No, we can’t know everything via human dynamisms of immediacy & mediacy, but, by golly, we can indubitably know some things, for all practical purposes, from each of them.
We know this from – not a neo-Kantian “a priorism” but – a robustly “a posteriori” turn to the subject, who participates cosmically & arguably eternally.
Dynamisms of immediacy like Polanyi ‘s tacit dimension, Newman’s illative sense, Maritain’s connaturality, Lonergan’s notion of being, Fries’ nonintuitive immediate knowledge, Aristotle ‘s intuitive induction, Peirce’s abductive instinct & common sense, as well as faith’s noesis as pistis, each immanently presupposes irreducibly triadic normative patterns of inference & participation.
While such immediacy presents prior to some developmental experiences of mediacy (personal acculturation) & to some cognitive operations (understanding & judgment), they’re constituted by adaptations (fast & frugal heuristics) … adaptations that express a 2 million year accumulation of successful understandings & judgments, all made by the coevolution of brains & symbolic (hence triadic) languages.
What I am arguing is that what we refer to as cognitively immediate is, in a very real sense, essentially mediated, only diachronically via a collective (phylogenetic) memory of cumulative past understandings & judgments, now operating in our hardwired but open-ended processes, i.e. abductive instincts with built-in triadic deductive logics that respond algorithmically to (variously novel) inductive experiences. This is otherwise distinct from, but integrated with, the triadic inferential cycling of mediated knowledge, which progressively & developmentally deepens our understandings & advances the efficacies of our judgments, i.e. realizing human authenticity.
Admittedly, that’s not an infinite biosemiosis of an eschatological community of inquiry, but, heck, I’m willing to work with it, despite its ineluctable fallibility & intrinsic biases.
I’m going to go out on a limb to suggest we can know:
the existence of other minds;
the laws of noncontradiction, excluded middle & identity;
reality is intelligible to a marked degree;
humans are intelligent to a modest extent;
common sense understandings of causation are meaningful;
AND that the ubiquitous belief in the Ens Necessarium is eminently reasonable!
The irreducibly triadic normative patterns of
inference include abduction, induction & deduction & of
participation include existential, co-creative & formal acts,
which reduce essential, material & final limited potencies, respectively representing natural, hypostatic & theotic logics.
eco-semiotics of ousia – what does home (cosmos) mean?
eco-logy of hypostatic logoi – how do homemakers (Christs) make homes?
eco-poetics of energeia & theotic poiesis – why is this (Cosmic Christ) the way home?
See: οἶκος & λόγος: a gloss | Reflections on Ecosemiotics, Ecopoetics & Apologetic Theology: Reading the “Signs of the Times”
Per the logic of immaterial hypostases, such substances, neither formal nor repeatable, are indifferent toward & irreducible to essences, whether primary (essential) or secondary (theotic) natures.
Material hypostases may involve a whole different ball of quarks. Can’t say.
Yes, I’m a godforsaken positivist & empiricist – just not, respectively, the logical or radical type!
Discussion: However much fallibility & bias afflict us, such that, proximately & inferentially, we can’t indubitably know everything, because we enjoy an holistic dynamism of immediacy from 2 million years of adaptations, it’s silly to say that we can’t indubitably know anything!
In my view, we’re gifted, via a coevolution of language & brain, a holistic dynamism of immediacy, a privileged approach to & notion (not grasp) of being, an immanent dynamical normative pattern in the structures of our consciousness.
A hyper-fallibilism lacks justification.
That holistic dynamism already operates symbolically, however tacitly & anticipatorily, prior to our developmental experiences of mediacy, personal acculturation, understandings & judgments.
What ails Peirce’s grounding can be cured by situating his semiotic within Lonergan’s method, perhaps?
The more I read CSP & Lonergan, the more complementarity I perceived between their cognitive theories. Both prescribed antidotes to skepticism, naive realism, Cartesianism, knowledge as direct intuitive act & nominalistic pragmatism. So, less daylight tween ’em than I was taught.
Lonergan does more clearly relate knowing to being?
re: remote criteria of truth to ground judgments, BL’s ‘talking things out‘ & CSP’s ‘community of inquiry‘ converge.
re: proximate assertions, some relate CSP’s ‘exhaustive investigation‘ to BL’s ‘virtually unconditioned.’
What is truth? or Who?
How well can we understand understanding?
How much insight can we have into insight?
Is there a relationship that necessarily (vs only probably) obtains between our indispensable methodological presuppositions and metaphysical verities?
When one asserts that a belief is truth-indicative, has one presupposed that other beliefs are necessarily truth-conducive?
When one asserts the virtually unconditioned, whether regarding probabilities or certainties, has one necessarily presupposed the strictly unconditioned?
In the same sense that the principle of falsification, itself, is not falsifiable, what about the principle of fallibilism? Might it be fallible?
Just because some arguments self-subvert when parodied or can be reduced to absurdity, doesn’t mean they’re necessarily false? Just because other arguments survive parody and don’t seem absurd, doesn’t mean they’re necessarily true?
Some of these questions risk the conflation of distinct conceptions, so can confuse.
To talk about knowledge, we must first talk about truth.
Falsification, fallibilism, understanding, insight, immediacy, mediacy, methods, the virtually unconditioned, parodies & reductiones refer to knowledge.
Our theories of knowledge presuppose, & their principles inescapably must refer to, realities like the strictly unconditioned, nondeterminacies, necessities, metaphysical verities, in a word, truth.
Some theories & principles of knowledge have circled back to saw off the same ontological branches wherein their own epistemological eggs are nestled.
The best axioms gift us – not only a home to hatch those eggs, but – fruits of a goodness we can taste & a beauty we can see, with a truth that neither can be nor need be derived or proved, for its own givenness in turn donates the very possibility of goodness & beauty, themselves, and of knowledge, itself.
Taste and see the goodness of the Ens Necessarium.
What’s Grounded & Justified & How?
Categorially, necessity, contingency, nondeterminacy, determinacy, self-determinacy & indeterminacy, all successfully refer. We know this, for all practical purposes, immediately. This guarantees a modicum of intelligibility of reality, consistent with a foundherentism.
The virtually unconditioned can indeed ground our empirical judgments.
Unanswered & of profound existential import, though, is the nature of any putative necessaria, e.g. an ens necessarium. Such answers may turn on mereological realities, e.g. whether reality’s parts suffice to explain the whole or not. An eminently reasonable leap of faith is pragmatically justified (e.g. fallibilist, pragmatic, semiotic realism; abduction of the Ens Necessarium).
I am strongly tempted to suggest that virtually refers only to putatively practically exceptionless realities, both the empirical & normative.