Map and territory - a cognitive fallacy question

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Re: Map and territory - a cognitive fallacy question

#61  Postby BWE » May 24, 2016 12:38 pm

I am not sure you have the basic structure down. Those are pretty much all map issues. If you want to avoid map-territory errors, you need to stop assuming the categorical knowledge you apply to categories you encounter. The problem is that is pretty close to impossible because those 'stereotypes' are also massively efficient even though they are also wrong a significant portion of the time, or, depending how you count, all the time.

If you see a fin when you are swimming at the beach, you get out of the water. You don't need to know it's a shark but it's ok to believe it is even if it isn't.
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Re: Map and territory - a cognitive fallacy question

#62  Postby tolman » May 24, 2016 12:42 pm

EvertVd wrote:An (extreme) example: how do we solve the problem of honestly and equally producing and distributing of (primary) resources?

Why 'equally', as opposed to 'fairly', 'appropriately', 'efficiently', or some other criteria?
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Re: Map and territory - a cognitive fallacy question

#63  Postby EvertVd » May 24, 2016 9:26 pm

tolman wrote:
Why 'equally', as opposed to 'fairly', 'appropriately', 'efficiently', or some other criteria?


It was just an example, I didn't really weigh all the words I was using. But you are right, 'equally' is not the correct word; not sure what would be. I meant to say was something like: everyone receives what they need, no more, no less, keeping in mind everyone's needs are different.

@BWE: I'm not sure if I misunderstand you, or you me?
I am not looking to prevent map-territory errors. Although I guess that would be an implicit, and impossible, side effect. I am looking for a base of reference. A logical reference cannot, in my view, depend on neither the collective opinion of the majority nor the ideological delusions of a dictator. To me this seems the same difference.
The territory is the only immutable, objective thing we have. Our knowledge of it may not be perfect or complete, and it may never be. But it is the only common reference point all humans (life?) share.
I am not advocating anything, I am merely trying to understand why people compare their maps to each others instead of lining them up to the territory. Since the latter will line up their maps to each other as well and the former does not guarantee realism. This 'eliminates' any errors, since those would then be common (universal) as well; at least until our knowledge of the territory changes/improves.
Is it realistic to think humans are capable of creating a world like that? No, I don't believe so. I am not a fanatic or an extremist who wants to impose his worldview on others. My problem is that I feel that others impose their view on me without any rational, empirical proof whatsoever and expect me to be able to build a life with those imaginary tools that only exist on their maps and can change whenever.
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Re: Map and territory - a cognitive fallacy question

#64  Postby BWE » May 24, 2016 10:01 pm

EvertVd wrote:
tolman wrote:
Why 'equally', as opposed to 'fairly', 'appropriately', 'efficiently', or some other criteria?


It was just an example, I didn't really weigh all the words I was using. But you are right, 'equally' is not the correct word; not sure what would be. I meant to say was something like: everyone receives what they need, no more, no less, keeping in mind everyone's needs are different.

@BWE: I'm not sure if I misunderstand you, or you me?
I am not looking to prevent map-territory errors. Although I guess that would be an implicit, and impossible, side effect. I am looking for a base of reference. A logical reference cannot, in my view, depend on neither the collective opinion of the majority nor the ideological delusions of a dictator. To me this seems the same difference.
The territory is the only immutable, objective thing we have. Our knowledge of it may not be perfect or complete, and it may never be. But it is the only common reference point all humans (life?) share.
I am not advocating anything, I am merely trying to understand why people compare their maps to each others instead of lining them up to the territory. Since the latter will line up their maps to each other as well and the former does not guarantee realism. This 'eliminates' any errors, since those would then be common (universal) as well; at least until our knowledge of the territory changes/improves.

I'm not sure i understand what you are asking or saying. Maps are shared through communication and adopted through their perceived fit with the territory. Ideally, we would always check the territory first and only conditionally employ the maps. That is why map-territory errors are errors though. It is often impossible to distinguish between the two and even more often impossibly inefficient to try.

If you are actually interested, you should read this:
https://www.uploady.com/#!/download/yRM ... Ux7yR0nb1_

If the link doesn't work, it's a pdf of a book called 'science and sanity' by a seriously unorthodox thinker named Alfred Korzybski. There are several links available through google. It is mildly torturous to read and excessively long but he thoroughly explored the idea and it does have some profound elements. I recommend it highly with the reservations given.
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Re: Map and territory - a cognitive fallacy question

#65  Postby EvertVd » May 24, 2016 10:12 pm

Thank you for the link, I'll read it.
I'm not sure what I am asking. Perhaps I am just lashing out at why humans make each others lives so unfair, miserable, complicated and then saying things like "that is just the way it is." NO, it isn't...it is the way we make it.
Like John Scalzi wrote:
There's a difference between the fact that the universe is inherently unfair on a cosmic level, and the fact that life is unfair because people are actively making it so.

Perhaps I am just incapable of accepting that and unable to try to live with it. (hopefully it is unwillingness, because that is something I can control)
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Re: Map and territory - a cognitive fallacy question

#66  Postby tolman » May 24, 2016 10:21 pm

EvertVd wrote:
tolman wrote:
Why 'equally', as opposed to 'fairly', 'appropriately', 'efficiently', or some other criteria?


It was just an example, I didn't really weigh all the words I was using. But you are right, 'equally' is not the correct word; not sure what would be. I meant to say was something like: everyone receives what they need, no more, no less, keeping in mind everyone's needs are different.

I'm not sure there is a 'correct' word, as, like most things, it's a subjective issue.

One could use words like 'rightly', 'correctly', or 'properly' instead of equally, but really they're still just placeholders for subjectivity, with the added risk that once someone has settled on what they think is a 'good' (and situation-specific) definition for their placeholder word, they may well be misled by 'right', 'correct', 'proper', etc into believing they aren't being subjective, or that they are more right, correct. or people than other people considering the same issue.

That is one of the problems with words - they can be very seductive, and carry so much baggage that they meaningfully get in the way of trying to think. They can be useful shorthand ways of trying to describe or explain thoughts to ourselves or others, or compact aids to memory, but they are shorthand, have unfixed meanings within people and between people, and shouldn't be taken too seriously.
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Re: Map and territory - a cognitive fallacy question

#67  Postby BWE » May 25, 2016 1:53 am

EvertVd wrote:Thank you for the link, I'll read it.
I'm not sure what I am asking. Perhaps I am just lashing out at why humans make each others lives so unfair, miserable, complicated and then saying things like "that is just the way it is." NO, it isn't...it is the way we make it.
Like John Scalzi wrote:
There's a difference between the fact that the universe is inherently unfair on a cosmic level, and the fact that life is unfair because people are actively making it so.

Perhaps I am just incapable of accepting that and unable to try to live with it. (hopefully it is unwillingness, because that is something I can control)

Now that I totally understand. Peace.
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Re: Map and territory - a cognitive fallacy question

#68  Postby Cito di Pense » May 25, 2016 5:58 am

EvertVd wrote:
I'm not sure what I am asking. Perhaps I am just lashing out at why humans make each others lives so unfair, miserable, complicated and then saying things like "that is just the way it is." NO, it isn't...it is the way we make it.


You should probably blame the religious nuts first, which is why we're all gathered here at Rational Skepticism. If, on the other hand, you want to join in condemning people's moral turpitude in general, you might as well go back to the bosom of religion, where the basis for that kind of talk is just taken on faith. Usually, people who justify their ill treatment of someone else do it on the basis of their having been selected by God to be the righteous ones. In the case of non-theistic woo, they just credit their moral superiority to the wisdom they got by their meditative prowess, even though no spoons were bent in the making of that film.
Хлопнут без некролога. -- Серге́й Па́влович Королёв

Translation by Elbert Hubbard: Do not take life too seriously. You're not going to get out of it alive.
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Re: Map and territory - a cognitive fallacy question

#69  Postby surreptitious57 » May 25, 2016 10:32 am

Humans have a tendency to see them selves as individuals or as a selective group within the species instead of collectively
as a species as such. Now this is perfectly natural as is evident within the rest of the animal kingdom. But while we should
think of ourselves in more inclusive terms it is not necessarily easy given as evolution has not provided us with such means
to do so. Hence why a desire to protect a member of our own family is usually greater than one to protect a total stranger
Last edited by surreptitious57 on May 25, 2016 10:39 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Map and territory - a cognitive fallacy question

#70  Postby Cito di Pense » May 25, 2016 10:37 am

What about the Fap and Meritory Cognitive Phallusy question?
Хлопнут без некролога. -- Серге́й Па́влович Королёв

Translation by Elbert Hubbard: Do not take life too seriously. You're not going to get out of it alive.
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Re: Map and territory - a cognitive fallacy question

#71  Postby surreptitious57 » May 25, 2016 11:34 am

Evert wrote:
Perhaps I am just lashing out at why humans make each others lives so unfair

While this be undeniably true it is a sweeping generalisation that does not account for the opposite which is equally true
And so I tend to avoid subjective interpretations like this preferring instead to see reality as it really is not as I think it is
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Re: Map and territory - a cognitive fallacy question

#72  Postby Fallible » May 26, 2016 7:21 am

lol
John Grant wrote:They say 'let go, let go, let go, you must learn to let go'.
If I hear that fucking phrase again, this baby's gonna blow
Into a million itsy bitsy tiny pieces, don't you know,
Just like my favourite scene in Scanners .
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