The Humanity Of Words - online book

A Primer Of Semantics

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174                 THE HUMANITY OF WORDS
to the future"37 Allport relegates the reduction of tensions that derive from the past, or even a present situation, to a secondary position. Purposive striving, he says, has a future reference that accepts risk-taking and scorns the avoidance of tensions. It is as if the inner self were bent upon the completion of an unfinished, and never to be finished, structure. This is a psychology of becoming, as expounded in a work of the same name by Allport.
When we use techniques of communication to advance purpose on the conscious level, this contributes to the inner organization of the self. And, with increased organization, the self is better equipped to make intelligent use of communication techniques. The process is circular.
(3) The human being as a unified self in cross organization with the environment.
To speak of the cross organization of the self and the relevant environment is to speak of field theory of personality. In Parts One and Three of this book, I referred to Gardner Murphy's conception of the personality in a field. If we would crystallize this conception of personality, no one single word is likely to be adequate, but as Murphy says, the word "field" will perhaps serve, if we expressly state that it is used as it is in physics. "An electromagnetic field," you will recall, "permits of no strict demarcation of a boundary and may change continually as a result of varying currents." (page 5) Murphy defines the personality in a field as an electromagnetic process in which the organismic pole and the environment pole flow into one another. It is important for the communicator to remember that
37 Becoming, p. 89.