Friday, February 19, 2010

Key Concepts...

... according to Steven Ericsson Zenith's - Explaining Experience in Nature


anthropogenic knowledge: The embodied product of human practice.

apprehension: Apprehension is the act of acquiring a sign.

apprehension: Apprehension is the act of individuating sense; the taking away of the world from mere sensory transduction to sensory conception.

apprehension: The differentiation of marks through impressions in the organism.

consciousness: The variety of properties associated with sense and cognition.

constructive explanation: An explanation that is built from clearly identified premises, constructed according to well-defined rules of logical construction. As we shall see in the course of this work, we must rely upon the mechanics that are the basis of apprehension and logic to enable our logical construction of the world.

emergence theory: Emergence theory is the theory that novel properties arise in the world that are independent of their functional dependence.

experience: Experience is the basis of consciousness. It is that which is most familiar. It is the common property of all senses. It is the first thing and the last thing for each of us. Though strictly, according to the model we will present, the first and the last thing for each of us is a sense – the primitive we will propose, characterized by physiology.

first principles: The initial determinates.

forms of intelligence: The sensory characterization of the primitive we propose constructs forms of intelligence that modify our inevitable behavior according to genetic disposition. This intelligence includes intellectual, intuitive and emotional capacity.

inevitable or intentional behavior of organisms: Organisms act inevitably according to genetic disposition. That action is mitigated by the intelligence of the organism; largely represented by the convention they embody.

laws: Laws are a priori determinants. They characterize the covariance of the primitive aspects of the world. By this definition, examples include, the laws of thermodynamics and gravity. “Laws of life (or complexity),” is also a meaningful statement by this definition.

magic: We use the term 'magic' and 'magical' here to refer to claims that are supernatural; i.e., outside a logical construction of the world.

marks: Formally, a mark is simply the subject of a sign. We distinguish two types of mark: one type is the product of semeiosis and the other is not. A thing designed, like a text or a television, we call a mark of metaphysics. Though we will often refer to a mark of this type more briefly as a “metaphysical mark.” A product of natural coincidence, such as a sunrise, is also a mark but is clearly not the product of semeiosis. We will refer to a mark of this type as a “natural mark.”

materialism: Materialism is the view that our physical models are essentially complete. Hence any explanation of experience in nature based upon this premise is logically constrained to identity and emergence.

Meaning: The behavioral product of apprehension.

naturalistic: A naturalistic solution relies upon nature as the sole basis of phenomena. It states that there are no fundamental divisions in the world and that all things are of and from a single universe, that all things are a part of the one natural world. Such solutions reject the very notion of the “supernatural”.

nominalism: We take nominalism to be the rejection of universals.

ontological status: We award ontological status to all things and behaviors that possess a functional dependence on the primitive aspects of the world. Thus sense, intelligence, the mind, possess ontological status according to our model. What then does not possess ontological status? We will see later that “relations” (the products of sentience) allow us to perceive things that do not exist (such as irrational numbers and television).

ontologically distinct: Ontological distinction is the aspect of our theory that argues that all constructions are ontologically distinct; the product of uniform laws. In our model ontological distinction is necessary for the isolation of our conception of relations. By arguing that existent entities and behaviors are ontologically distinct we enable a coherent model of relations as principal elements of sentience alone. Thus, for example, the notion of “class” and “set” are products of apprehension only.

physicalism: Physicalism, contrary to materialism, argues that the laws and principles of physics must necessarily be expanded to encompass a natural explanation of experience in nature as we discover more about perception. It is a view that allows new discovery.

principles: Principles are posterior determinants. Principles arise in the composition of Laws. By this definition natural selection is a principle of the world and not a law. In our model principles include those determinants that deal with the mitigation of genetic disposition through the engineering and operation of sentience.

relations: In our model “relations” possess ontological status only in their physical instantiation according to our model. Our model of ontology is one of strict independence, things exist in and of themselves and possess no a priori relationship to anything else. They are detached and merely coincident; quantum phenomena not withstanding. Quantum entanglement, in this model, is viewed as suggestive of the nonlocality we propose; though it does not itself provide a sufficient explanation. Thus, relations do not exist in the world beyond their apprehension. However, they uniquely possess “epistemological status”, they are the sole source of epistemology. Hence relations allow us to apprehend what does not in fact exist in the world - such as irrational numbers and televisions.

semeiotics: The study of signs, the development of general theories of signs.

signs: In our semeiotic model a sign is simply an individuated experience.

variety of sense: In addition to the variety of senses familiar to us, other sensory modalities are known. The Platypus, for example, is known to sense electrical phenomenon (called electroception).

verifiable: A statement is verifiable if it can be confirmed by others, given due consideration. Verification relies upon empirical observation and common mechanisms of inference.