atlashead

Sexual Ethics

124 posts in this topic

43 minutes ago, jts said:

Does that mean the entire literature of Objectivism should be committed to the flames?

 

I am not into book burning.  I am more into book ignoring (certain books,  not all).  I enjoyed Atlas Shrugged as alternate time line fiction,  my favorite Sci Fi genre. So I am not about to commit AS to the flames.  It was entertainment. 

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, anthony said:

Wiiliam (earlier):


"I like the Spock pretensions of Objectivism ..."

I've been puzzled by that.

What's the context?

On 2/16/2017 at 0:10 PM, william.scherk said:

With the exception of these conceptual slips, I agree with the main strokes.   Emotion is relatively easy to whip up, to manipulate, and needless to say, serve inhumane  and wholly irrational and destructive ends.  I like the Spock pretensions of Objectivism, even where I differ on scientific details.

The facial meaning is that there are pretensions in the formal teachings of Objectivism, among which that Reason is humankind's most potent tool/attribute -- and relatedly, that a reasoned inquirer needs to subordinate emotion, understand emotion, identify the root of particular emotional states. Since decision-making is quite often dependent on functioning emotional circuits, the identification requires steps out of Objectivist diktat into allied fields of investigation.

The fictional character Spock  was/is perfectly poised to understand the uses and misuses of emotion.  He could not be swayed by pure emotionalist argument, nor struggle to avoid his own half-human emotions overrunning logic and reason. Except of course when he was in rut. 

As with Ayn Rand's "Stomach Feeling" ...

Quote

Either you've misunderstood the role of emotions by Objectivist standards, or you could have seen Objectivists lauding the good Doctor (may be both). [...]

I sometimes see contortions.  Objectivist rage and all that.  Emotionalist language and emotional arguments. 

Quote

Spock is a character who portrays a fully emotionless man - and makes for an amusing foil to the other characters when he attempts to understand them, or they him. 

The character is evidently not stripped clean of emotions, being bi-racial.  A fully emotionless man is Damasio's famous patient, Elliot, which absence wrecked his life. The pretension to cold, logical, wholly rational cognition is then a nice target zone for me. I don't think Objectivists tend to master their emotions any greater than average, yet the pretense is attractive. If emotion is relatively easy to whip up, manipulate, recruit in service of inhumane, irrational and destructive ends, then a calm and collected culture of reason is where I want to live, at least in my mind.

6621493091_516eee284d_b.jpg

Edited by william.scherk
Doggy emotions or 'feeling states' or mood expression ...
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

William wrote: The facial meaning is that there are pretensions in the formal teachings of Objectivism, among which that Reason is humankind's most potent tool/attribute -- and relatedly, that a reasoned inquirer needs to subordinate emotion, understand emotion, identify the root of particular emotional states. end quote

Remember that line of Roark’s?

Toohey: Mr. Roark, we're alone here. Why don't you tell me what you think of me? In any words you wish. No one will hear us.

Roark: "But I don't think of you.”

It reminds me of something quoted on Fox news which may have been a quote from President Trump about news conferences, the one thing worse that getting scolded by Trump is to never be called on by the Prez.   

I have noticed that all the actors who have played Vulcans did a good job.  Is it because it is an easy part to play? Perhaps. Tim Russ who played Tuvok on “Star Trek: Voyager” is my favorite. The BBC is periodically showing Voyager and I have noticed a strong altruistic theme to that show, and Captain Janeway played by Kate Mulgrew rarely “shoots to kill.” Another odd thing is when I first watched the show in the early 2000 Captain Janeway seemed a bit too “all business” but now I find her very sexy.  

As an experiment try thinking and talking like a Vulcan. It will amuse those around you.

Peter

From Wikipedia: Tuvok is a Vulcan Starfleet officer who serves aboard Voyager while it is stranded in the Delta Quadrant. In 2371, Tuvok was assigned to infiltrate the Maquis organization aboard Chakotay's Maquis vessel, and is pulled into the Delta Quadrant. He serves as tactical officer and second officer under Captain Kathryn Janeway during Voyager's seven-year journey through this unknown part of the galaxy. He is the only Voyager crew member to be promoted in the Delta Quadrant (lieutenant to lieutenant commander).

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, BaalChatzaf said:

He killed metaphysics.  What is not to love about that? 

He killed reality?

I don't think you've yet explained what you mean by this.

Per my interests, metaphysics is merely reality itself. If you apply reason to reality there's epistemology.

Reality and reason--the two intertwined. Remove reality from reason--for us humans--then there goes reason. You're left with hypothetical logical structures, if that. (I see reason as logic applied to facts.)

--Brant

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, BaalChatzaf said:

I am not into book burning.  I am more into book ignoring (certain books,  not all).  I enjoyed Atlas Shrugged as alternate time line fiction,  my favorite Sci Fi genre. So I am not about to commit AS to the flames.  It was entertainment. 

What else was it?

--Brant

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
22 minutes ago, Brant Gaede said:

He killed reality?

I don't think you've yet explained what you mean by this.

Per my interests, metaphysics is merely reality itself. If you apply reason to reality there's epistemology.

Reality and reason--the two intertwined. Remove reality from reason--for us humans--then there goes reason. You're left with hypothetical logical structures, if that. (I see reason as logic applied to facts.)

--Brant

Metaphysics as practiced by Plato and Aristotle  is non-empirical bullshit philosophy which contributes no useful knowledge of the world  and has impeded (in the past)  the development of effective physical science.   By the 19 th century  physical scientists had mostly purge physical science of metaphysical baggage. In the 20 th century physical science  was totally cleansed of metaphysical rot. 

Metaphysics is (technically speaking) the philosophy or study  of being, qua being.  It is an extreme form of abstraction which leaves out anything observable or useful  which is why scientists who do physical science have little or nothing to do with metaphysics.  It is an impediment to physical science. 

Metaphysics and $2.75 will by a small cup of coffee and a plain doughnut at the local doughnut shop.  Which pretty well tells you what metaphysics is worth.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mind in Objectivism, A Survey of Objectivist Commentary on Philosophy of Mind by Diana Mertz Hsieh.

Philosophy of Mind. Philosophy of mind is the branch of metaphysics that studies the basic nature and capacities of the mind.  The primary issue of philosophy of mind is the “mind-body problem,” described in Anthony Flew's A Dictionary of Philosophy as the “problem of how the mind is related to the body, and of what properties, functions, and occurrences should regarded as, respectively, mental or physical” (Flew 1984, 232).  In the preface to Philosophy of Mind (an excellent and comprehensive anthology of the classics of philosophy of mind), David Chalmers lists some of the “central questions” of philosophy of mind (as conceived of within analytic philosophy) as:

What is the mind?  What is the relationship between mind and body?  Is the mind the same thing as the brain?  How can the mind affect the physical world?  Could a purely physical system be conscious?  Can we explain subjective experience in objective terms?  Does the mind represent the world?  What is the nature of belief and desire?  What is the relationship between consciousness and representation?  Is the mind in the head or in the environment?  What can we know about other minds, in humans, animals, and machines?  What is the self? (Chalmers 2002, xi)

Although philosophy of mind has been a hot topic in analytic philosophy in recent decades, Objectivism currently has no well-developed account of the ontology of mind.  Nevertheless, a survey of the comments on philosophy of mind by Objectivist philosophers reveals an unexpected wealth of published material, presented here by author in semi-chronological order.

Ayn Rand. Ayn Rand never published any substantial commentary on philosophy of mind, but her writings nonetheless offer clues to her views.  Early entries in the Journals of Ayn Rand contain unambiguous assertions of the metaphysical unity of mind and body.  In a 1947 entry she writes, And, to go to the roots of the whole vicious error, blast the separation of man into “body” and “soul,” the opposition of “matter” and “spirit.”  Man is an indivisible entity, possessing both elements—but not to be split into them, since they can be considered separately only for purposes of discussion, not in actual fact.  In actual fact, man is an indivisible, integrated entity...” (Rand 1997, 551). 

Rand reiterates this view in a undated passage eventually cut from Galt's Speech which states “man is an entity of mind and body, an indivisible union of two elements: of consciousness and matter” (Rand 1997, 663).

Rand also has some helpful comments on the mind in Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology, written between 1967 and 1968.  In a discussion in Chapter 5 on ostensive definitions, she speaks of both sensations and axioms as irreducible epistemological simples in writing.

Sensations are the primary material of consciousness and, therefore, cannot be communicated by means of the material which is derived from them. The existential causes of sensations can be described and defined in conceptual terms (e.g., the wavelengths of light and the structure of the human eye, which produce the sensations of color), but one cannot communicate what color is like, to a person who is born blind. To define the meaning of the concept “blue,” for instance, one must point to some blue objects to signify, in effect: “I mean this.” Such an identification of a concept is known as an “ostensive definition.”

Ostensive definitions are usually regarded as applicable only to conceptualized sensations. But they are applicable to axioms as well. Since axiomatic concepts are identifications of irreducible primaries, the only way to define one is by means of an ostensive definition e.g., to define “existence,” one would have to sweep one's arm around and say: “I mean this.” (Rand 1990, 40-41).

Thus consciousness, as one of the axioms of awareness, is clearly an irreducible concept according Rand.  (I do have some reservations about Rand's use of “sensation” here, but the basic point about irreducibility stands regardless.)

In the “Philosophy of Science” Appendix of Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology (based upon workshops given between 1969 and 1971), Rand addresses the limits of philosophy of mind, essentially arguing for a more restricted role for philosophers than generally found in analytic philosophy (Rand 1990, 289-90).  When asked whether “the relation of conscious activity to brain activity” is “a scientific question,” Rand simply replies “Yes” (Rand 1990, 290).  Then, after apparently agreeing that philosophy should offer science “certain provisos... such as that consciousness is causally efficacious and that free will is possible,” Rand argues that philosophers must also “define the terms of [the] question” because “in asking what's the relationship between 'mind' and 'brain,' scientists have to know what they mean by the two concepts” (Rand 1990, 290).  Rand is thus applying her general principle that philosophy must “be based only on that which is available to the knowledge of any man with normal mental equipment” without any assistance from “special knowledge or special instruments” (Rand 1990, 289).

Rand's most important commentary on philosophy of mind is very likely her praise for Aristotle's basic view of consciousness in a review of Herman Randall's book Aristotle published in The Objectivist Newsletter of May 1963 (Rand 1963, 18-9). Although Randall only briefly touches upon Aristotle's views on life and mind in that book, he does clearly highlight Aristotle's rejection of both the mysticism of dualism and the mechanism of materialism (Randall 1960, 59-72).  He summarizes Aristotle's conception of psyche (“power of living and knowing”) as “not an additional 'thing' besides the living body, but the body's power to do what the living body does, its function (ergon), its operation (energia), its culminating end (entelechia)” (Randall 1960, 64).  Rand approvingly echoes these sentiments in her review:

For Aristotle, life is not an inexplicable, supernatural mystery, but a fact of nature. And consciousness is a natural attribute of certain living entities, their natural power, their specific mode of action—not an unaccountable element in a mechanistic universe, to be explained away somehow in terms of inanimate matter, nor a mystic miracle incompatible with physical reality, to be attributed to some occult source in another dimension. For Aristotle, “living” and “knowing” are facts of reality; man's mind is neither unnatural nor supernatural, but natural—and this is the root of Aristotle's greatness, of the immeasurable distance that separates him from other thinkers (Rand 1963, 19). 

Such positive (albeit general) regard for Aristotle's view of consciousness is a common theme in Objectivist commentaries on the mind, such as Peikoff’s Objectivism: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand and Branden's Psychology of Self-Esteem (Peikoff 1991, 34; Branden 2001, 10).  (I was delighted to discover this review just a short time after finishing a paper entitled “The Soul of Aristotle” sympathetic to Aristotle's philosophy of mind (Hsieh 2002a).)

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In what part of the human body does the mind reside?  And has it ever been imaged by either sonic  or electromagnetic means?  

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One reads this stuff to obtain the simplicity of the actual, functioning entity and the ability to defend it. The "mind-body problem" is in the head of the intellectual, not the (human) entity. Most philosophy is blather, but it sounds important so the righteous philosopher would point this out to prevent the young from going off on irrational tangents. Rand did this by continually demanding "a philosophy of reason"--her philosophy, but overlooked or ignored or buried the simplicity apparently to magnify her importance or the importance of philosophy qua philosophy. We simply don't know if philosophy is the chicken or the egg in human (social) being only that each re-enforces the other continually over time. This is because so much happens not philosophy as in epidemics, military conquest, natural disasters, economics, climate, geography, scientific discovery, etc., etc., the various fluctuating ratios of which cannot be parceled out, all affecting the world(s) we live in, have lived in and will live in. Rand ignored most of it and merely claimed the absolute supremacy of philosophy, a claim substantiated only by freezing time, looking at the current slice, destroying the natural dynamics inherent in motion. Everything moves, although the motion is not necessarily seen.

--Brant

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
39 minutes ago, BaalChatzaf said:

In what part of the human body does the mind reside?  And has it ever been imaged by either sonic  or electromagnetic means?  

Your physical reductionism is tiresome. If would be good as far as it goes, but it goes too far. Yes, the "mind" can be reduced to pure physicality, but then it's no longer a mind. So too your thoughts here expressed on OL. In what part of the body do your thoughts reside? Your brain? If so, so too your mind. Mind is merely a collective description of what the brain does perceivable as such. This excludes the functioning of the autonomic nervous system, which is primarily in the brain too. (There is no need to discuss how the brain is hardwired into the rest of the body.)

Mind and consciousness are mostly the same thing, never mind nuance. Since you deny one, why not the other? Are you conscious or not?

--Brant

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 2017/02/18 at 7:21 PM, william.scherk said:

What's the context?

The facial meaning is that there are pretensions in the formal teachings of Objectivism, among which that Reason is humankind's most potent tool/attribute -- and relatedly, that a reasoned inquirer needs to subordinate emotion, understand emotion, identify the root of particular emotional states. Since decision-making is quite often dependent on functioning emotional circuits, the identification requires steps out of Objectivist diktat into allied fields of investigation.

The fictional character Spock  was/is perfectly poised to understand the uses and misuses of emotion.  He could not be swayed by pure emotionalist argument, nor struggle to avoid his own half-human emotions overrunning logic and reason. Except of course when he was in rut. 

As with Ayn Rand's "Stomach Feeling" ...

I sometimes see contortions.  Objectivist rage and all that.  Emotionalist language and emotional arguments. 

The character is evidently not stripped clean of emotions, being bi-racial.  A fully emotionless man is Damasio's famous patient, Elliot, which absence wrecked his life. The pretension to cold, logical, wholly rational cognition is then a nice target zone for me. I don't think Objectivists tend to master their emotions any greater than average, yet the pretense is attractive. If emotion is relatively easy to whip up, manipulate, recruit in service of inhumane, irrational and destructive ends, then a calm and collected culture of reason is where I want to live, at least in my mind.

Half-human - "bi-racial"- of course. I had forgotten that about "Spock". It made him a little more 'real' and authentic, but could more invite an admiration for his unemotionality I still can't share for the character. You raise good points, said well. The 'mastering' of emotions, only one. I don't like the image, I'm in the non-body/mind-split camp which precludes there existing two states  - 'lofty reason' contra 'earthy emotion' - or mind contra biology - or the "spiritual vs. the temporal"  - or psychology vs. philosophy -etc. - at constant war with each other for control. There is, no two ways about it, a single consciousness we each have, and the cognitive, conceptual, evaluative, emotional and subconscious components are only one entity, and together comprise the soul (the secular mortal 'soul', if you prefer) in full.

My few cents worth - It's not many years that I have been consciously thinking to that end (integration and alignment), but since I have, I find and can report a smoother mutual flow between my emotions and mind. I am trusting my emotions far more than I used to as they more accurately have come to mirror what's in my mind. No doubt about it, I had a period of "rationalism" prevalent in intellectualism (sometimes signs of it in advanced Objectivists, oddly), that has a lot to do with the damping down of emotion. I think it's par for the course in the field of ideas and ideals, especially early on. There's only one way to oppose the rationalism, as Objectivists well know, and it's by regularly re-applying one's concepts to real concretes. And definitely ~not~ by sliding the opposite way into empiricism. Any compromise with Empiricism* is the death-knell for Objectivism I think.

I'll add too, my sense that one should be very cautious about the studies and dubious findings on (e.g) EQ vs. IQ. and other clever-sounding contemporary 'type-casting', which seem almost designed to coax man/woman into boxes. I feel it leads to self-conflict, self-dissatisfaction and doubt, and false elitism, with the only apparent cure, more skepticism and "emotivism".

*[Empiricism, the philosophy not the science methodology, of course]

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Emotional Intelligence and Intelligence Quotient. EQ is new to me. I had to look it up and I am thinking “EQ” is “IQ” filtered through direct action with the portion of reality that deals with humanity and other living species. Every time I hear of a concept like this I flash back to family and clan living in the caveman era. IQ can make you be aware of reality but EQ leads to surviving. EQ is the essence of your soul (inner and outer personae) in a social setting. It evolves from family to society to political system within a certain geographical area. And then National EQ and coexistence and treaties or just leaving others the hell alone. So far there are no aliens to practice our EQ with. In the news this morning I read that that earth sized planet about 3.45 years away is inhospitable . . . unfortunately.

I watched some of the David Attenborough series Planet Earth II on BBC last night. They had a segment about chimps chasing down a young baboon and ripping it to shreds. The dominant male had first bite and then he shared it with others thereby gaining “friends” and “allies.” The whole show was gruesome and I turned it off after the bit about young Galapagos iguanas trying unsuccessfully to escape snakes. It was like that John Wick movie. One gruesome death after another.      

Since we cohabit in this cyber space I guess we exhibit EQ.

Cyphering not syphoning off, Peter.

Yahoo Answers. Best Answer: IQ - a number used to express the apparent relative intelligence of a person that is the ratio multiplied by 100 of the mental age as reported on a standardized test to the chronological age. IQ is the measure of cognitive abilities, such as the ability to learn or understand or to deal with new situations; the skilled use of reason; the ability to apply knowledge to manipulate one's environment or to think abstractly as measured by objective criteria (as tests); mental acuteness; logic and analytical skills.

EQ - is a measure of your emotional intelligence, or your ability to use both your emotions and cognitive skills in your life. Emotional intelligence competencies include but are not limited to empathy, intuition, creativity, flexibility, resilience, coping, stress management, leadership, integrity, authenticity, intrapersonal skills and interpersonal skills.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 2017/02/15 at 7:09 PM, moralist said:

 

Being religious, I regard the equitable ethical value-for-value business interactions of Capitalism as the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth because they are literal manifestations of Divine moral law in this world.

Whether or not people realize that law comes from God is irrelevant...

...because everyone can enjoy the blessings of keeping it.  nodder.gif

 

Greg

I am of a mind with this Greg. Apart from our obvious fundamental difference. What's missing from capitalists right now, and past, is *conviction* - in Capitalism. Put it another way, I can't see a rebirth of laissez-faire  ~only~ by means of the intellectual arguments from secular intellectuals and Objectivists. Independence from governments insisted upon by individualists and small businessmen, who are convinced of its rightness will have to be the major driver to achieve that end. While I consider Capitalism, in the Rand mode, as the consequence of a rational morality and individual freedom (not a derivative morality in itself) it is going to need many numbers like yourself, who understand with the conviction from experience, that people do best and are at their best when trading values. From "our" side, supporters of LFC in theory ought to do more to tap into them and combine intellectual forces, 'on the ground' - so to say.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Brant Gaede said:

Your physical reductionism is tiresome. If would be good as far as it goes, but it goes too far. Yes, the "mind" can be reduced to pure physicality, but then it's no longer a mind. So too your thoughts here expressed on OL. In what part of the body do your thoughts reside? Your brain? If so, so too your mind. Mind is merely a collective description of what the brain does perceivable as such. This excludes the functioning of the autonomic nervous system, which is primarily in the brain too. (There is no need to discuss how the brain is hardwired into the rest of the body.)

Mind and consciousness are mostly the same thing, never mind nuance. Since you deny one, why not the other? Are you conscious or not?

--Brant

The Cosmos is physical.  Every bit of it and always....

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, BaalChatzaf said:

The Cosmos is physical.  Every bit of it and always....

So you are the same as a block of wood? Be gone, woodchip. NO, Ba'al there is something wonderful existing in our electrical, chemical, physical beings and it is mental. Who mourns the loss of a wood chip? What about the loss of a tree? And when we lose a loved one, we did not lose just any "something."  

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Peter said:

So you are the same as a block of wood? Be gone, woodchip. NO, Ba'al there is something wonderful existing in our electrical, chemical, physical beings and it is mental. Who mourns the loss of a wood chip? What about the loss of a tree? And when we lose a loved one, we did not lose just any "something."  

Not the same, but describable by the same physical laws.  Humans are made out of a somewhat different set of atoms than wood chips and in somewhat different proportions.  

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, BaalChatzaf said:

The Cosmos is physical.  Every bit of it and always....

The mind or consciousness is physical. But it is experienced as something else. Thoughts are experienced as thoughts. We have free will because we are conceptual beings with a multiplicity of choices but only a small amount of time to act on them so, hopefully, we choose wisely. One choice means alternatives displaced. This is all going on inside our physical brains inside our physical skulls maintained by our physical bodies and here you are purblindedly denying the consequences of all this physicality which is the mind or consciousness. Yeah, the consequences are reducible to the physical source. Big frickin' deal! So is self-awareness.

So, I ask you again, are you conscious? Are you self aware?

I'll grant you not having a mind for I've a mind to.

--Brant

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sundays are slow days on the OL front porch, which means you can ramble, argue with yourself, and end up slightly less confused than when you started.

7 hours ago, anthony said:

Any compromise with Empiricism* is the death-knell for Objectivism

That would make a good OT. 

Quote

I'll add too, my sense that one should be very cautious about the studies and dubious findings on (e.g) EQ vs. IQ. and other clever-sounding contemporary 'type-casting', which seem almost designed to coax man/woman into boxes. I feel it leads to self-conflict, self-dissatisfaction and doubt, and false elitism, with the only apparent cure, more skepticism and "emotivism".

*[Empiricism, the philosophy not the science methodology, of course]

Measuring and interpreting an 'Intelligence Quotient' is one thing, with a long and controversial historical record, ripe for discussion in itself. EQ is another thing. I don't recognize EQ unless it means 'Emotional [Intelligence] Quotient' ...  I know of pop-psychology conceptual bogs around the notion of Emotional Intelligence. Is that what you had in mind? Like the "Sexual Intelligence" pseudo-psychology? (Peter's Yahoo list of 'may include' attributes of EI rendered its definition a melting pot of flab and fashionable babble.)

"The studies on EQ versus IQ" could be interesting, even if fat with pop-psychological assumptions, if they returned solid and useful findings. For me it has to align with neurophysiology and add detail and insight to be interesting. I would look for ''what brain behaviour and anatomy are you talking about, what deficits and surfeits, what syndromes and rare conditions are better explained by the answer to your study questions?"

I mean, let's say that some kind of questionnaire has been devised, an 'emotional intelligence scale.'  I think that a valid scale will be useful in constrained circumstances, eg, probing for individual deficits.  

With a valid and useful measurement, a  person could discover that they have problems in assessing emotions like fear or anger on another person's face. Troubling behavioural syndromes might be better identified and ameliorated by flags of incomplete or absent 'quotient' values -- ie, studies concurrently examining IQ and putative EIQ would show physiological patterns of norm-failure, allow precise scaling of severity  indicators of, say, autism, and other emotional syndromes tied to malfunctioning or absent brain circuitry. (one could say that characteristic patterned emotional-intelligence deficits of classic autism needed no great rigorous inquiry to suss out.)  On the other hand, an investigative stance of  IQ versus EIQ assumes adversarial relation rather than a norm of dynamic integration, adversarial 'modules' fighting instead of cooperating within the formation of a global Intelligence. 

Still, what if a  standardized measure  told my employer I had an EQ of only 58?  Or if a child's file was flagged with a characteristic Ted Bundy 'signal' in his scores?   What if I could be better trained to objectively measure the emotions and their influences, to aid my goals and values?

Along with those puzzles, I think I will find mostly swamp, but  will put on waders and see if my prejudices are reflected in today's 'the studies.'  Some device or scale may have been put through rigorous review, and achieved above the gold standard in face validity, inter-rater reliability, test-retest reliability, sampling validity and so on. Some devices will inhabit the netherworld of "Our test shows how big your heart is," or "Are you a Vulcan?" or "Are you Hitler or are you Stalin?" 

So, yeah, be demanding of  well-tested evidence that a measurement device actually measures something conceptually-distinct, of the world, and that the measurements give accurate and useful results. Which brings you back to the rubbery definition of emotional intelligence itself.

What I accept is that social-emotional 'intelligence' deficits are marked out in some psychological syndromes. Not being able to accurately interpret the facial emotions of other people, for example, can lead to problems in living. The most extreme cases are in sociopathy, where others' emotions are understood and manipulable, while an empathic response is absent. A sociopath can evince a high "Emotional Intelligence" while revealing the heart of a snake.

A person with amygdala damage may lack the ability to recognize and integrate information displayed as fear, anger or aggression on another person's face, and so be more vulnerable than someone without lesions, injury, or deformity. A blunted or failed or over-active 'detection system' metaphor helps me grasp how a so-called 'emotional intelligence' blends into a notion of 'social intelligence,' especially in the sense of 'intelligence' as well-based information reaching the executive.  What happens when threat detection compels an impulse to destruction, and the impulse is not countermanded by our inner Captain Spock?  

Prisons. But I digress.

If a device other than advanced neuro-imaging machines can flag amygdala damage or 'lack of distress' syndromes and other neurological outliers, I am for it.  Until they come for me.

 

As for pigeon-holing, labeling, stereotyping as aggregation into a Blob of this or that, I think we probably have basic agreement.  One always runs a sorting risk of false-positives and false-negatives if criteria are not bright and clear, and our boxes and tags may not cut nature at its joints but at caprice. This is perhaps why I disdain an Objectivish attachment to the Myers-Briggs type indicators. I don't think they are indicative or reliable. Perhaps there will some day be devised a tool to measure a person's Objectivism Quotient, if only to compare high against low as players in the game of life. 

Would a person's high OQ and type indicator INTJ reliably predict flourishing, all things being equal? Perhaps the quotients all add up to a greater chance of a productive, happy life. Perhaps the quotients are only important where deficits and strengths are exaggerated. 

Back to the Vulcan and the Objectivish, I see a philosophical gulf. Fictional Spock invites confrontation with fictional Galt over Spock's utilitarian maxim “The Needs of the Many Outweigh the Needs of the Few.”  A decidedly Comtean phrase, by way of Dickens. 

 

Edited by william.scherk
Added another ten thousand words to clarify
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Brant Gaede said:

The mind or consciousness is physical. But it is experienced as something else. Thoughts are experienced as thoughts. We have free will because we are conceptual beings with a multiplicity of choices but only a small amount of time to act on them so, hopefully, we choose wisely. One choice means alternatives displaced. This is all going on inside our physical brains inside our physical skulls maintained by our physical bodies and here you are purblindedly denying the consequences of all this physicality which is the mind or consciousness. Yeah, the consequences are reducible to the physical source. Big frickin' deal! So is self-awareness.

So, I ask you again, are you conscious? Are you self aware?

I'll grant you not having a mind for I've a mind to.

--Brant

Thoughts are electochemical processes that take place in the brain and nervous system.  Get an MRI scan sometime and you can see your thoughts in real time. 

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Brant Gaede said:

Are you conscious?

--Brant

How did we get off the sexual issue mentioned in the thread name? 

Ba’al wrote: Thoughts are electrochemical processes that take place in the brain and nervous system.  Get an MRI scan sometime and you can see your thoughts in real time. end quote

So . . .  then, thoughts are real? *YOU* can see? *YOU* can see in real time? Emotions are real? My soul is real? If you say in real time, "Bob exists,” is that real?

Bob if you continue on with this mental charade you are sentencing yourself to a lesser, though perhaps not nonexistent, LIFE. It is almost as if you are already senile . . . not Vulcan. . . and not scientific. You are in a state of denial. Wait. Who just said "harrumph!" Was it *you* Bob?

Peter   

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Peter said:

How did we get off the sexual issue mentioned in the thread name? 

Ba’al wrote: Thoughts are electrochemical processes that take place in the brain and nervous system.  Get an MRI scan sometime and you can see your thoughts in real time. end quote

So . . .  then, thoughts are real? *YOU* can see? *YOU* can see in real time? Emotions are real? My soul is real? If you say in real time, "Bob exists,” is that real?

Bob if you continue on with this mental charade you are sentencing yourself to a lesser, though perhaps not nonexistent, LIFE. It is almost as if you are already senile . . . not Vulcan. . . and not scientific. You are in a state of denial. Wait. Who just said "harrumph!" Was it *you* Bob?

Peter   

"You"  is a designator, which in this context means the set of processes and parts of your body that manifest thought.  There is no abstract "you" that floats around disembodied.  The "you"  I refer to is a proper subset of  your body the the electro-chemical processes that occur therein.

I am a stickler for exactitude.  If I am becoming senile,  I have forgotten more then you ever knew in your young life.  I know more than you and I am more intelligent than you are. 

 Spock is my patron saint.  \\//  LLAP.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, BaalChatzaf said:

"You"  is a designator, which in this context means the set of processes and parts of your body that manifest thought.  There is no abstract "you" that floats around disembodied.  The "you"  I refer to is a proper subset of  your body the the electro-chemical processes that occur therein.

I am a stickler for exactitude.  If I am becoming senile,  I have forgotten more then you ever knew in your young life.  I know more than you and I am more intelligent than you are. 

 Spock is my patron saint.  \\//  LLAP.

You are Aspie intelligent delimited by bullheadedness. I know an Aspie whose IQ is so high MIT couldn't measure it. He has some of your same Aspie limitations without the bullheadedness. Unlike you he is much more intelligent than a Wikipedia article. You use your brain like a club.

You've made yourself dumb with your mental righteousness--and obnoxious.

--Brant

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Brant Gaede said:

You are Aspie intelligent delimited by bullheadedness. I know an Aspie whose IQ is so high MIT couldn't measure it. He has some of your same Aspie limitations without the bullheadedness. Unlike you he is much more intelligent than a Wikipedia article. You use your brain like a club.

You've made yourself dumb with your mental righteousness--and obnoxious.

--Brant

Better obnoxious and smart than obnoxious and not-so smart.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now