Sunday, November 04, 2018

Philosophy as Therapy


Adding to this medical theme, of therapy, is the fact that this photograph was taken in a hospital, in one of the cafeterias. This is actually in the adjoining medical offices building, adjacent the hospital proper.  Both Carol and I had appointments there.

Lacking any informative dialog with ETs in this chapter, we resorted to inventing them, or extending anthropology towards science fiction.  "Imagine a tribe..." is how Wittgenstein would start a scenario. "... that multiples differently" I'm adding.  Then I go into a riff on tetravolumes.

The point was to demonstrate "paradigm shift" in a simple way.  The duckrabbit type gestalt switches convey one aspect of meaning, central to Philosophical Investigations Part 2.  But not all language games come with such convenient Necker Cube type branding.  That's where an XYZ versus IVM set of coordinates comes in.

Why don't I just jump in to having ETs teach me this alien thinking?  Because I grew up reading Asimov and Heinlein wherein the author doesn't have to develop a relationship with the characters other than by creating them.  The Martians or ETs I create have a pedagogical (andragogical) purpose.  If it turns out actual ETs also use a tetrahedron for unit volume, we'll say humans were anticipatory in this chapter.

Or maybe we'll say ETs were actually among us.  I'm aware of schools of thought that would suggest a military interest in the outward technology, but with much less of an interest in a Vulcan mind meld, if you know your lore.  Some television has explored more the direction of meme exchange.

Martian Math, as a genre of science fiction with math in it, suggests at least a Platonic relationship with these alt-humans, i.e. a shared fascination with Platonic forms.

Lets use the IVM-to-XYZ conversion (switch) to (a) demonstrate the idea of a "paradigm shift" in microcosm and to (b) explore what might be considered an "alien" mindset.