The failure of Symbolic Thought

Wally sent me a most interesting article on the failure of symbolic thought. I haven’t finished reading it but it’s full of good quotes already:

We seem to have experienced a fall into representation, whose depths and consequences are only now being fully plumbed. In a fundamental sort of falsification, symbols at first mediated reality and then replaced it. At present we live within symbols to a greater degree than we do within our bodily selves or directly with each other.

We succumb to objectification and let a web of culture control us and tell us how to live, as if this were a natural development. It is anything but that, and we should be clear about what culture/civilization has in fact given us, and what it has taken away.

Yep, a long and tricky read but it seems to be worth it.

4 thoughts on “The failure of Symbolic Thought”

  1. I found the ideas in this paper fascinating. I would love to hear more about this topic, particularly what the origins of Symbolic Thought are. I understand that it arose initially as a way to bind social groups that were beginning to fragment as a result of domestication. But, where did that first shaman get his insight. Perhaps it was some sort of sybolic representation of the conditions needed for domestication (where, when and what types of plants to grow?). But it seems like there shoudln’t have been a need to “understand” those variables or represent (distill?) them with symbols. Or perhaps some sort of understanding that certain constellations in certain positions produced favorable coditions for agriculture (I have no evidence for this. It’s just an example). And why did the one (or few) shamans acquire and guard this knowledge, rather than share it as other responsibilities had been shared up to that point? Does anyone have links to more papers on symbolic thought. Email responses to this post would be greatly appreciated.

  2. well its like this you gave symbolic symbol to me and i made it work by spining it away from the devil wich is 6 know if i told them i was devil son wich is micheal make me 12 wich blocks devil in know if say i said adam and eve 1/2 and angel piked up my girl than i simply went and messed with his girl you cold say angel killer knw if i told you that iwas babaricus if you izzy e such as me and eminem israel or isreal know if ileft my old ways and had a knew girl know if i told them why we killed every one is because we dont excepthalf human and angel we call it demons knoif i also i was the 666 plus 6 plus 12 666 in my vains know if i told you i am also perfect child like little nemo 1creation 2 beginning and if you want to know mystery on the forehead is a dragon piecethat i heat up and tosed it on the foreheads know if i told you if iwas also told you why they call me father would mean i fathergod jesuse is god and i said ialso pretty much the hole bible code know if i said jason is hole beast on 4 street backliff and know i told people to quit going back trough time know if we were set up by goverment means they were the real symbolic symbols and if they trying saying we were sinners means they used my blood in colleg station synthenised it to make symbols and enternal life than to set me upto die to sway i was big king snake omega and begging and end your old omega and alfa is kurt rasch who shoots from the sky wich is not an arrow it is a snake know he trains snakes to kill to hide him self know if they made knew deomons for knew heaven they will so them selfes know who train snakes will evedutaly turn against them.know if they tink iam dummb i spy on sifi wich means knew slaves as in know if i told you they stole my moring star we liked are lifes before it was know big rick gonzales was the onsupposed tobe forgotten in a cave thore and levitcus wich i call red cardinals know if itook the box they stole and stabed it in my arm know i can throgh the future know if its dark man he has no authority over me if they stole my morning star from the back yard than if they say if iam not aloud to have sex well its more like i told the demons there not aloud to have sex messiah was aloud to spirutaly and real sex i throgh out there demons and wickedtry ways know know w beast out of ground billy fosterfalse prohiate is tupack son is black than i called astar down and it fell in front of me but than i turned and it was be hind me know if i fooled mother marry this time i called the star down and had it the real way
    .knowif they trid to fool me in any sea the all go to hell for drinking my blood and my sons blood.,…………………………………………or any under ground

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