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Thread: What unites all of humanity?

  1. #1

    What unites all of humanity?

    What unites all of humanity?

    Our cognitive structure unites all of humanity.

    What is our cognitive structure?

    SGCS (Second Generation Cognitive Science) has developed empirical evidence to support a revolutionary new comprehension of human cognition. These three major findings of a second generation of cognitive science are:

    The mind is inherently embodied.
    Thought is moistly unconscious.
    Abstract concepts are largely metaphorical.

    Taken together, in a gestalt understanding of human cognition, “these three findings from the science of the mind are inconsistent with central parts of Western philosophy”.

    Our comprehension of cognition is of fundamental importance to our comprehension of our self and of the world that we inhabit. Our most basic beliefs are tied directly to our comprehension of human reason. “Reason has been taken for over two millennia as the defining characteristic of human beings. Reason includes not only our capacity for logical inference, but also our ability to conduct inquiry, to solve problems, to evaluate, to criticize, to deliberate about how we should act, and to reach an understanding of ourselves.”

    The mind is inherently embodied

    We have in our Western philosophy a traditional theory of faculty psychology wherein our reasoning is a faculty completely separate from the body. “Reason is seen as independent of perception and bodily movement.” It is this capacity of autonomous reason that makes us different in kind from all other animals. I suspect that many fundamental aspects of philosophy and psychology are focused upon declaring, whenever possible, the separateness of our species from all other animals.

    This tradition of an autonomous reason began long before evolutionary theory and has held strongly since then without consideration, it seems to me, of the theories of Darwin and of biological science. Cognitive science has in the last three decades developed considerable empirical evidence supporting Darwin and not supporting the traditional theories of philosophy and psychology regarding the autonomy of reason. Cognitive science has focused a great deal of empirical science toward discovering the nature of the embodied mind.

    “These findings of cognitive science are profoundly disquieting [for traditional thinking] in two respects. First, they tell us that human reason is a form of animal reason, a reason inextricably tied to our bodies and the peculiarities of our brains. Second, these results tell us that our bodies, brains, and interactions with our environment provide the mostly unconscious basis for our everyday metaphysics, that is, our sense of what is real...That is to say that the sensorimotor system in the human body can perform the functions required to conceptualize and, infer from those conceptions, in a manner required by human cognition. The logical assumption is that these self same sensorimotor neural networks are the networks the body uses to conceptualize during cognition.”

    Thought is mostly unconscious

    In the 1970s a new body of empirical research began to introduce findings that questioned the traditional Anglo-American cognitive paradigm of AI (Artificial Intelligence), i.e. symbol manipulation.

    This research indicates that the neurological structures associated with sensorimotor activity are mapped directly to the higher cortical brain structures to form the foundation for subjective conceptualization in the human brain. In other words, our abstract ideas are constructed with copies of sensorimotor neurological structures as a foundation. “It is the rules of thumb among cognitive scientists that unconscious thought is 95 percent of all thought—and that may be a serious underestimate.”

    Abstract concepts are largely metaphorical

    Human reason is an extension of animal reason. The sensorimotor system in the human body can perform the functions required to conceptualize and to infer, i.e. the system controlling bodily movements and perception are theorized to be the same that is used for reasoning and that much of what we thing comes from the unconscious. That which comes from the unconscious has been conceptualized based upon our bodily interaction with the world. We have an embodied mind and the failure to recognize that fact is the primary difference

    We constantly make subjective judgments regarding abstract things, such as morality, difficulty, importance; we also have subjective experiences such as affection, desire, and achievement.

    The manner in which we reason, and visualize about these matters comes from other domains of experience. “These other domains are mostly sensorimotor domains…as when we conceptualize understanding an idea (subjective experience) in terms of grasping an object (sensorimotor experience)…The cognitive mechanism for such conceptualizations is conceptual metaphor, which allows us to use the physical logic of grasping to reason about understanding.”

    Metaphor is pervasive throughout thought and language. Primary metaphors might properly be considered to be the fundamental building blocks for our thinking and our communication through language.

    “The integrated theory –the four parts together—has an overwhelming implication: We acquire a large system of primary metaphors automatically and unconsciously simply by functioning in the most ordinary of ways in the everyday world from our earliest days…we all naturally think using hundreds of primary metaphors.”

    In summation, we have many hundreds of primary metaphors, which together provide a rich inferential structure, imagery, and qualitative feel. These primary metaphors permit our sensorimotor experiences to be used to create subjective experiences. Thus abstract ideas are created that are grounded in everyday experiences.

    In modern society new human science theories take generations to seep into the social consciousness. However, new natural science theories are quickly accepted or rejected; when accepted they can immediately impact the world in which we live.

    Darwin informs us that the species that is unable to adapt adequately to the changing environment will quickly becomes toast.

    Can our civilization, with such a disparity of innovative conditioning, long survive?


    Quotes from Philosophy in the Flesh by George Lakoff and Mark Johnson

  2. #2
    Registered User Red-Headed's Avatar
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    What unites all of humanity?

    Doc Martin boots?
    docendo discimus

  3. #3
    Literary Superstar Pryderi Agni's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red-Headed View Post
    What unites all of humanity?

    Doc Martin boots?
    No, more fundamental than that.


    What unites humanity?

    A common greed and rapacity unites humanity.

    Fallacious action unites humanity.

    Depravity unites-and characterizes-humanity.

  4. #4
    I used this OP to focus attention upon that which is the only firm foundation for our development of a science of morality, i.e. the only thing that is universal to all humans. I shall try to add detail to this structure in later OPs.

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    Skol'er of Thinkery The Comedian's Avatar
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    To the question in the subject line, I'd have to say that "sex" unites all of humanity. It divides us too, funny how sex never makes any sense.
    “Oh crap”
    -- Hellboy

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    Registered User Judas130's Avatar
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    What are we talking about with 'unite' here?
    Rationality to mankind's degree has not yet been bettered (within our understanding of course!). It is something that we all have in common for certain, but it is not something we all choose to use. When rationality is used to whatever degree within one's thought and is propelled into use across the path of another person's own cognitive babble, it is there that rationality does little to unite - in common argumentative discourse!
    Philosophy has birthed, via rationality, the greatest rifts between peoples, and also the greatest thought - thought that we still take apart and argue about today and will always.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Judas130 View Post
    What are we talking about with 'unite' here?
    Rationality to mankind's degree has not yet been bettered (within our understanding of course!). It is something that we all have in common for certain, but it is not something we all choose to use. When rationality is used to whatever degree within one's thought and is propelled into use across the path of another person's own cognitive babble, it is there that rationality does little to unite - in common argumentative discourse!
    Philosophy has birthed, via rationality, the greatest rifts between peoples, and also the greatest thought - thought that we still take apart and argue about today and will always.
    As I said in the OP "Our cognitive structure unites all of humanity."

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    Registered User Morden's Avatar
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    I've always thought "self interest" would be a pretty good answer. You're telling us not?
    "I am thinking of aurochs and angels, the secret of durable pigments, prophetic sonnets, the refuge of art. And this is the only immortality you and I may share, my Lolita." -- Vladimir Nabokov

  9. #9
    Would "We all have the same basic cognitive structure," be an acceptable formulation? Is the usage of "unite" an indirect appeal to a sense of brotherhood or something like that?

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    Artist and Bibliophile stlukesguild's Avatar
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    Sex and Death
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    biting writer
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    Quote Originally Posted by stlukesguild View Post
    Sex and Death
    That about covers it mon ami . I believe it was Mr. Koppel on Nightline who phrased it, "Death is something we all have to face which no one knows anything about."

    Although I will confess not to have read much of this thread, I think it is safe to say shared experience both unites and divides groups of people. I know jack about how you sell your paintings; you probably cannot imagine my crip world.

    When I talk about The Literature Network to my ex, I might as well be speaking Czech, point being those who use online communities get it.

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    Something's Gone hoope's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pryderi Agni View Post
    No, more fundamental than that.


    What unites humanity?

    A common greed and rapacity unites humanity.

    Fallacious action unites humanity.

    Depravity unites-and characterizes-humanity.
    That is true.. i like that

    just to add that .. LOVE also unites us.. and can change alot in humans character
    "He is asleep. Though his mettle was sorely tried,
    He lived, and when he lost his angel, died.
    It happened calmly, on its own,
    The way the night comes when day is done."


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  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by billl View Post
    Would "We all have the same basic cognitive structure," be an acceptable formulation? Is the usage of "unite" an indirect appeal to a sense of brotherhood or something like that?
    If humans wish to reason together and thus save the species from quick extnction they must find a foundation of common unity. They must find a foundation upon which to construct society. For a while that unity was formed generally upon religion, because religion formed a basis of eternal life upon which all humans want to believe because all normal humans fear death and seek immortality.

    The eighteenth centuy Enlightenment destroyed this religious unity and focused upon reason as the unifyng force. Modern society has demonstracted the problem with this solution. We must find something within our self upon which to build a foundation and the only base that I can see is to start with what we all have in common.

    Objectivity is our shared subjectivity.

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    Registered User Judas130's Avatar
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    Perhaps the only way we can 'save the species' is to live naturally. Our prolonged lives and medical healthcare, as well as more money has caused surges of population explosion. This is all unnatural. By mothering our illnesses and indulging in great biomedical sciences, we are prolonging our stay on the planet - but we also deny the possibility of evolution, surely? Natural selection does not take place in western civilisation among humans.
    Nature has a way of cancelling things out. If we produce too much pollution, the environment wails in anger. If we have too many humans, we have too little dinner.

    Its a very weird thought. Personally I love science...but I can't help feeling this sometimes, if we just subdued ourselves to the health and life expectancy of our fellow animals, in the long run we'd be better off as a species. But as selfish individuals, it is unspeakable to our ears to sacrifice that much.
    peace

  15. #15
    Registered User Red-Headed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pryderi Agni View Post
    No, more fundamental than that.


    What unites humanity?

    A common greed and rapacity unites humanity.

    Fallacious action unites humanity.

    Depravity unites-and characterizes-humanity.
    I think that a lot of things can be said to unite humanity. A complex language, social skills, hate, fear, love, kindness, self-sacrifice inter alia but Doc Martin boots can be worn by everyone, male or female, young or old.

    So I'm sticking with Docs...
    docendo discimus

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