Saturday, May 14, 2011

Science and Sanity

This comes from page 176 of Science and Sanity:

"It seems evident that the extroverted and introverted tendencies have some connection with extensional and intensional types of reaction; but, of course, they are not identical.  They influence the individual in the selection of a profession, and in the preference for some special trend of activity.  Thus, mathematicians, generally, have an inclination toward extension, 'philosophers' toward intension.  Now it is interesting to note that mathematicians have a record of continuous constructive progress, and at each epoch have produced the highest kind of language known.  Also, the most important achievements in the fields which traditionally belonged to 'philosophers' have actually been produced by mathematicians.  The 'philosophers', in the main, have a record of failure.

The reason for this difference, which is too remarkable to be a mere coincidence, may be found by application of the term 'order' in our analysis.  The extensional method is the only method which is in accordance with the structure of our nervous system as established by survival.  Reversed intensional methods disorganize this normal mode of activity of the nervous system, and so lead toward nervous and 'mental' illnesses."

So I want to stop there.  If you read my earlier post I was talking about some Youtube videos I was watching and how these guys seemed to abstract way out into grounds where there seemed to be no point and no referents established for many of the words.  I will not post the link, as I do not want to knock them, they are trying to find their way just like anyone else and who is to say is right for another.  It is only observation for learning purposes, it is not meant to look down upon.  I'm sure you can find many representations if you go searching.  But these particular videos I was watching happened to be created by philosophy students.  And it was interesting how they were reading books about initiation and seemed to have all the pertinent information at their disposal but they didn't condense any of it, there was no seeming synthesis into a functional philosophy or "way of life", no purpose.

So what did they lack?  They lacked order, no road map.  Many are seeking enlightenment or expanded awareness but at some point all of this information (it is not knowledge) becomes a nemesis.  We become bogged down by the sheer volume.  We cannot synthesize it and make it functional, well because we mistake the mental squirrel caging for realization.  But the mathematician or scientist he has the structure and so with this I think he many times mistakenly find his way into the 'higher levels'.  As Korzybski says, for one to be well adjusted he should be an extroverted-introvert or introverted-extrovert.  So the philosopher starts out as intensional, but to make his information functional he must become extensional.  This is just like saying that we first must involve before we evolve.  Nature has a periodicity to it, there are no exceptions that I can see.  Or we can say that balance must always be achieved.

And so I will continue with more the text because I just think it is brilliant stuff:

"As explained before, the structure of our nervous system was established with 'senses' first, and 'mind' next.  In neurological terms, the nervous impulses should be received first in the lower centres and pass on through the sub-cortical layers to the cortex, be influenced there and be transformed in the cortex by the effect of past experiences.  In this transformed state they should then proceed to different destinations, as predetermined by the structure established by survival values.  We know, and let us remember this, that the reversed order in semantic manifestation-namely, the projection into 'senses' of memory traces or doctrinal impulses-is against the survival structure, and hallucinations, delusions, illusions, and confusion of orders of abstractions are to be considered pathological.  In a 'normal' human nervous system with survival value, the nervous impulses should not be lost in the sub-cortical layers.  In such a case, the activity of our human nervous system would correspond to the activity of the less-developed nervous systems of animals which have no cortex at all.  It must be remembered, also, that the sub-cortical layers which have a cortex, as in man, are quite different from corresponding layers of those animals which have never developed a cortex.  It is impossible to avoid the conclusion that survival values are sharply characterized by adequacy, and that animals without cortex have nervous systems adequate for their needs under their special conditions; otherwise, they would not have survived.  This applies, also, to those animals who have a cortex.  Their activities for survival depend on this cortex; and when the cortex is removed, their activities become inadequate.  Their sub-cortical layers alone are not adequate to insure survival.  For survival, such animals must use not only their lower centres and their sub-cortical layers, but also their cortices."

So I will stop there and comment.  So what Dr. Korzybski is inferring is that we humans are not using our cortex as it was meant to function and thus we on the majority are functioning like animals.  This has been cultivated in the race psyche and so this is now "normal", normal in the sense that it is average.  A new standard has been set.  But in reality it is not "normal", we are not functioning up to the level of our capabilities.  Our nervous reactions mirror those of animals.  If we continue to not function correctly then we will begin to not survive.  And so when I think of survival, I do not think in objective terms as in, "I'll lose my body."  The average person is having his fun and drinking and being merry and does not have time to stop and analyze the situation.  He can easily stop and say that there is nothing after I'm dead without further inquiry and be done with it and go on functioning like the animals.  Personally, I think about the qualities I am building into my psyche.  What qualities or aptitudes can I take out with me and bring back with me.  And then we must remember that the world is not going to slow down or lower itself to level we decide to function on.  It is non-survival.

What happens to those species in the past who lost the ability to survive?  Well, they aren't around anymore.  Vitvan in his book "The Deva Line of Evolution" talks about the period when the sea creatures began to evolve and leave the water and develop lungs.  There was quite the struggle and many could not adjust to the new conditions.  He says that those 'individual spirits' were shifted to the deva line of development, meaning that they no longer incarnated into a 'material' configuration (body).  The lowest level of their development was the etheric world.  They weren't extinguished, but in terms of development, being able to incarnate into these levels is a great boon to the individual.  It can take 10,000 years to accomplish in the deva world what it takes 1000 years to accomplish on the configurational level, Vitvan says.  That is just a practical example as to the struggle for survival and how nature does not give any slack.  So this might sound like fear mongering (I hope not), but hopefully to one on the fence it might give them the motivation to seek to read Science and Sanity (among other books) and change the patterns that have been bestowed upon us due to our integration within this race psyche. 

It isn't easy and in fact its probably the hardest process one could undertake, but what does anyone have to lose except maybe some pride and an ego and maybe some friends?  Sure sounds like a lot to gain though.  And as I've said previously, it seems as though the separation is occurring, there is societal dichotomy taking shape, so this seems to be the time to make the push forward and make sure one stays on the positive, creative side.

If you want to continue reading this section, you can pick it up on page 177.

Thanks for reading.

Edit:  The more I thought about this subject, the more I felt like I missed the mark.  I guess the point is that the autonomous field is the Ultimate Cause and that cause/effect is the play within that field.  There is validity in tracing the causes of certain effects, but we also must account for unknown factors that we are unable to register.  And once one removes himself from the rolling wheel, cause cannot be seen as happening before effect and vice versa, as the nature of reality is a spiral and not linear.

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