The only reason I know about Korzybski is because of Gregory Bateson’s frequent quotation of him, " The map is not the territory." To which Wilber added, " The map is a performance by the territory." This makes sense as we move between dimensions, we become aware that we are chronic map makers. And sometimes we make mistakes. We eat the menu rather than the meal.
We are trained to’ go meta’ perpetually in our scientistic culture which seems to me to lead us to a hyper-modern impasse. ‘Going meta’ becomes a transcendence without an immanence. Abstraction without concresence. Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon! The meta/trans fallacy is the mental structure and what could be the Integral awareness we all yearn for? It is the awareness we had when we were babies turning into toddlers, learning how to walk, before the talking started.
I imagine the Kleinian approach, outlined in Lisa’s paper, is less about 'going meta" but rather turning around, away from an externalized reality located" out there" and focusing attention upon the observer doing the observing, a more proprioceptive movement, a going inside, and then outside and then neither inside nor outside, a both and neither. It is like, going through the looking glass and realizing you are the looking glass and what is looking at and beyond the looking glass simultaneously as the personal pronoun ‘I’. That ‘I’ does not begin with language, it is a synesthesia, an overlapping interplay of senses in motion.
And when “I” let go of left and right and the right side drifts off which side is left? And which side is right? Proprioception allows each of us to make such distinctions from which our decisions can emerge. These are those templates our species gives us, each time we re-enter the human action arena, which break down each night when we fall asleep. This is not arbitrary as our social world(s) are not possible without such distinctions as up/down, left/right and these distinctions must be widely shared by many entities in many realms to make collective sense. Each species coordinates such activity in our mother’s wombs. Our sense of balance is coordinated by the vestibular system, the first system to appear, which happens in the inner ear. In the beginning there was movement. This isn’t arbitrary nor is it fixed. We can work around these supposed limits but how to put into words that make sense?
Dancers, athletes and lucid dreamers are attuned to this intelligence. As an active lucid dreamer/OBEer I can testify that a buzzing in the ears is the first sign that I am beginning to take off into other dimensions. I sense that something similar happens when I use a clean language question such as Where is that? Does it have a size or a shape? These are orientation questions that point out different features of our landscape than the conventional language games typically endorse. Such questions often have a’ dizzying effect.’
I am drawn to Lisa’s and Steven’s work because they are trying to make explicit some of the implications of chronically ignored aspects of our nature. And they are doing this phenomenologically. It must become first person first before second or third can arise. We cut off first person and rely heavily on third person accounts.
Merleau-Ponty is the most adept, perhaps, at focusing attention on the missing kinesthetic intelligence that atrophies in most of our discourse. Returning to and remembering this deeply forgotten and repressed propriocetive/kinesthetic interplay could wake us up! A lucid waking up! The linguistic consensus trance, which traps our tempo- rhythms in conventional 9to 5, 24/7 language game creates neuro-muscular lock down which becomes the norm.
A few nights ago I had a puzzling dream. I had in one hand a sock and in another hand a glove. What I wondered can I do with this pair of objects?
A brief video helps to make sense perhaps of this often ignored aspect of our nature, which I believe is the background knowledge that we draw upon to make communal sense.