New Theory of Aesthetics

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Lulie Tanett

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Jan 3, 2012, 8:55:45 AM1/3/12
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Trying to apply the Popper/DD worldview to the philosophy of aesthetics.

My theory in a nutshell:
Making something look more beautiful is indistinguishable from making it better in a 'technical' way. For any improvement, you could say "I did this <technical thing> which made it better".

Elaboration:
Lots of people think that art has something mysterious which does things like triggers feelings, beauty cannot be described in words, and so on.

But it's pretty well-known how to teach art, and what is involved in learning it, and even some of what is involved in improving it.

And as we know from Popper, all knowledge is about problems, conjecture and criticism -- rather than belief, as the traditional JTB school have it.

Each different art form has different categories of things to learn, but to take painting it is roughly:

- Composition
- Basic shapes/3D forms (sphere, cube, etc.)
- Anatomy
- Perspective
- Light and colour
- Dynamicness

(The exact categories I'm still working out. You could add 'consistency' maybe. Also some could be argued as parts of others, and most of them affect the others.)

Every improvement to a painting is an improvement in one of these categories (until someone creates a new category -- e.g. perspective was first invented in about 1420).

Art is about artistic problems under these categories. Creating art is about discovering and solving those problems. Looking at art is almost the same, except it's more about understanding the solutions used in that painting.

For any step towards beauty, you could describe it in terms of a problem in those categories. E.g. "This change made it more beautiful, because it solved a problem where the anatomy looked stretched and uncomfortable."

Also see my post "Agassi's Aesthetics: Explicability" from December 15th, 2011.


A theory of beauty/art must have these properties:
- Objective. (As it says in BoI.)
- Not based on emotion / doesn't have emotion at the centre.
- Not based / doesn't rely on culture.
- Not based / doesn't rely on the viewer's beliefs. Should be disconnected from belief like Popper disconnected it from philosophy when he took down JTB.
- Ditto psychology? (Gombrich had something to say about this and seemed to approve of the idea art is linked to psychology. Need to read his book.)
- The artist is barely relevant. (Except stuff is often more impressive when one can see how difficult it is. Should this not be so?)
- Possible for someone to improve a particular piece.
- Possible for someone to improve the field.
- Improving a piece is done by criticism (and conjecture).
- Ditto progressing the field.
- I guess the difference between those two is that a piece can be improved by known criticism, whereas the field has to have new (better) stuff.
- Making something look more beautiful is indistinguishable from making it better in a 'technical' way. For any improvement, you could say "I did this <technical thing> which made it better".
- If that's a genuine improvement, it'll be possible to formulate that into a general principle (or as a specific application of a general principle) which others can use in their pieces, unless it's super-parochial somehow.
- I'd guess art has a similar explicit:inexplicit ratio to, say, maths. It's pretty straightforward and well known and well documented how to make beautiful stuff.

--
Lulie Tanett

Matjaž Leonardis

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Jan 3, 2012, 10:39:19 AM1/3/12
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On 3 jan., 14:55, Lulie Tanett <w...@lulie.org> wrote:
> - I'd guess art has a similar explicit:inexplicit ratio to, say,
> maths.

What exactly do you mean by this? That the ratio between the amount of
explicit and inexplict ideas about the field that people hold is
roughly the same for both math and art?

Also to add to the list at the end - shouldn't the theory of
aesthetics be form-independent?

So in order to explain why a particular painting is beautiful one
would invoke both explanations about (general) aesthetics and the
specific properties of the medium (paint,paper).


--
Matjaz Leonardis

Lulie Tanett

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Jan 3, 2012, 6:15:05 PM1/3/12
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On 3 Jan 2012, at 03:39 PM, Matjaž Leonardis <sidranoe...@gmail.com> wrote:

> On 3 jan., 14:55, Lulie Tanett <w...@lulie.org> wrote:
>> - I'd guess art has a similar explicit:inexplicit ratio to, say,
>> maths.
>
> What exactly do you mean by this? That the ratio between the amount of
> explicit and inexplict ideas about the field that people hold is
> roughly the same for both math and art?

I mean where the knowledge of it is. So, contrary to popular belief, the body of knowledge about painting isn't largely inexplicit (or not any more than maths, at least).

Your version is more people-based. Maybe individual artists know a lot more inexplicitly than explicitly (I'd guess the same is true of random mathematicians, too). But as for the *body of knowledge* and *how to make a good painting* -- a lot more of that is explicit than what people usually think. I imagine you could get by just using it even if you have poor artistic intuition.

> Also to add to the list at the end - shouldn't the theory of
> aesthetics be form-independent?

Why?

There may be some things that different arts have in common, but why expect the categories of what's involved in making a good piece be the same?

Unless you mean the more broad theory -- namely beauty = technical stuff and problem solving -- in which case, yes, it is (and I was just using the example of painting because that's what I know best).

> So in order to explain why a particular painting is beautiful one
> would invoke both explanations about (general) aesthetics and the
> specific properties of the medium (paint,paper).

Yeah, but then isn't the latter form-specific?

--
Lulie Tanett

Matjaž Leonardis

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Jan 3, 2012, 8:49:06 PM1/3/12
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On 4 jan., 00:15, Lulie Tanett <lul...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On 3 Jan 2012, at 03:39 PM, Matjaž Leonardis
> <sidranoel.zaj...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > On 3 jan., 14:55, Lulie Tanett <w...@lulie.org> wrote:
> >> - I'd guess art has a similar explicit:inexplicit ratio to, say,
> >> maths.
>
> > What exactly do you mean by this? That the ratio between the
> > amount of
> > explicit and inexplict ideas about the field that people hold is
> > roughly the same for both math and art?
>
> I mean where the knowledge of it is. So, contrary to popular
> belief, the body of knowledge about painting isn't largely
> inexplicit (or not any more than maths, at least).
>
> Your version is more people-based. Maybe individual artists know a
> lot more inexplicitly than explicitly (I'd guess the same is true
> of random mathematicians, too). But as for the *body of knowledge*
> and *how to make a good painting* -- a lot more of that is explicit
> than what people usually think. I imagine you could get by just
> using it even if you have poor artistic intuition.

Fundamentally there is no difference between explicit and inexplict knowledge, I think. The only difference is that *we* know how to express the first kind in words or symbols.

So the whole notion of explicit/inexplicit knowledge is, I think, people-based. (An idea that is inexplicit today can be explicit tomorrow if someone figures out how to express it in words somehow).



>
> > Also to add to the list at the end - shouldn't the theory of
> > aesthetics be form-independent?
>
> Why?
>
> There may be some things that different arts have in common, but
> why expect the categories of what's involved in making a good piece > be the same?
>

No, but as I explain below I think that looking at it through the eyes of categories has some problems.


> Unless you mean the more broad theory -- namely beauty = technical
> stuff and problem solving -- in which case, yes, it is (and I was
> just using the example of painting because that's what I know best).
>

Hmm  I think I have a criticism of the theory you presented.

The way I look at it is this. We call many things beautiful (paintings , songs, proofs, computer code...). It is a guess that in all those cases we are referring to the same attribute when we call something beautiful or more beautiful than something else (otherwise there is no point in talking about beauty since it is a completely different thing in each particular case.)

What you seem to be saying is that something is more beautiful than something else if it is better than the other thing in some "technical way".

But what these "technical ways"  are isn't obvious and the ones you wrote down for painting seem to be very instrumental in nature.

To take just the stuff you wrote for painting - the theory of aesthetics must be able to explain *why* drawing things in perspective makes them look more beautiful and why doing the opposite of that doesn't.

That *same theory* must also be able to explain why changing proofs in such and such a way makes them more beautiful and why doing something else doesn't.

You could figure out similar lists for other forms of art (and that would be quite an achievement) , but what you'll have then looks very much like instrumental aesthetics to me.

It will for example leave you completely clueless when trying to come up with a *new* "technical way" of improving paintings that will make them look beautiful.


 
> > So in order to explain why a particular painting is beautiful one
> > would invoke both explanations about (general) aesthetics and the
> > specific properties of the medium (paint,paper).
>
> Yeah, but then isn't the latter form-specific?
>

Yes.

--
Matjaž Leonardis

Lulie Tanett

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Mar 17, 2014, 9:11:16 PM3/17/14
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On 4 Jan 2012, at 01:49, Matjaž Leonardis <sidranoe...@gmail.com> wrote:

> On 4 jan., 00:15, Lulie Tanett <lul...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > On 3 Jan 2012, at 03:39 PM, Matjaž Leonardis
> > <sidranoel.zaj...@gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > > On 3 jan., 14:55, Lulie Tanett <w...@lulie.org> wrote:
> > >> - I'd guess art has a similar explicit:inexplicit ratio to, say,
> > >> maths.
> >
> > > What exactly do you mean by this? That the ratio between the
> > > amount of
> > > explicit and inexplict ideas about the field that people hold is
> > > roughly the same for both math and art?
> >
> > I mean where the knowledge of it is. So, contrary to popular
> > belief, the body of knowledge about painting isn't largely
> > inexplicit (or not any more than maths, at least).
> >
> > Your version is more people-based. Maybe individual artists know a
> > lot more inexplicitly than explicitly (I'd guess the same is true
> > of random mathematicians, too). But as for the *body of knowledge*
> > and *how to make a good painting* -- a lot more of that is explicit
> > than what people usually think. I imagine you could get by just
> > using it even if you have poor artistic intuition.
>
> Fundamentally there is no difference between explicit and inexplict knowledge, I think. The only difference is that *we* know how to express the first kind in words or symbols.

Yes.

> So the whole notion of explicit/inexplicit knowledge is, I think, people-based. (An idea that is inexplicit today can be explicit tomorrow if someone figures out how to express it in words somehow).

Just because what is currently known is determined by people doesn't mean it's people-based.

There could be knowledge in books which no people today know (but would know if they read the book). People can make inexplicit knowledge explicit (or even instantiate the inexplicit knowledge in other non-people objects, like a novel).

This makes that knowledge separate from people today, and makes it meaningful to talk about 'the body of knowledge about X' as separate from "ideas about the field that people hold".

> > Unless you mean the more broad theory -- namely beauty = technical
> > stuff and problem solving -- in which case, yes, it is (and I was
> > just using the example of painting because that's what I know best).
> >
>
> Hmm I think I have a criticism of the theory you presented.
>
> The way I look at it is this. We call many things beautiful (paintings , songs, proofs, computer code...). It is a guess that in all those cases we are referring to the same attribute when we call something beautiful or more beautiful than something else (otherwise there is no point in talking about beauty since it is a completely different thing in each particular case.)
>
> What you seem to be saying is that something is more beautiful than something else if it is better than the other thing in some "technical way".
>
> But what these "technical ways" are isn't obvious and the ones you wrote down for painting seem to be very instrumental in nature.

Why is instrumental bad?

> To take just the stuff you wrote for painting - the theory of aesthetics must be able to explain *why* drawing things in perspective makes them look more beautiful and why doing the opposite of that doesn't.

To an extent. But wouldn't explaining all the whys result in infinite regress?

> That *same theory* must also be able to explain why changing proofs in such and such a way makes them more beautiful and why doing something else doesn't.

Is beauty in art the same as beauty in proofs?

Might that be a different level of theory, like more abstract?

> You could figure out similar lists for other forms of art (and that would be quite an achievement) , but what you'll have then looks very much like instrumental aesthetics to me.
>
> It will for example leave you completely clueless when trying to come up with a *new* "technical way" of improving paintings that will make them look beautiful.

If the theory had something about how to update the lists (like if we discover a new principle/technical thing that could improve a piece of art, which isn't in the existing categories), would it no longer be instrumentalist?

--
Lulie Tanett

Elliot Temple

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Mar 20, 2014, 11:18:49 PM3/20/14
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On Mar 17, 2014, at 6:11 PM, Lulie Tanett <lu...@LULIE.ORG> wrote:

>
> On 4 Jan 2012, at 01:49, Matjaž Leonardis <sidranoe...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>> On 4 jan., 00:15, Lulie Tanett <lul...@gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>>> On 3 Jan 2012, at 03:39 PM, Matjaž Leonardis
>>> <sidranoel.zaj...@gmail.com> wrote:
>>>
>>>> On 3 jan., 14:55, Lulie Tanett <w...@lulie.org> wrote:
>>>>> - I'd guess art has a similar explicit:inexplicit ratio to, say,
>>>>> maths.
>>>
>>>> What exactly do you mean by this? That the ratio between the
>>>> amount of
>>>> explicit and inexplict ideas about the field that people hold is
>>>> roughly the same for both math and art?
>>>
>>> I mean where the knowledge of it is. So, contrary to popular
>>> belief, the body of knowledge about painting isn't largely
>>> inexplicit (or not any more than maths, at least).
>>>
>>> Your version is more people-based. Maybe individual artists know a
>>> lot more inexplicitly than explicitly (I'd guess the same is true
>>> of random mathematicians, too). But as for the *body of knowledge*
>>> and *how to make a good painting* -- a lot more of that is explicit
>>> than what people usually think. I imagine you could get by just
>>> using it even if you have poor artistic intuition.
>>
>> Fundamentally there is no difference between explicit and inexplict knowledge, I think. The only difference is that *we* know how to express the first kind in words or symbols.
>
> Yes.

No that isn't the only difference. Another difference is the way it's structured. It's not like the ideas are all organized the same way, but with some in words and symbols and others not. There will be other organizational differences.

Also, Matjaz used the word "knowledge" but meant something like omniscience. He's saying basically that the Platonic Form of the ideas aren't different, just our view of them is. But our view of ideas is what we have, it's the knowledge epistemology is about, and it – our human knowledge – is what "explicit" and "inexplicit" apply to. Explicit and inexplicit aren't terms for discussing omniscience or platonic forms, that's confused.

-- Elliot Temple
http://curi.us/



Nicolas M. Kirchberger

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Mar 19, 2014, 11:03:21 PM3/19/14
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About this conversation about aesthetics, here's my take on it:
I would believe in the instrumental interpretation as follow; I think what we perceive as beautiful somehow resonate within our nervous system as an harmony-inducing structurally-similar map.
Let me explain, the proportions, relationships, ratios, etc would re-calibrate the nervous system's somato-sensorial map in a positive way as to optimize or increase some of its functioning.
In this way it would be like providing the nervous system with the answer with proof (the process of getting to the answer) to an adaptative challenge it was looking to solve.

That is for beauty, but any patter, be it auditive, visual, tactile or worldly could in theory induce a change for better or worse in the nervous system's somato-sensorial mapping of itself and thus induce change in inner feeling or mental state. A bit like a milder version of Stendhal syndrome (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stendhal_syndrome ) or the social psychology experiment where a test subject is made to believe by the testimonial of others that a stick of a certain size is equal in length to another one much longer and at the end of the experiment the ability to judge sticks size by perception is seemingly really altered as the subject can't seem to distinguish different sized sticks. Similar to somekind of hypnosis..

The nervous system, after all, must need calibration from time to time and therefore can also be miscalibrated or correctly re-calibrated too.

Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais extensively researched this kind of mapping in his work and even developed exercices to re-calibrate the somato-sensorial mapping of our body of itself. Recently one of his former student, Anat Baniel, developed a more concentrated, rapid and updated version of his teaching. The Feldenkrais method is widely used in advanced martial arts training and by elite athletes as well as normal people who want better well-being.. :-)

As for the ordering stuff, of course, some art forms will seems to be more beautiful to some type of nervous systems than others (miscalibrated nervous systems vs. better calibrated ones ). 'More' aesthetically pleasing art being the one that a well-calibrated nervous system would enjoy (probably not having any over-reaction and having more of a mlld, relaxed appreciation of it) :-)

Nick

Lulie Tanett

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Mar 23, 2014, 6:38:30 AM3/23/14
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On 20 Mar 2014, at 03:03, Nicolas M. Kirchberger <obero...@gmail.com> wrote:

> About this conversation about aesthetics, here's my take on it:

Do you have any criticism of the ideas in my original post?

https://groups.google.com/d/msg/beginning-of-infinity/FQQ9m-MDb1g/MjCPXFXq3gYJ

> I would believe in the instrumental interpretation as follow; I think what we perceive as beautiful somehow resonate within our nervous system as an harmony-inducing structurally-similar map.
> Let me explain, the proportions, relationships, ratios, etc would re-calibrate the nervous system's somato-sensorial map in a positive way as to optimize or increase some of its functioning.
> In this way it would be like providing the nervous system with the answer with proof (the process of getting to the answer) to an adaptative challenge it was looking to solve.

This view is criticised in chapter 14 of BoI.

If beauty were just an accident of biology, that would mean there's a limit to how much progress we can make in art.

Why expect good ideas/beauty to come from biology, anyway? Biology is often super dumb and self-destructive. We have design faults like a blind spot in our vision, ageing, etc.

--
Lulie Tanett

Vollmer

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Mar 23, 2014, 12:13:18 PM3/23/14
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Why are you dismissive about the amount of knowledge in biology?

transcribed from The Blind Watchmaker, by Richard Dawkins:

>And there's one ultra modern optical technology that actually owes a debt to nature for its existence. This is an optical disk used for storing information, and it can store an enormous amount, about 500 million characters.
>...
>But it's not what's written on this disk that interests me so much as the debt its designed owes to this, the moth. Because the eye of the moth has one particular feature which is precisely mimicked in the surface of the disk, and that is what enables it to store such enormous amounts of information."

Lulie Tanett

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Mar 27, 2014, 7:28:22 AM3/27/14
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On 23 Mar 2014, at 16:13, Vollmer <voll...@gmail.com> wrote:

>
> On 23 Mar 2014, at 06:38, Lulie Tanett <lu...@lulie.org> wrote:
>
>>
>> On 20 Mar 2014, at 03:03, Nicolas M. Kirchberger <obero...@gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>>> About this conversation about aesthetics, here's my take on it:
>>
>> Do you have any criticism of the ideas in my original post?
>>
>> https://groups.google.com/d/msg/beginning-of-infinity/FQQ9m-MDb1g/MjCPXFXq3gYJ
>>
>>> I would believe in the instrumental interpretation as follow; I think what we perceive as beautiful somehow resonate within our nervous system as an harmony-inducing structurally-similar map.
>>> Let me explain, the proportions, relationships, ratios, etc would re-calibrate the nervous system's somato-sensorial map in a positive way as to optimize or increase some of its functioning.
>>> In this way it would be like providing the nervous system with the answer with proof (the process of getting to the answer) to an adaptative challenge it was looking to solve.
>>
>> This view is criticised in chapter 14 of BoI.
>>
>> If beauty were just an accident of biology, that would mean there's a limit to how much progress we can make in art.
>>
>> Why expect good ideas/beauty to come from biology, anyway? Biology is often super dumb and self-destructive. We have design faults like a blind spot in our vision, ageing, etc.
>
> Why are you dismissive about the amount of knowledge in biology?

Because gene evolution is super slow compared to meme evolution.

But actually, I'm not. My argument is that *there is a cap* in any one biological entity (like an individual person).

No matter how much knowledge there is in biology, even if it's super awesome, there's still a cap and it doesn't change for an individual. It would mean any individual couldn't learn better aesthetic ideas than what was already built into their genes.

--
Lulie Tanett

Nicolas M. Kirchberger

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Apr 3, 2014, 6:54:00 PM4/3/14
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Le 2014-03-23 à 06:38, Lulie Tanett <lu...@lulie.org> a écrit :


On 20 Mar 2014, at 03:03, Nicolas M. Kirchberger <obero...@gmail.com> wrote:

About this conversation about aesthetics, here's my take on it:

Do you have any criticism of the ideas in my original post?

https://groups.google.com/d/msg/beginning-of-infinity/FQQ9m-MDb1g/MjCPXFXq3gYJ

Oh, I had not read the original post, but now that I did, yes, some:

About the criterium for a theory of aesthetics:
A theory of beauty/art must have these properties:
- Objective. (As it says in BoI.)

Yes

- Not based on emotion / doesn't have emotion at the centre.
- Not based / doesn't rely on culture.
- Not based / doesn't rely on the viewer's beliefs. Should be disconnected from belief like Popper disconnected it from philosophy when he took down JTB.

I would say here that 'aesthetics' result of a relationship between emotional state, culture and belief (among other things) and the object being perceive.

- Ditto psychology? (Gombrich had something to say about this and seemed to approve of the idea art is linked to psychology. Need to read his book.)

Psychology is heavily related to belief, feeling, culture and cognitive style, so I'd put it in the same category of 'things which are implicated in the 'aesthetic' relationship/process".

- The artist is barely relevant. (Except stuff is often more impressive when one can see how difficult it is. Should this not be so?)

Since I include psychological elements in here, the artist's psychology, culture, etc would be relevant in how to try to 'interpret' the art's effect as it was intended.

- Possible for someone to improve a particular piece.
- Possible for someone to improve the field.

Yes.

- Improving a piece is done by criticism (and conjecture).
- Ditto progressing the field.

And I would add here, adaptation to and integration to new elements (cultural, environmental, etc).

- I guess the difference between those two is that a piece can be improved by known criticism, whereas the field has to have new (better) stuff.
- Making something look more beautiful is indistinguishable from making it better in a 'technical' way. For any improvement, you could say "I did this <technical thing> which made it better".

I would add here that making it better would be akin to making it better fitting to a particular type of observer/nervous system/psychology/etc.  Aesthetic would therefore be a domain-specific function/relation between an observer and something observed. Of course, we could - arbitrarily - define a 'default' observer that would be the 'normal' or 'average' observer of a given environment.

- If that's a genuine improvement, it'll be possible to formulate that into a general principle (or as a specific application of a general principle) which others can use in their pieces, unless it's super-parochial somehow.

I'd guess the general principle would be something like "find a way to change the observer and/or the observed in such a way as to create an harmonious relationship between the two". :-)

- I'd guess art has a similar explicit:inexplicit ratio to, sa

Probably something like inexplicit ratios and the most basic level. And depending of the perceived ratios, how well the person's nervous system is calibrated and the ratio really contained in the object, the ratio will be differently perceived and should be adjusted accordingly.




I would believe in the instrumental interpretation as follow; I think what we perceive as beautiful somehow resonate within our nervous system as an harmony-inducing structurally-similar map.
Let me explain,  the proportions, relationships, ratios, etc would re-calibrate the nervous system's somato-sensorial map in a positive way as to optimize or increase some of its functioning.
In this way it would be like providing the nervous system with the answer with proof (the process of getting to the answer) to an adaptative challenge it was looking to solve.

This view is criticised in chapter 14 of BoI.

If beauty were just an accident of biology, that would mean there's a limit to how much progress we can make in art.

Why expect good ideas/beauty to come from biology, anyway? Biology is often super dumb and self-destructive. We have design faults like a blind spot in our vision, ageing, etc.

--
Lulie Tanett


I come from a general semantics (applied epistemology) background and I use non-aristotelian logic in that system; one implication is that I use non-elementalist to evaluate stuff.
In non-elementalist we say for instance that the disconnect between biology and psychology, mind and body, is artificial and we reconnect those artificially separated 'elements' together and get bio-psycho-social, neuro-linguistics and mind-body instead.

From that point of view, biology influence psychology and vice-versa.  This is supported today by current science, epigenetics, neurology, etc..

Epigenetics for instance now supports the thesis that environmental factors can affect how and if genes are expressed and can even change those gene. 'Environmental factors' in here include nutrition, outside events, beliefs, language, etc.

And 'neuro-linguistics' implies that language, propositions, etc, have a neural equivalent somewhere in the brain and both can be affected by each-others. (As we can notice when someone gets drunk and his/her mental state, thinking and behaving changes accordingly, or when a religious fanatics gets into crazy thinking and behaving and have the corresponding crazy mental state that goes with it ). :-)


Nick



Drew zi

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Apr 25, 2014, 12:13:47 PM4/25/14
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As far as I recall, Korzybski called his system non-Aristotelian logic before advances were made in probability and logic, he said that classical logic is false because nothing can be absolutely true: he was confusing justification with truth. His logic was a logic of degrees of truth. Let me contrast:

Aristotelian logic has two truth values: true and false.

Korzybski has an infinite valued logic, from zero to more and more true, but never certain: this is induction nothing more.


I'll go with Aristotle.


"From that point of view, biology influence psychology and vice-versa."

But the reason Korzybski held this view was false, he thought that life was colloidal (as many scientists were tentatively speculating at the time), before we discovered DNA.

Here is what Korzybski said about non-elementalism: what I call "elementalism," or splitting verbally what cannot be split empirically, such as the term mind by itself and the terms body, space, time, etc., by themselves"

You have to have an explanation for why things are seen to be split and why they should be unsplit, you are already assuming that they have been split, maybe they are just different, it seems arbitrary. He used an insight he got from einstein (that spacetime is more accurate than space and time) and generalized it, without explaining what problems each "unsplit" solves. Furthermore, saying "what cannot be split emprically" is not very clear. He does not give any explanations for why these things can't be split emprically, or what it even means to be split empirically.

Drew zi

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Apr 25, 2014, 12:18:03 PM4/25/14
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I wanted also to say that a lot of my information I quickly referenced Xenodochy, which has an interesting evaluation of how General Semantics and Popperianism, are compatible. the article is here (if anyone is interested): http://www.xenodochy.org/article/popper.html

Nicolas M. Kirchberger

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Apr 28, 2014, 11:45:53 PM4/28/14
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Comments below.


Actually, it's a lot more.. :-)
His model is of how our nervous system function; the connection of logic to reality - epistemology.
You might want to check out his "structural differential" here at  http://thisisnotthat.com/structural-differential/ 

Nick



I'll go with Aristotle.

"From that point of view, biology influence psychology and vice-versa."

But the reason Korzybski held this view was false, he thought that life was colloidal (as many scientists were tentatively speculating at the time), before we discovered DNA. 

Here is what Korzybski said about non-elementalism: what I call "elementalism," or splitting verbally what cannot be split empirically, such as the term mind by itself and the terms body, space, time, etc., by themselves"

You have to have an explanation for why things are seen to be split and why they should be unsplit, you are already assuming that they have been split, maybe they are just different, it seems arbitrary. He used an insight he got from einstein (that spacetime is more accurate than space and time) and generalized it, without explaining what problems each "unsplit" solves. Furthermore, saying "what cannot be split emprically" is not very clear. He does not give any explanations for why these things can't be split emprically, or what it even means to be split empirically.

He does gives plenty of reason with his "strucural differential", his description of the abstracting process in which information is lost at each levels and where events are split into qualities and stuff, like when we look at the spinning blade of a fan and our nervous system abstract out the individual blades of the fan and only let us see a circle; the circle is not "in the fan" the same way the split between body and mind, affection and cognition, time and space, etc are not "in the world" but more in our head. :-)


Nicolas M. Kirchberger

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Apr 28, 2014, 11:50:35 PM4/28/14
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Yes, I know Ralph E. Kenyon, the author of the site, he used to be part of our facebook general semantics discussion group, he had some weird idea about living system theory, evolution and a kind of social darwinism and wasn't liked on the group (which had about 700 members at the time - not all active participant though).

Nick
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