I'm a philosophy student that tends to post about really serious things unseriously and about really unserious things seriously.
I was once described as a "beautiful, intelligent iguana".
I can understand the split between sensual objects/qualities, and I can get how Harman comes to the idea of the withdrawn ‘real’ object, as opposed to the sensual one, but what I don’t get is the ‘real qualities’ part of the quadruple object.
Qualities are what allows Harman to talk about interaction at all (that, and his use of ‘elements’, which I’m just getting to), and the sensual object is what allows him to talk about objects divorced from their properties (so he can go against bundle theory, or its modern equivalents). And I get why there’s a need for a ‘real’ object in Harman’s philosophy (to allows to objects to be non-present entities, by virtue of their ‘being’, so as to keep true to Heidegger’s split between ontic/ontological).
But I don’t understand how we’re supposed to come to the idea of ‘real’ but withdrawn qualities. If the object is withdrawn while in its real sphere, I don’t know how we’re able to talk about it having qualities that also withdraw from any sort of presence, and to have any way of asserting the difference between the two, or even the existence of the two opposed to each other, without access into that sphere of being.
If I’m correct, the ‘real’ qualities of an object fall along the ‘thing in general’ side of the ‘thing in general/thing at all’ dualism that Harman gets from Levinas. But I don’t get how a ‘thing in general’ corresponds to any sort of qualities (especially ‘withdrawn’ ones).
This could very well be due to the fact that I haven’t read anything/know virtually nothing about Zubiri (hence why he calls this quality of objects their ‘notes’ (as in musical notes) borrowing this terminology from Zubiri), but it still makes no sense to me. Maybe I’ll have to read those sections over again. I don’t know.
If anyone could help explain this to me, though, it’d be greatly appreciated, especially since it’s the only quadrant in Harman I don’t understand (I think) at the moment (and it’s a pretty important one, since it allows for causation and essence in Harman’s ontology).