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Plato DNA



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Location: Illinois, US

PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2013 2:00 am    Post subject: Electromagnetism in Plato Reply with quote

This post stems from my other post Plato-Religion-Geometry-Science

In Plato’s Phaedo, a description of magnetism or electromagnetism can be found at 111d – 113.

“All this movement to and from is caused by an oscillation inside the earth, and this oscillation is brought about by natural means, as follows.
One of the cavities in the earth is not only larger than the rest, but pierces right through from one side to the other. It is of this that Homer speaks when he says, ‘Far, far away, where lies earth’s deepest chasm,’ while elsewhere both he and many other poets refer to it as Tartarus. Into this gulf all the rivers flow together, and from it they flow forth again, and each acquires the nature of that part of the earth through which it flows.”

Electric and magnetic fields are thought of as being produced by smooth motions of charged particles. For example, ‘oscillating’ charges produce electric and magnetic fields that may be viewed in a ‘smooth’, continuous, ‘wavelike’ fashion. This smooth continuous motion is also stated in the next few sentences of Phaedo…

“The cause of the flowing in and out of all these streams is that the mass of liquid has no bottom or foundation; so it oscillates and surges to and fro, and the air or breath that belongs to it does the same, for it accompanies the liquid both as it rushes to the further side of the earth and as it returns to this. And just as when we breathe we exhale and inhale the breath in a continuous stream, so in this case too the breath, oscillating with the liquid, causes terrible and monstrous winds as it passes in and out.”

When you look at a magnetic field, this ‘cavity’ that Plato describes or Homer’s ‘deepest chasm’ or ‘gulf’, is that section between the North and South poles, where the flow of the magnetic lines seem to go into, or come out of. In one way it could be pictured like a tube extending from one side to the other, and the magnetism flowing in one side and flowing out the other.
And these ‘rivers’ flow into this ‘gulf’ and flow from it, while “acquiring the nature of that part of the earth through which it flows”. This is the same as science, which states that…”the electromagnetic field may be viewed as a dynamic entity that causes other charges and currents to move, and which is also affected by them. “
I believe that the ‘liquid’ and the ‘breath’ here aren’t meant to be liquid or breath as we commonly know them, but are creative multi-descriptive terms, similar to Plato’s four elements, they aren’t exactly fire, water, air, or earth per say, but are more like the characteristics of these (or being the effects of still greater forces). They are words trying to describe things beyond our normal senses that can’t be normally seen or experienced so to say. Similar to the way it’s described in the Bible…”And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.” This part of the Bible seems to describe the same thing as what Plato is trying to say.
So what Plato describes here at 111-113 is an oscillation occurring into and out of a gulf, in a smooth continuous wave-like manner. The exact same way that science describes the electric and magnetic fields, or electromagnetism.

He describes it further at Timaeus 80c while discussing respiration (breath), sound (waves) and harmony he says…

“Moreover, as to the flowing of water, the fall of the thunderbolt, and the marvels that are observed about the attraction of amber and the Heraclean stones –in none of these cases is there any attraction, but he who investigates rightly will find that such wonderful phenomena are attributable to the combination of certain conditions – the nonexistence of a vacuum, the fact that objects push one another round, and that they change places, passing severally into their proper positions as they are divided or combined.”

So the ‘flowing of water’ could represent magnetism, and the ‘fall of the thunderbolt’ could represent electricity, so you could say electromagnetism. Then he describes the amber and Heraclean stones, or magnets, showing the concept of magnetic fields.

In Plato’s Phaedo he also states “Among these many various mighty streams there are four in particular. The greatest of these, and the one which describes the outermost circle, is that which is called Oceanus.” These four particular ‘streams’ are mentioned in many different ways in many different cultures and belief systems. Just a few examples…

From Norse mythology,
“Though at first he was the only creature endowed with life, Ymir soon had a companion in the food-providing cow Audhumla, who arose like him from the melted ice….Four rivers of milk flowed from Audhumla’s udders”

From the Bible,
“And a river went out of Eden to water the garden; and from thence it was parted, and became into four heads.”

In Egyptian writings these could show up as the Four Sons of Horus.

In Buddhism there are the Four Noble Truths, the Four Heavenly Kings, Four Bases of Power, among many other concepts based on four.

There are also Aristotle’s four causes.

And of course Plato’s four elements.


Now, if we look at science’s concept of electromagnetism, here is what it has to say…

A changing electromagnetic field propagates away from its origin in the form of a ‘wave’. (This ‘propagation away from its origin’ can be found very similar to many concepts in the different creation stories among many different belief systems.)

Electromagnetic radiation is a form of energy emitted and absorbed by charged particles which exhibits a ‘wave-like’ behavior as it travels through space.

The electromagnetic field can be regarded as a smooth, continuous field, propagated in a ‘wavelike’ manner.

It is easy to see how this ‘wave-like’ structure can be interpreted as a river or stream, fluid or water, encircling the earth, or anything else for that matter.

Furthermore, in the study of electromagnetism the concept of ‘four’ can also be found…

There are four main electromagnetic states of the brain, Beta, Alpha, Theta, and Delta. (It’s interesting to note here that these four electromagnetic states of the brain could be said to provide nourishment to us, whether consciously or physically. Just like the Norse story of the “food-providing cow Audhumla, and her ‘four rivers’ of milk, that provide nourishment.)

The Maxwell equations are the set of four fundamental equations governing electromagnetism.

There are four laws of electromagnetism, according to The Physics of Bruce Harvey.

An electromagnetic four-potential is a relativistic vector function from which the electromagnetic field can be derived.

Electromagnetism is considered one of four fundamental forces in nature.

Physicists are currently pursuing the ideas that the four fundamental forces may be related and that they ‘sprang’ from one force early in the universe.


Among the many creation stories out there, there are quite a few that mention springs or fountains, usually a hot or a cold spring. This could imply a connection between electromagnetism and thermodynamics, and thermodynamics according to science, is also governed by ‘four laws’.
Sources of electromagnetic fields consist of two types of charge, positive and negative. (This can be any duality; north and south, hot and cold, up and down, light and dark, etc.)

Norse mythology also speaks of a ‘chasm’…
Originally there was a chasm, Ginnungagap, bounded on either side by fire and ice. When fire and ice met, they combined to form a giant, named Ymir, and a cow named Audhumbla, who nourished Ymir. Around Midgard (earth) was an ocean where a serpent named Jormungand lived. He was big enough to form a ring around Midgard by putting his tail in his mouth.

In Norse mythology there are a few stories of Jormungandr, also known as the Midgard Serpent, or World Serpent. He was tossed into the great ocean that encircles Midgard. The serpent grew so large that he was able to surround the earth and grasp his own tail. It is said that when he lets go, the world will end. This serpent of the ocean that encircles the earth while grabbing his own tail is a perfect and very creative description of the earth’s magnetic field.
In one story of Jormungandr, he is in the form of a giant cat (being that dynamic entity) and Thor is challenged to lift him as a test of strength. Thor is unable to lift such a monstrous creature as Jormungandr, but does manage to raise it far enough that it lets go of the ground with one of its four feet. This story is interesting because the inference of the ‘four’ legs, definitely having a connection with Plato’s four mighty streams.


To add another way of looking at these concepts, and touching upon a different level; when looking at DNA, it can appear like a river or stream, it also has four bases; and these four bases can be divided into four ‘atoms’ of nitrogen, oxygen, carbon, and hydrogen.


As sort of a side note, a lot of people talk about Plato describing a hollow earth in Phaedo 111-113.

“In the earth itself all over it surface there are many hollow regions, some deeper and more widely spread than that in which we live, others deeper than our region but with a smaller expanse, some both shallower than ours and broader.”

Most people seem to think of a hollow as being a sort of cavity or cave. This could add some depth to Plato’s famous cave allegory, and probably other myths. But Plato describes us as living in a hollow also, so this could be describing the atmosphere, or the magnetic field creating a protective covering, so to say, for the earth, creating a cavity or ‘living space’. It could be possible too, that there are other dimensions being discussed or other ‘regions’. Considering he is describing the ‘real earth’ and not the earth of our normal sense perceptions, and considering he talks about electromagnetism; our experiences from our normal senses are from a very limited and small part of the full electromagnetic spectrum.

Jason
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Plato DNA



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PostPosted: Thu Jun 06, 2013 1:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To add yet another level to these concepts; I saw a commercial on TV today about donating blood, and realized there are ‘four’ blood types. And blood can be imagined to be a stream or a river. This I found to be an odd ‘coincidence’. After thinking about it for a while, I had a hunch that there were ‘four’ main components in blood. Having been awhile since high school biology, I looked it up…and sure enough…”Blood is a specialized body fluid. It has ‘four’ main components: plasma, red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets.” I find this too much to be just a ‘coincidence’. This matches up with DNA, being like a river, having ‘four’ bases and these bases dividing up into ‘four’ atoms, but occuring at a different level. And it is also very similar to 'Audhumla's four rivers of milk’ and ‘the river of Eden branching into four rivers’. Or how electromagnetism is one of 'four' main forces in science, and is yet itself governed by 'four laws'.

Maybe there is still another way of looking at these things. I am reminded of Edward Leedskalnin, the builder of the coral castle. He wrote papers on magnetic and electric currents. The supposed reason he built the castle was for his 'sweet sixteen', it is said to be a girl he was in love with. But following the concepts in this post...electromagnetism, a relationship with 'four' and possibly 'four' in 'four'. Or four main concepts being able to be divided into a different level of four, or when multiplied together sixteen. Could Edward Leedskalnin's 'sweet sixteen' have somthing to do with electromagnetism?

“It is man that makes truth great, not truth that makes man great.” – Confucius

“We don’t see things as they are; we see them as we are.” – Anais Nin


Jason
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Peter Blumsom



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PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2013 11:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dear Jason,
You are nothing if not ingenious. Here you bring together so many diversities upon which to sail your hypothesis concerning electromagnetism that is is a wonder it is not a mere blob fast disappearing over the horizon. Yet I remain unconvinced. However even though I see no compulsion in your arguments to lead me to your conclusions (you know, for instance, I disagree with your interpretation of Timaeus 80) I enjoyed reading this post immensely. What you have unearthed here, to my mind is not so much an argument for electromagnetism but instead a very good reason to contemplate the character of the number four and its properties. That, of course, may be of because of my leanings towards number than towards physics. Nevertheless, I recommend anyone visiting this forum to read your post thoroughly and chase up the various references.

Now, Jason, gird up thy loins as a philosopher and tell me why you feel Plato, Moses, etc. are so keen to talk about electromagnetism? In what way does this bring us any nearer to the Master Forms of Justice, Beauty and Agathos, the Good. That is what I am strugglng with here. Even if I were to grant all your arguments, and I could, seeing they are so well thought out, how is it to inspire me philosophically? So you can end my struggling by just clearing up that single point. Am I asking too much of your hypothesis in its present form?

It is not good enough for you to say, "Well doesn't Plato cover many subjects in Timaeus and elsewhere? Are they to all lead us to the ultimate? After all, what about, for example, the elements?" This really will not do because you are putting so much emphasis on electromagnetism. Your Genesis example confirms this. I believe that this, rather than giving extra examples of the same ilk, is your way forward. Is it that this electromagnetism is somehow the ... I won't finish this sentence, though I could. I feel it is for you to bring it all into philosophy. Otherwise it will forever dangle in Hamlet's Mill land, as it were.

Best regards, Pete
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Leonie Humphreys



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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 9:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You say the most fascinating things Jason!

Keep going.....


Here are a few thoughts on 'fourness' which you have mentioned before somewhere on the forum:


'In qualitative number theory, there is a curious process by which three becomes four. How one becomes two is deeply inexplicable: That is the question. But how two becomes three is more easily realized, because there cannot be two things that are not in some kind of relationship, and when they are related, it is now a threefold subject: Two things and their relationship.

But the threefold is ideal: It does not exist here in the material world or, rather, it is made physical by fourness. Examples of this 3/4 relationship include the fourth way's carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, and then hydrogen which may be any of the previous three. More specifically, in the fourth way, the distinction between three and four is brought out as the difference between "forces" and "matters", that is, three forces and four matters. The forces are Active, Passive, and Neutralizing; the matters are Carbon, Oxygen, Nitrogen, and Hydrogen. Carbon is matter in which the active force is manifesting, Oxygen is matter manifesting the passive force, Nitrogen is matter manifesting the neutralizing force, and Hydrogen is matter taken without regard to force, or in which no force is manifesting.'


Quote above from: http://www.rahul.net/raithel/otfw/5threeAndfour.html


Plato – 3 – is the eternal realities and 4 is the generated world.....
that is the actual creations of four are but temporary and imperfect examples of the eternal three.

1,2,3 & 4:

1: pure consciousness – ‘oneness’

2: duality – opposites

3: opposites in relationship – unmanifest – ideal - ? eternal world of ‘concepts’ and ‘forms’ (or ideas). [‘Real’/knowledge]

4: opposites in relationship – manifest – in balance or out of balance (harmony or disharmony):

4 – in balance – harmony (and human contentment?) Potential to connect with the divine – oneness (to return ‘Home’ to God/pure consciousness).

4 – out of balance – disharmony (and discontent? Disconnection from the divine?)

Threefold does not exist in the material world – it is made physical by fourness. Three actions precede physical existence.

‘Fourness’ is the unmanifest ‘concept’ in the generated world – ‘duality’ derived mysteriously from ‘oneness’. How the opposites are in relationship with each other – are they in balance or out of balance, if out of balance to what extent? The ideal is ‘harmony’ between the opposites, or as near to that as it is possible to get.

First three are ‘forces’ – active, neutral and passive; and fourth is matter without regard to force.

PLATO ON:

Truth
Goodness
Justice - is harmony – it is when opposites (duality) are in balance??
Beauty - is harmony??

So from truth to beauty and back again? Who was it who said: 'beauty is truth and truth beauty, that is all ye know on Earth and all ye need to know' - something like that!

So is justice ‘fourness’ or the ‘generated world’ when it is in balance/harmony?? And does beauty spring from justice?

Eg: masculine and feminine and ‘opposites’ associated with that: eg. ‘order’ and ‘freedom’

Plato: True knowledge is the perception of the archetypal forms themselves, which are real, eternal, and unchanging.


What does it all mean, if anything? I've no idea!

Best wishes, Leonie
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Plato DNA



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PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2013 11:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey Pete,
I appreciate your reply and thank you for the comments. You mean this post didn’t quite turn out to be a blob? That was my intentions, The Blob Theory, this mysterious unknown ‘ooze’ that consumes everything in its path….well kind of. I’m like a student still learning my notes, and you want me to perform a masterpiece. I don’t know if this post was as well thought out as much as things just happened to fall right in place. There is quite a bit more that I could have said, but I usually try to keep things to a minimum, just try to keep myself out of it and put the facts on the table, so to say. “A flood of words makes few drops of sense.” I have seen this quoted as Gandhi, but I have not been able to verify that. I do occasionally try to find those drops in the flood, other times they find me. Sometimes I don't realize that these drops are collecting and all of a sudden im standing in a puddle...then a pond, and well, right now I feel flooded. I have noticed so many things in such a small amount of time that I am still trying to sort them out and still realizing more details. I would say more but I feel the things I would like to say deserve a little more than just a post in a forum, it wouldn't do it any justice.
How you mention the Hamlet's Mill land reminds me of how when someone is discussing Timaeus you usually mention that it is only a myth. I do understand where you are coming from, its even stated, toward the begining, that it is an approximation more or less. But all thoughts and ideas are only approximations of experiences, and the further these get from their source the more approximate they become (in physics I believe they call this decay, but I am not a physicist). Just like words, theories, or your muthos you always mention. Even what anybody just experienced a minute ago, is now only going to be a myth, an approximation of their recollection of what just happened. Not only are the words they use to describe it approximate, but their experience is approximate also; the attention or focus being directed in different ways according to the individuals beliefs, and beliefs in-turn also being approximations; memory or recollection also being an approximation. And you can go on and on with these approximations. So does experience hang off in Hamlet’s Mill land too? Every second or millisecond that goes by, that which IS continually changes to that which was, and there is a gap, a division.


“We don’t know a millionth of one percent about anything.” --Thomas Edison

As to ‘circular thrust’ ( this is why you don’t agree with my account of Timaeus 80 right?) I haven’t done a thorough investigation, but it doesn’t seem like an original idea of Plato’s, it seems like Cornford may have borrowed ideas of other peoples after Plato’s time to try to explain what he was saying. I haven’t been able to find really any other references to ‘circular thrust’ outside of Cornford’s translation. I noticed quite of few ‘probabilities’, ‘suppositions’, and ‘maybes’ in Cornford’s comments; to me he seems to take that belittling approach in assuming that our more modern way of thinking is better or more advanced than ancient peoples, and he is trying to apply it to his 'objective' science.

Leonie,
Thanks for the comments, I'm glad you find the ideas I notice fascinating, and good work at keeping these concepts going and bringing more 'number theory' into it. I think that numbers actually exist, I mean, have characteristics that express themselves everywhere, in the background as it were. I believe that any creation story has to unfold through number. And each number 0-9 or 1-10, however you want to view it has its own ‘character’ or are ‘entities’ so to say, each of these numbers constantly expressing itself (in the background) at different levels and different ways, all overlapping, and forming relationships depending on how they are divided or combined, each in their own accustomed nature. Some concepts of what is known as ‘Vedic-math’ may come closer to understanding these ‘characters’ and their relationships more so than modern math. I feel like I might be able to explain this better and possibly what it all could mean, but I feel it would be rather lengthy and not appropriate for just a post on a forum.


"I'm not a genius. I'm just a tremendous bundle of experience." --R. Buckminster Fuller


Jason
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Peter Blumsom



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PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 12:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

<<“A flood of words makes few drops of sense.”>> My version of that is the Master artist looking at his apprentices work and saying "Many are the brush strokes but little is clearer".

I have warm thoughts about watching The Blob at our local fleapit. My girlfriend at the time clung to me in terror at the thought of being consumed alive by this oozing mass of molasses. Oh the innocence of those days! I don't quite see your theory that way. In Philosophy maybe the Blob stands for the all consuming idea that sucks all others into it. Is that what you mean? I see nothing wrong with that as long as all other existing blobs are allowed to play. I think fourness is a pretty decent blob as far as they go. As you have shown, it can be applied here there and everywhere. I don't know if you mentioned the Hindu Jugas, which are of course four in number as are Plato's ages of metal, The Kali Yuga, the yuga we live in, is likened to a chair which balances on one leg, In other words it's always on the verge of toppling into chaos. Justice is four also (as I believe Leonie may have hinted at). This was a Pythagorean belief though. The other three yugas gain a leg as they are traced back to the (Golden) Satya Yuga which, having four legs is the most stable and just epoch to live in. This, I suppose, we could call cross-blobbing!
Pete


Last edited by Peter Blumsom on Fri Sep 18, 2015 8:52 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2015 4:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A machine measures some thing. Reports on it in the form of numbers called data. The numbers go into a model. The ability of the model to consistently predict the data is what is aimed at. This nexus, machine, model, consistent prediction is what is chiefly named by the phrase Electromagnetic field.

Plato knew nothing about any of that. So what can be behind this misguided insistence? The rigorous critics would say, a clever person simply wishes to enjoy the vainglory of his own cleverness. The sympathetic critics say, an ‘x’ is imagined (i.e., apart from the real thing to which the matter refers, the derived applications, e.g., a microwave oven), such that the popularizers of science and the public begin to believe in a thing to which the nexus refers. And then vivid verbal descriptions about effluence and swirling appear, talk of vibration, other rhetoric, as a literary report to the public about the thing ‘x’ the machine is presumed to be measuring. As if this thing were really anything beside from the data, i.e., beside from what is know about it. (What is decisive is that in the future, again, it will be known in another way, and onward for thirty thousand years, for fifty thousand years, forever. And each time what is known will be what the thing is. Such that no same thing stretches from one age to another, no universal survives the transformation.)

True, Plato knew of something he called magnets. But he in no way can be imagined to attempt to generate such a technology as is named by the phrase Electromagnetic field. He knew of no mastery of the natural world by mathematical models. For him the question surely concerned something closer to the reverse. The idea that we deal with the same thing is not only misleading, but utterly unphilosophical, because it takes us away from the peculiarity of Plato and his world in order to show that magnets always refer to a heterogenous category which belongs to our own age.

Analogy: Someone claims Plato knew about light spectrums. And then points to some discussions on colour in the dialogues. This procedure would justify the opinion that philosophy is simply clever literary work. One can always find textual ‘evidence’ for any thesis. The decisive thing then is, does it convince at least a dozen important people? Or, does it attract them for mercenary reasons, such that they begin to expound the cleverness such that it becomes part of the general cultural attainment of those who are up on the latest things? And such that anyone who dares to challenge it is at once accused of insufficient familiarity with the material, which is characterized as complex and difficult by its votaries and the hangers on of those votaries. Thus, anything goes and the name obscurantism is cogent.
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James hyde



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PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 10:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This post is nice thank for share this information
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Plato DNA



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PostPosted: Sat Apr 30, 2016 12:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks James! I am glad you enjoyed it. You may also like one of my other posts "Plato Describes DNA". You should check it out if you haven't already.


Jason
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Plato DNA



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PostPosted: Fri May 06, 2016 2:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Redundant,

I saw your comment when you first posted it on here and I remember it being different than it is now, perhaps you edited it. Maybe it changed because it was from several months ago and things are different now, things from the past are different than modern day.

Quote:
A machine measures some thing. Reports on it in the form of numbers called data. The numbers go into a model. The ability of the model to consistently predict the data is what is aimed at. This nexus, machine, model, consistent prediction is what is chiefly named by the phrase Electromagnetic field.

Plato knew nothing about any of that. So what can be behind this misguided insistence?


I don't claim Plato knew about the modern scientific way in which people analyze things. It really has nothing to do with my theory, but this seems to be your main objection. This is a description of the way that modern scientists try to analyze the EM field. It doesn't mean that is all an EM field is or that's the only way to be aware of one. You are pointing at the model and claiming that is what an EM field is. They are called models for a reason; they are imitations, limited by our own knowledge, that are used by us to help understand the natural world. Measurements, data, and models are not the natural world, only ways of quantifying it.

The concept of a “field” is a mathematical construct that is used to help us “visualize” the effects of forces, but to say these forces are only a mathematical construct is a misnomer. The mathematical model is only a tool to help us “see” fields. This would be like saying your computer monitor is the Plato Forum. But in reality, a monitor is a tool to help us “see” the Plato Forum.

A clock is a machine that measures something and reports in the form of numbers that builds a model of what we call time. But we do not say that a clock “is” time. And a clock is not required for us to be aware of time. It is a tool to help us keep track of time.

You say...”But he in no way can be imagined to attempt to generate such a technology as is named by the phrase Electromagnetic field.” I don't claim that Plato generated any technology. It seems you think the only way to know about an EM field is by the current scientific methods used today. Just because you can't imagine or understand how ancient people could have known about something doesn't make it impossible.

There are many different organisms that use Earth's EM field to navigate and migrate (bacteria, insects, and animals). Does that mean these animals build machines and generate technologies to collect data and build models to show them which direction they should travel in?

The description is found in Plato's writings, it doesn't necessarily mean he knew all about it. The description is given by Socrates, who basically says someone has assured him of this description. He says, ”I believe on the authority of one who shall be nameless.”

Quote:
He knew of no mastery of the natural world by mathematical models.


I guess this depends on what you mean by “mastery of the natural world”, I suppose you mean technology. That is not really a mastery of the natural world but more like a mastery of our own views about the world and implementing them to manipulate the world according to our understanding. Doesn't really mean we have mastered nature, most technology destroys nature. I am inclined to believe that one who goes into the wilderness barehanded has more of a mastery of the natural world than one who goes with a RV, chainsaw, a torch, and whatever other kind of technologies they need.

Who would you say has more of a mastery over numbers, one who uses a calculator or one who doesn't need one?

Are you implying that Plato did not use mathematical models to understand the natural world? I am sure you are only implying current mathematical models as if they are the only kind that exist.

Quote:
This procedure would justify the opinion that philosophy is simply clever literary work.


Isn't all philosophy that is written “clever literary work”. Are you saying there is philosophy that is not clever? I don't think Plato's writings are simply clever, I think they are brilliant. They are able to embody things that we still, to this day, do not really understand. Not only that, but he also weaves it all together into a unified whole.

Quote:
One can always find textual ‘evidence’ for any thesis.


Use any discovery and any source of writing, let me see an example. It has to be at least more than one or two sentences that relate.

Your basically saying it is coincidental. There are way too many things that line up, and when the idea is expanded upon more details show up throughout many different cultures, mythologies, and cosmologies. So it is not just coincidental “textual evidence”.

Why does Plato give a description of the Earth in such a weird and unusual way? Perhaps you can find some scholarly interpretation that explains the odd things that he says about the Earth? Its obvious from the writing that he is not trying to describe the visible Earth.

Do you suggest he just decided to write a fanciful account just for amusement and entertainment? That would be very philosophical.

Quote:
The decisive thing then is, does it convince at least a dozen important people?


How is that decisive? It doesn't matter if 90 percent of the world believes something, that doesn't mean that it is true. Who and what determines that the people are “important”? The amount of people who agree with something and their importance does nothing for the validity of any claim. I am not trying to convince anyone. I am just putting the information out there for other inquisitive minds to see and possibly fuel more research into similar topics.

Quote:
And such that anyone who dares to challenge it is at once accused of insufficient familiarity with the material, which is characterized as complex and difficult by its votaries and the hangers on of those votaries.


I don't accuse you of “insufficient familiarity”, get as familiar with the material as you want. I encourage you to study it and, if you want to dispute my theory, come up with something better than just some superficial type of reasoning. Look at this data that was written down thousands of years ago and see how strongly it compares to recent data that was collected in a completely different way. It is not complex or difficult, it is really quite simple. I think it is so simple that it goes right by you. You seem to over-complicate things. You bring preconceived notions of what ancient people did and did not know based on our modern understanding.


Jason
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PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2016 11:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

“ perhaps you edited it.”

Yes, that’s true. Because it’s clearly true that Plato is interested in magnetism in the everyday sense. So, I could not say that the knew nothing of magnetism, but, yet, I believe he didn’t. Not in any sense. Since, if he did, the implication is that he lived in the same world, and only didn’t reach our conclusions.

But I think it is incorrect to start with the modern idea of a field of force, and then to say that it affected bacteria and the other things. What we call the earth didn’t exist for Plato. He lived under the canopy of the sky, which was itself the end of all things. It is only science that believes that he lived on a “natural” earth but “explained” it differently. He was not interested in explanation at all. Rather, in truth. And this is something we can not bring into our world, it is an alien concept.

“Are you implying that Plato did not use mathematical models to understand the natural world?”
I don’t think Plato had any “natural world”

Now, maybe you can paraphrase that, as to me it sounds like scientism or objectivism. What doe sit say, the things the eyes see? That is only opinion according to what Plato teaches. Then, we must really know what Plato aims at. Perhaps it is nothing we could aim at, It hink it is not. I think it is not part of this world. It was part of that one only.

I admit there is not a formal logical consistency in my view, but I find the notion of “nature” you keep pushing needs greater clarity, you seem to take it for granted. Yet, Plato begins by dividing the world between phusis and logos. And that is a conceptual distinction. Not a “natural” one. It is natural in that we have got it at a very young age, and so it acts on one like something approaching divine revelation, as Strauss used to say.

You’ve taken ironic statements for assertions in some cases, in the second to last quote for one.

I think you make a universal, nature, and imagine that it makes sense to carry it back to the other worlds, i.e., you imagine this world is that one. This is like taking hippolite to mean Navy Seal. Something is broken in this kind of thinking.
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 05, 2016 8:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:

Yes, that’s true. Because it’s clearly true that Plato is interested in magnetism in the everyday sense. So, I could not say that the knew nothing of magnetism, but, yet, I believe he didn’t. Not in any sense. Since, if he did, the implication is that he lived in the same world, and only didn’t reach our conclusions.


Your implication is very misguided. Electromagnetism permeates the universe, so anyone can live in, or on, whatever world they like and it is always there to be discovered. You can only imagine how us modern people discovered magnetism and think that is the only way possible, so you try forcing the modern 'world' on to them as a way to make any sense of it. Of course ancient people didn't reach the same conclusions as modern people, they viewed things in a very different way than we do.

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But I think it is incorrect to start with the modern idea of a field of force, and then to say that it affected bacteria and the other things. What we call the earth didn’t exist for Plato. He lived under the canopy of the sky, which was itself the end of all things. It is only science that believes that he lived on a “natural” earth but “explained” it differently.


I do not say our modern idea of a field affects organisms, that is only how you twist it around. It is the invisible force that affects organisms; we use the concept of a field to help us understand this invisible force that we call the electromagnetic field. I do not say the 'idea' or the 'name' of something affects organisms, it is the thing to which the idea or name implies. I doubt your level of comprehension could be that bad, so I assume you are going out of the way to be overly difficult.

Sure ancient people viewed everything in a different way then we do now. That is pretty much the basis for my theory. What I call the Earth and what you call the Earth are completely different things, but isn't there some point of comparison between the two? Do you assume we have both discovered the things of this Earth in the exact same way? Is there only one way to experience and discover Earth? We do live on the same planet right, as far as an external environment goes?

You say, “He lived under the canopy of the sky, which was itself the end of all things.” What a coincidence, I live under the canopy of the sky as well! Maybe there are other things that Plato's Earth and my Earth have in common. Maybe you have some 'textual evidence' to show Plato really believed the sky to be the end of all things. I am not so sure Plato actually believed something like that. What does it mean that the sky is the end of all things? What is beyond the sky?

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He was not interested in explanation at all. Rather, in truth. And this is something we can not bring into our world, it is an alien concept. 


Ok, so what is the truth of his description of the Earth in Phaedo? I do admit, Plato was interested in truth, but what is truth without explanation? Plato believed the soul to be immortal, but does he just leave it at that? He 'explains' in different ways why and how he finds this most probable. Doesn't he always lean on what is most probable, or what is most likely? Most of his writing is written in the form of discussions, which are actually nothing more than one explanation after another, ever focusing on what is most probable and the most good.

So truth existed at some time in the past but doesn't exist now? When did truth stop existing? When you say 'our world', do you mean my world or your world? Because my world is completely different from your world. What is the point of education or studying if truth is an alien concept?

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“Are you implying that Plato did not use mathematical models to understand the natural world?” 
I don’t think Plato had any “natural world”

...I find the notion of “nature” you keep pushing needs greater clarity, you seem to take it for granted.


I was responding to your previous comment that “He knew of no mastery of the natural world...” Now you say that you don't think Plato had any natural world. So no wonder he knew of no mastery of it!

I usually use the term nature loosely. I recognize different levels to the term. The most common being those parts of our external environment that do not rely on man. 'Natural world' usually being the Earth and the things of it excluding man. But then humans are part of nature and we do have human nature, so there is another level including us as humans. This starts falling into beings and their existing natures; if something exists it does so with a nature but is also a part of, and interacts with, other natures. This expands to include the universe and the things of it reaching a level that is inescapable.

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Yet, Plato begins by dividing the world between phusis and logos. And that is a conceptual distinction. Not a “natural” one.

Yes, from the modern way of looking at things, it would appear as an unnatural conceptual distinction. But for Plato they were active, integral, and necessary parts of a living universe. Does he really make a division here as a type of separation, or are these two mutual parts that act as a base for existence? To modern views, perceiving the Earth to be a living being would seem unnatural to most, but arguably can actually be more natural.


Quote:
I think you make a universal, nature, and imagine that it makes sense to carry it back to the other worlds, i.e., you imagine this world is that one. This is like taking hippolite to mean Navy Seal. Something is broken in this kind of thinking.


I do view nature as pretty universal, having different levels that completely engulf everything. I don't imagine 'this world to be that one' if you are talking about views and opinions of the world. But I do imagine the planet Earth that we live on to be the same planet Earth that Plato lived on. My theory is in no way like your comparison here, that it “is like taking hippolite to mean Navy Seal.” This is turning one thing into another. Both are also man-made concepts. I am comparing an ancient description of an invisible portion of the planet Earth and comparing it to a modern understanding of an invisible portion of the planet Earth. And my theory is actually quite the reverse of going from a hippolite to a Navy Seal, it seems like the ancient description has the more advanced understanding, and perhaps we can learn something from it.

Jason
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 07, 2016 9:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The foundation of these arguments, what you write and what I say, or the first step in each case, is radically different.

“Your implication is very misguided. Electromagnetism permeates the universe, so anyone can live in, or on, whatever world they like and it is always there to be discovered.”

What is the “universe”? Can you say it starting from the things we all can understand? The primary immediate evidence. It sounds to me like you have a very strong bias towards the evident truth of the modern idea of space and nature (although you deny it, but not wholly, since you speak of the "same" planet, thus, you presuppose the modern scientific objectivism, and that is a religion). Likely you are unconscious of the possibility to think it otherwise. I don’t hold those opinions, and don’t start from those presuppositions.

Your account sounds imaginary to me. It pretends a “universe” as some thing that is always there in the “other times”; the earlier times. Earlier? It’s a hypothesis and a thought experiment. The only time we know, is, now, this one.

“What a coincidence, I live under the canopy of the sky as well”

No, because we assume a depth beyond the vault or canopy. It’s utterly different. I would say there is no universal here, no connection whatsoever. It is two different thinkings. The very writing here, what I have just written, the claim of more than one world, is logically inconsistent. Logically one can not speak of the other worlds at all. Yet, so it is.

One can state it simply: Only the current side of the object exists. The whole object, of which this is the “current side”, doesn't exist. Thus, the saying, “the current side of the object or thing” has no meaning.

You, in every breath, assume that object. But that is a complete fabrication, the idea of nature. The id ipsissimosity and not the own-fact, the now fact. The appearance, the opinion, as the fact, when it can no longer be contrasted with truth becomes a tide of thought, the black gulf of intelligibility simpliciter.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 3:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
The foundation of these arguments, what you write and what I say, or the first step in each case, is radically different. 


For sure, we are of two different 'worlds'. You make the assumption that the Plato forum in your world is the 'same' Plato forum that is in my world. Our 'worlds' are different, but we also don't live 'on' the 'same world'. They are not comparable whatsoever, not even in the slightest, according to your statements; your 'world'.
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What is the “universe”? Can you say it starting from the things we all can understand? The primary immediate evidence.


What does it mean to say “starting from the things we all can understand”? That would imply that we all live in the 'same' world. How can we all understand the 'same' thing?

In my 'world', the word 'Universe' embodies everything that can said to be “now”. The word 'is' may actually be a more accurate way of putting it instead of “now”, at least in my 'world'. Consciousness, presumably, is conscious of something. Whatever that something 'is', that would be part of the word 'universe'. I only say a part, because what we typically call consciousness only has a small, narrow window of perception. Don't let my words mislead or fool you, there is no actual window or wall.

The 'you' that is reading the beginning of this sentence is not the same 'you' that is reading the end of the sentence; also, anything you can think of has changed while you were reading this sentence. But yet, with all your different parts and organisms that make up your body, your different emotional and mental states, your sensations and thoughts, with all the changes 'you' go through and the changes your environment goes through, we still refer to 'you' as you. The same goes for universe, it is really not that different than 'you'.
Quote:

It sounds to me like you have a very strong bias towards the evident truth of the modern idea of space and nature (although you deny it, but not wholly, since you speak of the "same" planet, thus, you presuppose the modern scientific objectivism, and that is a religion).


It gets me how you are always trying to stereotype my ideas, as if I am only part of some kind of category. You assume to know my 'world'. You take ideas from your 'world' and supplant them into mine. I try not to classify or categorize any ideas, it only puts superficial limits on the ways in which they can be perceived.

I am not so sure what 'truth' is, or 'evident truth' for that matter. Things occur at many different levels. And, yes, I acknowledge physical objects and environments as part of the experience of being human. I do think that many modern ideas are flawed in different ways, especially science. I think 'space' and 'time' are illusions. I find science to be unnatural and nature to be very unscientific.

You seem to conflate different meanings of words or remove them from their context. Like 'world', you take it to mean a particular view but also the physical Earth, apparently at the same time. You take the word 'same' to only mean exactly identical, as if it has no other meaning. I assume this to be part of your rhetoric that you seem to enjoy; your way of creating an argument or disagreement.
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Likely you are unconscious of the possibility to think it otherwise. I don’t hold those opinions, and don’t start from those presuppositions. 

Yes, you can tell from my posts that I am very unimaginative and not very creative. I am not very speculative either. I am really not open to many possibilities at all.

You don't hold what opinions or start from what presuppositions? That as humans we experience a physical environment? Though mostly illusive, it can be a decent beginning because it can be described, as you say, “starting from the things all of us can understand.” Not that we all can understand, but we all can relate to it in some way. Well, most of us anyways. As there are many levels and different ways of looking at things there are many starting points and different opinions.
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Your account sounds imaginary to me. It pretends a “universe” as some thing that is always there in the “other times”; the earlier times. Earlier? It’s a hypothesis and a thought experiment.


Your accounts are no less imaginary than mine. I cannot think of anything that is not imaginary. I am not so sure anyone is capable of talking about things that aren't imaginary. But, hey, maybe that is possible in your 'world', I wouldn't know.

You say we cannot assume the universe to always be there, but if you are going to use “other times” and “earlier times”, that would also mean that five minutes ago was an “earlier time” so we cannot pretend anything was there at all five minutes ago.

It doesn't 'pretend' anyways, through research and comparison it predicts; you and your rhetoric.

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The only time we know, is, now, this one. 


I would not even say that I 'know' now. I am not sure what it means to 'know' something.

So, there are all these different 'worlds' and not just one Earth? But there is only one time...'this one' that is also the 'same' for all the different 'worlds'? So the time we all know right 'now' is the 'same'?

What is 'now'? In relation to what? Now can be a fraction of a second, it can be a year, or it can be hundreds and thousands of years. It really depends on what it is being compared to. But how can we make a comparison with something from an earlier time and something at a later time? You keep telling me this is not possible.

I do not pretend to 'know' a different time, I am just making a comparison. I compare a written account of a passage that describes invisible parts of the Earth from ancient writings, with recent writings describing an invisible portion of the Earth. There are more than enough details that correspond as to call them the 'same', especially when you expand upon the ancient description and find similar descriptions all throughout the ancient world that add even more detail.
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“What a coincidence, I live under the canopy of the sky as well” 

No, because we assume a depth beyond the vault or canopy. It’s utterly different. I would say there is no universal here, no connection whatsoever. It is two different thinkings. The very writing here, what I have just written, the claim of more than one world, is logically inconsistent. Logically one can not speak of the other worlds at all. Yet, so it is. 

If the only time we know is 'now', how come you pretend like you know Plato's view of the sky? You assume the sky back then is the 'same' sky as 'now'. You keep insisting this is not possible. Maybe the sky really was a vault or canopy back then, how would we be able to tell? All we have is what was written and the way we interpret it.

Where is the 'textual evidence' that Plato thought the sky to be a vault? I think you are getting things mixed up. I am pretty sure the vault interpretation goes with the flat-disc Earth theory. Which in itself, is just another example of poor interpretation and translation of ancient writings, and really has nothing to do with Plato at all. This misinterpretation and misunderstanding of the flat Earth/vault sky concept was realized a little over a hundred years ago.

Besides, we find in Timaeus, Plato describes an infinite amount of stars and gives planets/stars different orbits, which in my 'world', certainly suggests depth. In Phaedo, Plato mentions the Earth as spherical and in the middle of the heavens.

As creative and imaginative as ancient people were, you cannot tell me that they could not look up in the sky and imagine depth. The contrast of the sun and moon with the planets and stars, all of different sizes and brightness. I am sure the depth of the sky was even more striking in ancient times without all the light pollution.

Your "thinkings" and my thoughts are completely different, does that mean they are incomparable?

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One can state it simply: Only the current side of the object exists. The whole object, of which this is the “current side”, doesn't exist. Thus, the saying, “the current side of the object or thing” has no meaning.


Can you provide an example; an example “we all can understand”?

Quote:
You, in every breath, assume that object. But that is a complete fabrication, the idea of nature. The id ipsissimosity and not the own-fact, the now fact. The appearance, the opinion, as the fact, when it can no longer be contrasted with truth becomes a tide of thought,


I am pretty sure your are the one saying “only the current side of the object exists.” In my 'world' all objects, all things, are dynamic, and don't only have a 'current side'.

Can you name something that is not complete fabrication?

Your whole argument so far is based off 'the opinion as the fact', with your 'other worlds'; this 'world' and that 'world'. Your are simply talking about different views of things and assume they are actual things.

You say “contrasted with truth”...what truth? What is truth?

Quote:
the black gulf of intelligibility simpliciter.


So where is this 'black gulf' located? Sounds like it could be an interesting place to visit. I bet it looks amazing! Maybe I could get a few pictures.

If, as you insist, there is no comparison between ancient written accounts and modern written accounts, why do you persist in posting comments on a site dedicated to an ancient writer? Why would you even research ancient literature, what would be the point if we only know 'now' and cannot compare anything from their 'world' to our own?

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 8:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

“For sure, we are of two different 'worlds'. You make the assumption that the Plato forum in your world is the 'same' Plato forum that is in my world.Our 'worlds' are different, but we also don't live 'on' the 'same world'. They are not comparable whatsoever, not even in the slightest, according to your statements; your 'world'. “

I don’t agree with “not even in the slightest” or, even, the seemingly-less insistent, “Our 'worlds' are different”. I think this is too logical. It assumes an insistence on the determination of the principle of identity, for instance. That something is individual, or that it shares an essence. That it is unique or that, in a second version of that principle, that it belongs together (with the ones that are identical to it).

But if we assume that understanding, or intelligibility, is something else, beside from words and grammar, that there is what I call, a dark conception, we can allow speaking, or in this case, what is the same, writing, to give expression without forcing itself to determine, to be determining.

Speach has a role to play here, but it is not decisive. We can’t suppose the principles of thought are not active, since they belong to any understanding of speach, but they should not be conceived so sharply.

Quote:
“What does it mean to say “starting from the things we all can understand”? That would imply that we all live in the 'same' world. How can we all understand the 'same' thing?”


This, again, is too insistent on the principles of thought. On that of contradiction. More vaguely, when a German, for instance, speaks of a Großstadt, they mean exactly the same thing as what an English speaker means by a big city. Yet, if we have to become strict, we come into an indefinite number of problems, or apparent problems, which, in ordinary life, when we just want to know, which is the big city that is nearest to where you live?, play almost no role. We may not, for instance, know, what a “big city” truly is, what it truly means to be a “big city”. But for the thing everybody knows, that is not a problem.

Even if one recognizes that the other conceives something else, while using the same words, there is not necessity to speak of the impossibility of interlocution. That between worlds.
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“The 'you' that is reading the beginning of this sentence is not the same 'you' that is reading the end of the sentence”


For commonplace dealings, these objections of yours, all can be clumped under the rubric, logical. In another setting they would be called hairsplitting objections. I wouldn't deny that they have a sense, but I suspect their main thrust is to show the limits of pure logic (I don't mean that you intend them to do that, but that that is what they largely do). And that they yield little difficulty to commonplace life or the speach that one uses daily.

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“You take ideas from your 'world' and supplant them into mine.”


I think this is too thin a use of the term “world”. I’m perfectly aware of what people teach regarding a natural world, and a universe. And what you say sounds similar. If on some mysterious and secret level it isn’t, then perhaps that goes beyond deliberation here or anywhere. But, I believe there is possibility of seeing the difference in conceptions, i.e., in immediate intelligibility in the way I mean to present (here and before and after). For instance, that Shakespeare was conceived differently by his contemporaries seems rather simple to accept. But just how he was thought, just what that thinking was, becomes a matter of psychology. It becomes a matter of putting oneself under the spell of notional constructs and such things. And I deny that it can be done. That time no longer exists. But that it did exist, and is now unknown, we can know perfectly well.

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“You don't hold what opinions or start from what presuppositions? That as humans we experience a physical environment?”


I think it is in the law of identity. Which may be a habit of thinking. It assumes the sense of a crystal with many facets. Some thing, for instance, the universe, that is standing there, and as it turns we see different sides of it. I believe it is a specific form of thinking, and that you are, indeed, very discernibly doing that kind of thinking. One could say, that, like a light, it's inside you guiding you. I don’t find it so murky as you present it, it is manifest. One can see, perhaps, as obviously that dogs are thinking after a fashion, that of dogs. I don’t appeal to any abstract or vague theoretical possibility of a secret event.

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“I would not even say that I 'know' now. I am not sure what it means to 'know' something.”


Again, this is too logical. Everyone says, I know that the word know stands here on the paper. If we ask, how do you know: Because I see it. If we say, do you really know, do you truly know, then and only then do other questions come in. It’s self deception to avoid the fact that one knows a great many things. It is the same with the higher things, by the way, Socrates asks about, say, Justice, he must have some awareness of what he asks, and so can not literally not know. If we get rid of the logical constraints, the strict laws of thought, and act more in the realm of the ergon, i.e., the action, we can notice that many things have a quite manifest reality without being known. There is more room here than your objections allow for. I think they are abstractions away from what we live. In life, we know things all day long. That is the question of appearances and truth. Or about the semantics of the word “know”.

“If the only time we know is 'now', how come you pretend like you know Plato's view of the sky?”

Because I don’t hold to the strict rules of thought. I don’t limit myself to the abstracted. That’s what I mean to say, the logos is not determining. It is clarifying and it gives expression, but the dark conception works also with the ergon, the deed. It stands between them, and the dark conception, which is a name for experience, is the thing that is the world that is not the same or different in logical terms. It grows, it is not like life or like the gods (i.e., the things that always are, or the logical).

“As creative and imaginative as ancient people were, you cannot tell me that they could not look up in the sky and imagine depth.”

So far as I know this is a literal fact of the textual evidence. I believe it was common sense even much later, that is the literal meaning of the phrase the “vault of the heavens”, it was considered a sort of ceiling or an egg-like boundary. See if you will find an ancient source that speaks of life on distant planets. Or, more practically, of stars beyond those seen. It is my understanding that Ptolemy considered earth to be at the center because roughly the same number of stars could be seen above and bellow the horizon all year round. He never dreamed of considering unseen stars! That was considered a wall (sometimes one adds: with pin pricks in it).

I think this sort of, anything could be, consideration, that they couldn’t imagine it, or could, and then one says, prove it. I think that is not a serious argument, it is logical or extreme-theoretical play. Something like that might be used, with good reason, but not as a simple argument, against, some view. That is too cheap or haphazard. It also misconstrues the assertion. Since, it is not what they could have done that is in question, but what they did do. Not the capacity, but the occasion of it coming to be.

“So where is this 'black gulf' located? Sounds like it could be an interesting place to visit. I bet it looks amazing! Maybe I could get a few pictures.”

I think these demands are very much scientific. So it isn’t as though I needed some special power to see into the other world to know you speak from a modern scientific bias. But what I want to bring out is that intelligibility is not that kind of thing to be observed and measured. But that does not mean we can’t know of it quite plainly. One often sees that another is thinking about the same things, but not in the same way. A dog for instance has a different power of intelligibility. But one must not always insist on proof for what one already knows. That usually leads to the construction of garbage, in the form of confused and therefore confusing theories and doctrines.
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