Stephen writes

>     I would like for you to consider that we should not take OMs as 
> "objective processes" but the result of "objective processes".

Of course, I will bow to whatever word usage is favored by most of
the people, or by those who have the longest experience with the
term. I merely want to assert that I don't and never have found
any real value in what is not objective. 

For example, if I am poked with a needle and cry out, one may wish
to proclaim to me "see, you do have a subjective reality".  "Oh, that
really hurt," I'll admit "but if you want to really know what happened
then the needle caused some nerves in my finger to fire, which caused
other nerves to fire and so on. I am a process fashioned by evolution
to object to actions like poking me."

> I shudder every time I read of notions that imply some kind of
> knowledge of "reality in itself"!

Yeah, well now you know how it feels!  :-)   Feels, that is, every
time that someone speaks of inner truths not accessible to anyone
else, not accessible in *principle* to anyone else. I don't consider
those things to rank very highly on the scale of truth.

It boils down, as you hint, to what we mean by "knowledge".  Casting
aside the incredibly mistaken quest for "certainty", we ought to 
speak of that which can be objectively known in principle. It doesn't
ever do any good to speak of anything else. Sure, ask someone if he
or she has a headache---but if you want to think about it strictly,
then it is a state (or a succession of states constituting a process)
in that person's brain.  I repeat my challenge: find *one* thing that
is subjectively "known" or investigable or knowable by introspection
that was not "known" by the ancients.

> How is it that we simply can not seem to acknowledge what we can not 
> know Existence in-itself and merely must rely upon logical rules, gleamed 
> from multiple attempts, to figure out good models of "what we think is going 
> on" and not try to fool ourselves that we can somehow abstract away 
> ourselves from our deliberations about the nature of *Reality*?

First, the models (as you call them) were provided by evolutionary processes
that finally led to one's own embryonic and fetal development. As a two
year old, you know that sometimes it's light and sometimes it's dark,
unless your brain is malformed or malfunctioning.  There is *so* much
true knowledge of that form accessible to a two-year old that it's

Yet no one except a naive child supposes that there is any absolute certainty
to his knowledge, or is unaware of the processes that put information about
outside events (and some internal ones) into his brain. So I reject the claim
that I or people like me believe "we can know Existence in-itself" as you write.

>     Let me try to boil this down a little, how is it even consistent to 
> claim that some "set of states" completely represents a "process"? The 
> assumption here seems to beg us to assume that a static representation can 
> faithfully capture all of the transitive properties implicit in the notion 
> of process.

Oh, here I agree with you.  I consider the speculations of the Everything
Platonic monists to be, er, speculations only. Those conjectures have not
even *begun* to pass the test of time, i.e., have not endured much criticism
as yet, and certainly cannot be said to have survived much criticism. Your
real knowledge, (for example, that some people have been to Hawaii or that
you have two hands or that four gas giants revolve around the sun), has
survived the tests of time.


P.S. I'll reply to Colin's post in a while.

> For me this is equivalent to claiming that Becoming can be 
> derived from Being. I would truly like someone to explain this idea to me! 
> >From what I can figure it is easy to show how Being can derive from 
> Becoming, so why the kicking against the pricks trying to go backwards?

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