Philosophy and Art

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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Arminius » Sun Nov 05, 2017 11:30 pm

Magnus Anderson wrote:Imagine yourself in the wild having these "conscious thoughts" before deciding how to go about hunting your prey. It's excessive. It does not help you in any way.

Imagine yourself on a philosophy forum (if there is a real one at all :wink: ) having no "thoughts".
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Magnus Anderson » Mon Nov 06, 2017 9:22 pm

Arminius wrote:
Magnus Anderson wrote:I understand. Would you agree that "conscious thought" is nothing other than "imaginary speech"? Personally, I think that in a lot of situations these "conscious thoughts" hinder thinking. We talk in order to communicate.

We do not only talk in order to communicate, but also in order to e.g. get power ... and so on. So, communication can also be something like a lie, a fake, a mask, an excuse ... and so on and so forth.


That's irrelevant.
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Arminius » Tue Nov 07, 2017 9:08 am

Magnus Anderson wrote:
Arminius wrote:
Magnus Anderson wrote:I understand. Would you agree that "conscious thought" is nothing other than "imaginary speech"? Personally, I think that in a lot of situations these "conscious thoughts" hinder thinking. We talk in order to communicate.

We do not only talk in order to communicate, but also in order to e.g. get power ... and so on. So, communication can also be something like a lie, a fake, a mask, an excuse ... and so on and so forth.

That's irrelevant.

Maybe for you, but not for me.

Communication is not only used, but also misused, especially for power, control. And that is absolutely relevant for all living beings.

So, ILP is an example too. The misuse of communication can be find in each ILP thread.
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Magnus Anderson » Tue Nov 07, 2017 1:30 pm

The point is that there is such a thing as "subconscious thoughts" whether you agree with it or not and whether you think that statement is a language abuse or not. Everyone can understand that statement pretty easily except for the paranoid few who see deception everywhere. Thoughts are necessarily conscious blah blah blah and yet we all know that we also make intelligent decisions unconsciously. Apparently, these aren't thoughts. If you don't talk you are not thinking. There is no thinking without talking. "Talking is everything", says the herd animal. It's become a habit to scream "language abuse" and "language games" whenever someone cannot understand what others are saying. It's a very convenient way to save oneself the trouble of trying to understand what others are saying. Just fixate on what is superficial and never ever pay attention to what is hiding beneath the surface.
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Arminius » Tue Nov 07, 2017 8:04 pm

Talking is langugae, regardless whether you agree or not.
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Alf » Tue Nov 07, 2017 9:53 pm

Here is an "Elephant Talk", produced by an animal herd:

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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Arminius » Tue Nov 07, 2017 10:46 pm

Alf wrote:Here is an "Elephant Talk", produced by an animal herd:

That is language too, but of different kinds. This "animal herd" is talking by using musical instruments, bodies, voices. There is communication and there is expression in that musical and non-musical language.

By the way (and in order to come closer to the topic): It is art to a large and philosophy to a lower extent.

Now you can value it and say that this art and philosophy are typical for our late modern phase. Okay. The heck with it!
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Alf » Tue Nov 07, 2017 11:59 pm

Here is the text of that said song:

Talk, it's only talk
Arguments, agreements, advice, answers,
Articulate announcements
It's only talk

Talk, it's only talk
Babble, burble, banter, bicker bicker bicker
Brouhaha, boulderdash, ballyhoo
It's only talk
Back talk

Talk talk talk, it's only talk
Comments, cliches, commentary, controversy
Chatter, chit-chat, chit-chat, chit-chat,
Conversation, contradiction, criticism
It's only talk
Cheap talk

Talk, talk, it's only talk
Debates, discussions
These are words with a D this time
Dialogue, dualogue, diatribe,
Dissention, declamation
Double talk, double talk

Talk, talk, it's all talk
Too much talk
Small talk
Talk that trash
Expressions, editorials, expugnations, exclamations, enfadulations
It's all talk
Elephant talk, elephant talk, elephant talk

This animal herd is lamenting the senselessness of human communication. :wink:
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Magnus Anderson » Thu Nov 09, 2017 3:49 pm

Arminius wrote:Talking is langugae, regardless whether you agree or not.


You are like one of those people who say that there is no such a thing as self-deception.

When a person A deceives a person B into believing p that means that person A knows or truly believes that p is false while causing B to believe that p is true. So when A deceives A (i.e. himself) into believing that p is true, he knows or truly believes that p is false while causing himself to believe that p is true. Thus, A must simultaneously believe that p is false and believe that p is true. Which is a logical contradiction.


I can hear these people screaming that this is a consequence of language abuse.
I say that this is a consequence of taking words too literally.

Self is a multiplicity. It is not a single thing.
We treat it as a single thing for the sake of convenience.
So when we say A decieves A what we really mean is that some part within A (say A1) deceives some other part within A (say A2.)
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Arminius » Thu Nov 09, 2017 5:47 pm

The statement that talking is language is a fact. I was talking about a fact. You are trying to put something in my mouth I never said. I did not say that there is no self-deception. If you want to tell something about self-deception, then just do it, but note that it should have to do with the topic of this thread.
Last edited by Arminius on Fri Nov 10, 2017 1:20 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Arcturus Descending » Thu Nov 09, 2017 8:09 pm

Alf wrote:Ur-thoughts are conscious too. All thoughts are conscious. Even if they are in contact with instincts: Thoughts are always conscious.


Hmm...are they? Have you ever suddenly *woken up* in a sense ~~ out of a daydream? We think in our daydreams. I am not so sure that they are conscious thoughts...that we are conscious of them.
Some thoughts come to us suddenly from out of the blue. Are they conscious thoughts?

Would you define *conscious* here as something that you are aware of, self-aware of, in the moments when they are happening?

I am not saying that I am correct here. I am just wondering...
SAPERE AUDE!


If I thought that everything I did was determined by my circumstancse and my psychological condition, I would feel trapped.


What we take ourselves to be doing when we think about what is the case or how we should act is something that cannot be reconciled with a reductive naturalism, for reasons distinct from those that entail the irreducibility of consciousness. It is not merely the subjectivity of thought but its capacity to transcend subjectivity and to discover what is objectively the case that presents a problem....Thought and reasoning are correct or incorrect in virtue of something independent of the thinker's beliefs, and even independent of the community of thinkers to which he belongs.

Thomas Nagel


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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Meno_ » Thu Nov 09, 2017 8:33 pm

Hello Arc,long time here.

Maybe a little mediation may offer a different view.
In one sense , the thought in a dream is not one where the person dreaming can establish beyond a reasonable doubt that he is in fact dreaming.

But then in real life we have ultimately the similar problem2, hence the outcry in cases of extreme situations of feelings of unreality: "am I dreaming this?"

Not to bring back the adage, "Life is but a dream".
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Arminius » Sat Nov 11, 2017 1:20 am

I would like to know what you think about the following text:

It remains, now, to say a word as to the morphology of a history of philosophy.

There is no such thing as Philosophy "in itself". Every Culture has its own philosophy, which is a part of its total symbolic expression and forms with its posing of problems and methods of thought an intellectual ornamentation that is closely related to that of architecture and the arts of form. From the high and distant standpoint it matters very little what "truths" thinkers have managed to formulate in words within their respective schools, for, here as in every great art, it is the schools, conventions and repertory of forms that are the basic elements. Infinitely more important than the answers are the questions – the choice of them, the inner form of them. For it is the particular way in which a macrocosm presents itself to the understanding man of a particular Culture that determines a priori the whole necessity of asking them, and the way in which they are asked.

The Classical and the Faustian Culture, and equally the Indian and the Chinese, have each their proper ways of asking, and further, in each case, all the great questions have been posed at the very outset. There is no modern problem that the Gothic did not see and bring into form, no Hellenistic problem that did not of necessity come up for the old Orphic temple-teachings.

It is of no importance whether the subtilizing turn of mind expresses itself here in oral tradition and there in books, whether such books are personal creations of an "I" as they are amongst ourselves or anonymous fluid masses of texts as in India, and whether the result is a set of comprehensible systems or, as in Egypt, glimpses of the last secrets are veiled in expressions of art and ritual. Whatever the variations, the general course of philosophies as organisms is the same. At the beginning of every springtime period, philosophy, intimately related to great architecture and religion, is the intellectual echo of a mighty metaphysical living, and its task is to establish critically the sacred causality in the world-image seen with the eye of faith. The basic distinctions, not only of science but also of philosophy, are dependent on, not divorced from, the elements of the corresponding religion. In this springtime, thinkers are, not merely in spirit but actually in status, priests. Such were the Schoolmen and the Mystics of the Gothic and the Vedic as of the Homeric (1) and the Early-Arabian centuries. With the setting-in of the Late period, and not earlier, philosophy becomes urban and worldly, frees itself from subservience to religion and even dares to make that religion itself the object of epistemological criticism. The great theme of Brahman, Ionic and Baroque philosophies is the problem of knowing. The urban spirit turns to look at itself, in order to establish the proposition that there is no higher judgment-seat of knowing beyond itself, and with that thought draws nearer to higher mathematics and instead of priests we have men of the world, statesmen and merchants and discoverers, tested in high places and by high tasks, whose ideas about thought rest upon deep experience of life. Of such are the series of great thinkers from Thales to Protagoras and from Bacon to Hume, and the series of pre-Confucian and pre-Buddha thinkers of whom we hardly know more than the fact that they existed.

(1) It is possible that the peculiar style of Heraclitus, who came of a priestly family of the temple of Ephesus, is an example of the form in which the old Orphic wisdom was orally transmitted.

At the end of such series stand Kant and Aristotle (2), and after them there set in the Civilization-philosophies. In every Culture, thought mounts to a climax, setting the questions at the outset and answering them with ever-increasing force of intellectual expression – and, as we have said before, ornamental significance – until exhausted; and then it passes into a decline in which the problems of knowing are in every respect stale repetitions of no significance. There is a metaphysical period, originally of a religious and finally of a rationalistic cast – in which thought and life still contain something of chaos, an unexploited fund that enables them effectively to create – and an ethical period in which life itself, now become megalopolitan, appears to call for inquiry and has to turn the still available remainder of philosophical creative-power on to its own conduct and maintenance. In the one period life reveals itself, the other has life as its object. The one is "theoretical" (contemplative) in the grand sense, the other perforce practical. Even the Kantian system is in its deepest characters contemplated in the first instance and only afterwards logically and systematically formulated and ordered.

(2) Here we are considering only the scholastic side. The mystic side, from which Pythagoras and Leibniz were not very far, reached its culminations in Plato and Goethe, and in our own case it has been extended beyond Goethe by the Romantics, Hegel and Nietzsche, whereas Scholasticism exhausted itself with Kant – and Aristotle – and degenerated thereafter into a routine-profession.

We see this evidenced in Kant's attitude to mathematics. No one is a genuine metaphysician who has not penetrated into the form-world of numbers, who has not lived them into himself as a symbolism. And in fact it was the great thinkers of the Baroque who created the analytical mathematic, and the same is true, mutatis mutandis, of the great pre-Socratics and Plato . Descartes and Leibniz stand beside Newton and Gauß, Pythagoras and Plato by Archytas and Archimedes, at the summits of mathematical development. But already in Kant the philosopher has become, as mathematician, negligible. Kant no more penetrated to the last subtleties of the Calculus as it stood in his own day than he absorbed the axiomatic of Leibniz. The same may be said of Aristotle. And thenceforward there is no philosopher who is counted as a mathematician. Fichte, Hegel and the Romantics were entirely unmathematical, and so were Zeno (3) and Epicurus. Schopenhauer in this field is weak to the point of crudity, and of Nietzsche the less said the better. When the form-world of numbers passed out of its ken, philosophy lost a great convention, and since then it has lacked not only structural strength but also what may be called the grand style of thinking. Schopenhauer himself admitted that he was a hand-to-mouth thinker (Gelegenheitsdenker).

(3) Zeno the Stoic, not to be confused with Zeno of Elea, whose mathematical fineness has already been alluded to. - Translator.

With the decline of metaphysics, ethics has outgrown its status as a subordinate element in abstract theory. Henceforth it is philosophy, the other divisions being absorbed into it and practical living becoming the centre of consideration. The passion of pure thought sinks down. Metaphysics, mistress yesterday, is handmaid now; all it is required to do is to provide a foundation for practical views. And the foundation becomes more and more superfluous. It becomes the custom to despise and mock at the metaphysical, the unpractical, the philosophy of "stone for bread". In Schopenhauer it is for the sake of the fourth book that the first three exist at all. Kant merely thought that it was the same with him; in reality, pure and not applied reason is still his centre of creation. There is exactly the same difference in Classical philosophy before and after Aristotle – on the one hand, a grandly conceived Cosmos to which a formal ethic adds almost nothing, and, on the other, ethics as such, as programme, as necessity with a desultory ad hoc metaphysic for basis. And the entire absence of logical scruple with, which Nietzsche, for instance, dashes off such theories makes no difference whatever to our appreciation of his philosophy proper.

It is well known (4) that Schopenhauer did not proceed to Pessimism from his metaphysic but, on the contrary, was led to develop his system by the pessimism that fell upon him in his seventeenth year. Shaw, a most significant witness, observes in his "Quintessence of Ibsenism" that one may quite well accept Schopenhauer's philosophy and reject his metaphysics – therein quite accurately discriminating between that which makes him the first thinker of the new age and that which is included because an obsolete tradition held it to be indispensable in a complete philosophy. No one would undertake to divide Kant thus, and the attempt would not succeed if it were made. But with Nietzsche one has no difficulty in perceiving that his "philosophy" was through-and-through an inner and very early experience, while he covered his metaphysical requirements rapidly and often imperfectly by the aid of a few books, and never managed to state even his ethical theory with any exactitude. Just the same overlay of living seasonable ethical thought on a stratum of metaphysics required by convention (but in fact superfluous) is to be found in Epicurus and the Stoics. We need have no doubt after this as to what is the essence of a Civilization-philosophy.

(4) Neue Paralipomena, § 656.

Strict metaphysics has exhausted its possibilities. The world-city has definitely overcome the land, and now its spirit fashions a theory proper to itself, directed of necessity outward, soulless. Henceforward, we might with some justice replace the word "soul" by the word "brain". And, since in the Western "brain" the will to power, the tyrannical set towards the Future and purpose to organize everybody and everything, demands practical expression, ethics, as it loses touch more and more with its metaphysical past, steadily assumes a social-ethical and social-economic character. The philosophy of the present that starts from Hegel and Schopenhauer is, so far as it represents the spirit of the age (which, e.g., Lotze and Herbart do not), a critique of society.

The attention that the Stoic gave to his own body, the Westerner devotes to the body social. It is not chance that Hegelian philosophy has given rise to Socialism (Marx, Engels), to Anarchism (Stirner) and to the problem-posing social drama (Hebbel). Socialism is political economy converted into the ethical and, moreover, the imperative mood. So long as a metaphysic existed (that is, till Kant) political economy remained a science. But as soon as "philosophy" became synonymous with practical ethics, it replaced mathematics as the basis of thought about the world – hence the importance of Cousin, Bentham, Comte, Mill and Spencer.

To choose his material at will is not given to the philosopher, neither is the material of philosophy always and everywhere the same. There are no eternal questions, but only questions arising out of the feelings of a particular being and posed by it. Alles Vergängliche ist nur ein Gleichnis applies also to every genuine philosophy as the intellectual expression of this being, as the actualization of spiritual possibilities in a form-world of concepts, judgments and thought-structures comprised in the living phenomenon of its author. Any and every such philosophy is, from the first word to the last, from its most abstract proposition to its most telltale trait of personality, a thing-become, mirrored over from soul into world, from the realm of freedom into that of necessity, from the immediate-living into the dimensional-logical; and on that very account it is mortal, and its life has prescribed rhythm and duration. The choice of them, therefore, is subject to strict necessity. Each epoch has its own, important for itself and for no other epoch. It is the mark of the born philosopher that he sees his epoch and his theme with a sure eye. Apart from this, there is nothing of any importance in philosophical production – merely technical knowledge and the industry requisite for the building up of systematic and conceptual subtleties.

Consequently, the distinctive philosophy of the 19th Century is only Ethics and social critique in the productive sense – nothing more. And consequently, again, its most important representatives (apart from actual practitioners) are the dramatists. They are the real philosophers of Faustian activism, and compared with them not one of the lecture-room philosophers and systematics counts at all. All that these unimportant pedants have done for us is, so to write and rewrite the history of philosophy (and what history! – collections of dates and "results") that no one today knows what the history of philosophy is or what it might be.

Thanks to this, the deep organic unity in the thought of this epoch has never yet been perceived. The essence of it, from the philosophical point of view, can be precised by asking the question: In how far is Shaw the pupil and fulfiller of Nietzsche? The question is put in no ironic spirit. Shaw is the one thinker of eminence who has consistently advanced in the same direction as that of the true Nietzsche – namely, productive criticism of the Western morale – while following out as poet the last implications of Ibsen and devoting the balance of the artistic creativeness that is in him to practical discussions.

Save in so far as the belated Romanticist in him has determined the style, sound and attitude of his philosophy, Nietzsche is in every respect a disciple of the materialistic decades. That which drew him with such passion to Schopenhauer was (not that he himself or anyone else was conscious of it) that element of Schopenhauer's doctrine by which he destroyed the great metaphysic and (without meaning to do so) parodied his master Kant; that is to say, the modification of all deep ideas of the Baroque age into tangible and mechanistic notions. Kant speaks in inadequate words, which hide a mighty and scarcely apprehensible intuition, an intuition of the world as appearance or phenomenon. In Schopenhauer this becomes the world as brain-phenomenon (Gehirnphänomen). The change-over from tragic philosophy to philosophical plebeianism is complete. It will be enough to cite one passage. In "The World as Will and Idea" Schopenhauer says: "The will, as thing-in-itself, constitutes the inner, true and indestructible essence of the man; in itself, however, it is without consciousness. For the consciousness is conditioned by the intellect and this is a mere accident of our being, since it is a function of the brain, and that again (with its dependent nerves and spinal cord) is a mere fruit, a product, nay, even a parasite of the rest of the organism, inasmuch as it does not intervene directly in the latter's activities but only serves a purpose of self-preservation by regulating its relations with the outer world." Here we have exactly the fundamental position of the flattest materialism. It was not for nothing that Schopenhauer, like Rousseau before him, studied the English sensualists. From them he learned to misread Kant in the spirit of megalopolitan utilitarian modernity. The intellect as instrument of the will-to-life (5), as weapon in the struggle for existence, the ideas brought to grotesque expression by Shaw in "Man and Superman" – it was because this was his view of the world that Schopenhauer became the fashionable philosopher when Darwin's main work was published in 1859. In contrast to Schelling, Hegel and Fichte, he was a philosopher, and the only philosopher, whose metaphysical propositions could be absorbed with ease by intellectual mediocrity. The clarity of which he was so proud threatened at every moment to reveal itself as triviality. While retaining enough of formula to produce an atmosphere of profundity and exclusiveness, he presented the civilized view of the world complete and assimilable. His system is anticipated Darwinism, and the speech of Kant and the concepts of the Indians are simply clothing. In his book "Über den Willen in der Natur" (1835) we find already the struggle for self-preservation in Nature, the human intellect as master-weapon in that struggle and sexual love as unconscious selection according to biological interest. (6)

(5) Even the modern idea that unconscious and impulsive acts of life are completely efficient, while intellect can only bungle, is to be found in Schopenhauer (Vol. II, cap. 30).
(6) In the chapter "Zur Metaphysik der Geschlechtsliebe" (II, 44) the idea of natural selection for the preservation of the genus is anticipated in full.


It is the view that Darwin (via Malthus) brought to bear with irresistible success in the field of zoology. The economic origin of Darwinism is shown by the fact that the system deduced from the similarities between men and the higher animals ceases to fit even at the level of the plant-world and becomes positively absurd as soon as it is seriously attempted to apply it with its will-tendency (natural selection, mimicry) to primitive organic forms. Proof, to the Darwinian, means to the ordering and pictorial presentation of a selection of facts so that they conform to his historico-dynamic basic feeling of "Evolution". Darwinism – that is to say, that totality of very varied and discrepant ideas, in which the common factor is merely the application of the causality principle to living things, which therefore is a method and not a result – was known in all details to the 18th Century. Rousseau was championing the ape-man theory as early as 1754. What Darwin originated is only the "Manchester School" system, and it is this latent political element in it that accounts for its •popularity.

The spiritual unity of the century is manifest enough here. From Schopenhauer to Shaw, everyone has been, without being aware of it, bringing the same principle into form. Everyone (including even those who, like Hebbel, knew nothing of Darwin) is a derivative of the evolution-idea – and of the shallow civilized and not the deep Goethian form of it at that – whether he issues it with a biological or an economic imprint. There is evolution, too, in the evolution-idea itself, which is Faustian through and through, which displays (in sharpest contrast to Aristotle's timeless entelechy-idea) all our passionate urgency towards infinite future, our will and sense of aim which is so immanent in, so specific to, the Faustian spirit as to be the a priori form rather than the discovered principle of our Nature-picture. And in the evolution of evolution we find the same change taking place as elsewhere, the turn of the Culture to the Civilization. In Goethe evolution is upright, in Darwin it is flat; in Goethe organic, in Darwin mechanical; in Goethe an experience and emblem, in Darwin a matter of cognition and law. To Goethe evolution meant inward fulfilment, to Darwin it meant "Progress". Darwin's struggle for existence, which he read into Nature and not out of it, is only the plebeian form of that primary feeling which in Shakespeare's tragedies moves the great realities against one another; but what Shakespeare inwardly saw, felt and actualized in his figures as destiny, Darwinism comprehends as causal connexion and formulates as a superficial system of utilities. And it is this system and not this primary feeling that is the basis of the utterances of "Zarathustra", the tragedy of "Ghosts", the problems of the "Ring of the Nibelungs". Only, it was with terror that Schopenhauer, the first of his line, perceived what his own knowledge meant – that is the root of his pessimism, and the "Tristan" music of his adherent Wagner is its highest expression – whereas the late men, and foremost among them Nietzsche, face it with enthusiasm, though it is true, the enthusiasm is sometimes rather forced.

Nietzsche's breach with Wagner – that last product of the German spirit over which greatness broods – marks his silent change of school-allegiance, his unconscious step from Schopenhauer to Darwin, from the metaphysical to the physiological formulation of the same world-feeling, from the denial to the affirmation of the aspect that in fact is common to both, the one seeing as will-to-life what the other regards as struggle for existence. In his "Schopenhauer als Erzieher" he still means by evolution an inner ripening, but the Superman is the product of evolution as machinery. And "Zarathustra" is ethically the outcome of an unconscious protest against "Parsifal" – which artistically entirely governs it – of the rivalry (Nietzsche's jealousy, envy) of one evangelist for another.

But Nietzsche was also a Socialist without knowing it. Not his catch-words, but his instincts, were Socialistic, practical, directed to that welfare of mankind that Goethe and Kant never spent a thought upon. Materialism, Socialism and Darwinism are only artificially and on the surface separable. It was this that made it possible for Shaw in the third act of, Man and Superman (one of the most important and significant of the works that issued from the transition) to obtain, by giving just a small and indeed perfectly logical turn to the tendencies of "master-morale" and the production of the Superman, the specific maxims of his own Socialism. Here Shaw was only expressing with remorseless clarity and full consciousness of the commonplace, what the uncompleted portion of the Zarathustra would have said with Wagnerian theatricality and woolly romanticism. All that we are concerned to discover in Nietzsche's reasoning is its practical bases and consequences, which proceed of necessity from the structure of modern public life. He moves amongst vague ideas like "new values", "Superman", "Sinn der Erde", and declines or fears to shape them more precisely. Shaw does it. Nietzsche observes that the Darwinian idea of the Superman evokes the notion of breeding, and stops there, leaves it at a sounding phrase. Shaw pursues the question – for there is no object in talking about it if nothing is going to be done about it – asks how it is to be achieved, and from that comes to demand the transformation of mankind into a stud-farm. But this is merely the conclusion implicit in the Zarathustra, which Nietzsche was not bold enough, or was too fastidious, to draw. If we do talk of systematic breeding – a completely materialistic and utilitarian notion – we must be prepared to answer the questions, who shall breed what, where and how? But Nietzsche, too romantic to face the very prosaic social consequences and to expose poetic ideas to the test of facts, omits to say that his whole doctrine, as a derivative of Darwinism, presupposes Socialism and, moreover, socialistic compulsion as the means; that any systematic breeding of a class of higher men requires as condition precedent a strictly socialistic ordering of society; and that this "Dionysiac" idea, as it involves a common action and is not simply the private affair of detached thinkers, is democratic, turn it how you may. It is the climax of the ethical force of "Thou shalt "; to impose upon the world the form of his will, Faustian man sacrifices even himself.

The breeding of the Superman follows from the notion of "selection". Nietzsche was an unconscious pupil of Darwin from the time that he wrote aphorisms, but Darwin himself had remoulded the evolution-ideas of the 18th Century according to the Malthusian tendencies of political economy, which he projected on the higher animal-world. Malthus had studied the cotton industry in Lancashire, and already in 1857 we have the whole system, only applied to men instead of to beasts, in Buckle's History of English Civilization.

In other words, the master-morale of this last of the Romantics is derived – strangely perhaps but very significantly – from that source of all intellectual modernity, the atmosphere of the English factory. The Machiavellism that commended itself to Nietzsche as a Renaissance phenomenon is something closely (one would have supposed, obviously) akin to Darwin's notion of "mimicry". It is in fact that of which Marx (that other famous disciple of Malthus) treats in his Das Kapital, the bible of political (not ethical) Socialism. That is the genealogy of "Herrenmoral". The Will-to-Power, transferred to the realistic, political and economic domain, finds its expression in Shaw's "Major Barbara". No doubt Nietzsche, as a personality, stands at the culmination of this series of ethical philosophers, but here Shaw the party politician reaches up to his level as a thinker. The will-to-power is to-day represented by the two poles of public life – the worker-class and the big money-and-brain men – far more effectually than it ever was by a Borgia. The millionaire Undershaft of Shaw's best comedy is a Superman, though Nietzsche the Romanticist would not have recognized his ideal in such a figure. Nietzsche is for ever speaking of transvaluations of all values, of a philosophy of the Future (which, incidentally, is merely the Western, and not the Chinese or the African future), but when the mists of his thought do come in from the Dionysiac distance and condense into any tangible form, the will-to-power appears to him in the guise of dagger-and-poison and never in that of strike and "deal". And yet he says that the idea first came to him when he saw the Prussian regiments marching to battle in 1870.

The drama, in this epoch, is no longer poetry in the old sense of the Culture days, but a form of agitation, debate and demonstration. The stage has become a moralizing institution. Nietzsche himself often thought of putting his ideas in the dramatic form. Wagner's Nibelung poetry, more especially the first draft of it (1850), expresses his social-revolutionary ideas, and even when, after a circuitous course under influences artistic and non-artistic, he has completed the "Ring", his Siegfried is still a symbol of the Fourth Estate, his Brünhilde still the "free woman". The sexual selection of which the "Origin of Species" enunciated the theory in 1859, was finding its musical expression at the very same time in the third act of Siegfried" and in Tristan". It is no accident that Wagner, Hebbel and Ibsen, all practically simultaneously, set to work to dramatize the Nibelung material. Hebbel, making the acquaintance in Paris of Engels's writings, expresses (in a letter of April 2., 1844) his surprise at finding that his own conceptions of the social principle of his age, which he was then intending to exemplify in a drama Zu irgend einer Zeit, coincided precisely with those of the future Communist Manifesto". And, upon first making the acquaintance of Schopenhauer (letter of March 2.9, 1857), he is equally surprised by the affinity that he finds between the Welt als Wille und Vorstellung and tendencies upon which he had based his Holofernes and his Herodes und Mariamne. Hebbel's diaries, of which the most important portion belongs to the years 1835-1845, were (though he did not know it) one of the deepest philosophical efforts of the century. It would be no surprise to find whole sentences of it in Nietzsche, who never knew him and did not always come up to his level.

The actual and effective philosophy of the 19th Century, then, has as its one genuine theme the Will-to-Power. It considers this Will-to-Power in civilized-intellectual, ethical, or social forms and presents it as will-to-life, as life-force, as practical-dynamical principle, as idea, and as dramatic figure. (The period that is closed by Shaw corresponds to the period 350-150 in the Classical.) The rest of the 19th-century philosophy is, to use Schopenhauer's phrase, "professors" philosophy by philosophy-professors". The real landmarks are these:

1819. Schopenhauer, Die Welt als Wille und Vorstellung. The will to life is for the first time put as the only reality (original force, Urkraft); but, older idealist influences still being potent, it is put there to be negatived (zur Verneinung empfohlen).

1836. Schopenhauer, Über den Willen in der Natur. Anticipation of Darwinism, but in metaphysical disguise.

1840. Proudhon, Quest-ce que la Propriété, basis of Anarchism. Comte, Cours de philosophie positive; the formula "order and progress".

1841. Hebbel, "Judith", first dramatic conception of the "New Woman" and the "Superman". Feuerbach, Das Wesen des Christenthums.

1844. Engels, Umriß einer Kritik des Nationalokonomie, foundation of the materialistic conception of history. Hebbel, Maria Magdalena, the first social drama.

1847. Marx, Misère de la Philosophie (synthesis of Hegel and Malthus). These are the epochal years in which economics begins to dominate social ethic and biology.

1848. Wagner's "Death of Siegfried"; Siegfried as social-ethical revolutionary, the Fafnir hoard as symbol of Capitalism.

1850. Wagner's Kunst und Klima; the sexual problem.

1850-1858. Wagner's, Hebbel's and Ibsen's Nibelung poetry.

1859 (year of symbolic coincidences). Darwin, "Origin of Species" (application of economics to biology). Wagner's "Tristan". Marx, Zur Kritik der politischen Okonomie.

1863. J. S. Mill, "Utilitarianism".

1865. Dühring, Wert des Lebens – a work which is rarely heard of, but which exercised the greatest influence upon the succeeding generation.

1867. Ibsen, "Brand". Marx, Das Kapital.

1878. Wagner, "Parsifal". First dissolution of materialism into mysticism.

1879. Ibsen, "Nora".

1881. Nietzsche, Morgenrdthe; transition from Schopenhauer to Darwin, morale as biological phenomenon.

1883. Nietzsche, Also sprach Zarathustra; the Will-to-Power, but in Romantic disguise.

1886. Ibsen, "Rosmersholm". Nietzsche, Jenseits von Gut und Böse.

1887-1888. Strindberg, "Fadren" and "Froken Julie".

From 1890 the conclusion of the epoch approaches. The religious works of Strindberg and the symbolical of Ibsen.

1896. Ibsen, "John Gabriel Borkman": Nietzsche's Übermensch. 1898. Strindberg, "Till Damascus".

From 1900 the last phenomena.

1903. Weininger, Geschlecht und Charakter; the only serious attempt to revive Kant within this epoch, by referring him to Wagner and Ibsen.

1903. Shaw, "Man and Superman"; final synthesis of Darwin and Nietzsche.

1905. Shaw, "Major Barbara"; the type of the Superman referred back to its economic origins.

With this, the ethical period exhausts itself as the metaphysical had done. Ethical Socialism, prepared by Fichte, Hegel, and Humboldt, was at its zenith of passionate greatness about the middle of the 19th Century, and at the end thereof it had reached the stage of repetitions. The 20th Century, while keeping the word Socialism, has replaced an ethical philosophy that only Epigoni suppose to be capable of further development, by a praxis of economic everyday questions. The ethical disposition of the West will remain "socialistic" but its theory has ceased to be a problem. And there remains the possibility of a third and last stage of Western philosophy, that of a physiognomic scepticism. The secret of the world appears successively as a knowledge problem, a valuation problem and a form problem. Kant saw Ethics as an object of knowledge, the 19th Century saw it as an object of valuation. The Sceptic would deal with both simply as the historical expression of a Culture.
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Alf » Mon Nov 13, 2017 12:07 am

I think that there are indeed similarities between philosophy and art in the sense of cultural forms, so that both can be in a good form and afterwards in a bad form.
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Alf » Mon Nov 13, 2017 12:08 am

Arcturus Descending wrote:
Alf wrote:Ur-thoughts are conscious too. All thoughts are conscious. Even if they are in contact with instincts: Thoughts are always conscious.

Hmm...are they? Have you ever suddenly *woken up* in a sense ~~ out of a daydream? We think in our daydreams. I am not so sure that they are conscious thoughts...that we are conscious of them.
Some thoughts come to us suddenly from out of the blue. Are they conscious thoughts?

Would you define *conscious* here as something that you are aware of, self-aware of, in the moments when they are happening?

I am not saying that I am correct here. I am just wondering...
Meno_ wrote:Hello Arc,long time here.

Maybe a little mediation may offer a different view.
In one sense , the thought in a dream is not one where the person dreaming can establish beyond a reasonable doubt that he is in fact dreaming.

But then in real life we have ultimately the similar problem2, hence the outcry in cases of extreme situations of feelings of unreality: "am I dreaming this?"

Not to bring back the adage, "Life is but a dream".

When you are dreaming that "you are thinking or saying 'am I dreaming this?'", then your consciousness is not involved.
When you are not dreaming, but thinking or saying "am I dreaming this?", then your consciousness is involved.
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Arminius » Wed Nov 15, 2017 7:25 pm

Alf wrote:I think that there are indeed similarities between philosophy and art in the sense of cultural forms, so that both can be in a good form and afterwards in a bad form.

And are both now in a good or in a bad form?

I mean, think of this:

Arminius wrote:Occidental philosophy compared to - for example - a tree, architectural art, clothes:

Image

Image
Arminius wrote:
Alf wrote:
Alf wrote:Just an example:

Image
Is that art?


So the art object above "tells" us that a certain artist who perceives the decline.
Arminius wrote:Perceiving this (?):

Image
Image
**
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Arcturus Descending » Sat Nov 18, 2017 4:07 pm

Alf wrote:


When you are dreaming that "you are thinking or saying 'am I dreaming this?'", then your consciousness is not involved.


It sounds to me as though a form of consciousness is involved. If not, then how would you explain it?


When you are not dreaming, but thinking or saying "am I dreaming this?", then your consciousness is involved.


It almost sounds to me as though one's consciousness is less alert in this instance then in the former instance.
I think that I am kidding there...maybe.

Isn't consciousness about awareness/self-awareness and sensation? Do we not have an experience of self in our dreams albeit perhaps more on a metaphorical and symbolic level?
There has to be *consciousness* involved in dreams. I have done any number of things in my dream state that I also do in my waking state - except for the flying.
SAPERE AUDE!


If I thought that everything I did was determined by my circumstancse and my psychological condition, I would feel trapped.


What we take ourselves to be doing when we think about what is the case or how we should act is something that cannot be reconciled with a reductive naturalism, for reasons distinct from those that entail the irreducibility of consciousness. It is not merely the subjectivity of thought but its capacity to transcend subjectivity and to discover what is objectively the case that presents a problem....Thought and reasoning are correct or incorrect in virtue of something independent of the thinker's beliefs, and even independent of the community of thinkers to which he belongs.

Thomas Nagel


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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Alf » Sun Nov 19, 2017 9:04 pm

Consciousness influences (affects) unconsciousness - and vice versa. But the dreams as such are not conscious. That’s what I am saying.

Let's have a film production as an analogy. The film is the "dream", the consciousnees is the "screenwriter", the unconsciousnees is the "film producer". The screenwriter has directly nothing to do with the film. The thoughts of the screenwriter are hidden in the script, only the language gives information about them to others. The film producer knows the script (language) of the screenwriter and the film.
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Alf » Sun Nov 19, 2017 9:37 pm

Arminius wrote:
Alf wrote:I think that there are indeed similarities between philosophy and art in the sense of cultural forms, so that both can be in a good form and afterwards in a bad form.

And are both now in a good or in a bad form?

I mean, think of this:

Arminius wrote:Occidental philosophy compared to - for example - a tree, architectural art, clothes:

Image

Image
Alf wrote:
Alf wrote:Just an example:

Image
Is that art?


So the art object above "tells" us that a certain artist who perceives the decline.
Arminius wrote:Perceiving this (?):

Image
Image

Both are in bad form, of course.
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Pandora » Mon Nov 20, 2017 2:30 am

Debate on Brutalist Architecture:

https://fee.org/articles/against-libertarian-brutalism/

A case for Brutalism:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VGwVAxRHxgM

Debate on Sydney's Sirius building:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P0sBs7CDM44

The Sirius Case:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-OkL3eKmjs

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7aom7e29bvs

The controversial Sirius Social Housing Building:
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The Barbican Story (another Brutalist social housing project):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fdbSMfXbjTA

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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby James S Saint » Mon Nov 20, 2017 2:45 am

Art, Artificial == the product of an Artisan.
Clarify, Verify, Instill, and Reinforce the Perception of Hopes and Threats unto Anentropic Harmony :)
Else
From THIS age of sleep, Homo-sapien shall never awake.

The Wise gather together to help one another in EVERY aspect of living.

You are always more insecure than you think, just not by what you think.
The only absolute certainty is formed by the absolute lack of alternatives.
It is not merely "do what works", but "to accomplish what purpose in what time frame at what cost".
As long as the authority is secretive, the population will be subjugated.

Amid the lack of certainty, put faith in the wiser to believe.
Devil's Motto: Make it look good, safe, innocent, and wise.. until it is too late to choose otherwise.

The Real God ≡ The reason/cause for the Universe being what it is = "The situation cannot be what it is and also remain as it is".
.
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Arcturus Descending » Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:41 pm

James S Saint wrote:Art, Artificial == the product of an Artisan.


Cold, James, real cold. :evil:
SAPERE AUDE!


If I thought that everything I did was determined by my circumstancse and my psychological condition, I would feel trapped.


What we take ourselves to be doing when we think about what is the case or how we should act is something that cannot be reconciled with a reductive naturalism, for reasons distinct from those that entail the irreducibility of consciousness. It is not merely the subjectivity of thought but its capacity to transcend subjectivity and to discover what is objectively the case that presents a problem....Thought and reasoning are correct or incorrect in virtue of something independent of the thinker's beliefs, and even independent of the community of thinkers to which he belongs.

Thomas Nagel


I learn as I write!
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby James S Saint » Mon Nov 20, 2017 10:02 pm

Arcturus Descending wrote:
James S Saint wrote:Art, Artificial == the product of an Artisan.


Cold, James, real cold. :evil:

I make an art of it. 8-[
Clarify, Verify, Instill, and Reinforce the Perception of Hopes and Threats unto Anentropic Harmony :)
Else
From THIS age of sleep, Homo-sapien shall never awake.

The Wise gather together to help one another in EVERY aspect of living.

You are always more insecure than you think, just not by what you think.
The only absolute certainty is formed by the absolute lack of alternatives.
It is not merely "do what works", but "to accomplish what purpose in what time frame at what cost".
As long as the authority is secretive, the population will be subjugated.

Amid the lack of certainty, put faith in the wiser to believe.
Devil's Motto: Make it look good, safe, innocent, and wise.. until it is too late to choose otherwise.

The Real God ≡ The reason/cause for the Universe being what it is = "The situation cannot be what it is and also remain as it is".
.
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Re: Philosophy and Art

Postby Arminius » Mon Nov 20, 2017 10:29 pm

    ONLY EXAMPLES:

    1) Le Corbusier:

    Sainte-Marie de la Tourette near Lyon:
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    Unité d'habitation in Marseille:
    Image

    ....

    2) Moshe Safdie:

    Habitat 67 in Montreal:
    Image

    Condominium in Singapore:
    Image

    ....

    3) Daniel Libeskind:

    Imperial War Museum North in Manchester:
    Image

    Militärhistorisches Museum in Dresden:
    MhM.jpg
    MhM.jpg (147.02 KiB) Viewed 133 times

    ....
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    Re: Philosophy and Art

    Postby Arminius » Fri Dec 01, 2017 8:28 pm

    Tiernan Morgan & Lauren Purje wrote:
      Hegel’s ... teleological understanding of history served as a useful template for Danto’s conclusions. Hegel understood progress as an overarching dialectic — a process of self-realization and understanding that culminates in pure knowledge. This state is ultimately achieved through philosophy, though it is initially preceded by an interrogation into the qualities of religion and art. As Danto summarized in a later essay entitled “The Disenfranchisement of Art” (1984):

      When art internalizes its own history, when it becomes self-conscious of its history as it has come to be in our time, so that its consciousness of its history forms part of its nature, it is perhaps unavoidable that it should turn into philosophy at last. And when it does so, well, in an important sense, art comes to an end.

      Danto is not the only philosopher to have adopted an Hegelian dialectic. Both Francis Fukuyama and Karl Marx utilized Hegelianism to reach their own historical conclusions. Fukuyama argued that liberal democracy and free market capitalism represented the zenith of Western civilization, whilst Marx argued that communism would replace capitalism (neither of these developments have quite panned out).

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        Arthur Danto (1924-2013) and Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770-1831).
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