The Weekend Wall Street Journal, 2/5-6/2022, featured Frank Wilczek’s (MIT) column entitled “We’re All Still Living in Euclid’s World.” The article prompts further thinking about how **space**, **space-time**, and **generalized coordinates** **underly** Bernard Lonergan’s **pretio-quantital** **Functional Macroeconomic Dynamics**, AKA **Macroeconomic Field Theory**. (continue reading)

# Category Archives: Theoretical Physics

# Field Theory in Physics and Macroeconomics

We hope to inspire serious graduate students of economics **a)** to seek and achieve an understanding of “**Macroeconomic Field Theory**,” **b)** to** verify** **empirically** Lonergan’s field relations, and **c)** to use the explanatory field relations as **the basis of influential scholarly papers.**

We trace developments

- in physics from Newtonian mechanics to modern field theory, and
- in economics from Walrasian supply-demand economics to purely relational, Modern Macroeconomic Field Theory.

Key ideas include a) **abstraction and implicit definition** as the basis and ground of **invariance** in both physics and macroeconomics, b) the concept of a **purely relational field**, c) **immanent intelligibility and formal causality**, and d) the canons of **parsimony** and of **complete explanation**. We highlight some key ideas: (continue reading)

# Five Why’s

# The Abstract and Concrete Components of Science (Brief Item #89)

[9/22/2020] (Bernard Lonergan, Albert Einstein) Because insights arise with reference to the **concrete**, mathematicians need pen and paper, teachers need blackboards, pupils have to **perform experiments** for themselves, doctors have to see patients, trouble-shooters have to travel to the spot, people with a mechanical bent **take things apart to see how they work**. But because the significance and relevance of **insight goes beyond any concrete problem or application**, men formulate **abstract sciences** with their numbers and symbols, their technical terms and formulae, their definitions, postulates, and deductions. Thus, by its very nature, insight is the mediator, the hinge, the pivot. It is insight *into* the concrete world of sense and imagination. Yet what is known by insight, what insight adds to sensible and imagined presentations, finds its adequate expression **only in the abstract and recondite formulations of the sciences**. [CWL 3, 6/30] [#89] **(Click ****here**** for previous “Single Paragraphs” or “Brief Items”)**

# A Philip McShane Sampler Relevant to Functional Macroeconomic Dynamics

Philip McShane had a strong background in mathematics and theoretical physics; thus he was able to understand the scientific significance of Bernard Lonergan’s **macroeconomic** **field theory** in an **Einsteinian context**.

First we display, in brief, key excerpts, many of which contain analogies from physics and chemistry, relevant to the science of Functional Macroeconomic Dynamics; then we show the same excerpts more fully within lengthier quotes. Continue reading

# Theoretical Breakthroughs of Euclid, Newton, Hilbert, Einstein, and Lonergan

To help the reader gain an appreciation of Lonergan’s achievement of **Modern Macroeconomic Field Theory** we will, in each section, print leading excerpts, then highlight the key concepts of those excerpts. We will comment on the historically-significant advances in geometry of Euclid and Hilbert, in physics of Newton and** **Einstein, and in macroeconomics of Lonergan.

- Euclid’s great achievement was his rigorous
**deduction**of geometry. - Hilbert’s great achievement was his employment of
**implicit definition**to reorder Euclid’s geometry. - Newton’s two great achievements were unifying the isolated insights of Galileo and Kepler into a
**unified system**of mechanics and his invention of the calculus. - One of the great achievements of Einstein was the invention of the
**field theories**of Special Relativity, General Relativity, and Gravitation. - One of Lonergan’s
**several**great achievements was his**systematization**of macroeconomic phenomena in his**Modern Macroeconomic Field Theory.**He combined the technique of**implicit definition**introduced by Hilbert and the concept of a**field theory**developed by Faraday and Einstein; and he developed an**explanatory macroeconomics**, which is**general, invariant, and relevant in any instance**.**(Continue reading)**

# The Wise Person Puts Questions In Their Right Order

In any **analysis** there is a **right order of questions**; and to violate this order is to invite misunderstanding, myth, and disaster. To indicate the wisdom in Lonergan’s analysis, we present excerpts, mainly from his CWL 12, which mandate clearly, for himself and for us, that one’s method and one’s heuristic necessitate putting **questions in their right order**. The precepts apply whether one is doing physics, economics, philosophy or theology. Continue reading

# Two Summaries in Functional Macroeconomic Dynamics

**.I. Summary of the Analysis: Heuristic, Observations, and Discoveries**

**.II. Summary of the Argument **(verbatim from CWL 15, 5-6)

**.III. Supplement to the Summaries**

# Why Economists Haven’t Yet Flocked to Functional Macroeconomic Dynamics

**Economists don’t have the methodological and conceptual toolkit needed for appreciation of FMD’s scientific and historical significance.**

- They don’t know what they don’t know.
- They’re not methodologists and don’t know what constitutes good theory.
**They never read CWL 3, pages 3-172 and 490-97**and, thus, they never studied the**canons of empirical method**, especially the**Canon of Parsimony**and the**Canon of Complete Explanation;**they have no idea of the deficiencies of their method.

- Thus, they lack a purely
**scientific and explanatory heuristic**.- They do not adequately distinguish
**description vs. explanation**. - They do not know the type of answer they’re seeking, i.e. their known unknown.
- They do not put questions in the right order to discover basic terms of
**scientific significance.** - They are mired in muddy premises and disorienting assumptions.
- They are unable to employ a
**scientific, dynamic heuristic**adequate for analysis of a**current**,**purely dynamic process.** - They don’t understand what constitutes the normative system’s requirement for
**concomitance, continuity, and equilibrium of flows.**

- They do not adequately distinguish
- They lack a
**background in theoretical physics**. They don’t understand the principles and abstract laws of**hydrodynamics, electric circuits, or field theory**. Nor do they understand adequately the idea of**continuity**and the**conditions of equilibrium in macroeconomic dynamics**. They are unaware of analogies from physics applicable on the basis of**isomorphism**to the phenomena of Functional Macroeconomic Dynamics. (Continue reading.)

# Prediction is Impossible in the General Case; Diverging Series of Conditions

Humans have a need to predict and plan.

Time present and time past

Are both perhaps present in time future, (T.S. Eliot, *Burnt Norton*)

In his book, *FREEFALL *(2009, Penguin Books), **Joseph Eugene Stiglitz**, a professor at Columbia University and a recipient of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences (2001) and the John Bates Clark Medal (1979), states that economics is a predictive science. Now, one must distinguish between predicting a) planetary motion in its **scheme of recurrence**, and b) this afternoon’s weather vs. next month’s weather, or this afternoon’s prices and quantities vs. next year’s prices and quantities, all subject to to **conditions diverging in space and time**. (Continue reading)