by baldilocks

You’ll want your choice of non-alcoholic beverage while reading this.

Philosophy can be a bit like a computer getting creakier. It starts well, dealing with significant and serious issues that matter to anyone. Yet, in time, it can get bloated and bogged down and slow. Philosophy begins to care less about philosophical questions than about philosophers’ questions, which then consume increasing amounts of intellectual attention. The problem with philosophers’ questions is not that they are impenetrable to outsiders — although they often are, like any internal game — but that whatever the answers turn out to be, assuming there are any, they do not matter, because nobody besides philosophers could care about the questions in the first place.

This is an old problem. In the sixteenth century, the French scholar and doctor François Rabelais satirized scholastic philosophy in his Gargantua and Pantagruel. In a catalogue of 139 invented book titles that he attributes to the library of the Abbey of St. Victor, he lists such titles as “The Niddy-noddy of the Satchel-loaded Seekers, by Friar Blindfastatis” and “The Raver and idle Talker in cases of Conscience.”

Centuries later, we seem to be back to the same problem. This is how philosophy speaks today: “The Failure of Class: Postcapitalist narrative and textual precapitalist theory” and “Deconstructing Lyotard: Cultural narrative and premodern dedeconstructivism.” Or: “As Lewis taught us in a classic series of articles, trope theories Gettierise zombie arguments” and “While the contextualist disagrees, we still hold that supposed mind/body ‘problems’ cannot generate an unacceptably Russellian picture of the world.”

Do not try to understand these lines. I produced the first two using a “Postmodernism Generator,” and the second two using an “Analytic Philosophy Generator.” They sound like real examples of contemporary scholasticism — philosophy talking about itself to itself in its own jargon. Such scholasticism is the ultimate freezing of the system, the equivalent of a Windows computer’s “blue screen of death”: so many resources are devoted to internal issues that no external input can be processed anymore, and the system stops working. The world may be undergoing a revolution, Rome may be burning, but the philosophical discourse remains detached, meaningless, and utterly oblivious. Time for an upgrade.

Read the whole thing. Flip on your brain’s comprehension and application switches first. It’s amazing that all too many of us need to be reminded to do these things. I think that’s a summation of this essay.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. (Her older blog is located here.) Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2012. Her second novel tentatively titled Arlen’s Harem, will be done one day soon! Follow her on Twitter and on Gab.ai.

Please contribute to Juliette’s JOB:  Her new novel, her blog, her Internet to keep the latter going and COFFEE to keep her going!

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If you missed it, read part one here.

Your child is learning to act like an adult. So make them do so.

When we lived in Hawaii, I quickly became addicted to Japanese Ramen. Not the crappy 15 cent stuff you ate in college because you were poor (I cooked mine in a coffee pot, so I got my daily dosage of caffeine and salt at the same time!), but the hand made noodles, slow cooked broth and sauteed vegetables that characterize really good Ramen.

Real Ramen looks like this…
Continue reading “Child raising for the Millenial, part 2”

As longtime readers might know my radio show DaTechGuy on DaRadio ended three years ago and since last year it has been replaced by a podcast titled DaTechGuy off DaRadio which is still carried online by the 405media , emailed to subscribers when it’s done and available on this site (usually by Wednesday) by clicking on the fedora in the upper right corner.

What you might not know is two years ago I recorded a pilot series (under my own name Peter Ingemi) for WQPH 89.3 Catholic Radio on prayer called Your Prayer Intentions where I talk prayer and scripture and then pray.

This week I was informed by WQPH that they have decided to pick up the series and will be airing the already recorded and airing them Saturdays starting this weekend, consequently they will be wanting me to record new episodes as soon as practicable.

So keep an ear open for WQPH 89.3 on Saturdays and Catch Your Prayer Intentions and if you HAVE a prayer intention that you’d like me to pray for either on the air or off, email me here at prayerrequests at DaTechGuyblog dot com and I will include said intentions in my prayers during the show. If you have prayer intentions and do not want them aired but still want them prayed for make sure that is noted in your email.

As the naem of the show implies this show is all about souls and the church, there will be nothing political about it, but don’t worry, if you are looking for our insightful commentary concerning the events of the week DaTechGuy off DaRadio will still be carrying on with two hours of talk and thought for you to enjoy.

So keep an ear open for WQPH 89.3 on Saturdays and Catch Your Prayer Intentions.

Update: Dropped a character on that built in email link should be working now