This blog is a modest but serious attempt to promote the philosophy of Mario Ferreira dos Santos amongst the English speaking public. Being the work of a single passionate student of Concrete Philosophy, the translations have not yet been subject to proofreading and mistakes can be expected. Nonetheless, the work of Mario Ferreira speaks for itself and his apodictically founded Concrete Philosophy, although unknown even in his own country, has much to offer for a perennial and universal thought.
We intend to translate the essential texts so the reader should be able to grasp the general aspects of Concrete Philosophy, Decadialectics, Concrete Dialectics, Mathesis Megisthe, Mathesis Universalis, etc. Yet, some of the more “specific” philosophical themes should also give an idea of how Mario intended to practically apply those concepts upon all aspects of human thought.
Also, over the natural struggle for any translator to combine the efforts of sounding familiar and/or natural to the new public and the need to preserve the author’s style and “voice”, we, throughout this entire work, tend towards the latter. Mario has a unique style and can even be confusing to most of his fellow countrymen. He had created an unique vocabulary to treat some of the aspects of his Concrete Philosophy. Some words, he created. Others, he used an archaic version of Portuguese, to emphasized their Latin roots. For instance, the Portuguese word “concrecionar”, which could be translated into “concretionize”, has, in his work, a similar meaning to the word coalesce, i.e., to grow together into a single body, to become concrete. “Concretionize” is preferred over “coalesce” since the former has the same root as “concrete”, as in Concrete Philosophy.
Finally, the greatest challenge of any student of Concrete Philosophy is the poor edition of Mario’s works. Having been denied publication of his books from all publishing houses he approached (“no one buys philosophy books in Brazil”, they would say), Mario started his own publishing house so his philosophy could be known. Employing his own family, he got his lectures transcribed and, in an amateur manner, published. The result, obviously, is a work with many omissions, broken sentences, general revision errors, and, last but not least, the absence of proper bibliographical references. A very recent effort has been put into place to properly publish some of his works in Brazil, with no more than five or six republications – a drop in the ocean of his Encyclopedia.
However, there is not enough time. Mario is a intellectual in the true classical sense, working pari passu with Aristotle, Plato, Pythagoras and St. Thomas Aquinas. The endless turmoil of hypothesis, the resurrection of old and already refuted errors, the emergence of so-called philosophers in search for easy praise from the hordes, those are all symptoms of our time, what he called “the vertical invasion of the barbarians”. Only a philosophical method founded in apodictic demonstration in search of a transcendental unity of philosophies (Mathesis Megisthe) can provide a solid ground to Philosophy. It is about time the world knows of Mario Ferreira dos Santos.