On Ontology

Ontology was a mistake, a distraction. Its only contributions have been arguably negative. Compare the impact of Aristotle’s Physics to his Metaphysics. The former laid the groundwork for modern science and changed how men act and understand and control the physical world. The latter spawned only arguments and hostility between religious men, and provided a subject for lesser men to argue about and write papers in journals to gain tenure at universities.


  1. Anonymous22.2.11

    Evidence that the author is living in the moment and only has a need for control over his physical surroundings. Ideally we would all be there all the time, but then what would we have to argue about?

  2. There is a point when expressing for the meaning of experience is just simply there and present and without effort. Then there is the imbalance when one then *accounts* for this expression, or accounting for this accounting, or accounting for something which was just merely at first an expression, and not an account.

    In any case, I will most likely be engaging in ontology over there at my unrigorous mess of weakness and dissipation. I may be led to science and health as a result--an ethic, perhaps.

    Yet there is a beautiful absence of hostility in this science you speak of. It is the thing itself, no need for interpretation, unless we get into the theoretical aspects of science, in which there is plenty of debate.

    You speak in your other post of courage. In my most insecure moments as a journeying bicyclist, I felt like I needed to cling on to something, as I had completely lost myself to the road and to the constant images of the sky, the land, others on the road. It was at that point that one might turn to ontology. Whether it is an illness, I do not know. I don't know if science is health. It might not cure a certain misery, a certain misery I find arises when I experience others.

  3. At the edges science breaks down. Even it runs out of certainties. But we do have some things it does well and these can be called positive contributions.

    My point was to contrast the science that led to jet airplanes--and all that men can now do because of them--with the thinking that produced SEIN UND ZEIT or L'ETRE ET LE NEANT and the piles of books and academic papers that resulted.

    Maybe as you say the work of ontology is for a particular man, to bring him to a certain very personal health. It will not have any general application like jet airplanes.

    This aphorism is cut out of a much longer one that speaks to the loss of the question of 'how to live'. No longer is that question asked. Philosophy broke with this question to focus on ontology. I believe this was the mistake.

    Marty thought the question of being was the first question, but I don't see how that question produced any sleepless nights for anyone other than himself.


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