in/out of other’s bodies
15 pg pdf for m of care – aug 5, (2015) by maurice bloch on durkheim [https://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/pdfplus/10.14318/hau5.3.019]
resonating as i reread/add emergence as whalespeak ch 6.. and of thread w simona/scott:
from me: It’s everybody, or no one.’ @SimonaFerlini tag
from scott: ‘i am only properly free when all men/women about me are equally free.. far from being a limitation/denial of my liberty, the liberty of another is its necessary condition/confirmation.. i only become truly free thru the liberty of others.. so that the more i am surrounded by free men, and the deeper/wider this freedom grows.. the further my own extends..
from simona: “it is part of my happiness to make so that many others may understand even as I do, so that their understanding and desire may entirely agree with my own”
6 – the mind readers
the children consistently assume that the grown up would expect to find pencils in the box (marked smarties), not candy.. they had not yet developed the faculty for building models of other people’s mental states.. they were trapped in a kind of infantile omniscience, where the knowledge you possess is shared by the entire world..
the idea of two radically distinct mental states, each containing diff info about the world, *exceeded the faculties of the 3 yr old mind. but it came **naturally to the 4 yrs olds..
rather*scrambled the mind/thinking of the 4 yr olds
**not naturally.. because the scrambling had begun.. ie: intro’d to consumer world of pencils and candy and box labels.. where people have to think/talk whalespeak.. so radically distinct mental states.. rather than legit natural interconnectedness.. we need a means to get back/to that natural/deep/non hierarchical listening
notes/quotes from pdf:
One thing that normal human babies do at about 1 year old, .. is point at things, not because they want what they designate—but because they want the people around them to pay attention to the same things. In other words, they want the people they are with to adjust their minds in harmony with theirs—in short, to share intentionality (Gopnik
yeah.. i think that’s what we find when research ie: whales in sea world.. rather.. could say the 1 yr old (who is not yet scrambled) is trying to unscramble the other people.. *wake them up.. to our natural one ness (back to m of care – jul 15 – beyond the monastic self)
This demonstrative pointing is one of the first stages of the development of that unique and probably most important of human capacities: the ability to “read” the mind of others, a capacity that is somewhat oddly referred to as “theory of mind” (TOM for short).
This ability continues to *develop from the age of 12 months on until the child reaches the age when it can be shown that the child “knows” that other people act in terms of the beliefs or concepts they hold, rather than in terms of how the world is ..
Those familiar with Gricean theories of linguistic pragmatics will realize that it can be argued, convincingly in my opinion, that this continual mind reading is wha makes linguistic communication, and indeed all complex human communication, possible ..
the very nature of human communication must involve something like this
nature of whalespeak.. not communication of 8b legit free people..
the representation of one brain colonizes another. This process, whether it is conscious or subconscious, is the basis of all communication. In such a case, the created neuronal activity of one brain is the material existing in another. By this means, the brains of different individuals interpenetrate materially so that the boundaries that we believe to be obvious become problematic. What I am saying is very similar to what some writers, especially Ed Hutchins, call “distributed cognition”.. each individual does his job as best he can in the light of his own knowledge, but in doing so he relies on other individuals who have other bits of knowledge necessary to navigate the ship that he does not and does not need to have. This is what Hutchins calls distributed cognition.
the different individuals need to trust that the others know what they are doing and are well intentioned. This means that people can then act on what they know is incomplete knowledge, but which they trust is completed by the knowledge others have, to the extent of acting on that which they do not need fully to understand. ..I deliberately align what I am saying with the point made by a group of philosophers who, following Hilary Putnam and the “deference” theorists, stress that social life is based on trust of others; basically on the default assumption that these others with whom we are in contact are normally competent and cooperative. ..
Such a state of affairs makes it possible that the content of knowledge stored in an individual is not to be understood nor consciously sought to be understood, but this individual is likely to be aware of the solidarity on which the whole system of social cognition is based, and this may be greatly valued.
yeah.. that.. along w intellect ness as a cancer/distraction.. so too.. thinking we need to understand..
When anthropologists study kinship systems, they are studying representations of phenomena having to do with obvious empirical processes, of which no one can be unaware: going in and out of each other’s bodies. When we examine the interpenetrations of minds, however, we are dealing with phenomena not so easily consciously perceived. The continual mutual reading of minds on which communication depends is like grammar: it is and has
to be subconscious, if only to operate at the necessary speed.
does that even make sense..? if we were all legit free.. legit ourselves?.. would it make sense to say.. reading your own mind?
Younger children say that the person who left the house will look under the hat where the sweets actually are, while older children say that the person will look under the hat where he or she saw them put, but where, of course, they no longer are. This difference is usually interpreted by psychologists to mean that the younger child has not yet subconsciously understood that other people do not necessarily know what they know. To put it more theoretically and somewhat differently, the younger child has not yet subconsciously understood that people act in terms of their possibly false beliefs, not in terms of what the world is actually like.
same ie as ch 6 emergence as whalespeak
The adult Malagasy villagers’ interpretation of the experiment was not all that different from that of professional cognitive psychologists. After a bit of prodding and reflection, the commonest explanation was that younger children have not yet learned to lie, so they do not understand that other people can also lie. For reasons that I cannot go into here, I take this to mean that the younger children are represented by them as naive empiricists, while they believe the older children and adults know that people can deceive and therefore look for the communicative intention of the speaker because they do not simply trust appearances that could be manipulated by people.
During these continuing discussions, the villagers explained that thought was an activity through which one matched one’s action to one’s purpose. .. Humans, however, are superior to other animals in that they have an extra tool— language— that enables them to achieve the purpose of their thought more efficiently especially through indirectness and deceit.
When I consider the very detailed information on mind, thought, and cognitive development that I obtained through this work from the largely unschooled Malagasy in this remote village, I am, above all, struck by the familiarity of the ideas they expressed and their similarity with our own folk view. I am also impressed by the correspondence between their views and those of the psychologists.
yeah.. i think all 8b of us are scrambled.. even the malagasy.. to me they’ve still been schooled.. influenced by our sick world.. ie: helena norberg-hodge findings et al.. language as control/enclosure et al..
Although these folk grammatical theories vary probably because of a great variety of historical and cultural factors, it would surely be perverse not to accept that their obvious similarities are caused by the way grammar actually works and that this can be accessed to a degree
yeah.. like that.. language as control/enclosure
The working of the mind is difficult for the Malagasy to understand and represent, as indeed it is for any psychologist. It involves peeping past barriers of many kinds by means of thought or practical experiments, but both parties do this and for neither party is this completely impossible.
on malagasy thinking dreams are other people speaking thru/in you.. The idea that dreams are really other people, especially ancestors, thinking through you for their own ends is part of that much more general idea that previous generations, dead forebears, living elders, or absent members of the family are speaking through you as you consciously or subconsciously “quote” them. Not only are you expected to utter the words of other wise people because you trust and rely on them. But a person’s forebears are thought to be continually acting through him or her. Indeed, to allow that to happen willingly is to show respect and to act morally.. Morality is thus experienced, less as a matter of individual choice and more as a matter of submission and recognition of the presence of others who penetrate you.
schooled.. socrates supposed to law et al
The point I want to stress is that the operation of theory of mind and the nature of the distribution of knowledge in society are neither unknown nor fully known by the Malagasy villagers I studied. Furthermore, they are aware of the unsatisfactory partial nature of their knowledge, often commenting on this during the discussions that followed the experiments. And, as a result of their realization of the incompleteness of their knowledge, when the chance arises, as when I showed them the false belief task or when they observed the deaf and dumb man, they eagerly seize the opportunity to find out more about their own and others’ mental processes. In that inquisitiveness they are no different from professional scientists.
Like them, their knowledge is incomplete, but also like them they strain to know more about a reality that, in the case of psychological processes, is common to all human beings and partly accessible.
i don’t think we’d do that if we were all legit free..
commonality of the enterprises and the reality of the world they engage with that explains the continuity between scientific discussion of such things as theory of mind and the cultural representations of largely unschooled Malagasy villagers and Western scientists
all in sea world
A central implication of TOM is that all social relation implies interpenetration, so the arbitrariness of boundaries within the social fabric applies not just to people who are related but also between all human beings who are in contact. Awareness of this ensures that ideologies of individualism are always, to varying degrees, negated by ideologies based on the realisation of interconnection, as Mauss stressed in his seminal essay on the gift
Knowledge of interpenetration and of the lack of clear boundaries, ..what is meant by that most Durkheimian of words: solidarity.. it would seem that a default assumption in most cultures is that there is a potential moral obligation to any stranger with whom one might come into contact or, to put it in a different way, that the very fact of entering into a relationship implies being consubstantial and therefore morally obligated. Perhaps the most familiar manifestation of this phenomenon is the obligation of hospitality toward strangers, ..
ie: i think the minute we think in terms of ie: obligation.. we start being cancerized/engineered/not-us/whales
beliefs in spirit possession that seem to crop up all over the world. These beliefs are an extreme representation of the colonizing nature of social relations because they involve the total invasion and replacement of one individual’s intentional mind by that of another.
maté trump law et al
In a somewhat different way, the realization of the interpenetration of individuals and of the context dependence of boundaries also seems present in many political movements and religions.
nationality: human.. but no one has yet made it be about all of us..
Most importantly, however, I differ from Durkheim in his understanding of causation. For Durkheim the social, which comes from we know not where, mysteriously causes the cultural, which then gives us the tools to invent what is, irrespective of what the world is like.
ie: to invent sea world