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Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Discuss any topics related to metaphysics (the philosophical study of the principles of reality) or epistemology (the philosophical study of knowledge) in this forum.
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Belindi
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Re: Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Post by Belindi » July 8th, 2019, 1:52 pm

There is no point to the story Lolita except the moral point. Did you think it was erotica? I suppose some people always read nothing but literal meanings and sensationalism. I hope you are not one of those?

A work of sound and fury is fine but surely must signify something for anyone with a brain.

GaryLouisSmith
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Re: Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Post by GaryLouisSmith » July 8th, 2019, 7:27 pm

Belindi wrote:
July 8th, 2019, 1:52 pm
There is no point to the story Lolita except the moral point. Did you think it was erotica? I suppose some people always read nothing but literal meanings and sensationalism. I hope you are not one of those?

A work of sound and fury is fine but surely must signify something for anyone with a brain.
I think your reply right there is a good example of the social having replaced the religious. I contend that Nabokov’s Lolita is a piece of religious writing, but that seems to go right past you and you interpret it as something very human only: a moralistic story or erotica. I think you are not alone in being unable to think religiously. That is the style today. About ten pages into the novel he writes “between the age limits of nine and fourteen there occur maidens who, to certain bewitched travelers, twice or thrice older than they, reveal their true nature which is not human, but nymphic (that is demoniac): and these chosen creatures I propose to designate as ‘nymphets.’ “ She is an “immortal daemon disguised as a female child”.

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Re: Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Post by GaryLouisSmith » July 9th, 2019, 1:48 am

Belindi wrote:
July 8th, 2019, 1:52 pm
There is no point to the story Lolita except the moral point. Did you think it was erotica? I suppose some people always read nothing but literal meanings and sensationalism. I hope you are not one of those?

A work of sound and fury is fine but surely must signify something for anyone with a brain.
In Lolita, Humbert Humbert was bewitched. A witch took possession of him. What is a witch? First what is a nymph. A Greek nymph lived in a spring of limpid water. That sparkling heavy essence came up from underground. It was a chthonic thing. A spring is the home of snakes. On the one hand crystal clear water has the loveliness of a young girl, of a gentle breeze, of a gentle touch. On the other hand it has the mind of a snake. Appearance vs. reality. Such a thing has power to hypnotize you. You are in thrall. You are bewitched. Lolita was a witch. What must one do when one is possessed, mesmerized and bewitched?

Does one have a moral obligation to not believe? But, Oh, the attraction is soooo strong. Do only the morally upright have the strength to resist that seductive madness? Have you ever been in the presence of madness and felt its pull? Demonic snakes from the Underworld guard a treasure, the wisdom of being. If you let yourself go you will finally have knowledge. So you go mad. A demonic being guides you. And loves you. How can you break that bondage and go back to human not knowing? Maybe you should look to Faust.

Faust made a pact with the Devil and got his reward, but his soul was lost. In the end it was another female, Gretchen, that saved him. For Faust woman is both demonic and heavenly. Is woman the salvation of man? And his fall?

Lolita is madness, simple insanity. That is the divine. To deny its existence is to fall into it. The gods beckon. You feel a jerk in your nerves. And that is the origin of art.

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Re: Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Post by Belindi » July 9th, 2019, 4:10 am

GaryLouisSmith wrote:
July 8th, 2019, 7:27 pm
Belindi wrote:
July 8th, 2019, 1:52 pm
There is no point to the story Lolita except the moral point. Did you think it was erotica? I suppose some people always read nothing but literal meanings and sensationalism. I hope you are not one of those?

A work of sound and fury is fine but surely must signify something for anyone with a brain.
I think your reply right there is a good example of the social having replaced the religious. I contend that Nabokov’s Lolita is a piece of religious writing, but that seems to go right past you and you interpret it as something very human only: a moralistic story or erotica. I think you are not alone in being unable to think religiously. That is the style today. About ten pages into the novel he writes “between the age limits of nine and fourteen there occur maidens who, to certain bewitched travelers, twice or thrice older than they, reveal their true nature which is not human, but nymphic (that is demoniac): and these chosen creatures I propose to designate as ‘nymphets.’ “ She is an “immortal daemon disguised as a female child”.
And you fell for that rationalisation of his entitlement to possess the enchantress ? No human activity is devoid of value. Lolita was more than a bewitching personality she was a vulnerable child.
I am not a theologian but I bet there is something in RC and indeed in Protestant and Muslim doctrine against idolatry.You said you are RC. Do you really think ritual and the trappings of ritual are more substantial than aids to good living?

Lolita is neither a supernatural goddess nor a sex object but a human child.Her sexual attraction is part of her vulnerability. She is is not psychologically able to be sexualised.

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Re: Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Post by GaryLouisSmith » July 9th, 2019, 5:44 am

Belindi wrote:
July 9th, 2019, 4:10 am


Lolita is neither a supernatural goddess nor a sex object but a human child.Her sexual attraction is part of her vulnerability. She is is not psychologically able to be sexualised.
Belindi, It's just a story, not a news report. If you want to interpret it as something that really happened and Humbert Humbert gave his understanding of it to the police, that's ok, but I don't think Nabokov meant it that way. I think he knew Greek mythology and he simply transposed that to the American Midwest. I think he meant it as a religious writing, not journalism. Btw, I am not RC Roman Catholic. It must have been someone else who told you that.

The serious story is true because it identifies the people and places not only as particulars but also as symbols of some general idea. If Nabokov were not a serious writer his books would not be famous. Pulp fiction is just that.

Belindi
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Re: Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Post by Belindi » July 9th, 2019, 6:14 am

GaryLouisSmith;

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reading_Lolita_in_Tehran

BTW the following is what I wrote:
The serious story is true because it identifies the people and places not only as particulars but also as symbols of some general idea. If Nabokov were not a serious writer his books would not be famous. Pulp fiction is just that.

Sorry, Gary, I must have pressed the wrong button that's twice this morning. I'll be more careful.

GaryLouisSmith
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Re: Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Post by GaryLouisSmith » July 9th, 2019, 7:46 am

Belindi wrote:
July 9th, 2019, 6:14 am
GaryLouisSmith;

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reading_Lolita_in_Tehran

BTW the following is what I wrote:
The serious story is true because it identifies the people and places not only as particulars but also as symbols of some general idea. If Nabokov were not a serious writer his books would not be famous. Pulp fiction is just that.

Sorry, Gary, I must have pressed the wrong button that's twice this morning. I'll be more careful.
Thanks for correcting that clich in posting. How do those things happen? I have had other strange things happen on this site. As for the interpretation of Nabokov I presented, I follow Roberto Callaso in his book Literature and the Gods. I have no objection to how someone interprets a piece of writing. I only assert my interpretation as of value. The fact that I have a religious interpretation, I know, must seem strange to people who have no sense of the religious, but that's the contemporary mind for you. Why do moralists like you insist, absolutely insist, that your and only your interpretation is the right one?

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Re: Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Post by Belindi » July 9th, 2019, 1:21 pm

I don't know any other interpretation that would stop Lolita being sensationalist light reading. Sensations are necessary but not sufficient.

I don't know what you mean by a "sense of the religious" . I think religion is the means by which people introduce passions and consolations into the rather dry need for social order. You also write of "magic". What magic means to me is attempts to control natural and human events without the benefit of much information.

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Re: Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Post by GaryLouisSmith » July 9th, 2019, 6:59 pm

Belindi wrote:
July 9th, 2019, 1:21 pm
I don't know any other interpretation that would stop Lolita being sensationalist light reading. Sensations are necessary but not sufficient.

I don't know what you mean by a "sense of the religious" . I think religion is the means by which people introduce passions and consolations into the rather dry need for social order. You also write of "magic". What magic means to me is attempts to control natural and human events without the benefit of much information.
Here in Nepal – and I think Nepal is much the same as everywhere else – most males are worried about maintaining their virility. They need power. Where does power come from? It always comes through the female. Shakti is the goddess that gives power to the gods and to human beings alike. And the part of Hinduism that deals in Shakti is Tantra.

Shakti is not a sky divinity. She is from the Underworld, Patal. She is Queen of the Underworld in most religions. She is the chthonic. And men are afraid of Her.

As Queen of the Underworld, this goddess who goes by many names, is unclean as menstrual blood and death are unclean. Here is the supreme Tantric ritual. Hindu Dharma says that a male must not do certain things: eat meat, drink alcohol, eat a certain type of fermented grain, eat fish, touch menstrual blood, touch a dead body etc.. To perform the Tantric ritual and thereby get power, the male must violate all of those taboos. At midnight, during the new moon, on the cremation grounds he must eat meat and fish, drink alcohol, and lick the menstrual blood of a low caste whore. It is only by partaking of those unlawful, underworld things that he will get power and virility. Power comes through unclean flesh. We are not dealing in the pure meditation of high consciousness here, which makes a man impotent.

Woman is extremely frightening, but also the source of power. Her power is also the madness of her menstrual period.

Religion has nothing to do with a rationalistic maintenance of social order. It is the madness of female sexuality. Most women know they have that power and even though they are lowly underworld, unclean beings, they want to keep things the way they are. Woman knows she has power over man. Most men tremble at the sight of the Vulva, and feel they must conquer it. It's a mystical thing.

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Re: Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Post by Belindi » July 10th, 2019, 4:52 am

Thank you for your piece which I like very much about Shakti and the masculine .Power is basic to human relations. You write "men are afraid of her".It was ever so. We are all afraid of those we hold in bondage, hence the cruelty of conquerors. Feminism liberates men too.

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Re: Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Post by GaryLouisSmith » July 10th, 2019, 6:18 am

Belindi wrote:
July 10th, 2019, 4:52 am
Thank you for your piece which I like very much about Shakti and the masculine .Power is basic to human relations. You write "men are afraid of her".It was ever so. We are all afraid of those we hold in bondage, hence the cruelty of conquerors. Feminism liberates men too.
Do men hold women in bondage or do women hold men in bondage? I see it as the latter. Are women reluctant to give up the hold they have on men? I think most men are in thrall to that womb.

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Re: Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Post by Belindi » July 10th, 2019, 11:12 am

You have read a different history book then.

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Re: Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Post by GaryLouisSmith » July 10th, 2019, 5:34 pm

Belindi wrote:
July 10th, 2019, 11:12 am
You have read a different history book then.
One of the most important books I have read is Camille Paglia's Sexual Personae. https://www.amazon.com/Sexual-Personae- ... 407&sr=1-2

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Re: Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Post by Consul » July 11th, 2019, 8:20 pm

GaryLouisSmith wrote:
July 7th, 2019, 10:34 pm
If F(x) is a fact, then <F(x)> is the idea of it. In his earlier work fact and idea were connected with the nexus of intentionality M, which stood for “means”. <F(x)> M F(x). The fact is complex and the idea of it is simple. It’s a one-many relation. In New Foundations, he says that fact and idea are connected without nexus, just as are class and its elements. <F(x)> M F(x) is for Bergmann analytically true. Does that mean that for every fact there is an idea of it?
No, it doesn't—unless facts (qua obtaining states of affairs) depend for their being on being represented, i.e. on being intentional objects/objectives of thought. But I don't think they do.

How can an "idea" of a fact be (mereologically) simple when it is an entire thought or proposition?

There's a "one-many relation" in the sense that one and the same fact can be represented by different propositions or statements.
"We may philosophize well or ill, but we must philosophize." – Wilfrid Sellars

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Re: Are you a Realist or a Nominalist?

Post by GaryLouisSmith » July 11th, 2019, 9:04 pm

Consul wrote:
July 11th, 2019, 8:20 pm
GaryLouisSmith wrote:
July 7th, 2019, 10:34 pm
If F(x) is a fact, then <F(x)> is the idea of it. In his earlier work fact and idea were connected with the nexus of intentionality M, which stood for “means”. <F(x)> M F(x). The fact is complex and the idea of it is simple. It’s a one-many relation. In New Foundations, he says that fact and idea are connected without nexus, just as are class and its elements. <F(x)> M F(x) is for Bergmann analytically true. Does that mean that for every fact there is an idea of it?
No, it doesn't—unless facts (qua obtaining states of affairs) depend for their being on being represented, i.e. on being intentional objects/objectives of thought. But I don't think they do.

How can an "idea" of a fact be (mereologically) simple when it is an entire thought or proposition?

There's a "one-many relation" in the sense that one and the same fact can be represented by different propositions or statements.
Since a thought for Bergmann is a universal and you don't believe in universals, I can see why you would say what you did. I think you would also not see a thought as a trope, but maybe you do. I really don't understand just what you think a thought is.

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