I am a woman born 1949 and my quest is to find a mindmate
to grow old together as a mutually devoted couple
in a relationship based upon the
egalitarian rational commitment paradigm
bonded by intrinsic commitment
as each other's safe haven and secure basis.

The purpose of this blog is to enable the right man
to recognize us as reciprocal mindmates and
to encourage him to contact me:

The entries directly concerning,
who could be my mindmate,
are mainly at the beginning.
If this is your predominant interest,
I suggest to read this blog in the same order
as it was written, following the numbers.

I am German, therefore my English is sometimes faulty.

Maybe you have stumbled upon this blog not as a potential match.
Please wait a short moment before zapping.

Do you know anybody, who could be my mindmate?
Your neighbour, brother, uncle, cousin, colleague, friend?
If so, please tell him to look at this blog.
While you have no reason to do this for me,
a stranger, maybe you can make someone happy, for whom you care.

Do you have your own webpage or blog,
which someone like my mindmate to be found probably reads?
If so, please mention my quest and add a link to this blog.

Monday, August 1, 2011

361. Rational and Irrational Mental Processes as Premises of Observable Behavior

Rational and Irrational Mental Processes as Premises of Observable Behavior

In entry 338 I defined consequencity as a form of rational behavior logically derived from premises in contrast to gullibility as behavior determined by believes.   

In entry 355 I declared:   I am convinced, that when two partners in a relationship are mature, rational and sane and when they share the same relationship paradigm, the same basic values and attitudes, all information about the needs and feelings of the other, then it is possible to solve conflicts rationally by using logic upon the shared information as premises. 

But I want to take this one step further.   I speculate, that all human behavior is based upon chains of if-then contingencies, that are logical in the conscious or at least in the subconscious thought process.    The difference between consequencity and gullibility are the premises used when starting the sequence.   Gullibility includes believes as premises, consequencity does not.

An example:  
Premise 1.   Getting wet is unpleasant.
Premise 2.   It rains.
Behavioral contingency:   The use of an umbrella, wearing a raincoat, not going out or something else.

Irrational Premise 1:   Young Children sometimes believe, that they grow in the rain.
Premise 2.   It rains.
Premise 3.   The wish to grow. 
Behavioral contingency:    Going out unprotected into the rain for the purpose of growing.

Using if-then contingencies in comprehending human behavior is not the same as dealing with the requirements of the observable material world by applying if-then contingencies.   It is quite obvious that when a glass falls on a hard ground, if breaks and that once a glass has been broken into shards, it cannot be restored into the unbroken state.    The same observable contingencies on the humans like a cut causing bleeding are obvious and therefore excluded from further considerations.  
Observable human behavior is much more complex and often determined by internal realities only directly perceptible to the individual himself by emotions or introspection.    Observable behavior does often not indicate, if the premises include irrational believes or not.   The same behavior can be caused by empathy and introspection or by a belief.   
An example:  A person can be faithful in a monogamous relationship
  • based upon the belief, that a deity will punish cheating
  • by the knowledge and empathy, that being cheated upon hurts and that the own refraining from cheating is a method to prevent being cheated upon in return.     
  • by only needing bonded commitment
These reasons are very different, but an external observer cannot know them without precise knowledge about a couple. 

A person's valid rational premises for consequencity are genuine expressions of the own identity.   Many differences are personal choices, that are neither right or wrong, just personality traits.    Tastes, interests and needs can all be genuine personality traits as premises leading to behavior.   Emotions are also valid premises, that are different between individuals.    So are attitudes if they are derived from the identity.   (I am omitting the problem, how much people are aware of their genuine needs and how much they are manipulated.    This will be the topic of a further entry. )

Rational premises are equally valid to explain proactive behavior and to explain reactions to external stimuli and impacts.    Actions and reactions are both sequences, that can either include irrational believes or not.  

The behavioral sequence of consequencity is a direct if-then contingency.   The person perceives a need, either by feeling the emotional urge or by introspection, and acts rationally to fulfill the need.  
The behavioral sequence of gullibility inserts an intermittent belief as an additional step into the if-then contingency.  

An example: 
A student has the wish to get good marks.   The rational sequence is investing enough effort to study.    The irrational sequence is the belief, that a deity helps and that praying will equally lead to the result of getting good marks.     
If two friends in the above example both pray and go to a party, then they both probably fail.   If both study hard, they can succeed.   But if one friend spends 10 minutes in prayer and then attempts to instigate the other, who wants to study, to go partying instead, then they have a conflict.   

This example may be a bit too extreme, but it illustrates, how a conflict cannot be solved by a compromise, because as a conflict of premises, there is only the dichotomous choice between gullibility and consequencity.   Tolerance also does not serve.   If one disrespects the other as an irrational fool for praying instead of studying, and the other pities the non-believer for lack of faith, tolerance only covers fundamental differences.   

Therefore the real challenge in resolving conflicts is the difficult task of ascertaining to really use the same premises for behavior.  This can only be done by constructive communication.  There cannot be viable compromises while remaining ignorant of each other's premises.    
I consider conflicts between gullibility and consequencity as not solvable (more in entry 358), but as a clear indication of incompatibility.    Only genuine needs as derived from traits with equal justification can be solved by compromise.    In contrast to the conflict between praying and studying, there is no question of right or wrong, there is no belief implied, when for example one partner prefers art exhibitions, the other movies as a leisure activity.    

To sum it up:   Conflicts can only be solved by communication about the premises.