Kyle Jacob Biodrowski

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This could be true if you weren't purblind on how you already educated yourself to now about some things. Ayn Rand's opinions especially--and what it did to the entirety of your philosophical psycho-epistemology and method of discourse leaving no room for the "empirical."

--Brant

what's done is done and won't be undone and I'm through with this with my being unkind (and as for "kind"--I generally avoid it)

"To now". I'm not a youngster who has just become enraptured by Rand. I have said before it has only been the last 6-8 years at which stage I really started "educating myself" on Rand's epistemology, and then doing some serious personal thinking and applying it all to what I remember in past and to what I see now. Count nearly 40 years before that with mostly capitalism and some ethics that I knew -- little else. I was "purblind" then. I screwed up plenty too. I'm thinking clearer now than ever. And if you think I have had little interest or paid no attention to empirical evidence over all this time, think again.

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Those things you mention are un-reality, Michael. Self-evidently.

Tony,

I was talking about how a person who believes any one of those statements will define all the rest for himself, not how he will define all the rest for all of us in terms of a different perception of reality.

The power of premise and all...

My point is, if your premise is not based on reality, how good will your definitions be? But I agree with you that you will have strong definitions.

For instance, if your premise is that emotions are only reactions, you will develop a line of thinking where the mind works one particular way and only that way. But if you later discover your premise is not reality, that this is an error, that it is wrong, what will that do to the rest of your thinking about the mind?

The trouble is, when one looks at the facts, measurable, repeatable and testable facts that anyone can learn, easily in fact, one actually does discover that the statement, emotions are only reactions, is false.

"To be conscious, is to be conscious of *something*". Do you at least agree with that? I'd reckon that the corollary of this is: To be emotional, is to be emotional of *something*.

Of course self-aware means your are conscious of yourself, which is something.

But you are now trying to deduce reality from a principle by imagining a corollary and so on. Why not look at reality and correctly identify it?

Emotions have different causes. I could talk about emotional hijacks, which actually are reactions but have nothing to do with integration and more to do with an amygdala shortcut in the brain, or about automatic changes in mood from gut processing, even processing feces, which can be called a reaction only by stretching Rand's meaning of emotion beyond recognition, but that goes off into neuroscience.

So here is a simple example in plain language. Some emotions, like curiosity, have to be present before most conceptual integrations can take place. Curiosity can move you to act--out of thin air so to speak--which means it is a cause to observe, just as much as it can be a reaction to something you observe (internally or externally).

This is a fact, not an opinion.

I am discussing this because I would like to entice you into looking at something other than Rand and early Branden about the mind. They got a lot right, but they got a lot wrong. And in no way do I want to diminish what they got right.

Speaking of curiosity, have you noticed how holding hard to an ideology or core story is a curiosity-killer? You just don't have any gumption or energy to look at anything else. The very idea shuts you down inside.

I know that hump because I had to get over it. I even denied I was shutting down for the longest time, but after a while, I did start looking. Let's say my curiosity got the better of me. (Which is where I believe you are at a lot of the time--the clam opening the shell a tiny bit to take a peek before shutting back :smile: .)

And what I found bothered me--I resisted it at first. Man, did I resist it. Then I got pissed, mostly at myself. Then really, really curious, which is where I am now. In fact, I'm in the soaking it up stage. There is a world of information out here that answers so many of my former questions, I now wonder what in hell I was thinking before.

In my own thinking, I can't see any future or benefit in holding to wrong ideas--not when looking just to test a premise is so easy and ubiquitous in today's book market.

But I do understand why one does not look. I myself didn't.

Michael

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This could be true if you weren't purblind on how you already educated yourself to now about some things. Ayn Rand's opinions especially--and what it did to the entirety of your philosophical psycho-epistemology and method of discourse leaving no room for the "empirical."

--Brant

what's done is done and won't be undone and I'm through with this with my being unkind (and as for "kind"--I generally avoid it)

"To now". I'm not a youngster who has just become enraptured by Rand. I have said before it has only been the last 6-8 years at which stage I really started "educating myself" on Rand's epistemology, and then doing some serious personal thinking and applying it all to what I remember in past and to what I see now. Count nearly 40 years before that with mostly capitalism and some ethics that I knew -- little else. I was "purblind" then. I screwed up plenty too. I'm thinking clearer now than ever. And if you think I have had little interest or paid no attention to empirical evidence over all this time, think again.

Since you came upon Objectivism 6-8 years ago there is hope if you think of yourself as a younger man with his plasticity of brain. It took me nearly ten years to begin to reverse course myself, but I had no one to inform me about any of it. I just kept bouncing into things that were damaging. In the meantime, you and I are essentially not speaking off the same base or true context. We literally don't know what the other is really saying except me in the general way of which I tried to inform you.

--Brant

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If one puts Randian theory through one's own experiences and thinking (without skepticism) the sky's the limit.

Do you here mean methodological or philosophical skepticism?

As I use it often, the philosophical skepticism. The criticality of the methodological type can be safely assumed. Facts (or 'factoids') need hard and constant checking, naturally. It's a world apart from 'Skepticism' - of ideas, of principles, and of any and all philosophy.

Fact-claims need checking is my skeptical aphorism. A Big S SKEPTIC philosophy by your definition is a toga-age offshoot of the SOPHIST school who pretended nothing could be known. This kind of skepticism of course lives on in a degenerated fashion by stoners and hippies who say 'it's all vibrations' and 'you never know.' UFOs, Cosmic Consciousness, on and on and on, that skeptical Big-S backwash is one of my special pains and complaints with the world. The Know-Nothing skeptics are in politics and everywhere people settle. It is oddly anti-science, pro-mystic; there are 'subtle energies' and satanic-cult-conspiracies and no amount of my own fact-checking can dislodge that cohort of our fellow humans. These are indeed the people who will believe Anything. Without a coherent theory of reality and its integral nature, they individually 'socially-construct' their moonbeam and rainbows (or darkness and fear) view of the world. So, I would agree that there is a know-nothing skeptical retinue alive in our worlds.

So, you can see that theirs is actually a raffle-bag of Old Skeptical methodology in stark opposition to the reason+science methodology of the modern skeptical movement (which has roots in, you guessed it, Darwin, the Scientific Revolution, blah blah). In a way, you are the tightest ally with modern, actual skeptical flowering . Skepticism co-evolved with the history of the philosophy of science. Modern skepticism is everything from local science-clubs to the sternest Supreme justice on earth. The practice of law and history is an exceedingly skeptical process. The philosophy of science guides skepticism in turn.

I am telling you the truth -- I cannot know without qualifiers which usage you intend and sometimes whether you understand the distinction in your own sentences. I suggest you use big-S backwoods simplelton drugged out sky-fairy hollow earth UFO captives and so on Skeptic/ism when that is what you intend to mean.

Please have the patience of mind to follow my concerns here. Which of these statements includes the awful Skeptical know-nothing retreat from rational process that bedevils the acquisition of reliable knowledge ... ?:

-- if one puts Randian theory through one's experiences and thinking, the sky is the limit

-- if one puts Randian theory through one's experiences and thinking (without Skepticism), the sky is the limit.

-- if one puts Randian theory through one's experiences and thinking (without skepticism), the sky is the limit.

-- if one puts Randian theory through one's experiences and thinking (with skepticism), the sky is the limit.

-- if one puts Randian theory through one's experience first (and rational inquiry), one can reach cognitive goals: understanding, winnowing, conclusions.

-- if one puts a particular Randian theory to a test of experience (from experiment to logical analysis, to comparison with the fruits of other fields of inquiry), one can do useful mental work.

-- if one puts a particular Randian theory or claim (about eg, art) to a critical, skeptical test (using appropriate rational tools of inquiry) one will probably end up with a better understanding of the reality of the claim at issue.

-- if one does not 'test' Randian theory, one might mistakenly assert it as true and proven to the satisfaction of 'everyman.'

Will you please answer my question about the two skeptical periodicals I noted, Tony? Answer nothing else but that, pretty please.

And another run at the same door:

I don't understand when you hold a red card for illicit cognition, Skeptical cognition. Looking at those points above, which are Skeptical (philosophical), which are skeptical (methodological)? I'd like you to know that I always use 'skepticism' as a methodological thing, a necessary component of rational thought. I have no truck with the ancient Greek philosophical tradition. Moreover, I cannot think of an example here of anyone whatsoever proffering a Skeptical note on your contributions in this thread.

They are absorbing, those 'emotion charts' you put up every so often, William. I guess by demonstrating a range of emotions (though not I think exhaustive) felt by mankind you are making some conclusive point.

No. And I don't believe you think I was. When you do this, "Oh? So what you really mean is drown all the kittens, right?" I shake my head.

Go back and see why I stressed emotional universals and personal individuation. These are the two crutches to my argument. In a pistachio shell, one's 'sense of life' emotional responses will be individual, even if 'statistically normal. An appreciation of art can be cultivated, but the individual opinions will both converge and diverge from the norm. Emotions are thus variable. Thus tastes will differ.

Can someone say tastes shouldn't differ? Sure, but saying tastes shouldn't differ is like saying you aren't planning to die. But ya are, Blanche. But ya are.

"If there are differing emotional reactions to particular pieces of art, that is the way it is--no amount of 'ought-ism' [punny] can change that reality. If a piece of art leaves you cold but inspires emotion in your neighbour, that is the way we are as humans".

That there can be differing emotions (to the same thing) is observable and apparent. It is 'a reality' of many men. But is it "reality"?

This is needless smoke and confusion. In the context of moralizing on differing tastes I am saying that 'tastes will differ' and there is no philosophical argument that shows 'tastes will not differ' -- and no logical contortions can change the reality that 'tastes in art differ.'

A whole lot of 'aught-ism' and 'ought-ism' does not change reality.

You are coming at me with photon emotion bombs. But I am Spock.

If confronted with a beautifully done artwork of the most foul image which you can conjur up, say, of human suffering and brutality, the response of predominantly-rational individuals would most likely be of horror and disgust. Horror at the image, and disgust with the artist.

I refuse to answer, Your Honour, on the grounds that the Prosecutor has not produced the artwork in question.

More seriously, Tony, you are providing support for my point, by qualifying your claim, even while adding more moralist lard and whoopee. I have posed a fairly-competent depiction in realistic format -- a painting of war in Syria. You had one reaction, I had another. Your moralisms then, and your contempt for an imaginative perfectly-awful perfectly disgusting painting now -- were a kind of doll-house argument, in a perfect world. You don't really want to trade in fancies. It's like you want us to join you with the other ladies of the Temperance Union and denounce, with full emotion, our disgust and horror at your imaginings. Meh.

Onward Rational Art Patrol! something christian war

All I can expect is that you spot the flaw in this kind of argument goring forward. You qualify 'tastes will differ' with an implied 'not among predominantly-rational people.'

This is pony land where one proves some moral point by sketching a universal moment in pink when everyone with moral-intellectual integrity will express (and deeply feel) that same mix of emotions as you. Everyone is a special pony. Cue the communist Coke song.

But anyhow, forgive me my excesses, and yet another banging at the door, about your way up there comment on my Suck It Up, That's the Way Things Are, Princess. It is just an instance of 'ought-ism' that meets an object/subject named William. If William does not share your emotions on viewing the AwfulHorrorDisgust, then he is a non-rational actor. I am trying to make this fun for all, Tony. Sorry if I make it seem like I wouldn't eat your sandwich at the Objective Picnic.

I think that would be an appropriate, moral, rational and objective (and "fully human") emotional response. If they know it or not, their responses are based on their value-judgments and "the reality" that man's life is the standard of value.

Another individual comes to the same image, and feels delight - or indifference - or ecstacy. Here is true "subjectivity". (What would you think of him? would you even want to know him?)

You have written magical prose. Now go find the horror-disgust item that has attracted gushes of hysterical praise, name the guy and quote his words. Then we will all kill him and feast on his remains like dogs and pickle the rest, and your point will be proved.

It is like you are baking a perfect imaginary pie, Tony, and demanding why we don't taste the lashings of factor X you put in the pie filling. It's not a real pie. You can't anticipate our 'taste' sensations nor our emotion. The thing is in your head and trying to get out.

Put up a picture/sculpture of the disgusting pie that illustrates your argument please. We cannot peer into your imagination as well as you think we can.

And another sweaty attempt to keep a ball in play on only two cups of coffee ...

Is that "differential" indeed at all "wonderful" ?

-- at the risk of repetition (among Scherk's greatest sins) you are misunderstanding me

The differential between person A's taste and person B's taste and on into the billions is I believe a wonderful thing, and something to learn from. I wish you could stop trying to get everyone on the same dang bus (265 - Randian Way Express) at the same dang bus stop at the same dang time. It must be tiresome for you.

Emotions MAY be all over the place for different people, but to the varying degrees he is rational, predicts a reasonably narrow range of any individual's emotional response.

Tony, Tony, Tony. "He" is now a fully imaginary thing. You have sketched a tale to confirm your prejudice (that only an irrational/immoral person can like Awful Horror Disgust Art. It just doesn't set the dye in your fabric as effectively as you may hope.

So I disagree with "no amount of ought-ism can change that reality".

Sure. We disagree. I grind the same nuts again: In context, the reality that 'tastes differ in art.' No amount of appealing to emotion or wagging the finger or constructing fanciful 'what ifs' or you-must-agree 'ought-istic' scenarios can persuade me that the differences in art taste between you and me is a function of our degrees of 'rationality.

Maybe a larger philosophical frame will convince you that we probably agree with each other on several points implicated in your 'Big-S small-s' distinction ...

We agree on the components, but differ on how to label the product ... ?

Actually, I observed a lot of that in myself. The first bit was my own, and then some embellishing from Rand's insights.

I always like answers that are true, it's a while since I was scared of any truths.

Clarity, consistency and sustainability - of cognition and emotion - are the most important benefits of philosophy in one's life, I think.

Clarity In Language, thy name is not Tony Garland. Before giving Phil-ish notes on clarity and consistency, you should work to make your prose more clear and communicative. "I observed a lot of that in myself." What freaking lot of what? The first bit of what was your own?

As, always, your kind friend in Canada.

Edited by william.scherk

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But his metaphysical nature is what determines man.

Yes.

That is the heart of the matter, Tony.

I define metaphysical (beyond physical) as "the objective reality of moral accountability" which does not exist in any other life form. It has no physical form other than the good or evil our actions manifest into this world.

Greg

Greg, This is a very good appraisal, imo. You understand personally-held convictions and principle, while practising the self-responsibility and self-sufficiency which leaves others to do what they so choose. I will always heartily toast to those, no matter where I differ with you on the basics.

As I see it, we agree on the basics and differ only on the fluff. :laugh:

Greg

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Those things you mention are un-reality, Michael. Self-evidently.

Tony,

I was talking about how a person who believes any one of those statements will define all the rest for himself, not how he will define all the rest for all of us in terms of a different perception of reality.

The power of premise and all...

My point is, if your premise is not based on reality, how good will your definitions be? But I agree with you that you will have strong definitions.

For instance, if your premise is that emotions are only reactions, you will develop a line of thinking where the mind works one particular way and only that way. But if you later discover your premise is not reality, that this is an error, that it is wrong, what will that do to the rest of your thinking about the mind?

The trouble is, when one looks at the facts, measurable, repeatable and testable facts that anyone can learn, easily in fact, one actually does discover that the statement, emotions are only reactions, is false.

"To be conscious, is to be conscious of *something*". Do you at least agree with that? I'd reckon that the corollary of this is: To be emotional, is to be emotional of *something*.

Of course self-aware means your are conscious of yourself, which is something.

But you are now trying to deduce reality from a principle by imagining a corollary and so on. Why not look at reality and correctly identify it?

Emotions have different causes. I could talk about emotional hijacks, which actually are reactions but have nothing to do with integration and more to do with an amygdala shortcut in the brain, or about automatic changes in mood from gut processing, even processing feces, which can be called a reaction only by stretching Rand's meaning of emotion beyond recognition, but that goes off into neuroscience.

So here is a simple example in plain language. Some emotions, like curiosity, have to be present before most conceptual integrations can take place. Curiosity can move you to act--out of thin air so to speak--which means it is a cause to observe, just as much as it can be a reaction to something you observe (internally or externally).

This is a fact, not an opinion.

I am discussing this because I would like to entice you into looking at something other than Rand and early Branden about the mind. They got a lot right, but they got a lot wrong. And in no way do I want to diminish what they got right.

Speaking of curiosity, have you noticed how holding hard to an ideology or core story is a curiosity-killer? You just don't have any gumption or energy to look at anything else. The very idea shuts you down inside.

Michael

Michael:

It has worked the opposite way for me, with respect to curiosity and ideas. Though to be clear, I don't assess curiosity as an emotion, but rather an "action", one inseparable from a conscious, searching mind. One might say "I feel curious", so associating it with 'feeling', or emotion, but correctly one is stating " I am curious". To think, to be focused on *something*, is to be inquring - i.e. curious. Can't think off-hand of any more examples, but I've thought of others in the past, of apparent emotions that aren't.

Any realistic and rational ideology or philosophy should ideally give rise to emotions, very likely those of excitement and wonder, from the desire to explore more, testing the new tool constantly against reality and one's own vision and knowledge.

Personally, I had to face a battle with boredom (an emotion from "in-action"?) for much of my life. To counter it led me into various fairly hedonist or risky pursuits (not, thankfully, anything too destructive).

Learning to be inquring, pay better attention, sharpen my awareness and to use the tools of this philosophy, has dissipated most boredom and reprised much of that "wonder".

I relish the word-concepts that have evolved to describe all the emotions we experience. That was some feat of introspection and language by men's minds. There are many more emotions than that quite limited chart indicates. First off, there're so many gradations of a primary emotion like, say, anger. Then, if we factor in a wealth of emotional combinations ("embarrassed anger" -- "discomfited vexation" -- "anxious irritability", a few off the top of my head) we'd get into hundreds of permutations.

I'm an even bigger fan of emotions themselves. I think the window they open into one's own consciousness and that of other individuals is invaluable. Certainly, the range and subtlety of emotions increased exponentially from simpler, Early Man - to civilised, sophisticated, rational man. The reason has to be primarily man's conceptual growth. It is paralleled by an individual's evolvement too, I think:

The more rational, thinking and "active" he becomes, the more 'emotional'... Just not driven by emotions.

Emotions are one and the same time the instant "barometer" of how one is doing, of one's 'state of play' (simplistically) - and - as with happiness (in all its gradations) the reward, too. That's like having your cake and eating it.

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640px-Plutchik-wheel.svg.png

William,

As an aside, here is a wheel of emotions writers often use for emotional modulation. For example, you can move a character from irritated to frustrated to angry or vice-versa and it will feel right.

Unfortunately, I don't know who came up with it.

And I'm not too sure about the smoothness of these modulations as opposed to others that are not on the wheel.

However, it is a great brainstorming tool.

07.03.2015-22.29.png

There are many variations of this thing online. It is somewhat ubiquitous.

Michael

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I don't assess curiosity as an emotion, but rather an "action", one inseparable from a conscious, searching mind.

This is so well put, Tony.

And no matter how far our curiosity leads us... the horizon forever retreats from us.

Greg

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07.03.2015-22.29.png

Reminds me of another wheel from the movie "Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome". :wink:

BUST A DEAL - FACE THE WHEEL!

thunderdome.gif?w=1000

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Greg,

I couldn't read the words on the animated gif, so I found a still:

AuntiesWheel.jpg

I see words like:

Authoritarian

Underworld

Death

Forfeit goods

Spin again

... and so on.

How does this relate to emotion wheels that don't spin?

Something round with words in wedges?

Free association or whatever?

:)

Michael

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But his metaphysical nature is what determines man.

Yes.

That is the heart of the matter, Tony.

I define metaphysical (beyond physical) as "the objective reality of moral accountability" which does not exist in any other life form. It has no physical form other than the good or evil our actions manifest into this world.

Greg

Greg, This is a very good appraisal, imo. You understand personally-held convictions and principle, while practising the self-responsibility and self-sufficiency which leaves others to do what they so choose. I will always heartily toast to those, no matter where I differ with you on the basics.

As I see it, we agree on the basics and differ only on the fluff. :laugh:

Greg

It is good to find some intersection with another philosophy - which any shared realism will guarantee. As long as you recognize that objectively, man's metaphysical nature is pre-moral. It is simply his identity, what he IS (and what he isn't), which at the next stage determines his morality - a guide of what he 'ought' to do (and not do).

"Autonomous": his consciousness has no connection whatsoever to other consciousnesses or "A Consciousness".

"Self-actuating": his faculty of reason is not automatic, it permanently requires a consciousness switching it on, directing and implementing it.

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If one puts Randian theory through one's own experiences and thinking (without skepticism) the sky's the limit.

Do you here mean methodological or philosophical skepticism?

As I use it often, the philosophical skepticism. The criticality of the methodological type can be safely assumed. Facts (or 'factoids') need hard and constant checking, naturally. It's a world apart from 'Skepticism' - of ideas, of principles, and of any and all philosophy.

Fact-claims need checking is my skeptical aphorism. A Big S SKEPTIC philosophy by your definition is a toga-age offshoot of the SOPHIST school who pretended nothing could be known. This kind of skepticism of course lives on in a degenerated fashion by stoners and hippies who say 'it's all vibrations' and 'you never know.' UFOs, Cosmic Consciousness, on and on and on, that skeptical Big-S backwash is one of my special pains and complaints with the world. The Know-Nothing skeptics are in politics and everywhere people settle. It is oddly anti-science, pro-mystic; there are 'subtle energies' and satanic-cult-conspiracies and no amount of my own fact-checking can dislodge that cohort of our fellow humans. These are indeed the people who will believe Anything. Without a coherent theory of reality and its integral nature, they individually 'socially-construct' their moonbeam and rainbows (or darkness and fear) view of the world. So, I would agree that there is a know-nothing skeptical retinue alive in our worlds.

So, you can see that theirs is actually a raffle-bag of Old Skeptical methodology in stark opposition to the reason+science methodology of the modern skeptical movement (which has roots in, you guessed it, Darwin, the Scientific Revolution, blah blah). In a way, you are the tightest ally with modern, actual skeptical flowering . Skepticism co-evolved with the history of the philosophy of science. Modern skepticism is everything from local science-clubs to the sternest Supreme justice on earth. The practice of law and history is an exceedingly skeptical process. The philosophy of science guides skepticism in turn.

I am telling you the truth -- I cannot know without qualifiers which usage you intend and sometimes whether you understand the distinction in your own sentences. I suggest you use big-S backwoods simplelton drugged out sky-fairy hollow earth UFO captives and so on Skeptic/ism when that is what you intend to mean.

Please have the patience of mind to follow my concerns here. Which of these statements includes the awful Skeptical know-nothing retreat from rational process that bedevils the acquisition of reliable knowledge ... ?:

-- if one puts Randian theory through one's experiences and thinking, the sky is the limit

-- if one puts Randian theory through one's experiences and thinking (without Skepticism), the sky is the limit.

-- if one puts Randian theory through one's experiences and thinking (without skepticism), the sky is the limit.

-- if one puts Randian theory through one's experiences and thinking (with skepticism), the sky is the limit.

-- if one puts Randian theory through one's experience first (and rational inquiry), one can reach cognitive goals: understanding, winnowing, conclusions.

-- if one puts a particular Randian theory to a test of experience (from experiment to logical analysis, to comparison with the fruits of other fields of inquiry), one can do useful mental work.

-- if one puts a particular Randian theory or claim (about eg, art) to a critical, skeptical test (using appropriate rational tools of inquiry) one will probably end up with a better understanding of the reality of the claim at issue.

-- if one does not 'test' Randian theory, one might mistakenly assert it as true and proven to the satisfaction of 'everyman.'

Will you please answer my question about the two skeptical periodicals I noted, Tony? Answer nothing else but that, pretty please.

And another run at the same door:

I don't understand when you hold a red card for illicit cognition, Skeptical cognition. Looking at those points above, which are Skeptical (philosophical), which are skeptical (methodological)? I'd like you to know that I always use 'skepticism' as a methodological thing, a necessary component of rational thought. I have no truck with the ancient Greek philosophical tradition. Moreover, I cannot think of an example here of anyone whatsoever proffering a Skeptical note on your contributions in this thread.

They are absorbing, those 'emotion charts' you put up every so often, William. I guess by demonstrating a range of emotions (though not I think exhaustive) felt by mankind you are making some conclusive point.

No. And I don't believe you think I was. When you do this, "Oh? So what you really mean is drown all the kittens, right?" I shake my head.

Go back and see why I stressed emotional universals and personal individuation. These are the two crutches to my argument. In a pistachio shell, one's 'sense of life' emotional responses will be individual, even if 'statistically normal. An appreciation of art can be cultivated, but the individual opinions will both converge and diverge from the norm. Emotions are thus variable. Thus tastes will differ.

Can someone say tastes shouldn't differ? Sure, but saying tastes shouldn't differ is like saying you aren't planning to die. But ya are, Blanche. But ya are.

"If there are differing emotional reactions to particular pieces of art, that is the way it is--no amount of 'ought-ism' [punny] can change that reality. If a piece of art leaves you cold but inspires emotion in your neighbour, that is the way we are as humans".

That there can be differing emotions (to the same thing) is observable and apparent. It is 'a reality' of many men. But is it "reality"?

This is needless smoke and confusion. In the context of moralizing on differing tastes I am saying that 'tastes will differ' and there is no philosophical argument that shows 'tastes will not differ' -- and no logical contortions can change the reality that 'tastes in art differ.'

A whole lot of 'aught-ism' and 'ought-ism' does not change reality.

You are coming at me with photon emotion bombs. But I am Spock.

If confronted with a beautifully done artwork of the most foul image which you can conjur up, say, of human suffering and brutality, the response of predominantly-rational individuals would most likely be of horror and disgust. Horror at the image, and disgust with the artist.

I refuse to answer, Your Honour, on the grounds that the Prosecutor has not produced the artwork in question.

More seriously, Tony, you are providing support for my point, by qualifying your claim, even while adding more moralist lard and whoopee. I have posed a fairly-competent depiction in realistic format -- a painting of war in Syria. You had one reaction, I had another. Your moralisms then, and your contempt for an imaginative perfectly-awful perfectly disgusting painting now -- were a kind of doll-house argument, in a perfect world. You don't really want to trade in fancies. It's like you want us to join you with the other ladies of the Temperance Union and denounce, with full emotion, our disgust and horror at your imaginings. Meh.

Onward Rational Art Patrol! something christian war

All I can expect is that you spot the flaw in this kind of argument goring forward. You qualify 'tastes will differ' with an implied 'not among predominantly-rational people.'

This is pony land where one proves some moral point by sketching a universal moment in pink when everyone with moral-intellectual integrity will express (and deeply feel) that same mix of emotions as you. Everyone is a special pony. Cue the communist Coke song.

But anyhow, forgive me my excesses, and yet another banging at the door, about your way up there comment on my Suck It Up, That's the Way Things Are, Princess. It is just an instance of 'ought-ism' that meets an object/subject named William. If William does not share your emotions on viewing the AwfulHorrorDisgust, then he is a non-rational actor. I am trying to make this fun for all, Tony. Sorry if I make it seem like I wouldn't eat your sandwich at the Objective Picnic.

I think that would be an appropriate, moral, rational and objective (and "fully human") emotional response. If they know it or not, their responses are based on their value-judgments and "the reality" that man's life is the standard of value.

Another individual comes to the same image, and feels delight - or indifference - or ecstacy. Here is true "subjectivity". (What would you think of him? would you even want to know him?)

You have written magical prose. Now go find the horror-disgust item that has attracted gushes of hysterical praise, name the guy and quote his words. Then we will all kill him and feast on his remains like dogs and pickle the rest, and your point will be proved.

It is like you are baking a perfect imaginary pie, Tony, and demanding why we don't taste the lashings of factor X you put in the pie filling. It's not a real pie. You can't anticipate our 'taste' sensations nor our emotion. The thing is in your head and trying to get out.

Put up a picture/sculpture of the disgusting pie that illustrates your argument please. We cannot peer into your imagination as well as you think we can.

And another sweaty attempt to keep a ball in play on only two cups of coffee ...

Is that "differential" indeed at all "wonderful" ?

-- at the risk of repetition (among Scherk's greatest sins) you are misunderstanding me

The differential between person A's taste and person B's taste and on into the billions is I believe a wonderful thing, and something to learn from. I wish you could stop trying to get everyone on the same dang bus (265 - Randian Way Express) at the same dang bus stop at the same dang time. It must be tiresome for you.

Emotions MAY be all over the place for different people, but to the varying degrees he is rational, predicts a reasonably narrow range of any individual's emotional response.

Tony, Tony, Tony. "He" is now a fully imaginary thing. You have sketched a tale to confirm your prejudice (that only an irrational/immoral person can like Awful Horror Disgust Art. It just doesn't set the dye in your fabric as effectively as you may hope.

So I disagree with "no amount of ought-ism can change that reality".

Sure. We disagree. I grind the same nuts again: In context, the reality that 'tastes differ in art.' No amount of appealing to emotion or wagging the finger or constructing fanciful 'what ifs' or you-must-agree 'ought-istic' scenarios can persuade me that the differences in art taste between you and me is a function of our degrees of 'rationality.

Maybe a larger philosophical frame will convince you that we probably agree with each other on several points implicated in your 'Big-S small-s' distinction ...

We agree on the components, but differ on how to label the product ... ?

Actually, I observed a lot of that in myself. The first bit was my own, and then some embellishing from Rand's insights.

I always like answers that are true, it's a while since I was scared of any truths.

Clarity, consistency and sustainability - of cognition and emotion - are the most important benefits of philosophy in one's life, I think.

Clarity In Language, thy name is not Tony Garland. Before giving Phil-ish notes on clarity and consistency, you should work to make your prose more clear and communicative. "I observed a lot of that in myself." What freaking lot of what? The first bit of what was your own?

As, always, your kind friend in Canada.

But you understand me very well - you simply don't approve of it. You are clearly as "moralistic" with your: it-is-all-ok-anything-goes-subjectivity, as I supposedly am.

"Man's life as the standard of value".

Everything derives from this. If that's what you object to, then say so... and why.

Do you? (Can you?)

As I find, the secular-humanist argument often confuses cause and effect. One doesn't HAVE to behave in a certain, dictated, prescribed "moralistic" manner. That's a carry-over from religiosity and often 'humanists' for all their atheist protestations, don't fall far from that tree. But the more rational is the person (and I think you have another idea of rationality to mine) - the more of one response, and the less of another, will show in his reactions to all aspects of reality (like art). The cause is reality and the reality of man, the effect is an ethical system based on those.

Good for man's life - or neutral - or mixed - or harmful.

Because man's life is his real and rational standard of value, not vague feelings, emotions and impulses about humanity.

You asked about scepticism/Skepticism. You should check this scholastically, naturally. These are my thoughts from an Objectivist p.o.v.

The first, the methodological, I've agreed is inarguably essential for one's validation of facts - and doesn't need any more debate.

But as a philosophy, Skepticism was broadly a reaction against mystical Intrinsicism. (Both are equally opposed by Objectivism).

The basic psychology was that when the individual finds he won't be granted Divine Revelation, confered upon him by Grace without effort - well then, he concludes, any *personal, direct* knowledge as a whole is a useless pursuit.

Skepticism has been simply defined as the impossibility of knowledge.

That's a very bald statement I think, and has to be unpacked somewhat.

What is "knowledge"? And, knowledge to whom and for whom?

1. Facts are not knowledge. 2. Only an individual can possess knowledge.

An array of memorized or parroted facts are "equal", each independently hasn't hierarchical value to 'a valuer' until he discovers it. (Again, according to the objective standard of man's life and the purpose for his life). The same for all the data, information, opinions and treatises in libraries and data banks ever recorded. It is all meaningless and abstract until one single mind (and another, and another - and so on) comprehends portions of it, and finds the "value" or disvalue in it. All the "Goggled" facts you put forth have no use to you or anyone else until you've *added value* and drawn a firm conclusion, right or wrong, and based on some principles, true or false.

Knowledge is the complete and integrated content of a consciousness: i.e. one's concepts including morality and convictions. When verified by him, facts need to go through a process of assimilation, hierarchical evaluation and sorting out, like with like, unalike from unalike - by the individual - which is his concept-formation.

Conceptualization is of course, never Perfect nor completed (unlike Divine Revelation) and is of course not carried out by "The Collective".

You notice that this is a totally individual, "selfish" process (with its attendant morality). Nobody else can do it for one, as one cannot achieve it for others. Unless you can demonstrate that a 'collective consciousness' exists. And that you can't, it is a subjective and emotional notion. From that notion - I've seen (if only implicit) in discussion with several Skeptical atheists - to altruism-collectivism, then to its outcome of Left politics is a quite consistent, 'logical' transition.

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If confronted with a beautifully done artwork of the most foul image which you can conjur up, say, of human suffering and brutality, the response of predominantly-rational individuals would most likely be of horror and disgust. Horror at the image, and disgust with the artist.

I refuse to answer, Your Honour, on the grounds that the Prosecutor has not produced the artwork in question.

More seriously, Tony, you are providing support for my point, by qualifying your claim, even while adding more moralist lard and whoopee. I have posed a fairly-competent depiction in realistic format -- a painting of war in Syria. You had one reaction, I had another. Your moralisms then, and your contempt for an imaginative perfectly-awful perfectly disgusting painting now -- were a kind of doll-house argument, in a perfect world. You don't really want to trade in fancies. It's like you want us to join you with the other ladies of the Temperance Union and denounce, with full emotion, our disgust and horror at your imaginings. Meh.

Onward Rational Art Patrol! something christian war

All I can expect is that you spot the flaw in this kind of argument goring forward. You qualify 'tastes will differ' with an implied 'not among predominantly-rational people.'

This is pony land where one proves some moral point by sketching a universal moment in pink when everyone with moral-intellectual integrity will express (and deeply feel) that same mix of emotions as you. Everyone is a special pony. Cue the communist Coke song.

But anyhow, forgive me my excesses, and yet another banging at the door, about your way up there comment on my Suck It Up, That's the Way Things Are, Princess. It is just an instance of 'ought-ism' that meets an object/subject named William. If William does not share your emotions on viewing the AwfulHorrorDisgust, then he is a non-rational actor. I am trying to make this fun for all, Tony. Sorry if I make it seem like I wouldn't eat your sandwich at the Objective Picnic.

I think that would be an appropriate, moral, rational and objective (and "fully human") emotional response. If they know it or not, their responses are based on their value-judgments and "the reality" that man's life is the standard of value.

Another individual comes to the same image, and feels delight - or indifference - or ecstacy. Here is true "subjectivity". (What would you think of him? would you even want to know him?)

You have written magical prose. Now go find the horror-disgust item that has attracted gushes of hysterical praise, name the guy and quote his words. Then we will all kill him and feast on his remains like dogs and pickle the rest, and your point will be proved.

It is like you are baking a perfect imaginary pie, Tony, and demanding why we don't taste the lashings of factor X you put in the pie filling. It's not a real pie. You can't anticipate our 'taste' sensations nor our emotion. The thing is in your head and trying to get out.

Put up a picture/sculpture of the disgusting pie that illustrates your argument please. We cannot peer into your imagination as well as you think we can.

Peer into your own imagination, William. What could fill you with disgust? I'll help you, with a image from mine. There is in this 'painting' the sweet face of a young girl beside a gutter in a road. You look closer and see that it's only her head severed at the neck. All painted with loving regard to detail ('Aesthetically' excellent, iow). Can you see it? I'd think you'd be disgusted as well. Before you run off into compassion, don't forget this is not a real girl. Your empathy is misplaced here, but your value judgment is required (or not, as you wish).

And okay, it is an extreme example. But it, or its like could be painted and probably will.

After my emotional reaction, would come: Why? What was so important to an artist to be inspired to commit this vision of his reality to uncountable eyes and minds?

A "shock protest" against the slaughter of innocents by brutish men? Perhaps. That's how he would justify it. But that aim could have been achieved better, symbolically, by a painting of, say, only a colorful head scarf or girl's sandal lying in the same gutter. Or he could paint nothing - nothing would be better. An artist has unlimited approaches open to him creatively. A painting is not a photojournalistic record and an artist isn't a paid journalist, "doing his job".

Therefore, I'd assume that his view of existence is irrational.

And I submit, anybody who could experience delight or amusement or whatever by that picture is irrational with a twisted view of life.

But, hey. Tastes differ, right? We "ought" to celebrate that.

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Tony, how about we branch off our Skeptic/skeptic, know-nothing/science discussion to a fresh thread? I am getting three things tangled up -- universals and variables of emotion; moral judgment of art (artists, art world, art history, art instruction, art theory, etc); rationality. A fourth dimension of S/skeptic/ism is taxing me. I will give a couple of jump-off place reactions below, and try to clean up the field of disagreement that remains.

Elsewhere I think you and I are close to the final heat in the relay. We agree tastes differ in art, and that emotions are variable. That's well trodden ground.

So, the disagreement remains not in the anodyne 'tastes differ' but in the second part -- "If a piece of art leaves you cold but inspires emotion in your neighbour, that is the way we are as humans".

Again agreement from Tony: "That there can be differing emotions (to the same thing) is observable and apparent. It is 'a reality' of many men." And yet, he tags on: "But is it reality?" Which I tried to and failed to get him to explain.

Onward.

I am clearly as "moralistic" as Tony with my it-is-all-ok-anything-goes-subjectivity. And i am clearly unfamiliar with the, er, quote um suggestion of "Man's life as the standard of value". I cannot, apparently, understand that Everything derives from this. If I don't understand that Everything derives from this quote then Tony thinks I should say so... and should also say why. He doesn't know if I understand or not. He isn't sure if I can.

That's promising.

Still, the quote is so general as to be anodyne itself, since My Life and My Mind rule in my little world. We are each arbiters of personal value according to our universalist individual read-out of cognition. We agree ...

**********************************************

Then we move on to Tony's findings: he claims that the/a secular-humanist argument often confuses cause and effect. Perhaps it does. Perhaps I am a secular humanist, for sure I am making an argument, but what does that mean to Art-variable-Effect which we both agree to?

Well, Tony says he doesn't HAVE to behave in a certain, dictated, prescribed "moralistic" manner. Which I also agree. Does this mean that my secular-human-ist argument is mixing up cause and effect? We agree that the variable behaviour is real, and we agree that it does not depend on a single moral prescription.

Tony says "humanists" don't fall far from the religious tree. Which is affirming the consequent: atheists like Tony and me have a carry-over from religion in our 'humanism.' Maybe yes, maybe no -- I was never a believer, and received no religious instruction. I don't know if Tony's atheism came from his earliest rational cognition or if it came after some time as a believer.

******************************************************

The next suggestion is that Tony and I have distinctly opposed ideas of rationality. He explains that the more rational of us will have more/less of an emotional response to art, and this pattern of reaction will also show up in our responses to all aspects of reality. In case I didn't get the referents, it is spelled out in an triad:

  • The integral cause (of varying emotional response) is reality (which includes the natural variability in emotional universals of humankind).
  • The effect of variable response to art is an ethical system that is informed by reality. Ethical in terms of value to fully-human individuals or to "Man's Life."
  • It is an individual's own personal self, knowledge and life that govern his rational assessments of value.

I did not know how to knit in Tony's disapproving phrases about vague feelings, emotions and impulses about humanity. which apparently can get in the way of a good cognition, or a good rational assessment of a piece of art. But we are well past that now.

To summarize, we have a solid agreement so far. The only scuffle will be over Your Version of Rationality Strikes Me As Slightly Mistaken.

********************************************************

Bad Skeptic, Good Skeptic

Here would be a branch off into the vexing questions I had about Tony's views on scepticism/Skepticism. We agree that skepticism is necessary to science and rigorous scholarship of all kinds. That skepticism is a good tool, we agree. That it is part of the Toolkit of Reason, we agree.

That there is a kind of "know-nothing" skepticism that creeps across the world, we agree. That the 'believe-anything' skepticism has a degenerate epistemology, we agree. That without proper skepticism our knowledge would be less reliable, we agree. That modern skepticism since the scientific revolution is a tight ally of objective research and analysis, we agree across the board.

So where is the disagreement if any, to carry on to a fresh topic?

Tony says we should 'check this' (meaning reality or fact-claims), scholastically. That's one opener. Then, thoughts from an Objectivist point of view, a second. Objectivism insofar as it has infused Tony will hold that 'skepticism is inarguably essential' for validating fact-claims. So, all our opinions align till this point.

Here I think where I do not understand is the 'philosophical' roots of the bad kind of skepticism Tony has in mind. I need examples from reality to illustrate what he is talking about. For example, Tony says Skepticism was broadly a reaction against mystical Intrinsicism. I am guessing we are looking back thousands of years to those events ... and it would make an interesting excursion to contrast the toga-age axioms and precepts with the modern-era toolkit.


Tony moves on from the history of philosophy to basic psychology. He says that way back when an individual found himself without evidence of 'divine' revelation in reality, when that individual found himself a disbeliever in such notions as Grace Without Effort, when he realized that religious teachings were based on little evidentiary grounds, then that individual, let's call him Adam, concluded that no personal, direct, infused knowledge of the cosmos was possible via transmittal from a Godhead..

Adam then had a choice, see. He could use the tools of his mind to test reality directly, to compare, to contrast, to sift, to consider, to debate. Adam, after some years of success as a rational man in a rational community, ended his days disbelieving in the usefulness of 'divine,' direct, personal, unverified knowledge.

No disagreement between Tony and I there. And still, "Skepticism has been simply defined as the impossibility of knowledge."

And there is the kernel of disagreement, the pea under the Princess. Who has defined it so, besides Tony? I don't agree that skepticism as used today is 'the impossibility of knowledge.' It is almost 180 degrees against that reading to my reckoning. But Tony unpacks the phrase for us, so the apparent paradox may be solved.

He asks what is "knowledge" -- and, knowledge to whom and for whom? He says facts are not knowledge and that only an individual can possess knowledge.

I say facts are knowledge in the most generous sense. Facts are facts. A is A. Truth is not Un-Truth. A true, valid, reliable, tested and proofed fact in a book is knowledge-of-the-day, and two or more people can each be 'knowing' the same set of generally-recognized facts. It is certainly no use for a gentleman like Tony to have a 'fact' that he is unable to share. Perhaps it shows our underlying agreement when we substitute Truth for Fact. A truth can be a very small thing, and it can also be a thing of complex ramifications. Is it true, is it a fact that E equals MC squared?

How about "Truths are not knowledge; Only an individual can possess truths"? I think that shows up the fissures in those rocks.

However, there are still possible incongruent conventional truths/claims of knowledge/fact assertions. Tony does give examples of some outliers: an array of parroted facts has no structure of value to the inquirer if the inquirer is a mere parrot. I agree.

The recitation of the times tables truths doesn't mean the reciter has any other knowledge of arithmetic ... rehearsing and memorizing a long script, and reciting it, this doesn't mean the reciter is holding a 'truth.' If another person cannot understand the language of the utterances, no knowledge can change hands, even if it is only a truth like four times four equals sixteen, or "This is a monologue about vaginas."

***************************************************

On to more statements.

Did I know that according to the purpose for my life, according to the objective standard of Man's Life, an array of facts are "equal", each one with no hierarchical value to me until I discover it? Well, it's tough. If I am parrotting, say, Rand's precepts on Art, can I be said to be holding a Truth?

Obviously not, especially if I haven't thought about the precepts or given them cognitive room in my hierarchies of 'knowledge' ... If Rand's precepts on Art are not true fact knowledge to me, then of course Tony is right, and I will be unwilling to build a moral system to adjudicate differences in art-Emotion-affect on its basis alone.

Again, agreement.

Next we are invited to consider Everything, all the data, opinions and treatises ever recorded. Tony suggests everything is meaningless and abstract until multiple people comprehend parts of the data and find positive or negative value in some portion of it.

In the strict scenario, that seems intuitively right. The books on cell biology are almost worthless to me without my grounding in biology and my interest in knowing more. Even if I set out and pull in a Google net, my own grounding in biology, my background awareness, my previous reading, my hierarchies and palaces of knowledge need be in play for me to efficiently transmute the data into something I can reason with.


In his next passages, Tony introduces morality into the pot of personal knowledge: I can know the 'prevailing winds' of morality, know what are the basics of interpersonal right and wrong. know in my heart of mind what I consider repulsive or attractive, immoral and not, happy-making and anger-making. I know my own buttons and to some extent, the set of buttons most rational humans have as factory installed and accessories by experience,


Tony's summation includes this sense of morality, this personal equation, the individual's totality as a part of 'consciousness.' Indeed, I agree. In our persons, in our personas, in our emotional life, we partake in consciousness. Without emotions our consciousness would be grey and cold. Taken all together the self-knowledge and knowledge-of-the-world form a whole, and this whole comprises my consciousness. Agreement again ...

*****************************************************


We briefly return to Revelation, the mystic, directly-infused pseudo-knowledge or intutive-leap in consciousness. Revelation, Tony holds is purported to be Perfect, Divine, and the work of my individual mind is corrupted by beliefs in divine knowledge. The work of my mind is neither perfect nor complete, and thus needs constant effort to maintain coherence and intelligibility and correct concepts and assumptions in play.

This is great. It is clear that Tony and I are skeptical through and through. We accept nothing on faith. We work hard to be conceptually clear and distinct, and we view defects in our conceptual reckonings to be 'catch-able' with due diligence.

With a hint of disdain for "Collectives" and unexamined dogma, we get to the end. Is there any real disagreement left?


First, Tony assembles the elements of his conclusion. All of what he agrees with me is agreed by a process. The process is reflected, yet individual; expressed, yet personal; moral-emotional, and yet rational; subjectively felt but universally available in theory.

This is all great stuff. We each have an individual "self-ish" aspect or aspects of the greater reality past and present, We can share our knowledge and test it by mutually-agreed tools. We can even learn about art by the emotional expressions of those who differ with our tastes.


Finally, and happily, Tony returns to the Skeptic/skeptic theme. We are not talking about Art and Emotion here, nor a relatively trivial thing like "good taste in art" ...

You notice that this is a totally individual, "selfish" process (with its attendant morality). Nobody else can do it for one, as one cannot achieve it for others. Unless you can demonstrate that a 'collective consciousness' exists. And you can't, it is a subjective and emotional notion. From that notion - I've seen (if only implicit) in discussion with several Skeptical atheists - to altruism-collectivism, then to its outcome of Left politics is a quite consistent, 'logical' transition.


I have to do a little unpacking or re-drafting, since sometimes Tony's comments are made obscure by his style of writing (I'd call it Kantian but that would be wrong and rude). I will offset it because it is almost entirely your words, cousin Tony, reassembled.

Facts need to go through a process, of absorption, evaluation, verification, evaluation, data-mapping into conceptual hierarchies. Concept-consolidation of this kind is totally totally individual. Concept formation and verification is individual. Only in a few ways (from persuasion to torture) can another mind get into the process. Sure you can have help from Einstein, and the librarian and elsewhere, but the cognitive task is yours. And it is a great task, no chore.

Nobody else can do it for me, no one else can achieve or go through that process for me.


********************************************

A subjective and emotional notion is 'collective consciousness' ... can anyone demonstrate it? No, you can't. You can't. Collective unconsciousness is a subjective and emotional notion.

From that notion, that a 'collective consciousness' exists, which I've seen in discussion with several Skeptical atheists, from that notion to altruism-collectivism is a quite consistent, 'logical' transition.


Those are great points to return to on a Skeptic thread. I would like to hear there more of the example several. I want to know more of what Tony knows on Skeptical atheists. I'd like to know the answer to my now plaintive question above about his 'knowing' the magazines Skeptical Inquirer and Skeptic.

I reserve the right to one more reply before branching off.

Edited by william.scherk

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What could fill you with disgust? I'll help you, with a image from mine. There is in this 'painting' the sweet face of a young girl beside a gutter in a road. You look closer and see that it's only her head severed at the neck. All painted with loving regard to detail ('Aesthetically' excellent, iow). Can you see it? I'd think you'd be disgusted as well. Before you run off into compassion, don't forget this is not a real girl. Your empathy is misplaced here, but your value judgment is required (or not, as you wish).

And okay, it is an extreme example. But it, or its like could be painted and probably will.

Tony,

What if the title of the work was something like, "A young lady at rest after killing and eating her two babies and stopped from detonating a dirty bomb in New York City during rush hour"?

Emotional nuance?

:smile:

Michael

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Final round-up. This thread is squeezing its last lemons for me. But before I die of lemonade poisoning, I return briefly to my suggestion, that understanding emotion makes a lot of the moralist whoopee about art a bit moot. I do understand that taking the moralist finger-wagging out of art discussion would be less fun for some.

But, a round up of agreement with Tony on emotion and art.

So, let's say like Tony that every emotion relates to something in reality, be it a sad or happy or disgusted or fearful emotion. Emotions for Tony are almost always a response to an "action", mental or physical. An action must precede emotion; action>>>>>>>>> emotion...)

The cause of an emotion is an action, okay. But, of course sometimes the action is a mental/physical thing like a 'gestalt' in the mind, where the entire subconscious machinery of the brain presents you with a felt emotion that needs heeding. So be aware that the causative chain can appear to run backwards or appear unbidden.

You have a really bad startle reflex, say. Ordinary noises to others can make you jump and be in a state thereafter. Or, say that other people's faces are rather mysterious to you: that you find a hard time telling the difference between excited and disgusted. You have trained yourself with meticulous attention to Ekman faces, and with Plutchik's wheel and a writer's aid, you can track down and examine the meaning of the particular emotion words and phrases that you yourself feel but do not completely understand in others.

Once in a while you will get a hair-on-the-back-of-your-neck feeling. You will have to remind yourself that your heavy breathing, dilated pupils, and searching for an exit can make you appear upset. You will 'rein in the horses' that bolted the stable without your will.

Knowing that the causative 'actions' can appear as if unbidden, knowing that forcing your face into a smile can raise your mood as well as others', knowing that 'gut feelings' and 'stomach feelings' may be indicators of distress or fear but not indicators of This Way To Exit Distress, you can have fun and play in the big people's pool without supervision.

Yes, cause and effect in reverse, overlapping, running on, emotion followed by action followed by action-emotion (a nameless dread, an accident, pain, regret, anger, guilt and sadness invading your mind. Add a gun or some pills and a terrible emotional suite of events can lead to dangerous moods and other bad effects of haywire affect-horses).

Emotional loops, feedback, digressions, obsessions, delusions, paranoiac fear and loathing, aggression and violence can all erupt from mismanaged emotions -- at the wrong time and place, in the wrong company, in the absence of emotional self-control.

Back to art and its appreciation, and the Moral Code of Art as given by Hammer Rabbi.

I have posted a fairly-competent depiction in realistic format -- a painting of war in Syria. I forget Tony and my detailed reaction, but I think I remember he found it ugly or unworthy of attention or of low 'art value' in his hierarchy.

That was a real pie. Not a word pie. So, when Pollyanna and I plead "Put up a picture/sculpture of the disgusting pie" it is only a wish that Tony would show a piece of art that makes him feel ... and tell us what he feels, and tell us what we should feel (presumably on the bell curve with him).

He tries, with a word picture:

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

CCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCC
DDDDDDDIMAGINARYDDDDDDDDDD
PPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPP

EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

GGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG

He muses on his picture. If only a colorful head scarf was lying discreetly bloodstained in the gutter. Or don't even paint the damn thing. Therefore, Tony assumes the bad pie baker's view of existence is irrational. And Tony calls down the Wrath of Rand upon anybody indecent enough to find XCDPEG worthy of anything but scorn. Somebodies get spanked and the person giving the spankings is Tony. Then only the rational, untwisted viewers can have some nice cake.

"But, hey. Tastes differ, right? We "ought" to celebrate that," says Tony smirkingly, with emotion.

Yup. If the only people I could converse with here were people who agreed with me in all aspects, in all modes, then I would be an intermittent visitor, not a regular. It would be a no-fun zone.

If your tastes in art are that objectively superior that you require extra time in the pulpit to issue the lessons, then I celebrate that my opinions do differ here and there from yours. I get a turn in the pulpit too, as much as I want.

I celebrate that you and I disagree. It keeps our intellectual teeth sharpened, at the ready for discussion. As here, even the most complete agreement on Reality can still be constrained by a Moralist reading of men's souls.

I am going to find an image of war, produced by someone thinking he or she is an artist, available for sale if only down the road.

Edited by william.scherk

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How does this relate to emotion wheels that don't spin?

If you haven't seen Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome I'll supply a little context. Thunderdome was a post apocalyptic society that had fixed rules in order to survive.

If you "bust a deal", you "face the wheel".

thunderdomewheel_zps6srh5gnt.jpg

So if you "bust a deal" with your common sense... by default all that's left is spinning the wheel of emotion and getting whichever one happens to turn up. Because once we separate ourselves from our common sense, all that's left is irrational emotion which could be any of them.

Greg

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What could fill you with disgust? I'll help you, with a image from mine. There is in this 'painting' the sweet face of a young girl beside a gutter in a road. You look closer and see that it's only her head severed at the neck. All painted with loving regard to detail ('Aesthetically' excellent, iow). Can you see it? I'd think you'd be disgusted as well. Before you run off into compassion, don't forget this is not a real girl. Your empathy is misplaced here, but your value judgment is required (or not, as you wish).

And okay, it is an extreme example. But it, or its like could be painted and probably will.

Tony,

What if the title of the work was something like, "A young lady at rest after killing and eating her two babies and stopped from detonating a dirty bomb in New York City during rush hour"?

Emotional nuance?

:smile:

Michael

Ha! - only the imagination of a writer could come up with that... )

Sure, and not only nuance - dissonance. "This is emotionally repulsive and cognitively delightful !"

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Hell, William. It's death by a thousand drips of honey, all sweet until I find you intend drowning me in it.

Go ahead - start a thread on skepticism, or emotions. What does "value" mean to the Skeptic?

(or is it maple syrup?)

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I like the second (Napoleon's army in Egypt?) and the shadow picture which is very clever. You had to include a triumphal Sadat for reasons unknown.

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Sadat? That's the late dictator-butcher of Syria. His son is continuing his good work.

Exactly, or rather yet, not exactly. The North Korea style painting hangs in a Syrian museum dedicated to commemorating the 1973 war with Israel. As can be seen from the cheerful hordes of well-known and symbolic Syrians, Syria triumphed in that war ...

More war pics for Skeptical Tony to 'like' ... or not.

Syria-art-001.jpg

156150-161556750648693-547806202-n.jpg

SYR-ART_Mustafa-Ali-3.gif

hafez-kim-il-sung.jpg

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