Re: Re: MD The Individual Level

From: Steve Peterson (
Date: Fri Apr 16 2004 - 02:05:21 BST

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    Hi Platt, Sam,

       I think that the misunderstanding that suggests eudamonia level for Sam
    and individual level for Platt is conceiving of the levels as types of people
    rather than types of patterns of value. The levels do help us understand
    people, but the fact that they do not adequately describe the sort of person
    who makes conscious value choices among static patterns of all four types for
    his purposes, i.e. an MOQ-informed autonomous individual, is not a limitatiom
    of the MOQ levels but rather a limitation of trying to use the levels as
    categories for people. (I agree that an autonomous individual does not
    necessarily fit the label of intellectual, just as many intellectuals are
    stuck in SOM and have no understanding of the evolutionary position of
    intellect relative to social and biological patterns.)

       Eudamonia and individual describe people, whereas Pirsig's intellectual
    level is a collection of patterns of value of a particluar type. When you
    think of the levels as types of patterns where intellectual patterns are
    simply patterns of thinking, then there is no need to do any renaming. There
    is no better word than intellectual to describe the sort of pattern that
    Pirsig refers to by the fourth level. I hope that the problems that each of
    you found with the term intellectual will lead you to reconsider how you have
    been thinking about what Pirsig means by level. As Ayn Rand would tell you,
    when you encounter a contradiction, check your assumptions. There are no

    Steve Peterson

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