Australian General Semantics Society


"Applications of general-semantics”


19 August 2007

(Identification and Timebinding, Tragedy and Triumph – Part 3

Led by Laurie


Preliminaries … Laurie’s notice:


Dear Friends and Colleagues,

I will be in the "driving seat" in our meeting at Gavan's next Sunday 19/8/07.


Apart from content presented, my overall aim will be to stimulate conversation which enables us to share with each other our on-going up to date "ideas, images, intentions, discoveries" (Juanita Brown).


"Shaping our Futures Through Conversations that Matter" is the main theme of Juanita's book entitled "The World Cafe Community" (Juanita wrote this book with David Isaacs).


To stimulate impactful conversation, may I suggest considering the following topics, from a general-semantics as well as other perspective:


1. I think we agree that words represent "reality".  But in a difficult or complex situation, how do we recognise the reality beneath the words?


2. To what extent can the time-binding principle enhance our moral or ethical orientation?  To what extent does applied scientific method embrace a moral or ethical orientation?


In this connection, I recently attended, by invitation, a meeting of the Universal Peace Foundation.  I was pleased to find that, although their basic belief system rested on Christian values, I could easily share my more anthropological, evolutionary perspective with them.


3 A question which we could derive from the above, could be:


How can we improve our ability to negotiate different values or crossed purposes between ourselves and others?


Thank you for considering this proposal.  I look forward to your company on Sunday 19/8/07.




At the Seminar …


1)      Catching-up

      There was quite a lot of news from participants, including retirement, health issues, “psychomatic” symptoms, children at school, a Jungian word-association experiment, and other career and domestic-life changes.  These were shared and discussed.



2)      Fact/Inference Issues

      Weinberg P22: Story of the driver with great driving skills but confusing fact with inference.

      “Infantile semantic reactions”

      Anecdotes from assumptions and reports etc.



3)      Semantic Reactions

      Weinberg P52: Relates to use of symbols.




Gavan served up a sumptuous lunch of a spicy inclination, along with baked bread and a range of gastronomic accroutrements.



4)      Q1 from the Agenda – Words representing reality -

      Laurie’s modified Structural Differential


      Various stories real and hypothetical.


      Identification: “Is the word the same as the territory?”


      Case study of the “Meaningful conversation” – How to abstract/infer eg “religiousness”?


      What about a grievance from an argument or insult being carried into future encounters … ?


      Gavan’s suggestion: “GS is a process for getting over emotional problems”


      Other processes, eg Psychodrama.



5)      Case Study:

      Argument between friends, not resolved, but a commitment to attend an event together in the future.

      How to handle that challenge?


      Gavan’s suggestion:  “GS is a process for getting over emotional problems!”


      We considered personal examples of this principle at some length.



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