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Thread: Panpsychism

  1. #21
    Tenured roisterer SolitaryWalker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Helios View Post
    I presently regard Jung's claims regarding a collective unconscious and its archetypical contents as fanciful conjecture; my purpose was not to offer an apology for Jung's position, but only to correct your explanation of Jung's position, viz.



    Your response to my correction indicated a misapprehension of my purpose. The issue was not whether what Jung claims is true, but what it is Jung claims. Regardless, I do find the following challenge inadequate, specifically because it is an instance of the Straw man fallacy:



    "Archetypes" are defined by Jung as, "only those psychic contents which have not yet been submitted to conscious elaboration and are therefore an immediate datum of psychic experience". This elaboration, much of (but not all of) which cognitive development is needed to facilitate, is an elaboration of the already present archetypes; even if most of this elaboration cannot be performed at birth, that does not require that those archetypes not already be present in the collective unconscious. It seems, however, that a certain form of "conscious elaboration" is available even to newborns: Jung believes that archetypes can be immediately manifested in dreams and visions. Presumably, as even infants dream, they too elaborate archetypes in this manner, though this is altogether different from the other modes of elaboration requiring cognitive development, such as mythologizing processes.
    A straw man fallacy is a representation of one's position, and a very specific kind of a misrepresentation. It is a distortion of the view's of one's interlocutor which presents his position as less defensible than it truly is.

    In literature it appears far from clear with regard to specifically what 'archetype' means and what this term is taken to mean in Jungian writings. Several ideas have been advanced to define the term in both contexts all of which are closely linked yet have not been synthesized to form a single, unequivocal definition. I was under the impression that what Jung meant by archetypes is coherent ideas or at least coherent images, E.G, the mother archetype. Such things, I maintain cannot be innate. I regarded no other concept but this one as an archetype.

    If it is the case that an archetype as you suggest is not what I had in mind, but simply any content of our unconscious mind that has not yet been subjected to conscious scrutiny, than yes archetypes are inborn.

    In the most technical sense, some experience is required in order for us to have some content within our unconscious mind. To a minor degree, fetuses are able to cognitively process information before being born. As a result when they are born, they have archetypes or some content in their unconscious.

    In the strictest sense, no idea as archetypal, yet all ideas are ectypal as all ideas in our mind have derived from the external world. Jung would be correct to maintain that some content of our unconscious was present at our birth, yet it would be a mistake to suggest that it has originated from within and not from without. The notion of 'having derived within and not from without' is close in meaning to 'archetypal', which I find to be fundamentally mistaken for the reasons stated above.
    "Do not argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level and beat you with experience." -- Mark Twain

    “No man but a blockhead ever wrote, except for money.”---Samuel Johnson

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  2. #22
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    The problem with Panpsychism is that it is Dualist, without any reason to be.

    Why claim there is matter, AKA a material world, when one can't experience it?

    Idealism makes the most sense, in my opinion. People claim the existence of matter, yet all we have to go by is our own conscious experience of matter.

    Sure, Panpsychism, Materialism and more could be true, but no reason is present to favour them over any other theory that lacks any evidence. The very metaphysical definition evidence is contained within Idealism (that which we directly experience).

    Now, assuming there is a material world and a world of qualia (mind), why can't the material cause the mind? Sure, there's no reason to favour this direction of causation, but we cannot observe causation directly, only patterns, and there seems (major emphasis there) to be a correlation between neurology and other activities in the brain, with qualia.

    Not that this could be proved, as qualia in and of themselves have no evidence, e.g. when we are unconscious, we simply have no memory of being conscious, when perhaps we were, simply without a recording mechanism for us to experience with our consciousness at a later date. As has been shown with sleep, evidence suggests we are aware the whole time we are a sleep (a correlation has been observed between awareness and the delta brainwave), we simply cannot recall any of the experience.

    Interestingly, a man has claimed he is still aware when he switches of his delta emission through meditation. Not that any solid pattern was drawn between the two in the first place.

    To me, the idea of using conscious experience to show the existence of the physical world, and then use the existence of the physical world to show the existence conscious experience, seems like a strange endeavour.

  3. #23
    Senior Member Helios's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SolitaryWalker View Post
    A straw man fallacy is a representation of one's position, and a very specific kind of a misrepresentation. It is a distortion of the view's of one's interlocutor which presents his position as less defensible than it truly is.
    Indeed.

    Quote Originally Posted by SolitaryWalker View Post
    In literature it appears far from clear with regard to specifically what 'archetype' means and what this term is taken to mean in Jungian writings.
    Could you provide quotations from any other Jungian work which would contradict the definition of archetype found in the opening pages of The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious, such that your original explication of Jung's position is accurate?

  4. #24
    Tenured roisterer SolitaryWalker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Helios View Post
    Indeed.



    Could you provide quotations from any other Jungian work which would contradict the definition of archetype found in the opening pages of The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious, such that your original explication of Jung's position is accurate?

    This would require a thorough research of critical writings on Jung's work. In Psychological Types however, it does not appear to be the case that he takes for the term archetype to mean only the content of our thought that is unconscious and has not yet been consciously contemplated.

    "The inborn mode of acting has long been known as instinct, and for the inborn mode of psychic apprehension I have proposed the term archetype. I may assume that what is understood by instinct is familiar to everyone . It is another matter with the archetype. What I understand by it is identical with the "primordial image," a term borrowed from Jacob Burckhardt, and I described it as such in the Definitions that conclude this book. I must here refer the reader to the definition "Image" " (Psychological types, P. 377)

    In this passage Jung notes that the the notion of archetype is closely linked to the notion of image.

    He defines the image as follows,

    "When I speak of "image" in this book, I do not mean the psychic reflection of an external object, but a concept derived from poetic usage, namely, a figure of fancy or fantasy image, which is related only indirectly to the perception of the external object." Psychological Types, P. 442

    This passage shows that the word image can be taken to mean something that has been derived from poetic activity, or a fantasy. Such an activity is complex. Because Jung mentioned that the notion of idea is closely linked to the notion of an archetype and he uses the former as a propaedeutic to the latter, it is the case if the image can be a complex notion (more than only a vague unconscious impression), then an archetype could also be a complex notion. Jung maintains that an image can be a complex notion, therefore an archetype can be as well.
    "Do not argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level and beat you with experience." -- Mark Twain

    “No man but a blockhead ever wrote, except for money.”---Samuel Johnson

    My blog: www.randommeanderings123.blogspot.com/

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