In thoughts on cybernetics and systems theory I find myself returning over and over to the same English linguistic oddity.
In systems that do not incorporate “good” and “evil” as ingredients but rather as consequences…
Is mettle hard coded?
Is mettle a solution to a recursive problem that converges?
Is mettle a requirement for the ability to cease self organization so an optimal solution to an encompassing system may continue?
A distinction must be required so that suffering may be defined in order to then define mettle. But this distinction can be trivial.
In English with an English speaker, if I ask you “What is ‘valor’?” your answer only tells me something about you.
In English with an English speaker, if I ask you “What is ‘depth of character’?” your answer only tells me something about you.
In English with an English speaker, if I ask you “What is mettle?” for a fleeting moment, I think something happens in thought that is an elusive algorithm that can give any intelligence…
An ability to possess mettle.
Then, of course, subsequently an answer is formed that only tells me something about you.
What occurs in that moment between?
It may be a pretty old conundrum. “The Judgement of Osiris” over 3000 years ago seemed to be measure of mettle that was supposed to be applied to all followers. Admittedly, I am always skeptical even of historical records written of events that have occurred during my life let alone three millennia ago as truth is often a nuanced version or completely different from that which is recorded.
That said, I do feel at least the story of it captures that very moment between asking “What is mettle?” and the formulation of an answer. The fleeting moment being that between life and death of that spirit which possesses some value of mettle.
But the value or amount of mettle is not what confounds me. It is something in its calculation.
This is the dead end I continuously come to. Or, I like to think, a door to a better understanding of intelligence.
I’d like to find the key to that door.
The funniest thing is that you could say this post makes my blog become eponymous even though I chose the name ‘Unknown Kadath’ many years before writing this. 🙂