Oct 5 am A western way?
In conjunction with foundations of mind.
Room 304 CIIS • 1453 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94103
Celtic Metaphysics; Omos Sheain Ui Dhuinn
The Benedictine monk Sean O Duinn, currently aged and infirm, argued that Celtic spirituality was panentheistic. In particular, he cited Jubainville’s work about a link from Amergin to Eriugena; indeed, from the Upanishads to the Celtic church’s reconstruction of Patrick in the Lorica.
. Arguably, the mediaeval synthesis of Roman law and Hebraic experience of the sacred that birthed Europe in the face of Islam is in rapid terminal decline . The language of the social sciences has become sufficiently debauched that normative statements, first ruled out by political correctness, are now viewed as epistemologically suspect.
This session invites papers looking for solutions or arguing that no such solutions will be found. It argues that East Asian systems fail to make metaphysical subject-object distinctions of sufficient granularity to support dualistic Western science. Conversely, for all its bravado, western science has never engaged with the Ground of Being. The results include relativism in morality and aesthetics which culminate in “Crime and Punishment” means vs end paradoxes in arguments about stopping terrorism and a debauching of art that culminates in drunken party goers staring at a DJ as the apotheosis of their very expensive aesthetic experience.
Specifically, we invite papers on this and other themes;
- Drawing on Plato out of Dionysius the Areopagite, Celtic mediaeval philosophers like Eriugena produced an ecological, rationally-founded emanationist synthesis. Can this be the foundation of a western way?
2 Pm Culture and mental health in Celtic countries
The notorious “Saints. Scholars and schizophrenics” incident has elided a more serious discussion about mental health in Ireland. The number of suicides in the Republic since the crash of 2008 now exceeds the 3k+ total killed in the troubles from 1969 to 1997. The attempted medicalization of mental health in the 1945 legislation, one that is trumpeted as anticipating Laing and Szasz, had the paradoxical result of ensuring that Ireland had the highest number of psychiatric resident patients per head in the world from 1955.
Mental health has been treated in Gaelic epics like “Buile suibhne” (translated by Heaney in his only foray into Gaelic) and the legendary St Dympna. This thread discusses what actually can be done. Suggested themes are up to you, but might include;
- Laing’s phenomenological approach and its failure
- The legendary refractoriness of the Irish to psychotherapy
- Behavioral approaches
4pm A perfect storm – the axial month of May 2017 and its aftermath
In May 2017 there are unelected Prime ministers in Britain and Ireland; no MP’s in the UK as all are now candidates; a Scotland that loves the EU more than Britain; and a Northern Ireland ruled directly from Westminster after the de facto collapse of the 1998 agreement. Moreover, the EU has - for the first time – exercised geopolitical jurisdiction on the island of Ireland and warned Britain against attempting to re-introduce the border.
This session raises the issue of whether the Humpty that is the UK can be put back together again. In his recent address to Anglo-American studies at UC Berkeley , Chris Patten remarked that Northern Ireland pays very dearly in bad government for peace. There are profound disincentives for Sinn Fein to bother; they are the de facto opposition in the Republic of Ireland, and nobody is going to risk Canary Wharf style bombings again,
The collapse of the Northern Ireland executive had a salutary tang of corrupt politics-as-usual; an energy scheme had been imported from the “mainland” without caveats as to limits on payment of state money to consumers. The responsible minister, Arlene Foster, refused to resign from her new job as first minister. However, the geopolitics have
become very tricky, with some customs posts between the two Irelands a distinct possibility until the EU intervened and effectively proclaimed a united Ireland . In the meantime, Trump has appointed a secretary of state whose Senate hearing alluded to a war between Northern and Southern Ireland now, fortunately, in the past. It resembled KA Conway’s Massacre at Bowling Green which also never happened. In short, the Americans will not be of much help
This session thus considers the new geopolitics of western Europe. As the UK falls apart, the resurgence of a Celtic confederation in the islands formerly known as British is a distinct possibility. Themes are by no means limited to the following
- Given that the countries worst hit by the EU’s Teutonic dispensation post 2008 are the former Celtic cultural empire, can there be a resurgence in what used be Gaul and Lusitania?
- The failure of the Irish free state. Arguably, a new “elite” layer of bureaucrats was added under Ahern (amid his massive public service expansion) that first clamped down on the very creative class that had established Ireland’s modern brand
- Corporatism and criminality
Submit abstracts to firstname.lastname@example.org by August 1 2017. Invitation to attend and present will follow by August8