SCIENCE AND SANITY - online book

An Introduction To Non-aristotelian Systems And General Semantics.

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192 IV. STRUCTURAL FACTORS IN A LANGUAGES
processes, we are bound to introduce explicity or implicitly some objectively meaningless 'infinite velocities' of the propagation of the process. Thus, the 'infinite velocity' of light, which is known to be false to facts, is at the very foundation of the Af-system. The equally false to facts silent assumption of the 'infinite velocity' of nerve currents underlies A animalistic 'psychology' and results in elementalism. This el 'psychology', until this day, vitiates all human concerns and even all science, the newer quantum theories not excluded.
General non-elementalism and, in particular, its restricted aspect, the 'organism-as-a-whole', implies the relation of the 'parts' to the 'whole', for which we need asymmetrical relations. In the statement 'more than an algebraic sum', 'more' is also an asymmetrical relation. When we analysed the statement, 'Smith kicks Brown', we saw that the problems of 'space', 'time', 'infinity'., entered, the solution of which requires serial notions, which evade analysis without asymmetrical relations.
The solution of the problems of 'space' and 'time' are fundamental for a theory of sanity, as they are potent structural factors in all s.r. In the majority of 'mentally' ill, we find a disorientation as to 'space' and 'time'. Similar milder forms of disorientation appear in all forms of semantic disturbances, as they are disturbances of evaluation and meanings in the form of delusional 'absolute space' and 'absolute time'. These semantic disturbances carl be eliminated only by considerations of multi-dimensional order, which are impossible without asymmetrical relations, and so could not have been accomplished in an A-system.
The problems of multi-dimensional order and asymmetrical relations are strictly interdependent and are the foundation of structure and so of human 'knowledge'; and they underlie the problems of human adjustment and sanity. Without going into details, I shall suggest some relational and ordinal aspects as found in the structure and function of the human nervous system and their bearing on semantic reactions and sanity. I shall also apply these considerations to the analysis of a historically very important delusional factor which has influenced, until now, the s.r of mankind away from sanity. I am dealing only with selected topics, important for my purpose, which, to the reader, may appear one-sided and unduly isolated. In fact, all issues involved are strictly interconnected in a circular way, and no verbal analysis of objective levels can ever be 'complete' or 'exhaustive', and this should be remembered. On the A silent assumption of the infinite velocity of nervous impulses, that the nervous impulses spread 'instantaneously', 'in no time' (to use an Alice-in-Wonderland expression), order was of no importance. But when we take into account the Unite and known velocity