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Intellect vs intuition (by Joni Mitchell)

 
Nhoj Morley
 
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Nhoj Morley
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18 February 2011 13:09
 

Mr. Zen:
I guess this is what makes jazz or any sort of improvisational progressive music so much more advanced or visceral or inspirational than other forms of music? Funny that when one is high even something like Judas Priest is found to contain traces of this deep-play within it, but it becomes virtually undetectable when one is not stoned.

I want to start here. I am not a fan of Judas Priest or their genre but to be fair, I’m sure that on a good night with material they really care about, they are just as nyeeps as anyone else. You give yourself away, Bob. “jazz or any sort of improvisational progressive music (is) so much more advanced or visceral or inspirational than other forms of music (especially Judas Priest)” is your narrative reality. Their obvious nyeeps are filtered from consciousness because they are contrary to your narrative. Such realities are difficult to maintain when stoned, thus revealing the nyeeps.

While maintaining an unconscious performance is vital, there is a role for the third floor that doesn’t take command or demand any awareness while we play, punt, knit, chop or whatever. The third floor can be a modest short range navigator that can assist in plotting a strategy without becoming consciousness. Your unconscious performance self remains your highest level of organization even though there is a third floor over you. Improvisations can rely on this greatly.

I think of the word ‘re-member’ as the action of our brain redirecting nominal information back into the senses so that we can actually grasp the sensual nature of our experience that formed the meaning of that name or that word.

Yes. There is a constant recycling through a feedback loop. The carrot on a stick in front of the horse describes it. The third floor rider is led by the first/second floor horse but the rider can dangle perceptions in the horse’s face and influence where it leads.

it also goes to show just how entrapped we are in that third storey. The more complex we become, the more difficult it becomes for us to reaccess the lower strata of our lives, yet it is in these bottom floors where all the action takes place; where life actually happens!

Some of us more than others. We can deny the reality of our physical and unconscious selves if the truth about them is inconsistent with our conscious narrative. Anything that inconsistent with the narrative is either denied, avoided or declared evil.

 
 
can zen
 
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can zen
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18 February 2011 16:00
 
Nhoj Morley - 18 February 2011 12:09 PM

I want to start here. I am not a fan of Judas Priest or their genre but to be fair, I’m sure that on a good night with material they really care about, they are just as nyeeps as anyone else. You give yourself away, Bob. “jazz or any sort of improvisational progressive music (is) so much more advanced or visceral or inspirational than other forms of music (especially Judas Priest)” is your narrative reality. Their obvious nyeeps are filtered from consciousness because they are contrary to your narrative. Such realities are difficult to maintain when stoned, thus revealing the nyeeps.

Actually, I am not a fan of Judas Priest either, but I recall that at some point in my youth in spite of never listening to heavy metal music, I found (when stoned) that I appreciated their talent in a way that resonated with the kind of music I actually enjoyed, which surprised me.

Indeed Nhoj, I am exposing myself with these comments in giving away what my narrative allows or doesn’t allow in an everyday sense.  Actually perhaps at a deeper level (unconscious) I can appreciate all the varieties of music, but the narrative biases play some kind of decisive role in choosing what actually “breaks through” to the third floor appreciation? Yet I agree that most decisions are made at the nyeep level, so is the “third floor bias” merely a blocking mechanism?  Somehow this makes sense, but it also gives one the false impression that the “long narrative” is in control.  In this sense, is bigotry a nyeep experience or is it a product of the narratives? It seems to be a case of the latter because children are not naturally bigotted.

While maintaining an unconscious performance is vital, there is a role for the third floor that doesn’t take command or demand any awareness while we play, punt, knit, chop or whatever. The third floor can be a modest short range navigator that can assist in plotting a strategy without becoming consciousness. Your unconscious performance self remains your highest level of organization even though there is a third floor over you. Improvisations can rely on this greatly.
. . . . . .
Yes. There is a constant recycling through a feedback loop. The carrot on a stick in front of the horse describes it. The third floor rider is led by the first/second floor horse but the rider can dangle perceptions in the horse’s face and influence where it leads.

I guess you are answering my question above with these comments.

Some of us more than others. We can deny the reality of our physical and unconscious selves if the truth about them is inconsistent with our conscious narrative. Anything that inconsistent with the narrative is either denied, avoided or declared evil.

I find that this is what I dispise most about christian theology, the narrative is hailed as superior to the sensual/emotive. Perhaps most of the destructive religions cling to this sort of Platonism.  Naively, it seems like the correct perspective . . . to set your sights on “higher” goals and on “superior” standards of evaluation, but this is a trap really because at an essential level we are NOT our narratives, like you say Nhoj, it can be used like a carrot (for good or bad).  In fact, our narratives are often false ideals or at least strongly biased or even prejudiced points of view, and it can be dangerous to attempt to live (or to love) according to these erroneous values. This is especially disturbing when one realizes that as one approaches (cognitively) our true biological nature there exists a whole world of intersubjective agreement that we are naturally predisposed to experience. At this deeper level we are “one” in ways that the narrative normally fails to recognize.  Well, at least we are doing our part here in trying to articulate these complexities.

 
 
Nhoj Morley
 
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Nhoj Morley
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18 February 2011 22:05
 

Auntie S:
Let me clarify. I’m not championing short-thinking. Indeed, long-thinking is essential to the science of morality. I’m not suggesting we leave that to the nyeeps. What I am suggesting is that the subconcious is a more effective governor of human behavior than the conscious. Once we’ve arrived, through reason, at our theoretical, subjective moral imperative (be it maximizing the well-being of conscious creatures or maximizing the well-being of the master race), we still need to put it into practice. We still need to compell people to behave according to our moral theory. And the most effective way to do that is through the subconscious.

You seem clear enough and I think we agree on the details. I would stick with your scheme, too. However, what if that process was cognizant of itself? What if teachers knew the mechanics of consciousness and even included that in the lesson? What if we told the kids that we’re teaching them to stop their natural impulses so that they can make more complex choices that lead to even greater rewards? We could stop lumping these two separate things into one basket called morality and call things as they really are. No room for sin or redemption in this scheme.

The problem with leaving it in place to run in parallel with reason is that since the factory program resides in the subconscious, it will be more effective at dictating an individual’s behavior than conscious reason.

That’s true. It comes first and will always have first crack at choosing our actions. Simply being conscious won’t stop it. Consciousness must have previously trained the unconscious. Morality on the fly is tough to install. But then, if everybody knew that, maybe things would be different.

 
 
Nhoj Morley
 
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Nhoj Morley
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19 February 2011 13:18
 

Mr. Zen:
Actually perhaps at a deeper level (unconscious) I can appreciate all the varieties of music, but the narrative biases play some kind of decisive role in choosing what actually “breaks through” to the third floor appreciation?

I wasn’t suggesting any dishonesty. Like me, JP and their ilk rub your nyeeps the wrong way. I don’t enjoy it except in very small doses if it’s loud enough. It’s a physical/emotional reaction that we needn’t apologize for. But how do we fit it into our narrative? If we don’t know why we don’t like JP, that will leave a gap. So there must be an explanation that fits the feeling. That’s where biases and prejudices can pop in (or break through) to fill the gaps where there is no good information or personal experience to draw from. There must be an explanation. The ongoing third floor narrative of the conscious ego insists that it must know all.

It sounded to me that your narrative’s explanation was that heavy metal musicians are a lower life form than improvisational jazz musicians. They’re not. Well, okay, a lot of them are, but not because they do heavy metal. Nor do they necessarily play with any less sincerity or “soul”.

Yet I agree that most decisions are made at the nyeep level, so is the “third floor bias” merely a blocking mechanism?

No! It is the greatest motivating tool known to sentience. Once the primal levels “see” the rewards at the end of the narratives, our natural survival drives will try to reach them. Even if that means delaying gratification in ways or simple choices that it can “see” without the narrative. We will choose the narrative path if we understand it to offer greater rewards than the odd impulsively shop-lifted snickers bar.
That why there are snickers bars.

  Somehow this makes sense, but it also gives one the false impression that the “long narrative” is in control.  In this sense, is bigotry a nyeep experience or is it a product of the narratives? It seems to be a case of the latter because children are not naturally bigotted.

I think children are innately uncomfortable with the unfamiliar until they are acclimated to it, and that can include racial differences. But these aren’t permanent hard-wired attitudes, at least, not to start with. Such discomfort must eventually be explained by the narrative and often as a permanent explanation. Usually, the body acclimates much more easily than the narrative will allow itself to be modified. Our tendency toward dogma starts with ourselves. Egos are dogmatic and they like to live in world that is, too.

It’s not a false impression. If the long narrative fails to be in control at a local level (a person), than the external tools kick in. Your door, I mean. Then, the jack-booted enforcers of the narrative will engage in acts that are not for the benefit of any human conscious creature, but for the benefit of the mass-narrative. Who are the Brain Police?

I find that this is what I dispise most about christian theology, the narrative is hailed as superior to the sensual/emotive.

Worse, it hides behind it and uses our natural impulses against us to convinces us of the truth of its own artificial reality. We can’t deny that we have the big narrative to thank for nearly everything around us including posting. I think we should press on with the narrative after first acknowledging that it is a fixable and redeemable farce and not a perfect and unchanging God-given explanation.

As to the rest of your post, amen.

[ Edited: 19 February 2011 13:22 by Nhoj Morley]
 
 
burt
 
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burt
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19 February 2011 15:37
 
can zen - 18 February 2011 03:00 PM

Nhoj:

Some of us more than others. We can deny the reality of our physical and unconscious selves if the truth about them is inconsistent with our conscious narrative. Anything that inconsistent with the narrative is either denied, avoided or declared evil.

I find that this is what I dispise most about christian theology, the narrative is hailed as superior to the sensual/emotive. Perhaps most of the destructive religions cling to this sort of Platonism.  Naively, it seems like the correct perspective . . . to set your sights on “higher” goals and on “superior” standards of evaluation, but this is a trap really because at an essential level we are NOT our narratives, like you say Nhoj, it can be used like a carrot (for good or bad).  In fact, our narratives are often false ideals or at least strongly biased or even prejudiced points of view, and it can be dangerous to attempt to live (or to love) according to these erroneous values. This is especially disturbing when one realizes that as one approaches (cognitively) our true biological nature there exists a whole world of intersubjective agreement that we are naturally predisposed to experience. At this deeper level we are “one” in ways that the narrative normally fails to recognize.  Well, at least we are doing our part here in trying to articulate these complexities.

I like this, but disagree perhaps with the statement: “at an essential level we are NOT our narratives.”  Perhaps, because of the qualification “at and essential level.”  Not sure what you mean by that.  In one way, each of us is our narrative (Dennett argues this) and the function of Platonic meta-narratives is to provide the ideals allowing us to construct ourselves in ways that go beyond the everyday concerns of survival.  They are what has civilized us as a species.  What we need to understand is how these meta-narratives function, and bring the ones we accept into accord with what we have learned about the world, including our biological nature and the way that aspects of it are evoked by narrative.

 
can zen
 
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can zen
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19 February 2011 17:14
 

Beautifully filled out Nhoj, like a woman in touch with her sensual nature.

burt - 19 February 2011 02:37 PM

I like this, but disagree perhaps with the statement: “at an essential level we are NOT our narratives.”  Perhaps, because of the qualification “at and essential level.”  Not sure what you mean by that.  In one way, each of us is our narrative (Dennett argues this) and the function of Platonic meta-narratives is to provide the ideals allowing us to construct ourselves in ways that go beyond the everyday concerns of survival.  They are what has civilized us as a species.  What we need to understand is how these meta-narratives function, and bring the ones we accept into accord with what we have learned about the world, including our biological nature and the way that aspects of it are evoked by narrative.

Yes burt, you are correct, I should have said ‘existential’ rather than ‘essential’ - yet the narrative is like the carrot Nhoj brought up . . . it’s like something we are trying to live up to (or down to).  The narrative is slightly removed from reality, probably not in a linear fashion but in a purely spatio-temporal sense, if that’s even possible? It’s the one metaphysical aspect of existence which is real, yet essentially separate.

 
 
Poldano
 
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20 February 2011 03:56
 
can zen - 19 February 2011 04:14 PM

Beautifully filled out Nhoj, like a woman in touch with her sensual nature.

burt - 19 February 2011 02:37 PM

I like this, but disagree perhaps with the statement: “at an essential level we are NOT our narratives.”  Perhaps, because of the qualification “at and essential level.”  Not sure what you mean by that.  In one way, each of us is our narrative (Dennett argues this) and the function of Platonic meta-narratives is to provide the ideals allowing us to construct ourselves in ways that go beyond the everyday concerns of survival.  They are what has civilized us as a species.  What we need to understand is how these meta-narratives function, and bring the ones we accept into accord with what we have learned about the world, including our biological nature and the way that aspects of it are evoked by narrative.

Yes burt, you are correct, I should have said ‘existential’ rather than ‘essential’ - yet the narrative is like the carrot Nhoj brought up . . . it’s like something we are trying to live up to (or down to).  The narrative is slightly removed from reality, probably not in a linear fashion but in a purely spatio-temporal sense, if that’s even possible? It’s the one metaphysical aspect of existence which is real, yet essentially separate.

Burt’s got me tangled up in what “is” means again, but I’m getting used to it. Maybe someday I’ll even understand it.

I suggest that the dissonance (for want of a better term) between our meta-narratives and our sensual-emotive natures originates in a more fundamental dissonance, that between the demands of external reality and our sensual-emotive natures. The narratives and meta-narratives we produce may be mitigating that dissonance. Mythologies and theologies generally, and especially Christian theology, may be the products of attempts to channel the narratives of people living in the same group into compatible forms (the same form or complementary forms).

The platonic aspects of Christian theology may be nothing more than an attempt to formulate a preceding Judaic narrative template into language acceptable to those who were culturally Greek. From a slightly different viewpoint, the platonic aspects may be an attempt by people of mixed cultures to formulate their “best practice” into language that was generally acceptable to multiple cultures.

Discomfort at the demands of the narrative with respect to sensual-emotive nature may be a case of disliking the remedy more than the ailment. The ailment I’m suggesting is the insufficiency of sensual-emotive nature in humans, with respect to the demands of civilization. On the other hand, there may be remedies that are less noisome (Bali’s traditions come to mind for me), and the remedy tradition that most of us here are familiar with may furthermore be suboptimal in our current cultural context.

I’m not proposing anything new. I’m just not sure I’ve seen it all in one place at a time when I could understand it or believe it.

 
 
Speakpigeon
 
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04 April 2019 03:59
 

How does intuition work exactly?

Well, obviously, nobody really knows.

Still, as I see it, intuition works from a database of notions that the brain has previously integrated. The database is essentially what you’ve learnt through your life since birth. However, it’s not knowledge as such. Rather, it’s what you’ve learnt, which may well be bullshit.
When you’re interested in a problem, the key point to let your intuition come into play, is to give your brain the time to integrate the new data. So, a good idea is to work for example two hours a day on this problem, so that your brain takes in the stuff and has the time to “integrate” the new information.
Another key point, is to diversify the points of view, the kind of data relative to the problem, because brains are really champions to establish correlations between apparently unrelated sets of data.
A third key point, is to articulate whatever ideas you’ve got so far. Your brain will also work on that, given the time to do it.
Intuition is probably the only intelligence we have. When we think, we toy with bits and ends literally without knowing what we’re doing. It’s only our intuition that will come into play to tell us that this bit and that end have to do with each other.
Thus, our unconscious brain is probably more intelligent than our conscious mind. It’s clear for example that when you’re trying to solve a problem, your brain may find the solution perhaps several days before you. And it will give you the solution through intuition, i.e. you’re thinking about a problem and there it is, you suddenly have the intuition something you’re thinking is the answer. Sometimes the brain may have the solution, or part of the solution, years before you finally get round to it, if you ever do.
A last point perhaps… Intuition is not just some idea that pops up in your mind as most people seem to believe. Intuition is really your brain insisting on telling you that something is the case or is true or is the solution. It tells you you should really pay attention to this one. If you feel that both A and not A are both possibilities, then neither is an intuition.

Still, remember your intuition works on whatever you’ve learnt, and this may actually be complete bullshit. So, perhaps another key point is to keep an open mind and resist dogmatism. Whatever pet theory you’re working on, remember it may well be trash. It’s still best to stand your ground as most people do, but that shouldn’t prevent you from considering the possible value of the arguments other people put forward. Let your brain sort out which is true. This is the only fountain of truth you can trust you will ever have. You just need to give it the time to work its magic and to consider and learn the possibly relevant facts.
EB

[ Edited: 04 April 2019 04:05 by Speakpigeon]
 
Speakpigeon
 
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Speakpigeon
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17 April 2019 02:32
 

The intuitions that we have aren’t ideas at all.

The intuitions we have aren’t ideas as such. They are only the conscious results of the unconscious assessments produced by our brain on whatever conscious ideas we’re having on the moment. And we will have intuitions only about what we have in mind on the moment, including what we perceive and also in particular the ideas we care to think about, as if indeed to submit these ideas to our unconscious brain for assessment.

If we don’t trust our intuitions, we won’t take advantage of this assessment and we become dependent on the collective wisdom and ideas received from other people, and therefore more likely subject to manipulation. Think for yourself means just that. Think up ideas to see what your intuition is about them. Give time to the process. Sometimes it will be almost instantaneous, other time it may take months and why not years. The result will depend on what you’ve learnt before and what you care to spend time learning now.

Another aspect which seems particularly relevant to many of this forum’s posters, there’s a different between an inchoate ideas and articulated ideas. The more articulated the better. Consciously analysing an idea will be in effect asking for an intuitive assessment. Articulating an idea will help you analyse the idea. The more you analyse it, the more likely your intuition will be triggered to tell you there’s something wrong.

Within reason. Don’t stop living your life to do it. But it seems to me, it would be a good thing if more people did it, for themselves, because individuals are the creative force of humanity and we really need new ideas all the time, and ultimately, individuals can’t keep the good ideas for themselves and they become public and can be taken up by other people and developed.

Well, sometimes. Less ideology and more logic would help. The Sun does move in the sky. This is a fact. What most people call the Sun is something that moves in the sky. We can all look up and see it for ourselves. So, the truth is most likely that the Sun moves in the sky. Then again, why? Well, it may be because the Sun is orbiting the Earth… Sounds a good idea but we can’t actually verify it from our vantage point given our limited perception powers. Still, it was a logical possibility. Yet, another logical possibility is that it is the Earth rotating on itself. It would produce the same result, i.e. the Sun moves in the sky. This is the example we should keep in mind. Your ideology may sound fine to you from your vantage point, but, there are other logical possibilities and different people will see these other possibilities whereas you don’t. So, please show a little respect for other people’s ideas. Most of them are perfectly respectable and you would benefit paying a bit more attention to them. And you can perfectly insult people at the same time if you feel like it. Within reason.

The production of new ideas is probably the difficult bit for us human and indeed for any cognitive system. It’s a question of too many combinations. For even a very simple problem, there may be initially millions of logical possibilities and working out what are the ones that are interesting has to be a massive task. So, the more people who do it and do it efficiently, and share their ideas, the better. That’s how humanity works anyway. We discuss ideas with our family, then perhaps with our friend, and from one to the other, some ideas will bubble up to produce the good stuff: The Earth does rotates on itself, and therefore, well, possibly the Sun doesn’t move after all even if it does move in the sky. It’s all relative, anyway.
EB

 
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