green numbers give full details.     |    back to list of philosophers     |     unexpand these ideas

Ideas of Jens Zimmermann, by Text

[Canadian, fl. 2015, Professor of Humanities, Trinity Western University, Canada]

2015 Hermeneutics: a very short introduction
1 'Truth' p.13 We take part in objective truth, rather than observe it from a distance
     Full Idea: Hermeneutic thinkers insist that we need to redefine objective truth as something we take part in rather than something we merely observe from a distance.
     From: Jens Zimmermann (Hermeneutics: a very short introduction [2015], 1 'Truth')
     A reaction: Don't get it. If I objectively judge that there are some cows in a field, I judge that they will probably still be there if I turn away and forget them, so any passionate involvement I have with cows is irrelevant to the objective facts. Am I wrong?
2 'Husserl's' p.33 In phenomenology, all perception is 'seeing as'
     Full Idea: That human perception is always a 'seeing as' was the cardinal insight of what Husserl called 'phenomenology'.
     From: Jens Zimmermann (Hermeneutics: a very short introduction [2015], 2 'Husserl's')
     A reaction: I presume that 'cardinal insight' means there is no possibility of Husserl being wrong about this. What's happening before you figure out what it is you are looking at?
3 'Beyond' p.53 Hermeneutic knowledge is not objective, but embraces interpretations
     Full Idea: In the hermeneutic ideal of knowledge, not distance but involvement, not impersonal observation but personal interaction, not thinking against prejudice or tradition but accessing knowledge through them, characterizes our perception of the world.
     From: Jens Zimmermann (Hermeneutics: a very short introduction [2015], 3 'Beyond')
     A reaction: To make this stick it will have to challenge scientific knowledge which results from mathematical summaries of measurements done by instruments. Is a stop watch an interpretation?
4 'How texts' p.67 The hermeneutic circle is between the reader's self-understanding, and the world of the text
     Full Idea: The 'hermeneutic circle' of understanding is not between the author and the reader, but between my understanding myself in my own world, and the world projected by the text, with its possibilities for life.
     From: Jens Zimmermann (Hermeneutics: a very short introduction [2015], 4 'How texts')
     A reaction: I'm not much of a fan of hermeneutics, but this idea seems quite important. Readings of Dickens in1860, 1930 and 2020 are very different events. For example, which parts catch the reader's interest, or jar with their sensibilities?
5 'Inspiration' p.73 Traditionally, God dictated the Torah to Moses, unlike the later biblical writings
     Full Idea: Jewish traditionalists hold that the first five books of the Hebrew Bible (the 'Torah') were dictated word for word by God to Moses, while the remaining sacred writings were more generally inspired.
     From: Jens Zimmermann (Hermeneutics: a very short introduction [2015], 5 'Inspiration')
     A reaction: This gives the Torah a similar status to the Quran, and presumably also to the actual words which are ascribed to Jesus in the four gospels.
6 'Natural' p.108 Natural law theorists fear that without morality, law could be based on efficiency
     Full Idea: Natural law theorists fear that by denying the intrinsic connection between law and morality, positivists could encourage the validation of law based on efficiency alone.
     From: Jens Zimmermann (Hermeneutics: a very short introduction [2015], 6 'Natural')
     A reaction: The law's the law. The issue can only be whether one can ever be justified in breaking a law, and that isn't a legal question. I am sympathetic to the positiviists.