Life connected au des while technology evolves by design?

Monday, August 15, 2011

my positive take (rooted in cognitive neuroscience) on Masonry* and alchemy

To Masonry: I deeply respect your goodwill but only superficially respect your reference to God - while all light merits attention, only scientific knowledge is worthy of reverence. To clarify, your fellowships' discourse of God is good insofar as it gives members a better understanding of all things (as can be understood from experiments in which rodents living in cages with toys and other such rodents resulted in them being smarter at deducing solutions and remembering information than rodents of the same species living in not such enriched environments1); but such knowledge cannot be as readily applied to solve problems. This is not to say such knowledge will not help solve specific symbolically relevant problems, but it will not for a comprehending individual as quickly result in realizing a solution.

GnostiMason: "...What drives a man to know anything? Do you think it is simply to understand that one thing he or she does not? Or do you think it is a deeper need to understand all the parts of the whole, that is existence? And if it be the latter, then what is then existence? Science has recently determined (not by all) that there is no existence without ones perception of it. If this is indeed the case, we (Freemasons) are not surprised. The knowledge that you speak of and that you say does not lend a hand in ones comprehending a solution to the problem is in err. In the most meaningful way does it have everything to do with finding a solution to any problem. As a frame of reference, to which scientific, religious or philosophical body do you belong to?..."

Me: Cognitive neuroscience (at least in Richard Restak's scientific community) considers curiosity, a drive to know things, a type of intelligence. But the desire to make oneself more capable of helping ones fellows is another possible motivator.

The knowledge I speak of can help solve any problem, but so can knowledge that is more likely to result in a solution to specific problems - even highly technical concepts have metaphorical and associative symbolic value.

I often identify myself as a transhumanist but I cannot say that this is all I am - I have been influenced by ideas from a wide range of intellectual niches."

~

In alchemy there are traditionally four elements representing four aspects of the human psyche:
1. Earth: reality - North, governed by Gnome
2. Air: concepts - East, governed by Sylph
3. Fire: passions - South, governed by Salamander
4. Water: love - West, governed by Undine

I have added to this:
1. Glass: metabolism - Center, governed by Sol
2. Smoke: negativity - Inward, governed by Mephit
3. Light: purity - Outward, governed by Void
4. Mirror: McLuhanism - Fractal, governed by Kairos

*I saw this blog advertised on Facebook's right sidebar: I'd already checked all the articles recently posted on PhysOrg.com, NextBigFuture.com, SingularityHub.com, and futurismic.com, so I figured, "Why not?": http://wcypodcast.blogspot.com/2011/07/whence-came-you-episode-1-freemasonry.html?showComment=1313361996244#c6330615462004527020

1http://psych.hanover.edu/research/thesis05/UpdikeWalker.pdf

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