File spoon-archives/bhaskar.archive/bhaskar_2001/bhaskar.0111, message 32

Date: Fri, 30 Nov 2001 09:09:42 -0800
Subject: Re: BHA: PON ch. 3 question

Hi guys,

Mervyn, thanks a lot.  Phil, I'd be curious to hear what you have to say.  Unfortunately I really don't have anything of note to add one way or another.  

I mean, if I had to, I guess I would say that I was a little surprised, at first, by such a belief-oriented definition of essence, but I'm not sure what else I thought it would be - and it fits in with the over-all thrust of the argument, I can see that.  I'm not in on, or up on, Bhaskar's current thinking, so I appreciated Mervyn's review of the talk.  I suppose I *might* end up thinking that in PON the discriminations aren't as fine as Mervyn suggests - and that the word "person" is used simply because he's talking in the singular.  But I'm not terribly committed to that.  I don't know a lot about Freud, but Bhaskar credits him, and I guess I was also curious about how he fits in exactly with the idea that it is beliefs that are primary, causally.  I would have expected it to be "wants," broadly construed.  But that's most likely to be a matter of my not understanding Freud very well.  Plus maybe that beliefs-wants-action thing is only meant to capture the idea that wants are necessary AND sufficient for action whereas beliefs are only necessary.  Still, I guess if I think about it it seems curious that wants don't seem to make it into the definition of essence, in PON.

But that's it.  As I said, it's really just the questions you ask when you're trying to really understand something.  I had never paid enough attention to this chapter before. 


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