Phil McShane

Patrick Byrne

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The Question of Reduplication

The question of reduplication refers to the operations involved in cogitional operation. The general question of reduplication might be posed as: Can lower level operations be operative on higher levels and/or can higher level operations be operative on lower levels? Or, are the operations localized on specific levels of cognition?

For example, can the operations associated with the levels of understanding, judging, and deciding be active on the first level of experience and can the operations of the first level be operative on the higher levels? Or, is, say understanding only a second level operation?

There appears to be two positions of thought in response to these questions:

    (1) The first position presents the various operations of intentionality as localized on specific levels of intentionality. Sensing, perceiving, imaging are first level operations. Inquiring, conceiving, and defining are second level operations. Reflecting, grasping and judging are third level operations. Deliberating, evaluating and deciding are fourth level operations. Each operation is dedicated to a specific level of consciousness as determined by the level's operator. In other words, the operations are fixed on each level. Thus, whenever one is defining, for example, one is engaged in an intentional activity on the second level of consciousness.

    (2) The second position argues that each of the operations of conscious intentionality may be operative on different levels of intentionality. The position is articulated in at least two different ways, for example, McShane and Byrne. Yet, for both, the starting point is that the first position is appears to be too simplistic in its account of the operations of conscious intentionality and their functioning in the different levels.

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