Kevin, I'll give you a line from Moby Dick (ch 32) and then I'm not going to carry on with this on Facebook -- it is just too big a topic. ...
"To be short, then, a whale is A SPOUTING FISH WITH A HORIZONTAL TAIL. There you have him."
To which I reply ...
Tom, SPOUTING describes a general activity that we can recognize specific instances of; FISH is as general a term as "whale"; HORIZONTAL and TAIL are both abstractions, terms that describe a category rather than pointing to a specific thing. Language cannot be used in a nominalist sense. If these abstractions aren't "real", if they don't correspond to reality, if the form recognized by the word FISH is just a convention and not a real thing, then we're fooling ourselves by saying anything.
Beyond that, I assert that nominalism eventually leads to the atomization of experience - nothing is general, everything is specific. You can't even comment on time or space beyond your current specific impression of them. Indeed, nominalism, if consistent, must deny that even the property of "being" is real. Individual things may exist, but in nominalism they cannot be said to share in the same quality of "being", a quality that explains them, a quality that sane people know is a real (though unseen) thing, independent of them. You can't even say the word IT in nominalism, for the word IT implies an object that exists. And no object can be said to share the qualities of any other object (including existence), for such qualities are abstractions and are not "real" (in nominalist thinking). Such qualities are simply conventions that we observe by our own quirkish way of looking at the world, and do not necessarily correspond to reality.
But if there is no spirit, there can be no incarnation; if there is no form, there can be no in-form-ation; if there is no intangible reality, there can be no tangible reality. There can only be things you touch or see before you from moment to moment, blunt impressions not unlike blunt trauma.
It takes a leap of faith to recognize the most basic abstraction that all things share - existence. Once we see that we all depend on that and that existence is real, we see God and we see our way out of this madhouse where nothing connects to anything - or to more nothing.
"Hell is a place where nothing connects with nothing" -T.S. Eliot, Introduction to Dante's Inferno