Arquivo para a ‘Information Science’ Categoria

The Russian counter-offensive and threat

29 May

The week promises to be tense in the war in Eastern Europe, Ukraine has announced the start of its counter-offensive and Russia is threatening retaliation for Western aid in armament for this new phase of the war.

Peace is a long way off, now it’s really about the occupied territories the point of contention, and the whole question of the threat of borders and NATO advance is no longer the point, even if it is touched, the four partially occupied territories: Lugansk, Donesk, Zaporizhzhia and Kherson are claimed by both warring countries, as well as Crimea.

After several countries announced arms and financial support for Ukraine, Russian threats escalated and threatened with “strategic” nuclear weapons, but any war on one of the NATO countries is immediately declared war on all and the conflict could escalate.

In the province (oblats) Belgorod in Russian territory was the first conflict inside the country in this war, right-wing and anarchist anti-Putin groups appeared on the scene, indicating that something is already happening inside Russia, the Russian government says it is under control, however evacuated the region.

The scenario is quite worrying, because the scale of the war and a possible conflict on the soil of NATO countries could mean an open start of a third world war, the Russian threats do not seem like a bluff, but a response to Western aid that prolongs the war and gives survival to the conflicting Ukrainian forces.

The displacement of nuclear weapons from Russia to Belarus and warships in the oceans indicate that the danger of responding to the West is real and could happen.

Although in the war in Ukraine it was demonstrated that there is a war capacity to intercept Russian hypersonic missiles, with nuclear charges no matter where they are detonated they will have a devastating effect on the environment and human life.

It remains for those who desire peace to ask that conflicts cease and that men return to serenity and respect for human life and nature.


Asceticism and the dualism between body and soul

18 May

Already in Greek philosophy, self-discipline and self-control of body and mind (or soul) accompanied asceticism as well as the search for truth.

This quest and its corresponding asceticism is present throughout philosophy and even in literature, it is from Shakespeare’s Hamlet “there are more things between heaven and earth than vain philosophy supposes”, but it is from the same play “To be or not to be, this is the question” that refers to ontology.

Freud also said that the main task of an existence is to understand the mind, in contemporary philosophy there is the classic dilemma of separating body and mind (or soul), even Marx proposed to reverse Hegel’s path “from earth to heaven” , clear Hegelian sky.

What is certain is that the civilizing process depends on asceticism, on men as a community and on individual men, because otherwise they will not have anything to bring to the community if it does not have its own asceticism, they will take away the human misery and decadence that they experience.

The body and mind dualism is the one that separates the phenomena of the mind (which would be just mental, in the case of the soul, just spiritual) and the body that are physical and, therefore, are largely separable, there is also today a cheap philosophy that states that what I think will come true, I do not cite the books so as not to give greater popularity to this one without any theoretical or practical basis.

Husserl’s phenomenology will penetrate the ontological category of “intentionality” to remove this obstacle “the peculiarity by virtue of which experiences are experiences of something” (HUSSERL, 2010), and in § 14 of Cartesian Meditations (1931), repeats it o again, but in a more complete way: “The word intentionality does not mean anything other than that fundamental and general particularity of consciousness of being conscious of something, of carrying, in its quality of cogito, its cogitatum in itself” (HUSSERL, 2010).

Husserl and his teacher Franz Brentano recovered Aquinas’s category of intentionality for which the exterior in nature (esse naturale) is how things exist, the forms being distinct from existing in thought (esse intentionale), thereby supporting the mode of existence, in which things exist in the intellect (in intellectu) as “things thought”, but Husserl removes from intentionality the empirical basis and immanent objectivity.

In the previous post, we showed this separation between Philosophy of Nature and Philosophy of Spirit as divergent and even opposite, by admitting that in a certain way there is in consciousness some form of awareness of something that is the basis for phenomenology and then in ontology and existentialism, there is in the consciousness a definite and transcendental form of what is external, but part of the intentionality of consciousness.

The transcendent is present in the mind (or soul) through intentionality, while the transcendental is of a higher order and only becomes knowledge if it can be understood within the transcendental mystery of existence, or we return to nothingness.

Husserl, E. (2010) Meditações Cartesianas. Conferencias de Paris. Phainomenon –Clássicos de Fenomenologia .  Portugal, Lisbon: CFUO.



Controversies of spiritual and philosophical asceticism

17 May

To deny asceticism, one resorts to the idea that it would be impregnated with “Christian exegesis”, however, the literature itself shows that this is a contradiction, since both idealist philosophy tries to remake a vision of what is spiritual in the “Phenomenology of the Spirit” and also more modernly Foucault ( ) will say that the Greeks in the Hellenistic and Roman times would be far from understanding the term we call ascesis. “Our notion of asceticism is, in fact, more or less modeled and impregnated by the Christian conception”. (FOUCAULT, 2004, p.399).

In Michel Inwood’s Hegelian dictionary, we find the concept of Spirit (geist): “Geist includes the most intellectual aspects of the psyche, from intuition to thought and will, but excluding and contrasting with the soul, feeling, etc.”, however Spirit in Hegelian usage has a meaning that is both similar and different from that used in everyday life (in the sense of the soul) and in philosophy, since there is also a “Trinitarian” meaning there.

As in all idealist philosophy, Hegel is a post-Kantian it is good to say, there is a search for overcoming the subject and object duality, for Hegel it is found in the Absolute Spirit, said in such a way as to propitiate an encounter between the subject and the object, forming an identity that takes place within the mutual relationship between subjectivity and objectivity.

While in Kant transcendence is what makes the Subject go to the object, in Hegel it is the Absolute that marks a meeting between the subject and the object, forming an identity that takes place within the mutual relationship between subjectivity and objectivity, but in both there is no Being in transcendence.

It is important to understand this relationship because in it what Hegel treats as an essential intellectual activity takes place, for the intellective apprehension both about the object (which is precisely the moment of alienation as a “going out of the Self”) and about the subject itself (the return to subjectivity after the experience with the object, that is, the Other as he sees it), thus different from the ontology of Husserl, Heidegger and others, who see in this an ontological relationship with Being.

For this, one must penetrate the Hegelian categories: in-itself, of-itself and for-itself, said in the Philosophy of Right as: “In effect, the in-itself is consciousness, but it is also that for which it is a Other (the in-itself): it is for consciousness that the object’s in-itself and its being-for-an-other are the same. The I is the content of the relationship and the relationship itself; it confronts an Other and at the same time surpasses it; and this Other, for him, is only himself” (HEGEL, 2003);

Many contemporary philosophers will see the Other, as something beyond the Self, and a for-itself something beyond the Self and the Other, a “for” beyond.

Although there are controversies both in Hegelian idealism and in his “Trinitarian” dialectical conception, it is important to note that for him the members of a community should always have among the principles the one that “has objectivity, truth and morality” (HEGEL, 2003, §258).


Foucault, Michel. (2004) A hermenêutica do sujeito. Transl. Márcio Alves da Fonseca; Salma Tannus Muchail. Brazil, São Paulo: Martins Fontes.

Hegel, G.W.F. (2003) Princípios da Filosofia do Direito. Transl. Orlando Vitorino. Brazil, São Paulo: Martins Fontes.

Inwood, M. J. (1997) Hegel. Dicionário Hegel. Transl. Álvaro Cabral. Brazil, Rio de Janeiro: Jorge Zahar Editor.


Asceticism as human and spiritual elevation

16 May

It is not specific to a religion and is also defined in philosophy, from the Greek áskesis, “spiritual exercise”, derived from ἀσκέω, “to exercise”, consisting of a practice or more practices that promote spiritual development, the simple idea of ​​renouncing pleasure or the primary needs, must be seen within certain contexts or periods, therefore it is not normal in general and also its opposite does not mean just sinning, but deteriorating, weakening when failing to do certain exercises.

Peter Sloterdijk, an agnostic, speaks of this despiritualized asceticism, in the sense that we are a society of exercises, but that they do not provide either a human or spiritual elevation, a clear example of this is the number of academies that grow in the country and in many places of the world. world, another example is the demonstrations of virility as a human elevation, of course it is important to take care of health, but sometimes excessive exercise and medication do the opposite.

From the human point of view, what we experience is a decadence that goes from the moral to the religious, subjects so clear until recently, today they are seen as having almost absurd controversies to the point of the immoral being considered “normal” and “human” and the religious being identified with atrocities.

The series of humanitarian crises could not fail to affect the economy, these are not simple market crises, they are at the epicenter of wars and economic fallacies, it is not necessary to be an economist to see that simplistic formulas do not work at either extreme: the wild capitalism and socialism without freedom and without human quality.

It seems difficult to recognize what a true spirituality would be then, even with the principle of asceticism, which means human elevation in social relations and in the inherent dignity of every human being, in respect for nature and in the preservation of its benefits, in short, in the love of life .

Even for the concept of peace we go back in history, the pax Roman seems to be the principle for many wars, whatever the one that subdued “enemy” territories to declare peace, not even the eternal peace of contemporary idealism is claimed, although it also have limitations.

It is a harbinger of great tragedies, including war, what is hoped is that somehow forces that still have a human and spiritual background can interpose this contemporary reality and revert the dangerous situation that we all face and few work for its reversal (photo about Pulitzer Prize in 2023).


Visit to Rome, Counteroffensive and Pulitzer Prize

15 May

The week was all about Ukraine: a visit to Rome and the pope, advances in Backhmut and photos from the war that drew attention when they won the Pulitzer Prize, the photos are shocking and perhaps say more than words, since today there is even incomprehensible rhetoric favor of war.

In the strategic plan, there is no Portuguese analyst Germano Almeida pointed out: “here in the West we are not yet aware of the plans, so there is a Ukrainian idea that this is just the beginning and nobody knows where in fact this counter-offensive can be launched because the Bakhmut’s question could be a first diversion maneuver [discussion] and the essential thing and the mass offensive could be elsewhere”, says Almeida.

The visit to Italy, in addition to the country’s already declared support, the visits to Italian President Sérgio Mattarela and with Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, he also participated in a talk show on Italian TV, about the pope, all that is known is an agreement humanitarian assistance to refugees.

The images that won the prize also have a Brazilian on the list: Felipe Dana, from Rio de Janeiro, who filmed and photographed scenes from Bucha, the most cruel and violent massacre carried out by Russia in Ukraine (first photo below), it is worth remembering that the war was also from Vietnam had awards on the horrors there.

Some images from the 2023 Pulitzer Prize given to several Associated Press photographers, including the Brazilian, if words don´t move, maybe the images will.


The Other, the Infinite and the Truth

12 May

The development of the question of Being in modern philosophy is not separated from the religious question, Gadamer recalls the example of the gods in works of art from the Greek world (Gadamer, 1997, p. 18),

The other is treated in different areas of ontology, becoming almost an essential category.

Another important point on the path to Truth, states that it is necessary to recognize: “The finitude of understanding itself is the way in which and where reality, resistance, the absurd, and incomprehensible reaches validity.” (Gadamer, 1997, p.24), and expands this history to the historical one, where he criticizes Dilthey’s romantic historicism and emphasizes that it is not ahistorical.

Thus, the path (or the method) to the Truth is traced the development of the hermeneutic circle as a new and revolutionary method for the Truth, listening to the text (or the Other) and performing a fusion of horizons, where it is possible to see and rethink more clearly the Truth.

The simple elaboration of narratives that justify the power of certain truths is nothing more than a return to the obscurity and opportunism of the modern sophist discourse, now using as a resource the limits and specialties of certain sciences, for example, law and economics that seen in their restricted fields are nothing but sophisms that justify each other.

When analyzing the possibility of the end of metaphysics, Gadamer points out: “If science rises to total technocracy, and thereby covers the sky with the “night of the world” of “forgetfulness of being”, the nihilism predicted by Nietzsche, may if then you keep looking behind the last glint of the sun that went down […]” (GADAMER, 1997, p.27), that is, science is not part of this question.

A true humanism must look to the infinite, not just the one that is now visible through the James Webb megatelescope (which raises many questions as well), it cannot fail to ignore the infinite, the mystery and the religious phenomenon.

For Christians, this truth was revealed humanly and visibly in Jesus, last week we remember the disciples saying “Show us the Father” (Jn 14:8), now on another front Jesus reveals himself more fully to those who follow him (Jn 14:8). 14, 16-17): “And I will pray the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, that he may abide with you always: the Spirit of Truth, which the world is not able to receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him” .

This is not an arrogant Truth, it can and must dialogue with the cultures of our time.

Gadamer, H.G. (1997) Verdade e método. Transl. Flávio Paulo Meurer.  Brazil: Petrópolis, RJ: ed. Vozes.


The fundamental question of the method

11 May

The historical question could not be missing, in fact before the book “The truth and method”, it was a lecture by Gadamer that started this work, called “The question of historical conscience”, the book was corrected and translated into English after publication of the masterpiece, and from this version came the Portuguese version.

Thus the author states: “Because, only with the failure of the naive historicism of the historical century, it becomes evident that the opposition that exists between a-historical-dogmatic and historical, between tradition and historical science, between ancient and modern, is not absolute.” (GADAMER, 1997, p.22).

So it is in the face of this finitude of knowledge that one must depart: “The finitude of understanding itself is the way in which and where reality, resistance, the absurd, and the incomprehensible reaches validity. Anyone who takes this finitude seriously must also take the reality of history seriously” (Gadamer, 1997, p.24), and from there he resumes and reorganizes the hermeneutic circle.

Thus, what he calls effectual history starts from the understanding of “what makes the experience of you so decisive for all self-understanding” (idem), it will be from there that he will elaborate his philosophical hermeneutics, which seems paradoxical, he states: “precisely Heidegger’s critique to transcendental questioning and his thought of the “turn” (Kehre) serves as a basis for the development of the universal hermeneutic problem, which I undertake” (Gadamer, 1997, p.25), and thus for him “language does not arise in the consciousness of those who speaks” and has nothing to do with subjectivity, since the subject’s experience has nothing “mystical” or “mystifying”.

He clarifies that his methodology goes beyond a purely metaphysical view, and says about the method of idealism: “I think that Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason is binding, and that propositions that do nothing more than add, by thought, and dialectically, the infinite to the finite, the being in itself to what is humanly experienced, the eternal to the temporal, I consider them as mere extreme determinations, from which, by the strength of philosophy, no knowledge of our own will be able to develop. (GADAMER, 1997, p.26).

With regard to metaphysics, he clarifies that even the Hegelian tradition, which does not abandon the idea of infinity, has: “the tradition of metaphysics and especially its last great formulation, Hegel’s speculative dialectic, contains a constant proximity.” (idem).

And he resumes Heidegger’s question of the oblivion of being: “What does the end of metaphysics mean, as a science? What does it mean to finish in science? If science rises to total technocracy, and thereby covers the sky with the “night of the world” of the “oblivion of being”, the nihilism predicted by Nietzsche, then one can look behind the last glint of the sun that has set […]” (GADAMER, 1997, p.27).

The opening to the Other opens up a perspective of merging the horizons of the Being, which applies a new meaning to the text (or discourse) and allows one to question oneself about the truth and reach it, this is the hermeneutic circle.

Gadamer, H.G. (1997) Verdade e método. Transl. Flávio Paulo Meurer.  Brazil: Petrópolis, RJ: ed. Vozes.




Truth and Hermeneutics

10 May

It was Hans-Georg Gadamer who developed and founded a deeper criterion for making a correct interpretation of method and truth (the name of his two-volume book) in the human sciences, and it is not about opposing the natural sciences, but giving the sciences social a soul and a “spirit”, even the one understood strictly in non-religious thought, but that actually seeks the truth and not the syllogism, pure logic or even sophistry.

Gadamer clarifies right at the beginning of his masterpiece: “The fact that I used the expression “hermeneutics”, weighing an old tradition on my shoulders, certainly led to misunderstandings” (GADAMER, 1997, p. 14) .

Returning to the question of the natural sciences, the author clarifies the misunderstanding “the famous Kantian distinction between the questionio juries and the questionio facti” (Gadamer, 1997, . 16), it was not a question of a court of reason, but “.It posed a philosophical question, that is, he asked about the conditions of our knowledge, through which modern science becomes possible, and what is the scope of science” (idem).

Thus his philosophical behavior in response to the question: “what is knowledge” was developing the temporal analysis of existence: “which Heidegger developed, I think, convincingly showed that understanding is not a way of being, among other modes of behavior of the subject, but the way of being of the pre-sence itself (Dasein)” (ibidem).

Before entering the question of history, he seeks its origins by stating: “However, where is the world and the afterworld really separated? How does the vital significance of the originary pass into the reflective experience of the significance of formation?” (GADAMER, 1997, p. 17).

Humanism had not been separated from the religious phenomenon: “One should recognize and admit that an ancient image of gods, for example, which was not represented in the temple as a work of art for the aesthetic enjoyment of reflection, and which today has its representation in the modern museum, contains within itself the universe of religious experience.” (GADAMER, 1997, p. 18).

Thus, before reflecting on history, Gadamer will reflect on art, and does not fall into the dualism of subjectivism, he exposes his conviction that: “Thus, no one will convince me, objecting to me that the reproduction of a musical work of art is interpretation in a different sense than, for example, the achievement of understanding in reading poetry or looking at an image.” (GADAMER, 1997, p. 19).

The artistic experience in its “method” and “truth” is not exclusive, but it is the one that allows greater breadth in its conception of what really leads us to the “method” that guides the “truth”.

Gadamer, H.G. (1997) Verdade e método. transl. Flávio Paulo Meurer.  Brazil: Petrópolis, RJ: ed. Vozes.


Arete’s Absence

09 May

The Greek virtues and educational formation, through paideia referred to the total formation of the Greek man, so Areté was this peak (translated as ideal, however the modern ideal refers more to the subjective x objective dualism than to the Greek Eidos, which is more linked to having a vision, showing reality).

Thus, the total vision (for the time, but less segmented than today), indicated a man who was a citizen of the polis with virtual attributes (this is the true meaning, coming from virtus), which placed him in harmonious conjunction with the city-states and their statutes.

Both in culture, and mainly in politics today, these attributes are little lacking, it is more about building a narrative that justifies all brutal power over the citizen, so the laws are made in order to protect the oligarchy in power, it is It is also true that in Greek times those who were citizens were limited to free men (there were slaves) only.

The worsening of bipolarization, where coexistence is not possible, has a dangerous aspect for exclusivist authoritarianisms where a part of society must be segregated.

The areté is missing, so it is impossible to think of statesmen, leaders who think of society as a whole, because their culture and concepts are based on that part they belong to and claim that their model is universal, thus justifying their barbarism.

Already in the reading of the historical books “Ilíada” and “Odisséia” we register this ideal of areté as strength, dexterity and heroism of the warriors, qualities that were uncommon to the men of that time, so it is a fact that in the origin they also served the purpose of the war.

However, a modern areté that would lead us to honesty, to the spirit of dialogue, not the hypocrisy of talking only with those who suit us, could lead us to a new civilizing eidos.

A culture that does not ignore history and what is good and lessons learned through it, a vision of the polis that goes beyond partisan selfishness and the game of interests, a policy that could “see”.

Worldly blindness leads the civilizing process more and more to collapse, barbarism and hatred.

Only a modern areté that leads men to a culture of peace will revert the civilizing process to the common good.


War and our dayli bread

08 May

As one of the largest grain producers, Ukraine at war would certainly affect the market, and it took a while but it happened, the Chicago Stock Exchange recorded an advance in the price of wheat last week, and soon it will reach the market and our daily bread.

A product on the rise can drag down other products (such as corn, for example), the more advanced countries seemed to already know this and took preventive measures: China, Russia and the USA have already been reinforcing stocks and taking protective measures, in our if we trust agribusiness, but we cannot forget that we are part of a global trade.

And if the war were to end, we drew a picture last week of the Ukrainian counter-offensive and the Russian expectation, which expects a new offensive in the North, as it was in the resumption of Kharkiv last year, but now it seems that the scenario will be different.

The war has grown into technology, Russia has frequently blocked US-made mobile rockets in Ukraine (according to CNN), while Ukraine has intercepted Russia’s sophisticated hypersonic missile (according to Brazilian site G1).

In the North, where the new republics of Donesk are located, according to analyst Niklas Masuhr of the Center for Security Studies at the Federal Polytechnic School of Zurich, Russia has erected trenches in the region, to avoid Ukrainian actions that are always unlikely and change places easily for they know the land (on uol site).

But attacks can happen to the south, despite being small villages around Odessa, such as Lazurne (3,800 inhabitants), Zalizniy Port (1,500 inhabitants) and Krasne (1,300) beach towns and strategic city Zapozhshya.

The Ukrainian tactic has always been to surprise the Russian army and change strategy where it finds less resistance, a good part of the Russian army was withdrawn from the Crimea which is close to this region via the Black Sea, the grain trade is already looking at this scenario.

The week that begins will determine the strategy and tactics of each side, unfortunately the war continues and the damage to all humanity will begin to reach everyone’s table, and the poorest in particular.