Understanding and Being lecture 2:2
Archival Number: CD/mp3 136
Author: Lonergan, B.
CD/mp3 136, second part of second Halifax lecture on Insight. Corresponds to CWL 5: 48-58. Sponsored by Msgr. Angelo Caligiuri. A few traditional matters are presented in the context of what has been said. First, syllogism for Aristotle was a way of communicating insights. He is trying to pin down the object of insight. Next, there is the notion of system. Systems are not numerous. A system is the expression of a cluster of insights. Thomas's Summa is not simply system. His method is a series of questions and answers, not the formulation of a cluster of insights. System is not a complete method. There are always further questions that cannot be answered in terms of the system. Higher viewpoints are usually expressed symbolically, and the symbols fulfil a function similar to that of geometrical diagrams. The discovery of an apt symbolism greatly simplifies mathematics and makes possible enormous developments. Inverse insight is a matter of understanding that there is nothing to be understood. Inverse insights eliminate a series of problems. 'What cannot be done' opens up new fields. In a more general way, there is the empirical residue: there has to be a part in the empirical presentations that is just given and that does not correspond to any insight. The empirical residue makes possible scientific collaboration and scientific generalization.