Notes Public

January 4, 2013

I fight for ignorance. And for keeping mouths shut.

There is no proof in philosophy. Proof, compelling arguments, work in math, and in many concrete situations. But on the large and somewhat abstract themes of philosophy there is a compelling argument and then another compelling argument. Say justice vs. mercy. Say adjudication between competing principles.

Either the philosophical situations are so complex. But we can lose our way in a situation without something being complex. We could be confused, or the situation could be a fluid one.

We could explore the notion that some subjects are essentially vague. For our words are fluid, and arguably, cannot be otherwise.

In our thinkings, words expand and confuse us. This is a problems not only for philosophers but for politicians as well. Politicians (and those who folow them) have no way to nuance their words in a philosophically appropriate manner.

Words and phrases have their own reality. They set up, like concrete.
Words form (the magic) stepping-stones.

Reality does not happen in words. Thought changes happen faster than words.
One event can generates a number of sentences. But perhaps it is plausible to say that reality is understood in words (and in sentences).

In history there is a reason for telling this. And not merely as entertainment.

We must distinguish thinking from processing.

The 'world' of science is not the world. We live in a context. The world is the context in which we exist.

If you are describing something concrete, a rough adumbration is a step in the right direction.
If you are inventing, designing or building something, an adumbration can be dangerous: you get off to bad start.

So which words do you use?

We honor you with truth. Giving information as a kindness.

What is a historical fact? Was the Battle of the Ardennes the ones seen by the individual troops, the battalion, the generals, the nations or the one seen on the world level. (Though Most things are not like the Battle of the Ardennes, and more like a barn in France.

What were early people like? There were probably a variety of people, like there are now. The earliest people in historical time (writing) were much like me.

What is their religion? It is not necessary to think that everyone took it any more seriously than some do today.

Some defining metaphors of philosophy.

    Plato's cave
  • Descarte's cogito
  • Wittgenstein's duck-rabbit
  • sense-data — reality is a construct
  • Aristotle's excellences
  • evolution
  • atoms
  • God(s)

We can call these POVs. The important thing is that there are other points of view. That is a lesson. not aspects but views, views of a lake

Language is not being there. ties in with stories and media safety.

Can lie and deceit in language to honor with truth. Huckleberries are here. (Built on knowledge of directions.) Use of language as get information in say Verizon phone store is a special kind of polite behavior. Sharing information is a relationship.

What uses of language would have evolutionary usefulness? Food, warnings. (There is the knowledge of and the knowledge of how to: recipes and descriptions.)

  • Food there now.
  • Warnings.
  • How to cook.
  • Food there then.
  • Signals of social moods.

It is plausible to think that the best language users have an evolutionary advantage.

There is a primacy of animals in our minds. They move. They are food and they are danger.

There are probably thousands of ways in words are used. Always room for one another. That is linguistic creativity, how new words are formed. They resonate.

'Knowledge' we should say is of many kinds.

Some people prefer, indeed demand, to view the world only from one point of view.

Your very objections to my book and writing exhibit all the elements of a fellow social manimal. Now you make be quite right, as in playing this role correctly, or you may be posturing—or both—as may I.

Our failure to come to terms with our manimality could hurt a lot of manimals.

The origin of speech went hand in hand with education.

We did not start with simple language games.

Even before writing there was memorization of what he said (memorable speech).

[on metaphor] Why do we think philosophy is like a landscape? Those are the processes we are dimly aware of using.

How can we describe a three dimensional word in two dimensions, A multi-process world with the mono-process of human attention.

There are questions about the world that have evaded our finest wordsmiths, our nuanced aesthetes, let alone our word processors and archivists.

Why is writing a book about the world so complicated? (Compare: name all the things in America.)

Language: Why is it so hard to think about language? There are so many different kinds of words. Why? How?

Surely we will understand language? Surely we will always have something we will call the understanding of language. We already do.

Agents have no agents... through sometimes they do.

Some words, like status, and culture, are up for grabs, subject to intuitive precising definitions.

Language is a land of unintended and surprising consequences.

Our knowledges are not stackable.

In ordinary language analyses of words, it would be useful to have a book with lists of common usages.

Can one speak different languages and still be in the same culture?

In The Emotion Machine, Marvin Minsky discusses suitcase words—words that contain a variety of meanings packed into them, such as conscience, emotions, consciousness, experience, thinking, morality, right, and wrong.
The word 'consciousness' is used to describe a wide range of activities, such as "how we reason and make decisions, how we represent our intentions, and how we know what we've recently done [p 128]." If we want to better understand the various meanings of consciousness we need to analyse each one separately, rather than treating it as a single concept.

Can one think without words (language)? One can do things that can be called thinking without using words? But thinking is arranging words in appropriate ways.

What do we lose with a perspicuous representation? The details.
I hope there is nothing that goes against the facts, though a lot that goes against interpretations.

Reflect on the word/sentence Yes.

On a new definition of education: I love it. But how can it be justified? As a mental exercise? As tradition?

Does everyone have a hidden agenda? [Who is the subconscious?]

When we listen with interest to Terry Gross ask Loretta Lynn about her song 'Don't Come Home A-Drinkin' (With Lovin' On Your Mind)' what exactly are we interested in?

Culture is a way of programming your brains

A general principle: multiple expectations.

A game, as in language-game, implies that it is not serious. It is seen as play. Not fully tied in with more serious behavior.

A game provides limits on behavior.

Books make me think there is only language. Books lack the tingles of humans.

We like to seek the truth the way we like to play Hide and Seek.

What am I doing when I am thinking? Who knows?

We can talk to ourselves? How is that? What is that? Who is talking to whom?

It is a difficult chore to turn off the stream of consciousness and our inner 'talk.' (The Buddhists claim, from experience, that it is a worthwhile thing.

The use of language is so complex it is not clear we can understand it.

Speech-act is a word taken from the world of language.

How do we see red? How do we see a human? There exists no ordinary language answer to this.

We have no word for our language-game. [Why would we?] [We cannot see it?] Other words for language-games: Language-concepts, language-reactions, language-contexts.

Language is a game in like tag is a game or hide-and-seek is a game. There are rules but there is also a lot of room for improvisation. And there is no field.

Will a new conceptual framework help with anything?

In real life sentences are spoken by people in a situation. We abstract (and extend) that in books, recordings, writing.

On books: the intimacy of books.

We live in the small. We live in distractions. I want to learn more about the history of Israel before the time of Jesus. I want top read the nonfiction book: new perspectives on Boswell's Life of Johnson.

When we listen with interest to Terry Gross ask Loretta Lynn about her song 'Don't Come Home A-Drinkin' (With Lovin' On Your Mind)' what exactly are we interested in?

The past (history, ignorance), the present (movies, Internet, books), the future (better ways of talking, diversity)

We can test for pattern recognition. It is a human skill.

We have a gut allegiance to simple conceptions and to simple systems. This is based on a presupposition that the world is somehow conceptual. The world fits OUR concepts.

How do we learn/know about culture? [Check out E.O. Wilson's imprinting.] Imprinting is not learned. It is a basis for learning. Learning is not learned.

Extension of words go along with their connotations and feelings.

Question: What is it we don't we see about culture?

Extension and metaphor are related.

Abstract nouns: easy to use, easy way to define something. Chemistry can't do it.

Reading philosophy and writing philosophy are very different. Like listening to music and writing music.

Interest is like Desire. [fundamental]

You cannot write how this word will be used. When you will pull it our insland, or in modify it with a precising definition. Rape. Thinking that an upskirt camera is a kind of rape. Statutory rape.

Phrases melt together and become words as cliché's In a word, is not primary uinst, if anything has meaning it is a sentence, Austin. Like you are intending to do something.

Assume that scientific language language is primary and everything else is chatter. This belies the fact that Fact that science (an extension of fact talk) is a project within the world of chatterboxes. [extension/flow of words]

Mind can think of computer programming better than think human. Langiage as a tool to manipulate. Specific sounds for specific purposes

True that I can speak a whole bunch of sentence including the one I am speaking now) and have no idea (1) how we do it or (b) what exactly we are doing. [multi-valence]

People are mysteries, have stuff that kicks into place that we are not aware of,. Falling down and extending hands And they have an order, not in meaning of words Mi>per se We can call these boundaries... people Priorities

Creative element in speaking (in lecturing, relation ships) if relation generates a canned response it won't be appropriate — greeting card response. There is room for canned responses.

The crudest of us are still delicate machine, delicately balanced. We know how to play other delicate machines.

We cherry pick history.

It's when an animal or a child puts together words in a different way they are thinking.

We have built in processes and more importantly, built in priorities

Books and writing present a de-contextualized word.

These are two very different judgments: "He could beat me up." and "I think he is going to beat me up."

Language is very very complicated. The demand for a simple answer is a mistake.

Our will is not free but it is constrained.

Did primitive man think like we do?

Do we think in words, or are words like the music we are listening to while we are doing other things, Two useful points of view.

We don't know what it is like to be other people. We don't know what it is to be ourselves.

You get the fake person (the author) to go with it. He doesn't expose himself much, Unless he is a first-person novel suits. We like the avatar, the mask.

Flaw is to think that man is made out of of 3, 7, 47 parts.

You could write down everything you thought.

The inner verbalogues and monologue varies with the time in your life but you can't prove that This is a secondary but precious use of language, at least for philosophers.

My book is not phenomenology, even though it is based on common phenomenological observations. Phenomenology: description of how things appear to us, and a conceptual structure that organizes these in a plausible manner.

Then there is obsessing, sometimes called thinking.

We express our thinking in words. We maintain it in words What was it like before language, written language. We will never know.

You cannot abandon your culture. Not to have science. Never know. Indians in woods:

We know what it is to say She is a beautiful woman.

But we can only understand by analogy and extension.

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