Archive | February, 2014

Beyond the Hammer

24 Feb

So we are going to deal with the extended concept of a hammer. If you wish, and I often do, you may make an actual physical map. Draw a circle, put a picture of a claw hammer, or write the words in the circle. Put it in the center of a large paper. I’ve been known to place tiny little toys, like for doll houses, on the floor or 4’ by 8’ sheets of plywood resting on saw horses. This is so I can move my concepts around as needed.

A claw hammer is rather simple in concept. You have a handle that you hold, that you use to swing it with. On one end you have a head that does work. In this case the primary use is to pound in nails.

Opposite the face of the hammer is the claw. This is used to erase the mistakes you might make when hammering a nail in. You can take it back out.

We have just paralleled a hammer and a pencil.

In this area the concept is the same. One end does the work and has the potential of making a mistake. The other has the ability to remove, or erase, the mistake.

Place a pencil somewhere on your map, far away from the claw hammer.

A claw hammer normally hits a nail.

A sledge-hammer normally smashes things, such as rocks or concrete. A sledge-hammer is much closer to a claw hammer than a pencil.

An axe cleaves the wood apart. A hammer uses nails to cleave wood together. Yet the principle is the same. A hammer can be as small as a claw hammer or smaller. An axe can be as small as a hatchet. A hammer can be as big as a sledge-hammer, which is about the same size as an axe.

 

If a hammer hits a nail how different is a stick with a curved end that hits a hockey puck? Or a golf club that hits a golf ball?

 

Once a hammer is paralleled with a pencil how much easier is it to parallel it with a cue stick that hits billiard balls?

 

So now lets follow the concept of use. An air hammer, an electric hammer, and a hammer that shoots out nails like a bullet, using powder, all serve the same purpose and are all called hammers.

 

Following this path along its concept line it brings us to guns as hammers. In fact we can say the bullets “hammered” into the wall.

 

A concept line with a gun as the source will almost automatically go to rockets.

 

Let us see where this brings us in our thinking:

 

We will use the scenario of  a heavenly body approaching dangerously close to the Earth.

 

If it is small enough and we have rockets large enough with enough explosive payload then smashing it like a bug with a fly swatter (Are you now able to “illogically” meld the concepts of a shotgun, a claw hammer, and a fly swatter into one?).

 

If it is not small enough and we do not have large enough hammer to hit it with then perhaps we can “nudge” the object with a payload that will move it away from the Earth, perhaps into the sun. In other words I am talking about using a rocket as a cue stick to pocket a comet into our big fiery light bulb in the sky.

 

Suppose it is so large we can do none of those. Then perhaps we can do a bit of trick shooting. Say knocking a smaller astroid out of its path, sending it around the sun in a close orbit that triples its speed and shoots this high-powered missile into the offending rock — knocking it off its path and away from us.

 

Mapologically™ we are playing a cosmic game of pool. Because people who think using Mapological™ Methodology see an obvious continuum between a pool stick, a hammer, a gun, and a rocket. Thinking of the various bodies in space, asteroids for instance, as billiard balls is no great stretch. If you have a good glimmer of Einstien’s theories, thinking of the sun as a “pocket” to shoot for is no stretch.

 

However, as has been pointed out to me, often rudely, that, logically and grammatically, what has happened is that metaphors and analogies have been used to draw parallels between things that have no real connections with each other. Logically and grammatically playing billiards, sending a rocket into space, firing a pistol, and using a hammer, are all separate, disparate, distinctly different. Then it is often pointed out that you have to be careful when drawing conclusions based on analogies because “They only apply so far”.

 

Yet to a Map Thinker ™ metaphors and analogies are only different in degree, not in kind. They are easier to arrive at, and apply, because they are not fundamentally different.

 

Also to a Map Thinker™ it does not matter how similar any two instances are in appearance they are always different to some, possibly infinitesimal degree, and one should still be careful what conclusions you draw.

 

Finally to a Map Thinker™ drawing conclusions is not of primary importance or concern. What is of primary importance and concern is the extraction of pertinent questions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Extending the Concept of Hammers

16 Feb

Hopefully now we are at a point where we can see the world as an interconnected, conceptual map, that we can navigate from point to point. Not simply in a simple line from, say black to white, with lots of  shades of greys and grays in between, but closer akin to a map of say a state.

The map of a state will show large towns, the capital, small towns, country sides, forests, and roads leading from one place to another.

So let us try this with hammers.

The capital would be the claw hammer, the most common kind.

A claw hammer has a handle to hold onto, a head that, in most cases bats the head of a nail, forcing the nail into a piece of wood. This most often joins two pieces of wood together.

Fully concepting this idea of a hammer as an item with a handle to be held and a head that does work we can conceive of an axe as an anti-hammer that splits the wood apart. It is still a hammer, it is an axe hammer, and it normally does the opposite of what a hammer normally does.

Interestingly grammar, as well as Aristotlean Logic, make it difficult for people to make the connection between the two.

Example: You can hammer with a hammer, but you can’t axe with an axe. You have to chop with an axe, even though you can turn a single-headed axe over and use it as a sledge-hammer.

This insistence that words must be used in certain ways because “you can’t” hammer with an axe or chop with a hammer, and “you have to” say it right or you are stupid, ignorant, or…Forces people into rigid reasoning patterns that reflect the either/or approach of logic.

Humans have hands at the ends of their arms and feet at the ends of their legs. Animals have paws, or hooves, — And Grammar Gurus actually talk as though humans DO have arms and hands and feet and animals actually DO have paws or hooves, or whatever.

And they don’t.

Humans have appendages we have names for.

Animals have appendages we have names for.

The reason they are so different is not so much because of biology but because of The Human Superiority Complex. Many humans feel they are too good to have paws and animals are not worthy to have feet. What save many humans from going into severe emotional trauma over monkeys, apes, etc is their lack of opposable thumbs — “Ah,” these people say, “Humanity is saved. It is still the superior species and is grammatically entitled to hands whilst those poor beasts have to survive with mere paws.”

This is fine for those who are Grammatically, and perhaps Logically, Pure, but a Map Thinker™ must grapple with the reality that hands, feet, paws, and hooves, are all both conceptually the same at one end of the concept line and conceptually different at the other end.

While it is not conceptually valid to speak of a horse swatting at an annoying dog with its hand, it is conceptually valid to say it swatted at the dog with its foot.

While it is normally not conceptually valid to say “My son grasped his glass of milk with his hoof”, it is conceptually valid to say “My son pranced in from the backyard on all four hooves neighing at me in convincing horseness.” Once it is established the child has been horsing around it would be both conceptually valid and humorous to say “He sat at the breakfast table and grasped his glass of milk with his hoof.”

As you can easily see  Conceptually Based Grammar™ would be far different from our currently Logically Based form of Grammar. For one thing it would have to be far less prescriptive and far more fluid, that is, creative. It would also be accommodating to humor as a natural consequence of Conceptually Based Grammar™ rather than an aberration from Logically Based Grammar.

By now we all should be able to see that by discarding Logic and Logically Based Grammar and adopting Conceptually Based Reasoning™ and Conceptually Based Grammar™ which are both necessary to Map Thinking™ we can easily see that our Individual Creative Potential increases exponentially.

This is done by the simple expedient of discarding the two most standard limits to our everyday thinking.

I’m going to let this blog chapter rest here.

What I want you to do is to take a week, or at least a day, and see just how far, and in what directions you can extend the concept of “Hammer” for yourself.

Hopefully you will do a better job than I.

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