From: Tennessee Leeuwenburg (email@example.com)
Date: Thu Mar 17 2005 - 03:40:28 MST
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In case you thought I was trying to say "Hey, I had that idea too", I
thought I'd clarify what I meant when I said I thought our ideas were
very similar, and what parallels I saw.
| The mind works through the interactions of two
| distinct modes of thought ? a non-linear (inductive)
| mode and a linear (deductive) mode. The interaction
| is the generation of metaphors. Every cognitive
| system can be decomposed into interacting pairs of
| functions ? one representing an inductive mode, the
| other a deductive mode. The key is the *interaction*
| between the two modes ? which takes the form of
| *metaphors/analogies*. It is the ability of the mind
| to form metaphors/analogies which is the heart of
| intelligence and it this which gives rise to qualia.
| Metaphors are *bridges* between two distinct levels of
I posited an interaction between an intuition and a formal system. I
thought of these as being a lot like the relationship between the ego
and the id, but different in important ways also.
You here talk about the interaction between a "non-linear" inductive
mode of thinking which interacts with the deductive mode to create
metaphors/analogies, which I interpreted as being cognitive objects like
ideas or thoughts.
Later in other emails, you say that the split is much stronger, and the
interaction less important. You say that the two systems split into one
which deals primarily with morals/values and one which deals primarily
with physics. Now, I would say that morals/values are things we
typically associate with strong emotion, and that deductive reasoning is
not something we associate with feeling.
You talk about forming ideas, and having those as the basis of qualia.
Metaphors, it seems from this account, are how we bridge between what we
feel about things, and what our reasoning tells us about things. You
seem to be talking about idea creation to me. It is not entirely clear
whether you regard these reasoning systems as conscious processes.
Now, I am not talking about idea formation, but rather about how choices
are made. I don't separate reasoning process by function, which is a key
difference. I think we have intuitive beliefs about physics in the same
way that we have intuitive beliefs about emotion, and that we are
equally able to reason logically about both.
However, both of us have identified that there are two kinds of ways in
which ideas get affected by mental processes - one way is relatively
formal, involving the kind of deduction one could describe with logic,
and another which is less formal.
Unless, of course, you want to say that you meant your "non-linear
inductive" mode to still be formalisable.
| The mind as a whole is a complex system which can be
| decomposed into sub-system ?Rationality? (lower
| sub-level) and sub-system ?Morality? (higher
| sub-level). The key is the interaction between the
| two, which is *the ability of the mind to form
| metaphors which enables it to understand models of
| physical processes in terms of models of it?s own
| internal value systems*! (Bridging the physical and
| mental worlds through metaphors ? similarities between
| moral laws and physical laws).
This seems to me to be very similar to a dialectic process between the
two kinds of thinking in my model.
You clearly regard moral laws as the exclusive domain on the non-linear
mode you identify, whereas I think it is clear that we reason in a
linear fashion about moral ideas. Clearly that is what people are doing
when they are creating objective ethical systems, for example. They may
be grounded on intuitive ideas, and creating a logical system is a
different thing to actually thinking that way, but it's clearly not just
a one-way street. The same logic that we use in regards to physics (laws
of non-contradiction, implication, transitive and intransitive relations
etc) applies to moral ideas also.
You might claim this is the level at which metaphors are created - they
are how the feedback occurs, and how we form models to apply reasoning
to. However, this seems to me a lot like the idea of a dialectic process.
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