01 April 2007

April Poem of the Month

Since this is my philosophy month, here's one with a Platonic perspective. Comments/critique/responses welcome.


If all I touch is shadows, every sight
like fog on focused visions, each sweet taste
an after-taste, and songs just aging echoes—
what exponential ecstasy awaits!
Imagine: Here, the ocean’s westward music
drives me mad; I weep for marble’s whiteness;
and the slightest wind-blown scent of rose
winds labyrinths and mist-fronds of delight—
but There! if There, the body’s narrow windows
burst to banks on banks of lake-lit glass,
how much more perfect will a flower be,
its flimsy Type fulfilled; belief at last
as much more certain as each rock more real;
and my substance-senses one with all that they reveal.

~ Admonit


Darlin said...

Did you write this?

I like the thoughts and pictures displayed in this. As well as the couplet at the end.

Lovely enjambment.

poi said...

On the subject of philosophy, here is what I think.

The Four Types of Philosophical Problems

Distinguishing good reasoning from bad cannot be done scientifically, for the ability to make this distinction is presupposed by all thinkers, scientific or otherwise. The philosophical field of logic seeks to ascertain the principles of the thought patterns one ought to follow if reality is to be reflected adequately or if reality is intentionally not being reflected in one's thought or utterances. Thus logic is the normative discipline of correct reasoning as such.

Theory of Knowledge
Although as important as any area in philosophy, the theory of knowledge, also designated epistemology, has seen surprisingly little progress in moving past the issues raised by the first philosophers over two and a half millennia ago. These issues include the definition, criteria, and sources of knowledge. Equally significant is the question of whether there is a foundational structure of directly known principles of evidence upon which reasoning can be built. Also, there is the problem of deciding on the conditions that must exist for a statement to be true.

Metaphysics and Ontology
The term "metaphysics" was first used to refer to what Aristotle claimed to be "a science which investigates being as being and the attributes which belong to this in virtue of its own nature." He distinguished this "science" from all the "so-called special sciences," for none of them dealt "generally with being as being." Although the etymology and traditional use of the term "ontology" makes it a synonym of "metaphysics," its meaning has become narrowed in contemporary philosophy. This constriction began with Immanuel Kant's theoretical separation of reality from the appearance of reality and the limitation of human knowledge to the latter.
Prior to Kant metaphysics was commonly understood as the theoretical grasp of the overall structure of reality. Following Kant's distinction between reality and appearance metaphysics has been seen by many as the dispelling of illusion about what can be known of reality, assuming the human inability to transcend the realm of appearance.

In the analytically oriented philosophy of today's English-speaking world metaphysics amounts to a rigorous examination of the concepts used when referring to the basic categories of being. The term "ontology" is usually preferred, leaving "metaphysics" for the largely discredited speculative account of reality as a whole. By way of contrast, continental European philosophy considers ontology to be the disclosure of the world of appearance which is reality. Many philosophers, however, reject the kantian distinction between appearance and reality by striving to grasp reality as a coherent system toward which human thought is advancing. For them metaphysics is understood in its traditional sense.

Value Theory
The fourth major department of philosophy includes ethics and aesthetics. The primary focus of the study of aesthetics is upon the question of whether beauty is relative to the observer. The answer has a direct bearing on the practical problem of whether standards should be imposed upon the creation, appreciation, and criticism of art works.
Ethics is mainly concerned with the grounds warranting human actions to be judged right or wrong, and persons and events good or evil. Ethicists who take moral statements to be cognitively meaningful and who find an objective basis for ethical values are divided into two standpoints in their theory as to what makes human behavior morally right or wrong. The teleological approach looks for the moral quality of an action in its tendency to bring about an intrinsically good state of affairs. Instances of such states that have been proposed include the greatest pleasure for the largest number of people, the full development of one's potential as a rational being, and the attainment of eternal peace. The competing standpoint is that of deontological ethics, which maintains that the rightness or wrongness of some human actions is not based on the results of those actions. Keeping a promise, for example, is thought right in any situation, because it is one's duty or is commanded by God. Traditionally Christian ethics has had both teleological and deontological elements.

Iambic Admonit said...

Dear Darlin':
yup, I did. Thank you for your thoughts!

Dear Poi:
Thank you for your detailed survey of philosophical concerns. Very cogent. I have one question for you: Do you have any suggestions as to how Epistemology can move beyond its original basic questions? What might a postModern epistemology look like? For that matter, we could insitute another whole discussion on the current state of philosophy and where it is going. This would bear upon the current state of Christianity and how it might be developing as it moves "East," to Asia and Africa, for new cultural centers.

Rosie Perera said...

Hmmm... Poi, I know this isn't an academic publication, but plagiarism is still plagiarism. You should have cited your source. That entire post is not what you think at all (unless poi is a pseudonym for S.R. Obitts, author of the entry on "Christian View of Philosophy" in the Elwell Evangelical Dictionary). The tone of your post sounded too formal to really be someone's own personal reflections added to a blog, which is why I got curious and started Googling some of the text. You can't pull the wool over people's eyes anymore in the Internet age. You might agree 100% with what the author of that dictionary entry wrote, but you could have said so and presented it as a quote, rather than putting forth the whole thing as if it were your own work.

poi said...

I meant to cite it, I had it saved in a word document and copied and pasted, I must have missed the link. But since you have cited it already I will not bother. I meant by my statement that I agree with this conclusion. Thank you for pointing this out. I did not mean to offend or plagerize. My apologies.
After some feedback I have begun to study religion and I have come to wonder that maybe my conclusion on the fact that there is no god, is in fact, false.
I think I agree with what I posted, I wanted to make that point. No harm intentional.

Iambic Admonit said...

Dear Poi: Thank you for your apology. I am very happy to hear you say that "After some feedback I have begun to study religion and I have come to wonder that maybe my conclusion on the fact that there is no god, is in fact, false." I do hope that you will follow the current discussion in the most recent post, "Is there a God?" Thank you for reading!!