Friday, July 15, 2016

Dashed Off XV

Qualia-based defenses of dualism generally seem to require that all sufficiently developed animals are such as to require dualism (and 'sufficiently developed' would seem to have to be quite generous).

We do not need abstraction to explain the fact that we classify things; but abstraction does explain why we are so extraordinarily good at it, able to navigate rather high-level classifications when (e.g.) helping to sort books at a library, and why as a species we are able to take it so far as to build periodic tables that predict properties of elements not yet discovered, classify subatomic particles we can never sense, and sort stars by age and composition based on lines of light.

All of Hume is a sort of proof that intellectual abstraction is not reducible to phantasms and imaginative processes.

arguments from evil as falling into (1) quasi-ontological (2) quasi-cosmological (3) quasi-teleological (4) quasi-moral groups
(1) evil makes existence of infinite good (conceptually) impossible (2) evil rules out infinite good as cause (3) evil rules out infinite good as exemplar for world (4) evil rules out infinite good as practical postulate

respect & gratitude as essential elements of good stewardship

The translations of Enoch and Elijah, the assumption attributed to Moses, the Assumption of Our Lady, the Ascension of Christ, all perhaps suggest that what we call death is but the defective malfunction, the disordered falling-short, of something profound in us, of a transcendence that must be restored if we are to be whole.

What is especially significant of human classification ability is not that we classify but that we consider why we classify the way we do.

All accounts of scientific realism can be seen as converging on Aristotelian principles, although this is a matter of degree (it of course also follows that proponents of those accounts could well say instead that Aristotelian principles go too far in this way or that).

roles of metaphysical principles in fields of natural science
(1) to explain how and why those fields can explain
(2) to establish the general for what in that field is specific
(3) to relate that field to other fields
(4) to serve as heuristic in the inquiry of that field

(a) impressions are productive causes of future properties
(b) powers of an object are productive causes of future properties
(c) changing the course of nature may cause a change in the powers of the object
(d) custom is a cause of the idea of causation

A healthy government restrains itself not only in light of legal requirement but also in light of the way actions would function as symbolic precedents.

situationism as a problem for utilitarianism: the fragility of psychological states like pleasure & pain or satisfaction

artificial classifications as approximations

real numbers as: points in axis/lines in area/points in plane; infinite decimals; a particular kind of set construction given rational numbers; an ordered field with the least upper bound property
- the problem with the geometrical account is that reals and rationals do not seem easily distinguishable this way.
- the problem with infinite decimals account is defining the arithmetical operations
- the problem with cut-based accounts is construction the relevant subsets of rational numbers in the first place and defining arithmetical operations with them

A free society requires the ability of citizens on their own power and authority to form quasi-public institutions.

Note that Calvin holds that unction was an apostolic sacrament but that it ceased with the cessation of the gift of healing he regards it as having signified; the obvious difficulty is that the remission of sins seems to indicate that there was more to its signification.

The rule for the interpretation of Scripture is the Spirit that animates the whole Church.

baptism saves Mk 16:16; 1 Pt 3:21

clarifying & facilitating freedom as one of the functions of law

discipline, foresight, and thoroughness as properties of prudence

tea ceremony as training in civilization

"If the universe is so bad, or even half so bad, how on earth did human beings ever come to attribute it to the activity of a wise and good Creator?" (CS Lewis)

preceptive, directive, and facultative rules in liturgical law

Schelling distinguishes two kinds of idea in Plato: those that ground the world with respect to materiality and those that do so with respect to form as such. (The former objects, the latter the Good, quantity, quality, causality, etc.)

The purpose of Descartes's Meditation IV is not to get God off the hook, but to put us on it -- i.e., to establish that we are responsible for our own judgment.

testimony as self-reflective (qua testimony, it can be regarded as being partly about its own causality)

the affinity of justice and truth

Paleatiology requires a temporal ordering of first causes aligned with their logical ordering (so that prior/posterior/indifferent in logic can be translated directly to time)
- in what domains does spatial ordering align with logical ordering? (and what kind of ordering? up/down, in/out, to/from, over/under)
(think of logical diagrams here, which use topological relations to model logical relations)

using etiological and causal role accounts of function in application to scientific inquiry itself

Etiological accounts of function, as given by analytic philosophers, are ironically not themselves historically structured, thus treating the function of intellectual problems, etc., as non-etiological.

sacred narrative as an expression of providential order

almsgiving and the temporal prosperity of the Church
Bellarmine's note of temporal prosperity is linked to the existence of communitas perfecta.

prosperity is relative to common good

Every etiology is an account of a series of causes that is itself an effect.

Bull's two arguments for angels: plenitude and best explanation for vastness of the universe

invocation of saints (1) to think and speak humbly of it (2) to proclaim them blessed (3) to ask for their prayers

The modern age favors the idea of faith without zeal.

principles of mutual forbearance in inquiry

Swiftness of progress along a certain line of inquiry may also be accompanied by shoddiness of constructive and critical thought. Pressure to progress swiftly, or even steadily, is pressure to take shortcuts.

Fiction and nonfiction alike are testimony, with different causal accounts.

simulations as artificial testimonies

People will usually act on their own interest; but they will also usually try to avoid ways of doing so that interfere with what they see as the general interest.

soil sampling requires
(1) representativeness of sample
(2) stability of sample
(3) representativeness of tested subsample
(4) accuracy of test
- it seems like error statistics would be appropriate here

Phenomena are not identifiable without appeal to causation.

A sample's role in inference is determined by its causal profile.

artificial analogies converging on natural analogies

Every actual being is intelligibly actual; what is intelligibly actual is either itself a principle of intelligibility or requires a principle such that its actuality is intelligible.

Meno as a comic dialogue

Ungoliant as envy

guidance by example and counsel as essential to integrity and health of law and government

the extent of lobbying as a sign of the extent to which a government is not sticking to its duties of governance

dreams & unsettled classification

'qualia' as a residue concept

As the books of the New Testament are being written, they proceed from and to churches already living in the Tradition of Christ and His Apostles, a tradition from those who had known Christ Himself or His Apostles who had known Him

Jesus scholarship as aggressive Gospel Harmony

Every pursuit of pleasure requires restraint.

Some punishments clearly do allow for penal substitutions like fines (cf. David Lewis)

philosophical systems as both discursive and intuitive in character

illusion of abundance as the principle of fast food

Barzun: decadence as good intentions exceeding power to fulfill them

Our body is mostly in the domain of allowing rather than doing, and the allowing shows a difference between an active and a passive allowing.

Every human being unfolds out of motherhood.

Mary Lk 1;42
Jael Jdg 5:24
Judith Jud 13:18
Jael crushes head of Sisera, Judith severs the head of Holofernes; Gn 3:15 in some mss

Knowledge requires a standard to exist at all; it is an inherently normative concept.

virtues admitting of infinite intension -- prudence and charity obvious candidates, poss. also justice
-- some virtues seem necessarily to have only finite intension (temperance & its parts, fortitude, as poss. candidates; possibly also faith and hope)
-- Aquinas explicitly argues that charity admits of infinite intension (ST 2-2.24.7)

Hope is an intrinsically narrative virtue.

Malachi 2:7 and the mark of priesthood

Every psalm as a standpoint and an addressee. (This is explicitly recognized by St. Hilary as the key to interpreting the psalms.)

The Gospel known by the prophets under symbolic veil was known by the apostles through manifest seal.

almsgiving as a discipline of humility

prevalence of distraction as a deteriorating factor in the availability of good counsel

It is important to grasp that people not only argue at others but also with and for them.

the moral as well as physical defenselessness of the infant

cooperative reinforcement of distinct lines of argument (parity, analogy, practical suitability, metaphorical/symbolic aptness, co-parsimony)

poignancy and precious pains (pains that make life better)


Jesus' resurrection in Mark: 8:31, 9:31, 10:32-34; aslo 9:2-13; 14:27-28; 16:6

Synoptic sharing shows a congeniality of shared material for diverse groups of early Christians.

galley effect as showing that sensory experience is more than sensory perception
constancy & coherence as aspects of semiosis

simultaneity (of time) as primarily a systemic concept

the principle of plurality of societies (Every human being is a member of multiple societies, each with some protection and good of its own)
the legitimacy and necessity of rational faction -- the modern state has attacked social pluralism under the name of faction

Arguments from evil require that our moral sense be sufficient to establish impossibilities and necessities of a high degree of metaphysical importance, or it cannot get its conclusion, indeed, cannot get more than a puzzle; but if our moral sense is this sure, it is itself a reason to believe that God as a moral principle exists.

the danger of using fuss over the appearance of tradition to cover lack of the substance

Some prices are too high for saving even the innocent. (Everyone actually recognizes such cases.)

personal and abstract ends of society (abstract ends include intrinsic interest, principle, and traditional loyalty)

Hund-Mulliken molecular orbital theory and the relation between part and whole in a molecule


vagueness of location (note that this is quite intuitive -- we only locate things to a given precision -- but immediately causes problems for strict denial of multilocation

localizable abstractions (e.g., local jurisdiction)

Rehabilitation requires free will if it is not to be mere manipulation.

all patriarchal sees are as if one Petrine see (cf Gregory the Great to Eulogius; REg Ep Bk VII, Ep 40)
(this is obviously said analogically, via relation to Peter)
(but note especially the connection with John 17:21

"the good of a neighbor is common to one who stands idle, if he knows how to rejoice in common in the doings of the other" (Gregory the Great Ep 40)

Liturgy of St. James as the primary liturgical type of the Church
(various Latinate rites are from different sources, and Liturgy of St. Cyril is from Liturgy of St. Mark, but Liturgy of St. James splits into Liturgies of St. BAsil and St. John Chrysostom and Syriac Liturgy of St. James)

Note that the praise of creation in Sirach 43 prepares for and anticipates the praise of Simon the Just as high priest in Sirach 50.

A movie is not an illusion of motion; it is an actual motion of representation by light and filter.

Matrimony receives from baptism that our bodies are for the Lord.

Matrimony is pedagogical as law, as symbol, and as grace.

Pauline & Petrine privileges as linked to marriage's role in knitting together the Body of Christ and uniting it to Christ.

complete definition, varied examples, explicit reasoning, developed foundations

cultivation of asymmetric confusion as one of the fundamental problems of military strategy and tactics

"success at the cost of one's kindred is the greatest misfortune" 2 Macc 5:6

What passes for historical objectivity is usually just a certain sobriety of political judgment.

Observation is a change that is caused in such a way that allows reliable semiosis.

(1) principle of asceticism
(2) principle of purity
(3) needful things
(4) moral good taste
(5) making virtues manifest

realism vs anti-realism as being at root a question of the relation of intelligible to sensible

experiments as changes, experiments as effects, experiments as signs

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