Thinking About Thinking

Testing to see how new pages, vs. new posts, show up in WordPress

Hmm … I don’t think I’m understanding WordPress fully yet.  All blog posts seem to show up on the Home page which becomes pretty long pretty fast.  To be sure, they’re left-and-right (next-previous) linked beautifully, buglessly, and organized by the selected categories and by months … and permalink addressable by individual post, all of a category, and all of a month … that’s fantastic! … but, i think i must not be understanding something since ALL the posts show up, in one LONG page, when one simply goes to the home page, … well, i’m not posting that much anyway … i’ll stay alert in case i’m missing something obvious about how to organize blog posts on WordPress … i must be … with all the WordPress users, and all their blog posts, EVERYBODY who reads them is loading the ENTIRE history of the blog everytime they go there for the latest? … hmm…

Anyway, here’s what I was thinking about when I started wondering how WordPress handles new “pages” (vs. new “posts” on the long default blog page):

I’ve been very interesting … [ HA! Nice typo! No, Engrish is NOT my second language.  🙂   Let’s try this again … ]

I have been very interested in thinking systems for quite a while.  My favorite is something called TOC, Theory of Constraints.  But another that I’ve been fascinated by is the shelf of books known as the Talmud that many Jewish people have used as one important part of an education (1) in the Hebrew language, (2) in Jewish law and culture, and (3) for role models and extensive practice in thinking effectively about real — and often complex — issues in life.  It’s been my understanding that Talmud study in what’s usually referred to as “Hebrew School” involves far more than learning the Hebrew language.  My perception of the nature and content of the Talmud has led me  into the habit of remarking that studying it produces teenage bar mitzvah and bat mitzvah graduates whose minds are already trained at levels most adults  only attain when — and if — they complete high-quality law, philosophy, or science degree programs in college.  Apart from the thinking/analytical effectiveness developed at such a young age, there’s the depth and perspective that comes from spending years considering — along with the several generations of rabbis in the Talmud — a very large number of realistic legal, moral, economic, and social issues.  I have been so impressed with this that, for a while, I had wanted to suggest that a Talmud-like education program — with multi-cultural and multi-religious issue content — be used for the confirmation education process in my church institution (Unitarian Universalist Association).

What’s any of this have to do with TOC?  Let’s make a contrast with TOC.  TOC is a concise comprehensive thinking system that is,  in my opinion, a pretty good candidate to be considered THE generic effective thinking process.  In other words, what Chomsky’s Universal Grammar (if I understand it properly) is to innate language learning potential, TOC is to effective observation, verbalization, causal thinking, assumption detection, idea generation, and planning potential.  Or what Kant’s noumenal world (if I understand it correctly) in Critique of Pure Reason is to our built-in innate process invisibly underneath our conscious thinking, TOC is the process that’s going on, usually invisibly and unverbalized, whenever a genius or everyday creative person invents or creates.

Talmud study, by contrast, as far as I understand it, doesn’t seek to concisely describe a thinking process, but famously and powerfully succeeds in using many repetitions of examples of effective thinking to inculcate the habits of very effective thinking in realistic situations.  My parallel interest in TOC and Talmud stems from my thinking that it’s possible that the thinking process one gets inductively, from pattern recognition over years of study of Talmud debate and conversation, is the thinking process described so concisely, with its own jargon/terminology, by TOC.  The thinking process part of TOC, by way of another contrast, doesn’t have content — specific questions, issues, arguments on many sides, stories, humor, culture, and such that make the Talmud so rich culturally beyond development of thinking skills.

Hmm… enough time on this draft … but, in parting, for now, I’m realizing that whenever the thinking process part of TOC is applied to some next area of life — manufacturing, industrial supply chain, education, or other — both situation-specific and validity-range-bounded generic solutions are created, which begins to make my comment about “no content” not exactly right … ah, well … enough for now …

Anyway, food for thought.  So to speak. 🙂

🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

Let’s change it up a bit.  Have a little fun …

I wonder who’s on the “empty” plinth in London’s Trafalgar Square right now … let’s see … 🙂

The plinth:

The backstory:

The Lovely Girl playing “Guess Who”

The Lovely Poetess

🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

Anyway, something got me to thinking about the Talmud again today.  I thought Talmud meant, “conversation.”  I thought I read that somewhere.  And, when you study a Talmud book or page – with its standard physical layout/placement of Mishnah, Gemara, with tanna, amora, Rashi, & Rashi relative commentary sections —  it becomes clear it definitely IS a conversation.  My understanding is that the conversation takes place among several generations of rabbis (teachers) about why a later version of Jewish Law (the Mishnah) is both correct and consistent with an earlier version, the Torah (the first 5 books of the Bible, the books that contain the Jewish partiarchs and the laws given to Moses and Aaron).

It occurred to me to look it up today, to check my memory/understanding of the actual meaning of Talmud, and it seems that Talmud actually means “study,” which also makes sense.  Maybe I’ve caught myself in-between two different reasonable translations from Hebrew into English.  But the link that googled out today that I thought was pretty good seems to be saying, “study” is the right literal translation even though the Talmud itself can apparently be considered both an historic and ongoing conversation.

a moment in time, 1976


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