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A Small Reflection on the Tempore of Modern Philosophy
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Avital Ronell
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 16, 2014 4:33 pm    Post subject: A Small Reflection on the Tempore of Modern Philosophy Reply with quote

What would produce the reflection of a circle, a genetic circle, what kind of imaginative creation is this circle, this discovered product of the conception? How confusing it all is!

Did the dissatisfaction with the death of the impersonal philosophies lead to the encouraging thought that now we have impersonal producers of theories, that are not quite knowledge, not truth? However, does it happen like that at all before we think it that way, before Nietzsche, did it ever happen like that before?

Can I not have a system in a wholly meaningless world? But, assuredly, such a system has been devised, that life emanate all arrangements of organization and thought. The philosophical system of Nietzsche, the dogma of the destruction of all truths, of the sovereign transformations of life, is now very popular.

Is a personal philosophy, for that reason, that of being all-too personal, never to be conceived of as systematic? I have lost my logic, becoming untrue, but then have I ceased to follow a methodical tendency? Naturally, very many people use, and regard as true, the death of god. Saying, how lovely that god has died at a last, now we are free not to be systematic. Perhaps it is as stupid as that.

Wittman says: I contradict myself? Very well then I contradict myself, (I am large, I contain multitudes.)

If such a great thinker as Jaspers has come out with a grounded thought — that Nietzsche everywhere is penetrating himself with contradiction — it means that we must not understand Nietzsche as a logical thinker? Will the dead tyrannize over the living? What it means is that something called systematic thought is supposed to be dead. Nietzsche is not regarded as a systematic thinker. The work that has for its title, Nietzsche, is not called systematic. Yet Nietzsche is systematic, and he himself said that his work was that of a ‘determinate philosophical sensibility.’ So that it is everywhere obvious that his body of work fitted a tendency, a tendency which differs from him himself.

That it differs from him himself means: If I ask about an American, simply, I find the American tendencies, and I see also, out of my simple eye, that there is there also a person, with peculiarities apart from this. I need not go on to explode that theoretically, and so posit that in fact there is no person, but a collection of singular expression of being, taken here and there, or, going further to say that the person is not there, but a collection of thoughts that happen, and of various concomitants gathered according to a prejudice and so on. Many explosions of the simple view of someone who comes across an American in actual dealings are possible, but they are fanciful in relation to life as it is. Science too, of course, is such a fancy. But the thought of the true world, overlays the ordinary one that we personally live in. Of course, this does not mean they should be derided, such thoughts, but only that here we do not treat with them.

With Nietzsche what did happen? An obscenity called personal philosophy came in. Obscene because never before was such a thing heard of amongst the professoriate. And again, what was new with Nietzsche? A systematic or radical break with dogma, and so with the claim to knowledge. Thus, it is true to say Nietzsche is not logical in the vernacular sense, he contradicts himself, and also he is personal, and not impersonal as all the philosophers were, prior to Nietzsche. Yet, today, all the philosophers, even those prior to Nietzsche, are personal. Or so they are regarded by the preponderance of the folk. And, doesn't that mean, that not just in truth, in the illusion of all impersonal dogmas, which have been unmasked at last, but in life, they are so?

Today, if we look at the EGS-type thinkers, the now fashionable theorists, we see numerous examples of entirely systematic, methodical, personal philosophies.
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Peter Blumsom



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PostPosted: Tue Oct 21, 2014 3:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What is reflected in a mirror hanging in an empty room - from a personal point of view?
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Avital Ronell
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 11:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Es gibt ein Reich, wo alles rein ist:
Es hat einen namen:
Totenreich

I stand and point, ‘there is the reflection.’ If I objectify, I say, ‘There in the room a man sees his reflection.’

The objectification, however, can be taken as but a mode of the personal. Thus too the whole of natural-scientific experience.

The philosophers always took themselves to ask a question, the ontological question, about beings or being, or the epistemological question, what is science? Ergo, they made objective inquiries. When the ground of common sense opens with historicism, then great chaos comes. It is, even today, not clear whether phenomenology rescued that situation. That is very tricky.

Whom is to tell us what is this 'personal,' if not the immediate self evidence of common sense? What is a reflection? What the eye sees, the thing there, taken in the vague and primary ambiguity, non-theoretical ambiguity, the perceived. Does it not all sound a bit like a guess, a theory, a truth? Something too far from… But, then, too far from what?
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Peter Blumsom



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PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2014 6:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Earlier this room had been full of people, each seeing more or less the same furniture, chandeliers, wallpaper, doors, but each seeing a different mirror.

Now the meal is over and they have all shuffled out. Everything in the room falls back objectively to as it was, without personal viewpoint.

The mantelpiece is still surfaced with grey marble, the coat of arms above still embossed with gilt, and each piece of furniture yet exhibits its own skin deep Aristotelian quality – poion. But the surface of the mirror seems to only live in the looker's eye. Where has it gone?

Reflections in general, ground zero on the divided line and also the property of Ficino’s magus (as a powerful refracting tool), are interesting as a ‘tangible’ depiction of becoming – too dark to live in our light, too bright to live in our darkness.
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Avital Ronell
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2014 7:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What I understand in your first statement, although it is written with astonishing crypticness and unnecessary analogy, is that you are mistaken.

In fact one still has this personal self. This perception. If by your analogy that is this mirror. The different mirror each is. It doesn't go away. Nicht? Common sense is still here, even from within natural-scientific truth.

Don't go into some pseudo-philosophical prate like the Zizeks, like your last paragraph. Be honest with yourself, and try to think . That is my friendly advice to you.
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Peter Blumsom



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PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2014 8:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The mirror is interesting. That is what my thoughts are on. Is it not common sense here that is failing? Here we have a mirror in a room with nothing being reflected in it. Is that not thaumazein?

Thank you for your interest.
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Peter Blumsom



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PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2014 8:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Even if a ghost slipped into that empty room and painted it there would be something reflected in the mirror – the ghost’s viewpoint. When the ghost slips out again there is no viewpoint. What is personal here?
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Plato DNA



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PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2014 2:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Why do people fear contradictions? Isn't this world, this life we try to understand full of contradictions? Wouldn't these be included in truth?

If the mirror reflected nothing would it really be a mirror?

A room is being reflected. You must have walls, a floor, a ceiling; these are being reflected.
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Peter Blumsom



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PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2014 2:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, Jason, it is not useful to fear contradiction, so why bother?

So the mirror is reflecting all the things within its range, you hint. But the range is dependent on the angle, and the angle is dependent on … what? A looker. A mirror needs to have a looker. But there is none so your mirror is a theoretical mirror – all potential no act. No one seems to be getting to grips with what I am saying. This is like something Plato describes, but why let him do the work?
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Avital Ronell
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2014 9:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you speak with an analogy about something you could say directly you add shallow confusion. Think of all the ways people misunderstand the cave metaphor. We want to get to the deep confusion.

“Even if a ghost slipped into that empty room and painted it there would be something reflected in the mirror – the ghost’s viewpoint. When the ghost slips out again there is no viewpoint. What is personal here?”

A big problem is you don't know at all what you mean by an empty room, even in theory, do you mean a mathematical model? We want to think more seriously about life, not metaphor.

The empty room is never part of your experience. It is a kind of wild conjecture. I would say that you are weaving yourself the whole story in speech: about a theoretical empty room. When I am standing in a room, and I point, there is something there. The computer, the floor. When I weave a story I say too much, I go beyond the facts of my everyday dealings and the things that are sure. Every time I challenge those things, I do it by making a thesis, I go too far.
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Plato DNA



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PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2014 10:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If we are talking about a mirror there must have been a ‘looker’ or else why would we be talking about a mirror? I think I get what you are saying; if nobody sees it does it really exist? Kind of like what’s his name saying…if a tree falls in the woods and nobody hears it; does it still make a sound? Which I realize is a generic (and poor) version of some of the same concepts Plato inquired into. Maybe my wax has faded or I am catching the wrong birds, but sometimes I also like to take a fresh look.

The technical side of me wants to say that if a mirror is in a room the room is not empty. An empty room would have nothing in it. The mirror had to get in there somehow. This would be part of the personal view right? The one who placed the mirror in there and in such a way would leave an imprint or record of it happening.

A hundred people could all see the same mirror and from the same angle but not see it in the same way.
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Avital Ronell
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2014 10:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

‘I think I get what you are saying; if nobody sees it does it really exist?’

No. You’re starting from your radical hypothetical, and then you start going away from it. Start from life instead. What do you do? You start with life, and then you invent the notion, an empty room.

Drop the metaphors, they make everything you say bloodless, and they add a shallow confusion any serious thinker must repudiate. If you use a metaphor make sure it is really necessary and exceptionally crisp and clear. Wittgenstein offers us some fine examples. When he speaks of a room and a window, it is only because there is no other way to express the opaqueness of our private existence.
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Plato DNA



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PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2014 11:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well I was talking to Pete.

In my opinion nothing can be empty, and everything is hypothetical.
Any serious thinker should be in (or create) a shallow confusion, because if he knew he wouldn't have to think. And by thinking, he would realize that he does not know.

Why should metaphor be crisp and clear? Is anything in life ever crisp and clear?

I am not familiar with Wittgenstein, but how can there be only one way to describe a private existence? Private being personal right?
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Peter Blumsom



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PostPosted: Sat Oct 25, 2014 7:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ms Ronell sees no life in my people-shorn and ghostless room.

But Jason, the old Greek geometer carelessly scratches a circle in the sand. Let that be a perfect circle, he says. In that spirit I say, let the room be empty. The mind can see it if the eye cannot. Life infuses everywhere so we have no need to worry about that. I merely struggle to establish my hypothesis, while adhering to my original question.
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Mark Stocks



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PostPosted: Sun Oct 26, 2014 1:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A TEST OF ABSOLUTE PROFUNDITY AND WORKABILITY

I hope this sincere enquiry into the genetic circle may produce some extraordinary fruit. However, let us not bite too hastily.
I am hoping rather that the fruit may appear untouchable, and if we so wish totally immersive to our surrender.
It is probable that I am not wise enough to write about such things, so I shall attempt to allow this person to etch such profundity through it's being by resonating with this immediate screen of which you may if you so wish engage with sincerely.
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