Ming the Mechanic:
Opinions, perceptions and intuition

The NewsLog of Flemming Funch
 Opinions, perceptions and intuition2009-10-25 17:04
picture by Flemming Funch

It is a good thing that many people have keen perceptions of the material world around us. I mean, that you can experience something and be pretty sure what you experienced and that it really is there. It allows for developing mental models that are calibrated with the material world, e.g. science, and thus to get very consistent results to certain very consistent actions. You'd probably want a surgeon to have very keen perceptions.

But many otherwise pleasant people are not good at distinguishing between perceptions and opinions. I.e. they don't quite know the difference between knowing something because you've observed it and verified it, or because you hallucinated it. An opinion based on an emotional reaction is a lousy source of knowledge compared to perception or measurement. Folks who use guessing as their method of knowing stuff or making decisions can probably be perfectly adequate in many professions, but not in the ones where it is important to get things right, such as engineers or pilots.

Then again, keen perceptions and an absence of hallucination is not quite enough. You wouldn't want to be a passenger in a car driven by somebody who only goes by what they see and hear. You certainly shouldn't let such a person ride a motorcycle, as they'd probably not survive more than a few weeks. What would be missing would be the kind of intuition one has when one has mastered a skill. Where you somehow predict that a car is about to turn in front of you, despite that there's nothing visually that gives it away. Where sub-conscious or extra-sensory cues tell you something useful, despite you not knowing exactly how.

I suppose I'm thinking about this because I'm trying to convert parts of my life from being based on emotions, opinions and hallucinations to being based on something more real. Oh, I have very sharp perceptions in some areas, and super-human intuition in others, but in fields like finance, business, marketing, or even in "work" in general, I have more difficulty than I ought to have. Blindly making dumb decisions and failing to learn what works, even when frequently exposed to success.

A good start is to be able to recognize when there's something one doesn't know, and to then go and learn it.

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25 Oct 2009 @ 20:21 by mortimer : Opinion vs Facts
2 + 2 = 4 just my opinion

If I claim fact 2 plus 2 equals 4, I quickly find myself under a stampede.
Seems there is common agreement that everybody is allowed an opinion. Perhaps stating opinion grants being.  

25 Oct 2009 @ 21:16 by mortimer : A good Start
"A good start is to be able to recognize when there's something one doesn't know, and to then go and learn it."

Well, my mind is open to other approaches. Emotional art includes, not excludes.
Although, when I pick up a book and the first chapter contains a handful of fallacy, I do not finish reading that book.


26 Oct 2009 @ 04:52 by mortimer : put to task, definition of opinion
1. a belief or judgment that rests on grounds insufficient to produce complete certainty.
3. the formal expression of a professional judgment: to ask for a second medical opinion.
4. Law. the formal statement by a judge or court of the reasoning and the principles of law used in reaching a decision of a case.
5. a judgment or estimate of a person or thing with respect to character, merit, etc.: to forfeit someone's good opinion.

From - http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/opinion

Based on the Random House Dictionary...
"Sentiment (usually pl.) refers to a rather fixed conviction, usually based on feeling or emotion rather than reasoning

Seems you are correct Ming.

My bad. I been misusing that word.

How wrong does somebody have to be to be completely wrong?

http://www.newciv.org/pic/nl/artpic/10/1949/pc-0043b.jpg http://snarkerati.com/movie-news/files/2008/07/woody-harrelson-in-2012.jpg  

26 Oct 2009 @ 16:14 by solomoreno : Really?
Reality is simply what is real, and it does not NECESSARILY have to be true. That seems to me to be part of what Ming is saying. Is what's real, TRULY real, or REALLY real? Hubbard said that it's probably not a good idea to investigate the reality of reality. In other words, if it's real to you, then it's real. But again, is what's real, true? One might be able to say that resolving 'case,' or becoming whole is simply reconciling reality with truth. As the Radiohead song goes, "Just 'cause you feel it, doesn't mean it's there."  

26 Oct 2009 @ 22:44 by ming : Truth and reality
I'm mainly concerned with practical truth, not ultimate truth. Any reality we can deal with is not the ultimate Reality, but some kind of virtual reality. Still, there's the question of whether you deal with the reality in front of you or not. If I try to put my coffee cup on the table, and I miss the table because I'm not paying attention, I'm not very in sync with the reality I'm operating in. In that moment it matters little that both the cup and the table really are just one probable possibility within a quantum multiverse. That's interesting, and maybe useful if I'm going to perform some kind of magic. But if I just need to put down my cup, it suffices to pay attention. Meaning, I need to use perceptions, and not just opinion or hallucination.

What I'm pointing out is three different levels of dealing with reality:

- guessing, opinionating, reacting, hallucinating what is there
- perceiving what is there, learning what you don't know by observation
- knowing what is there so well that you can know stuff without looking

And it is worth noticing that the 1st and the 3rd might look like each other at first glance. Somebody who just knows stuff without seemingly going through the motions of learning what is there might either be delusional or they might be a master. Of course the proof is in the pudding. I.e. the results should be verified.  

26 Oct 2009 @ 23:59 by mortimer : Oooh Yaaa
I get excited when somebody talks like that.

In the political atmosphere calibration and measure of truth is by rhetorical force.  

27 Oct 2009 @ 00:45 by mortimer : Rhetorical Force
They've been playing this tune for so long, they don't need to look at the sheet music  

27 Oct 2009 @ 09:44 by susannahbe : finance, business, marketing
. . . or even in "work" in general.

Perhaps it is a difficult area because your vision and perceptions are 'bigger' and more encompassing. Perhaps finance, business etc. would involve a step backwards? as it needs to trigger the more primitive hunter gatherer mentality, the urge to do it, to have it!

If you are much more highly attuned to other areas, then one opinion would be why work on the areas that are weak?, concentrate on the areas that are strong. That is your unique essence.

I understand the need for money, we need it to live but some people are motivated by finance, business, marketing it is what makes them come alive. Why not find someone that you can trust who is motivated that way but doesn't have the vision and strengths that you possess and work with them, let them guide and market you and your vision and skills, so that you can concentrate on the bigger vision of what you feel is important.

There are lots of people with skills in the areas of finance, business and marketing - but few with the more vast vision that I suspect you have. ;-)

You could probably get a dog to miaow if you tried long and hard enough but why not find a way to let him bark.

Just an opinion of course. lol  

27 Oct 2009 @ 13:38 by ming : Doing what you're not good at
Susannah, yeah, no reason to have to be an expert in everything. But, personally, I've noticed how I've spent a lot of wasted effort on stuff I was resisting, sort of refusing to be good at them, because they aren't "my thing". But that made them consume a lot more time and energy, with less result, than if I had just faced them and gotten them out of the way. Which is what I'm trying to remedy now.

Yes, one might also simply find people to trust in those areas one isn't very fluent in. I certainly plan on doing that too. But since I'd like to be very good at "making things happen", I feel I need to have at least a basic facility with business and marketing. I.e. how do you set up some activity that is viable. That involves having the resources needed, making sure it does something that actually is needed, and being able to let the people know about it who would be interested. Somebody needs to orchestrate it. You can call that "business" or you can call it something else, but it typically doesn't happen unless somebody has a sense of how to do it.  

27 Oct 2009 @ 16:52 by ming : Business
There are lots of things wrong with "business as usual" in the old civilization, particularly when it involves mega-corporations. But still, there's a certain "business" sense that is needed to carry out any kind of activity. E.g. you need to figure out how it is done, and how it is done effectively and efficiently; you need to get the needed resources from somewhere; you probably need the cooperation of some other people; you need to communicate clearly with the target audience; you need to deliver a quality product or service into their hands; etc. It is too easy, if one doesn't succeed at very much, to just blame it on society. Even if we had a totally different economic system, even if there was no currency, even if there were no greedy megacorps, you'd still need to know how to organize a sustainable activity that produces something useful. Which requires some kind of rapport with reality, probably learning some things one didn't already know.  

27 Oct 2009 @ 20:18 by susannahbe : Doing what you are not good at. . .
Yes, you explained that very well and I understand that certain skills are necessary whatever route you take, as you will invariably come back to the point where they are needed, and all the detours etc. will only waste time and energy.

Whatever the form of 'energy' you have for exchange, (whether skills, products or anything else) there is a need to effectively present and market the idea to achieve an effective energy exchange.

I do agree that for getting things moving, those vital skills are needed.  

Other stories in
2014-09-27 00:04: You must be an expert by now
2014-09-26 15:15: Brevity
2011-11-06 21:33: Counting what counts
2011-01-23 13:46: Authenticity
2010-08-23 01:31: Semantic Pauses
2010-06-27 02:28: Doubt
2009-10-15 08:32: Abstraction
2008-06-29 16:47: Complicated and Complex
2008-02-20 16:39: The universe as a virtual reality
2007-12-08 23:53: Blindness and cognitive panoramas

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