ART & ORGANISM
SAPIENCE AND SENTIENCE
Thought and Feeling, Rationality and Emotion
co-constitute our experience of the world and of ourselves in the world. are the heart of sentience and represent ancient neuro-based processes that motivate our adaptive actions in our environments. BUT are they always in balance? can they compete? see “Gorgeous Trumps Everything“ and A&O notes on DUALITY
Sapience and Sentience represent partly overlapping constellations of cognitive functions that in varying proportion co-constitute states of consciousness
BUT look also at comments (“The Psychopaths Among Us“) written after a 2012 conference on “The Moral Brain,” at NYU … follow that up with a short essay on the view that we have more in common with a psychopath than we realise (from Aeon). Supporting the idea that behavioral disorders often (always?) exist on a spectrum.
Is there a balance between sentience and sapience? what are the forces that weight it one way or another Intuition seems based on sentience? is there a good evolutionary reason for this?
RATIONALITY. “Rationality” has different specialized meanings in philosophy, economics, sociology, psychology, evolutionary biology, game theory and political science.” (Wikipedia) In a recent (2022) interview, New Scientist editor Graham Lawton asked Steven Pinker, “Steven Pinker: “I define it as the use of knowledge to attain goals. There is not one single tool of rationality – it depends what you’re after. If you’re seeking to derive new true statements from existing ones, then logic is your tool. If you want to assess your degree of belief in a hypothesis based on evidence, then Bayesian reasoning[i]. If you want to figure out what’s the rational thing to do when the outcome depends on what other rational people do, game theory.”
- Tools of rationality (Pinker 2022 in NS 11 Dec2022); More at https://richarddawkins.net/2022/02/excerpt-from-steven-pinkers-rationality/ ; & see Antonio Damasio’s (2021) Feeling & Knowing
Aesthetics in Mark Johnson (Following Dewey…)
“Following Dewey, I want to turn [some common misconceptions] on their head by showing that aesthetics must become the basis of any profound understanding of meaning and thought. [these misconceptions are” Chief among these harmful misconceptions are that (1) the mind is disembodied, (2) thinking transcends feeling, (3) feelings are not part of meaning and knowledge, (4) aesthetics concerns matters of mere subjective taste, and (5) the arts are a luxury (rather than being conditions of full human flourishing).”
“Aesthetics is properly an investigation of everything that goes into human meaning-making, and its traditional focus on the arts stems primarily from the fact that arts are exemplary cases of consummated meaning. However, any adequate aesthetics of cognition must range far beyond the arts proper to explore how meaning is possible for creatures with our types of bodies, environments, and cultural institutions and practices. In short, this book is about the bodily depths of human meaning-making through our visceral connection to our world. It will become clear as my account develops that I am using the term “meaning” in its broadest and most profound sense. I am going to argue that meaning is not just a matter of concepts and propositions, but also reaches down into the images, sensorimotor schemas, feelings, qualities, and emotions that constitute our meaningful encounter with our world. Any adequate account of meaning must be built around the aesthetic dimensions that give our experience its distinctive character and significance. A philosophy capable of making a difference for how people ought to live must be grounded on how we make sense of things. What we need, in short, is an aesthetics of human understanding. This is a big, sweeping task, but one well worth the journey for anyone who cares about what it means to be human.”
(Johnson, Mark (2007) The Meaning of the Body: Aesthetics of Human Understanding . University of Chicago Press. Preface xi-xii).
Is the “LEAP of FAITH” an issue here?
ABOUT SHERLOCK HOLMES’ reasoning: Some may argue that “Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth” is a nod to Bayesianism, but for the most part Holmes stuck to strict Boolean choices. The “must” in the quote above is an example of this binary thinking.