I'm not sure yesterday's post was as clear as I would have liked, as my blood sugar starts running low when I'm trying to wrap things up, which means that the cognitive fog rolls in just as I'm trying to tie the cosmic room together. So, consider this a clean-up post.
Let's begin with Jaki, who correctly observes that
Whenever a philosopher offers the kind of message which is philosophy, it must contain, at the very minimum, a justification of the means used to convey the message to beings no less real than the author himself.
Which is impossible in a Kantian universe. In other words, as every baseball fan knows, the batter cannot steal first base. Rather, he must earn his way there by getting a base hit or base on balls, or being hit by the pitch.
Come to think of it, the batter may also reach base via an error, and this is precisely how most philosophers manage to get there -- except it is a result of their own unacknowledged miscue.
Probably the most obvious example of such a self-justifying error would be any form of materialism, a metaphysic that can account for neither philosophers nor philosophy, not to mention minds, truth, certitude, etc. Certainly Darwinism can't account for the truth of Darwinism (which we most certainly acknowledge as far as it goes), but as the Aphorist says,
It is not the false idea that is the dangerous one, but the partially correct one (Dávila).
Now, every thinking person, by virtue of being one (a person and therefore a thinker), should be able to agree with the following aphorism:
Science, when it finishes explaining everything, but being unable to explain the consciousness that creates it, will not have explained anything.
From this follows the axiomatic truth that science is incapable of accounting for reality in full. To believe otherwise is not only to steal first, but to pretend one has made it all the way home. Thus, we can know from the outset that
To believe that science is enough is the most naïve of superstitions.
Or, maybe you're just intellectually lazy, or a tasteless rube:
The rhetoric that is in the worst taste is that which renounces transcendence without renouncing its vocabulary.
Or just a barbarian:
Those who reject all metaphysics secretly harbor the coarsest.
Bad news / good news: one way or another, history -- like you and me and everything else -- will have a temporal end. This is another truth we can know with 100% certitude, that history will surely end, and when it does,
The definitive scientific sum will never be anything more than the prejudice existing at the moment when humanity becomes extinct.
This "scientific sum," whatever it turns out to be, is but a quantitative notion that will have no impact, one way or another, on those necessary and eternal truths that are accessible to us now and always, and to which we have a right, by virtue of being human persons. For
Truth is in history, but history is not truth.
Time soon erodes what is said about the soul but it never even scratches what the soul says.
Scraping the painting, we do not find the meaning of the picture, only a blank and mute canvas. Equally, it is not in scratching about in nature that we will find its sense.
Much of what goes by the name of science isn't even science, because it is not falsifiable. Moreover, to the extent that it is truly scientific, this is always an epistemologically modest claim, for
Being only falsifiable, a scientific thesis is never certain but is merely current.
"Current truth" is nice -- we won't turn it down -- but in order to live a truly human life, or a life worthy of the human station, we need a lot more than these temporal and temporary truths. Indeed, these higher truths are what make us human.
Now, critiquing and negating others is all well and good, but is there a positive metaphysic that allows us to honestly get to first base without anti-intellectual trickery, performative contradictions, magical sophistry, etc?
Well, we've been touching on it for the past... actually, for the past 17 years. Have we actually made any progress? NO! Or maybe YES, depending on how we look at it. For
Religious thought does not go forward like scientific thought does, but rather goes deeper.
A thought should not expand symmetrically like a formula, but in a disordered way like a bush.
I suppose these disordered posts will continue until morale improves in the cosmos!