Part of the series Perceiving complexity
The surprising part for me when immersing in the study of this perspective I wrote about in the previous articles was to realize that this is not as stupid as it appears to be at the first glance. The capacity to find all kind of unexpected answers to how much “2 plus 2 makes” is so valuable for the humanity, it opens the possibility for abstractization and for taking in consideration the abyssal complexity of the raw reality. Only that this is a rudimentary endeavor in its current use specifically as a power structure, it suffers from the focus on simple patterns, while the raw reality abyss is too much under the radar (albeit there is always an intimate connection to it). When you see it like this and you realize what real potential this mental disposition can have, you don’t feel the current human use too much different from that of the gorillas and chimpanzees. It is (nowadays increasingly literally) an earth-shattering evolution, but it is still in about the same league. It is a sui generis belief in the spider web of patterns you develop in your mind in an intimate openness to the raw reality perspective.
This sui generis situation appears to be developed by the classical human gender relations. An intimate connection between the man and the woman that both of them do not really understand what is about, they become like one, the female perspective of a psychological abyss is meaningful and perceptible enough for the man in this melting of personalities. The specific way things unfold at the humans in this moment is that the man feels he can make sense of that abyssal perspective not by opening his own mind to it, but by leaning on the woman’s responsibility to deal with it. This while he keeps the fiction that he is in control of the situation. This psychological experience is not something really opening his mind to the raw reality perspective, it just enhances and fluidizes his use of patternization as control of the situation and turns into an infinite number of answers to how much “2 plus 2 make”.
The perception of the mental abyss is something intimate, it is there in the mind, but it does not turn into a deliberate cognitive perception. What comes out of this melting of personalities is a sub-cognitive awareness of the raw reality abyssal perspective, for the man this is not really something external to his own sense of self, something that he has to face squarely. It is in a controlled environment due to the woman’s organized mental investment in the raw reality perspective. The man is not so directly conditioned by the woman, he does not experience a blip on his radar that constantly scans for potential threats in the environment, hence he has no further incentive to clarify what is this about. After all, the female raw reality perspective developed in a disempowered context. In the distant human past, when this mindset took shape, the men were not so experienced in the consequences as they can be now and thus the immersion in the woman’s raw reality perspective remained something personal, under the radar, something that he does not need to further investigate.
This while the immersion has consequences, it opens the mind to a multidimensional cognitive experience. The specific way this experience happens, as a personal assertion of power over a non-threatening other, turns its consequences towards creating plateaus of cognitive stability as control of the situation in the environment through patternizations. These specific patternizations, on the one hand, are taken at their face value as simple “1 plus 1 equals 2” perceptions of the environment. And, given the underlying psychological relation with the environment as control of the situation, they tend to lock your mind in their self-containing ecosystem, like a spider web of patternizations that “makes sense” of the world. On the other hand, the sub-cognitive awareness of the raw reality abyssal perspective, experienced as a pleasant masculine control over the fluid richness of the feminine mental investment in that perspective, keeps a personal, intimate, sub-cognitive openness to the complexity of the raw reality.
The mind, feeling in control of the situation, is open to slide into the richness of the complexity of the feminine-mediated raw reality perspective. This is a sub-cognitive experience and it creates a richness of psychological perceptions subsumed to the sense of being in control of the situation. The man has a perception that there is much more beyond the simple patternization of the world, but, being a sub-cognitive perception subsumed to the sense of being in control of the situation, all this intimate perception is still used in the framework of the patternization of the world.
The latter turns into a sui generis patternization, in which the patterns themselves are actually floating on a fluid sub-cognitive awareness of the raw reality perspective, they are not taken literally for their sake, but their coherence matters first of all for the overall sense of being in control of the situation. If it is necessary to defend this overall sense of being in control of the situation, then humans can be very liberal with the interpretation of these patterns (not only the men, but women too when they are “in organizational mode” by themselves, as they assume too this classical human organization for orientation in life).
This kind of masculinity based on the control of the femininity has something creationist at its core. When you hear a rooster crowing, it feels like creating an entire world full of meaning out of nothing, only based on his dare to plunge into the unknown of the raw reality as revealed by his control over the hens. The plunge into the unknown is at the core of this kind of masculinity. Apparently it is about the patternization of the world, but that is secondary to the relation with the vivacity of the abyssal perceptions of the raw reality.
It is this combination of a perspective from a point of view of strength and a perspective from a point of view of weakness that seems to have opened the mind to the current human cognitive capacities. I see animals that are weak and thus they need to see the world from the raw reality perspective, they are not in the position to organize their lives directly, they need to take in consideration too much the environment. A puny mosquito can have such brilliant out-of-the-box moves in the air, it does not follow lazy-minded patternized courses of action that most likely would see it soon dead. It has a very developed sense of that worldview that can give you an infinite number of answers to how much “2 plus 2 make”. A chased mouse can be so creative in choosing unexpected directions to run for its life.
These animals would put to shame a Napoleon in terms of creative strategy. What they lack in comparison with humans (aspects that ultimately make a Napoleon much more efficient) are the organized collaboration between large groups of individuals and the perspective of strength, of control, of the confidence that you can have the strength to change the course of some action by your own capacities and thus a broad perspective over the situation. Those animals ultimately are still weak physically and they did not manage to make the mental passage to a more intellectual use of their experience in seeing the world in a position of strength from such creative perspectives. Among humans, obviously it is not so much about physical strength in relating to the world, but most likely it mattered initially for a mental passage to a more intellectual approach (an intellectual approach that has the idiosyncrasies of physical strength in classical human thinking).
I see animals that live in packs, like the wolves, who have a rudimentary organization and collaboration in being efficient to impose that carnivore mantra of “I have nothing against you personally, I just need your meat”. They exhibit issues of becoming locked into a self-containing mental ecosystem as a group of individuals, similar to the ones the humans experience. This is because their life is not only about hunting, but also about being in a continuous confrontation with other carnivores, be they of their own species or of different species. The kind of confrontations that create a group cohesion and turns into having a problem with any other carnivore in the area by default. They don’t have a problem with the animals they hunt, but with other (potential) competition and in general with beings that can be stronger than them.
The dog from the times of my grandparents (on my father’s side) was a nationalist/religious fanatic material, he was very aggressive with whatever alien person was entering the courtyard, even if it was obvious we the humans were in good terms with the respective person. It didn’t matter if we were telling him to shut up, he was even biting fallen tree branches to the point his gums were bleeding, in the idea that this is what I am going to do to you if I can get to you. And you should not imagine him at all with a morose personality, when there were no strangers around he was such a sparkling presence with us who were part of his pack.
The dog that I raised is aggressive by default with whatever alien person enters the courtyard, but he calms down after a while if he sees that the vibe between me and the other person(s) is peaceful. I notice him being very attentive to what is going on and probably he would turn violent again if some aggressive vibe crops up (this situation did not happen yet and I could not verify it, but I see him being circumspect). One day I notice how a woman from the group of people visiting the house at that moment is going towards the fence separating our area and his area, in the idea of establishing emotional connections the way the women of our species do. She is talking to him in that human feminine manner of creating an immersion in a pleasant mediated raw reality perspective for a staunch mind that is already locked into a self-containing mental structure based on the cohesion of a group of individuals.
I sense how he is absorbing that vibe, he is not rejecting it, and yet he still has his own point of view. He is sitting in about the same position with a body language of neutral self-confidence, he is just slightly moving his muzzle aside with a whiff of embarrassment about the woman’s emotional expressivity, in the idea that it is over the top, but he is diplomatic enough to not embarrass her and for the moment he is just slightly embarrassed himself.
She was kind of patronizing in her approach, with a too narrow-minded focus on turning the dog on her side, hence not feeling very sincere (but still to a level not very obvious to the average human, many men and women would have been engulfed in her point of view). The vibe coming from him is that you should prove yourself first, let’s see what is your character on the long term. In the meantime, I am not against you, but I am going to give back a sense of emotional connection only to the level I feel you deserve it.
As I am watching this unfoldment on the sideline, I am increasingly surprised at how emotionally coherent he is in such a situation, one of those situations in which I actually learn new psychological nuances from him. I struggle myself with making sense of feeling my mind too locked in a patternizing mental ecosystem, while not being so natively literate in the raw reality perspective like a woman. And here I see this guy able to sustain concomitantly two points of view in his mind, not losing sight of his own perspective, being effective in clarifying what is the authentic healthy path to keep in mind when this new external emotional worldview is trying to engulf you, being effective in expressing the value of that authenticity by being personally immersed in it, not by trying to prove to the other side how his point of view is better.
In the more distant past I witnessed a dog reacting to a woman’s approach that was more sincere and empathetic. Years ago, when I was student in Iași (a city in Romania), I was walking with a girl in the Botanical Garden, when we see ahead a huge stray dog laying in the grass on the side of the alley, basking in the sun. I direct the steps towards the other side of the alley, my mind is very tense about the situation, how am I going to handle it if that dog is getting aggressive? We go past him, but after a while we are returning on the same alley and the dog is still there. Now the really shocking part is to see her going empathetically towards the dog and after a bit of exploratory moments she even starts to pet him. Without her saying anything, the previous image of a huge dangerous dog turns now into that of concern about his fate as a stray dog, what lies ahead for him if he most likely would be perceived so dangerous comparative to the smaller dogs?
It feels like she already perceived some aspects about him that made her consider it is okay to approach him. I sense some of the flow of raw reality perceptions between them, the powerful dog is not just immersing in this feminine approach, like I was used to think by default that someone in position of power is doing. He is powerful, but he also has some broadness of the mind of his own in that abyssal psychological realm. It is not just about being focused on the control of the situation, to some extent he is a producer of raw reality perceptions too. He has a position of his own in this realm of perceptions, he is probing around the authenticity of her expressivity. In their rather muted interaction, I sense how each of them discovers new psychological nuances that enrich their sense of relating with that abyss of the raw reality perceptions.
Even if I was sensing all of this, at that time it was difficult to make sense of all that I was witnessing. I was sensing it, but it was all new, I was very far from the way I can process the situation now, I was rather TV (I hear how the women from Romania call “TV sets” the men who only release information, but don’t receive any back, spending time with them is like watching TV, the most you can do is to change the channel).
(As a disclaimer, I also hope you got the idea that I am not idealizing femininity as some sort of magical deus ex machina that can solve all kind of issues and that if you are a woman you can automatically approach feral dogs without problems. This kind of feminine input requires some personal striving and responsibility about your own life. With some nasty bites you may have a rude awakening to the practical level of psychological leverage you have in real life and to the fact that you are just a celebrated “princess” or “queen” in a mental golden cage. Plus that in that case it was a matter of empathy and concern, it was not about feeding the ego as I imagine some bored lazy-minded women turning this into instagrammable photos with them touching stray dogs.)
Thus these animals with pack mentality have the same as the humans issues with becoming locked in a mental ecosystem based on group cohesion and collaboration. The same as the humans, they have some leverage around it, it depends on the circumstances, on whether there is sufficient food, on whether they have a rich psychological life.
The dog from the times of my grandparents was treated well, had enough food, but the grandparents were very busy with work, they did not have time to pay attention to him, and in general they had a more traditional mindset in which the relation with the dog was rather business-like, I take care of your needs, you take care of the security of the house. He was rather lonely, thus insecure and inexperienced in relations with other carnivore beings, hence he was very aggressive when strangers were entering the courtyard. Plus that the grandparents had some persecuted minority background and, even they did not show it visibly, they were apprehensive about the other people (and the dog was picking on that too).
And you could feel that he was not a bad guy, it’s just that he was facing a huge unknown in whatever strong being not part of his pack. In the terms of the nationalist/religious fanatic material that I mentioned before, he was one of those who are rather naive (as there are fanatics who develop vested interests in this mental disposition, they find it an easy way to get satisfactions for their egos and get ahead in their lives and in order to sustain that they turn into “other side of the Moon” junkies, they are manipulative).
The dog I raised had a much richer psychological life. And sometimes he makes me feel like my human sense of mental ecosystem based on group cohesion is rather ant-like, too narrow-minded. Sure, with my human mental tools, I can be much more diplomatic than him in handling group relations with a much more sophisticated and broader perspective, I can do things he doesn’t even dream of, but I find myself being too immersed in mental structures in which I already invested my sense of being in control of the situation. Something like those previously mentioned Christian missionaries in China who were studying the Chinese worldview, but only with the purpose to find ways to turn them to their own point of view. And nowadays, when the Chinese are opened to the world, their leadership does the same kind of manipulations of the other populations’ worldviews only to turn them to their own point of view (I am talking about the Communist regime on the mainland, as the Taiwanese society is more conscientious around these issues, given their ongoing outcast status in which they experience the powerless side of the long-term human accumulated experience).
How easy it is to manipulate the average human when you present them something that looks like a plateau of cognitive stability appearing so meaningful by itself. I get Chinese propaganda videos as advertising on YouTube, like this one about seven people who received organs from a boy who unfortunately died young. It all looks so heart melting, but I happen to have already some knowledge of the streak of information about organ harvesting from people killed by the Communist regime (criminals, but also political prisoners). Rather this explains the abundance of organs that creates the medical tourism boom in China.
Or this video about the investment in infrastructure in Xinjiang, obviously as a manipulative counter-narrative to the information transpiring about how they currently imprison much of the Muslim population there. They are even brazen enough to say that this would facilitate tourism, when in reality it is almost impossible for foreigners to enter Xinjiang, it is a closed-off area full of army and police brutalizing the local population. Lots of people already know about these aspects, but they choose the peace of mind offered by such propaganda videos. Let’s rather admit that 2 plus 2 equals 5 than ponder about what is really going on and what to do about that. And do not forget the irony that, while YouTube is banned in China, the authorities find very convenient to use it as a propaganda tool in the rest of the world.
The success of such plateaus of cognitive stability is based on the human masculine propensity to need them as control of the situation over that sub-cognitive, intimate awareness of the raw reality perspective. Give them imagery with underlying nuances of serving them on the plate meaning of the raw reality as control of the situation and you will see drastically increased your chances to make them believe what you want them to believe. Exactly because they want to feel in control of the situation they end up being manipulated and brought under someone else’s control with such approach.
The women know this at an unofficial level for a long time, and they use it when they are in a disempowered context. However, they pay too the price for the human masculine mental limitations when they think themselves from the point of view of projecting their ego as an active agent. Yes, they go to the other side of the Moon to ignore the side of the Moon facing the Earth when in relations to others as a classical feminine disempowered agent. But when it is about the projection of their own ego, they go to the other side the same as the men, namely in order to ignore the Earth. Things like those two previous videos, which may not raise red flags about specific feminine disempowered contexts, make many women too fall for their plateaus of cognitive stability. And in real life this happens also in relations with men, when they do not sense red flags.
From my empirical observations, a male dog seems to be better equipped mentally to not trust such make-believe imageries (and thus probably not propagate such problems to the female dogs too). If he understood what is saying in those videos, it looks like he would be much more discerning than lots of humans in keeping a healthy dose of skepticism, together with an open mind to sense in time the psychological depths of a situation. He would not think like a human male or a gorilla male in such situations, who tend to lose sight of what is beyond their sense of self developed by the domination over femininity.
I wonder if it is because the dog males are not thinking in terms of controlling the females, their gender relations being more egalitarian. They can be aggressive and they use to assert domination and hierarchy in the group, but this does not go into the direction of creating a sense of self and a world full of meaning by leaning mentally on a personal domination over one or more females. Thus they appear to have a sense of self of their own in that fluid side of the mind.
The same as the human males, they have a schematic approach to life by seeing their sense of self as part of a group that needs to have some organization and cooperation. They exhibit similar issues of becoming locked in a mental ecosystem based on group collaboration and not seeing much beyond it. But if they have personal life experience to get some leverage around this, they appear to think rather fluidly about new experiences outside of their usual routine. They are probing around with that fluid side of their mind, they have a sense of authenticity and they do not lose sight of it, aspects noticeable in encounters with the human femininity, which is designed to get around schematic perceptions of powerful beings.
It is not so much of a thinking in terms of axioms, by starting with some initial basic concepts as a sense of control of the situation and then by subsuming to them whatever new information appears in your way. I wonder what results would produce some studies about the comparative levels of credulity at the gorilla males, chimpanzee males, bonobo males, human males and dog males (in the context of dealing with new experiences outside of the usual routine presented as something giving on a plate a sub-cognitive sense of being in control of the situation).
Not to idealize dogs either, this ant-like narrow-minded human approach to new experiences makes possible some rudimentary organization that is still something a dog does not even dream of. A male dog may be more open to immerse in the fluid complexity of the new experiences, but that is too much of a steep learning curve to organize a more complex social life. Paradoxically, seeing too much complexity directly can be too much of a steep learning curve to organize something complex. But still, the way I see the situation is that, once you are aware of all that complexity, you need to face it and see how to make sense of it. There is already lots of human experience accumulated in dabbling with it.