The Initial Tangent
There is a desire to somehow resolve reason for one’s own personal behavior and ideas. This will be a search to realize my own identity through reasoning based on day to day life. For my reasoning to make some sense to others, it must remain balanced along what have personally been found to be the two most significant spectrums an individual can live along.
1) The Conservative/Liberal Balance
2) The Introverted/Extroverted Balance
There has not been a great deal of time spent considering these spectrums and the writing here will act as a log of the investigation to come. To maintain balance, it will be extroverted through this blog as well as introverted through a personal journal. This is in an effort to make it both an inward act of reflection as well as an open act of publication. Remember, balance. The influences over it are many and because this is not an academic forum, due diligence to citing sources will not be fully paid. The first priority is keeping the reader’s trust with honesty and openness being the only standards.
At the core of the writing’s progression will be confusion. The idea is the ending will provide an explanation. In keeping with the standards, honesty and openness, the product will look like a personal life encyclopedia. There will be some definitions, charts, and experiments which are open to interpretation and critique. Openly defining personally confusing terms will lead to the formation of an identity that will reflect something that’s really worth knowing.
As somewhat of a disclaimer, it is a choice to remain as balanced as possible in these blog writings, and postings will reflect the results of day to day life which will be kept close to the vest in this venue. Balance in personal life cannot be guaranteed and I apologize for any added confusion. It is not intentional. Think of it like the American Constitution where amendments can be made but the original document remains intact out of respect to founding ideals. This will also create a clear beginning and end to the body of work. The editing process will be, for lack of a better word, loose.
Foolishness will be the largest hurdle, and most likely insurmountable, but the journey will at least be interesting to me, all convolusion aside.
Definitions and Terms
1) Identity: the distinguishing character or personality of an individual; sameness in all that constitutes the objective reality of a thing
Extrapolation: “Identity” is the first defined term in this writing because it must stand alone. To consider identity in the definition of future terms would make the result far too personal. It is impossible to write without bias to begin with and to try to consider and accommodate it in explanations of ideas would only increase confusion. That is for the writing of the bold, which is not the goal in this space.
Also, for selfish reasons, my identity will be kept my own. Authorship will be under a pen name with as little of my personal life in this as possible. Reasoning will be guided by math and science. Metaphors and similes based on reason and conjecture are far more useful than anecdotes. Writing around the personal journey of establishing an identity is best left for the Dali Lama.
It is useful to define and explain this term as thoroughly as possible because that way both writer and reader can tell when personal asides are creeping in and clouding new concepts. To begin, there are a few assumptions that will be made.
Assumption 1: One’s identity is unique to their own self. Two people cannot share one identity at the same time. Like wearing a shirt, an identity is form fit for one and any attempts otherwise will be uncomfortable. Within that metaphor’s thinking, seemingly identical identities may be mass produced but the material and wear over time is unique.
Assumption 2: The perfect-fit identity for one (not an easy thing to come by) will result in stress free living. Stress is a term that deserves its own extrapolation but in this role it can be described as an uncomfortable feeling, the result of a perceived inability to fulfill your own responsibilities.
Assumption 3: Without further defining “stress” the leap is made where clear responsibilities results in clear identity. Fulfilled responsibilities are a matter of opinion.
From these assumptions comes the reason identity is to have as little part in this writing as possible. Alone, the act of writing is stressful enough. Opening yourself up for public scrutiny makes editing an ordeal and publishing treacherous. What is produced here should in no way be misinterpreted as a responsibility. What it is, who knows? But it is certainly not that.
Keeping all this considered we find an end to the extrapolation of identity. If future writings fall off the path of this starting direction then let identity’s definition act as a reference point for orientation. Here’s to looking ahead and the discovery of new reference points along that way.
2) Conservative/Liberal Balance: a description of constant action relating to shifts in motion along a spectrum, both physical and metaphysical, and in consideration of all conservative and liberal interpretations
Extrapolation: The definition is obscure and frankly quite silly. Whatever you think about the validity of statements like this it is still going to be written about, hopefully extensively in this space. The definition is so vague that it does not need to be taken too seriously but the substance it carries can be explained. There is a purposeful juxtaposition of physical and metaphysical as to be thought of in a spectrum or on an axis.
Whatever way one chooses to see it is a matter of personal choice. Even these choices change in certain situations. Conservative/Liberal is the name describing a particular balance along a chosen spectrum as it relates to actions in theory and in practice (all of it open to interpretation).
The only important message is that defining what conservative and liberal mean as an individual leads to understanding and the ability to establish reference points for orientation. We all do this instinctively as individuals and that ability if the result of a functioning consciousness. Unfortunately, the interpreted reality of both these words within our society leaves millions and millions of people confused. The source of most misinformation and its content is up for debate but society tends to be skeptical in educated areas. The common ground where decisions are made needs to be fortified with truth if balance is to be kept. As the masses become more and more mislead by seemingly everything and anything, the foundation upon which life exists begins to crumble. The pursuit of an understanding for what conservative and liberal truly mean will be the first step toward understanding why certain actions happen and how decisions are made.
A reasonable approach will produce the best course for this pursuit to follow. Truth through education through information gathering is possible and the significance in most of the previous paragraphs is but a few characters in type. Ideally we rarely have to think about it, which is nice. Once it is practically out of the system, things immediately become clearer and more interesting to discuss.
Admittedly, the usefulness of a definition like this along with any type of extrapolation is debatable. The best way to look at it is by reading the definitions of and googleing both “conservative” and “liberal”. To see how each term is described in society is where the interest lies. All ramblings aside, asking a person for their own personal definitions of the terms will lead to a weird conversation for no real reason. Obviously it has been greatly pondered in the past and maybe society is incapable of complete understanding but the conversation between individuals should not be so difficult. Surely readers of this kind of writing would love to go on about it but the fact that they don’t shows how confused we all are.
Internal gains can be made by asking these questions introspectively and external gains can be made by asking these questions extrospectively (more on that later). Tastes can’t really be accounted for and a connection of this to identity is a separate issue. Any sense of control can be debated. Explanations can be entertaining or they cannot. What’s key is investigation through interest through experience. The links of that chain combined in any way will result in information. This leads back to the truth through education through information gathering from before.
Where this is all leading cannot really be figured but there is a plan going forward. Remember, balance is the key to this writing with only honesty and openness as standards. If identity is the last thing to be considered in this writing then truth is second to last. It has never been wise to assume truth from writing, in all of history.
Where is this going again? It’s probably best to go back to the mindset present before reading or writing of this nature but the feeling of slight entertainment cannot be denied. As new heights and depths are considered there is still some basic direction to a continuance, so that’s what will happen…
3) Introverted/Extroverted Balance: the balance of actions, both inward and outward, within a system
Extrapolation: Less controversial and confusing than the Conservative/Liberal Balance, this term almost explains itself. When the words involved stand alone they are well known with little contention over their definitions. Introverted relates to the inward and extroversion relates to the outward. A thorough explanation of this is not needed because people are capable of labeling most actions as either one or the other without much debate. Readily available definitions from reliable sources clear up confusion but it’s the kind of assessment made where you know it when you see it.
The word carrying most of the weight in the definition is “action.” It is used to convey a sense of cause and effect along the introverted/extroverted spectrum. Introversion and extroversion require a setting or context to exist because the action involved is either withdrawing from or engaging with that context. Introverted action withdraws, yielding inward results with variable effects on the external. Extroverted action engages, yielding outward results with variable effects on the internal.
There can any number of actions within a closed system and all can be defined as either introverted or extroverted in nature. Reasoning that the actions adhere to the laws of conservation, the net output within a system will equal the input. This is reassuring for our purposes because when investigating whether an action is labeled a introverted or extroverted we do not have to account for its counter balance. It is not possible to observe and consider all actions within a system but the study of one action can be useful even if not complete. It will still lead to and increase in knowledge and understanding of the system. Unobservable actions within a system are too difficult to differentiate from actions outside the system so the pursuit of clarification will ultimately end in even more confusion.
The extrapolation ends here with the summary that the Introverted/Extroverted Balance characterizes movement along a spectrum within a system. This is similar to the movement along the other defined spectrum from before, the Conservative/Liberal Balance. These two terms will be at the center of most future writing in this space.
Retrospective Essay: Defined Balances and Time
The purpose of this essay is to tie together the previous defined terms. Please reference the graph below for a visual interpretation of the writing.
The definitions and extrapolations preceding were a sort of build up to the following essay:
“On Balance Along C/L and I/E Spectrums, Over Time”
A spectrum is intangible and open to interpretation. It is most commonly used in reference to politics, the most confusing and polarizing arena of human interaction, making the conceptual sorting device even more distorted. When analysts sort and compare ideas along a spectrum it is in an attempt to establish reference points that will be clear to others who are trying to familiarize themselves with new information. The Conservative/ Liberal (C/L) and Introverted/Extroverted (I/E) spectrums are useful for orienting oneself with actions within systems. An understanding of their definitions through the extrapolation and the realization of a common relationship can serve as a model for reasoning actions within a system over time.
Mathematical thinking will help with the understanding and visualization of what a spectrum is (visually speaking) a line that can continue infinitely in two directions. What else does this sound like but a mathematical axis? Most can picture an axis in their head and it is not unreasonable to think of a spectrum in the exact same way.
The main difference between a spectrum and an axis is the establishment of a beginning. On an axis, the beginning is point (0) where positive and negative integers relate at all instances. The conceptual beginning of a spectrum is far less clear because there is only a definition giving direction. The more unclear the definition, the more unclear the beginning. While the definitions and extrapolations of C/L and I/E are a good start and have some direction, they are hardly clear.
It is not until the two are considered together that centers can be reasoned. Thinking of each as an axis, with C/L as the (x) and I/E as the (y), will create the graph found before the heading of this essay. This is a clear mental model for considering the relationship between C/L and I/E. An immediately useful result is the formation of a center for what was before undefined. The significance of the intersection point for each spectrum is the clarification of a beginning. The axis themselves are rotated because people tend to assume the (y) values on a graph are dependant on the (x) values which is not the case in this circumstance.
At this time the idea of balance can now enter the equation. Again, balance is achieved after an equilibrium is found in relation to a center. After establishing the existence of center point (0,0) along the C/L v. I/E graph (CLIE) we can begin a balancing act of reasoning. The incentive to do this is that balance is often thought of as a best case scenario. Despite any individual preconceptions toward conservative, liberal, introverted, and extroverted terminology, most people agree on the concept of balance. The disagreements start over how to achieve it. Using the new CLIE graph as a compass during discussion can give opposing sides a direction towards finding what can be an agreed upon objective of achieving balance. These discussion topics as well as the alternative (chaos) will be the topic of future postings.
Points plotted within this graph can be used to orient oneself within the actions of a system and determine the most logical next step that may achieve a more balanced state. What’s important is to not make things too complicated. Concepts like free will and quantum mechanics are difficult to relate with and, much like personal anecdotes, only add to confusion. When determining where an action falls on the CLIE graph, instinct can be just as accurate as analysis. The ideal is that in the end, no matter how much time you spent classifying actions and interpreting information, the conclusion is comfortable. This makes sense because the mind should be at peace when there is balance. No matter how wrenching the journey, peace is an acceptable outcome and should not be undervalued. All that’s left is continuing your understanding and maintaining balance.
This brings us to a new spectrum that must always be considered, Time. It is a spectrum that all people are familiar with and it constitutes the journey to balance and the maintenance thereafter. It also fits in nicely with the CLIE graph as the (z) axis. Picturing one point anywhere on the CLIE graph can be considered a moment in time. As you move along time’s (z) axis (not pictured due to poor artistic ability) the individual moments constitute reality as we experience it moment to moment. Every action at one moment has a classification within CLIE and a collection of those consecutive points (shown on the (z)) show how the orientation of that action shifts. Actions are constantly in motion within the system and data that is balanced is easier to analyze. This implies that the most balanced point on CLIE, point (0,0), is the clearest way to move through time.
There are many tangents off of these conclusions but the important message is that, “balance through time is ideal.” This is a lot of build up to an almost obvious statement but the comfort level with a simple conclusion is the reward after a convoluted journey through new concepts and imagery.
The next step is to use what amount to tools for reasoning that can help us understand confusing actions. Increasing understanding is will lead to better identification and more efficient movement across time. Applications are abound.
There is no point in defining the C/L and I/E spectrums unless they can be used for some practical purpose. Convoluted terms like these are present throughout writings like this and if there is no use derived from the conclusions then the entire exercise is an indulgence. Dense writing no longer has much purpose in today's world because the investment of time in reading does not have a payoff. The intention is that the questions raised will stay with and influence you for a meaningful amount of time. Unfortunately, tying any future actions back to a dense reading in your past is hardly ever possible.
The question then becomes, how can the balance within the CLIE axis and time be applied to your day to day life? If these new terms have not been considered in passed actions, how do you begin to use them?
The following is a proposed experiment, derived from the previous essay, that represents a first step in how an individual can pursue balance along the CLIE axis, in respect to time. In all honesty though, this can only be loosely considered an experiment.
Experiment: Efficient Use of Time, Sleep, and the Lucid Dream
Because the CLIE axis are not the most comprehensible terms, the experiment begins with a consideration of the time axis. It is reasonable to assume that people experience time in the same way. There is a possibility that each individual has their own unique interpretation of time but differences have never proved to be significant. All of this considered, we can agree that the 24 hour day, and all the scale measurements based on it, are an appropriate metric for comparing experiences in time.
Now that we have a metric to base our data on, the second element to be considered in the experiment is balance. More specifically, the balance of actions. There does not need to be any further understanding of CLIE spectrums for reason to conclude that a balance along the time axis will show data with opposing actions equalled out.
The only understanding of the CLIE spectrums necessary to proceed is that introverted actions are the opposite of extroverted actions and conservative actions are the opposite of liberal actions. For this experiment, it is not necessary to consider the externalities of any actions. Best practices usually require that externalities be factored in but the resulting information overload would be counterproductive in this experiment.
A new term now enters the mix with the idea of efficiently used time. Efficiency describes the use of resources being consumed for any purpose. The less resources are used to achieve a result, the more efficient those actions of use are. The measurement of efficiently used time for this experiment correlates with the intent to achieve a balance of actions within the cycle of a day.
This experiment is only a first attempt at balancing CLIE actions within the quantifiable cycle of a day. Considering all that time in a day can only happen in a very vague way. Basically, there are 24 hours in a day. For balancing purposes, conservative actions (C) should be allotted 12 hours and liberal actions (L) should be allotted 12 hours. Also, introverted actions (I) should be allotted 12 hours and extroverted actions (E) allotted 12 hours. Remember, C and L can overlap with I/E and I and E can overlap with C/L. A balanced day will be the result of these these divisions being equal. Time that is labeled with any of the CLIE letters can be referred to as a specific time.
The purpose of this experiment is to achieve the efficient use of a specific time, spent while sleeping.
Sleep is an appropriate starting point for this type of experiment because it is an action we can all understand and compare. Sleep is also an action that can be clearly described as introverted. That is its significance for our experiment. The natural need for individuals to achieve REM cycle sleep on a regular basis, purely for personal well-being, is a fact. Because no direct connection of benefits to others outside sleep action can be made, it is purely introverted.
Getting back to the purpose, how is time spent sleeping efficiently used. The easy answer to this is that it depends on the individual. Experts tend to advise an 8 hour average is best for full performance, but most individuals can add a lot of opinions when it comes to their own personal habits. The extremes are where time spent sleeping gets really interesting. Soldiers going through intense training periods can achieve REM sleep in a little as 30 minutes. Also, CEOs often share the habit of sleeping an average of 3-5 hours every night. On the other end, those who regularly sleep double digit hours experience it as a symptom of a life disturbance. Whatever the reasons, it is important for individuals to monitor sleep habits because it can produce valuable insights into
emotional states and personal actions.
Deciding on an appropriate amount of time spent asleep is not the intent of this experiment, however. The pursuit here is to use whatever time there is efficiently. That involves lucid dreaming (the ability to dream while being aware of the dream state). No easy task, lucid dreaming is usually a fleeting experience with very little afterthought. Most people can relate to the experience, as well as describe it to others, but without much understanding.
At this point the experiment turns into a challenge. An introverted endeavor for an individual is to actively pursue an understanding of their own lucid dreams. The understandings that can come from this are very individualistic but meaning cannot be denied. Not much scientific effort has been committed to this study because technology has yet to develop strong tools for measurement, at least compared to the human brain. This is a pleasant thought when considering the potential within human beings but none the less, it remains unexplored.
The first step in this experiment is ambiguous and perhaps personal as well. A generalized question to begin answering is, how much do I really know my brain? The question itself is of almost grade school complexity but there really is no discernible answer. Something to consider now is the relationship of this with the CLIE terminology that's been laid out thus far.
Getting back to the CLIE spectrums, the initial inspiration here, we can remember that if eight hours are the suggested amount for a good night's sleep then sixteen hours are left. That's tangible and conscious time left to make reasonable decisions: twelve hours extroverted + four hours introverted. When you begin to deconstruct your actions along the time(z) axis with the basic labels of introverted and extroverted you can begin mental note taking that will result in some sort of perceived balance of actions. This does not mean the actions will become balanced. It would just begin a new way of perceiving, which is always nice to have. Also, "new" is in respect to the individual who's becoming aware of this.
Because this is an experiment that hasn't been seriously attempted, questions and comments about the methods are strongly encouraged in an effort to refine what the hell is being talked about here. Call out all the nonsense and post thoughts on where any of this should progress. Ideally, some concrete applications of thought processes like this will be analyzed in upcoming posts. If anything, the implication that balance is the key and perception is important are a good start for discussion.