Saturday, February 18, 2012

Temporality and Imagination


Though I have not had time to post regularly, I do with to comment on the ongoing discussion at Archive Fire, Knowledge Ecology, and Footnotes to Plato.

I argue that imagination is an emergent feature of nature whose principle root is the temporality of nature.  Human imagination dilates the present moment and manipulates its temporality, i.e., manipulates the inter-relations of present, past, and future.  Human imagination’s primary function is the projection of the anticipated consequences of an action, i.e., the meaning of an action by definition (cf. Peirce), and thus imagination allows us to make the anticipated future part of the present.  To the extent that we may anticipate the consequences of our transactions with the world, we may render it comprehensible.

I am arguing for a kind of naturalism, but not scietnfic or reductive naturalism.  E.g., I hold that imagination is an extension of and continuous with the basic anticipation of any homeostatic organism, though it is not reducible to it.  I may explain this in more detail, but let me say that a reader without familiar with the process metaphysics and emergent naturalism supporting this view cannot take my words at face value, as they will likely misjudge the implied arguments.  I can supply a short annotated bibliography upon request in addition to my own work.

Some technical points about the above.  Yes, I take phenomenological temporality to be continuous with natural temporality, which is a major deviation from the Husserlian tradition of phenomenology.  Screw Kant and his insistence that time is the inner form of representation; we can do without that presumed dualism of body and mind.  The utter lack of the concept of continuity is part of the Americanist rejection of many post-Kantian philosophies, especially in metaphysics and phenomenology.  This is also part of my own hesitance to accept object-oriented ontology insomuch as it rejects continuity.  (This seems to vary depending on which OOO-thinker we are talking about.)

1 comment:

  1. Yes, "homeostatic" can be translated into "autopoetic" terms.

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