Sunday, March 14, 2010

Philo. of Knowledge

Reynard Tubid Philo-2

1. The only reason that there us anything present to human consciousness is that I am not pure viewer, but an acting, existing being. My reality as existent is the source for the given which is there for me as a knower. Subjectivity cannot be considered irrelevant to the truth, for subjectivity is not irrelevant to evidence.

Truth is the conformity between mind and reality. Reality imposes itself upon me, and in the presence of evidence, I submit. In submitting, I confirm to what is, and thus my judgment may be dominated true. Drawing the idea from this reality I could firmly say that man in its finite capacity clarified his actions and environment through the submission of one’s self. The process of committing ones self in a certain phenomenon would justify that man is not only a pure viewer but an acting and existing being. There is no question the way we conceive things with permanent validity, but the manner of spontaneously express it may be both highly questionable and highly misleading. The reason for this matter is that human consciousness is very definite in some aspects but sometimes even if the thoughts of actions are placed inside the mind we find it difficult to express, and probably this may lead into questions and misleading.
My existence is here and my object is over there. In this relationship the relation between the knower and evidence is quasi-spatial manner: here is the mind and there is the evidence. Therefore knowledge is the confrontation of the mind with evidence. There arises in our mind the conception of a subject standing off and characterizing an object juxtaposed to his subjectivity and thought. The implication in this is that subjectivity is irrelevant to the truth. If the object is juxtaposed to my thought, if the evidence is posted out there, then the only function of the subject is to be a viewer of this object. A pure viewer, however, is one in whom all the impediments to viewing have been removed and whose gaze is turned pellucidly to what he views. But the impediments to viewing are not from the side of the object, which simply offers itself to view. They are from the side of my subjectivity. Perfect knowledge would, then, consist in the reduction of the subject to a cipher: A perfectly transparent eye opening on a world of objective evidence. The way reality is present to my thought and mind is called evidence. If the object is posted out there in the mind the tendency of the viewer is to become a seer. But if it contained inside the mind the being set aside all his prejudices and biases to achieved a clearer result of what he has perceived. If ever the subject perceives an object he must have a clear vision of the reality. The object he perceived must be congruent with what is in the reality. If ever the subject denies the structure of the object, the impediment is from the subject and not directly from the object. When a certain object is perceived by the subject his mind assents with what is in reality which composes his knowledge as concrete and precise. The scope of his consciousness covers not only his body but his knowledge and the correct perceived object. The reality does not lie because the senses do not lie also. The thing perceive is what it is, but because of some defect from the part of the perceiver he tends not to perceive it concretely. The reality stands as the object of my consciousness but the thoughts inside it is considered as subjectivity.
The object presented to me is the object that is real and clear in the present but it is my way of seeing it that changes its appearance. For example, if the chalk board is color green the reality conforms that it is really color green but my consciousness would argue that it is not color green, it is color yellow. If awareness is other than its subject, then pure awareness is purely other than its object. The only reason that there is anything present to human consciousness is that, from another standpoint, I am not a pure viewer, but an acting, existing being. My reality as existent is the source of the given which is there for me as knower. First I exist, then I know. Therefore even if as knower, I want to affirm objective evidence my mode of existing has a hand in determining the way reality is present. Subjectivity cannot be considered irrelevant to truth, for subjectivity is not irrelevant to evidence. If the awareness of myself surfaced, I become aware all the more about my awareness of the object. In order to grasp well the idea of a certain object primarily I need to recognize that I am existing. I could attain total awareness of myself if I determined first and foremost my position as knower and checked the reality if it is attuned with what is in my mind. Thus, I am not just a pure viewer but I am also an existing being through my action and approach of what is happening on me and the reality. I contribute the way reality is present to me. We must not let personal biases to over rule us but see things as they really are. We want to know reality just as it is in itself, regardless of my own wishes.

2. Man is existing reason, as reason, he participates in the truth; as existing, he is separated from the truth. If he were totally estranged from the truth. If he were in no sense already attached to it, he would not even be able to seek it; if he were totally coincident with it, he would have no need to seek it. (Soren Kierkegaard)

Kierkegaard championed the view that conceptual adequacy would never be enough to enforce assent in man. Man is not just reason, he is the existing reason. His existence estranges him from reason; it means that he is not just reason. The capacity of man to assent is not taken automatically. There is a gap between existence and reason. Reason cannot close this gap because reason is always the reason of an existing being. Man exists, and his existence places him in an extra-conceptual order where the validities of concepts are not decisive. Man is an existing reason. As reason, he participates in the truth; as existing, he is separated from the truth. If he were totally estranged from the truth, if he were in no sense already attached to it, he would not have no need to seek it. Man as a rational being is born with reason. He does not exist only but take the responsibility of participating into the truth and to find this truth through reason. If a man failed to attach his reason into the real truth, he would not seek the things he desire to prove. But if the truth coincides the way he uses the reason he would have no need to seek it because from the reason itself he already found the truth he is looking for. Therefore, truth is directly connected in the life of man. The truth embodies the person of a rational being. Truth assents the reality if it is processed through reason and through the presence of the knower doing the action.
For Socrates, not even arguments have the character of self-enforcing, there is always something left. There is a gap between evidence and assent. But this gap could be filled through an existence. The immortality is not given to abstract thinker for evidence rests in the function of exigence. There is no argument constructed if the arguer is not implicated. The argument is directly stated to him as an existing subject. Existence is the component of evidence. It cuts the dichotomy between the subject and the object in the stream of knowledge. This evidence may be an unqualified revelation of reality, but it is a revelation which is only there for an existing subject and not for a neutral observer.
From this particular illustration existence is very essential to bridge the gap between the object and subject. Since the being uses argument, his competency to construct this argument will accompany him in achieving a unified structure of the reality. In this line truth is very important. We always believe that knowledge has a defect but instead of saying knowledge has a defect we need to establish it abstractly. Subjectivity is very essential. A concrete intelligibility that is available only through subjectivity. When we eliminate subjectivity, we eliminate intelligibility. The subject determines the clearness of an action. It is he who clarifies everything and places everything in order. If truth is incorporated with existence I am capable to say I am these truths. In order to put everything in its proper places, we need to value our subjectivity as the primordial act of connecting our self in the reality. Our embodied body connects our relationship with the object. Subjectivity is the bridge of man to know the reality. Man through his actions and judgment makes a subjective action with regards to either affirms or denies. Man doesn’t automatically give assent to truth. If man would automatically give assent to truth then judgment would not be necessary anymore for it is just automatic to man to accept truth. Man is not estranged totally to truth, perhaps if it will happen he may not be able to seek it. He could only attain truth the moment he desires to search for truth. Therefore if man able to seek it he is not totally estrange with truth and vice versa. This simply means that if man coincides with the truth, he will no longer crave for the truth. The truth is already in him. It is up to him how to mingle with it. Truth is easy to achieve, sometimes we are place in a certain situation wherein reality is tested by truth. Senses do not lie, therefore if man corresponds to his senses concretely and definitely he will eventually achieve the ultimate truth that completes his existence.

3. God is absolute presence, the absolute thou. Whatever is true of the infinite being, it clearly could not be correct to represent Him as outside the finite. The plenitude of being includes me; therefore, the thought which seeks the infinite cannot approach it as it approaches things which are “somethings” alongside of other things. And the knower who affirms the infinite cannot be an anonymous epistemological subject, but a unique singular self.
When we speak of God, it is not about God that we speak. God is an absolute presence, or Absolute thou. Whatever is true of the infinite being, it clearly could not be correct to represent Him outside the finite. God is not an object for He is supremely non-objectifiable. He is not juxtaposed to my existence. The question about the existence of God is raised only in function of an exigence which is felt by the subject. Man’s longing for God is not epistemologically irrelevant, but uniquely and irreducibly evidential. The evidence of God is there only for an apprehending self and the mode of existing of his self is a component of this evidence. When we speak about God, it is not about God that we speak. To speak about God means an absence of his presence. God is uniquely placed in the mind of the being. God as an infinite being could not be represented outside the finite. His presence overflows in the finite being. If God is placed in the word it means that he is outside the nature of the finite being. God is not an absent being He is always present. Thus if we seek for the presence of God who is infinite we could not express him as something or a being there. The desire for the plenitude of being is the ultimate face which participation presents to my thought. It is in the nature of man to discover God. His presence is not contained in words but it is an inner disposition of one’s self. God is transcendence. He is not a mere something which refers as an object but He is an absolute presence or thou.
God is unique, ultimate source and goal of all beings; infinite plenitude of all perfection. The nature of God is to be pure unlimited act of existence, which ipso facto thereby contains within itself all possible real perfection. This means that he is the highest possible qualitative intensity of perfection, not He swallows up within himself all the numerical diversity of all other existing finite beings too. God plus His creatures make more beings, not more being. No one of our limited concepts can express explicitly all this fullness to us. Hence, we must use many, which are not synonyms for us. But this posits no real multiplicity of distinct parts or qualities in God himself. They all refer to the same identical simple reality of God, seen incompletely from various points of view. Thus, though our concepts of God do not explicitly include each other, neither do they exclude or oppose each other. Implicitly they include each other, although we cannot see this clearly. We would see that all are merely explicit unfolding of what is already implicitly contained in the one ultimate simple perfection of pure unlimited act of existence as total active presence to itself and to all others. My existence is a genuine notion that is necessary in making an argument about God. Since my existence is a direct contact with God, I am sure that as a knower I affirm my existence because I am thinking of the existence of God. My act of knowing justify that I am a pure knower and thus cannot be an anonymous subject, but a unique singular subject.

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