Looking at Richard Colledge’s Essay (2021) “Thomism and Contemporary Phenomenological Reduction” (Part 7 of 7)

0026 Are Catholic philosophers so alienated from science that they are willing to talk through the mouthpiece of phenomenology?

Are there other ways to enter into discourse in this modern Age of Ideas?

Why does the hylomorphic structure of reality constantly get co-opted in the pursuit of science?

Are phenomenologists implicated?

0027 Doctor Figal imagines a gap3c, whose interpretive polarity1c sparks the exteriorization2c of what the thing itself1amust be1b, thereby generating a noumenon1b(1a) that can be objectified as its phenomena1a, according to “social” scientific discipline2a.  He labels the operation, “objectivity2c“.

Is objectivity metaphysical?

Or, does it sound like “electricity”?

0028 Colledge is fascinated.  What marvelous transformations occur in the laboratory of Professor Figal.  Metaphysics alchemically mutates into the stuff of physics.

0029 Comments on Richard Colledge’s Essay (2021) “Thomism and Contemporary Phenomenology” offers value to the originating essay.  Not only is science brought into the picture, but the re-vision is rooted in Comments on Jacques Maritain’s Book (1935) Natural Philosophy.  Colledge has more than he knows.

003 It is wonderful to see striking similarities between Marion’s naming of givenness2c and Figal’s enumeration of objectivity2c.

Peirce’s categories offer ways to diagram that vision.


Looking at Richard Colledge’s Essay (2021) “Thomism and Contemporary Phenomenological Reduction” (Part 6 of 7)

0022 Okay, so far in this sequence of blogs, I have discussed three incentives for why Catholic philosophers may be interested in phenomenology.  I have also raised a question concerning why these philosophers do not mention science.

0023 The answer to the latter question is located in the relation within the Positivist’s judgment.  A positivist intellect (relation, thirdness) brings an empirio-schematic judgment (what ought to be, secondness) into relation with observations and measurements (what is, firstness).  The positivist intellect has a rule.  Metaphysics is not allowed.

0024 What is the result?

Catholic anti-reductionists are excluded from discourse… er, polite scientific society in this modern Age of Ideas.

The positivist intellect says, “No.”

So, why even try?

Why not discourse with the ones who might want to talk, the phenomenologists?

0025 Do I see Gunter Figal heading to the exit?

Professor Figal is interested in objectivity, not givenness.


Looking at Richard Colledge’s Essay (2021) “Thomism and Contemporary Phenomenological Reduction” (Part 5 of 7)

0017 Why do Catholic philosophers (who are curious about phenomenology) not mention science?

This is a very good question, since Aristotle’s and the Positivist’s judgments are structurally similar.

Well, they are different, because the three elements of judgment are imbued with different categories.

0018 The similar structures, along with different categorical assignments, benefit phenomenology.  Phenomenology can sneak Aristotelian metaphysical constructs into the laboratory by reifying hylomorphes into what the thing itself1a must be1b.  Phenomenology appropriates illicit metaphysical constructs then cleans them of metaphysical terminology.

0019 For example, in terms of physics, a one Euro coin may be reduced to its constituent metal and minted shape.  To me, this looks like matter and form.

At the same time, in terms of phenomenological reduction2b, a one Euro coin1a is money1b.  Money1b is what the Euro coin itself1a must be.

0020 What happens when what the thing itself1a must be1b is not the thing itself1a?

Is phenomenological reduction at work?

0021 If the one Euro coin as money is a mind-independent (formerly mind-dependent) being, then novel laws of “physics” apply.  The coin1a(1b) now exhibits the phenomena of value1a and fiat currency1a.

The novel “social” science of modern economics investigates the phenomena1a that objectify this noumenon1a(1b).


Looking at Richard Colledge’s Essay (2021) “Thomism and Contemporary Phenomenological Reduction” (Part 4 of 7)

0014 Why are Catholic philosophers interested in phenomenology?

In Comments on Richard Colledge’s Essay (2021) “Thomism and Contemporary Phenomenology”, a third incentive is proposed.

0015 Colledge reads a 2006 book by German phenomenologist, Gunter Figal, entitled Objectivity, The Hermeneutical and the Philosophical

Colledge wonders, “Is this a phenomenological realist open to Christian anti-reductionism?”

Can we talk?

0016 Figal admits that the thing itself1a should be mind-independent.  If this is the case, then metaphysics should be allowed.  Aren’t the mathematical and mechanical models of the empirio-schematic judgment mind-dependent beings?  Don’t mind-dependent beings transcend (while entangling) physics?  Doesn’t that fit the definition of metaphysics.

Well, yes, this becomes apparent when phenomenology reveals what the thing itself1a must be1b and then a novel empirical science2a arises to investigate its1a(1b) phenomena1a.


Looking at Richard Colledge’s Essay (2021) “Thomism and Contemporary Phenomenological Reduction” (Part 3 of 7)

0008 Why are Catholic philosophers interested in phenomenology?

In Comments on Joseph Trabbic’s Essay (2021) “Jean Luc Marion and … First Philosophy”, a second incentive is proposed.

0009 If phenomenology situates science, then what puts phenomenology into perspective?

0010 In 1995, the French Catholic phenomenologist, Jean-Luc Marion, comes very close to naming that “what”.  “What” coincides with the givenness of things themselves.

0011 Marion’s identification of givenness offers an opportunity for Catholic philosophers.  But, the concerns of the positivist intellect remain.  The positivist intellect rules out metaphysics.

As far as science is concerned, givenness is irrelevant.

0012 But, there is a twist.

The naming of givenness illuminates the potential underlying phenomenological reduction.

The noumenon1athe thing itself1a, is a mind-independent being.

The noumenon1bwhat the thing itself1a must be1b, is a mind-dependent being, that one can take to be mind-independent.

0013 Does that reflect the awkward nature of givenness?

One can give, with no expectation for return.

Can one take, with no expectation of reciprocity?

Can the gift be given, even when the giver and the recipient are nowhere to be found?


Looking at Richard Colledge’s Essay (2021) “Thomism and Contemporary Phenomenological Reduction” (Part 2 of 7)

0005 Why are Catholic philosophers interested in phenomenology?

In Reverie on Mark Spencer’s Essay (2021) “The Many Phenomenological Reductions”, one incentive is proposed.

0006 The positivist intellect has a rule.  No metaphysics is allowed.

Catholic anti-reductionism is metaphysical.

Phenomenology is not.

Consequently, the phenomenologist is tolerated in our scientific Age of Ideas, but the Thomist is not.

0007 So, the Christian realist has an incentive to speak through the mouthpiece of phenomenology.


Looking at Richard Colledge’s Essay (2021) “Thomism and Contemporary Phenomenological Reduction” (Part 1 of 7)

0001 Phenomenology situates science.

Three commentaries flesh out the above statement.

All are available at smashwords.

Just search for key words, in addition to the commentator, Razie Mah.

0002 These e-works are:

Reverie on Mark Spencer’s Essay (2021) “The Many Phenomenological Reductions”

Comments on Joseph Trabbic’s Essay (2021) “Jean-Luc Marion and … First Philosophy”

Comments on Richard Colledge’s Essay (2021) “Thomism and Contemporary Phenomenology”

0003 The originating articles are published in the American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly.

None mention science.

0004 Two questions arise.

First, why are Catholic philosophers interested in phenomenology?

Second, why do none of these originating essays mention science?


Looking at Joseph Trabbic’s Essay (2021) “Jean Luc-Marion and … First Philosophy” (Part 5 of 5)

0017 Comments on Joseph Trabbic’s Essay (2021) “Jean Luc Marion and … First Philosophy” adds value to the original.

How much value?

Maybe two Euros worth.

0018 What is the value of a Euro?

That is a very good question.

0019 Can a one Euro coin be reduced to its matter and form?

Can a Euro be reduced to instrumental and material causalities?

Surely, according to the empirio-schematic judgment, a one Euro coin can be accounted for by its constituent metals and circular shape.  There is a science to coining money.  Isn’t there?

0020 Or, does the givenness of the Euro allow us to imagine that a Euro is more than metal and shape?

Does the givenness of the Euro say that what the thing itself must be may be treated as a thing itself, supporting novel, “social”, sciences, where the noumenon can be objectified as its phenomena?

0021 If this is so, then phenomenological reduction precedes Husserl by over a century.

Is that possible?

Can what the thing must be become a thing itself?

There is something eye-catching and nonsensical about givenness.

Trabbic graciously accepts that Marion must make sense and leads the reader to that glittering impossible possibility.


Looking at Joseph Trabbic’s Essay (2021) “Jean Luc-Marion and … First Philosophy” (Part 4 of 5)

0014 Ah, phenomenology situates empirical science.

This is one lesson found in Reverie on Mark Spencer’s Essay (2021) “The Many Phenomenology Reductions” (available for purchase at smashwords).

0015 Givenness puts phenomenology into perspective.

This statement stands at the heart of Comments on Joseph Trabbic’s Essay (2021) “Jean Luc Marion and … First Philosophy” (also available at smashwords).

0016 Yet, neither Spencer nor Trabbic mention science.


Looking at Joseph Trabbic’s Essay (2021) “Jean Luc-Marion and … First Philosophy” (Part 3 of 5)

0009 The following looks like a hylomorphe, but it does not belong to the realm of actuality.

Figure 1

0010 This dyad expresses what is in the Positivist’s judgment.

The Positivist’s judgment constitutes the second first philosophy, arising and ruling out the first first philosophy.

0011 What is a first philosophy?

A first philosophy addresses the question, “Why is there something rather than nothing?”

This is the first question that every philosophy must confront.

0012 Many prefer to skip to the next question, “What is ‘something’?”

The first first philosophy, as practiced by scholastics of the Latin Age, says, “It must be the things of God and of everyday life.”

The second first philosophy, modern science, says, “No, it must be phenomena, the observable and measurable facets of things.”

The third first philosophy, Husserl’s phenomenology, says, “We must return to the noumenon, the thing itself, and figure out what the noumenon must be.”

But, is the thing itself the same as what the thing itself must be?0013 Here is where Jean-Luc Marion enters the picture and says, “A fourth first philosophy should place Husserl’s situating of science into perspective, by addressing the question, ‘Why are there noumena, rather than nothing?’.”