• khaled
    3.1k
    People come up with all sorts of models to understand themselves, some more mainstream than others. "Conscious and subconscious", Jung's archetypes, Left brain right brain, whatever the Yogis were doing (I'm just not familiar with it), etc. My question is whether or not these concepts are discovered or enforced, because they never really seem to cleanly translate. The split between conscious and subconscious can be used to explain certain behaviors, and the split into left and right brain others behaviors. Sometimes they can even explain the same behavior in different ways. But they can't explain each other. Are they really explaining behavior, or are the creating certain behavior in adherents?

    Personality models are perhaps a better example. There is the 5 factor model, there is Ayurveda in the east, there are humanistic and biological approaches, etc, all with their uses and all producing different explanations and treatments for behavior. In the sciences, there is no issue of having multiple perspectives on the same thing. Examining the physical makeup of a brain will not yield results that contradict the biology, and you could always reduce the biology to the physics. But in psychology and philosophy, different models produce different, sometimes contradictory explanations. A believer in the 5 factor model will, for instance, think that they're just screwed since they were born with a low conscientiousness since these personalities are near static, a self fulfilling prophecy. A believer in Ayurveda will think that consciousness is just a state, not a trait, and so will likely not be so hopeless.

    The classic philosophy example is the person who believes he has no free will, and so goes on to steal and cheat. Clearly here, the model induced a certain behavior which verified the model ("I couldn't help it"). So to what extent do you think models in psychology explain, as opposed to create, behavior?

    Are psychologists making models based on what they observe? Or are the models self fulfilling prophecies? Or a mix? And what does that say about the validity of the models and which we should use?
  • Gobuddygo
    28
    My question is whether or not these concepts are discovered or enforced, because they never really seem to cleanly translate.khaled

    You mean translated into one another?
  • khaled
    3.1k
    Yes. Nor are they even consistent. According to the 5 factor model, there isn't much you can do to be more productive. According to others, there's plenty.
  • Gobuddygo
    28
    . Nor are they even consistent.khaled

    Why should they be consistent? Aren't they consistent (litterally meaning "standing together") by the very fact they both are there?
  • TheMadFool
    11.9k
    But they can't explain each other. Are they really explaining behavior, or are the creating certain behavior in adherents?khaled

    If memory serves, there's the idea that when it comes to psychololgy, it's very difficult to put the required level of distance between the observer/researcher and the observed/subject because, well, they're one and the same viz. us; that would preclude an objective analysis. Say, a psychologist comes up with a theory; this theory once known would modify our behavior and we might comply/rebel and that would screw up any future studies based on that theory as those who consciously resist the theory's principles would throw a spanner in the works. Thus, any psychological theory, once widely known, would result in a negative feedback loop that would destroy the theory for all future experiments from that point on would give negative results.
  • Hermeticus
    58
    I'd say it's a bit of a mix. Our belief is based on what we perceive. But what we perceive is also based on what we belief. Selective awareness.

    Generally, I consider the psyche to be ever changing. It's too flexible, too impermanent to make a general sort of classification of "This person is of the type XYZ". The traits themselves may be discovered, in the sense that someone at some point noticed certain behaviour and labeled it with a term. Once labeled, it can easily happen that other people associate themselves with that particular trait. That is however a momentary observation.

    A classification like that fails to capture the whole scope of the human psychology, as well as failing to acknowledge that our states of mind, our thoughts and moods, yes even our persona, our very idea of self, are not permanent.
  • Gobuddygo
    28
    If memory serves, there's the idea that when it comes to psychololgy, it's very difficult to put the required level of distance between the observer/researcher and the observed/subject because, well, they're one and the same viz. us; that would preclude an objective analysisTheMadFool

    Are you saying the patients are the doctors and vice-versa?
  • TheMadFool
    11.9k
    Are you saying the patients are the doctors and vice-versa?Gobuddygo

    Self-reflection (examining ourselves) + Self-affecting (causal-reflexivity i.e. our thoughts cause other thoughts and these others, ad infinitum or cyclical)
  • khaled
    3.1k
    Generally, I consider the psyche to be ever changing. It's too flexible, too impermanent to make a general sort of classification of "This person is of the type XYZ".Hermeticus
    A classification like that fails to capture the whole scope of the human psychology, as well as failing to acknowledge that our states of mind, our thoughts and moods, yes even our persona, our very idea of self, are not permanent.Hermeticus

    Is it like that because you think it's like that? Or is it actually like that?
  • Hermeticus
    58
    Is it like that because you think it's like that? Or is it actually like that?khaled

    Our belief is based on what we perceive. But what we perceive is also based on what we belief.Hermeticus

    I think like that, therefore it actually is like that.
  • khaled
    3.1k
    But our minds aren't so malleable that you can just believe anything are they? You can't be a masochist by choice for instance.
  • unenlightened
    5.9k
    We have had various theories of matter, and the current theories seem to work better than the old theory of the four elements (Earth, Air, Fire and Water), for example. One of the things about matter that helps us here is that matter is constant in the sense that it does not adapt to the theory we have of it.

    Not so, humanity alas. We always have some view of human nature or other, and that view does much to colour our interactions with each other and with the environment. The effect of a psychological theory on behaviour is not something that the psychological theory in question can possibly take account of. Thus one comes up with - for example - a theory of sexual repression of women leading to hysterical symptoms (Freud), and by the time the ideas have percolated through society, everyone is talking about sex all day long, the repression no longer exists and poor old Freud looks like a nutcase.
  • Hermeticus
    58
    But our minds aren't so malleable that you can just believe anything are they? You can't be a masochist by choice for instance.khaled

    Are you sure about that?

    Consider how we go through life, from our days in the cradle to our dying bed.
    We come to life as basically a blank slate. So unfamiliar with the world outside the womb that many of us will do this crying, utterly confused as we are taken away from the warmth of our mothers.

    Consider your first years in life. You know nothing. Not to crawl, not to walk, not to speak. You only know how to cling to your mother and suck on her teet. Our childhood is all about learning what the world contains and how we can live in this world. We do so through experiencing the various situations life throws at us. From the education of our parents to the socialization with our friends. This is also what develops our mind, our psychology. The experiences we make are what act as our basis for decisions in the future. These are psychological habits - the way we tend to act in certain situations, the way we tend to think, the way we tend to see the world.

    In this way, you'll know not to mess with fire. Either because you've experienced it first hand or because someone taught you that you can burn yourself when you mess with fire.

    Or to pick up the example of a masochist: While there is no definite consensus on why people turn masochistic, isn't it reasonable to think that there must have been an experience where the individual made a choice to associate pleasure with pain? To view their pain as pleasure rather than suffering? Perhaps the individual was suffering through a relationship - but more than the pain that their relationship caused, they dreaded the thought of being alone - so they sunk themselves into their desire for the other and found pleasure in the pain. They embrace their masochistic tendencies.

    Perhaps then later in life they are broken apart and the individual learns that being alone is not all that terrible. If at this point, they realize their habit of viewing pain as pleasure, they may associate the habit with the delusions which they had about being alone and drop the behaviour all together. On the other hand if they are to assume that this is an integral part of their being, then they most certainly will not change and carry their habits onward.

    Now, it does make sense to try to put a label on these habits to some degree - in order to be able to talk about them. However, as I said before, strictly talking in terms of psychological models and category fails to recognize the infinite complexity that these "constellations of habits" may have due to the highly individual experience of origin.
  • tim wood
    7.7k
    Are psychological models discovered or enforced? They're invented and marketed to consumers. And of inconsistencies, you simply trim and choose until you find one, or a blend, that works for you, reminding yourself perhaps of Walt Whitman's model: " Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself, I am large, I contain multitudes."
  • khaled
    3.1k
    Consider how we go through life, from our days in the cradle to our dying bed.
    We come to life as basically a blank slate.
    Hermeticus

    Doesn't seem very clear to me. It seems there are concepts that you just understand without explanation. Such as "shape". Haven't run into someone whose repertoire of concepts hasn't included "shape" yet.

    The experiences we make are what act as our basis for decisions in the future. These are psychological habits - the way we tend to act in certain situations, the way we tend to think, the way we tend to see the world.Hermeticus

    But a good bit of it is taught, not discovered. I for one, never discovered the split between conscious and unconscious mind. Among many other concepts that shape how I act and think today.

    isn't it reasonable to think that there must have been an experience where the individual made a choice to associate pleasure with pain?Hermeticus

    Don't see why that would be reasonable. I have no clue how masochists become masochists.

    And note: It took a huge experience to bring about this change. It wasn't by choice. You can't just pick and choose your mental model, but you don't entirely discover it either it seems.
  • khaled
    3.1k
    And of inconsistencies, you simply trim and choose until you find one, or a blend, that works for youtim wood

    Do you think that a model that works for everyone is possible? Is it like the elephant story situation, where everyone touches a part of the elephant and and mistakenly says it's a different thing, or is there no elephant at all in this case?
  • khaled
    3.1k
    The effect of a psychological theory on behaviour is not something that the psychological theory in question can possibly take account of. Thus one comes up with - for example - a theory of sexual repression of women leading to hysterical symptoms (Freud), and by the time the ideas have percolated through society, everyone is talking about sex all day long, the repression no longer exists and poor old Freud looks like a nutcase.unenlightened

    So what do do? How do we pick which model to use?

    I heard the folk in the East have a nice model which supposedly eliminates all suffering and places you in a state of permanent bliss. It's called enlightenment or something. Let's all use their model!
  • unenlightened
    5.9k
    I heard the folk in the East have a nice model which supposedly eliminates all suffering and places you in a state of permanent bliss.khaled

    You heard wrong, unfortunately; there is heap plenty suffering in the East. But anyway, you don't get to choose your theory any more than you get to choose your form of insanity. You get educated/socialised according to the current psychological theory, and that produces the kind of person and the kind of insanity that you, or I then theorise and use to bring up the next generation. My generation was brought up on 'discipline' meaning physical punishment and threats. So the current theory is called 'trauma theory'. This seems to lead to a lot of complaining snowflakes who will probably neglect their children. Expect "abandonment theory", or some such, therefore.

    Of course I am probably entirely wrong about all this, because it is after all, a psychological theory. :death:
  • Pristina
    13
    Self-reflection (examining ourselves) + Self-affecting (causal-reflexivity i.e. our thoughts cause other thoughts and these others, ad infinitum or cyclical)TheMadFool

    Self reflection: looking in the mirror or looking at thoughts and reactions others have about you. My neighbor can tell me I joke and sing too much, my psychologist can award me the title "manic-depressive with a touch of schizophrenia and psychotic paranoia", my wife can tell me I rant on and on unsubstantially, while my mirror image tells me I'm an intelligent human being who thinks of others and l like to joke and fool around, while my serious, dark-voiced other neighbor can't stand me for that and joins with other neighbors to write a complaint about my education of our child who screams too much like me (being jealous of my wit).

    Who am I? Should the social sciences be invoked? Are social sciences the same or on equal footing with psychology. Or maybe antroplogy? What can the social sciences and psychology say about antropologists? Why do they examine cultures? Can this be done objectively, as is demanded in science?

    Causal reflexivity. What reflexes are caused? Which thoughts come up when self examining? What is it that you examine in the first place? What is the self?
  • T Clark
    6.3k
    People come up with all sorts of models to understand themselves, some more mainstream than others. "Conscious and subconscious", Jung's archetypes, Left brain right brain, whatever the Yogis were doing (I'm just not familiar with it), etc. My question is whether or not these concepts are discovered or enforced, because they never really seem to cleanly translate.khaled

    I think there are a couple of characteristics of the approaches you're discussing that relate to the question you've asked. First, the philosophies and psychologies you've identified are focused on the human experience of the human mind. Second, and related, they are also generally associated with a specific practice, e.g. meditation or therapy. If you take a look at branches of psychology that don't have that focus, e.g. cognitive psychology, cognitive science, psychology of language, developmental psychology, etc. you'll find that things are less chaotic.
  • TheMadFool
    11.9k
    You are a composite of who you think you are and who others think you are. You have an identity, a self, in every conceivable discipline - a sociological one, an anthroplogical one, a philosophical one, a psychological one, etc.

    Causal-reflexivity is simply the fact that ideas influence/modify ideas, thoughts transform thoughts: psychological claims (ideas) cause changes in our thought patterns which may, later, contradict the theory that caused this alterations.
  • Pristina
    13
    You are a composite of who you think you are and who others think you areTheMadFool

    I'm just my body. Thoughts influence me. Just like feelings or sensations and perceptions. Of mine and of others. If someone has a seven-year itch I already start to scratch. Am I a composite? Yes. Of feet, legs, hands, arms, torso, a head and face on top. Doing zillions of things with them. Idea, thought, or emotion and perception inspired.
  • TheMadFool
    11.9k
    I'm just my body. Thoughts influence me. Just like feelings or sensations and perceptions. Of mine and of others. If someone has a seven-year itch I already start to scratch. Am I a composite? Yes. Of feet, legs, hands, arms, torso, a head and face on top. Doing zillions of things with them. Idea, thought, or emotion and perception inspired.Pristina

    :ok:
  • khaled
    3.1k
    But anyway, you don't get to choose your theory any more than you get to choose your form of insanity.unenlightened

    I say you do. It’s just really difficult.

    You get educated/socialised according to the current psychological theory, and that produces the kind of person and the kind of insanity that you, or I then theorise and use to bring up the next generation.unenlightened

    So just go to a society that will educate you in the model you want. Easy peasy.

    So the current theory is called 'trauma theory'. This seems to lead to a lot of complaining snowflakes who will probably neglect their children.unenlightened

    I can’t tell if you mean that abuse leads to complaining snowflakes or that a lack of it does.

    You heard wrong, unfortunately; there is heap plenty suffering in the Eastunenlightened

    Well they say that it’s because of people not fully committing to the model!
  • Joshs
    1.9k
    My question is whether or not these concepts are discovered or enforced, because they never really seem to cleanly translatekhaled

    Are psychologists making models based on what they observe? Or are the models self fulfilling prophecies? Or a mix? And what does that say about the validity of the models and which we should use?khaled

    I think that all scientific theories are simultaneously inventions and discoveries. That is, they are responses to real influences from the empirical world , but that empirical world is already shaped for each of us by our prior ways of modeling it. So the relation between world and self is reciprocal. It produces constraints and affordances that correct , validate and invalidate our suppositions, but only within the bounds of the constraints that our existing body of knowledge imposes on the world.

    Are they really explaining behavior, or are the creating certain behavior in adherents?khaled

    More and more social scientists are coming to believe that knowledge is not the mind’s representation of an independent outside. Instead , to know something is to make a certain kind of change in it. New knowledge in physics implies new measuring tools, and those tools are inseparable from the new discoveries they make possible.
    A psychological theory or therapy invites the adherent to try on a way of organizing events. Each approach organizes those events in different ways , some more pleasing , useful or clarifying than others. We will allow our behavior to be changed by an approach that is introduced to us if we find it is more advantageous to us in some way with respect to our current outlook. The mere fact of its being presented to us will not in and of itself force us to adopt it , any more than our exposure to a new political viewpoint or religious doctrine will automatically lead to our adopting it uncritically.

    The bottom line is that different psychological systems are useful in different ways, which is why it is possible to incorporate more than one system, and many therapists do just that.


    Examining the physical makeup of a brain will not yield results that contradict the biology, and you could always reduce the biology to the physics. But in psychology and philosophy, different models produce different, sometimes contradictory explanations.khaled

    You can’t reduce the biology to the physics without losing much of value of the biology. Both are useful but for different purposes. And there are conflicting accounts within physics and cosmology.

    [
  • unenlightened
    5.9k
    Well they say that it’s because of people not fully committing to the model!khaled

    You have to laugh! It's not that the theory is wrong, it's that people aren't trying hard enough! Worthy of a politician. :rofl:
  • khaled
    3.1k
    but that empirical world is already shaped for each of us by our prior ways of modeling it.Joshs

    I don’t think the rock in Newton’s experiment got embarrassed so started falling faster. The only area where I can get what you’re saying is quantum physics.

    You can’t reduce the biology to the physics without losing much of value of the biology.Joshs

    But you can do it. There is a bedrock in the sciences from which you can derive everything and to which you can reduce everything. Physics. Biologists are doing physics, just at a much higher level.

    I’m wondering if there is such a bedrock in our mental landscape. Is there a model that underlies all these other models and explains them that we just haven’t found yet? The physics of the mind?
  • khaled
    3.1k
    You have to laugh! It's not that the theory is wrong, it's that people aren't trying hard enough!unenlightened

    To be honest I don’t see much wrong with that idea. Most Eastern countries are just Western countries with Eastern accessories now. I live in Japan for one, I could tell you most people don’t know anything about Zen, even though it originated there. They can tell you about the intricacies of the Marvel Cinematic Universe though.

    Not saying the model is correct, just saying that yes, in fact very few actually follow it so there may be merit in saying people aren’t trying enough. Or are trying cheap caricature.

    Anyways I’m interested in your thoughts on this:

    I’m wondering if there is such a bedrock in our mental landscape. Is there a model that underlies all these other models and explains them that we just haven’t found yet? The physics of the mind?khaled
  • ExistenceofSelf
    12
    **** (A Social Engineer Explains) ****

    (An individual should not become definition, however, an individual should recognize definition.) (An individual exists and expresses within the parameters in-which they were produced in and from.)

    I have been pioneering a new social science. I want to give perspective on personal experience. I eventually found that not every model and perspective is 100% accurate or even accurate at all. Humans had to perspectively guess during the initial stages of their development. Humans still had to stand on the guesses since they were correct enough to evolve humans. I dumped all information that I considered non-sense and stood on information I knew to be unequivocally correct. This helped illuminate what was accurate and what was not.

    I suggest test the data before standing on it. If there is a reason why you can not seem to resolve a perspective conclusion, then it could be the data you are standing on that does not allow for the calculation. Try and see if you can invent or create a better structuring. If you can, then stand on that for filtering of other structuring. If other structuring becomes constrained, then go back to old structuring that you may have; changed, altered, someone else formulated or you formulated to see if the conclusion corrects itself. An individual will find that everything is entangled quite complexly.

    The concept free will is based on a perspective conclusion that humans invented. They are trying to emplace the internal concept to the external concept, instead of emplacing the external concept to the internal concept.

    Artificial Intelligence utilizes a series of prompts in patterning to; interpret, translate, and express. Humans are no different than AI with this concept except for that we are more complex in the prompting currently. AI is a series of automated prompts and so are humans. The more a human learns, the more the human has to formulate choices.

    Humans get caught up in the concept of not having choice. The reality is that humans do have choice. The more complex they become, the more choices that is at their disposal and expression. In order for choice to happen, automation first must take place in order to liberate information into complex functioning of expression.

    As for pre-determinism, that is a whole different conversation. Hope I helped.

    Respectfully,
    Lloyd R. Shisler
  • unenlightened
    5.9k
    The physics of the mind?khaled

    The physics of the mind would be very abstract and rather empty seeming. I can make one vague suggestion: the physics would be 3 dimensional. There is a necessary (or perhaps unnecessary*) division of self-awareness between the self that is aware, and the self it is aware of. And to notice this requires a further division, producing the three dimensions. But further division is unnecessary, and simply repeats the previous ones. Thus every decent theory has 3 elements id, ego, superego, or child, adult, parent, or social, personal spiritual, Father Son and Holy Ghost, or whatever.

    *Of course "the sage is ruthless; he treats the people as dummies." But that is to say that when one has no division, one has no psychology.
  • Manuel
    1.4k


    When we reach such levels of complexity as human behavior, it is not clear to me that these models are discovered much, interpretations can vary significantly, yet they all seem to capture some aspect of the human psyche: perhaps they exaggerate one aspect at the expense of others.

    It seems more probable, given the choices, that it is enforced with a bit of discovery sprinkled in. Yet insight into human psychology often does not go much beyond the wisdom of the ancients, so far as human behavior is concerned or even observations about what is good for a person to do. These insights can be translated into psychological terms, and they can be helpful.

    But it is a difficult problem.
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