Saturday, August 06, 2011

Husserl, Heidegger, Whitehead, & Sri Aurobindo

Sri Aurobindo points out that some may hold that “the spirit which now presides over the human soul-experience was originally formed by a human mentality ...
In sum, it does not seem that, even on Thill’s view as developed here, common sense qua common sense carries any epistemological weight beyond mere plausibility. There is some “extra-commonsensical” criterion or criteria according to which common sense may be judged infallible or not. Once we hear what that is, we can debate whether it is correct that this criterion allows us to declare certain beliefs infallible. Regardless: according to this quote here, certain kinds of common sense are proposed to be infallible; but it is not and cannot be the fact of their being common sense that makes them so.
When Derrida was king (and keep in mind, I did not like that period) this accusation could not be made. Derrida knew Husserl and Heidegger and Levinas extremely well, and was very much digesting all of it and doing something new with it. You could disagree with his personal spin on it (I did) and also find his style often worse than exasperating (I did). But there was never any question that Derrida was deeply rooted in the phenomenological tradition, which –like it or not– is still the gold standard for recent continental philosophy. The situation became more problematic on this front after Derrida’s star began to dim somewhat.
Deleuze takes off in a completely different direction, and a very refreshing direction in many respects. But he never really came to terms with the Husserl/Heidegger legacy, and the passing remarks on phenomenology are among his most impressionistic and shallow.
With Badiou and Žižek it’s a bit more complicated. They do full justice to Heidegger in terms of praising him, talking about how great and important he was, and so forth. But he leaves too little trace on their own philosophical positions, which are basically Hegelian and Lacanian and have little direct resonance with Heidegger. As for Husserl (despite Badiou’s claims to understand him well) they don’t get the point at all, though in this respect they’re no worse than most others at present.
At the top of my wish list for continental philosophy in 2030 … is that we need to get back on the Husserl/Heidegger page again and push things further, not simply pretend without proof that they are vaguely archaic figures. You have to work your way through figures of that magnitude, and at least Derrida was trying.
The Battle For Eyeballs: Take #2 from ANTIDOTE - Jul 30, 2011 Second, all of you must read Paul Johnson's excellent book titled Intellectuals.
In this excellent book, Johnson has compiled brief biographies of many, … who wrote completely stupid books on how "society" could be better "organised" - and all their stupid books led the world astray. There is Rousseau, Marx, Sartre and more. 
My first book, published in 2000, Antidote: Essays AGAINST The Socialist Indian State, contains an essay on money, sub-titled "Why private money is the only sound money" - but my thoughts have developed far beyond that essay written so long ago, thanks especially to my study of the works of Ludwig von Mises. My best so far is the one in my 2007 book Natural Order: Essays Exploring Civil Government & The Rule of Law, which reflects the study of the works of Jesus Huerta de Soto, and this essay can be read online by scrolling down the right-hand bar.

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