Insight, chapter 20
Sku: 37200DTE050
Archival Number: A372
Author: Lonergan, B.
Language(s): English
Decade: 1950
Open 37200DTE050.pdf


Typescript of chapter 20 of Insight.  Pages numbered 1-77 (typed), 1155-1231 (hand). Mostly blue carbon.


pt 687-88 (ts 1156): the two paragraphs beginning `To these ... ' and `The relation ... ' are not in ts.


pt 690, line 5 (ts 1160): `historically' is in ts `historical'; not changed.


pt 690, line -19 (ts 1160): `an X named' is in ts `an X which we named'; changed by hand. Same: semicolon after `cosmopolis' is in ts comma, not changed. `Cosmopolis' was originally capitalized, changed by hand.


pt 690 (ts 1161): Paragraph beginning `However ...' is run into preceding.  Instruction given in margin to begin new paragraph.


pt 690, line -6 (ts 1161): ts reads, 'The positions invite development, and ... '; not changed in ts.


pt 691, line -18 (ts 1162): `if ever' was in ts `once'; changed.


pt 692, line 1 (ts 1163): ts has commas around `less good than that'; not changed.


pt 694, line 13 (ts 1166): `will not' was in ts `won't'; not changed.


pt 696, line 1 (ts 1169): `is by no means opposed' is in ts `by no means is opposed'; not changed.


pt 696 (ts 1169): footnote is in text in ts; not changed.


pt 698, line -5 (ts 1174): `all spontaneous' was `all their spontaneous'; changed.


pt 706, line 2 (ts 1186): `specialties' was `specialists'; changed.


pt 709, line 7 (ts 1192): `preceded' was `proceeded'; not changed.


pt 711, lines -12 and -11 (ts 1196): ts read `is so constructed'; changed.


pt 713, line 1 (ts 1198): `None the less' was `still'; changed.


pt 713, line 7 (ts 1198): `his' was `their'; changed.


pt 714, line -17 (ts 1201): `the evil' was `and evil'; changed.


pt 716, line 7 (ts 1203): `taken' is `known'; not changed.


718: the 'Logical Note' was much longer in ts.  The changes to the form of the published text are not indicated in ts. It reads:


4.4                                           A Logical Note


            The possibility and fact of belief enlarges the notion of truth to include not only the content of judgments resulting from reflective grasp of the unconditioned but also the content of assents that proceed proximately from decisions of the will and remotely from someone else's grasp of the unconditioned.

            However, if this enlargement is overlooked, there arise a number of logical problems that have repercussions on the analysis of belief.  It will be the purpose of the present subsection to indicate that such problems are merely logical and that they vanish when the notion of truth and, in particular, its enlargement are taken into account.

            First, then, it will be objected that belief involves no enlargement.  For whether one knows or believes, truth consists simply in affirming what is and in denying what is not while falsity consists simply in affirming what is not and in denying what is.  The answer to the objection is to be had in noting that affirmation and denial are intrinsically rational acts, that they not merely regard an object but also occur because of an apprehended motive.  Hence, while belief does not enlarge the range of objects of true affirmation, it does enlarge the range of true affirmations for it enables many to affirm truly what only a few may grasp as unconditioned.

            Secondly, it may be objected that, in the analysis of belief, four of the alleged typical acts are superfluous.  For once one knows that an expression has been communicated accurately from a really reliable source, one knows that it is true.  Therefore, there is no need for the reflective act of understanding, for the judgment of value, for the decision of the will, and for the assent that is said to be an act of believing.  The answer is to point out that the objection takes the counter-positions for granted.  It supposes that truth and falsity are properties of expressions but, as has been seen, they are properties of intrinsically rational acts while expressions are merely adequate or inadequate.  Hence, to know that an expression has been communicated accurately from a reliable source 1) is not to know that the expression is true, for truth is not a property of expressions, and 2) does not lead to knowledge of truth but solely to belief.

            Thirdly, one may object that it leads not merely to belief but also to knowledge of truth.  For it leads to the judgment on the value of deciding to believe; that judgment is not a belief, for it proceeds immediately from a grasp of the value as unconditioned; moreover, that value is neither sensible nor volitional but purely intellectual, and the purely intellectual value is truth.  Therefore, the judgment of value is not belief but knowledge of value, and the value known is truth.  Further, there follows the corollary that the decision to believe and the act named believing are superfluous.

            The fallacy here turns on the use of the name, knowledge.  In a broad sense, one can say that a cognitional act is knowledge if its object is true; in that sense all true belief is an instance of knowledge.  But in a strict sense one will say that a cognitional act is knowledge 1) if its object is true, and 2) if the cognitional act results immediately from a reflective grasp of the object as unconditioned; and, clearly, in this strict sense not even true belief is knowledge.

            Now, in the third objection, it is argued that the judgment of value is not belief but knowledge, and then the name, knowledge, is employed in the strict sense.  Later, however, it is argued that the value in question is a truth and, since the value is known, therefore the truth is known.  Now it is in this argument that the ambiguity becomes operative.  For knowledge of the value is knowledge in the strict sense.  Knowledge that the value in question is the value of truth again is knowledge in the strict sense.  But knowledge of the content or object, subsumed under the value of truth, is no more than knowledge in the broad sense.  For it is knowledge that an act of believing, if it occurs, will be true; but even when the act of believing does occur, it will be no more than knowledge in the broad sense; and anticipatory knowledge of knowledge in a broad sense is knowledge of the anticipated content or object only in a broad sense.

            Fourthly, it will be objected that at least the decision to believe and the act of believing are superfluous.  For in the judgment of value there is implicit knowledge that the content of this anticipated assent of belief will be true.  But, by adverting to the implication, one already knows all that one will know by believing.  Therefore, at least for anyone aware of the implications of his acts, the decision to believe and the act of believing are superfluous.

            The basic distinction overlooked by this objection is between the primary flow of consciousness, in which occurs the process of believing, and the secondary, introspective flow, in which occurs the analysis of the process of believing.

            Now in the primary flow a judgment on the value of deciding to believe either is or is not superfluous.  If it is superfluous, then the premise of the fourth objection vanishes along with the decision to believe and the act of believing.  But if it is not superfluous, then the affirmation of the value of deciding motivates the will to decide and may even oblige it to decide; and if the will decides, then the act of believing follows with natural necessity.  Moreover, if one grants the judgment of value to be superfluous, then one is committing oneself to the counter-positions; for one will be driven to conceive truth, not as a property of intrinsically rational acts (veritas logica formaliter est in solo iudicio), but as a property of expressions or, perhaps, as some self-subsistent entity to be known by taking a look.

            It is in the secondary, introspective flow of consciousness that there occurs the advertence to the implication that, if the judgment of value is true, then the assent of belief will be true.  But though the implication exists and the advertence may occur, they do not render superfluous either the decision to believe or the act of believing.  For the introspective flow of consciousness either is confined to knowing or else it goes beyond knowing to become a principle of action.  If it is confined to knowing, then its sole function is to report accurately what occurs in the primary flow; and the accurate report is that the decision to believe and the act of believing are not superfluous but normal elements in the collaboration of men in the pursuit of truth.  On the other hand, if the introspective flow of consciousness is supposed to be a principle of action, so that man knows himself in order that he may reconstruct his procedures, then at least the reconstruction has to be coherent and reasonable.  But it would be incoherent to posit a judgment on the value of deciding to believe and, at the same time, exclude the decision and the believing.  And a will that consistently failed to respond to affirmative judgments of value would not be good and reasonable but bad and unreasonable.  Finally, while the reader may feel that he could work out a coherent and reasonable reconstruction that modified the actual process of belief, he also will acknowledge that his reconstruction would remain a mere theory, quite irrelevant to the analysis of belief, until believers commonly proceeded along the new lines laid down for them.


pt 721, line 1 (ts 1216): ts has comma after `object'; not changed.


pt 724, line -20 (ts 1222): `undreamed of' is just `undreamed' in ts; not changed.


pt 724, line -13 (ts 1222): ts has comma after `new'; not changed.


pt 725, line 10 (ts 1223 and added page following this): the added page contains the note on `supernatural', but the text (1223) gives no indication of where it is to be inserted.


pt 726, lines 1 and 2 (ts 1224): ts has comma after `intimacy'; not changed.  And the verb is `results', not `result'; not changed.


pt 727, lines 13 ff. (ts 1226): ts had: `Their faith would be not only a believing to understand ... but also a believing ...' `a' is removed by hand before `believing', in each case.


pt 727, line 17 (ts 1226): ts had `love of God above all'; changed. Also `a' seems to have been added later, before `self-sacrificing'.


pt 728 (ts 1228): paragraph, `At the same time' is run into preceding paragraph, but note in margin indicates to begin a new paragraph here.


pt 730 (ts 1231): chapter ends in ts as follows: `and by infusing the charity, the dispassionate, unrelenting at-oneness with all the true, the real, the good, that outlasts the fire-ball of the atom bomb and immeasurably exceeds its power to change the living of man.'

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