PEG 2.0

Writer & entrepreneur. Bio.

This is my very, very personal blog.

All work that is my own is my copyright; rights reserved. Toutes mes oeuvres sont protégées par le droit d'auteur.

I suspect that some forms or shades of homosexuality are distortions of the longing for friendship. Our culture has made it much easier (especially, but not only, for men) to acknowledge intense, poignant longing for intimacy with another person of the same sex if we construe that longing as sexual rather than non-sexual.
Eve Tushnet, being thoughtful and interesting, as per usual (via wesleyhill)

Chto éta nature?

Il ne surprendra aucun de mes lecteurs réguliers d’apprendre que je m’associe sans problème au commentaire du dernier manifeste des Veilleurs par mon ami @PierreSchneider.

Cela dit j’en profite pour évoquer un point qui me chiffonne, qui est un traitement du sujet de “nature” (et les concepts connexes, genre loi naturelle), sur lequel il y a très souvent une confusion absolument fondamentale qui fait qu’on ne sait pas qui raconte quoi. En l’occurrence, je ne sais pas si la confusion est chez Pierre, ou chez les Veilleurs (ou les deux). 

Lorsqu’Aristote (et Saint Thomas son “traducteur” en “langue catholique” (oui Thomas était bien plus que ça)) parle de “nature” dans le contexte de l’éthique (mot inventé par Aristote), il ne parle pas du tout de la physis, ce qui existe, ou le monde naturel, ou ce que nous entendons communément par “nature”, c’est-à-dire les oiseaux, les arbres, le chant du ruisseau qui descend la vallée, tout ça. Il ne s’agit pas d’une opposition entre “nature” et “culture.” Dans le contexte de l’éthique, la “nature” d’un être, c’est, si on peut dire, sa vocation profonde, son telos, ce pour quoi cet être existe et ce dans quoi il trouve sa réalisation profonde. Le slogan de recrutement de l’armée américaine des années 1990, “Deviens tout ce que tu peux être”, c’est en plein dans l’éthique aristotélienne, et ça n’a aucun rapport avec une opposition de cours de philo de terminale entre nature-petits-oiseaux et culture-bitume. Et donc signaler que l’homme est un animal culturel qui s’affranchit toujours de la nature-petits-oiseaux comme objection à des arguments fondés sur “la loi naturelle” c’est un hors-sujet complet. Oui, justement, la nature de l’homme c’est d’être auteur de culture (ce qu’Aristote est le premier à dire), mais donc justement, en s’affranchissant de la nature-petits-oiseaux, l’homme obéit à sa nature. En tous les cas, c’est ce que dirait un aristotélien ou un thomiste ou un “vertuiste” à la Anscombe.

La nature-physis peut nous servir comme enseignement sur la nature-éthique, dans une approche qu’on qualifierait aujourd’hui de phénoménologique, mais les deux concepts sont absolument distincts. Si je dis “la nature d’un gland c’est d’être un futur chêne”, je ne fais pas de la biologie, je suis informé par la biologie dans le sens où je ne peux pas le dire si je ne sais pas ce qu’est un gland, un chêne, et que si on plante un gland ça devient un chêne, mais je parle d’autre chose que de biologie. 

Donc, pour resserrer la focale et parler clairement, si un #Veilleur dit que que le mariage homosexuel est contraire à “la loi naturelle”, ça n’a aucun rapport avec le fait que les taureaux s’accouplent avec des vaches et pas avec d’autres taureaux, et ce n’est pas un déni du fait que le mariage est une institution profondément culturelle, qui ferait que signaler que le mariage a évolué culturellement et est sujet à d’autres évolutions culturelles rend l’argument nul (évidemment que le mariage c’est culturel). C’est un propos sur la nature, ou, si on veut, le telos, de l’homme (et, éventuellement de l’acte sexuel), telos dont tout le monde s’accorde pour dire qu’il incorpore le fait culturel.

Il s’agit de dire que l’homme, par exemple, ne peut trouver sa réalisation que dans le cadre de l’altérité sexuelle, ou que sais-je encore. Peut être que c’est n’importe quoi. Mais en tous les cas c’est ça l’argument qui est (implicitement) fait par les partisans de la loi naturelle. En tous les cas ceux qui savent de quoi ils parlent—ça ne m’étonnerait pas du tout que les Veilleurs aient séché ce cours-là.

Mais, en tous les cas, quand on parle de “nature” dans ce contexte, voilà de quoi, en gros, on parle. Ca ne veut pas dire que les #Veilleurs et les #LMPT ont raison (ou qu’ils ont tort).

D’ailleurs il est parfaitement possible de faire un argument aristotélien pour le MPT, et c’est en sous-main ce que font beaucoup de partisans du MPT: c’est la nature des personnes homosexuelles d’être homosexuelles, et de chercher à s’accomplir/de chercher le bonheur dans la relation amoureuse avec des personnes de même sexe, etc. C’est d’ailleurs un point faible souvent évoqué du concept de loi naturelle: même si on est d’accord sur l’idée qu’il existe quelque chose comme la loi naturelle ainsi définie, on ne sera pas pour autant d’accord sur son contenu. Mais ce n’est pas mon sujet ici, mon sujet c’est simplement de signaler un malentendu au niveau des termes du débat.

Et en conclusion, je signalerai que quoi qu’on pense de l’application qui est faite par certains du concept de loi naturelle au mariage de personnes de même sexe, il est pour moi très clair que si on escamote complètement le concept de nature-éthique, on pose des problèmes philosophiques et moraux dont j’ai du mal à voir comment ils peuvent être résolus. A bon entendeur…

Indeed, our current foreign policy is a perfect reflection of the American people. Obsessed with ourselves, lost in our own circular and petty domestic squabbles over issues we ourselves usually don’t understand, we sit with folded arms like cranky children awakened too early from a nap, furious that the world dares to intrude on our self-indulgent bad mood.

While the danger of an accidental launch of a strategic nuclear weapon is not zero, it is tiny.

That is, unless someone builds a “Doomsday Machine” that takes the human beings out of the loop. And who’d be crazy enough to do that?

Turns out the Soviet high command, in its pathetic and paranoid last years, was just that crazy. The USSR built a system called Perimetr, known informally in Russia as “the Dead Hand.” Perimetr was essentially a computer system that would watch for signs of nuclear attack and retaliate on its own if the Soviet leadership was struck first and wiped out. We’ve since asked the Russians if it’s still on, and they’ve reassured us, with complete confidence, that we should mind our own business. Let’s hope they’re just being rude.

fabforgottennobility:

Traffic

fabforgottennobility:

Traffic

(Source: airviation, via etonnement)

alwaysabeautifullife:

utterly-me:

alwaysabeautifullife:

secretaryofsass:

look at all those chickenths

This would be the greatest possible thing to happen to my 8 year old son he loves chickens 💜💜

But aren’t they ducks?

😑Yep. 😂

alwaysabeautifullife:

utterly-me:

alwaysabeautifullife:

secretaryofsass:

look at all those chickenths

This would be the greatest possible thing to happen to my 8 year old son he loves chickens 💜💜

But aren’t they ducks?

😑Yep. 😂

(Source: funnywildlife)

I have even seen a picture of a family wedding that took place in June 1939, in the garden of a Polish country house I now own. All of these pictures convey a sense of doom, for we know what happened next. September 1939 brought invasion from both east and west, occupation, chaos, destruction, genocide. Most of the people who attended that June wedding were soon dead or in exile. None of them ever returned to the house.
Let me end by pointing out what I’ll call the “Tegmarkian slippery slope.” It feels scientific and rational—from the perspective of many of us, even banal—to say that, if we’re conscious, then any sufficiently-accurate computer simulation of us would also be. But I tried to convince you that this view depends, for its aura of obviousness, on our agreeing not to probe too closely exactly what would count as a “sufficiently-accurate” simulation. E.g., does it count if the simulation is done in heavily-encrypted form, or encoded as a giant lookup table? Does it matter if anyone actually runs the simulation, or consults the lookup table? Now, all the way at the bottom of the slope is Max Tegmark, who asks: to produce consciousness, what does it matter if the simulation is physically instantiated at all? Why isn’t it enough for the simulation to “exist” mathematically? Or, better yet: if you’re worried about your infinitely-many Boltzmann brain copies, then why not worry equally about the infinitely many descriptions of your life history that are presumably encoded in the decimal expansion of π? Why not hold workshops about how to avoid the prediction that we’re infinitely likelier to be “living in π” than to be our “real” selves?

In another highly publicized incident, Beard retweeted a message that she had received from a twenty-year-old university student: “You filthy old slut. I bet your vagina is disgusting.” One of Beard’s followers offered to inform the student’s mother of his online behavior; meanwhile, he apologized. Beard’s object is not simply to embarrass offenders; it is to educate women. Before social media, she argues, it was possible for young women like those she teaches at Cambridge to enjoy the benefits of feminist advances without even being aware of the battles fought on their behalf, and to imagine that such attitudes are a thing of the past. Beard says, “Most of my students would have denied, I think, that there was still a major current of misogyny in Western culture.”…

The university student, after apologizing online, came to Cambridge and took Beard out to lunch; she has remained in touch with him, and is even writing letters of reference for him. “He is going to find it hard to get a job, because as soon as you Google his name that is what comes up,” she said. “And although he was a very silly, injudicious, and at that moment not very pleasant young guy, I don’t actually think one tweet should ruin your job prospects.”

She told how God chose a woman to be the Great Sanctuary of our Lord, Jesus.
And about how we are mothers, not only to our children but also to our spouse, just like Mary was mother to her spouse, who is Christ.
Through humility, service, prayer, we give birth to our husbands, who may never know, appreciate, or even welcome the life we want to give them.
In a sense, it was a new cosmology allied to a new moral metaphysics, constantly in ferment, producing movements and sects and new beginnings, but never straying beyond the boundaries of the world in which it believed: a universe of Darwinian struggle that, precisely in its savage economy of “nature red in tooth and claw,” demanded of conscience that it assist evolution in its ascent towards higher ethical realizations of the human essence. In Cowling’s account, one comes to see not only the broad unity of the school of “ethical earnestness,” but the final incoherence of its ethos: the closed order of nature is at once merciless chaos and the source of our ethics; morality is both obedience to nature and rebellion against nature’s implacable decrees; progress demands at once universal brotherhood and (especially among socialists) a ruthless eugenic purification of the race. What unifies this farrago into something like a moral vision is its most obviously religious element: complete devotion to the future as an absolute imperative, requiring in consequence a renunciation of all faith in and charity towards the past”or, for that matter, the present.
She was notorious for a forthright foulmouthedness which was only enhanced by the beauty of her voice. When presenting a paper on pleasure, she distinguished extrinsic pleasures - things we enjoy because of the description they fall under - and intrinsic pleasures - things we enjoy regardless of how they are described; and she cited, as an example of the latter, “shitting”, strongly pronouncing the double “t”, and with such sternness that her academic audience were too daunted to laugh.
Chastity is a decision to die to self and to selflessly love. People who practice it regard all people as intrinsically valuable, reject their objectification and uphold love as a choice in a culture that calls it a feeling.
Arleen Spenceley (x)

(Source: chastitymodesty, via alwaysabeautifullife)

Wallace’s annotations suggest that he had been reading too closely, searching for too much validation, guidance, or comfort in the books he read, to the point that his reading only wound up reinforcing his worst tendencies. Wallace found no escape from himself while he was reading; rather, his personal library remained just that: personal, continually bringing him back to his own struggles and inadequacies.

(Source: airows, via etonnement)