Friday, April 14, 2023

Dashed Off XII

This begins the notebook that began in March 2022; I seem to have accidentally skipped this notebook in the order of uploading, so these are actually earlier than the most recent Dashed Off posts.

"The beginning of wisdom: get wisdom." Pr 4:7

the ostiarial power of the Church
(1) to admit or not admit
(2) to regulate effectively the approach to the altar
(3) to exclude and remove
(4) to keep secure under lock and key
(5) to guard from vandal and evildoer

"In the absence of governance, the strong will swallow the weak. In the presence of governance, the weak resists the strong." Kautilya

In the long run, the enemies of the Church always build their own gallows with their plots, but it also requires courage on the part of Christians before they are delivered.

duties within humanitarian traditions as creating rights (e.g., obligations of doctors making associated rights for doctors, justified by the humanitarian value of the medical tradition)

Never do anything important on a single statistic; serious statistical inference always looks that how different lines of evidence converge (or not).

selective delicacy as a common manipulation tactic

"as the care for all was fitting to the dignity of his see" Sozomen (Ecc. Hist. 3.8, paraphrasing St. Julius)
"the Church of Rome's peculiar privilege" Socrates (Ecc. Hist. 2.15, describing the same events)
"he alleged that there is a sacerdotal canon which declares that whatever is enacted contrary to the judgment of the bishop of Rome is null" Sozomen (3.10, paraphrasing Julius again)
"Neither was Julius, bishop of great Rome, there, nor had he sent a proxy, although an ecclesiastical canon commands that the churches shall not make any ordinances against the judgment of the bishop of Rome." Socrates (2.8)
"charging them with a violation of the canons, because they had not requested his attendance at the council, seeing that the ecclesiastical law required that the churches should pass no decisions contrary to the views of the bishop of Rome." Socrates (3.17)

The World as tempter makes considerable use of appeal to the authority of accomplished fact.

Recognition of legal personality always pre-exists covenant, treaty, or contract.

God must call the people of Israel before He can covenant with them as a body.

To make use of postulates consistently, one must at least postulate that postulates that genuinely resolve a number of distinct genuine problems are at least probably approximately true.

Dionysius of Corinth, in his letter to Pope Soter, notes that the Roman church sends contributions "to many Churches in every city, thus refreshing the needy in their want and furnishing the brethren condemned to the mines all that is necessary." (Eusebius, Hist. Ecc. 4.23)

Both the sublimity of the starry heavens above and of the moral law within are but signs of the sublimity of God.

2 Chr 6:12 -- Solomon and the people pray toward the altar
2 Chr 6:32 -- foreigners pray toward the house of the Lord
2 Chr 6:34 -- people in battle pray toward the city of the house of God
2 Chr 6:38 -- people in captivity pray toward the land, the city, and the house of God

An imagined community is not the same as an imaginary one.

"It is evident that every person who participates in virtue as a matter of habit unquestionably participates in God, the substance of virtues." Maximos
"The inclination to ascend and to see one's proper beginning was implanted in man by nature."

Freedom of speech is not the freedom speak words into the air but the freedom to communicate by speech, and thus includes a secondary freedom of the interested and addressed hearer not to be prevented from hearing.

The ability to take on long-term debt is a sign of wealth, not poverty.

Enthymeme is the body of persuasion because it is what structures that to which one is persuaded, both in terms of the thing itself and the context by which it is understood.

"a topos is a heading under which many enthymemes fall" Aristotle, Rhet 1403a18-19

"Counter-speech" is not a coherent category, or else it is just "speech".

values as aspects of actual desirability
goodness G exhibits/constitutes value V to desiring power D

the link between sublimity and dignity

an ethos: an ordering of value preferences (Scheler)

pleasure, utility, vitality, culture, sanctity

feeling with another
feeling that another feels
feeling for another
feeling on behalf of another
feeling within a common mood as one's own feeling
feeling that others feel a certain way

Scheler gets his objective ranking of values on the basis of durability, indivisibility (resistance to change compared to carrier), relative independence of other values, depth of satisfaction, absoluteness (independence from one who feels).

"A Good is related to value-qualities as a thing is to the qualities that fulfill its properties." Scheler

sanctity vs. the value of sanctity
sublimity vs. the value of sublimity
(the holy, the sublime, etc., may in a given experience not be exhibiting the value of sanctity or sublimity)

Even in purely mechanical causes we must distinguish what a cause can do of itself and what it can do from other causes.

Much of international politics after the Second World War has been an attempt to discover means of aggression short of war.

the Burning Bush as type of Mary, of Church, of resurrection body

God witnesses affliction, hears cry of complaint, of Israelites.

'baptized into Moses' in the cloud and the sea

hell as the realm of wasted chance

televisual/audio participation in Mass (i.e. by visual and auditory prayer rather than by presence) and living in the Land, Israelites not able to go up to the Temple

reading of Scripture: Church Militant
Creed & prayers: Church Patient
Communion: Church Triumphant

paraliturgical commemorations not sharing the space (livestreaming), not sharing the space and time (recording, lesser symbolic commemorations)
-- Are there cases of not sharing the time but sharing the space? Good Friday seems an example.

"The aim of philosophy, abstractly formulated, is to understand how things in the broadest possible sense of the term hang together in the broadest possible sense of the term." Sellars
-- This requires that there be: aims, understanding, reality, coherence, unified intelligibility

The more specialized fields are, in terms of both context and ethos, the harder it is for them to spawn new fields.

the body as a system of natural signs

physical mass as stored power-to-do

(1) symbolic representation
(2) artistic geometry
--- (a) classical
--- (b) projective
--- (c) optical
(3) artistic mechanics
(4) artistic anatomy

One should see chess pieces not as pieces but as squares of control with a vulnerability (the piece as such).

If you ask about writing, "Should I do things this way?", the correct answer is almost always, "No, unless this is an exception." The same seems true of drawing.

remotive divine attributes
(1) being: remove limitations on being (unity, simplicity, infinity, ineffability)
(2) presence: remove limitations on presence (eternity, omnipresence)

From the way Aristotle sets up his account of virtue, one of the indications of true virtue is that it makes you a good friend.

We naturally admire success and therefore naturally form hierarchies according to such various standards of success that we regard as both important and easy to apply, hierarchies of the apparently successful, and we take the higher-ranked as guides in our own behavior, because we too wish to be successful; or, failing that, to be linked with those who are. Attempting to quash this ranking-tendency only leads people to switch their standards of success and do the same thing according to that different standard.

Aquinas on Mass (IV Sent d8, exp.)
I. Beginning of Prayer
--- A. Preparing the people for prayer
--- --- 1. Through devotion (Introit)
--- --- 2. Through humility (Kyrie)
--- --- 3. Through intention (Gloria)
II. Middle of Prayer
--- A. Instruction of people through the word of God
--- --- 1. Deacon proclaims teaching of Christ (Gospel)
--- --- 2. Subdeacon proclaims New Testament preaching (Epistle)
--- --- 3. Lesser ministers proclaim Old Testament preaching (Reading)
--- B.  Effect of this instruction ordered to Christ
--- --- 1. Advance in virtue (Gradual)
--- --- 2. Exultation in hope (Alleluia)
--- --- [3. Lamentation of present sorrow (Tract)]
--- --- 4. Confession of faith (Creed)
III. Mystery
--- A. Oblation of matter to be consecrated
--- --- 1. Exultation of the ones offering (offertory Antiphon)
--- --- 2. Expression of offering and oblation (Suscipe)
--- --- 3. Petition for acceptance (Secret)
--- B. Gathering of the sacrametn
--- --- 1. Preparation through praise
--- --- --- a. Imploring praise be received (Preface)
--- --- --- b. Praise of divinity and humanity of Christ (Sanctus)
--- --- 2. Completion of sacrament
--- --- --- a. sacramentum tantum
--- --- --- --- 1. Blessing of offering (Te Igitur)
--- --- --- --- 2. Petition for salvation of the offerers individually (Memento)
--- --- --- --- 3. Commemoration of those in whose honor it is offered (Communicantes)
--- --- --- --- 4. Express conclusion (Hanc Igitur)
--- --- --- b. res et sacramentum
--- --- --- --- 1. Imploring of the consecrator (Quem Oblationem)
--- --- --- --- 2. Completion of consecration (Qui Pridie)
--- --- --- --- 3. Exposition of the commemoration (Unde et Memores)
--- --- --- c. res tantum
--- --- --- --- 1. Petition for the effect of grace
--- --- --- --- --- a. that the sacrament be accepted (Supra Quae)
--- --- --- --- --- b. that the grace be given (Supplices Te Rogamus)
--- --- --- --- 2. Petition for the effect of glory
--- --- --- --- --- a. of the dead (Memento)
--- --- --- --- --- b. of the living (Nobis Quoque Peccatoribus)
--- --- 3. Reception of the sacrament
--- --- --- a. petition of sacrament (Pater Noster)
--- --- --- b. expiation of the recipients (Libera Nos)
--- --- --- c. fulfillment of peace (Pax Domini)
--- --- --- d. petition for mercy (Agnus Dei)
--- --- --- e. special preparation of priest (Domien Jesu Christe)
III. End of Prayer (Thanksgiving)
--- A. Calling to mind the benefit (Antophon)
--- B. Act of gratitude in prayer

Aquinas on the Mass (ST 3.83.4)
I. Preparation by Prayer
--- A. Divine praise (Introit)
--- B. Prayer for mercy (Kyrie)
--- C. Commemoration of heavenly glory (Gloria)
--- D. Prayer of priest for people
II. Preparation by Instruction of the Faithful
--- A. Dispositively, by lectors and subdeacons
--- --- 1. Reading of teachings of Prophets and Apostles (Lesson)
--- --- 2. Signifying progress in life (Gradual)
--- --- 3. denotation of spiritual joy (Alleluia) or spiritual sighing (Tract)
--- B. Perfectively, by deacons and priests
--- --- 1. Reading of Gospel
--- --- 2. Assent of people
III. Celebration of Mystery
--- A. Offered as sacrifice (Oblation)
--- --- 1. Joy of offerers (Offertory)
--- --- 2. Prayer of priest that it might be acceptable
--- B. Consecrated as sacrament
--- --- 1. Exultation to devotion (Preface)
--- --- 2. Praise of Christ's Godhead and humanity (Sanctus)
--- --- 3. Commemoration
--- --- --- a. of those for whom the sacrifice is offered, the whole Church
--- --- --- b. of the saints (Communicantes)
--- --- --- c. Conclusion of petition
--- --- 4. Consecration
--- --- --- a. petition for effect of consecration
--- --- --- b. consecration
--- --- --- c. petition to excuse presumption
--- --- --- d. petition that the sacrifice finds favor
--- --- --- e. petition for the effect of sacrament
--- C. Received as Sacrament
--- --- 1. Preparation for communion
--- --- --- a. by common prayer (Pater Noster)
--- --- --- b. by private prayer (Libera Nos)
--- --- 2. Preparation for peace (Agnus Dei)
--- --- 3. Actual reception
IV. Thanksgiving
--- A. Rejoicing for having received
--- B. Returning thanks by prayer

Given the various appellations of angelic beings in Scripture, there are only three possibilities:
(1) They are all of a kind and share the same roles but the names indicate various aspects of these roles.
(2) They are of the same kind but the appellations indicate different roles or offices.
(3) They are of different kinds and roles, as indicated by the appellations.

Zech 1:12 & angelic intercession (Turretin argues that this is Christ, as he does also with Rev. 8:3)

It is difficult to see any evidence in history that animism ever develops polytheistic gods except under the influence of an already existing polytheism.

Grave goods are an important marker in the prehistory of religion because they had to have had a a transliminal point, which requires some kind of beyond-grave conception.

(1) ritual recognition of boundary
(2) ritual recognition of boundary-crossing
(3) ritual representation of what is beyond the boundary

100,000 BC -- earliest surviving evidence of deliberate burial
38,000 -- earliest zoomorphic sculpture
35,000 -- 'Venus' figurines begin to be found in graves, some deliberately broken or mutilated; staining of bones with red ochre
25,000 -- various grave goods
13,000 -- clear evidence of shared burial sites / cemeteries
9,130 -- Gobekli Tepe, Nerali Con
2494 -- We begin to find Pyramid Texts, the oldest surviving religious texts
2150 -- Oldest identifiable versions of Gilgamesh narrative
1700 -- Rig Veda
1351 -- Amarna heresy
1300 -- the Sin-liqe-unninni edition of the Epic of Gilgamesh
1250 -- Upanishads begin to be composed
1200 -- earliest surviving Chinese oracle bones

Christ saying, "My Father is greater than I," is somewhat peculiar if one assumes Him to be a mere man; of course God is greater than a man. But it takes on significance if we recognize that 'Father' here indicates a fatherhood not purely figurative and symbolic.

Jude 6 -- the aidios fire

Every sin has its piacularity as well as its culpability.

If we cannot deserve infinite penalty, we can even less be suitable for infinite reward. But the human heart opens out to infinity; we know ourselves to be capable of deserving infinite punishment and we know ourselves to have a suitability for infinite reward.

Hell is a state of good wholly finite, always a good merely petty and without greatness.

To claim that love does not punish is to claim something contrary to every kind of love we know.

Theological innovations always circle back to something like old heresies.

Family often vicariously bears penalty for family.

It is interesting to read Francis William Newman, Phases of Faith; he is always at one period of his life rejecting doctrine A on the authority of doctrine B, and then at a later period rejecting doctrine B on the authority of something else, without ever questioning his prior rejections, now apparently unfounded.

pilgrimage // commemoration

"Pursuing the same thought to the Old Testament, I discerned there also no small sprinkling of grotesque or immoral miracles. A dead man is raised to life, when his body by accident touches the bones of Elisha, as though Elisha had been a Romish saint, and his bones a sacred relic.' Francis W. Newman
-- 'As though', indeed!
-- Note that the standard of 'grotesque and unmoral' is merely 'being like Romanism'.
-- It's perhaps worth noting that the brothers think along similar lines on points like this, but Francis tollenses and John Henry ponenses.

Uzzah, Abimelech, and piacularity

Doublets in the Pentateuch are so many and extensive that their number clearly indicates that they are being used as a storytelling device.

FW Newman's suggestion that Ex 15:19 describes no miracle, but is merely 'hyperbolic', 'high poetry that describes nothing definite, is remarkable. People use hyperbole to accentuate what they think happened, not to invent it; Ex. 15:19 is at least being put forward in its very text as something that actually happened -- later interpreters did not invent this  aspect even if you assume they were overly literal about it. Ex 15:19 makes no sense at all unless the Lord was taken by the original author to have intervened in some way with waters to save the children of Israel from Pharaoh's army. To say it implies no miracle when it explicitly states one, however figurative you assume its language, is absurd. It is only topped by his later assumption that no one else in the history of reading Song of Songs recognized that the book consists of voluptuous love-songs, it apparently never having occurred to him that the allegorical reading presupposes it.

It is often the case that justice is impossible where love does not go first.

Mill's On Liberty as a generalization of Socratism (e.g., Socrates's discussion of refutation in the Gorgias)