Published by the Center for the Study of The Great Ideas (founded in 1990 by Mortimer J. Adler and Max Weismann)
In association with the The Adler-Aquinas Institute and Aquinas School of Leadership
A Founding Member of the Alliance for Liberal Learning

Friday, July 20, 2018

ALI 2018 Plenary Session Panel 4 (July 20th 3:30 pm EDT)

3:30 pm–5:00 pm: Plenary Session Panel 4 (Location: Meeting Room)
Chair: Robert A. Delfino (St. John’s University, NY)

Complete conference program (subject to change)

Update: Plenary Session video

Speaker: Timothy O’Donnell (Butler University/Co-host: “The Catholic Cave”), “Identity Zero: Why You Don’t Matter in the Technocracy of the AI Herd”

The Future of Philosophy, Global Leadership, and World Peace is dark and darkening. Liquid modernity is dissolving and devolving the heretofore social and historical realism that had been axiomatic and a necessary presuppositional conceptual framework on which much of the Western Intellectual Tradition depends. 
In this new absurd theatre of the self AI severely compromises, corrupts, and replaces what St. John Paul the Great identified as an authentic Christian Personalism with Identity Zero. The gods of Moralistic Therapeutic Deism are to be worshipped by the Herd and through a ritualistic and sacred technocratic Liturgy-of-the-Device that erases puddles the self into the consuming Self.
In this essay, I will not offer solutions, but instead a thick diagnostic of what is the multi-layered suppositions of the contemporary setting are devastating hostile to the author aims and work of Philosophy, Global Leadership, and World Peace by making use of Patrick Deneen’s analysis found in Why Liberalism Failed. Through this lens the dire project of overthrowing the Technocracy that rules may become more visible.
Speaker: Valentina Peliccia (Pontificia Universitas Lateranensis, Rome), “Metaphysics of the Foundation as the Future of Philosophy”
Respondents: Eduardo Bernot (Universidad Abat Oliba, Barcelona) and Rev. A. William McVey (Universidad Abat Oliba, Barcelona)
Our time, rich in scientific and technological knowledge and open to astronomical discoveries, brings to mind the beginning of the modern era, a period in which, for the introduction of mathematical language and scientific method in the natural sciences, they reached rapid knowledge of nature that presented new questions to philosophy. René Descartes, a man of science and philosophy, tried to make the philosophy up to the needs of that moment, but instead of directly addressing the new questions, he decided to intervene on the nature and structure of the philosophical investigation, giving rise to a authentic revolution in the philosophical field.           
He presented an innovative reading of reality starting from the definition of the very structure of philosophical inquiry. He chose to take a method as the starting point of the research to identify the primum cognitum, or the cogito. According to Descartes, the recognition of the act of thinking, deprived of a content, was the first evidence to be laid as the foundation of philosophy, cogito ergo sum. All the contents of knowledge, certain and evident, originated from innate ideas, justified by the direct intervention of the Christian God, by their presence in the human mind.But if we bring to light the fact that philosophy, by its very nature, does not want to eliminate any object of nature from its field of investigation, we recognize that philosophy coincides with the same human knowledge, distinguishing itself only by the rigor of method and language . Therefore, if we put forward a method and we want to find the primum cognitum from this, it means that we exclude a lot of knowledge that allows us to develop a discourse on the whole, or a discourse that is properly metaphysical, as it is able to recognize the distinction between essence and existence.
Starting from the Cartesian perspective, philosophy had to make itself capable of dialogue with the natural sciences, since it had placed representations as the starting point of its investigation and, similar to pure mathematics, developed its discourse exclusively on the plane of essences, no longer facing the problem of truth and stopping only on the search for certainty and validity. The Cartesian cogito has been chosen as the starting point for most modern philosophers and contemporary philosophy is influenced by its influence which has given rise to multiple forms of interpretation, which experience the discomfort of a lack of well-defined freedom of investigation and of a difficulty in elaborating coherent discourses, because they lack a genuine gaze on the whole.In order to respond to the current philosophical crisis and to the questions that science and technology submit to us, it is necessary to recover a metaphysics that has a gaze towards the whole and recognizes on the gnoseological level the ens in its unity of essence and existence and on the plane. metaphysical the esse subsistens as foundation.The dialectical recognition of the existence of the foundation and the search for its essence are the necessary condition for elaborating coherent answers for the multiple questions that the various sciences present to philosophy. In these terms philosophy shows itself for what it really is, that is, the science of the whole, able to dialogue with all kinds of knowledge, as well as that of divine revelation, as it does not exclude the knowledge that comes from testimony. The future of philosophy is linked to its ability to recover knowledge in its entirety, from its forms to its ways, and in the ability to compare and link the different information, starting from its ability to recall a whole look at the different fragments. 

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