Re: MD Irrationality

From: Wim Nusselder (
Date: Mon Sep 30 2002 - 22:24:25 BST

Dear Platt,

You wrote 24/9 9:59 -0400:
'I associate the irrational with patterns below intellectual patterns and
therefore of less quality or relatively "bad."'
If I may translate 'irrational' as 'pre-rational', I agree.

You replied to my suggestion to distinguish pre- and post/trans-rational
'Any thoughts on what a post-rational world would be like?'

I don't think 'post-rational thinking' will ever completely oust rational
and pre-rational thinking, if only because human beings have to start from
zero (no intellectual patterns of values at all) when growing up.
A more 'post-rational' world is one in which more people need less time for
survival. Such a world is already being accomplished by rational thinking.
People in that world don't have all their economic needs satisfied; they
even still need time to satisfy their survival needs. They have time left
They have the more time left, the more they recognize (and act accordingly)
that part of their economic needs is only a disguise for greed, irrational
fear for their survival and socially organized insecurity that justifies
such fear. In a society that glorifies competition survival needs are less
easily satisfied than in a society that values (and organizes) more
cooperation and risk-sharing. At the social level the 'law of the jungle'
and the need to be competitive is very real. Societies need to value
competition enough to survive as society or there will soon be no basis for
an intellectual level at all any more. They need a balance between
competition and cooperation and yes, Platt, I agree that communist countries
got that balance wrong.
Societies that recognize that they are part of an overarching (now global)
society that has no real competitor any more and that act accordingly, need
less external competition. They still need internal competition however to
prevent degeneration of intellectual patterns of values. Intellectual
values, reasons to act in a certain way, are exceptions to social, habitual
patterns of behavior. If there is only one, global social pattern of values,
without internal competition between less encompassing social patterns of
values, no reason to deviate can latch any more. Intellectual patterns of
values will degenerate into habitual repetition of ideas that won't support
consciousness any more in the end. So no, global communism, a world
government etc. are not the roads to take either.

You wrote:
'I don't see any need for recourse to irrationality.'
And not for recourse to transcendence of rationality or at least of
SO-rationality either? Is denying the ultimate reality of subjects and
objects rational?

You wrote:
'Societies only change one person at a time and someone has to be
first ... We're the vanguard ...'
There are lots of discussion lists like this one ... plus chat boxes plus
mobile phone circuits plus ... so this mailing list may already be lagging
behind ... If someone -logically- has to be first, the speed of imitation is
so high, that quibbling over who is first is pointless. Logic may fail here
... Maybe social change is not located in individuals at all, but rather in
the relations between a lot of them...

With friendly greetings,


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