HIGHER ORDER ABSTRACTIONS 443
Section C. Confusion of higher orders of abstractions.
We have already seen that Fido's power of abstracting stops somewhere. If we are finalists of any kind, we also assume that our power of abstracting stops somewhere. In some such way the finalistic, dogmatic and absolutistic semantic attitudes are built.
If, however, by the aid of the Structural Differential we train the s.r of our children in A non-identity and the inherent stratification of human knowledge and power of abstracting, we facilitate the passing to higher order abstractions and establish flexible s.r of full conditionality which are unique for Smith and of great preventive and therapeutic value. We thus build up 'human mind' for efficiency and sanity, by eliminating the factors of semantic blockages, while, by engaging the activity of the higher nerve centres, we diminish the vicious overflow of nervous energy upon the lower nerve centres, which, if allowed, must, of necessity, make itself manifest in arrested or regressive symptoms.
The above issues are of serious semantic importance in our daily lives and in sanity. All semantic disturbances involve evaluation, doctrines, creeds, speculations., and vice versa. Under circumstances such as described above, which appear inherent with us, it is dangerous not to have means to see one's way clear in the maze of verbal difficulties with all their dangerous and ever-present semantic components.
By disregarding the orders of abstractions, we can manufacture any kind of verbal difficulties; and, without the consciousness of abstracting, we all become nearly helpless and hopeless semantic victims of a primitive-made language and its underlying structural metaphysics. Yet the way out is simple; non-identity leads to 'consciousness of abstracting' and gives us a new working sense for values, new s.r, to guide us in the verbal labyrinth.
Outside of 'objectification', which is defined as the evaluation of higher order abstractions as lower; namely, words, memories., as objects, experiences, feelings., the most usual identification of different higher order abstractions appears as the confusion of inferences and inferential terms with descriptions and descriptive terms.
Obviously, if we consider a description as of the nth. order, then an inference from such a description (or others) should be considered as an abstraction of a higher order (n+ 1). Before we make a decision, we usually make a more or less hasty survey of happenings, this survey establishing a foundation for our judgements, which become the basis of our action. This statement is fairly general, as the components