PCT Ideas; Arguments

[From Hank Folson (960225)]

Kent McClelland 960218.2040 CST

>I'd be happy for comments or corrections.

>11. Emotions are part of learning. Mistakes feel bad and finding a way to
>succeed feels good.
>12. Ultimately, we learn more from our successes than our mistakes. We
>learn from errors by correcting them.

Why are these two items stated so differently from the others? The others
clearly are PCT based. (i.e. Only a PCTer would state them that way.) These
last two statements could be made by any observer, as they are simply
observations of behavior. What is your PCT basis for them? Can you put them
more in terms of PCT like the other statements?


Bill Powers (960218.0300 MST) on Arguments:

>There IS a conflict between the PCT answers to this and that and the
>answers you have learned and believe. The more clearly you grasp the
>basic principle of PCT, the sharper the conflict becomes. The only way
>out of this conflict is to take responsibility for both sides of it, and
>make a decision as to which side you're going to take. Nobody else can
>help with this, except perhaps by making sure the PCT concept is clearly
>expressed. Nobody else can make up your mind for you.

The resolution is not that easy. The problem is that our erroneous beliefs
are not that far off what is really going on in the PCT view. As has been
stated many times, all other psychologies are based on looking at only part
of the control loop and assuming erroneously that one is observing a cause-
effect or stimulus-response system. Converting a culture that believed that
all behavior was the result of the interaction of good and evil spirits
would be difficult, too, but at least there would be little similarity and
thus little confusion between the basic concepts involved. The superficial
similarities between the control loop system and the assumed cause-effect
system make it hard to see the distinct differences, I think.

A further complicating factor is that our higher level belief systems are
based on seniority: What goes in first becomes the reference, and thus what
is "correct". I believe this is why even the best reasoned arguments can be
a waste of time.

>What are you waiting for, looking for? Some ultimate vindication
>of your old beliefs? Some external resolution of the conflict? Is PCT
>just a threat that you have to keep track of? Or is this just another
>soap opera, in which you are involved only out of habit? Are the
>arguments interesting just for the sake of seeing who is scoring the
>most points, like a sporting event?

Unfortunately, Bill, these are all quite valid, and common, goals for
independent living control systems. Are there ways, such as The Test, to
ask these questions and determine what variables we are controlling? And
would we have the discipline to apply such tests on the net?

>I don't know what I'm leading up to here.

Possibly, Reorganization? :wink:

>Perhaps I'm just explaining to
>myself that arguments are futile, and that the only useful way to
>communicate PCT is to focus on the basic principle and tell people to
>work out the conflicts with older ideas for themselves.

If so, is your response to argumentative posts going to be a simple
statement that you will not be drawn into arguments?

In addition, I would like to see PCT presented on its own merits. Why not
develop real world applications based on PCT that will succeed so well
where others based on flawed premises have failed, that it will be much
easier for people to accept PCT?