KARL JASPERS FORUM
Response 8 (to C8, Moodey)
THEISM AND CONSTRUCTION
by Herbert FJ Müller
17 March 2008, posted 28 March 2009
Thank you for your quick response; and I will also respond quite briefly.
Exclusive objectivity is a view which people with purposes use; the statement that exclusive objectivity does something is short for ‘people who hold the exclusive objectivity view do something’.
Subjects cannot become objects, and should not be treated as-if-they were objects; see for instance Martin Buber. I agree that many objects are not subjects.
The rephrasing points to the reason of the disappearance of ‘subjects with purposes’ in exclusive objectivity. Atheists tend to be exclusive objectivists.
If one treats perception as a physiological event, the subject is not taken into account. Exclusive objectivity (that is people who rely on that view) lose the subject, either implicitly or even explicitly and deliberately. A typical example of the latter is F Crick’s ‘astonishing hypothesis’.
For instance visual gestalt-formations prompt the assumption that there are visual MIR-objects. My position - the result of elimination of other possibilities rather than of a leap of faith - is that structures, like visual gestalt-formations for instance, are formed with subject-participation in an otherwise unstructured matrix. If you make the leap of faith to MIR, can you explain how you know something that is not in your mind ? Or to put it the opposite way : what you know or believe is in your mind and thus is not MIR. This has been the main difficulty with metaphysics since Parmenides, it seems. ‘My faith’ is not that there is no MIR but that in its traditional subject-exclusive form MIR is impossible, although something like it is also necessary; MIR can instead be considered as a mental tool (as-if-MIR or reality-design), not as subject-independent.
I agree that they are inarticulate, but one can understand them as-if they were able to assert themselves. As an analogy, one can understand people’s expressions and gestures even if they don’t talk.
I agree that objectivity is a method of thinking, and that one can form judgements about arguments by thinking about them.
See Re <2> above.
I agree, encompassment needs to be ‘of everything’ in order to deal with the mind-brain question.
I agree that the unrestricted encompassment precludes the traditional understanding of metaphysics-ontology as mind-independent; but it is compatible with its transformation into a mental tool.
I apologize for having imposed on your time. But I would still be quite interested in what you think of the conclusion section of my previous note R7.
e-mail <herbert.muller (at) mcgill.ca>