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Science and Sanity: An Introduction to Non-Aristotelian Systems and General Semantics Hardcover – Jan 1995


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 825 pages
  • Publisher: Institute of General Semantics; 5th edition (Jan. 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0937298018
  • ISBN-13: 978-0937298015
  • Product Dimensions: 5.7 x 16.5 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 562,057 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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First Sentence
Science and Sanity: An Introduction to Non-aristotelian Systems and General Semantics, first published in October, 1933, was intended to be a textbook showing how in modern scientific methods we can find factors of sanity, to be tested empirically. Read the first page
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47 of 49 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 15 Dec. 2000
Format: Hardcover
Stunning. Absolutely stunning. I really cannot use enough superlatives to describe the effect this book has had on my life. I have seen it described as difficult to read, and I admit that at first glance it can seem daunting. But investing some time and effort in trying to internalise what Korzybski says can have dramatic effects on your quality of life. I would advise that you read it once, and don't worry too much if you don't understand long passages. On the second time of reading, some of those passages begin to make sense, and you get an inkling of the importance of what he says. I read it twice, starting again as soon as I had finished. I intend to read it again soon, once I have given my brain a chance to mull over the new information I have presented for it's delectation.
As a general formula, the more you read this book, the greater benefit you derive from it.
With Science and Sanity, Alfred Korzybski presents a system of thought that he claims can make humanity 'sane'. To evaluate such a claim, which has profound implications for humanity, you must read the book and decide for yourself. Don't listen to the propaganda. By examining our language, and it's underlying Aristotelian metaphysics, he illustrates that the structure of our nervous systems does not correspond to the structure of our language, leading to a serious discrepancy that causes 'un-sanity'. Put simply, our language cannot cope with 'reality'. Since we rely on language to think and evaluate, WE cannot cope with reality. The solution? Change our language.
Rather than base our language on Aristotelian 'metaphysics', which means only that we base our language on the physics of Ancient Greece, let us base our language on modern physics, which denies the existence of an objective reality.
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Format: Hardcover
The most important knowledge contained in ‘Science and Sanity’ can be found in the preface sections - a number of prefaces, in chronological order, have been included. The prefaces unveil the science of General Semantics, created by Korzybski. The main body of the book then examines various branches of human knowledge through the prism of his concepts, covering areas such as: Anthropology, Biology, Education, Logic, Mathematics, Neurology, Physics and Physiology.

Science and Sanity may appear to be a difficult book to read and understand, but this stems from our per-conditioning and flawed perception that doesn’t take into account the role of our senses and the role of the human nervous system in connecting reality and our minds. Like any paradigm shifter, it requires repeated reads, to infuse the mind with a different (better) perception of reality. Once this occurs, your world will never be the same.

If you want to better understand yourself and those around you, seriously consider reading this book. If you work as a scientist then every day you spend without having read it will be a waste.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Peter Davies TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 21 Aug. 2008
Format: Hardcover
This is an important, yet often overlooked book. It deserves more attention than it has so far had, and it deserves to be in a wider readership than as a source book for neuro-linguistic programming (NLP)

The message of this book is important and can be summarised to the classic quote, "The map is not the territory, it is a representation of the territory and useful in so far as it corresponds to the territory" The book is the great statement of non-identity- the description of a thing or process is not the thing or process itself.

The book makes the argument fully, but sadly like Merleau-Ponty's "The Phenomenology of Perception" it's message is often lost amidst linguistic complexity.

This book is important, it does make a worthwhile argument, and it is a basic resource for those interested in NLP, general semantics and neuro-semantics.

The message from this book deserves to reach a bigger audience.

The book is worth reading, but you will need persistence and concentration to get the message out of it.
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