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Professor Frank N Steinisch I was working through the ideas of metaphysical waste and stumbled on the following negation:
Freddy Faust You mean the atom was born of a double negation? A kind of denial of meaning flowing into the world? A denial of the idea that the world is not made of stuff but of movement?
Nadim Can it be that the philosophical concept of substance is nothing more than the waste left over once the forms of the world are severed from their roots?
Professor Frank N Steinisch Hi Jacques. I wondered what you thought of this?
Jacques I think, if we are able to unpack this image, we would find the core of the Kantian legacy and those he attempted to synthesize.
Professor Frank N Steinisch Happy to do that. When are you free?
Jacques Later this month?
Ibn Aflatun Just a note, really. The Collective has been working on transcribing a dialogue on human understanding. It is loosely based on Locke and Hume – but circles around a number of related writers, philosophers, and thinkers. It uses the following:
Ali Yes, I recognize this. This echoes across all our work. You say it is the basis or grammatical principle of understanding?
Ibn Aflatun Yes.
Nadim I find this music really hypnotic.
Karl You work and write to it, don’t you?
Nadim Yes, like Steve Reich, John Adams, and Nik Bartsch – I find it helps me think – repetition & variation – the creative flow in the natural order. From leaves, trees, plants, all species, chemical elements – it is everywhere. And, for me, the human being, is a distinctive growth, including our culture –
Ali So Freddy, I was thinking about how forms, patterns, emerge out of the deeper semiotic field, the Heraclitean flux – and how, in particular, the beauty of form is closely linked to the root of nature and its unknowability.
Freddy Yes, we have often discussed this. I am intrigued by this drawing. It is new, isn’t it?
Ali Yes, I was with Nadim this afternoon. We stumbled into when we were working through the question of how evil is born in the world.
John I heard an interesting idea.
John We haven’t talked for some time.
George No. That last series of conversations was really interesting. I went away and began working with Karl and Freddy.
John I went away and worked with an ecological philosophy group. That’s where I stumbled into this. One of the younger female researchers, working on the way ecological thinking runs counter to our current university specialisms, talked about the importance of doing more than resisting capitalism in education. It wasn’t enough, she said, just to critique the systems we move in. We need a new philosophy of education. We all know that funding and policy is driven by certain general ideas of the purpose of education. Criticising the narrow, economic orientation of much policy is just not enough.
George What else is there?
John To produce a philosophy of education, she said when I asked her the same question, to support the development of an ecological civilisation.
Nadim I call it ‘Urwerke’. It’s not entirely a joke, but there’s something slightly Dadaesque in the naming of it.
Karl Because it belongs to that tradition?
Nadim I think of Rene Daumal in ‘Pataphysics, Queneau & Perec in the OULIPO. Movements that break the categories that divide up experience, movements that restore a sense of wholeness.
Karl Your work wants to return to a deeper sense of experience? An experience that lies at the root of mathematics and art?