Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

RE: [existlist] Re: Against bad manners

Expand Messages
  • chris lofting
    ... Our subjectivity, and what ... The cogito perspective covers the emergence of proactive mediation dynamics where self-referencing and
    Message 1 of 24 , Feb 7, 2009
    • 0 Attachment
      > -----Original Message-----
      > From: existlist@yahoogroups.com
      > [mailto:existlist@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Herman B. Triplegood
      > Sent: Sunday, 8 February 2009 9:43 AM
      > To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
      > Subject: [existlist] Re: Against bad manners
      <snip> Our subjectivity, and what
      > that is all about, has become our central philosophical
      > issue. We should not ignore that or try to explain it away.
      > It seems to me that a Cartesianism and an Existentialism
      > would go hand in hand. What do you all think about that?

      The cogito perspective covers the emergence of proactive mediation dynamics
      where self-referencing and self-organising systems develop. Physiologically
      a sensory stimulus is met with an inappropriate, immediate, response and
      mediation develops. In lesser life forms the mediation is 'mindless' and
      covers a life form trying out its full repertoire of possible responses and
      so 'out of context' behaviours in attempts to resolve the issue
      (biochemically we get down to enzyme dynamics and the nature of catalysts).
      With neural complexity comes emergence from mechanistic dynamics of a
      teleological element in the form of pattern matching (analogy making) and
      planning and on into language formation. As such the mediation involved in
      resolving some issue is now communicatable to others and so speeds up
      learning in a social context.

      The essential feature of the cogito is DELAY in response and we can see this
      at work in the laboratory where when learning there is a delay of at least
      half a second in responses until the habit has formed at a level where
      awareness is no longer needed and the delay disappears as we fall back on
      stimulus/response. The initial discovery of this delay element in
      experiments raised some issues about consciousness for those not willing to
      accept that a lot of our behaviour is unconscious. See such as:

      Pockett, S., Banks, W., & Gallagher, S., (eds)(2006)"Does Consciousness
      Cause Behavior?" MITP

      The emergence of a sense of self takes about two years to develop post
      birth. This sense has been identified in humans, monkeys, dolphins, birds,
      elephants etc where the common test is the 'mirror' test - getting the life
      form to recognise itself in a mirror. The DIFFERENCES are in the huge mass
      of neurons and their rich connectivities that we have as humans compared to
      other neuron-dependent life forms. The rich connectivities are essential and
      our long development time (upto early 20s for frontal lobe development
      completion) gives us a huge advantage in developing proactive mediation
      skills. The dynamics of our symmetric nature as a determined species (and so
      a closed system) is extended to cover local context interactions (open
      system dynamics), positive feedback (and so high levels of discretisation
      and amplification), high sample rates (differentiating with high precision),
      where such contribute to the development of self-organising systems - we
      take on unique identity that can contribute to the species as a whole.

      Environmental pressures bring out a demand for more and more
      distinction-making and so more and more border creations (positive feedback
      at work). What THIS does is let loose what lives on borders -
      complexity/chaos dynamics. As such a social whole will start to fragment and
      life in general 'speeds up' and become less determined, more competitive,
      and we move into probabilistic thinking over deductive thinking.

      The movement into probabilistic thinking introduces us to a realm of
      uncertainty/doubt and THAT realm is the ground from which mediation dynamics
      is born. This realm is useful in that it aids in 'refining' the deductive
      thinking of symmetry, we refine our instincts/habits and so benefit from
      energy conservation as we age. HOWEVER, we also note that the fragmenting of
      a whole into parts or 'lesser wholes' also leads to emergence of new wholes
      (gets into economic dynamics, corporation formations, monopoly capitalism
      etc); we see the dynamics of self-organisation at work where a dynamic
      context demands change to keep up with development, and that includes
      fragmentation/re-configuration; symmetry without direction becomes sterile,
      decadence, 'post modern' ;-) Overall there is a movement from the
      cooperative to the competitive to the cooperative etc - in a sociological
      sense this is a movement from the egalitarian to the aristocratic to the
      egalitarian etc and is covered in recent work on small world networks etc.

      The development of consciousness as language covers the emergence of
      mediation dynamics in dealing with local contexts and as such grounds
      language/consciousness in uncertainty. This ground is discoverable when we
      move to meta-level analysis of specialist languages - such as Gödel's focus
      on mathematics or Heisenberg's focus on basic physics. NOT understanding the
      dynamics of the neurology has led to a perspective of uncertainty being the
      ground of the universe when in fact it is only the ground of mediation.
      Certainty is in the realm of the UNCONSCIOUS in the form of
      instincts/habits/memories. What is implicit in this is that to maintain the
      precision possible in mediation we have to (a) store the mediation processes
      and (b) never stop mediating since to do so is to surrender to symmetry and
      so live off instincts/habits and so fall back on approximations, on generals
      and so lose local context sensitivity (and that includes the dynamics of

      The essential feature here in regard to consciousness is in its emergence
      from relational space, mediation space, and so its dependence on movement,
      on dynamics, to exist. If there is nothing to mediate we fall back on
      instincts/habits aka auto-pilot. This focus presents us with the perspective
      of the monadic of Leibnitz (symmetry bias, the 'one', a closed system) and
      the dyadic perspective of Descartes (anti-symmetry/asymmetry where a parts
      perspective can be transcended by emergence of a unique form out of
      relational space - this can also elicit paradox).

      Given the dynamics of existentialism, the lived perspective that demands
      mediation at all times with local context, so its grounding is in the cogito
      and with that comes the at time chronic sense of uncertainty.

    • chris lofting
      ... The path to higher education is a path to de-socialisation (social fragmentation as individuals learn to fight for themselves). The core focus on
      Message 2 of 24 , Feb 7, 2009
      • 0 Attachment
        > -----Original Message-----
        > From: existlist@yahoogroups.com
        > [mailto:existlist@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of bhvwd
        > Sent: Sunday, 8 February 2009 9:48 AM
        > To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
        > Subject: [existlist] Re: Against bad manners
        > --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, Susan Schnelbach <susan@...> wrote:
        > >
        > > All right, children. Play nice and no more name calling.
        > Discussions
        > > seem to be getting a little heated and rude. Remember, this is just
        > a
        > > discussion group about philosophy -- it isn't important enough to
        > get
        > > emotionally worked up about. Also, let's drop the political topics
        > > unless is directly relates to philosophy.
        > >
        > >
        > > - Susan
        > >Philosophy of education. It appears education is a prime target for
        > reductions in the stimulus package. There seems bipartisan
        > rejection of higher spending on education. People do not like
        > the orientation of educational philosophy. They come from all
        > over the political spectrum and dislike education for
        > multiple reasons.

        The path to higher education is a path to de-socialisation (social
        fragmentation as individuals learn to 'fight' for themselves). The core
        focus on education is socialisation at the primary/secondary/cheap-tertiary
        levels. The other form of education is education for understanding and that
        can be considered 'dangerous' to the current crop of politicians etc. High
        level tertiary education or extreme specialist master-apprentice education
        can be interpreted as a waste of money - it does not maintain the capitalist
        turn-over requirements of goods and services within a generation. The
        standard sequence of PROCESS is defined by four categories - production,
        distribution, filtration, exchange. These then break down into:

        production: re-production, new production
        distribution: external, internal (aka consumption)
        filtration: unconditional, conditional
        exchange: competitive, cooperative

        re-production is less costly than new production.
        unconditional filtration is less costly then conditional (the latter where
        quality control is in the hands of subjectivity rather than imposed from
        competitive exchange is less costly than cooperative in that the latter sets
        up dependencies that can 'block' extremes where it is in extremes that
        capitalism makes money (the current crisis was predicated some time ago and
        many 'in the know' got out then - mindful greed dominated mindless greed -
        or else used the bail-out money 'inappropriately')

        Extended education expands the 'filtration' realm and that is detrimental to
        capitalism that prefers that area to be only dominated by 'market forces'.

        The high end education is thus sold to capitalism to cover the R&D costs or
        else are covered in joint university/corporate development. The latter is an
        issue in that it can 'corrupt' 'education for understanding' in that the
        understanding is copyrighted etc and access restricted and so if filtration
        cannot be stopped other than for 'market forces' then it is managed by
        capitalism itself - potential filtering rules etc are restricted/delayed in
        publication/release or made too costly for the average person to acquire.

        The attraction of higher education is for the more asymmetric thinkers
        where, on the other hand, most are maintained at a symmetric level of
        thinking, social/dream-like, repetition, reflection etc (all properties of
        symmetry) dominate.

        AN issue is with the selling of PhDs where the requirements have become
        increasingly specialist (to a level of being potentially meaningless outside
        of a very few) or commercially sponsored and/or dumbed down - symmetrised.
        In a country where education is mostly free, public scrutiny of PhD work can
        raise eyebrows from a social perspective (usually brought to attention by
        the press) - 'why are we spending hundreds of thousands on some research PhD
        into the life cycle of a specialist worm living in a 1/2 acre plot of grass
        on the south side of a particular mountain when our schools and hospitals
        are short staffed due to lack of funds?' etc etc etc

        Note that these days, due to the past conservative government, public
        university comes with fees in the form of a government loan that is then
        paid off (automatically deducted from one's salary as part of tax) after one
        has graduated and starts to earn an income beyond a certain amount. There
        is also a second level of entry into university through paying upfront for
        those who did not make it with high entry scores.

        Most of that government got THEIR degrees for nix. The public universities
        also had their funding cut and were encouraged to seek out funds from
        corporations and so opened up issues of possible 'corruptions' - something
        already present in selling degrees, dropping standards to attract overseas
        students with money etc etc.

        From a SPECIES perspective, the development path has been to the emergence
        of reason from emotion and consciousness from reason. The DEMAND is to
        educate the brain, more so our frontal lobes/pre-frontal cortex and so how
        to use top-down regulation of our primate instincts; to use delay to refine
        our instincts if not to suppress them. Without that level of education all
        we have are 'smart apes' (as well as issues where our physiological
        development is slower than the demands of a consciousness-dominated society
        and we can be forced to 'grow up' prematurely).

      Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.