Archive | Philosophy RSS feed for this section

Why Would YOU Think Like Aristotle?

26 Oct

So why would anyone, you, I, or the person down the street, the big shot in the office, the bag person pushing a shopping cart  — Why would they, or anyone else, think like, or want to think like Aristotle?

The reason is simple: Because we are human.

Aristotle no doubt believed he came up with a higher form of reasoning. His followers, even to this day, tend to believe that Aristotlean Logic is a higher form of reasoning, largely due to the complex nature of its exceptions.  Fallacies, they are called.

So what is a Fallacy?

Its simplest definition is an error in reasoning: On the surface the argument looks as though it is reasonable and logical, but when compared to empirical data the answer simply does not fit.

The easiest fallacy to uncover results from not closely defining the terms being used. Often these are accidental. If you don’t realize that bacteria, viruses, fungi, yeast, and protozoa, are all called germs: If you don’t realize that some of these are good for you, then you are prone to making fallacies about them yourself or to accepting fallacies about them from others.

This is where questions come in. Even when you know that germs are a category, not things themselves, and even when you know that some are good for you and some are bad for you and some are indifferent — it does not hurt to ask yourself, or the person you are talking too, “Exactly what do we mean by that?”

Why Logic is so difficult to master is because there are so many potential fallacies that have been identified. The lowest number of known fallacies I have ever heard is ninety-nine.  The largest number is over a thousand.

In order to be a logician you need to not only recognize a fallacy, you need to be able to implement it; that is find it and correct it.

The reason why there are so many exceptions in Logic; the reason why there are so many fallacies is not because Logic is complex, but because it is simplistic. It way over simplifies so that our minds, which are incapable of handling the full extent of reality, can deal with, manipulate, and understand reality.

Once we understand that Logic is simplified reasoning, one that is not in any way connected too, or representative of reality, then we can use it to good effect. We take a tiny piece of our insanely complex universe, make it bite size so our brain can deal with it, and then discuss it as though it were real. We can refine our definition to the point where it can be understood and manipulated. We can discuss specific bacteria strains, or domestic cats, without constantly worrying that this small segment of reality is not representative of all reality, even though we are aware of the fact.

Once that is done we can use Logic.

Basically Logic is a system of drawing lines around the various parts of the universe and declaring “This is This and That is That”.

It is important to realize that neither This nor That really exist in and of themselves.

A dog is NOT a dog. There is a self animated fur-bearing thing out there in reality that we call a dog. Dogs share DNA with cats and humans. When we talk about dogs we often do not even realize we are discussing domestic dogs and much of what we say does not apply to their wild cousins. So we can discuss German Shepherds or Border Collies as opposed to Tea Cup Poodles or Chihuahuas.

I am aware I am beating a point in the head here, but it needs to be absorbed.

When we are using Logic we are not talking about “Things” we are talking about our definitions of “Things”. The things themselves do not exist independently or out of context with any of the other things the universe is composed of. The fact things can be treated as though they are separate entities allows humans the ability “Think” about them: To manipulate ideas about them: To, as far as humanly possible, understand them.

We never really know, no can we ever know, exactly what we are talking about. But we can arrange our definitions is such a way that we can discuss them as though we did know.

The problems of reasoning happen when we forget that Logic, Things, or Events, and our understanding of them, are all artificial constructs that allow us as humans to function within a universe we cannot fully comprehend.

© 2013 All Rights Reserved.

Advertisements

The Sixth Law of Identity

14 Jul

Now we have a tiny little itsy bitsy teeny-weeny problem in the <- . 

Ready?

There are two senses we know for a fact do not act the way we think the senses work.

One is what we see. 

The other is what we smell.

I suspect those two rascals the ears as well, but that is unproven.

The oldest cones in our retinas sense the color blue. 

But do those cones report this color blue to the optic nerve? Does it travel to the part of our brain that says what we are looking at is blue?

No.

They report to other glands and organs that relate to our ability to adjust to time. In other words our sleep cycle. 

Our noses sense smells called pheromones. But this information is not passed on to the olfactory system. It is sent somewhere else and causes reactions that could be called romance or lust. 

Ooops.

So we have to live with the conclusion that we do not know for sure what we are sensing and we do not know for sure how we are sensing it. Nor can we ever be sure what our bodies are doing with that information. 

This puts a whole new spin on A <- P.

We do not know for sure what A is.

We do not know for sure how well we perceive A.

We do not know for sure how we perceive A.

To make it worse when synaesthesia kicks in. That is when someone smells yellow, hears blue, sees the sound birds make, or hears someone touching them. 

All answers are provisional. 

Only questions have meaning.

If we can find the right questions.

It order to account for these types of phenomena we must add in the uncertainty of what might be being perceived.

I <-^- P

Hmmm. We have another problem. This one is with ->.

A = Rip/T -> I

I do not want to dig too far into Complexity Theory, Breaking Points, and Emergent Phenomena, but let us simply say the recipe sometimes produces unexpected results. Without trying to account for it we still need to include it. 

A = Rip/T -^-> I

So now we have: 

A -^-> I <-^- P

So lets take a look at one of the unexpected things in A -^-> I.

Most people are aware of Herd Mentality and are disparaging of it. That is where a group of livestock will follow the leader anywhere without question. Sort of the way people follow Rock Stars, Politicians, Preachers, and Talk Show Personalities. It enables unscrupulous slaughter-house owners to train Judas Goats to lead the herd through the slaughter-house.

What most people are unaware of is Herd Intelligence. This is where the intelligence of the individuals in the herd is low but the effective intelligence of the group is high. This is most obvious in ants that appear to have no intelligence as individuals but have been known to perform amazing feats of engineering in large groups.

If you recall P(EE) where EE is Experience and Expectations. If we add cultural bias and other factors that influence perception into the ^ of <-^- P we can pretty much cover the entire gamut. Other people from other disciplines can add whatever unexpected influence might occur here.

In short: 

Even if a human ever did come across an A = A situation there is little chance that human being would ever be able to experience it.

Yet, of course it appears that we do.

A baseball bat is a baseball bat and whether it is made out of wood, aluminum, or plastic, it is still a baseball bat.

And we all know it.

We are able to function not because A = A but because we can act as though A = A. 

The ^.  I call it the Bump, as in “The Bump in the road”. 

Normal humans only have three cones. Red, blue, and green. Butterflies can see ultraviolet light. Mantis Shrimp — The number of colors they can see is just plain scary. 

Two things that look exactly alike to a human might look like two entirely different things to a Mantis Shrimp. 

Thus our own senses, such as eyesight, limit out ability to comprehend reality, to reason through reality, and to be creative with reality, if we actually believe and treat reality as if A = A.

Or when:

A <- P -> B

When A as Perceived and Processed by P become Absolute Belief then we have an individual or group who are locked into mental prisons of their own making and will be unable to cope with any emergent reality their belief system does not encompass.

When A <- P -> U 

That is when A as Perceived and Processed by P produces a deliberately useful Future (Where future can be the time it takes to respond at the speed of light) Action or Reaction. Please note that an Action or Reaction can range from discounting the tree as not being relevant to the current situation, or a simple admiration of its habit (Habit means “Shape” to non horticulture types), or snapping its picture. It does not have to be a physical action or interaction with the tree. 

Thus P is aware, at some level, that other Actions and / or Reactions are available but are not included because they are not useful at the time. 

Thus if we expand the new formula derived from A = A out to its maximum we would have: 

A = DRip/Tn -^->DQ/Tn  = I (EE)/Tn <-^- P/Tn -^-> B -^ -> FAR/Tt

It is doubtful to me anyone would have any use for such a cumbersome formula aside from explanation of its parts and how they fit together. 

The simplest accurate formula we can use is: A <-^-> P = ? where A and P interact with each other in ways that produce results that have statistical probability but are not individually predictable. Yet managing, in most cases, to produce the illusion that A = A.

It is almost scary to me that I could do that to Aristotle’s poor little A = A. 

But to me it is just, well, obvious.

(C) 2013 All Rights Reserved

The Fifth Law of Identity

6 Jul

So far we have considered many things. Until now we have considered only one Perceiver and attributed only one Point of View to that Perceiver.

 

Humans are the only intelligent species we know about that is able to actively consider Points of View of Others, either other humans or other intelligences. This is a valuable ability that should be tended and cultivated. It increases one’s ability to solve problems, achieve greater understanding, and increases creativity.

 

But here we get into a real tangle.

 

How many Points of View do we have and do we pick it or does it pick us?

 

Logically A = A and there is only one Point of View.

 

Mapologically  An /T-> In /T <- Pn.

 

We need the T (Time) in our formula because Timing is often important to P.

Farmer George waits for the fruit to be ripe enough to pick.

Courting George must wait until the girl is old enough to marry.

Fisherman George throws back all that are too small.

Historian George wants to save the tree because it is so old it is a part of history.

Thus Time plays a part in our Point of View.

 

A/T =  A  A becomes A when A is ripe enough to be A.

A/T ≠  A   A ceases to be A when A is overripe, old, and rotten.

 

But…

 

Not everyone sees a banana as being ripe at the same stage.

 

Some people like their bananas firm and almost green: Others like them soft with brown spots on them.

 

Cooks who only eat firm bananas will wait until they are soft to make banana bread with them.

 

Therefore a Cooks perspective changes with whether they are going to eat the banana or cook the banana.

 

Thus

A = DA/T -> Iu/T0-n <- P

 

A is A.

DA/T is the difference in A over Time.

I is the Identity of A as Perceived and Processed by P.

Iu is the usefulness of that Identity as Perceived by P.

/T0-n is the length of Time A is Perceived as being useful for a specific purpose by P.

In English:

 

A is only A over the length of Time George Perceives of A as being useful.

 

At all other times A ≠ A.

 

But if we are going to discuss the fifth law of Identity, then we also have to discuss a phenomena called Pareidolia.

 

What is Pareidolia?

 

It is that wonderfully creative process that allows you to lay on the grass, look up at the sky, and see all kinds of pictures, creatures, things, etc. Or the stars. Those pictures aren’t really there. Our minds are able to recognize patterns in random events. This is an advantage for us. We can take the night sky, look at the random array of stars there, and create constellations in our minds. Cassiopeia and Orion do not exist until we look at them and identify them. Once done we can organize, study, and use the night sky to guide us home.

It doesn’t just happen with things that we see. In Lady Chaterley’s Lover, D. H. Lawrence has her attempting to understand what the windshield wipers are saying. I believe this apparently “non-episode” episode is more important to the story than is generally supposed.

Pareidolia enhances our lives with art and creativity of all kinds.

 

But:

 

Pareidolia has a negative side.

While it grants us creativity and gives us superior problem solving skills, it also allows us to delude ourselves and allows others to delude us when we are not self aware enough to realize what mental tools we are using when.

When we convince ourselves, or allow others to convince us, that random static on the radio or TV is in fact spirits of the dead trying to contact us — We have carried our wonderful gift of Pareidolia a bit too far.

Pareidolia is creative.

Pareidolia is NOT proof.

 

Add Confirmation Bias and you have Delusion.

 

I’m not going to go into a lot of detail here, there should be no need to. This is the day and age of computers. Even if you are not reading the blogged version you should have one handy.

Use it.

Research anything that interests or confuses you.

 

A/T -> I/T <- P/T

 

A over Time produces an Identity over Time that is Perceived and Processed by P over time even though A is a random series of events that have no innate meaning.

 

So. The Fifth Law of Identity explores the POV, or Point of View of P.

 

In order to apply this law we must first be aware there are always more POV’s than we are aware of. (Don’t bother to point out I just split an infinitive. I am a native speaker of English — Not Latin.) Or more specifically, I have a different POV of Grammar.

Which points out the First POV we have to be aware of is our own.

My POV regarding Grammar is that the subject needs to be revised until all rules, not just some, make sense and serve a worthwhile purpose.

We have to be aware of the POV’s of others.

I am aware there are people whose POV will discount everything I ever say based on my use of Grammar. After all how can anyone who refuses to dedicate himself to observing all the rules of Grammar, even the most idiotic, have anything worth while to say about reason?

And I have to be aware that my POV could be wrong.

And I have to be aware their POV could be right.

And I need to be aware that BOTH could be either wrong or right.

Now toss in the factor that whether either of us is either right or wrong may depend on factors neither one of us have any control over, and that the correctness or incorrectness may be fleeting, and you have something to wrap your mind around.

 

The Map Is Not the Territory.

 

A better set of questions might be:

 

When and where:

am I right?

am I wrong?

are they right?

are they wrong?

are we both right?

are we both wrong?

 

The best answer might be:

Depends on the audience.

 

And now we have to add:

 

Belief.

 

A <- P

 

Where P perceives and processes.

 

To Perceive an Apple and to Process all the data at hand to define it as a “ripe” apple, that is one ready to eat, is one thing. This is a conclusion. Conclusions are to be tested.

We may call a Conclusion a provisional belief. A conclusion is subject to substantiation, and when proven incorrect, can be changed.

A belief, on the other hand, is an investment of one’s own identity in a conclusion.

 

So now we must extend our poor little A = A equation further.

 

A = DRip/T ->DQn/T  = I (EE) <- P -> B -> FAR

 

Let’s simple it down:

 

A -> I <- P -> B -> FAR

 

Where A produces an Identity that P not only perceives and processes but forms Conclusions and Beliefs about. These Beliefs dictate FAR = Future Actions and Reactions.

 

Let’s continue.

 

B can be an Idea, a Theory, a Conclusion, a Belief, even a Delusion, or in its most extreme case, a Trigger.

 

What is a Trigger?

 

A Trigger is a reaction that has become so ingrained emotionally that it bypasses all intellectual contexts.

 

It is often induced by severe emotional trauma. I met a girl who had nearly been strangled to death. A man could not put his arm around her neck for a hug or a kiss, as is commonly done, without evoking an extreme fight reflex from her.

I met a man who as a child had been constantly yelled at and punished by his parents for slamming the door shut. One day he slammed his way out of the house — Just as a severe earthquake struck collapsing the house and burying his parents inside. To this day he has a hard time closing a door, let alone slamming it.

But a Trigger can be induced with less trauma over longer time.

I knew a man whose father taught him to spit every time he passed a Synagogue. Even though he disowned the teachings of his father toward all things Jewish — His mouth still watered every time he passed a Synagogue.

My late wife was a diabetic. She took insulin. A friend, who was an ex-addict, could not watch her take insulin because of the overwhelming desire it caused in her to go back to her old ways.

I’ve known several women whose mother’s potty trained them using running water. These women could not be around running water without wanting to go to the bathroom.

During the cold war the word “Communist” evoked a Mass Trigger Effect.

 

What is a Trigger?

 

Any emotional reaction that bypasses all critical thinking. Especially if it is disadvantageous in the current situation.

 

Not all triggers are simple.

Rituals, both simple and complex, are often used by individuals and societies as triggers to certain types of action.

 

Not all triggers are erroneous.

 

A boxer enters a frame of mind when he puts on gloves and enters a ring. This triggers a certain type of behavior. When the opponent raises his hand the boxer will likely strike.

The same person would not be likely to strike someone at a party who raises their hand to their chin.

The trigger was not present.

 

Thus:

 

A -> I <- P -> B -> FAR

 

Means that we must always question each step along the way.

 

The Identity we Perceive is not A, it is the amalgamation thereof. We tend to treat this Identity as though it were the Territory itself, even though it is not. Our Perceptions are limited, our ability to Process the information is limited, yet we develop beliefs and belief systems based on them. These in turn produce Future Actions and Reactions that are often so instantaneous there is not perceptible time lag.

 

Thus Time is a factor in FAR:

 

A -> I <- P -> B -> FAR/T

 

Knowing this a Map Thinker must ask questions at all five stages of A.

 

But first: The /T is not quite complete.

 

We need a superscript t for “trigger”.

 

A trigger is something that triggers a reaction. We can never be quite sure what that trigger might be or when it will go off. We can give pretty good guesses based on probabilities of large populations or on intimate knowledge of an individual or culture.

I knew a lot about triggers before I ever heard of one.

 

I read a Science Fiction story once about ( I think ) an alien who could read minds. Some very very intelligent people tried to outsmart him, but alas he always knew what they were thinking so nothing they tried worked.

Then the Mind Reader gave an order to a man who was not all that smart.

The man hit the mind reader, knocked him cold. Everyone was then able to jump in and hog tie the Mind Reader.

The reason the man won was because he did NOT think. He reacted instantly. What the Mind Reader said to him caused a Trigger to react. The Trigger was to hit, hit now, and hit fast. Without thought, without plan.

 

I dated a girl who would not allow anyone to put their hand or arm around her neck because someone had tried to strangle her. This had so traumatized her that putting an arm around her neck sent her into a violent panic reaction.

 

On the other extreme when I was a bartender I came across a woman. People who had known her for years had no clue she had ever been pregnant.

Until one day she saw some women putting their children on the school bus for the first time. And she realized that had her baby lived it would now be six years old and would attend kindergarten.

She had a complete breakdown at the bar.

Six years before she had had an abortion. She had not mentioned it. She had not thought about it. She had had no emotional reaction to it.

Until that day, when it hit her.

She had killed her baby.

And if she had not she would be putting it on the school bus for the first time today.

 

A trigger does not have to be complex or dramatic.

 

It can be as simple as suddenly realizing what your mother meant when she said “Don’t be Walter Mitty.” too you.

 

So now we have:

 

A -> I <- P -> B -> FAR/Tt.

(c) 2013 All Rights Reserved

 

The Fourth Law of Identity

29 Jun

TIME

The Great Contradiction

Agent of Change

Anchor of Continuity

 

A = AT <- PT

 

Once Time is added we have to conclude that A ≠ A.

That is Yesterday’s A is not Today’s A and Tomorrow’s A will be a different A still.

A0 is the lawn that was planted. It was not yet a lawn.

A1 is the lawn that I cut yesterday.

A2 is the lawn I have today.

 

Before we move on lets look at A0. 

Why start with 0 instead of using 1, the first example of A?

Because 0 has a value. The value is the unrealized potential. 

 Take one molecule of gold. It is gold. It has all the properties of gold. 

But it has no use. Indeed a hundred are of no use. How many molecules does it take to be useful? A thousand? Ten thousand? A million?

Let us say the smallest useful amount of gold that can be readily identified is one flake. That is a lot of molecules. That amount can be counted as one. The smallest useful amount of zero gold is the amount it is profitable to extract into useful amounts of one. Gold is in lots of places. There is gold in the oceans. But it would cost more to extract it than it would be worth. 

Oil is the same. In California a capped well might have a million gallons of zero oil in it. Someday the situation will probably change.

One fertile egg is one zero chicken or one-third of a zero omelette. 

One chicken is 365.25 zero eggs a year.

One grass seed is one zero grass.

You might want to consider this type of zero a “special case zero” but somewhere in the future when I get into Complexity Theory and the Magic of Emergence (Novelty be thy name-o) the idea of Zero equaling a potential of unknown outcome may seem normal, and the concept of Zero having a value may seem a lot less special. In a way it isn’t that special now. Think of adding 0.2 and 0.4. We now have 0.6. All three have value, but none of the three is 1 yet. They are still all three 0. 

In the mean time let us consider Zero to be potential rated from Zero potential to absolute potential when it becomes One.

And believe it or not, to me that makes perfect sense.

 

 

To get back to the subject:

A = A0…AFor the life of A.

Where each gradient from 0… is a discreet change that is detectable in some way over time. It may only be detectable using technology, but it still counts.

 

Yet we know that A is still A. 

 

At the same time we know that A is not A yet, it is only potential A.

We know a grass seed is both not grass and is grass at the same time.

 

Once we factor in Time we must recognize the Difference in A from Time Zero through Time for each section of Time measured. 

But:

Once we factor in Time we must recognize the Continuity of A as the same A that experienced the Difference. 

 

Yesterday’s Child could not walk.

Today’s Child took its first step.

Tomorrow’s Child will run.

 

Thus A, and our knowledge of A, is in fact Anchored in Continuity. 

We know nothing about anything until we know its past state, its present state, and are able to have expectations about its future state.

 

Thus: 

A = RD/T = I <- P

 

Where the Difference in the Recipe of A over periods of Time becomes the Identity of A as understood by P. 

 

In other words A is not only not A over time, but the changes undergone by A becomes the Identity of A as Perceived and Processed by the Perceiver. 

 

Thus allowing Aristotle to believe that A = A in spite of so much evidence to the contrary. 

 

Thus Aristotle is not an idiot. 

He simply did not take Socrates advice to heart. 

The unexamined A is not worth looking at. 

 

It also explains why stories, anecdotes, and Maps, are so important to human thinking. Without Anchoring to something, Time, Place, Concept, there is no continuity, and therefore no real understanding. 

It explains why people with complete maps that are well anchored, which compares to Deep Structure in linguistics, are more stable mentally and emotionally than people with Fragmented, disjointed, unanchored maps. 

 

Noam Chomsky, and others, have tried to account for how the two sentences:

Jack kissed Jill

And 

Jill was kissed by Jack

 

Can both be interpreted by the human mind as roughly equivalent. 

(They are not equivalent and do not mean the same thing, but that is a secret to be revealed later.)

For the minute we will simple accept that both sentences describe the same event. 

The question is “How does the Human Mind know this?”

The answer depends on Anchors.

If you do not know what a “kiss” is you have no anchors. 

To have a kiss explained to you is to be able to attain some understanding of kiss-ness, but it is free floating knowledge, unanchored, forgettable, and unexperienced.

To see people kissing is a visual anchor.

To completely anchor the concept of kissing a person has to kiss and be kissed. Once it is anchored a map, a model, a physical, mental, emotional, reference has been developed and is retainable and recallable.

If a person has only experienced one type of kissing, say that of parent to child, then the map / model is incomplete and the person’s kissing vocabulary is undeveloped. They may not fully understand what happened when Jack kissed, Jill was kissed. 

When the words are heard, or seen, a map is recalled, a model is compared too, and experience replayed, a video clip is viewed — Any or all of these things happen as fast as the human mind can operate. So fast the Perceiver is probably not aware of it. It does not matter how it is said, this same — NON WORD reference is made. 

It is important to realize that WORDS are not referenced.

Once we get past this Aristotelean Block™ to reason, everything makes — Not just sense — But simple, easy to understand sense.

 

The idea that Surface Structure Words refer to Deep Structure Words makes no sense.

Words refer to events as experienced by the Perceiver. 

A = AT/D <- P

 

Words describe the Qualities that make up the Identity as understood by the Perceiver. 

 

W -> A = Qn <- P

Words describe A which are the Qualities received, understood, perceived, and processed by the Perceiver.

 

When the situation is reversed:

P -> Qn (A) <- W

The Perceiver reports the (Noticed and Understood) Qualities of (A) using Words. 

 

In all cases the physical, perceived, experience, of P is referred too.

 

Deep Structure is the Experience of a thing or event by the Perceiver. 

 

Thus: 

Jack kissed Jill

Jill was kissed by Jack

Jack and Jill were kissing

 

Are all experienced by the Perceiver as similar (but not exact) experiences.

 

The fourth law of Identity can be expressed as:

A = EE/T <- P

Where A equals the (past) Experience and (future) Expectations of A over Time as Understood (Perceived and Processed) by P, the Perceiver. 

 

When A EE/T <- P in some significant way, then P -> A.

 

In English: When  A does not live up to future expectations in some significant way then the Person tends to deny that A is actually A even though A is still A in all other respects. 

 

Thus a stunted rose may no longer be a rose to a prize-winning gardener. A homosexual child may no longer be a son, or a pregnant child a daughter, to a zealot father. Or a thousand other rejections both petty and traumatic for any number of reasoning “From Expectations”.

 

I have stated before and no doubt will state again.

There is no way to separate the study of Language or the study of Philosophy from either Science or Psychology.

Experience is often not as remembered. 

Expectations are often unreasonable and demanding.

Reactions when Expectations are not met are often unreasonable. 

There is a distinct proportion here:

The more unreasonable the expectation the more unreasonable the reaction. 

Oddly this often becomes a cycle. The same unreasonable expectations happen again and again and the same unreasonable reactions happen afterward. 

I give Christmas as an example. 

Post Christmas Depression. 

You would think after one or two years of disappointment the Perceiver would change their Expectations. 

But that does not happen.

 

Back to A.

Our expanded formula:

A = DRip/T ->DQn/T  = I (EE) <- P

Where A is the Recipe composed of Ingredients and Proportions  that change D with Time. This Recipe produces perceivable Qualities that also change D with Time. This is the Identity which includes Past Experiences and Future Expectations that is Perceived and Processed by P. 

 

The Past Experiences and Future Expectations are so incorporated in the human mind that Aristotle, and future philosophers, were able to ignore them completely and insist that A = A rather than the what A really is.

A, any given A, is a process. 

The Qualities that process expresses produces an Identity. 

The Perception itself is a process. 

The Perceiver, in turn, processes the information. 

 

Reality itself is a Process.

Perception of Reality is a Process.

 

A <- P

 

A is not A. 

A does not exist.

A only exists when and how it is Perceived and Processed by P.

 

 

(C) 2013, All Rights Reserved

 

First Law of Identity

8 Jun

The Map Thinker’s ™ first law of identity.

When the Identity consists of those things that are objects in the real universe (As opposed to Concepts). When the Identity consists of those things that are concepts, such as freedom, God, government, goals. When Identity consists of things that are beliefs, such as a belief there are true psychics and those who believe all psychics are frauds. When the Identity consists of an event, such as the birth of a baby, or Christmas, or 911.

Identity is that which the Perceiver has learned to identify as distinct.

For the minute we will concentrate on those things that are “real” objects in The Universe.

Let us look at what this means.

And by the way, when you are looking at it, the math like looking junk confuses some people, makes it clearer to others. If it confuses you, just skip it. Just read the words. The math like looking stuff is only there to make me seem more important anyway.

The words alone explain it all.

A = I <- Pn.

Where A is that which is perceived.

Where I is the identity of A as Perceived and Processed by P.

Where <- is the perception as received (observation or non observation through various senses) or, you may say, is understood, by P.

Where P is the Perceiver who Perceives and Processes the Qualities of A that equal Identity.

Where n denotes the specific Perceiver.

Aristotle in his egotism, assumed every intelligent person would be a copy of — You guessed it — Him. He never took into consideration that someone else might legitimately differ with his view. He assumed anyone who differed was less intelligent — Or even less human than he was. Thus he assumed that A = A is the truth and that any intelligent human being would experience it the same. Thus you either agreed with him or joined the ranks of subhumans; barbarians, women, Blind, and Deaf.

Einstein was not an egotist, he simply did not take differences in human perception into consideration when he evolved the Theory of Relativity. To do so would have added a note of complexity that would not have helped his ideas in any way. Still he postulated an observer who saw accurately, processed the information accurately, and would report accurately. Naturally accuracy would duplicate Aristotle’s perceptions.

Something which seldom happens.

It is time we got off our high horse. Look the horse in the eye. That horse thinks. We may think things the horse does not, possibly because there is no use in the horse thinking of them. In this the horse may be superior to us. As humans we think many things there is no use in our thinking. In fact many things humans think are counter survival. Unlike the horse.

Aristotle assumed Truth exists in a permanent state.

There is no evidence that anything, let alone truth exists in other than a transitory state.

Aristotle further assumed that a human being using their mind alone could understand this absolute truth.

That assumption is unfounded and has a very low probability factor. The evidence is that it is extremely difficult for anyone to understand completely even the most obvious truths.

The tree is full of green leaves.

But do we all experience the same green from the same tree? Even those of us who are not color blind do not see the exact same green as others. I personally see one green from one eye, another green from the other eye, and a different green when I look with both eyes. I experience three shades of tree green. Should I ask, “Which is the ‘true green?’ or do I simply accept the fact that I can only experience that which I can experience?

Most of us would be horrified nowadays to be told that Deaf People and Color Blind people were less intelligent, perhaps less human than those who saw colors ‘correctly’ or heard ‘correctly’.

Yet when anyone attempts to apply Aristotelian logic to the modern world they are applying just those assumptions. They are imbedded in Aristotelian logic. They are embodied in the “Law of Thought” A = A.

The “truth” as near as it exists, is that each person who Perceives  ( P1,2,3…n) will experience any given reality in a slightly different way.

If an absolute truth did exist in any manner, shape, or form, we would not be able to experience it in any way save through our imperfect human senses.

Once we did experience this absolute, perfect truth, each person would have to process it.

An example of this might be an automobile accident. Let us assume that all observers are of equal perceptual ability. They are capable of exactly the same initial perception.

P1 might notice the action of the cars involved but not be aware of the colors of the cars.

P2 might notice the colors of the cars but be unclear on the action.

P3 might not notice the action or the colors of the cars. They might notice the color of the drivers.

Why the difference?

Processing.

Each processed the exact same information differently.

So Pn for each n processes different information differently.

One person sees Caviar and salivates.

Another is revolted by eating fish bait.

So now let us take an objective look, as objectively as we can, at two disparate A’s.

A half pound of ocean water and A half pound of rock.

No two things could be more different.

Or could they?

Ocean water is called salt water because it has so much salt in it. It has so much that it is economically sound to extract the salt from it.

Rocks have enough water in them that colonizing the moon is more apt to be viable because it can be extracted from them.

Oceans have organic matter in them. Probably because fish poop in it.

Rocks have organic matter in them. Probably because the neighbor’s dog pooped on it.

Ocean water has minerals in it.

So do rocks.

It is quite possible to hold a solid rock in one hand and a glass of ocean water in the other and that both contain the exact same ingredients.

Just not in the same proportions.

It is important to grasp this.

There is no difference between the rock and the glass of ocean water except the proportions of the ingredients.

An = Rn <- Pn

Where A is that proportion of difference which allows the Perceiver to perceive it as having a separate identity. R is the recipe.  If you find it difficult to think of A, say a rock, as a Recipe, read on, the concept is truly very natural.

This proportion of difference might be very slight.

One percent difference in DNA can mean the difference between one discernible distinct species and another discernible distinct species.

My mother was in the middle of baking a meatloaf when a bunch of panicked people raced into the kitchen yelling the problem. There were a lot more people coming to dinner than expected and there was no time to change the menu and cook more, or new food.

My mother, undaunted, said, “Hand me some broth. I’ll turn the meatloaf into  a huge stew.”

And she did.

She had an innate knowledge that the difference between many things is more in the perception than in the reality.

But she did not stop there.

Spaghetti  cooks quick. So she scooped out some future meatballs from the meatloaf.

In less than twenty minutes the meatloaf that was meant to feed six became stew with spaghetti and meatballs able to feed twenty.

Slight differences in composition and ingredients made huge differences in the final product.

This is equally true of humans.

The difference that makes us individuals is one thing and one thing only — How we choose to react to situations.

Let us apply this to our little equation:

A = R

Where A is the Thing, R is the Recipe.

Let us look closely at R.

R = (RsiRpi)

Where Rsi is the sum of the ingredients.

Here we need to keep in mind that stew is still identifiable as stew whether it contains salt or not or whether it contains oregano or not. It is identifiable as the same stew even though you add peppers to spice it up.

Where Rpi is the proportions of those ingredients.

Remember my mother’s stew and the meatloaf had exactly the same ingredients. The spaghetti and meatballs only had one new ingredient.

Where A equals the Sum of its Ingredients factored by the Proportion of those Ingredients. This creates an aggregate identity that can be perceived by The Perceiver. Which is then processed, categorized, and possibly reported to others via language.

The R is simply the Recipe.

In other words all of reality consists of recipes that consist of the same ingredients recombined over and over again.

Are we finished?

No.

The last produces more confusing clarification: We need to dig just a little deeper into identity.

A = R = (RsiRpi ) -> Qn

Or, written in English.

R is the Sum and Proportion of its ingredients expressed as distinct Qualities. These qualities are perceived as hard, soft, rough, smooth, heavy, light, tasty, smelly, etc.

Therefore:

A = R = (RsiRpi ) -> Qn = I <- Pn

A is a Recipe that equals the Sum and Proportions of its ingredients and is expressed as various Qualities that present a distinct Identity that can be Received by each Perceiver in a different way.

A tree is a bunch of bored quarks who got together for a little party. They banded together into little Ménage à trois to produce electrons, neutrons, etc. That banded together into atoms and molecules. That produced all kinds of parts of the tree. Those parts somehow all came together and produced the tree.

Wow!

Aristotle’s universe was very drab and boring compared to the real thing.

Just remember:

A  ≠ A

An = Rn = (RsiRpi )n -> Q = I <- Pn   

So (RsiRpi) can easily be reduced to Ripn

Looking at this alleged formula brings one to the same philosophical conclusion as arrived at by particle physics.

To wit:

A thing does not really exist except as a potential possibility until we perceive it.

But it gets worse.

We, who perceive it are, to varying degrees, deaf and blind and otherwise limited in our perceptions.

So we are not able to fully perceive that which our perceptions have brought into existence.

We get to that later.

Right now lets just shorten our equation to Rn -> I <- Pn.

A -> I <- P

All the complexities that go into the creation of A produces an Identity that is Received by a Perceiver.

R = A <- P

Or even:

A <- P

In English: A person, place, idea, or thing as perceived by the individual in question.

This is a perfectly fine simplified equation to use instead of:

An = Rn = (RsiRpi )n = Ripn ->  Qn = I  <- Pn

So long as we remember that it is a simplified, shortened form. 

 

 

© 2013 All Rights Reserved

 

Aristotle was an Idiot: Part 3

1 Jun

Aristotle was an idiot (Part 3)

 

We now come to the most idiotic of Aristotle’s three laws.

 

The law of the excluded middle.

 

Either (A or not A)

 

Either something exists or it does not exist.

 

Either a statement is true or it is false.

 

The tree exists in one sense. It does not exactly exist in several other senses. It is an emergent phenomena that we don’t have a clue how to explain. It is a novel emergence that is an example of the genus tree.

A river exists in a sense. But it has less existence in another some ways than the tree. The tree is a process that is slow. Its sap is a sluggish thing hidden from our eyes. Its other processes are also hidden, including the way it changes sunlight into nourishment. A river is a quicker process. It changes before our eyes so quickly that the water we were looking at the beginning of this paragraph is long gone now and other water from somewhere upstream has taken its place.

So the river neither exists nor does it not exist. It is an emergent phenomena that we are able to perceive and name.

Even the name is fluid.

Many of the rivers in California are creeks in Missouri.

Size matters.

Who is looking matters.

 

The biggest problem with the excluded middle is that it promotes ignorance and unreasonable thinking.

 

It promotes ignorant concepts such as, “You are either with us or against us.”

It is the kind of thinking that promotes bigotry, hatred, and superiority thinking — Either you think like Aristotle thinks or you are an ignorant jackass.

Either you give the answer that is in the back of the book or you get an “F”.

 

Excluding the middle, if a person actually did that, would be to take our society back at least 2,000 years.

 

ALL of science takes place in the middle.

 

Let me give you a quick course in economics using Map Thinking™.

Take a picture of a teeter totter.

When the benefits on one end equal the cost in resources on the other the teeter totter will balance. When this has happened the most efficient decision has been reached.

Note that economics is a great way of reaching decisions for future actions in all kinds of situations.

And it is far less complicated than logic to learn.

 

And where is this decision for optimal action made?

In the middle.

The center of the teeter totter where pros and cons balance each other.

 

The Bell Curve has so many uses in so many ways I cannot begin to even enumerate them all.

And where is the Bell Curve?

In the middle.

 

If you want to add Complexity Theory to the mix then you add the Power Law, a sort of Deformed Bell Curve with a serious slope, or slide on one side.

And where is this found?

In the middle.

 

All of the progress in science has been made either at the edges of our knowledge or in the excluded middle.

 

Steven Hawking makes a massive statement in “The Universe in a Nutshell”:

 

“The question, ‘Do extra dimensions really exist?’ has no meaning. All one can ask is whether mathematical models with extra dimensions provide a good description of the universe.”

 

And that, my friend, is Map Thinking™ in a nutshell. Not just about mathematics, or about extra dimensions — But about everything.

 

The excluded middle, in effect, rejects all maps, models, graphs, pictures, and actions. All that is left is the words and the definitions you apply to them.

Conclusions from these, in logic, are called truth.

 

Let’s go back to Steven Hawking:

 

“I take the positivist viewpoint that a physical theory is just a mathematical model and that it is meaningless to ask whether it corresponds to reality. All that one can ask is that its predictions should be in agreement with observation.”

 

One thing that places Aristotle totally in the idiot category is that in other things — He stayed, and demanded others stay — Square in the middle.

 

In The Nicomachean Ethics Aristotle constantly harps on finding the middle way between two extremes. Choose bravery, which is the middle position between cowardice and foolhardiness. Choose politeness which is between rudeness and servility. One should be neither a glutton nor neglect oneself through self denial.

Unfortunately those who chose to follow his thinking were more idiotic than he and they chose to ignore his sensible ethics.

Thus if gluttony is bad his followers believe there is virtue in starving oneself. If greed is a sin then self denial is a virtue. If lust is wrong then virginity is the only virtue. And son on and so on.

 

In other words Aristotle was only half an idiot.

 

His followers were complete idiots.

 

Come to think of it, this could be said of most religions.

 

Map Thinking™  places reasoning where reasoning should be, between the extremes, where reality lies and where the action is. Not at the extremes, which are dead ends.

 

Map Thinking™ is by nature both empirical and positivist.

 

That is Map Thinking™ first looks to empirical evidence. From the empirical evidence maps, models, graphs, charts, etc are built. The maps are checked for usefulness. Not for accuracy.

 

In Map Thinking™ comprehension of relationships are considered of primary importance.

 

I hope you will take the adventure into Map Thinking™ with me starting with how this effects the “three laws of thought” as espoused by Aristotle.

 

 

 

Aristotle was an idiot (part 2)

25 May

The law of non contradiction.

This is often written in the following dumb format:

Not (A and not A)

This takes a simple statement in English, inverts it, and then expresses it in math form. Nice way to complicate the issue for people who are not math informed.

This works great with Americans whose schooling has somehow taught them, “I’m no good at math.”

How an entire nation of people can be programmed into that five word sentence by so many teachers spending eight hours a day five days a week for twelve years would be easier to understand if most math weren’t relatively simple and if the job of teachers weren’t expected to educate the public.

Of course the same teacher will quickly point out that the above sentence fails grammatically even though its communication is clear.

Someday I will write a Map Thinker’s Guide to Grammar™. But not today.

So let’s make it simple English and simple math.

Either A exists or A does not exist.

It cannot be both at once.

There is a problem with this.

The Law of the Excluded Middle, which we will deal with next makes that statement.

Either (A or not A)

They make the same basic statement but they mean different things. That is why they are expressed differently. Seen as neither one makes much sense to a Map Thinker™ it doesn’t really matter but we will go over the distinction just because.

Not (A or Not A) means that a thing cannot both exist and not exist at the same time in the same way. Or you can say a statement cannot be both true and false at the same time.

I used the word “way” while most translations I have read say “respect”. I doubt if either one carries the exact meaning of the original. Even if you speak modern Greek I am not convinced you would be certain exactly what the same word meant 2,300 years ago.

Today we know, from quantum physics that some pretty large particles can in fact exist in more than one place at the same time in the same way. The largest I have heard of is a drumstick. The kind made of wood you play a drum with, not the kind from chicken you eat.

But lets take something larger.

Two things I love. Water and Trees.

A tree on a knoll either exists there or it does not. It (at present knowledge) cannot both be there and not be there at the same time. It may not be there tomorrow, it may be cut down, or zapped by lightning.

Unless of course you subscribe to the Quantum concept of parallel universes in which case there will be a universe where the tree is on the knoll and another where it does not exist there. How about the one where the knoll itself does not exist there.

But lets call that reaching.

The question arises, “Does the tree exist at all?”

In point of reality it does not.

The tree is a product of Emergence. That is the tree is built of simple building blocks that are built of even simpler building blocks that are composed of non-particles that are also non-waves.

Ready?

That may sound confusing.

It is.

It is a combination of my understanding of particle physics and complexity theory.

The tree itself is an expression of a combination of relationships that exist in reality in such a way as to produce a species we call “tree” and this is a particular member of that species.

So the tree is really a figment of our imaginations. We aren’t completely sure what is out there. We are sure that this particular combination of universal building blocks is identifiable as both a species and an individual and we call them trees.

So no matter how you look at a tree using modern knowledge it both exists and does not exist at the same time.

And we are talking about something we can cut down to build houses, handcuff ourselves to so others cannot cut them down to build houses, climb, kick, or hug.

In reality the tree does not really exist.

But we can treat it as though it exists in the same way as Aristotle conceived of it.

Things do not get easier when we tackle concepts instead of objects we can touch, hear, taste, hold, smell, see, kiss, or rub on.

A thing can only be true or false if it is narrowly defined. If the parameters are sufficiently delineated. The problem is that once a term is so narrowly defined that it can be true or false it must be agreed upon by two or more people.

In Aristotelean logic most arguments happen because those involved did not agree on their terms, their definitions.

Thus if we agree that Aristotle was the wisest man in history there is little we have to argue about.

There is little point in any discussion between us.

If we agree that Socrates was the wisest man in history then we also have little to disagree about.

There is little point in any discussion between us.

If you believe Aristotle was the wisest man in history and I believe Socrates was the wisest man in history then we disagree about everything.

There is little point in any discussion between us.

Aristotle wanted answers.

Aristotle constructed methods that would force agreements between people who disagreed. If you followed his rules only one truth could exist and the winner of the argument was the one who had demonstrated his was the true argument.

Socrates realized that what people believe to be true is seldom true and that what people believe they know to be real very seldom is. Socrates realized that what is considered knowledge is, like the tree discussed above, a fiction. It does not really exist.

Aristotle represents certainty.

Socrates represents chaos.

Aristotle, like any good preacher, gave the people what they wanted. A feeling of superiority over all lesser beings. These included animals, foreigners, women, and deaf people. He provided simple, easy to master, rules that reinforced this feeling.

Socrates, like any good scientist, sought to find the boundaries of what is known. You cannot explore any concept until you know where the limit of that concept is.

Here we have the basis of logic, both as a workable system of thought, and logic as a failure of reason.

If you believe Aristotle was God’s human gift to Reason, then I am an idiot and there is no point in your paying any attention to anything I have to say.

Your belief is your truth.

If you believe, as I do, that Aristotle did little or nothing to advance humanity and stifled human progress with lousy reasoning, then you must recognize Socrates as a martyr.

Our belief is our truth.

What matters is not that our truth is different.

What matters is that neither of us has the right to force the other to change our truth.

There is no truth.

There is only belief.

And our beliefs are maps.

The maps are not the territories.

Our maps, no matter how useful, are in some way wrong.

If we ask the right questions we may discover where our maps have gone awry.

The law of non-contradiction makes no sense.

 

 

© 2013 All Rights Reserved

ultimatemindsettoday

A great WordPress.com site

Don Charisma

because anything is possible with Charisma

War By Other Means

Politics & Philosophy

this is... The Neighborhood

the Story within the Story

stillness of heart

MUSINGS : CRITICISM : HISTORY : PASSION

The Guilty Preacher Man

abandoned illustrations

matchtall

A tall women amazon model WordPress.com sit

Gotta Find a Home

Conversations with Street People

Three Wise Guys

Best not to think about it

Mister G Kids

A daily comic about real stuff little kids say in school. By Matt Gajdoš

Ray Ferrer - Emotion on Canvas

** OFFICIAL Site of Artist Ray Ferrer **

The Judy-Jodie and Kelli Memorial Blog

A great WordPress.com site

A Financial Life Coach

Your Financial Life Coach

Storyshucker

A blog full of humorous and poignant observations.

Dysfunctional Literacy

Reading from a writer's perspective... and vice versa!

Top 10 of Anything and Everything - The Fun Top Ten Blog

Animals, Gift Ideas, Travel, Books, Recycling Ideas and Many, Many More

ajrogersphilosophy

A fine WordPress.com site

Thoughts

What ever I'm thinking