Note to myself: the future never arrives. It was never there.
Something arrives. Just not the future. Rather, all we can really know is the new present. The present is always here, and we are always in it.
Pro-tip right there.
Still, we can't help thinking about the future. We are situated in this dimension called time, which has three distinct and extraordinarily different modalities: past, present, future. These three are so different in character that it's difficult to see how they could be the same thing; or, three views of the same thing. And yet, there it is: was, is, and will be.
I'm out of the loop. Has anyone cracked the enigma of time? Or have we still made no progress since Augustine's remark that if no one asks us, we know what time is. But if we wish to explain it, then we have no idea.
It seems to me that science just putters around the edges of such mysteries. It can only assume time, not explain it. Likewise little things like causality, law, consciousness, subject, origin, event, etc. These are all prerequisites for science and therefore unexplainable by science -- just as the eye cannot see itself or the Antifa support himself.
You might say that science is one way to metabolize the mystery of existence. But just because you have metabolized it in a certain way, it hardly means you have done so exhaustively, or that nothing remains to be digested. Indeed, no explanation, no matter how complete, ever extinguishes the mystery, and may even deepen it.
As Feser explains, "there is simply no reason to suppose that physics gives us anything close to an exhaustive description of reality in the first place," and "ample reason to think that it does not." It "focuses its attention on those aspects of nature which can be described in the language of mathematics," but by definition leaves out everything that is not subject to mathematization. Thus, "if there are features" of the world "that cannot be captured by this method, physics is guaranteed to not find them."
Mathematics is an abstraction, indeed, the most abstract language available to man. But it is only possible because there is something concrete prior to it. We cannot live in mathworld. There must be something of an "intrinsic character" that simply is what it is, and can never be reduced to an abstraction.
It seems to me that this is Gödel's bottom line take, and yet, so few really take it to the bottom: that all of our intellectual systems are ultimately projections on the mystery of existence.
However, according to my sources, Gödel never intended this to consign us to a Kantian shadow-world of phenomenal appearances only, with no possibility of knowing reality. Rather, the opposite: that of course we have access to truths we cannot prove with our reason, the latter of which is always self-enclosed and tautological.
In short, we can exit the cave and see the sun. But we can never contain the sun in our own little abstract systems. To think otherwise is... G3AOA -- Genesis 3 All Over Again.
So, one must maintain a complementary balance reality and idea, or between concrete and abstract. Again, no matter how sophisticated your idea, reality nevertheless is what it is. Indeed, the more sophisticated the idea, the more one may be tempted to imagine that it is adequate.
This is precisely where idea transmogrifies into ideology, where education devolves to indoctrination, and where math is fallaciously reified into a misplaced concreteness.
It is the difference between mathworld and mythworld. No civilization can be founded upon mathworld, let alone maintained on it. Infertile eggheads who imagine otherwise are just leaves leafing in denial of the trunk and roots of the cosmic tree that nourishes them.
From a psychological standpoint there are two forms of independence, the real kind and a pseudo version. Real independence is always rooted in what we call "mature dependence." Conversely, to imagine we are literally independent -- an I without a We -- is the worst kind of narcissism. I think many libertarians fall into the latter error. Conversely, leftists champion a version of immature dependence in elevating the We to the detriment of the I.
Come to think of it, this is precisely the subject of Who Are We?: The Challenges to America's National Identity. The questions 'Who Are We?' and 'Who Am I?' are absolutely intertwined and complementary: one cannot ask one without asking the other, either explicitly or implicitly.
And at the basis of our civil war are two completely irreconcilable version of the I and We. In other words, the We of the left has absolutely nothing in common with the We to which I belong. That may sound polemical, but it is quite accurate, and cuts right to the heart of the dispute.
I've highlighted so many passages in the book that I scarcely know where to begin. I'm almost out of time anyway, but let's just say that Trump not only speaks for the forgotten We of America, but for a We that the multicultural and transnational left effectively wishes to eradicate.
And I mean that literally. Ultimately what the left wishes to eliminate is Americans, that is, people who identify with our founding, our traditions, our history, our myths, our spiritual vision, and our exceptional mission. Even our statues. And certainly our constitution.
Let's put it this way: you can deconstruct the shorthand myth of George Washington cutting down the cherry tree. Fine. But if you are not mythopoetically awed by the greatness of the man, and deny his national fatherhood, then we are not only no longer brothers but members of different and hostile tribes.