March 25

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Communication: A reality is a take on actuality. A take on actuality starts out as an individualís way of looking at things, his or her own internalized thoughts, observations, and feelings. The individual reality is collectivized through communication. When a take is collectivized, it becomes a story. Stories are conveyed through the spoken word, writing, art, media, gesture, etc. They may pass between a listener and a talker or a reader and a writer. The power of communication lies in its ability to convey perceived actuality to others. Its weakness lies in its inability to convey the reality in its totality. The level of story is the third level after reality and actuality.

Communication changes reality: Communication conveys reality but does so imperfectly. This is why:

1. The means of communicating are limited. Therefore the created story does not capture reality in its entirety. There are only so many words, so many ways to convey meaning. For instance, this essay does not convey what Iím thinking. It is an effort to convey what Iím thinking, but will never come up exact because I must create words like actuality and reality, I must search for words that donít exist. I must reduce things to language.
2. The ability, talent of someone to communicate may be lacking. Because of their poor ability their story lacks a correspondence with their reality. The words may exist for what they wish to say, they just donít know where they are. My writing skills, for instance, are not perfect. I often mean to convey one meaning but convey another instead.
3. Along the path between speaker and listener, the story may be corrupted. This may be a result of time, distance, translation, change, interference, censorship etc. Say youíre reading this essay in the dark. A few words make it to your eyes, others donít. Youíre missing a lot.
4.The listener may lack the means or ability to understand the story. Their comprehension of the language used may not be enough to grasp what is meant, or they may choose not to listen. Even if the story is well made and corresponds to the tellerís reality, the listener has the a responsibility to decode the story on their side. If they do so poorly, reality is corrupted. So assume that my essay is well written, adequately describes my reality, and isnít tampered with, yet upon reading it you have no clue what I mean. You are now the weak chain in the link Ė the communication failure is your fault.

These 4 blocks always result in a story that is less than reality. One or all of them operate in every attempt of communication. No reality can ever be conveyed because the means of conveyance are flawed and imperfect. The process of collectivization is a process that spreads reality, distributes it, while simultaneously degrading it. Therefore, as reality spreads from the individual it is degraded and changed, and the more it is repeated and spread the more it will probably be changed.

The non-existence of truth: Through the process of perceiving and communicating, we change truth. Let me track the way in which we do so. We live in and perceive actuality through our senses, but these are limited. Our abilities to understand actuality come up short, we only really grasp the smallest part of actuality. And what we do grasp we do so imperfectly. Therefore, the realities we form in our head are poor copies of actuality. As humans we communicate. We convert our realities into words, pictures, and sounds Ė we then send our stories over space and time to the recipients, who then decode into their own realities what we have written about our reality. All these stages result in a degradation of reality. Combined with the initial conversion of actuality into reality, the change of reality through communication dilutes the truth even more, compounding error, dropping meaning, and changing what is implied.

Marshalling the masses: Communication has a purpose. Despite its imperfection, it contains kernels of underlying value that have survived the potential problems that corrupt meaning. Furthermore, communication allows humans to empathize. It satisfies the social beast inside us. We get enjoyment not from the truth, but the sound of communication, the cooperation it implies. Through stories, realities can be compared, adopted, and criticized. If people are ignorant of communicationís defects and believe in all that is spoken, than the meaningfulness comes not so much from an actual transference of truth but a feeling that truth has been transferred. This feeling results in satisfaction, though not truth.
Communicated stories allow for collective action. Without communication, all reality is individual, so all action is individual. The collective view of reality is a conglomeration of commonly accepted stories, stories that have existed over a long period of time that people can subscribe to.

Why communicate if a large part of the content is erroneous and lacks correspondence to reality? Why communicate if the chance of the target understanding the communication is unlikely? In every package of communication, there is a false and a true component. Why speak if we spread falsity? Why listen if we receive untruth? Errors occur as we move reality into the communicated story, and transfer back to reality. Why speak if we cannot convey our inner selves? Why listen if we know we will never fully comprehend? Should we accept the imperfection of communication, and only work towards becoming better communicators?

---insert picture ---- It wasnít till this point that I figured out there was a third plane hovering above the other two, and it was connected to them in a vital way.

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