In this section, you will find out about my philosophical thinking. I will start with a summary of my academic history.
In 1980, I graduated with a degree in music composition from the University of South Carolina. Composition, invention, creativity, innovation and discipline are what I was trained in. Expect new ideas to mix with old ones in my philosophical views.
From 1982-1986, I studied theology part time at St. Vincent de Paul Regional Seminary in Boynton Beach, Florida. I learned a lot about what Catholics think. I considered the priesthood during that time, but in the end, I chose not to be Roman Catholic.
From 1991-1995, I studied theology at St. Michael Academy of Eschatology in West Palm Beach, where I received a Masters Degree in Christian Theology. The school has an untraditional accreditation, which is not accepted in many places. I was an adjunct professor there while earning my degree and in college in 2008 I was a Business Administrator and built the majority of their present web site and online curriculum.
The jurisdiction is controversial with the Orthodox Church. Expect me to have some familiarity with Orthodox politics and Church history as an insider, but please do not judge me by association. I was a helpful guy learning what I could. Eschatology is the study of the last things, including the return of Jesus as Lord. It is a subject I have considered more deeply than most.
Some might not consider me to be an Orthodox Christian despite having received the rite of chrismation at St. Mary’s Antiochian Orthodox Church in 1996. Whether the Church would consider me a heretic should have more to do with how they might view my philosophical system than any association I may have had with the Metropolitan Xaralambos, who as far as I know, still believes himself to be one of the two last days witnesses the Bible describes. For the record, I did not hold that he was. I will simply state here that I understand Orthodox eschatology and not many do.
In 2019, I enrolled as a student of Interdisciplinary Studies at Arizona State University, with concentrations in Organizational Leadership and Philosophy. I expect to earn my degree there by 2022. There are many reasons I chose to go back to school. Among them, I wanted to start a Philosophical Society that would serve to discuss my philosohical system, which I call Pamalogy.
Pamalogy is short for “Poly Astronomically Maximized Awesomeology.” It has a metaphysical side and an axiological side. I should start with the axiological side. How does one maximize their awesomeness? What does it mean to maximize your awesomeness? The word, “axiology” comes from the Greek word “axios,” which means worthy. What is worthy? Awesomeness and worthiness might be considered synonyms. Generally, there categories of axiology – ethics and aesthetics. Aesthetics might ask what is beautiful. Ethics might ask what is good or bad.
One thing I think is awesome is practicing what we preach. I much prefer action to talk. Sure, I’ll leave some writing, but rather than trying to talk philosophy with anyone, my goal is to start a Pamalogy Center, where all sorts of worthy projects might be realized. A Pamalogy Center is an arts and tech guild. It would feature a music and video recording studio, co-working spaces, sound proof practice rooms, instrument and equipment rentals, art displays, an informal theater and a relaxing bar and lounge for members. It would focus on collaborative projects and royalty and equity sharing for lean start ups. It would encourage members to contribute to other member’s work to improve their own member status. Member status earns members the right to ask for more help from other members. Artists and inventors would see it as an incubator for their projects.
The metaphysical side of Pamalogy asks what maximized awesomeness would be in an absolute sense. It would suppose that no one can conceive of it. It is that than which there could be nothing better. It would compare maximized awesomeness to the concept of infinity. No one can count to infinity, yet we do understand the concept to mean that any number we can think of is always less than infinity. Maximized Awesomeness is like that. There is something greater and that thing does not exclude the goodness one might positively conceive of.
Pamalogical metaphysics would ask whether this abstract Maximized Awesomeness concept is part of reality. Does it exist? If so, why is life not always awesome to us? Why do bad things happen? Also, is it possible for Maximized Awesomeness to exist in just one Universe? I think the answer to that question is no. I think that for every good thing to be real, there must be many Universes – not just one. That is why I call it, “Poly Astronomical.” If Maximized Awesomeness is real, there are many astronomies, not just one.
Every now and then I’ll make up a word and start using it. Pamalogy is one such word. I have a reason for coining certain terms related to philosophy or theology. Usually, it has to do with the fact that there is no other single word I know of to describe something. It may have to do with wanting to be specific or to distinguish one idea from another similar idea. If I introduce a word that I’ve made up, I’ll spend some time defining it so we can both understand what that word means and start using it together. Afterwards, maybe it will become part of the English language. That would be cool but the vanity behind coining a term is not what drives me. It’s about precision.
Here you will find a JamesCarvin.com menu list that will lead to some of my philosophy articles and web properties. This menu will use some of those new words. So, right here, I’ll explain their meaning up front and alphabetically.
Asynalagonomy – from the Greek root, συναλαγων (trade). The prefix “a” means not. “Nomy” means law. I’m using it here in the same way you would use it in the word “economy. ” Together it refers to an economic system, or set of laws, without trade – a tradeless economy. In general, a tradeless economy would fail. If anyone in such an economy were to own property, they would not be permitted to sell it or trade it. This would make it impossible to possess anything for any reason other than personal consumption. An economy would be frozen. No one could have a business. No one could work for money. Money itself is an exchange. A true asynalagonomy does not have money, or any other form of exchange. Fortunately, no such thing exists.
An incentivized asynalagonomy is something quite different. As a rule, there would be no trade but there would be incentives to work as determined by a system that managed the incentives. In such a system, workers earn privileges. Then in order to obtain goods and services they exercise the privileges they’ve earned. They don’t trade those privileges. They can only earn them, or fail to earn them, and thus lose them. A system of incentives can keep an economy moving because workers have reason to produce goods and services, which can then be consumed by those with sufficient privilege to them. I will have much to say about incentivized asynalagonomies because pamalonomies are a type of incentivized asynalagonomy. See pamalonomy.
Cosmostrophy – the way that a person reconciles their faith with their metaphysical view of the Universe – what it is, how it was formed, how old it is, ideas about time, matter and energy, whether there is a multiverse, whether there is a creator, etc. Each person has a cosmostrophy no matter what their religion. It is a general term like the word “metaphysics.” The suffix, “strophy” indicates harmony or pattern. How do you harmonize your faith with science?
Foundationism – Sometimes I think I’ve coined a term but actually haven’t. When I made up this word, I was unaware it was associated with Reneé Descartes. Like Descartes, I believe that derivative forms of certainty can be obtained by basing beliefs on what we already know we may be certain of. Unlike Descartes, I think there can be more known with certainty than the statement, “I think, therefore I am.” I don’t reject math or logic, for instance. Descartes supposed that an evil demon might be deceiving him even about math and logic. I don’t make that assumption. In fact, the entirety Pamalogical metaphysics is foundationist. When I first used the term, I had never studied epistemology. I was a theology student looking for a word to contrast with fundamentalism. I was referring to theology and eschatology that was logical. For instance, it is logical that if God is perfect, that there is no good thing that can be added to God that God does not already possess in either divine being or divine action. As such, God does not ever change. I don’t have to find the Bible verse that supports that idea. It stems from what Perfection means in the absolute sense often attributed to God. Therefore, it is a foundational principle that if God is perfect, God does not change.
Pamalogy – Poly Astronomically Maximized Awesomeology. See above.
Pamalonomy – a hybrid between socio-capitalism and incentivized asynalagonomy. It is a way of experimenting with incentivized asynalagonomies on a small scale within a broader socio-capitalist framework. A guild concept might be an example. In general, the guild does not own its creations. It fosters and helps manage them as an incubator. The members enjoy their own profits but work collaboratively to overcome the cost of starting enterprises without shared resources and talent.
Stromagesis – a method of interpretation that considers multiple perspectives without holding one perspective to be invalid when another seems to be valid. It holds that even if viewpoints may seem to be in conflict, both viewpoints may be true. The prefix is from the Greek στρομα, which means layer. Stromagesis can be compared to the more commonly known words, exegesis and eisegesis. Exegesis holds the intended meaning of the author to be a valid interpretation. Eisegesis refers to the interpretation of the hearer or reader. It is often thought to be invalid if it does not account for the intended meaning of the writer or speaker.
Theogesis – refers to God’s intended meaning and purpose. I hold that this is more valid than exegesis and may incude stromagesis. See above. Notice that I have not referred to “Biblical” interpretation here, but to interpretation in general. You may be an epistle. How shall I interpret you? How does God interpret you?