rebooting...

1.

The problem is not "totalization" or "closure" -- the problem is TIME.  Or rather it is the traditional metaphysics of Time.  We do not normally think of metaphysics through a time/space lens but perhaps we should.

What I will call spatial metaphysics is concerned with beings that appear to exist in the present moment.  It addresses issues related what things ARE.  When we make the gesture of "There 'it' is!" we are dealing primarily with entities @ locations.  This holds true when we assert a horizon of meaning or a formal system which presumes to incorporate and define everything that is in existence.  Interesting it also holds true when we critique such a horizon or system.

Temporal metaphysics deals with how we hold becomings -- not beings.  Instead of asking ourselves about the manner in which we currently hold the ontology of beings, we instead inquire about the way we assume the arising of patterns.  Here our postmetaphysics shifts.  It becomes a "process postmetaphysics".  A postmetaphysics of the event.  

2.

When we are examining the relationship between epistemology & ontology (between our means of access to things & our presumption of the ultimate status of things) we are dealing mostly with spatial metaphysics.  We imagine the universe of "things".  Then we act as if we know them (MOSP) or as if we know that they are more than what we know of them (MOA).  They are present.  They are given.  

Perhaps we think they are given perfectly by great entities who are also given.  Perhaps we think they are given imperfectly by the structure of reality.  In either case we are affirming or critiquing a certain type of metaphysics which reaches out spatially to enfold beings within the background of our worldspace. 

There is an uncanny similarity between the ISness of the "it is what I think it is" and  "surely it is more than just what I think it is".  In fact it is precisely this continuity that justifies a phrase like the Metaphysics of Adjacency to describe postmetaphysics.  It continues to operate metaphysically... albeit in a distinctly pluralist & postpluralist sense.

But okay. Let there be a continuity between the affirmation of total access to beings and non-total access to beings.  Perhaps this continuity informs us that the problems we are feeling about totalized metaphysics may not have to do specifically with the metaphysical or totalizing elements.  There is another approach.  In this other approach we forgo "staring at beings" and worrying about whether they are, or are not, what they appear to be.  That appearing is contextualized a bit like Space.  What if it was instead contextualized a bit like Time?

In a temporal approach we are not concerned with the potentially misleading status of what is -- or with the potentially exaggerated systems and horizons which enable a particular interpretation of beings.  Instead we turn becomings.  We take beings only as the output of the process.  The metaphysics that must be overcome is not an assertion about beings but rather an assumption about becomings.

3.

Many things are becoming what IS.  The unknown is pouring into the appearance. We may take the appearance as "is only" or "is more" or "is also" -- reality is still mysteriously already poured in from past patterns.  The identity is not fixed and circumscribed by a spatial enclosure but by a cut that is assumed in the flux of histories.  

In exaggerated metaphysics this cut stands out clearly.  The retroactive doubling of an authorizing origin gives us a finite thing which stands under the sway of an historical power.

4.

Traditional metaphysics reveals this clearly.  They even assert and depend upon it.  The potency of their horizon is not experienced by them as evenly distributed.  It has a privileged moment of potency.  They locate it as the officializing primordial moment.  We should take this seriously.  In the dogmatic opposition to evolution the argument takes roughly this form:

If it is accepted that intelligence and design in nature are not the result of a planner's plan then there is no owner-custodian of the metaphysical universe and it "apocalyptically" ceases to apply.

To pull the plant up by the root we must seek the root.

These traditional metaphysics, and their perpetuation in modern conceptual systems (and in the critique of modern conceptual systems!) are not failing to be open-ended, available to mystery, available to creativity.  All these indetermining factors are present in every worldview.  Thesy are not added by metatheoretical worldspaces.  The shift lies in the assumed prior placement of the mysterious creativity.  It is either "pre-given" or not. 

Imagine that an all-knowing mythic God appeared today -- or even last Thursday.  This appearance is curious.  We will have to see what happens.  His existence and his status are not insults to our intelligence.  But... if He existed BEFORE or AT the VERY BEGINNING then there is no room for intelligence. His stamp of fixity haunts the future. Bible and Korans are of interest in the degree to which they are present texts flowing into becoming from past sources.  They are temporally closed if we retroactively presume the "anticipatory and authorial perfection" of their initial instant.

5.

In a spatial metaphysics we always think that what "is" includes unknowns.  Every worldview, every person, accepts unknowns within the existing present context of their reality.  It is no surprise to get surprised.  To specify a world in which unknowns may appear is no great shift.  

Every system and horizon of meaning has to contend with finding things out.  But there is this question of whether we anticipate that what we discover has to fit within a system we remember.  This is a particularly temporal consideration. 

From an MOA viewpoint, or even just a rational viewpoint, we see that patterns are not uniquely sourced in an exemplary past moment.  Rather what is given in the exemplary past moment is precisely the MOSP-like inertia of patterns.  

6.

Every traditional statement of Great Order of Everything (to which we may want to add "or so it seems to us") affirms nature as a perfection of fixed roles.  But these roles are not assumed as eternal.  They are fixed at some point.  

Evolution is fine with traditions in the sense that Nature changes and struggles.  What they need to be metaphysical is a plan, a planner, a beginning at which the patterning is sourced.  Primordial origination turns the obviousness of intelligent design into the cunning of those who would assert an intelligent designer.  

The buck stops with the First One.  

The Fist One conceived, intended & initiated the current situation in which patterns are discovered.  The metaphysical horizon is not fixed by the scope and presence of the Great Orderly System but rather by the primordial temporal placement of its guarantor.

In a traditional sense, I can shoot you on my own land. The legal signing or the moment of inheritance provides me with the authority to impose finite, lop-sided rules for which I am ultimately responsible.  Likewise one person should represent a political region! These traditional metaphysics operate the same principles as their, to me, heretical notion of God -- imagined as the legally, writing-entitled, owner-operator and responsible party whose firstness is the classical theological argument for obedience to the role-and-membership society of trans-tribal dogma assertions.  

The horizon of the universe is locked at a retroactive point in the past.  It is not necessarily locked by any degree of totalization in the present.  A PLAN is a pre-established intelligent design.  It is not just "an" intelligent design.  

7.

Infinity is an ambivalent concept.  It is perfectly thinkable as non-ending processes (like the regress of numbers in "pi").  It is not thinkable as an already completed quantity.  You can observe an indefinite sequence.  You cannot throw your arms around infinity.  Or your mind.  

The operations are different depending on whether we use a spatial or temporal lens.  Every spatialized concept is finite.  That we can add something to it only amounts to affirming the temporal extension... the active time of making an addition.  

Everything can be stated, totalized, affirmed, relative to a space-like metaphysics.  There is only so much of it.  But we cannot totalize a temporal process. To do adds a false note which is the very thing from which metaphysical conceptions suffer.

8.

If we are interested in preserving the terminology of totalization/closure we can just as easy posit two "types" as we can posit an alternative.  I favor the latter for some very simple reasons.  I wish to root out certain spatial metaphors.  Closure, like containment, is originally a spatialized concept. 

However when it applies to space it is appropriate rather than problematic.  Articulations in physics such as "finite but unbounded" point to the functional closure of spatiality.  Space is not open-ended.  In order to indefinitely extend our imaginary vision of space we have to temporalize it.  Infinity is a valid temporal concept but not valid spatial concept.  Therefore we must be open to embrace spatial finitude, closure, totalization.

9.

Compare the following two notions:

(a) THE PRESENT ASSUMPTION OF ALL. This is a totalized statement applicable to the domain which exists in the current reality, the space-like domain.  An example of such a statement is: Reality consists of only and all real things.  That is currently a totalized closure - the onlyness -- of beings.  It is non-problematic.

(b) THE PRE-TEMPORALIZED NON-ALL.  This is a statement which connects a non-totalized reality to a metaphysically presumed extra-temporal authorization.  Example: The Non-All Universe appeared from an original Nothing.

10.

Time is necessarily open-ended (at both ends). So NEXT is the position which makes adjacency viable.  The "next" is always a potential discover following the apparent presence.

But this is frequently not invoked by discussions of totalization which, as often as not, revolve around the presumed insufficiency of omni-concepts and logical assertions.  For example, the position that Integral Theory (or anything else) ought to be cautious about giving rise to the impression that it incorporates, includes, contains, everything is a critique of the insufficiency of space-like containment.  Yet it is not terribly relevant.  Any theory can accurately include an All.  The word "everything" is a micro-theory which totally includes all things.  Nothing in the present falls outside of everything.

Yet the meaning of that everything can change.  This change is temporal.  If we presumed that the theory was temporally closed (the reciprocal of pre-temporally authorized) then we would make a grievous error. 

The lion's share of the problems associated with "totality" and "closure" and "all" (which are spatially suggestive terms) exist via implied temporal metaphysics.  They are not very problematic when applied to spatial metaphysics.

11.

So what are some examples of problematic temporal metaphysics?

  • Time began from a Timeless Condition before Time
  • An Authorizing Being set the patterns of reality at the Very Beginning
  • The Universe was created when we started writing History (only several thousand years ago)
  • Time started at the Big Bang
  • The Early Universe was Perfectly Balanced -- we have since deviated.
  • We originally lived in a pure state but fell from Grace
  • Events have single causes
  • Timelessness exists "somewhere next to" Time
  • The Future & Past still exist "somewhere"
  • Time is only a dimension of spatial geometry
  • Time is only a condition of the human mind
  • A designer or decider added "purpose" to the universe at the beginning
  • Subtle, Causal & Nondual bodies "appear" when we evolved foward enough.
  • New emergence happens at the "leading edge" of the forward moving Time
  • Time is a line, road, arrow path or stream (come from somewhere).
  • Ancient metaphysics necessarily are still true
  • Today's best models will continue to be the best models
  • what else?

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That's an interesting and somewhat mind-bending/breaking perspective - "Novelty does not mean something utterly new. It means a certain kind of appearance of one of the endlessly repeating patterns." It's a huge abstract stretch to imagine with the logic of infinite time inducing material to repeat itself into patterns infinitely. All possibilities have been and will be. So what does that mean for us? Snap, Fracture, Frazzle, Sizzle, muttered WTFs infinitely. (This got away from me, as I thought it would, if I tried to enter the zone of stretch markings.

Layman Pascal said:

There are two senses to a cyclical nature of Time.  The first simply means that the "big bang" was one of many periodic events which produce material universes.  The second, more Nietzschean, is that because Time is necessarily infinite but energy is finite, all possible permutations of reality have been (and will be) tried an endless number of times.  To work with either of these, Integral Theory has to make a minor shift in its usual articulation of Novelty.  It is a two part shift:

1. Novelty does not mean something utterly new.  It means a certain kind of appearance of one of the endlessly repeating patterns.

2. Emergence does not occur at the "open front end" but rather at all the inbetween places.  In a circle of Time we imagine the "levels" as already being laid out.  So new growth does not happen by installing an extra one on the end, but rather by enriching them at their mutual edges.

Regardless, we must be wary of the temporal metaphysics problems raised in this thread.  They are, primarily, the issue of "no beginning of time" and "timeless and time are one" and "intelligent and desirable design is not sourced to a primordial fact".

Hi, LP, I apologize for the long delay in responding; I've been under the weather for the past several days but am poking my head out into sunnier health again.  I see you have substantially re-written your opening post.  I'll start with just an initial question that arises for me.

LP:  Temporal metaphysics deals with how we hold becomings -- not beings.  Instead of asking ourselves about the manner in which we currently hold the ontology of beings, we instead inquire about the way we assume the arising of patterns.  Here our postmetaphysics shifts.  It becomes a "process postmetaphysics".

Traditionally, space is often associated with ontology and time with epistemology.  Your phrasing in the above statement suggests an epistemological emphasis as well: inquiring into our assumptions about the arising/emergence of (perceived) patterns.  Is this what you are suggesting with your space vs time contrast, that postmetaphysics is a turn towards time and thus epistemology?

Ambo,

Yeah, it takes us to intense places.  A number of ancient Greek saints affirmed this vision.  What Nietzsche added under the name "Eternal Recurrence" was a sort of ethical test which demanded that we live toward the possibility of endless affirmation.  On the one hand, try to live as though even the most trivial and casual moments will be played out infinitely.  THESE patterns, this finitude, no matter how unpredictable in its creativity, are the situation and test of our being -- without recourse to an "additional" space or time.  Ultimately it requires us to empathize with energy itself in its endless branching...

Ambo Suno said:

That's an interesting and somewhat mind-bending/breaking perspective - "Novelty does not mean something utterly new. It means a certain kind of appearance of one of the endlessly repeating patterns." It's a huge abstract stretch to imagine with the logic of infinite time inducing material to repeat itself into patterns infinitely. All possibilities have been and will be. So what does that mean for us? Snap, Fracture, Frazzle, Sizzle, muttered WTFs infinitely. (This got away from me, as I thought it would, if I tried to enter the zone of stretch markings.

Layman Pascal said:

There are two senses to a cyclical nature of Time.  The first simply means that the "big bang" was one of many periodic events which produce material universes.  The second, more Nietzschean, is that because Time is necessarily infinite but energy is finite, all possible permutations of reality have been (and will be) tried an endless number of times.  To work with either of these, Integral Theory has to make a minor shift in its usual articulation of Novelty.  It is a two part shift:

1. Novelty does not mean something utterly new.  It means a certain kind of appearance of one of the endlessly repeating patterns.

2. Emergence does not occur at the "open front end" but rather at all the inbetween places.  In a circle of Time we imagine the "levels" as already being laid out.  So new growth does not happen by installing an extra one on the end, but rather by enriching them at their mutual edges.

Regardless, we must be wary of the temporal metaphysics problems raised in this thread.  They are, primarily, the issue of "no beginning of time" and "timeless and time are one" and "intelligent and desirable design is not sourced to a primordial fact".

I think a "temporal turn" is one of the key modern insights which liberates us toward the possibility of a postmetaphysical view.  But more specifically I think postmetaphysics must be responsible for a critique of the various metaphysical assumptions about Time -- both casual and philosophical.  

The shift in ontology from a metaphysics of simple presence to a metaphysics of adjacency "is" good, important, natural.  However I do not think this shift is adequate to free us from some of the most thorny dimensions of metaphysics which persist despite (or are even obfuscated by) the concern for whether our ontologies are closed or open.

At the risk of sounding like Badiou, the limiting power of metaphysics may be retroactively "evental" -- rather than located in our assumptions about the existential status of how entities in the present relate to our uses and perceptions of those entities.



Balder said:

Hi, LP, I apologize for the long delay in responding; I've been under the weather for the past several days but am poking my head out into sunnier health again.  I see you have substantially re-written your opening post.  I'll start with just an initial question that arises for me.

LP:  Temporal metaphysics deals with how we hold becomings -- not beings.  Instead of asking ourselves about the manner in which we currently hold the ontology of beings, we instead inquire about the way we assume the arising of patterns.  Here our postmetaphysics shifts.  It becomes a "process postmetaphysics".

Traditionally, space is often associated with ontology and time with epistemology.  Your phrasing in the above statement suggests an epistemological emphasis as well: inquiring into our assumptions about the arising/emergence of (perceived) patterns.  Is this what you are suggesting with your space vs time contrast, that postmetaphysics is a turn towards time and thus epistemology?

Although this is not directly responsive to your last post -- as yours wasn't directly to mine :-) -- I wanted to add that, given my Sophia project, I'm inclined to see this thread here as a depiction of the postmetaphysical turn as entailing a critique of and movement away from nounal metaphysics, towards (at the least) more verbal and/or pronounal forms.

In any event, more on topic:

I've read your "reboot" post several times, and while I agree with you that the question of time is indeed important for our shifts to post/modern and integral-aperspectival thought and appreciate the inquiry you're opening, I'm not quite following the argument you are making here -- particularly the contrast you are setting up.  I might be missing some subtleties in your argument.  It seems to me that you are still identifying 'totalization'/'closure' as the postmetaphysical problem, re-framed or re-applied in temporal terms.  You are objecting to the totalizing 'cut' (and foreclosure) in temporal process that belief in a First One, a Primordial Authorizing Agent, inserts.  From what I have followed of your argument thus far, I would say you are exploring another dimension of this issue of totalization, rather than an alternative to it.

A few more thoughts which might (or might not) clarify:

1.

If we are interested in preserving the terminology of totalization/closure we can just as easy posit two "types" as we can posit an alternative.  I favor the latter for some very simple reasons.  I wish to root out certain spatial metaphors.  Closure, like containment, is originally a spatialized concept. 

However when it applies to space it is appropriate rather than problematic.  Articulations in physics such as "finite but unbounded" point to the functional closure of spatiality.  Space is not open-ended.  In order to indefinitely extend our imaginary vision of space we have to temporalize it.  Infinity is a valid temporal concept but not valid spatial concept.  Therefore we must be open to embrace spatial finitude, closure, totalization.

2.

Compare the following two notions:

(a) THE PRESENT ASSUMPTION OF ALL. This is a totalized statement applicable to the domain which exists in the current reality, the space-like domain.  An example of such a statement is: Reality consists of only and all real things.  That is currently a totalized closure - the onlyness -- of beings.  It is non-problematic.

(b) THE PRE-TEMPORALIZED NON-ALL.  This is a statement which connects a non-totalized reality to a metaphysically presumed extra-temporal authorization.  Example: The Non-All Universe appeared from an original Nothing.

3.

Time is necessarily open-ended (at both ends). So NEXT is the position which makes adjacency viable.  The "next" is always a potential discover following the apparent presence.

But this is frequently not invoked by discussions of totalization which, as often as not, revolve around the presumed insufficiency of omni-concepts and logical assertions.  For example, the position that Integral Theory (or anything else) ought to be cautious about giving rise to the impression that it incorporates, includes, contains, everything is a critique of the insufficiency of space-like containment.  Yet it is not terribly relevant.  Any theory can accurately include an All.  The word "everything" is a micro-theory which totally includes all things.  Nothing in the present falls outside of everything.

Yet the meaning of that everything can change.  This change is temporal.  If we presumed that the theory was temporally closed (the reciprocal of pre-temporally authorized) then we would make a grievous error. 

The lion's share of the problems associated with "totality" and "closure" and "all" (which are spatially suggestive terms) exist via implied temporal metaphysics.  They are not very problematic when applied to spatial metaphysics.



Balder said:

In any event, more on topic:

I've read your "reboot" post several times, and while I agree with you that the question of time is indeed important for our shifts to post/modern and integral-aperspectival thought and appreciate the inquiry you're opening, I'm not quite following the argument you are making here -- particularly the contrast you are setting up.  I might be missing some subtleties in your argument.  It seems to me that you are still identifying 'totalization'/'closure' as the postmetaphysical problem, re-framed or re-applied in temporal terms.  You are objecting to the totalizing 'cut' (and foreclosure) in temporal process that belief in a First One, a Primordial Authorizing Agent, inserts.  From what I have followed of your argument thus far, I would say you are exploring another dimension of this issue of totalization, rather than an alternative to it.


For your list of problematic temporal metaphysics, you might add the following:

  • Time consists of moments - with the corrolaries that time had a first moment, or that it consists of a linear series of moments.


The main culprit you have identified for bad temporal metaphysics (and thus bad metaphysics), the belief that there is a primordial authorizing agent that originally set the patterns of the universe or established a purpose, is mainly problematic for you, I gather, because this move appears to "pre-determine" emergence and/or to subordinate time to space by placing a (spatial, thing-like or very subtle thing-like) fixed being at the source of time.  Is this right?  Reality is conceived metaphysically, in the problematic sense, when we take it to consist of things that are fixed-in-advance by, or given by, this primordial author(iz)ing agency?

If so, I'd like to take a step back and take a slightly different look -- particularly in relation to Wilber's framing of metaphysics and postmetaphysics.  You know this already, but I'll tell the story anyway.  For Wilber, even the elemental, momentary "dharmas" or "perceptions" of Buddhism are metaphysical (in the problematic sense).  But here, the elemental dharmas or perceptions are not metaphysical because they are fixed in advance by an authorizing deity or agency at the beginning of time, but because they are still (apparently unconsciously) 3rd-person abstractions of perspective-events.  Wilber's postmetaphysical turn definitely includes a temporal element, in that he frames reality in evental terms -- here, specifically, as perspective-events (in which things are definitely "outputs of the process" (of perspective-taking), not simply "given" or "self-existing").  

As I mentioned above, "time" is often associated with epistemology, and Wilber's temporal (processual/evental) framing is also a strongly epistemological one:  ontology per se is called into question; the "usual metaphysical suspects" at the base of reality -- whether atoms, perceptions, elements, consciousness, energetic or material processes, etc -- are all revealed as subtle or gross abstractions of perspectival events.  Wilber notes postmodernism's 'contextualization' of identities and objects as outputs of cultural or linguistic processes, but argues that most of these formulations are also still subtly metaphysical, since they tend not to acknowledge or recognize these generative or formative background contexts themselves as perspectival enactions.

Wilber may be seen as objecting to an arbitrary 'cut' in temporal/evental process, not necessarily at the beginning of time or the universe, but at least as a 'settling' on gross or subtle abstraction as 'given' -- as a pre-given constitutive element of some sort.

However, as we've discussed on this forum and elsewhere at some length, there are other problematic metaphysical issues that arise if we privilege time/epistemology in such a way that space/ontology is subordinate to and only ever generated by perspectives (the epistemic fallacy, correlationism, etc).  To locate the "more" of adjacency only in the temporal/epistemological "next," we verge on an epistemological reductionism (and a form of actualism) if the adjacent excess is only ever a matter of subsequent temporal en-actualization.

Regarding space as finite, I am not convinced this is necessarily the only viable position.  See Spinoza, or more recently Joel Morrison's works, for compelling accounts of ontological infinity; or see Universal Cycle Theory for a scientific account of both spatial and temporal infinity.

Time & Space have a peculiar relationship.  It is uncertain whether "more" is a movement of addition or an existing fact.  So while we certainly cannot reduce space to time, or fix all the former problems by address to the latter, we also remain open to the possibility that dynamic closure is a considerably more important problem than ontological closure. 

Thinking over your comments about Wilber, I consider that, obviously, a lot of official MOSP metaphysics are largely characterized by 3rd person objectifications.  And this is challenged at MOA-1 by the alterity of 1st and 2nd person perspectives.  But I think these perspectives are not absent from the worldspaces prior to postmetaphysics. 

They are, perhaps, not as tightly woven together into the explicit assertions about reality as subsequent layers permit -- but that is to be expected.  People at all the MOSP levels have shared and subjective perceptions of reality which form motivational and central aspects of their experience even though not being consistently displayed in their written philosophies.  We notice this very obviously when we have come to wrangle ontology and epistemology side-by-side but it was previously present. 

The issue was not the 3rd person externality and mere thingness of things (which in some way IS balanced in MOSP and MOA metaphysics alike) but the space-like objectification.  The confinement of  beings to Being.  The fixity of their dynamism and the collapse of their next-ness.

Adjacency occurs.  It is does not ONLY occur -- but too often we discuss it as a structural present fact of a being or beings rather than a movement performed by the perspective which is admitting additional potentials into an identity.

Development occurs.  Every healthy level gives birth to its successors and therefore we can suppose that ill health or error at any level (including all the postmetaphysical levels) is characterized, in part, by confined to the apparently inherited, apparently pre-established forms of the present rather than permitting subsequent flowering.

The way that occurring is held, in metaphysics or in that metaphysics called Postmetaphysics, seems to be a key concern.  While the way in which ontology is held relative to epistemology is natural for MOSPs and grown beyond by MOAs. 

Yes, I think you have a good point about temporal closure being more problematic than spatial closure -- meaning, it is more problematic to say, This is so complete that it is complete for all time, as has been claimed regarding certain revealed texts or teachings, than it is to say, This is comprehensive with regard to our present state of knowledge.  However, given the complexity and scope of existing human perspectives, even the latter claim is generally suspect.  A theory may contain or present "an" All, conceptually, but that is different from claiming that a theory is functionally THE All for our current needs -- that it leaves nothing essential out, that it has accounted for everything, that there are no meaningful gaps, aporias, distortions, or oversights, etc...  Still, it is not necessarily a show-stopper to claim a theory is "comprehensive enough" for present needs; that's what we should aim for.

LP:  The issue was not the 3rd person externality and mere thingness of things (which in some way IS balanced in MOSP and MOA metaphysics alike) but the space-like objectification.  The confinement of  beings to Being.  The fixity of their dynamism and the collapse of their next-ness.

I think this may be part of it, but for postmetaphysical concerns there seems to be an irreducible (inter)subjective component to the issue: it is not just that such formulations "fix" being in a particular form, rather than acknowledging it may change, but they fix being in a form without acknowleding the role our own (inter)subjectivity plays in their very apprehension and positing.  Meaning, we posit these things as if in a view from nowhere.

LP:  Adjacency occurs.  It is does not ONLY occur -- but too often we discuss it as a structural present fact of a being or beings rather than a movement performed by the perspective which is admitting additional potentials into an identity.

At least in our discussions here on IPS over the past couple years, discussion of this 'more' as (also) structural rather than primarily or exclusively temporal/emergent (via perspectival enactment) has arisen because of some of the metaphysical issues that attend the latter interpretation.  I mean here the issues of correlationism and the epistemic fallacy, among others.  In other words, we should distinguish between something like Bryant's object-oriented (process) philosophy which includes a (MOA-2- or MOA-3-like) understanding of the radical 'nearness' of being/becoming and which still includes reference to things such as endo-structure and withdrawal, and either  1) a more MOSP-like, (spatial) metaphysics of substance, being, etc; or 2) a more radically perspectival-processual view such as Whitehead's.

Yes, the advent of a Metaphysics of Adjacency (postmetaphysics) requires a variety of things such as irreducible inter(subjectivity).  The objectification and inclusion of such element in our overt theory is a natural component of theory at this level -- and it stands in some degree of distinction from the less packaged way in which people explored objective and (inter)subjective parts of their experience at previous levels.  Such elements are less likely to feature prominently in the discussion at more primitive levels.  Not because they are not widely experienced and acknowledged, but because holding that slippery "edge" between them is not done very successful in the moment of enacting their theories.  However their metaphysics is still very appropriate to their level and not that much of a issue except where it gets into patterns associated with this limiting temporal arrangements.

The difficulty of a "view form nowhere" does two things:

(a)  It reminds us that that inter-perspectival threshold, epitomized in the meta-contextual slide to include the perceiver, is a normal and natural part of an advanced model of reality. 

(b) It also highlights the nihilistic assumptions hidden in many forms of traditional metaphysics (even those which are continued under modernist logic).  Yet this nothingness is not added to my model by virtue of the fact that I forget to include myself in the picture.  Relativists frequently invoke an explicit view from nowhere by simply noting a primordial and meaningless space in which all perspectives are possible.  "That's just your opinion, man" is a kind of colloquial microcosm of the view-from-nowhere which persists under the inclusion of (inter)subjective contexts. 

The idea that "before" my perspective, or "before" anyone's perspective, or "before" God created the universe, there was Nothing is a prior implicit retroactive assumption which smuggles the Nowhere into the system.  Then it is either noticed (MOA) or not noticed (MOSP).

Yes, I agree, there is a nihilistic metaphysics that is often preserved in postmodern relativism -- in, as you say, the (implicit/practical) assumption of perspectives all arising and floating in a prior nothing/nowhere.  

Relative to this, and to your thoughts in this thread, I'm thinking Bhaskar's metaphysical model might be useful here.  It retains 'nothingness' as absence, but this is a 'local' absence in a sense, not a primordial one -- the negativity or negating/absenting implicit in the conception of being-in/as-becoming.  Bhaskar describes "7 stadia of being" or of the "ontological-axiological chain."

* being as such (as structured and differentiated; non-identity)

* becoming (processuality of being through absence/negativity)

* totality (correlativity of being, all beings enfolded in each being)

* intentional transformative agency (reflexivity of being)

* spirituality

* re-enchantment (world as intrinsically meaningful, valuable, processual, and creative or spiritual)

* non-duality (of subject and object, fact and value, sacred and profane, etc)

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What paths lie ahead for religion and spirituality in the 21st Century? How might the insights of modernity and post-modernity impact and inform humanity's ancient wisdom traditions? How are we to enact, together, new spiritual visions – independently, or within our respective traditions – that can respond adequately to the challenges of our times?

This group is for anyone interested in exploring these questions and tracing out the horizons of an integral post-metaphysical spirituality.

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At the moment, this site is at full membership capacity and we are not admitting new members.  We are still getting new membership applications, however, so I am considering upgrading to the next level, which will allow for more members to join.  In the meantime, all discussions are open for viewing and we hope you will read and enjoy the content here.

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