Intelligence. Please discuss.

Discussion in 'Other Stuff' started by Steve, Jul 7, 2017.

  1. Steve

    Steve Member

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    I was thinking about the various forms of intelligence and how very few of them are valued in our culture.
    Seems to me that getting a First in Physics from Oxford or Yale is first prize. All others can suck the hind tit!

    Please discuss.
     
  2. Mediochre

    Mediochre Member

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    I'm guessing its likely because STEM fields and the styles of thinking they entail are, in one way or another, all but universally responsivble for all human progress to date. Fire wasn't harnessed by someone crying they were cold and then someone else comforting them. Emotional intelligance is a distant second and has been more or less relegated to forms of manipulation and control of humans and animals. Whether it's stereotypically positive or negative manipulation is largely irrelevant. Ironically all other forms of intelligence, including emotional, can all be developed through the scientific method, the same one used in STEM. Because it's all just logic.

    TLDR; People who get first in physics from oxford and yale tend to get things done and be more resillient, stable people.


    I'm reminded of a game I played a long time ago called Starsiege that details what I believe to be the most accurate portrayal of an AI rebellion I've ever seen to date. The AI's, called Cybrids, are attempting a third invasion of earth and have learned that they keep losing because of humanity's "will-to-resist" which Cybrids do not possess. Wheras the Cybrids would cut an run in a fight that they had low probability of winning, humans would just keep going, and going and going and going. Causing humanity to just barely repel the two previous invasion attempts. So this time the Cybrids use tactics designed specifically to be psychologically and emotionally traumatic to make human resistance less efficient. Taking advantage of human emotional intelligence especially compassionate, caring behaviors. Although you don't see much of this happening in game directly its discussed extensively in between missions on the news net. Likewise the solutions to these problem on the human side are equally as cold and calculating. I'll give you some gems from there to illustrate what I mean:

    From The Starsiege Compendium Project

    Basically the Cybrids are portrayed as every tyranny in history cranked up to 11. And human emotionality is portrayed as its most glaring weakness and almost sort of strength even though technically cold calculating logic, luck and deus ex machina is what really ends up winning the day in the end. Well, not really win, more like "not lose."
     
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  3. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

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    I'd have thought Business Studies (or related) was valued most!

    David
     
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  4. I think trying to separate intellectual insight into brackets is a mistaken enterprise and IMO at least partially a product of the flawed mechanistic thinking that has engulfed us globally.

    I immediately thought of the reverence for mathematics that can be found among at least some mathematicians, of mysterious gnosis of proof-making to the point that proofs might come after a night's sleep (and in a few instances came from dreams, in Ramanujan's case from what he saw as communion with a goddess).

    But going beyond that is Plato's whole sense of cosmology which intertwines with a study of mathematics and the nature of philosophy in his day (and with Neo-Platonism which followed after) that concerned both the "left-brain" & "right-brain" thinking. What is the acceptance of reason but a kind of Gnosis, as Nagel notes Reason's ground enters is itself a mystery. So the whole work of reasoning in the Western World is arguably born from the esoterics. (See Lachmans's book on secret teachers of the Western world for more on that.)

    We can also look at those motivated to read God's Book of Nature and discover the Laws He inscribed, the ways in which religion inspired varied scientific and philosophical branches of thought - specifically the Christian and Islamic cultural worlds come to mind here.

    I don't know if it's still ongoing but when I was closer to NYC there was a series of talks called Poetry-Science which attempted to explore that - from our modern perspective - liminal space between the kinds of thinking. I suspect such groups exist in many places, at least in online form, and are worth looking into?
     
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  5. Kamarling

    Kamarling Member

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    The frustrating thing about intelligence is that I have just enough to know that I don't have enough of it.
     
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  6. Steve

    Steve Member

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    I realise this is a joke Kamarling, but I would strongly disagree. ;)
     
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  7. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

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    That is an interesting thought. However, I know I could never have achieved anything at all in art - my mind was definitely more focussed towards science and maths.
    Ramanujan's experiences seem to be echoed in reports that some people access knowledge directly while on NDE's, or in other mystical states. The difference is that he had something very tangible to show for it!

    As for that reverence towards mathematics, I really think that is leading some scientists astray by now. It isn't just HEP with its 10-dimensional models of space-time etc, it can also be seen in the use of high power statistics to extract signals from what common sense would term noise!

    Or conversely, maybe we all feel the same way as Kamarling!

    David
     
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  8. Steve

    Steve Member

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    Great stuff, I felt an urge to post about this topic but when nobody was replying I had lost the urge and didn't know why I had felt the urge, but all these posts have relit the flame!

    The whole thing is that I don't think it is all logic, well, maybe it is, but shouldn't be. Logic is something I associate with materialism, it is the reason that QM threw a spanner in the works in the early 20th century and led to 'shut up and calculate'. Using 'logic' we can calculate 'till the cows come home, or maybe get evaporated in the nuclear blast would be more fitting.

    Mediocre you kept saying my logic was at fault when I was posting my ideas about how I think things might work. Logic has very little to do with 'my thinking', in fact I'm not sure that thinking has a lot to do with my thinking! lol

    Presumably Stephen Hawking used logic to come up with the idea that 'philosophy is dead'? I've heard many bright people wonder how someone as intelligent as Hawking can come up with an idea like that. Eckhart Tolle often talks about 'stillness' being the road to something divine, I believe it was the same state that Sci and David were talking about when they mentioned Ramanujan and others' knowledge from dreams or other relaxed states. So the questions arise: Where do these divine wisdoms come from? And what does it say about the answers arrived at from other means, if anything?

    This comes back to the TED talk that I personally find so touching by Elizabeth Gilbert about Creativity. I believe popular TED talks such as this bypass logic and people just 'get it' without knowing why.

    That's the reason why I strongly disagree with Kamarling and David about 'not being intelligent enough'. Maybe we're all a part of a potential jigsaw that could bring amazing things to this world, if we stopped focusing on Maths and Science so much. These things might have brought amazing things to us, but I feel that they have left behind vital components that are needed to 'make the light shine'. (Sorry Mediocre!;))

    Music and art are now falling out of the picture entirely, with school budgets being slashed leaving money only for the mainstream chosen few, taken to it logical conclusion it appears to me that eventually we'll be left with Mathematicians and Physicists as the only truly educated people. Ken Robinson is aware of this danger and his own Ted Talk has been part of his armoury which he uses to push against the tide.

    It is the very same tide that we on Skeptiko are pushing against in our own limited way, that of the materialist worldview. So no Kamarling, I am quite certain that you do not have the same 'IQ' as Hawking, but perhaps you can play the piano, or bring someone to tears with a guitar, or do the same with a painting or sculpture? To me, you are the equal of anyone. The potential is there in every single one of us, whether we end up as a suicide bomber or a concert pianist is a very interesting question...and it is down to all of us what the outcome will be.
     
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  9. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

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    Well, I think that the word 'logic' - like so many other words - was grabbed by science/maths/computer science and its meaning was drastically narrowed. The problem with that, is that a lot of people start to think that the new word - let's call it logic` - has exactly the same scope as the original word.

    One particular form of logic` was a total disaster when applied to AI, yet it took people a long time to realise, because even though they were bright people they were mesmerised by the simply trick/mistake of equating logic with logic`.

    I don't want funding to be cut for arts and music, though maybe I would remove funding from the conceptual/installation type of art and give it to groups making stuff that was less pretentious. However, if I had control of the science budget, I'd do something similar - along the lines of Rupert Sheldrake's idea that 1% of the science budget should go on things that really mattered to people.

    David
     
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  10. A comment that I don't agree with completely but nonetheless is amusing and worth a bit of consideration:

    "As the Director of one of the five greatest museums in our Eastern States has more than once remarked to me:

    From the Stone Age until now, what a decline!"
    - Ananda Coomaraswamy
     
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  11. Steve

    Steve Member

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    This video will just about fit here.

     
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  12. Steve

    Steve Member

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    This one too. Great talk.

     
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