Roger Peters Copyright © 2005
Inquiry into the Quaternary Evolution in Shakespearean Thought
Criteria for Quaternary
A response to queries from Professor Michael A. Peters
The question 'does quaternary exist' is rhetorical because the Quaternary Institute has existed in the world as a natural fact for fifteen years, which is infinitely longer than God or the Big Bang. As purely mind-generated ideas, Goddesses and Gods and Big Bangs have only ever and can only ever exist within the human imagination.
Rather, the question is how best to reach those who are inclined in varying degrees to trust their idealising imaginations over their verifiable existence in nature. How best to convey to them the significance and potentiality of the quaternary sensibility derived from Shakespeare's previously unknown nature-based philosophy.
When Philip Stokes publishes his coffee-table book 100 Essential Thinkers [Capella London, 2002] (from the early Greeks to the present day including Michel Foucault, Jaques Derrida, etc.), he omits William Shakespeare from his list of 100 seminal thinkers. Yet, in his short introduction he begins by quoting from Hamlet and then asserts Shakespeare's character Hamlet epitomises the philosophic aims of the 100 thinkers.
Considering the brief Introduction is all over Shakespeare, the absence of a chapter on Shakespeare shows Stokes is unable to explain philosophically why his 100 thinkers and Hamlet share a common aim. The dramatic irony is that Hamlet is a dupe who does not get Shakespeare's nature-based philosophy hence why his play is so irredeemably tragic. Effectively, Shakespeare overarches all other philosophers.
Bertrand Russell in his Philosophy of Western Civilization [George Allen Unwin, London, 1946] similarly fails to give Shakespeare a chapter, yet he gives one to the lesser poet Lord Byron. However, not only does Russell mention both 'Nature' and 'Hamlet' on the first page of his Introduction before other substantive concepts or proper names, throughout the lengthy tome he quotes and references Shakespeare and his plays a dozen or so times.
Many philosophers and others have tried but failed to account for Shakespeare's philosophy. Books have been published anthologising the numerous attempts to plumb Shakespeare's thought from Samuel Taylor Coleridge to Friedrich Nietzsche, from Samuel Johnson to T. S. Eliot. Recently Colin McGinn publishes Shakespeare's Philosophy (HarperCollins, NY, 2006) but only considers a handful of plays from the disadvantage of a few traditional philosophical tropes such as cause and self.
The claim here is that since 2001 the Quaternary Institute is the only investigative and pedagogic institute worldwide based on the consistent and comprehensive nature-based philosophy Shakespeare presents in his 1609 Sonnets revealed for the first time over the last twenty years. The extraordinary explanatory power of the Sonnet philosophy enables a full Quaternary teaching program across all subjects.
However, to qualify as a Quaternary level of education beyond anything available anywhere worldwide in Tertiary, Quaternary needs to meet exacting criteria both as a substantive philosophic advance on Tertiary and as having a comprehensive pedagogic program.
From Primary to Quaternary
The Quaternary level of education follows the numeric progression from Primary to Secondary to Tertiary and then on to Quaternary.
1. Like Tertiary, Quaternary can refer to a geological period, but the educational usage simply designates a fourth level of pedagogy beyond the whole of Tertiary worldwide.
2. Post-graduate study or research at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton (or other such Institutes), is resolutely Tertiary if it is not contextualised by the Quaternary Criteria outlined below.
3. As only one Quaternary Institute of advanced education exists worldwide, and as it is not yet a formally constituted institution, postulating a Quinary (sic) level of education seems to be of academic interest.
4. If there was to be a Quinary level of education it would not involve human mind-derived constructs like social machines as they are Tertiary in origin and ends.
5. In effect, as will be seen, the Quaternary level of education rounds out the natural cycle of pedagogic learning and endeavor that begins at birth.
The context for Primary to Tertiary
After a child is born with very rudimentary propensities for learning and expression, she or he is exposed immediately to a plethora of mind-based constructs that become formalised in the educational levels of Primary, Secondary and Tertiary.
1. Primary involves education in literacy and numeracy and elementary forms of expression.
2. Secondary imparts basic ideas in literature and science and artistic expression.
3. Tertiary encourages developing sophisticated constructs across a wide range of disciplines.
4. Primary usually presumes on the default mythology in the particular culture.
5. Secondary similarly presumes on the parent myth with an awareness of other mythologies.
6. Tertiary considers multiple mythologies albeit with the default myth of the culture surfacing in graduation ceremonies. (In New Zealand the default mythology is biblical in the guise of Henry VIII's Anglican Church.)
Conditions for Quaternary
The Quaternary level of education reasserts the natural dynamic native to the neonate and, in a nature-based philosophical context, recontextualises the mind-based male-based constructs developed from Primary to Tertiary along with their inevitable inconsistencies and illogicalities.
1. The natural logic of Quaternary pedagogy provides a context for all the disciplines taught and researched in Tertiary and redirects their accomplishments into globally beneficial practices.
2. Quaternary shows how mind-based constructs like God and the Big Bang are the consequence of an over reliance on apologetic validity in philosophy, theoretical over-dependence in science and purely mind-based inventions like zero and infinity in mathematics.
3. Quaternary exposes the prejudicial and unjust imposition of male-based mythologies and cultures that deny and denigrate the natural originary status of the female as the progenitor for the male.
4. Quaternary involves applying the logic of all mythic expression to understand and ameliorate the benefits and malconsequences of mind-based male-based mythologies.
5. Quaternary has implications for a global constituency across all areas of political, social and cultural expression and activities. It holds accountable before nature the excesses of mind-based male-based mythologies, constructs and activities.
Shakespeare as the first and only Quaternary Philosopher
The only consistent and comprehensive expression and articulation of the Quaternary sensibility is found in the works of William Shakespeare. Shakespeare intentionally presents his nature-based female-priority philosophy in the Sonnets he publishes in 1609 as the philosophy behind all his plays and poems.
1. The 1609 Sonnet set, with precisely 154 sonnets, identifies the word nature as the only generic concept in the English language that is always singular and never associated with an article in ordinary usage.
2. The 154 sonnets recognise, in their division into 28 Mistress sonnets and 126 Master Mistress sonnets, the precursor status of the female and the subsidiary role of the male.
3. The first 14 sonnets take as a given the biological (evolutionary) requirement for humankind to increase if the species is to survive beyond the current generation.
4. Shakespeare's sonnet set correctly considers, and structures into the arrangement of the whole set as consequent on the female/male dynamic of the body, the natural inter-relationship between unmediated incoming senses, the true/false logic of articulate language, and unmediated interior sensations of the mind.
5. Significantly, a dedicated group of five sonnets account for our ability to write about the undeniable givens of nature and the female priority by accepting that writing is conditional on the givens and that the givens make writing and expression possible.
6. The Sonnets accept there is a direct relationship between the offshoot status of the male and the capacity of language to create constructs and constructions that are in effect false outside the confines of the human mind and human endeavour. In effect, the male propensity leads directly to the facility to hypothesise for cultural, scientific and other purposes.
7. By laying out the logical components of human life and understanding and accounting for the ability to write poetry that captures the role of myth in any culture, Shakespeare sets down the logical conditions for any mythic expression, which he adheres to in his thirty six plays in the 1623 Folio.
8. Critically, in the 14 increase sonnets that head the set, Shakespeare differentiates between the bodily act of sexual reproduction and eroticism of mind-based desire. As all myths of creation are constitutionally erotic no Goddess or God in myths of creation reproduces biologically then all mythologies (and hence all Goddesses and Gods) are desire mechanisms consequent on increase in nature.
The Nature Template derived from Shakespeare's Sonnets
From Shakespeare's logical structuring of the 154 sonnets, a Nature Template can be drawn to show all the above relationships schematically. Shakespeare's nature-based philosophy is the only philosophy capable of representing logically and isomorphically the relationship of body and mind with the body in nature giving rise to the mind (as in Darwinian evolution).
1. The Nature Template schematises the qualitative and pedagogic difference between Quaternary and the current Tertiary paradigm.
2. Shakespeare's telling achievement, which allows those like Stokes and Russell to sense he overarches all other philosophers, is the arrangement of the 1609 Sonnets so that nature and the female/male biology of the body dynamic form the unquestionable givens for the sensory and cognitive functions of the mind. No other philosopher is as rigorous in insisting on the natural relationship.
3. That Shakespeare's Sonnet philosophy has remained unknown to Tertiary for 400 years symptomises the excessive dependence of Tertiary on discretionary mind-based male-based mythologies and constructs.
4. That thinkers like Darwin, Wittgenstein and Duchamp (and thousands of others in various ways) have arrived at an understanding of portions of the Nature Template while not advancing to picture the whole and not noticing its brilliant expression in the 1609 Sonnets indicates significant lacunae in Tertiary expectations attributable to a continued adherence to aspects of its founding biblical/Platonic paradigm in Medieval Europe (or earlier).
5. The problem for Tertiary responsible for the current impression it is in its death throes is not in the depths of its research programs, but is instead philosophic as it adheres to an inconsistent paradigm.
6. The distinguishing mark of the Quaternary program is its adherence to a completely consistent and comprehensive globally viable paradigm based in nature and the female priority isomorphic with the human mind.
7. As with the establishment of Tertiary over 1000 years ago in isolated academes of learning and research, the Quaternary level of pedagogy will begin as stand-alone institutes preparing the way for a wholesale adoption of Quaternary logic over time affecting each level of learning from Primary to Tertiary.
8. The first such Quaternary Institute is sited on the banks of the Kapuni River in South Taranaki, New Zealand.
Why a God Template is full of Inconsistencies
The problem for Tertiary can be represented by attempting to reconfigure the Nature Template as a God Template to force it to accord with male-based mind-based prerogatives.
1. Significantly, the biblical paradigm as represented in the God Template incorporates all the components of the Nature Template but inverts them into an illogical morass of empirical and illogical contradictions. The inability of Tertiary to recognise the extent of the problem, along with its failure to uncover Shakespeare's Sonnet philosophy, indicates the reason for its current malaise.
2. The terminus ad quem of Postmodernism is the failure to break out of the perpetual psychology as philosophy syndrome of the last 4000 years into philosophy as philosophy a project Wittgenstein begins hesitatingly but only Shakespeare accomplishes magisterially.
3. Symptomatic of the attempt in the God Template to mimic natural logic albeit in reverse is the lack of insight into the metaphysics of mythologies. The ignorance of the relationship between articulate language and the interior sensations of the mind amongst both theologians and scientists leads to the most preposterous postulations of sensational heavenly entities like God or the Big Bang for an entire universe created from nothing.
4. However, the purely theoretical postulations based on mathematical 'sense' cannot explain the actual moment of origin because the zero in mathematics is entirely a mind-based convention exposing the limitations of Tertiary metaphysics.
5. In the Twentieth Century, Marcel Duchamp resolutely explores and encapsulates the logic of mythic expression by understanding the relationship between articulate language and the interior artistic sensations of all human minds. That his efforts have been ignored not only by scientists and theologians but by artists as well catches the tragedy of persisting with Tertiary expectations in the face of proto-quaternary brilliance.
The Explanatory Power of Shakespeare's Nature-based Philosophy
A measure of the success of a seminal insight is its explanatory power. The findings in question need not only account completely for the area of investigation specific to the findings but should be fruitful across a wide range of disciplines. In the case of Shakespeare's nature-based philosophy, as the basis for a Quaternary level of advanced education, the explanatory power beyond his own works creates the possibility of an interdisciplinary institution that accommodates all modes of enquiry.
1. It can be shown Shakespeare intentionally arranges his set of 154 sonnets and publishes them in 1609 to present the nature-based philosophy underpinning all human experience, understanding and expression. The philosophy, as discovered twenty years ago, accounts for every aspect of the structuring and numbering of the whole set and all its incidental features.
2. It further follows, and is demonstrated readily, that Shakespeare publishes the Sonnets around twenty years after beginning his plays to present the philosophy behind all the plays and longer poems. Every aspect of the arrangement and content of the 1623 Folio of thirty-six plays is explicable by applying the Sonnet logic.
3. No emendations, reattributions or disparagement of parts, and no authorship issues, etc., which constitute the bulk of Tertiary scholarship on Shakespeare, are required from the vantage of their inherent nature-based philosophy.
4. As indicated in the preamble, Shakespeare's nature-based philosophy overarches every attempt to formulate a consistent and comprehensive philosophy over the last 4000 or more years. Every philosopher of the period magnifies one or other of the components of the Nature Template but none incorporates them all into a consistent and comprehensive philosophy as does Shakespeare and none of them since 1609 have worked out his Sonnet logic.
5. Shakespeare's crucial acceptance of the natural female priority and the offshoot status of the male allows his philosophy to avoid the psychological contradictions and prejudices of the founding male-based paradigm of Tertiary.
6. By showing the logical interconnection between the biologically sexual dynamic of female and male and the feminine and masculine gender dispositions of the mind, the philosophy accounts for the variety of human types without prejudice as evident in Shakespeare's plays.
Conditions for a Quaternary Level of Education
An advanced teaching and research program is inherent in the overarching status of Shakespeare's nature-based philosophy. Shakespeare and his works already provides a staple which in some institutions is compulsory for many Secondary and Tertiary courses albeit in the corrupt forms generated by Tertiary academics and others over the last 400 years.
1. Because Shakespeare is the only thinker ever to have specifically articulated a consistent and comprehensive nature-based philosophy, his works provide the principal locus around which Quaternary pedagogy devolves over time with the expectation the programs will lead to further expressions of natural logic on a par with or in advance of Shakespeare's contribution.
2. The contributions of proto-Quaternary minds like Darwin, Duchamp, Wittgenstein and a few others enable the base philosophy of Shakespeare to be contextualised by practitioners whose works bring pedagogic variety to the mix.
3. Shakespeare's nature-based philosophy contextualises all forms of scientific and mathematical endeavor as well as articulating the logical conditions for the deepest of all artistic expression, the mythic.
4. Shakespeare's philosophy easily accommodates the complete works of thinkers like Darwin, Mallarmι, Wittgenstein and Duchamp who, in varying ways, prove resistant to Tertiary exegesis or challenge Tertiary prerogatives. By comparison, artists like Kazimir Malevich are resolutely Tertiary in their expectations.
5. Because of the range of political, social and religious concerns Shakespeare addresses in his plays, their native philosophy provides the basis for a new approach to the disciplines deriving from those studies.
Summary of Findings and Implications
The discovery and articulation of Shakespeare's nature-based philosophy from his 1609 Sonnets as the basis for a Quaternary level of advanced pedagogy is a fiat accompli. The question is not 'does Quaternary exist' but, as Thomas Kuhn anticipates clearly, for how long will the current Tertiary paradigm continue to defend the indefensible before succumbing to the inevitable.
Concomitant with understanding Shakespeare's brilliant philosophy is the acceptance it will take time to bring a truly global understanding and sensibility into the light of day as a fully constituted systematic pedagogic opportunity. Because of Shakespeare's awareness of global sensibilities witness his involvement in the renaming of the Globe Theatre not long after the planet was circumnavigated the Quaternary pedagogy based on his insights restores humankind to its natural roots whilst acknowledging all the advancements in science and art achieved through the Tertiary enterprise.
The Quaternary philosophy gives substance and energy to the bare precepts of the United Nation's Declaration of Human Rights, where all states gather free from any particular mythology. The issue is reinforced by the need of Muslim countries to write their own Cairo Declaration of Human Rights in Islam justifying their retrograde male-based female disenfranchised cultures. Similarly, Shimon Peres' suggestion of a United Nation of Religions to the Pope recently shows the Tertiary apologetic mind-set at its worst.
While equally apologetic, Doomsday scenarios about the end of Postmodernism or the demise of Universities are not surprising as they are symptomatic of Tertiary's roots in New Testament eschatological I.O.Us. Similarly, imagining a future ruled by AI or social machines is an ironic consequence of modern skepticism's lost faith in a Descartes-type soul argued for in his mechanised-body/spiritualised-mind lobotomy.
Instead of pursuing Tertiary chimeras there is a Quaternary opportunity to embrace a forward looking natural philosophical connectivity that both accommodates the highest levels of intellectual excellence and carries with it an appreciation of the most mature love and art humankind can experience which is the achievement of Shakespeare's Sonnets and all his poems and plays.
Roger Peters Copyright © 2005
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