Category: Philosophy


A Darwinian defense of Kantian ethics in 233 words

Someone who rejects your friendship when you are being both kind and sincere—that one has core wrongness. Hating someone because they cause something you hate—that is instinct. It is a mechanism of behavior modification that has been selected for. If some cells really do irritate large numbers of others, their ang...

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Theory, Formalism, and PSR

There cannot be a final theory in principle. We have the (local) universe. Explanation? Explaining the universe means, first, assuming the existence of some transcendent field that contains it. For example, the (local) universe is just a bubble inside the Multiverse, which is a churning vastness that births universes like...

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Dualism: an indefeasible formulation

I: Ought and awareness

You cannot fear reality if you are doing the right thing. That’s it! That is the Alpha and Omega of all ethics. Doing the right thing—but whence this right?

Cognitive choice, applying epistemic rules to Dasein, has ontological effects at the...

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Prejudicial problem formulation

An example from philosophy of mind
Dualism and monism are the two central schools of thought on the mind–body problem, although nuanced views have arisen that do not fit one or the other category neatly. Dualism is seen even in the Eastern tradition, in the Sankhya and Yoga schools of Hindu philosophy, and Plato, but i...
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Is generality just obscurity?

What if the “what it is like” is just faded sense presence made fuzzy?

There is sense presence and we capture from it rules. Every sayable is a kind, a background field of variation. An instance of a kind falls inside the kind in two ways:

  1. When I see thi...
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Voluntarism: the new First Philosophy

First philosophy is the ultimate set of presumptions that constitute both the striving of the subject and the tone of the whole panoply of being-here. Even the simplest and most attenuated question is the ripe fruit of a mountain of metaphysical presumptions.

The perennial discovery of all trenchant philosophical questioning...

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Schopenhauer vs Leibniz on PSR

Leibniz defined the principle of sufficient reason as that which requires us to acknowledge that there is no fact or truth that lacks a sufficient reason why it should be so, and not otherwise. Our subjective epistemic nature is constituted to to assume that what is real is what is...

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Why desire is occult

It is hard to impossible to understand desire. Why?

Entelechy, active power, conatus (effort/striving), nisus (urge/desire), primary force, internal principle of change, light, self-surpassing, ebullient surplus, inner movement, proprioception of mere time, or what Kant called spontaneity.

Why? Understanding means comprehension, and comprehension means has been capped. The comprehended thing...

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Existentialism: sour grapes for smart people

Existentialism is envy and sour grapes for smart people.

SAD FACT: There are people who love their vocation and who look forward to getting up in the morning. There are people in love with their bad faith, who meld blissfully with their constructed identities, and who love their lives. They...

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Magnitude and objectivity

The reality that the world presents is simultaneously what can be measured. Even subjective qualia—like saltiness—can be transcribed into magnitude (and so enjoy universal agreement) when we attend to their intensity. Salty and bitter may be entirely subjective, but their quantification is universal, and so objective.

The world that is rea...

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Extension or mass?

Descartes says that the model of objective reality is extension.

But Salvia teaches that the essence of reality is not extension but heaviness, mass, and physical solidity. We acquire our sense of reality from the counter-force that greets our acts of pushing against things. Reality, or thingy-ness, is abstracted from...

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Who they really are.

Digital is the new real

Digital is the new real

Agreement about the flaw makes the flaw real and your judgment valid. What could be happier? Ontologically negating the oppressor AND the joy of being right about something that others cannot even see.

Passion is relaxed interest.

Hillary is Devil; Trump, a Golden Roman God....

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Capital as bonafide agent

Capital, which is money that seeks to attract more money, has agentive qualities. We say that people make demands on behalf of capital, but if the soul is just a pattern of biological action, then we can say that capital makes those demands and be ontologically correct. Also, capital works...

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Great Hegel lecture

CSH: Fara said, “Did smoke was.”

And I realized that once humans have economic surplus—enough food and their society is organized—they get bored. People have a lot of cognitive survival machinery. Once survival is taken care of the machinery doesn’t take a rest. Instead, it creates games, makes art, theorizes nature an...

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Certainty and blindness

CSH: Wei was saying that we can’t get geometry and arithmetic wrong because those sciences merely report back on our very means of apprehension. That is to say, mis-grasping a geometric or arithmetic truth is impossible. If you understand the sentence then you already grasp its truth and cannot misjudge i...

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Rick Roderick: fearless perception

Rick Roderick was the light, guide, and joy of my life for 20 years.

I just realized something. I now know the secret of his power. The reason Rick was so smart is that he was so fearless about human self-twisting. Human lives are run and ruined by passion. Rick...

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How is counting possible?

Preserving passing in time through clever mechanics

Kant: We transcend time by making it objective, by building a model of time, in time, such that the model presents the progression of time with the passing of time. The act of...

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Marxian materialism explained

Marxian materialism in a nutshell:

The subject exists as constant adjustment to the extra-subjective.

Here’s a timely example. Think about how you value the substance of your secreted words when you posit them materially (chisel, paint, manually punch into paper) as opposed to how you value them when you “enter” them ...

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Why we prefer theism

CSH: Zora was saying that we demand that ultimate reality be irrational. According to survival-oriented reason, a religion that promoted suicide is a failure and a bad choice. But the picture of ultimate reality in atheistic science is not as comfortable as the picture of reality that has a god,...

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Resistance and value

Q: What is the interest in this Kantian-Buddhist analysis? Why is it the highest good to do this type of thinking? Why is it so pleasurable? And why is it so valuable? Why is metaphysics valuable (if it is)? When is metaphysics valuable?

A: When it addresses impact—when it addresses t...

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Through a metaphor darkly

All of life is bewitchment by metaphor.

Our natural language is a grimoire of metaphors.

Look at perdure. First, look at endure. It’s from the Old French endurer, which came from the Latin indurare ‘harden,’ from in- ‘in’ + durus ‘hard.’

Now perdure. It’s from the French perdurer, from Latin perdurare ‘endu...

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Kant synopsis

CSH: My dissertation is about the fact that understanding operates as a combination of discrete elements. It makes utterances that are distinct blobs—the subject-blob and the predicate-blob. Each of these is intended in a different way. The intentions are different. The two blobs are like two substances.

Two questions:

Q1: W...

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Kant intro starting from speakability

CSH: New tack, starting from “the world must be capable of being talked about.”

Annie: Does it have to be though? I feel like the most important parts of the world are the ones you can’t talk about.

CSH: I agree. And Kant agrees also. But there is a sense world...

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