You can’t be rooted unless you’re free and you can’t be free unless you’re rooted L. Ingalls Wilder

Constructive Recollection Philosophy Application

Finding Truth in Science, Justice and Journalism


Ron de Weijze - June 2016

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam


 Finding truth is an art we learned and deliberately unlearned. Truth can only be found by looking for independent confirmation for our beliefs, from reality. This methodology requires dualism which is difficult to apply in personal- and social settings, because power and politics turn 'seeking independent confirmation' into 'avoiding dependent rejection'. A completely different social order is implied and the one keeps running the other into the ground like a tectonic plate. Philosophical Modernism may show us how dualism found truth, before Post-Modernism challenged it, regretfully regressing us all back into monism. 


When philosophical Modernism had developed most articulately, Post-Modernism was just around the corner, reducing the two sources of life, or duality of origin (Bergson 1932), to one. At the beginning of the French Revolution (1789), Kant was finishing the greatest work on modern philosophy (Rohlf 2010), which was dualistic. Mind and body were believed to be independent. What followed was monistic Post-Modernism. The body or object from then on was considered "intersubjective" at best. There was no longer a really independent object, or Kant's noumenon, to take into account, for the subject which had to be the phe-noumenon. The intersubjective extended the subject, now dependent and obliged to share everything, no longer being free, independent and critical.

The Cultural Revolution (1968) doubled down on the monistic premise, after Post-Modernism returned from a trip to sell itself around the world, leaving behind its brand of social order as collectivism, socialism or communism. We fail to associate the transition from dualism to monism, since it happened along the way, in so many local histories, like in Roman-Catholicism, architecture, art or philosophy1. Yet it had a deep impact upon many everyday lives, including our own. According to Post-Modernism, if we deconstruct our world (Žižek 2012, Derrida 1992), the self does not exist (Heidegger 1959, Sartre 1943), God is dead (Nietzsche 1882), there are multiple dialectical truths (Marx 1867) and reality is only a phenomenon of the mind (Hegel 1807), without an independent object.

Our two sources are after-the-fact sensibility and before-the-fact understanding, or the "synthetic a posteriori" and the "analytic a priori" (Kant 1770). Assuming that sensibility may also be called "sensing what-is-sensed" and understanding may also be called "knowing what-is-known", then the following concepts describe and explain modern dualism, as opposed to post-modern monism. The sources coordinately reflect [1] themselves, as what-is-sensed, which is reflected in sensing, and as knowing, which is reflected in what-is-known. Truth may be found, only if and when sensing what-is-sensed independently confirms [2] knowing what-is-known. Through states of coordinated reflection, at stages of independent confirmation and in phases of constructive recollection [3], an ideal social cycle transcends, for social interaction [a], social reality [b] and social identity [c].


1. Coordinated Reflection


In recollection after-the-fact, sensing is the spatial self-reflection of what-is-sensed. In construction before-the-fact, what-is-known is the temporal self-reflection of knowing. Sources create their own self-reflections, co-ordinated spatially or temporally, relative to the tangent points between them. These points create room, as the sphere comes into being. The spatial point stays at the periphery-, as the temporal point stays at the depth, of the expanding spatial- and temporal spheres or beings, which are both our sources and both their self-reflections.

Sensing, knowing, what-is-sensed and what-is-known are 4 spheres or beings, with 3 spatial dimensions for the convex periphery and 1 temporal dimension for the radius, in all directions. The ratio between the circumference and the radius of the sphere is π ("pi"), a number carrying infinite decimal places, indicating irreducibility or independence, between space and time or ultimately temporalized space and ultimately spatialized time (Bergson 1922). Temporalized space is not original time and spatialized time is not original space, although they are compatible. Time at the depth of the sphere or being is either the self-reflection of temporalized space or the source of time itself, while space at the periphery of the sphere or being is either the self-reflection of spatialized time or the source of space itself.

Space and time are united as space-time in the environment/other/reality before being processed. They are separated in the organism/self/belief, to be processed separately in recollection and construction, as space temporalizes and time spatializes, content-shapes-form and form-shapes-content or behavior internalizes as consciousness and consciousness externalizes as behavior. After processing, they are reunited in the environment/other/reality, involving the organism/self/belief "here and now" in truth, if and when they co-incide or co-ordinate again, around π.

The sensed environment/other/reality reflects itself in the sensing organism/self/belief, while the knowing organism/self/belief reflects itself in the known environment/other/reality. Self-reflections wander their sources, coordinated by their tangent points, "here" or "now". In recollection, sensing wanders what-is-sensed while independently, in construction, what-is-known wanders knowing. The reflection is a separate sphere or being and not a mirror image of the source. Living beings are the products or reflections of all aspects of nature, in being and particularly in sensing (Rorty 1979).

Before- and after processing, tangent points across all "heres" and "nows" add up to a tangent line or horizon, where the separated "here" and "now" naturally reconnect into one "here and now". Processing itself has taken them apart, separating recollection, external normativity in space, or sensing what-is-sensed, from construction, internal normativity in time, or knowing what-is-known, to test the validity and reliability of the latter against the former. This is done by seeking co-incidence between forms (sensing, knowing) and between contents (what-is-known, what-is-sensed).

If recollection or sensing what-is-sensed, and construction or knowing what-is-known, were not independent processes, there would be no need for the sources' self-reflections to coincide with the opposite source and have knowing what-is-known validly and reliably represent sensing what-is-sensed. Interaction would then depend exclusively on power and politics or dominance and submission, by reinforced cultural conditioning, within-groups-between-people. Everybody would (eventually) have the same, uniform, group identity, and the self would be non-existent.

There are two ways to functionally structure content (Dooyeweerd 1935, Sanders 1976) and dualism uses both. Content is processed in recollection by temporalizing space or functionally structuring 3 spatial dimensions into 1 temporal dimension, and in construction by spatializing time or functionally structuring 1 temporal dimension into 3 spatial dimensions. Space is temporalized from the periphery to the depth of the sphere or being, as content-shapes-form or behavior internalizes as consciousness, while time is spatialized from the depth to the periphery of the sphere or being, as form-shapes-content or consciousness externalizes as behavior.

Sources and reflections are as independent- and dependent variables in laboratory experiments, where changes in the one type of variable do or don't have a predictable effect on the other. Since reflections are the sources' self-reflections, their space and time, content and form, behavior and consciousness, depend on their sources. However, since the sources are independent, their dependent variables or reflections are also independent, from each other and from their opposite sources, which they need to coincide with. If and when they do, the source they depend on, must be the same as its opposite source, which fulfills the purpose of their separation, to assess identicality.

Sources and reflections are as independent- and dependent variables in laboratory experiments, where changes in the one type of variable do or don't have a predictable effect on the other and here they do. Since reflections are the sources' self-reflections, their space and time, content and form, behavior and consciousness, depend on their sources. However, since the sources are independent, their dependent variables or reflections are also independent, from each other and from their opposite sources, which they need to coincide with. If and when they do, the source they depend on, must be the same as its opposite source, which fulfills the purpose of their separation, to assess identicality.

What can only be sensed in sensing, cannot be known, and what can only be known in knowing, cannot be sensed, since these sources and their self-reflections always oppose each other. Therefore, initially, we are only subliminally aware of facts, and supraliminally aware of ideas. The organism/self/belief is not able to sense or know the environment/other/reality in itself (Kant's "noumen-non"). It can only trust and find out whether or not sensing what-is-sensed justifies knowing what-is-known, by positive verification for reliability and negative falsification for validity. Trust may then develop into expectation, presumption, prediction, belief and intent.

What-is-sensed must be known and what-is-known must be sensed, so that space/content/behavior at the periphery-, and time/form/consciousness at the depth of the sphere or being, may have impact beyond subliminal sensing and supraliminal knowing. The sensed environment/other/reality has the sensing organism/self/belief wander it, while the knowing organism/self/belief has the known environment/other/reality wander it. The reflections in recollection (sensing) and construction (what-is-known) therefore wander their sources, bringing their spheres for possible coinciding and reuniting with the other source, hopefully as more than coincidence.

What-is-sensed (source1) always needs to be able to verify what-is-known (reflection2), while sensing (reflection1) always needs to be unable to falsify knowing (source2), so that sensing what-is-sensed after-the-fact will coincide with knowing what-is-known, before-the-fact, as much as possible. The environment/other/reality should coincide what-is-sensed and what-is-known, while the organism/self/belief should coincide sensing and knowing. As long as this seems impossible, the system is under pressure to recollect and construct content that is refined and/or restructured to have the opposite source accept it, or legitimately reject it.

figure 4

As sources coordinately reflect themselves, so do space/content/behavior at the periphery and time/form/consciousness at the depth of their spheres or beings. As long as wandering in recollection and construction do not coincide the sources' self-reflections with the opposite source at their peripheries and their depths, no justification of one side by the other in duality of origin is found or perhaps even sought. This 'non-incidence' between sensing what-is-sensed and knowing what-is-known could drive communities to traumatizing sociosis (Van den Berg 1956) and drive individuals to tormenting dissociation disorder (Dell and O'Neill 2009).

The tangent line or -plane of all "heres" and "nows" or "theres" and "thens", in space/content/behavior and time/form/consciousness, between sources and reflections, show co-inciding contents and forms by levels of functional structure. Both recollection and construction build these structures by processing current content. Recollection does so causally, away from the plane, while construction does so teleologically, towards the plane. As the sphere or being grows, depth and periphery move apart, until the next level of functional structure is reached of current content, among all currents.

2. Independent Confirmation


Dualism suggests that we need two sources, sensibility or sensing what-is-sensed and understanding or knowing what-is-known, to live our lives, while monism states that we only need one source. As a consequence, we not only have different world-views, we have different worlds! Dualism is related to theological- and philosophical Modernism, while monism is related to "God is dead" anti-theist- or atheist philosophical Post-Modernism. From the start of our era, Judeo-Christianity was dualistic, having separated heaven from earth. Around the mid-17th century, dualism entered philosophy (Descartes 1644), by separating what he doubted from what he could not doubt, as in "I think, therefore I am". Post-Modernism took over from Modernism at the end of the 18th century, when Hegel reinterpreted Kant's magnum opus on Modernism and the French Revolution started.

The object or noumenon, toward which we are sensible, Hegel dismissed, claiming there was only the phe-noumenon or understanding. Without a critical object, monistic top-down dominance and submission, by immanent dialectics, could replace the old regime, which had just conveniently been guillotined. The dualistic view was different. One source may confirm the other independently or without bias, to bring truth to light and follow it. If and when possible, one source independently confirms the other, as what-is-sensed (source1) positively verifies what-is-known (reflection2), and sensing (reflection1) negatively falsifies knowing (source2). Independent confirmation seeks positive verification and negative falsification, while dependent rejection seeks negative verification and positive falsification. One upholds truth and ethics, the other power and politics (dialectics).

Hegel cut modern philosophy in half by removing the object and keeping the subject. Kant had described so well how the subject related to the object, that it seemed almost natural that Hegel reduced dualism to monism, by calling the object the "intersubject" in dialectics. Since Kant's position was that the subject itself created the categories of space and time, objective spatiotemporality seemed redundant and dismissible. This became known as "the Copernican Revolution in philosophy". Monists claim that there is no God, truth, self or reality, and that Kant was one of theirs. Hegel told a reporter that it was "too bad for the facts" (1804). This post-modern position is still widespread and almost insurmountable due to inherent power and politics, which can always deny truth and ethics. Modern dualism is opposed to post-modern ideas. Kant was a dualist and not a monist, therefore he is modern, not post-modern.

To make sure that knowing what-is-known is true, construction must be prior-, or a priori (before-the-fact), to a posteriori (after-the-fact) recollection, to detect independent confirmation by sensing what-is-sensed. Independent confirmation consists of both negative falsification of knowing by sensing, for validity, and positive verification of what-is-known by what-is-sensed, for reliability. If and when sensing what-is-sensed independently confirms knowing what-is-known, sources and opposite reflections coincide or coordinate in space and time.  It is then possible for contents in recollection (facts or what-is-sensed) and construction (ideas or what-is-known) to swap forms (sensing, knowing). Sensing what-is-sensed turns into knowing what-is-sensed, which is no longer subliminal, and knowing what-is-known into sensing what-is-known, which is no longer supraliminal. We can now be aware of current content.

Truth and ethics motivate intrinsically in modern dualism, while power and politics motivate extrinsically in post-modern monism. Intrinsic motivation is the product of independent rational-, emotional- and/or compassionate confirmation between external normativity in recollection and internal normativity in construction. Extrinsic motivation is the division of internal normativity in one, sending, "more equal than others" (Orwell 1945), part of the population (one or many), and external normativity in the other, receiving, part of the population (many or one). Roles and role-positions are sent and received, including inter- and intra- sender and -receiver conflicts (Boekestijn 1978), to establish a power-distancing (Mulder 1973) hierarchy or pyramid-scheme for all people to adapt to, as in "the subject goes into the world and loses himself, or he goes into himself and loses the world" (Hegel 1807).

The sensed- and known environment/other/reality plus the sensing- and knowing organism/self/belief, positioned opposite each other, and the wandering self-reflections bringing content to the other side, are all spheres. If and when independent confirmation happens between forms and between contents, forms can and do swap their positions or roles, to extend content with new form, leading the wave, reducing the last form to content itself, for processing. This happens from the "here" and "now" in π, extending both recollection and construction with the latest form in place, that was swapped, on the side the wave was to go. For the "other", in the environment/other/reality, is an organism/self/belief, having content shape form in recollection and form shape content in construction, as well, extending the meandering content between them with his or her (reflected) form, not content as he or she is for the one organism/self/belief.

By stages of independent confirmation, for greater sensibility in recollection and greater understanding in construction, facts develop from sensing what-is-sensed to reacting what-is-reacted, if and when the facts positively verify the ideas for reliability, while simultaneously ideas develop from knowing what-is-known to acting what-is-acted, if and when the facts negatively falsify the ideas for validity. Independent rational-, emotional- and/or compassionate confirmation should reliably coincide constructed ideas with facts, in space/content/behavior at the periphery-, and validly coincide recollected facts with ideas, in time/form/consciousness, at the depth of the sphere or being. Facts in recollection and ideas in construction remain apart, when forms are swapped, because their substances alternate if and when their space and time coincide, as part of how each of them must be composed.

If and when contents swap forms, recollection and construction expand, the one developing greater sensibility and the other greater understanding. By our definition, knowing what-is-sensed is realizing, and sensing what-is-known is intuiting. Sensing developed into realizing and knowing into intuiting. In the same way, if and when independent confirmation is still happening and contents can still swap forms, realizing develops into valuing (sensing what-is-known-what-is-sensed) and intuiting into trying (knowing what-is-sensed-what-is-known). At the final stage of processing current content, valuing develops into reacting (knowing what-is-sensed-what-is-known-what-is-sensed) and trying into acting (sensing what-is-known-what-is-sensed-what-is-known). The swaps add new form, from the other side, to the old content, while new form processes old form as new content.

What-is-sensed is one source, the sensed environment/other/reality, recollecting from the periphery to the depth of the sphere or being, where space temporalizes, content-shapes-form and behavior internalizes as consciousness. Knowing is the other source, the knowing organism/self/belief, constructing from the depth to the periphery of the sphere or being, when time spatializes, form-shapes-content and consciousness externalizes as behavior. Both sources reflect themselves on the other side of the shared tangent-plane, as the sensing organism/self/belief and the known environment/other/reality. Space/content/behavior at the periphery and time/form/consciousness at the depth, may be shared between the four spheres or beings (two sources and two self-reflections), if and when independent confirmation or truth is found between the sources and their opposites' self-reflections.

From sensing and knowing to reacting and acting, each stage of independent confirmation adds an alternate form to the pre-existing content, to which the old or previous form was added, turned into content. Sensing thus turns into realizing, valuing and reacting, on the recollective side, while knowing turns into intuiting, trying and acting, on the constructive side. The organism/self/belief then reacts to the environment/other/reality and acts to its own reaction. However, at this stage, the environment/other/reality may be another organism/self/belief, recollecting and constructing on its own, so that social interaction may have started, in social reality. The one's recollection is then the other's construction and the one's construction the other's recollection. The one reacts what-is-acted by the other and acts what-is-reacted by himself. This swap takes place externally and no longer internally.

Independent confirmation takes place between forms (sensing and knowing) in time/form/consciousness, and between contents (what-is-sensed or facts and what-is-known or ideas) in space/content/behavior. When form and content surf by wandering self-reflection, going around from-, and coming around to, one source it hopefully coincides with, and so does the other side around its source, then at the final stage of coincidence or independent confirmation for the current content, action calls for reaction between the sides (between the one's construction and the other's recollection), through space/content/behavior, while reaction calls for action within each side (between recollection and construction), through time/form/consciousness. This is external communication between sources or social interaction, which continues as long as there is some degree of independent rational-, emotional- and/or compassionate confirmation.



figure 8



3. Constructive Recollection


By coordinated reflection [1], our two sources seek independent confirmation [2] for- and from each other, to stay on track of truth in constructive recollection [3]. This is the purpose of dualism in modern philosophy, as opposed to its monistic, post-modern descendent, which denies the existence of God, truth, self and reality. Both foundations for social order apply to social interaction [a], social reality [b] and social identity [c]. Although they are mutually exclusive, we are often caught in the middle of these two worlds, stressed, confused and harmed, physically and mentally.

3a. Social Interaction

In terms of coordinated reflection [1], social interaction is construction between the one as source and the other as self-reflection of that one source, and recollection between the other as source and the one as self-reflection of that other source. Who is the one and who is the other, is a matter of role-differentiation. The one may be more apt to be the source of recollection and the other that of construction, to make social interaction happen. Sensing what-is-sensed and knowing what-is-known interact by surfing self-reflections, around their sources, until they independently confirm [2], rationally, emotionally and/or compassionately, the other source, which in social interaction is the other person. Therefore, in social interaction, what-is-sensed by the one is self-reflected as sensing in the other, while knowing in the other is self-reflected as what-is-known in the one, if and when the two independently confirm each other.

Groups are formed and society is ordered, either dualistically by the intrinsic motivation of truth and ethics, or monistically by the extrinsic motivation of power and politics. Finding independent confirmation for our beliefs about reality motivates intrinsically, to externalize consciousness as behavior. Offering the (Significant) Other freedom of choice, rationally-, emotionally- or compassionately earned and paid (forward), intrinsically motivates by independent confirmation as well. If and when independent confirmation happens and is shared in social interaction, the one's independence confirms and strengthens the other's independence. This is one's reaction in response to the other's action and one's action in response to his or her own reaction, made noticeable by externalizing consciousness as behavior. It is the final stage of independent confirmation for current content, reacting what-is-acted and acting what-is-reacted.

As long as truth is maintained by independent confirmation in social interaction, between sides, recollection happens in response to construction, through space/content/behavior, whereas on each side, construction happens in response to recollection, through time/form/consciousness. The environment/other/reality is then the other organism/self/belief, with whom the one interacts. Two cycles are needed for both sides to respond to the other's construction, in their own recollection, and then to their own recollection, in their own construction, as they take the other's response into account. There are four phases in a cycle, two for each side, one for the other and one for themselves. Independent confirmation, at four stages, corresponds to these phases, because each phase commences from a degree of independent rational-, emotional- and/or compassionate confirmation, or social interaction has to stop in its tracks.

In social interaction, content from the sensed environment/other/reality, is recollected and surfs by its coordinated self-reflection, the sensing organism/self/belief, to the other source, the knowing organism/self/belief, where the two forms (sensing and knowing), being shaped by- and shaping content (what-is-sensed and what-is-known), may coincide in time/form/consciousness at the depth of the sphere or being. More than coinciding, they may find truth by independent confirmation in negative falsification. Simultaneously, content from the knowing organism/self/belief, is constructed and surfs by its coordinated self-reflection, the known environment/other/reality, to the other source, the sensed environment/other/reality, where the two contents (what-is-known and what-is-sensed), being shaped by- and shaping form (knowing and sensing), may coincide in space/content/behavior at the periphery of the sphere or being. More than coinciding, they may find truth by independent confirmation in positive verification.

People adapt to the other person, to accommodate him, and make him adapt to them in return, to assimilate him (Piaget 1936). In post-modern monism, accommodation and assimilation are dominance and submission of one group or group member by another, extrinsically motivating them or him to avoid fear of dependent rejection through using power and politics, by dependently confirming friends (cronyism) and/or independently rejecting enemies (prejudice). This process does not take into account staying on track of truth, whereas looking for-, finding-, and looking after independent confirmation, in modern dualism, does. Independent confirmation consists of positive verification, of what-is-known by what-is-sensed, for reliability, at the periphery of the sphere or being, in space/content/behavior, and of negative falsification, of knowing by sensing, for validity, at the depth of the sphere or being, in time/form/consciousness. Therefore, what-is-known accommodates what-is-sensed, while knowing assimilates sensing, if and when independent confirmation happens.

If and when independent confirmation happens, recollection and construction swap forms (not contents), to transform into the next stage's substance of recollection and construction, separately yet simultaneously. The new substance is more extended than the old while it does include the old, putting a new form in the lead which is the opposite of the old form, due to the swap, and which turns the old form into new content, which must now be processed as well and does no longer process content itself. This continues until new substances are no longer formed, either because independent confirmation is no longer happening, or because the highest stage has been reached, for the current content, which is reacting what-is-acted by the other and acting what-is-reacted by oneself, externally in social interaction and no longer internally. Recollection and construction thus are waves between the sources by coordinated reflection, for every bit of current content, overlapping each other, making it seem as if there is only one meandering stream, while there are actually four, two for each side.

Interaction, internally in social belief, not yet in social reality, involves both sources as independent individuals, a priori or before independent rational-, emotional- and/or compassionate confirmation is detected. Both sources and their self-reflections have form and content, as content-shaping-form in recollection or as form-shaping-content in construction. Content streams from one side to the other, causally in recollection as what-is-sensed and teleologically in construction as what-is-known. Both sides separately recollect in response to the other's construction and construct in response to their own recollection. These are four phases in a social cycle, at maximally four stages of independent confirmation. Phases begin one state apart, as a response to the previous phase, and then overlap. A social cycle consists of maximally eight states, four by separation of phases and four by a phase's maximum length. External interaction in social reality makes four waves overlap, each side including the other side. Internal interaction in social belief is only about one side including the other.

Content streams from one form to another, for processing. It processes form in recollection and it is processed by form in construction. The two forms, as well as the two contents remain dualistically independent, as long as they process or are being processed, between the subliminal (sensing what-is-sensed) and the supraliminal (knowing what-is-known). Beyond these limits, they are one, as they were before- and should be after processing. The beating heart of processing, is looking for-, finding- and looking after truth or what independent confirmation detects, between recollection after-the-fact and construction before-the-fact. If and when truth is found, every state of sensing extends until it turns into reacting, and every state of knowing extends until it turns into acting. Thereafter, content is cast as dice, in social interaction, where one's reacting what-is-acted by the other, is followed by one's acting what-is-reacted by the self, after processing. Meanwhile, new content has come to fruition from later states, and is ready to enter the social arena similarly.

The one's recollection is the other's construction and vice versa. What looks like one wave, is actually a compilation or overlapping of four waves into one stream or flow: two waves for the one side, or source plus opposite self-reflection (the sensing- and knowing organism/self/belief), and two waves for the other side (the sensed- and known environment/other/reality). For each side, that is one wave of recollection plus one wave of construction, either one of which is the self-reflection of the opposite source, wandering or traveling by coordinated reflection, to recollect behavior or construct consciousness, having its content and form independently confirmed, by the other side, on a regular basis, to stay on track of truth. Independent confirmation and the resulting swap of forms (sensing and knowing), lines them up with contents (what-is-sensed or facts and what-is-known or ideas), enabling a flow or stream in one direction. This happens continuously, when sources (and their self-reflections) simultaneously produce new content and form.

3b. Social Reality

Cultural reinforcement by the power and politics of post-modern monism, extrinsically motivates people, to avoid fear of dependent rejection by excommunication and homelessness. Externally induced self-fulfilling prophecy, through media and marketing, favors or dooms people. "One adapts and loses oneself, or one does not adapt and loses the world", Hegel stated. Therefore, people must civilly, uncritically and politically correct, be prejudiced to independently reject enemies, and/or cronyistic to dependently confirm friends (cronyism). The distance between themselves and those of lower rank is increased, while the distance to those of higher rank is decreased, so that "some animals [become] more equal". Normativity is either internal for some, giving the orders, or external for the others, receiving the orders (ever so subtly). Thus, mimetic desire (Girard 1977) and group-polarization (Moscovici 1969, Meertens 2007) turn relations within-groups-between-people into hierarchies of dominance and submission, by immanent dialectics, closed morality and static religion (Bergson 1932).

Natural reinforcement by the truth and ethics of modern dualism, intrinsically motivates people, to look for-, find-, and look after independent confirmation, to strengthen each other as independent individuals. Offering or paying (forward) freedom of choice, which the other noticeably earned, serves the whole community. Relations within-people-between-groups are never corrupted, and within-facts-between-ideas they never entangle, since normativity is dualistic, external in recollection and internal in construction. They are used for comparison and finding truth by independent rational-, emotional- and/or compassionate confirmation, if and when facts positively verify ideas for reliability, and facts negatively falsify ideas for validity. People can adapt to groups without losing themselves, be independent without being isolated, or create groups of their own, of independent individuals, who need strength (not power), which they all send and receive, if and when truth is found, by keeping morality open and religion dynamic, to welcome critique.

While coordinated reflection [1] appears in both worlds, the one created by post-modern, immanent dialectic monism or power and politics and the other created by modern, independent individual dualism or truth and ethics, independent confirmation [2] matters to the latter only. Monism may look like dualism, since it is dialectic, yet its basic assumption is that we are all one group within which subgroups or individuals compete for dominance while submitting others (Hegel 1807, Marx 1859, Nietzsche 1901). Dualism, on the contrary, assumes there are two sources, instead of one, which interact to stay on track of truth and not to gain dominance over-, and submit, "less equal" others. Living in the one world or the other, is the outcome of our upbringing. As we all live on the same planet, we are challenged, all the time, by a social order that is completely different from our own and that we must accept, even if it runs us into the ground like a tectonic plate.

Where and when post-modern monism and modern dualism run into each other, role-sending and role-receiving by the former may grow intense, or it may diminish under the influence of the latter. Internal normativity is sent from the one to the other who is to receive it as external normativity. The sender's external normativity and the receiver's internal normativity are ignored, when monism takes over from dualism, which happened at a large scale since the French Revolution and, revitalized, since the Cultural Revolution. This stimulates the will to power (Nietzsche 1901) and a propensity for action through politics, media and marketing. Power can simply bulldoze its way forward and let the facts it created "prove" its predictions. This is what Hegel meant by "too bad for the facts". Thus, power and politics can disguise as truth and ethics. Power changes the facts to fit its ideas, making innocence defenseless, while truth changes its ideas to fit the facts.


3c. Social Identity

Independent confirmation between sources, the knowing organism/self/belief and the sensed environment/other/reality, by their self-reflections, the known environment/other/reality and the sensing organism/self/belief, can be very consistent. That is when one source may become part of the other, by social identity and not only by independent confirmation. The other then is the Significant Other. Construction will under those circumstances lead recollection, as it is believed to be true, and no longer be subjected to verification and falsification, before it can move forward or processing current content is halted. When each is a source him- or herself and the other's self-reflection, the one's construction self-reflects in the other, while the other's recollection self-reflects in the one. The two are as one, interacting by spontaneous gestures and living expressions (Shotter 2011), and without a doubt about the fortitude of their continuing togetherness under any circumstance.

It is between modern dualism or intrinsic, ethical motivation to seek independent rational-, emotional- and/or compassionate confirmation or truth, and post-modern monism or extrinsic, political motivation to avoid dependent rejection or power, where and when the relationship between Self and Significant Other is most critical for the kind of social order, that will surround and support it. Independent rejection of enemies, or prejudice against those above the comparison level, bringing tension to the relationship (Thibaut and Kelley 1959), and dependent confirmation of friends with whom cronyism is group-polarized and exploited, taking away from others, are the only possible ways to avoid dependent rejection. However, relationships are also built on giving and taking independent rational-, emotional- and/or compassionate confirmation between sources (Significant Others), if and when they can, by positive verification for reliability and negative falsification for validity.

While power and politics of the group are central to post-modern monism, truth and ethics of the individual are central to modern dualism. The one avoids dependent rejection within-groups-between-people and within-ideas-between-facts, creating problems of dissonance for people and of impossibility for facts, while the other seeks independent confirmation within-people-between-groups and within-facts-between-ideas, solving those same problems. Closed morality and static religion do not allow people to defect to other groups and facts to be understood in other contexts, as opposed to open morality and dynamic religion. The latter are not immanent dialectics, because fighting over dominance and submission presupposes all sub-groups to belong to one group, that will eventually dominate and submit all others and have its own uncriticizable ideas or dogmas. People belonging to different groups will want to avoid cognitive dissonance (Festinger 1962) and return to one group and one set of ideas, unable to bear the undogmatic 'lightness of being' (Kundera 1984).

Relations within-groups-between-people naturally translate into relations within-people-between-groups, since they are basically the same. This is also true for relations within-ideas-between-facts and relations within-facts-between-ideas. Dissonant relations cannot logically, chronologically or associatively maintain themselves and need to dissociate people from their groups or facts from their ideas. They can do so lopsidedly as monism requires, to guarantee trust and safety. However, truth and ethics would soon be replaced by power and politics, if they would wholly accept this "solution". Relations entangle when the same facts are reused in different ideas, relating them differently and creating meaningful networks for them which are incompatible. To cope with entanglements, constraints or conflicts of interest, socioses are invoked in communities, calling for dissociation disorders, like derealization and depersonalization, in the independent individuals living in these communities (Dell and O'Neill 2009).

Ideas relate facts in spatializing time, form-shaping-content and consciousness externalizing as behavior, by the logic, chronology or association of multi-perspectiveness, while facts relate ideas in temporalizing space, content-shaping-form and behavior internalizing as consciousness, by the (social) identity of object-orientation. Relations within-ideas-between-facts, naturally translating into relations within-facts-between-ideas, get entangled by shifting orientations towards the environment/other/reality. Untangling may still be possible, holding on to truth and innocence, seeking independent confirmation where it has (at least nominally) always been critical to the highest standards in science, justice and journalism. Modern dualism can beat post-modern monism, since minority influence is strong when consistent over long periods of time and not dividing the majority’s attention (Moscovici 1974). Else facts dissociate from ideas, or the person from his or her own identity, by traumatizing socioses and tormenting identity disorders2.





Philosophy Application


figure 14



Finding truth is an art we learned and deliberately unlearned. Truth can only be found by looking for independent confirmation for our beliefs, from reality. This methodology requires dualism which is difficult to apply in personal- and social settings, because power and politics turn 'seeking independent confirmation' into 'avoiding dependent rejection'. A completely different social order is implied and the one keeps running the other into the ground like a tectonic plate. Philosophical Modernism may show us how dualism found truth, before Post-Modernism challenged it, regretfully regressing us all back into monism.  



Berg, J.H. van den (1956). "Metabletica of leer der veranderingen. Beginselen van een historische psychologie". Nijkerk: Callenbach.

Bergson, H. (1922). "Durée et Simultanéité". Paris: Félix Alcan.

Bergson, H. (1932). "The Two Sources of Morality and Religion". London: Macmillan and Company Limited.

Boekestijn, C. (1978). "De psychologie van relaties tussen groepen". In: Jaspars, J.M.F.; Vlist, R. v.d. "Sociale Psychologie in Nederland". Meppel: Boom.

Dell, P.F.; O’Neil, J.A. (2009). "Dissociation and the Dissociative Disorders: DSM-V and Beyond". New York: Routledge: 750.

Descartes, R. (1644). "The Principles of Philosophy".

Derrida, J. (1992). "Force of Law”. In: D. Cornell, M. Rosenfeld, and D. G. Carlson "Deconstruction and the Possibility of Justice".  New York: Routledge.

Dooyeweerd, H. (1935-36). "The Philosophy of the Law-Idea". Amsterdam: H.J. Paris.

Festinger, L. (1962). "Cognitive dissonance". Scientific American, 207(4), 93–107.

Girard, R. (1977). "Violence and the Sacred". Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.

Hegel, G.W.F. (1807). "Phänomenologie des Geistes". Bamberg und Würzburg: J.A. Goebhardt.

Heidegger, M. (1959). "Introduction to Metaphysics". New Haven: Yale University Press.

Kant, I. (1770). "De Mundi Sensibilis atque Intelligibilis Forma et Principiis". Regiomonti: Impensis Io. Iac. Kanteri.

Kant, I. (1781). "Kritik der reinen Vernunft". Riga: J.F. Hartknoch.

Kant, I. (1783). "Prolegomena". Riga: J.F. Hartknoch.

Kant, I. (1785). "Grundlegung zur Metaphysik der Sitten". Riga: J.F. Hartknoch.

Kant, I. (1788). "Kritik der praktischen Vernunft". Riga: J.F. Hartknoch.

Kant, I. (1793). "Kritik der Urteilskraft". Berlin: Bey F. T. Lagarde.

Kundera, M. (1984). "The Unbearable Lightness of Being". Paris: Éditions Gallimard.

Marx, K. (1867). "Das Kapital". Berlin: Verlag von Otto Meisner.

Meertens, R.W. (2007). "The Hofstadgroep".

Moscovici, S.; Zavalloni, M. (1969). "The group as a polarizer of attitudes". Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 12 (2): 125–135.

Mulder, M.; Veen, P.; Rodenburg, C.; Frenken, J.; Tielens, H. (1973). "The power distance reduction hypothesis on a level of reality". Journal of Experimental Social Psychology 9 (2): 87–96.

Nietzsche, F. (1882). "Die fröhliche Wissenschaft". Leipzig: Verlag von E. W. Fritzsch.

Nietzsche, F. (1883). "Also sprach Zarathustra". Chemnitz: Verlag von Ernst Schmeitzner.

Nietzsche, F. (1901). "Der Wille zur Macht”. Leipzig: C. G. Naumann.

Orwell, G. (1945). "Animal Farm". London: Martin Secker & Warburg.

Rorty, R. (1979). "Philosophy and the Mirror Image of Nature." Princeton: Princeton University Press.

Piaget, J. (1936). "La naissance de l'intelligence chez l'enfant". Neuchâtel: Delachaux et Niestlé.

Rohlf, M. (2010). "Immanuel Kant". Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

Sanders, C.; Eisenga, L.K.A.; Van Rappard, J.F.H. (1976). "Inleiding in de grondslagen van de Psychologie". Deventer: Van Loghum Slaterus.

Sanders, C.; Rappard, J.F.H. van (1982). "Tussen Ontwerp En Werkelijkheid". Amsterdam: Boom Meppel.

Sartre, J-P. (1943). "Being and Nothingness". Paris: Gallimard.

Shotter, J. (2011). "Draft: ‘Spontaneous Responsiveness, Chiasmic Relations, And Consciousness – Inside the Realm of Living Expression’",

Thibaut, N.; Kelley, H. (1959). "The social psychology of groups". New York: Wiley.

Žižek, S. (2012). "Less than Nothing: Hegel and the Shadow of Dialectical Materialism". London: Verso.


1encyclopedia Britannica

2website TormentedInHiding





Send Feedback