The Non Being and therefore Un-Sayable

31 Aug

After reading passages from Parmenides and Wittgenstein’s Tractatus, along with the opposite views of Heraclitus and Spinoza, I understand that for a long time a large argument is about what what the nonbeing is and what can be said about it. Parmenides responds to Heraclitus when Heraclitus said that “the road up and the road down are one and the same” and relative to the being/nonbeing argument it means that anything can be said or thought about the road towards being or non being. Parmenides comes back by saying that the nonbeing cannot be thought or said upon (he does so in a variety of ways other than just one quote stating his stance like Heraclitus’ roads, but he does say that “thinking and being are one and the same” stating his ultimate stance about why nonbeing cannot be thought or said).  My aim is not to discuss the arguments that both Heraclitus and Parmenides had in Greece, but it is to discuss Parmenidesian and Wittgensteinian opinion that what doesn’t exist cannot be thought or said. I take up the matter because it is evident and has been evident in all of time that people think and say about things that are in fact non existent. I involve Parmenides and Heraclitus in the matter because they are one of the first philosophies to come about, and both had good arguments upon the same matter Wittgenstein and other philosophers discussed. Finally, I choose to bring Wittgenstein into this same matter because in Tractatus Logico Philosophicus Wittgenstein says: “I cannot think what I cannot think. What I cannot think I cannot say either”.  When discussing what he cannot think is referring to those things that do not exist within the human perception. This was one of the propositions that led to his solipsism and neutral monism ( numerous writings about Wittgenstein’s neutral monism and solipsism on this webiste, look in the category Ludwig Wittgenstein and/or the archives to find them, theres like 6 I think) that I refute totally, but have respect for the propositions leading up to them. These arguments between Wittgenstein and Spinoza’s monism, and the other numerous arguments between Heraclitus and Parmenides along with other Presocratics are not the subject for discussion, the only subject for discussion is that the non being can be thought and said, so much so that the non being can be made into being by planning through discussion.

Nonbeing can consistently be thought of and reflected upon. When thought of as a being, nonbeing cannot be thought of leading to the notion that nonbeing cannot be thought of or said about. When contemplating upon any contradiction at all, no results will come forth because little can come of such thought (the being in nonbeing is what is thought here).  I say so because when people think about nonbeing, it is a common misconception to think of it as a being, which is totally fallacious and contradictory, therefore nonbeing cannot be thought or said at the outset.  But getting further in nonbeing, we have to get specific of what does not exist to think and say things about nonbeing itself.  For example, eons ago before the genesis, the only thing that existed was God and his angels in a spiritual world. The physical creatum was not in existence before God created it (note that God, angels and the heavens are not part of the general creatum), and yet He conceived the idea of this world, and he made it so. Because God can conceive the nonbeing, so can we to a lesser extent.  Like said before, nonbeing thought of in terms of its being in the world cannot be thought of and the notion is preposterous, but down to nonbeing’s specificities in terms of how it would be if it was can be conceived.

Hopefully I am getting to the point of how nonbeing can be thought of and said. Again, nonbeing can be both thought and said if it is thought of down to its specificities. If nonbeing is thought of in a broad perception little can be obtained from the notion, and yes it is lacking in thought and speech. But if we think of nonbeing specifically down to what certain thing does not exist, thought and speech can be made upon it, possibly even allowing us to turn this specific nonbeing into being.

If nonbeing is thought down to its specificities (examples), we can think and say things about it, and the best part of it (as evident in society) is that we can possibly make the nonbeing into being. If this were not true, then there would be no inventors of the products and services we use daily. Take Alexander Graham Bell for instance. In Bell’s time, there was no device that could enable 2 people 100 miles apart to talk to each other by voice (there was a telegraph, but it was not by voice). The telephone was a nonbeing object. Bell and his assistant worked together with this notion of this telephone device and turned nonbeing into being by inventing their notion into being. They invented the telephone.  Here, nonbeing was thought, and even said. This mere example of Bell’s achievements falsifies Parmenides’ and Wittgenstein’s opinion that the nonbeing cannot be thought or said.

Another example of nonbeing transitioning into being because of our thoughts and speech about the nonbeing, is the fairly recent idea of a liger.  A liger being a cross between a tiger and a lion. This was on the movie Napoleon Dynamite where Napoleon draws the liger, calls it his favorite animal and shows it amongst the people around him. If what Parmenides and Wittgenstein say is true (that what doesn’t exist cannot be thought or said), Napoleon would have no notion of a liger, and anyone thinking or talking about a liger would not be possible because of the fact that ligers are of the nonbeing. Even more recently, biologists tried to make a liger by breeding a tiger and a lion, and they were successful in producing it so the nonbeing notion of a liger did well because it led to an actual being state of the liger. It was born a very weak animal and may not do very well and could regress back into nonbeing.  If what Parmenides and Wittgenstein say is true, the telephone, many other inventions and the breeding production of the liger would never have been possible because we would never have the ability to think about the nonbeing.

My ending inference from my unorganized thought process is this: there is nothing we cannot think, and therefore there is nothing we cannot say. Nonbeing presents one of the many obstacles in thought and speech, but it can be easily hurdled. Wittgenstein’s statement that we cant think what we cant think and what we cant think we cant say is just a resolution to many philosophical problems of dualisms and what some may call ‘philosophical hell’, and the proposition is a great thought, but after searching philosophically, the proposition I refute rejects a lot of areas of thinking that are unexplored and deserve consideration and thought. Wittgenstein’s solipsist and neutrally monist principles when taken for truth would rule out about 1/2 of philosophical exploration that needs to be done in the future. I, personally, look forward to exploring these unexplored areas, and refute any proposition that make exploration of those areas redundant.  In philosophy, there cannot possibly be unthinkable or unsayable  just because there is some nonbeing within metaphysics. If there was, philosophy would not have come as far as it has because more than half of it would be redundant.

If you want more thinking in the nonbeing being said and thought read into Lawrence Sklar and his geometries relating to philosophy and epistemology because of how Euclidean geometry long passed into geometrical law are falsified immediately (i.e. making a triangle with 3 90 degree angles within a whole triangle, which is nonbeing until discussed specifically).

This was just an unorganized thought process coming from reading some ancient writings of Parmenides and Heraclitus and reflecting back on my studies of Wittgenstein.

Thanks for the support.

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2 Responses to “The Non Being and therefore Un-Sayable”

  1. link September 14, 2010 at 8:20 am #

    ok how is this supposedto mean?

    • zcosmos September 14, 2010 at 9:06 am #

      I was basically saying that its wrong when people say ‘we cant think or say these things’ just because it doesn’t exist, its wrong. We can think or say whatever we want. Just like a unicorn does not exist, but we can have the thought of white horse with big horn on its head.

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