Le 24-déc.-06, à 09:48, Tom Caylor a écrit :
I have been doing a lot of reading/thinking on your former posts on the
Hypostases, other reading on Plotinus and the neo-Platonist hypostases,
and the Christian "interpretation" of the hypostases. There is a lot
to say, but I'll start by just giving some responses to your last post
On Dec 11, 8:46 am, Bruno Marchal
I agree that the problem of evil (and thus the equivalent problem of
Good) is interesting. Of course it is not well addressed by the two
current theories of everything: Loop gravity and String theory. With
that respect the comp hyp can at least shed some light on it, and of
course those "light" are of the platonic-plotinus type where the
of goodness necessitates the notion of truth to begin with. I say more
The discussions over the last two weeks on Evil, and just how to define
good and bad, underscore how puzzling this problem can be.
It certainly is.
that at the base of this is the question, "What is Truth?" I am not
satisfied with the Theaetetus definition, or Tarski's "trick".
We can come back to this.
believe the answer to the question, "What is Truth?" which Pilate asked
Jesus, was standing right in front of Pilate: Jesus himself.
Hmmm.... Perhaps in some symbolical way.
Christian definition of truth goes back to the core of everything, who
is personal. As I've said before, without a personal core, the word
"personal" has lost its meaning. In the context nowadays of
impersonal-based philosophy, "personal" has come to "mean" something
like "without rational basis".
Of course that *is* a pity. It is bad, for human, to develop such
It is not rational either.
But when the personal IS the basis, not
an impersonal concept of personal, but the ultimate Person, and with
man being made in the image of that ultimate Person, we have a basis
for truth, personality, rationality, good...
So you are emphasizing the "third hypostase" = the first person = the
ALL-SOUL = the universal knower. This is akin to David Lymann and
George Levy. It is not incompatible with your view if you accept the
idea that we "are all God(s)". Cf Alan Watts for example and most
>> Note also that the major critics by the neoplatonists on Aristotle,
>> besides their diverging opinions on the nature of matter, is the
>> non-person character of the big unnameable, but then for Plotinus
>> "second God" (the second primary hypostase is "personal"), and
>> G* has a personal aspect from the point of view of the machine. I
>> (comp agree) with Plotinus that the big first cannot be a person.
>> second one can. To be sure Plotinus is not always completely clear
>> that point (especially on his chapter on free-will).
> None of Plotinus' hypostases are both personal and free from evil
> well as infinite, which we agree is needed (but not sufficient, I
> maintain!) for the problem of meaning).
It is a key point. I agree. None of Plotinus hypostases are both
personal and free from "evil/good". Finding an arithmetical
interpretation of the hypostases could then give a hope toward an
explanation of goodness and evil.
Please note that 7/8 of the hypostases are "personal-views".
I'll just deal with the first 4 hypostases, since this is the basis of
the rest, even though my John quote below addresses the others also.
Perhaps the neo-Platonists couldn't see how the core could be personal
(even though Plato called it the "Good"). It is hard to accept that the
core could be both infinite and personal (and good), since our view of
personality is finite (and flawed). But the infinite personal core, God
the Father, which replaces the neo-Platonist "ONE" or 0-person (of
course I maintain that the replacing was in the other direction :),
It looks you seem really to be an Aristotelician ....
answers the big question of the origin of all other persons (and
You mentioned to Brent that perhaps invoking the second-person is a way
of explaining the origin of "personal" aspects.
I was just saying that the "second person" or some collective intimacy
can explain utterance of "uncommunicable things".
Some "ethical" scientific truth can be said in the coffee room, not at
any congress ...
In a way this is true,
in that our earthly fathers/mothers and others take part as persons in
developing us as persons. But there has to be an ultimate source.
Yes. To be a realist is to bet there is one, but from a scientist
(third person) pov, it is an open question as to know if such ultimate
thing is personal. Comp is going in the Plotinus direction where the
ultimate reality is not personal.
in the Christian "interpretation" the ultimate source of all
first-person level experience (neo-Platonist "ALL-SOUL" or
"UNIVERSAL-SOUL") could be said to be God the Holy Spirit.
I can agree with that hypothesis. It is consistent with
computationalism. There is no real order among the main three primary
He fills in
the gaps when we cannot find words to talk to him.
Like G* minus G does for any self-referentially classical machine. (The
Then, the real clincher is the third person point of view, the
neo-Platonist "INTELLECT". The personal God did not stay silent and
keep all of this personhood stuff at a purely theoretical level which
we would have to take with blind faith. Instead the hopes of the
neo-Platonists were fulfilled in the Christ (Messiah) whose name was
Emmanuel which means "God with us", who was the "wisdom and power of
God". "In the beginning was the Word (Logos), and the Word was with
God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through
him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been
made. In him was life, and that life was the light of men. The light
shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it... The
Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.
I can take this as a poetical description of the relation between the
internal modalities or the hypostases.
We have seen his
glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of
grace and truth." (John 3:1,2,3,14) So the particular finite form that
we have, God somehow took on that same form.
This, on the other way, could be a comp sort of blasphemes. Comp
"ethic" could even makes God eliminating any creature so arrogant that
they take they their realities and images of God for granted. With
comp, if we are divine, we can only be divine *hypotheses*. We can hope
being God last word, but this is really something which depends on our
work and can never be taken for granted.
In this way God showed us
(who are in his image) true truth about himself in a way which we can
understand (just as a father tells truth to his children), without
having to tell us infinite exhaustive truth.
Again this can have Plotinian sense. But there is a danger (for us
human) to take those assertions too much literally.
This bridges the gap
between the celestial/divine and the terrestial/human. Christ is the
fixed-point between heaven and earth, the axis of the universe for us.
In Christ, we all see in third-person the Way, the Truth and the Life.
Again if "Christ" denotes a symbolic value I can make sense of what you
are saying, but in my opinion the relation between Christians and the
Christ are extremely fuzzy. There has been a lasting confusion of power
which makes me skeptical. Too much propositions has been deformed by
their authoritative institutionalization. Still today "theology" tends
to be separated from science (i.e. from accepting doubts and the
infinite number of attempts of clarity and rigor). This separation
resulted into the abandon of the fundamental questions to the fanatics
(who mocks clarity, rigor, and doubts).
Now I am aware of the last century "repentance" of the Catholic Church,
including the necessity of restricting faith with rationality, like
many open minded school of Muslims already warned us in the eleven
century, but not for a very long time).
It's late, so I'll stop here.
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