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An Introduction To Non-aristotelian Systems And General Semantics.

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PREFACE TO THE FIFTH EDITION
xv
that alone would have constituted a major achievement worthy of the gratitude of succeeding time-binders for centuries to come. Korzybski did that. He enunciated a system, incorporating aspects of but going beyond its predecessors, and proposed a methodology for making his system a living tool: general semantics (the name he selected), the first non-aristotelian system applied and made teachable.
In addition, I can list here the following selected formulations and points of view, emphases, etc., which I consider to be original with Korzybski.5
1.     Time-binding; time-binding ethics. Rejecting both theological and zoological definitions, Korzybski adopted a natural science, operational approach and defined humans by what they can be observed doing which differentiates them from other classes of life; he defined them as the time-binding class of life, able to pass on knowledge from one generation to another over 'time.'6
Derived from this definition, which evaluates humans as a naturally cooperative class of life (the mechanisms of time-binding are descriptively social, cooperative), Korzybski postulated time-binding 'ethics' - modes of behavior, choices appropriate to time-binding organisms.
2.     Korzybski recognized that language {symbolizing in general) constitutes the basic tool of time-binding. Others before him had noted that language, in the complex human sense, was one of the distinguishing features of humans. What Korzybski fully recognized was the central, defining role of language. No language, no time-binding. If so, then structures of languages must be determinative for time-binding.
3.     The neurologically focused formulation of the process of abstracting. No one before Korzybski had so thoroughly and unflinchingly specified the process by which humans build and evolve theories, do their mundane evaluating, thrill to 'sunsets', etc. Korzybski's formulating of abstracting, particularly in the human realm, can constructively serve as a guide to on-going neuroscientific research.
4.     As a function of the above, but deserving separate mention with the rigorously formulated notion of orders of abstracting, is the concurrent admonition that we should not confuse (identify) them. Given the hierarchical, sequential character of the nervous system (allowing, too, for horizontally related structures and parallel processing), it is inevitable that results along the way should manifest as (or 'at') differing orders or levels of abstracting. These results are inevitable. That they would be formulated at a given historical moment is not inevitable. Korzybski did it in the 1920's, publishing his descriptions in their mature form in 1933.
5.     Consciousness of abstracting. If human organisms-as-a-whole-cum-ncrvous systems/brains abstract as claimed above and described herein (pp. 369-451 ml passim), surely consciousness of these events must be crucial for