SUMMARY / RELATED TOPICS

Being

In philosophy, being means the material or immaterial existence of a thing. Anything that exists is being. Ontology is the branch of philosophy that studies being. Being is a concept encompassing subjective features of reality and existence. Anything that partakes in being is called a "being", though this usage is limited to entities that have subjectivity; the notion of "being" has been elusive and controversial in the history of philosophy, beginning in Western philosophy with attempts among the pre-Socratics to deploy it intelligibly. The first effort to recognize and define the concept came from Parmenides, who famously said of it that "what is-is". Common words such as "is", "are", "am" refer directly or indirectly to being; as an example of efforts in recent times, the German philosopher Martin Heidegger adopted German terms like Dasein to articulate the topic. Several modern approaches build on such continental European exemplars as Heidegger, apply metaphysical results to the understanding of human psychology and the human condition generally.

By contrast, in mainstream analytical philosophy the topic is more confined to abstract investigation, in the work of such influential theorists as W. V. O. Quine, to name one of many. One of the most fundamental questions, contemplated in various cultures and traditions and continues to exercise philosophers was articulated thus by William James in 1909: "How comes the world to be here at all instead of the nonentity which might be imagined in its place?... from nothing to being there is no logical bridge." The deficit of such a bridge was first encountered in history by the Pre-Socratic philosophers during the process of evolving a classification of all beings. Aristotle, who wrote after the Pre-Socratics, applies the term category to ten highest-level classes, they comprise one category of substance existing independently and nine categories of accidents, which can only exist in something else. In Aristotle, substances are to be clarified by stating their definition: a note expressing a larger class followed by further notes expressing specific differences within the class.

The substance so defined was a species. For example, the species, may be defined as an animal, rational; as the difference is potential within the genus. Applied to being, the system fails to arrive at a definition for the simple reason that no difference can be found; the species, the genus, the difference are all being: a being is a being, being. The genus can not be nothing; the trivial solution that being is being added to nothing is only a tautology: being is being. There is no simpler intermediary between non-being that explains and classifies being. Pre-Socratic reaction to this deficit was varied; as substance theorists they accepted a priori the hypothesis that appearances are deceiving, that reality is to be reached through reasoning. Parmenides reasoned that if everything is identical to being and being is a category of the same thing there can be neither differences between things nor any change. To be different, or to change, would amount to becoming or being non-being. Therefore, being is a homogeneous and non-differentiated sphere and the appearance of beings is illusory.

Heraclitus, on the other hand, foreshadowed modern thought by denying existence. Reality does not exist, it flows, beings are an illusion upon the flow. Aristotle knew of this tradition when he began his Metaphysics, had drawn his own conclusion, which he presented under the guise of asking what being is:"And indeed the question, raised of old is raised now and always, is always the subject of doubt, viz. what being is, is just the question, what is substance? For it is this that some assert to be one, others more than one, that some assert to be limited in number, others unlimited, and so we must consider chiefly and and exclusively what, which is in this sense." And reiterates in no uncertain terms: "Nothing, not a species of a genus will have an essence – only species will have it....". Being, for Aristotle, is not a genus. One might expect a solution to follow from such certain language but none does. Instead Aristotle launches into a rephrasing of the Theory of Act and Potency. In the definition of man as a two-legged animal Aristotle presumes that "two-legged" and "animal" are parts of other beings, but as far as man is concerned, are only man.

At the point where they are united into a single being, the being, becomes actual, or real. Unity is the basis of actuality: "...'being' is being combined and one, and'not being' is being not combined but more than one." Actuality has taken the place of existence, but Aristotle is no longer seeking to know what the actual is. He has found a "half-being" or a "pre-being", the potency, being as part of some other substance. Substances, in Aristotle, unite what they are now with everything they might become; some of Thomas Aquinas' propositions were reputedly condemned by Étienne Tempier, the local Bishop of Paris in 1270 and 1277, but his dedication to the use of philosophy to elucidate theology was so thorough

Tudor Ganea

Tudor Ganea was a Romanian mathematician, known for his work in algebraic topology homotopy theory. Ganea left Communist Romania to settle in the United States in the early 1960s, he taught at the University of Washington. In 1957, Ganea published in the Annals of Mathematics a short, yet influential paper with Samuel Eilenberg, in which the Eilenberg–Ganea theorem was proved and the celebrated Eilenberg–Ganea conjecture was formulated; the conjecture is still open. By 1958, Ganea and his mentee, Israel Bernstein, were the two leading algebraic topologists in Romania; that year at an international conference on geometry and topology in Iași, the two met Peter Hilton, starting long mathematical collaborations. Ganea emigrated to Western Europe in 1961, came to the United States. Just before he died, Ganea attended the Symposium on Algebraic Topology, held February 22–26, 1971 at the Battelle Seattle Research Center, in Seattle. At the symposium, he was not able to give a talk, but he did distribute a preprint containing a list of unsolved problems.

One of these problems, regarding the Lusternik–Schnirelmann category, came to be known as Ganea's conjecture. Many particular cases of this conjecture were proved, until Norio Iwase provided a counterexample in 1998, he is buried at Lake View Cemetery in Seattle. Eilenberg, Samuel. "On the Lusternik–Schnirelmann category of abstract groups". Annals of Mathematics. 2nd Ser. 65: 517–518. Doi:10.2307/1970062. JSTOR 1970062. MR 0085510. Ganea, Tudor. "On the homotopy-commutativity of loop-spaces and suspensions". Topology. 1: 133–141. Doi:10.1016/0040-938390021-2. MR 0150774. Ganea, Tudor. "A generalization of the homology and homotopy suspension". Commentarii Mathematici Helvetici. 39: 295–322. Doi:10.1007/BF02566956. MR 0179791. Ganea, Tudor. "Lusternik–Schnirelmann category and strong category". Illinois Journal of Mathematics. 11: 417–427. MR 0229240. Ganea, Some problems on numerical homotopy invariants, Lecture Notes in Mathematics, 249, Berlin: Springer, pp. 13–22, MR 0339147 My algebraic topology professor, Tudor Ganea, used to say that "mathematics progresses by faith and hard work, the former augmented and the latter diminished by what others have done".

From: "Eightfold Way: The Sculpture", by Helaman Ferguson with Claire Ferguson, in The Eightfold Way: The Beauty of Klein's Quartic Curve, edited by Silvio Levy, MSRI Publications, vol. 35, 1998 Tudor Ganea at the Mathematics Genealogy Project

Tony Jordan (politician)

J. Anthony "Tony" Jordan is an American politician and former Republican member of the New York State Assembly, representing the 113th Assembly District from 2009-2013, he is the District Attorney of Washington County, New York. Jordan received a bachelor's degree in business with a concentration in finance from the University of Notre Dame in 1986, he earned a law degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School in 1995. He was a partner in the law firm of Jordan & Kelly LLC. Prior to being elected, he served part-time as Assistant District Attorney in Washington County. In 2008, he was elected to replace Assemblyman Roy McDonald, running for the New York State Senate. Jordan won his November 2008 general election with 57 percent of the vote and ran uncontested in the November 2010 general election. In April 2013, Jordan announced. On November 5, 2013, Jordan ran on the Republican and Independent Party lines defeating incumbent District Attorney Kevin Kortright who ran on the Democratic line.

Jordan resides near New York. He and his wife Wendy Jordan have four children: Gabrielle, Tricia and Eliza. New York State Assembly website Appearances on C-SPAN