Thursday, October 28, 2021

952: Ratio and irrationality....

The Renaissance in Italy is maybe one of the most influential periods in the history and development of knowledge.


Scientists began to use the empirical cycle. Theories and hypotheses were tested by means of observations.

We first have to see it before we believe it. Does it mean that homo sapiens has become a more rational being since the renaissance?


To be honest, despite all science and scientific knowledge, homo sapiens is as irrational today as he was in the past.


He is still willing to believe and act upon such beliefs which lack a thread of empirical proof. Apart from century-old religions, the most up-to-date proof is probably The Big Lie in the US.


But yet in the period 13-50 to 1450 big changes in thinking take place. Empirical evidence becomes the material, that decides in matters of science,


In Visual Art the painter tries to copy the three-dimensional reality on the two-dimensional surface of his painting.


I already mentioned Batista Alberti who published his "De Pictura" on linear perspective in 1435, and not in 1415 what I mistakenly said in my previous lecture.


It was a mathematical approach of perspective with mathematical laws. However, just like Pythagoras mathematical theory on intervals was contradicted by empirical facts,


in the same way, the strictly mathematical approach of perspective didn't fit reality 100%. The man who revealed this was Leonardo da Vinci himself (1452 -1519).


He describes it in "Trattato della Pictura", which was published after his death. He experimented with colors and shadings to make the perspective less artificial and more realistic.


An interesting detail is that Albrecht Dürer visited Italy in 1506 and there learned of linear perspective.


With his book "Unterweysung der Messung"  of 1525 he brought the theory to the northern part of Europe.


Like da Vinci Dürer experimented with all kinds of instruments and constructions to get the right perspective on the canvas.


Most interesting is also the musicological activities in those days. The Humanists had their starting point in the theory of harmonics of Pythagoras.


but using only the ratio and math came in conflict with the ears and properly tuning string instruments.


The metaphysical background played an important role in the musicological debate on consonant intervals and harmonics.


Interesting detail: It was Vincenzo Galilei (1520 - 1591), the father of Galileo,  who divided the octave into 12 equal parts. Still our scale in music.


Furthermore, almost all 17th-century natural scientists, from Galileo, Kepler, Descartes to Huygens, have worked on the theoretical and empirical justification of consonant intervals.


What is the state of the empirical cycle in the early modern humanities? In all the disciplines discussed here, philology, chronology, linguistics, art theory and musicology, 


the empirical cycle is applied from the fifteenth or sixteenth century onwards, but not in all regions.         


Outside of Europe we only have any evidence for the empirical cycle in philology in China, and possibly also in history and musicology. 


The use of the empirical cycle in the humanities, therefore, seems to take place mainly in Europe, where the aim to revive antiquity was stronger than elsewhere. 


In their zeal, however, the humanists went well beyond the classics they admired: they developed new text reconstruction methods,


 they improved historical dating, analyzed the linear and empirical perspective, 


and they discovered new string laws, all based on the cyclical interaction between theory and empiricism.


This means, that we eventually could conclude that the main source of science and scientific methodology finds its origin in the European Renaissance.


Thank you for your attention.....


MacMillan The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2nd edition
Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 1995
Rens Bod: "Een Wereld vol Patronen".  2019

 The Discussion

[13:17] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): Thank you Herman

[13:18] herman Bergson: If you have any remarks or questions....go ahead

[13:18] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):

[13:18] Somedirtycat Saule: Thanks for the lecture

[13:18] herman Bergson: For me the most interesting observation is..

[13:18] oola Neruda: Leonardo used (for perspective) scale, values, overlapping and atmospheric perspective

[13:18] herman Bergson: that the scientific method did not originate from the natural sciences....

[13:19] herman Bergson: He did more than only mathematics indeed oola

[13:20] oola Neruda: color intensity and use of compliments vs. similar colors... did not show up consciously at that time

[13:20] herman Bergson: and what I find also interesting is that it hasn't made us more rational beings

[13:21] Somedirtycat Saule: We are not humans. We are exceptional apes.

[13:21] oola Neruda: even the use of soft and hard lines...thick or thin... undulating... etc... all feed into perspective

[13:22] herman Bergson: I agree... In the 70s there was that book "The Naked Ape"... nice title

[13:22] Somedirtycat Saule: ^^

[13:22] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):

[13:22] herman Bergson: Morris was the author if I am not mistaken

[13:22] herman Bergson: Yes, Desmond Morris

[13:23] herman Bergson: A zoological study of the Human Animal

[13:24] herman Bergson: Free to download here

[13:24] Somedirtycat Saule: Ooh. Ty.

[13:24] herman Bergson: I never reacd it in those days

[13:25] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): gotta check

[13:26] herman Bergson: 1967... I was too young then.....

[13:27] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): i never have read it

[13:27] herman Bergson: But it caused a lot of publicity in those days

[13:27] Somedirtycat Saule: I just threw that human ape oneliner out as Im rethinking my standpoint in human rights.

[13:27] herman Bergson: add to that animal rights Saule

[13:28] Somedirtycat Saule: Yes. Animal rights should includ us. ><

[13:29] herman Bergson: Anyway, in the Renaissance we see exceptional cognitive behavior of the naked ape :-)

[13:29] herman Bergson: And I yet must conclude that science as we know it is mainly the product of the white version

[13:30] herman Bergson: living in Europe

[13:30] Somedirtycat Saule: That times scientists, was not lazy.

[13:31] herman Bergson: the works they produced are impressive indeed

[13:31] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): yep

[13:31] herman Bergson: But we still too have our Nobel prize winners today Saule :-)

[13:32] oola Neruda: I apologize for the earlier interruption... thought you were finished

[13:32] Somedirtycat Saule: Yes.

[13:32] herman Bergson: you didn't interrupt oola :-)

[13:33] herman Bergson: da Vinci did a lot of what you said indeed

[13:33] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): he was a genius

[13:33] oola Neruda: and more.... i just hit the high points

[13:33] oola Neruda: scale is a really elusive topic

[13:34] herman Bergson: He was a unique individual... a kind of Einstein avant la lettre

[13:34] oola Neruda: subtle

[13:34] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): indeed

[13:34] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): he did a lot including invent the helicopter although he never managed to build a working machine but the concept was his

[13:35] herman Bergson: yes if you see his notebooks..... really impressive material

[13:35] oola Neruda: i mean... understanding the way the mind interprets various ways of seeing... that are subtle and we don't even think about it

[13:36] oola Neruda: Albers was chasing that down also

[13:36] herman Bergson: Indeed oola...he also did research on the working of the eye

[13:36] oola Neruda: yes

[13:36] herman Bergson: what did he not do....:-)   ?

[13:37] oola Neruda: he had problems with oil paint...because of the kind of reciepes they had at the time

[13:37] herman Bergson: For your information......

[[13:37] herman Bergson: next week there will be no class. I'll be on a short vacation

[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aa ok

[13:38] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): is the isle calling:)

[13:38] herman Bergson: Last class coming Thursday

[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): i guess

[13:38] herman Bergson: it is Beertje

[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):

[13:38] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): yay

[13:38] herman Bergson: We had to cancel three times due to covid

[13:39] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): be careful, covid is coming back

[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): now finally time

[13:39] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): covid

[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hmmm i really hope we have seen the worst of it now

[13:39] oola Neruda: will you have trees/fall colors there?

[13:39] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): yes Oola

[13:39] herman Bergson: Yes oola

[13:39] oola Neruda: good

[13:40] Somedirtycat Saule: I really hope a new better vaccine comes out

[13:40] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): or a medicin to cure

[13:40] oola Neruda: booster....

[13:40] herman Bergson: a pill would be handier. I'd say

[13:40] bergfrau Apfelbaum: ahh!! yayyy Nice!! finally back on the isle:-)

[13:41] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): great

[13:41] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): you can bike to the isle's only 1100 km to bike

[13:41] herman Bergson: I guess we may conclude our conversation of today unless you still have questions....

[13:41] bergfrau Apfelbaum: lol yes sure i can

[13:41] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):

[13:42] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): don't forget to TURF there Herman ? i forgot to check if there are any zones

[13:42] herman Bergson: ok...thank you all again for your presence :-)

[13:42] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): when is it wintertime?

[13:42] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): in the US

[13:42] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): but Holland is a popular place , id wanna do a TURF project there

[13:42] bergfrau Apfelbaum: thank YOU Herman and class :-)

[13:42] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hmm yes soon indeed time change soon

[13:42] herman Bergson: I had expected it this weekend Beertje but it didn't happen

[13:43] oola Neruda: we often get snow around thanksgiving

[13:43] herman Bergson: So I guess next weekend

[13:43] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): ok:)

[13:43] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): but US is before rest of world so

[13:43] oola Neruda: but not always and whether you are in the north or south

[13:43] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): should be any time now the time chaos

[13:43] herman Bergson: Not now, it seems Bejiita...

[13:43] herman Bergson: So.....class dismissed.....^_^

[13:44] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): Thank you Herman:)

[13:44] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):

[13:44] herman Bergson: And we'll wait for times to come :-))

[13:44] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): good times i hope

[13:44] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): for sure

[13:44] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):

[13:44] herman Bergson: Next week for sure, Bejiita :-))