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Thinking without language?

Sir Knowitall fell_followedby_in at one.net.au
Fri Nov 26 21:48:41 EST 1999

Sebastian Diel <sedi at dorf.wh.uni-dortmund.de> wrote in message
news:383D36CF.69B45FE at dorf.wh.uni-dortmund.de...
> Larisa Migachyov schrieb:
> >
> > Sebastian Diel wrote:
> >
> > Yeah, I also read newspapers or books while improvising.  But I seem to
> > combine your two modes somehow - part of the process is very right-brain
> > spontaneous, but part of it is quite analytical and controlled.
> Then you do deserve my deepest admiration, I still have to do a lot of
> working on it :))
> SeDi

I believe Larisa is fooling her self (just a little ;->) when she states
that she improvises and reads at the same time. What you perceive to be as
multi-tasking by way of "multi-threading" (a word+meaning borrowed from how
computers perform their "multi-tasking") her conscious awarness of the two
modes going on in parallel.

It is, I maintain, impossible to be equally aware at the same time (really
focused and vividly conscious of two activities of two "hardware"-absorbing
activites) of any two distinctly different sensory-motor contents of/at
either cognitive-level consciousness and/or emotional (or feeling)-level
consciousness --- or IOW potential focuses of actention at the same "level
of (neurophysioanatomically correlated) consciousness" get mutually
exclusive by the organizational function/principle of lateral inhibition (or
center/surround excitation/inhibition).

I am a professional violinist. Therefore I also know what it is like (for
me) to read and play at the same time.

An interesting aside:

I have experienced surprising manifestations of non-conscious mind-processes
that are somewhat similar to the effects reported by people whose corpus
calossum has been cut, though mine has not -- as far as I know ;-).
One "kind" of these has on several occassion caused me to behave *as if* I
had perfect pitch (at my finger tips) and *as if* I was *confident* about
knowing the pitch even when the situation would normally have made me on
guard not to loose face.

Another kind/occassion was when I somehow produce a strangely confident and
succinct improvised musical statements. Something just "got into me" as I
said (whilst butting in on someone *really and reliably* talanted, who sat
at a piano, endulging some women): "This is how I would like an
improvisation to sound"! This behaviour as if "took me over"; i.e. there was
no deliberate or conscious preparation of what I said/did and played in this
intimate and potentially very embarassing social situation (had what I
played on the piano not "come off").

What came out and what I did, nearly chocked me but also greatly satisfied
my own musical taste.

If we just bother to take note of ourselves "at close quarters" we shall
find -- first hand -- that we are wonderous and interesting creatures.



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