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Reading Mark Johnson and George Lakoff’s book Metaphors We Live By felt like the scene from The Matrix where Neo meets Morpheus for the first time. After just a few pages, we were suddenly and vigorously aware of previously hidden layers of reality. They had always been quietly present, but now they were glaringly obvious—and frankly, they made our heads hurt. To borrow a phrase from that movie, Lakoff and Johnson’s book freed our minds, and as Neo discovers, getting one’s mind freed can be an uncomfortable experience. The basic concept behind Metaphors We Live By is that metaphors are the fundamental construct of human thought. This concept was not entirely new to us, but we quickly discovered that the scope and scale of humanity’s reliance on metaphor is shockingly large. The book explains that metaphors do not simply make things more interesting or easier to understand— metaphors actually are understanding, and it is almost impossible to think in non-metaphorical terms.
After showing that virtually all our thoughts and understandings are based in subtle, often hidden metaphor, Lakoff and Johnson go on to explain, “The primary function of metaphor is to provide a partial understanding of one kind of experience in terms of another kind of experience.” The key word here is “partial.” No metaphor is a complete and comprehensive representation of reality.
Originally posted by pieman
to think other than metaphorically is to think in a different manner, is this manner an improvement or a disability?
Originally posted by pieman
but if we look at everything as a separate entity not understood in relation to anything else then it would take a longer to learn everything. we must first learn and understand before we can add.
When Banzan was walking through a market he overheard a conversation between a butcher and his customer.
"Give me the best piece of meat you have," said the customer.
"Everything in my shop is the best," replied the butcher. "You cannot find here any piece of meat that is not the best."
At these words Banzan became enlightened.
After Bankei had passed away, a blind man who lived near the master's temple told a friend:
"Since I am blind, I cannot watch a person's face, so I must judge his character by the sound of his voice. Ordinarily when I hear someone congratulate another upon his happiness or success, I also hear a secret tone of envy. When condolence is expressed for the misfortune of another, I hear pleasure and satisfaction, as if the one condoling was really glad there was something left to gain in his own world.
"In all my experience, however, Bankei's voice was always sincere. Whenever he expressed happiness, I heard nothing but happiness, and whenever he expressed sorrow, sorrow was all I heard."