APPENDIX Z20: Take #2: Where Is Competing The Metaphysics?*

Published on 24 Jan 2016 at 1:12 pm. No Comments.
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Take #2: Where Is The
The Bard Symposium ‘take
The three basic groups of
academics represented at the
April 2012 international academic conference at
College (NY) on Summa Metaphysica were:
A) Religious philosophers
B) Secular Philosophers/Metaphysicians
C) Scientists
Conference co-Chair Gary Hagberg** posed the
noted) question, (see title above) to the assemblage
Group A academics leaned-towards the proposition
that each of their respective religions could potentially
embrace Summa as an
elegant dovetailing add-on to
their respective belief systems.

Group B academics leaned-towards the proposition
that Neoplatonism as a whole was the closest
indirectly) competing neo-metaphysics. However,
Neoplatonism is more a modality of looking at problems,
rather than a particular specic all-embracing
or metaphysical structure. Indeed, we all operate on
Neoplatonism platform. Meaning, that there was,
no salient viable directly competing metaphysics.
respectfully, Aristotelianism and its Jewish
offshoot, Maimonidean philosophy are important historical
systems, still embraced by many, which do so-to-speak
on signicant levels compete with Summa. Daniel Khalil
directly and articulately deals with – and exposes
the fatal
metaphysical gap in – Aristotle and Maimonides in his
Foreword to Summa II: God
and Good.]
Group C academics went along with Oxford scientist and
Conference presenter Peter Atkins’ “interesting” mini-
metaphysics that “purposeless decay” was the allegedly
more powerful and competing metaphysics. Atkins
repeatedly articulates this theme in his published
When challenged as to whether he preferred to view
himself as the product of Birnbaumian Quest for
/Extraordinariation or of Atkinsonian purposeless
decay, Atkins responded with the latter, to the dismay of
the assemblage.

In Summation
re: the proposed
“Purposeless decay” metaphysics:
Thus, the prime direct challenge to the Potential/
Extraordinariation metaphysics, is, according to at least
one segment of the Conference, only “purposeless
decay.” Frankly, hard-to-believe that this pessimistic
quick-x – which has no formal structure and no
answers to many key questions – is even qualied
challenge. Aside from the fact that the ‘visceral
of “purposeless decay” is not, shall we say, stellar.
As well, it has neither a “starting point” nor
“integration” beyond a few specic physics issues.
re: the Aristotelian metaphysics:
As noted above, Khalil deals with the fatal gap in
Aristotelian or neo-Aristotelian systems.***
Thus, with no readily available seriously
metaphysics, we would need to juxtapose Summa
against putative competing systems as they are
potentially offered-up.
see also “Appendix Z4: Where is Option B?”
** Chairman, Dept. of Philosophy, Bard College
For the record, Orthodox
Jewish scientist and academic Khalil
does not challenge the religious doctrines of
Orthodox Jewish
Maimonides. Nor does Khalil truly need to do so in
order to challenge
the metaphysics of Maimonides. [Please note that
Khalil and I are in-
sync on both fronts here.]

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