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The eschatology of goodness

24 Jul

Just as any worldview has some allegory for the beginning and end, in the case of the Christian Genesis and Heaven and Hell, and others propose that we are born of plants or animals, or that we come back to life through reincarnation, the good has its eschatology, while evil is a symbolic “structure”.

It is not just the definition of religious views, also in the classical philosophy Plato in the Republic and Aristotle in Ethics, Nicomachus addressed the issue and we have already made some posts here, but it was Democritus who defined our current situation more closely, saying that good depends of man’s inner desire, the good man not only practices good, but always desires it.

So it is in human history too, without historical determinism or romanticism, we walk for good if we exercise from within each man, but socially practicing what the Greeks called “virtue”, but we also have the vicious cycle of evil.

The vicious cycle of evil leads to a “crisis” of good, symbolic evil can be structured in such a way that a given social structure can lead to an end, it can be the end of an era that is very tragic, but it can also lead to a serious civilizing crisis if there is no way out.

Humanity has always found ways out, this gives hope, but tragedies are part of the change, and the severity of the tragedy depends on the resilience of good, although it is fragile that can indicate the new path, a way out for earthly citizenship, for the future human civilizing.

Biblical reading indicates three metaphors for the eschatology of goodness, and compares the “kingdom of heaven” (Mt 13, 24-43) with the planting of the growing tares and wheat that should only be harvested and separated from the eschatological end. mal (the chaff), the second parable the mustard seed, the smallest of the seeds, which gives a beautiful and leafy tree where “the birds come to make their nests”, and the third is a bread recipe, a woman mixes three portions of flour.

The third “parable” the woman mixes three portions of flour, one part should only be fermented, those would be those that have the virtue of good and it should be practiced in order to produce good fermentation in the rest of the dough, the other two portions, then yeast is good.



Civilizing evil, beyond the symbolic

21 Jul

We have already commented in a post on “Symbolic Evil”, a work by Paul Ricoeur that should be read together with “Evil: a challenge to philosophy and theology and“, symbolic evil exists and can become structural, but in a good reading of philosophy means becoming a personal or social addiction, as well as virtue.

Philosopher Aristotle says that virtue is acquired through habit, practiced again and again, until it becomes a natural or social attitude if many people practice it, when social and human values ​​are confused, evil spreads, and thus a society or civilization falls into disrepair.

To return to the virtues is to return to our roots as human beings, that is why it is not a question of Manichaeism, a perennial struggle between good and evil, but if symbolic evil is installed, we must return to our deepest root as human beings, that almost all contemporary philosophy recognizes a civilization malaise, in psychology Freud (Freud, 1969) and Jung (JUNG, 1988), even contemporaries like Sloterdijk and Byung Chull Han, almost everyone also in this pandemic warns of attitudes in a civilization crisis.

In a quick reading of Freud, with the possibility of being somewhat superficial, the malaise of civilization is equal to that of culture, says the author that there is a dichotomy between the instinctual impulses and civilization, that is, individuals and society, thus the good of civilization the individual manifests in drives and experiences a malaise.

Jung, on the other hand, points to the massification of Western man, crushed by the State, and to the defense that each one seeks through their own personality or religious attitude.

Morin’s work since the 70’s is all linked to the idea of ​​a new humanism, and this specific text on the subject, he deepens what he considers an ethics necessary for this return to humanism, his work essentially points to the lost foundations, the institution of the complex method and a vision of planetary citizenship, in this text about the personal responsibility of each one.

FREUD, S. O mal-Estar na civilização (Edição Standard Brasileira das Obras Psicológicas Completas de Sigmund Freud, Vol. 21). Rio de Janeiro: Imago, 1996.

JUNG, C.G. Presente e futuro. Petrópolis, Vozes, 1988 (tradução Márcia Cavalcanti).

MORIN, E. “A ética do sujeito responsável”. In: Ética, solidariedade e complexidade. São Paulo, Palas Athena, 1998.


The reason and the evil

16 Jul

To demonstrate two truths, Agostinho de Hipona wrote a few pages in his book “On Free Will”, practically the whole book II (from chapters 3 to 17), where we concluded all the goods processed by God, including the free- agency, and the question is welcome must be given to man.

Both Augustine (De Trinitate) and Boethius (Opuscula) defend the cooperation between faith and reason, but it will be in the High Middle Ages that Tomás de Aquino and also Duns Scotto, in different variations (realist and nominalist) defender that the use of reason is complementary of faith.

While Tomás de Aquino defends a distinction between Being and essence, Scotus will elaborate a law of analogy, which states that we cannot conceive or that it is something that does not exist, as a thing that exists (is) that it is (qui est).

What is important in both Thomas Aquinas and Duns Scotto is a complementarity between faith and reason, as an idea that Descartes, Kant, Leibniz and Hobbes are heirs of them being too simplistic, or that they will be replaced by cases of faith, by rational arguments , or fact that is important, must be studied from the ontological aspects.

Thus, the ontological argument was corrected by Franz Brentano, incorrectly called a neo-Thomist, as only one subcategory “went up” to “being” which is consciousness, a hermeneutics and the phenomenology that is taken up from it, and remains in Husserl, Heidegger and Gadamer is an ontological philosophy, having in common a metaphysical question of Being.

Hanna Arendt and Paul Ricoeur, who come from these changes, return to the question of “evil”, but as questions of reason and all modern literature is analyzed (Descartes, Kant and Hegel).



The struggle of good against evil, weaknesses of good

15 Jul

The evil in Augustine of Hippo in book VII of the Confessions, is the absence of good, just as the entire universe is ordered, although now we discover a universe with energy and dark mass, black holes, semi-new and galaxies disappearing and appearing, and many laws new in astrophysics, even so, there is a hierarchy, where some things stand out from others, and that is what Augustine drew attention to, and there was already in Augustine the question of free will.

But a tough lesson even for religious like Augustine, who abandoned the Manichean philosophy, is the struggle between good and evil, and this still dominates part of the philosophical dualism, where being inferior is not being evil, there are inferior good things and things more superiors, so the important thing is the loss of sense of what is good or bad, what Hanna Arendt called “The banality of evil” (Companhia das Letras, 1999), so someone can do something “inferior” without being “evil ”.

Those who want to give life pure delight, or who claim that it makes sense in a life well lived if we are “productive” and “active”, inspired by myths like a superior IQ or fortuitous inheritance, fortune in the Greek sense is different, even if this is done by oppressive means, where arguably the racial argument is the most disgusting of all, but where do these myths come from.

One of the great myths that has arisen since antiquity is Odyssey of Odyssey and Iliad (chants VIII of Odyssey and IX of Iliad), which means a symbol of man’s ability to overcome adversity, although there is the character Odysseus (the Greek name of Ulysses), would be born in Ithaca, son of King Laerte, who reigned in Anticléia.

Although James Joyce’s Ulysses, written from 1914 to 1921, speaks of a character Leopold Blum, considered by the author to be a modern man who is both strong and weak, cautious and rash, hero and coward, in an attempt to create a human being representative of humanity, however, is actually the modern lonely hero, an exquisite Don Quixote.

The contextualization of the Greek epic hero and the modern “hero” are, however, different, so to read Ulysses by Joyce it is necessary almost a script, which even some were made.

It was the psychologist Carl Yung who called attention to the “monologue” aspect of Joyce’s Ulysses, although he looks like an “ordinary” man, he is a single man and his “struggle”, warned Yung: “What is so scary about Ulysses it is the fact that, behind a thousand veils, nothing is hidden; of being neither turned to the mind nor to the world, but, as cold as the moon seen from the cosmic space, allows the drama of growth, being and decay to take its course ”, this is the modern myth.

The heroes who appeared in the pandemic are not heroes of “war” or immortal myths, they are not immune to the pandemic themselves and live with fear, and even family isolation, what they should think about is the life worth living. for everyone, for the planet and for health.

JUNG, Carl Gustav. Ulysses: A Monologue, UK: Haskel House, 1977.


Looking without seeing, listening without understanding

10 Jul

The rush, the hectic life, the anxiety made us insensitive on a daily basis, on the social plane the stubborn reigns, where the third party has no time, follows the logic of Truth and False, which is valid for the world of digital equipment, but it shouldn’t be in the logic of human thought. 

The third included by Barsarab and Stefan Lupascu, is also in the quantum principles and is gradually reaching digital physical devices (now quantum), and some advanced teleportation experiments have been carried out (see the article), which expands the concept to space , one can go from A to B, without going through the third intermediary, which introduces the discontinuity.

But the social, human and political logic remains binary, Manichean and gradually leads to a confrontation at a time when social forces should unite for the common enemy that is the virus and the consequences that it will bring socially, we remember that the Spanish flu followed both wars, despite countless warnings from wise thinkers and philosophers, to mystics.

As Morin says (see the lecture) it seems that we are walking like somnambulists in the dark, the process that could correspond to global solidarity is going the other way around, we want to include but exclude, we love only equals, knowledge has become obscure. 

The biblical words follow, as it is in Isaiah (6: 9): “You will hear, without understanding, you will look, without seeing … because the heart of this people has become desensitized”, and even in times of world difficulties it seems that folly endures.

Evangelist Matthew says of his time, but it also serves for the present moment (Mt 13: 16-17) “Happy are you, because your eyes see and your ears hear. Truly I tell you, many prophets and the righteous wished to see what you see, and did not see, wished to hear what you hear, and did not hear ”, but you can still open your ears and change the route.

It is a time of deeper awareness for those who want change, and to listen more attentively to the signs of the times for those who believe and know the kingdom of God on earth will come.



The veiling of knowledge, night of thought ’

09 Jul

Arrábida’s Charter of Transdisciplinarity, written by the physicist Nicolescu Barsarabi, the Portuguese serigraphist Lima de Freitas and Edgar Morin, points out the process (prior to the Web), where excessive specialization and an impoverishment of Being created a veiling of thought, says the letter :

“… The contemporary rupture between an increasingly accumulative knowledge and an increasingly impoverished inner being leads to the rise of a new obscurantism, whose consequences on the individual and social level are incalculable.” (Arrábida, Portugal, 1994).

The problem then is how to create a knowledge that unites and a worldview that expands the impoverished and brutish human spirit, according to Morin’s own recipe: “it is necessary to replace a thought that isolates and separates with a thought that distinguishes and unites”.

All polarization and barriers between different thoughts are the root where dialogue is ignored, even if sometimes stated, the semantic closure of thought, whatever the principles and often moral, religious and even cultural are important, must exceed the pre-conceptions (in sense of Gadamer) and meet the positive in the Other.

The Letter of Arrábida says in article 14: “The opening involves the acceptance of ignorance, the unexpected and the unpredictable. Tolerance is the recognition of the right to ideas and truths contrary to ours ”, this is the meaning of replacing a thought“ that isolates and separates ”with another that“ distinguishes and unites ”, having a difference does not mean isolating or even separating.

It is the totalitarian idea of ​​the single truth, even if religious, pragmatic or scientific, that often isolates and does not unite, in grounded dialogues there are always new elements to be considered and rarely are they properly heard and respected.

Physicist Barsarab Nicolescu, one of the signatories to the Arrábida Charter, in his own Charter of Transdisciplinarity, regarding quantum physics wrote: “… where does this blindness come from? Where does this perpetual desire to do the new with the old come from? The irreducible novelty of quantum vision continues to belong to a small elite of leading scientists ”, although the physical reality proves and surprises it.

Barsarab said in that his Manifest about “reality”, “In our century, Husserl and some other researchers, in an effort to question the foundations of science, discovered the existence of different levels of perception of Reality by the observing subject”, more than that the observer is part of the experiment, of the whole, and is not neutral.

All of our logic and actions are based on three axioms: The axiom of identity: A is A, The axiom of non-contradiction: A is not non-A; and the third is called the axiom of the excluded third: there is no third term T (T for “included third”) that is both A and non-A.

What Nicolescu says is what would happen if we became the included third, that’s what Stefan Lupascu (1900-1988) did when creating the logic of the included third (tertium non datur), including the T-state that is neither “current” nor “potential”, they replace the classic logic of “true” or “false”, and create a more generalized level that includes physics, epistemology and what is “consciousness”.

NICOLESCU, Barsarab. Transdisciplinarity and Complexity : Levels of Reality as Source of Indeterminacy.  Available in: access: July 2020.


Tribute to Edgar Morin, 99 years old

08 Jul

July 8, 2020 Edgar Morin turns 99 years, with an impressive lucidity, recently described the current pandemic as: “We have to learn to accept them and live with them, while our civilization has installed in us the need for certainties each time bigger about the future, often illusory, sometimes frivolous ”, the same frivolity that Peter Sloterdijk states:“ In this frivolous sphere, we thought we were able to control nature with sophisticated technology, but the virus brought us to our knees. Will our way of being in the world change?”. 

Of Sephardic Jewish origin (Jews who settled in the Iberian peninsula), with the original name of Edgar Nahoum, was born on July 8, 1921 in Paris, his father Vidal Nahoum was a merchant from Salonica (the former Thessalonica), and his mother Luna Beressi, passed away when she was 10 years old, adopted the code name Morin during the French resistance struggle and remained.

In 1978 she married Edwige Lannegrace, to whom she dedicated the book Edwige, the Inseparable (2009), after her death in 2008, about him, she said a sentence by Montaigne: “It was him, it was me”.

He is currently married to the 61-year-old Moroccan sociologist Sabah Abouessalam.

He wrote 1956, Le Cinéma or l´Homme Imaginaire, Minuit, Paris. In Portuguese: Cinema or the Imaginary Man. Lisbon: Relógio d’Água Editores, 1997, had previously written Year Zero of Germany (1946) and Man and Death (1951).

Among other books, the second book of great impact is The Lost Paradigm – for a new Anthropology, Zahar, Brazil, 1979. (French edition of 1973).

But his great work will be the six volumes of Method 1, the first “The nature of nature” publishing in 1977, the second of Method 2, “The life of life” (1980), Method 3 “The knowledge of knowledge” ( 1986), Method 4 “Ideas: habitat, life, customs and organization” (1991), Method 5 – humanity of humanity: human identity (2001) and Method 6: Ethics (2004), the years adopted are from the original French editions.

In total he published more than 30 books, in 1983 he held a debate in Lisbon where he put “The epistemological problem of complexity” which became a book in 1985 published by the publisher Europa América Portuguese.

 His central ideas in addition to the problem of complexity are the return to the human (which is called the lost paradigm), the transdisciplinary thought present in almost all of his work and was a signatory of the Letter of Transdisciplinarity of Arrábida by the serigraphist painter Lima de Freitas, for him, the physicist Nicolescu Barsarabi, written in 15 synthetic articles, where we highlight:

“ … singly accumulative knowledge and an increasingly impoverished inner being leads to the rise of new obscurantism, whose consequences on the individual and social level are incalculable.” (Arrábida, Portugal, 1994).

In 1985 he wrote “The epistemological problem of complexity” (Europa America, 1985), which was conceived from a debate held in Lisbon, in December 1983.

The essence of his thinking about complexity can be thought of in three new concepts, among them: the dialogical operator (understood differently from the dialectic operator), the recursive operator (which means to understand the consequences of the acts, in a continuous cause-effect relationship because the effect produces a new cause) and the holographic operator (the part is in the whole and the whole is in the part, so do not separate the part from the whole).

So we must unite separate things, namely: reason and emotion, sensitive and intelligible, real and imaginary, reason and myths, and, science and art, another essential thing is to consider that we are 100% nature and 100% culture, the old nature paradigm X culture that philosophy asks about what we are, from contractualists, through evolutionists to socio-Marxists (wrote My left), Morin answers in a new way (from Pena-Veiga: The ecological awakening: Edgar Morin and ecology complex).

He has many questions about our future, the following lecture explains this dramatic moment, that the pandemic can demonstrate that this is how we should perceive it.







Knowledge needed for the future

07 Jul

It was Edgar Morin who found the masterful way or veil over knowledge, its errors and illusions, to interrupt knowledge in its principles, which is expanded in another book that talks about “global flavors and local flavors: the transdisciplinary look” (2008) .

“The seven knowledge necessary for the education of the future” (Morin, 1999) affirms this paradox that in search of knowledge embedded in illusions and errors, it affirms in the first chapter, while no second presents a gap that knowledge teaches is “not pertinent” to the student, that is, the fact that he shows within a disciplinary process that should be displayed as a whole.

The third saber is to indicate human identity, to comment on the part is curious and to speak so much about identity without mentioning the social complex in which we live as a “species” that must identify as such (from identity), perhaps the great paradigm of humanism , today in question.

This will send in chapter 4, which is the earthly identity, which lies in the importance of understanding that the disciplines (areas of specialties) must converge to a human condition, and it leads to human understanding, once in school it should be used as “ understand each other ”.

The fifth saber refers to dealing with uncertainties, students can consider a great paradox when dealing with mysteries, since a school school only dedicates to dealing with conceptual and scientific certainties, and life is always a surprise.

The sixth (and 6th. Saber) chapter involves understanding, which comes from the earthly condition, the globalization process that started with the colonization of America in the 16th century and had complex consequences (ideological, economic, social, etc.) and this must be taking us to a planetary condition.
The seventh chapter involves the ethics of mankind, he names it as an anthropo-ethics (Sloterdijk goes further and says an anthropotechnique is necessary, but falls outside this scope), the importance of citizenship in society (in Homeland-Earth goes beyond and proposes citizenship planetary) where a social conscience is needed.

Tomorrow he will be 99 years old and we are thinking of a special post for this lucid educator and thinker.

MORIN, E. (1999) Seven complex lessons in education for the future. UNESCO Pub. Available PDF.


Trinitarian forgetfulness and ontological resumption

29 May

The idea of ​​an absolute, infinite, unique and eternal spiritual substance (see the post) far from being an idea of ​​God, far from being the unveiling of the Holy Trinity, is an idealistic scheme of rationality for an abstract God, yet compatible with the Hegelianism, the idealistic god.

Sloterdijk’s severe criticism of humanism now makes even more sense with the post-pandemic perspectives, placing the “will to power” of the two wars and a possible future scenario, as “a synthesis of humanism and bestialism” (Sloterdijk, 2000) , of course we have other possibilities, the varied ideological thesis that many expect or a third excluded: the fraternal option planetary.

Just as the ontological resumption proposed a new logic and epistemology, which comes from the Husserlian epoché (put all concepts in parentheses), along with a new theology, this Trinitarian, where there is a third person in the Trinity, which is the Holy Spirit, but it is not simple.

Christian and Catholic theologian Karl Kahner wrote about “Trinitarian oblivion” (1962), even before the Second Vatican Council, which marked a turning point in Catholic thought, the first ecumenical council that generated some controversy and which is not yet fully applied,

The Second Vatican Council marked a profound change in the relationship of the church with society, it should open a new perspective of the participation of the popular (of the laity), a new vision of the mission of the church and in special presentation of the updating and insertion of the church in its time. with various liturgical and pastoral aspects.

Many Christians in general understand the Father and the Son well, but the Holy Spirit is a mystery, not a synthesis and not only the relationship with God the Father (the One that no one has seen) and neither the Jesus, the incarnate God alive, historical, but without leave divine.

Classical theology treated the “mystery” of the Trinity with the idea of ​​an “absolute, infinite, unique and eternal spiritual substance”, see the previous post of Hegelianism, so God is a single substance, essence or nature, explained as three sub- distinct systems and people: Father, Son and Holy Spirit, in these ideas the Hegelian system (among them even the Marxist) fit well.

The understanding of Being as an act and potency (typical of Tomás de Aquino), and potency is similar to the virtual, places divine people as a relationship and is integrated in a new synthesis that sees God as a pericoretic communion* of love, theologians of different tendencies as von Balthasar, Rahner and Kasper moved in this direction and the ontological issue is a common one. (*more that relationship, inter-pretenetration)

 The second Vatican Council already reflected the turning of a metaphysical perspective of a theology that prioritizes a more historical, phenomenological, hermeneutic and existential understanding of reality, more in tune with the current worldview and culture.

The understanding of being as an act (so characteristic of Aquinate) and of divine persons as a relationship, are part of a new synthesis that understands God as a pericoretic communion of love.

The understanding on the other hand of potency as virtus, virtuous possibility of Love that is essential to understand that sin is non-love and not a mere Manichean opposition from evil.













What is Hegelians spirit and transcendence

27 May

We have already made several posts to explain that Kant’s transcendence is nothing more than the separation of subjects and objects, but Hegel completes and systematizes this whole philosophy in Phenomenology of the Spirit, a work that deeply influenced the philosophies of law, history, aesthetics and of religion, Marx himself and many currents that flow from it have not escaped this.

We have also made posts on the question of Gadamer’s historical conscience, criticizing Dilthey’s main ideas about history, now let’s analyze the “spirit” in Hegel.

First, as the name says, it is a phenomenology, therefore not a set of facts or even tangible realities, but a set of phenomena placed under a certain scheme.

Hegel understands history, art, religion and philosophy itself as an objective phenomenon, and as such (this is an object) is directed to the spirit for self-knowledge.

His capacity for synthesis will make his history of philosophy, with specific schemes and elements about transcendence and metaphysics in philosophy, give strength to his thinking, and the Phenomenology of the Spirit is central to his scheme.

To understand what he thought as a phenomenon, it is necessary to understand what he calls “natural conscience” which was what opened the way for philosophical knowledge, and it is through it that he will make a reading of the history of philosophy and thus elaborate what it is knowledge.

Just to make a counterpoint, Husserl will say instead that there is only awareness of “something”, while Hegel constructs this category as being “natural” and there is objectivity.

But Hegel’s “natural” is not only natural, but historical, therefore, its introduction to a system of philosophy, is built on the historical path of thought, it seems “natural” but it is not, its is philosophy of history.

What is hidden behind this scheme is what Nietzsche will call the genealogy of morals, but then other genealogies arose, the linguistic turn from Wittgenstein for example, he will see objects in relation to others: “we cannot think of no object outside the possibility of its connection with others” (Wittgenstein, Tractatus, 2.0121).

To understand what is Spirit in Hegel, and which profoundly influences the conceptions of arts, history and religion today, the forms are correlated to an idea of ​​absolute subjectivity, therefore “outside” the object, and related to it by a special type of essential logic that leads to the knowledge of reality, therefore it is not a phenomenological realism as Husserl sees it.

The spiritual and transcendent in Hegel is “the most interior, from which the whole construction of the spiritual world ascends”, it was what Marx called “heaven for earth” and that he (Marx) reversed, however, the separation of subject and object remains, so spiritual is a type of Absolute Spirit of Religion (see diagram).