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5. The morphology of metapatterns: the Triad of Entity-Relation-Transaction

I will now return to the fundamental {onto-logical / epistemo-logical / experiential} logic structure presented above: "The three existential world centers: SUB, OBJ, SEM":

{} {} {}

{circle} X {square} X {triangle} [49]

Focusing on the epistemological aspect, we can map this to the fundamental categories of:

{}:{Entity/State/Substance} {}:{Transition/Process} {}:{Relation}

{circle}:{Entity/State/Substance} X {square}:{Transition/Process} X {triangle}:{Relation} [50]

and the corresponding grammatical elements:

{circle}:{noun} {square}:{verb} {triangle}:{particle} [51]

These are fundamental categories of cognition as they are {channeled / filtered} through a (slightly) Sapir-Whorf ian language grid. The presently dominating indo-european language models make ready provision for two of the epistemological categories {Entity/State/Substance} and {Transition/Process}, while obliterating (or treating as insignificant) the possible third category of {Relation}.

The noun marks category {circle}/{}, the verb marks category {square}/{}, while category {triangle}/{} is relegated to spurious word forms called particles, adverbs, or adjectives. In other words, this means that the category {triangle}/{} is treated in indo-european language models as subordinate.

In the history of philosophy, different schools of thought have differently weighed their world models according to these linguistic (Sapir-Whorfian) categories:

1) by Parmenides, Zeno, and Platon, we can entertain a fundamental cognitive model based on {static entities / unchanging substances / persistent objects / eternal, immutable ideas}. (Parmenides 1974).

2) by Heraklit, we can entertain a fundamental cognitive model based on {process / transaction / transition}. (Heraklit 1976).

3) by the Buddhist philosophy of pattica samuppada [52], we can entertain a fundamental cognitive model based on {inter-relation / inter-causality / inter-processuality}.

5.1. The attractor principle of the Entity-Relation-Transaction triad

The cognitive dynamics of the attractor principle of the ERT can be better visualized in this diagram:

The triadic poles of the ERT are mutually interdependent and exclusive. In the realm of cognition, a percept can either be perceived as entity/substance/essence, as relation, or as transition/process. This is a tripolar all-or-none decision, a trichotomy, anything can be perceived only in one way at a time. A similar (but binary, dichotomic) process occurs in the flip-picture of a Gestalt image, like it was shown in the familiar Boring women picture. The three poles of ERT act as attractors [53] in a similar sense as used in Chaos theory as they pull the percept to either one pole. This dynamic property of attractors has been described as trina machina mundi by Korvin-Krasinski.

The above considerations can now be condensed and lead to a three-fold Gestalt flip of cognitive dynamics. This is here called the morphology of metapatterns, the ERT:
ERT: {entity / state / substance}, relation, {transaction / transition / process}.

The morphology of metapatterns is the logical ordering by which patterns of patterns arise. [54] The catagories relevant for this are given by Gotthard Günther's reflexion theoretical polycontextural logics. Günther (1976-1980). In (1976: 282-296), (1979: 252-264), (1980: 104-135), he gives a systematics of levels of reflection, called proto- deutero- and trito- structures (1980: 111). In the present context, this systematics is applied to different levels of reflexivity in pattern perception. The different levels of reflexivity are called proto-, deutero-, and trito- patterns.

5.2. Metanoia: a Gestalt flip of cognitive dynamics

The cognitive dynamics can take three non-conversible (extracontextural) forms as proto-patterns which we have listed above:
1) The Parmenides view of {entity/substance/essence}
2) The Heraklit view of {process / transition / transaction}
3) The Buddhist pattica samuppada view of {relation / fluidity}

On reflection of these proto-patterns, a Gestalt flip of the cognitive dynamics can occur, called metanoia. The ability to perform a metanoia, leads to the formation of the first level of metapatterns, the deutero-patterns, ie. reflexions upon reflexion. The next level of metapatterns, is to reflect on the form of the changes of reflexions, which is a trito-pattern, and the ERT scheme presented here is such a trito-pattern of perception.

5.3. The cognitive model of Entity

Examples for entity oriented cognitive models are the idealist cases of the Platonic eternal, immutable ideas, and the Christian eternal immortal soul, or of material substances that stay the same "in themselves" while their configurations may change. See also Macy (1991: 46).

5.4. The cognitive model of Process

An example for a process oriented cognitive model view of is that of 20th century physics, driven by the second law of thermodynamics of ever increasing entropy, in which the universe is involved in an unrelenting thermodynamic dissipation process that is inevitably drifting toward thermodynamic equilibrium. Genz (1994: 76). Jantsch (1982: 56-58). In this view, even the apparently stable atomic particles "are temporary stable configurations of reciprocating forces (Wechselwirkungen)" Jantsch (1982: 63). They may have a lifetime of many billion years, but in the end, everything will run down into thermal dissipation and equilibrium. Social theories that are based on the thermodynamic principle of entropy are presented by Neirynck (1994) and Bloom (1995).

5.5. The cognitive model of Relation

The third cognitive model of relation is that of interconnectedness, and of pattern. While the first two cognitive models are fairly easy to understand for Western thinking, the third one is not. To achieve this perception, another metanoia is needed like it was demonstrated in the re-tracing of the awakening of the Buddha, Whitehead's society paradigm, and Macy's description of dependent causation in the model of general systems theory. The pattern view has been described by Bateson (1979: 18) as "a pattern that connects", referring to Goethe (p. 17). Bateson's definition of context (1979: 15) "as a pattern through time" is the essential platform for the present systematics of the cultural pattern.

It is within the individual freedom of the observer by which side of the flip she will construct her reality and if and how long she will let herself get stuck on any of them. (As is evidenced by the fact that whole civilizations have been stuck on one or the other end of the flip for centuries and even millennia). This discussion is not presented towards the aim that any one these possible flip patterns is inherently better or more useful than the others, and by no means is it implied that there is anywhere a "real world" that follows this structure. Quite to the contrary. The educating effect of entertaining various versions of a Gestalt flip is to learn to make the perceptive system so flexible that one can flip forth and back at will, and not be stuck to any one of the positions.

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[52] See the section: "Paticca samuppada as first principle of cognition".
[53] A triadic cognitive attractor in neuro-biologial usage. (Spitzer 1996: 185-188, 338).
[54] After Bateson, and Tyler Volk, Metapatterns.

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