Monday, December 29, 2014

a 3-fold ambiguity of ‘cognitivity’

Throughout academia, ‘cognitive’ is used ambiguously, if not ambivalently, to pertain to (1) mental phenomena or issues of inquiry, (2) conceptuality or domain of comprehension, or/and (3) epistemic issues or range of representational relevance.

This 3-fold is homologous with philosophical discourse on concepts alone: Concepts are standardly regarded as (1) capabilities, as (2) so-called Fregean senses, or as (3) representations.

This is homlogous with Habermas’ 3-fold model of lifeworld pragmatics (though I don’t expect that to seem evident; a keynote is that what really holds us together is conceptual).

And the homologies continue, really. So, what’s the nature of such 3-folding of a person(1) relating(2) to the world(3)?

I have the answer! But a simple (unexplicated) rendering(3) of foldness(2) itself wouldn’t seem obvious(1).

Anyway, logocentrism conceals the ontogenesis of such abstracted differentiability.

Two relevant discussions are: “‘I understand’” and “emergingness in relation to ordinary conceptuality.”

Monday, December 22, 2014

autumn 2014

December 22:

My Dec. 21, Habermasian posting, “drawing thought beyond transcendentalism,” explains itself well enough. Today, I’ve sketched a context for moving beyond that into how Habermas’s work could be progressively applied to working for the good of our times, going forward (rather than being overly attached to the past). But I’ll return to that next year. Presently, I’m having fun with my purely philosophical venture.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

vistas in conceptual design: a preface on anthropic singularity

baby, baby...

Oh, how cute!”

“Well, it’s still a toddler. You should have been here just a few years back. Just wait a few more years.”

What is a “mind”? As it goes now, a recent Science article titled “A Mind of Its Own” is subheaded: “Novel neuromorphic chips and software should provide robots with unriveled perceptual skills.”

Forget computational neuroscience (trying to model wetware perception, which is the result of eonic biogenic self-sorting, then intelligent self-selectivity which outstripped natural selection, yet is replicably encoded in the [regulatory] genome). The Game is neurocomputational beings (with quantum computational capacity allegorized in human terms). And the meta-Game is conceptual design of computational complexity—if not conceiving autogenic algorithmicity (which must remain always susceptible to human halting).

Sunday, November 30, 2014

being a zoo (or algebraic gadfly)

When we look at a photograph, we project a third dimension (depth, “going back” “in” the imagespace). 3-space is mapped into the 2-space photo. We see this because we live in 3-space—or rather, we see within the 3-space (4-space actually, of course) in which we move and live.

But someone who was congenitally blind, then gains sight has to learn to see 3-space. You take his hand (which is so familiar to him having done to him, as he has always lived by touch and embodied spatiality) and move it toward the glass on the table. His fingers touch the glass, and he takes hold of it immediately, as he’s always done—yet now amazed that there is the glass seen at the distance that his reach knows well. (Seeing in 3-space is learned by infants, as they also learn to focus).

Suppose an ant on a plane (flat surface, not a jet). Dependent on everything being in his plane, there is no such thing as something being above or below the plane. Above and below don’t exist. (This little fiction is stipulating absurd cognitive ability with severe constraints, but what the heck...). If a circle that is positioned above the plane (to we beings who know an x, y, z coordinate system) passes through the plane, the ant sees a point suddenly emerge, which becomes two points which move away from each other, each stopping, then moving back to each other, finally becoming a point that disappears.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

philosophy lives in highlands

Habermas’ recollections on Jewish émigrés is a partial version of a chapter of The Lure of Technocracy, which will be available between March and May, 2015.

Postmetaphysical Thinking II is due in mid-2017 (German original, 2012!). And he has a big manuscript in process on the evolution of religion, he noted in last June’s interview.

One might easily forget that Habermas is a philosopher in a fully-philosophical sense, not just a political philosopher also being a public intellectual. Someone approaching the challenge of understanding Habermas’ career is met with the best paradigm available of what philosophy may strive to be. At 85, the philosopher is still actively engaged as philosopher. Very few pretend to understand the philosophical example that Habermas continues to work to exemplify. Whatever disagreement one has with particular views, his scale of recognized engagement is in small company, if having any peer.

Saturday, November 15, 2014


One might easily associate my coinage with the craft of textual layout; or maybe: writing itself as presentation—and presentation as design: presenting as a designed endeavor, a deliberateness of presenting, like a poet thinking of immanent belonging in the line that breaks aptly.

I recall David Krell’s Archeticture: Ecstasies of Space, Time, and the Human Body (1997—so long ago) in a Derridean mood, as if the endeavor was about glyphical design in conceptuality: a glyphical fate of the trace in all perception.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

summer 2014

September 14: protean daze

Ever wonder why the old Greeks would fabricate such a god as Proteus?

I have a story about that, way beyond what They Say about a king—who so loved Helen before Troy?—who became the Old Man of the Sea who would always tell Truth, if he could be captured.

flexible perspectivity

I mentioned a notion of “flexible perspectivity” in my discussion of Habermas’ essay on Putnam’s “pragmatist virtue ethics,” but I didn’t introduce the notion carefully. I discussed it briefly, but that was unfair to the value I find in the notion.

Worse yet, I introduced the notion as if it was transparent, out of the head of Zeus, then mentioned more-accessible aspects later, which would better have been mentioned first (discussed in detail first). After some more preliminaries here, I'll quote all I mentioned earlier, in better order (giving it salience); and include some discussion.

radiant gravity

Nothing that I write is a clear pointer about where I’m going, though the point (the event of writing presented) should be clear in each instance—and is, I hope, for the thing here, the trace of the event, a time-space architexture presented.

For example, all I’ve written recently about Habermas is part of drawing a provisional closure, not departing further into being there soon (though surely again later!). Likewise with Heidegger. Writers who have profoundly influenced me are part of going on—where “on,” as my pathmaking, would be my learning going forward, into undefined horizons that nonetheless are the gravities, the Appeals.

What’s worthwhile to say about the Sirens drawing Ulysses?—as if I knew Homer. (My Dad’s first name was Homer. I was born on Bloomsday, June 16, the singular day of Joyce’s Ullysses, when Leopold Bloom has his odyssey about town.)

Yet, a draw—The Draw—draws me on.

I’m surrendered to being drawn by the hill whose forward vista I can’t yet see.

I’m given to the draw of drawing, given to drawing as such.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

real Martin

summer 1924.... Young Gadamer organized a picnic, including a cart that had to be pulled to the site, which he enlisted philosophers Hartmann and Heidegger to endure, each pulling one shaft of the 2-shafted cart (meant for a mule). Late in life, Gadamer recalled that day (citation available):
“Heidegger on such occasions displayed a charming boyish sense of humor. When, on the return journey, the cart was empty, he suddenly let Hartmann do all the pulling on his own...jumped onto the cart and opened his umbrella.”
Martin was 34, composing Being and Time.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

for Its Arriving

Heidegger to a student, 1950:
"The default of God and the divinities is absence. But absence is not nothing; rather it is precisely the presence, which must first be appropriated, of the hidden fullness and wealth of what has been and what, thus gathered, is presencing, of the divine in the world of the Greeks, in prophetic Judaism, in the preaching of Jesus. This no-longer is in itself a not-yet of the veiled arrival of its inexhaustible nature.”
from: “A Letter to a Young Student, 18 June, 1950,” Poetry, Language, Thought, 182
By the way, his response isn't excluding there being the divine beyond regioning of Europe; rather, he addresses what's appropriate to the student's letter of 1950.

Friday, June 6, 2014

spring 2014

June 6:

I added my August 2013 posting on “the better way” to the short list of “philosophy for good.” I’m amazed by the oversight: The posting was written the same week that the philosophy for good project was first indicated here.

Friday, May 30, 2014

given all due regard…

My manifold dwelling with Habermas’s sense of truth, “Habermas and Truth,” evinces from years of engagement, but expresses an activity of a few days, late September and early October, 2003. Its first part, “What is truth for?,” begins:
Given all due regard for technicalities, a theory of truth must (as a practical imperative) be realistic, in at least the pragmatic sense of according with what we do when we look for truth or ask for truth in everyday life, as well as via methodic determinations.
That first sentence of the presentation basically distinguishes theoretical and practical interest in truth, in order to emphasize practical interest. It begs the question: How may a theory be a practical imperative in being “realistic”? I’m implicitly presuming association of the English idiomatic sense of ‘realistic’ with practicality, prudence, or candor. The movement of attention is from theory as conceptual analytics (“technicalities”) to practicality in theoretical terms, then (back? “back”?) to theory as inquiriality—from interest in conceptual analytics to theory of practices to interest in method. (I don't believe that my present comment here clarifies anything; rather, it emphasizes unreconstructed background context.)

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

notes on truth

evening | days of ‘truth’

What’s truth?

Look it up in an unabridged dictionary, which I’m doing below.

I love doing that with auratic (e.g., ‘love’), mystified (e.g., ‘spirit’), and allegedly difficult words (e.g., ‘truth’). It’s a tickle. (That reminds me of my undergraduate professor of ancient philosophy giggling regularly during lectures. He was very elderly, and loved his calling. When the very Christian man died, he had his gigantic library shipped to a mission in central Africa.)

The oldest definition of ‘truth’ is allegedly “1 a archaic : the quality or state of being faithful: fidelity, constancy” “Archaic” is not “obsolete”; the lexicographers use ‘obsolete’ frequently, when apt. I think of “true to form” or “being true” in friendship. Merriam-Webster uses S. T. Coleridge: “…whispering tongues can poison truth…” Pithy. Anyway, think a moment of the consanguinity of fidelity, constancy, being true to form, and faithfulness (as a non-religious notion, simply consanguineous with the others here). Archaic may be far beyond primitive (a basic meaning of ‘archaic’) because the meaning is archetypal, in this case evincing from Old English, akin to Old High German and Old Norse: fidelity, trustiness, faith. Truth in trust, an intimacy of reliability, as if deep need for reliability in life is integral to there being good life. Indeed—in deed. Etymology is anthropology.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

reverence for the future

In Heidegger’s 1975 television interview, he referred the viewer to a specific work, 1964, which is available in the book On Time and Being (1972). He died in May, 1976. Born on a 26th, he died on a 26th, a few months after Hannah Arendt, December, '75.

What is his sudden look in the last fraction of the last second of the video—a little, very private recoil: embarrassment toward a fatefulness of the word? von Kleist's reverence has been made into an interview object, there and gone, like so much of our talktalktalk?

Saturday, May 17, 2014

what is translation?

The great translator Ralph Manheim (namesake of a coveted award given to translators, the “PEN/Ralph Manheim Medal for Translation, ” “likened his work...,” says the New York Times obituary, 1992—“likened his work to acting, saying a translator’s challenge was ‘to impersonate his author,’” not to impersonate the author, but to enown the author, “his author,” in the act of translation.

Is this the Act belonging to the translation; or is it the translation belonging to the Act of translating? The latter, of course. The translating is an enowning of the authorship, an intimacy with the authorship that results in a possession by the author (as best one can) of the text at hand. The author may say, in the intimacy of the writing—in gaining the time that is to let go of the writing and, in effect, saying in the Act of releasing the writing into the version of itself that is now:— “This is the text that I’ve become, through which I am for you." That surely seems unduly poetic (if not oblique), but enowning thought is integral to Heidegger’s thinking.

In the intimacy of the writing, the author becomes of his/her text. The text born from the authorship is by the author of the text—the author understanding himself as of this text. The writing is alive in setting forth what is set up “now” as the text of the authorship, by the author who, relative to the text, has become the author of the text.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

what is being German, 1934-35?

What is renewal for "We" who must enown Our region?

“Martin Heidegger’s 1934–1935 lectures on Friedrich Hölderlin’s hymns ‘Germania’ and ‘The Rhine’ are considered the most significant among Heidegger’s lectures on Hölderlin,” blurbs the publisher’s book cover.

Considered by whom? I thought that his post-War lectures were the most important.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

things of Appropriating

Though Heidegger's essay “The Thing" is widely available in English, it's maybe useful to also provide a PDF of it. Also, at the end of this note is a link to a PDF of the entire book (which downloads slower, maybe).

With Heidegger, keep in mind that he can only speak from his time. Television, for example, was barely invented. So, questions of our being are shared and not (like a mirrorplay of identity in difference—being together identity-in-difference). Now, we grow up as if the Internet arose from Nature. What a "Thing"!

He speaks to the future, not to his time, yet from his time calling for futural appropriation.

It's for you to find how potential for focal gathering belongs with you within and among Us now, going on, potentially originary.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

environmental engineering

This posting was mistakenly transferred from the Facebook/Habermas project to here. It belongs and is here.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014


For an Eros of mathematics: So Edward Frenkel prospects. Contrary to him, I don’t prospect that The Universe may be a simulation. I’d love to elaborate (not now, yet...).

I would agree with him (and Leslie Valiant) that continua from mathematical physics into biology and beyond (e.g., human cognition) can be fruitfully modeled (e.g., cognitive computing—a.k.a “AI”). Yet, fulfillment of the Langlands Program (deep-structural homologies between number theory and harmonic analysis—so far beyond my capabilities of comprehension) would leave us still in wonder about the continua of life. They—the high, wondrous prospectors—are far from fruitfully prospecting even the computationality of a regulatory genome in simple life, let alone a neuroscience of such prospecting (e.g., a computational neuroscience of ordinary curiosity). It’ll never happen.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

winter 2014

March 18:

At the "new in site" space, “new” doesn’t necessarily mean recent. I have years of things I could upload (but I don’t plan to make this site primarily archival). I’ve found closure on some very difficult work that will serve me well, I hope, in coming years. Soon, I’m going to give good attention to the “Topics to be furthered” here. [That home page area was antedated in June.] The “Habermasian studies” area has grown. That will continue some more, but probably cease for a couple of years this spring because I have many other kinds of projects in mind. I’m excited.