Doubling Down: Doing Deconstruction During Derrida’s Death

I’m doubling down on doing deconstruction, and apparently I’m doubling down on that phrase, “doubling down,” which I already said once (too much) in the title and have now used way too much at this point. I promise not to use it again here, but the excess is part of my point: an exercise inContinue reading “Doubling Down: Doing Deconstruction During Derrida’s Death”

The Irony of Practice: Hypocrisy

In a previous post, I pointed out the use of Socratic irony in Pierre Hadot’s writings on philosophy as a way of life involving spiritual exercises. The idea is that “Hadot’s practice of irony reveals the irony of practice.” To put it simply, practice is always hypocritical.

Beginnings of Philosophy

The origin or beginning of something plays a significant role in its ongoing explication: extreme sensitivity to initial conditions. As Aristotle observes (Ethics 1098b), “arche [origin] seems to be more than half of the whole.” There’s a story that philosophers tell themselves about the beginning of philosophy, a very common story, a story that seems toContinue reading “Beginnings of Philosophy”

The Anaxagoras Problem

In Plato’s Phaedo, Socrates gives an account of what can be called the Anaxagoras problem.  Here’s the problem: Anaxagoras claimed that mind is the origin of all things; however, when describing the way things are, he leaves mind behind and ends up resorting to physical or mechanistic explanations, thereby failing to instantiate his guiding principle.Continue reading “The Anaxagoras Problem”

Socrates and Place

Socrates can’t learn from place.  He’s too anthropocentric.  I always think of Plato’s Phaedrus (230d), where Socrates says this: You see, I am fond of learning. Now the country places and the trees won’t teach me anything, and the people in the city do. He is fond of learning (philomathes), but country places (chorai) andContinue reading “Socrates and Place”