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An Introduction To Non-aristotelian Systems And General Semantics.

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XVI
PREFACE TO THE FIFTH EDITION
optimum human functioning. Animals (non-time-binders) abstract; but, so far as we know (1993), they do not know that they abstract. Indeed, many humans don't either - but they have the potentiality to do so. Korzybski recognized this, realized that consciousness of abstracting is essential for "fully functioning" humans, and made of it a primary goal of general semantics training.
6.     The structure of language. Among Korzybski's most original formulations was the multiordinal character of many of the terms we most often use. He insisted that, with multiordinal terms, the 'meaning' is strictly a function of the order or level of abstraction at which the term is used and that its 'meaning' is so context-driven that it doesn't 'mean' anything definite until the context is specified or understood.
7.    Structure as the only 'content' of knowledge. This represents the height/depth of non-elementalism; that what used to be designated as 'form' (structure) and 'content' are so intimately related as to be, practically speaking, fused, that structure and 'content' are functions of 'each other'. Further, and more deeply, all we can ever know expresses a set or sets of relationships and, most fundamentally, a relationship ('singular') between the 'known' and the knowing organism: the famous joint product of the observer-observed structure. "Structure is the only 'content' of knowledge" may qualify as Korzybski's deepest expression of anti-essentialism. We can not know 'essences', things in themselves, all we can know is what we know as abstracting nervous systems. Although we can on-goingly know more, we can not 'transcend' ourselves as organisms that abstract.
8.    Semantic reactions; semantic reactions as evaluations. Growing out of his awareness of the transactive character of human evaluating and wishing to correct for the elementalistic splitting involved in such terms as 'meaning', 'mental', 'concept', 'idea' and a legion of others, Korzybski consciously, deliberately formulated the term semantic reaction. It is central to his system.
9.     The mathematical notion of function as applied to the brain-language continuum. Boldly grasping the neurophysiology of his day, Korzybski formulated what research increasingly finds: language is a function of (derives from, is invented by) brain; reciprocally, as a function of feedback mechanisms, brain is a function of (is modified by the electro-chemical structuring called) language.
10.    Neuro-semantic environments as environments. The neuro-semantic environment constitutes a fundamental environmental issue unique to humans.
11.    Non-aristotelian system as system. Korzybski had non-aristotelian predecessors, as he well knew. What distinguishes his non-aristotelian stance is the degree of formulational consciousness he brought to it, and the