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Socrates says “know thyself”: I say which self?

coberst

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Socrates says “know thyself”: I say which self?

I don’t know what happened to me. I was beside my self with worry.

My pet dog Fido uses his imagination to create image schemas to help him to comprehend and move about in his world. I use my imagination in much the same way but because my species can create abstract concepts I also use my imagination to create these abstract concepts.

I have the ability to use linguistic metaphors to help me comprehend my world and also my cognitive processes uses conceptual metaphors (structures from concrete experience) to construct abstract ideas while I am unconscious of this happening.

The concrete concepts, structured from experience, become primary metaphors that my unconscious imagination utilizes to construct image schemas for my abstract ideas.

SGCS (Second Generation Cognitive Science) has developed a set of theories using these metaphors, both linguistic, and conceptual to examine such abstract concepts as what is self, time, causality, etc.

If we examine linguistic metaphors that are common to our culture regarding “self” we can determine much information regarding what we normally think about this matter.

SGCS inform me that we have many different common metaphors for “self”:

The General Subject Self “A person is divided into a Subject and one or more Selves.” The Subject experiences consciousness only in real time. This Subject is the center of reason, will, and judgment. The Subject is thought of as the essential self that encompasses our self as a person.

The Physical-Object Self“Self-control and object control are inseparable experiences from early childhood…Self Control is Object Control.”I lifted my hand—I lost my voice—I couldn’t control myself—the boy picked himself up from the ground.

The Locational Self I was besides my self with worry.

The above quotes from Philosophy in the Flesh by Lakoff and Johnson

We are born recognizing our self as a ‘me’. The ‘me’ is an object before ‘me’ becomes ‘I’, i.e. an executive subject. Only after this happens in an infant’s life can s/he “back away” from her or him self.

The child discovers first that s/he is a social product. Perhaps this will show us why we are so often mere puppets jerked around by alien symbols and sounds. Perhaps this is why we are so often just blind ideologues (blindly partisan).

In order to separate the ego from the world it seems that the ego must have a rallying point. It must have a flag about which to rally. That flag is the “I”. The pronoun ‘I’ is the symbolic rallying point for the human’s ego; it is the precise designation of self-hood. It is concluded by those who study such matters that the ‘I’ “must take shape linguistically”. The self or ego “is largely a verbal edifice”.

“The “I” signals nothing less than the beginning of the birth of values into a world of powerful caprice…The personal pronoun is the rallying point for self-consciousness.” The wedding of the nervous ability to delay response, with the pronoun “I”, unleashed a new type of animal; the human species began. The ‘I’ represents the birth of values.

Upon the discovery of the “I” the infant human becomes a precise form, which is the focus of self-control. The creatures previous to the arrival of humans in the chain of evolution had an instinctive center within itself. When our species discovered the “I” and its associated self-control centers a dual reality occurred. “The animal not only loses its instinctive center within itself; it also becomes somewhat split against itself.”

Becker, the winner of the Pulitzer for “The Birth and Death of Meaning”, notes that Kant was perhaps the first to impress upon us the importance of the fact that the infant becomes conscious first of itself as a “me” and then only as “I”. This order of discover has been shown to be universal.

I have noticed when an infant becomes an ‘I’, when all of a sudden they behave in a self-conscious manner. Have you noticed such a change taking place in a child?

Quotes from The Birth and Death of Meaning—Ernest Becker
 

lizzie

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I know all of my "selves" fairly well, but one of them stands above the rest as the primary mover and shaker.:D
 

Wiseone

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Sounds like a lot of psycho babble mumbo jumbo
 

coberst

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What is your opinion?
Opinions are a dime-a-dozen. Almost everyone has an opinion about almost everything. I seldom post my opinions. I generally post only my judgments, which have been formed after careful study. I generally provide quotes from the books that I have studied so that the reader can go to those books for further illumination.
 

Anarcho-fascist

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Opinions are a dime-a-dozen. Almost everyone has an opinion about almost everything. I seldom post my opinions. I generally post only my judgments, which have been formed after careful study. I generally provide quotes from the books that I have studied so that the reader can go to those books for further illumination.
What is your judgement about the quote? Do you agree with everything it says?
 

coberst

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What is your judgement about the quote? Do you agree with everything it says?
I judge everything that I stated in the OP to be the best theories that I have studied.

I am a retired engineer with a good bit of formal education and twenty five years of self-learning. I began the self-learning experience while in my mid-forties. I had no goal in mind; I was just following my intellectual curiosity in whatever direction it led me. This hobby, self-learning, has become very important to me. I have bounced around from one hobby to another but have always been enticed back by the excitement I have discovered in this learning process. Carl Sagan is quoted as having written; “Understanding is a kind of ecstasy.”

I label myself as a September Scholar because I began the process at mid-life and because my quest is disinterested knowledge.

Disinterested knowledge is an intrinsic value. Disinterested knowledge is not a means but an end. It is knowledge I seek because I desire to know it. I mean the term ‘disinterested knowledge’ as similar to ‘pure research’, as compared to ‘applied research’. Pure research seeks to know truth unconnected to any specific application.

I think of the self-learner of disinterested knowledge as driven by curiosity and imagination to understand. The September Scholar seeks to ‘see’ and then to ‘grasp’ through intellection directed at understanding the self as well as the world. The knowledge and understanding that is sought by the September Scholar are determined only by personal motivations. It is noteworthy that disinterested knowledge is knowledge I am driven to acquire because it is of dominating interest to me. Because I have such an interest in this disinterested knowledge my adrenaline level rises in anticipation of my voyage of discovery.

We often use the metaphors of ‘seeing’ for knowing and ‘grasping’ for understanding. I think these metaphors significantly illuminate the difference between these two forms of intellection. We see much but grasp little. It takes great force to impel us to go beyond seeing to the point of grasping. The force driving us is the strong personal involvement we have to the question that guides our quest. I think it is this inclusion of self-fulfillment, as associated with the question, that makes self-learning so important.

The self-learner of disinterested knowledge is engaged in a single-minded search for understanding. The goal, grasping the ‘truth’, is generally of insignificant consequence in comparison to the single-minded search. Others must judge the value of the ‘truth’ discovered by the autodidactic. I suggest that truth, should it be of any universal value, will evolve in a biological fashion when a significant number of pursuers of disinterested knowledge engage in dialogue.

In the United States our culture compels us to have a purpose. Our culture defines that purpose to be ‘maximize production and consumption’. As a result all good children feel compelled to become a successful producer and consumer. All good children both consciously and unconsciously organize their life for this journey.

At mid-life many citizens begin to analyze their life and often discover a need to reconstitute their purpose. Some of the advantageous of this self-actualizing self-learning experience is that it is virtually free, undeterred by age, not a zero sum game, surprising, exciting and makes each discovery a new eureka moment. The self-actualizing self-learning experience I am suggesting is similar to any other hobby one might undertake; interest will ebb and flow. In my case this was a hobby that I continually came back to after other hobbies lost appeal.

I suggest for your consideration that if we “Get a life—Get an intellectual life” we very well might gain substantially in self-worth and, perhaps, community-worth.

I have been trying to encourage adults, who in general consider education as a matter only for young people, to give this idea of self-learning a try. It seems to be human nature to do a turtle (close the mind) when encountering a new and unorthodox idea. Generally we seem to need for an idea to face us many times before we can consider it seriously. A common method for brushing aside this idea is to think ‘I’ve been there and done that’, i.e. ‘I have read and been a self-learner all my life’.

I am not suggesting a stroll in the park on a Sunday afternoon. I am suggesting a ‘Lewis and Clark Expedition’. I am suggesting the intellectual equivalent of crossing the Mississippi and heading West across unexplored intellectual territory with the intellectual equivalent of the Pacific Ocean as a destination.
 

lizzie

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At mid-life many citizens begin to analyze their life and often discover a need to reconstitute their purpose. Some of the advantageous of this self-actualizing self-learning experience is that it is virtually free, undeterred by age, not a zero sum game, surprising, exciting and makes each discovery a new eureka moment. The self-actualizing self-learning experience I am suggesting is similar to any other hobby one might undertake; interest will ebb and flow. In my case this was a hobby that I continually came back to after other hobbies lost appeal.
I have found that to be the case as well, and I suspect that this is one of the primary reasons many people turn to prescription psychotropic drugs at around this time in life. It's very difficult to change your thinking patterns and perceptions, and it's very unsettling emotionally and psychologically, and I would imagine especially so for you (and others like you), with a background in engineering, because in my experience, analytical tendencies/abilities make it difficult to see things from a more creative point of view. Great post btw.:)
 
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