The Political Fray - Political Forum
Go Back   Political Fray > The Political Fray > Philosophy

Philosophy Philosophy discussion about everything from politics to daily living to ethics and morals


Thanks Tree16Thanks
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old May 3rd, 2017, 03:53 PM   #101
Senator
 
numan's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2016
From: Victoria, BC
Posts: 772

'
I think it is clear that humans diverged biologically from chimpanzee-like apes in order to keep up with the evolution of their social and technological environment, and not vice versa, as simple-minded people think.

Naturally, there was a certain chicken-and-the-egg interplay between the two -- what the communists used to call "dialectic", and American science-geeks call "synergy". But the main driving force is the evolution of the environment. Recent human biological change is, in the main, a response to the evolution of the social and technological environment of humans, not the cause of that evolution.

If human children were torn from the social web that enfolds us all, raised without exposure to language and all the other aspects of modern society, I maintain that they would resemble chimpanzees (very autistic chimpanzees!!) much more than they would what most people think of as human beings.
.
numan is offline  
Old May 4th, 2017, 03:16 PM   #102
Senator
 
numan's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2016
From: Victoria, BC
Posts: 772

'
Subatomic Logic

Quote:
In a quantum computer, information is stored not as a string of ones and zeroes, but as a series of quantum-mechanical states: spin directions of electrons, for instance, or polarization orientations of a photon. In 1985 David Deutsch of the University of Oxford pointed out that quantum physical law allows particles to be in more than one state at a time, making it possible for each particle in a quantum computer to hold more than one bit of information. (In this field, the term "bit" is replaced by "qubit," meaning quantum bit.) A computer containing, say, a hundred particles could execute a computation on 2100 numbers at once. The ability to crunch many numbers at the same time--known as massive parallelism--would make quantum computers ideal for some basic computing tasks, such as factoring large numbers. Two years ago, Peter W. Shor of AT&T Bell Labs presented an algorithm showing exactly how a quantum computer would carry out such task.
But there is much more to quantum computers than breaking down large numbers....
...Lov K. Grover, also at Bell Labs, announced a more down-to-earth application: a crafty algorithm that, building on Shor's ideas, would allow a quantum computer to make lightning-fast searches through a database. In this scheme, each item in the database would be represented by a quantum state of a particle in the computer. Relying on the inherently fuzzy laws governing those particles, Grover's algorithm would enhance the state in the system corresponding to the desired item and suppress the others. Rather than slogging dumbly through a list, the algorithm operates on all of the particles at once, so it could far exceed the speed and efficiency of a classical computer.
.
numan is offline  
Old May 4th, 2017, 04:20 PM   #103
Vice President
 
Aufgeblassen's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2013
From: Central FL
Posts: 9,781

Quote:
Originally Posted by numan View Post
A bogus quote of non-pre-existent text, followed by no comment. WTF?
Aufgeblassen is online now  
Old May 11th, 2017, 03:14 PM   #104
Senator
 
numan's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2016
From: Victoria, BC
Posts: 772

'
I think it is wise to make a distinction between taste, which is subjective, and aesthetic judgment, which has a core that is objective, and does not change.

I agree with Shakespeare, when he has Hamlet say,

"Now this overdone, or come tardy off, though it make the unskillful laugh, cannot but make the judicious grieve, the censure of which, one must in your allowance o'erweigh a whole theatre of others."

The objective core of art is notoriously difficult to define, but in a finger-pointing way of defining it, I think it comes down to the traditional cliché of the Good, the True, the Harmonious. As Plato said in the Philebus,

"If we are not able to capture the Good in a single idea, we shall do so with three: Beauty, Harmony, and Truth."

The highest works of art are those which best permit goodness, truth and harmony to shine through them; that is why Bach and Mozart are greater than any rock-and-roll or heavy metal music.

It may be objected that even in heavy metal music, American militarism and Nazi ritual there are aesthetic components which have a certain "beauty" of their own. This is true, but to become Platonic, these are very dim, fading shadows of the true Beauty which shines forth in the great works of Art. In general, whatever aesthetic components such trash possesses are merely formal, superficial craftsmanship and illuminate true Beauty very ill. Bach, on the other hand, raises us to a transcendent realm where we glimpse what the angels sing to God.

Germany produced Bach, and many, many other towering figures in the arts. Europe is resplendent with Great Art.

The United States produced Elvis.

American barbarism, if it had any sense, would bend the knee and worship at the shrine of European Greatness.
.
numan is offline  
Old May 12th, 2017, 04:09 PM   #105
Senator
 
numan's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2016
From: Victoria, BC
Posts: 772

'
POWER CORRUPTS --- AND ABSOLUTE POWER CORRUPTS ABSOLUTELY

Alas, this is the downfall of all societies and governments ever since so-called "civilization" began, some ten thousand years ago.

And, of course, it is the downfall of the United States as it presently exists.

Sh¡t floats. The cheaters, the chiselers, the creeps always seem to worm their way up to the top of any organization, given enough time.

Is this preventable, or is it just a part of the human condition which must be endured?

It has never yet been prevented, but I think it is possible to prevent, or, at least, greatly mitigate.

Some ancient Indian philosophers thought that there were three grounds for valid knowledge: induction, deduction, and divine revelation.

I think that there are three grounds for a decent human society: the carrot, the stick, and the Beauty of Harmony.

Order the Beauty even of Beauty is,
It is the Rule of Bliss,
The very Life and Form and Cause of Pleasure;
Which if we do not understand,
Ten thousand Heaps of vain confuséd Treasure
Will but oppress the Land.
In Blessedness itself we that shall miss
Being Blind which is the Cause of Bliss.

--- Thomas Traherne

But I guess that is just my "hive mind" at work again.

Contrary to the wisdom of political leaders, economists, and Ayn Rand, I just can't help feeling that:

It is better to serve in Heaven, than reign in Hell. ---
.
numan is offline  
Old May 14th, 2017, 03:09 PM   #106
Senator
 
numan's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2016
From: Victoria, BC
Posts: 772

'
I would never say that there is no aesthetic virtue at all in the inferior productions of American mass culture, but these worthy elements are swamped by the vastly greater amount of evil that is propagated by this "culture."

Plato had justification for wishing that inferior art be banished from his ideal Republic --- which was, of course, a metaphor for banishing it from the life and consciousness of the individual person.

Even if we do not go so far, it is wise to treat any art which is not worthy to be considered High Culture as a dangerous drug, which may serve some positive ends, but which should always be used with a keen consciousness of the evils which it may introduce into the purity of the soul.
.
numan is offline  
Old May 14th, 2017, 03:18 PM   #107
Vice President
 
Aufgeblassen's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2013
From: Central FL
Posts: 9,781

Quote:
Originally Posted by numan View Post
'
I would never say that there is no aesthetic virtue at all in the inferior productions of American mass culture, but these worthy elements are swamped by the vastly greater amount of evil that is propagated by this "culture."

Plato had justification for wishing that inferior art be banished from his ideal Republic --- which was, of course, a metaphor for banishing it from the life and consciousness of the individual person.

Even if we do not go so far, it is wise to treat any art which is not worthy to be considered High Culture as a dangerous drug, which may serve some positive ends, but which should always be used with a keen consciousness of the evils which it may introduce into the purity of the soul.
.
KISS is awesome culture - get with the program!

Aufgeblassen is online now  
Old May 18th, 2017, 03:39 PM   #108
Senator
 
numan's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2016
From: Victoria, BC
Posts: 772

'
My favorite work of non-monumental Egyptian art, even if it does come from the New Kingdom, is the bust of Nefertiti which is presently held by the Ägyptisches Museum in Berlin.



As with all great works of sculpture, it looks very different depending on the angle at which it is viewed, and the type of lighting with which it is illuminated. Sometimes she looks young and innocently mischievous, but I am most impressed when she is seen as holding a noble pose, looking eternally across the ages, never flinching as she awaits her gods to speak to her. That sometimes moves me almost to tears.

P.S. What has the United States ever produced that even approaches the magnificence of this single work of art?
.
numan is offline  
Old May 18th, 2017, 03:40 PM   #109
Vice President
 
Aufgeblassen's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2013
From: Central FL
Posts: 9,781

Quote:
Originally Posted by numan View Post
'
My favorite work of non-monumental Egyptian art, even if it does come from the New Kingdom, is the bust of Nefertiti which is presently held by the Ägyptisches Museum in Berlin.



As with all great works of sculpture, it looks very different depending on the angle at which it is viewed, and the type of lighting with which it is illuminated. Sometimes she looks young and innocently mischievous, but I am most impressed when she is seen as holding a noble pose, looking eternally across the ages, never flinching as she awaits her gods to speak to her. That sometimes moves me almost to tears.

P.S. What has the United States ever produced that even approaches the magnificence of this single work of art?
.



Last edited by Aufgeblassen; May 18th, 2017 at 03:46 PM.
Aufgeblassen is online now  
Old May 23rd, 2017, 03:50 PM   #110
Senator
 
numan's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2016
From: Victoria, BC
Posts: 772

'
It is true that I am impressed by a wider range of art than many people appear to think. However, the purpose of my postings on this thread has been to draw a clear distinction between art seen as craftsmanship, technique and taste, and High Art, which illuminates the Good, the True and the Beautiful to a much higher degree than art which merely appeals to individual taste.

In the United States there is much art which displays individuality, quirkiness and interesting techniques, but there is a remarkable lack of High Art which inspires one with a love of the highest pinnacle of human awareness, the knowledge of the Good, the True and the Beautiful.

Yeats has one of his fools say:

All men live in suffering,
I know as few can know,
Whether they take the upper road
Or stay content on the low,
Rower bent in his row-boat
Or weaver bent at his loom,
Horseman erect upon horseback
Or child hid in the womb.
Daybreak and a candle-end.

That some stream of lightning
From the old man in the skies
Can burn out that suffering
No right-taught man denies.
But a coarse old man am I,
I choose the second-best,
I forget it all awhile
Upon a woman's breast.
Daybreak and a candle-end.


Americans, in general, prefer comfort, like the fool in the poem. They turn their backs on the Fire from Heaven.
.
numan is offline  
Old May 24th, 2017, 12:17 PM   #111
Senator
 
numan's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2016
From: Victoria, BC
Posts: 772

'
Democracy, Oligarchy, Monarchy, Communism, Socialism, Capitalism, Corporatocracy, Kleptocracy, etc.

There is one way of approaching life that is not troubled by those pesky suffixes: REASON.

To understand it as synonymous with "intellect" is false to history and philosophy. It derives from the Latin "ratio", relation, balance, harmony---and comes ultimately from an Indo-European root meaning a joint, a ball-and-socket, bones that fit together and function smoothly.

In the Encyclopedia of Philosophy it is defined as "the faculty and function of grasping necessary connections." Webster defines it (under "ratio") as "the real ground or nature of a thing, especially as determined by its relation to other things."

All modern education and social structures are dedicated to hiding and falsifying the true relations between things---since consumer-units are easier to control if they are clueless.

Until they are guided by Reason (properly understood), all social strategies will end in disaster --- especially if they represent rigid and fossilized abstract programs.

Reason can triumph only if large numbers of people begin to perceive the wonder and glory of Truth and Beauty --- for they are the root of all balance and harmony.
.
numan is offline  
Reply

  Political Fray > The Political Fray > Philosophy

Tags
beauty , intellectual , meaning



Thread Tools
Display Modes


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Intellectual warfare myp Philosophy 5 May 3rd, 2017 03:16 PM
Meaning of second coming of Jesus dattaswami Religion 3 May 1st, 2012 12:19 PM
Intellectual property rights reform myp Government and Politics 2 August 19th, 2011 08:17 AM


Facebook Twitter RSS Feed



Copyright © 2009-2013 Political Fray. All rights reserved.