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Introduction This book is an Anthology of previously published Tract Books or Essays dealing with Critical Thomist Jurisprudence.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Chapter 1 2 3 4 5 6
Description A Second Refutation of Ockham’s Razor Bergson, Duration, and Metaphysics Biblical Miracles and Quantum Physics Canon Law and Equity Christianity, the Bible, and Karma Critical Thomism and Gadamer’s Hermeneutics
Page 4 6 10 15 18 21
7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15
Critical Thomism and Economics Critical Thomism and Liberation
Critical Thomism, Creative Form, and Jesus Christ 30 Ethics, Natural Law, and Responsibility Hegelian Phil., Dialectic and LL-T Law Jungian Psychology, the Bible, and Spirituality Law and Liberation Theology Law and Love Law, Science, Statistical Probability, and Standard Deviation 49 54 56 61 32 35 37 40 47
16 17 18 19
Metaphysics and Quantum Physics Natural Law, Divine Law, and Equity Parenting Children for Social Justice and Equality Philosophy of Law, Evidence, and A Fallacious Argument
64 68 73
20 21 22
Reincarnation: A Critical Look Separation of Church and State Statutory Construction and the United States Constitution
23 24 25 26
The Bible and Natural Law The Bible and Social Justice The Bible, Jesus, and Social Justice The Bible, Equity, and Law: Unclean Hands and Good Faith
78 82 84
90 93 98 101 103
27 28 29
The Bible, Evolution, and Multidimensional Reality Zen Realism and Critical Thomism Zen Satori and Critical Thomist Insight THE END
Chapter 1 A Second Refutation of Ockham’s Razor By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
Previously, I argued that Ockham’s Razor is invalid because in order for a concept to be valid, it must at least allow for its’ own existence. Ockham’s Razor does not allow for its’ own existence because it excludes itself as an unnecessary metaphysical assumption. In this Tract Book, I explore an alternate refutation of Ockham’s Razor. In essence, Ockham’s Razor provides that a simple explanation of some phenomenon is to be preferred over a more complex explanation. So, for example, if it is possible to argue for or prove or even theorize the origin of the Universe in purely physicalist terms, excluding any discussion of God or metaphysics, then, such a “simple” physicalist explanation is to be preferred. I would like to propose an alternative approach, however. Let us call this Fejfar’s Rubberband. Fejfar’s Rubberband argues that a more complex explanation is to be preferred over a simple one. The argument is that
intellectual people generally prefer more complex explanations of phenomenon over those which or simple at best, simpliste, at worst. Fejfar’s Rubberband would prefer an explanation of the origin of the Universe which involves God, or metaphysics, over a simple physicalist explanation. Now, let us assume the role of a judge who must determine which approach is more valid, Ockham’s Razor or Fejfar’s Rubberband. Looking at the arguments from a more critical point of view, it is clear that there is no rational basis for preferring Ockham’s Razor to Fejfar’s Rubberband. The choice of selecting a more simple explanation over a more complex explanation is purely subjective. There is no value neutral argument which favors Ockham’s Razor over Fejfar’s Rubberband. Ockham’s Razor is revealed not as critical science, but as a subjectivist, purely arbitrary, irrational, assumption.
Chapter 2 Bergson, Duration, and Metaphysics By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar In his philosophical work, “Introduction to Metaphysics,” Henri Bergson showcases the metaphysical concept of “Duration.” Instead of
discussing the metaphysical concepts of being, or substance, or logos, Bergson explicates the idea of Duration. What is Duration? Well, it is not easy to say precisely. Duration represents an enduring moment in time. One wonders whether duration is found precisely in space-time, or beyond it in some sense. Metaphysics are typically thought to function beyond space-time, but perhaps they can manifest in the duration of space-time. Metaphysical concepts or quiddities such as being, form, logos, and substance are thought to operate independently of the knower outside of time. Bergson, however, places duration within time, although it must be stated that duration does not represent ordinary time.
Perhaps we can better understand duration by considering some examples. For many Native Americans, time flows. Those on “indian time” have a very difficult time showing up on time for appointments. If a Native American says that he will be at a certain place at a certain time, this is traditionally seen as an approximation. If a Native American tells you
that he will be there first thing in the morning, he might show up at ten o’clock, rather than eight o’clock. I am not saying this as a criticism. Nor am I saying that all Native Americans who have been acculturated into “western” linear time necessarily function this way. But, some Native Americans do experience time this way. Perhaps, then, Indian time is an example of duration where space-time is curved or bends to manifest in an alinear way. In addition to Indian time, there is also “farm time.” While it took a phenomenology class to critically reflect on the experience of time that I had growing up. On my Grandpa’s farm in South Dakota, where I spent summer vacations, growing up, time flowed differently. This “Bohemian Farm time” was very different that the “school time” that I was accustomed to during the school year. Similarly, for some people, it is possible that they experience “vacation time” as qualitatively different. If you are on the type
of vacation where you do not have to keep a schedule, vacation time is qualitatively different different than “work time.” My point for the foregoing discussion of time is that it does lend support for Bergson’s concept of Duration. Perhaps Duration is a different
sort of time than we are normally accustomed to. Perhaps space-time “bends” a bit to manifest duration. The notion that space-time can bend is consistent with Quantum Physics. Because of Quantum Non-locality at a subatomic level, it is possible that time might bend or endure as a “moment” of duration, where the change in time is qualitative. This is because with Quantum Nonlocality, the shortest distance between two points is not necessarily a linear straight line. Now, a point that can be made is that perhaps meditation can change enough of one’s subatomic structure in a person’s brain that time will be experienced differently. Perhaps this accounts for the fact that some people say that time “slows down” in an emergency situation. Moreover, some athletes say that time can slow down so that it is easier to play a sport effectively. At some “moment points” a baseball, or a tennis ball can slow down in a way that makes it easier for the ball to be hit.
The point I wish to make is that if one can experience “moment points” of duration as part of a person’s ordinary life, then it makes it easier to imagine that some scientists, philosophers, or theologians, can intuit being, substance, or logos, or other metaphysical quiddities which manifest outside of space-time. Such metaphysical quiddities such as quantum form or quantum cause, then, manifest in the duration of curved space-time, within space-time, while the others do not.
Bibliography Henri Bergson, Introduction to Metaphysics Edmund Husserl, Phenomenology
Chapter 3 Biblical Miracles and Quantum Physics By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar When I was a freshman in college at Rockhurst College (now Rockhurst University) I had a course called “Christ in the Scriptures.” It was a good class. There was this cute little blond from the Kansas side, who drove this cute little sports car, who sat right behind me. I didn’t get anywhere with the cute little blond, who by the way was Protestant, but I did get somewhere with the class. Father Carl Dehne, S.J., taught us about “redaction criticism” of the Bible. That is, interpretation of the Bible through the use of “demythologizing” hermeneutics. In other words, were we basically taught, at least to some extent, that although Faith may make us believe in the Miracles of the Bible, when we are “scientific” scripture scholars, we will not believe in miracles. The toughest thing for me was the discussion of the gospel of Luke. Father Dehne told us about the “infancy narrative” which was found only in
Luke. Matthew refers briefly to the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem, of Judea, and Matthew also refers to the three wise men or magi. Neither the gospels of Mark, nor John, refer to the birth of Jesus. Now, why do I point this out? Well, the implication of the whole thing, whether explicit or not, was that there was really no virgin birth, nor flight to Egypt, etc., etc., etc. In other word no Christmas. So, I went home to Lincoln, Nebraska for “Christmas” break, in a little bit of a quandry. Was Christmas really real? Did the miracles in the Bible really take place, or was it all hyperbole? Was there a virgin birth or was Jesus an illegitimate child? Well, I went to Christmas Mass, probably Midnight Mass, and I was almost convinced that the miracles were true,...somehow, someway. Then, I sat up late, like I usually did, and stared into the Christmas lights on the Christmas tree, and the homemade cretch scene, with Jesus in the manger with the three wise men, and Mary, Joseph, the shepherds, and the sheep, and meditated. Then somehow I knew that it was ture, intuitively. I had not lost my Faith with the Jesuits, but had strengthened it, somehow. I knew the miracles were true, I knew Christmas was real. Now, many years later, as an adult in my forties, I am revisiting the
issue. Was there a virgin birth of Jesus? Did Moses really part the Red Sea to allow the Hebrews to escape from the Egyptians? Did Daniel really survive in the lion’s den? Did Jesus really heal blind and lame people? Did Jesus really raise Lazarus from the dead? Did Jesus really rise from the dead after his crucifixtion? Well, Faith told me yes, and even more, Intuition told me yes, but what about modern science? What does science have to say? Well, modern science, in my view, using Quantum Physics, definitely supports the idea of miracles happening. In the world of science, using Quantum Physics, miracles happen “scientifically.” Quantum Physics says that at a subatomic level all of material reality is supported not by atoms, but by subatomic particles, one of which is the quanta. The quanta particle is a chameleon. Meaning changes the valence and function of a quanta particle. Mind over matter is literally true. The double slit experiment of Quantum Physics shows a dispersion pattern that is impossible given ordinary newtownian physics assumptions. Moreover, Bell’s Theorem proves non-local communication at a distance between atoms, thus making the idea of “psychic channeling” scientifically possible. Additionally, if non-local communication is possible, and if subatomic particles can change valence or function, then it is possible that
meaning, or prayer, can change subatomic particles non-locally at a distance. And, if meaning or prayer can change subatomic particles non-locally at a distance, then it is certainly possible that atoms and molecules, and even cells, which are ultimately composes of subatomic particles, could also change. A virgin birth is thus scientifically possible, as well as moving large amounts of water, and healing the blind and the lame. The foregoing is confirmed by the fact that modern scientific prayer studies show that prayer provides a statistically significant difference in the healing of heart attack patients. Quantum particles, called quanta, and the Quantum Field that they compose, can change matter physically. Underlying material physical reality is not atomic separateness, but instead the Quantum Field, masking itself as various subatomic particles. Thus, miracles are not only scientifically possible, but probable. Not only are the modern “scientific” miracles of the microwave oven, the television, the computer, the gameboy, the playstation, the dvd player made possible with Quantum Physics, so too are the “scientific” miracles of the virgin birth of Jesus, Jesus healing the blind and the lame, the parting of the Red Sea, and Daniel and the lion’s den.
Bibliography Larry Dossey, M.D., Recovering the Soul Nick Herbert, Quantum Reality
Chapter 4 Canon Law and Equity By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar Ordinarily, Roman Catholics are bound by the Code of Canon Law. However, there is at least one exception to this. The Code of Canon Law, following Divine Law and Natural Law, has a provision which parallels Aristotle’s treatment of Equity. This is done in the first instance by the Doctrine of Epikeia, and in the second instance by Equity itself. The Doctrine of Epikeia provides: Epikeia is an interpretation exempting one from the law contrary to the clear words of the law and in accordance with the mind of the legislator. Epikeia is used where: “(a) the strict interpretation of the law would work a great hardship, and (b) in view of the usual interpretation it may be prudently conjectured that, in this particular case, the legislator would not
wish the law to be strictly applied. Let us take, then, this example. Suppose that a person was stranded on a desert island with some food and drink, including a box of soda crackers and a bottle of grape juice. While Canon Law would ordinarily prohibit the use of grape juice for the eucharist, and while Canon Law ordinarily requires that Mass be said by an ordained priest. In these exceptional circumstances the lay person would be permitted to say Mass, as a priest, with the materials available. The lay person would be entitled under Natural Law, Divine Law, and Canon Law, to make an exception to the ordinary Canon Law rule so that the lay person would not be denied the sacrament of the Mass and eucharist. A second use of Equity is that Canon Law is to be applied equitably: “Canonical equity may be defined as a certain human moderation with which canon law is to be tempered, so that the text may be prudently, even benignly applied to concrete cases.” This equitable interpretation of law means that every Canon Law rule can be equitably interpreted so as to promote Divine Law and Natural Law in the interests of justice. Thus, a priest could interpret canon law in a particular situation to allow, the one hour fast before mass rule, to be relaxed for a person who has just gotten of
the night shift and needs to eat a snack before Mass.
Bibliography Bouscaren and Ellis, Canon Law
Chapter 5 Christianity, The Bible and Karma By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar Christianity is often thought not to have anything to do with the eastern concept of Karma. The idea of Karma is that everything, including human beings, is bound by the law of cause and effect. In the west, we sometimes say, “for every action there is an equal a opposite reaction.” Karma is a similar idea. The general idea is that every action that a person undertakes has an effect, sometimes immediate, sometimes delayed. Additionally, in Christianity, it is argued that Christ transcends Karma. This Chapter explores these issues. In the Bible, there is a quotation which says, “As you sow, so you shall reap.” What this means is that the actions you perform reflect back upon you. So, if you treat others unjustly, you will be treated unjustly. If you harm others, you will be harmed. If you help others, you will be helped. If you love others, you will be loved. If you hate others, you will be hated. Sometimes the effect is immediate, sometimes it is delayed. The Bible also says, “Judge not, lest you shall be judged.” What this
means is that as you judge, so you shall be judged. The standard you set for others is the standard that will be applied to you. This is why hypocrisy is a serious sin. If you set artificially high standards for others, so you will be judged by those same standards. This is another application of Karma. It is the position of Christianity that Grace from Christ transcends Karma. Thus, prayer and Divine Intervention by Christ can cancel out Karma. But, even so, there is still a price. Jesus demands that we love and help others. As Jesus says in the Bible, “Love one another as I have loved you.” Additionally, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength, and your neighbor as yourself.” When a person finds love in Christ hae1 receives the Grace in Christ to love and help others. One’s Karma becomes Karma in Christ where one pledges to live a simple life in the service of others, letting one’s Holy Spirit Self flow through. The person is happy to live a life helping others, whether as a nurse, a doctor, a lawyer, a priest, a nun, a minister, a social worker, a teacher, even a business person who follows social responsibility of business when producing a profit. The person, in Christ is happy to have the Karma of Christ, especially, since Christ was penured, or crucified, once
“Hae,” is the neuter pronoun that I have developed. “Hae” is used here rather
than “he” or “she.” 19
and for all for our sins or Karma. We are not required to be crucified, only to help others. The concepts of Heaven, Hell, and Purgatory, thus make sense. If a person lives a life of hate, then Karma will place that person in Hell, either now, or later. If a person lives a life of mediocrity, a combination of love and hate, then Karma will place that person in Purgatory, either now, or later. If a person lives a life of love and helping others, then Karma will place that person in Heaven, either now, or later.
Bibliography Matthew Fox, The Sermon on the Mount
Chapter 6 Critical Thomism and Gadamer’s Hermeneutics By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
In Hans Georg Gadamer’s book, “Truth and Method,” Gadamer discusses at length the problem of hermeneutics. Hermeneutics is that discipline concerned with meaning. Gadamer points out that no language can have meaning outside a hermeneutic context. Meaning, then, in some sense preceeds reason. Meaning is the “light” which enables us to see the forest and the tree. Without meaning we would simply have a jumbled up world of meaningless sense impressions. Meaning provides the context through which we not only interpret reality, but in some sense construct reality. Because meaning in some sense preceeds reality, we have the problem of the hermeneutic circle. Since meaning preceeds knowing, all that we know must in some sense be meant, and since meaning is seen as essentially subjective, we know what we mean and we mean what we know.
This is the hermeneutic circle. I would argue, however, that conceptual meaning involves, in the strict sense only the level of understanding. As I have argued before, Critical Thomism takes the position that knowledge comes from a three part cognitive operation involving sense experience, meaningful understanding, and reflective intuitive judgment. Reflection and judgment sublates meaningful understanding by performing a different cognitive function. While understood meaning is rational and analytic in its’ pure form, reflection and judgment are alinear, arational intuitive cognitive functions. Thus the intuitive function of reflection and judgment transforms the hermeneutic circle into a “hermeneutic spiral.” Therefore, a certain vantage point can be found using judgment and reflection which leads one out of the “illogical” hermeneutic circle. Because of the intuitive function of judgment and reflection, that which is know is that what is judged and reflected upon, not simply that which is meaningfully understood analytically. Finally, Gadamer also points out that there are certain “forestructures of knowing” which enable better understanding. Additionally, Gadamer also discusses what he describes as “enabling
prejudices” or an “enabling horizon.”This is Gadamer’s attempt to avoid the hermeneutic circle. I would argue that the cognitive function of judgment and reflection, as mentally operative can be understood as a “forestructure of knowing” in terms of operative cognitive psychology. Additionally, if one interprets Gadamer as suggesting that “forestructures of knowing” are purely conceptual in nature, then as a Critical Thomist I suggest that something like the Immutable Platonic Forms act as objective “forestructures of knowing” independent of any knower, thus again limiting the application of the hermeneutic circle.
Bibliography T. Bastick, Intuition Hans Georg Gadamer, Truth and Method Bernard Lonergan, Cognitional Structure, in Collection. Bernard Lonergan, Insight Bernard Lonergan, Method in Theology
Chapter 7 Critical Thomism and Economics By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar The Critical Philosopher, Bernard Lonergan wrote an extensive unpublished manuscript dealing with economic theory. I had an opportunity to read that manuscript quite some time ago. Following Lonergan’s work, I would like to start the discussion of Critical Thomism and Economics with the following equation: S x SC x SP x SPR x E x SCM x V = D x BP x E x BCM x V = EQ Put in longer form the equation reads: Supply x Supply Cost x Supply Price x Supply Profit x Supply Cost of Money x Externalities x Value = Demand x Buyer Price x Buyer Cost of Money x Externalities x Value = Equalibrium. Supply means the amount of the commodity available for sale.
Supply Cost means the cost of the good to be sold incurred by the seller. Sale Price means the Price demanded by the seller. Supply Profit means the amount of money realized over costs as profit for the seller. Supply cost of money means the cost and availability of money to the seller. Externalities
means indirect costs such as a the costs of transportation of the commodities. Value means the value that is placed upon the sale of the commodities, as value. Demand means the amount of the commodity wanted by the buyer for purchase. Buy Price means the Price demanded by the buyer. Buyer Cost of Money means the cost and availability of money to the Buyer. Externalities again means indirect costs such as the cost of transportation of the commodities. Finally, Value means the value that is placed upon the sale of the commodities, as value. Let us imagine a hypothetical sale between a lawn mower wholesaler and a hardware store that can sell lawnmowers. Let us imagine that the Seller starts out with ten lawmowers potentially for sale at a price of $100 per mower. Let us suppose that the supply cost per mower is $70 per mower. Let us also assume that the Supply Profit desired is 10%. The Supply Cost of Money is 5%. There are no externatilities. Finally, the
Seller places a high Value on the supply and use of lawnmowers. Given this situation it is quite possible that a deal will be made at the equalibrium price of $100 per mower. It must be pointed out, however, that if any of the significant variables is changed then the equalibrium price will change. If for example, the Buyer, or society in general place a relatively low Value on the supply and use of lawnmowers, this might result in a discounted sale equalibrium of $90. The point I wish to make is that Value comes into play in every economic situation and must be taken into account. involves Value and values. Economics, then,
Chapter 8 Critical Thomism and Liberation By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
Classical Philosophy in general, and Thomism, in particular, is typically thought to be conservative, even reactionary. This is because Classical Philosophy is thought to privelege a world view where society is static, and those in control, or in power, because of the static nature of reality, stay in control, or in power, presumably to the detriment of everyone else. The idea expressed above, that Classical philosophy is conservative or even reactionary, in a negative way, is, however, false. First of all, classical philosophy is based upon the idea that reality is structured by material forms, substantial forms, or even immutable platonic forms. However, even if the foregoing is true, it can certainly be argued that concepts such as freedom, liberty, liberation, autonomy, self-determination, individual rights, etc., are
respectively, themeselves, material forms, substantial forms, or even immutable platonic forms. Moreover, it can be argued that material forms, substantial forms, or even immutable platonic forms, are really “quantum forms” which exist and operate in the “Quantum Field,” and thus, can be “Added to but not subtracted from, rearranged but not changed.” Now, it can be argued that the forms are infinite in number, and that the God who is Incomprehensible to us, in all His Perfection, in His Mind, has every possible immutable platonic form, ex nihilio, from the beginning, outside of space-time. Thus, whenever a new concept, or relationship, or idea, or even movement comes into our society, it is argued that such new concepts, relationships, or even movements, have always-already existed outside of space-time in the Mind of God, or the World of the Forms. Platonism, then results in a sort of conservatism, but it is one which is, or at least can be, totally “progressive.” Alternatively, perhaps as to some forms, say material forms, such forms are really “Quantum Forms” which can be “added to but not subtracted from, rearranged but not changed.” In such a case it is obvious that there is room for new forms, new concepts, new relationships, new movements. Critical Thomism, suggests, however, that Liberation in
society will never happen unless Liberation of the individual mind also takes place.
Chapter 9 Critical Thomism, Creative Form, and Jesus Christ By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
Critical Thomism is based, in part, upon a metaphysic of Form. Form is a metaphysical quiddity which forms the basis for the Immutable Platonic Forms. It is argued that all of reality, especially, linguistic reality is structured by the Forms. There is one Form, however, that is more important than the “ordinary” forms, and that is Creative Form or Logos. While the Immutable Platonic Forms are that, that is, precisely immutable, a sort of “change” is possible. Logos or Creative Form is responsible for making “changes” in the “World of the Forms.” It has been
said of the Forms that they can be “added to but not subtracted from, rearranged but not changed.” It is precisely Logos, or Creative Form that is responsible for adding to but not subtracting from the Forms, rearranging them but not changing them. This provides a certain amount of creative “change” in the context of stability. Creative Form can also be translated as the Creative Word, or
Word, as Logos. Thus, a secondary argument can be made that Jesus Christ, who is the Word, or Logos, referred to as God, in the prologue to the Gospel of John, is also the Creative Form or Creative Word, or Logos, who gives us the Forms found in the World of the Forms in the first place. It is God, in Jesus Christ who is responsible for “adding to but not subtracting from the Forms, rearranging but not changing them.” This is very powerful position to be held by Jesus Christ, and shows us that our God is one who is Creative Form, Who is both creative and structuring at the same time.
Chapter 10 Ethics, Natural Law, and Responsibility By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar There are different approaches to Ethics. Philosopher Richard Neibuhr suggests that we start with the concept of responsibility. Responsibility is a conservative ethic. Put best, I suggest that the formulation: “responsible for self, responsible for other,” is best. In this way the balance is found for concern for the other, as well as for the self. The “Responsible Self,” is the Jungian Self of the Holy Spirit. It is the Holy Spirit within our hearts and minds that helps us to be responsible. To start, one must begin first with the Self that is you. You have a responsibility to be Ethical and responsible. As an adult this does not just mean financially responsible, it also means ethically responsible. Being ethically responsible, both to Self and to Other, in my view, means starting with the Natural Law Ethical principles of: “Reciprocity, Utility, Proportionality, and Equity. Reciprocity means treating another
you would wish to be treated in similar circumstances. Many of us learned this in grade school from our Mother. Mom, who, after seeing Billy hit
his sister Sally, said to Billy, “Now, Billy, how would you like it if your sister Sally hit you. You know you wouldn’t like that, so, you shouldn’t do it to her.” Utility, means maximization of value. Here one asks whether or not a particular actions fits within some scale of values. Is there really value in Billy hitting Sally? Answer, no. Nothing positive is accomplished. Nothing of value is really gained, rather only the negativity of pain and suffering is produced. Proportionality, means a perfect reflective ratio is present. For example, damages in money should be owed in perfect proportion to the amount of physical damage incurred. Thus, ethically, with Proportionality, Billy owes a certain amount in damages, or in the alternative, in proportional punishment, for hitting Sally. Finally, Equity, makes an equitable exception from a general rule based upon need. In the case of Billy, and Sally, it can be argued that Billy should not be required to pay damages or to be severely punished because he has the special need of being a child and thus is not considered fully responsible
for his actions. It is my position, that using the foregoing Natural Law Ethical principles promotes responsibility to Self and Other.
Bibliography Anthony Fejfar, Jurisprudence for a New Age Richard Neibuhr, The Responsible Self
Chapter 11 Hegelian Philosophy, Dialectic, and Landlord Tenant Law By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006, by Anthony J. Fejfar
The Philosopher Hegel is most widely known for his philosophical theory of “Dialectic.” Dialectic takes place where two seeming opposites are reconciled through the use of a third approach. Thus, Hegelian Dialectic can be summarized as having three movements: 1. Thesis; 2.
Anti-thesis; and 3. Synthesis. Such a dialectical approach is similar to the approach found in the scholastic philosophy of Saint Thomas Aquinas: 1. Argument; 2. Counter-argument; and 3. Conclusion. Dialectic, then, has a noble history, and can be found in a number of modern contexts, including, Law. Generally, in Law, an adversarial approach is used as follows: 1. Plaintiff’s Argument 2. Defendant’s Counter-argument
3. Judgment of the Court or Conclusion Let us consider the following example. Imagine that in an rental apartment there is a dripping faucet in the kitchen. The Tenant complains to the Landlord, and asks that the faucet be fixed. The Landlord refuses. Tenant then has a plumber come in and has the faucet fixed at a cost of $100. Tenant then deducts the $100 cost of repair from the $200 per month rent that is owed, paying only a rent of $100 for that month. The Tenant argues that the reduced rent is appropriate because the Tenant has a right to “repair and deduct” (See, Pugh v. Holmes, Pennsylvania Supreme Court) because the Landlord is not complying with the Implied Warranty of Habitability which requires that the Landlord provide leased premises which are safe, sanitary, and habitable. Landlord argues that a leaking faucet does not constitute leased premises which are unsafe, unsanitary, or nonhabitable. The foregoing, then, in Dialectic is presented as follows: 1. Argument/Thesis: Leaking Faucet is habitability violation Leaking Faucet is not a
habitability violation 3. Judgment of the Court Damages to Tenant
Chapter 12 Jungian Psychology, The Bible, and Spirituality By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
Spirituality is difficult to define. Spirituality deals with matters of the Spirit. If we could describe the Spiritual feeling, is a “streaming” feeling in one’s mind or heart. How is it that some people are spiritual and others are not? It really is a matter of accepting the Spirit at some point in your heart. If you accept the Spirit in your heart, then you feel spiritual. You must make a conscious decision to accept the Spirit. Don Juan de Matus, describes such a move as “an opening.” Once there is an opening in your heart and mind, the spirit start to work with you. The Spirit is so important that Jesus said that only unforgivable sin in the sin against the Spirit, that is, rejection of the Spirit. Once a person has integrated the Spirit, then one begins to
develop what Depth Psychologist, Carl Jung, describes as the Self. The Self is the Spirit in you, and is contrasted with the persona or the ego, which is a more superficial way of being which lacks spiritual depth. Saint Paul, in his letter to the Ephesians, explicitly prays for his readers that they may “be strengthened with power through [Christ’s] Spirit in the inner self....” Ephesians, Chapter 3, verse 16, New American Bible. Thus, the real me,
the true self, the inner self, that is really me, is in fact the Spirit in me. And, somehow the Spirit in me is more me than the superficial me which is my ego identity. The Self flows, the Self is, while the ego is merely a puffed up false representation of the the Self. The task of Spirituality, then, is to develop the Self and to replace the ego. Should one do away with the ego? Some Buddists would say we should not only do away with the ego, but also the Self. This is wrong. The self should never be rejected, and, the ego should be transformed into a transcedental ego, that is an ego which is geared toward transcendence, not inane ego projects. The ego which transcends survives. It is oriented toward overcoming obstacles. It is oriented towards accomplishing goals by overcoming obstacles. The transcendental ego is spiritual. If nothing else it is oriented toward the transcendental precepts: be attentive, be intelligent,
be reasonable, be responsible, be loving. (See, generally, Bernard Lonergan, Method in Theology).
Chapter 13 Law and Liberation Theology By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
Liberation Theology is best summed up by the idea that Jesus leads us by coming down off the Cross in a Liberating Action. The Human Jesus refuses to die on the Cross, but instead comes down from the Cross to lead us in Liberation and Social Justice. Although, two of the most influential liberation theologians are Gustavo Gutierrez and Juan Segundo, perhaps the most influential Liberation Theologian is Pedro Arrupe, who led the Jesuit Order in the General Congregations affirming the “Preferential Option for the Poor.” It is within the foregoing tradition, of liberation theology, that I am writing this Chapter.
Liberation is the key of Liberation Theology. What is Liberation? We can see a eight fold movement of Liberation: 1. Individual Cognitive Liberation 2. Individual Metaphysical Liberation 3. Individual Ethical Liberation 4. Social Liberation Critique of Unjust Social Structures 5. Liberative Social Political Action 6. Liberative Social Norming 7. Liberative Law 8. Liberative Law Enforcement Individual Cognitive Liberation involves the “self appropriation” of one’s mind in a quadrilectical movement of experience, understanding, judgment-reflection, and love. Each of us must experience: experience, understanding, judgment-reflection, and love. Each of us must understand: experience, understanding, judgment-reflection, and love. Each of us must judge and reflect that we know reality through experience, understanding, judment-reflection, and love. Finally, each of us must love, experience, understanding, judgment-reflection, and love. In order to Liberate, we must first experience what is going on. In
order to Liberate, we must each then understand what is going on. In order to Liberate, we must then each know what is going on, through judgment and reflection. Finally, to really act to Liberate we must love. In the final analysis love Liberates. Love is Liberation, more than anything else. Love moves the will to Act when we are afraid to act. The Second Movement of Liberation is Metaphysical Liberation. Metaphysical Liberation involves structuring one’s consciousness with Being, Logos, and Substance. Being is Form of Form, an Unrestricted Pure Act of Understanding. Being is the basis for the Incomprehensible God the Father. Being is the basis for much of our Intuition of Reality. Logos is
Creative Form, Creative Word, or Creative Reason, or Reason itself. Logos is the basis for The Word which is the Son of God, Jesus Christ. Finally,
Substance is Formless Form, which paradoxically is a combination of Truth, with a small amount of Form and love. It is the appropriation of Being, Logos, and Substance, that causes Liberation to Flourish. Being Liberates! Logos Liberates! Substance Liberates!
Individual Ethical Liberation is the Third Movement of Liberation. Ethics teaches us what is right or wrong, better or worse, to do, both
individually, and socially. There are four basic Natural Law Ethical Principles: 1. Reciprocity 2. Utility 3. Proportionality 4. Equity Reciprocity requires that the individual treat another as that person would like to be treated in similar circumstances. Utility means Maximization of Value. Value implies individual values, and a scale of values. Proportionality is seen best in a one to one ratio. Damages paid should be proportional to damages sustained. Proportionality means equality before the law. Finally, Equity means that Equity makes an
equitable exception from a general rule based upon need. Need is based upon love. Reciprocity Liberates! Utility Liberates! Proportionality Liberates! Equity Liberates! The Fourth Movement of Liberation is the Social Liberation Critique of Unjust Social Structures. Here, experience, understanding,
judgment-reflection, love, Metaphysical Intuition, and Ethics, combine to critique unjust social structures. Rules which are wrong in the face of
experience, are impractical and unjust. Rules which are obtuse or irrational violate substantive due process, and are unjust. Rule which are unwise in their rejection of good judgment or reflection, are unreasonable and unjust. Rules which lack love as their basis, and rather are based upon hate, are unjust. Rules which reject a transcendent Metaphysical basis for Reality are unjust. Rules which are Unethical are unjust. So, too, rules which do not involve reciprocity, utility, proportionality, and equity, are unjust. The Fifth Movement of Liberation is liberative Social Political Action. Liberation requires social and political action. In order for just laws to be enacted in the first place, social and political action is required. In order for unjust laws to be repealed, social and political action is required. In order for just laws to be enforced, social and political action is required. Just because a just law is on the books, does not necessarily mean that it will be enforced. Liberative Social and Political Action Liberates! Liberative Social Norming is the Sixth Movement of Liberation. As Saint Thomas Aquinas said, Law is to support the common good. Similarly, Liberation must support active Social Norming. Liberative
social rules must be taught in school and at home. Society must reward those who engage in Liberatory consciousness and action, and society must
sanction those who oppose Liberatory consciousness and action. This is the natural societal function. Thus children are taught not to steal as a moral rule long before they are taught this as a legal rule. Liberative Law is the Seventh Movment of Liberation. Just as the Founding Fathers of the American Revolution fought a Revolutionary War of Liberation against King George, so to those who are oppressed in undemocratic, unjust regimes, must also fight. In the case of a democratic, just, or near just society, such as we have in the United States, only democratic, non-violent means of social, political, and legal change, is required. Law Liberates! Liberative Law Enforcement is the Eight Movement of Liberation. Those responsible for the administration of justice, especially, lawyers, legislators, police officers, and judges, are required to Liberate and to be Liberated. Even lay persons are required to stay informed and involved in law enforcement. Law Enforcement must Liberate! All eight movements of Liberation are required for a just society to exist. Both individual as well as societal liberation is required.
Fejfar, Jurisprudence for a New Age Lonergan, Insight Lonergan, Method in Theology Lonergan, Cognitional Structure, in Collection Rawls, A Theory of Justice
Chapter 14 Law and Love By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar Most people think that law doesn’t have much to do with love, and I have to admit that in teaching law for over ten years, I don’t recall ever saying in class that law has anything to do with love. But, upon reflection, I think that law does have something to do with love. Law is supposed to have something to do with Justice. But, what is Justice? How is law to be applied? In the end there are, I suppose, three options. Law can be applied using love, or hate, or some sort of antiseptic neutrality. Let’s start with hate. It law is based upon hate then all law is interpreted in such a way as to support harm and destruction. The worse criminal sentences are handed out, and, there is no guarantee at all that a civil litigant will have hae2 day in court. Hatred is irrational. Hatred breaks up things and rends them asunder. Justice is supposed to bind the polity together, and hatred simply is incapable of doing this.
“Hae” is the neuter pronoun, used here rather than “his” or “her.”
The second option is love. While this may seem unlikely as a basis for applying law, I think that it works. Love heals, love brings people together, love is the basis for compassion. How then, can love dole out punishment, or award damages? Love is capable of these things because love is intelligent. Love may seem to be irrational, but it is not. Love is the nature of reality. Love is totally consistent with the doctrine of Karma, or cause and effect, which says as a matter of Natural Law, we are responsible for our actions. While love forgives, loves still asks, even demands that we serve others. Love sees public service as the “punishment” for a crime, not jail time or worse. The last option is some sort of antiseptic neutrality. I argue that neutrality in law is really not possible. Either, ultimately, one loves or one hates, even if this disposition is unconscious or subconscious. In the end,
it is my view that those who espouse some sort of antiseptic neutrality are really espousing hatred. It may be masked, but neutrality is still a sort of cruelty, although it may not appear to be so.
Law, Science, Statistical Probability, and Standard Deviation By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
The Law, in the person of the Legislature, uses statistical studies all the time in determining whether or not to enact particular legislation. Once a hypothesis or theory, or a position, is generated, then statistical probability can be used to prove its’ validity. A statistical analysis uses what is known as a “standard deviation” in order to rule certain data as valid or significant, while other data is excluded as insignificant. If the data falls within the range of the standard deviation used, then that data is considered significant or valid. Let us use a simple mathematical equation as an example of a “scientific theory.” Let us assume the equation A + B=10, as our starting point. Then, let us assume a standard deviation of 2, plus or minus 10, as valid. What this means is that any actual, factual answer which falls within
the range of 10 (plus or minus 2) that is, between the range of 8 to 12, is considered statistically significant or valid. The range of 8 to 12 is determined by taking 10+2 to 10-2, or 8 to 12. So, the following “factual” equations produce statistically significant results from our starting theory of A + B=10, with a standard deviation of 2: Study A 1. 2. 3. 4. A=6, B=5, 6+5=11 (11 falls within the range of 8-12) A=7, B=4, 7+4=11 (11falls within the range of 8-12) A=5, B=4, 5+4=9 A=3, B=6, 3+6=9 (9 falls within the range of 8-12) (9 falls within the range of 8-12)
Thus, all four equations produce statistically significant or “valid” responses, given the original equation and a standard deviation of 2. What if, however, we use a different standard deviation, such as 4, while staying with the same original starting equation of A+B=10? Now,
the statistically significant range has broadened to 6 to 14 (10-4 to 10+4). Now, the following “factual” equations produced statistically significant results from our starting theory of A+B=10, with a standard deviation of 4:
Study B 1. 2. 3. 4. A=3, B=4, 3+4=7 (7 falls within the range of 6-14) A=5, B=2, 5+2=7 (7falls within the range of 6-14) A=6, B=7, 6+7=13 (13 falls within the range of 6-14) A=5, B=8, 5+8=13 (13 falls withing the range of 6-14)
Thus, all four equations produce statistically significant or “valid” responses, given the original equation and a standard deviation of 4. Now, if a Bill were introduced in Congress which found a “social problem” that needed correcting given the equation or theory, A+B=10, then both study A and Study B, above would support the enactment of the legislation. However, what if Study C, below were performed, instead? Let us assume the equation A + B=10, as our starting point. Then, let us assume a standard deviation of 2, plus or minus 10, as valid. What this means is that any actual, factual answer which falls within the range of 10 (plus or minus 2) that between the range of 8 to 12, is considered statistically significant or valid. The range of 8 to 12 is determined by taking 10+2 to 10-2, or 8 to 12. So, the following “factual” equations produce statistically
significant results from our starting theory of A + B=10, with a standard deviation of 2: Study C 1. 2. 3. 4. A=3, B=4, 3+4=7 (7 falls outside the range of 6-12) A=5, B=2, 5+2=7 (7falls outside the range of 6-12) A=6, B=7, 6+7=13 (13 falls outside the range of 6-12) A=5, B=8, 5+8=13 (13 falls outside the range of 6-12) Thus, while Study B with a standard deviation of 4, supports the theory A+B=10, and the accompanying legislation, Study C with the same “data” and a standard deviation of 2, does not support the theory A+B and the accompanying legislation. Merely, by changing the standard deviation from 4 to 2, the exact opposite result is produced. One standard deviation supports the legislation, and another standard deviation opposes the legislation. Now, the critical point, here, is that there is no scientifically, “objective” way of favoring a standard deviation of 4 over a standard deviation of 2, and, what is more, this is true with respect to any standard deviation, contained in any study. At present, only social convention determines what standard deviation is considered valid in a particular type of study.
Now, I could stop here, but I choose not only to deconstruct, but also to reconstruct. Using metaphysics, I propose the following chart as normative for the use of standard deviations in science and politics: Level 5, A standard deviation of 5 for Psychology, Psychiatry, History, English, Hermeneutics, Philosophy, Theology, and Quantum Physics
Level 4, A standard deviation of 4 for Law, Political Science, and Sociology. Level 3, A standard deviation of 3 for Newtonian Physics Level 2, A standard deviation of 2 for Biology and Medicine Level 1, A standard deviation of 1 for Chemistry The foregoing is based upon the idea found in Ken Wilber’s work, that there are enfolded levels of metaphysical reality which find empirical support.
Bibliography Capaldi, The Art of Deception Wilber, Sex, Ecology, and Spirituality
Metaphysics and Quantum Physics By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
Quantum Physics is most clearly associated with the philosopher scientist Heisenberg. Metaphysics is credited as starting with the philosopher-scientist Aristotle. Do Quantum Physics and Metaphysics have anything in common? They do. The metaphysical quiddity of Form. Both Aristotle and Thomas Aquinas spoke of material form. The idea was that materiality was “formed” by the metaphysical quiddity of Material Form in conjunction with Material Cause. Many consider metaphysics to be outdated, but I don’t think so. The same type of arguments used by Aristotle and Aquinas can also be used in Quantum Physics. The building block of the universe is not the atom, it is the subatomic quanta particle. The quanta particle is a chameleon. The quanta can change valence and function so as to form what appear to be other
subatomic particles such as the electron, positron, and quark. At a deeper level every quanta participates in the “quanta field” or “quantum field” which is non-spacial. What is interesting is that what causes a quanta to “mask” as another subatomic particle is the metaphysical quiddity of Form. Quantum Form is what makes a quanta particle into an electron particle. This approach is consistent with Aristotle, Aquinas, and Heisenberg. Bibliography Aquinas, Summa Theologica Aristotle, Metaphysics Aristotle, Posterior Analytics Heinsenberg, Physics and Philosophy Herbert, Quantum Reality
Chapter 17 Natural Law, Divine Law, and Equity By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
In Great Society, and in Utopia, it is promised that everyone will be taken care of from “cradle to grave.” In the Great Society the poor are no more. The poor are provided a “social welfare net” which places them in the same position, or perhaps better than the lower middle class. This is the Social Welfare State. The social programs involved provide food, clothing, shelter, transportation, and even education. Maybe even more. What is the legal basis for the Social Welfare State? How do we justify it? John Rawls argues that a rational person in an “original position” of ignorance would be risk averse and would rationally choose a society with a social welfare net. Rawls also argues that those persons who cognitively have formal operations as a matter of developmental psychology would choose to help the poor and less fortunate as a matter of essentially aesthetics. For Rawls, an intelligent person finds it distasteful to live in a
world where poverty exists. Poverty is distasteful. No one likes walking down a street and seeing homeless people starving. The rational choice is to help them, not exterminate them. I would argue, also, that based on the Natural Law Principle of Reciprocity, I, as a person maximizing value as a Utilitarian, would choose, reciprocally, to have the protection of the social welfare net. Physical or mental illness, and even financial misfortune, can strike anyone at one time or another, and the rational person using the Ethical Matrix, chooses the “insurance policy” of the social welfare net. We pay our insurance premiums through taxes and charitable giving. Now, a different result is reached if we start at Law, using the Natural Law Principle of Proportionality. Under Proportionality, one is compensated at Law for what one produces. Just as damages are proportional to the amount damaged, so too, compensation is to be proportional to the amount earned or produced. If I work a job which pays, justly, $100 per hour as a lawyer, I deserve to be paid $100 per hour as a lawyer. Natural Law requires this. Now, if I am unable to work at all, then under Proportinality at Law I am not entitled to compensation. However, under another approach to Proportionality it can be argued that the poor and disadvantaged must be taken care of in a positive way. If
the underlying secondary principle used, accompanying Proportionality is need, then it is apparent that needs met should be proportional to needs sustained. To the extent that I have a need, Proportionality requires that that need be proportionately satisfied. To the extent that a poor or mentally disabled person has a need, then Proportionality requires that such a need be proportionally satisfied using a one to one ratio of perfect proportionality. In Equity, however, one can also argue for compensation. Equity requires that each be compensated according to need. Since all human being need food, clothing, shelter, education, etc., they are entitled to it in Equity based upon need. Can equitable need be prioritized, however? a world with limited resources are all “needs” to be treated equally? Under Divine Law, as found in the Bible, in the Book of Isaiah, it is clear that taking care of the poor and the ill is the highest priority. This would also be true using need based Proportionality under Natural Law. But what about Natural Law in another context? It is argued that reality is structured by the threefold levels of Body, Mind, and Spirit-Intellect. Under Natural Law in this reality, Spirit-Intellect is to be given the highest priority, then the Mental, and last of all the Body or the physical. In Equity, then, as a matter of “faith” in Natural Law, we must prioritize differently. For example, my need for a In
happy, fufulling job serving others, intellectually and spiritually, has a higher priority than my neighbor who has the level one need for a speed boat to water skiing. Additionally, as between three starving persons,
the spiritual-intellectual person, the mental mind person, and the sensate body person, the spiritual-intellectual person should be fed first, the mental mind person second, and the sensate body person last. Interestingly, I would argue that even a mentally ill or a mentally retarded person could be very spiritual and thus be entitled to priority. The tough case is the one where resources must be allocated as between a spiritual person, so that such a person could live an intellectual, spiritual, or scholarly life on the one hand, and feeding unspiritual, uneducated, ignorant, starving people on the other hand. Obviously, poor people can be spiritual, and many are. But that is not the case I am considering. I am considering the poor person who is purposefully ignorant and unspiritual. I would argue that under the Natural Law of Body-Mind-Spirit/Intellect in the first instance, we must prioritize and pay for spiritual and intellectual pursuits, before we feed the ignorant, unspiritual poor. As a matter of Natural Law we only feed the ignorant, unspiritual poor for level three intellectual and spiritual reasons, or level two mental political reasons. Just as Rawls says that people in formal operations
detest poverty for aesthetic reasons, I would argue that level three people detest poverty for spiritual reasons, and level two people detest poverty for political reasons. So, in the end, I suppose that level two political people who believe in the great society, and level three spiritual people will order their lives to both feed and educate the poor. This is of course bolstered by our earlier analysis finding that Natural Proportionality based upon need requires that the poor, the mentally and physically ill, and the disadvantaged be helped.
Bibliography Anthony J. Fejfar, Jurisprudence for a New Age John Rawls, A Theory of Justice
Parenting Children for Social Justice and Equality By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar There are different ways of raising children. One way of raising a child is for authority and hierarchy. Another way of raising a child is for social justice and equality. Raising a child for social justice and equality takes more work, but it is worth it. The first thing that you can do in order to raise a child for social justice and equality is to make sure you have not broken the spirit of the child. It is important that you only discipline your child in regard to serious infractions of the rules. You also need to make sure that a child is only disciplined for breaking a rule that the child has been given notice of previously. You teach a child due process of law by making sure that a child is only disciplined for breaking a rule that the child has been told about. Second, it is important to give your child choices whenever
possible. Once your child is old enough, offer hae3a choice for dinner. Offer hae the option of having pudding or pureed fruit for dinner from Gerber or another company. responsibility at an early age. Third, it is important that when your child interacts with another child that you treat each child equally as possible. Don’t give “primogeniture” or priority to an older child at the expense of a younger child, simply because of age. In fact, teach the older child that it is hae responsibility to help and protect the younger child, particularly when the parents are not around. Fourth, it is important when you are disciplining a child that you only spank a child or have the child do “push-ups” when the child refuses to go to “time-out.” Putting a child in hae room for time-out is to be preferred to corporal punishment such as spanking. Fifth, always explain what are doing to your child. When a child is told why something is wrong, then the child looks for rationality with rules. Try never to say no, just because Mom or Dad “says so.” Rules should be based upon reason, not arbitrary authority. Additionally, when a child hits another child you need to teach the
Giving your child a choice teaches
“Hae” is the neuter personal pronoun.
child not to hit based upon the Natural Law Principle of Reciprocity. When a child hits another, don’t just say that it is wrong. Instead, ask the child why it is that hae hit the other. Then, ask the child how hae would like it if hae was hit by the other child. Typically, the child will say that hae did not want to be hit. The parent then says, “Well, if you don’t want to be hit, then you should not hit your sister.” Finally, try to use positive reinforcement whenever possible. When the child does something right, encourage the child. When the child does something wrong, say, “well, that’s not quite it, why don’t you try again.”
Chapter 19 Philosophy of Law, Evidence, and A Fallacious Argument By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar Law involves the rules of evidence. That which is irrelevant is inadmissable. It is my argument that the rules of logic preclude certain fallacious arguments from being used in court. The evidence which an attorney attempts to introduce using these arguments is fallacious and inadmissable. One such fallacious argument is the “fallacy of assuming the consequent.” Let us assume a civil tort case for damages, with a bench trial. Judge Brown must decide whether or not Joe Smith, the defendant, committed the tort of battery, by throwing a bucket of water on the head of Bill Jones, causing Bill Jones to have a Wet Head. It is undisputed by the parties to the lawsuit that Bill Jones had a Wet Head. In pretrial discovery, three possible theories have been developed to explain how it is that Bill Jones got a Wet Head:
Theory One: Rain causes Bill Jones to have a Wet Heat. Theory Two: Joe Smith throws a Bucket of Water and this causes Bill Jones to have a Wet Head. Theory Three: Stan Green sprays a hose Nozzle of Water and this caused Bill Jones to have a Wet Head. It is the law’s assumption that only one of the foregoing theories is true. In the abstract, however, all three are in some sense true hypothetically. Thus, put symbolically, we have the following: 1. If Rain then Wet Head Rain, therefore, Wet Head 2. If Bucket of Water (thrown), then Wet Head Bucket of Water (thrown), therfore, Wet Head 3. If Nozzle of Water (sprayed), then Wet Head Nozzle of Water (sprayed), therefore, Wet Head In a more abstract form, the foregoing is symbolized using symbolic logic, as follows:
1. If R, then WH R, therefore, WH 2. If BW then WH BW, therefore WH 3. If NW, then WH NW, therefore WH
Now, all of the foregoing is true, in the abstract, and perhaps one is true in the concrete. Since the cause of action is alleged against Joe Smith by Bill Jones, let us focus of the following: If BW then, WH BW, therefore, WH While the foregoing is true, the following statement, which commits the fallacy of “affirming the consequent,” is fallacious, false, and wrong: If BW then, WH WH, therefore, BW Put informally, the foregoing is as follows: If Bucket of Water (thrown), then Wet Head Wet Head, therefore, Bucket of Water thrown Now, the reason the foregoing is false, is this: it is possible that the Wet
Head was caused by another cause from another causal “syllogism.”
Wet Head of Bill Jones could have been caused by Rain or Water Nozzle. An inductive argument involving affirming the consequent is only valid “If and only if Water Bucket (thrown), then Wet Head. It is quite possible that the presence of the Wet Head, in the abstract, was caused either by Rain or the Water Nozzle. Just because there is a Wet Head, it does not mean necessarily that Joe Smith caused the Wet Head with the Bucket of Water. It is apparent, then, that an argument which affirms the consequent, that is moves logically backwards, as a matter of logical proof is fallacious and inadmissable in evidence. To use such an argument the plaintiff must prove that the only possible way that the Wet Head could have happened was with the Water Bucket of Joe Smith.
Bibliography Capaldi, The Art of Deception
Reincarnation: A Critical Look By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
I reincarnation a valid doctrine? Apparently, an early church council, The Council of Nicea, held around the year 400 A.D., did not think so. Although the Pope from Rome did not attend the council, and apparently only five bishops participated, a three to two vote defeated the idea of reincarnation in the Christian Church, at least for a time. (Most protestants do not consider themselves bound by Nicea, but rather focus on the Bible.) From a scientific point of view, Psychiatrist Brian Weiss, M.D., has written a book confirming the idea of reincarnation from a scientific point of view. (See, Brian Weiss, Many Lives, Many Masters). Additionally, Psychologist, Michael Newton, in his book, Journey of Souls, extensively discusses the reincarnation lives of his clients which were discussed while the clients were placed in hypnotic trance states. Other “new age” authors such as Michael Roads, Edgar Cayce, and Janes Roberts have used
information gathered in trance states to confirm the concept of reincarnation as valid. Although Edgar Cayce asserted that the Bible contains numerous references to reincarnation, I choose to focus only on one passage. In the Book of Job, Job’s ten children are all killed when the house that they were having a party in collapsed. At the end of the Book of Job, after Job has been found righteous by God, Job’s ten children are restored to him. This either means that Job had ten new children who reincarnated, or alternatively, all ten were resurrected by God from the dead. I think that reincarnation is the less intrusive, more likely explanation. Assuming for the sake of argument that the concept of reincarnation is valid. One interesting question is the underlying purpose of reincarnation. There are several options: 1. random 2. Karma 3. Learning 4. Grace 5. experience While I will discuss all fiver options, I find the “Learning” option and the “Grace” option to be the most sensible and plausible.
The “random” interpretation of reincarnation simply states that each person “bounces” from life to life, without meaning. There does not seem to be much that is very attractive about this interpretation. Many might prefer to simply die and go out of existence rather than randomly reincarnate. The second interpretation is the “Karma” interpretation. The Karma interpretation states that the lives which a person takes is based upon past Karma. For every cause there is an effect. As a person does, so it will be done unto that person. Heaven, Hell, and Purgatory are not “places” but rather represent “states of being” which play out in reincarnational lives which may be a life of Heaven on Earth, or, Hell on Earth, or something in between. This Karma interpretation is in my view, valid, and is the ground or baseline interpretation of reincarnation. Next is the “learning” interpretation of reincarnation. Once a person has reached a certain level of maturity after reincarnating, the person takes on “learning lives.” While “bad” Karma could certainly result in a person taking on mental or physical handicaps in a particular life, it is quite possible that a person could be using “good” educational Karma to take on learning experiences which develop the soul or spirit of the person. We should not look down on people with mental or physical handicaps. Often such a
person could be an “advanced” or “wise” soul who is trying to develop attributes or experiences which can only be developed through taking on a handicap. Learning is a very sensible and plausible explanation for reincarntion. Grace is also a very sensible and plausible explanation for reincarnation. It may be that a “mature” or “advanced” or “wise” soul will take on a life or lives of service to others, as a priest, a nun, a minister, a teacher, a doctor, a lawyer, an author, a professor, a nurse, etc., etc. Although these lives may be lives of personal hardship and even sacrifice, they are undertaken either voluntarily or involuntarily as a matter of Grace, in the service of God and humanity. Because Grace in Christ transcends all Karma, it may be many lives of personal service and hardship will be required to bring a person’s “bad” Karma, back into balance. Additionally, some saints, with remarkably “good” Karma, take on lives of Grace, out of love, simply because they are saints. In my judgment, there are many reincarnational “saints,” on earth. The last, and perhaps most dysfunctional interpretation of reincarnation is the “experience” interpretation. On this view, all reincarnational lives are simply taken for the sake of experience, without meaning or value, or even education. This is the voyeur view of
reincarnation, and I find it selfish, egotistical, and non-sustainable.
Bibliography Michael Newton, Journey of Souls Michael Roads, Journey into Oneness
Journey into Nature Jane Roberts, Seth Speaks The Seth Material Brian Weiss, Many Lives, Many Masters
Chapter 21 Separation of Church and State By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
There are three policy reasons which can be cited for the idea of the separation of Church and State. First, it is argued that religion is manipulative and irrational and should be excluded from public debate and public policy. Second, it is argued that religion is powerful, and, it places too much power in the government if Church and State are combined. A Church-State Super State would be oppressive of individual freedom. Finally, a third argument is that although religion is a good thing, the problem is that reasonable people can differ as to Church doctrine and religious authority, and therefore it is not appropriate to privelege one person’s Church doctrine and religious authority over another’s. It is argued that such favoritism leads to the persecution of religious minority groups. I would like to argue that the wall between Church and State should be relaxed but not eliminated. In so arguing, I will address the three policy
arguments favoring separation of Church and State. The first argument to be addressed is that involving the separation of Church and State based upon the idea that religion is irrational. This argument is ultimately based upon the application of Ockham’s Razor to public policy. Those favoring Ockham’s Razor argue that theology and metaphysics must be excluded from pubic debate because they are excluded by Ockham’s Razor. Recall that Ockham’s Razor argues that a simple solution to any problem is to be preferred over a complex solution. Since God and metaphysics involve complex solutions to problems, they cannot be discussed. However, it has been argued that Ockham’s Razor is bereft. There is no rational reason to privelege a simple solution over a more complex one. Moreover, it has been argued that in order for a concept to be valid it must allow for its’ own existence. Because Ockham’s Razor excludes itself as a metaphysical assumption, it cannot be taken seriously. Because Ockham’s Razor has been refuted, it is argued that religion or metaphysics cannot be excluded from the public square on the basis that they are irrational. Instead, it is argued that they can be included, at least in some form. The second argument favoring the separation of Church and State argues that too much power would be placed in the hands of government, to
the detriment of individual liberty. This argument I agree with. Although it is possible to include religious or metaphysical concepts in public debate, or, have them taught in public schools, I would argue against an established Church which has a doctrinal authority which is enforced through the use of government. We do not need a governmental inquisition. The last argument in favor of the separation of Church and State argues against favoring one religion over another. Here I would argue that something like the “Perennial Philosophy” exists. I would argue that certain common religious doctrines can be taught and utilized such as love of others, and service to others. Additionally, I would argue that metaphysics is philosophy and not theology and thus can be used like science. Also, Theological Ethics and Theological Spirituality could be utilized. So, in conclusion, I would argue that metaphysics and theological ethics can be taught in the public schools, and used in arguments in the public square. On the other hand, for pragmatic reasons, I still do not favor any merger of Church and State.
Chapter 22 Statutory Construction and the United States Constitution By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar It is a well known rule of statutory construction that statutes in derogation of the common law must be strictly construed. What this means is that when interpreting a statute, you must do so in a way which has the least effect upon the common law. This rule of narrow construction
developed to ensure that the common law would be given priority. I would like to argue for a similar rule in the case of Constitutional Law. I would argue that statutes in derogation of the Constitution be narrowly construed. Thus, a statute must be read in such a way that Constitutional rights are not infringed upon. For example, one could argue that a governmental statute relating to sales tax must be strictly construed to avoid a problem with the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. Thus, one could narrowly construe the taxing statute so that newspapers
cannot be taxed with sales tax. Such a narrow reading of the statute would prevent the Constitution from being infringed upon.
The Bible and Natural Law By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
Some think that the Bible has nothing to do with Natural Law. In fact the idea of Natural Law is that knowledge is available to the human mind through the use of natural reason, rather than Divine Revelation. Nevertheless, perhaps there is some nuggets to be mined from scripture which support Natural Law. Such is the focus of this Chapter. Both Plato and Aristotle were ancient Greek philosophers, writing in Greece many years before the Christian New Testament texts were written. Plato and Aristotle both argued that the human being is essentially constituted by three levels of manifestation, essentially body-senses; soulmind; spirit-intellect. This is consistent with both developmental psychology’s idea of stages, as well as Ken Wilber’s idea of transpersonal stages of consciousness. Interestingly, St. Paul in his letter to the Thessalonians seems to
have utilized a similar idea: May the God of peace himself make you perfectly holy, and may you entirely, spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Thessalonians Ch. 5 v. 23, New American Bible (emphasis added).
It is thus appparent, that St. Paul was exposed to Greek philosophical Natural Law thinking, as well as approving of the same. Thus it is Biblical and Christian to understand that there are in fact three (or more) levels of consciousness for a human being: spirit soul body. As
noted above, Plato and Aristoltle both wrote about the three levels of spirit, soul, and body. There is a Natural Law Ethic which accompanies the foregoing formulation. All other things being equal, spiritual-intellectual-wisdom values are to be preferred over values of soul-mind-moral-political, and values of the soul-mind are in turn to be valued over values of the bodysenses, such as fancy food or clothes, or sexual excess. Additionally, I have argued that Critical Thomist Natural Law Ethical principles, such as reciprocity, utility, proportionality, and equity, also exist and operate. Do these Natural Law Ethical principles also find support in the Bible? I think so.
Reciprocity is the principle that one should treat another as one would wish to be treated in similar circumstances. This Natural Law principle finds support in the teaching of Jesus Christ that one should treat others as one would like to be treated. This is the Golden Rule. Additionally, Utility is also a Natural Law Ethical principle. Utility is defined in a broad sense as the “maximization of Value.” For
example, all other things being equal, pleasure is to be preferred over pain, satisfaction over disappointment. In the Bible this is confirmed in the Song of Songs, the Psalms, and Proverbs, where love, compassion, and even pleasure is to be preferred over hate, spite, and vindictiveness. Another Natural Law Ethical Principle is Proportionality. Proportionality is first found as a Ethical Principle in Aristotle, although Aristotle rejected perfect proportionality which is the basis for equality. Proportionality is found in the Biblical Old Testament injunction that justice requires that damage should be compensated proportionately as “an eye for and eye, and a tooth for a tooth....” Finally, a Natural Law Ethical principle is Equity. Equity, first found in Aristotle, requires that Equity make an equitable exception from a general rule based upon need. In the Bible, Equity is supported by the story of the Wedding Feast at Cana of Galilee in the Christian Gospel. In the
story Mary, Mother of Jesus, equitably intervenes to have Jesus make an exception from the proportional rule of “no miracles at this time,” so that there would be wine for the wedding celebration. In conclusion, although Natural Law is not strictly speaking based upon Divine Revelation, the Bible clearly supports some Natural Law Ethical principles, and Natural Law metaphysical “levels of consciousness.”
Chapter 24 The Bible and Social Justice By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar Social Justice is not communism, neither is it unregulated capitalism. Social Justice is the point of view that we have an obligation to help the “little guy,” the poor, the homeless, the oppressed, the sick, the mentally ill, even the working poor. Social Justice believes in helping others. Social Justice is a religious attitude that God demands that we help those in need and that God valued this more than religious rituals, often empty religious rituals. This is the message of the Bible found in the book of Isaiah. In Isaiah, Chapter 58 God makes it clear that we are to help others, especially those in need, and we are to avoid empty religious rituals. God, in the person of Isaiah, criticizes Israel, in the modern context the United States of America for having an empty prayer life and not helping others. God refuses to help those who fast and afflict themselves in religious self sacrifice, when those very same persons are selfish, vindictive employers. God says that He does not want penance, He does not want the kind of humility where a “man bows his head like a reed.” Instead God
wants the following: “releasing those bound unjustly” “untying the thongs of the yoke [of the employee]” “setting free the oppressed” “breaking the yoke [of injustice]” “Sharing your bread with the hungry” “sheltering the oppressed and the homeless” “Clothing the naked” “not turning your back on your own [friends and family]” Isaiah Ch. 58, verses 6 and 7, New American Bible. Those who promote and follow Social Justice are rewarded by God. If you follow and promote Social Justice: Then your light shall break forth like the dawn, and your wound shall be quickly healed; Your vindication shall go before you, and the glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard. Isaiah Ch. 58, verse 8, New American Bible.
The Bible, Jesus, and Social Justice By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
In the Gospel of Luke, Jesus starts his public ministry by appearing in the synagogue in Nazareth, opening the scroll from the prophet Isaiah. Obviously the scroll from Isaiah contained sayings from the biblical book of Isaiah, which is concerned primarily with social justice, and, prophecies relative to the messiah, namely, Jesus himself. It is important to note that Jesus starts his public ministry with Isaiah, for both of the foregoing reasons. First, to affirm his, that is Jesus’ identity as the messiah, and second, to affirm that the fight for social justice is the most important part of Jesus’ ministry. It is also interesting to note that Jesus was a lay reader, apparently an important office in the Jewish religion. Luke begins his account of Jesus’ public ministry by having Jesus read the following from Isaiah: The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he has annointed me to bring glad tidings to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, and to proclaim a year acceptable to the Lord. Then, after finishing the foregoing reading, Jesus said, “Today this scripture passage is fulfilled in your hearing.” Luke Ch. 4, v. 20, New American Bible. Now, the passages from Luke which we have just discussed, only make sense in the context of the readings from the book of Isaiah. As stated previously, there are two major themes in Isaiah, first the messianic prophecy, and second, God’s support for social justice. Isaiah, Chapter 8,
foretells Jesus virgin birth in Bethlehem of Judea: “[T]he Lord himself will give you this sign: the virgin shall be with child, and bear a son, and shall name him Immanuel.” Isaiah Ch. 8, v. 14, New American Bible.
Further, in Isaiah, Chapter 9, the prophet Isaiah describes Jesus, the Son of God the Father,
For a child is born to us, a son is given us; upon his shoulder dominion rests. They name him Wonder-Counselor, God-Hero, Father-Forever, Prince of Peace. Isaiah Ch. 9, v. 5, New American Bible. What type of messiah is Jesus, our Immanuel? We begin to see this in Isaiah, Chapter 10. On the lips of Isaiah, God says: Woe to those who enact unjust statutes and who write oppressive decrees, Depriving the needy of judgment and robbing my people’s poor of their rights.... Isaiah, Ch. 10, vs. 1 and 2, New American Bible. Thus, Jesus is fully in favor of liberal “rights’ consciousness, and is opposed to corrupt, unjust laws.
Additionally, we see in Isaiah Chapter 11, that Jesus rules with wisdom and justice: The spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him: A spirit of wisdom and of understanding,
A spirit of counsel and of strength, A spirit of knowledge and fear of the Lord, and his delight shall be fear of the Lord. Not by appearance shall he judge, nor by hearsay shall he decide, But he shall judge the poor with justice, and decide aright for the land’s afflicted Isaiah Ch. 11, vs. 2-4, New American Bible. Obviously, the rule of evidence rule against hearsay found in the Federal Rules of Evidence, is based upon the foregoing passage. As referred to in Luke, in Isaiah, it is said that the messiah, Jesus, will deliver us from harm: “Then will the eyes of the blind be opened, and the ears of the deaf be cleared; Then will the lame leap like a stag, then the tongue of the dumb will sing.” Isaiah Ch. 35 vs. 5 and 6, New American Bible. Additionally, Jesus is referred to as the “Champion of Justice.” Isaiah Ch. 41, v.2, New American Bible. Finally, in Isaiah Chapter 42, Jesus is once again referred to as bringing justice to the nations: Here is my servant [Jesus] whom I uphold, my chosen one with whom I am pleased, Upon whom I have put my spirit;
he shall bring forth justice to the nations, Isaiah Ch. 42, v. 1, New American Bible. In bringing about social justice, however, Jesus does not cause riots (“not crying out, not shouting, not making his voice heard in the streets” Id. v. 2), and, Jesus will not bring about social justice at the expense of the innocent weak or spiritual (“A bruised reed he shall not break, and smoldering wick he will not quench....” Id. v. 3). Jesus wants persons who support social justice as part of their spirituality. He does not like mere appearances of holiness such as fasting: Would today that you might fast so that your voice would be heard on high! ...The fasting that I wish [is]: releasing those bound unjustly, untying the thongs of the yoke, Setting free the oppressed, breaking every yoke; Sharing your bread with the hungry, sheltering the oppressed and the homeless; Clothing the naked when you see them, and not turning your back on your own. Isaiah Ch. 58, vs. 6 and 7, New American Bible.
Just as Jesus ultimately brings about social justice in an assertive but non-violent manner, so too we are supposed to do the same. Self-defense is permitted, but aggressive violence is not.
Chapter 26 The Bible, Equity, and Law: Unclean Hands and Good Faith By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
Equity finds its’ academic origin in the work of Aristotle. Aristotle says that Equity applies when law fails due to its’ generality. In the West, however, Equity developed in the Chancery courts of England, following Roman Catholic canon law. In this Tract Book, I explore the
origin of the Equitable Doctrines of “Unclean Hands” and “Good Faith and Fair Dealing.” In the law of Equity, there is an Equitable Doctrine known as “unclean hands.” When a litigant wishes to bring an action in Equity, it can be argued that the litigant cannot bring an action because hae4 has “unclean hands.” One has unclean hands when one has acted wrongfully or in bad
“Hae” is the neuter pronoun that I have developed. “Hae” replaces “he” or
“she” in this context.
faith. It is similar to the idea in English that a person might have “dirty laundry” that needs airing in the press. Analogous to the idea of “unclean hands,” is its’ opposite, “clean hands,” or “good faith.” Some courts say that accompanying every contract, there is an accompanying duty of Good Faith which applies to each of the parties to the contract. Good Faith implies a standard which is above that of an ordinary “arm’s length” relationship as between the contracting parties, where each party is considered to be a competitor with the other, and in some sense, an adversary. Interestingly, it can be argued that the Equitable Doctrines of Unclean Hands and Good Faith find their origin in the Bible. In the Book of Genesis, there is a story involving Abraham, Sarah, and King Abimelech of Gerar. (See, Genesis, Ch 20, New American Bible). Abraham and his
wife Sarah (who was also Abraham’s half sister), came to the land of Gerar. Abraham was apparently afraid that he would be tortured or executed if he disclosed the fact that he was married to Sarah, so Abraham told King Abimelech that Sarah was Abraham’s sister, and did not disclose their marriage. Then, the King married Sarah in reliance on Abraham’s represenation. The marriage upset God, who threatened retribution against King Abimelech.
King Abimelech defended his actions before God, saying that he had relied in “Good Faith” upon Abraham’s representation, and that he, the King, had “Clean Hands” in the matter: “I [married Sarah] in good faith and with clean hands.” Genesis, Ch. 20, v. 5, New American Bible. This passage in Genesis appears to be the origin of the “unclean hands” and “good faith” Doctrines found in Equity. Although the context is analogous to criminal law, the civil law application is apparent. Because the King acted in good faith, and with clean hands, God did not punish the King for bigamy. Good Faith, then, implies the idea of innocence and a good or pure motivation for one’s actions. Bad faith, or unclean hands, the correlative opposite, then, means knowing bad intent or motivation. If the King had known about the marriage and acted to marry Sarah anyway, then the King would have been judged as acting from bad faith, coveting his neighbor’s wife, and marrying her for the wrong reasons. In the modern context, then, unclean hands, for purposes of the law of Equity, means that a person in acting with bad or harmful intent in an intentional way is guilty of “unclean hands,” and should be denied an equitable remedy.
The Bible, Evolution, and Multidimensional Reality By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
The idea of multidimenional reality comes from Quantum Physics. One interpretation of Quantum Physics involves “parallel universe” theory. Although it has been argued that it is impossible to move between parallel reality frames at faster than light, superliminal speed, if space bends as Einstein postulates, then perhaps it is posssible for persons to “cross frames” from one parallel universe to another at subliminal speeds. This involves multidimensional reality. Perhaps too, events can “bleed” between frames.5 Perhaps certain events happen in one frame, they are memorialized in writing, and then the written work then “shifts” into a parallel universe where events were different then those memorialized in the original writing. This is where the Bible becomes relevant to the discussion. If one
See, Jane Roberts, Seth Speaks.
takes the Biblical miraculous and magical events as literally true, then perhaps it is not that great a leap to postulate that the Bible discusses “parallel universe theory” and “Multimdimensional Reality.” The focus of
this Chapter is just this issue. Can we do an analysis of scripture which supports Multidimenional Reality? Yes, we can, and to do so we start with Genesis Interestingly, the Bible contains two stories of Creation in Genesis. The first account seems to support an evolutionary theory, while the second account seems to suggest some sort of artificial intervention in Creation by God in the “Garden of Eden,” perhaps supporting the idea of an “Eden Metaphysical Plane” prior to the “Fall” or insertion of Adam and Eve on Earth. The first account of Creation in Genesis starts with idea that the Earth was a “formless wasteles” or Void, or perhaps even Chaos. This is consistent with Greek philosophy and cosmology which states that reality manifests out of Chaos which preceeds reality . This formless wasteland of Chaos or perhaps “Substance” is also consistent with the idea that the Universe began with the “Big Bang,” which itself was preceeded by the “Quantum Field” or other “non-material” subatomic activity. This Creation account is also consistent with the idea that God uses
“Metaphysical Quiddities” in Creation. Obviously, “Form” as a Metaphysical Quiddity was used by God to “Form” the “formless wastland” to create the “formed” Earth or Universe. Interestingly, even in this first account of Creation, God seems to have started by creating a Metaphysical Plane, namely, the Earth Plane. It is not until the “Third Day” of Creation that God creates Time, and the material Universe, as symbolized and actualized by the creation of the Sun and the Moon which are “luminaries” which structure Time, that is, “days and years.” On the fourth day of Creation, evolution is recognized. The first life to appear on the Earth is amphibian water life and birds, which is not inconsistent with evolutionary theory. On the fifth day of Creation, wild
animals are created or “evolve.” Finally, last, and consistent with evolutionary theory, human beings are created or “evolve: “God created [hu]man in his image, in the divine image he created him; male a female he created them.” Humanity is given dominion or stewardship over the Earth. On the sixth day of Creation nothing is mentioned, and on the seventh day, God rested. It is my interpretation that on the sixth day God created Multidimensional Reality and this is why the Bible is silent as to what activity occurred on the sixth day.
On the sixth day then, the “Multidimensional Day” the second account of Creation becomes relevant. It is my argument theat the second Creation was multidimsionally “shifted in” and superimposed upon the first evolutionary creation. In this second Creation, the Eden Plane is created, and is an artificial Creation. Eve is created out of Adams rib, obviously some type of genetic creation, and humanity in the persons of Adam and Eve, artificially precede animal life instead of evolving out of it, as in the original creation. This “Eden Plane” was then shifted into or onto the orginal Evolutionary Creation upon the “Fall” of Adam and Eve who ate the forbidden fruit of conventional knowledge of good and evil, rather than having true wisdom. The foregoing “Multidimensional” interpretation of the Bible is also consistent with the Christian Gospels. There are four Gospels rather than one, suggesting a Multidimensional interpretation of reality. The four Gospels are factually inconsistent with one another. It is my argument that Jesus Christ manifested multidimensionally and that each Gospel represents a different multidimensional reality frame. Let us contrast, for example
the Gospel of Mark with the Gospel of Luke. In Mark, the Gospel starts with the Baptism of Jesus and his Galilean ministry. It is my argument that this reality frame came first, and
that Jesus simply manifested in adult form, simply manifesting as an adult, and then walking out of the desert. Any family that Jesus has in this frame is essentially “adopted.” In the Gospel of Luke, on the other hand, we have the “infancy narrative.” Luke starts with the birth of John the Baptist and
the birth of Jesus. It is in the Gospel account that Christmas story of the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem of Judea is told, including the account of the angels and the shepherds. This is the story of Jesus and the manger in swaddling clothes. The foregoing is my argument that the Bible is evidence of Multidimensional Reality.
Zen Realism and Critical Thomism By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
Typically, it is thought that Zen Bhuddism and Thomism have nothing to do with one another. However, a closer look indicates that Zen Realism and Critical Thomism have a great deal in common. Zen Bhuddism, in its pure form argues that the reality that we see is a false one, an illusion. Instead of “seeing” this illusory reality, we are instructed to “see through” the illusion and find the real. Unfortunately, Zen in the West has been interpreted as an Idealist philosophy, rather than, a realist one. On this account, truth is found in the ideal, not the real. Thomism, on the other hand, argues that reality is structured by metaphysics. Material form, and material cause help to structure material reality. At its’ worst, Thomism is guilty of a “naive realism” (Bernard Lonergan) which is precisely subject to the critique of Zen. The naively real world of the Thomist is arguably the world of illusion that Zen sets aside.
A closer look at the two approaches, Zen and Thomism, on the other hand shows that the Zen Realist interpretation of Zen, and the Critical Thomist interpretation of Thomism, reconciles the two positions. A famous Zen Koan, provides: 1. First I saw the tree (naively)
2. Then I no longer saw the tree (analytically) 3. Then I saw the tree again (critically) It is precisely the foregoing threefold approach to reality that Zen Realism, and Critical Thomism, priveleges. Critical Thomism, based on the original work of Jesuit Philosopher, Bernard Lonergan, starts with three levels of intelligence: 1. naive sense experience 2. ideal analytic understanding 3. intuitive critical judgment and reflection Returning to the above Zen Koan, I start first with naive sense experience. I look at the tree across the street with my eyes, and based upon this naive sense experience there is a phenomenal “tree for me” in my range of vision. Second, I engage in “postmodern” analytic understanding and I deconstruct my naive experience of the tree. The “tree” is now seen as an “arbitrary” social and psychological “construction” created by my mind. The “tree” is no longer real, the tree is now seen as an illusion. Finally, there is a third
movement where the “tree” is now critically and intuitively “reconstructed” as a tree again. This is the “real tree” of “second sight” or “reflection” that is often referred to. The real tree is the tree which is intuitvely, critically, judged to exist, or, the “tree-as-reflected-upon” which really exists. The type of idealist Zen which simply stops with level two analysis and deconstruction, is rejected.
Zen Satori and Critical Thomist Insight By Anthony J. Fejfar © Copyright 2006 by Anthony J. Fejfar
A key concept in Zen is Satori. Satori means Liberation or Enlightenment. Satori is what happens when you get it, when you figure it out. Satori is a kind of global or even “mystical” understanding. Based upon the work of Jesuit Philosopher, Bernard Lonergan, I have developed a philosophy called “Critical Thomism.” In Critical Thomism, there are three levels of cognition: 1. Experience, 2. Understanding, and, 3. Judgment and Reflection. It is my argument that Judgment and Reflection are intuitive functions. Intuition produces Insight. Insight is Satori. Insight can occur both at level two with the function of Understanding, but also at level three with judgment and reflection. Insight is interesting. Insight is a sort of “preconscious” or “hyper-conscious” or even “unconscious” type of cognition. Insight on the level of Understanding,
produces understanding. It is Insight which takes disparate experience and/or ideas and then turns them into a new integrated idea. It is Insight which can take the tools, equipment, and know how of a concrete form and and turn them into a construction plan. It is Insight which can take the legal concepts, facts, and ends of the client, given to the lawyer, and turn them into a solid piece of legal analysis. It is Insight which can take the medical knowledge, patient symptoms, and overall circumstances, and turn them into a medical diagnosis. Insight also functions on the level of judgment and reflection. It is Insight which can take several different theories on the level of Understanding and then intutively choose which theory is more adequate. It is Insight which allows the lawyer to judge whether or not his client is lying or telling the truth. It is Insight which allows the business person to judge whether or not to start a new manufacturing plant. As stated above, Insight is also Satori. When one has Insight into the nature of reality, this is Satori. Such Insight is not really an idea, it is cognitive, it is consciousness, it is precisely what allows for the more mundane functions of judgment and reflection. Satori cannot really be conceptually described, as such, because Satori is a Spiritual “Experience,” that is, it is a function of consciousness, not an idea in consciousness. There
is a Zen Koan that says that Satori is like hearing a person clapping with only one hand. What you hear is Spirit, it is not sound. Satori is mode, action, process, it is not a fixed idea in the mind. Thus, the Satori of Zen Realism is perfectly consistent with the Insight of Critical Thomism.
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