Paradox: a Multi-Dimensional View

2004 05 15

Paradox: a Multi-Dimensional View

My theory of macroinformation is itself macroinformational. It can no more be expressed in data than could Cleopatra’s fickleness in gushing over Marc Antony, right in the wake of her gushing over Julius Caesar, be expressed in data. Shakespeare’s forged a cybernetic loop with his oxymoron “salad days” with which to lasso a hoof of the creature which was human, female, imperial, and still vital. We still can’t see the whole critter, but can guess something of her shape by how she bucks once lassoed. The best I can do with Macroinformation is layout some data and hope that something kin to my own processing will generate spontaneously in the mind of the visitor.

In my quote of Bateson on Paradox (recent post-rescue), we find a keystone:

Interactions between different logical levels produce phenomena unseen at either level

In that same Bateson quote we also find the Liar’s Paradox. Mind and Nature repeats Bateson’s point that traditional logic makes no allowance for time. In a buzzer, making electrical contact breaks the circuit; breaking the circuit reestablishes the circuit. If no, yes; if yes, no.

There we have corner stones: and a keystone. But the arch must build itself.

Perhaps will a little more arranging of parts.

In Flatland Information Finds the Z Axis (module rescued soon, among Spectra) I talk about traffic cloverleafs as a two-dimensional system venturing fractionally into a third dimension. In a two dimensional system, two lines of uninterrupted traffic can’t cross safely. Ah, but if one line goes above or beneath another, then you can. What’s impossible in two-dimensional logic is easy and familiar in three.


I suggest that many paradoxes disappear, were never anything but merely apparent, illusion, if the appropriate additional dimension is invoked.

Caution. I am not saying that all things are true. I am not saying that the moon is made of green cheese … or rock: take your pick. I am not saying that logic may be disregarded. I am saying that some logical limits are local, misleading.

I am saying that encountering paradox should stimulate us to look “up”: to look orthogonally.

(Religions do just that: causing untold mischief amid Flatland thinking. Trick: thinking in the new dimension must be more, not less, rigorous. Trouble: how do you think more rigorously in the new dimension when you just got there? When you haven’t surveyed it yet? Have no depth of experience? Ah, rigor must remain the goal where it can not be the achievement.

2004 05 21 Yahoo shows me that they’re making a bio pic on Peter Sellers. The article quotes Blake Edward’s on the star: “I never loved a man so much. I never laughed so hard and I never hated a man so much.” Does what’s already here in this cluster of files show you what’s coming once I make time to deal with it? The statement is definitely paradoxical in Flatland. But any human living fully dimensionally among other humans should have no difficulty processing the macroinformation. Still, what but my theory wishes to work out the details? Formally!

In any multi-dimensional system some dimension (or dimensions) may be shallow. For example, we model the solar system as a shallow disk. It’s not flat, but there’s much more X and Y axis amplitude than Z axis amplitude. Photographs of other galaxies show multiple other similar shapes: the shape of the solar system recapitulates the shape of the galaxy. The same with a local system: our moon revolves around our earth in a shallow plane; it doesn’t zip all over the place like an electron.

Now: we also know from photographs through telescopes that such three-dimensional systems will resemble different Flatland shapes depending on the perspective from which they’re viewed. Viewed from a distance to a pole, such systems may look “circular”; viewed from a point closer to the plane of spin, the system will look “elliptical.”

Bateson tells a story of experimenters testing a dog’s ability to distinguish circles from ellipses. The experimenters gradually presented the dog with more and more circular ellipses till “distinction” crossed a threshold into “guess.” The frustrated dog bit an experimenter. (Good dog!) I wish the dog could have argued with the experimenters that for all he knew they could have been showing him the same three-dimensional system over and over again, each time a different angle flattened to two.

In four? I don’t know: we’d have to go there, get our feet wet.

More on this later.

Thinking Tools Information, Macroinformation Menu Mi Views

About pk

Seems to me that some modicum of honesty is requisite to intelligence. If we look in the mirror and see not kleptocrats but Christians, we’re still in the same old trouble.
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