The Second Law of Identity

15 Jun

We start with the simplest form of the First Law of Identity as applied to objects in the real world, such as a dog, a tree, a river.

A <- P

Then:

AnT -> (A1…A) = C <- P

Where Significant Variations of A over T(ime) becomes a Group Category. A Concept of A’ness as viewed by the Perceiver.

Or:

Once enough examples of A have been observed A’ness becomes a  mental concept so that the next time the Perceiver encounters the next A they will perceive it as an A: That is it belongs to the Category A. Even though there is a wide difference between the New A and its predecessors.

In simpler language:

Once you have seen a Chihuahua, a Cocker Spaniel, and a German Shepherd,  you are pretty certain to be able to recognize a Great Dane as a dog even though you have never seen one before.

Like all things dealing with the mind this does not work perfectly.

If you have seen enough sheep to recognize a sheep you might think a goat is a sheep until you learn differently.

Also a thing can belong to more than one grouping. Thus a whale legitimately belongs with fish as things that swim in the sea and also as a mammal that nurses the young.

Words play a part in this.

Let us go back again to childhood to see how the next problem of Identity begins. I will call it the first step in Map Fragmentation™. It is normally done by a person with a minimal understanding of Reason who considers themselves a “logical” person swinging Aristotle’s Hammer™.

I can remember looking out the window of a bus and pointing at a big red truck with all the bright lights and loud noise. “Look mommy. A truck.”

My mother explained, “Honey, that kind of a truck is called a Fire Engine.”

A simple enough exchange, you would think.

Until I heard the father of a friend of mine tell his son, “That is not a truck. That is a Fire Engine.”

When I tried to explain it was a truck, just a different kind of truck, the father instructed me that I should inform my mother to get married so I could be raised like a real man instead of like a whimpering sissy.

What I took away from that was pure happiness that I did not have a father around who would act like that, and a profound fear my mother might someday get married and I would have to deal with someone like him. What I get out of it today is that what adults think they are teaching children and what the children are learning have nothing to do with each other.

What I also gathered was that to be a “Real Man” in The United States in 1950 meant to have an unwavering opinion and NEVER show any uncertainty, hesitation, or doubt.

What happened is the father used Aristotle’s Hammer™ to fragment his son’s map.

A (Fire Engine) is A (Fire Engine). Therefore it is not a truck.

A (Fire Engine) is not both A (Fire Engine) and Not A (Fire Engine). Therefore it cannot be both a Fire Engine and a Truck.

A (Fire Engine) is either A (Fire Engine) or Not A (Fire Engine). Therefore if it is a Fire Engine it is not a truck.

This type of reasoning not only fragments a person’s map, which is the way they navigate through reality, it does serious damage to their mental and emotional states as well. It makes it difficult for the person to make the connections necessary to maintain mental and emotional wellness.

The child’s ability to group things into a sensible Map or Model of the Universe has been seriously ruptured with Pseudo-Logic.

It may not matter if this only happens once, or twice, but you can bet the father will have a lot more subjects to apply Aristotle’s Hammer™ to. It would help if the schools somehow countered the process of Map Fragmentation™ but unfortunately they have entire text books devoted to Map Fragmentation™ rather than Map Creation.

For example small children are given books that help them identify cars, trucks, and airplanes. Cats, dogs, cows, etc. It is only later they are taught that cars and trucks are vehicles, and they may never be told that an airplane is also a vehicle. Somewhere, when they are old enough they will be told that cats, dogs, cows, and OMG even humans, are mammals.

I have been given several reasons why children are taught this way, each one (to me) appearing stupider than the last.

What it amounts to is that instead of giving the children connected maps of reality; the maps they would build if left alone; are fragmented in the name of Education using Aristotle’s Hammer™.

Most people…Eventually… Construct completed maps subconsciously on their own.

However certain institutions, such as the military, us an Aristotle’s Hammer to a power Thor would envy.

Some navy people get apoplectic if you call one of their ships a “boat”. Sorry, bud. A ship is just a big boat. A canoe is a tiny boat. In the real world, in spite of Aristotle, there is no distinct demarcation that makes a ship something separate from all other floating devices.

An army man once told me of a harrowing experience when he referred to his rifle as a “gun”.

He was forced to stand for what seemed like hours

First shaking his rifle while shouting, “This is my weapon.”

Then shaking his crotch while shouting, “This is my gun.”

Shaking his rifle again while shouting, “This is for fighting.”

Shaking his crotch again while shouting, “This is for fun.”

A penis is not a gun. A rifle is a gun. A gun is a weapon.

But then disassociation is supposed to be helpful in the military. They are, or were, taught to think of the person they were shooting at as a target, not a living breathing human being.

However:

Sooner or later the soldier comes face to face with the fact the target they shot was a living breathing human being.

That is Post Traumatic Stress Disorder served raw.

The Second Law of Identity is the conceptual recognition of groups of things in addition to recognition of individual things. The way an intelligence, any intelligence, recognizes the next example of a thing as belonging to a known group of recognized things.

The Second Law of Identity is necessary because the recognition of groups of things, and the connections between groups of things, is just as necessary to the thinking process as recognition of an individual thing.

To carry it one step further:

AnT + A+nT + ∞Tn -> EnT <- P

Where AnT is any group of things, say dogs and A+nT is any other group of things, say cats, and the two of them become an Extended group called pets.

We arrive at something very much like a Venn Diagram where cats and dogs are pets while mountain lions and wolves are wild creatures.

Except that wolves can be made into pets and lions cannot except in Texas.

Time to move on to the 3rd Law of Identity.

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