"To get people to think more..."

391 views
Skip to first unread message

Mark Klein

unread,
Nov 5, 1993, 12:36:30 PM11/5/93
to
Hi. My name is Mark Klein. I graduated from the University of
Michigan this past May with a B.A. in psychology. The reason I am
posting here is because I am very much in search of comments, feedback,
or advice that people in psychology or interested in psychology could
give me. I will try to make this as brief as possible to save bandwith.
What you see in the "subject" above, "to get people to think more..."
is my ultimate goal in life. How am I to achieve this goal, however?
There is no major to "get people to think more," there is no graduate school
to "get people to think more," and there is no profession to "get people
to think more"--none of which I am aware, at least.
Because no indirect means of study seemed to exist, I decided to choose
a profession from which I could learn about ways to get people to think
more, or a profession in which I could directly get some people to think
[to this end, however, any profession I would choose would be limited in
scope (i.e. as a teacher I would only teach X classes of kids, which is a
far cry from the entire world--where I would ultimate like my goal to
apply)]. I enjoy and want very much to help people, and I thought that
by doing something involving psychic processes I would learn about "human
nature" and be able to apply that to "getting people to think more." This
narrowed my options to Education, Clinical Psychology, or Psychiatry. I
chose Psychiatry for two reasons, one of which being that in case I did
encounter patients with "strictly biological disorders" (I prefer not to
debate what is "biological" or "psychological" at this point), I could treat
them with known "cures" (which really may cure only the symptom and not
the cause, but again, I prefer not to debate this at present).
Following up on this, then, I began at the University of Michigan Med-
ical School this August. I have finally come to the conclusion that this
is not what I want to be doing. While in the end I will interact with
people and quite possibly learn about "human nature" and, therefore, how to
get people to think more, I do not want to spend the next 3-6-8 years
thinking about things that are wholly unrelated to my ultimate goals (i.e.
Anatomy, Cellular and Molecular Biology, Pathology, etc.). If something
is going to consume my entire life, then I would rather be thinking
directly about my ultimate goals or things related to them. Because of
this, I had decided that clinical psychology is what I should do.
My question to any of you who might have expertise and/or an opinion
resulting from identifying with my goal or just from existing as a human
being is basically what steps would you recommend I take in figuring out
both what I want to do, and how to go about achieving that goal of "getting
people to think more"?
Perhaps clinical psychology is not necessary here. While I could take
from my therapeutic experiences something about the human mind, perhaps the
scope there is simply too small. The reason people don't think, in the way
I am speaking (i.e. about bigger, worldly issues, or about philosophical
queries, or about anything in a structured, logical way) may be simply
because there is no time. *This* would be a result of our society and the
way it is--a much larger scope than how individuals or systems (i.e.
families) think about themselves and their relationships with others.
Perhaps social psychology is the way to go. Through study of group
dynamics I could learn about getting groups of people to think together
in logical, productive ways. Perhaps I could also suggest ways to change
society so there is time for people to think--maybe by placing a higher
value on thinking than is done today (it is hardly ever emphasized
in school, for example. You think by studying, but you don't think about
the "big picture" issues that are relevant to each and every one of us).
Perhaps some sort of *consulting* is the way to go. I understand that
there are people who go from one group to another--be them corporate exec-
utives, political committees (sp?), educators, or a multitude of other
kinds of groups--and, without having any understanding of the issues at
hand, get these groups to sit down and think in a structured and productive
manner. I suppose this would certainly give me expertise in "getting
people to think more"--or would it?
If you can offer me any comments, any advice, or have any questions to
clarify my situation, then I would *very* *much* appreciate it. I have not
read this newsgroup for a long time, but I will read it in the near future
in case anybody chooses to post here. Otherwise, my electronic-mail address
is: msk...@umcc.umcc.umich.edu .
I sincerely ask any of you who do work in social psychology, clinical
psychology, consulting, critical thinking, counseling, or *anything* that
leads you to have comments about my words above to please take a few minutes
and respond to me here or through e-mail. I am at a crossroads these days,
and no matter what qualifications you have or are going to have, you also
have life's experience, and that is what will yield comments that will
very much aid me in deciding where to go next. Thank you very much for your
time.
Mark Klein (msk...@umcc.umcc.umich.edu)
--
Mark Klein "It's a great day for hockey..."
Profession: unknown. --"Badger" Bob Johnson
Affiliation: unknown.

Dave Breeding, xt-dGR,

unread,
Nov 5, 1993, 3:20:47 PM11/5/93
to
Hi Mark,

It's an interesting goal that you set for yourself. Perhaps I have a
similar one, because I believe we could all do a lot better than we do
(at thinking).

Some specific suggestions:

1. You will want to develop your skills as a communicator, one on one,
and with groups.

2. You will want to learn more about "thinking" itself, because it
won't do any good to just tell people to "think." You will have to be
able to teach them to do it.

3. I would recommend that you study NLP (neuro-linguistic programming)
as it is the most effective set of tools I know of for your purposes.
It will help you accomplish both 1 and 2 above.

4. I would also recommend that you study hypnosis (you will probably get
a start at this in NLP training).

5. Attend any of the workshops of others with similar goals to your
own.

6. Read everything you can get your hands on that seems like it might
help. We can never have enough ideas.

7. And finally, realize that "thinking" isn't the whole story. If you
can find it, I highly recommend that you read "The Philosopy of As-If"
by Hans Vaihinger (English translation, 1924).

Best Regards,
Dave

David J. Rose

unread,
Nov 5, 1993, 4:45:55 PM11/5/93
to
msk...@irie.umcc.umich.edu (Mark Klein) writes:

> What you see in the "subject" above, "to get people to think more..."
>is my ultimate goal in life. How am I to achieve this goal, however?
>There is no major to "get people to think more," there is no graduate school
>to "get people to think more," and there is no profession to "get people
>to think more"--none of which I am aware, at least.

[snip]

> My question to any of you who might have expertise and/or an opinion
>resulting from identifying with my goal or just from existing as a human
>being is basically what steps would you recommend I take in figuring out
>both what I want to do, and how to go about achieving that goal of "getting
>people to think more"?

[snip]

>Mark Klein "It's a great day for hockey..."
>Profession: unknown. --"Badger" Bob Johnson
>Affiliation: unknown.

Mark,
Some random thoughts (see, you've already made _me_ think more . . .)

1. There are avenues other than the psychology/psychiatry/education
fields you mentioned, although all those have major things to say on
the topic. Recently I did a minor literature search in management
journals on creativity and problem solving. Many institutions are
quite interested in improving the thinking/problem solving/creativity
of their managers. There is also interest in aiding people think and
work in groups. Many schools of management have programs in managerial
problem solving, for which psychology is an excellent background. You
can also make some bucks consulting when you finish, especially if you
can develop some kind of software creativity enhancer/group decision
facilitator.

2. Don't knock the chemistry/biology aspect of thinking. I've
been reading "Listening to Prozac" lately, and I'm fascinated by
comments by patients that use of Prozac has made their thinking clearer
and has enhanced their creativity. The author speculates that perhaps
a chemical thinking enhancer may be developed for those who are not
depressed. Some people in the pharmacological underground (R. U.
Sirius of Mondo 2000 comes to mind) are already working on chemical
thinking/creativity/consciousness expanders.

Hope this helps.

David Rose
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
ro...@rpi.edu

Mark Klein

unread,
Nov 7, 1993, 11:48:48 AM11/7/93
to
In article <1993Nov5.2...@exu.ericsson.se>,
Dave Breeding, xt-dGR, <exu...@exu.ericsson.se> wrote:
>Hi Mark,

Hi Dave. Thanks for your comments. I have a couple questions about some
of the things you suggested here.
Let me first note that you make a good point that I need to learn
something more about thinking so that I don't just say "go think" without
having a process *how*. On a related note, many people have told me that
rather than say "we need to think more," I need to decide what I want
people to think *about*. I have purposely left this vague, and although
I may need to change this in order to apply it, I have reasons for leaving
this vague. I suppose that ultimately what the directive of thinking
more implicates is a minor change of lifestyle. Why? Because this time
spent thinking will be time taken out of "spare time," not necessarily
work time. Does this make sense? There are things we can do to make
the thinking more enjoyable--like think together in groups (and eventually
I think this will be necessary to come to decisions. Incidentally, use
of computer networking can help bridge the gap of distance between groups
thinking together on the same subjects)--but in order for me to make my
goal "realistic" I am starting out by sparing the corporate/work domain.
What, then, should people think about? There are some things related
to our society and the world that need to be thought about such as poverty,
racism, *-isms, environmental concerns, etc. This is for the good of us
all. However, I think that all analytical considerations are worthwhile,
if only for development of our analytical thinking capacities. I consider
there to be "analytics" and "philosophy." Philosophy is a type of deep,
logical thought on any of a number of topics. Analytics is a subset of
philosophy: it is those topics that *you* enjoy thinking about. I want
people to spend more time working on analytics, I suppose, and then people
with similar analytics can work together, etc. All of this will help
develop our analytical components such that we can solve the big-picture
problems which, while they may seem so disconnected from each of us
individually, are no less important than issues seemingly more related to
"I."

>3. I would recommend that you study NLP (neuro-linguistic programming)
>as it is the most effective set of tools I know of for your purposes.

Could you tell me more about NLP, either here or through e-mail?

>4. I would also recommend that you study hypnosis (you will probably get
>a start at this in NLP training).

What would a study of hypnosis help me achieve? I have written a couple
papers on hypnosis, but the connection in this context seems unclear to me.

>5. Attend any of the workshops of others with similar goals to your
>own.

This is a wonderful idea, but I have never been able to find people with
similar goals to mine. Does anybody out there have similar goals to mine?
:) If you know of anybody, Dave, then please let me know. I've been
looking for the last seven years.

>7. And finally, realize that "thinking" isn't the whole story. If you
>can find it, I highly recommend that you read "The Philosopy of As-If"
>by Hans Vaihinger (English translation, 1924).

I have heard of this book. Can you tell me a bit about its content? I
will look for it.
Mark Klein

Mark Klein

unread,
Nov 7, 1993, 12:04:32 PM11/7/93
to
In article <2behij$s...@usenet.rpi.edu>,
David J. Rose <ro...@aix02.ecs.rpi.edu> wrote:

Thank you for your comments, Dave. In response to you:



> 1. There are avenues other than the psychology/psychiatry/education
>fields you mentioned, although all those have major things to say on
>the topic. Recently I did a minor literature search in management
>journals on creativity and problem solving. Many institutions are
>quite interested in improving the thinking/problem solving/creativity
>of their managers. There is also interest in aiding people think and
>work in groups. Many schools of management have programs in managerial
>problem solving, for which psychology is an excellent background. You
>can also make some bucks consulting when you finish, especially if you
>can develop some kind of software creativity enhancer/group decision
>facilitator.

In talking to people over the last few days, what you said in the first
sentence up there has become evident to me. Some sort of consulting would
be directly working with getting those groups of corporate people to think
about a specific topic. I would be offering a process, I suppose, and that
would be the important thing for them to take and apply to the problem at
hand. I would gain some sort of expertise here in, literally, getting
people to think more.
Ultimately, however, this is not the kind of thinking I want to get
people to do. Most everybody [excepting those who are in some way mentally
impaired (biological or psychological, and I care not to debate here whether
or not we should label this "disordered" or "abnormal" or "sick")] can
think, and does think--but it is when we get time off from work that we
often do *not* think. This is what I want to change, I believe. I want
to increase "productivity" (I'm not sure I want to start using these sort
of terms for what I want to accomplish, but I will leave it here for now) in
the non-working times. I do not want to decrease the amount of time people
spent with family--that is important. In high school I used to think "look
at everybody...on weekends they just go out and get trashed instead of
bothering to think about things," but now I do believe that we all need time
off to relax a bit from our stressful lives. Somewhere in there, though,
we need to make more time to think, I believe, and that includes thinking
about the big-picture issues as well as issues of "rationality vs. emotion,"
or whatever analytics appeal to you. I wonder if working in the corporate
area as a consultant will give me the kind of expertise I need to talk to
people about thinking more in the non-corporate domains of their lives.
Does this make sense?

> 2. Don't knock the chemistry/biology aspect of thinking. I've

...

>and has enhanced their creativity. The author speculates that perhaps
>a chemical thinking enhancer may be developed for those who are not
>depressed. Some people in the pharmacological underground (R. U.

Fascinating! I did not at all mean to demean the chemical aspect of
thinking or anything else. I did go into medicine for reasons, and one
of those was a feeling of agreement about the biological aspect of the
mind. I may ultimate think that everything is biological, and that, for
example, even psychoanalysis works through thinking in ways which cause
chemical changes in the brain.

>Hope this helps.

I most definitely appreciate it!
Mark Klein

Richard E. Cytowic MD

unread,
Nov 8, 1993, 9:28:11 PM11/8/93
to
Mark:
What a thoughtful message. I am relatively new to the Internet
newsgroups, mostly as a result of discussing my latest book, but what
is immediately apparent is that of the 20 million people on the
Internet, 19.8 million have absolutely nothing to say.
I intend to reply shortly. But first I would ask "What do you
want people to think about?" and what do you hop will happen as a
result of their "thinking" more?
Whatever you do, you should continue to share your experience.
You post has already caused people to think more.
Richard E. Cytowic

Mark Klein

unread,
Nov 9, 1993, 4:20:47 PM11/9/93
to
In article <296190153...@psilink.com>,

Richard E. Cytowic MD <p00...@psilink.com> wrote:
>Mark:
> What a thoughtful message. I am relatively new to the Internet

Thank you!

>newsgroups, mostly as a result of discussing my latest book, but what
>is immediately apparent is that of the 20 million people on the
>Internet, 19.8 million have absolutely nothing to say.

200,000...that's pretty generous! :)
Seriously, I am just kidding. I just put that in because it does seem
to be one common reflection of society and how people do not think. It
is important to note that I do not believe people do not think. On the
contrary, I believe that people think a great deal. People seem to think
about themselves and their relationships, about school, about their
job--and, to sum up 95% (? That is a random figure) of what people think
about, what society dictates are the kinds of things they should think
about...

> I intend to reply shortly. But first I would ask "What do you
>want people to think about?" and what do you hop will happen as a
>result of their "thinking" more?

Okay, and to continue with the end of the last paragraph: ...but what it
does not seem that too many people do is deep, analytical thinking about
things. What are "things"? Different people will have different interests,
so the focus of their thought will differ. I took a fascination to
_Star Trek: The Next Generation_, and as a result, one of the topics I
did a great deal of thinking about was "logic versus emotion." Certain
people will take interest with big-picture political issues (i.e. prejudice
or the -isms, poverty, environmental concerns, drug abuse, homelessness),
and others will be concerned with abortion, drug legalization, animal
rights--and some of these also fit the former category. Much of this
may run together, and my general point is that people will and can think
about different things. I do not want to tell people what to think about,
because I intend to be no revolutionary of any sort [although, and this
is interesting, too, to actually "get people to think more" may require
a change in social attitudes toward thinking (whatever these attitudes are--
yet another tricky issue), and this is, almost, a revolutionary endeavor].
One of the main foci of these goals did regard big, social problems,
however. I believe problems such as prejudice, homelessness, and others
that I mentioned above are so big that no one person can come up with
solutions on his/her own. There are so many variables--but if we think
analytically about them, and think *together*, then maybe we can overcome
the immense multivariate problems with our combined brainpower. That is
a general idea.
To attempt and directly answer your question then, Richard, I think
that an increase in this deep thinking would eventually benefit society
and our future, by solving some of these immense issues/problems. As for
thinking about other philosophical issues that do not appear to be
world-related, I think that is worthwhile also for two reasons. First, I
think it sharpens up analytical skills and prepares people to be able to
think with other people in solving the bigger problems. Secondly, espec-
ially because I do not expect everybody to be political, I believe that
many "philosophical ideas" have a much greater potential in their
application to the "real world" than people often believe. I believe
these connections could be realized--if people thought about them a bit
more and took interest. Would you agree that "Philosophy" is believed,
by many, to be a discipline that is "somewhere out there"? If so, then
I guess I am disagreeing with that belief.
Do you have any suggestions for me? I am curious to know about
the work you do, Richard. Please inform me--either here or in e-mail.
What was the book that you just published?

> Whatever you do, you should continue to share your experience.
>You post has already caused people to think more.

Thank you! That means a lot to me. Some of you out there have responded
to this, and you have helped me a great deal by getting me to think about
it in other ways--I appreciate it!! I have not, however, gotten as big a
response as I might have hoped, since anyone with life's experience (i.e.
everybody) could offer comments that could be useful to me.
Mark

Anthony Robert Sabo

unread,
Nov 16, 1993, 2:40:05 PM11/16/93
to
In article <2be2uu...@srvr1.engin.umich.edu> msk...@irie.umcc.umich.edu (Mark Klein) comments:

> What you see in the "subject" above, "to get people to think more..."
>is my ultimate goal in life. How am I to achieve this goal, however?
>There is no major to "get people to think more," there is no graduate school
>to "get people to think more," and there is no profession to "get people
>to think more"--none of which I am aware, at least.
[clip]

>from my therapeutic experiences something about the human mind, perhaps the
>scope there is simply too small. The reason people don't think, in the way
>I am speaking (i.e. about bigger, worldly issues, or about philosophical
>queries, or about anything in a structured, logical way) may be simply
>because there is no time. *This* would be a result of our society and the
>way it is--a much larger scope than how individuals or systems (i.e.
>families) think about themselves and their relationships with others.

[more clipped]


Mark, I am one of the Poeple from the alt.meditation group, who
is following the meditation thread here. It is from this
background that I would like to respond:

First, I would like to compliment some of the suggestions from
other backgrounds, they show some insight. However, I would
suggest that of the academic disciplines, philosophy might be the
most appropriate.

Second, I would suggest that you reconsider the exact structure
of you goal, "to get people to think more" Thinking more may not
be an answer, for society. However attempting to have a better
quality of thoughts, may be. In my experience thinking is a
process that involves a few variables, reasoning or cognition,
intuition, and habit. Dr. Deepak Chopra once quoted a study (in
"Quantium Heeling", I think) in which the researchers concluded
that the average person thinks approximately 65,000 thoughts per
day. They also went on to conclude that of these 65,000, about
95% are exactly the same thoughts that apssed through the minds
of people the day before. {eg. what should I make for dinner
tonight, did I remember my car keys, did I put out that
cigarette, etc} These kinds of thoughts are quite mundane, but
take up our capacity to use our mind, intellect, and brain in new
creative pursuits, and also in developing pure powerful thoughts.
Getting people to focus the mind and train the intellect will
help to shift the balance of mundane thoughts, to creative
powerful ones.

Turning to Meditation, I would suggest that when people have a
higher purpose in life, they tend to have a natural tendancy to
turn to thinking about the nature of life, needs, wants, meaning,
the nature of knowledge, etc.

Further, I have found most of the mundane thoughts, are habitual,
and are not in the concous intent of the individual to continue
to think them. Daydreaming, for example, if you try to measure
for yourself just how much of the day you spend at this, you will
probably be alarmed to find it is as much as 10-30%. I found it
alarming to find how much I personally did. Learning to change
the habits or patterns of our thoughts can be quite challenging,
and not seem rewarding until far after the change has been
recognised. (this why I suspect that very few people have a
desire to try meditation)

New thinking is part cognition, and part intuition. Good
quality thinking is a healthy balance between the two.
Uneducated seems to lack reason or cognition, and their thinking
is largely intuition, subject to the experiences and attitudes of
those close to them. THe highly educated, on the other hand,
often become sensors, and rely on cognitive skills, for the most
part. HTis is a problem since life is not just a head game, it
must be lived, for a sensor (I hope that I am using this term
correctly) life is not always experienced directly, but filtered
through a theory or framework, and the thinking suffers because
the 'experience' is already flavoured by someone else's theory and
writeup. It becomes vicarious, at best.

I would suggest that you consider using meditation, in a form
other than TM, as a supplement to your other studies. Meditation
is all of the following, and you can try these out for yourself:
1. Meditation is using thoughts to study thoughts.
2. Meditation is sitting so still that thoughts themselves ARE
the disterbance.
3. THoughts flow through our conciousness like water through a
stream, meditaiton is watching that flow.
4. Thoughts are our closest companions, but they are not uor true
selves, meditation separates this distinction.
5. "Meditation is a Love -link with God" -Jagdish Chander


> Mark Klein (msk...@umcc.umcc.umich.edu)
>--
>Mark Klein "It's a great day for hockey..."
>Profession: unknown. --"Badger" Bob Johnson
>Affiliation: unknown.

P.S. being a flames fan and a Calgarian, I love this .sig.......

--
Tony bon Joni (no relation) / (ars...@acs.ucalgary.ca)
Heaven and hell don't coexist in time or space, you get one or the other.
Life is more fun with chocolate.

Michael A. Crampton

unread,
Nov 16, 1993, 10:03:10 PM11/16/93
to

How about this:

i had a friend that wwent to Puerto Rico to study
why the had such cronic poverty...
his conclusions were that much of it was the way
that the govt carried out monetary policy,
but that even that was related to the underling
social trends of valueing stupidity...
that trend had persitsted through generation after
generation to such a deep seeded storeotype
and thought structure that it is now almost a value.
it has lead to social and economic problems.
He then suggested that this same trend could be found
in good ole US of A...

just a thought.

In my opinion this is a deadly problem that will
take an adjustment of main stream attitudes...
I would love to see more participate in this
thread, so we can get this out in the open...

--

Mike...

mcra...@nmsu.edu
"the procrastinators shall inheret the earth--
when they get around to it..." -me
"people that criticize spelling mistakes do so
becasue they can't find any intellectual mistakes..." -me

Mark Klein

unread,
Nov 19, 1993, 5:52:46 PM11/19/93
to
Anthony--
I thank you very much for your comments. I think these can be
especially interesting, coming from a competely different perspective than
what I am used to. However, I hope that your holding a different
perspective doesn't put me in a position where I have to either try
your techniques or not try them--with those being the only two options.
I would have nothing against trying a new technique, but if I then had
to either use that as a framework for building on my ideas or not and
thereby rejecting your ideas, that is unfortunate.
I don't know if I am making myself clear or not. Let me try an
analogous example that may be more familiar: religion. A few people
have suggested that if I want to "get people to think more," then I
should approach it from a religious standpoint. Not being religious,
I cannot do this. This does not mean that I am against religion, however.
To become religious and start believing in something in a
qualitatively different manner than I do now might not be logically
possible, given that I am trying to maintain a largely nonjudgemental
stance.
I hope this makes sense. If not--hey, it's Friday. :)

In article <Nov16.194...@acs.ucalgary.ca>,
Anthony Robert Sabo <ars...@acs.ucalgary.ca> wrote:
>In article <2be2uu...@srvr1.engin.umich.edu> msk...@irie.umcc.umich.edu
(Ma
rk Klein) comments:

>First, I would like to compliment some of the suggestions from
>other backgrounds, they show some insight. However, I would
>suggest that of the academic disciplines, philosophy might be the
>most appropriate.

I have considered this, but the problem I would have with approaching
this specifically from a philosophical side is that I see a perception
among so many people that Philosophy is some discipline that is just
"out there" somewhere, disconnected from them. I do not believe this
is the case, and I believe that if we spent more time thinking about
"Philosophy" then we would see how it relates to us more. Nevertheless,
I think most people choose not to bother with it because they see
it as a sport for the philosophers to play.
Is your sense of society's perception of Philosophy consistent with
this?

>Second, I would suggest that you reconsider the exact structure
>of you goal, "to get people to think more" Thinking more may not
>be an answer, for society. However attempting to have a better
>quality of thoughts, may be. In my experience thinking is a

Excellent point! The question now, then, would be "how are you going
to increase the quality of what thought does take place?" I am going
to want a method that will reach as many people as possible with as little
opposition as possible.
By the way, do you have a complete reference for this study in
_Quantum Heeling_ about thought? I would like to take a look at it.

>Turning to Meditation, I would suggest that when people have a
>higher purpose in life, they tend to have a natural tendancy to
>turn to thinking about the nature of life, needs, wants, meaning,
>the nature of knowledge, etc.

My first question about meditation regards its individuality. Is this
not a practice that people do alone? That is my impression (probably
the only book I have read which may describe a form of meditation is
_Creative Visualization_). The kind of thinking that I want to encourage
is a kind that people can do together.
Ideally, using your daydreaming example, if we could take the time
spent daydreaming and use that time for thinking together in groups,
then I think we would be in *excellent* *shape*. That is the kind of
thing I have been considering. This would, also, be a way of increasing
the quality of thinking, as opposed to the quantity.

>New thinking is part cognition, and part intuition. Good
>quality thinking is a healthy balance between the two.
>Uneducated seems to lack reason or cognition, and their thinking
>is largely intuition, subject to the experiences and attitudes of
>those close to them. THe highly educated, on the other hand,
>often become sensors, and rely on cognitive skills, for the most
>part. HTis is a problem since life is not just a head game, it
>must be lived, for a sensor (I hope that I am using this term
>correctly) life is not always experienced directly, but filtered
>through a theory or framework, and the thinking suffers because
>the 'experience' is already flavoured by someone else's theory and
>writeup. It becomes vicarious, at best.

Hmm...I'm not sure I understand what you are getting at in this
paragraph, Anthony.

>1. Meditation is using thoughts to study thoughts.

That is definitely consistent with what I have been considering...

>2. Meditation is sitting so still that thoughts themselves ARE

This is *very* *interesting*. If meditation is trying to clear your
mind of all thought, then this is exactly *opposite* of my considerations.
I do not object to meditation at all, but I think, from what I know of
it, that its place is different from the place of my "thinking together"
ideas. I certainly see a need for us to relax, clear our mind, and
strive for an inner balance. Hard, logical, in-depth thought is not
necessarily going to achieve this. :) Meditation can, however. Does
this mean we should meditate instead of think? I believe the thought
is *absolutely* *necessary* for the survival of _Homo sapien_.
Do you know of a good intro book on meditation, or would you say
that _Creative Visualization_ fulfills that specification?
Have a good weekend, Anthony!
Mark
P.S. What does TM stand for in reference to meditation?

>>--
>>Mark Klein "It's a great day for hockey..."
>>Profession: unknown. --"Badger" Bob Johnson
>>Affiliation: unknown.
>
>P.S. being a flames fan and a Calgarian, I love this .sig.......

GO PENGUINS!!! :) (I've always liked the Flames, actually, but
being in the other conference none of my teams have ever played them
too much)

Judy Ann Kettenhofen

unread,
Nov 21, 1993, 7:34:23 PM11/21/93
to
Mark Klein (msk...@irie.umcc.umich.edu) wrote:
: Anthony--

[stuff deleted]

: >be an answer, for society. However attempting to have a better


: >quality of thoughts, may be. In my experience thinking is a

: Excellent point! The question now, then, would be "how are you going
: to increase the quality of what thought does take place?" I am going
: to want a method that will reach as many people as possible with as little
: opposition as possible.

Perhaps one of the first things would be to consider *how* people think,
what is the structure of their thoughts? Further, how does the struc-
ture of those thoughts affect what they believe to be possible?

For example, in _The Structure of Magic, Vol I_ by John Grinder &
Richard Bandler, expand and specify how the Korzybskian (of Science
& Sanity fame) idea that "The Map is not the Territory" works. The
"true" nature of reality is not what is known to us--rather, it is
filtered not only through what we can detect from our five senses--
but also through how that sensory information is received within the
mind; and then, how we symbolize (often through words) those per-
ceptions. Grinder & Bandler specify 3 primary filters that permit
human beings to make a shorthand of reality--i.e., how we symbolize
it from information we receive through our neurology: 1) deletion;
2) distortion; and 3) generalization. (I'm actually, undoubtedly,
using all three processes in attempting to represent information
from that book to make my point here--I recommend reading the book).

For example, some readers of this post may very well have cognitive
blocks the moment they read the name of the book above, or, when
they get to the authors' names, because they will recognize the
book as particular book, the authors as the co-founders of Neuro-
Linguistic Programming (NLP)--no matter whether they endorse NLP
or denounce it (or somewhere in between). I would hope that some-
one with NLP training, however, would understand that their per-
ception is filtered, their thoughts are *not* reality, and have a
few more tools with which to understand their understandings, and
to understand *other* understandings as well. So, if I have a
perception that someone reacts negatively to the symbol "NLP", I
might start asking them about what it is about NLP that they dislike;
or, I might never mention the term, and, instead, discuss NLP
concepts without providing a label, in order to offer them another
choice, another viewpoint; I might also probe to gain see if the
person fits some model of I've made of other people who disliked
NLP, or whether I get to enrich the models I have, or even make
a new one.

NLP, of course, is not the only source of this kind of information.
The linguistics field has a number of people who have and are
exploring this arena.

Other areas I think you will find of interest are negotiations,
politics, and various writers on creative thinking: DeBono and
Roger Van Oech are two off the top of my head.

Thus: I hope I have provided information that will 1) allow you
to explore the concept of "quality of thinking", 2) how people's
perceptions can affect your ability to incur as little opposition
to methods you feel are useful in achieving your goal. Hopefully,
as well, these tiny morsels will give you an appetite for a full-
course meal.

: Ideally, using your daydreaming example, if we could take the time


: spent daydreaming and use that time for thinking together in groups,
: then I think we would be in *excellent* *shape*. That is the kind of
: thing I have been considering. This would, also, be a way of increasing
: the quality of thinking, as opposed to the quantity.

It does seem that the quality of thinking requires both some individual
thinking and some group thinking--and a facilitator to clear up any
roadblocks. For instance, I ran a problem-solving meeting where I sent
out a survey to the participants, and summarized the results of that
survey before the meeting was ever held. I spent time talking with
the participants who had strong ideas and opinions, before the meeting.
Thus, I had given the participants to use the meeting to discuss the
products of their thinking efforts about the problems we were trying
to solve, rather than spending the meeting time doing information gathering.
(Groups, to me, are where ideas get discussed, and the thinking
part is done before and after; many folks like to have the opportunity
to think "over" things, which I believe requires some time for absorption
and integration of information.) I, as the facilitator, spent time
thinking about what were the ways in which I could have the group
have an "enriched" process--allowing the quieter folks to be heard,
and the louder folks to not dominate. I threatened folks with a squirt
gun if interruptions got out of control, for instance. (Indian "talking"
sticks are another to keep the pandemonium down, as well--when ideas
flow, people get excited!).

If people are going to "think together", they must communicate with
one another. It is important, as well then, to understand how group
process dynamics work. Yet another area of exploration I would recommend.

In summary, I have attempted to provide an experience in perception,
and then talked about how different perceptions might be developed
and some ideas of how to get around perceptual roadblocks. I've given
some pointers to areas of information which hopefully you will find
useful. And, of course, I have added my own opinions and a personal
anecdote.

Fascinated and stimulated by this discussion, I am

--Judy

PS:
: P.S. What does TM stand for in reference to meditation?

if I may speak for Anthony...it means Transcendental Meditation,
the tradition started by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi (for the younger
folks here, he taught it to The Beatles.) There are TM centers in most
large American cities, if not all--I've been told.

Reply all
Reply to author
Forward
0 new messages