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Sarah Luczaj

“Am I a Self, or Just a Place?” Comments, Page 1

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5 Responses (One Discussion Thread) to “Am I a Self, or Just a Place?”

  1. 1

    The authors say, ““Spatial-relations concepts are at the heart of our conceptual systems.”” but is heart a spatial-relations metaphor?

    I wonder about our sense of time and aging and our sense of self. (Maybe because my hair is now much greyer than it used to be.)

    When you say, “”This map is experienced within the body — the first and most obvious differentiating marker between “I” and “everyone else”.” I’m not sure whether you mean this to be a metaphor. My physical experience feels far more than metaphorical to me.

    I suspect Lackoff and Johnson of being extraverts. It is possible to see our trajectory through time as the development of a seed – eg Hillman’s The Soul’s Code. In this case the self is some kind of homunculus that unfolds in relation to it’s environment.

    I do think who we are is profoundly shaped by where we come from. But there is great diversity of individuals within cultures. So I don’t think we are blank slates either.

  2. 2

    Hi Evan! I feel a little confused by some of your comments so I’ll take them one by one…

    “The authors say, ““Spatial-relations concepts are at the heart of our conceptual systems.”” but is heart a spatial-relations metaphor?”

    Well yes, it’s locating the concepts in our body, at the heart, the centre, the source

    “I wonder about our sense of time and aging and our sense of self. (Maybe because my hair is now much greyer than it used to be.)”

    I wonder about this a lot too in this my 40th year ;-) This is a good example of the co-ordinates that keep changing on “the map” of the self… it changes all the time

    “When you say, “”This map is experienced within the body — the first and most obvious differentiating marker between “I” and “everyone else”.” I’m not sure whether you mean this to be a metaphor. My physical experience feels far more than metaphorical to me.”

    Well the body is in a concrete sense the differentiating marker. By ‘the map is experienced within the body” I mean it quite ‘literally’ in that this is where I feel it and how I have access to anything at all. “Literal” experiences are often metaphorical “too” because that is the way our conceptual systems work.

    “I suspect Lackoff and Johnson of being extraverts. It is possible to see our trajectory through time as the development of a seed – eg Hillman’s The Soul’s Code. In this case the self is some kind of homunculus that unfolds in relation to it’s environment.”

    Not sure where you are coming from with the extravert comment…. don’t see how it connects…? Don’t know the Soul’s Code, but suspect this way of growing would be one of the trajectories on the map.

    “I do think who we are is profoundly shaped by where we come from. But there is great diversity of individuals within cultures. So I don’t think we are blank slates either.”

    That is what I am saying in the post. That not only is there diversity but every one of us is utterly unique. We are the crossing points of a certain DNA, certain parents at a particular time in their lives, a time in history, certain languages, cultures, etc etc you get my drift. Our slates are scribbled on all over from every direction – in a unique way, which we get to react to in our unique way too!

    Hope I’ve made things a but clearer…?

    • 2.1

      Hi Sarah, thanks for your response. I feel lots clearer about what you are saying.

      The sentence that triggered the extraversion comment was: “The rest is a question of where we are in space and time, in our bodies, our families, our cultures and histories.”

      Another way of speaking about development would be: “the rest is the development of our own path, the deep feeling we develop within ourselves and of ourselves and the knowledge and affects we store of our environment and relations with others. Over time and in space we manifest more of our self, the essence that we learn and are.” For me this has a different flavour to that of cultural psychology.

    • 2.2

      Hi Evan,

      glad it seems clearer. The sentence that triggered the extraversion comment wasn’t from Lakoff and Johnson – they talk about the spatial/metaphorical./ conceptual way we think and how that is based in the body. The rest of the text was mine, influenced by cultural psychology amongst other things.

      Yes, what you said does have a different flavour, although I still don’t get how it fits with the extraversion and introversion thing. When you talk about discovering an ‘essence of the self’ – it sounds like something pre-existing, not really changing just being discovered/manifested throughout life? That sounds very different from the map idea….

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