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Practice English Speaking&Listening with: 2017 Maps of Meaning 12: Final: The Divinity of the Individual

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Started that I started the beginning of the class

three months ago talking to you about

What it what the problem was that I was trying to address?


The fundamental problem was the problem of belief systems


the issue is was

what precisely constitutes a belief system and

Then a secondary question was why are people so inclined to

even engage in conflict to Maintain and Expand their belief systems

and then maybe a sub question of that and is there an alternative to conflict with regards to belief systems and

then the last issue

Was something like well. Is there a way of judging the relative quality of belief systems?

And so those are all very very complicated questions, I

mean the first one is something like

How is it possible to understand the structures by which we orient ourselves in the world the second one is something like

What's the pSychological significance?

Precisely of those systems. What role does it play in?

psychological health and maybe also in Social health

the next one is

can you make a [non] [relativistic] case when you assess an array of different value systems and

then link to that is is it possible to

hierarchically organized value systems in

The manner that's justifiable, so that something can be reasonably considered in

a superior or subordinate position

now the last question

Drew my attention because because of the implications of the first set and the last

question drew my attention because I

Was trying to sort out the metaphysics in some sense of the cold war?

the question was was this just a battleground between

two hypothetically equally

appropriate belief systems which would could be a morally immoral relativistic perspective right it's belief systems are arbitrary and

So combat between them is in some sense inevitable and even more to the point there isn't any other way

around the

discontinuity in some sense other than

combat or

subordination because there's no way of

adjudicating a

Victor because there's no such thing as victory if there's no way of ranking value systems. It's arbitrary

As a frightening prospect because it means that if you have a value system, and I have a value system

And they're different and they're different

[I] mean we can talk or you can subordinate yourself, or I could do the same

But there's also no [reason] why we shouldn't just engage in Flat-out


now it's complicated in the modern world obviously by the fact that conflict can become so

[untraveled] that it risks destroying everything and that doesn't seem necessarily to be in anyone's best interest unless

Your interest haps happens to be in destroying everything and certainly there are no shortage of people whose interests tilt in that direction

Alright, so the first question was well. What does it mean to have a belief [system] and

That's a very complicated problem, and I think

It's a subset of the question of being

Maybe you can break the question of being into two


Which we've done in this class, and you could say well, you can assess being

From the perspective of what exists and then you can assess being from the perspective of how?

You ought to act?

so it's like you walk into a room and you can describe the furniture or

You can determine how your going to conduct yourself in the room

Maybe it's the difference between a play and the stage setting for a play now

the Modernist

Perspectives Roughly speaking is that the fundamental reality is to be found in the description of the furniture?

So to speak in the description of what is that's the scientific?


[and] the scientific process seems to involve

the stripping off of the subjective

from perception and to some degree from action and

the extraction of the commonalities across

perception as a means of

delineating the Nature of reality

Now obviously that's a [very] powerful

process, and it has many advantages, but exactly what it is that

science is doing is not precisely clear one perspective might be is that

we are


Discovering the Nature of objective reality [and] perhaps even the nature of reality itself


There are some problems with that perspective

one of them being that

The scientific process seems to strip the subjective from the phenomena. It does that technically right?

I mean you have [a] hypothesis about what something is and you have a hypothesis about what something is and you have [a]

hypothesis [about] some [what] something is and we undertake a number of procedures to assess what the

Fundamental phenomena is and then we look across our perceptual set and we extract out the commonalities

And we dispense with everything that is superfluous everything that's merely subjective

So what you feel about the chair is not relevant to the objective existence of the chair and so it

eradicate subjectivity, and that's a very useful process because it does seem to enable us to

Grasp reality in a fundamental sense more profoundly, but it leaves the subjective behind and maybe that's a problem

Because it annoys okay, okay? Thank you. [what] [if] I just didn't alright appreciate it, so

so then the issue might [be] well is something you retrieve ibly lost if you dispense with this objective and and

also, how

Deep a hole do you dig when you dispense with this objective?


I think that that's


associated with the

Problem of the relationship between is [an] [dot]


That's an old

Philosophical conundrum, I think first put forth by D. David hume

Who made the claim that?

No matter how much you know about something from an empirical perspective?

You cannot use that as an unerring guide to action in relationship to that?

To that empirical object or set of empirical objects and people it's a tricky [issue]. You know because obviously you can use empirical

information to inform your decisions

But I think

But the problem is is that there's multiple pathways of action that are implied by any set of data that seems to be the fundamental

Problem, it's something like that. Is that you can't draw a one-To-one

Specification between the empirical district description and what you should do about that and like maybe an [example] is

But you can gather a lot of information about aids

and you can gather a lot of information about cancer and you can gather a lot of information about educational outcomes and

Economic outcomes and so forth but it isn't obvious. How you then use that?

empirical information

For example how to guide policy decisions because you might say well, how much money should we spend on education?

compared to cancer prevention and how much money should be spent on cancer prevention compared to curing aids and or

Addressing disease in the third-world country what happens is that the set of variables that you?

Encounter while trying to make your empirical calculation get to be so massive so rapidly that there doesn't seem to be any

Logical way of linking them to a behavioral outcome now. It's kind of associated with the postmodern conundrum as well

Which is well if you have a set of data, and it could be a literary work without better

There's a very large number of interpretations that you can derive from [that] set of data

And there's no simple way of deciding which one is going to be canonical

and so it isn't it I think the reason that you can't derive a naught from an is is because you run into something like

Combinatorial explosion it's like you have an infinite [number] of facts at your disposal

Roughly speaking and then another infinite number of ways that you can organize those facts and that

massive array of facts and and

[Andrey] categorized facts doesn't tell you what to do in a given situation

and so maybe the question of what to do in a given situation is a different domain of question and

I believe that to be the [case]. I think it was Stephen Jay gould who talked about religion and science as

- I think he called them different

Magisterium to different fundamental domains that and that each had their realm of operation and one was the

description of the objective world obviously that's on the scientific end and the other was the realm of ethics and so you could put

Religion Mythology narrative the humanities all of that history even for that matter to some degree into the into the


Category and

because I don't see a

[straightforward] way of

Taking a set of facts and then transforming them into a behavioral compulsion

then I do think that these two [things] are reasonably regarded as overlapping and


associated but

But technically and philosophically


[alright], so then then the next question emerges well if they're separable if there has to be a

domain of inquiry into the structure of [values]

What might that look like?

like how is it that you would understand the

psychological and sociological

phenomena that are associated with a Moral stance

[Howhow] would you understand the details of that and then even more to the point is there any way of

subjecting different sets of ethical interpretation to

Testing so that you can judge their comparative validity because that's sort of the way out of Moral relativism

Roughly speaking. It's like

First you make the proposition that there are value structures and that they're independent from empirical investigation

and then the next is that you investigate the possibility that you can compare and contrast different structures of ethics and

Draw some sort of conclusion. That's not merely arbitrary

Now it might be turtles all the way down. That's how the old joke goes right, but

But maybe not then I was interested in that again because I thought well are we fighting the cold war

merely because we're having an argument or


there some

Manner in which one of these systems can be just determined to be wrong and of course

There was more weight behind that query


The soviet system and the maoist system and and the system. That's in place in North Korea

were not only

Predicated on different assumptions than in the western system, but they were also extraordinarily murderous and so that seemed to add additional

Weight [to] the to the sequence of questions


I was reading young at the time and young was carl young was

fundamentally I would say a psychologist of narrative of story and


He he outlined this

He outlined the idea for me that

people inhabited Stories Roughly speaking

He said actually they inhabited myths and even more to the point whether they knew it or not

They inhabited archetypal myths or even that they were possessed by them

And so it was the first time I'd really come into contact with the idea directly put that

there was a direct relationship between the

structures that you use to orient yourself in the world and

stories, and so then I started to


the fundamental elements of stories what what - story looked like and

while I was doing that that was informed by a number of other things that I was reading about including a

set of I

Read the Neuroscience literature with regards to information processing fairly extensively

And that introduced me [into] a whole set of other ideas including cybernetic ideas which have been incorporated into what I was

describing to you, and this basic cybernetic system is a

system [that] has [a] starting point in a system that [has] an [endpoint] and

A system that has a subsystem that monitors progress or deviation from progress

Along the pathway to the endpoint, and I thought well [that] looks a lot like a story

Or a map that's another way of thinking about it, and I thought okay

Well that's where the overlap is and the fundamental story is something like it's very [straightforward]. It's

it's also the frame that you inhabit when you conceptualize the world and narrow and

Narrow and simplify the world which you have to do because it's so complex because you have this infinite number of facts that

Are laying around you well so what are you doing? Well? You're a mobile creature a living creature not a static information processor and

You're targeted you're a targeted creature, and otherwise you wouldn't move

Right to move is to be a targeted creature because you have to move towards something or away from something so the targeting is built

Right into the fact that you're a mobile creature, and then you might say well

What do you target [and] answer to that is well, you target?

Target you could say you target what you aim for but?

Then you could say well you you aim for what you want you target your desires

And then that leads you into a discussion of the underlying neurobiology essentially you bring to the table a set of inbuilt

desires and

the targets that you pick

Have to address the fact that those desires exist and the desires are actually grounded in Necessity

and this is this is a sidebar, but this is where I think piaget theory is weaker than it should be because

piaget and you know I'm a great admirer of piaget believed that the

Human infant came into the world with a fairly primordial set of reflexes mostly sensory motor reflexes and then bootstrapped

Him or herself up on the basis of those reflexes in the sociological in

the Social Surroundings

Viewpoint [that] the child comes in with a few basic elements that can get it going

elements of exploration and memory essentially and then it builds itself

Of the consequence of its exploration in the social community now. I think that's true except that

It's too empty because what it fails to

take into [consideration] is the fact that and

I think this is this is an observation in some sense philosophically that was first made by immanuel, Kant when he criticized pure reason

so that

You can't come into the world structureless you have to come into the world with an inbuilt structure

And then it's the interaction of [that] structure with the world

That provides the information that you can use to build yourself, but the structure has to be there

And I would say that's the sameness logically speaking as the idea that the [great] [father] is always there, right?

There's the great mother is always there. That's Chaos itself the great father is always there that's order

That's the interpretive structure that you use to interact with the Chaos and then of course the individual is always there at the same time

that piaget in some sense ree-ree

told that story


He didn't

give enough credence to the fact that the infant comes into the world far [more] fully formed than

his theory

His theory presumes now the problem see that the problem with that is [that]

Without that additional underlying set of let's call them neurobiological constraints the interpretation universe gets too large you

[need] constraints to narrow

The domain of phenomena that you're contending with and and it's in the analysis of the constraints that the answer to

How do you stop drowning in an infinite number of Potential interpretations emerges?

The interpretations are subject to constraints

And that's also the way out of the Moral relativist

Paradox as far as I can tell now one of the things I really liked about Piaget was that

He describes some of the constraints one of the constraints was is well

if I'm going to exist in a social world

And I'm going [to] because I won't exist at all if I don't exist in a social world

then there are constraints on the way that I have to interact with other people and

Piaget is essential point was I have to organize myself

To play a joint game with you

But the Joint game has constraints and one of them is you have to want to play?

Because you have other options [and] then there are other constraints

You and I have to be able to play in a way that other people don't object to or maybe even that you and I

Have to play in a way that other people

will be

look support

and then you can imagine another constraint which is

You and I have to play a game in a way that other [people] would support that will last more than the moment

So it has it has to work today and tomorrow and next week it has to work across the span [of] times it has [to]

Work not only for you

And I but it has to work for our future [cells] and so the damn constraints are starting to pile up

That's just on the socio-Cultural side that's on the constructionist side only

But there's about the biological constraints are equally important because not only does the [game] that you and I have to play

Have to satisfy those


sociological constraints, but the game also has to be organized so that the internal polity that

that's composed of

Let's call them the fundamental motivational and emotional systems that make that

Constitute us. They have to all find satisfaction because otherwise the system grounds halt [and] so

This seems to me to be the beginnings of an answer to the postmodern conundrum looks like okay?

Any set of facts is amenable to an infinite [number] of interpretations fine got it

That makes deriving and is from an [Oauth2] very difficult endeavor right no problem. [all] right, but that

Doesn't mean that any old solution will work

why well first of all it's merely because we introduced work into the

Conversation to begin with the interpretation has to be functional and again. That's what it seems

That's what seems to tie. It back to the story. This is also

what got me interested in pragmatism, technically speaking and so because if if

your conundrum is here you are and there you have to be and

How to get there then one of the constraints on the Manner in which you interpret the world is

When you apply your interpretation

Do you end up moving from the point you're at to the point you want to be and if the answer that is no?

Then the solution is insufficient now. You could call the solution untrue, but I it's dangerous, too

to introduce the truth

Falsity Dilemma because because it isn't its functionality more its functionality more than truth although

I think you could say that in the final analysis truth

Is integrally linked to function?

But I'm not going to touch that question for the time being the point is is that

your interpretation of the world carries within it implicitly a theory about its own validity and the

Theory about its own validity is that if you enacted in the world it will produce the result that you

Desire and then the consequence of that is [that] if it doesn't produce the result that you desire then it isn't good enough theory

period and that's how you grapple with

The fact that although you don't know everything you still have to orient yourself in the world

You lay out partial theories that make partial predictions, and if they do a good enough job

Then you don't worry about it [any] more and you go on to the next thing, okay?

So then you think there's a lot of constraints piling up on your interpretations number one

They have to work for [the] creature that you are and so you know we can lay it sort of like maslow's hierarchy of needs

something like that's not exactly the same because I don't [think] [that] he got the hierarchy right for for very complex reasons, but it's it's

reasonably obvious to to

Observe that well you're not going to work out very well if you don't have anything to eat

And you know you've got about a week in you if you don't have anything to drink and obviously you need shelter

And you know you need you need companionship and by need what I mean is that if you don't have these things then you die

The whole game comes to a halt [so] we can ground that in?

Self-evident reality without any real problem, and you might say well, what's the list of human necessities and that that's that's a difficult thing to


Because you can argue about the degree to which something is necessary, but there's some things that we know about

Well, we covered the basics

Temperature regulation elimination food intake shelter right, but then there's more subtle things like well

children for example died without touch

So there's there's something integral about

Tactile interaction with other people so we could call that love if you want to do that. It's not optional

Right play is the same thing

children do not develop properly

unless they play and

I would say that adults also can't maintain their mental health or physical health unless they play, [too]

And so you can say well, there's a core set of necessities, and then off of that. There's a secondary set of like

What would you call them their own ultimate necessities?

But they're pretty hot they're going to be pretty highly valued by people and more or less universally pain avoidance for example under most circumstances

[most] people don't really like to be in terror most people really don't like to be disgusted

You know you can lay out the basic emotions

You can lay out the basic motivations

And you can say well the [game] that you're going to play has to operate within a space

That's defined by that set of a priori constraints fine now things are getting [pretty] constrained here

so they had the game you play house to satisfy that set of

biological demands

Intrinsic biological demands and it has to be something that you can utilize with other people

Voluntarily and it has to be something that will [be] playable across multiple iterations, and I would say

there's a very limited number of

Interpretive interpretive structures that are going to satisfy all of those preconditions simultaneously, and to me that just blows out

The two things it blows out the claims of Moral relativism, and it it it also

Demolishes and this is the same thing in some sense it demolishes this ideas that the manner in which people

Organize themselves in the world as individuals and in societies is somehow


doesn't look to me to be arbitrary at all and

So in ampere days genius. I think in some part was observing that in children spontaneously in that when children

passed the egocentric phase which means after they're about two years of old old, [they're] maybe [they're]

What they're approaching three years old they've more or less got their internal mechanisms organized so that there are

unitary being

Roughly speaking at

Three they start to develop the ability to use fictional frames of reference

So and that's an interesting thing because I would say that the fundamental

biological systems come armed with their own frame of reference, so [if] you're hungry

Poof up comes [a] frame of reference [and] within that

Your perceptions are shaped the action proclivities are are

primed and

The world lays itself out around that particular

Biological Necessity and you can lay those out same if you're thirsty same if you're too

Hot same if you want to play all those systems come

built in but then the problem with that is that

they compete because it isn't obvious which one should take priority and then

It's not that easy to organize them in a social space

[and] so what seems to have happened to human beings is that we've been able to replace

the frame that's

predicated on

motivational necessity with abstracted frames that are more voluntary voluntarily constructed that

Incorporate multiple motivational systems simultaneously

And that's in some [sense]

That's also what it's the same thing as we learned how to think abstractly

and so the frame

that you're going to lay out on the world if it's a good frame is one that solves a whole set of problems at the

same time and

so that

[and] you can slot different frames you can you can experiment with [different] frames?

and that's a

Precondition to being able to play because one of the things that piaget pointed out you can see this when children pretend play. It's like

Four and even more clearly in games that have rules, but let's say they're there in pretend play, and they're going to say well

We're going to lay out a little fictional schema here

We're going to play house

And you can be the cat and all be the I'll be the dad and then you negotiate a bit to see if those rules

Are acceptable and then you run it as a simulation, and that's what kids are doing when they're playing and they're experimenting with different

Superordinate frames of reference that are active all in the world, and they're in there

they're [learning] how to develop those perceptual schemes and also how to

Interact in a manner that allows the scheme that they're using to find its social acceptability and its successful

the child

assumes that

the Scheme is successful if

both children have fun while they're doing it and

So that's the volunteerism and so piaget made a very interesting point about that that I think is [absolutely] brilliant. He said that

there's a difference between a game that people will play voluntarily and

One that has to be enforced and so then you can imagine an environment

Where game a is played voluntarily it has a certain end and game b

is played by Force but both of them are moving towards the same end and

Piaget his claim was the game that's played voluntarily or even more to the point the set of all games that are played

Voluntarily will out-Compete the set of all games that are played by Force if they're put head-to-head in a competitive environment

[I] thought God that's such a brilliant observation because there you have the basis for a pragmatic grounding of

For the evaluation of ethics. It's like

You can pick the Target. It doesn't matter whatever Target

You pick if the game is voluntary and aimed at the target it will defeat a game. That's imposed by Tyranny now

It's a proposition, but it's a pretty good proposition

and I would say there's a fair bit of evidence for this proposition and a fair bit of it is actually derived from

observation of animal Behavior because I ran you guys through the emerging literature on the stability say of Chimpanzee hierarchies and the

Chimpanzee tyrant

Hierarchy isn't very stable and the reason for that is that to subordinate chimps who are?

3/4 as strong as the dominant tyrant can take them out and they do and so then the question might be well

How do you have to conduct yourself as a high dominance chimp if you're not going to be torn apart by those who are?

Hypothetically your subordinates and the answer to that is well. Don't be too much of a


formulate some social connections engage in some

reciprocity with regards to your social relationships

Don't oppress the females don't torment the children

It said ETC because that makes you unpopular

And then you'll get torn to shreds and so there are

practical limits on the expression of Tyranny that are a consequence both of biological limitations because people are going to

object if the system is set up so [that] their fundamental needs are met and they're also going to object if

The game that's being played isn't functioning socially and so this is very very tight set of constraints

And then the question might be okay if you take that set of constraints

What sort of systems can operate?

What would you say well?

Just that what set of systems can operate within those sets of constraints?

Then you might say if you take that the set of all systems that might operate within those constraints

And you look at what's common across them then you could extract out what's essentially a universal morality

It's something like that and I

Don't see how that proposition is precisely questionable. It seems to me [that] all of that's built on rock like there's no [doubt] that

Infants bring biological necessity to the table. I think that's fully established and it's established

Physiologically, it's established


it's established with regards to evolutionary history because we can take the

Motivational systems that are part and parcel of our being and we can trace their development back in some cases half a billion years


So the idea that the the infant is a blank slate when it's born and that's subject to infinite

Sociological manipulation is a it's a dead in the water. That's just not the case

So okay, so far. So we've got that nailed down

hard and then the idea that

Your identity is also shaped

Sociologically well I don't think anybody disputes that it doesn't matter where they are on the interpretative framework they might

dispute the degree to which [that] occurs and the mechanisms by which it occurs, but

The fact that it occurs. That's

That's close enough to self evidence so we can just leave it there

well then the question is what are the consequences of the

sociological of

socio of socialization and

Once you admit the nifty

existence of the realm of biological necessity you instantly put a set of constraints on

How societies can structure themselves so that they will not be?

torn down and overthrown

Well that if you look at. How kids are socialized. I think that psAys developmental observations are Bi and Bi correct

The first two years it's mostly interactions between the infant and the parents

It's it's bi-directional though

Because the infant has to come to terms with the mother but the mother also has to come to terms with the infant

So it's not even top-down at the level of infant maternal relationship

Quite the contrary and if you watch a new mother adapt to a baby

you can see that the mother is doing as much out apt ation to the baby as the baby is to the mother because the

Infant has this inbuilt character already and has to be

Charmed into a relationship that's love does that and and attention

it's very little different than establishing a relationship with someone who's older it's it's lower resolution and

It's harder to make the observations because of course the infant is only capable of behavioral display

[can't] can't speak but nonetheless the necessity for establishing the individual relationship

Is there to begin with so even in the early stages of the infant's realization the process isn't?

State downward it's not great farther down work. It's

Mutual and then of Course by the time the child is old enough to be launched out into [the] social world

Then all the constraints that are associated with the playground are immediately placed on that child and that's a very unforgiving landscape

right because the last thing a child wants really the last thing a child wants is not to have any friends or

even perhaps equally seriously not to have a best friend [I]

Read something so idiotic the other day that I couldn't believe it. So the newest prince

So [queen] [Elizabeth's] I guess great grandchild is off to daycare in in the uk and in this daycare

They don't let the kids have best friends because that's unfair [I] thought you know

Something times you see something that's so stupid. You can't even believe it it

Exists, and that was one of those examples because it's been known for quite a long time that one of the developmental Milestones

the children attained somewhere between say the age of five and ten is they pick a best friend and

So they and and you know the hypothesis well that's unfair to all the other children

It's like well first of all you can't be the best friend to everyone because you didn't

Maybe there's a billion children so each of them gets one second

It's like that's just not a very deep relationship. So the idea that you can be equally friendly with everyone is

It's a preposterous, but even worse the thing is the thing [that] the child is doing is actually becoming

there they're stepping out of their egocentricity because their best friend becomes more important than they are and that's a precursor for

Adult relationships where you know if you're married?

[well] your your partner should be at least as important as you are and the relationship should be more important

But then when you have children, it's like they're more important than you [that] that's that

It's unless there's something wrong with you. You come second and your children come first and their way first

They're not just a little buddy. You're necessary because without you. They're not going to manage

So you have to take care of yourself?

But you're not number one [anymore] once you have kids unless

Seriously unless you didn't learn the lessons in the playground and when you have a best friend. You're not number one. They are and so

So anyways there are these constraints that Emerge in in the social landscape

you have to have friends and also you have to single someone out as particularly unique among those friends and establish a

Genuinely reciprocal and caring relationship. I can't remember the psychiatrist who studied this so intently


He was the first person [to] to do a detailed analysis of the best friend relationships that children

established and I'd like to give him credit for his ideas, but unfortunately I can't remember his name, so

Okay, so what are the propositions so far?

You inhabit a structure the [dorian] [Cu] in the world it has something. That's akin to a narrative structure. [I'm] here

[I'm] going there, and this is the [way] I did it its narrative if you describe it

It's based in biological necessity, but it's shaped by Social

socialization and the fact of that

Base and that shaping means that the set of interpretive schema that you can lay out in the world are bounded

Those would be functional

Hypothetically functional systems and maybe they compete over over the evolutionary time span

but there's something in common across that set of functional interpretations, and if you extract that out you can get the

Initial images of what you might describe as an archetype you never cilmi. That's what archetypes are


So and to say all that is no more than to say that people can extract across instances, and we can obviously do that

So then the question is can you start to develop an articulated picture of what that?


structure of universal morality might be and

so my answer [to] that was basically well let's look at old stories as many old stories as we can collect and

If their stories are stories that have survived for a very long period of time so much the better because it


indicates that they're acutely memorable and

Peculiarly functional because if they weren't memorable then they'd have been forgotten

and if they weren't functional they wouldn't have managed to be the foundation stories for four

Cultures that lasted for thousands or even tens of thousands of years

So and then we could say well

Let's collect a whole variety of these stories and see if there's patterns across them now the danger that is

Have you collected an unbiased set of stories danger number one how do you know that you're not just reading into the stories?

That's the postmodern problem

Reasonable reasonable objections and so that those objections have been laid

against people like

Wrote the Golden bough fraser who is the fraser who was one of the first?

Anthropologists to collect stories from all over the world and to start to look for commonalities the same

Objection has been laid at the feet of people like [Richie]. Le odd or carl jung or Joseph Campbell

it's like how do you know you just

How do you know you're not just cherry-picking your damn interpretations perfectly reasonable?

Perfectly reasonable objection, and I would say that the reason I [don't] believe that

I'm cherry-picking my interpretations is because I used a method and

it's a method that's akin to the Multi Trait Multi method method of

[construction] that that clinical psychology and other disciplines of psychology rely upon

But it's also akin to a process put forward by E.O Wilson that he called consilience the process is something like

Well pick your level of analysis

Does the phenomena manifest itself at that level of analysis? Yes?

Pick another level of analysis and another level of analysis and another level of analysis and see if the same phenomena

Manifests itself at every single level and then assume that the probability that that will happen by chance

Decreases with each additional level of analysis [that] fits that where this concordance, and I thought okay that that that makes sense

So it isn't only that you can look for patterns and stories because you know what if you're a hyperactive?

Pattern detector

Which basically means like there are people like that people who tilt towards Paranoia?

People who tilt towards conspiracy theories you can see it manifest itself in new age thinking all the time

Because new age thinkers are very high in openness

But not very good at critical thinking and so they see phenomena a and B and C and D

they think [Pad] then they think universal pattern but they don't attempt to

Disconfirm their pattern prediction and so what I tried to do when I was starting to see Patterns Emerge in the stories

Informed by people like dealing in a leotta and so forth was to see if what [they] were describing

Manifested itself at any other levels of analysis that [were] independent intellectually from that stream of thinking and I found it in two places

targeted cybernetics, and I found it in neuroscience and so

On and that that and the neuroscience element that includes the physiology

But also the behavioral analysis that was done by by people most particularly like like like Jeffrey Gray and and the animal

Experimental is who were brilliant Brilliant scientists, and who've done a very good job of laying out the manner in which

interpretive frameworks exist

Within the realm of animal cognition and and and to describe how they manifest themselves in the world, so [I] thought okay

That's not too bad because we've got maybe four different levels of evidence all pointing in the same Direction

So that's why I walk you guys through the neural psychology. It's like a story is you're going somewhere

You're somewhere, and you're going somewhere, and you're tracking your progress, [okay]?

That's the story well what what happens when you look at how people lay out their called cognitive maps well

It's the same thing you specify a target an endpoint. You specify a beginning point

Which is just where you are and then there's a mechanism a comparator mechanism that [operates] or multiple comparator mechanisms that operate?


Physiologically to orient yourself towards that goal and [the] emotions

Basically Emerge as a as a consequence of [that] positive emotions indicating that you're moving forward properly

Negative emotions indicating that you've encountered some kind of obstacle. It's like well. That's the basic. That's the basic

structure of a narrative, okay fine

So now we can see how its instantiated neural physiologically that adds a fair bit [of] credence to the to the entire



now normally when you look at the

Basic cybernetic work there's a hypothesis that the system is oriented towards a goal

And that it's comparing what is manifesting itself in the world to that desired end state as the system moves?

but it's too simple because

People don't precisely have gold

they have nested hierarchies of goals and


The issue of emotional regulation becomes more complex than are you proceeding happily towards your current goal

because your goal is composed of micro goals and it's a

Constituent element of a set of Macro goals and so that makes the problem of error Far more

Complex than it would be if you only had one frame of [reference]

[and] you were only adjudicating your error within that frame of reference the question starts to become

what does it mean when you make a mistake and

Answer to that

The Behavioral answer to that was well you encounter a stimuli

That's a threat or maybe a punishment or an incentive reward or a consumer [tori] reward something like that

It's very it's a it's a unit dimensional and oversimplified answer. I'm not complaining about it

Has great [utility] but there's the problem

there's a problem and the problem is it doesn't take into account the nested structure of this of your goal hierarchy and

What that means is that it underestimates the difficulty of responding to an error?

Because the problem with an error is that you don't know what the error signifies, and that's a huge problem

And that's part of what I want to delve into even in more depth today

And so this is like Ellis and the what in wonderland going down the rabbit hole it's exactly the same thing

That's the [hole] the rabbit hole is you made a mistake [right]? You made a mistake. You've got your


Representation of the World Laid upon it it validates itself in its execution [if] it executes properly if it executes

Improperly, [then] what does that signify and the answer isn't precisely that you've made a mistake

The answer is it

signifies that there's something in the world that you excluded that shouldn't have been excluded and that's a big problem because

when [you've] laid out a simplified

Schema on the world you've excluded virtually everything and so what that means is that as [soon] as you make an error

the search space for the error immediately tends towards the infinite and you experience that

It's part of it human

Existential experience and the way you experience that is especially if your mood is Shaky is

you lay [out] a small plan like maybe you go out for coffee with someone that you're romantically interested in and they're

There, they're not they're not pleasant to you and and so that's an error. It means well. What does it mean well?

You've construed yourself wrong. You've construed them wrong. You've construed the opposite sex wrong. You've construed human beings wrong

You're a walking catastrophe, [and] you might as well not even exist

It's like well, that's that's pretty extreme, but it's not that extreme

I'll tell you like it's not that uncommon for people to have exactly that set of catastrophic

Responses to even a minor Setback now. It's not good for them and I would say

you know just because you

Scraped your foot doesn't mean you should dig a grave and jump into [it] pull the dirt on on top of you. You know

So you don't want to start by taking yourself completely apart, but that doesn't mean people won't do it

They do it all the [time] in fact to me. It's always a mystery that they don't do it every single time

Because the logical inference for why didn't you get someone interested in?

You could easily be because you're a failure as a human being and at some level that's actually true now

It's all it's true in a way

That's not that helpful [right] because it's just too catastrophic

but it isn't obvious at all how people can defend themselves against that cascade of a


Catastrophizing, [I] mean after all if you are everything you could be then maybe everyone would be attracted to you

I mean perhaps not but you get the point [and] no and no easy rationalization is going to let you just brush that away

Especially if you actually happen to be interested in the person because that's even worse because then not only are you rejected?

But you rejected [by] someone

Who's who upon whom you've projected an ideal or perhaps on?

From whom you've actually observed an ideal so it's worse you're you're rejected by someone that you want to have

Be [attractive] to you to validate your old miserable existence. It's a non-trivial problem

So you're in this protected space that I?

You know I made an analogy between that in the garden of eden

Or the city that buddha was raised it. It's all protected and everything inside it is beautiful and functional and

That's by definition because if your frame of reference is working properly

then what's within it is things you control that are functional and and and and

and they're serving your purposes, so

When you're successful

You're in the garden of Eden that's one way of [thinking] about it when the things that you're laying out in the world are delivering

What they're supposed to deliver

That's what you inhabit, but the problem is is that there's always a snake inside the garden

And it's that's the story that's echoed in the story of Buddha in that case

It's Buddha's own curiosity that happens to be the snake and you could actually say the same thing about human beings

Maybe it wasn't the snake maybe it was eve's curiosity

They're the same thing in some sense

And so it's Buddha's curiosity that drives them outside the city to find disease and death and to blow apart his


conceptualization of the world and so

When we're looking at unit for universality

The first thing we might say is well you have a frame of reference that you've laid on the world

it's a story you live inside a story and

The second thing week it's and that's universally true the content of the story can differ. That's okay. I don't care about that

it's the structural equivalence that I'm interested in you live inside the story and you have to because

you have to live in something like that because you are [goal-directed] and you have to be and

You [have] to simplify the world because there you're just not

Enough of you to take into account everything at once in fact you can hardly take into account anything at once so you

[have] to narrow things unbelievably and

by narrowing

And including only certain things you exclude virtually everything else, so you're always in the problem in the situation

where you have this little bounded universe that you inhabit, but outside of it is Chaos itself and

And so that's the existential landscape order

surrounded by Chaos

Right it's like a tree. It's like the

The evolutionary home of primates the tree with the snakes on the ground

that's that's our landscape or it's the fire for tribal people and the terrors of the forest that are Beyond the

that would be on the

Light that the fire casts

It's explored territory versus unexplored territory

and that's that's an archetype as well that that you can't not be in a situation where that's the case even

[if] you're among friends, you know

You think that's explored territory. That's not exactly right because what happens if you're among friends is that


Carefully reveal new parts of themselves all the time, so it's like. They're blasting little

Elements of unexplored territory you territory at you constantly and if they don't then what happens

You get bored

And you look for new people

And we know there's empirical data on that with regards to intimate relationships because there was a nice study done a while back showing that

Looking at the ratio [of] positive to negative emotional experiences that were most predictive of long-term

relationship success and the answer was now obviously it depends on how you would measure an

event and how you would measure positive and negative emotion, but that aside the finding was something like

If you're in a relationship, and you only have five positive

Interactions [-] One negative interaction then the relationship will end. It's [too] negative, but if you have more than Eleven positive

Interactions - One negative interaction, then it also ends, and you think well

That's pretty bloody [acuter] what why in the world would that be don't you want like a hundred to one positive to [negative]?

interactions and answer that is what makes you think that you want a relationship so that you could be happy or

At least happy moment to moment. Why do you think that?

It's not it's certainly not the case as you [know] that - because

You I mean I bet you there's not a person in this room who hasn't rejected someone because they were too nice to them

Something like that [person's] no challenge. It's something like that

You want someone who you know you can get along with them, but now and then they bite you and you think oh?

That's that's interesting you know

I didn't really expect that and then you go and puzzle over it for a while, [and] you torture yourself about it

And that's one of the things that keeps you really linked [in] [to] the relationship and the reason for that is that

Part of the reason that you want the relationship isn't so that you're happy [right] now

[it's] so that you can live a high-quality life across multiple decades

And so you're looking for someone

[that] you have to contend with who's going to push you beyond what you already are and who's going to judge you harshly?

Often for your limitations [now] [that'll] make you angry and all about you. You know and resentful

And maybe you'll take your revenge and and all of that

But you don't want someone who thinks you're perfect in your current form partly because why would you want to go out with someone that?



okay, so

[you've] got this interpretive schema laid out on the world and

It excludes the entire world and because it excludes the world

the world tends to manifest itself inside that protected space on a in an uncontrollable manner and that

[can] take you down and it takes you down the rabbit hole and down the rabbit hole is where everything is because

when you make an error what that is is the manifestation of the excluded world and

The problem with that is that's too much

Right because if you step out of the lifeboat into the ocean then you drown, and that's that's not any good

You can't drown every time

Something manifests itself that you didn't expect

there has to be a mechanism for

Orienting you in the face of error

all right, so

What exactly does that imply the question is what do you discover when you go down the rabbit hole?

I was thinking about that [a] lot today. I

Showed you that diagram that I thought was like a map of the phenomenological world

The the lowest resolution Category is something like the dragon of Chaos and so you might say

Well what you discover when you make an error and the answer is

First it's a brief manifestation of the dragon of Chaos

and that's no more to say then when you encounter the incursion of

Unexplored territory into explored territory the circuitry you use is

the same circuits that we use to to

respond instantaneously to the presence of

Predatory Forces

We use that circuit and that makes perfect sense because the predator is almost by definition

The thing that lurks Beyond the safe confines of the community and I told you I believe a story about rats

raised in naturalistic environments

the Rats are

We've got the burrows on one end of the little field

That hierarchy they're doing their [little] rat social things they're playing and they're laughing and they're tickling each other and they're there you're you know

Raising the rat families, and that's all working out

Just fine rats in that situation by the way are very difficult to get addicted to cocaine

If you want to dick the rat to cocaine you have to put it in a cage and isolated

It's not really a rat any more than any more than you're a person if you're in solitary confinement, right?

I mean, you're sort you're mostly [your] just misery

Anyways in solitary confinement [you'd] be after cocaine non-stop and maybe under other circumstances

but like a normal [rat] it's not that interested in cocaine, so

Let's just decide


[anyways] the rats are doing their thing and then they've learned that they can go out to the other side of the field and they

can get food [and] so one day the

experimenters instead of putting food out there put a cat out there and

the rat goes out and gets a whiff of the cat which they do not like and then the rat runs home and

Pokes is because of the burrow and screams for like two days

Ultrasonic LI and all the other rats are like frozen stiff because of that

They're not going anywhere, and so a 2-day rat screaming V is no a trivial [thing]

That's be I calculated that be the equivalent of use

Screaming for two weeks, so you have to be pretty upset to scream for two weeks, right, so this is hard on the rat

But the reason I'm telling you this is the rat doesn't expect the cat to be there the rat goes out

And there's a cat and what it uses is its predator

Detection and alert systems to signify the presence of the cat and what we've done with the dragon imagery Roughly speaking is make an amalgam

Of predatory monsters and state that's a symbol for what lurks Beyond safety

because we're observing our own responses in some sense and

And it's not only that we're observing our own responses, but we also have a category

Categorical set of responses to Predator and we again

There's no speculation about this we already know this like if you go study monkeys for example they have

Distinct sets of vocalization [that] are associated with Predator Detection that have distinct circuits

We know that there are predator Detection circuits, and it's not unreasonable [to] also

Presuppose that they underlie the phenomena for example that human beings are [very] good at learning fear to snakes

Snake fear might be innate like that's pushing the argument but at minimum

Psychologists have already concluded that even if snake fear isn't innate and it probably is that it can be learned like that

So you can condition people to be afraid of pictures of snakes?

way faster than you can condition them to be afraid of pictures of electrical outlets or handguns, so

And that's well documented. I don't think anybody disputes that at all, so

the first

Assumption is when something unexpected

Emerges, so we'll call that the snake in the garden that

Your prey and that's a predator and that the monster has come to get you. It's something like that now the

Representation of the Dragon is more complex than mere Monster because the dragon the mythological

Dragon also is the thing that hoards Treasure, and I really like that symbol

I think it's I think that's also why it will never go away

It's such a great symbol because it says well the unknown can take you down

[it] can it can right you with its fiery breath like poisonous snake and it can burn things like fire

and it's a

aerial predator that can take you from the air and it's a carnivorous predator that can take you from the ground and [it's]

Reptilian it's the sort of thing that can pull you down into the water

And it's easy to see that as an amalgam of of the threats that have been

Laid Forth for Human beings since the beginning of time and

Monster is an amalgam of predator, and you might say well. There's no such thing as a dragon. It's like. Yes

There is it's just a loose category

What's common across all [predators] equals dragon?

It's not like it's a knot. They're not real. They're hyper real. They're more real than the phenomena themselves

Just like an abstraction can be more real than the phenomena the result and then the canonical dragon for human beings isn't just a predator

We're not rabbits

You can imagine that the dragon for a rabbit is just a dragon

There's no damn treasure there at all but for human beings its ambivalent because the thing that you don't know about is

Also, the thing that holds the greatest gift and why is that?

It's [because] the unrealized world manifests itself when you make an error and the unrealized world is something that can take you down

Obviously, but it's also the source of all new information

it's an infinite source of information, and that's a really useful thing [to] know error is an infinite source of information and

[that's] one of the things that can help you recalibrate the way that you interact

[with] the world you think well, we're interacting

let's say we're having a conversation and

It's flowing

Melodically and all of a sudden. [I] say something, and there's a disjunction right you're offended by it

There's some negative emotion that comes up or or

Or or you know maybe I've said something to impress you or to be arrogant, and you respond badly

It's like we've got this melodic thing going on

It's a consensual frame and something pokes itself up to put a disjunction in the conversation

It's like well, that's where the information is

It's like something went wrong something didn't work out

I'm not looking at the world properly or I don't know you well enough or as well as I thought there's something

There and if I have any sense, I'm going to focus my [attention] on that like not obsessively or anything like that

But where all the information is because as long as what we're doing is working then we both know enough already

As soon as what we're doing together

It'll working then that's instant evidence that there's something about us that needs to be updated and you might think [well]

[that's] a terrible thing and the answer is yes of course it is

It's a terrible thing

But it's also the thing and this is the next stage of the development of this let's call it universal morality. It's like

The universal morality might be found in the answer to the question. What should you do when you make a mistake now?

[one] answer is catastrophic dissolution. That's

that's a collapse into Chaos well, that's

No one is going to pick that voluntarily let's put it that way that's it unbelievably unpleasant terribly anxiety-Provoking

shameful and

painful all at the same time

Worse it can mean [the] absence of positive emotion because if you really collapse into Chaos not only are you overwhelmed by negative emotion?

but the positive emotion system shut off and that that's what happens to someone who's

Extraordinarily depressed and also hyper anxious at the same time not only are they suffering from an excess of negative emotion?

But they've got no incentive movement forward Whatsoever [okay], [so] that's not an optimal solution because it takes you out

The other possible and so I would call that a nihilistic solution or a chaotic solution

It's not a solution. It's a dissolution, and you could think about it as a precursor to a potential solution

But it's very easy to get stuck there

and that's why

[Jonah] could have stayed in the belly of the whale along with all the other people that were eaten by the whale and never got

Back out, and you see people like that all the time their error [has] come along blown out their frames of reference

they've collapsed into the underworld into the chaotic underworld and

They don't know how to get out they have post-traumatic stress disorder or they're depressed or they're hyper anxious or or

they're they're resentful and aggressive and destructive like there's any number of

states of being that can overwhelm you when the bottom has fallen out [of] your life, [so]

[it] isn't something that people are going to

It's not an optimal solution. Let's put it that way well [that] the other

That's a nihilistic solution a collapse

the other solution is

We're talking and I don't get what I want from you, and so I say you'd better not do that again

I don't want to see that from you again

and so that's a tyrannical attitude right what I'm going to do is I'm going to take my

universe of order and its predictions, and I'm going to say you go along with this or I'm going to punish you [and]

That's that's a no there is a an element in

Society Like Society is made up of

threats like that to some [degree]

It's an erratic level in

Erratic apart of Society that would be the tyrannical aspect of the Greek king let's say you know

We've organized a set of punishments and threats that keep each of us in alignment


Generally speaking in a society that's functional we've decided to adopt

Agreement with that set of principles more or less voluntarily?

We say well you have rights and responsibilities, and I have rights and responsibilities

And I'm willing to pay a price for yours including the acceptance of punishment if I transgress

But you're going to do the same for me. So there are there are

intelligent ways that punishment and threat can be used and bounded so

but it that could easily degenerate into Tyranny and one of the

methods that I can choose to [use] if I don't want to encounter error is just to enforce my will on everyone else and

I think when that happens

personally and in the family and in the community and in the state all at the same time

then you get the emergence of a Tyranny and

So I would consider those two counterproductive

Reactions to the emergence of the unrealized world. It's like you say something. I don't like I collapse completely

Children don't like other children who do that by the way right? It's something that's very interesting to [observe]

So let's say kids have organized themselves to play a little game of baseball with a plastic bat in a ball

And you know one child pitches and the other child hits the ball

The child Catches it and puts the puts the batter out and the batter bursts into tears

Well, what happens is the other kids you know the first time that happens they'll be sympathetic [the] third time that happens

They won't invite that kid out to play baseball anymore

so the answer to

We're not getting along is not you get to burst into tears and and and manifest extraordinary emotional distress because if you do that

no, one's going to want to play with you and

[that's] a lesson that many people could stand learning again one of the things. I think that's really destabilizing our society right [now]

Maybe is that I'm not sure [that]

Kids have been encouraged or allowed to play enough in the last

[2530] Years and I think a lot of this identity stuff is actually

Fantasy play, it's delayed fantasy play because it's sort of what you do when you're seven years old. It's like well

I'm going to be this identity

That's what you're doing when you pretend you're going to go along with that because we're going to play this out

It's like that's fine

You don't impose that though right not not if you're a kid that has a clue you invite people to play you don't insist on

Your identity and their compliance with it

It's not a playable game


You don't burst into tears and run off when [someone] won't play your game because then they won't play with you

And then you have to turn [to] force, and that's that's fine. If that's what you want to do, but you better look out because

You better be ready to use it

Those crazy me were some morality come to responses

insurance [applied] in [your] [city] and [will] [thank] [you] [buy] this if we can say

Researcher a is better than this structure being from a pragmatic perspective

Does it come with responses of making sure that people who are trapped perhaps the [treadle]?


Somewhere else that we have a responsibility [against]

Good question. I mean that that's part of the question that that I in some sense

Motivated in some sense motivated the American incursion into Iraq

Right so what's our responsibility in relationship to tyranny that's a good question all of the increases of families are

Getting is for non processing about the situation of [human] and say solidarity yeah, you know

I think that's I [think] that criticism is more emerging because of because it's apparently

it's apparently paradoxical and they've laid out a set of principles to which in principle they they adhere and

One of those principles is to reduce the destructive power of the patriarchy it's like okay

There is some destructive Patriarchy for you radio silence. It's like hmM now

What am I supposed to do about that am I supposed to question your adherence to those principles?

Which is exactly what should be done, so I think it's a it's it's a criticism of performative contradiction

[you] say you're for this, but when it comes to acted out you don't selectively in this situation, so there's something wrong

There's something about your game that you're not being straight about that's the criticism, and maybe there's rejoinders to that you know

Well, okay, okay? Well

responsibility well you know then you'd have to look at different levels of

Analysis with regards to interactions. You definitely have a responsibility to your partner and

Your children okay, so your responsibility to your children as far as I'm concerned is

don't it's twofold one don't let your children do anything that makes you dislike them and

There's a corollary to that

which is don't be an idiot you know so that's partly why you need a partner because your partner has to tell you when your

Demands on your children are excessive because you're kind of you know you're not 100% oriented properly

but still you're their target adult and

So it's up to you to help them choose a path that makes you want them to be around right?

And that that's your critical responsibility, and hopefully you're enough of an an analog of the broader community

so that if they can figure out how to get along with you it radically increases the

Probability that they'll be able to get along with everyone so for example if you're playing with your children

two years old

You you help them you encourage them to play in a manner

That's fun

And if you get that down, then you know when you introduce them to another child don't know how to play in a manner

That's fun, and so great

You've solved the problem the problem is to get your child to enter into the collaborative social world, and so yes

You have a primary responsibility for that and then with regards to your partner. Here's something to think about

With regards to role so my wife and I have had this discussion many times and one of the discussions is well

How are we to treat each other in public?

And it isn't her name is Tammy the discussion isn't

How should Jordon treat Tammy in public or how should tammy treat Jordan that's not the discussion this isn't personal

It's how should a wife treat her husband, and how should a husband treat his wife

It's impersonal and it's partly you don't put your partner down in public

Why well it's not because you're hurting that person's feelings

That's not why it's that you're denigrating the relationship that you are in voluntarily

You know I've some of the most painful days. I've ever spent one in particular

I spent with a group of men who had been in therapy for their marriage and

who bloody well needed that I can tell you that and

They spent their whole day complaining about their wives. I could just made me sweat the whole day

I thought I can't believe I'm here with you guys that I

Can't tell you why I was it's just you know it was just happenstance more than anything

And I thought how can you be so damn dumb it's like

It's certainly possible that you marriage barbaric married Barbarian witches fine

You don't have you're so lacking in sense that you would discuss that in public not noticing that you picked them

So basically all you're doing is holding up a sign and waving it constantly that says I'm an idiot. I'm an idiot right and so


back to responsibility

You have a responsibility to those whom you love and are obligated to

To ensure that they manifest themselves in a manner that's most beneficial to them over the long run

Now you have the same responsibilities. I would say to yourself, but you'll have blind spots other people have to help you with that

But so the rule is you know you don't let you don't you help your wife figure out?

How not to make [a] fool [of] herself in public and she extends to you the same courtesy and it's partly

Maintenance of the sacred Nature of the relationship it has nothing to do with you or her precisely

It's broader and wider than that okay, so then that's two levels of responsibility child

partner next level of responsibility

You're asked at your workplace to go uncut to undergo unconscious bias retraining

You say yes, it's like okay

You've just admitted that you're a bigot right because you're acting about it's like

I'm a racist bigot obviously I need [to] be retrained and so you might say well

I'm not going to make a fuss about it right or I've been told to do it for maybe you agree with it fine and

If that if you agree with it, no problem, you can make a case for it

I [think] it's a weak and appalling case personally, but you can make a case [for] it

you could say well, you know why I'm interested in my

Biases and how to rectify them and like fair enough, you know people are biased

But if you object to it, and you don't say anything

then you're complicit and

then it's on you, and you know like a

Causes [B] and C and B causes C and D and so forth the thing tends does noise?

But it has this tendency to expand and you'll come home angry and upset and [you'll] go to the training program

And you'll think this is ridiculous because that is what you'll think in all likelihood, and you won't say anything

But it eats at you well

Gated your responsibility and so and then you might say well

So then then that's how the community becomes corrupt that's how the community starts to be corrupt is that people turn a blind eye to

Emergent Pathology when they know it's pathological. That's exactly what the egyptian story says

Osiris is

overcome by Seth

Because he's willfully blind

Willfully blind which means he knows?

But refuses to he knows quote his predator Detection systems have gone off

Monster well, then you're supposed to look okay? Exactly what sort of monster is this what doesn't have wings?

it doesn't have a tail you know you cut it down into the

You cut it from the monster that it could be into the monster that it is

That's the first step and then you take the appropriate steps and then you also notice the other monsters because here's something [to] think about

You're going to pay a price for speaking up

But you're going to pay a price for not speaking up

So it's like monsters on the right monsters on the left pick the ones you want to battle with if you decide not to

Make your stand

You weaken yourself if you do it a hundred times

Then even if the monster was only this big now

You're this big it's going to eat you you know when it was this big you probably could have kicked it across the room

It's too late for that you've capitulated and capitulated you know and so what what you've done?

And this is a way to think about it from a union perspective

This is what jung was trying to get [at] when he was talking about elka elka me. It's like the thing that pops up


object to you is

this incredibly complex

Entity it's it's the entire world encapsulated in the event

If you interact with it

You unpack it you differentiate your sense of the world and you and you you gather new skills, so for example

Let's say there's something going on at your workplace, and you need to object to it cuz it's driving you crazy

And you talk it over with your wife so that you've got your head screwed on straight say

Oh, I've got to say something and you go there, and you say something

And you know you're stumbling and awkward and all of that

But but you watch the response and maybe you get what you're aiming at. Maybe you don't but you've learned a bunch

You've learned while I noticed coherent as I could be I'm not as good at putting my arguments together

My boss is more of a son of a bitch than I that he thought it was this is a worse problem that I knew

about it's like

Differentiated differentiated so now the landscape is higher resolution and so are you?

Well so good

So maybe you're a little bit next

Better prepared the next time you have to do that and so the issue here to some degree is

Don't lose an opportunity to grapple with something that objects to you, especially when the object

Objection is rather small

Because that's something you can you say well, I can put up with it

It's like fair enough like you don't want to make everything into a war

I usually use a rule of three if we're interacting and you do something that I find disruptive. I'll note it

It's like potential dragon go on and I'll leave it be and then if you do it again. I think oh yeah

That probably wasn't merely

Situation but I'll leave it be because that's still not enough evidence, but if you do it a third [time], then I'll say hey

I just noticed this and you'll say no that didn't happen and I'll say yeah, not only did it happen

But it happened here, and it happened here, [and] I'm not making this up

So there's something going on here like I'm not ignoring it and we can get to the bottom of it

And then they'll come [up] with a bunch of objections about why that isn't necessary and you push those aside

[and] they'll come up with [a] few more objections, and they'll push those aside

And then usually they'll get mad or burst into tears and if you push that aside

Then you get to have a conversation

Right and then you can solve the problem

but man

it's you got to be a monster because first of all you need six arguments about why they're objections aren't going to stop you and

then you have to not be intimidated by the Anger and you have to not be swamped by compassion about the tears and

Then you can have a conversation and people don't do that

They won't do that

And so they don't solve the problems and so then the problems accrue

Right and if they accrue over 15 years of a relationship then that then they end up fat ugly and in divorce court

so and that's you know, that's not a

That's not a great outcome. It's an it's

Divorce Court and cancer are

similar in their in their seriousness, not always, but

But sufficiently often so when that error emerges it's a it's a glimmering


You know we talked a lot about the hierarchical structure of goals you know and so

Here's something

here's something to think about so

the thing that

Announces itself is error has a two-fold nature

That's because it's Chaos and order at the same time or it's because it's all the archetypal structures at the same time

It's dragon of Chaos. It's the great mother positive and negative. It's the great father positive and negative. It's the

Individual hero and adversary all of that manifests itself in the moment of error

Right the architects come forward did you make an error because you're a bad person?

Could be now so so one of the things to [think] about with regards to that is you know in the mesopotamian creation story?


When when time out comes flooding back. It's so interesting that story

You think about what she does?

So she's the archetype of error. Let's say the error that can take you out that can dissolve you in salt water


Well, she's irritated because absolute was destroyed so that the structure is gone carelessness is destroyed the structure up comes time at she's not happy

What does she do she prepares a Phalanx of Monstrous Monsters?

It's exactly what the story says she produces a whole horde of monsters to come at you

and she [puts] king you at their head and

Kenya was the king of the Monsters and

Later so he's the ultimate bad guy he's satan for all intents and purposes in the mesopotamian version. It's out of him that

Marduk makes human beings out of his blood that marduk makes human beings. That's a critical issue man the mesopotamian said

Imagine the worst monster you can possibly imagine the king of all the monsters

That's the blood of human beings


So what does that mean?

Well it means that one of the terrible things that lurks

Let's say that you've been in a long-term

Relationship and it collapses let's say you were

You know you had a tendency towards alcoholism. You weren't so great with regards to your drug use [you]

[know] that conscientious, and you had like four or five kind of

low-rent affairs, and you know it

your marriage collapses bang

Well who do you first meet when you fall into Chaos?

You meet king of the monsters and he's you it's like. Why did my marriage fall apart?

[what] did I do wrong bang bang bang bang? [I] [did] all these things well? Why?

Because that thing inhabits me. What is it well? That's the most horrifying question

Well, that's why

So down there in the archetypal space all these things lurk

The hero and the adversary you've just met the adversary right well

Maybe your tyrant that's certainly possible. Maybe everything around you was chaotic. So what do you encounter when things fall apart you?

[encounter] the adversary you encounter the tyrant you encounter the catastrophe of nature and you encounter the dragon of the Chaos, and they're all intermingled

You have to sort that out. That's what happens to Ellis when she goes down the rabbit hole right she meets

the Red Queen

[and] the red queen is always running around

Off with their heads off with her heads and she says in my kingdom you have to run as fast as you can just to

Stay in the same place

right down the rabbit hole you meet the archetypes and


Okay, so back to [responsibilities] well one of the things solzhenitsyn detailed. We said well, how does societies. Go corrupt said it's easy

one Little sin at a time

You go to work someone's lording it over you you know that they're tyrannical?

You don't have the wherewithal to stand up. It's like okay

You're a slave

And so if you continue to agree [to] be a slave you will continue to generate tyrants

Right and the only thing that can stop you from doing that. I think is the right kind of terror. It's like careful

What you give up?

Because that's this [logos] okay, so so [alright]

that's this logos the logos is the thing that enables you to mediate between a

Between order and Chaos and maybe you have to have some faith in that it's like well

What should you do [if] someone is harassing you?

Well, you should fight back okay? What is that?

What's the most effective way to fight back well sometimes it's physical, but that's not necessarily for the best

Maybe it's through articulation

Maybe it's through analysis right you want to be sharp you want to be able to decompose a problem you want to be able to?

Formulate an argument and a counter response and maybe you want to be so good at that that people don't mess with you to begin

With and then you're a perfectly articulate counter monster, and you never have to take your sword out

That's that's the place that you want to be. It's like people should know

after three seconds of interacting with you that harassing you [would] be a seriously bad idea and then

You'll have a perfectly fine time with them

So and that's part of you know, so there's some utility in meeting the devil in the underworld

Right because maybe he's got something to teach you that's certainly possible that

[and] one of the things that you can be taught is that your

Normative morality which is basically your harmlessness and your naivety masquerading as virtue is

Completely insufficient to protect you in the world especially against the sorts of things [that] you're talking about which are tyrant tyranny

Tyrants will push until you push back. It's in their nature

They don't have internal controls

So they just push and push and push and push and push and push even kids do that like little kids

Do that all the time they'll just push you until they hit that wall they're actually quite

Happy when they hit a wall because the last thing a child wants is a universe without walls

It terrifies them right they want to see while I'm in a swimming pool. There's an edge

They don't want to see oh, no this isn't a swimming pool

This is [an] ocean [I'm] in the middle of an ocean I'm going to drown

That's a terrible thing for children. That's why they need discipline and structure because

It's consistency and predictability and routine and all the things that are extraordinarily

helpful to them okay, so now think of that hierarchy [that] we talked about so

You're not in a story. You're in nested stories

And the nested stories round themselves in action [in] actual embodied action, so if you're going to sit if you're going to be a good

partner maybe you help

Prepare the meals and to help prepare the meals means you pick up a plate with your hand

And you move it physically through space, and you put it on the table. That's where it stops being an abstraction

So at the bottom of an ethical

Hierarchy of value are

actions not things that's the scientific world, but actions and

then you can

label the actions with abstractions as you move up the hierarchy, so

You're good at setting the table so that means you're good at making dinner

so that means that you've got one element of good being a good partner [in] place and

being a good partner is one element of being a good person and so

You you're not so good at setting the table, and you say well. I'm [not] a good person. It's like well

No, you should go down [to] the higher resolution levels of the hierarchy and start there

and that's what you do when you're arguing with [people], but there's another thing that's really useful about conceptualizing the Hierarchy in this manner, so

So I think what we'll do is

We'll stop now [for] 10 minutes and all because I want to bring up this diagram because what I want to do next is

it's a bleak story at the moment because the story is something like

You're going to lay out oversimplifications in the world, and they're going to be prone to catastrophic error, and then you have to encounter

What's terrifying in order to Progress and so what that means is that progression is always dependent on terror something like that

And there's some truth [in] that and that's why people don't progress, but it's not a sufficient truth

And I want to unpack that when we come back, so let's come back in 10 minutes, and then I'll die can unpack that

There's this parable in the new testament [that] just came to mind

I'm going to mangle it a bit because it's not one that I have well memorized but

And I'm probably going to conflate two or three stories together, but I think I think [I've] got it, right

Christ is walking down the road and someone picks them up

the person is rich and


like well wealthy and

He has a talk they have a talk and the wealthy man, basically

tells him all the things that are wrong with his life and

then he asks him what he should do about it and

Chris says to him you have to give up everything you own and follow me

And that's often be read as a criticism of wealth

And that's actually not what the story means what the story means is this this guy has a lot of wealth

but he's still miserable and so that means that what he has is the

Obstacle to what he could be and so that's the message of the [story] is that if you're miserable with what you have then you?

have to let go of what you have so that maybe you could have something else and

And so and then there's some commentary on that story

I think other people are listening and they say well if that's the price to be paid then

no one is ever going to pay it, and I think that's where the

statement it is easier for a man to go through the eye of a needle for a camel to go through an eye of

The eye of a needle than for a rich man to [enter] paradise. [I] believe that's the derivation of that

Story and like I said that's been read as a critique of wealth, but it isn't it's a critique of attachment now

You know in the buddhist doctrine

one of the

impediments to enlightenment is attachment and

People read that as saying. Well you shouldn't care for anything in the world, and that's there's a nihilism

That's associated with that and not and there is a strong nihilistic tendency in buddhism that has to do with

Abandonment of the world do you see that in?

Christianity to some degree with people going off to lead ascetic lives and to you know it's part of multiple religious

traditions that idea of asceticism

and there's some utility in it if it is your attachment say to material things or status or whatever that's

Interfering with your pSychological progression now the idea is that you [should] let go of whatever it is that's interfering with your pSychological

Progression because no matter how valuable what it is. That's interfering is

It's not as valuable as what you're giving up

Okay, however the Criticism still stands and the Criticism was well

if the task is that difficult then no one's going to do it and

so in in

the Brothers karamazov, [there's] a famous story called the Grand inquisitor and

it's a story told by

Ivan karamasoff to his brother [Elia] and Ivan is a very


intelligent attractive

Tough minded

Soldier and

Alyosha is his younger brother and he's kind of softer and less rational


spiritual and

also training to be a no vitiate at the local monastery and Ivan likes to tear strips off it because he's a

cynic and an atheist and and and in Dostoyevsky's normal

Brilliant Manner he makes Ivan an incredibly powerful

articulate and

Admirable character, so when dostoyevsky wants to take someone on in his literary investigations

He doesn't take his enemy and turn him into some sort of weak

Puppet he takes his enemy and turns them into the strongest possible enemy he can imagine and then

Goes to battle against that it's a hallmark of Great literature

It's what distinguishes dusty sp for example from [Ain] Rand

Because what ain't rand does is she takes her she's a darling of the I would [say] libertarian, right?

She takes her enemies

And they're all the same first of all every single one of her negative characters is exactly the same as every other one

And they're all bad you know there's there's no redeeming qualities whatsoever in them

And they also I would say make their weak characters who make weak arguments

That's not the way to progress the way to progress is to take your enemy

Seriously and to even inflate them into something Beyond their [capacity] to inflate themselves

and then see if you can hammer out a solution to the genuine problem that's being posed anyway, so

Dusty else he does that brilliantly always and what makes him, so absolutely remarkable

But anyways, I even tells le Osha this story

He calls it the [grand] [inquisitor] and that in the story christ comes back to [Earth] in the Spanish inquisition

[and] he's he's out by a fountain and

People sort of notice him and he starts performing miracles and a big crowd Gathers around and it's like happy days. You know

But then the inquisitor shows up this old, you know harsh

Tyrannical guy and he has his guards arrest him [he] [throws] them in Prison and

so now christ is in prison and the

Inquisitor comes down and says to him while you're probably wondering why which are you in prison you know?

especially given that were the members [of] the you know were the representatives of the church that you hypothetically found it and and

christ remains silent through this entire episode and

the inquisitor basically says look you know you laid down this ethic that

it's wonderful, but it's

Superhuman no one can do it

It's asking way too much, and so you're you put the burden you put on people was just far too great

And so what we've done in the catholic church in the centuries since the church was founded is was lightened the load

we said well we take ordinary people and say well there here are some things you can do to be a little bit better and

You [know] we've instituted confession and repentance and all that we've kind of toned it down

So that the average person has some hope of progress

And we're making Headway and the last bloody thing we need around here is you coming back and like?

Screwing up all our all our good efforts is like. It was nice to have you around once but once was plenty man

We don't need you around anymore

and so christ listens to this doesn't say anything and then the inquisitor turns to leave and

Christ grabs him and kisses him on the lips and the inquisitor turns white and

Then leaves and when he leaves the door he leaves the door open

And that's the end of the story and it's an amazing story

It's an absolutely remarkable story in every possible way and and you know

Dostoevsky was objecting to some degree to the tyranny [of] the catholic church or even of the Christian church for that matter

But the thing that he did [that] was so damn brilliant is that he even made the inquisitor leave the door open

No, and as a [bellas] critique of Catholicism even during the inquisition. It's so brilliant

It's so emblematic of dostoyevsky's take on the world that he criticized the inquisitorial

Aspect of Christianity and of course, it's the tyrannical aspect of any belief system, but noted that they bloody well left the door open

Right so it's Brilliant. It's Brilliant

It's it's it's remarkable. So anyways the whole point that I'm making here. Is that there are terrible?

impediments to enlightenment and

the light is the impediments are the necessity of sacrifice and the necessity area of

Necessity of the Voluntary acceptance of suffering [I] mean you see that in buddhism

You know because one [of] the canons of [buddhist] one of the fundamental [principles] of buddhism

Is that life is suffering and that attachment makes it worse and well?

It isn't it isn't precisely attachment [its]

Attachment to things such that you cannot release the things when it's time to let them go [right] [so] like you're a Phoenix

You're [a] hundred years old your feathers. They're not working anymore, right? You're all wrinkly you're done

It's time to burst into flames and be reborn

but you don't want to burn off your feathers you want to cling to them and

That's not good because you have to be willing to undergo that

Transformation process and that involves

Like you know if you if you take your po self apart because you've made a mistake and you find out

What it is about you that's not?

Set up properly

And that's why the mistake occurred that's really going to happen for example when an intimate relationship breaks down

then you have to be in a position where you're willing to let


Errors that are part of your character that define you right they might even be part of your [identity] you have to let you have

To be willing to let them go you have to be willing to let them burn off and that's a hell of a thing to

Ask and so then the [question] might be well is there a less radical solution to the problem then then then?

Crucifixion and resurrection or the total emulation and regeneration because that's the archetypal

What's that's the archetypal end point that if you want to put your self together you have to die and be reborn?

[I] mean that in that motif comes up all the [time]

In in popular popular stories and in mythology and so they here's here's

How I think that problem can be?

resolved so

Let's go back to the Enochian Story momentarily

so what happens and that the pinocchio story to me [is] analogous in its structure to the sermon on the mount so I'm going to

make a

Parallel between those two things so basically what the [sermon] on the [mount] suggests is that?

you should

conceptualize the highest good that you're capable of conceptualizing and orient yourself towards that and

That having done that you [should] live in the moment

So it's not like you should live in the moment

It doesn't say [that] because that's often christ the hippie

You know so the hippies who have adopted that or that?

That's sort of that that element of Christianity say well

you live for the moment you know and and

And in meditation and other practices some of the attempt is to get you to live in the moment

But you know just to tell people to live in the moment

It's like what what the hell kind of advice is that what about the future? You know that is not helpful advice

Somebody comes to you, and they're suffering dreadfully because you know their mother has alzheimer's and they're unemployed well live in the moment

It's like that's just not helpful. It's it's and because it's even worse than that

It's judgmental you say well

the only reason you're suffering is because you haven't oriented yourself property to live in the moment like no you're suffering because your

Mother has alzheimer's and you don't have a job. It's like. It's not because you aren't living in the moment, so

Living in the moment isn't the right answer

The right answer is something more like orient yourself towards the highest good that you can imagine and then act in the moment

That's a whole different story now. That's what happens in the pinocchio story, basically what happens is that Geppetto?

sees the star beckoning in the distance

And he orient's himself towards the highest good he can imagine he wants to take this creation of his and so this is

Manifesting itself conceptually at multiple levels simultaneously because there's a there's a story about the destiny of humanity in relationship to God

Nested in the story. It's like take your

fallible creation your puppet and

Set [up] the pre. Set up the condition such that. It's capable of taking on full functional independence. It's something like that

So that's what you do if you're a good parent with your children. You don't protect them. You don't offer them safety

You don't do any of that except insofar as it's necessary to facilitate


Development as

Fully confident and courageous beings the purpose of the protection is only to allow that developmental process to to continue