Insight Chapter 6
Sku: 40500DTE050
Archival Number: A405
Author: Lonergan, B.
Language(s): English
Decade: 1950
Open 40500DTE050.pdf


Typescript of chapter 6 of Insight, including some of manuscript A
Database and descriptions © Copyright 2017 by Robert M. Doran


pt 173, l. 1 (ts 1): The title is simply: Chapter VI: Common Sense.  From the next file it is clear that the two chapters on common sense were originally one.  The handwritten title of the next file is Chapter VII: Common Sense (cont'd.)


pt 173, l. -15 (ts 1): ts has no quote marks and no exclamation point.


pt 173 (ts 1-2): A second paragraph of introduction is provided: `The present chapter falls into three main sections.  In the first the parallel between empirical science and common sense is examined.  In the second and third, attention is drawn to fundamental differences.  While empirical science seeks the relations of things to one another, common sense is content to know the relations of things to us.  Despite its deceptive simplicity, this undertaking is ambiguous.  Not only is the development of common sense a change in us, but also common sense is practical and devotes itself to changing the things related to us.  While empirical science endeavours to grasp the relations between the fixed natures of things, common sense seeks to relate the two variables and, by that very effort, brings about their variation.  Accordingly, the second main section of this chapter examines the subjective aspect of common sense, and the third section turns to the effects of common sense practicality.'


pt 173, l. -10 (ts 2): ts had `In the human infant ...' `Infant' is changed to `child.'


pt 173, l. -6 (ts 2): ts has `of the blanket answer,'  No change.


pt 175, l. 19 (ts 3): ts has `From spontaneous inquiry ...'  [In ms. B, `a' is in typescript, but is crossed out by hand.]


pt 175, l. -16 (ts 3): ts has `from these premises'


pt 175, l. -1 (ts 3):  ts has: `... similarly understood.  But the analogies that common sense employs do not suppose that any two concrete situations are exactly similar; for the platform from which common sense operates is an incomplete set of insights that corresponds to the incomplete similarity of situations; and the valid operations of common sense rest, never on the incomplete nucleus of insights, but always on that nucleus as completed by the further different insights that correspond to the significant dissimilarities of concrete situations.  It can yield ...'


pt 176, l. 3-4 (ts 4): ts has `In correspondence with the similarities of situations ...'


pt 176, first full paragraph:  ts has a paragraph crossed out at this point (just before the paragraph `Not only'):

                        This account of the analogies and generalizations of common sense has its bearing on the meaning of ordinary speech.  As has been seen, the development of a science is a movement from description to explanation, from things as related to our senses to things as related to one another.  Now it is quite clear that common sense does not express itself in the technical terms of scientific explanation, but it is well to notice, as well, that even scientific description is of no concern to common sense.  No doubt, both deal with things as related to our senses, but they deal with them from different viewpoints and with different purposes.  The aim of scientific description is to formulate the sensible aspects of things that lead on to a grasp of their relations to one another.  The aim of common sense is confined within the circle of the relations of things to us.  Again, in the light of its purpose a scientific description has to be fully articulate and quite complete; with equal impartiality obvious and unnoticed aspects of things must be observed; and all that is observed must be adequately recorded.  In contrast, the speech of common sense is abrupt and elliptical.  It takes far more for granted than it ever dreams of expressing for, after all, the other fellow, too, has some common sense.  It operates not only through distinct statements but also through the whole panoply of hints and suggestions that are conveyed subtly and delicately through choices of words, tones of voice, fleeting shifts of features, pauses, questions, changes of topic, and all the indirections that not only find directions out but also, without the slightest immediate reference, can reveal them.  Logically competent speech is the transmission of propositions.  But the language of common sense is a mutual transmission insights that would end in a common understanding communication of insights that aims to reach a common understanding of concrete situations and immediate tasks.


pt 176, l. -2 (ts 5): No new paragraph in ts.


pt 177, l. 4 (ts 5): ts has `reveal'


pt 177, par. `It follows': No new paragraph in ts.


pt 177, l. - 14 (ts 5): ts has `... is common sense.  The simple and exact correspondence between saying and meaning in primitive statements is no more than an incomplete grasp  For the relation ...'


pt 178, l. 12 (ts 6): ts has no `the'


pt 178, par. `Common': No new paragraph in ts.


pt 179, l. 1 (ts 7): ts has `Scientists may wonder how they can succeed.  How is it that the world's work does get done intelligently and efficiently  Still, how can ...'


pt 179, l. 5 (ts 7): ts has `Why must such intelligent men be encumbered with abstruse technical terms, and abstract reasoning,  Why must such ...'


pt 179, par. `Common'; No new paragraph in ts.


pt 180, l. 1 (ts 8): ts has `There remain to be mentioned the differentiations of common sense.'


pt 180, l. 11 (ts 8): ts has `been ever'


pt 180, l. 13 (ts 8): ts has `shifts' for `movements'


pt 180, l. -19 (ts 9): ts has `Such, then, is the specialization of common sense, so that its varieties multiply with every difference of place and time,  Such, then, ...'


pt 181, l. 5 (ts 9): ts has `science'


pt 181, section 2 (ts 10): At this point ts becomes double-spaced, and remains so for remainder of chapter.


pt 181, l. - 6 (ts 11): ts has `Still, such acts never occur by themselves, in isolation from one another, and quite apart from all other events.  On the contrary, they occur in a context of bodily movements, and it is from that context that they derive their dynamic significance  they have a bodily basis;...'


pt 182, par. `There are' (ts 12): ts reads `There are, then, different dynamic patterns of experience, nor is it difficult for us to say just what we mean by such a pattern.  Not only is insight the source and ground of intelligent formulations, but also it arises in the first instance with respect to sensitive or imaginative presentations.  The materials, then, or data  

            The materials, then, of a dynamic pattern are an aggregate of sensed objects and sensitive experiences; the dynamic pattern of the aggregate is what is grasped by insight in the aggregate 

            By a dynamic pattern of experience is meant what is grasped by insight into the various elements of the experience

            by such a pattern.  As conceived, it is the formulation of an insight; but all insight arises from sensitive or imaginative presentations; and the materials, relevant in the present case, presentations; and in the present case ...'


pt 183, l. 16 (ts 14): ts has `terminal activities of intussusception, self-preservation intussusception or ...'


pt 183, l. 19 (ts 14): ts has `it takes us beyond positivism, inasmuch ...'


pt 183, l. - 16 (ts 14): ts has `experience is made possible by the to be obtained ...'


pt 184 , l. 1 ff. (ts 15): ts has `The bodily basis of the senses in sense organs,and the functional correlation of sensation with bodily movements the positions and movements of the organs, the mnemic, imaginative, conative, emotive consequences of sensible contents presentations, and ...'  Notice the word `mnemic'--not in pt.


pt 184, l. 11 (ts 15): ts has `over against'--this is probably what pt should have.  Ms B reads `ever,' but I think this is an error.


pt 184, subheading (ts 16): ts has `2.3  The Aesthetic Form Pattern of Experience'


pt 184, l. - 1 (ts 16): ts has no footnote.


pt 185, l. 11 (ts 17): ts has `The aesthetic and artistic also are symbolic.'


pt 185, l. 13 (ts 17): ts has no commas around `then'; this changes the meaning to a temporal one


pt 185, l. 16 (ts 17): ts has `to impart some X that is ...'


pt 185, l. - 8 (ts 17) ts has `to these questions'


pt 186, l. -12 (ts 19): ts has `exigences'


pt 187, l. 8 (ts 20): ts has `But behind these palpable ...'


pt 187, l. - 10 (ts 21): ts has `Style is the man before ...'


pt 187, l. -6 (ts 21) ts has no comma after `man'


pt 187, l. -6 (ts 21): ts has exigences


pt 187, l. -5 (ts 21) ts has `those exigences'


pt 188, l. 18 (ts 22): ts has `... own.  His practical living requires the cooperation of others  His artistry ...'


pt 188, l. - 15 (ts 22): ts has `... inspired by example and emulation, sustained confirmed by admiration and approval, respect and affection  sustained by respect and admiration affection.


pt 188, l. - 7 (ts 23): ts has `... criteria, effect work out his own ...'


pt 189, l. 1 (ts 23): ts has `our past actions behavior ...'


pt 189, l. 5 (ts 23): ts has: `... collaborate in producing representing the projected course of action that is to be reflected upon, subje  submitted ...'


pt 189, l. 9 (ts 23): ts has: `... with an artistic sublimation transformation of a more ...'


pt 189, l. - 11 (ts 24): ts has: `... release them.  To learn to walk is to learn to correlate psychic elements with bodily movements, and the human child takes a notable time to learn to do so; yet precisely because walking is such a laborious acquisition, other acquisitions are equally possible.  The initial plasticity ...'


pt 190, l. 8 (ts 25): ts has `also is true ...'


pt 190, l. 15 (ts 25): ts has `... not only of position relative to an object, the intensity of the light, the healthiness of eyes, but also of ...'


pt 190, l. - 14 (ts 25): ts has `... call form a delighted Eureka.


pt 191, l. 1 (ts 25): ts has `... of conscious psychic contents.'


pt 191, l. 8 (ts 26): ts has `... invite the emergence anguish of abnormality.'


pt 191, l. 15 (ts 27): ts has `... personal matters.  Nor has such a bias merely some single and isolated effect.  To exclude an insight ...'


pt 191, l. - 17 (ts 27): ts has `This introversion from , which overcomes the extroversion, native to the biological pattern of experience, generates a differentiation of the persona that appears before others and the more intimate ego that in the day-dream is at once [the main--added by hand] actor and audience the sole spectator. 


pt 194, l. 3 (ts 31): ts has `In Jung's terminology, the ...' 


pt 194, l. 8 (ts 31): ts has `... shadow.  It would seem to be ultimately the same phenomena that are named ambivalence by the Freudians, bipolarity by Stekel, and an alternation of opposites by Adler.'


pt 194, l. - 16 (ts 32): ts has the following attempt at this paragraph, crossed out: `Besides the Psychopathology of Everyday Life, there is the Interpretation of Dreams.  In the dream not only is there excluded the reflective and critical attitudes is there excluded the breadth of waking consciousness, on which rests the efficacy of reflection and criticism, but also there is a focussing of attention on presentations that, if they arose during the day, would be simply ignored.  Accordingly, the dream is the pure product, on the one hand, of the censorship with its aberrations and, on the other hand, of the neural demand functions with their inhibitions.  The materials of the dream are provided by the inhibited demand functions.  The selection and arrangement of the materials is the work of the censor and repressions.'


pt 195, l. - 11 (ts 34): ts has `... wish-fulfilment, not of course in the sense that neural patterns do any wishing, but in the sense that they have an exigence for the occurrence of the psychic experience named wish-fulfilment  fulfilment.  This statement ...'


pt 196, l. 1 (ts 35): ts has `... its functional significance.'  (This is changed by hand in ms B.)


pt 196, l. 7 (ts 35): ts has `... while preserving the integrity of the conscious personality stream of experience.'


pt 196, l. -16 (ts 36):  ts has `... from its proper object preserves the integrity of the conscious person. respects the immanent direction of the stream of consciousness.'


pt 196, l. -18 (ts 36): ts: `Even if his neural patterns ...'


pt 196, l. - 2 (ts 37): subheading in ts is `The Main Problem'


pt 198, l. 5 (ts 38): ts has `Eventually, a point is reached where the distorted structure of consciousness (the dramatic pattern of experience) becomes incapable of providing psychic representation and regular integration for the distorted demands of neural patterns and processes.

                        While the psychoneuroses or parapathies do not concern a study of human intelligence, it will not be amiss to point out that their treatment has been conceived by Dr. Wilhelm Stekel in terms of insight.  In his Technique of Analytic Psychotherapy (The Bodley Head, London, 1939), the analysis is described as a retrospective education.  a point is reached ...'


pt 199, l. 13 (ts 40): ts has `... a conquest of his feelings.'


pt 199, section 2.7.6 (ts 41): In ts the opening paragraph of § 2.7.6 reads: `In his History of the Psychoanalytic Movement Freud prefaced his indictment of the secessionists, Adler and Jung, with the statement that he had always asserted that repressions and the sustaining resistance might involve a suspension of understanding.  But where Freud recognized a consequence, we have seen an antecedent.  Our study of the dramatic bias begins from the flight from insight and, rather systematically, it has led us to repression and inhibition, the slips of waking consciousness and the function of dreams, the aberrations of religions and morality and, as a limit, the psychoneuroses.  Naturally, there arises the question whether any specialists in the field of abnormal disorders provide us with confirmatory evidence on the connection between repression and a refusal to understand.'  The word `might' in the first sentence is not underlined, and the first sentence in the next paragraph (originally run into the preceding, but specified by hand in manuscript B as beginning a new paragraph) reads, `An affirmative answer is offered by Dr. Wilhelm Stekel's Technique of Analytic Psychotherapy (The Bodley Head, London, 1939).'


pt 200, l. -17 (ts 42): ts has `are allied'


pt 201, l. 1 (ts 43): ts has `Just as the root of the disorder is a refusal to understand, ...'


pt 201, l. 10 (ts 43): ts has `... without an abreaction of aberration.'


pt 202, l. 9 (ts 44): ts has `... he has to be gaining insight ...'


pt 202, l. 18 (ts 44): ts has `... but also a genetic factor'


pt 204, l. 1 (ts 46): ts has `... upon his work.'


pt 204, l. 9 (ts 47): ts has `... a significance that Freud himself coult not suspect.'


pt 204, l. 12 ff. (ts 47): ts has: `Mechanism is the additional determination to invent what is neither a correlation nor verified nor observable.  The motive behind the mechanistic impulse is the scientist's mistaken attempt to assure himself that what he is talking about is read and objective, really out there, really real.  In this fashion nineteenth century physicists devoted enormous ingenuity and energy to working out a model aether that would supply the reality for electro-magnetic equations; earlier Newton had dismissed observable motions as apparent and secured true motions by introducing an unobserbvable absolute space and time; still earlier, Galileo had dismissed secondary qualities as merely apparent to pronounce primary qualities as real and objective. a correlation nor verified ...'


pt 204, l. 18 ff. (ts 48): ts has: `... Because verified correlations are attributed to imagined atoms or aether, they are not abstract.  To admit statistical laws is impossible without denying classical laws; and if classical laws are admitted, mechanism acquires the further property of determinism.  they are not abstract but concrete; ...'


pt 205, l. 1 (ts 48): ts has: `Or is it a construction ...'


pt 205, l. 9 (ts 48): ts: `only probable' for `non-systematic'


pt 205, l. 13 (ts 49-51): ts has the following conclusion to the chapter (later replaced by 205: `Still, whatever ...' to the end): `There is a more momentous consequence.  For the acknowledgment of statistical laws gives a new status to the science of psychogenic health and psychogenic illness.  Neural determinants settle not unique psychic events but sets of psychic alternatives.  Psychic determinants acquire an independent function of selecting between neurally determined alternatives.  Psychic health is the sequence of psychic determinants that can follow immanent psychic laws without heading outside the range of neurally determined alternatives.  Conflict arises when the two sets of determinants are incompatible.  Psychoneurosis results when the direction of the stream of consciousness, by its selections of neurally determined alternatives, heads subsequent neural determinations to offer alternatives of which none are compatible with the stream of consciousness.  Analytic treatment is a reorientation of the stream of consciousness and, at the same time, a release from obstructing neural determinations.  This is no more than a thumb-nail sketch, but it suffices, I think, to reveal the significance of statistical  It becomes possible to conceive two distinct sets of schemes of recurrence, one conscious and the other non-conscious, where each set follows its own classical and statistical laws yet through its own laws is linked to the other set.  Then, psychic health is the harmony of the two processes, conflict and break-down are their incompatibility, psychogenic aberration is a direction of the stream of consciousness that heads towards break-down, and analytic tratment is at once a reorientation of the stream of consciousness and a release from neural obstructions with a psychic origin.  This is no more than a thumb-nail sketch but, if neural determinants admit psychic alternatives, the psychic can acquire an independent role, and that independence is the basic significance of statistical laws in the conception of psychic and neural relations.  Moreover, our whole presentation has been careful to observe the canons of parsimony and of statistical residues; we have spoken simply of intelligible relations between psychic events under the name of patterns of experience and of intelligible relations between neural events under the name of neural patterns; nor were neural patterns conceived as unique determinants of psychic events but, on the contrary, they involved no more than neural demand functions capable of being satisfied in many ways.

                        There is a further aspect of the matter.  On the assumption of mechanist determinism, one may speak of the actual, of the necessary, and of the impossible; but within the confines of that view there is no room for the potential, for what really could occur yet in fact may not occur.  On the other hand, once statistical laws are acknowledged, the potential assumes its proper status; each present situation is the potential for a variety of future situations, none of which is necessary, none of which is impossible, yet only one of which will arise.  Moreover, this notion of the potential is needed for the adequate conception of Freud's discoveries; the censorship, whether constructive or repressive, pertains to the potential of future conscious states; the neural demand functions similarly pertain to that potential; the situations, favorable or adverse, in which experience occurs, pertain to the potential of the experience.  The unconscious, that is never conscious, is the neural.  The preconscious, that can become conscious, is the potential.  The repressive censorship is a negative potential opposed to a positive potential arising from the neural and the situation.

                        A final point has to be made.  Freud hesitated for a year before publishing his Interpretation of Dreams.  His conscientious devotion to the insights he had won made him stress aspects of his discoveries that he knew full well would arouse resistance, opposition, and vituperation.  But while I cannot but admire the self-sacrificing devotion to conscience in a man sometimes supposed to have abolished guilt, I must point out that this loyalty was directed less to his own discoveries than to the mechanist determinism curent in the scientific milieu of his age.  There is nothing revolting or shocking in the affirmation that man has a commonly rejected potential for parricide, cannibalism, incest, and suicide; otherwise, those unpleasant names would not exist.  Freud's difficulty arose because determinism eliminated the notion of the potential to leave only the actual, the necessary, and the impossible; and it was further complicated by the mechanist obsession that has to invent an unobservable reality and has to regard as mere appearance the observable and as mere thinking the verified correlation.  As yet, we have not been able to state what we believe the real and objective to be, nor even to say what is meant by a thing, a man, a person.  In due course we hope to do so