TED Conversations

David Hamilton


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The Transitive Theory of Cognition

If I = A Human Being, and You = A Human Being, and You = A Negative Value, then I = A Negative Value.

This is the built in logic gate that distorts and informs all human experience. The problem here... is that negative numbers, exist only on balance sheets. Something either exists or it doesn't, it has value or it does not... There is no negative value.

A business has expenditures, it buys products, at a cost of money... but it does not deal in "negative money". There is not an antimoney particle floating around, and if you accidentally come into contact with it, your money ceases to exist.

In the same way, there is not a negative human being wandering around, just relatively useless ones. We are not taught this as children, we are taught, us and them, right and wrong, bad and good. We should be taught, existing and non existing, correct and incorrect. By teaching our children an us and them mentality, we have destroyed their logical abillity to value their own lives.

By teaching them, that some people are horrible, we teach them, that they are horrible. No matter how emotional, and unreasonable a person may appear, there is a logical component to their cognition, and the more things they identify as negative, the more that logical component, will force them to have a negative self image.

What am I suggesting, that we tell children, that everyone is a beautiful and unique snowflake, and everything will work out in the end? No. I am suggesting that it is healthy for the human mind, to reset its 0 point, to 0. Right now, we are teaching people to believe that numbers exist between negative infinity, and positive infinity. I believe it is healthier to realize that every number which exists, exists between the numbers 0 and 1.

This is a difficult process, I'm a writer, so at times I can be worse at this, than anyone I've ever met. I love using horrific language to illuminate mistakes... but, logically, I think I should probably stop.


Closing Statement from David Hamilton

That was a fun an engaging conversation. I'm going to edit it a bit, and throw it up in debate. Debate always seems to get more attention. Thank you all for your contributions, and just know, that I am defending a theory of cognition, which I think is unique to myself. In doing so, sometimes I may come off like I see myself as a guru, coming down from a mountaintop with ancient wisdom.

I only do this, because I think I'm the only person defending the idea right now... So, if I'm going to get a fair debate, I have to take on the role of someone fairly certain of his premise. In reality, I know it's on pretty shaky ground, but I also think, it's correct.

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  • Jul 28 2012: Since zero to one can be infinitely divided, it is an infinitely large range.

    Negative infinity to positive infinity is still conceptually represented by the less than 0.5 range and the greater than 0.5 range.

    With your suggested paradigm, less than average becomes undesirable and greater than average becomes desirable.
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      Jul 28 2012: Not exactly. With my model there is no negative infinity, and the entire world can be expained in 1's and 0's, things either being there or not.

      In terms of emotional context, I can see what you are saying though. People I may have previously suggested a negative value for, now sit at the bottom end of the .5, and are still less desirable... Where I seperate, is at undesirable.

      If there is no negative value, the average, is of positive value. The .000000000001 is of better than average... Average, would be non existence. As an entity only begining to become awake, it would seem foolish of me, to imagine that existence is just expected. Existence is something better than non existence.

      Everything is beautiful... in that it is lucky to exist, but some things are still far more ravishing than others.

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