A Mind of One’s Own
(so to speak,
in ordinary language)
Are we provoked to think on these
things? Encouraged? Who would
give permission? Set up guidelines
for what it’s like to have a mind of
one’s own? What it takes (to have
a mind of one’s own)? What it would
look like (so to speak): criterion for
assessment! And its costs—to
have a Mind of One’s Own?
Ultima Thule of Reflection, yes?
An examined life. Worth living.
Liberal Art, as opposed to & not
to be compared with because
incommensurate to the liberal arts.
Are these go-to-the-library questions?
ASK Jeeves? Google? Or fiddle tunes
of the Western & Eastern Mind Set:
same old same old anyone can play
back porch jam bring kazoo or banjer
makes no never mind: just get better
and good playing at them: same old
Thoreau said he never met a man
who was quite awake: “how could
I have looked him in the eyes.”
In my classes there are anywhere
from 15 to 25 discrete bodies .
I can count them. Take attendance.
As for their attention efficient-to-
Can’t put my finger on it, damnit.
Then there’s the collective Group
Collaborative Mind maybe called
Body Politic not to be confused
with a Mind of One’s Own which
certainly plays part and participant;
& both require representation so as
to not conflate CMBP with MOOO.
As reductive and violent to the whole
as it must be, there’s no getting around
the need to name, or image (imagine),
represent and model. A necessary crime
of fiction to fashion fact and faction.
OR else: buy your holy smokes pre-
packaged and shrink wrapped off the
convenience store shelf: lesser crime,
Although it sounds implausible it might
turn out that above a certain level of
complexity, a machine ceased to be
predictable, even in principle, and
started doing things on its own account,
or, to use a very revealing phrase, it
might begin to have a mind of its own.
It might begin to have a mind of its own.
It would begin to have a mind of its own
when it was no longer entirely predictable
and entirely docile, but was capable of doing
things which we recognized as intelligent,
and not just mistakes or random shots, but
which we had not programmed into it.
But then it would cease to be a machine
[when we can no longer] understand the
operation of the whole in terms of the
operations of its parts. (J.R. Lucas,
Minds, Machines, and Goedel.”)
Predictability on the one hand. Indeterminacy on
the other: the difference between "dead" & "alive."
I was going to say it was the difference between
Machine and Intelligence, but Intelligence is sub-
category of Alive and an epic Jump-Up Over
Machine & can be both predictable & indeterminate
which makes Intelligence meta-un-predictable..
Upside Down Flamingo & Hedgehog
Much too alive and unpredictable for my
mind set. I have to reduce the game
to hard balls and mallets
I prefer it dead & deadening
I don't like it wiggling when I'm doing
getting R done!
“The paradoxes of consciousness arise
because a conscious being can be aware
of itself, as well as of other things, and
yet cannot really be construed as being
divisible into parts." (Lucas)
We have a PROBLEM.
In talking about self, Self, SELF.
The language doesn’t easily differentiate.
selfish-selfless-self-centered for example:
do these “values” change when referring
to UN - Semi - & -conscious aspects of
me, Myself & I?
This is not to say we are THREE different
THINGS. God forbid. We are each ONE.
But at least 3 aspects, 3 “faces” of
ME, myself and also I.: and they
are radically incommensurate.
Conscious self can not measure
Unconscious SELF in conscious-self
terms without reducing Unconscious
Self to conscious-self terminology,
which is like Fred Flatlander talking
about Sally Sphere in terms of circles,
yes? See the problem? (Got to love it!)
And the classroom issue was: What happens
when a System that Regulates itself (a self-
regulating system, cybernetic), one that keeps
it self on track so as to hit the “target.” (like smart
bombs & missiles) …what happens when its
“consciousness” takes over the WHOLE SYSTEM
and starts driving the bomb itself, consciously—so
to speak: like, say, kid in the kiddy seat some how
decides to drive the car: "systemsmallself consciousness”
considering its self smart enough (a mind of its own,
full of song, furry & its own intelligence, savvy, perceptive
awareness & mindfulness) that it can take matters of the
WHOLE (SELF, Self, self) into it’s small self-centering
hands and take on the job of manual over-ride: guiding
the system by light of the moon, say: it’s tip-of-the-I's-burg
self-consciousness over-riding the automatic & autonomic
systems, say --so to speak?
" …It is inherent in our idea of a conscious mind
that it can reflect upon itself and criticize its own
performance and no extra part is required to do
this. It is already complete, and [apparently]
has no Achilles heel"
it would take
to break thru my lucid dreaming.
Dear Colleagues all around,
"Ordinary Language" considerations of
Mind minding mindfully even while
self (ego) conscious
self doing stuff
self reflecting on self doing stuff
self reflecting on self reflecting etc.
All these notions relate to mind minding and are
differentiations but not extra parts required for my
noetic & para-noetic operations—which doesn’t
mean I don’t confuse conflate & collapse. I do.
Lump them all together: me--universalist, unitarian.
In Performance mode, I AM All ONE.
Otherwise, a triad.
Differentiation, sure: but no parts or compartments
except in manners of speaking: I'm in my boxes but
not of them and out of them too all at the same time,
generating the paradoxes of consciousness that
Lucas describes (earlier: part I).
How-it-is I can be both present and absent
at the same time--attentively efficient by virtue
of deficiency, my gnosticism fully dependent
on my agnosticism: knowing because I ignore
& driving to Connecticut even while walking
Mind Minding Mindfully
This is a picture of a Wood-Chopping System
Consider the flying chips, wind, sunshine, heft
of ax--all the local feedback circuitry at work
to fell a tree. Typical of any operation.
Put your finger on where Mind Minding Mindfully
might be said to be located (reside: habit & habitat)
in this picture, in this representation of a
representational system representing representing.
Under the woodchopper’s hat?
That would be the normal
placement: a reification
I could knock on Wood
rap the skullhaus, pique Mind
a little, or provoke: "hey--you
in there! I'm talking to you!"
And here? Would Mind Minding Mindfully
include the cane as part of the
Overall Minding Hap-ening
Woodchopping Going On and
Blindman & Cane Navigation
may be talked-about in terms
that goes beyond borders of skin & bones
& frontiers yet unknown to include the whole
organization; and particular epi-phenomal...
yes yes yes—
...emergencies rising emergent from the interaction
of “parts,” all of which are included in a definition
of MIND— making A Mind of One’s Own moot,
a manner of speaking, sure: but one that generates
ts own paradoxes of consciousness, damnit and, in
manners of speaking inaugurates the ongoing damage
done if paradox is perceived as pain-in-the-assessment
& persona not grateful, know what I mean?.
(See Gregory Bateson: Steps to an Ecologyof Mind)
IT depends on how we would define/confine Mind,
yes? Where we would agree to draw the lines. And
THAT RIGHT THERE
the confabulation of minds minding mindfully to draw
the lines: would be Minding of another Color—true?
Coming to terms. Agree-ability.
Paradoxes arise at least in manners of speaking when I must
talk parts where there are no parts and am less than more
aware of dividing to conquer where there are no divisions except
so to speak those that suit my Procrustean beds for some purpose,
aim, outcome or other, not that there's anything wrong with THAT
if I don't mind suffering the contra-dictions and double binds of
Anyone might improve my terms and images.
We could sustain some argument, perhaps.
Converse action acrosss the curriculum.
I'm always just asking for it.