SCIENCE AND SANITY - online book

An Introduction To Non-aristotelian Systems And General Semantics.

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HIGHER ORDER ABSTRACTIONS                   449
important structural fact impossible to avoid, and one which makes this special semantic sense uniquely necessary to acquire.
It seems unnecessary to repeat that everything that has been said above applies in the fullest extent to our ethical, social, political, economic, and international relations. Before any sanity can be brought into the analysis of these relations, before they can be rationally analysed, the investigators would have to be trained to observe correctly and to avoid verbal structural pitfalls. For the lack of such semantic training and re-education, the 'time-honoured' 'Fido' debates involving the 'is' of identity, continue on all sides, and lead to naught else but a waste of 'time' and effort.
I say waste of 'time', simply because there seems no end to the paradoxes which, with a little ingenuity, we can build up when we begin to gamble with confusion of orders of abstractions and disregard multi-ordinality. Any doctrine, no matter how structurally true or beneficial, can be defeated, confused, or delayed, by the use of such methods. These problems appear of crucial semantic importance, because our lives are lived in a permanent structural interplay between different orders of abstractions. All our achievements depend upon this interplay, yet the most acute and painful dangers also have their sources in the non-realization of this dervish dance between different orders of abstractions.
Since we cannot evade the passing from level to level, or the use of nniltiordinal terms, our wisdom should consist only in not abusing these semantic conditions of human life. As we must do that, let us do it, but let us not identify the orders, and thus let us evade the dangers. Consciousness of abstracting gives us the complete psychophysiological solution of this complex situation, as it allows us to have the psychological benefits and to avoid the dangers by the use of physiological means.
In conclusion, I must stress once more the importance of the structure of the language in which we analyse any given problem. In the ,7-system I am proposing, the term order is accepted as one of its very foundations. In 1933, we know that as words are not the things spoken about., structure, and structure alone, becomes the only possible content of knowledge, and the search for structure, the only possible aim of science. If we try to define structure, we can do so in terms of relations and multi-dimensional order. The recent advances of science show, beyond doubt, that the day will come when all science will be formulated in terms of structure and, therefore, of physics, and physics formulated as a form of multi-dimensional geometry, based on multidimensional order, giving us, ultimately, multiordinal structure.
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