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Philosophical term which, in its various meanings, is opposed to Dualism or Pluralism

Thus, for the dialectical monist, reality is ultimately one but can only be experienced in terms of division. Furthermore, dialectical monism might also be termed "plural monism," for it recognizes the dependently originated existence of a multiplicity of entities, which Taoism calls "the ten thousand things. Dialectical monism has been mentioned in Western literature, although infrequently. Jean-Paul Sartre used the term on at least one occasion.

Sartre may have used the term "dialectical monism" to when inferring what he saw as absurd in the dogma of a Marxist—Leninist non-dualistic interpretation of the dialectic, in which any oppositional view point was claimed to be non-dialectical rather than part of the dialectic itself.

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Although the term has never been used outside the West, advocates maintain [ who? A wide number of Taoist sources are cited, especially those that relate to the Taiji or yin and yang concepts. In addition, several Buddhist works are seen as containing strong elements of dialectical monism. The Heart Sutra provides a notable expression of dialectical monism:.

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Emptiness is no other than form; form is no other than emptiness. However, it is sometimes held that the Buddhist elements of dialectical monism are more accurately characterized as non-dualistic since they deny any fundamental sort of creative principle or "one thing," such as that posited by dialectical monism. See the Buddhist philosophy of emptiness. In response, dialectical monists might reply that theirs is a "positive expression of nondualism," as opposed to the "negative" expression implied by the qualifier non in nondualism.

Nagarjuna , principal developer of the emptiness doctrine in Buddhism, had a perspective consistent with a broad dialectical monism that was based on the following statement attributed to the Buddha:. But when one sees the origination of the world as it actually is with right discernment, 'non-existence' with reference to the world does not occur to one. When one sees the cessation of the world as it actually is with right discernment, 'existence' with reference to the world does not occur to one. Heraclitus is a notable early exception to the Eastern monopoly on dialectical monism:.

All things change. Fire penetrates the lump of myrrh, until the joining bodies die and rise again in smoke called incense. The harmonious structure of the world depends upon opposite tension like that of the bow and the lyre. One must realize that war is shared and Conflict is Justice, and that all things come to pass in accordance with conflict.

The way up and down are the same. In its article on Aztec philosophy , the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy describes Aztec Nahua metaphysics as a form of dialectical monism:. Although essentially processive and devoid of any permanent order, the ceaseless becoming of the cosmos is nevertheless characterized by an overarching balance, rhythm, and regularity: one provided by and constituted by teotl Dialectical polar monism holds that: 1 the cosmos and its contents are substantively and formally identical with teotl ; and 2 teotl presents itself primarily as the ceaseless, cyclical oscillation of polar yet complementary opposites.

Teotl's process presents itself in multiple aspects, preeminent among which is duality.

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This duality takes the form of the endless opposition of contrary yet mutually interdependent and mutually complementary polarities that divide, alternately dominate, and explain the diversity, movement, and momentary arrangement of the universe. These include: being and not-being, order and disorder, life and death, light and darkness, masculine and feminine, dry and wet, hot and cold, and active and passive. Life and death, for example, are mutually arising, interdependent, and complementary aspects of one and the same process.

Chapter 42 of the Dao De Jing outlines a number-based cosmology that may be consistent with dialectical monism:.

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All things leave behind them the Obscurity out of which they have come , and go forward to embrace the Brightness into which they have emerged , while they are harmonised by the Breath of Vacancy. So it is that some things are increased by being diminished, and others are diminished by being increased. Several other chapters including Chapter 1 make reference to concepts consistent with dialectical monism. Act II, scene ii As Shakespeare in several places borrows directly from the Bible , he may have been paraphrasing Saint Paul :.

There can be no other time as another one of many durations. For Bergson, only a single time can account for the virtual multiplicity of real difference in kind. Duration is virtual coexistence of all degrees of a single time. Bergson integrates duration into space as sufficient reason for that which is actualized in extension. The virtual point is the sufficient reason in duration that becomes actualized. There is extensity in duration. There is duration in matter. The two lines of repetitionthe two multiplicitiesthe virtual-real multiplicity and the actual-numerical multiplicityintersect and interpenetrate.

Extensity becomes qualified by the contractions that become expanded in it.

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There are numbers enclosed in qualities. Intensities are included in duration.

Memory is difference in kind, matter is repetition in degree. Between the two lines are all degrees of difference and all nature of difference. Duration is the most contracted degree of matter. Matter is the most expanded degree of duration. There is no longer dualism between difference in degree and difference in nature. All coexist in monism. All levels of expansion and contraction coexist in the virtual singularity that is all real difference.

Therefore, just as Univocity says being in one sense, so does Bergsonism live time in one sense. And that of which being is said, or time is lived, is the difference of real distinctionof real difference in kind. If time is merely a fourth dimension of space, as Einstein says, then we still have a merely spatialized-time. There can be no real difference in time at all. A scientific theory is an actualization of a virtual ontology. Science is the actual, numerical, and discontinuous multiplicity of space.

Philosophy is the virtual, continuous, and qualitative multiplicity of duration.


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The intersection of these two types of multiplicities is necessary to give science its philosophical foundation. Therefore, Bergson says that there cannot be multiple times that could be totalized into one symbolic unity. If there were multiple durations, then there would be one symbolic or conceptual spatialized time to which all durations would be relative.

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Only with Univocity can there be multiplicity. Only with Univocity can there be One time lived in All durations of real difference. Rather, there are two types of multiplicity that interpenetrate in the One-All. At the level of virtual multiplicity, with its interpenetrating contractions, duration cannot divide without changing in kind. At the level of numerical-actual multiplicity, matter divides without changing its nature.

The two lines of repetition intersect as the virtual is actualized. That is, there is monism of time. But this monism of single time is not at all inconsistent with the pluralism of really distinct rhythms of duration. Each actualization is really different from any other actualization. Each actualization is open onto ontological duration. Monism rediscovers dualism generated as it is actualized.


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