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3.3.17

As Hegel pointed out, the other answers of the German Idealists were not very good, and some (like Fries) were simply nonsense.

I should mention that I prefer Neo Platonic thought myself as that looks to me to be the closest to reality. Not Plato alone nor Aristotle alone. Dr Kelley Ross definitively goes in the Kant-Plato direction. But most of the great thinkers in history that form the basis of Western Civilization go with the Neo Platonic approach.

To Plotinus, Reason can perceive the forms, not just know them from some kind of implanted knowledge.
[And I have to say the Hegel is about as Neo- Platonic as one can get with the Divine Mind emanating reality].[And Hegel incidentally was quite well aware of Isaac Luria.]

In any case, my own viewpoint in this direction I should admit was very much influenced by Rav Isaac Luria. When I was in the Mir in NY I spent a great deal of time between Gemara sessions in learning his Eitz Chaim which is thoroughly Neo Platonic. [The Eitz Chaim was actually written by Reb Chaim Vital, but it is the teachings of the Ari.] [The Reshash/ Rav Shalom Sharabi I learned only later.] 
[The רש''ש Shalom Sharabi  made an important move back to Aristotle in saying in putting the order of the world horizontally in the time of תחיית המתים revival of the dead. That means saying the universals depend on particulars.]




As a support to the Neo Platonic view I might mention that the observer has a radical effect on reality as Hegel also noticed. For we know from the two slit experiment, and especially from Bell's inequality that the electron has no spin nor any quantum values until it is measured. 

 But Reality is also radically objective,--  the Schrodinger equation  is about as objective a law as anything that has ever existed as Dr. Kelley Ross wrote to me. In any case, the contradiction between reality being radically subjective and radically objective is exactly the type of thing that Hegel would have thought validates his system.

[I also want to add that to come up with the kind of Neo Platonic thought that is in the Rambam, the Ari, and Aquinas and Hegel is by no means a trivial feat. If you think that with simple faith in the Holy Torah and in Reason, you would have come up with this synthesis on your own then take a look at Hippolytus and see how hard it was to reconcile reason and faith and how radically different Plato is from the Neo Platonic synthesis of the Rambam.]


(note 1) The electron has no objective value [energy or time, momentum or position in space] until it is measured which is proved by the fact that Nature violates Bell's inequality.
[Feynman makes the point even more clear with his path integral approach.] 


As I put this elsewhere: We know from Einstein locality (causality). This we know by GPS (global positioning satellite). And we know from Bell either that reality is subjective, or non local. But we already know from Albert Einstein, that reality is local. Therefore putting 2+2=4 together we know reality is local and subjective.
I also should mention that we might have known this from the two slit experiment, but there might have been ways to explain that away. So it is in fact that Nature violates the Bell's inequality that proves the point.




There are good reasons to go with Hegel which is thoroughly Neo Platonic. No one liked Kant's answers for the synthetic a priori and, as Hegel pointed out, the other answers of the German Idealists were not very good, and some (like Fries) were simply nonsense. There is no such thing as immediate non intuitive knowledge because if you do not think it you do not know it.   Fichte was a disaster as Hegel also pointed out, and Kant also pointed out the problems in Fichte.

 After I took the time to see what Hegel actually was saying, instead of reading secondary critiques on him, I began to realize how important he is.
[I should admit I feel a little guilty about sticking up for Hegel, since one of the best philosophers of this generation is Dr. Kelley Ross of the Kant Friesian School, and he is not very happy about Hegel.[And in fact he was and still is used to justify things he would not have agreed with.] Still I think a lot of the misconceptions about Hegel really come from Popper.] While I am at it I might as well mention that Dr. Kelley Ross wrote to me that the Rambam was straight forward neo Platonic. I also had suspected that, and I have no idea how people got the impression of hi being Aristotelian in a pure sense. Aquinas was much more pure Aristotelian.