Sunday, May 06, 2012

The Five Motives?

In my last post I made a remark that appears enigmatic even to me. "I suppose there may be exactly five motives (just as there are exactly five senses) but we have not, I think, enumerated them yet." Is there really anything in the realm of motive that resembles the division of the senses into sight, hearing, taste, touch and smell?

If a "sense" is a channel or mode of perception the we can think of "motive" as a channel or mode of action. Now, just as we have hearing we have voice. Voice might be a "motor modality" just as hearing is a "sense modality". So far so good. We also have modalities like moving (i.e., changing our position in space), as well as pushing and holding. We might add pulling, but that seems to be a combination of holding and pulling—back. That seems to do it. But that's only four motives.

Is it silly to look for a fifth? Well most sense experience involves a combination of senses. You can't "perceive" a dance, for example, except by seeing and hearing it. And taste, as everyone knows, is actually a combination of tasting (actually using your taste buds) and smelling. So let's think about this motive of "voice". Let's divide it into the intention to speak and the intention to sing. We now have five: speech, song, impulse (pushing/pulling), grasp (holding), and locomotion (moving around).

Telekinesis, of course, is simply extra-motory action. A sixth motive.

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