marți, 19 iulie 2011

The Immediacy of Definitions

The immediacy of the operation of definition, one that was firstly invoked by Aristotle, is not motivated only by reasoning purposes.

For such reasons, the immediacy guarantees that the definitional statement does not leave room for further interpretations, which could close it to a conclusion of an argument supported by unexpressed premises.

Here we have enclosed the believe that definition could surpass our slowness of thinking and our current uncertainty, both of them involved by the act of producing an argument. The strong assertion of the defined things would replace the weakness of our thought.

From this point of view, definition is not contrary only to arguments, but also to the act of producing arguments.

The virtues of definitions should spread in the arguments where they are used, but actually we use them into forms of thinking characterized by contrary virtues. Therefore, all the arguments that use definitional statements search not only to prove a thesis, but also reconciliation between different properties.

The reconciliation is often realized by subduing argumentative slowness and uncertainty to the immediacy and certainty of the premises included. Thus, the authoritative force of an argument grows and conceals its natural weakness.

From a so called moral perspective, such authoritative arguments prove a lack of sincerity. For someone who is confident in the definitional statements, it is a natural move of the arguments. We are normally obliged to adequate our weakness of thought to the supposed objective power of definitions.

The success of an argument built with the aid of definitional statements does not exclude the loose of sincerity. It is a great loose, if we take into account the fact that sincerity (or being sincere, gr. aletheuein) is our proximate image of the truth (gr. aletheia).

Or, we may call the sincerity another kind of immediacy than that claimed by definitional statements. It is the immediacy of recognition the weakness of our thought and, for this reason, the weakness does not imply a relativistic attitude to the possibility of reaching the truth.

On the contrary, its sincere assumption makes someone to explore what are the virtues of weakness. The most important virtue is the perseverance of philosophical inquiries from one thing to another, since it is not believed that one thing could be circumscribed by a definitional statement and thus to be known by itself. The lack of power in circumscribing leaves the chance to view a thing in a living connection with other ones.

For instance, we might realize that the immediacy of the act of definition is closely related to a set of acts, not only thinking acts, for which we claim or need their quickly achievement.