Friday, November 21, 2008

Science Fulfills All Four Mythological Functions

knowBuddhaU See Profile I'm a Fan of knowBuddhaU permalink

Word! 'America is center-right' is the new nyth with which the Right is trying to jack us again, as Liddy Dole so blatantly tried.

We've been jacked by the exact same 'fake election' ploy that we've used all over the world. We're now experiencing 'economic shock therapy.'

Unexamined Newtonian Mechanism has completely overtaken our modern thinking. But no less a scientific eminence than the late Stephen Jay Gould, almost 8 years ago, declared reductionism dead, and its attendant Newtonian Mechanism--sire of our demonic economics--along with it. So what gives, academia?

Gould's announcement, Klein's Shock Doctrine, Perkinsian Economic Hit Men, and the Bush-APA Torture Doctrine (isolation and psycho-religio attacks) have forever changed how I see our political economy. And their absence from contemporary analyses is my greatest frustration.

"We get fooled, again and again, by being [deceived]... into thinking we are only part things that must relate to the Whole via bachelor fathers with terrible tempers and unspoken habits. Our science, psychology, has midwifed this monstrous abuse of being human."

It is abundantly obvious to me, a non-matriculating grad student of psychology, that McCain/Palin and Liddy Dole both used that abhorrent method.

"There [they] go again."

What do I recommend?

Posted 12:49 PM on 11/10/2008
knowBuddhaU See Profile I'm a Fan of knowBuddhaU permalink

If there is no center from which to act, then what lies between your left and your right hands?

Posted 03:22 PM on 11/10/2008

TomR See Profile I'm a Fan of TomR

Hey Budda,

I'm not trying to ignore you--just had limited time for commenting before.

Am I engaging in black and white thinking? No, what I'm stating is based on science and how the brain processes information. According to George Lakoff, who is a Professor of Cognitive Science at Berkeley, mutual inhibition in the brain permits conflicting modes of thought, but only one at a time. The activation of one frame naturally inhibits a contradictory frame.

Lakoff writes, "The very use of the left-to-right scale metaphor serves to empower radical conservatives and marginalize progressives�Conservatives have framed their ideas as mainstream when they are not, while progressive ideas are characterized as extremist, which they are not."

"To illustrate the concept that there is not a linear scale, Lakoff holds up the brilliant example of Senators Joe Lieberman and Chuck Hagel. The popular press incessantly describes both as 'centrists,' yet they share virtually no views. On social issues, Lieberman is consistently progressive and Hagel is solidly conservative. On the war, Lieberman is conservative and Hagel is progressive. They share views on nothing, yet both are branded as centrists. How can there be such a thing as a centrist, or a center, if these two agree on nothing?"

So, I do see the world in shades of gray, but that doesn't mean some things are not black and white, like how our brains process contradictory modes of thought.

- Tom

Posted 08:10 PM on 11/10/2008
knowBuddhaU See Profile I'm a Fan of knowBuddhaU permalink


Thanks for replying. My name's knowbuddhau. Buddhism's aka The Middle Path. Buddhists embody the Center which you deny exists.

I'm a grad student of research psychology. Lakoff doesn't impress me at all.

What about Sokolov (continued Pavlov)? Karl Pribram? Neuronal models of stimuli? Spencer Brown's Laws of Form? Any Buddhist philosopher? My main guru, Alan Watts? Heard of non-dualism?

You're attempting to overwhelm me with an authority, science, with which I am intimately familiar.

Lakoff's exclusionary assertions are artifacts of absolute dualism.
"[S]cience has strongly privileged the reductionist mode of thought that breaks overt complexity into constituent parts and then tries to explain the totality by the properties of these parts and simple interactions fully predictable from the parts... The reductionist method works triumphantly for simple systems [but not at all for historically contingent ones]... [W]e fell victim to hubris, as we imagined that, ***in discovering how to unlock some systems, we had found the key for the conquest of all natural phenomena.***"

Hubris is your error; Lakoff doesn't know everything.

"Left" and "Right" come from seats in Parliament. The podium is at the Center. We depolarize as we move to the podium, symbolizing moving from the many to the One. (E pluribus unum.) A chairperson embodies both. So in my center is The Center. Centrists identify with established authority. JL and CH share that.

Posted 12:20 AM on 11/11/2008
TomR See Profile I'm a Fan of TomR permalink

Okay then. I understand conservative and progressive ideologies. Please explain for us the centrist ideology.

Lakoff doesn't know everything, but what he states explains how it's possible that a significant number of Americans voted for Bush twice, even when it was against their best interest.

The Middle Path. Buddhists embody the Center which you deny exists.

I happen to believe 2 + 2 = 4.
If another person believes 2 + 2 = 5,
shall we split the difference, find the center and agree that 2 + 2 = 4.5 ?

Yes, most people have a left arm and a right arm. How many have a center arm?

Interestingly, you appear to have a black and white view of centrism, no room for cases where a continuum is not the appropriate paradigm.

- Tom

Posted 11:22 AM on 11/11/2008

knowBuddhaU See Profile I'm a Fan of knowBuddhaU

Thanks for replying.

Sailboats have a center of thrust. Can't put your finger on it, nevertheless exists.

A continuum is an analogy, not paradigm: the political spectrum is analogous to a rainbow.

Read the Stephen Jay Gould quote? Can't afford to repeat.

If you're not going to give my words a fair hearing, including links, won't say more.

You're reducing my questions to absurdities. Are you familiar with Kant? "The aesthetic forms of sensibility." Please look it up.

Obviously, there is intelligibility to being; mathematics are true. Our tragic mistake is to allow a dysfunctional myth to dominate modern thinking.

Myth of cosmos as Newtonian mechanism:

--dualistic assumption that creation is a construct of a creator that is absolutely and eternally Other than the cosmos; observer and observed are absolutely other.

--creator is imaged as cosmic engineer.

--Science reveals laws of the cosmic engineer.

Here's our hubris: we think we master the cosmic machine with our science. Refer to post with nytimes link.

Please read dialogue of me&fatherof4.

Accusing me of black-and-white-thinking demonstrates a complete lack of familiarity with Buddhism. What is non-dualism?

Posted 12:05 PM on 11/11/2008

Helmsey See Profile I'm a Fan of Helmsey permalink

I am sorry science is not a religion. Religion is something you take on faith. Science is something you strive to prove with testable results. Yes there are theories/hypothesis in science, but these are things that have at least some factual base. Religion on the other hand has none. God can never be proven that is why it is called faith.

Posted 02:36 PM on 11/11/200

knowBuddhaU See Profile I'm a Fan of knowBuddhaU permalink

Sorry, you couldn't be more mistaken. Was eugenics a science?

OK, now you done it. What are the four functions of mythology?

Thou Art That: transforming religious metaphor. Joseph Campbell (2001). New World Library 14 Pamaron Way Novato, California 94949

Copyright 2001 by Joseph Campbell Foundation

-- the first function of mythology is to arouse in the mind a sense of awe before this situation through one of three ways of participating in it: by moving out, moving in, or effecting a correction.

--The second function of a traditional mythology is interpretive, to pre�sent a consistent image of the order of the cosmos.

--The third function of a traditional mythology is to validate and sup�port a specific moral order; mythology reinforces the moral order by shaping the person to the demands of a specific geographically and histori�cally conditioned social group.

--The fourth function of traditional mythology is to carry the individual through the various stages and crises of life"that is, to help persons grasp the unfolding of life with integrity.

(PS: what part of my username made you think you could get away with a specious diatribe? I can't believe such an astute student missed that!)

Posted 02:55 PM on 11/11/2008

knowBuddhaU See Profile I'm a Fan of knowBuddhaU permalink

Sorry, ran out of words.

Science features all of these functions.

1) Big Bang=creation myth

2) Cosmology is our way of laying out flat (ex-plain-ing) a multidimensional reality.

3) Larry Summers thinks women might not be suited to some sciences, ignoring the geographical and historical contingencies that have shaped participation in the sciences; the first science clubs were all men-only; some halls of academia still are.

4) Developmental psychology is but one example.

In sum, science, as practiced in the here and now, not considered in a vacuum, most certainly is practiced as religion.

The *power* of myth is that it shapes the cosmos in which we enact the theater of Life. There is intelligibility to Being, yes; mathematics are true. Our tragic mistake is to allow war gods to remain installed permanently at the controls of the mathematical cosmos.

Baconian-Cartesian-Newtonian Science practiced as religion (the "Faith" was kept while princely States warred with the imperial Church) has spawned the little monsters, petro-powered engines, that have given our Mother a fever. Is it the fever before the flow? Is Gaia getting ready to miscarry us? She may be doing so already.

Posted 03:14 PM on 11/11/2008

Helmsey See Profile I'm a Fan of Helmsey permalink

Sorry about the typo reguarding your user name, I made that fatal mistake, not proof reading. I am also dislexic, not that it is a very good excuse, as I have been battled with it all my life. So, I do ask you to forgive my poor grammerical skills. I now grasp more of what you are trying to imply reguarding science and religion. Please forgive me for not following all that you have stated above it is a rather difficult point you are making. By that I mean very complex. I guess to clarify my own position, I was trying to convey science in a more idealistic fashion than perhaps the reality. Thank you very much for knocking me off you soap box. Your points about science also being driven by creationism and the historical flaws, really even the still modern flaws in science, have made me open my eyes a little wider. It is easy to fall into lock step with all those around you, which for me are pretty much the science department these day. This has been the most enlightening blog response I have ever recieved thanks again.

Posted 03:49 PM on 11/11/2008

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