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[Xmca-l] Re: Spinoza on xmca



Hi Mike,
All I can say now is that Spinoza is famously quoted as having said, "The more clearly you understand yourself and your emotions, the more you become a lover of what is." This quote happens to appear in the introduction to a very popular self help book, Loving What Is, by Byron Katie (2002). I bought the book , obviously, because I thought I needed help. It did, but it also introduced me to Spinoza. And that has been a deeper "help". So, from a personal perspective, I can totally understand how Spinoza and periizhvanie would be connected. For all of you ESL teachers out there, who doesn't remember Krashen on the "affective filter" and I have been seeing a lot on character and education lately. Oh yes, and how failing is important to eventual success. Teasing out issues in the education of non-mainstreamers, and recognizing how the current system is toxic for everyone, I think Spinoza's analysis and the narrative of his life are powerful. Vygotsky hits me the same way. Cantor, the mathematician, and Pierce, the philosopher/logician/semiotician, also constantly come up for me. They were ridiculed by the received cognoscenti of the time, so much so that the suffered mental breakdowns. But they pushed on to develop tools in math and semiotics that seem to me are complementary with Vygotsky. Again I get to take the role of unserious scholar here, so think of my thoughts as gaming on line and don't take the game too seriously.
Henry

On Sep 5, 2014, at 6:42 PM, mike cole <mcole@ucsd.edu> wrote:

> Hi David and Henry--
> 
> David-- I was intrigued by your comment that Spinoza is a controversial
> topic on xmca. I googled Spinoza on the main web page and came up with 4K
> plus hits (!!). My own impression is that few on this list, me included,
> have engaged in serious study of Spinoza let alone the imprint of Spinoza
> on Vygotsky.
> 
> What is the nature of the controversy? What is at stake? The topic is of
> particular interest to me at present because I have been part of
> discussions with people who are focused on Vygotsky's use of perezhivanie
> in his later work, where the relation of emotion and cognition is a central
> concern and Spinoza is clearly relevant.
> 
> Henry and anyone interested in chasing down what has been written about
> various topics in xmca chatter, take advantage of the nice google search at
> lchc.ucsd.edu.
> 
> mike
> 
> (who enmeshed in the sense/meaning distinction in all of its multilingual
> confusifications at present)