Essence and Form | Forum

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Interrogist Nov 20 '13

At a base level one has perception of concept.

Advance a bit and one assigns abstraction for conceptual reference.

A bit more and you come to recognize that many abstractions reference the same concept.

Identifying and navigating through such abstractions one interacts with concepts directly.

Having interacted directly one realizes that abstractions serve only to attempt communication of direct experience.

The map is not the terrain.

This does not nearly explain the whole issue, I merely seek to dedicate a thread to the topic and open the discussion.

The Forum post is edited by Interrogist Nov 21 '13
SIN_JONES Nov 20 '13
Quote from Interrogist The map is not the terrain.

Yet the map is prime in navigating it.

You keep placing this shit in Site Announcements giving the Janitors little jobs to do.  Aren't you considerate ;)

Interrogist Nov 20 '13
I tried to fix it, but that's not an option in the Edit menu.
Grimsmeer Nov 21 '13
Topic was moved from Site Announcements.
Grimsmeer Nov 21 '13
The option to move a topic you started is on the right side of the response box. All Users should have that option.

The Forum post is edited by Grimsmeer Nov 21 '13
JK Nov 21 '13

Quote from Interrogist The map is not the terrain.

I would argue that "terrain" is a meaningless concept akin to the Noumenon of Kant. I mean really, how can you describe a pristine thing without debasing it through language?

Sure we all give our best efforts, myself included, but these are invariably maps. Subtle-reshuffle of the realism/idealism divide.

UserX Nov 21 '13
Here's something topical to Essence, a quote with its commentary:

The Tao that can be spoken (expressed in words)
Is not the constant (eternal) Tao
The Name that can be named
Is not the eternal Name

The "Nameless Name" - that which existed before there was anything to name - is a synonym for the Tao.

The main idea here is that the Tao is a concept beyond reason and logic. It is the universal principle that permeates every action and every phenomenon, but it cannot be adequately understood through the rational mind. To comprehend it completely, you must exercise your intuition and get in touch with the fundamental divinity that connects everyone.

Lao Tzu is also pointing out the limitation of spoken words and written texts. Our tendencies to categorize, define and analyze only give us the limited understanding of how the Tao acts upon the material world. This is exactly what happens when we study physics, biology, chemistry, and other natural sciences.

On the other hand, if we free ourselves of this limiting human desire to put everything into words, and become aware of our wordless communion with nature, we can catch glimpses of a divine wisdom. Beyond categories, definitions, and analyses, it is wisdom far more profound than anything that academic knowledge, science and technology can offer.


thedeadidea Nov 21 '13
The map isn't the terrain and yet the irony is not a one here would or could do a philosophical work like Korzybski did to substantiate the point. The idea man is an 'animal of reason' is conceited on multiple levels. Reason is hard won process but not an end in itself. Those that wish to affirm nothingness as The Golden Truth should fuck off to to any one of the plethora of Eastern tracts that pursue that course.

Yet I expect with few exceptions the 'form' as it were will become a far more convenient emphasis when it suits. 

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