Where Real Learning Begins

Where Real Learning Begins

This talk was transcribed digitally and will be edited in the future.

Today is Wednesday, July 7. And I’d like to talk about a topic that I believe is the key that really unlocks philosophical learning. A topic that I would say is the difference between all common people and a wise man. The topic I could say, this is the most important lesson in all of philosophical study, most important lesson in all philosophical education, and is really the, the gateway into the world of true Aristotelian or scholastic philosophy. You won’t hear many people talk about this, because in modern society, many people who work in education professional scholars, college professors, researchers, Christian authors, and conference speakers. We imagine that because these men have gone to colleges or seminaries that they’re the educated men because they have master’s degrees or doctoral degrees. In modern society, we imagine that these men are educated men, and the common people. In modern society, we’ve been led to, to think our people who don’t go to college. They’re the common people. And the college people are the learned people. When we look back into ancient society, and we talked about men of letters, and learned men, we know of the common people or the vulgar. And then the wise men or the philosophers. And we imagine we’ve been, we’ve been led to imagine that in modern society, the learned men are the college people. And the common people are the people who don’t go to college. But this is false. The reality in modern society is that both the college people and the people who don’t go to college are all common people in the ancient sense. They may know they may have specialized knowledge of different fields, but that’s just that’s just occupational knowledge. It doesn’t matter that we consider a subject, academic. If the purpose of that subject is simply to make money. Then it’s just occupational knowledge. It’s just specialized job knowledge. It’s not philosophical learning, it’s not wisdom. And we mistake college for true learning. We’re all that college is, is job training. It’s common. Education, just applied at a at an advanced level, for more and more specialized occupations, but the college people with all their degrees and bow ties are really just common people. In an ancient sense, they’re not wise men. And if we were to try and pinpoint where a man transitions from, a common man with common thoughts to a wise man with A Wise Man’s thoughts were to try and find the specific point at which that transition takes place. It would be at that point where the man understands Aristotle’s categories. That’s the point where the human mind transitions from ignorance and common, vulgar thinking, where the man transitions from that vulgar common thinking, in the world of sense, in the world of physical experience and observation, which is the knowledge of the common people, which extends, as I said, all the way through all of the university academic departments, because they continue with the same mode of learning as the common people where that transition takes place as in the understanding of Aristotle’s categories. So if you were to ask, Where would that study be? Where my life, in my mind, really change. And I can put on the mind of a true philosopher, and cease to think and live as one of the vulgar, as Aristotle calls them. My answer would be when you learn and understand Aristotle’s categories, and not only understand them, not merely know about them, not learn what they are. But you begin to allow that knowledge of the categories to become the framework with which you are through which you look at the world, and begin to to understand your thoughts, your speech, and so on. It’s pretty obvious because this study, which we might call logic, or reasoning, is really the first of three divisions of philosophy. It’s the beginning of philosophy. It’s, it’s rational philosophy, there are three divisions of philosophy of classical philosophy. The three divisions are rational, moral, and physical or natural, rational, moral, and natural, are the three divisions of philosophy. Rational philosophy is the study of reasoning. And I like to use the term reasoning rather than logic, certainly, rather than dialectic. Because Aristotelian rational philosophy includes a number of different types of reasoning. When we talk about logic, what we normally mean are the superficial school classes that teach about things like the square of opposition or the modes of arguments. And the goal is just to present a superficial almost mathematics level survey of the basic points of logic and kids take those classes and walk away imagining that they’re now experts in reasoning when they haven’t even learned the first lessons of rational philosophy. And where those lessons begin, as I said, is in the study of Aristotle’s categories, That’s the beginning of rational philosophy. And humanly speaking, that’s the beginning of wisdom. Now, I want to say that when we use this phrase, the beginning of wisdom, if you read the scriptures as you should, you’ll recognize that phrase, because it’s found in the book of Proverbs. Solomon, however, has something else to say about wisdom. He says, the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, but fools, despise instruction. Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. Now, when I say, the knowledge of Aristotle’s categories is the beginning of wisdom, I’m simply speaking in in a different sense. What’s revealed to us over time in history is that the knowledge of God which is attained by divine revelation, is the ultimate and most perfect wisdom. I’ll repeat that the knowledge of God, which is received by faith, through divine revelation, is the perfection of wisdom. St. Thomas, in the opening question of the Summa theologica, asks of divine revelation, or what he calls sacred doctrine, he asks, is sacred doctrine the same as wisdom? And his answer to that question is yes, sacred doctrine is the same as wisdom. And what he’s talking about there, remember, he’s writing in the 13th century, after Christ. what he’s talking about there is the perfect and fully manifested wisdom of God that’s given to us by divine revelation in the Christian era. When I’m talking about classical philosophy, I’m not talking about that ultimate capital W. Wisdom. Because again, that wisdom comes through faith, through the study of divine revelation, and through the theological virtue of faith, which believes, all that is revealed. Because it is revealed by god it seeks no proof asks for no demonstration. God says it. And the faithful soul believes it. Because he knows God is the author of it. That wisdom is something different than the wisdom of philosophy. It’s easy to say that that wisdom is superior to the wisdom of philosophy. It’s easy to say that and many liked to say things like that many like to say that the knowledge of God’s word is more important than the study of philosophy or even the knowledge of God’s word is all one needs. But what you should do anytime you hear someone say that is look at the man’s life and see what a life without human philosophy looks like. It’s the life that I often talk about the life of the revving engine with a car in neutral the transition of divine revelation ideas about God and the world into actual works on the ground in this present life requires knowledge of human philosophy. Human philosophy is the transmission that converts that knowledge into actual power on the ground converts RPM into mph, as I often say. And we find that the the powerlessness of modern Christianity is owed to its attempt to have a life based on divine revelation that neglects human philosophy. And the wisdom that I’m talking about when I say that the study of Aristotle’s categories is the beginning of wisdom is this, let’s say lowercase w wisdom, the wisdom that’s attained through human philosophy, wisdom, that is known by very few wisdom that may not be necessary for salvation. But wisdom that’s necessary for a well lived life on Earth, and wisdom that may very well help someone to persevere to the end in this life, without which perseverance. Jesus warned us, we shall not be saved. Now, it’s easy to talk about the religion of the Middle Ages, because in the Middle Ages, in order to be religious, or to be a priest, one had to complete the course of classical liberal arts studies. And the priests were wise men. But that’s not true today. The priests in the church today have a modern University and seminary education. They don’t have the education that priests of past generations of the church had. They don’t know the things that St. Thomas taught. They’ve never studied the subjects that St. Ignatius of Loyola taught in the Jesuit schools. They don’t have the philosophical learning the clergy of the early church in Middle Ages, they have modern university education. And this is one of the problems in the church today. The problem is not that the Vatican Council Second Vatican Council was bad and cause that’s that’s really just a lazy diagnosis of a much more profound problem. The problem is that the education of the Catholic Church from its earliest years when the church fathers were men like St. Ambrose and Santa Gustin, through this scholastic period, and even into early modern history, the priests and bishops of the Catholic church were classically educated philosophers. And the priests of the modern church are not. It doesn’t matter if they dress themselves up in traditional vestments. It doesn’t matter if they offer the Latin mass. These superficial attempts to make one appear different from the other priests is just like the attempt to get college degrees to make oneself appear different from the common people. But the fundamental difference between the wise man and the common man is not addressed. We have appearances superficial appearances of change, we can change the music we can, we can move from modern hymns and praise songs back to the Gregorian chant. But that Doesn’t mean that we understand the philosophy of Gregorian chant, or that we even do it correctly. And consequently, receive the benefits of it. We simply change the sensible characteristics of the liturgy. And imagine that because our senses perceive something different, that it’s better. But Gregorian chant wasn’t a matter of the senses. It was based on a philosophical understanding of the moral role of music, and the theory of ancient music which was developed not by Christians, but by the ancient Greeks. I’m in like the sagaris. Christians received the philosophy of music, which directed the church’s opinions and judgments about music in the church, from ancient philosophy, and to have a clergy that doesn’t understand ancient philosophy that’s never learned ancient philosophy that doesn’t know the ancient art of music. And is simply making changes to cause the sensual experience of those that mass to change. We’re merely we’re merely changing clothes, we’re merely changing appearances on the surface without addressing the real problem. The change is found when we come to understand Aristotle’s categories, the book Aristotle’s categories. Back in 2008, when I was starting the classical Liberal Arts Academy, there was a movement among Christians that was called a Latin centered curriculum. And all of this hype and hoopla was made about going back to the study of Latin. And I was a, I was a Latin teacher. And I kind of shocked everyone when I said Latin is irrelevant. There’s nothing intrinsically good about Latin. Greek, in fact, would be better than Latin for philosophical studies. But we have the ability to translate the writings of the ancients into perfectly clear English. And wisdom in the study of philosophy is in no way dependent on any language. The same is true of the Christian liturgy. liturgy is not improved by the language. It’s celebrated in that’s just a superficial, sensual judgment. For people who are still judging things, by the senses. It feels different. But the real essence of classical learning the real essence of wisdom, humanly speaking, comes when we learn Aristotle’s categories, the first book of his work on rational philosophy. Now, it’s well known that Plato would not admit any person into his Academy until that person had studied classical geometry. Geometry was a prerequisite to get into Plato’s Academy. And the reason why was not because there was any special value of the knowledge of geometry itself, the study of magnitudes at rest. That was not what Plato was concerned about. The reason why Plato was concerned with the study of geometry was because in Plato’s time, the science of rational philosophy was not yet established, it wouldn’t be established until Aristotle published the Organon. Plato was working in an age in a generation where the science of rational philosophy was not yet established. The same is true of Socrates. Socrates, his method of investigation was valuable in his generation, because the science of rational philosophy had not yet been established. Aristotle is the master, the philosopher, as St. Thomas calls him, who gave us the science of rational philosophy. And that’s why, in the 13th century, St. Thomas argued, to persuade the church to embrace Aristotelian philosophy as the official philosophy of the Catholic Church. And the church did so. And that Aristotelian philosophy remains the philosophy of the Catholic Church. Geometry was required by Plato not because of the study itself, or the subject that was investigated. Geometry was required because in geometry, the Scholastic method in its rudimentary form, could be learned. Men learned how to reason, demonstrative Lee through geometry. For whatever reason, geometry allowed the demonstrative or scholastic or Aristotelian method to be manifested. And so Plato knew that that method that was present in the study of geometry was the method of true philosophy. But it was yet still in something of a rough draft form. We’re still being investigated and studied. And it wouldn’t be, as I said, until Aristotle published the Organon that the science was established, and it was no longer dependent on geometry even though geometry remains the best example the best, the best tutor in the actual use of the Scholastic method. And so we always have to think about the chronology of events and teachings and philosophers. When we talk about different ideas, all of the hype today given to the Socratic method is given to Socrates because he’s something of a cartoon character in modern society. Very few people know anything about his actual life or philosophy. Very few people actually read and study his dialogues and understand what he’s doing in those dialogues. I’m going to publish some talks in the near future where I walk through those dialogues and show what Socrates is actually doing, what his method actually is. I started to prepare to do that last night and probably would have done it but I was just too tired. But I’m going to do that soon. Just to take away this ambiguity and nonsense about the Socratic method. Yesterday on Facebook, for example, a man, a Catholic man who’s always boasting about his latest graduate level studies and doctoral studies, I posted a question and asked, Where can I find information on how the Socratic method can be used in teaching. And I responded and asked, why would anyone want to do that? It makes no sense. The Socratic method was never used for teaching. It’s just this modern ignorant. Talk about the past, trying to have an appearance of some kind of learning or knowledge of the past. That’s just nonsense. The Socratic method was an early form of philosophical investigation. It was limited in the subjects that it could examine. It was intended for one on one discussion. Because the answers to Socrates his questions need to be answered by someone they can’t be answered by a class of disagreeing people. They can only be answered by an individual. And then the answers of that individual are collected. And the discussion goes where those answer leads it either to an apparent defense of that person’s answers or to a contradiction, which leads to philosophical doubt, which is the real goal of that method to simply introduce doubt, where there are false opinions. But Socrates was succeeded by Plato, who took philosophy much further than Socrates did. And Plato was succeeded by Aristotle, who took it even further, we could say, who perfected it. And so our philosophical talk should be about Aristotle. While the dialogues of Plato are helpful, while the example of Socrates his investigations are helpful, it’s similar to studying the Articles of Confederation to understand the American government today. If you don’t understand that, the Articles of Confederation were replaced by the Constitution. And if you don’t understand that the Constitution has been amended dozens of times. You’re not going to prepare to understand American government in the 21st century. And this is the error that we find among people who talk about Socrates and the Socratic method. Justin an ignorance it’s not it’s not sincere talk that they’re not, they’re not actually studying. They’re not actually learning about Socrates in the Socratic. They’re just looking for some catchphrase that they can use to market their own ideas. And all the Socratic method means is conversational method of leading a class so that the teacher doesn’t have to prepared expert lecture notes to deliver science to his tuition paying students, he can simply show up with a cup of coffee in his hand and a bow tie and gab with the students and get paid for it. That’s the motivation for this Socratic method talk. But real wisdom begins with the categories of Aristotle. And these are studied in classical reasoning, one in the classical Liberal Arts Academy. So I could say that classical reasoning, one is the real gateway to philosophy and wisdom. So let’s talk about this, this book, the categories and how it helps us What does it do that makes it so important? Before I get into that, let me say that if you enroll in that classical reasoning, one course, you’ll find that we actually don’t start with Aristotle’s categories. We actually start with a book by a philosopher named porphyry. titled The introduction. In Greek The title was Isa go gay. The introduction by porphyry and porphyry was a Christian era playtest philosopher. And he understood that in order to understand Aristotle’s teaching in the categories, there were some ideas that needed to be understood first, which few understand and that leads them to struggle to grasp Aristotle’s teaching in the categories and so he wrote this book called The introduction. And I teach that book first, because it does what it is supposed to do, it introduces students to preliminary ideas that should be understood before one studies, Aristotle’s categories. And what we learn in porphyries introduction is that there are five cat There are five different types of predicates that can be spoken of any subject. These are called the predicate Bulls in philosophy. These are genus, species, peculiarity difference, and accident, genus, species, peculiarity difference, and accident. And these five ideas need to be understood before one can study Aristotle’s categories. And this is the beginning of this entrance into wisdom. You can’t understand anything that you read in Aristotle or in St. Thomas Aquinas. Unless you understand these ideas of the pedicles St. Thomas speaks in these terms on every page of his writings. This is required knowledge for anyone who claims to be a scholastic. And while we have loads of people calling themselves thomists, as if they’re great students and followers of St. Thomas. This even includes Protestants now, who imagined that they’re scholastics, they call themselves reformed scholastics. Because in modern society, you can say anything you want, there’s no accountability. And so we can have Catholics claiming to be Thomas who don’t understand the first thing of scholastic philosophy, they simply read, the sooner they browse, and flip through the Summa and call themselves thomists. But they can’t, they can’t explain the actual philosophy, or the method of investigation and underlies the Summa they can’t use it themselves. If you ask them a question, you’ll find that they, they respond in no way like St. Thomas ever would. Because it’s not real. It’s just academic nonsense. And as I said, even Protestants today are calling themselves scholastics. They just have, they just have no idea what they’re talking about. So in porphyries, introduction, we learned about the five predicate poles. And that’s step one. We enter into the categories. We begin with a lesson on one of the great causes of confusion which is the careless use of words in human communication. Aristotle explains that there are objects in the physical world objects in the supernatural or spiritual world. And these objects exist outside of ourselves outside of our mines. And we’re able to perceive them through the senses. And through the senses, our mind, forms, ideas. These ideas exist in our minds. And then we associate words as signs of these ideas. And when we communicate, we communicate by passing signs to one another, which refer to ideas. And so an idea is turned into a word, and passed to another person who then receives that word, and turns that word into an idea, or associates that word with an idea. And when that trans mission of words, is not careful, that process doesn’t work. Words can be misapplied to the wrong ideas. And this is one of the chief causes of confusion in the mind, and unless we learn how to avoid that confusion, we can’t progress in philosophy. So Aristotle takes time in the very opening chapter of his work on the categories to make us aware of this problem with words, he explains that we use words in a couple of different ways. Sometimes, the word is used in two different places. But it represents different ideas. In some places, the word is used in two different places. And that represents the same ideas. And then other places the word is a word or similar words. related words are used in two different places, and they signify different ideas. And so the only the only way that we can communicate, if we’re going to communicate philosophically and progress in wisdom, is by using terms synonymously. Or let’s just stick with synonymously. That’s the that’s the English word used in the English translation that we teach in the academy. So we first have to learn to be conscious, that we use words synonymously, that we establish definitions for terms, to put it simply that we define terms. And those definitions need to actually be true definitions. It’s not just established by convention in the sense that we can define the term have we please, we should seek to establish the true definition, the true philosophical definition of a term and then agree to use that term in that way. Every time we use it, and if we want to express a different idea, rather than using that term, we should invent a new term, to mark a difference in the ideas. And so we learned this in the first chapter of Aristotle’s categories. Aristotle then explains to us that there are 10 Well, let’s let’s back up one second here. Anytime we’re given a subject, we’re able to make judgments about that subject. That’s one of the first processes of the mind. And what it means to make a judgement is to combine ideas to state that some relationship exists between ideas. So for example, if I have two ideas in my mind, I have the idea of man and I have the idea of Socrates. I can join those ideas together and say Socrates is a man. And that process of joining ideas together is called judgment. To say Socrates is a man. And you can see the is the verb is is essentially an equal sign. And we’re joining these two terms together and saying that they, they have some relationship. Socrates and man have some relationship. And that process of joining ideas together is called judgment. Our mind does this naturally, by means of the faculty of reason. And yet our mind can make false connections. And we need to examine these judgments to make sure that our mind is making proper judgments. So we have a subject and a predicate, those are the two terms that are joined. And when we when we make a judgement, we express a judgment in what’s called a proposition. A proposition is a judgement. proposition is a sentence that can be true or false. So a question is not judgment. A command is not a judgment, a prayer or wish is not a judgment. A judgment is a statement that can be true or false. Now, if we take a subject if we take, Socrates, let’s stick with Socrates, if we take Socrates, who is an individual, what Aristotle calls a primary substance, which will not get into in this talk, but we can say all kinds of things about Socrates. or so it seems, it seems that we can say all kinds of things about Socrates, we can say, Socrates is a man. We can say Socrates is a Greek, Socrates is an individual or one Socrates is dead. We can make all kinds of judgments about Socrates by combining Socrates as an idea with other ideas. We can make hundreds of different judgments about Socrates. But what Aristotle taught in the categories is that between subjects and predicates, there are only 10 classes 10 most general, General, or 10, general classes of things, which can be said about any individual. So just as in grammar, where we learned that though, there are 1000s and 1000s of words, yet there are only eight parts of speech. And we can understand the art of language by studying the characteristics of these eight parts of speech, and then these characteristics apply to all the words that exist within each of these eight classes. The same is true with ideas in our minds, as our minds work, to make judgments constantly. There are 1000s and 1000s and 1000s. of different ideas that can be joined, but they can be classified into 10 genera 10 categories. And knowledge of these 10 categories is the knowledge that allows us to order our minds to place and identify every idea in its proper category. And notice I keep saying idea idea. The 10 categories are not a classification system for biology. The classification system used to classic classify objects in the physical world is something different. This is one of the errors that Protestants made. Protestants criticized and rejected Aristotle’s categories because they didn’t understand what Aristotle was talking about. Largely because the Protestants were temporally minded men, who had no real taste for true philosophy. That was the ultimate cause of their errors in religion. They had already shipwrecked, in philosophy and their religion was simply a consequence of their philosophical errors. But we’re talking about ideas, we’re talking about rational philosophy, the ordering of our thoughts. And so, a wise man understands that there are these 10 categories of ideas in his mind. And he learns to think in terms of these 10 categories. The first of these categories is substance or essence. There are ideas in our mind, that are substances that represent substances. And substances can be primary or secondary, a primary substance is an individual thing, like Socrates, an individual man. Socrates is a primary substance an individual who is able to exist independently of anything else. And when I say exist, I mean exist as an idea. A secondary substance is a substance that is not an individual, but yet it can exist independently. So a secondary substance would be man. Socrates is a primary substance, man is a secondary substance, but they’re both substances. This is easy for anyone who studied classical grammar, because in classical grammar, you learn about substantive nouns. And guess what? substantive nouns are the names of substances, classical grammar, doesn’t come out of nowhere. Classical grammar is the study of language for the sake of classical reasoning. And so the parts of speech in classical grammar come from rational philosophy. And that’s why pretending you can choose any grammar book you like is ridiculous because most grammar books don’t even teach true grammar. And don’t prepare students for rational philosophy. Of course, no one knows that because they don’t study these things. And they argue about which grammar they like better based on their senses, the appearances of the books and so on. They don’t know what the real purpose of grammar is. But a substantive noun is a word or a name of a substance. The substance However, in philosophy is the idea not the word the idea. So, when we speak of a substance, we use a substantive noun and the noun signifies the idea. So the first of the categories of ideas in our minds are substances. All the all the rest of the categories, all the other nine categories are properties or attributes. So the 10 categories To break down into substances and properties, properties differ from substances and that they cannot exist independently, they must be present in a substance. This is why in grammar we learned that an adjective noun is a noun that must be joined to a substantive in speech. Because it’s a property cannot exist independently. And so adjective nouns are names of properties. So the other nine categories are properties. They depend on substances for their existence, because if the substances in which they exist, did not exist, the properties could not exist either. So there are nine categories of properties 10 categories, the first is substances, and the other nine are properties. The first of these is quantity. And there’s no necessary order for these. It’s simply when I say that the second is quantity, it’s just the order that they’re presented in, in our studies, but we have quantity and then there are eight others relation, place, time, action, passion and so on. So, when we take the subject, Socrates, which is a substantive noun, that signifies a primary substance, we can then in our minds make judgments concerning that subject Socrates, we can say that Socrates is one and when we say Socrates is one, that predicate is a quantity, we can say that Socrates is a husband. And when we say that Socrates is a husband, that predicate belongs to the category of relations, we can say that Socrates is in Athens. And that predicate is in the category of place where we can say, Socrates is buried. And that predicate belongs to the category of position, we can say that Socrates teaches, or Socrates is teaching. And that predicate is a predicate of action. We can say that Socrates is condemned. And that would be an example of the category of passion or action that’s suffered by the subject and so, there are 10 categories into which all ideas can be ordered. This is the beginning of wisdom This is where a man orders his thoughts and begins to think like wise man first, through the study of porphyries introduction to understand the five classes of pedicles genus species, peculiarity difference and accident, to understand the different kinds of particles. And as I said, one cannot understand. Though he may think he does, one cannot understand the teaching of St. Thomas or of Aristotle or of most wise men, unless they first understand these predicate balls are classes, of things that may be predicated or judged of a subject. We have To know, what’s called the poor Furion, tree, or the tree of porphyry, which we learn in the introduction. And then, having learned that learn the 10 categories of Aristotle. Why don’t we have learned the categories of Aristotle. And as I said, not merely know about them, which is the kind of knowledge that we may find among some college students, they may have learned about the 10 categories. They often however, learn about them falsely, because they’re not understood by temporally minded men who, who really have no time for true philosophy, because they think it’s a waste, it doesn’t make any money. Our goal is not merely to know about them, but when you actually learn about them, rightly. And you begin to allow your mind to be organized into these categories, you begin to think of things in terms of these categories. You can now analyze things like a wise man, for example, I’m walking right now, out in the country in the woods by my house, if I were to pick up a leaf off the ground, I could look at that leaf. And I could investigate or examine that leaf, as a common person, or as a wise man. A common person might start naming characteristics, he might say, this leaf is green, this leaf has jagged edges, this leaf is smooth, this leaf is small, and so on. He would go through common, sensible properties of the leaf. But a wise man would pick up that leaf and he would analyze it differently. The categories would guide him and he would analyze it as a philosopher. He could go through and he could ask, Well, what can I say of this leaf with respect to its substance. And he would start by saying this individual leaf is a leaf. leaf is a substance he could then go and name different properties. Based on the categories he could say okay, well, as for the quantity, quantity breaks down into multitude and magnitude. So I could say, as regards the quantity of this leaf, it is one as regards the magnitude of this leaf, it is as regards the magnitude of this leaf, it is great or small. He could go on and say, let’s consider the relation of this leaf. He could say it is half the size of an oak tree leaf. But it’s double the size of a of the leaf on a rose. He could make judgments about the leaf based on relation. He could say this leaf is found in North America and comment on the place of the leaf. He could say the leaf is green. Now, the problem with saying the leaf is green is that if he comes back a few days later, after he’s picked the leaf he’ll find that the leaf is no longer green but the leaf is now yellow. And so green is an accident. It’s a quality but it’s an accidental quality to quality that can change And so he can go through this investigation making judgments about the leaf. And the 10 categories will guide him into a philosophical investigation of that leaf. And he’ll gather his ideas, make judgments about this leaf based on the true categories of ideas in the mind, and as he gathers judgments from each of these 10 categories, he’ll have a full examination of that thing. And this is just an example of a simple physical object. The same examination can be conducted with much more complex objects like an angel. For example, if we took the individual angel, Gabriel, our first judgment might be Gabriel is an angel. And that would be a judgment of the substance of the individual. We can make another judgment according to substance and say, Gabriel is a spirit. Gabriel is a spirit. That’s another substance, we can then say Gabriel is one spirit, we there have a judgment of quantity, we can say Gabriel is a holy spirit. There we have a judgment of quality. We can say that Gabriel is an ark Angel. There we have a judgment of relation. Because the term Ark Angel requires that other orders of angels exist. And we say that Gabriel is an archangel. To express his relation to other angels. He is an archangel, we can say that the angel is white, that would be another quality. And we could go on and on, we could say the angel is kneeling. And that would be a position we could say the angel is speaking. And that would be an action. We could say the angel is in heaven, that would be a place where we could say in four BC, the angel was with Mary. And identifying time would be a judgment of time, one of the 10 categories and so we could we could investigate this subject philosophically. And we would have direction provided by our knowledge of the 10 categories rather than the haphazard, chaotic examination that would be found in a common person. Now, if we were to go into science and say, Well, does a scientist differ from the common person, it would appear so because the scientist would have a particular method of classification, maybe maybe even a method of examination, but the problem is that the scientific classification may not be true. The scientific classification may be based on a philosophy that’s false. And the classification itself may be false. Because obviously, if we were to study plants, we would find that plants have many different characteristics, but determining which characteristics are the true organizing characteristics of the plants is a matter of philosophy. To determine the categories into which plants should be divided is a matter of philosophy. And we’ll find that in modern science, while the scientist appears to have a method, he appears to have a system of classification, a system of examination and judgment, we’ll find that that classification system is actually not in agreement with true philosophy. And therefore, it’s false. What gives us the ability to judge things truly, to examine our ideas. And consequently, the objects outside of our minds truly is the knowledge of the true categories, which we learned in Aristotle. And that’s why the study of the categories is not the study of the categories. The mastery of the categories is the beginning of philosophical wisdom for us. And so I’d like to encourage you, to not be distracted by the superficial learning of our generation. I’d like to encourage you, to not allow the desire to appear clever or smart or witty, to deceive you, and lead you away from the study of true philosophy. I’d like to encourage you, to not be content to add academic titles to your name. To think that degrees and diplomas are a sign that you’re actually a wise man. If you admire your own academic credentials, just think, how many foolish men can we find in the world who have the same or even better academic credentials than you do? it’s unreasonable to place any confidence in modern academic degrees, because as I said, we can find the most ridiculous fools who have the same or even better degrees than you do. Look at the Christians who will mock and criticize a man like Barack Obama. Barack Obama has the most impressive academic credentials that you’ll find anywhere. And yet the same men who mock and criticize Barack Obama will turn right around and show off their academic credentials, which are at the very best, the same as those of Barack Obama. For them, they’ll imagine that those academic credentials mean something, even though their criticism of Obama proves they represent no such thing. And this is the kind of self contradiction that reveals that these men of modern academics are not wise. They’re self contradicting men who don’t think like wise men. And even as they deny the significance of these degrees, they continue to pursue them, sacrificing everything to get them imagining that their verbal disrespect for their degrees overrides the actual testimony of their life, how they’ve spent money, how they’ve spent time where they’ve directed their energy. If we were to press mute and shut their mouth and look at their actions, we would find that they’ve gone into great depths to obtain these degrees that they claim are insignificant. We’ll find that they’ve spent many of the most productive or potentially productive years of their lives pursuing these degrees. Rather than anything else, only to say that they’re, they’re not that important to them. And they’re, they’re not honest men, they pretend to have some higher principle, and yet their lives, betray their words and reveal their real concern. There’s no degree program needed. For true wisdom. It’s a matter of study, it’s a matter of self discipline and commitment. It’s a matter of patience, and humility. And that’s why it’s not popular. So don’t be distracted by the apparent the apparent method, or system of modern scientists understand that it’s not the same thing as true philosophy. You can study this, as I said, in classical reasoning, one in the classical Liberal Arts Academy. And I recommend that you do so the first lessons are difficult, because we’re introduced to radically new ideas, so don’t be discouraged. But I’ve provided videos to help you through these early lessons. And once you get through them, things will really begin to open up for you, you’ll see that these things are present throughout the writings of church fathers. You’ll see these things in the writings of all wise men. And you’ll notice an underlying wisdom that you’ve never noticed before. So I recommend to you if you want to make this transition from thinking like a common men to thinking like wise men. To get started in the study of rational philosophy and classical reasoning, one, which you can do very affordably and conveniently, in the classical Liberal Arts Academy. I hope that’s a helpful introduction. If you want to get into these things in detail, join me in the class where I go through them chapter by chapter, line by line, through all of the works of Aristotle’s Organon and porphyries introduction. This talk is intended just as a casual introduction and motivation to the study. And I hope that you’ll take up my invitation to pursue the real thing studying in the classical Liberal Arts Academy. I hope that’s helpful. If you have any questions, please get in touch. I’d be happy to provide more information or answer any questions that pop up in your mind as you listen to this. Please take a moment for my sake, do me a favor and subscribe to the YouTube channel here. Like the video if you’re on YouTube, if you’re listening on a podcast platform, like or favorite podcast and provide that feedback which is helpful for us in promoting the study of the classical liberal arts. God bless your studies.