An online, public domain project currently in progress at AnEnquiry.info, this ongoing philosophical work attempts to systematically investigate both ontology and epistemology by accumulating optimal certainties within a prevailing framework of fallibilism. Themes to be addressed include certainty, consciousness, free will, philosophy of mind, the nature of objective reality, value theory, belief, truth, and reasoning.
I completed the framework for this somewhat elaborate philosophy well over a decade ago. My writing abilities, however, were not on par to the sometimes-complex ideas I then did my best to express. I’m now rewriting this same philosophy. Due to the uncertainties of what is to come, rather than waiting decades until the newly written work is concluded, I’m uploading sections as they become finalized at www.AnEnquiry.info—a website I launched just for this purpose.
All the work’s contents are offered under the public domain CC-0 license. Monetary profit is certainly not a motivation for my ambition to write it. Instead, I’d simply like to one day see the contents of this work (in part if not in whole) have their share of fair competition within the marketplace of ideas. (For that matter, neither is personal reputation a strong motive. In my ideal world, this work’s authorship—for better or for worse—would be fully anonymous. I in fact tried this, but without success.)
For those interested, as of today the first and second of its sixteen parts are online (likely in need of some minor revisions, but getting the necessary points across), mostly addressing topics of certainty and consciousness. I’ll announce via my blog when subsequent parts are finalized and uploaded on AnEnquiry.info. Following is the work’s current preface stub:
Preface Stub (2022): Rather than attempting to explain the occurrence of consciousness via the primacy of matter, this work attempts to derive an objective, external, physical world from the occurrence of first-person awareness. To do so, at least three principles that are not currently in favor will be made use of: the occurrence of freewill, teleological determinacy, and formal determinacy.
By the author’s appraisal, the two ready-established metaphysical systems which this work most closely resembles are those of objective idealism as specified by the pragmatist Charles Sanders Peirce—namely, such that physicality is considered to be effete mind whose natural laws are global habits—and of Neoplatonism, in particular the Neoplatonic notion of “the One” or, else termed, “the Good”. Overlaps with other metaphysical systems, such as that of Buddhism, can also be found. Of potential note, given these similarities, to the typical atheist this work might be interpreted as being of a theistic mindset while, to the typical theist, the same contents might be interpreted as espousing an atheistic philosophy.
Likewise by the author’s appraisal, among this work’s greatest strengths will be its explanatory power in addressing topics of value theory, including that of meta-ethics.
Among the most prominent challenges associated with this work will be the requirement that one let go of today’s commonplace presumptions—both implicit and explicit—of a physicalist ontology. To arrive at certain conclusions, collectively exhaustive ontological possibilities will often be appraised—with many of these possibilities being noncredible, if at all imaginable, from a physicalist worldview. Furthermore, the conclusions thereby obtained will at times contradict physicalist suppositions—as can be exemplified by the conclusion of freewill’s occurrence and the teleological determinacy this entails. Nevertheless, it will be via these same, non-physicalist conclusions that the reality of an objective, physical world will be derived—this alongside derivations of a compatibilist system wherein a formal determinacy between brain and mind unfolds.
One of this work’s leading unresolved issues will be the metaphysical explanation of how life—and the awareness that life is deemed to entail—evolved from nonlife. Notwithstanding, in part because this work derives a metaphysical requirement for biological evolution, and in part because intrinsic to this overall work will be an epistemological obligation to honor data obtained from all branches of empirical science regarding objective reality, this work will staunchly conclude that life did indeed emerge from out of a universe that once was devoid of lifeforms. Due to the logical implications of this conclusion as derived from both the ontological and epistemological tenets to be herein presented, the work will then culminate in a generalized hypothesis of panpsychism, one whose metaphysical details await to be resolved.AnEnquiry.info