman, The probability of green cheese. The subject reminds me to some extent of St. Olaf's Miraculous Thirteen.

* Liam Kofi Bright on intellectual humility.

* Bright has another post on Peter Boghossian and the correspondence theory of truth that is interesting, but I think fails completely in its intended argument; much of the post reads like Bright needs to go back and re-read Fumerton (Realism and the Correspondence Theory of Truth). While positions like it have fallen out of general favor in recent years, and Boghossian tends toward blunt and un-nuanced formulations, Boghossian's understanding of the correspondence theory is not (pace Bright) 'idiosyncratic', and such views are not uncommon (although probably not common enough to be counted as 'typical') among correspondence theorists, and never have been. The discussion of what Bright finds appealing in deflationary theories, though, is quite interesting.

* SFAudio's Public Domain PDF page for science fiction works in the public domain

* Marilynn Johnson, Must We Mean What We Wear? (I meant to put this link in the last set of links)

Currently Reading

Charlotte Yonge, The Heir of Redclyffe
Kevin Flannery, Cooperation with Evil
John Henry Newman, Discourses to Mixed Congregations
Michael Trapp, Philosophy in the Roman Empire

Benevolence and Righteousness

Mencius went to see king Hui of Liang. The king said, 'Venerable sir, since you have not counted it far to come here, a distance of a thousand li, may I presume that you are provided with counsels to profit my kingdom?'

Mencius replied, 'Why must your Majesty use that word "profit?" What I am provided with, are counsels to benevolence and righteousness, and these are my only topics. 'If your Majesty say, "What is to be done to profit my kingdom?" the great officers will say, "What is to be done to profit our families?" and the inferior officers and the common people will say, "What is to be done to profit our persons?" Superiors and inferiors will try to snatch this profit the one from the other, and the kingdom will be endangered. In the kingdom of ten thousand chariots, the murderer of his sovereign shall be the chief of a family of a thousand chariots. In the kingdom of a thousand chariots, the murderer of his prince shall be the chief of a family of a hundred chariots. To have a thousand in ten thousand, and a hundred in a thousand, cannot be said not to be a large allotment, but if righteousness be put last, and profit be put first, they will not be satisfied without snatching all. There never has been a benevolent man who neglected his parents. There never has been a righteous man who made his sovereign an after-consideration. Let your Majesty also say, "Benevolence and righteousness," and let these be your only themes. Why must you use that word - "profit"?'

[Mengzi 1A1]

Monday, November 11, 2019

Natural Vaticination

There is a certain analogy, constancy, and uniformity in the phenomena or appearances of nature, which are a foundation for general rules: and these are a grammar for the understanding of nature, or that series of effects in the visible world whereby we are enabled to foresee what will come to pass in the natural course of things. Plotinus observes, in his third Ennead, that the art of presaging is in some sort the reading of natural letters denoting order, and that so far forth as analogy obtains in the universe, there may be vaticination. And in reality he that foretells the motions of the planets, or the effects of medicines, or the result of chemical or mechanical experiments, may be said to do it by natural vaticination.

[George Berkeley, Siris, #252.]

Abyss & Sea 4

Let's see if I can get this started again. Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

The High King sat, and then Disan across from him, and then, in a flowing motion, Elea next to the High King. Disan had to suppress a smile; the Princess's manner was as artless as her artfulness could make it. Antaran leaned forward.

"I am told that King Envren visited you recently. How is he? Last I saw him, he seemed to be behaving oddly."

"Jumpy, too quick to startle," the Princess put in.

"He seemed well enough," said Disan, and he paused, trying to assess the room. "Of course, he did have a complicated story about Tavra and Tala building a large fleet that could be used against other kingdoms."

Antaran and Elea glanced at each other, and Antaran relaxed back with a smile, as if Disan had passed a test. "Well," he said, "he is right about the fleet, although not about the purpose. When you were away, we started building a fleet with the Andrans. We have run into a problem with it, however. A month ago, an Andran ship was caught by a storm and it sank."

"That's not possible," said Disan. "The Andrans have the secrets of the unsinkable ship; they stole them from Sorea several generations ago."

"So we were told, as well. Yet the loss of the ship is certain, and we are worried that the Andrans have been playing us for fools, promising ships that won't sink, which are not at all cheap, and skimping on the actual building so that they could pocket the profit. You know what they say. To make wire, give two Andrans one coin."

"That is their reputation, but surely they would have the sense to know that they would be found out."

"Which leads to the second theory, which is that they are simply incompetent. I will be honest with you, my friend. My first impulse when we began to think of building the new fleet was to go to the Soreans. But you were away across the sea and some people"--here he glanced with meaning toward Elea, who ignored him--"thought that your Queen might be hesitant to agree to such a large undertaking in your absence. But ever since we have been plagued by complications and delays and now this egregious failure of an unexpected test, and while you've returned, we have made little enough progress and and what gains we have made are plunged into certainty. We should have waited for your return. You were always the person we needed. Besides, the Andran royal court is cramped and unimaginative. For a bold undertaking, we need someone bold."

"You still have not told me what this 'bold undertaking' is."

"You have been out in the world," said Elea. "You have met the barbarian tribes in treaty and in battle, not through emissaries, but in person. You have tramped across a significant portion of the Great Continent. And as the King of Sorea you have more news about all the rest of the world than any of us combined. Is there any society on the face of the earth that rivals ours in strength and prosperity."

"None. That is, in fact, why Envren said that you must be planning conquest of the other kingdoms."

Antaran laughed. "Why would I try to conquer the Great Realm? I already rule it."

"King Envren has become paranoid in his old age," said Elea. "He excels everyone in observation, but he is no longer as swift to the right interpretation as his legend would suggest. You need a fleet not merely to conquer armies but to ensure prosperity as your power expands."

"Surely you are not going through all of this trouble to hunt pirates and smugglers? We could do that simply by providing occasional support to our allies."

"We are not doing it specifically to fight anyone at all, although there will doubtless be some fighting. But you have been out in the world. Is there not already too much fighting among all these barbarian nations."

"There is a vast amount," Disan admitted.

"And that raises a question. What would stop it?"

"The fighting? Nothing, I imagine." Disan paused. "But you are suggesting that we would stop it."

"Exactly," said Antaran. "Look around us. We are overflowing with an abundance that the outer realms could not possibly imagine. The magnaneries of Tala produce finer silk for farmers than the kings of the barbarians can afford for themselves. Compare the finest palaces of their wealthiest chieftains to Neyat Sor, or Neyat Andar, and they are shown to be little more than barns. We are arts of which they have never even dreamed, resources which are to them but whispers in a legend. Do they have a city than compare to Talamir or to Mir Ezrym? We sit here in the light, and there is a world out there huddling in the darkness.

"And yet, though we are in the light, we rot. It is all stagnant. We are built for great deeds, but what great deeds are there to do? Our ancestors did things of wonder. Our grandparents fought the Court of Night and won. How can we match them? But to enlighten the world -- is that not a great deed? Is it not something that none of our ancestors ever did, or ever dared to do?"

Disan looked thoughtfully across the balcony to the dome of the Oracle of the Sun, which had lost its gleam and was growing more shadowy under a purpling sky. "Is it even possible?" he said slowly. "The Orikhalh Tablets forbid the founding of any empire beyond the shores given to us by the Powers."

"The Orikhalh Tablets are ancient. Can any law be valid that long? All other things change. The Great Realm is a living thing; it cannot be governed by a rigid rule forever. As for the Powers, who has seen them in any recent years. They came to our grandparents and asked for help, and our grandparents helped them, and who has spoken to them since? And that is one time in centuries. When was the last time anyone heard the Voice of Fath? We have been children under the Powers, but some day we must become adults, throwing our tutelage. How is this not the time? We have grown so powerful, we could overthrow the Court of Night. What is there that we cannot do?"

"We had help against the Court of Night."

"Yes, we but we have only grown in power since," said Elea. "And throughout the world, you would look in vain to find anyone who is our peer, much less our superior."

It was growing dark. Antaran snapped his fingers, said, "Light!" and pointed, and a brazier lit and glided over to where he pointed. "Is there anything more splendid than being able to make light? We three could enlighten the world. Think about that."

"It has a certain fascination to it," said Disan. "How many ships would you need?"

Antaran smiled broadly. "It is a big world. As many as you could make. The agreement with Andra was for three hundred fifty, but if you can do more, we will take more."

"Our forests cannot supply anything like the timber for a fleet that size. And somehow I suspect that in this case the Andrans would be reluctant to let us cut down theirs."

"They may have little choice in the matter," said Antaran. "But my thought is actually that if we are going to build a fleet for the world, there is a world of forests out there. There are bound to be places that are suitable for new shipyards."

Disan nodded slowly. "We have thought at times of building outposts for ship repair, to service the other kingdoms allies and those handful of foreign allies who have fleets of their own. What you are suggesting is on another scale entirely, but there are places that might be right for it."

The High King seemed very pleased. "You have the right idea." He thought a moment, then looked at Elea. "Obviously there is a great deal to consider in this. Perhaps we can give you time to think about it, and then we can start formalizing the agreement to build the ships, the shipyards, everything."

"We have been quiet about this so far because we do not wish to bring the full plan before the Ten and Two without having the essential elements in place," said Elea, "Tala, Tavra, Andra, Sorea: these are the only Houses who have knowledge of the fleet and its purpose..."

"Frankly, we should have found some way to keep the Andrans out of more of it," interrupted Antaran; "Zalan is an idiot and has no doubt let out more than he should...."

Elea, ignoring him, continued: "...and we have sounded out a few of the other Houses about smaller details in the plan..."

" extending elsewhere what you've done with the Chipou tribes..."

Elea, continuing as if the High King had not spoken: "...but the essentials need to be held close to the chest. With something this size, everyone will know something is happening, as Envren does, but not everyone can know everything until the time is right."

"Besides, it will impress more if they have spent a while puzzling over it before we lay it before them at the Great Council," said Antaran.

She finally glanced at him. "That is very true." And she smiled at Disan. It was a truly lovely smile, beautifully crafted.

"You need have no fear on my part, Princess," said Disan.

"Not a word of it unless Elea has cut off all possibility of eavesdropping," warned Antaran. When Disan nodded, he said, "Well, we will not keep you from your evening rest. No doubt it has been a long day."

"I will need to open a doorway for you in the shield," said Elea, rising. She went to the door, followed by Disan, and she raised her pendant again, muttering something. "You can step through."

Disan did, and turned to say his goodbye, but the Princess was already raising her pendant again, muttering whatever invocation touched off the magic of it, and Disan was startled to see the doorway, and the room beyond, suddenly hidden in an impenetrable darkness.

He made his way to his rooms.


Sosan came to Baia in a moment when she had a moment between morning magistracy and afternoon entertainments.

"I sent messengers to a number of villages for the inquiries you requested," he said. "There have been rumors of sightings of wolves, but nothing definite or reliable, and no one has come across other deaths like those at the farmhouse. But villages along the road near the farmhouse say that it is a route commonly taken by merchants selling honey, sugar, and flour from Tavra. Beyond that, we have found nothing. It may be all we will ever find."

"Tavra," said Baia reflectively. "That would make sense." She thought a moment. "I would like regular reports on any news we get about Tavra, paying special attention to merchants from there. Perhaps it was a singular affair, but it would be better to be prepared if there is a tainted trade source. What are we doing about the wolves?"

"I set a group of rangers to scout the area; they have found nothing."

"Increase the area; otherwise I will have nightmares of wild wolves coming upon children. And we will keep looking on both fronts until we find something, even if only a tenuous bit of evidence for an unlikely speculation. This is not something I want to stay a complete mystery."

"As you wish, my Queen."

Baia sat in thought for a long while, trying to piece everything together.

It had all begun for her when Disan had returned from his time abroad, a little older, a little wearier, but more handsome than ever, if possible, and with the same dry humor in his striking grey eyes. She had been worried that a year of battle and hard living might chase that light away, and she was boundlessly relieved to find that it had not. But after her relief had quieted, she did notice differences. He was graver, as if his responsibilities had increased, and seemed more cautious, or perhaps more wary, of everything, as if he had some grave secret in his keeping. She waited for a few days to see if he would tell her on his own, and when she concluded, exasperated (he was always slow to tell his problems to her), that he would not, asked him one night in the space between first and second sleep.

He had sighed. "I have been wondering how to tell you about it," he had said. "I myself do not fully understand what it means. But while I was away, I had experience, of sorts; whether a vision or something else, I know not."

After an intense battle, he had said, he had become separated form his guard and become lost. While trying to return to his men, he came across something like a temple, far more advanced in its architecture than could be expected from any of the tribes in the area. And out of the doorway, yawning like a black mouth, came the words, "Disan, King of Sorea." Then all around vast rose bushes preventing his retreat. He entered into a long, dark passageway, sloping somewhat steeply downward. At first there was no light except what filtered past him from the doorway, but he soon became aware of a strange bluish luminescence along the walls, preventing the passage from becoming completely dark. And soon he came into a large room, still dark, but just barely lit by the luminescence.

"I say a room," he said, "but it was more like a cavern; when I hit my foot on a stone, it echoed."

Standing there a moment, he had wondered what to do, but had soon realized to his surprise that despite the dimness, he could somehow make out pictures on the wall, and, what was more surprising, that he could recognize the stories they told. Miles beyond count from home, here were stories learned by all of the children of the Great Realm, of things accomplished by forces so old their names were hardly spoken from the sanctity of them. Here were the first ancestors, huddling in a cave, visited by The Kané with the gift of fire; there Fulné and Trethin raised the Great Realm from the sea, and there again Fath and Fulné bringing the huddled men and women to their new home. There in pictures was the story of the Lady and the Old One, whose names no man knows can know, teaching the arts of civilization: the gifts of steel, of orikhalh, of loom, of neyat, of volor, of impermeable silk, of unsinkable ship, of chantment capable of mastering water, air, and fire. Here Fulné brought the Soreans of the sea, and there Trethin brought the Khaljans of the mountains, and the joining of the Two to the Ten, the building of Talamir, the cooperative work on the Porphyry Mountain to make it the greatest of all palaces imaginable to the human mind. There was the giving of the Orikhalh Tablets and the establishing of the pacts and the covenants, and the people swearing before the Powers to uphold them. Hundreds more followed, heroes and kings battling khalkhythra and dragon, and uncountable more great deeds done by his people. But when he had reached the pictures that spoke of the kings of the Great Realm for the first time leaving their island in person to fight the Court of Night, a great,deep voice spoke through the dark air, as if it were coming from all points simultaneously, even reverberating from inside and casting him down to his knees.

Hail, Disan, King of Sorea. Do not fear. Do you know the Voice you hear?

And Disan had said, "It is the Voice of Fath."

Listen now, Disan, to the Voice of all Powers that guide the working of the world: For three transgressions and for four, we have borne patiently the wickedness of your people. For three transgressions and for four, we have awaited for the words of repentance. We called your grandfathers to the War of Night, to bring finally to nothing the corruptions of the terrible Court; with all the free peoples of the world we called them. And we laid this rule and this alone on them: that they should not take from the Court of Night anything unless we permitted it. But the kings of all the Houses saw the power of the Court of Night, and the greed of their hearts won out, and they took, hiding them in secret. And among the things they stole was an abomination beyond all other things, which even now sits in the darkness, rotting the heart of the Great Realm. The law we gave to your ancestors was writ in orikhalh, which neither rusts nor fades; how then has the law in your hearts rusted and faded? Do not the people of the Great Realm even now reach out their greedy hands with violence and death in their hearts? For three transgressions and for four, judgment shall surely come upon you all.

"What do you wish of me?" Disan had asked, out of breath from the forcefulness of the Voice.

For now, only this: Let your blindness fall away; let your deafness be no more; let your mind take thought to the corruption beneath the splendor. Listen and see, and be a fool no more.

Disan had then been thrown to the ground unconscious, as if a great weight had collapsed upon him, and when he awoke, he was in the sunlight, on a little grassy knoll in the wood, with the temple nowhere in sight. He found his men shortly afterward.

When he had told her all of this, Disan had put his head on her shoulder and sighed. "I do not know if you can understand," he said wearily and in a low tone, "what it is like to have the Voice that cannot be denied tell you, as if it welled up out of your very being and everything around you, that you have been a fool."

Baia, remembering all of this, and especially Disan's head upon her shoulder, said to herself, "There must be something more here, something we are missing. Twice now Tavra has been named in strange doings, so that is where we must inquire."

Sunday, November 10, 2019

The Sleepless Emperor

The Emperor Justinian would apparently thrive on Twitter:

Everything was done the wrong way, and of the old customs none remained; a few instances will illustrate, and the rest must be silence, that this book may have an end. In the first place, Justinian, having no natural aptitude toward the imperial dignity, neither assumed the royal manner nor thought it necessary to his prestige. In his accent, in his dress, and in his ideas he was a barbarian. When he wished to issue a decree, he did not give it out through the Quaestor's office, as is usual, but most frequently preferred to announce it himself, in spite of his barbarous accent; or sometimes he had a whole group of his intimates publish it together, so that those who were wronged by the edict did not know which one to complain against.

Procopius, The Secret History. Of course, The Secret History is a hatchet job, so shouldn't be trusted, and, what is more, as a hatchet job is very over-the-top (there is an extensive discussion of how Justinian, who famously slept very little, was a demon whose head would sometimes float around on its own at night), so who knows whether Justinian actually went around just announcing his decrees to whomever.

Saturday, November 09, 2019

Music on My Mind

Gordon Lightfoot, "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald". The Edmund Fitzgerald left Superior, Wisconsin on the afternoon of November 9, 1975.

Lightfoot made a serious effort to be as accurate as possible, but there are always things missed or not known at the time, or are reworked a bit to fit the song, or that aren't wrong but potentially misleading due to compression. The Edmund Fitzgerald was actually bound for Zug Island near Detroit, its last cargo run before it returned home to Cleveland for the winter. "The Maritime Sailors' Cathedral" is really the Mariners' Church of Detroit; it still holds an annual memorial service, although now it is for all lives lost in the Great Lakes, not just for the Edmund Fitzgerald.

Friday, November 08, 2019

Dashed Off XXIII

This finishes the notebook completed in September 2018.

Three blocks may be so disposed as to hold a sheet stably when no single block can do so. Likewise multiple persons together may be so disposed as to do what no single person can do. (group agency)

Summative accounts of collective intentionality run into problems with cases in which the intentionality is organized deontically.

groups operating as instruments (armies for generals, etc.)

Memories often include references to other memories; this is a big part of remembering.

indexical, iconic, and symbolic memory

mediational approaches to apologetics: There are two opposing needs/tendencies requiring a mediating principle, such-and-such Christian doctrine or practice is capable of providing such mediation. (Cp Schleiermacher)

The vow of celibacy in the Latin Church is linked to the Latin Church's special charism of evangelization.

Symbolic theology teaches the right use of sensible things.

correlates in civil theology to theistic arguments in natural theology (e.g., Fourth Way / Aquinas on law; design / Maistre on British Constitution; etc.)

There is a dangerous tendency to take rights to be nothing other than powers to force others to do things. Rights can give title to coercion, but they are in fact not naturally expressed coercively -- coercion is remedial, not essential, to the right. The tendency also leads to overlooking that actions have to take into account all of the rights of all of the parties.

Sexual sins tend easily to breed sins of dishonesty.

At-at theories give implausible results when dealing with motion-through == something can be at x at t1 and at x at t2 and still be moving through x despite being at it at both times (which is just a matter of how you are measuring).

Never trust someone talking about development of doctrine if they are not also concerned about avoiding corruption of doctrine.

events that can only be understood as being 'on occasion' of something else: responses, reactions, jarrings, traveling changes

The love of human parents for their children is not mere affection but heavily deontic in character.

The most dangerous corruption is corruption under cover of good intentions.

the chosaliser of symbolism

Bodies are located by commensuration with containing dimensions; but location for other things is not so straightforward (cp. souls, Hume's taste of fig, angels, eucharist, electrons, legal entities).

Every sacrament is a kind of conversion to God.

our capacity to use our own presence (or communication thereof) as a sort of instrument, particularly in interacting with others (e.g., using one's being here to console)

One of the things that seems to have worked very well for Fabius Maximus was his recognition of religion's power to 'reset' a people so that they might rally anew.

Christ is Prophet, Priest, and King, but each as a unique limit case, in a way eminenter, for he fulfills all three not in servile mode but in filial mode.

One of the oddities of human society is that people will actively punish unusual self-restraint.

Nietzsche has a fragment in which he classifies the Gospel of John as Dionysian.

The epistemic advantages of the margins are real, but they are at the margins.

To say that Christ's presence in the Eucharist is substantial is to say that His presence is not merely causal.

kinds of presence, with example
true, not real, not substantial: legal representation
true, real, not substantial: telepresence
true, real, substantial: personal meeting

Hunter-gatherers have a more active involvement in their environment than is usually assumed: they clear out undesirable vegetation and fauna, spread desirables by selective use and sometimes by seeding, and modify the environment to make resources more available.

In any frontier or wilderness setting, food-gathering tends toward an improvised mixture of hunt, trap, forage, farm, and herd. A pioneer wants as diverse a set of options available as is possible. Indeed, this extends well beyond pioneering; small farmers and the like still do this to some degree.

"All these philosophers, so much on guard against the truths that embarrass them, are, so to say, all open to error, if only it accommodates them." Maistre

internal sacramental abuses, with examples
--- (A) Incorrect
--- --- (1) Fake: invented rite of ordination for women
--- --- (2) Misapplied: correct rite applied to women
--- (B) Incomplete
--- --- (1) Impeded: anullable marriage
--- --- (2) Interrupted: marriage with no actual expression of consent
--- (A) Illicit: consecration by episcopi vagantes
--- (B) Unworthy: receiving consecration in a spirit of disobedience
[I and II are essentially different kinds of evaluation.]
[I is ordered according to severity]
[IIA and IIB, on the contrary, are not exclusive, and this is important: one may innocently do the illicit, due to ignorance, and one may do the licit unworthily, and one may do the illicit unworthily. So they are also essentially different evaluations.]

three distinct standards by which sacramental acts are evaluated: sacramental, jural, and moral

In addition to abuses internal to the sacramental act itself, there are external abuses, e.g., sacrilegious use of consecrated hosts -- that is, desecrations and mockeries.

Categorical and dispositional properties are the same things described differently.

the analogous supplementation principles for compossibility

Note that Austin recognizes infelicities that are not in his taxonomy (e.g., verdictives may be unjustified or incorrect despite being neither void nor insincere).

Because of its occasion, unction admits of cases that are possibly in some sense unjustified, but neither invalid nor illicit nor unworthy (e.g., perhaps the seriousness of the illness is overestimated in an understandable but avoidable way).

titles of interpretation

Idea, Energy, and Power in praying
scalene trinities in praying

Restorative justice requires a retributive framework.

In "Justice", George MacDonald fails to grasp that punishment can be just because it itself is part of resitution and restoration; he also fails to grasp that perpetrators, not merely victims, have a perspective, and perpetrators in being restored to justice recognize the justice of, and sometimes demand, being penalized. The punishment makes up the wrong to the perpetrator; it is the justice of it that makes it up to the victim. When a perpetrator repents, this contributes to reconciliation by admitting the wrong; when he begs forgiveness, this contributes by admitting the desert of punishment. Thus MacDonald's entire discussion is incomplete.

MacDonald's attack on spiritual adoption seems clearly to take it as a merely forensic notion. But this is not true even of human adoption.

Punishment is obviously part of the offset to transgression; this is recognized almost universally. MacDonald's error is to assume that this means nothing can substitute for it, or that being a genuine contributor to offset means being a necessary condition of it. This is because he actually has an extremely harsh conception of justice: if a perpetrator has suffered independently from his crime, he takes this to contribute *nothing* to how justice will work. But this again is almost universally recognized as false.

MacDonald also does not seem to grasp that the sin is the beginning of its punishment. (This is quite clear in his comment on Dante -- he does not recognize that the punishments are symbolic representations of the wrongness of the sins.)

religion beyond the bounds of reason alone (note that this necessarily includes history as well as tradition and mysticism)

responsibilities to parents // responsibilities to ancestors

modes of Christology: Christology proper, Mariology, mysteriology

Much modern political philosophy depends on taking the part for the whole: taking one part of the common good, for instance, as definitive of it.

Contractualism does not guarantee justice, but only the least injustice that could reasonably be had by negotiation.

presential self-knowledge vs common-sensible self-awareness

performatives as language operating in ritual space

'causal powers' of absences // movements of cracks

consent-based ethics as negotiated relativism, the attempt to have the benefits of relativism while avoiding pure social relativism and pure individualism

Nonconvergence arguments for anti-realism often conflate two different things:
(1) there being no objective fact of the matter, in which case talk of nonconvergence is itself as problematic as convergence
(2) there being an objective fact adequately in hand which could explain nonconvergence

winking, shrugging, etc., as micro-ritual

tacit consent as deemed consent

A priori and a posteriori are relative to method.

The subsidiarity of the Incarnation makes possible the solidarity of the Cross.

the layers of the external world (sensation, experience, ampliation)

On the Cross Christ descends into *our* dark night.

People consistently draw the wrong conclusions in Dutch Book Arguments; the Dutch Book theorem establishes that some losses are guaranteed -- it is impossible to have unrestricted betting that does not overall incur guaranteed loss. Two ways to see this, with minor common assumptions:
(1) Betting does not occur in the realm of real numbers; probability does. Thus no betting can ever do more than approach probability theory to a certain degree.
(2) Some propositions, like "I will make no more bets", will not possibly conform to the requirement.
--The question is more complicated if betting is not unrestricted (since it depends on the restriction) or if you change how the probability theory is interpreted.

A rational agent whose sole aim was to maximize monetary profit would not do so by betting.

Grace burns before it saves.

"It is the great achievement of American civilisation that in that country it really is not cant to talk about the dignity of labour." Chesterton

Lust's greatest torment is chastity's expectation.

For every fact understood in context, there is a natural valuation for that context.

Every known proposition has a causa cognoscendi.

Mary participates in the passion of Christus patiens.

God must be judging His Church, given the theologians with whom we are stuck.

Lines in genealogical trees always involve a range of probabilities and, indeed, distinct kinds (because a genealogical record has multiple factors as testimonial and as evidential).

trying things out as the normal activity of the human mind

The assumption of compositionality in meaning tends to be applied without regard for functionality. But propositions are functional, not aggregative, wholes. Intersubstitutability is more like organ transplant than like switching out tiles on a floor.

All epicycles tend to correspond to real phenomena because their whole purpose in the model is to make the model better at tracking real phenomena.

ampliation and the non-univocity of truth value assignments

Rights must be adorned with beauties or people do not defend them.

A society needs people both to come together easily and to be insulated from each other's mistakes and aggressions.

What we call 'human dignity' is sometimes integral humanity, sometimes the possibility of it, sometimes the power of either to signify divinity.

sympathetic knowledge as quasi-presential

Survival is incremental and cumulative in nature.

the person as such -- the jural person -- symbolic vestment of person -- honor as witness to person -- protective circumstances of person (personal environment)

The words of absolution in penance are verdictive and exercitative.

A geneaological tree should be seen as a system of hypotheses confirmed by (usually) testimonial evidences.

The descent into hell is an illumination of souls. (ST 3.52)
the descent into hell & preaching (1 Pt 3:18-20; 4:6)

"The nineteenth century prided itself on having lost its faith in myths, and proceeded to put all its faith in metaphors." Chesterton

philosophy in theology like a curved four-dimensional space embedded in a ten-dimensional space

The standpoint of the martyrs is a eucharistic standpoint.

divertissement as a spreading out of attention and intention

Trading is by its nature a ritual interaction.

Economics is one kind of study of performatives and their results.

Trading failures
(I) misfires: purported trade but void
--- (A) misinvocations
--- --- (A1) nonplay: purported trade without the form of trade
--- --- (A2) misplay: purported trade but with wrong persons and circumstances
--- (B)
--- --- (B1) flaw: trade done incorrectly
--- --- (B2) hitch: trade not completed
(II) abuses: trade inviolation of the spirit of trade
--- (C1) fraudulent or forced
--- (C2) breached

People talk about free markets as if the markets were free, when in reality a free market is one in which the people are free.

"The soul does not die by sin but by impenitence." Chesterton

There is very little though in the politics even of very intelligent people.

"It was in itself a Christian miracle to make Paganism live." Chesterton

While there is a causal influence, the use of notes or a notebook is not merely causal; the notes/notebook are involved in our thinking and not merely an influence on it.
The physical notebook on its own lacks intentionality, nonderived content, or informational update, but using-the-physical-notebook has all of these things.

"...our vices are cured by the example of His virtues...." (Augustine)
"No sinner is to be loved as a sinner; and every man is to be loved as a man for God's sake, but God is to be loved for His own sake."

As morality is a higher advantage and wisdom a higher eloquence, so holiness is a higher morality.

Even among just societies there is gradation; for among just societies one may be more just than the other in this way or that. For there is a creativity to justice that seeks out new ways of being just.

The essential marker of an adequate philosophical account of disease is capturing the notion of something to be cured if possible. Any account that does not do this is already wrong, whatever strengths it might have in capturing other aspects.

accounts of disease based on harm, on failure of the necessary,, on lessening of quality, on nonfulfillment of end

The sacrament of confirmation constitutes the people of the Church as a spiritual militia.

onological principle of noncontradiction (Met 1005b19-23)
by abstraction ->
logical PNC (Met 1011b13-14)
both together by aptitude of intellect for truth >
psychological PNC (Met 1005b23-25)

ontological, logical, and psychological versions of PSR

Xunzi's account of li makes it (a) goal-directed (seeking after desires), (b) social (avoiding contentions), (c) structured (making divisions), and (d) traditionary (ancient kings).

li as that which is necessary for completion

probability: using possibilities to measure possibilities
time: using changes to measure changes
location: using regions (containers) to measure regions

x is a brute fact -> X is capable of being a brute fact -> There is something about X such that it can be a brute fact -> Something about X explains its possibly being a brute fact.

Either a brute fact is possible or it is not. If not, it is impossible. If so, it is either always possible or only sometimes possible. If always possible its possibility is a necessary truth, and is explained as such. If it is only sometimes possible, something must distinguish when it is possible from when it is not. Therefore even if there are brute facts, their possibility requires sufficient reason.

A single psychological study is not better than a common anecdote -- indeed, on its own, it is just an anecdote about a single artificially provoked case. The advantage over ordinary anecdotal evidence is pragmatic -- measurement allowing replication for further confirmation -- and not intrinsic evidential force.

"There is no rationality without turning to the infinite." Marion

Arguments are given on someone's behalf.

discovery strategies: (1) generalize; (2) apply; (3) divide; (4) analogize

"Human life is composed of small actions which accomplish great duties." Gerbet
"Each mark of contempt towards the poor contains a principle of infidelity and the germ of blasphemy."

Sincere joy or sorrow is given a transfiguration by music, becoming then something more easily shared.

"...learning is precisely learning to have a stopping point." Xunzi
"Speeches without proof, untested actions, and unprecedented plans -- the gentleman is careful of all such things."

When Xunzi says that human nature is bad, he takes it to be equivalent to saying that people who do not learn the good nor work at being good are bad.

making-possible, facilitation, making-probable, causation, determination, overdetermination

heresiological invasion, proliferation, metastasis

compatibilism and incompatibilism with respect to free will // compatibilism and incompatibilism with respect to chance

Dreyfus on expertise --
(1) novice : simple techniques and processes, explicit rules for use
(2) advanced beginner: expansion of technical repertoire and of judgment in application of rules
(3) competent: large number of rules requiring focused problem-solving and emotional engagement.
(4) proficient: problem recognition and classification increasingly automatic, as well as rule selection
(5) expert: immediate recognition and classification, passing easily to appropriate action

'the meaning of life': the structuring of the materials of life into means for an appropriate end, by that end
-- this is the broad sense (life given meaning), but we often use the phrase in a narrower sense that requires that the end be not only appropriate but also adequate. (Arguments that without God life has no meaning, for instance, are usually not saying that God is the uniquely appropriate end but that among appropriate ends, God is uniquely adequate.)

Institutes 4.2.1: Note that Calvin switches immediately from 'founded on the apostles and prophets' to 'founded on the doctrine of the apostles and prophets'.
Institutes 4.14.23-26: Calvin argues that the sacraments of the New Covenant are on a level with those of the Old. -- Note that this discussion is extensive and repeatedly echoed later; this is an essential element of his account. -- Note that he also puts Christian baptism and the baptism of John on a level (4.15.6-8), on similar grounds.

the ministries of the traditional minor orders
(1) porter: Christ cleansing the temple.
(2) lector: Christ reading Isaiah in the synagogue
(3) exorcist: Christ healing
(4) acolyte: Christ leading
(5) subdeacon: Christ washing the feet of the disciples
(6) deacon: Christ distributing at the Lord's Supper
(7) priest: Christ offering himself in sacrifice

Those not yet enlightened by the Spirit of God become teachable by reverence for the Church, through which the Spriit teaches, and thus submit to learn the faith of Christ from the gospel, which the Spirit through the Church preserves, proclaims, and preaches.

the Life of Christ as the general miracle: all miracles anticipate Christ, or memorialize Him, or are contained in or are expressive of the Life of Christ

"Grace does not come to man in the abstract, not because grace is limited in its power or efficacy but because there is no man in the abstract." Frederick Wilhelmson

intelligere est communicare

Experiment occurs within a field of observation, and thus depends on the kind of observation.
Duhem's theory of instruments and simulation as part of experimental context

works that express a philosophy vs. works that explore a philosophy