SCIENCE AND SANITY - online book

An Introduction To Non-aristotelian Systems And General Semantics.

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328                      VI. ON PSYCHOPHYSIOLOGY
logically, this misuse of a function must be a non-survival tendency for this class of life.
Sanity must be based on methods for the most efficient use of the human nervous system, in accordance with its structure, and will thus bring about the full working of human capacities, which at present are still semantically blocked by faulty handling of the apparatus.
Before going further, I will analyse and suggest the complete elimination from the English language of the term 'conditioned' reflex, which is structurally false to facts, and suggest in its place the uniform use of the term 'conditional' reflex, introduced by Pavlov and used occasionally by some English writers. I will also suggest the elimination of a psychological term, 'inhibition', from physiology and neurology, in which it should have no place at all. Such a change in language leads to new results, and also suggests new experiments. It is little known and seldom taken into consideration that long ago Locke was quite clear on the point that the misuse of language has often been taken for deep mysteries of science; but Locke, unfortunately, did not take into consideration structure, and s.r; so his arguments were, in general, non-operative.
As everything in this actual world is structurally interrelated with everything else, we should consciously look for interrelations; in which case we have to build special languages for the eventual synthesis. As we must first ascertain empirical structure, and only then coin the languages, obviously to start with a descriptive, impersonal, non-'psycho-logical' language of ordered events on a given level is most important.
In our case, we are investigating the structural and semantic problems in connection with language. We have to accept the structural facts as discovered by physicists, physiologists, neurologists, and other scientists, and then build a language similar in structure to the empirical world. The language in which the present theory is formulated is a physiological and neurological one, as it deals with observed impersonal functionings of the organisms called 'man'. When we reach results in a physiological language, these have, naturally on the human level, a psychological aspect, and perhaps the main importance, and even value, of the present work is that it reaches the very difficult psycho-logical, semantic level by purely functional and easily controlled physiological methods.
Thus the reader must translate for himself, as nobody else can do it for him, the physiological results into his psycho-logical feelings and attitudes and evoke the un-speakable s.r. These must be evoked by the reader, otherwise he will inevitably miss the point. For instance, if it is said that 'the objective level is un-speakable', the reader should try to become entirely 'emotionally' impassive, outwardly and inwardly silent