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Sophistication: Recognizing piece, part, and

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Sophistication: Recognizing piece, part, and whole

In “Art and Visual Perception”, the author Rudolf Arnheim speaks of the master cook “whose cleaver remained sharp for nineteen years because when he carved an ox, he did not cut arbitrarily but respected the natural subdivision of the animal’s bones, muscles, and organs”.

The master cook was a sophisticated butcher. The sophisticated butcher recognizes the natural pattern of the animals he was required to dissect; under such a sophisticated individual the parts seemed almost to melt away, they almost dissected themselves. The student of life becomes sophisticated as s/he studies and learns the patterns of the parts and wholes comprising reality.

The sophisticated student of educational institutions, or the sophisticate autodidact, has learned many of the patterns of reality; perhaps we might properly call these patterns as being the domains of knowledge that can be both wholes and parts of reality. They are whole or part depending upon their relationship to that which surrounds them in the situation that is under study.

Learning how to distinguish between part and whole or fragment and part is the key to success in all of our endeavors.

Humans are meaning creating creatures; much of what is important to us are what is artificial, i.e. not the result of Mother Nature directly but through the human creator. I suspect that it is these artificial creations for which we live, die, and kill are the most difficult to comprehend even though the human created world is designed specifically to fit human needs.

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John from Lowell

It is my understanding that perception is a mental action.

We have a physical body of energy that is manifested in a very particular way. Outside this body of energy is our emotional body of energy. This supports that physical energetic expression.

Outside the emotional body of energy is the mental body of energy. Its job is to filter with perception the energies that reach our emotional and physical bodies.

Outside the mental body of energy is the spiritual body of energy. It is filtered by the free will intent of the conscious physical being during this simulated reality called physical life. The disires of the heart will have the most influence on this body of energy.

So yes perception plays a substantial role in the life of a human.


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Let us imagine how human reason might have been born. The question seeking an answer is: how can natural selection (evolution) account for human reason?

Somewhere back in time we must encounter the signs of reason within the capacity of our ancestors. What is the essence of reason? The necessary and sufficient conditions for reason are conceptual and inference ability. To conceptualize is to create neural structures that can be used to facilitate making if-then inferences.

Imagine an early water dwelling creature, which must survive utilizing only the ability to move in space and to discriminate light and shadow. The sense of a shadow can indicate a friend or foe and can indicate eat or not eat. Assume that this sensibility has a total range of two feet, i.e. a shadow within a radius of two feet of the creature can be detected.

A shadow comes within sensible range, the creature can ‘decide’ by the size of the shadow whether the shadow is friend or foe and as a possible lunch. If the shadow is large the creature must ‘run’ if it is small the creature might ‘decide’ to pursue.

It seems obvious to me this simple creature must have the ability to reason in order to survive. This creature must be capable of ascertaining friend/foe and eat/not eat. It must also determine how to move based upon that conceptual structure. It must be able to make inferences from these concepts, these neural structures of what is sensed, to survive. This creature must have the capacity to perceive, conceive, infer, and move correctly in space in order to survive.

Continuing my imaginary journey; I have a friend who is the project engineer on a program to design robots. I ask this friend if it is possible for the computer model of a robot in action can perform the essential operations required for reasoning. She says, “I think so, but I will ask my robot simulation to do the things that are considered to be reasoning”.

She performs this operation and tells me that it is within the capacity of the robot movement system to also do reasoning. I conclude that if the sensorimotor control system of a creature also has the ability to reason, then biology would not recreate such a capacity and thus this sensorimotor capacity is also a reasoning capacity that evolves into our human capacity to reason.

To reason is to conceptualize and to draw inferences from those conceptions. To perceive and to move in space requires the ability to conceive and to infer. Conception is part of perceiption.

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