Thursday, July 29, 2021

The Poetics of the Equivocity of Being

 Here are some poetical remarks on the equivocity of being by William Desmond. Enjoy!

Desmond, Being and the Between, 87

The war of philosophers against unintelligibility has made them generally hostile to the equivocal. This is manifest in the oscillation with the univocal we examined in the last chapter. It is no less true that this war is never finished, and many victories turn out pyrrhic, indeed brief lulls before the hydra of the equivocal sprouts another head to replace the one just chopped. The equivocal is a hydra that cannot be completely killed by univocity; for to kill its many heads demands many hands, and univocity has only one hand at a time. Indeed, I think equivocity is not to be killed but charmed from being a mythic monster into a fabling of the plurivocity of being. We must come to terms with the beautfy of the beast. Logical murder, murder repeated methodically, will not do.


Wesley C. said...

Reposting some of my questions about ideas:

1) One last thing I'm wondering about is that, if we say that the divine ideas are closer to the divine intellect than our ideas are to our intellect because they are an accident or changeable or could exist separately from our own intellect, then this would seem to imply that the divine ideas are more closely rooted and related to God than our ideas (or maybe the ideas in our intellect are the same as the divine ideas?) are to our own minds.

One could then say that even the parts of the divine ideas that aren't pure perfections and don't simply reflect God are still rooted in God and so still in some way reveal God to us as well - even if not as just a reflection of God. Maybe through their own uniqueness and NON-similarity to God bringing God glory precisely because uniqueness is God and rooted in God. What do you think?

2) This then leads to the possibility that the two aspects of a divine idea - the pure perfections reflecting God, and the creaturely part that's unique in itself - are not only compatible but even complement each other as well.

Say, when God brings about the New Creation we won't see created beings as nothing more than reminders of God like an infatuated girl seeing everything else in the world as just a reminder of her boyfriend in different ways - we'll also see each thing as having a uniqueness in it that isn't just a reflection of God. And those two will complement each other and make themselves shine - things aren't just reminders of God, but they also aren't just purely unique things without any reflection of God either. In some way, they need each other and fulfill each other - just as God is both One and Many in Himself, so too are the divine ideas both reflections of God AND unique in themselves with non-reflective content.

And since God is also infinitely unique in Himself and is Goodness itself, and having both aspects present in the content of a divine idea is good, both the uniqueness of creatures and their similarity to God are rooted in God, and give greater glory to Him.

What do you think?

Wesley C. said...

As for the divine will and contingency, would a good explanation of it be that the Will by nature and in its concept is self-determining and can't have a necessary relation to the contingent (due to only infinite goodness absolutely determining it), and so even Pure Actuality as a substrate doesn't change that? This also means that the Will may have a form of contingent actuality, which isn't potentiality, which makes the idea of God possibly having chosen differently coherent.

In fact, one could even say that the relation between God and creation is an intentional relation - a relation of the intentionality of God's acts, which doesn't depend on creation (so it's not a real relation) but also isn't purely a logical relation of reason. What do you think?