Arquivo para a ‘Método e Verdade Científica’ Categoria

Exercises for political reflection

03 Oct

When we enter Manichaeism we only perceive opposing forces without clearly discerning where evil and ethics lie, every philosophical exercise about evil is seen from a moral perspective.

However, what is moral has become confused, precisely because power has become confused with violence, and Hannah Arendt’s reflection on this is quite enlightening: “Power and violence are opposites; where one absolutely dominates, the other is absent (ARENDT, Between the past and the future: Eight exercises for political reflection, 1961).

The philosopher’s argument is simple, difficult to understand in a polarized world, but I would say it is the first of her reflections on politics when power is exercised legitimately, violence is absent. This means that in a healthy political system, power must be based on consent and voluntary cooperation, rather than resorting to violence to impose the will of one group over others, as there is no consent by others.

Much of political reasoning today is to exercise violence against opposites, this is its own denial, Arendt argued that freedom and political action are synonymous, since politics has no meaning enclosed in itself, the famous bubbles, being free is a necessary condition for political exercise, the exercise of citizenship, any limitation becomes violence.

Freedom exists as a plural condition of man, in religious terms it is free will, in social terms it is the possibility of acting freely as a citizen and having protection for this, if this condition is removed there is no other definition to the system other than the authoritarianism.

Just as in the arts: music, dance and theater, political action is valued as a “virtue”, all serious theories since Plato aimed at this participation in the “polis”, even Machiavelli’s amoral concept of virtú, performance requires a “audience” and a space for the spectacle to take place, in Arendt’s view, the Greek polis was “a kind of amphitheater where freedom could appear (Arendt, 2001, p. 201).

Listening to the contradictory, allowing it to express itself is a necessary condition for politics, the model of excluding opponents is nothing more than a euphemism for dictators.

Arendt does not fail to analyze the violence advocated by Marx, and returns to Aristotle’s zoon politikon, poorly read by hasty readers: “… which may be difficult to perceive, but what Marx, who knew Aristotle very well, must have been conscious” (ARENDT, 2001).

And he continues: “Aristotle’s double definition of man as a zoon lógon ékhon, a being who reaches his maximum possibility in the faculty of speech and in life in a polis, was intended to distinguish the Greeks from the barbarians, and the free man from the slave. The distinction was that the Greeks” (Arendt, 2001, p.50), living in a polis […] conducted their actions through discourse, through persuasion, and not through violence and through mute coercion.

For philosophy it would have been a contradiction in terms to “realize Philosophy” or transform the world in accordance with Philosophy without it being preceded by an interpretation, thus Heidegger warned that Marx’s statement “philosophers have interpreted the world, now it is up to transform it” is contradictory, because you must think about what transformation you want.

ARENDT, Hannah. Between the Past and the Future Trans. Mauro W. Barbosa de Almeida. 5th ed. Brazilian edition, São Paulo: Ed. Perspectiva, 2001.  Em english (pdf)



Exemption from violence and anger

12 Sep

It was not the Abrahamic religions (Islam, Judaism and Christianity) that exempted violence, as Peter Sloterdijk thought in Wrath and Time (Sloterdijk, 2010), in fact it was the idea of ​​the Enlightenment that made violence and domination, from the beginning of expansion of mercantilism and which later became colonial-imperialism, which was anti-clerical and little religious, and was later sacralized in Hegel’s “absolute”, whose image of power and the State is juxtaposed with power and domination and has nothing linked to God.

Thus this power is the relief from violence and its capture and guardianship by the state, this way the colonial and imperialist plan can be developed, the basis of today’s civilizational crisis, it is a military and autocratic arrogant state, liberal only in name, it cannot result in something else: anger.

Sloterdijk’s observation about lightness and relief is particularly clear. Supposing that progress would go on a progressive journey, we would think of a more trivial answer that he would be leading people in better conditions than before, and this is not true.

The author also talks about pain, he remembers that until 1940 the idea of ​​pain was normal in surgical center treatments, he doesn’t mention it but I remember that scars on men’s faces indicated virility and some were done on purpose, predecessors of current tattoos, the author remembers that painkillers appeared in the 40s and then little by little antidepressants and stimulants and finally plastic surgeries that corrected what needs to be corrected in us.

The author says that thinking on the right is discipline and on the left is the salvation of the poor, discipline falls into dreams and leads to the world of the moon, while poverty in its fallen condition, persecuted by an unjust system is always seen victimized, which is not always real, so both narratives escape a concept of justice, peace and balance and we find ourselves in narratives that justify anger and contempt for the Other, moving towards anger.

If the being must be light it is to be someone who is not serious, so the lightness of the being is unsustainable, it must be in both narratives “heavy”, transforming into gas balloons that are flying aimlessly, the flight itself is not is reasonable, although the ultimate desire is everything can, but nothing is.

If the being must be light it is to be someone who is not serious, so the lightness of the being is unsustainable, it must be in both narratives “heavy”, transforming into gas balloons that are flying aimlessly, the flight itself is not is reasonable, although the ultimate desire is everything can, but nothing is.

The popular Brazilian songbook says: “there is no sin on the side below the equator”, but that was already the case in post-Renaissance Europe, in Dante’s “divine comedy” which became Balzac’s human comedy, it was there that did the circumnavigation (in picture the Art for Jacob Hashimoro), yes the earth is round, so the people should be dominated and colonized, again Slotertijk’s spherology makes sense.

The fundamental event of our time is to get out of this heavy burden of dogmatism, from the perfectionist stress of the tired society, to get out of the physical, discursive, political, design and spatial battles, technology for man and not for man, robots are machines.

It’s the agony of what was heavy and no longer has a coherent narrative. spherology is based on the principle that a kind of “hermeneutics of existence” must form art of figures, meanings and vocabularies of a light existence, let’s say, discharged from hatred for the Other who is not our mirror, of course the reverse path is there, he leads to anger and violence.

Sloterdijk, P. (2010) Rage and Time, translation by Mario Wenning, New York, Columbia University Press.


Language, truth and error

07 Sep

The most common is to understand truth as the logical tautology that derives from the conception of scientific empiricism and mathematical syllogism,

Modern philosophy has developed several conceptions of truth, currently seeking the adequacy of truth to ideological systems that came from Hegelianism and a conception of History, on these mistakes is the elaboration of Hans-Georg Gadamer, which in turn comes from the conception of truth as Heidegger’s Being.

From syllogism and logicism come idealist concepts of judgment and positivist law.

Truth is for Descartes: “Never accept anything as true that one does not know evidently as such” (Descartes, Discourse on Method), is thus the opposite of falsehood, very close to formal truth.

The utilitarian pragmatism of Stuart Mill is the opposite extreme of this (is ilogic), and is close to the conception of Hegel and Nietzsche, it is the relativist truth that dominates many current discourses.

Nietsche also remakes the Hegelian concept of historical truth for the concept of existence, although the positive concept seems simple to be refuted, the difficulty is to establish what is true and real, which in reality would be the same thing, but what is real? Often this adjustment is made ideologically, thus the narratives arise.

It is because of this difficulty that the true conjugate with morality arises, it makes sense in the context of moral realism. For example, “Oppression and exploitation are malevolent” is a moral truth within a humanist morality, and “Unholiness is sinful” is a moral truth within a religious morality, and this conjugation is resolved in relation to Being and language, and one can withdraw the veil, the concealment through a-letheia, the unveiling.

The Western conception of truth, so difficult to have a single definition, can be combined in the Western case with three roots, the Greek “aletheia” (a- no, occult lethe), which comes from what comes from the definition of what being is: “language is the house of Being” (Heidegger), Veritas, the Latin concept conjugated between logic/language (true and false) and Emunah (the ethical-moral concept) truth/fidelity and its negation infidelity, Augustine of Hippo: “ in the interior of every being dwells the truth”.



Another critique of Hegel

05 Sep

We have already outlined here several criticisms of Hegelianism, with its vices of German idealism, which in our view also affects the so-called Young Hegelians like Marx, but there is another possible rereading that is that of Soren Kieerkegaard (1813-1855) who is more contemporary with Marx and perhaps for this reason little read, since the great philosophical clashes took place in the German idealism of this period.

However, a Hegelian reading of Kierkegaard is possible and who called my attention to this is a Brazilian “millennium” doctor, Natália Mendes, who, in addition to writing an award-winning doctoral thesis of the author, speaks with ease and propriety of the philosopher.

First, it is important that he writes and studies Greek metaphysics, and the author draws attention to the issue of being the “father of existentialism”, labels that hinder the study and perception of the great problems that the philosophers brought.

The author sees Kierkegaard’s depth in three fundamental axes: the ontological, the epistemic and the psychological, without denying and realizing the theological origin of some of his concerns, she clarifies the theme of anguish, which must be understood as “philosophical anguish” that is having the right questions and the right answers to them.

Here I explore a little-explored and non-secondary angle that is post-positivism, and post-philosophical logicism, perhaps one of Kierkegaard’s great anxieties about theology.

Before proceeding, I highlight a phrase of the philosopher about prayer: “The function of prayer is not to influence God, but especially to change the nature of the one who prays”, seems profound to me.

Returning to Kierkegaard’s logic, which I believe is appropriate for our millennium, in addition to not considering himself a philosopher, which would mean undergoing severe criticism of authors he criticized, he builds his own perspective and does not abandon literature, psychology and theology in it.

In order not to make a treatise on his truth, I quote two of his quotes: “There is no true truth that is not subjective, this is appropriate” and another: “There are two ways to be deceived. One is to believe what is not true; the other is to refuse to believe what is true.”

Kierkegaard, S. (1986). Textos selecionados. Seleção e tradução por Ernani Reichmann. Brazil, Curitiba: Editora Universidade Federal do Pará.



Religion, philosophy and humanism

01 Sep

Neither is he who simply proclaims a faith without knowing it, nor is he who follows a series of precepts without understanding the fundamentals. In Christianity what is Love, the philosopher Hannah Arendt, for example, studied as her doctorate “Love in Saint Augustine” while Edith Stein discovers from philosophy and Saint Teresa of Ávila a religious path and became a nun and martyr (died at Auschwitz).

There is much apology for superstitions and beliefs in the religious environment, but they were not unknown to Jesus, the question of the Sabbath is famous, in which Jesus asks if it is fair to save someone from an illness on Saturday (Matthew 12:10), he calls the Pharisees “whitewashed tombs” (1Jn,2,27) and finally ends by revealing to the apostles that he will have to suffer a lot from the elders, the high priests and teachers of the law (Matthew 16,21-22), to which Peter is scared and asks that this not happen, and Jesus scolds him and calls him saying that he did not have a divine inspiration.

So it is not the model of public life of many nominal religionists, false prophets and people with little depth of faith that we can understand what religion is, but there is an anthropological, philosophical and clear theological sense that underlies the teachings of love, of enduring the cross, of not building hatred, revenge or resentment in the fashion of those who do not believe.

Augustine overcame the Manichean dualism of good against evil, it is about Love that is far superior to everything and evil is just its absence, Boethius and later Thomas Aquinas instituted the question of the person and the Being, which is part of the polis, but inseparable from it.

The importance of Severino Boécio, venerated as a saint by the Catholic Church (his date is October 23rd) for the history of science and philosophy, the “quarrel of universals” and the importance of reason, Thomas Aquinas and current figures such as Edith Stein do not separate faith from human thought and contemporary humanism.

From this was born modernity and its dualisms (objective x subjective, body x mind, spiritual x material) part of the ontological dualism: being is and not being is not, however, there is now the principle of the third included coming from Stéphane Lupasco and Barsarab Nicolescu, it’s physical and real

It is time to review humanism and no face of human reality can remain without a necessary revision: what is the Being, what is the idea (the Greek eidos linked to Being) and what do the modern myths and cosmogonies mean before a deeper look to the sacred with dialogue and depth.


Religion, anthropology and philosophy

30 Aug

Enlightenment and modern philosophy, on the assumption of abolishing all “superstition” and establishing an age of knowledge and reason, divided the system of knowledge into subject and objects, medieval philosophy was not very far from this, there were realists and nominalists and none won, all changed, and everything that was considered “metaphysical” including the Being was left aside.

However, the ideas of concepts, structures that should develop knowledge were already present in an author little read, but important: Boethius (400 – 524 AD), a philosopher, poet, statesman and Roman theologian, whose works had a profound influence on Christian philosophy. from the Medieval.

His main work is the “Consolation of Philosophy”, but his is the “wheel of fortune” and a fragment finds what became known as “the quarrel of the universals”, if the universals (concepts would be today) would be today “if the universals are things or mere words”, hence the division between realists who see things and nominalists who defended “names”, words.

But both Boethius and later Thomas Aquinas who studied and translated Greek works, with their own interpretations, the question of Being was present and the question of history and truth as well.

His humanistic contribution lies in the conception of what we now call “human dignity”, for his Philosophical Anthropology the human person on the horizon of rationality considering his singularity data, a new humanism cannot do without its new and still little understood prism, for Boethius was a staunch defender of the faith for Christians and for humanists his De Consolationes Philosophiae brings essential collaborations.

Even today, his ideas may seem controversial, when he defends that man is also nature, but that he must subsist and achieve it as an extension of “nature”, he says in another work:

“Or, if ‘person’ does not equate to ‘nature’, but if ‘person’ subsists under the reach and extension of ‘nature’, it is difficult to say to what natures it always occurs, that is, to what natures it is fitting to contain ‘person’ and which of them should not be separated from the word ‘person’. Indeed, this is clear: ‘nature’ underlies ‘person’ and ‘person’ cannot be predicated beyond ‘nature'” (Boethius, Against Eutyches and Nestorius, 2005, p. 163).

At a time when anthropocentrism is questioned and the relationship with nature is reviewed, it is important to read this medieval philosopher, theologian and humanist.

Boécio. (2005) Escritos (OPUSCULA SACRA). Tradução, introdução, estudos introdutórios e notas Juvenal Savian Filho. Prefácio de Marilena Chauí. São Paulo, Brazil: Martins Fontes.  



God and time do not exist

24 Aug

We hardly explain quantum physics and general relativity well and physics seems to be in crisis, philosophers and physicists seem to have found strange paradigms and phenomena in observations of the universe and particle physics, what is the relationship with God, to exist is in space-time.

It is not the discovery of the Higgs particle or God particle, its existence proven, but an ontological speculation that is now taken seriously, we always affirm a principle of duality, that is, A is false or True and it cannot be the two two at the same time and also if we go from A to B we must go through intermediate B, this is the traditional ontology.

Thus, from the pre-Socratics to Kant, time was absolute and this physics was proven, however the physical discovery of the third included, this so-called “level of reality” brings the contemporary questioning of the questioning of what is existence and Being, a new scientific approach , social and spiritual under a method called Transdisciplinarity.

It was not religious people who proclaimed it, but physicists like Barsarab Nicolescu, educators and philosophers like Edgar Morin and artists like Lima de Freitas, a Portuguese serigrapher and painter, who signed Arrábida’s Charter of Transdisciplinarity.

For theologians and mystics who agree with this principle, God exists since he entered history through the “Deus Homo” Jesus, God is through the eternal divine Being, and God is communication through the Holy Spirit, the Trinitarian hypothesis seems perfect.

If there were divine manifestations, theophanies almost always subject to contestation despite innumerable contestations, both theoretically and practically, a moment of great opening of the “clearing” of a general conscience seems ever closer.

Of course, there are counterfeiters, as there have always been in philosophy, science and religion, where fantasy and imagination can take wing, but there are serious people who know that the phenomenon exists at least in the consciousness of billions of believers around the world, in all cultures and also scientists, philosophers and serious psychologists have their beliefs.

The present reality, at the same time that counterfeiters and false prophets have increased, seems to approach that moment in which the historical Homo Deus Jesus affirmed (Jn 1,51): And Jesus continued: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, You shall see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man,” hich was how Jesus curiously referred to his own existence to say that he became man.

Events in many aspects seem to converge towards this and it is great hope for a confused humanity, a civilization in crisis and a harsh reality.



The truth between thought and action

29 Jun

The whole logic of the sophists was a logic of power, the logic of flattery, of hidden and sometimes even confessed interests, in a society and in a thought without the necessary appreciation, the truth is the values ​​and logic of power, oppression and lack of freedom that work.

It is not a lack of someone who tells the truth, but rather a lack of thought, of sincere listening and dialogue, after all, what the hermeneutic circle proposes in relation to the text (fusion of horizons) means recognizing that we all have, at an earlier stage, the our prejudices, our beliefs, our political or social vision.

So a “method” is needed and it cannot exclude counter-arguments, attentive listening and sincere examination of what we have as “our truth”, when we make room for the Other something new almost always happens, and if it doesn’t it’s because of the other On the other hand, there is not the same openness, but it is still worth listening and pondering.

In the political field, the politics of polarization is an eye-for-an-eye, an attempt to mock and ridicule the opposite thought, there is no possibility of merging horizons and not even a healthy dialogue, what a common citizen sees is the unpreparedness and the anti -policy.

The same goes for cultural and religious discourse, exacerbated and out-of-control positions are far from winning over followers, creating more radicalization and hatred within what they intend to fight, taking the civilizing process to the limit, and leaving young people and children with no prospect of a full and peaceful future.

In the religious field, it is important to remember that it is not the one who says “sir, sir” who will conquer eternal happiness, but the one who puts into practice what almost every religion or cult proposes, extending a hand to the neighbor and not doing to the Other what he doesn’t want you to do it to yourself, it’s a minimum logic and ethics without which no law or cult makes sense.

We want world peace, respect for peoples and their cultures, but we must do our homework first.



Between rhetoric and prayer

22 Jun

Until the beginning of the last century, the logical-idealist discourse prevailed, which is still part of a good part of the contemporary narrative, but a good part of it is now shattered by contradictory narratives and psychopolitical or ideological cohesion.

The Greeks from the opposition to the Sophists, in particular Aristotle divided the speeches into 4 types: poetic, rhetorical, dialectical and analytical.

The poetic is related to the possibilities of the imagination, dreams of possibilities and is neither unreal nor delirious, being utopian in the best sense of the word.

The rhetorician deals with the world of dialogue, uses modes of persuasion, but is supposed to be founded on common beliefs, imaginary and dystopian beliefs of our time, cannot be confused with it, can be eloquent, but not rhetorical.

The dialectician is also the one who deals with the probable, defining errors and truths with greater or lesser probability according to the demand of reason, but submitting beliefs to the test through tests and attempts to overcome objections, seeking the truth among errors and errors. between truths.

Finally, the analytic deals with certainties and certain demonstrations, starting from premises and demonstrating the veracity of the conclusions and in an apodictic way the truth, the dialectical debate that supposes Hegel and idealism is not apodictic, it is opposed more as a belief than as true.

A few words, coming from the heart and feeling, as poetics demand, from tolerant and respectful rhetoric, from Greek dialectics that flee from casuistry and dogmatics, and finally from a true apodictic foundation, those who have categorical assertions about right and wrong, honest and dishonest, far from sophistic and empty speech.

If you speak, speak with clarity and empathy, if you pray, speak with the heart and with few words and if you think, look at the positive, generous and healthy.

Pure rhetoric is not speech, neither dialogue nor prayer is just personal proselytizing.



Hermeneutic circle and dialogue

07 Jun

Before the dialogue, Heidegger’s hermeneutic circle builds a concept of fusion of horizons, it seems idealistic, but it is just the opposite, knowledge does not happen by revealing the object to the subject, as understood by Kant, it is not a mere projection of the subject on the subject. object as thought by Kant’s idealism.

Subject and object have their own horizons, as both are endowed with historicity, I exemplify with a very present example: war, it is not enough to look at the subjects at war on both sides of a dispute, there is war as an instrument of hatred and oppression, and it itself has its historicity, of course the subjects at war as well.

Knowledge then takes place from the fusion of the horizons of the subjects, hence the overcoming of the subject-object scheme, it is dualistic and in it the dialogue is segmented.

When perceiving an object, the subject always contributes with his pre-understanding, his interpretation is partial, so it is necessary to understand the other pre-understanding, in philosophical hermeneutics although they are called pre-concepts, it has a positive aspect, the starting point of dialogue and the next step is the fusion of horizons.

If both want peace, and this cannot be just rhetoric, it is necessary to know the prejudice.

Gadamer criticizes Dilthey’s romantic historicity and clarifies: “[…] the idea of ​​an absolute reason is not a possibility of historical humanity. For us, reason only exists as real and historical, which simply means: reason is not master of itself, since it is always related to the data on which it is exercised. (GADAMER, 1998).

Kant provided the overcoming of the object paradigm, with his spiritual vision he went to the philosophy of subjectivity, however today, with the studies pertinent to the linguistic turn, there is already a vision of overcoming subjectivity through intersubjectivity, manifested in language as a condition for the possibility of knowledge and not just as a third thing between subject and object or simple opposition and confrontation.

Philosophical hermeneutics is based not on the duality of meanings, but on its broad and plural vision of possible meanings, the possibility created by the understanding that takes place in the fusion of horizons that is not “anything about anything”, but rather penetrating what Husserl’s phenomenology called “the thing in itself”, that of the Being of beings.

The dialogue of positions in confrontation is just another form of war, there is no analysis that goes to the bottom of each subject’s pre-understanding and what is in the objects.

A sincere dialogue is necessary for a new civilizing step, an “other” dialogue.


Gadamer, Hans-Georg. (1998) Método e Verdade (Truth and method) Trans. Flavio Paulo Meurer. 2nd ed. Brazil, Petropolis: Vozes.