Friday, May 22, 2020

Dashed Off X

Metaphor & irony establish that the 'only if' in "<p> iff p" is not universally true. An interesting question is whether the 'if' is. For intsance, if I say, "I'm fine", in response to polite query, can we consider it true even if I'm not, in fact, fine, as it may nonetheless be the correct response? But there are perhaps even more likely cases in idealization and in cases where special vocabulary are involved (e.g., what counts under law). One could perhaps deny that these are the 'same' propositionally, but then "'Snow is white' is true iff snow is white" illuminates exactly nothing in language, because it is just presupposing that you've guaranteed equivalence, which requires a correct pattern of assignments of truth value; you've just turned it into a notational device.

the distancing function of quotation (scare quotes the obvious -- but note that the distancing function is still operative in cases that aren't scare quotes, e.g., when you want to make sure that something is attributed to another person and not to you)

Metaphors are sometimes good for talking about *ranges* of positions -- e.g., 'open future' rules out nonexistent and definitely closed (i.e., strictly deterministic) futures, but does not otherwise specify the kind of openness.

swarm-and-review as an imitation of genius (i.e., solving a large number of small problems very fast, not letting oneself be bogged down, and moving on if there is any danger of that, but periodically assessing where you are with regard to the problems and solutions overall)

Controls in experiments primarily get their value from facilitating comparison.

journalism as informal law enforcement

If you cannot see that a truly good thing may be done even by the gravest sinner, you are already on the way to damnation.

Language allows one to do more with perception than one otherwise would by building descriptive structures of great versatility.

"If everything really depended upon everything else, in the organism as well as in nature there would be no laws and no science." Merleau-Ponty

natural sciences as the study of the causation, constitution, and coordination of kinds of change

Sensations differ in the way they draw attention.

Nobody can have full knowledge of all things relevant to the health of society and government, so in practice we all assess these things by selected markers. They may be more or less well chosen, but even the best give us only a limited view, and other people will always be assessing how things are going according to other markers.

rituals for forming evidence, rituals for acknowledging evidence

The Cartesian method of doubt as certainly establishes 'I act for an end' as it does 'I think' or 'I exist'.

(1) 'I act for an end'.
(2) But is every end just mental or is some physical?
(3) Attribution of ends to physical is sometimes irresistible.
(4) God is not a deceiver.
(5) Therefore &c.

formal-object truthmaker vs. cause-of-formal-object truthmaker vs truth-entailing truthmaker

By entailment truthmaking (a truthmaker is that the existence of which entails that the proposition is true), everything is truthmaker for all necessary truths.

truthmaker maximalism -rarr; 'Something exists' is necessary.

Truthmaking is not about the relation between truth and truth but about the relation between truth and reality.

'Snow is white' is made true by snow being white iff snow is white.

The thing that we consider as relevantly making something true varies according to context.

Moral judgments do not reliably express pro- and con-attitudes.

"Logic is truly and properly a science and it is, at the same time, an art, though a liberal one." John of St. Thomas

grounding, linking, and disrupting functions of metaphor

collecting, building, measuring, moving in mathematics

Acts of mercy often begin with inquiring.

All physicalisms are built on conjecture.

In politics one often does not need to get belief from people but just plausibility sufficient that few think it worth the effort of opposing it.

virtual rites arising by chance intersection of distinct rites

One of the most universal experiences is the feeling that there is some sort of falseness or emptiness to the world.

Articulations of arguments are fundamentally improvised, although these improvisations may undergo considerable refinement.

Possibility with regard to fictions is constructible within plausible consistency.

Fuller's account of legal fiction gives too central a place to falsehood. This has unfortunately carried through to other discussions of it. But, for instance, a corporation's being a person for the purpose of law is not *false* but *constructed* on analogy to a relatively nonconstructed fact, and once constructed is true. Likewise, taxonomies have focused too heavily on motivation or explanation for having the legal fiction and not enough on the fictions themselves.

Legal fictions arise from the need to use artificial classifications for the practical purposes of law.

Legal fictions are legal facts had not by discovery practices, nor by practices of approximating the extralegal, but by imposing extensions on such facts had in these ways.

"The true sign represents the signified, not according to an empirical association, but inasmuch as its relation to other signs is the same as the relation of the object signified by it to other objects. It is because of this that we can decipher unknown languages." Merleau-Ponty

Prophetic foretelling is often treated as if it were pre-description; but this is not especially accurate as to what prophets usually do. Prophecy is rather pre-framing, so that by the foretelling you may understand what will happen when it has happened, or else so that by it you may understand the doing that brings it about or avoids it.

The apostles were either deceivers, or deceived, or at least approximately right.

Orthodoxy is, like philosophy in Plato's Gorgias, a form of self-restraint.

The New Testament is clear that the Church has a correspondence-network structure; this is clear from the organization of the New Testament and from the book of Revelation.

"In an organism, experience is not the recording and fixation of certain actually accomplished movements: it builds up aptitudes, that is, the general power of responding to situations of a certain type by means of varied reactions which ahve nothing in common but the meaning." Merleau-Ponty

"The unity of physical systems is a unity of *correlation*, that of organisms a unity of *signification*." Merleau-Ponty

Introspection cannot be sharply severed from external perception; granting the latter, you have already granted some of the former.

? Could one analyze validity/validities using a ternary relational semantics, Vabc, wehre a is a premise set, b is structural info of some kind, and c is a conclusion set?

Modern democracies consistently confuse the dramatic and the sincere. (The Athenians seem not have had this problem; they simply supported the dramatic and had remarkably little interest in the sincere.)

difficult-to-articulate inferences

With too many adaptations to too many problems, a philosophical movement can no longer (re)constitute itself as a unity through time.

The sin of Adam moves original justice out of the possessed common good of the human race, along with all of its concomitants and consequents.

Human beings naturally desire wisdom from the past and knowledge from the future.

Merleau-Ponty: The perspectival character of knowledge does not introduce subjectivity but assures us of the richness of the world (appearances are manifestations of something more).

the body as "the living envelope of our actions" (Merleau-Ponty)

The beloved sets ends for the lover, and what moves as beloved does the same.

the mutually representative character of perceptions

A body is a complex activity; it is a composition of things being done.

We recognize the reflection in the mirror as expressing ourselves and also the creepy uncanniness that would go with its detachment from that expression.

"A perception which would be coextensive with sensible things is inconceivable; and it is not physically but logically that it is impossible. For there to be perception, that is, apprehension of an existence, it is absolutely necessary that the object not be completely given to the look which rests on it, that aspects intended but not possessed in the present perception be kept in reserve." Merleau-Ponty

In the Xuting Mishisuo Jing, the Holy Spirit is referred to as the Cool Wind (lia'ng feng).

Each sacrament is a delomic symbolic legisign.

signum est res faciens cogitare (Petrus Margallus)
omnis res mundi est signum

Matrimony is a sign that gives birth to signs, as the Church is a sign that gives birth to signs.

The whole sacramental economy is found by sign in the sacrament of matrimony.

As a delomic symbol, the sacrament of matrimony is submitted to the Church, to be acknowledged; urged on the Church, as a guide; and presented to the Church for contemplation.

Divorce treats marriage as a purely external sign.

Matrimony, like revelation (cf. Ratzinger), is "a historical action of God in which truth becomes gradually unveiled".

sign of witness vs sign of sacrament

1 Cor 3:16 & 6:19 → divinity of the Holy Spirit

The sacramental character is a power of representation, both of Christ and of the Church.

sacramentalia caused by impetration (cf. Salmanticensis)

Trent, Session XXII cap 1 & can 2 on the apostles and the priesthood and the Last Supper

Extreme Unction does not remove from us our mortality and its consequences, but it strengthens us against the temptations therefrom, by strengthening our minds and wills according to disposition and, at times, strengthening our bodies through our minds & wills, by a sort of overflow.

Every human mind has a rhetorical firewall.

Great intelligence often consists in recognizing the possibility of a greater intelligence than one's own and working out some means of approximating it in various ways.

the organic unity of the Church through sacrament, charity, and doctrine

ontic vs epistemic senses of prediction (i.e., of the 'pre')

"The alleged self-evidence of sensation is not based on any testimony of consciousness, but on widely held prejudice." (Merleau-Ponty -- thus he takes perception, not sensation, to be primary)

Puller on Extreme Unction:
- Bellarmine seems to think extreme unction wipes away grave sins (he takes St. James's statement to be too strong to confine to venial sin); cp 1 Jn 2:1.
- Cajetan takes St. James to be talking not of extreme unction but of anointing the sick more generally [his argument puts too much emphasis on 'near the point of death', which VII later establishes as not understood quite that way, but also notes that the remission of sin is conditional]
- Bede takes the sickness & sin to be linked -- sometimes people are sick and dying *because * of their sins, so *if* this is so, the sins are remitted (Exp super Jacob) -- But he takes this to be conditional on confession.
- the Church Fathers often seem to envision the sick anointing themselves (or even being anointed by family) [but note Catholic arguments vs. this, that the anointing is passive anointing rather than active anointing]
- "The anointing oil signifies the mercy from God, and the cure of the disease, and the enlightening of the heart." Victor of Antioch
- clear statement of unction as part of viaticum begins in very late 8th/early ninth century
- Puller's argument that the Jacobean passage refers to two distinct cases and two separate institutions (rather than 1 case and institution with a conditional clause) is immensely implausible.
- Puller's argument with respect to remission of venial sins is also not very strong, for *many* things can remit venial sins; it's not a particular distinctive feature of sacramental unction. [This is why Bellarmine's argument above has some force.] On the other hand, he is probably right about the Carlovingian origin of the *full* Latin theory.

We tend to think of the seven sacraments as a group, but in fact, despite the intimate relations between them, each of the seven is the heart of an entire network of signs, rites, and doctrines, much of which is in various different ways more intimately related to that sacrament than the other six sacraments.

sacraments (broadly considered) instituted ad salutem, ad exercitationem, ad praeparationem (Hugh of St. Victor)

Rolandus in his Sentences treats the Incarnation of the Word as the chief sacrament and only then the others.

Theodore the Studite's list of six sacraments: Baptism, Holy Communion, Consecration of Chrism, Ordination, Monastic, Rites pertaining to death.

To pursue justice from a posture of pride is already to have begun corrupting it.

In absolution, the verdict is the sentence; such is the tribunal of mercy.

NB that Austin takes 'I absolve' as exercitative based on a verdict.