Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Number Forty-Eight

An Fortschritt glauben heißt nicht glauben, daß ein Fortschritt schon geschehen ist. Das wäre kein Glauben.

Believing in progress does not mean believing that progress has yet been made. That is not the sort of belief that indicates real faith. [Kaiser/Wilkins]

Belief in progress doesn't mean belief in progress that has already occurred. That would not require belief. [Hofmann]


Post hoc ergo propter hoc. This disengages the idea of progress from the past entirely, showing how "progress" is a judgement, an interpretation, rather than an empirical observation. Simply because things have developed in the past, it does not follow that things will continue to develop in the future. This might then mean that belief in progress has to address all of time.

Applied to the idea of wayfaring, this means that going along the way is not a matter of clearing distance and making a certain amount of progress, but of being oriented in what one believes is the direction of improvement.

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