Collecting excerpts from books I am reading and links to video I am watching — that you can easily share to FaceBook and Twitter.


5 thoughts on “Collectibles

  1. Our tendency to conceptualize our own mental activities in terms of subject-object relations and of the inner-outer dimension has been noted, as has the evident ease with which we project these notions inward and outward to explain all manner of creation and change, stability and intractability. We have an ancient heritage of thought about essence and appearance, form and matter, about the necessary as universal and the contingent as variable. These ideas are so interwoven and so deeply entrenched in our intellectual tradition that it is difficult to think in other terms. Attempts to find alternative ways end up being complicated and obscure, thus only contributing to the conceptual inertia they are challenging.

    ~ Susan Oyama The Ontogeny of Information

  2. The developing organism as object of thought will occassionally be conpared to the prcess of thought itself. Our conceptual structure and metaphors not only describe our discoveries, they guide and define them as well, and both object and knowledge of it emerge interactively. There may also be a nonarbitrary relation between the fact that we find it difficult to believe ontogeny is possible without a guiding mind or mind-surrogate to lend impetus, direction, and form to the process and the fact that we find it difficult to conduct our lives without recourse to a priori truths, particularly in the face of social and cultural variety and great uncertainty about the future. It is this relation that leads us to place God in the cell to make us, but to search ontogeny and phylogeny for clues to the enduring conundrums of the place of humanity in the world of fate, reality, and limits to human world.

    Susan Oyama The Ontogeny of Information p. 160-161

  3. If we are truly concerned with dealing humanely and realistically with ourselves and the world, then we cannot afford prematurely foreclosed possibilities or naive, simplistic optimism, crossed or circular inferences, empty explanation, or facile analogy. We cannt let projections (of ourselves into our genes, of our past into our future) pass for understanding, or disciplinary ambition for theory. I am suggesting, that is, that some worldviews are bettter suited than others to our abilities, including our ability to do science, and to our requirements as denizens of the natural world.

    Susan Oyama The Ontogeny of Information p. 192

  4. Can it be that if we really reinsert ourselves into the world, see our development, investigations, and technological control as actions within a network that we support and alter and that supports and alters us, see freedom and responsibility not as demands of causality but as a particularly human acknowledgement of it, if we see nature, including our own, as multilayered and constructed in development, not prior to it, if we see the world as truly our home and not … as our hotel, with all the loving reliance, multiple attachments, pride, and farsighted maintenance that “home” entails, is it possible that we will no longer need a mystical hidden message? Is it possible that the only message is our lives in our world and the life of our world in its universe?

    Susan Oyama The Ontology of Information p.193

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