home page    
phenomenality
April 10, 2011 | August 25, 2017


1 | Phenomenology, to my mind, begins as appreciation of other persons—typified by personification of what’s tangible, which is easily shared (e.g., with children; or the awed child in us anewed)—yet appreciation easily involves intangible importance (intangibility) found to belong to things.

2 | Yet, a tangible interest in appreciation is easily evocative because it appeals to what we’ve experienced, enriched “now” by evincing or educing meaning and importance from familiarity in some new way (as if presence itself is evocative narrating, which pertains to photographic framing as well, as if it “speaks” to us).

But enriching evocation or eduction may become less likely as narrated things become intangible—as appreciation may gain a philosophical character, as can literary art.

3 | Literary writing may be like a continuing letter—or diary or journal or journalism or ethnography—implicitly instilling a pathway of appreciating some destination or high sense through every permutation of imagination, memory, and perception into synergies of experience. Endure the list:

  • imagination in/of memory, e.g., “That time we had...”
  • memory in/of imagination, e.g., “The time will be like...”
  • perception in/of memory, e.g., “That moment actually...”
  • perception in/of imagination, e.g., “The prospect really can...”
  • imagination in/of perception, e.g., “I’m inspired by...”
  • memory in/of perception, e.g., “For the first time in decades...”

4 | Resonance of something in time has its lived space just as potentially resonant as its temporal presence (or temporality). Some things are clearly outside myself (possibly interpersonal), others clearly innerworldly—so “personal,” we say. But what we mean in the latter case is that something is so identified with self that it doesn’t enter into the shared world easily (if at all). Something is easily not merely personal at all; it’s intimate. That might not be the best word, but there are frequent differences between what belongs to interpersonal life (easily outwardly) and what belongs to oneself (not easily outwardly or not at all).

5 | Inner-/outerworldly differences are integral to our sense of lived space. Yet, synergies of imagination, memory, and perception may play differences into resonant possibilities (scary, as well as appealing), giving lived space elusive boundaries between persons and things. A child’s personifications of things (carried into adult cuteness) may develop into an artistry of Found Significance as appealing as one’s love of resonances.

6 | Need to preserve boundaries is integral to daily life. In the beginning, an infant is pure inwardness as no inner/outer differentiation at all—though experience is filled with differences within an interpsychal fusion of inner/outer (actually, a pre-fusion, as fusion presumes a differentiation, there not yet made). An infant gradually differentiates other and Self, such that the development of outwardness as such implicitly mirrors its complement: an inwardness, now with its own outwardness (“mine”); and our outwardness (which also consolidates a distinct inwardness—“your” own—relative to outerworldliness), in turn securing “my” distinct outwardness (experienceable by and with others).

What was, in the beginning, all Self (or interpsychal Mothergod as/in I) becomes a relatively interpsychal life, distributed among familial others, yet increasingly interpersonal, since Selfidentity wants itself to be not only distinctly in “the” (shared) world, but to oneself uniquely being (selfidentity gradually distinct from wholly being). A self/[inter]personal difference is integral to Self actualization (though I haven’t here yet fairly distinguished Self [wholly being], self [concept of oneself]). Understanding personality relative to outerworldliness is a way of distinguishing [a] identity with and [b] selfidentity (which of course includes withness—yet potentially much more).

7 | Within outerworldliness, objectivity is commonly confused with factuality (i.e., reduced to factuality). But there’s a difference between a shared (or shareable) experience and what can be validly (factually) said about it. Not reducing objectivity to factuality allows appreciation that shared experience is disputable because there’s a difference between the sharing and agreement about the status (importance, validity) of what’s shared. Conversely, there’s potential in shared experience beyond what’s factual!: enhancement of appreciation, enriched sense of importance.

Objectively speaking, something is there with us. There’s a difference between what we can make of it and what is establishable. Perhaps, what should be made of it (i.e., is good to do) is different from what is so far establishable (due to prevailing conditions or the character of the situation). But releasing something from its given situation (in order to enrich its presence) is not to see it disappear (or become something else); rather, to see—find, have, make—it translate, transport, transpose, or transcend its proximal givenness. Psychal potential “in” the merely given is more good reason for distinguishing objectivity (i.e., shared/shareable phenomenality) from factuality (i.e., disputable givenness).

8 | Differences between shareable and unshareable experience are expressed by ordinary notions of objective and subjective meaning. If something’s objective, I presume I can gain your agreement about its meaning. If something’s psychal (which I prefer to “subjective”), I’m on my own, though also potentially (or actually) having the help of translation to and from others. Relative to interpersonal life, translation is integral to psychal efficacy with[in] outerworldliness. Not relative to that, psychal meaning lives with its own appreciability, reading, synergies, potential, and capabilities of differentiation.

9 | Lived differences between inner and outer, self-to-oneself and self-to-another may be given (psyche as subjective) or made (psyche relative to one’s own potential for individuation). Differences given, differences made—a child grows up in countless resonances of possibility,
at best balancing this difference (given, made) prudently yet creatively, for the sake of one’s ownmost place in the family, a neighborhood, one’s life. Potential for individuation is wholly one’s own: an ontogenic potential growing into its life projects, one’s project-ivity.

Existentially-prior capacity for differentiation best grows into a psyche (or psychality) that wants a fruitful sense of balance, pragmatism—a balance between ordinary ideality (enjoying imagination, feeling promise, having aspiration,wanting engagement) and ordinary realism (being perceptive, prudent, mutual, and gracious).

10 | Making a life, we appreciate “things” along the way (situations, others, tangibles, intangibles). So, generally speaking, an appropriate phenomenology would find life-orienting issues prevailing on (or framing) interpersonally-experiential issues.

In all events, it seems to me, fair representation is done in light of potentials of meaning bounded (constrained) by situational aptness—which is not to imply a generalized situationism of meaning, but an appropriativity belonging from potentials for meaning and importance, brought to bear situationally. Though others and things deserve appreciation relative to their potentials, one’s appreciability deserves to enhance its own potential in accord with one’s ownmost desire and preferences. An enowning life that is not unduly compromised is a life which is already always trans-situational and transpersonal.

Some topography of situationality belongs to any life, possibly becoming a conceptuality of that: a topology of trans-situationality?

11 | Inquiry advances itself first by letting things be, granting others and things their ownmost time. In a sense, to wonder about emergent depth is to wander in a play of things themselves, belonging in belonging, finding in being found.

12 | An integrity to wondering about subterranean straits is the generative potential in dissolving boundaries, dwelling in liminality—transcending a difference between transportation and transgression—translating oneself into times, spaces, ideas, others, and things all drawn into each other for whatever prospect.

Yet, intangible, high engagement is always already in “our” world: Audacity shares the ground that needs well-ordered sense. Seafaring makes home with others who weren’t drawn to sea, and the chores must be done.