Sunday, June 10, 2012

Freedom, Chance, and Necessity in Ontogenesis

Yesterday, I wrote about a "deep implication" of my view for ontogenesis and asked Matt of Footnotes to Plato to comment, and he did comment. I wrote:

"As I have written here before, “form” is the name for the momentary structure of an event. However, potentiality precedes form, which is not an Aristotelian view. One deep implication of this view is that  in ontogenesis, when the most basic elements of a cosmology have not become more complex structures, there might be no distinction between time and chance."

There might be no distinction between time and chance in ontgenesis. Why? Because unlike Aristotle, I argue that potentiality is prior to form, i.e., becoming is prior to being. Aristotle argued that potentiality always inheres in substance that includes form, and form generally dictates what potentialities are possible for a substance.

Matt asked me, "what would be the difference between genesis by chance and by absolute freedom?" to which I responded "none." He was invoking Schelling, especially Ages of the World and On the Essence of Human Freedom.

The Pythagoreas are right: the unlimited is terrible. Freedom comes first, but if it does, then something other than freedom must play the part of limit and necessity. That is God.


  1. Another response to some of these issues:

  2. Thanks, Matt. I left out the link; sorry.