This book seeks to explain the meaning of life from a materialist standpoint where it faces its greatest challenge – the certain death of our embodied being. Jeff Noonan lucidly argues across metaphysics and moral and social philosophy for the ultimate meaning, not meaninglessness, of human life created by the limit of certain death. The implicit assumption is that there is no otherworldly life after death, or immaterial God source, or destiny of the individual soul beyond this world or any supra-or-extra-terrestrial meaning.
The video starts with Svandís Ósk Gestsdóttir giving the Z-Day 2020 Intro, then Giorgio Baruchello spoke about Maître à penser.
Born in Genoa, Italy, Giorgio Baruchello is an Icelandic citizen and works as Professor of Philosophy at the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences of the University of Akureyri, Iceland. He read philosophy in Genoa and Reykjavík, Iceland, and holds a Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of Guelph, Canada. His publications encompass several different areas, especially social philosophy, theory of value, and intellectual history. Since 2005 he edits Nordicum-Mediterraneum: The Icelandic E-Journal of Nordic and Mediterranean Studies
The Primary Axiom of Value is the unifying solution to the open question ‘What is Good? What is Bad? The Value of All Values across Time, Place and Theories’ by John McMurtry, Philosophy and World Problems, Volume I, UNESCO in partnership with Encyclopedia of Life Support Systems: Oxford, 2004-11. It defines the ultimate first principle/s of Life-Ground Ethics, and more comprehensively, Life-Value Onto-Axiology.
In traditional terms and terrestrial parameters, the Primary Axiom provides the unifying criterion and measure of the Real, the True and the Good.
You may or may not know that I was his private doctor, and I had several opportunities to discuss many issues on life, that were relevant to his life and that of the life of our community.
What became clear very early on was that he was mourning the diminution of our liberating communal spirituality by an enslaving materialistic religiosity, that had captured our political and economic systems of good governance and had created histories and legacies of mental enslavement of our people, still yet unseen.
In this light, I am going to take a deep history and deep heritage approach, to show from whence we came and to whither bound, to show how we can make the Great Turn to transform all of the rules of our social engagements so that they can uplift us to the highest heights and not lead us downtrodden to the lowest-lows.
Sir Probyn had pride of place of Brimstone Hill in his heart, for it manifested the unbreakable spirit in the hearts and minds and backs and hands and feet of the slaves who built it, as manifested in their superb craftsmanship.
For him this was proof of principle that no matter how diabolic the times were, THAT spirit could never have been extinguished and can NOW be tapped into as a source of transformation that guides our thoughts, feelings and actions, individually and collectively, in comprehensively inclusive and imaginatively creative life-enabling ways.
Table of Contents
- I. THE RIGHTS OF THE “HUMAN” OVER THE “NON-HUMAN”: THE UNDECLARED WORLD WAR OF HUMAN RIGHTS VERSUS CORPORATE RIGHTS
- Right to Life: From Right-Wing Slogan to Life-Grounded Comprehension
- Intrinsic Life Worth and Humanity’s Universal Being
- Projecting Personhood onto the Non-Human to Deprive the Human
- The Life-Value Onto-Ethic in Contrast
- II. FINDING THE LOST LIFE-VALUE GROUND AND MEASURE: THE COMMON LIFE INTEREST OF LEGITIMATE RIGHTS AND SOCIAL JUSTICE
- Capabilities: Regrounding Amartya Sen and Martha Nussbaum in Life Need and Value
- Individual Differences and the Life-Value Criterion and Measure of Legitimate Rights
- Thinking Past the Life-Blind Paradigms
- The Universal Human Life Necessities
- Universal Life Needs the Basis of All Legitimate Rights
- III. GROWING THE LIFE GOODS BASE: BEYOND MONEY, IDEOLOGY AND PRODUCTIVE FORCES
- Why Marx Does not Solve the Problem
- Predictable Downfall of Human and Planetary Life Until Life-Value Turn
- From Moral and Legal Philosophy to Marxian Revolution: The Missing Life-Ground
- The Modern Blind Eye: No Life-Value Standard to Steer Productive Development
- The First Requirement of Social Justice: Re-Grounding in Universal Human Life Goods
- Recognising the Human Vocation Above All
- Right of Access to Universal Life Goods: The Missing Argument
- IV. THE UNIVERSAL HUMAN LIFE NECESSITIES: THE LIFE GROUND OF ECONOMICS AND HUMAN RIGHTS DEFINED
- Blocking Out Life Necessity: The Compulsion of High Theory
- The Universal Life Needs and Goods: Explaining the Base of All Rights and Obligations
- Beyond the Invisible Hand: Naming Humanity’s Universal Life Necessities and Goods
- How to Test the Universal Life Goods and Necessities for Validity
- Sufficiency and Insufficiency of Provision Recognised by Life Capacity Margins
- Thinking Through “From Each According to Ability, To Each According to Needs”
- V. RECOVERING THE BASES OF OUR LIVES FROM SILENCE AND OCCUPATION: THE HUMAN VOCATION, THE CIVIL COMMONS AND SOCIAL JUSTICE
- Being Human: Why We Must Work for Our Own Life Good and Others’ at the Same Time
- The Civil Commons: Real Economic Base and Social Correlative of the Human Vocation
- The Corporate-Rich War on Civil Commons to Expropriate and Degrade Them for Profit
- From Commons-Blind Theory on Both Sides of Class Division to Life-Goods Economy and Justice.
- Regaining the Lost Bearings of Civil Commons as First Premise of Human Evolution
- From Corporate State versus Social State to Life-Coherent Rationality
- VI. EVOLVED CIVIL COMMONS VERSUS CORPORATE GLOBALIZATION: A PERFORMANCE EVALUATION ACROSS UNIVERSAL LIFE GOODS
- Re-Setting to the Common Life-Ground of Our Existence
- Economic Advance and Social Justice Both Decided by Universal Provision of Life Goods
- Atmospheric Goods
- Bodily Goods
- Home and Habitat Goods
- Environmental Integrity
- Life-Protective Goods of Security and Healthcare
- Cultural Life Goods
- The Good of Human Vocation
- VII: WHY CONTEMPORARY JUSTICE THEORY FAILS: THE MISSING COMMON INTEREST OF HUMAN RIGHTS AND REASON
- Abstracting Away Everything that Ultimately Matters: Mapping High Theory’s Correspondence to the Life-Blind Ruling System
- G.A. Cohen’s Egalitarian Rescue Remains Within the Ruling Alibi as First Premise
- Economic Science and Pareto Optimum/Efficiency Unmasked in Principle
- Rawlsian Justice as Trickle-Down Myth in Formal Costume
- VIII. BEYOND EQUIVOCAL EQUALITY AND MASKING MYTHS: GROUNDING JUSTICE IN WHAT WE ALL NEED TO LIVE AS HUMAN
- From Rational Plan of Life to Human Vocation: The Ultimate Moral Regrounding
- Life-Ground Ethics Rejects a Career Plan as a Universal Good of Justice or Morality
- Linking Life Right and Obligation at System-Wide and Historical Levels
- The Life-Coherence Principle, Civil Commons, and the Human Vocation
- IX. REGAINING THE REAL ECONOMY FROM THE CANCER SYSTEM: THE CHOICE SPACE FOR HUMANITY’S EVOLUTION OR DESTRUCTION
- Evolution of Humanity by Rules of Life-Enabling Economy and Justice
- Progressive or Regressive Meta Pattern of History?
- The Corporate-State War Against Human Evolution
- Recovering the Real Economy in Principle and Fact
- X. THE SOCIAL STATE VERSUS THE CORPORATE STATE: FROM EUROPEAN FASCISM TO GLOBAL MONEY-SEQUENCE ABSOLUTISM
- Social State Evolution versus Corporate State Growth: The Battle Lines Defined
- From the Depression, Anti-Fascist War and Decolonisation to the Corporate Occupation
- The Morality of Corporate Rights: No Rights Except for Private Money Sequences
- Social Justice and Economic Integrity: The Life Code in Social Defence
- XI. THE LIFE-AND-DEATH WAR OF RIGHTS SYSTEMS DEFINED
- Defining the Global Corporate Mechanism in Formal Terms
- The Age-Old Life Economy of the Civil Commons versus the Corporate-Rights System
- Holding and Advancing the Life-Ground of Resistance: Clarifying the Civil Commons of Economic and Human Rights Around and Under Us
- Beyond Amnesiac Despair: The Life Economy and Human Rights Base Already Won
- The Real Private Sector is the Opposite of Global Corporate For Profit
- XII. HUMANITY’S EVOLUTION AND THE GREAT REVERSAL: AN ANATOMY OF THE CORPORATE RIGHT COUNTER-REVOLUTION
- Getting Our Historical Bearings in the Turning-Point Time
- The Great Reversal
- The Historic Choice Today
- XIII. HISTORY’S LONG WAR FOR LIBERATION: RECLAIMING THE LIFE RIGHTS WHICH HAVE BEEN WON
- The United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights
- Societies’ Life Rights Against Corporate Fascism Across Borders
- Resolving Confusions of Meaning to See the Historical Pattern Across Generational Time
- Reclaiming and Moving Beyond the Human Life Rights That Have Already Been Won.
LK 6:27-38 Jesus said to his disciples: “To you who hear I say, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. To the person who strikes you on one cheek, offer the other one as well, and from the person who takes your… Read More
The 2008 financial crisis spread from Wall Street to the world almost overnight, threatening the lives and livelihoods of millions, even though its causes had nothing to do with the production and distribution of any of the basic necessities of life. Instead, the crisis erupted because the financial system had become unhinged from its real function: supplying credit to productive enterprises. Finance capital increasingly made its money from complex “derivatives,” which are not claims on a company’s proﬁt (as shares are) but on debts packaged and sold as investments. Immense profits were made, which provided the incentive to create more derivatives, causing debts to be piled on debts, all sold with guaranteed returns. Many of these derivatives involved American mortgages. Since these were backed by a physical asset (the house), they were advertised to institutional investors as highly secure, but the models assumed that housing prices would continue to rise. As it turned out, the housing market was a bad-mortgage fuelled bubble. When it burst, the “mortgage backed securities” became worthless, and banks from Athens to Iceland collapsed. Instead of having to foot the bill for their recklessness and greed, major banks were bailed out with hundreds of billions of dollars of public money. Workers lost their jobs, housings, and savings; Wall Street bankers paid themselves bonuses for the greatest failure of the financial system since 1929.
But knowledge is not knowledge if it is not life coherent. To be life coherent, it must speak to the felt side of being, of which emotions are key, or it is inconsistent and life-blind. But emotions alone mislead us all over the place unless they are moored in life coherent action too – mainly with words that distinguish… Read More
When the UNESCO-EOLSS Secretariat asked me in 2004 to organize a Philosophy Theme for the Encyclopedia of Life Support Systems, I accepted with an ultimate commitment. We were united in our shared concern for the future of life on the planet, and the world itself needed what philosophy can offer – critical examination of first principles and underlying value assumptions at a system level. The cumulative degradation and collapse of the globe’s life-carrying capacities was by then undeniable to thoughtful people, and I had already published much research on the unexamined value system regulating the globe. With the sciences and economics misleadingly claiming value neutrality, and philosophy and the humanities not engaging the value- system problem at a planetary level, I sought to meet a seemingly impossible task of explaining world philosophy across specialties and areas while coming to grips with the emergent world crisis. Forging explanatory connection between ruling thought systems and the deep-structural problems of civilization had long been central to my research, and so I understood this invitation as a call to enlist the deepest and most comprehensive resources of philosophical analysis to explain philosophy across schools, to lay bare the fatally misguided assumptions and their consequences pressing in upon us, and to spell out a life-coherent way of reason to move forward. “How to live” has been philosophy’s ultimate question since the ancients and “what is good and true”, or not, has been its unifying quest. Common problem and method of understanding it whole were joined by this project.
Organization of the Chapters
The work found in this publication has two major ‘volumes’ of explanatory analysis. The first is my Theme Essay on Philosophy and World Problems which is written in a cumulatively building explanation to fulfill the project in one unified volume. Its 12 chapters are set out in full in the Table of Contents ahead. Here I shall only summarize their research and findings in a very general way. Analysis begins from our current human condition with an anatomy of the global crisis in terms of opposed and unexamined value systems (Chapter 1). The next chapters then critically analyze and move beyond the immutable idea of the good as happiness and release from pain (Chapter 2) to critically excavate other general theories of value across classic and leading contemporary forms (Chapters 3, 4 and 5). The self-evident basis of all that human beings truly value is spelled out from the “primary axiom of value” with the “ultimate value fields of thought, felt being and action” explained and illustrated across problems and domains (Chapters 6, 7 and 8). The human subject and the manifold value systems constructed across cultures are then explained as the rules by which individuals and societies live whose validity or invalidity, justice or injustice can be objectively determined by life-value analysis in theory and practice alike (Chapters 9, 10 and 11). Rational choice and scientific method across contemporary theories are then critiqued in light of the life-coherence principle as the missing imperative of human reason and of the global system itself (Chapter 12).
The second ‘volume’ of original essays is by experts who have been selected to cover all the life-relevant fields of contemporary philosophical inquiry. Their essays cover three meta areas of philosophy, with each meta area consisting of a set of four or five essays. This organizing framework complements the all-inclusive Theme Essay by providing specialist accounts of major topic fields by philosophers with internationally recognized capacities of research in these fields. The three meta areas are: (1) Onto-Ethical Philosophy from the pre-Socratics to the present with overviews from a life-grounded standpoint covering virtually every known figure and school of philosophy up to contemporary environmental theory; (2) Modes of Reason consisting of systematic coverages of logic, science, natural language argument, and market rationality; (3) Philosophy and Society investigating competing historical and contemporary views of human nature, democracy, and human rights.
Philosophy resists conclusions because its method across disagreements – like modern science to which it gives rise – always leaves issues open to counter-argument and furtherance of understanding. This is how philosophy differs from religious, sectarian and other dogmas and closed systems of thinking. Yet agreement across the research contributing to this work is implicit or explicit on one meta principle: whatever is incoherent with organic, social and ecological life requirements through time is false, and evil to the extent of its reduction and destruction of life fields and support systems.
Members of the UNESCO-EOLSS Secretariat patiently supported and counseled on this complex “magnum opus” over six years. My former PhD students and now distinguished professors, Jeffery Noonan and Giorgio Baruchello, have been close and outstanding co-researchers and explainers of life-ground philosophy and the method of life-value analysis across philosophy’s domains. James Robert Brown, Alex Michalos, and (as joint authors) Tony Blair and Ralph Johnson have written definitive overview texts for the project as masters in their fields. Kai Nielsen has explained why he thinks that received moral philosophy in which he is a noted leader has been impoverished in facing the world’s problems. Jerry (G.A) Cohen contributed his renowned essay on non-market reason and community before his tragic passing. My longtime partner Jennifer Sumner has been an invaluable social-science researcher into the life-ground and the civil commons and has provided all-sided life support to the project.
I usually post my blog articles on several social media sites and list servers, and sometimes the feedback I get forces me to think deeper and wider and make more connections than I could have made without that feedback. In response to one such pivotal email feedback to the article A Resetting of our Life-Dysfunctional… Read More