By DONALD DeMARCO
The dictionary is not a very good teacher of philosophy. Its definitions are limited and fail to show the wondrous versatility of the word. Philosophy, on the other hand, loves analogies, metaphors, shadings, and nuances. Moreover, it likes to put the various meanings in order. Consider the word “belonging.” The dictionary fails to reveal its breadth and how its various meanings are all connecting with each other and form a ladder that ascends from the humblest to the highest. The following seven levels of belonging illustrate the dictionary’s need for philosophical explication.
Position: On the humblest level, the jigsaw puzzle offers us a good illustration. “Where does this piece belong?” someone asks. Its peculiar shape and contour indicates that there is but one position that answers the question. And so, we put the puzzle piece exactly where it belongs and enjoy of small glimmer of satisfaction. … Continue Reading