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Notes on ‘Why is Being not a being’ in Heidegger’s Being and Time argument?

May 26 2020 Published by under Uncategorized

Notes on Why is Being not a being? Good Question.

[My responses to this question from discussion of Heidegger Being and Time reading group on Continental Philosophy discord server. See]

Being as an Entity is God, i.e. the supreme entity that creates all others in the Western tradition. God as the Supreme Being is the subject of what Heidegger calls OntoTheology which a way of summarizing the Western tradition which says you cannot separate Ontology and Theology in the Western tradition. God is Transcendent and is Being as Transcendent. It was Plotinus that said that the One was beyond Being, i.e., that there is an Absolute beyond Being. This of course raises the specter that God as Supreme Being is something lower than the Absolute and this in fact is the Duality of the Divine in Gnosticism. Heidegger does not consider Being as a being because that would make his work Theology rather than Ontology. This is the confusion that Spinoza embraced when he thought that the Universe was God. Spinoza identified the Supreme Being and the Cosmic oneness and thus embraced Pantheism. One way to solve this kind of problem is to distinguish the Absolute from God in the sense of Supreme Being who might be identified with the Kosmos. It was a way to create a rational picture of God and to avoid the pitfall of trinitarianism and the whole problem of the fundamental vagueness and unscientific nature of the Bible. The Absolute in a way is the dual of Dasein. The absolute is a way to avoid the problem of Spinoza of confusing the Kosmos as Creation the Creator. The absolute is the focus of negative theology which says we can only say what God is not, not what God is, so God is absolutely transcendent. Not relative to other “persons” or avatars within the trinity, not relative to its creation. What God would have been on his own before creation of the Kosmos. The absolute is a way to get rid of the dualities of theology, like Creation/Created that was the pitfall that Spinoza wanted to overcome by just identifying them. Dasein is a way of getting over the duality between Subject and Object that was a problem for Husserl.

Ok, I will try again. I would argue that Being is not a universal as presupposed by Heideggrer in B&T and by the Western tradition in general. Being is only in Indo-European Languages. People who would distinguish Being from beings, i.e. uphold Ontological Difference, are assuming it is a Universal as well as Abstract for the most part and that beings is neither particular or concrete. But if it is not universal that means there are other Standings, or instance existence (Wujud) which are in various varieties as existentials in other languages that are not Indo-European. But this also implies that there is a Genus of Standings which are differentiated into different species of Standings like Existence and Being and perhaps others. This has bearing on you question. Because a basic assumption of Fundamental Ontology is that not only is a being different from Being (Big B) but also Being is a universal, and is abstract rather than concrete and particular. And this does not even touch the assumption that we are using a Set-like frame rather than masses to understand Being. In India they use pervasion logic and for them Being is a mass like the Sea in which there are instances of beings within it. And that is why Emptiness which is the denial of Being is also seen as pervasive cancelling out ‘Sat’ with the fundamental denial of Being. If you extend beyond the Western worldview our vision of the place of Being within the Western worldview then we start seeing that Being has limitations not contemplated by Heidegger in B&T and which makes us think perhaps it is more like an abstract entity than or at least like a generalization that has exceptions. But in fact from a linguistic point of view Being itself is an exception among languages.

Existentials are the Rule in languages and Being is the exception only appearing as a standing in Indo-European languages. But at most this makes Being a Generalization or an Abstraction not concrete as either a particular nor an instance.

But you are jumping ahead because Heidegger himself questions whether ontological difference holds in his Contributions. Beyng is considered Onefold, Strange and Unique. In it Ontological difference breaks down and there is no entity nor either the normal abstraction or generalization.

Heidegger himself questions whether Being is a being, and eventually decides that just like he had to get rid of the duality between Subject and Object with Dasein he also has to get rid of the duality between Being and being.

But no where would Heidegger say that Being is a being because that is tantamount to saying that this being is God in Ontotheology, ah but that is what the avatar of Christ is, oops.

The position that you are giving here that Being is a being is what Plato in the Sophist calls the Men of Earth who only believe in what is in their hands, they are the uninitiated. The initiated are either those like Heraclitus initiated into the lesser mysteries believe in the unseen and think it is flowing. Those initiated into the greater mysteries are like Parmenides or Zeno and believe in the unseen and think it is static. The Sophist is the Hierophant who says we need change and changelessness at the same time, which is supra-rational and is like the WorldSoul which is a moving image of Eternity in time. The Hierophant knows about the fact that there is a third kind of Being as Plato says in the Timaeus (Chora, receptacle) which is like the DifferAnce of Derrida, i.e. differing and deferring. What we will find out as we go along is that there are Meta-levels of Being and present-at-hand and ready-to-hand are only the first two of these meta-levels and Fundamental Ontology in Continental Philosophy has identified several others of which the third is what Plato recognized and Derrida focused on in his Philosophy and which Heidegger called Being (crossed out).

To me these arguments are moot because Being itself is paradoxical, if not the ultimate paradox in the Western worldview, so any argument about the status of Being differentiated from beings is going to be inherently contradictory. That is why I said it was an aporia. And that is why Russell’s Ramified Higher Logical Type Theory is the way to reveal the Meta-levels of Being which are classes or kinds of Being which are in fact discovered by Continental Philosophy and the beginning of that is Heidegger’s distinction between Pure Being (present-at-hand, nb. Parmenides) and Process Becoming in Action (ready-to-hand, nb. Heraclitus). This is my own nomenclature and interpretation. But it disarms analytical philosophy type arguments because it admits from the outset that this Metaphysical Principle of Being is itself ultimately paradoxical if not absurd, and in fact it goes to the extreme of being intrinsically impossible to make this distinction which Heidegger admits in Contributions when he defines Beyng violating Ontological Difference himself. Russell’s Higher Logical Type Theory was meant to deal with Paradoxes and so we can apply it to Being generating categories and types in a ramified hierarchy. But it turns out this is finite rather than infinite as Heidegger feared when he discovered Being crossed out (Hyper Being). But Godel shows that in spite of this compartmentation it was impossible to prevent contamination in Formal Systems and so basically everyone gave up and resorted to Simple Types. More recently mass-like topological factors have entered the universe of discourse of type theory establishing Homotopy Type Theory based on the Univalence conjecture. In terms of Analytical Philosophy a similar move to that of Heidegger by an Analytical Philosopher is Puntel, Lorenz B. Structure and Being: A Theoretical Framework for a Systematic Philosophy. University Park, Pa: Pennsylvania State Univ. Press, 2013.

But you bring up a good point for the whole group to discuss. Heidegger would say that you cannot even frame your question without pre-ontological understanding of Being by dasein.

The fact that you are framing your question shows that Being is an issue for you, and thus that you are a dasein from Heidegger’s point of view as we shall see.

I thought of another possible answer to your question which I agree that Heidegger does not answer, but only assumes as we shall see, i.e. that Being is different from beings. This question of Being becomes pressing if you read Formal and Transcendental Logic by Husserl because he does not explain where Being comes from in S is P within logic. This book came later than Being and Time I believe (1929). But Heidegger could have known it is was in the works. Its effective silence on what is Being raises the question implicitly about the nature of Being as connector between S and P. But the point is that To Be is a verb. The noun Being is derived from the verb. The noun is a reification nominalized verb from To Be. Thus when we say that S is P, the S here would be a being, i.e. a reified substantiated product of a grammatical operation. that turns the To Be into a noun that is a signifier indicative of Being. and we can see that as Being is a being, i.e. Being appears as a being. Or we could say beings are Being, reversing the proposition.

Either way we are substituting beings and Being into the propositional form with the unexplained IS mediating between them as a verb. But we can also just say Being is in the form of beings. or beings are in the midst of Being (as world) embodying Being in concrete form as instances or particulars or entities of some other nature. The upshot of all this is that the difference between Being and beings is Logical and Grammatical. But fundamentally Being is a verb to be and it is the verbal form that is different from the beings or the Being as reified generality, or supposed universal, or as abstraction against the background of the concrete. Being is different from beings as mediated by the verb To Be within the proposition. And from this point of view if we take Set theory as our model then Being is like the Set of All sets and beings are like the various elements that can be in the set and the is is some version of membership, a rarified kind of having. Note in Indo-European languages the roots for both Being and Having are the most fragmented. So there is some kind of internal relation between Being and Having in Indo-European languages. This is to say that possession of private property and the perpetuity of ownership fi simple is claimed to be eternal, i.e. perduring forever and this relation is inscribed at the core of the worldview as Natural Law of Mine and Yours as Kant says.

Or if we take Mass theory as our basis (as in Geometry and Topology) then Being is the mass and beings are the instances, and Being pervades the beings via the To Be that mediates. The key is that the Being and beings or S and P are reifications of the To Be that mediates. Set with its membership function can be seen to be on the side of Having. And that would suggest that Being and beings as Mass and Instance are on the side of Being originally. And this is emphasized by the fact that in India they used Pervasion logics primarily rather than Syllogistic logic in Greece and Europe. So you get Paradox on the Being has beings or a being has Being side. But on the To Be side of the duality you have pervasion which is known in Greece as participation in one direction and ousia in the other relating essences to attributes.

This would explain why there is the internal relation between Being and Having in Indo-European languages because it relates to the Set/Mass divide. And if that is the case then really we should be considering pervasion logics rather than syllogisms. Pervasion logics are basically Venn diagrams. It means that beings are instances of the mass of Being. And this explains where ousia and participation come from in Plato as the description of essences mediating ideal forms and copies. And this turns into the answer that beings are the copy and the ideal form is Being, and that the being participates in Being while the being embodies Being through ousia in the other direction. And this suggests that the To Be of the proposition is the essence that mediates forms and copies. Form in this case is a Mass and copy in this case is an instance with a pervasion relation between them. And this would imply that Being is a being by a pervasion relation, but if we switch to having then we get the paradoxes of Set theory. So just like the difference between Category Theory and Set Theory. Category Theory does not generate paradoxes. So to Being as Mass does not generate paradox but instead gives essences.

This argument will need to be fleshed out and inspected for coherence. But it basically says that the idea that Being is really a being is a fallacy of misplaced concreteness. The real Being is the To Be between S and P in the statement *S is P *and not the reifications of Being and beings that fill in the variables S and P which are reifications from nominalization of the verb. But it also says that we need to go outside the set-like prejudice of our worldview and realize that paradox comes from that set like presupposition and that the underlying basis of Being is mass, and that is precisely what appears in internal relations between properties within a substance that defines an essence.

This argument explains why there is the difference between the internal relations that are pervasive and the set like differences between different beings within the world that are different substances. This has from the very beginning thrown philosophers for a loop within the Western tradition. It explains where the Essence comes from that mediates between the forms and copies and why there are relations between ousia and participation between forms and copies. And it explains why Being and beings are not the real issue, it is really the connecting To Be within S is P that is the key and this is what Heidegger calls the ecstasy of existence, i.e. the projection of P onto S, i.e. attributes onto substance, predicate onto subject. In other words, this theory explains a few things that otherwise would remain without explanation within our tradition. 







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Apr 23 2020 Published by under Uncategorized

The LacanOnline video ‘A Tour of Lacan’s Graph of Desire’ is excellent.

Note that we could see the Passive Syntheses of the Unconscious as what is fused in Poincon. Notice that envelopment is the nature of Wild Being which I normally call encompassing following Jaspers. Development of the same thing, i.e. what is enveloped, is the connection synthesis. And then you have the opposites of Conjunction and Disjunction. It would be very much like Deleuze to take his entire theory from a single crucial point in Lacan’s theory. Poincon would then be the production of production. The Lozenge which is a supra-rational fusion connects the bared subject with the objet petit a. Bared subject is the subject under erasure, i.e. in Hyper Being (differance, nothingness). Objet petit a is an anamorphic object mediating the registers opposite the Phallus and mediated by the little piece of the real. Phallus is surplus that becomes lack. Objet petit a is lack that becomes screen or surplus as background. Little piece of the real is what interrupts the fantasy of the projection of the Phallus on the screen of the desired. See my interpretation of the Gilda movie. The anamorphic objects are glued to the Barred Subject by the synthesis of the unconscious of non-sense as the elements of Poincon within Wild Being. In other words, Anamorphic eventities are a surplus or deficit synthesized with the subject with Hyper Being, through the operation of Wild Being. This might even make sense ontologically.[11:42 AM]The Graph of Desire is the furthest elaboration of the oedipal regime by Lacan setting up the signifier (Phallus) as castration and thus Lack. But the key point is when the Subject as barred is synthesized with the anamorphic objects, and by dissecting this overall synthesis into its parts Deleuze and Guattari break through the representation of the Oedipal complex into new territory, i.e. the production of production rather than the desire of desire, i.e., Jouissance as the impossibility of satisfaction of desire. Rather in a Hegelian move we get satisfaction of desire and affirmation instead.

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California Systems Dynamics Economic Pandemic Recovery Model

Apr 19 2020 Published by under Uncategorized

It is quite clear that the California Task Force on Business and Jobs Recovery chaired by Tom Steyer and Ann O’Leary should use Systems Dynamics Modeling to trade off policy positions that are being considered. This is because we are in a dynamic situation in which the Pandemic might return and it may be necessary to close down again after partially reopening. This dynamic situation in which there may be a resurgence in the viral load on the economy needs to be modeled in relation to the reopening strategies. Also, the goal should be future resilience and the model could help attempt to plan future strategies that will lead to greater resilience of the economy in the future against not just resurgence of Covid-19, but also against future pandemics.

So, the question needs to be asked what the form of such a California Systems Dynamics Economic Recovery Model should be like. How do we build such a model to support the work of the Task Force that will allow them to trade off different policy choices in relation to the dynamics of the possible pandemic resurgences that might cause the economy to retract again after opening? There clearly has to be a part of the model focused on the pandemic effects and possible contagion dynamics. On the other hand there needs to be a part of the model that focuses on different sectors of the economy. And another part of the model that is social and related to economic factors based on different behaviors of the public as they go back to work and start mixing again creating vulnerabilities for the continued spread of the virus. The right granularity of modeling must be picked based on the kinds of questions the task force has with regard to their policy recommendations to the Governor. Experts from various disciplines such as Economics, Sociology, Business Administration, Infectious Disease Experts and other disciplines need to have input into this model in order to make it robust enough. However, it cannot be too detailed to become unwieldy.

It is suggested that the place to start is with the Causal Loop diagrams that are fundamental to the way in which the dynamics in the economy and in the pandemic are understood. For us the rate of infection is unknown because of a lack of testing. Therefore, we only have a lagging indicator of the rate of hospitalization as the basis of our current modeling. Fortunately, we have been able to flatten the curve and to so far avoid the dire predictions that were first made with regard to the deaths from the pandemic. But the problem is that there is this fine line to be walked between opening up business and reinfection rates. And this is where good modeling could help policy makers attempt to understand different scenarios related to different policy choices in order to avoid unintended consequences. It is actually thrashing that has the most probability of causing harm to the economy. Thrashing means opening up then having to close down again quickly repeatedly. It is the dampening of this possible thrashing that Systems Dynamic Modeling might help us understand better before we make mistakes in our reopening policy recommendations.

My suggestion is that we divide up into teams that would create sub-models of the overall model. It is recommended that there be a generic economic sector model that is elaborated for each specific sector. And that there is a general economy model that represents that sector’s interaction with the whole economy. There needs to be a pandemic epidemiological sub-model hooked to various models of the pandemic itself and its dynamics. There needs to be a part of the model that represents government actions and then another part of the model that represents public response. The workforce needs to be represented and the relation between unemployment and reemployment. Companies and their supply chains also need to be represented in this model. In other words, it needs to be comprehensive with regard to the Pandemic situation we face but at a high enough level of abstraction so that it can actually help reflect the differences in policy choices that are considered by the task force. The model should be open to inspection by the public so that others might critique it and so we get maximum input into the model from experts in the various fields represented in the model. A public model would inspire more confidence in decisions based on the model than a private model. But this is of course a task force decision.

Here is the key to why such a model is useful in a situation like this. The model becomes a repository for your knowledge of the situation. It allows you to focus on what you need to know in order to make decisions which you can then build into the model. Then it gives you a place to plug in the relevant data as it is known in order to discover the impact as the situation evolves. It gives a way to focus on details as sub-systems within the overall model are considered by experts, but then there is an overall answer at the highest level of abstraction that can drive policy choice selection given different scenarios.

Systems Dynamics is a standard technique. There are many different experts in building these kinds of models who exist and can be recruited to help build it. It brings to the fore the dynamics one is concerned about which in this case is re-infection verses business functioning and the openness of the economy. This same approach could work for every state. There could be a shared model between states that is generic so that other states could benefit from the work on the California model.

I recommend that Systems Scientists in California and other experts who know how to build Systems Dynamics Models as well as disciplinary specialists cooperate to produce a model that Government and Business leaders can use to guide their policy recommendations and choices in these trying times.


Coda: To Sys-sci google group

Thanks to everyone for your comments.

I am reading this study with an eye to whether it provides a starting point for attempting causal loop diagrams.
What I think it is worth while trying to model is the possible thrashing of the system if there is a sequence of closed…open…closed…open… as a result of opening too early that looks likely in some places. When a machine starts thrashing that is when it can literally tear itself apart. And it is this possibility of thrashing that I think it is worth trying to model using Systems Dynamics in order to try to inform policy alternatives.
It is obviously a big job to produce a model like this. I am merely trying to raise awareness of the role Systems Dynamics could play in this policy development process in case the task force is unaware of that particular technique. A generic model could be created that could apply to any state not just California. The idea just occurred to me in the context of the discussion about the California task force. It is an opportunity to bring Systems Theory and Systems Engineering to the mind of people as something useful.
Kent Palmer

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The Future of Systems Engineering is to become EcoSocial Meta-system focused Synergistic Engineering

Mar 21 2020 Published by under Uncategorized

Fellow Systems Engineers–
I think now is a good time for Systems Engineers who are interested in Systems Science to think about what I said in this article about the Future of Systems Engineering.
Now is the time to start taking Meta-systems (environs) seriously which I develop in my tutorial on Schemas Theory. See
Now is the time to fully integrate the Social Sciences into Systems Engineering thinking.
The coronavirus and its effect on our country and the world calls for Systems Engineers to think differently as Systems Scientists so they can help mitigate problems like this in the future.
I think we need discussions on how we can change the paradigm of Systems Engineering to try to prepare to be responsive to the needs of the country in these times in which it is clear that no-systemic thinking was done prior to the crisis and because of that the crisis was exacerbated. Systems Thinking can only go so far. What we need to integrate with that is meta-systems thinking that takes the environmental milieu seriously within the context of all the Schemas and taking into account Social Sciences in order to be better prepared in the future.
See Palmer, K.D. (2000), 9.6 Meta‐systems Engineering. INCOSE International Symposium, 10: 889-904. doi:10.1002/j.2334-5837.2000.tb00470.x
I hope all of you are staying safe. But now we have time to think more deeply about our discipline and perhaps move to a new paradigm in our own thinking about these problems we all face together. We need a paradigm change in Systems Engineering. This is one suggestion of what that might be. We need to work together to find the right paradigm change to transform out discipline to meet the challenges that are not just on the horizon but here now.
Kent Palmer

The SysSciWG wiki is at!topic/syssciwg/PnGvCwiGCNA

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Foundations of Systems Architecture Design

Mar 22 2018 Published by under Uncategorized

A Series of papers on the Foundations of Systems Architectural Design: See

  1. Afoundational Basis

Using Gödel’s Incompleteness Theorem to ground Systems Theory via Co-recursion based on Special Systems Theory. — Abstract: A foundation for Systems Engineering is laid out based on Gödel’s Incompleteness theorem. This foundation gives the basis for Architectural Design of Systems including Software Systems. Systems Engineering has its roots in Systems Science. Systems Science propounds various General Systems Theories and all of them depend on Logic and Mathematics and their Foundations which have been brought into question by Gödel’s theorem. We use the Theorem of Gödel to provide the foundations for Systems Theory, and thus Systems Science via the Special Systems and Schemas Theory, which in turn ground Systems Engineering and thus Software Engineering Systems. These Systems are syntheses that are Designed using Architectural Design, the Afoundation discovered herein gives a basis for Emergent Design in general which leads to Architectural Design of Systems including Software Systems. Key Words: Systems, Architecture, Design, Special Systems, Pascal Triangle, Systems Engineering, Software Engineering, Software Ontology, Formal Systems, Schemas Theory, Godel’s Incompleteness Theorem, Afoundationalism, Foundations, Meta-systems.

2. Steps toward and Ecology of Emergent Design

Differance that makes a difference — Abstract: Bateson says that we need to explore the meta-levels of Learning in his Steps to an Ecology of the Mind. Here we explore the steps toward an ecology of Emergent Design. Notice we are not trying to found any specific Discipline directly. But instead we are trying to ground our specific designs that we produce as software systems architectures. In other words, it is concrete systematic structured compositions that we are grounding as dynamic syntheses. We do this by a fusion of Leibniz Characteristica Universalis as Symbolic Logic with his Analysis Situs the lost science of configurations of things which the mathematical contemporaries of Leibniz did not accept and therefore was only sketched by him. But this sketch is brought back into focus by our transformation of the proof of Gödel that gives a basis for Special Systems Theory. — Key Words: Systems, Architecture, Design, Special Systems, Systems Engineering, Software Engineering, Software Ontology, Formal Systems, Schemas Theory.

3. On Design Synthesis

A Mysterious Synthesis or How a Miracle Occurs Here — Abstract: This paper attacks the core problem with Design: What is a synthesis and how is it possible. We begin by asking why this Transdisciplinary approach to the problem of design synthesis is necessary and significant. — Key Words: Systems, Architecture, Design, Special Systems, Systems Engineering, Software Engineering, Software Ontology, Formal Systems, Schemas Theory.

4. Convolution

A Prelude to the Comprehension of the Supra-Rationality of the Dagger Formation — Abstract: The internal view of worlds seen in terms of the relations between pairs of schemas and pairs of Foundational Mathematical Categories which are convoluted and reflected as inward relations between Dagger Theory elements that are external and appear in the interstices between the worlds or realms as defined by Ken Lloyd based on the delineations of worlds by Penrose and Popper, with the addition of the social world. — Key Words: Systems, Architecture, Design, Special Systems, Systems Engineering, Software Engineering, Software Ontology, Formal Systems, Schemas Theory, Dagger Theory.

5. Schematic Nerves

Quiddity and Internal Relations in Schemas Abstract: We define the names of the “essences” of each Schema. We call these nerves after the “Nerve Category” in Category Theory. Examples are Essence of Form, Structure of Pattern, Nucleus of System. We discuss the implications for the understanding of internal relations in Hegel from a schematic point of view. Key Words: Systems, Architecture, Design, Special Systems, Systems Engineering, Software Engineering, Software Ontology, Formal Systems, Schemas Theory, Dagger Theory, Essence, Nerve, Internal Relations.

6. Essencing Forth

Essence as a Model of Internal Relations and Projective Geometry. Key Words: Systems, Architecture, Design, Special Systems, Systems Engineering, Software Engineering, Software Ontology, Formal Systems, Schemas Theory, Dagger Theory, Essence, Nerve, Internal Relations.

7. Microgenesis of Internal Difference

From Internal Relations of Hegel to Internal Differences of Deleuze — Abstract: This paper explains the difference between internal difference of Deleuze and internal relations of Hegel. — Key Words: Systems, Architecture, Design, Special Systems, Systems Engineering, Software Engineering, Software Ontology, Formal Systems, Schemas Theory, Dagger Theory, Projective Geometry, Essence, Internal Relations

8. Nondual Difference (TBD)

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Comments on “Models, Science and Intersubjectivity” by Harald Wiltsche

Oct 20 2017 Published by under Uncategorized

Article at Models, Science, and Intersubjectivity

I have been reading Mohanty, Jitendranath. Edmund Husserl’s Freiberg Years, 1916-1938. (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2011). I was interested in it because it reviewed Genetic Phenomenology strand in Husserl’s thought. But it also reviews the Intersubjectivity strand much better than the Passive Synthesis strand.

His presentation makes it quite clear that Husserl was ultimately saying something like Transcendental Subjectivity is Intersubjectivity. In other words, he solves the problem ultimately by fiat which is really no solution. But the problem that Husserl has with solipsism is ultimately the problem that Western science itself has and the critique of Phenomenology by Science advocates is really a case of the pot calling the kettle black.

This is why Heidegger’s initiative in Being and Time is so important. Heidegger seizes on Husserl’s idea of the “monad” and makes that Dasein. He posits it as something prior to the arising of the dualism between Subject and Object. And this is a big step toward the solution of this problem. But this of course entails other problems to do with the unleashing of a regress in Meta-levels of Being. But Heidegger’s whole project is meant to solve multiple problems with Husserl’s Transcendental Phenomenology at the same time mostly by building off of the Genetic Phenomenology strand in Husserl courses. Of course we do not find that out until later.

Phenomenology is developed purely in a present-at-hand or Pure Being mode. Heidegger introduces a ready-to-hand or Process Being mode and gives Dasein an Existential basis seemingly outside ontology. This kicks off the development of Fundamental Ontology as a basic theme in Continental Philosophy. Another basic theme is Genetic Phenomenology taken up by Merleau-Ponty and Deleuze explicitly.

But the problem of Solipsism remains in Husserl’s thought despite claims to the contrary by him. Derrida uses these problems as the basis for his deconstruction of Husserl’s philosophy in Speech and Phenomena. If Husserl was convincing that Transcendental Subjectivity is Transcendental Intersubjectivity, that deconstruction of Derrida would be a moot point.

It seems to me that the real solution to the problem with intersubjectivity must be not just getting to a place prior to the arising of the subject/object split. But prior also to the mitsein/dasein split. And to do that it seems that we have to go all the way to the level of Wild Being as it is defined by Merleau-Ponty and taken up and developed by Deleuze as Transcendental Empiricism with respect to their version of Dasein and the Monad which is the Transcendental Field.

I try to show how this is possible in my recent article “Primordial Sociality and Intersubjectivity: Exploring the Socius”. I try to show that we need to go all the way up the meta-levels of Being to Wild Being in order to get to a place prior to the division between dasein/mitsen and I also invoke Emergent Time as a resource for attempting to solve the problem of solipsism within the Husserlian context.

Phenomenology shows that Science itself has a problem of solipsism while claiming to have theories that are reproducible by a community of observers. The solipsism of science is seen in the exclusion of the subject and the claims of objectivity that cannot be sustained. Husserl is only delving into the common problem and attempting to find a way out. But the whole problem is set up and maintained by the subject/object duality that is the basis of science. Basically we need to go even further than Heidegger did when he concentrated on Dasein which was Husserl’s Monad as the basis of his philosophy and tried to make it something prior to the arising of the subject/object split. Merleau-Ponty went further and extended Phenomenology by developing further the idea of Dasein into the Transcendental Field that contains invisiblities interspersed in the visiblities. Deleuze goes even further down this road consolidating the moments of Genetic Phenomenology in Difference and Repetition to support our understanding of Wild Being and developing Transcendental Empiricism as an alternative to Phenomenology.

This problem of the solipsism (objectivity) of Science continues to be a fundamental problem that later phenomenologist have continued to work on as the advocates of science ignore the problem. But even with the developments of Genetic Phenomenology so far the solution to the problem of solipsism and intersubjectivity has been elusive. Hopefully by bringing to bear the resources of Emergent Time along with advances in Fundamental Ontology we can solve this problem. But that solution must in turn transform not just phenomenology but Science itself.

See Meta-levels of Being

See also Genetic Phenomenology and Fundamental Ontology of the Meta-levels of Time

Kent Duane Palmer

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Schemas Theory Research — Personal Narrative

Oct 13 2017 Published by under Uncategorized

I am going to give you a brief overview of my work so that you can decide if it is interesting to you.

I have been working as a Software Engineer and a Systems Engineer in my career.

I did a Ph.D. in Sociology/Philosophy of Science at LSE 1982: Structure of Theoretical Systems in relation to Emergence.

See The structure of theoretical systems in relation to emergence

Working as a Software Engineer after studying Continental Philosophy I eventually saw that Computer Hardware embodies the first two meta-levels of Being: present-at-hand and ready-to-hand as defined by Heidegger in Being and Time.

That meant that software embodied Hyper Being or what Derrida calls Differance.

See What_differance_does_Derrida_make



This realization that Continental Ontology directly related to Software as an technological artifact drove me to research Software Engineering especially Architectural Design of Software and then eventually Systems Design at the level of Systems Engineering, i.e. the whole system including Hardware.


I wrote some papers and placed them on the internet and someone at Systems Engineering saw them and invited me to speak about Schemas Theory I formulated a set of schemas for that presentation and it has basically remained the set that I did my tutorial on for “” Systems Engineering and International Society for the Systems Sciences Conferences.

Along the way as I developed Schema Theory I decided to do a Ph.D. in Systems Engineering, and my adviser asked me to apply Schemas Theory to something so I decided to apply it to design because that was my original interest that drove me to develop Schemas Theory.


Over the years I have written quite a few papers on Schemas Theory and its implications some of which I have given at the “” Systems Engineering, CSER and workshop meetings.

See General_Schemas_Theory

As far as I know nothing like Schemas Theory has been developed before and it serves as a foundation for design, because all designs use schemas as their basic imaginary “material” “substance”, i.e. spacetime templates of intelligibility each with its own intrinsic order.

Schemas Theory is the next level of abstraction beyond Systems Theory



I have recently discovered the mathematical basis of Schemas Theory but have not published that paper yet.

Schemas Theory was developed in order to frame and make understandable the context of Special Systems Theory.



Since I have been not working I have devoted myself full time to my research and have gone back and reread everything that was significant in the development of the theory of the Meta-levels of Being in a Continental Philosophy Study group that is local.


In that I have discovered the thread of Genetic Phenomenology that I am studying intently now


I am also engaged in editing and publishing some of the papers I have written over the last year or so based on the readings I have done recently.




If you are going to study Systems Theory as a basis for better understanding design I recommend the work of George Klir as a point of departure

Formal Structural Systems in relation to General Schemas Theory: On the Architecture of Problem Solving


This gives you a narrative to help you approach my work on Schemas Theory hopefully making it more accessible.

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Systems Philosophy Questions concerning Schemas Theory Answered

Feb 19 2017 Published by under Uncategorized

Systems Philosophy Questions concerning Schemas Theory Answered

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Systems Philosophy Questions about Mathematical Category Theory

Feb 19 2017 Published by under Uncategorized

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What Special Systems Theory is about . . . Life, Consciousness and the Social

Feb 19 2017 Published by under Uncategorized

Speical Systems Theory is a Mathematical Systems Theory concerning the necessary conditions for the possibility of anomalous phenomena like Life, Consciousness and Sociality which exist but are unexplained inadequately by contemporary scientific theory

The Summary of my research on Special Systems Theory is here:


The idea of Special Systems Theory is to set the mathematically necessary conditions for the possibility of life, consciousness and the social, three very special anomalous phenomena. The necessary conditions are set by Mathematics which structure the possibility space in which anomalous emergent processes can occur as we see in Life, Consciousness, and Sociality which we have in ourselves and other life forms existential proof of their existence even though they cannot be explained by standard theories of Science yet. The whole idea of the meta-theory is to set the external limiting conditions that mathematics gives for understanding the phenomena. And those external conditions are in the form of mathematical anomalies that make ultra-efficacious phenomena like Life, Consciousness and Sociality possible. The bridge between the existential proof which we are as living conscious social beings and the mathematical possibility based on anomalous structures in mathematics is the meta-theory Special Systems Theory itself that is part of Systems Science and an addition to General Systems Theories within Systems Science. The relation between Systems and Special Systems are explained by Schemas Theory (

I take mathematical anomalies of different sorts that have basically the same structure and build a meta-theory that has a radically different structure than normal general systems theories. Then within the meta-theory are placed local theories that explain the phenomena of life, consciousness and the social very much along the lines of what Terrance Deacon has envisaged in Incomplete Nature, but he has not mathematics to back up his claims and he leaves out the social layer of emergence and only deals with life and consciousness. He however does the service of re-explaining basic scientific concepts in a way that makes Life and Consciousness plausible rather than the normal explanations that would render these phenomena improbable or impossible.

The concept is to use anomalies in mathematics as the basis for explaining the possible existence of anomalies in the physical world that would give us emergent features like life, consciousness, and the social. The meta-theory specifies the emergent differences between these phenomena and some of their very general properties. Then more specific theories related to each phenomena are substituted into the meta-theory to explain the phenomena in more detail in this case Prigogine’s theory of Dissipative Structures augmented by the Construal Flow theory of Bejan, a modified form of the existential theory of life of Maturana and Varella called Autopoiesis, and Reflexive Sociology to explain the social in more detail. We take the meta-theory as being fixed by mathematical anomalies that are related to each other by their general structure to specify the Special Systems Theory, then we allow the contained theories to be modified to better and better explain the link between the mathematics and the anomalous phenomena in question, be it life, consciousness or the social. The meta-theory explains the interaction between the Special Systems based on the structure of Hyper-complex algebras and other types of mathematics or some anomalous physical theories like the theory of Solitons, Breathers, and Instantatons, or Cooper pairs in super-conductivity or Bose-Einstein condensates. Thus there is a physical component to the theory based on specific physical phenomena that have the same structure as the mathematical anomalies.

Special Systems Theory has been constructed so that it as to be refutable by using different anomalies in mathematics to structure the special systems in order to give a very specific theoretical structure to the explanation offered. Unless we make our systems theories refutable there is no way to make progress. Special Systems Theory is meant to be an example of what a good theory of the phenomena might look like rather than the final answer. A good theory would be based in mathematics and testable, thus refutable.

Special Systems Theory was discovered through an analysis of the imaginary cities of Plato and then relating the anomalous structures of those cities to Anomalies in Mathematics. It was realized that these anomalous structures in mathematics which were all similar could be used to produce a general Systems Theory about these Special Systems. Then it was realized that Special Systems Theory could be used to set the limits of the necessary conditions of the possibility of anomalous phenomena like Life, Consciousness and the Social. The combination of mathematical anomalies and physical anomalies with the same basic structure makes it possible to explain things that normal Systems Theory cannot explain and thus its value in Systems Science and for other special sciences that need to explain anomalous phenomena with similar structures.

Other works on Special Systems Theory: Reflexive Autopoietic Dissipative Special Systems Theory Reflexive Autopoietic Systems Theory

General Schemas Theory Research

For more see

Kent Palmer –

Nondual Science Institute

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