1.5 THE TWO DOMAINS OF VALIDITY :
Personal Validity & General Validity
empiricist, (not as a philosopher) I cannot let myself
presuppose that my peculiar temperament , my own attitude to
intellectual problems is universally valid. Apparently this is an
assumption in which only the philosopher may indulge, who
always takes it for granted that his own disposition and attitude
are universal, and will not recognize the fact, if he can avoid it,
that his personal equation conditions his philosophy " ....Jung.
This article explains the need for two distinct operational domains of validity.
There is a strong human tendency to presume that any experience and its
valuation must be universally valid and applicable. This is taken to the
extreme in science where everything has to be objectified in order for it to
exist, and also in religion where everybody is sought to be converted into a
pattern of ritual, procedure, or even blind belief - stated as faith.
Thus it becomes necessary for an exploratory individual to recognize that
even if a huge mass of people hold something to be true, does not imply that
it is also true for that individual. Therefore, a distinctive split between that
which is generally accepted and that which is seemingly true (to be tested)
for that individual is almost mandatory for an exploratory individual.
"Read, every day, something no
one else is reading. Think, every day,
something no one else is thinking. Do, every day, something no one else
would be silly enough to do. It is bad for the mind to be always
part of unanimity.".......Christopher Morley
the autonomy of the individual, asserts itself in the right to
race his automobile, to handle his power tools, to buy a gun, to communicate
to mass audiences his opinion, no matter how ignorant, how aggressive,
it may be".....Herbert Marcuse
This split is necessary because an individual being in order to retain a sense
of individuality cannot do so without questioning the validity of the values
imposed by family, society and culture. Furthermore, any creative activity
arises not from blind acceptance, but from challenging and breaking the
shackles of dull conformity or mindless repetition and imitation.
"For me, insanity
is super sanity. The normal is psychotic. Normal means
lack of imagination, lack of creativity."......Jean Dubuffet
1.5.1 THE NATURE of CONFLICT
"I've got a
peculiar weakness for criminals and artists--neither
takes life as it is. Any tragic story has to be in conflict with
things as they are."--- Stanley Kubrik
Since a starting assumption of this work is that human beings have individual
distinct and unique natures, to be explored, realized and developed, it then
follows that these distinct or different natures will invariably tend to conflict with
one another. This conflict can have the following consequences: it can be creative
(or evolving) or it can be destructive (or devolving), or in some ways creative and
in other ways destructive. ( In case there is a perfect harmony between all the
beings in a world, there can be no destruction, and on the other hand there can
be no creativity either. Perfect harmony in any case implies a state of no change,
that is, a statis, which implies a state of non-existence in space-time)
"Change means movement. Movement means friction. Only in the
frictionless vacuum of a nonexistent abstract world can movement or
change occur without that abrasive friction of conflict......Saul Alinsky
Usually the creative aspect only is realized and the destructive aspect
ignored or justified by the party that immediately benefits from a conflicting
interaction. But this overlooking of the destructive aspect ultimately proves
to be fatal for him who ignores this factor, although this is not immediately
apparent. And that is because what is creative and what is destructive isn't
clear-cut or obvious. Since any change is both creative in some aspects as
well as destructive in other aspects, it is very difficult, if not impossible,
to ascertain whether that change will be for the better or worse. At least
one thing is certain: that it is impossible to ascertain scientifically or even
by faith whether any change will be for the better or the worse, either in
the personal context or in the social context. One thing is however
more or less clear: a purely static condition or order is as good as dead,
and will be dead if it does not change, even if that change implies some
destruction in the process. In any case, even the destruction of an
oppressive order itself needs a creative input.
"The creative person, the person
who moves from an irrational source of
power, has to face the fact that this power antagonizes. Under all the
superficial praise of the "creative" is the desire to kill."....May Sarton
"The urge for
destruction (of a tyranny or oppressive order) is also
a creative urge!" ......Mikhail Bakunin
"Every act of creation is, first of all, an act of destruction." - Pablo Picasso
"Before you kill
something make sure you have something better to
replace it with"........Charles Bukowski
As beings having intelligence and diverse natures, we humans are, for
better or worse, pitted against each other, and as a result either learn
to evolve systems for creative conflict for the benefit of all life on
this planet or else at the very least acknowledge and then face up to
prospect of inevitable destruction.
" A poet's
life begins in conflict with the whole of existence"
" Once the realization is accepted that even between the
closest human beings infinite distances continue to exist,
a wonderful living side by side can grow up, if they succeed
in loving the distance between them.".....Rainer Maria Rilke
We need to
give each other the space to grow, to be ourselves,
to exercise our diversity. We need to give each other space so that
we may both give and receive such beautiful things as ideas,
openness, dignity, joy, healing, and inclusion. (Max de Pree)
understand you. You don't understand me. What else do
we have in common?"......Ashleigh Brilliant
1.5.2 THE GOOD-GOOD Vs GOOD-BAD Vs
writing sparkles, is witty, a bit savage and above all it
is ironic. Here we see that he is downplaying the significance his own
status as a philosopher, while he is actually mocking the pretensions
of the philosophic ethos of his age, in particular, he is mocking the
'system' by which he means the philosophy of Hegel.
His style of writing, witty and ironic, often radically indirect, is intimately
related to his criticism of philosophical systems and philosophy's
pretensions to scientific knowledge.".....TTC T. Roberts
The conflicts of pre-civilization man were between good and evil or moral
and immoral. The immoral dominated, and the result is civilization, where
most conflicts are those that are between one kind of immorality versus
another kind of immorality or between lesser and greater evils.
"He that doth not as other men
do, but endeavoureth that which ought to
be done, shall thereby rather incur peril than preservation; for who so
laboreth to be sincerely perfect and good shall necessarily perish,
living among men that are generally evil"....Sir Walter Raleigh
Both these kinds are also sort of necessary, for so called development,
but are usually long term destructive (although avoidable) conflicts.
Something good comes out of these also, if nature regenerates as a result.
Or else one destructive conflict follows another.
" It is the logic of our times,
No subject for immortal verse -
That we who lived by honest dreams,
Defend the bad against
...... Cecil Day-Lewis
"It should be the magic of our times,
A subject for an immortal verse,
That we who see a horrifying future,
Must defend the best against the jerks"
......Upgraded Version July.03
1.5.3 INDIVIDUAL Vs SOCIETY
"The criminal and the
soldier at least have the virtue of being against
something or for something in a world where many people have learned
to accept a kind of Grey nothingness, to strike an unreal series of poses
in order to be considered normal......It's difficult to say who is engaged
in the greater conspiracy--the criminal, the soldier, or us."
The toughest conflict is when an individual challenges long held beliefs and
concepts in a society that holds these as eternal or sacred. The individual
who proposes a new idea is then going to come into conflict with the rest
of society, and unless the conditions are conducive in society to accept a
change in its cherished values, the conflict can be an unsettling one,
especially for the rebel.
"To revolt is a
natural tendency of life. Even a worm turns against the
foot that crushes it. In general, the vitality and relative dignity of an
animal can be measured by the intensity of its instinct to revolt."
But it is here that comes the supreme test of the individual with radically
new idea/s : What if no one else is willing to accept it ? Even worse :
what if everyone else in society thinks that the proposer is a nut who
needs to be locked up ?
"Follow the path of the unsafe,
independent thinker. Expose your ideas
to the danger of controversy. Speak your mind and fear less the label of
"crackpot" than the stigma of conformity"......Thomas J Watson
"The man with a new idea is a
crank until the idea succeeds."
"Our wretched species
is so made that those who walk on the well-
trodden path always throw stones at those who are showing a
"It is the
customary fate of new truths, to begin as heresies,
and to end as superstitions"......Thomas Huxley
This usually is not the case of "scientific discoveries" whereby any new
hypothesis can be tested by others, since the physical universe has
consistent, verifiable properties.
But when the new ideas or conceptions are of a metaphysical (non-
physical) nature, all kinds of problems crop up, since these cannot be
verified by controlled scientific method .
For example, if I say " The average human being is destructive", this
statement cannot be tested for its consistency by scientific method of
controlled testing. To do that, would in any case destroy the whole
The point therefore is that outside the domain of physical sciences,
we cannot have general agreement ( agreed by all ) about anything.
And it is here that comes the test and worth of ourselves as human beings.
Are we capable of evolving a communication technology (for example,
a general explanatory theory (or metaphysics) about the overall purpose of
human existence) through which a minimal cross-cultural integration and
mutual understanding is possible in order to overcome our destructive
nature, and transform it into a creative or constructive potential ?
Specifically: Is it possible to develop a generally valid set of inter-related
concepts and use them as a basis for an explanation of reality (metaphysics)
that is universally valid at least insofar as a basic principle (telos) that
governs all life, especially human life?
This work attempts to answer this question.
But the first and foremost prerequisite for this is the development and the
transformation of unique individuals through which social transformation
takes place. But individual creativity and uniqueness can only take place
if the requisite space is provided for it to happen by the existing social
and cultural beliefs and values. This leads to a chicken and egg situation,
i.e., it is almost impossible for an individual to hold beliefs and values
in radical contrast to the culture's beliefs and values in which the
individual is brought up. An individual that proposes a concept, idea
or belief that is alien to, or opposes the strongly held beliefs in a
culture is dubbed insane, mad, pervert and degenerate. And one
has to be completely cracked to persist in such a situation.
The whole issue centers around the question of how the unusual, the
different the divergent individuals are handled in a particular society
and culture, and this is one question that has not been adequately
addressed in the literature or norms of any culture.
The divergent, the different are treated as freaks of nature whose
apparent non-conformity is treated as insanity and is either brutally
suppressed or ridiculed into actual insanity.
The only culture that did not treat its unusual individuals as freaks
was the Native American culture where every individual was treated
as a unique individual. A deviant was considered not as a freak
of nature, rather as another creature of nature with a unique
experience and a unique story to tell.
"Insanity is better than Outsanity".....J. C. Lilly.
I'm going to speak my mind because I have nothing to lose.
S. I. Hayakawa
"My point is, I went crazy. When I saw what a black, awful joke the world was.
I went crazy as a coot! I admit it! Why can't you?”
― Alan Moore
“I would be better for me … that multitudes of men should disagree with me
rather than that I, being one, should be out of harmony with myself.”
This work attempts to find the balance between personal - individual
reality and the socio-cultural reality or what has now become world-
wide as the scientifically established objective physical reality.
"The artist's life
cannot be otherwise than full of conflicts, for two forces
are at war within him - on the one hand the common human longing for
happiness, satisfaction and security in life, and on the other side a
ruthless passion for creation which may go so far as to over-ride
every personal desire."......C G Jung
The conceptual tool of Personal Validity recognizes that what may be valid
for a person may not be generally valid for everyone, and therefore the
central idea is to consciously and continuously explore and
between personally valid beliefs versus generally held or agreed
upon beliefs in societies or cultures.
Furthermore a conflicting situation whether of the internal belief system or internal
Vs external beliefs provides for an opportunity or a challenge to explore, expose or
test the validity of ones personal as well as general belief system structures. This
can lead to not only the test of the limitations, applicability and usefulness
(validity) of ones beliefs but also to refine and to transcend their
inter-relationship and limitations in terms of their applicability.
"I have never in my
life learned anything from any man who agreed
with me."......Dudley Field Malone
The end result should ideally be a constructive or a creative one for the entities
involved in the conflict although this is idealistic and rare, but certainly something
that should be aimed at or to strive for. This work repeatedly emphasizes and
supports this kind of effort or striving.
And so one more of the assumptions this work is based upon, is that the being
who embarks upon the path of self exploration needs to distinguish between the
two domains of Personal
& General Validity and their spheres of applicability.
The domain of General Validity should be operational when one is dealing or
interacting with other beings in a social system and its rules and beliefs
determined by social or general agreement.
These rules, assumptions or beliefs are more likely to be different than those
that are applicable or valid for the alone self in a being who believes one's
self to be unique and distinct.
1.5.4 NATURE : DISCRETE as well as WHOLE
In order to understand the need and applicability for this duality of validity
systems, this work supports the belief that an essential common thread runs
through all the beings that share a world like on this planet earth, and that
this unseen thread is what binds, supports and sustains all
the beings in this world.
This unseen thread or binding force (or intent or spirit) and all the life forms,
and the supporting physical resources in its totality is what is referred to
in this work as Nature.
It follows from the above definition that one's self, although unique is also at the
same time a component of and connected to this totality of Nature that gives a self
its being and uniqueness, is therefore an inseparable subject of this Nature.
This aspect of the inseparability of a being from Nature should not be lost sight of
in the process of exploring one's own unique nature.
For there is an unwritten rule of nature that although a being, given a distinct nature
has every Right to explore and express this unique potential, it also becomes the
responsibility of this being to ensure that in this process, he/she does not take away
or infringe upon a similar Right of other beings within the same world.
"A right is not
what someone gives you; it's what no one can take
from you".....Ramsey Clark
[ Web int 2015: The attitude
of the other extreme of desperately wanting to preserve
nature and the ecological balance at the expense of making humans "expendable" is
also an unfortunate one to take by people who are over-sensitive to the ongoing
While it is true that nothing relies on us as a food source, and hence the seemingly logical
belief that "humans are expendable to the planet" is a somewhat flawed and oversimplified
thought and attitude, and that is because the innocent and simple mind does not reflect
much upon the meaning and purpose of human life, and to do so requires a loss of innocence
AND the development of the intellect - especially a sufficient tool base.
To illustrate my point, and going to the extreme in a thought experiment, lets say that just
to preserve the planet, human life is obliterated totally so that life on the planet earth
can continue indefinitely without humans. What would be the point and purpose of that?
By this I don't mean that we should take to the other extreme and go about destroying
nature, but what I mean is that human life is here on this planet to fulfill the purpose of it's
own nature, individually as well as collectively. And in that sense, although we are part of
nature, we are also above it in the sense that because without humans as special kind of
creatures, all the rest of life also loses it's meaning and purpose.
Now an important part of the necessary component of this nature is that we are on an average,
subconsciously destructive creatures, and even if we consciously realize this, we hate to admit
and acknowledge this because it is an ugly truth that is an intrinsic part of what makes us
special. Just as creativity goes hand in hand with destructivity, knowledge (not data) is possible
because of an awareness of having been plunged into a state of ignorance.
Part of this self-deception happens because of the developments of the scientific mindset of
'evolution', which makes us believe (not that we are above creation, for there never was
creation according to the evolutionists, as creation is an anti-thesis of evolution) that
humans are the finest end product of 'natural selection' through which evolution works.
This is not even admitted as a belief by the scientific establishment, as it is claimed by them
that there is a mountain of evidence for evolution but nil evidence for creation. The natural
and logical outcome of this 'evolution' is the attitude that humans are not responsible for
anything because it is all happening as a result of 'natural selection' and the best DNA is
evolving. If you challenge their evidence as shaky at best, the standard rhetoric is : should
we go back to life in the caves - the stone age?
What I want to conclude is this: the most formidable and ultimate challenge is not the logistics
of eco-sustainability but this battle against the mindset of those who will evade taking
responsibility because they do not have the awareness that what we are witnessing is
not the evolution, but the average de-evolution of human beings. ]
1.5.5 THE SPHERES OF VALIDITY: INTERNAL and EXTERNAL
126.96.36.199 Isolation as a Prerequisite
"It is not
necessary that you leave the house. Remain at your table and
listen. Do not even listen, only wait. Do not even wait, be wholly still and
alone. The world will present itself to you for its unmasking. . . in ecstasy
it will writhe at your feet".......Franz Kafka
delighted in solitude, is either a wild beast or a god.”
While a certain degree of isolation of an individual from society is essential for
self-realization and individual development, yet this isolation cannot be just a
goal in itself, but only as a state where one's individuality in terms of knowing
one's predilections and potential can manifest.
The personal space of a genuine individual can only develop when there is a
certain degree of isolation from social, cultural impositions, and when there is
an inner felt sense as well as unease, about the flaws, shortcomings and
limitations of the imposed beliefs and norms.
[ Web Int 2013 Your
meaningful place is one in which you are able to generate a mood
in which the creative best within you can come forth. This is more importantly a mental
state, but a physical place can be crucial too. The critical parameter is usually isolation
- for ex. the vision quest. With other people around, one gets easily distracted.
In my experience, the most resourceful place is an isolated spot in the high mountains,
preferably near a water body like a lake. Spending at least two days, preferably a
week or so in complete isolation in certain places in wilderness has a most profoundly
cleansing effect on the mind of most people, and perhaps the best way to connect
and be in communion with the earth. The wilderness is a perfect counter-balance to
civilization which "licks us all smooth" (Goethe's phrase). Of course such an
experiment/exercise must be volitional and preceded with a feeling or drive
that is clear and determined.]
The point here is that one does not seek escape from society, but only temporary
isolation from the imposing nature of social and cultural norms and patterns of
behavior, so that one's thinking and behavior is not perpetually locked onto
social and cultural reality.
This may happen by default or contingency, however that is not the ideal state
of isolation, but the ideal state is one which comes from a force that is sourced
from within - by the force of one's own will or spirit.
Even if this happens by contingency of external forces, to be conscious of this
and have a sense of gratitude rather than resentment is a sign of one's
unique individuality and purpose.
In other words even a "Byronic hero" is indicative of a potential of being
an artist if not a deep thinker.
hero - an invention of Lord Byron is a moody, passionate,
superior and absolutely autonomous figure, who is also isolated from
other human beings either by some terrible and unforgivable crime
that he committed in the past or by the fact that he is jaded by too
much excitement or pleasure that he cannot feel anything any more.
He winds up in isolation by having to rely entirely upon himself for
his codes of action which he never, ever compromises - not for
other human beings and not even for god. The Byronic hero is
fascinating because of his indifference to opinion.
Byron is one of the truly free men of literature who doesn't care
what anyone else thinks, and his invented hero is one who stands
outside of the normal definitions of good and evil and does what he
chooses. And it is partly that absolute freedom that he embodies
that makes him so attractive."
..........TTC Grant Voth
The development of one's individuality cannot take place unless one can achieve
a minimum distance or isolation, in order to develop a structure of thought and
experience that is independent of the social and cultural construct. Then and
only then can one contribute creatively back to society. Else, one just becomes
another cog in the socio-cultural machine.
Rather an unwillingness to be in blind conformity or adaptation to the
materialistic and merciless world generates a very different kind of anxiety - angst,
which is the force that makes an existing individual make a bid for freedom.
"Anxiety is the dizziness of freedom" ...Soren Kierkegaard
" The very notion of a
"normal human being" suggests a restriction to the
average. It is only a man, who, already finds it difficult to come to terms
with the everyday world who can see in this restriction a desirable
improvement ; a man, whose neurosis unfits him for normal life. To be
"normal" is a splendid idea for the unsuccessful. But for those who have
far more ability than the average, for whom it was never hard to gain
successes and to accomplish their share in the world's work - for them
restriction to the normal signifies the bed of Procrustes, unbearable
boredom, infertile sterility and hopelessness." ......C G Jung
If you see in any
given situation only what everybody else can see,
you can be said to be so much a representative of your culture
that you are a victim of it......S. I. Hayakawa
We thus have two spheres of validity, two distinct modes of operation that
require distinct parameters and domains under which to function effectively
and efficiently in both : The Personal domain of Validity and the General or
Social domain of Validity.
man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one
persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress
depends on the unreasonable man.".....G B Shaw
THE TWO DISTINCT DOMAINS
"Problems arise in that one has
to find a balance between what people
need from you and what you need for yourself".....Jessye Norman
The domain of Personal Validity is essentially that which has in its
spaces one's deepest personal experiences, particularly in isolation,
and the expressions, rationalizations or meanings these have for
the course of one's life and it's fulfillment.
The domain of General Validity is essentially that which has in its
spaces shared experiences, shared expressions, interpretations and
actions towards others that have a positive effect on the physical,
social and cultural environment.
General Validity is the development of personally valid knowledge
into a wider context of intra-human communication that promotes
But when we cease to play explorers
And become settlers, clear before us
Lies the next need - to re-define
The boundary between yours and mine;
Else, one stays prisoner, one goes free.
Each to his own identity
Grown back, shall prove our love's expression
Purer for this limitation.
The important point is that these two spheres of validity do not conflict in their
applicability or operation even though certain beliefs may be the opposite of
each other in these domains, and even if there is a conflict, then this conflict
has a creative outcome or resolution.
The other important point is that in the separate and distinct sphere
of Personal Validity, one can assume, believe, conceive or construct
anything without the constraints and limitations imposed by the
beliefs and concepts held to be generally valid by the society of that
time and place. This is vital for opening up the space for imagination
One of the useful rules that one needs to follow is that even if one feels that
certain personal beliefs or experiences are of great importance, these may well
have no general validity and should therefore be recognized as such. Similarly,
beliefs that are generally taken to be the norm in a social setup should only be
considered as important only as far as their functional value for the individual's
social role and responsibilities.
1.5.6 THE TWO DOMAINS TABULATED
|SPHERE OF VALIDITY||INDIVIDUAL||WHOLE OF NATURE|
NOT TO BE SOUGHT,
|AGREEMENTS OF TRUST, LIBERTY, JUSTICE, LAW|
|VALID BELIEFS||PERSONAL UNIQUENESS LIMITS||SOCIAL NORMS LIMITS|
|EXPERIENCE||NO LIMITS||LIMITED BY SOCIAL-CULTURAL|
|DISTINCTLY OPERATIONAL REQUIREMENT WHEN IN||ISOLATION, DREAMS, IMAGINATION, CREATIVITY||MEANINGFUL, CREATIVE INTERACTION WITH OTHERS|
|DEVELOPMENT BASIS AND GOALS||TO BE SELF DEVELOPED, TO TRANSCEND BIOLOGICAL LIMITS||SOCIALLY AND CULTURALLY ACQUIRED, TO BE TRANSCENDED OR CHALLENGED|
|PURPOSE||PERSONAL GOALS||ENVIRONMENTAL, EARTH|
This article covered the fundamental requirements for the concept of Personal Validity,
in order to encourage any unique individual to create a personal sphere of action so as
to have the necessary free space for imagination, creation of new ideas, personal vision,
and creative expression. This personal sphere of action whose domain covers those acts,
that do not directly affect others is contrasted with that other sphere of action which has
direct bearing upon others either in an interactive mode or even an non-interactive
mode whereby an individual's actions influence other people. In novel experiences
the generally valid programs, beliefs and 'data' acquired from external sources
should stand suspended for the experience to be revelatory. Subsequently, the
personal meaning from novel experiences must be properly interpreted and
analyzed and correlated with the expressed experiences of others for the
development of it's personal validity. If the personally valid expressions are
indicative of the possibility of usefulness to others, such expressions should
be expressed in a manner that the general validity of these can then be
test in the domain of the society, culture and the world at large.
With this distinction as a basis, the second part goes into the building blocks of this work,
or a study of the tools and the underlying processes that are to be used for the goal of
self - exploration. The first article in this part itself starts with an examination of what
these tools are, that is, how we make assumptions, build concepts and analogies, how
we are made to believe certain things or entities ( almost always without allowing for
any kind of questioning these beliefs, let alone their validity), and how the
overvaluation of fixed ideas, beliefs and entities leads to an entrapment.
NEXT PAGE 04 : PART 2
The Ontology : Assumptions, beliefs and concepts
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