Arquivo para June, 2020

Ignoramus et ignorabimus

30 Jun

The phrase of the German physiologist Emil du Bois-Reymond in his work meant that in his Über die Grenzen des Naturerkennens meaning that in scientific knowledge there was ignorance and the Latin translation is ignored and we will ignore.

The first big reaction would come from David Hibert in 1930 when he said: “We need to know and we will know”, said at an annual meeting of the Society of German Scientists and Doctors, but at a round table at a Conference on Epistemology, Kurt Gödel provisionally announced his incompleteness theorem, which showed that elementary axiomatic systems are self-contradictory and contain logical propositions that are impossible to prove or disprove.

At a conference of mathematicians in Paris in 1900 he had announced the famous 23 problems that mathematics was supposed to solve, including the famous incompleteness theorem that would prove that a mathematical system is either complete or open.

However, the biggest problem was closing the questions around mathematical theorems and axioms, and the next big debate is the difference between human and social systems on the one hand, and systems of nature, physical or mathematical on the other.

So if we say that 2 plus 2 is four and this is accurate, it means that we are in the field of mathematics, just as geometric figures can be perfect, no “natural” system is exactly perfect, planets are not exactly round, light and waves Electromagnetic waves do not walk in a straight line in the universe and neither is any natural surface perfectly flat.

What we ignore means that our system of interpretation is limited to certain models and metaphors that do not correspond exactly to nature, and on the social level not only is man extremely complex but the nature that is where the set of human relationships takes place is still more complex, since it is the sum of individual complexities.

The epitaph on the grave of David Hilbert is his famous phrase:

“Wir müssen wissen.

Wir werden wissen ”. (photo above)




Covid 19 in Brazil and the plateau

29 Jun

The analysis based on the number of infected cases is not feasible because testing in Brazil is still small, done by companies or hospitals but only in cases where there is a suspicion of the need for hospitalization, and the estimate that 5% of deaths would correspond to the number of infected is not true because the isolation measures are different in several regions.

The plateau that started from the middle to the end of May has lengthened because the regions with the highest number of infected people were widening and in the case of Brazil going inland, called the epicenter, the name would be inappropriate if there was isolation, thus the contamination spread.

In addition to there being no isolation from the regions where infections started, which has been done in many countries since China where it started and the Wuhan region was epicenter, in this case the name is justified, both local measures and isolation regions were hard to contain the spread.

The second question is how to look at the graph and the numbers, the graph that at the beginning was an exponential and although it is necessary to look at making a logarithmic scale of the curve to see the degree of slope (for example, at the beginning, the number doubled every day and then every other day, etc.), now that the curve no longer has an exponential behavior, it is necessary to make the logarithm.

Looking at the logarithmic scale of the curve, the plateau is clearly perceived (graph above) and the numbers are rotating slightly above the thousand daily cases of death, the degree of infection as already said is not necessary, and thus it is perceived the plateau that has been going on for a month.

The reason was the initial analysis done here, with no isolation from the regions, the virus spread to more inland regions and the new “epicenter” is the interior of the country, and so it should continue into the month of July, either because of the ineffectiveness of isolation policies , or for the winter period



Hermeneutics and spirituality

26 Jun

The fundamental reason for hermeneutics is from the beginning to resolve the question of the relationship between people and objects, whether they are real or immaterial (virtual is something else), and as these relate to our mental world, I say subjective by idealists, but linked to them.

If originally the idea of ​​intersubjectivity arises, through dialogue and proximity to idealism, what contemporary philosophy will recover is being-for-Outrem, or Empathy, and here it is not a question of cordial or generous relations, but what comes of philosophical hermeneutics, such as the merging of horizons, and in this empathy can be put as having something “spiritual”.

Not by chance Edith Stein, one of Husserl’s disciples, who was even his secretary, had empathy before her religious life (she became a Carmelite sister, even though she was Jewish), but it is not difficult to make a connection between the two moments in Stein’s life.

Edith Stein will reflect that what she calls “the pure me” (or what I prefer the deepest of me) is in line with the Outrem, in three singular ways analyzed by the author: the experience in the field of pure investigation, which is always reports to the two poles of consciousness: subjective (noesis) and objective (noema), in the second it differentiates the phenomenological approach from the empathic act from other approaches made in the empirical field (genetic, psychological, moral, ethical, etc.) and the third despite ability to learn from the experience of others what constitutes the self.

The “I” always recognizes the flow of ipseidade (which is proper, correlated to hecceidade, principle of Duns Scotto) and this leads to otherness (differentiates it from the other). However, if this relationship is seen within the hermeneutic phenomenology, epoché (putting concepts in parentheses) differs from the Cartesian code because it is not about the ego, as it is intuitively possible to understand emphatically the experience of the Other, but not in an original way , and this means Identity.

We would have difficulties to affirm a unity of the Self, of its individuality, if the relations that are called “intersubjective” (I don’t like the name for its idealistic origin), because we cannot identify where the freedom and responsibility of each individual begins and ends.

To look at the other as conscience (which always has the intention directed towards something) means to become aware of me in that aspect towards which conscience is directed, unlike finding the “middle ground”, “the truth”, what happens later Heidegger and Gadamer called it a fusion of horizons, so the dialogue presupposes a philosophical hermeneutics, in the sense of diving into the horizon of others and rediscovering oneself, requiring an epoché.

It is interesting that in the biblical readings Jesus asks the disciples who he was for them*, and they gradually discover him and never fully, Jesus also looks and analyzes each one to form a community with them, some see a unilateral relationship, but it is dialogics.

*Mt 16, 13-14: Jesus asked his disciples: “Who do men say that I am the Son of Man?” They replied, “Some say it is John the Baptist; others that is Elias; still others, that is Jeremiah or one of the prophets”.



Cartesian meditations and phenomenology

25 Jun

A small book by Edmund Husserl, which was a compilation of a conference in Paris, was the booklet Meditations Cartesian, where he makes five contributions and it is from there that gives rise to a consistent formulation of phenomenology.

The path of a Transcendental Ego, unlike idealistic transcendence towards the object, is towards the Other, or other selfs, an overcoming of the status of the transcendent linked to the object, thus describes Husserl: “…. it immediately becomes apparent that the scope of such a theory is much greater than it seems at first, since it also jointly founds a transcendental theory of the objective world […] ”(HUSSERL, 2010, p. 134).

By admitting and relating to the subjectivity of others (another alter ego) both cultural objects and the shared world, it creates an intersubjectivity (HUSSERL, 2010, p. 134-35), now from the transcendental phenomenon “world” a layer of meaning that can be referred to the intersubjective constitution.

The criticism of the experience made by Husserl at the beginning of the Meditations, takes the primacy of the Immanent experience (apoditic of the cogito, attached to logic) while the transcendent experience (the outside world and the others included) does not reduce the transcendental experience towards the object .

Husserl also uses the concept of solipsism which is the idea that there is only the act of thinking and the self, see that in this reasoning the very existence of the object is to put in doubt what is solved by experience, in this case there is a gnosiological solipsism where other beings (human beings and objects) exist only in the mind and not in consciousness.

The phenomenological doctrine is based on the fact that the objective world of science is turned to experience and pre-reflective and pre-scientific thinking because it is linked to subjectivity, to modify this relationship of being in the world, incorporating the world of life (Lebenswelt) from where the need arises for a philosophical anthropology and an epistemology that answers these to this challenge.

As a consequence of this thought, phenomenological ontology emerged as a clear possibility in Husserl’s own project, although he did not initially approve Heidegger’s work.

Another possibility for a philosophical hermeneutics as developed by Hans-Georg Gadamer was also designed there, and the hermeneutic circle was already in project in Heidegger’s thought.

HUSSERL, E. (2010) Meditações cartesianas e conferências de Paris. Tradução de P. M. S. Alves. Lisboa: Centro de Filosofia da Universidade de Lisboa.


Modern thought and truth

24 Jun

Most of the issues raised in modernity refer to the Cartesian “cogito”, and that this would separate body from spirit, in fact mind from spirit, however it is unknown that the question is previous and is the meaning of substance.

It can be seen in the Cartesian work that mind and spirit are very connected, it can be said that the mind is submitted to the spirit, it reads in the sixth meditation: “mens cerebro tam intime conjuncta sit” (Adam and Tennery, 1996, VII, p. 437).

The origin of two forms of thought, Karl Popper will say that Parmenides’ statement is ontological “being is and non-being is not” in the sense of does not exist (existential and not logical), and Heraclitus of Ephesus “everything is not is becoming ”seen as“ dialectic ” is also ontological.

For Aristotle the substance meant the support or substrate in which the hylé (Greek conception of matter) was constituted in something giving a form (morphe), Tomás de Aquino will think from there, and add a new component in the notion of substance, besides of these two, namely, the act of being (esse / actus essendi), the act of being from which its ontology comes. This was already in Plato.

The famous notions of act and potency, an example, the seed is in the potency of the tree.

Aristotle had 4 causes: Material cause: what is the thing made of? For example, a house would be bricks. Efficient cause: what do you do with the thing? it would be construction. Formal cause: what gives it shape? The house itself. Final cause: what shaped it? The builder’s intention.

But intentio in Tomás is a subcategory of consciousness, and will return to being a category for Franz Brentano, but changing it as the main category as consciousness directed towards something, thus very different from the everyday use of intention.

What Husserl a student of Brentano will think of Cartesian Meditations, is mainly in the fifth and not in the sixth thesis, where he questions whether Descartes does not suspend judgment, but not the ego.
It challenges the Self of Cartesian anguish, without understanding which path from the immanence of the Self to the transcendence of the Other? Reconfigure psychology through phenomenology. Through the method of phenomenological reduction, the Transcendental Self is reached, as this suspension of Husserl and his followers is a hermeneutic epoché, a place in parentheses.

 The whole question of Heidegger (student of Husserl) and Lévinas is directed to this Other and Time.

ADAM, C .; TANNERY, P. (org) Oeuvres de Descartes, Paris: Vrin, 1996. Quoted in Amir d. Aczel: Descartes’ secret notebook, São Paulo: Zahar, 2007.


Conciousness and truth

23 Jun

One of the most common tricks is to say a half-truth, a lie without malice or that which softens our conscience when we know that we are doing what is wrong, it is not a matter of politics because in many cases it is difficult to say that “good” politician if corrupted.

A well-known phrase from William Shakespeare is “We know what we are, but we still don’t know what we can become”, which is as interesting a phrase as “To be or not to be”, because it means that we can be beyond being current , so there is a becoming, so “not to be and I will be”.

The inner sphere in which we satiate emotional voids, frustrations or anxieties, for example in drink or food, we are filling the void by temporarily satiating, but it will come back.

The relationship with philosophy is broad, since Plato who defined the myth of the cave as passing from the world of shadows, where we see ourselves as projections at the bottom of the cave to a high, authentic sphere and where there is true freedom, and the fear of the half- truths disappear.

True consciousness is neither an awakening nor an enlightenment, but an “unveiling” to remove the veil, and the first step is that consciousness is awareness of something, where I found limits or an unexpected NO, not only a pain, but a obstacle at first insurmountable sight.

Gesltat psychology, with a strong influence of hermeneutics, defines how to be aware of something (awareness) and we find a correspondent in Japanese philosophy, for example, as “satori”, to remove the superficial layers to find the nucleus of something.

The three steps to enter these layers are: to awaken to our deepest zone, in the emotional aspect, our fears, anxieties and concerns, the second requires what happens outside, the context, the people and situations that I invest without results, and the third, much more complex, knows what he feels, what happens outside, but there are prejudices, barriers and something that makes him defend himself and not go beyond certain limits.

Make a change, it is not enough to find the strengths, it is precisely in the weaknesses that your defenses are weakened, and they are articulated with your mistakes and experiences.



Corona virus: flexibilization and the endemic

22 Jun

Several countries in the world are preparing for a second wave of the corona virus, Brazil has not left the first and seems to be stationed on a plateau around a thousand daily deaths, many analysts claim that Brazil is different due to its territorial extension, social inequality and density population, very well, but India and China too and control the infection with harsh measures.

Several specialists and infectologists point out that the flexibilization policy can be adopted if the possibility of reversion is admitted, that is, where the number of cases worsens returns to quarantine, but the depletion of the population after more than 100 days no longer allows.

Aline Dayrell, professor and coordinator of the UFMG (Brazilian Minas Gerais Federal University) Epidemiology course, says that we will only have total security if 70% becomes immune, see that the same indexes of social isolation are desired, and Prof. Carlos Fortaleza infectious disease at UNESP-Botucatu (Paulista State University) says the second wave is the possibility of any communicable disease, as long as the population is not immune.

India with more than 2 months in April, after the first case of infection had 800 and 27 thousand infected, being more populous than Brazil, but the numbers accelerated and 4 days ago it registered 2 thousand daily deaths, showing that even the measures harsh were not enough.

China and New Zealand, which apparently had controlled the corona virus, already admit that it is an endemic, that is, that it is not possible to completely eradicate the pandemic without a vaccine.

“The risk of spreading the epidemic is very high, so we must take resolute and decisive action,” said Xu Hejian, spokesman for the Beijing city government, the epicenter of the second wave of covid 19, in New Zealand. two people who came from the UK to attend a funeral, an exceptional case that the government admits and will review.



Post-truth time or hermeneutics

19 Jun

Hermeneutics is one that allows a worldview and an interpretation of different facts, it does not mean manipulation of the truth, but exactly the unveiling of what ideologies and non-practical theories hide (there is no phronesis, practical wisdom).

What happens is that the search for the absolute spirit, the establishment of total truths was actually totalitarian, that is, they did not admit a different worldview, the dialog was simply linked to a pre-established truth, so there were truths a priori .

Knowledge for Immanuel Kant begins with experience, and reason would organize this matter according to its own forms, with the existing structures in knowledge, so information would be a way to organize the matter that comes from experience.

Although “a priori” is generally referred to as an adjective of knowledge, it is also used as an adjective to modify nouns, such as truth, so there would be truth a priori, and this is one of the tenets of idealism.

But the truth for centuries has remained veiled, it has always been established by certain forms of power, but this is the time when the truths begin to be revealed, not by journalists and controlled groups that are part of fans, but the armed crowd of photos and cell phones , cameras present in many surveillance places, but the big leap is awareness.

It is no coincidence that this is the great current topic, from philosophical hermeneutics, the question of historical consciousness that is no longer deterministic, romantic or dogmatic to the question of whether intelligent machines can be aware and ultimately “imitate” man .

For Christian culture this can go to another point, a time when the truth is revealed, according to the evangelist Matthew 10: 26-29:

“Do not be afraid of men, because there is nothing covered up that is not revealed, and there is nothing of hidden that is not known. What I say to you in the darkness, say it in the light of day; what you hear at the ear, proclaim it over the roofs! Do not be afraid of those who kill the body, but cannot kill the soul! On the contrary, fear the one who can destroy the soul and the body in hell! ”.

Philosopher Peter Sloterdijk, who is not a Christian, said that the pandemic put us “all on our knees”, I would say that not everyone still has those who do not admit the mystery beyond our ability to understand and among the religious those who are not yet knees, at least out of compassion for those who suffer.




Scheilemacher’s Hermeneutics to Gadamer

18 Jun

The revival of hermeneutics, it was confined to ancient classical culture as a strand of classical philosophy, made by Schleiermacher (1768-1834).

For Heidegger, hermeneutics is equivalent to the phenomenology of existence, that is, things that are open to interpretation, must be analyzed according to the possibilities of existing and manifesting in their historical time, but their understanding of history is different from Dilthey.

His work finds its first echo in Wilhelm Dilthey (1833-1911), which separates the idea of ​​interpretation in two fields: explanation of the natural sciences and understanding in the human sciences.

Paul Ricoeur (1913-2005) and Hans-Georg Gadamer (1900-2002) will overcome this dichotomy by creating a philosophical hermeneutics, for Ricoeur to understand a text is to chain a new discourse into the text’s discourse, so the text must be open, that is , subject to the appropriation of a sense.

On the other hand, reflection, for Ricoeur, is meditation on the present signs, so there is no explanation without understanding the world and yourself.

Hans-Georg Gadamer sees in Dilthey’s historical conception a certain idealism, and his hermeneutics like that of Ricoeur, which are philosophical, however he sees it in a circular structure where there is always a pre-understanding, where a fusion of horizons is possible which it will allow a reinterpretation and a new formulation of understanding.

In the hermeneutic circle, inspired by Heidegger, it was thought that “Every interpretation, to produce understanding, must have already understood what it is going to interpret”, but it was Gadamer that systematized it.

In Gadamer the idea of ​​the horizon is: the singular content is apprehended from the totality of a context of meaning, which is pre-apprehended and co-apprehended, where there is a dialogue understood as: Understanding is always apprehension of the stranger and is open the modification of the initial assumptions given the difference produced by the other (the text, the interlocutor).

Understanding the context in the sense of traditions, culture, ethnicities and beliefs are fundamental to understanding how the hermeneutic circle happens.

The experience takes place according to the dialogical exchange within a language and it is always productive, not just reproductive: “the meaning of a text surpasses its author, not occasionally but always”, so the philosophical hermeneutics sees it as present in cultures and languages.

The result of this circle is the production of practical knowledge using a Greek word phronesis (there is no theory x practice) which is not a private but social knowledge, where it minimizes and exacerbates the self-creation of the self and in the social sphere the creation of dogmas removing ethics from its social aestheticization, and preserving the practical wisdom of cultures and beliefs that operate in the processes respecting diversity.

GADAMER, H.G. (1989) Truth and Method, 2nd edn, Sheed and Ward.





From Brentano’s phenomenology to Heidegger’s Ontology

17 Jun

Among Brentano’s contributions, in addition to the intentionality of consciousness, which is awareness of something or the object, is what some authors (Boris, 1994) call Philosophy of the Present, where the here and now is the only possible experience, breaking with the idea of ​​empiricism that an experiment is only scientific if it can be repeated, and also breaks with the viewer’s neutrality, as he is part of the experiment, which makes him a hermeneutic.

From the intent of his master Brentano, Edmund Husserl (1859-1938) will retain the aspect of the experience of “being aware of something”, but will modify the empirical phenomenology, to make it transcendental, not in the still spiritual sense, but of cognitive experiences , will leave aside the empirical view, for that of an immanent objectivity.

Husserl states in Ideias da Fenomenologia (1986) that: “The experiences of knowledge have, this belongs to its essence, an intent, they aim at something, they report in one way or another to an objectivity”, thereby abandoning the idea of ​​the empirical of the Mestre Brentano, and takes up the concept of immanent objectivity as a revision of the Aristotelian and Thomist concepts, as “essence”.

In his work of maturity The crisis of European sciences Husserl makes the concept of transcendence more alive, within his Lebenswelt (World of Life), the transcendent “the transcendent is the outside world” while the transcendental “is the inner world” of consciousness (HUSSERL, 2008, p. 18), but this dichotomy between outer and inner world will make existentialist philosophers avoid the term consciousness.

Heidegger (1989) Husserl’s pupil was the first to avoid it, since the relationship between man and world has always been pursued by phenomenologists in order to overcome the idealistic phantasm of the subject-object relationship, the intentional and descriptive analysis of consciousness defined the essential relationships of mental acts and the external world, although Husserl matured the issue of phenomenological reduction.

Martin Heidegger (1889-1976), via Husserl as an intellectualist and Cartesian, abandons the terms conscience and intentionality, central to Husserl’s transcendental phenomenology, in the work The Being and Time (1927), not approved by Husserl, the student overcomes the concept awareness and proposes the concept of Dasein, inaugurating the existential phenomenology.

Human “finitude”, temporality and historicity (being in time) will be fundamental in Dasein’s Heideggerian analysis, a theory based on the “destruction” of the subject-object split


BORIS, G. D. J. B. (1993) Noções básicas de fenomenologia. Insight. Psicoterapia (São Paulo). v. 46, pp. 19-25, novembro.

Heidegger, M. (1989) Ser e tempo (Vols. 1-2). Petrópolis, RJ: Vozes.

HUSSERL, E. (2008) A crise da humanidade europeia e a filosofia. Porto Alegre; EDIPUCRS.