Basic Orientation
Book1: R-E Living & "Homo Rationalis"
Book2: Humanianity
Book3: Mind-Body Problem
Preface
Introduction
Causation and Explanation
Physical and Mental Worlds
Modeling
Subjective Experience
Subjective Model
Objective Model: Linguistics
Objective Model: Agreement
Objective Model: Rationality
Objective Model: Measurement
(More)
Book4: (Future Possible Development)
Child Rearing Issues
Philosophico-Religious Issues
Psycho-Socio-Cultural Issues
The Twelve Articles
Relevant Autobiography
 
"HOMO RATIONALIS" AND HUMANIANITY
 
HELPING TO PROMOTE OUR THIRD EXPONENTIAL CHANGE
 

PREFACE



I wish to clarify something important about how this book is written.


It is customary, I know, for presentations about issues such as the one this book is about to refer plentifully to "sources," so that the reader can explore further the specific issues being discussed. However, I have not done that in this book, for two main reasons.


First, the concepts being referred to in this book have been written about by many, many people, and there is no way to refer to one, or a few, of these people who would stand out as being unusually important.


Second, it is my belief that the very existence of this problem (the "mind-body problem"), and its related problems, is due to a great extent to linguistic confusion, produced by the inherent ambiguity of language. Therefore, in this book I have attempted to develop a specific, highly consistent lexicon, the purpose of which is to obtain as great clarity as possible in communication and understanding. As soon as I would refer to some other individual's work, I would have to be taking into account how that individual was using his or her words in what he or she was presenting. This would immediately make this extremely difficult task dramatically more complex and difficult.


I also would like to clarify why I consider this problem, or set of problems, probably regarded by many as rather obscure and therefore unimportant, to be the most important philosophical problem that our species faces. This is because of my belief that it is extremely important, and increasingly so, that our species be able to come to agreement about certain basic things, and that what those basic beliefs are be as accurate as possible. Our species has become more and more able to do extremely influential things, and so while we have been able to do increasingly useful and wonderful things, potentially ultimately beneficial to us all, we have simultaneously become able to make extremely influential, and even tragic, mistakes, that will impact the whole future of our development as a species on this planet. Inaccuracy of our beliefs leads to the making of mistakes, and inability to agree tends to promote paralysis of decision-making.


We have to have a way of coming to agreement, and a way to optimize the chances of that which we are agreeing to being accurate. That would mean, I believe, that we should develop a relatively easily understood and agreed-upon lexicon for understanding and communicating about our most basic, fundamental ways of viewing everything. I do know that the vast majority of people will immediately say that what I am trying to accomplish is impossible, and therefore many people will simply not have any interest in pursuing the effort. I am hoping, however, that (1) I am correct, and (2) that there will be a few people who will make the effort to understand what I am offering, and will then advocate to others that such effort be undertaken.


Lest it be thought otherwise, I wish to assure the reader that I am fully aware of the possibility of a person being absolutely convinced that he or she has arrived at some "truth" that seems obvious and "undeniable," only to be shown later (if willing to be shown) that there are fundamental flaws in his or her way of thinking. I wish to assure the reader that I do not have the kind of feeling of certainty and confidence that I was just referring to. So I will be among those who will be interested in whether or not what I have presented here stands the test of conscientious scrutiny by others. I truly hope that it will, because I currently maintain the tentative belief that I am making a significant contribution.


I do wish, also, that the reader will read what I have written conscientiously, with an effort to understand everything that is written within the context in which it is written. I am well aware that it is possible for someone who is reading something to have a strong wish to demonstrate that there are flaws, and therefore to be prone to read superficially and thereby allow the words and sentences being read to mean something different than what they are actually meaning in the context in which they are written. Most of the words that I use in this book can have more than one meaning, and if a meaning other than what I am using is assigned to my words, I can be made to appear to be saying things that I am not saying and would not say. I have already had this experience in other things that I have written. The reader should indeed look for flaws in what he or she is reading, but the flaws should be with regard to the actual meanings of what is being written, rather than substituted meanings produced by using the words differently.


I do hope that I am making a contribution, but I fully acknowledge that I could be mistaken. Only time will tell, so to speak, and, of course, I may never know. Nevertheless, what follows is the result of many, many hours of work that has been not only quite difficult but also quite solitary, since it has not been possible to have any kind of prolonged, in-depth, meaningful conversation about these issues. If you, the reader, fully understand what I am trying to convey in this book, I believe you will understand what I have just said. This remains to be seen.