Notions for Possible Discussion
about how important DIFFERENCE is.
For Linguists and Information Theorists if not Systems Analysts:
“meaning” is “a difference that makes a difference.” Not just
a difference that makes no difference of which there are plenty;
it’s got to be a difference that makes a difference.
You, Dear Reader, are the meaning-maker that makes
meaning twice-told, a Compound Differentiator (CD):
1) you make the difference between a Ford and a Chevy,
say, or between the letter B and the letter A—call this a
2) then you make the difference between which of the two
has more value to you—the difference that makes-a-difference.
Call this evaluative. Judgmental. Grading.
I’m not saying the process is actually sequential & chronological
in real-time. Just emphasizing: there’s 2 kinds of differentiation
going on here that make a difference between a difference
that don’t make any difference and one that does.
This is an amazing definition, as fundamental and reduced
(and therefore nuclear and absolute) as I know:
difference-differentiator differentiating degrees
of differences differently.
We can argue about what’s meaningful and meaningless to us
personally, or collectively: examples & variety & diversity galore.
But what all meanings have in common is this eloquent reduction:
they are founded on DIFFERENCE—not only that, but—value
added—a difference that makes a difference.
Defines in terms of itself. Tauto –“same”
( to + auto; logos – “word.” )
I am that I am, says God to Moses, tautologically.
The sentence, “Sleep is a ‘dormative’ function,”
uses a different word that actually makes no
difference & means the same (tautos) and
is therefore meaningless and yet seems
different—and so: meaningful in a
meaningless way, or meaningless
in a meaningful way.
You think you’ve got a sleeping problem but what you’ve go
is DD: Dormative Disease. You think you’ve got the jitters
and can’t concentrate but what you’ve got is ADHD
plus early onset RLS (restless legs syndrome).
Tautologic: how-it-is we manufacture differences that don’t
make a difference that seem like they do and therefore do.
Like God: tautologists: all of us--defining difference
in terms of our selves: species-self and
Meaning could also be defined as a sameness that un-makes
a difference demonstrating difference in being not-a-difference
where difference was dominant and expected. A sameness
which un-makes a difference.
To be undifferentiated or to un-differentiate is to be all the same:
meaningless, unless the act of un-differentiating makes a difference
that makes a difference, in which case: meaningfulness out of
The mix of meanings generating from these logical levels of
difference and differentiating generates the paradoxes that
emerge from using/abusing the same word on different levels
of our mental hierarchy:
a difference that makes a difference,
a difference that makes a difference
that nevertheless makes no-difference- in-a-larger-context.
a difference that makes no difference
that nevertheless makesa big difference-in-a-larger-context
Etc.—hard to keep representing on & on without tying up the
Can you differentiate
the differences in all