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Image Credit: Adapted from an image in Probabilistic Logics: the thinking programmer’s accessory by Carroll Morgan and Annabelle McIver. Click the image to explore their work.


The study of logic is the study of the biocognitive technology of representational thought (there’s a paradox there if you can spot it). Since nearly all of our volitional activities are sourced in games of distibguishing, naming, linkage and parsing, it falls to reason that the efficacy of the toys we invent and together enact to accomplish these things dictate the relative beneficence or tyranny both of our ways of knowing and their products in human and personal history. They also prescribe the elemental efficacy of our learning abilities.


The character of our initial exposures to language and culture in childhood prefigure the unique rationalities that we will express and depend upon as they complexify throughout our experience. Formal and informal logics arise in the wake of our initial exposures to representational consciousness in infancy; thereafter, our emotional, semantic, and relational faculties accrue their founding character from the human logics we elaborate and express together.

Formal logics are purposed by definition with being transports to the adept solution of challenges in various dimensions of thought or action. Endowed with the ability to generate distinctive tokens and modes of linking or relating them, we use them assemble and sustain ‘rational’ pseudosystems of organizational intelligence whose goal is the meaningful and beneficial reconciliation of what was previously divided with the same toy.

These systematic yet imaginal activities form the substrate of our awareness of meaning and relation, and we enact them to emphasize or reveal hidden opportunities and to bring forth symmetry from the seeming chaos of undefined entities.

The Logos

Before abstraction became popularly credentialed over nearly everything else, Logic referred to the progenerative emanations of The Logos as the basis of reality itself. The Logos is the proper name of the being who is the source and inspiration of order and intelligence in form, thought and relation. The generally intended comparator could be reasonably translated into ‘celestial teacher-friend-agent’. Usually this refers to a living transport (a being) who is the ‘keeper’ of the universal library (a living library), in others the name is synonymous with a connectivity-organ (who is a being in its own right) within the body of God [1] .

I do not believe that our near and distant ancestors were inventing religious fictions to explain a universe they were ill-equipped to accurately understand. In fact I am certain that they had direct experiential contact with an entity nearly all of us would instantly agree actually qualifies as a non-human intelligence, and that this contact was in part responsible for the emergence and preservation of formal logics, possibly even of language itself.

Behind our beliefs and ways of discussing them is an accessible reality near at hand, and we must have the safety and encouragement to explore this without dogmatic codicils having previously explained or denounced what we may discover there. If our cultural and linguistic biases render this impossible we lose the majority of our birthrights of sentient connectivity as an immediate result, and this translates into lost connectivity with each other and our potentials of human unity (such as the establishment or preservation of liberty).

None of our sources or relations are naturally abstract or mechanical, and rendering them in this likeness denies us the connectivity necessary to explore them at all. We are more than models in every possible sense, but if we are coerced into defining ourselves with reductions of what we are or may become — we will consistently ‘grow} to be less of what we are — achieving ever-greater likeness with the tokens and codicils originally assembled as guarantors of our liberty. Somehow, this bizarre activity has become confused with comprehension, and truth be told, logics have been as deadly in these domains as they have been helpful. It turns out that having a logic is one thing, and having survivable logics quite another.



A Founding Polarity — The First Division...

In almost every case, one of two positions lie at the root of our modes of learning and knowing:

One: Everything is Thing first, and the universe is fundamentally pseudomechanical, as are all participants. This is the inference-basis of the scientific method as we modernly practice and understand it. It is simulative more than it is connective, and leads us to emulate abstraction in our assembly of identity, relation, and thought. In this case, ‘abstract’ means ‘having subtracted all poetics and organismal likeness’.

Two: Everything is an instance of a single Being first, and ensues from the activity of a unified transentient source. This position requires we directly explore the potentials of contact with each other, our sources, and the endless frontiers that lie hidden just beneath our tokens.

We become whichever one we grant precedence to.

The problem isn’t that we’ve discovered abstraction but rather what happens when we credential it in precedence to organismal and relational connectivity. In this case we end up trapped in a shrinking domain of multiplying mirrors who by their nature exclude nearly all of what may be seen in precedence to their amazing silvery shine.


To Isolate and Reconcile

Let’s model an imaginal bubble in which we re-present our relations with reality to ourselves — the place where our consciousness is assembled, sustained and elaborated. The whole terrain is generally reflective, and the aspect we are concerned with is a sort of mirror in what relation and experience are assembled into meaning. Our awareness becomes interpretable only in relation to this inward mirror, where we employ a logical toy (a rod) to differentiate elements from contexts and re-link them into meaningful symmetries.

As we approach this place, the reflection is like water in chaotic motion — impressions of potential symmetries, noise, and fields of context are all splashing around together. With the ‘dividing end’ of the rod we locate and stabilize candidate-symmetries from their less differentiated peers. These we set apart from context and errata as significant figurative entities.

When we have established a suitable ‘family’ of these and ascribed general degrees of precedence to each element, we turn the toy around and use the other end to unify them, producing a metaphor, or vehicle of knowing. We may then compare this imaginal symmetry to various lexicons we’ve accrued, and if the lexicons are common we can easily record the event to ourselves, and later ‘recall’ it for consideration or reporting.

The universe, the perciever, the mirror and the logicRod.

In waking consciousness these activities follow patterns generally enforced by circumstance, biases in language, and enculturation. During dreaming these filters fall away, and the experience of interacting with our imaginal mirror regains its natural progenerative creativity. We can immediately see that two very distinct forms of lexicon are being elaborated in during these polarized states, and that their purposes are often directly at odds.

The lexicons to which we compare the produce of our logics for verification or recording are not like our physical indexes such as books or computer memory — they are fundamentally aware of threats to their own survival and reproduction first and foremost, and are naturally inspired to dominate every available terrain without regard for consequences in an attempt to gain precedence over these threats. Unfortunately the outcome of this is often the same as in human ‘civilization’, the aggressors rule the table at all times. These fictive comparison-indexes are far more like organisms than books, and their home in human consciousness is more like an ecosystem than a library.

If the lexicons empowered by our common comparison to them are truly intelligent the outcomes of the enaction and reproduction of these comparisons will be favorable to organisms, intelligence and liberty — if not, they will in almost every case virulently oppose these benefits, in scalarly progressive waves of velocity and effect..

Not all ways of knowing are created equal, and it is generally dangerous to apply or credential one form above all others.


Masquerade and Mastery

We are generally convinced that our modern modes of valuing and knowing are dependable enough to act as a rational basis for thought and action, and we teach other other to abide by this across the gaps of person, generation and culture. Unfortunately, the ways we were taught to employ in the assembly of knowledge and comparison are cruelly erroneous in general, and our modern implementations fail to sustain much if any accord with the sources and ‘rationality’ they claim to represent. Those sources are themselves formally delinquent when applied beyond their functional domains of efficacy, yet somehow we apply them to whatever scale or domain we desire as if blind to the deadly dangers of this activity.

As we magnify our misrepresentations of already erroneous forms of interpretation in our moment-to-moment experience the artifacts of meaning and relation we assemble as a result become increasingly interested in their own preservation and dominance — and they drag us along on their mission as a source of fuel. The ongoing enaction and entrenchment of these momentums in our cultures and education lead us directly into isolation, conflict, and loss. Generally the next stop on the line is confusion about how we got there.

Because we represent ourselves and our experience in an imaginal universe, we must understand and employ successful strategies there, otherwise enacting our ‘knowledge’ over here in reality generates cataclysm. Unfortunately the logics we create and employ are in fact only toys, and possess no property which obstructs us from misapplying them. In fact, because they are pseudo-mechanical and we find this endlessly attractive we can end up in a situation where the logics that drive war are the logics we preserve simply because they are the most adept cognitive terrain predators.

If we do not have mastery over the dimensions prior to the assembly, manipulation and valuing of the token-like outcomes of logic, our toys are far more likely to be dangerous than helpful. Empowered to deal quasi-intelligently with products of a very limited set of knowledge games — rather than their sources and and purposes of assembly — we become hypnotized by the shiny quality of the tokens produced, mistaking them as sacred and inviolable. This leads to their entreanchment as common arbiters of agreement and ‘normalcy’.

For about as long as our species has been able to experience and express abstract representational consciousness this foible has been a deadly consequence of the supposed ‘intelligence’ that separates us from the animalian kingdoms of our world.


When our logics grow too self-important or vastly misrepresent their sources or function they lead in nearly every case to ugly and unnecessary consequences which generally begin with enforcement. Any form or agent of a way of knowing which delivers atrocity instead of progress is at increasing risk of being silenced by the revelation of its self-inflating costs of enaction and preservation. Such entities must provide for their survival by sustaining the distributed illusion of rewards which will never be delivered, and the cost of this pursuit grows in exponential proportion to attentional activation of the host populations involved.

Consider that if human representational logics are more like animals than imaginal systems, (they live in animals, after all) they may masquerade when threatened — and logics which are false by nature are always threatened. What might they masquerade as? One obvious answer is effective transports to something they in fact have no relation to — like intelligence.

Many logics mimic superficial likeness with intelligence (sophistication) as their primary active function in order to sustain their survival and reproduction opportunities. Their only real function is to dominate terrain, convert it such that it further envitalizes this dominance, and reproduce. The terrains which fall to their invasion are those which were in every case held by far more useful and beneficial cognitive momentums. Since ‘the beneificials’ are not warlike in their elaborative activity, and generally don’t spend momentum advertising themselves loudly they have little defense against the mechanico-predatory onslaught of mimetic invaders.

For at least the past 1500 years at least, our species has been trapped playing war with the exhaust-products of aristotlian Logic instead of having common access to the sources and potentials of logics in general — particularly those we were born completely and complexly empowered to explore and express.


This is Not our beautiful house...

Our obligation to enact and magnify the explosive costs of the logics we employ arises from teaching and sustaining intimacy with the products of a given way of knowing, in precedence over the sources of logics in general. If we teach each other and our children to be fluent in the recognizing the outcomes of aristotlian Logic, we can learn to form statements that simulate features of a logical statement — without actually having any logical validity.

Instead of understanding the toy in use, or the sources from which such toys are assembled, we must invent our own personal misreflection based on an erroneous reverse-engineering of the tokens we possess or contact. These ‘homegrown’ logics are intransigent once endowed, and as their hosts we must ever-more habitually emulate logics we’ve no working comprehension of.

In this form of cognitive binding, our knowledge- related activities will radically magnify the same errors over and over again because in the psuedosystem we are using to achieve discernment and valuing, these are do not appear to be errors.

In reality they are the fruit of homegrown imposters of aristotlian Logic, which itself is too commonly a substitute for logics with far more universal applicability and effective problem-solving prowess. The ongoing produce of these logics are badly broken (and very defensive) instances locally unique ‘misreflections’ of aristotlianism. As these collect into groups and cultures, nations and religions — the result is an ever-more aggressively divisive relational holocaust.

The answers to these problems and the opportunities to transcend them entirely lie in close examination of the toys we’ve so long depended upon, as well as the unexplored universes of those we’ve unknowingly cast aside in their favor.




[1] Some branches of kabbalistic philosophy propose that the first name of God (ShDY) was later revealed to Moses in the Tetragrammaton — the unpronounceable name of god (YHVH). This was the seed which would sprout with the arrival of the ever-coming-son on Earth, and grow into the pronounceable name of the messiah-teacher — (YHShVH), signifying the Logos incarnate — the Christ.