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Programmer’s Guide to the Mind, Part 2



Mercy Thinking

Mercy Automatic Thought

The Mercy Internal World

Neural Networks and Mental Life


Multiple Personalities

Mercy Strategy and the Brain


Associative Thought

The Diagram of Mental Symmetry

Perceiver Confidence

Perceiver Automatic Thought

The Perceiver Internal World

Perceiver Assumptions and Axioms

‘Schizophrenia’ and ‘Multiple Personalities’


Who does What

The Definition of a Fact

Good and Bad, Right and Wrong

Object Detection

Automatic Thought versus Internal World

The Role of Cognitive Style

Perceiver Strategy and the Brain

Objects in Space and Time

Art and Belief


Copyright © 2010, Lorin Friesen

Mercy Strategy

We will begin our study of human thought by looking at Mercy strategy. Remember that our description refers both to the type of thinking which is conscious in the Mercy person, and to a mode of thought which is present, under the surface, in all of the other cognitive styles. I should remind you as well that not all of the personality traits of the Mercy person are the result of Mercy thought. Many characteristics come from the other six rooms operating subconsciously within the mind of the Mercy person. In this section we will only examine traits which are the result of conscious thought. As we discuss the other cognitive styles and gain an understanding of the rest of the mind and how it operates, our picture of the Mercy person will become much more complete.

Mercy Thinking

As we can see in the diagram of mental symmetry, the Mercy person is associative, concrete and emotion-oriented. This means that Mercy thought lives within a network of experiences, each with an emotional label. Wherever the Mercy person goes, he is always being reminded of other experiences, and with each of these memories is a related emotion.[A] The feelings associated with these linked memories color the emotional atmosphere of present experience.

Let me give you an example. One Mercy girl[B] was looking at displays in store windows when she happened to glance upon a certain doll. Immediately she felt bad. When she got home she realized the source of this feeling. As a child she had been in a school play, and had worn a costume like the dress on that doll. Her dress had ripped during the performance, and she had felt terribly embarrassed. Seeing that doll reminded Mercy thought of the experience with the school play, and brought back all the feelings associated with that event.

It is this ability to relate the present to the emotional past which allows the Mercy person to empathize with others or show ‘mercy’ to them. When the Mercy observes other people, he is reminded of how he felt when he was in similar situations. The Mercy is the person who will see the dog trying to scratch a hard-to-reach spot and find himself reaching in sympathy with the animal. When we identify with a hero in sports, with an actor in a movie, or with some object of religious worship, it is because our Mercy part is relating emotionally to the focus of attention.

The Mercy person, who is conscious in Mercy mode, is the best at sensing nonverbal communication. Inside his head, he ‘sees’ subtle clues in the environment triggering emotional memories. Therefore he notices the atmosphere of a restaurant, for instance, and is constantly reading meaning into the facial expressions of others.

I have mentioned that Mercy thought uses associative processing. I suggest that associative thinking works with connections and labels. The diagram below shows three memories, A, B and C, each represented by a dot. The arrows which point up or down show the labels associated with these three memories, and the lines between the dots show how they are connected. With Mercy processing, the memories are concrete experiences and the labels describe emotion.[C]



                                         A              B                    




Experience A is a new experience.

It reminds Mercy thought of memories B and C.

B feels fairly good. C feels very bad.

Experience A ends up feeling fairly bad.

A is stored with this emotional label.

A now helps evaluate other experiences.

Let us use this diagram to explain the example of the girl with the dress. Any experience which comes in to Mercy strategy will form a memory. Therefore, the situation of seeing the dress in the window created the memory ‘A.’ This new memory reminded Mercy thought of two other memories: ‘B,’ and ‘C.’ ‘B’ was the composite memory of previous window shopping. This memory had a positive emotional label—it felt fairly good. If ‘B’ were the only memory to be triggered, then ‘A,’ the new experience of seeing the doll in the window, would have also received a good label. However, ‘A’ also managed to connect with the old memory of ‘C,’ the embarrassing situation from childhood, which was labeled with a very strong negative feeling. The result was that the intense negative emotion of ‘C’ overwhelmed the lesser positive feeling of ‘B.’ Therefore, ‘A,’ the new memory of seeing the doll in the window, unexpectedly acquired a bad emotion.

Take this example, multiply it millions of times, and you have Mercy processing. Everywhere the Mercy person goes, he is being reminded of emotional experiences—he is associating to memories of experiences which have emotional labels. This means that the way he feels about the present is largely determined by how he feels about his past.[D]

Because past experiences have such a large effect upon present emotion, the Mercy person will often try to use the past to influence how he feels about the present. The environment will be arranged in such a way as to remind Mercy strategy of memories which have good emotions. Of course, we all do this to some extent, but for the Mercy person, this is conscious thought. This is where he lives.

Christmas time at my home provides a good example. My mother is a Mercy person. She has fond memories of celebrating Christmas as a child. So whenever we have Christmas, my father must go through exactly the same routine that my mother’s father carried out when she was little: We all go outside and stand in a row from youngest to oldest. Dad comes out and says in Low German: “Children, it’s Christmas!” Then we file into the room with the Christmas tree, singing ‘Silent Night’ in German. Finally, we all sit down and father reads the Christmas story. Repeating this ritual reminds my mother of her ‘ghost of Christmas past’ and brings back the pleasant feelings of childhood.

The associations of the Mercy person do not always involve dolls, dresses, atmosphere and Christmas. The Mercy person is naturally talented at finding unorthodox solutions to practical problems. He will pull together experiences and objects from here, there and anywhere until an answer is found—a behavior which I call ‘doctoring.’ The Apple II personal computer, for example, was designed by a Mercy electronics whiz called Steve Wozniak. It contains a number of very efficient but highly unorthodox circuits. In a similar way, my mother is always ‘doctoring’ food in order to make it taste better. Some of her culinary solutions are also quite unusual.

Mercy Automatic Thought

I suggest that the Mercy person is good at ‘doctoring’ because he ‘lives’ in a mental room which is surrounded by experiences. Remember that each of the four simple styles contains an internal world at the front of the cortex, and a corresponding automatic part at the back. One could think of the automatic fragment as a sort of mental toolshed. While all of the significant experiences are pulled into the front of Mercy thought to form the internal world, the other less important memories are stored in the back. Therefore, when the Mercy person faces a practical problem, he only needs to go into the ‘back’ of his mental room and rummage around in his ‘storage shed’ in order to come up with an appropriate response.

My sister-in-law’s brother is a Mercy person who designs and builds electronic devices for underwater applications. His lab provides a perfect example of the way in which Mercy ‘doctoring’ uses bits from the ‘storage shed.’ He constructs his testing and production equipment out of plastic pipes, light bulbs, meters bought at estate sales, scrap pieces of lumber, and stepper motors salvaged from ancient computer disk drives. The gizmos that emerge from his ‘storage shed’ of external parts and internal ideas are truly amazing.

Sheds are great for holding odds and ends, but have you ever tried to find something in a cluttered shed? You move aside the lawnmower, and a pile of rakes and shovels comes tumbling down. You get the tools out of the way and a mouse scurries from the corner. What you need may be there somewhere, but where?

The situation with the mental storage shed of automatic thought is similar. Not every Mercy person is good at ‘doctoring.’ The potential is there, but the actual result depends upon the quality and content of automatic memory. I suggest that a good mental ‘storage shed’ has three requirements: First, there must be something in the shed. Just as a storage shed must be filled in order to be useful, so the Mercy person must expose his mind to situations which can fill automatic memory with experiences. The reason that my sister-in-law’s brother is so good at building gadgets is that he has been working with electronics since he was a little child. He can find just about anything he needs by looking at those past memories.

Second, the contents of the storage shed must be useful. The Mercy person who spends his time watching soap operas on television may have a shed full of experiences, but there is not much that he can do with this mental information. However, I suggest that if the contents of the mental shed are useful, then they will also automatically become available. This is because the mental storage shed has one major advantage over a physical shed. Real sheds which are disorganized stay that way. The more you rummage through them, the messier they get. Mentalstorage areas, in contrast, are self-organizing. Simply stick your mental hand into the shed, think of what you want, and if something useful is there, then it will magically appear in your fingers.[E]

Three requirements for a working ‘storage shed’ of automatic thought.

·       It must have content.

·       The content must be useful.

·       The organization must be appropriate.

Finally, I suggest that the mental shed needs some way of deciding what is appropriate. Since Mercy strategy works with emotions, every item in the Mercy storage shed will be labeled with some type of feeling indicating what works and what doesn’t. We even speak of getting a feel for something. The Mercy person decides which mental tool to use depending upon what feels appropriate—what seemsright. If the Mercy individual has healthy feelings, then he will automatically pick the correct piece. But, if his emotions are either inappropriate or lacking, then the Mercy person will find himself reaching continually for the wrong mental tool. Our story of the doll illustrates how a childhood experience of embarrassment can warp Mercy feelings. In the same way, the Mercy person who lives in the unreal world of television sit-coms, or who harbors bitterness, hurt, or resentment will find over time that these deep-seated feelings put a false color upon all memories; whenever a new tool is placed in the mental storage shed, it will be labeled with an inaccurate emotion.

We have seen how the Mercy person’s storage shed of experiences allows him to come up with weird and wondrous solutions. I suggest that this mental awareness also leads to a desire for subtlety. Whenever the Mercy person encounters a situation, he is immediately aware of a host of similar experiences and feelings. As a result, when he approaches some emotional topic, he prefers to beat around the bush and talk about it delicately. For him, the mental associations are so obvious that stating the subject directly would feel like emotional shouting. He appreciates the same emotional sensitivity from others. A hint is usually enough: If he has the appropriate associations, then he can figure things out from there.

The Mercy mental storage shed also creates a need for sincerity. This trait has to do with emotional consistency. A person who is sincere broadcasts a uniform emotional message—Mercy strategy can reach into its mental storage shed and pick out the appropriate tool with certainty. On the other hand, an insincere person is constantly sending out mixed signals: His words may say one thing, his clothing indicates something else, and his tone of voice suggests yet a further message. As a result, the Mercy person simply does not know how to respond. His storage shed retrieval mechanism misfires, the red light blinks, and the warning voice intones: “Inconsistent data; unable to fulfill your request; please try again.” The Mercy person is strongly tempted, when this occurs, to turn to his friend and say, “I have a bad feeling about this person. Let’s leave.”

Finally, the Mercy person’s mental storage shed leads to a hunger for emotional novelty. Suppose that the Mercy person is stuck with a group of people who are socially predictable. Every situation which arises will remind the Mercy person of some mental fragment which already exists within automatic thought. After a while he will become famished for new emotion, and wish for some reaction which he has not encountered before. In response, he may do something unusual, bizarre, or even inappropriate in an attempt to stimulate emotional dialogue. If this fails, he may try to provoke an emotional reaction by losing his temper, shouting at others, or even saying dreadful things. Generally speaking, the Mercy person who reacts in this way does not really mean what he is doing or saying, he just wants to escape from the prison of emotional repetition.

We have looked at the relationship between the Mercy person and automatic Mercy thought. Remember that every individual, regardless of cognitive style, has a Mercy room with an internal world in the front and a ‘storage shed’ of automatic thought in the back. Therefore, if those of us with other cognitive styles fill our minds with appropriate situations, then we will also develop a storage shed of experiences which can help our subconscious Mercy strategies to operate more effectively. However, only the Mercy person has conscious access to this storage shed of experiences. Unlike others, this is the area of thought in which he naturally excels. His emotional sensitivity is inborn. For the rest of us, it is acquired.

The Mercy Internal World

Let us move on from automatic Mercy thought, located in the back of the cortex, to the internal world of Mercy strategy. Any experience which the mind encounters will automatically enter the storage shed of Mercy thought—that is why this part of the mind is called automatic, because it fills and organizes itself automatically. In contrast, it appears that an experience will only enter the internal world of Mercy strategy if I identify with that situation. Whenever I act as if some experience is me, then I suggest that this brings it into the front of Mercy thought. For example, I may become infatuated with some person, I may watch a movie and identify with one of the characters on the screen, I may get personally excited about some basketball star or baseball team, or I may enter into the singing in a church or an auditorium. Whatever the situation, whenever ‘me’gets involved, then experiences are being allowed into the internal world of Mercy strategy.[F]

I suggest that Mercy identification can occur either voluntarily or involuntarily, depending upon the emotional strength of an incoming experience. We could compare the inner world of Mercy thought to a reservoir of water with the height of the water corresponding to the emotional intensity of each memory. As long as the waters of incoming experience remainbelow the level of the internal reservoir, it is possible to open and to close the gate into the internal Mercy world and to choose what comes in and what stays out. However, if the water of incoming emotion ever rises above the level of the internal reservoir, then no matter how one turns the mental ‘tap’ of identification, the experience will come in.

For example, suppose that I really like having dogs around and that I enjoy petting them. If a puppy comes up to me with a wagging tail, I will probably decide to open the mental tap of Mercy identification and allow this pleasant experience into my internal world. On the other hand, if the dog growls at me, I may decide to shut the door to my inner Mercy room and find something more enjoyable to dwell upon. Now suppose that some canine beast takes a dislike to me and bites me on the hand. As long as the nibble is not too painful, I retain the mental ability to block this experience from my internal world. But, if I am sufficiently frightened, the nasty experience will enter into my inner world of Mercy thought, whether I like it or not.

Experiences enter the Mercy internal world through identification.

·       Experiences with excessive emotion force their way in.

·       If internal feeling is high, then identification is voluntary.

Any emotional experience which forces its way into the Mercy internal world becomes a defining experience.[G] I suggest that defining experiences affect thought in three ways: First, they define me. Any experience which barges its way past the doors of Mercy identification will naturally become part of me. Second, defining experiences strongly influence how I feel about related situations. Remember the illustration of the doll in the window? The experience of having a dress rip in a school play obviously was a defining experience. Because of its strong emotion, it overwhelmed the little girl’s sense of Mercy identity. Years later this memory still had the emotional potency to poison the pleasant experience of an evening walk.

Third, I suggest that a defining experience becomes an emotional magnet which attracts other experiences. New situations which are similar will bring it back to mind. These new experiences become mentally attached to the defining experience. Whenever this network of memories becomes sufficiently large, it turns on and begins to develop a life of its own. This is how a phobia develops. It starts as a bad memory. It turns into a living, breathing entity of fear.[H]

The number of similar memories required to create mental ‘life’ depends upon the emotional intensity of the defining experience. If the feeling is not too strong, then it may take quite a few similar memories for mental ‘life’ to begin. On the other hand, if the emotional level is very high, a single experience may be enough.

For example, think about an evening walk in the park. The birds are singing, the flowers are blooming, the air is cool and the setting sun creates a beautiful picture. One act of criminal violence is sufficient to turn this idyllic scene into a continuing mental horror.

Notice that there is a strong connection between personal identity, emotional labeling, and the Mercy internal world. What is my identity? I suggest that it is that which makes me an individual, different from others and separate from my environment. Identity, first of all, can be created mentally. Emotional situations enter my internal world of Mercy thought. Because these memories live within my mind, they are present wherever I go. My environment may change, but my memories stay relatively fixed. In other words, they define me.[I]

My internal world also affects how Mercy strategy feels about situations. This is because experiences with the strongest emotions force their way into my internal world, and these obviously have thegreatest effect upon emotional labeling. Therefore, I end up imposing my emotional likes and dislikes upon my environment, another expression of identity.

Second, identity can be created physically. Wherever I go, my physical body follows me around. It is easy for me to change my environment, much harder to alter my physical abilities. My physical skills and limitations therefore also define me.[J]

The presence of a personal physical body affects how Mercy thought reacts to situations. I can feel pain and pleasure from my own body, but I cannot feel the physical sensations of another person. Therefore, my emotional responses are colored by my own physical reactions of pain and pleasure.

The relationship between me and emotional labeling often shows up in the personality of the Mercy person, who has conscious access to the Mercy internal world: Suppose that he really likes hamburgers. When he sees someone who is hungry, he is reminded first of food and then of the good emotions associated with eating hamburgers. As a result, the Mercy person’s response to the famished figure may revolve around hamburgers. But, what if the other person hates beef and cannot bear the thought of eating fast food? Obviously, the Mercy person’s actions will be misguided. He will feel that he is helping the other person, but he may actuallybe hurting him.

It is common for the Mercy person to fall into the trap of assuming that his likes and dislikes are shared by others. I suggest that there are three reasons for this behavior: First, we have already seen the relationship between emotional labeling and personal identity. Second, if you look at the list which describes which mental rooms can see which other rooms, you will notice that Mercy strategy cannot ‘see’ any of the rest of the mind. Therefore, not only does the Mercy person identify with his own feelings, but he also does not see any other room of thought. As far as he can tell, his room is the house. Finally, the Mercy person has the ability to concentrate.[K]When the Mercy person is in pursuit of a goal, he is capable of ignoring all of the rest of the world. This single-mindedness can extend even to physical movement. Some Mercy persons are constantly bruising their bodies: In their enthusiasm to arrive at a destination, they forget that their path is full of obstacles which must be avoided.

As we go through this book, we will discover many personality traits which can be either beneficial or harmful, depending upon how they are used. The emotional tenacity of the Mercy person is one of these characteristics. I suggest that in its positive form it is the basis for love: First, as the Mercy person sees other people going through life, he is automatically reminded of how he felt in similar situations. This provides the stimulus for love. Second, because Mercy strategy is trapped within the internal world of emotional experiences, these feelings of empathy cannot be avoided. This gives the motivation for love. Finally, when the Mercy person decides to do something, he can use concentration to ignore the actions and words of others. This gives love its strength.

The problem arises when the Mercy person tries to impose his standards of ‘love’ upon those around him. He can be so convinced that others should love what he loves and hate what he hates that he may turn into a type of emotional dictator—all in the name of love. As long as others live by his standards of ‘love,’ all is sweetness and light. But, if they dare to express feelings which are contrary to his own, then he will drop subtle hints, give them ‘the look,’ or even throw a temper tantrum in order to impose his emotional standards upon his surroundings, all the while convinced that he is spreading love.

I suggest that this same error of thinking can occur in cultures or groups of people which strongly emphasize Mercy thought. For instance, the guerrilla ‘freedom’ fighter usually comes from a peasant background, in which life is limited to concrete experiences and where actions are guided by ‘gut feelings.’ [L] He becomes so obsessed with his effort to teach others how to ‘love’ that he ends up deceiving, shooting, killing, blowing up, destroying and maiming, all in the name of so-called love.

Most Mercy persons talk about love. However, I suggest that as the Mercy person grows in mental maturity, his definition of love will change. It is as he goes beyond his own feelings, and learns about the hopes and hurts of others, that his actions of ‘love’ acquire a character which is worthy of the term.

Neural Networks and Mental Life

We have taken a brief look at the relationship between the Mercy internal world, defining experiences, and fear. This may give us the impression that defining experiences always have a negative influence. However, the strong feelings associated with defining experiences can be positive as well as negative. For instance, I suggest that positive defining experiences play a critical role in the mental development of a baby.

The mind of the baby is like an empty slate, or a vacant house: The shape is there, but nothing has been written upon it; the mental house has been built, but the rooms are still unfurnished. The newborn mind may not be able to do or say much, but it does live in a human body which can feel hunger, thirst, cold, and warmth. I suggest that it is pain and pleasure from the physical body which makes Mercy strategy the first mental room to operate within the mind of the child. If we existed as disembodied beings floating through the air, other mental modes might develop before Mercy thought. But, the baby is stuck within a body which feels. Within the first day of his life, he has been spanked on the bottom by a doctor, felt the warm touch of a mother, suffered hunger, and been fed. Very quickly, an emotional network of Mercy experiences develops. The experience of seeing the face of mother, for instance, creates a good feeling because it reminds the baby of the pleasant satisfaction of being fed.

Childhood experiences with the strongest emotional labels automatically become defining experiences, for there is no internal world to resist them. These emotional absolutesform the kernel of personal identity. When enough memories join themselves to a defining experience, then the mental fragment becomes ‘alive’ and starts to operate. Slowly, the baby develops a personality with likes and dislikes. At first, personal identity is quite fragile. Almost any emotional experience contains sufficient feeling to become a defining experience around which Mercy thought can integrate. Even ragged old teddy bears and squeaky little toys become emotional seeds from which mental ‘life’ develops. Try to take these possessions away and the child reacts by clutching on to them and saying “Mine!” Mother and father are a major source of defining experiences. As far as the child is concerned, they have the emotional significance of gods—huge, strong beings who are all-powerful and all-knowing, with the power of life and death.

In early stages of life, the personality of the child can vary radically as different situations trigger differing mental fragments, each with its own set of feelings and emotional reactions. Even normal everyday experiences occasionally have sufficient emotional strength to overwhelm the internal Mercy world of the child and trigger a crying spell or an emotional outburst.

defining experience sets the standard for rating similar experiences.

     This is the event about which I have the strongest feelings.

e.g. A holiday for me may be the week of glorious weather at the cabin by the lake.

     All other holidays are compared to this single experience.

e.g. A car may be that old rusty ‘lemon’ which continually broke down.

     Say the word ‘car,’ and this memory comes to mind.

One can see why the Mercy person is often quite shy as a child. His immature conscious mind is constantly being bombarded with emotional experiences which threaten to overturn his internal stability. The natural defense is for him to ‘stay within sight of home’ mentally: He can then counter emotional threats by thinking about strong emotional experiences already present within his internal world. When he feels insecure, he can ‘run’ to his defining experiences for shelter.

External objects can also be used to help remind Mercy strategy of ‘safe’ memories. The Mercy child may drag around his security blanket, or clutch on to mother when a stranger appears. Like all of us, when his emotions are threatened, then he retreats in some way to mental safety. However, unlike others, the Mercy person is capable of taking this response to its logical conclusion: He lives in the Mercy room, and can decide to ignore most of the world and pull back to a set of emotionally safe memories. If his external world is full of hurt and misery, then he may in fact choose to withdraw from it completely. I suggest that this is the mental mechanism behind schizophrenia. The schizophrenic suppresses Mercy memories which make him feel bad, and uses concentration to dwell upon those memories which feel good and secure. In essence, he puts up a false wall within the ‘room’ of conscious thought and pretends that the part of the room which is behind the wall does not exist.[M]

Other cognitive styles can block off parts of their mind and still function to some extent. I suggest that the Mercy person does not have this ‘luxury,’ because Mercy thought plays a pivotal role in human mental integration. Mercy strategy, as we have suggested, is the first to operate in a child. This is because we live in physical bodies which ‘feed’ our minds with experiences of pain and pleasure. The rest of the mind develops later, and is held together by the core of personal identity which is located first and foremost within the internal Mercy world.[N]

Therefore, if the Mercy person blocks off part of his conscious room, he is dissolving the ‘glue’ which holds his mind together. The result will be major mental fragmentation. But, because the Mercy person cannot see the rest of his mind, he will not immediately realize the repercussions of his decision to suppress painful memories. However, the mental networks which he has quarantined will continue to operate under the surface—without being supervised by conscious thought.


I suggest that this mental divorce can account for the symptoms which are present in schizophrenia. First, the schizophrenic person begins to hear voices. In the same way that Mercy strategy uses emotions and concentration to work with experiences and identity, we will see later that Teacher strategy uses emotions and concentration to process words and understanding.[O]I suggest that these two mental modes are responsible for emotionally driving the rest of the mind.[P] If the Mercy person abrogates conscious control over some part of his mind, then subconscious Teacher strategy will take control over these suppressed fragments, and this aspect of subconscious thought will then be driven by words and understanding, which the Mercy person will hear as internal voices. The Mercy person put up his mental wall of partition, originally, because he did not like what was on the other side of the room. Given that mental foundation, the words and understanding which come from subconscious thought, as it grows from this base, will probably be unpleasant and condemning.

Second, and looking further at symptoms, if the Mercy person blocks off portions of subconscious thinking, by walling off their base within conscious Mercy thought, he loses conscious access to their abilities. For instance, any task which is related to words and understanding will become much more difficult, because subconscious Teacher strategy is now working partly on its own and no longer cooperating fully with conscious Mercy thought. Therefore the schizophrenic person will find it harder to read, listen and understand speech, and will experience more difficulty in tying together the individual elements of sight into the ‘big picture’ of understanding.

Third, the thinking which the Mercy person does do consciously will no longer receive as much corrective guidance from the rest of the mind—obviously, since a mental wall has been built at the foundation of mental integration. Therefore, the schizophrenic Mercy person will be free to follow emotional flights of fancy, and will flit from one defining experience to another, unrestricted by limitations of logic or reason.[Q] There can be incredible theories about me and personal identity, with no basis in fact or reality.

For the Mercy person, the decision to pull back from unpleasant experiences is usually a conscious one. Our observation suggests that most schizophrenics have the cognitive style of Mercy—it is the mode of thought with conscious control over Mercy strategy. However, it is also possible in some cases for other personality types to acquire the disease. Shell shock, for example, is a temporary form of schizophrenia which can occur in any person. In this case, the recurring horror of war eventually causes subconscious Mercy thought to reject the experiences of the external world and to retreat mentally to safety.

Multiple Personalities

I have suggested that memories which join together become ‘alive.’ I would like to illustrate this concept of mental ‘life’ with the help of another mental illness which also seems to affect almost exclusively the Mercy person. Schizophrenia, it turns out, starts when a teenage Mercy person decides to pull back to mental safety. If, in contrast, the Mercy person mentally retreats from danger at anearlier age, then I suggest that the result is multiple personalities. The reason is simple. Any Mercy split which occurs later in life can only be partial, since subconscious thought has already had time to move beyond its initial base in Mercy thought and to form its own network of connections. In contrast, a Mercy split which happens early in childhood can be total, because the rest of the mind has not developed to the point where it can fight the break.

Multiple personalities, it turns out, provides the most graphic example of mental networks which ‘live.’ The mind is literally split into different personalities, each depending for its character, existence and growth upon the network of memories and experiences which gives it shape.

One researcher writes: “When a personality assumes the body, any experiences in the real world during this period become those of the personality. The personality then has the memories and feelings generated while he or she was in control. This explains why some personalities may grow, mature, and change. A personality who never emerges into the real world will remain in nascent form precisely as first conceived. Personalities are incomplete, lacking the contrasts, contradictions, and versatility of real people. Many seem to be automatons with an unswerving dedication to a single mission. One thinks but does not feel, another cries but cannot laugh, a third specializes in self-mutilation.” 1

“Most personalities, at least in patients, are produced by abuse and mistreatment, usually in childhood. Evidence suggests that almost all of these traumas have been actual events. Only in the last decade have articles and books begun to appear verifying the frequency of child abuse and sexual assaults upon children.” 1

I have described how strong emotional experiences force themselves into the internal world of Mercy strategy. Imagine an innocent child assaulted physically by an adult in the most intimate way. For a little child, sexual assault would be a personal attack from an omnipotent, evil god. Any sense of personal identity would be totally overwhelmed. Almost instinctively, the victim would then block off the extreme emotions in order to rescue the remaining fragments of self.

Suppressing memories leads to schizophrenia or multiple personalities.

·       In schizophrenia, mental segments remain partially connected.

·       In multiple personalities, thinking fissures into separate ‘persons.’

The Mercy person is most susceptible to these two conditions.

Each experience of abuse would shatter personality further. It would become a defining experience, attract other related experiences, become alive and start to operate. These living fragments are often associated with friends or familiar toys, as the abused child assigns his hurtful memories to defining experiences which already exist. Once a person has created one mental fragment, then he may respond to more pain by creating two, three, or even dozens of mental networks, each with a kind of independent life. This would literally fragment his mind into separate life-forms.

The mental fragment which is active is determined, then, by the environment. Any external object or experience which relates to one of the defining experiences causes that mental fragment to be triggered and to become active. For example, perhaps there was an unusual chair in the room when the abuse occurred. The sight of a similar chair would cause the related mental fragment to emerge. As this internal switching occurred, others would notice that the person had changed his personality. The person himself would feel as if he had been asleep and had now awakened many hours later in a different place and time.[R]

When a split occurs at a relatively early age, then there is nothing in the rest of the mind which can reintegrate the fragments. Therefore, mental development moves along parallel paths. Any fragment which is active will grow and mature. It will acquire memories—it may study math tables, or learn how to drive a car. Fragments which remain suppressed will stay unchanged. If suppressed fragments are accidentally triggered many years later, then the person will appear to have regressed to an earlier age. He may lose his knowledge of arithmetic or driving.

Psychologists have found that multiple personalities can be cured by accessing and ‘reliving’ the defining experiences of abuse, thus building mental connections. This process of mental integration is very painful because it goes beyond normal feeling to mental ‘life’ and ‘death.’

Let us digress for a moment to examine this new concept of ‘death,’ the counterpart to ‘life.’ Once a mental fragment starts ‘living,’ it wants to stay alive. Anything which tries to tear apart an operating network makes a person feel as if something inside of him is about to die. I suggest that the agony of mental annihilation is much stronger than the normal emotion of pain and pleasure. People will invariably choose emotional or physical pain over the discomfort of mental fragmentation.

The practice of female circumcision, for instance, shows the emotional force which can be associated with mental integration. Many people in African countries currently feel threatened by the incursion of Western thinking and culture: The mental fragment of Mercy experiences associated with their own culture is facing a sentence of ‘death.’ Therefore, African women may actually decide as adults to undergo genital mutilation, or choose to inflict this sexual abuse upon their daughters, in order to create a defining experience which can keep the mental fragment of their culture ‘alive.’

The emotional pain involved in reintegrating a person suffering from multiple personalities is just as intense. It is common for patients undergoing treatment to attempt more than once to commit suicide. Mental fragments often do not want to come together because they are afraid that integration will result in their ‘death.’ The process of mental unification is like peeling layers from an onion. Each mental revelation uncovers another set of hurts and it may be only at the end of a long road that the core trauma is unveiled. The pain of these latter stages can be excruciating because each suppressed memory which comes to the surface will be re-experienced by the patient in all of its original emotional intensity.

Mercy Strategy and the Brain

Let me introduce this section by describing how the neurologist goes about determining the functions of the various parts of the brain. This will help us to see why neurology is still somewhat of an inexact science.

The researcher cannot just open up a person’s head and start poking with needles. This type of intrusive research fell into disuse, thankfully, at the end of the Third Reich. Today, a brain researcher has four options: First, he can do his experiments on monkeys and rats. While monkeys are not human, their brains are similar and much of what we know about the humanbrain comes from work with animals. Second, he can wait for some human to lose part of his brain in an accident, and then try to find out which mental function is now missing. This is the study of brain lesions. Third, since the invention of PET scanners and other brain imagers, it is possible for the first time to see the functioning human brain in action. However, images are still somewhat blurry and scanning for one picture takes several minutes. Fourth, the brain surgeon must at times poke around in a live human brain. For instance, in the case of extreme brain seizures, the doctor may open up the skull of the patient and remove the part of the brain which is malfunctioning. Before doing the actual cutting, though, he will probe the cortex with electrical signals and look for responses from the patient. That way he can know which sections can be removed and which are absolutely essential for normal functioning.

Now that we know the conditions under which neurologists must do their work, we can frame the question. Is there a location in the brain whose operation corresponds to Mercy thought? Unfortunately, the answer is not totally straightforward. Instead, the answer must be pieced together.

 As far as neurology is concerned, first of all, we are starting our analysis of the mind from the wrong point. The modern study of brain regions began in 1861 when Paul Broca, a French physician, discovered that damage to a specific area of the left frontal cortex impaired speech. These patients remembered individual words, but they could no longer assemble them into sentences.

Having started with a study of words, neuropsychology grew up with a sort of linguistic bias, referring all brain functions to the fundamental behavior of speech. For instance, the left hemisphere was called the verbal hemisphere, because it contained the centers of speech. The right hemisphere, in contrast, was called the non-verbal hemisphere, indicating its supporting role in the general understanding of the mind.

This book, in contrast, begins by looking at Mercy strategy, the ultimate non-verbal mode of thought. Neurology built its understanding of the mind around the core concept of speech—located within the bottom half of the left hemisphere. We, on the other hand, are beginning our discussion of the mind with Mercy thought, which appears to be located in exactly the opposite side of the brain.

I suggest that there is a mental reason for this difference in approach. As we will see later, humans find it easiest to use logical thought in areas where the Mercy emotions of everyday life do not intrude. This is why universities generally turn into ‘ivory castles,’ distant from the feelings of normal life. Therefore, it makes sense that the research of neuropsychology would begin with speech—an aspect of human thought which is both obvious and separate from Mercy thought and feelings.

One more problem emerges when trying to decipher the evidence of neurology. Generally speaking, the data falls into two different categories. On the one hand, when looking at specific brain regions, neurologists generally do not distinguish between the operation of the left and right hemispheres.[S] For instance, when referring to the functioning of the orbitofrontal cortex,[T] they usually lump together the region in the right hemisphere with the one in the left and treat the two halves as one indivisible unit.

On the other hand, those who do compare the functioning of the left hemisphere with the operation of the right hemisphere usually talk in general terms, referring at most to the front or the back of the cortex.

So, let us see what we can discover. We begin with a brief digression into basic neuroanatomy. First, if you look at a human brain, you notice immediately a division between the left and the right hemisphere. And, even a layman can tell you that the left hemisphere operates analytically and that the right hemisphere functions associatively. Researchers may disagree over the precise nature of this processing, but the basic distinction is well established. Therefore, we can immediately conclude that Mercy and Perceiver thought are associated with the right hemisphere and Teacher and Server strategy with the left.[U]

Second, when we look closer at the function of each hemisphere we find another clear division, between the front and the back of the cortex. At the boundary between these two regions is the primary motor-sensory strip, a band of cortex which is responsible for body sensation and muscle movement. The region behind this strip interprets and manipulates information which comes in from the external world, while the area in front of this strip—the frontal lobe—is a more nebulous domain housing the internal world which makes us human. Again, there is no question over this distinction and these functions. It is general knowledge. Thus, we conclude that the mental processing of each of the four simple styles is divided into the two categories of sensory thought and internal world.

Finally, if we examine the back of each cortex, we find one more clear division, between top and bottom. The bottom half is called the temporal lobe, while the top is labeled the parietal lobe.[V] The function of these two lobes is also well known, and it has also been firmly established that the right parietal lobe has a different purpose than the left parietal lobe, and that the right and left temporal lobes also differ in function.

When we get to the front half of each cortex, though, the situation becomes somewhat confused. On the one hand, neurology has discovered that there is a clear distinction between the top of the frontal lobes (the dorsolateral region) and the bottom of the frontal lobes (the orbitofrontal cortex). The exact boundary between these two areas may be uncertain, but there is no question about the separation between them.

So far, so good. The only problem is that information about the frontal lobes usually lumps together corresponding regions in the left and right hemispheres. Therefore, while it is easy to compare the function of the bottom half (or inferior) of both frontal cortices with the top half (or superior) of both frontal cortices, it is much harder to find information which makes a distinction between the left dorsolateral frontal and the right dorsolateral, or between the left orbitofrontal and the right orbitofrontal cortices.[W]

This pairing in fact makes sense in the light of mental behavior. At this point in the book, we probably have the impression that Mercy thought operates in isolation, apart from other modes of thought. This is not the case. Normal thought involves extensive interaction between mental modes. In addition, two of the composite styles generate precisely the pairing which is noted by neurologists. Contributor thought combines Server and Perceiver memories. Therefore, it makes sense that there would be a close relationship between left dorsolateral frontal cortex (the region I associate with Server thought) and right dorsolateral frontal cortex (the area connected with Perceiver thinking). Similarly, Exhorter thought combines Mercy and Teacher modes, making it reasonable that the right and left orbitofrontal cortices (the corresponding brain regions) should be lumped together.

Fortunately, where behavioral studies are lacking, brain wiring comes to the rescue. Each hemisphere contains two major bundles of conduction fibers, called the uncinate fasciculus and the arcuate fasciculus. The uncinate fasciculus interconnects the temporal lobe with the orbitofrontal cortex, and the arcuate fasciculus connects mainly the parietal lobe with the dorsolateral frontal cortex.[X] Thus, each of the four major regions in the back of the cortex is strongly related to a corresponding quadrant in the front: the right parietal and right dorsolateral frontal regions are related, the left parietal and left dorsolateral areas are related, the left temporal lobe forms a unit with the left orbitofrontal lobe, and the right temporal lobe forms a unit with the right orbitofrontal region.

In the area of speech, the aspect of brain functioning most thoroughly studied, research solidly backs up the idea of a back quadrant of the cortex forming a system with its corresponding frontal quadrant. Speech deficits are divided into three major categories, depending upon the precise location of the damage.

If Broca’s area (in the inferior left frontal cortex) is damaged, comprehension is preserved and individual words can be remembered, but the patient loses his ability to form sentences. In other words, as far as speech is concerned, automatic thought remains intact, but the internal world is crippled.

On the other hand, if the damage occurs in Wernicke’s area (in the left temporal lobe), patients can produce structured sentences, but they are unable to fill these sentences with meaningful words. Thus both speech and comprehension become empty, devoid of content. This means that the internal world is functioning, but the storage shed of specific items has been smashed.

Finally, if the fibers which interconnect these two regions are destroyed, the result is conduction aphasia.[Y] Here both speech and comprehension are fairly normal, but the patient finds it difficult to repeat words or name objects. It is as if the storage shed and the internal world are still present, but the mechanism for retrieving information from the storage shed has become faulty.

Given this basic neurological information, the question of relating cognitive style to brain region takes on a completely different light. It is not a question of somehow pasting personality patterns haphazardly onto brain areas. Rather, our study of personality suggests that there are four distinctive personality types—the simple styles—which deal with mental content. Likewise, our research indicates that each of these four styles combines automatic thought with an internal world. Turning to neurology, we find that the cortex—the region of the brain which deals with content—is also divided into eight well-defined regions. Therefore, in order to connect personality with neurology, we only need to answer a single question. Is there a correspondence between the eight aspects of personality demonstrated by the simple styles and the functions of the eight major regions of the human cortex? I suggest that this answer is yes.

We will finish this first look at neurology by analyzing the connection between Mercy strategy and brain location. First, it is known that the mind stores memories of experiences in the right temporal lobe. Neurology has discovered that if this part is damaged, then long-term non-verbal[Z] memory is impaired.2 Thus, we conclude that Mercy automatic thought is located within the right temporal lobe.

I have mentioned that the left temporal lobe and left inferior (lower) frontal cortex act together to handle speech. Neurology has discovered a similar system linking the right temporal lobe with the rightinferior frontal cortex. As expected, the described linkage is speech-centered, but one can see that researchers are definitely referring to Mercy type processing. Our research has found that the Mercy person is especially adept at picking up non-verbal (that word again) speech. He concentrates so much on the way something is said, that he often misses what is being spoken.

If the area of the right temporal lobe which corresponds to Wernicke’s area in the left area is damaged, then a condition called sensory aprosodia emerges, in which the patient is severely impaired at comprehending gestures and interpreting the emotional aspect of speech. In other words, the area of the Mercy storage shed which deals with communication is destroyed.4

On the other hand, damage to the right inferior frontal cortex produces what is called motor aprosodia. These individuals can still comprehend emotional communication, but they talk in a monotone and their speech is unaccompanied by any gestures. This suggests that their Mercy internal world is unable to form any mental structures related to speech.

The connection between multiple personalities and suppressed Mercy memories has also been noted by neurology. I have suggested that Mercy memories are stored in the right temporal lobe. Based upon our understanding of multiple personalities, we would suspect that this region of the brain would be underactive when the core personality was in control, and that brain activity would increase when the secondary personalities emerged. Precisely this was observed when an individual with multiple personalities was placed under a brain scanner. When the mental activity of a secondary personality—to whom painful memories have been assigned—was measured, the only difference noted on the scanner was an increase in blood flow in the right temporal lobe.3 [AA]

Turning our attention now to the front of the cortex, some evidence specifically linking the right orbitofrontal cortex to the Mercy internal world does exist. For instance, one researcher mentions that “...patients who are restless, impulsive, explosive, self indulgent, inappropriate, sexually disinhibited, little concerned for others…are more likely to have right orbitofrontal lesions.” 4 These undesirable traits can be summarized as emotional reactions to experiences without the help of a set of emotional guidelines.

Most of the evidence, though, looks at the right and left orbitofrontal cortices as a complete system. For example, “Few patients who sustain major frontal lobe lesions ever engage in creative endeavors or in the pursuit of meaningful interpersonal relationships. Taste, in the aesthetic and social sense, is a trait that the frontal-lobe-damaged patient will find difficult or impossible to cultivate…We believe this set of behavioral abnormalities is strongly associated with lesions of the orbitofrontal region and not at all with the more superior dorsolateral or mesial lesions.” 5

We have looked at the content of Mercy thought. Evidence suggests that there is also a specific brain center which does the actual Mercy processing. Neurology has found that buried within the temporal lobe is a nucleus, called the amygdala, which processes feelings. As one researcher states, “the amygdala mediates the encoding into memory of both positive and negative emotional attributes associated with reinforcement contingencies during a specific learning experience. A learning may be encoded into memory by different neural systems, the amygdala encoding the emotional attributes of the experience.”  6

This same volume mentions that when the amygdala is removed in humans, “hyperactivity is said to decrease, fear and aggression harder to provoke; emotional control enhanced, resulting in better concentration, a steadier mood, and more rewarding social interactions…There can also be problems: decreased spontaneity, productivity, and elaboration of emotion. Amygdalectomy does not significantly impair general intellectual or memory function.”

In other words, science, in its infinite wisdom, has determined that humans can survive reasonably well without emotional processing. Scary, isn’t it? As we go through this book, we will see that this statement is not an academic aberration. Rather, it defines the fundamental premise of modern science: Humans do better without feelings.

Coming back to the amygdala. There are in fact two of these almond-shaped centers,[BB] one buried within each of the two temporal lobes. Neurological literature generally does not distinguish between them, but rather treats emotional processing as a single entity.

This seemingly insignificant point was actually responsible for a major breakthrough in our research. Initially we thought, like most others, that feelings were synonymous with Mercy processing, and that emotions and experiences always went together. So, it made sense when we read that the right temporal lobe—the storage location for Mercy experiences—contained an amygdala—the emotional processor.

But, why was there also an amygdala within the left temporal lobe? Logically speaking, if the right amygdala was responsible for Mercy emotions, then the left amygdala must be adding feelings toTeacher thought. This reasoning led us to examine the traits of the Teacher person for emotional content. To our surprise, we discovered that Teacher thought did operate with feelings—Teacher feelings. What are these Teacher feelings? We will answer that question when we describe Teacher thought.[CC]

In summary, I suggest that Mercy thought contains three components: First, the memories of Mercy automatic thought are stored in the right temporal lobe. Second, the Mercy internal world is located in the right orbitofrontal cortex. Third, Mercy processing is done by the right amygdala. Or, in the words of one researcher, “the close anatomical relations between the orbital cortex and temporal lobe structures, the amygdala in particular, suggest that those temporal lobe structures, together with the orbital cortex, form a neural complex essential for the appraisal of the motivational significance of objects, for emotional expression, and for social bonding.” 7

Perceiver Strategy

We will start our discussion of the Perceiver person by taking another look at the diagram of mental symmetry. Notice that the word ‘Perceiver’ is at the top right of the first diagram. The top axis tells us that the Perceiver is associative; the left axis shows that the Perceiver works with abstract data; finally, the diagonal indicates that the Perceiver uses confidence to evaluate information.

Associative Thought

Notice that both the Mercy and the Perceiver persons think associatively. Their thoughts are constantly bouncing from one memory to another. When the analytical person reads a book, he starts from page one and reads through until the end. The associative person, in contrast, may start in the middle, thumb through a few pages here and there, see if the story has a good ending, and then go back to the beginning. This difference in approach became very clear to me during the time that I, an associative Perceiver person, worked together with my brother, an analytical Teacher person. I would typically begin my analysis of a problem at the easiest point, even if it was right in the middle. On the other hand, my brother started at the beginning, regardless of the difficulty.

While the Mercy and Perceiver persons use the same type of thinking, the information which they process is quite different. The Mercy person works with concrete data—images, pictures, and real events. He looks at the windows on a barn, for instance, and sees a face with half-closed eyes leering out at him. He notices the body language of another individual and is reminded of experiences involving personal acceptance and rejection. He plays around with real objects in order to get a feeling for how they interact.

Both Mercy and Perceiver persons think associatively.

·       The Mercy associates between experiences with emotional labels.

·       The Perceiver associates between facts with labels of confidence.

The Perceiver person, on the other hand, deals with abstract information; he associates between facts and concepts. He does not work with the experience itself, but rather with the idea behind the experience. Just as the mind of the Mercy individual is constantly jumping from one experience to another, so the Perceiver person’s mind is continually bouncing between ideas. Let me illustrate with the help of a joke. Question: “Why are fire trucks red?” Answer: “Because fire trucks have four people and eight wheels. Four plus eight is twelve. There are twelve inches in a foot. A foot is a ruler. Queen Elizabeth is a Ruler. Queen Elizabeth is also a ship. A ship sails on the ocean. Oceans have fish. Fish have fins. The Finns fought the Russians. Fire trucks are always rushin’. Russians are red. Therefore fire trucks are red!” Of course, as the Perceiver person becomes more educated, his mental connections tend to make a little more sense, but I suggest that his mind may still go from ‘a’ to ‘b’ by stumbling through half of the alphabet.

This associativity generally shows up in the speech of the Perceiver person. He bounces from one topic to another. He is often saying: “Oh, that reminds me…” as he begins another chain of associations. It also affects the listening of the Perceiver person. He is tempted to interrupt others before they finish speaking. Why? First, his mind has already jumped ahead of the speaker and completed the sentence. While the talker is wending his way from ‘d’ to ‘e,’ the Perceiver person has arrived at the destination of ‘j.’ Why should he listen further? The Perceiver person also tends to approach reading in the same way. He often skims through a book or article and picks out the essential points. Usually, he arrives at the correct mental destination. But, not always.

Second, the words of the other person probably reminded the Perceiver person of some related idea, and he knows that if he does not say it right now, it will be gone, and he will not know how to bring it back. Besides, since the thinking of the Perceiver person is constantly being dragged from one concept to another, what is the harm of one more interruption?

What the Perceiver person does not realize is that there are people out there who really do think linearly, who actually read books from start to finish and who hate to be interrupted in the middle of a sentence. I learned this principle while working with my analytical brother. I did not barge in when he was talking, and heaven help me if I dared to interrupt his speech with a pun or some other offbeat remark. Oh, the agony that I suffered constantly biting my tongue, keeping my mouth shut, and swallowing scores of brilliant comments, which then died stillborn. I received a plaque once from a group of friends as a moving-away gift. On it was inscribed, “We will miss you, but not the puns.”

A map provides a perfect illustration of Perceiver processing: First, as I suggested earlier in the book, a map is associative. Symbols indicating names, cities, roads, rivers, and mountains all lie scattered about on a single sheet of paper. This is a good picture of Perceiver memory. His mental room is full of facts strewn here and there with no regard for context—information about mountains lies next to facts about the ‘information highway’ which connect to knowledge about the price of tea in China. If at times the Perceiver person appears to be somewhat scatterbrained, it is because he is—this is the true nature of raw Perceiver thought.[DD]

Second, a map is based upon connections. Names, lines and symbols are not just placed randomly on a map. Instead, cities which are linked by roads are shown as dots connected by lines. Locations which are spatially connected in real life are shown close together on a map—it is this relationship which make a map so useful. These links are related to distance: Locations which are not directly connected are further apart.[EE] For Perceiver strategy, the memory lies in the connections. These are all-important.

Third, a map is abstract. The Mercy person remembers experiences about real rivers, bustling towns, and towering mountains. In contrast, the Perceiver person steps back and looks at the facts behindthe experiences. He actually thinks of towns as little black and red dots, and remembers a freeway as a pair of green lines snaking across a piece of paper. For him, thinking is like playing with Lego blocks: He takes the messy stuff of raw experience and idealizes it into neat, square, well-fitting blocks of information. Then he builds mental objects by playing around with these abstract representations of reality.[FF]

Fourth, a map represents reality. The dots and lines symbolize real towns and physical roads. The Perceiver may be an abstract thinker, but he does not build castles in the air. He may step back from reality, but he never cuts the link that binds him to the real world. His bricks of thought may seem idealistic, but they still have their basis in the real world. This is because Perceiver thought can take the oozing clay of experience and form it into the bricks of solid facts, but it cannot build memories out of thin air. It is this mental limitation which forces him to maintain contact with the concrete world.

Finally, a map varies in detail. Maps can be city plans which show all the streets in a certain town, or round globes which depict the entire world. Similarly, Perceiver thought can look either at the overall picture of the ‘forest,’ or focus on the details of the ‘trees.’ Perceiver thought is equally at home with major principles and with small details—mental bricks can be any size. Small bits of information are assembled to form big pictures, and general principles are broken down into their component parts. Just as Mercy strategy is the part of the mind which is responsible for storing memories of experiences, so Perceiver thought is responsible for building the connections between the forest and the trees of mental facts.

The Diagram of Mental Symmetry

We have talked a little about Perceiver thought. I would now like to illustrate Perceiver thinking by looking at the diagram of mental symmetry. As you know by now, I am a Perceiver person, and I suggest that this diagram provides a picture of my way of thinking. In particular, I would like to tell you why I chose to call it the ‘diagram of mental symmetry.’

First of all, what we have is a diagram. I have just stated that Perceiver strategy thinks in terms of mental maps. A diagram is a type of map. It takes words and symbols, and depicts them in a way that shows the connections between these various items. The diagram of mental symmetry labels the major processing modes of the mind, and indicates the connections between these strategies of thought.

As a Perceiver person, I found that my research was usually driven by a search for connections. I developed this theory of the mind by taking the concepts of others, and by connecting them together to form a general understanding. I analyzed the mind by looking at each mode of thought and by seeing how it connected with other ways of thinking.

Second, it is a diagram of mental symmetry. The Perceiver person is naturally attracted to the facts behind experiences. What we are examining here are the general principles which lie behind human thought and action. I suggest that this approach can be very helpful. We live in a world of complex human interactions, a sea of people and institutions. What lies behind every human interaction is the human mind. Therefore, if we can work out a map of thinking, this can help us to keep our mental directions straight when we interact with other people or with other rooms within our own mind.

For instance, open a newspaper and see how many of our problems involve people and mental conflict: An ex-employee walks into the office and kills six people before committing suicide; a country erupts into ethnic conflict because one group of people hates another; part of a country wants to secede because it either feels that it is being mistreated or else it senses that its culture is being threatened; a terrorist blows up a building or derails a train because of some perceived injustice. The list goes on and on. Occasionally we read about a real catastrophe like a flood or a hurricane but even here the human element seems to intrude: If a spaceship blows up, then there is a suspicion of improper engineering; if a hurricane strikes, the story centers upon the slow response of the emergency teams. You can see why I as a Perceiver person would want to study the mind: It connects with so many other topics and situations.

Third, what we are looking at is a diagram of mental symmetryOver the years, I have discovered that there are amazing symmetries within human thought. My reflection in a mirror provides an example of physical symmetry. The image that I see in a mirror looks just like my body, except that left and right are flipped.[GG] The same principle seems to apply to cognitive styles. Take the personality traits of one thinking style, ‘flip’ them with a certain type of ‘mirror,’ and you end up with the traits of another style. For example, there is a symmetry between Perceiver and Mercy thought. Both think associatively—here the mental ‘image’ is the same, but one works with abstract facts and the other with concrete experiences—here the image is ‘flipped.’ Perceiver thought is always looking for symmetries. This kind of a mind is constantly reflecting mental images and concepts one way and then another in order to try to match them up.

By now some of you may be asking: “If this book is a description of Perceiver thought, why do the rest of us need to read it? Let the Perceivers have their facts and connections. We do not need to bother with all of this esoteric information.” I have often received this type of response, and it needs to be addressed. After all, libraries are full of books written by people trying to impose their mental approach upon other thinking styles.

I would like to suggest two reasons why this book is relevant, even for those who do not have the cognitive style of Perceiver: First, while Perceiver persons like maps, we all need them. It is true that studying the map is not the same as being there, but being there is much more enjoyable with a map. Think of the courage of explorers such as Christopher Columbus and Ferdinand Magellan, who sailed off into open sea not knowing when, where and what they would find. In our day of well-marked freeways and established rules and procedures we forget the terror associated with the lack of a map.

I had my own experience recently of wandering around terra incognito without a map. When we go to the store, in North America, we all assume that we will find the corn flakes next to the bran flakes, and that the car tires will be in the section with the car batteries. However, when I visited post-communist Russia, I found that this basic order was not present: I would go into a little store and find chocolate bars sitting next to ladies’ pantyhose, cartons of apple juice and penlight batteries. Each shop was an adventure, for I never knew what treasure I would discover lying in some obscure corner. In order to remember where I could buy a certain item, I first of all had to build mental maps of the locations of the various shops. Then, I also had to remember where the objects were located within each store: “If you want to buy some margarine, go to the kiosk opposite the culture hall and look on the top shelf on the right side of the store. You’ll find it there beside the notepads.”

Second, I suggest that this book is relevant to non-Perceivers because I have tried to construct a map which describes all styles of thinking. Rather than portraying a map restricted to a portion of some mental continent, I have put together a big picture of the entire human globe. We will be looking at more than just Perceiver facts. We will also examine Mercy emotions, Server actions, Teacher understanding, Exhorter excitement and vision, Contributor planning and business, and Facilitator philosophy and science.[HH]

Perceiver Confidence

With this in mind, let us continue with our current analysis of Perceiver thought. So far, we have seen a basic similarity between Perceiver and Mercy mode as well as a major difference. On the one hand, both Perceiver and Mercy persons use associative processing. On the other hand, while they both think in the same way, they work with different types of information: The Perceiver remembers abstract facts, whereas the Mercy deals with real experiences. We will now look at a second major difference between Mercy and Perceiver strategy: Mercy thought uses emotion to evaluate experiences while Perceiver strategy works with confidence.

I suggest that both confidence and emotion can vary all the way from completely negative through nothing to totally positive. With emotion these extremes are obvious: We marvel at the sight of mountain scenery, whereas a cut in the finger hurts. However, confidence—like emotion—can also come in negative flavors.

Mercy emotion and Perceiver confidence can be positive or negative.

·       Mercy thought can feel good or bad about an experience.

·       Perceiver mode can know a fact is true or know it is false.

Mercy feelings and Perceiver confidence can both vary in strength.

·       Mercy thought can have deep emotions or shallow feelings.

·       Perceiver thought can be totally confident or else uncertain.

In order to understand confidence more clearly, it might help if we used the word knowing instead of confidence. The Perceiver person deals with facts. He can knowthat a certain piece of information is true—positive confidence, and he can also know that a fact is false—this is negative confidence. In between these two extremes lies a gray area in which Perceiver strategy may think that something seems true or false, but not be completely certain. In mathematics, something that is not right is automatically wrong. In real life, though, things are often not that black and white.

I might add that some Perceiver persons specialize in knowing what is wrong. They have great confidence in labeling error. However, an individual who is adept at pointing out falsehood is often less proficient at recognizing the truththat passes his way.[II]

Let me illustrate confidence with a few examples. Think of the following facts: The President of the United States was abducted by Martians; 2 x 2 = 214; the moon is made out of green cheese. In all cases we can know that these facts are false. Why? Because we are sure that these bits of information cannot belong together: Martians live in fantasy books, and presidents belong in newspapers; only at grocery checkout stands do these two converge. Similarly, the number 214 is much bigger than the number 2. Therefore, the two do not belong together. Likewise, we all know that the only green cheese on the moon is that which was left there by the Apollo astronauts.

Now let me try another set of facts: The President of the United States visited Ecuador; 14 x 16 = 214; the moon is made largely out of silicon. These pieces of information may or may not be right. Most of us would probably have to check them out in order to know whether they were correct or not. With these facts, our level of confidence is low—maybe positive or maybe negative. The problem is that we do not know whether these ideas belong together or not. The President could have visited Ecuador. Multiply fourteen by sixteen and you get a number pretty close to 214. And, as for the moon containing lots of silicon, we know that silicon is the major ingredient of sand. Maybe the moon does contain a lot of silicon.

Finally, look at these facts: The President of the United States visited the White House; 2 x 2 = 4; the moon is made out of rock. I think that all of us can say with certainty that we know these facts to be true. Why? Because we know that the component pieces of information belong together. When we think of the President of the United States, we automatically think of the White House. In our minds, these two fragments of facts have become connected. In the same way, the words ‘two times two’ automatically remind us of ‘4.’ As for the moon, every picture I have seen reveals nothing but dust and rocks.

Let us summarize. Perceiver strategy works with facts. A fact is a bundle of information. A fact is true if the pieces of information belong together and false if the various bits do not coexist. Just as Mercy strategy labels every experience with a feeling, so Perceiver thought attaches to each fact a label of certainty. Perceiver strategy knows what does and what does not belong together.

Perceiver Automatic Thought

All of us have a Mercy part which can feel. Similarly, each person can know facts with the help of Perceiver thought. However, I suggest that the knowing of the Perceiver person has an added advantage. In the same way that the Mercy person is consciously aware of a mental storage shed of experiences, so the Perceiver person has conscious access to a mental storage shed of facts. As a Perceiver person, I have discovered over the years that I have a natural ability to work with uncertain information. I simply ‘reach’ into the mental storage shed of facts located within automatic Perceiver thought and out pops the appropriate piece of information, along with a label of certainty. I suggest that the name which we give to this Perceiver storage shed is intuition.[JJ]

Intuition[KK] is the Perceiver analog to Mercy ‘doctoring.’ Just as the Mercy storage shed allows the Mercy person to come up with strange solutions that work, so the Perceiver storage shed helps the Perceiver person to develop unusual ideas that make sense.

Perceiver intuition gives us a sense for what is reasonable. The Perceiver person lives within the Perceiver ‘room’; the rest of us have this mode of thought available under the surface. We all use Perceiver reasonableness, for instance, when checking and comparing prices. For example, we expect the cost of gasoline to vary by a few pennies between service stations—this is reasonable. But if one station were to charge three times the price of the other stations, or if the price of gasoline went up overnight by two hundred percent, we would all consider this to be completely unreasonable.

Intuition can be very helpful, but it can also be very wrong. How does one build an accurate intuition? I suggest that the same three principles for building a good Mercy storage shed of experience apply to the Perceiver storage shed of facts: First, a mental storage shed only works effectively when it is filled. The more facts I know, the more raw material there is for intuition. For instance, my own personal storage shed of facts started filling quite early—I read the encyclopedia even before I began school. I have always read a lot and years of working together with my Teacher brother have forced me to broaden my intellectual diet. Every time he came up with a new theory, I would have to learn more facts in order to know whether his ideas were right or wrong.

Reasonableness falls apart when Perceiver thought encounters a fact that is completely new. Perceiver strategy puts its hand into the ‘storage shed’ and comes up with a blank: The new data does not remind Perceiver strategy of any other facts, and therefore it cannot know whether this fact is right, wrong, reasonable, or ‘out to lunch.’ As a result, the Perceiver person is often a conservative thinker. He prefers to stick with ideas which are tried and true; he feels disoriented when he has to expand this base of knowledge. When he encounters something genuinely original, the temptation is for him to zero in on some error—real or perceived, and use this as an excuse to label the material wrong and to reject it. Just as the Mercy person can have problems with shyness, so the Perceiver individual may hang on to the ‘apron strings’ of limited knowledge. As a Perceiver person, I can state that my intellectual horizons have generally been expanded by other people. They prodded me over the initial hump of uncertainty. Once I acquired a sense of reasonableness, then I could usually motivate myself to study further.

Second, the mental storage shed of facts must contain material which is useful. Suppose that a person absorbs facts about hockey players and Star Trek episodes. His Perceiver storage shed may contain reams of information, but it is helpful only at hockey games and Trekkie conventions. Unfortunately, the mind seems naturally to avoid facts which apply to the present and to focus instead on information which relates to other times, other people, and other places.[LL] The Perceiver person, in particular, can fall into this trap. He will know all of the facts and rules that pertain to others, and be able to judge exactly what they should do and what they should believe, but turn strangely silent when it comes to his own home, his personal beliefs, and his own actions.

Finally, any information which is placed into the Perceiver storage shed will need to be labeled properly. The Mercy storage shed labels experiences with a feeling of appropriateness. In contrast, the contents of the Perceiver storage shed acquire labels of reasonableness. These tags, as they link, allow the mind to judge whether a particular fact is possible, impossible, reasonable, unreasonable, likely, unlikely, common or rare.

It is easy for us to feed our Perceiver storage sheds with inaccurate labels. Suppose, for instance, that I ‘suspend feelings of disbelief’ while watching a movie or reading a novel. Or suppose that I swallow facts from others without checking them. This programs Perceiver automatic thought with spurious information. Intuitive thought becomes less dependable. As the old computer adage says: “Garbage In; Garbage Out.”

In the same way that the Mercy storage shed is responsible for certain traits in the Mercy person, so I suggest that the Perceiver storage shed also influences the Perceiver person. First, there is a strong desire for brevity. Just as the Mercy person finds it distasteful to deal too bluntly with experiences and emotions, so the Perceiver person hates to have facts explained in excruciating detail. He dislikes longwinded explanations. State the information once, clearly; that is enough. While writing this book, I had to learn how to use more words and more illustrations. I found out that it is sometimes necessary to state things two or even three times before the point is sufficiently understood. Even now, I am sure that some readers will accuse me of being too terse. I’m sorry. But there are so many ideas, and I refuse to devote my entire life to writing them down.

The need for brevity extends to the humor of the Perceiver person. His jokes tend to be one-liners—short, pithy statements. He cringes at the endless ‘shaggy dog story’ type of joke preferred at times by the Exhorter person (who, by the way, finds it difficult to stop talking). If the Perceiver person retells the long tale, he will throw away the unnecessary bits and reduce the story to its essential core.

The Mercy person needs sincerity and dislikes insincerity. I suggest that the corresponding trait in the Perceiver person is a desire for integrity and a hatred of hypocrisy. The person who is insincerebroadcasts inconsistent emotional messages which confuse Mercy automatic thought. In contrast, the individual who is hypocriticalmakes it difficult for the Perceiver storage shed to come up with a reasonable set of facts. How do you describe a person who talks one way and acts another, who communicates one set of facts with his lips, and broadcasts completely different information with his body? If you listen to what he says, you reach one conclusion. On the other hand, if you watch what he does, then you come up with a totally different result. If the facts about this two-faced individual are accepted in totality without questioning, then Perceiver thought itself becomes fragmented. Consequently, the natural reaction of the Perceiver person is to despise the hypocrite, and to reject him as ‘wrong.’

For example, I remember having a deep conversation with a girl recently married. I gathered that she was a person of real integrity. Imagine my disgust when, several weeks later, I discovered that she had run off and abandoned her husband. I wasn’t so much annoyed at her. Rather, I began to doubt my ability to detect integrity. And without an accurate, operating ‘hypocrisy detector,’ I felt vulnerable.[MM]

Unfortunately, the Perceiver person himself is often somewhat of a hypocrite. I suggest that the blame for this state of affairs can be laid at the feet of two culprits: The first is associative thought. Remember that the thinking of the Perceiver person is naturally scattered. Gathering of thoughts is a lifelong process. Obviously, with this type of memory organization, inconsistencies can sometimes be overlooked.

The second culprit is the interaction between confidence and emotion. Perceiver strategy may be totally confident about right and wrong—as long as the emotional pressure is not too severe. However, once personal feelings enter, then confidence can crumble. The Perceiver person is famous for boldly saying “This is the truth,” and then adding a meek “I think” as others turn to listen. He often recognizes this trait within himself and may struggle to avoid ‘being a hypocrite like all the others.’ Later on, we will examine ways in which Perceiver strategy can gain lasting integrity.

Finally, I suggest that the Perceiver person’s mental storage shed creates a real hunger for new ideas. The Perceiver person hates clichés—statements which have been repeated so often that they have lost their meaning. For the Perceiver, hearing a cliché is like turning on the television set and seeing reruns. It channels his mind back to information which he already knows by heart.

In the same way that the Mercy person may use inappropriate behavior in order to open up channels of emotional communication, so the Perceiver person can use deliberate nonsense to start the flow of facts. For instance, while the Perceiver individual detests the well-worn phrase, he loves the modified cliché. His version might go: “Roses are red, violets are blue. Most poems rhyme, this one doesn’t.” Hewill respond to “Hello, how are you?” with something like “Dreadful, my great-grandfather is dead.” When discussion is going nowhere, he will make the extreme statement just to get people talking.[NN]

The Perceiver Internal World

So far, we have emphasized the thinking which occurs within automatic Perceiver strategy. Let us turn our attention now to the internal world of Perceiver thought. With Mercy mode, I suggested that it was identification which moved an experience from automatic memory to the inner world. In the case of Perceiver strategy, I suggest that the critical component is beliefAutomatic Perceiver thought deals, we said, with reasonableness. It decides which facts make sense and which ones do not. Belief, however, goes further than reasonableness. A fact which is reasonable could be true, it is probably correct, itseems to make sense. In contrast, when I believe a piece of information, I am stating that it is true, that it is certainly correct, and that it definitely makes sense. Of course, believing that something is true does not make it true, but it does take the information from the ‘storage shed’ of automatic Perceiver thought and move it into the ‘house’ of the internal Perceiver world.

Facts enter the internal world of Perceiver thought through belief.

·       If existing beliefs are uncertain, then new beliefs can be imposed.

·       If internal knowing is strong enough, then belief is voluntary.

Memories which enter the internal world have the potential of becoming ‘alive.’ We saw how experiences which exist within the Mercy inner world can combine together and start to ‘live.’ In a similar way, I suggest that Perceiver principles can coalesce together to form a living system of belief. Any mental network which begins to ‘live’ will want to stay ‘alive.’ Therefore, any system of belief which develops a life of its own will try to protect itself from being attacked.

Mercy fragments grow around defining experiences. I suggest that Perceiver belief systems are based upon absolutes. An absolute is simply a core belief which exists within the Perceiver inner world. The average person in our western society tends to find the concept of an absolute somewhat frightening. It is of course scary—by definition. Imagine believing in an idea so strongly that it affects how you approach other facts. In the middle ages, for example, people used to believe that the sun moved around the earth. This one piece of information warped their entire world view. That is the power of an absolute.

Let me see if I can demystify this explosive subject of absolutes. We will start by reviewing how Mercy thinking operates: Each Mercy experience which enters the mind is associated with a certain feeling of physical pain or pleasure. This incoming experience reminds Mercy strategy of relatedexperiences from the past, each with an associated emotional label. The sum of these emotional influences determines how Mercy thought feels about the present situation. Mercy memories which are located in the internal world of Mercy strategy have the greatest impact upon this calculation of feeling simply because they have the strongest emotional labels—they act as emotional ‘absolutes’ which guide how Mercy strategy feels about other experiences.

I suggest that Perceiver thought operates in the same way: A fact enters Perceiver strategy. This incoming fact reminds Perceiver thought of relatedfacts from the past, each with an associated label of confidence. All of these influences add together and determine the label which is given to the new information. Perceiver facts which are located in theinternal world of Perceiver strategy have the greatest effect upon this calculation of confidence simply because they have the strongest labels—they are the absolutes which determine whether other facts are labeled right or wrong.

Let me illustrate. In the past, when I introduced people to the concept of cognitive styles, I often received the following reaction: “Oh, personality types. That reminds me of horoscopes. Well, I know that horoscopes are wrong, therefore your theory must be incorrect as well.” Notice what was happening. Perceiver thought encountered a new fact about cognitive styles. The labeling for this novel concept depended upon which related ideas came to mind and how they were labeled. If Perceiver strategy was reminded of horoscopes and if Perceiver thought knew that horoscopes were wrong, then cognitive styles would also be labeled as wrong.[OO]

After several years of research, the typical reaction changed. First, my description of cognitive styles tended to remind Perceiver strategy of different facts. Because the theory had become more sophisticated, people were now reminded of television programs which they had seen about the mind and not fortunes which they had pulled out of cookies. Second, not only had the connections changed, but the labeling appeared to be different as well. People who did associate mentally to the idea of horoscopes now tended to label my theory as right and not wrong. New Age thinking had spread, and the general population had started to see the whole topic of horoscopes in a different light.

Perceiver Assumptions and Axioms

We have looked at the similarities between Mercy and Perceiver labeling. However, I suggest that there is also a major contrast between these two. Mercy experiences enter the mind accompanied with an emotional label suggested by physical pain or pleasure. Perceiver facts, on the other hand, come into Perceiver thought without an accompanying sense of rightor wrong. Any label of confidence which a fact receives comes purely from the mind. How does the mind generate this label? That is a good question which we will be examining in a few pages.[PP]

Let me state this in another way. As babies, we automatically knew which Mercy experiences to love and which ones to hate: We loved pleasure and we hated pain. As Mercy strategy grew and memories begin to shape emotions, Mercy thought gained the ability to modify these internal feelings. As adults, we have probably developed areas in which physical and mental feelings diverge completely. For instance, we go out into the middle of the forest, swat mosquitoes, eat burnt hot dogs, endure pouring rain, crawl into damp sleeping bags and declare that we are enjoying ourselves. Or, we state in the middle of a party, at which there is lots of tasty food, fun games, exciting music, and good friendship, that we want to go home to bed.

In contrast to Mercy thought, Perceiver strategy is stuck with a sort of ‘chicken-and-egg’ problem: Eggs are laid by chickens, but without eggs, no chickens will hatch. Which then comes first, the chicken or the egg? How can the cycle of chicken and egg start without having both a chicken and an egg?

This is the situation faced by Perceiver thought. In order to know what to believe, Perceiver thinking compares new facts with the existing system of beliefs already residing within the internal Perceiver world. But, a system of belief can only be constructed by putting together a number of individual beliefs. So what comes first, the system of belief or the belief? How can the cycle of evaluating and testing new beliefs start without an already operational belief system? Hmmm. For the Perceiver person, this is not just a theoretical problem. He lives within the Perceiver ‘room.’ Conscious thought in him requires an operating internal world of beliefs.[QQ]

Wow! We have barely started this book and already we are into heavy questions of metaphysics and philosophy. Let us step around some of the mental minefields and approach this loaded topic from the viewpoint of programming a computer. After all, this is a Programmer’s Guide to the Mind, right?

We will start with a simple fact. Suppose I believe that ‘2 + 2 = 4.’ Why do I think this is true? Because I learned it in school. Why is the school correct? Because the information came from a book of mathematics. Why is mathematics correct? Because someone decided that the symbol ‘2’ would represent two of something and he discovered that if he gathered two of something twice, then he would end up with something which he decided to call ‘4.’ But why is this so? Because the world happens to be that way. But why is the world that way? Because! Now quit bugging your mother and go play with your toys.

Notice how each fact is labeled right or wrong because it brings to mind another fact which Perceiver strategy knows is either right or wrong. Notice also how the string of questions ends with a ‘Because!’ I suggest that this illustrates the core challenge in programming Perceiver thought. On the one hand, Perceiver strategy is not told which facts are true and which are false—facts do not come with built-in knowing. On the other hand, Perceiver thought can only operate by assuming that some facts are true and that others are false—the big ‘Because!’ In fact, it has been proven logically that the need for absolutes, assumptions, or axioms is universal. Mathematics itself has shown that every system of logic must assume a certain set of core facts.

So why do we need absolutes? Why not live without them? First, what are we going to do with the poor Perceiver person? After all, he lives in the room which contains Perceiver thought. If we give up the search for absolutes, we lock the door to the Perceiver ‘room,’ board it up, and then, in big red letters, scrawl ‘Condemned’ on the plywood sheet nailed over the entrance. How could we do that? Try telling an Exhorter person that he may not get excited, or try denying love to a Mercy person. This obviously is not going to work.

Second, I suggest that the human mind in fact always operates with some set of absolutes. During the late twentieth century it has become fashionable to elevate relativism and to question the existence of absolutes—we put on an air of ‘free thinking’ to complete the ‘look’ of bell bottoms, wide ties, leisure suits and platform shoes. However, seldom have we lived in an environment with so many absolutes! We receive ‘absolute’ guarantees from manufacturers: “If you are not absolutely satisfied with our product, we will refund your money without question.” We are ‘absolutely’ sure that government or science can solve all of our problems. We are ‘absolutely’ convinced that next year’s product will be new and improved. We are ‘absolutely’ positive that we can go to the store and find cereal, milk and cheese to buy. We have ‘absolute’ confidence that the little rectangles of printed wood pulp which we stick in our wallets with so much pride can be exchanged for items of value. For a time, we even became ‘absolutely certain’ that there were no absolutes. If a person came in from the jungle to observe our activity, he would be amazed at our high level of belief.

Now, at the beginning of the millennium, as our absolutes of prosperity, progress, guaranteed employment, civilized behavior, and ‘satisfaction or your money back’ are beginning to slip, we are becoming more aware of our innate need for ‘absolutes.’ Of course, maybe there really are no absolutes. Who knows. However, it appears that Perceiver strategy can only function properly if it assumes some set of facts as absolute.[RR]

If the human mind requires absolutes in order to operate, then the basic question changes. It does not matter whether absolutes exist or not, because if they didn’t, we would be mentally driven to create them. Therefore, the puzzle now involves finding the best set of absolutes.[SS] Let us approach this challenge by playing our ‘why’ game one more time. This time we will start with the statement: “Stealing is wrong.” “But why is stealing wrong,” responds the obnoxious child.

One possible answer is: Because I say so. But why should I believe you? Because! I might be clever and add: Because it says so in my Holy Book. Here. See? It’s one of the Ten Commandments. But why is your Holy Book correct? Because it is the Word of God. But why is it the Word of God? Again, because!

As we examine this approach, we see that the ultimate ‘Because!’ is rooted always in the statements of some person or religion. This reminds us of the traditional approach to questions of ‘morality.’ However, we have now learned that ‘absolutes’ involve Perceiver thought and we also know that Perceiver strategy views a ‘fact’ as a set of elements which are connected: A fact is ‘true’ if the various elements belong together, and it is ‘false’ if the various pieces do not fit together.

A Perceiver definition of Truth:

·       A fact is true if its component parts remain connected.

·       A fact is false if its various components cannot stay together.

With this definition of ‘truth,’ let us try again to come up with an answer: Stealing is wrong because it takes things without working for them. But why is it wrong to take things without working? Because if others take what you make, then you will never make anything. But why must people make things? Because unless people make things, there will be nothing to steal. Q.E.D.

Notice that this second line of reasoning is different from the first. Why did we conclude that stealing is ‘wrong’ or ‘false’? Because if everyone steals, then there will be nothing left to steal. In other words, stealing is ‘wrong’ because the various bits of this composite fact do not belong together in a permanent way: Over the long term, the two fragments of ‘taking’ and ‘object’ cannot remain connected. If you do not believe me, look at a country in which people steal from each other, or where the government steals from the people. You will find that, ultimately, there is nothing left to steal.[TT]

‘Schizophrenia’ and ‘Multiple Personalities’

When we looked at Mercy strategy, we saw that the Mercy person can use conscious control to withdraw from hurtful experiences—he constructs a wall across the Mercy room of thought. If this mental wall is erected early in life, then the result can be multiple personalities. On the other hand, if the wall is constructed later on, when most of the other rooms are also functional, then symptoms of schizophrenia may emerge.

Mercy experiences come with feelings already attached. Therefore, the Mercy person faces the challenge of dealing with strong emotions: Multiple personalities are caused by excessive emotional pressure. Schizophrenia, similarly, seems to be a defense against overwhelming emotional hurt. Perceiver facts, in contrast, come without any suggested label of confidence. Therefore, I suggest that the Perceiver person must learn how to handle a lack of confidence. It is when the environment denies him absolutes that he is tempted to put up a mental wall and retreat to a safe portion of his conscious room of Perceiver thought.

Mercy denial early in life can lead to multiple personalities. Similarly, I suggest that the Perceiver person with an underdeveloped thought life, who rejects topics or people, can turn into a cynic. Major portions of Perceiver thought will be blocked off and rejected wholesale: “They are lying, cheating, stealing idiots who wouldn’t recognize truth if it hit them over the head with a sledgehammer. Everythingthey say and do is hypocrisy. They haven’t got an honest bone in their body.” A group of people may be rejected. It can also be a topic, an organization, or a religion which gets the cold shoulder.

The cynic blocks off a region of Perceiver memories, and then retreats to a safe area of truth and absolutes: “They may be idiots, but at least have principles.” Unfortunately, living as a Perceiver person in today’s Western World is rather difficult. It is hard not to be cynical, just as it is difficult for the Mercy person not to become desensitized by the senseless and gratuitous violence that seems to accompany a lack of absolutes.

Let me give you a personal example of Perceiver cynicism. My research on the mind started as graduate work in Electrical Engineering.[UU] To make a long story short, I found myself spending three years poring through the neurological literature. Eventually I was asked to give a graduate seminar on the work which I had done thus far. As a Perceiver person, I assumed that if I came up with facts which were sufficiently interesting, then my research would be accepted. Instead, I found to my surprise that the response to my presentation centered around the philosophical question of whether or not it waspossible for a person to discover facts about the human mind. While I was trying to use Perceiver strategy to build a system of facts, those around me were not even convinced that Perceiver thought was a valid option. The shock to my mental system was so great that I went home and banged my head against the floor in frustration.[VV] It took me some time to emerge from my feelings of cynicism.

Notice the essential similarity between Mercy multiple personalities and Perceiver cynicism. In both cases, a person is subjected to an environment which hinders conscious thought from developing normally. The abused Mercy child is bombarded with emotional experiences which stop his internal Mercy world from forming. Me is actually torn apart with conflicting defining experiences. Similarly, the Perceiver person turns into the cynic when his environment lacks absolutes; he is surrounded by individuals who act as if the contents of his Perceiver internal world are irrelevant and that Perceiver truth can be created or destroyed at will.[WW]

I have compared cynicism to multiple personalities. I suggest that the Perceiver analog to schizophrenia is the leap of faith. The Mercy person who tries to suppress an operating mind discovers that any segment of thought which he quarantines continues to work under the surface. In the same way, the Perceiver person who knows enough facts and has sufficient understanding is no longer able to turn into a cynic. He cannot write ‘them’ off completely, for he knows that ‘they’ accept some Perceiver facts which he knows to be correct. But, he still wants to get away from ‘them’ and their hypocrisy. Therefore, he proves logically that ‘they’ and their beliefs are inadequate. Once he has shown the inconsistencies in ‘their’ way of thinking, then he uses conscious control of Perceiver strategy to jump from their facts to his set of beliefs.

Let me give you an example. I talked once to a Perceiver person who is well known in Protestant Christian circles for his intellectual acumen. Over the years he has discovered many shortcomings with ‘the church’ and can describe these hypocrisies with great precision. As a result, he took a ‘leap of faith’ and became a convert to the Greek Orthodox faith. When you talk with him, he uses logic to try to convince you of the futility of following Protestant Christianity and then mentally jumps to the conclusion that the real truth is found in the icons, rituals and writings of the Orthodox Church.[XX]

The Perceiver analog to multiple personalities is cynicism.

·       The cynic blocks off people and beliefs as inherently wrong.

The Perceiver analog to schizophrenia is the leap of faith.

·       The ‘leaper’ combines logical reasoning with irrational denial.

Oh no! Not another heavy subject. First philosophy, then university, now religion. Let us see if we can use our understanding of Perceiver thought to cut through this tangle of emotional information. Remember that a Perceiver fact is a set of connections. A fact is ‘true’ if connections exist and ‘false’ if they do not exist. But, notice that cynicism and the ‘leap of faith’ both involve the breaking of connections—they put up a mental wall which separates one set of facts from another. Since both of these mental strategies involve the denial of connections, I suggest that they are by definition ‘wrong.’ One need not get sidetracked by questions of philosophy or religion. Rather, one simply looks for the existence of lasting connections.[YY] In order to discover ‘truth,’ one must build connections. Attacking connections leads only to a knowledge of ‘error.’

Notice also that both Mercy schizophrenia and the Perceiver ‘leap of faith’ involve an essential contradiction. On the one hand, mental thought is allowed to operate: The schizophrenic emotionally identifies with his internal world of safe Mercy experiences. Similarly, the ‘faith leaper’ uses Perceiver logic and internalized beliefs. On the other hand, both of these individuals are very selective about whenand where they allow this thought to function. The schizophrenic identifies with a limited set of Mercy memories and uses conscious control to prevent Mercy thought from expanding into other areas. In the same way, the ‘faith leaper’ restricts his Perceiver logic to a limited number of facts and uses conscious control to freeze the rest of his Perceiver internal world.

Notice, in a final related point, the interaction between conscious thought and the mental ‘room’ which is under conscious control. As I mentioned before, it appears that these two are different: For instance, the Mercy person has a Mercy ‘room’ just like any other cognitive style. However, he is also conscious in the Mercy ‘room’—that is what makes him a Mercy person. Conscious thought, it appears, is a sort of extra module of thought which is tacked on to a certain mental ‘room.’ The ‘room’ to which the conscious module is attached determines a person’s cognitive style. In schizophrenia and in the ‘leap of faith,’ the conscious mental room is being allowed to operate some of the time, while at other times, conscious control takes over and suppresses the operation of this room.[ZZ]

Mercy plus Perceiver

Let us review where we have come thus far in our journey through the mind. First, we scanned the seascape of Mercy strategy. We saw how thundering storms of experience could generate deep rolling waves of emotion. Making our way across these changing contours, we peered into the roiling emotional whirlpools of multiple personalities and schizophrenia.

We then made our way through the terrain of Perceiver thought. Here we found a landscape covered with the pebbles of information and shaped by the mountain peaks of truth and confidence. Strangely enough, despite surface differences between these two areas, we kept noticing similarities of underlying shape. Even the emotional abysses which we uncovered in Mercy thought had their analogs in the deep chasms and uncrossable gulfs of Perceiver cynicism and ‘the leap of faith.’

We will now turn our attention to the interaction between these two mental contours. Just as water and land together sustain plant and animal life, so I suggest that tying together Mercy and Perceiver strategies will generate an entire ecosystem of trees, flowers, grasses, and animals that feed upon them. What type of system? Well, we know that Mercy strategy remembers experiences and emotions and that Perceiver thought works with facts and confidence. Think of the many different ways in which facts and feelings can and do interact. Sparks of life from this mental interplay are sufficient to generate a rich bio-diversity of inter-dependent personality traits. So, let us shift our attention from the imagery of poetry to the language of logic and see what we can discover.

There is a one way connection: Mercy       Perceiver.

·       Perceiver mode sees Mercy experiences.

·       Mercy strategy does not see Perceiver facts.

·       Perceiver facts alter the connections between Mercy experiences.

·       Mercy mode notices that different experiences come to mind.

I suggest first that the diagram of mental symmetry provides a major clue about interaction between Mercy and Perceiver thought. If you examine this diagram, you will notice that there is an arrow from ‘Mercy’ up to ‘Perceiver.’ This arrow indicates a unidirectional flow of information from Mercy mode to Perceiver mode. You could think of this connection as a sort of one-way mirror connecting these two rooms in the mental house: Perceiver thought is aware of Mercy experiences—in this direction the glass is transparent, while Mercy strategy cannot see Perceiver facts—in this direction the glass is a mirror; all that Mercy thought can see is its own reflection. However, this mental one-way glass is very peculiar, because as Perceiver strategy works with facts, the shape of the mirror changes and the image which is seen by Mercy thought becomes altered and warped, like one of those curved mirrors which you see at the circus, that make you look ‘bent out of shape.’ Therefore, whereas Perceiver strategy can seeMercy memories, Mercy images are altered by Perceiver thought.

Who does What

Now that we have a general idea about how Mercy and Perceiver thought interact, let us look at the details. We will start with the path from Mercy to Perceiver strategy—the ability of Perceiver thought to see Mercy memories. Remember that I defined a Perceiver fact as a group of elements which are connected together. I would now like to refine that definition. I suggest that the elements which make up a fact are located in Mercy strategy and that Perceiver mode works only with the connections. In terms of our analogy, Perceiver thought looks through the one-way glass into the room of Mercy strategy and searches for relations. When a connection is discovered, then Perceiver thought remembers it as a fact. Perceiver strategy is therefore somewhat like a psychologist observing a patient through the glass: It does not get directly involved with the action and with experiences. Rather it observes through the window and silently takes notes.[AAA]

Let us see if we can clarify the distinction between Mercy items and Perceiver connections with the help of our road map illustration. Remember that a map contains two main parts. There are the dotsrepresenting the towns and cities and there are the lines indicating roads between the different places. Now erase all the dots and leave only the lines. These form a set of connections with a specific shape. Suppose we did this with the major roads and cities of Britain. We would end up with a triangle connecting London, Bristol, and Birmingham and a straight line going from Birmingham up to Manchester, just like a pyramid with a flagpole at the top. It is this set of connections which is remembered by Perceiver thought as a fact. When Perceiver strategy works with facts, it works with connections and disregards Mercy experiences which were the source of those connections.

That is why the Perceiver person can jump in one sentence from the topic of motorways and driving on the left side of the road to the subject of pyramids with flagpoles. Within his mental room of Perceiver thought, he sees these two asdirectly related, because they have similar connections. The experiences may be totally different; Perceiver strategy does not mind, it is concerned only with connections.

Here is another example. When Perceiver strategy thinks of a ‘car,’ it pictures a group of wheels, doors, engine, seats and body placed together in a specific way. Perceiver thought does not care about which wheels or doors are being used. It only remembers the way in which the various bits are connected.

This emphasis shows up in the approach of the Perceiver person. He generally tries to avoid the individual and to deal rather with the problem. Of course, people and problems tend to go together and the attitude of the Perceiver person sometimes reminds one of a horse-mounted knight bound by rules of chivalry: “I must kill you. I have nothing against you personally. You are simply a problem which needs to be addressed. Would you please step out of the way while I hack you to pieces.”

Mercy strategy, in contrast, deals with the individual experiences. Mercy thought cares very much about which specific wheels and doors are in the car, because some wheels and doors are much nicer than other wheels and doors. Mercy strategy would probably find touring the motorways of Britain much more interestingthan visiting pyramids with flagpoles.

Notice how Mercy and Perceiver thought view the same objects in completely different ways. Mercy strategy sees the 1973 green Honda Civic with the dent in the fender. If this car is associated with enough emotion, then it can become the defining experience by which all other cars are evaluated. Perceiver thought, in contrast, simply sees each specific vehicle as another example of the species ‘automobilis Nippon.’ The color and the make of each individual car are not as easily remembered.

I suggest that many of the problems which come up in the marriage between a Mercy person and a Perceiver person can be explained by looking at the interaction between Mercy thought and Perceiverthought.[BBB] For example, I have just mentioned that the Perceiver person thinks in terms of facts and tends to ignore individual experiences. In contrast, the Mercy person will usually focus on the personand the specific incident. This differing approach can lead to some profound clashes of opinion.

Suppose that the Perceiver husband sticks only with ‘the facts and nothing but the facts, ma’am.’ Eventually, his Mercy wife will get frustrated at his lack of emotion and erupt in an outburst—just to get some feelings back into the relationship. He will listen to the torrent of words tumbling from the lips of his Mercy wife and interpret them as logical facts—now he knows what she really thinks about him. He may decide that if she believes such terrible things, then he is justified in pulling out his sword of ‘truth’ and slashing without mercy at his opponent: “Well if that is your honest opinion about me, then let me tell you this and that and…” The emotions associated with his brutal statements enter deep into her heart and fester.

Or, suppose that the Mercy wife follows her emotions completely and ignores Perceiver facts which lie behind individual Mercy experiences. Eventually, her Perceiver husband will become disgusted at the lack of factual content in their relationship and start to preach information at her, or make extreme statements to trigger her sense of reasonableness. She will interpret his remarks as a lack of personalrespect for her, and feel that he is trying to belittle her emotionally. Coldly, she will block off her feelings towards him. Perceiver thought in him will become convinced that the connection between them has now been broken. His preaching will gain an air of finality, and cement the separation.

This leads us to a general rule. Whenever we look at the interaction between parts of the mind, I suggest that the same principles can be applied to the relationship between corresponding people. For instance, if certain conflicts can occur between Exhorter strategy and Contributor strategy, then the same incompatibilities can appear between an Exhorter person and a Contributor person. In addition, I suggest that when some individual is unwilling to deal with internal mental conflict, then there will be no way to resolve the corresponding external interpersonal strife that results.

Finally, I would like to make a brief comment about marriage between Mercy person and Perceiver person. Because conscious thought in each partner interacts strongly with conscious thought in the other, Mercy persons and Perceiver persons who meet will tend to feel a mental bond. As a result, it is common for individuals with these two cognitive styles to marry each other.

So, who does get married? Our observations about married couples and their cognitive styles suggest the following principles: First, people with the same cognitive style will not get married (with the occasional exception of Contributor persons). This would be like marrying a mirror image of your own self. Look too closely and you start to see all of your own wrinkles and shortcomings. Yuck!

Second, people with the opposite cognitive styles also will not be attracted to each other. By opposite, I mean on opposite corners of the diagram of mental symmetry. Therefore, Teacher and Mercy persons almost never get married to each other, and Perceiver and Server persons very seldom tie the knot.[CCC] People who do get married seem to be conscious in mental rooms which are ‘adjacent’ to each other—by working together these individuals complete mental circuits. Therefore, with the simple styles, the combination of Perceiver and Mercy is very common, as is Teacher and Server. Composite styles tend to marry other composite styles, with Exhorter-Contributor and Contributor-Facilitator being most likely, since these combinations tie together stages one and two, or stages two and three of the mental loop of drive and imagination.

The Definition of a Fact

We have compared Mercy thinking with Perceiver thought. We have seen how Mercy and Perceiver strategies divide the task of working with experiences and facts. I would now like to examine exactly how Perceiver thought takes Mercy experiences and transforms them into facts. If our discussion seems to be a little dry and esoteric at the moment, I assure you that several extremely emotional topics are looming just over the hill. Therefore, it is important for us to lay a solid foundation so that we can traverse these issues without slipping in the mire of wishful thinking or getting splattered by the muck of controversy.

I have mentioned that Perceiver thought can observe Mercy experiences by looking through a sort of one-way glass which separates the two rooms—Perceiver strategy sees Mercy thought with all of its individual experiences. As situations occur within the Mercy room, Perceiver strategy will pay special attention to the connections which form between them. Each link that is noted by Perceiver strategy will be stored as a fact within the Perceiver storage shed of automatic thought.

Over time, Perceiver mode will begin to notice certain patterns—connections which are repeated. It will discover, for instance, that there are many experiences within Mercy memory which contain doors, wheels, engines, seats, etc. in a similar arrangement. As a specific pattern repeats, Perceiver thought will start to gain confidence in this fact. It will become reasonable that it is correct. Notice that we have discovered one way in which Perceiver strategy can discover labels of confidence: Perceiver thought will place greater trust in connections which are repeated—they will become labeled as ‘right.’ Similarly, Perceiver strategy will also conclude that connections which never occur are ‘false.’ On the one hand, if a connection is repeated enough times, Perceiver thought may decide to pull the information into the Perceiver internal world and believe that it istrue. On the other hand, if a connection does not occur for enough incidents, Perceiver strategy may choose to pull this fact into the Perceiver internal world and believe that it is false.

For example, staring at roads for long enough will convince Perceiver strategy that there is a fact called ‘car’ which is true. Whenever Perceiver thought sees another metal box with four wheels on the ground, it will gain more confidence that this fact, or network of connections, is actually correct. On the other hand, if Perceiver mode encounters a metal box moving down the highway with no wheels, it will have confidence that this fact is wrong—Perceiver thought will know that experiences do not connect together in this way. Similarly, a metal box with three or six wheels may attract attention as being unusual or unreasonable.

Memories of wheels, body, seats, steering wheel and motor are stored in Mercy strategy.

·       Perceiver mode sees that they occur together often.

Perceiver mode decides that this is a fact.

·       Perceiver mode ignores the experiences and remembers the links.

These Perceiver connections have an impact upon Mercy thought. You will recall that there is a one-way path from Mercy strategy to Perceiver mode. Therefore, Mercy thought is unable to see the development of Perceiver strategy. What Mercy thought will notice is that some unseen influence is changing the way in which experiences connect. In other words, Perceiver links bend the mirror in which Mercy strategy sees its reflection. Notice exactly what shifts. The Mercy experiences are the same—they always remain within Mercy memory. It is only the connections between these Mercy experiences which are altered.

For instance, suppose that a person is bitten by a dog: In Mercy strategy, the experience of ‘dog’ and ‘bite’ occur together. Perceiver thought, looking in from next door, notes the connection between these two elements, and stores this connection as a fact within the Perceiver storage shed of information. If Perceiver strategy reaches into its storage shed for facts about dogs, it will come up with this connection between ‘dogs’ and ‘bites.’ The label of confidence associated with this Perceiver fact will probably be ‘quite certain.’

Now suppose that several more incidents with dogs occur in which a person is not bitten. As usual, these facts will be noticed by Perceiver strategy and deposited within its storage shed. However, as each fact is remembered, the label of certainty associated with this collection of facts will change. After the twentieth encounter with a friendly dog, a search by Perceiver strategy within the storage shed for facts about dogs would probably retrieve the item: “ ‘Dogs’ and ‘friendly’ go together; probability: reasonable.”

Mercy strategy, of course, does not have conscious access to this mental library of factual Perceiver information. What will happen is that as Perceiver facts grow, Mercy associations change. Initially, the image of a dog reminded Mercy strategy of the memory of being bitten. However, as the fact which is stored within Perceiver thought changes, the sight of a dog will begin to trigger memories of wagging tails and friendly licks. The memories within Mercy strategy have not been altered. Only the Perceiver connections have changed.

Altering the connections between individual Mercy experiences will have an indirect effect upon Mercy emotions. If thinking of a dog reminds Mercy strategy of the experience of being bitten, then obviously this memory will feel unpleasant. However, if wagging tails and friendly licks come to mind, then Mercy feelings about dogs will change as well.

Over time, as Perceiver thought places confidence in facts which are repeated, Mercy strategy will notice that associations start to be based in common sense. I suggest that this is the mental transition which begins in the average child at about the age of six, when he enters school. Piaget, the Swiss child psychologist, studied these types of mental transitions in great detail.

Whenever Perceiver thought places confidence in a fact, this connects many isolated experiences within Mercy strategy—events from different places and various times. For instance, think of the fact of a ‘car.’ This set of links can refer to a Cadillac in America, a Lada in Russia, a Toyota in Japan, or even a buggy on the moon. All of these various places become related by the single fact of a ‘car.’ The Perceiver fact of ‘car’ also ties together individual experiences from different times: A Model T of the 1920s is just as much a ‘car’ as a Ford Mustang of the 1960s. And, we will probably find that there continue to be ‘cars’ in the 21st Century.

If the label of Perceiver confidence is related to repetition, then a fact with greater confidence will obviously tie together more individual Mercy situations. In other words, this fact will apply in more places and more times.[DDD]Following this logic, a Perceiver absolute is simply a fact which can be applied in allplaces and at all times.[EEE] For example, the fact of a ‘car’ cannot be regarded as a true absolute, because there were no cars before the end of the nineteenth century, and though there are a few abandoned vehicles on the moon, you will not find cars on any of the other planets. In contrast, the fact of an ‘atom’ appears to be much more universal. Everywhere you look, you see evidence that atoms exist. Even the light which reaches our planet from a distant star gives indication that the same types of atoms exist over there as here.[FFF]

An Absolute is a set of links which exists in all places and at all times.

·       It is a Perceiver fact which is true wherever and ‘whenever’ I go.

·       It is based in connections which do not change.

At this point, our discussion about absolutes may seem a little strange. Many of us probably have not thought much about them, and if we have, quite possibly we have associated ‘absolutes’ with dogmatism, conservatism, religious fervor, and other forms of emotional excess. I suggest that we are confusing absolutes with the method by which they are often propagated. Obviously, if a person wearing a bright orange tie with lime polka-dots comes to my door selling insurance, I will tend to forget about the product and remember the tie. Similarly, if ‘absolute truth’ comes to me clothed usually in emotional robes, I will probably forget about the facts and remember only the feelings. Don’t worry. We will dip our intellectual toes into the goo of emotion soon enough and examine the connection between ‘truth’ and ‘feelings’ in exhaustive (and exhausting) detail.

We have been looking at some of the distinctions between Mercy mode and Perceiver strategy. We have seen that experiences are stored within the Mercy room, whereas the connections between these experiences are worked out by Perceiver thought and stored within the Perceiver room. We learned that a kind of one-way mirror is located in the ‘wall’ which separates these two mental rooms. This means that whenever Perceiver strategy works with facts, it can always lift its head, look through the mental ‘window,’ and see the Mercy experiences which are being affected by these facts.

Thus, I suggest that when a Perceiver person tries to limit his thinking to ‘the facts and nothing but the facts,’ he is actually putting a mental ‘curtain’ over the window which ‘overlooks’ Mercy strategy, and pretending that experiences and feelings do not exist. He usually does this because he finds it easier to think without the distraction of feelings emanating from the room next door. However, I suggest that this strategy is self-defeating, because the only way that Perceiver thought can come up with facts is by opening the curtain, looking through the window into Mercy thought, and searching for patterns and connections. Therefore, the Perceiver individual who limits himself to facts will usually spend more time adjusting mental curtains than working out facts—he will close the curtains when the glare of Mercy emotion gets too bright, and he will reopen them when the room darkens again with shadows of Perceiver confusion.

Good and Bad, Right and Wrong

The fact that Perceiver strategy is aware of both Perceiver and Mercy memories also has an effect upon Perceiver labeling. Remember that Mercy experiences are identified with emotions, whereas Perceiver facts acquire labels of confidence. If Perceiver mode can see both the Perceiver facts within its own room, and the related Mercy experiences in the room next door, this means that all Perceiver facts can become associated with two labels, one a label of confidence from Perceiver thought, and the other a label of emotion from Mercy strategy.

Let us compare these two types of labels. The first one is direct: Every Perceiver fact receives a label of ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ based upon Perceiver confidence. The second label is indirect: Every Perceiver fact acquires a label of ‘good’ or ‘bad’ depending upon the Mercy feelings associated with the Mercy experiences which are tied together by this Perceiver fact. In other words, if Perceiver strategy looks down at the facts themselves, it sees labels of ‘right’ and ‘wrong’—a way of measuring connections. On the other hand, if it lifts its head and peers at the Mercy experiences moving by the window, in the room next door, it sees labels of ‘good’ and ‘bad,’ determined by Mercy emotion.

Perceiver thought is aware of two types of labels:

·       It can see Perceiver facts and their labels of right or wrong.

·       It can see Mercy experiences and their labels of good and bad.

Perceiver strategy finds it easy to confuse these two types of labels.

I suggest that it is very easy to mix these two sets of labels—to confuse ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ with ‘good’ and ‘bad.’ While ‘good’ is often ‘right’ and ‘bad’ is generally ‘wrong,’ it is not that difficult to find situations in which these two methods of labeling are completely opposed. For example, suppose that a teacher tells his students, “There will be a surprise examination in class today.” Being acquainted with the habits of the instructor, Perceiver strategy in the students will know that this fact is right. But if they have not studied, then this ‘right’ fact will also be very bad.

It can also work the other way. Consider the statement, “I have won a million dollars in the lottery.” This fact is good. But it is only possible that it is right if I have bought a lottery ticket. Otherwise it is obviously wrong, and believing it to be right would only be wishful thinking. Businesses such as lotteries depend upon our confusing ‘good’ with ‘right.’ They make their money assuming that if they come up with a fact which is sufficiently good, people will think that it is ‘right’ and plunk down their hard earned cash. Similarly, most governments have learned by now that facts which are ‘bad’ will not always be accepted by the voting public as ‘true.’ Why do we tend to confuse these two sets of labels? We will answer that question as soon as we have finished laying a proper foundation.

Object Detection

We have only few more pages of dry information to get through before we get into the ‘juicy emotional stuff.’ Just wait. As soon as we start slogging through some heavy feelings, you will probably long again for the solid ground of abstract logic. Oh well, one can’t win. Sometimes we really do act like the cows who ignore grass under their noses and long for the succulent shoots tantalizing them just out of reach on the other side of the fence.

In the last section, we saw how Perceiver strategy can connect together Mercy experiences. I suggest that a Perceiver collection of Mercy experiences is called an object. Thinking in terms of objects comes so naturally to us that we tend to forget how much work is involved in building these mental concepts. It was only when engineers began to build object recognition into robots that the immense mental processing involved in distinguishing a fridge from a teacup, from Aunt Agatha standing in front of the fridge and holding the teacup, became evident.

For instance, let us look at the pair of scissors which Aunt Agatha has just laid down on the kitchen table and see if we can understand how our mind distinguishes them from the knives which are lying beside them.

When we look at a pair of scissors, we see two round handles connected with two blades. In contrast, a knife has only one blade and one long handle. Mercy strategy notices the images of blades and handles; these memories enter the Mercy room, quite possibly bringing to mind other experiences and their feelings: “Don’t run with a pair of scissors. My second-cousin-once-removed Herman ran with a pair of scissors, tripped over the family dog and gouged his left eye.” Second, Perceiver thought looks into the Mercy room from its vantage point next door and notices connections: “Hmmm. That is the 327th time that I have seen two blades and two handles hinged together. Maybe they really are connected.” [GGG]

What about the knife? Lay two knives side by side and they can look an awful lot like a pair of scissors (this thought has obviously gone through peoples’ minds, or else why would they be called a pairof scissors). I suggest that the distinction lies in Perceiver repetition. When Perceiver strategy observes Mercy images of knives, it notices that while one blade and one handle always occur together, two blades and two handles only go together occasionally. Therefore, Perceiver thought will decide that with knives, the connection between one blade and one handle is ‘right,’ and the connection between several blades and several handles is ‘probably wrong.’ Notice that the label of ‘wrong’ is less certain, because when we open the drawer in which the cutlery is stored, we do see several knives lying together.

The result is object detection. Mercy strategy is constantly encountering experiences and Perceiver thought is continually trying to figure out which experiences belong together and which do not. But, doesn’t all of this processing occur automatically within the mind? Exactly. I suggest that it is the interaction between automatic Mercy thought and automatic Perceiver mode which is responsible for recognizing objects. In other words, the Mercy and the Perceiver mental storage sheds are physically hooked together in precisely the way that we described earlier when we looked at the interaction between Mercy and Perceiver thought.

If it is automatic Mercy and Perceiver thought which handles the everyday down-to-earth job of distinguishing kitchen knives from scissors, then I suggest that we have discovered a way to combine deep philosophical questions with everyday life. We often seem to have the impression that ‘normal’ thinking is appropriate for average existence whereas the pondering of important questions requires that we sit down, put on a long face and wear a mask of deep concern. However, I suggest that it is one mental strategy—Mercy thought, which works with all experiences: images of scissors, memories of mother, love of country, religious ecstasy or the sticky mess of taking out the garbage. Similarly, it is one mental room—Perceiver thought, which handles all facts and connections: scientific facts, moral truth, information about the stock market, facts about cups and saucers, and even the fact that I stubbed my toe this morning.

Let me state it in a different way. When my mind is trying to decipher images of scissors, cups, knives, and saucers, automatic Mercy strategy is being filled with experiences, and automatic Perceiver thought is working out how to connect these experiences. Similarly, when my mind is trying to decipher deep moral and philosophical questions of right and wrong, my internal world of Mercy strategy is being filled with experiences, and my internal world of Perceiver thought is working out how to connect these experiences. In both cases, an interaction is occurring between Perceiver and Mercy strategy.

Automatic Thought versus Internal World

While automatic thought and the internal world operate in the same way, there is a major difference in the method by which information enters these two aspects of thought: Automatic thinking appears to have an ‘open door policy.’ Any sensation which walks by the gates to the mind is welcomed into the ‘storage shed’ of thought and placed within the appropriate niche. In contrast, entrance into the internal world is ‘by invitation only.’ Here, a watchman stands at the door and carefully scrutinizes each item which is asking to gain entrance. For Mercy strategy, this watchman is identification, whereas belief stands guard over the door to the internal Perceiver world.

Each of these options has its pros and cons. The benefit of keeping the mental gate open at all times is that mental organization can occur automatically and effortlessly. The disadvantage is that there is no way to screen who and what enters the mind. If most of the situations walking by on the street of life are fairly civilized, then keeping the door open is not a problem. I suggest that this is why people in our modern Western world tend to ignore the deep questions of the internal world and instead allow automatic thought to work out facts and principles: A civilized world screens out nasty experiences and dangerous people, and therefore the automatic organizing of automatic thought is good enough.

On the other hand, it takes effort to build an internal world. Each Mercy experience and each Perceiver fact must be ushered in personally by the guard at the door. Anyone who has gone through the struggle of constructing a comfortable internal world of belief and identity knows that it involves a lot of hard work. However, I would like to mention two benefits that make this labor worthwhile.

First, building an internal world makes it possible for me to become unique. If I rely on automatic thought for my personality, then chances are that I am replaceable. There are probably thousands of other people with my cognitive style who have grown up in similar cultures, gone to the same kinds of schools, and therefore acquired a storage shed full of Perceiver facts and Mercy experiences which are essentially identical to mine. The only real difference between me and these other people is the size, shape and color of the physical body which contains these mental storage sheds. For instance, suppose that I as a Perceiver person base my identity in an ability to make puns and deliver one-liners. Time and again I meet people who tell me that they have a friend who is ‘just like me,’ and they are probably right. As long as I rest in automatic thought, there will be many others who are ‘just like me.’

In contrast, suppose that I build an internal world of Perceiver belief and Mercy identification. Now I can choose what goes into the structure, and this freedom of choice allows me to becomemy ownperson. This is how an individual can survive in a sea of billions of people. By specializing, he develops some area in which he is unique, where he does or knows something which others do not.[HHH]

Second, building an internal world allows me to choose my building material. Let us suppose that I was building a real house and decided to use the following method: Each morning a truck would pull up onto my driveway loaded with workers and material. Each laborer would take a handful of boards and nails from the truck and tack this wood onto my house. He would then go back to the vehicle, get another collection of material and add it to whichever part of my house caught his fancy. The process would continue until bedtime. The workers would then go home and come back the next morning for another day of work. This cycle would repeat itself every day for as long as I lived in the house. I would hate to think what my house would look like, or whether it would even be a house, or how long I could stand living amidst the noise and the dust. However, this is the method by which automatic thought is programmed. You see now why I refer to this aspect of thought as a storage shed and not a house.

Now suppose that the same truck came to my door with the same workers and the identical material and I told everyone to carry all of the stuff into the storage shed out back. Suppose that then went into the shed, pulled out what I liked and gave it to the workers to place where they saw fit.[III] Obviously, the results would be much better. The final structure would have quality, and I would probably enjoy living in it. This is what it is like to build an internal world. Of course, the downside is that have to sort through the material and have to decide which elements are needed for each stage of construction.

So, how does one build an internal world? What are the rules of mental construction? How does one sort through building material and how does one know what goes where? The reason I chose to call this volume A Programmer’s Guide to the Mind isbecause these are the types of questions which I would like to answer. Now that we understand enough about the mind to define the problem, we can start casting about for a solution.

The Role of Cognitive Style

How does cognitive style fit into this picture? It appears that, regardless of my personality type, I have two abilities: First, I can decide what is allowed into my internal world. While it is possible to place a guard at the door, it does not seem possible for me to control where this information is placed. Second, I can choose what material is appropriate for my current stage of building. Again, while I can decide which ‘board’ to use, I do not seem to have control over where this ‘board’ is placed within the ‘house.’ These two abilities of guarding and choosing appear to be present in every person.

In other words, every individual can control his mental context, and can give instructions to the ‘gatekeeper’ standing guard over the entrance to his internal worlds. For instance, when I identify with a situation, I am telling my Mercy ‘watchman’ to allow this experience to enter Mercy internal thought. Similarly, when I suspend disbelief, I am telling the Perceiver ‘guard’ to give the green light to all potential facts.

In addition, the conscious control of cognitive style gives each individual the ability to ‘build’ within the room in which he lives. In that one room, he can decide where each board is placed and how it is fitted into the existing structure. For instance, I suggest that every person can choose what he believes and which of his beliefs apply to any given situation. However, it appears that only the Perceiverperson is capable of using conscious thought to assemble a system of belief one brick and board at a time.

We all have some control over the content of our internal world.

Cognitive style allows us to arrange the content in one ‘room.’

·       We cannot arrange the content in rooms which are subconscious.

While conscious thought gives each cognitive style power over his own room, I suggest that this power is limited. A person trying to rearrange the physical furniture in a real room has only so many arms and legs. Therefore, he has to do things one step at a time, and move objects around one piece at a time. Similarly, conscious thought cannot remodel the conscious room instantaneously. Major renovation takes time. It requires planning and effort.

Perceiver Strategy and the Brain

If you examine neurology, you find that the distinction between Mercy experiences and the Perceiver connections between those experiences is seen physically within the structure of the brain. I have mentioned that automatic Mercy thought is located within the right temporal lobe. I suggest that automatic Perceiver processing occurs higher up, in what is called the right parietallobe.

This region of the cortex is essential for processing connections between individual experiences. As one author states, “dealing with the spatial relations of objects is believed to be a right parietal function.” “The right parietal zone is specialized for processing the spatial characteristics of sensory input.” 2 Damage here impairs this ability: “Spatial neglect on drawing and constructional apraxia [an inability to build with objects][JJJ] correlates with right parietal damage.” 4

As long as the flow of Mercy experiences remains fairly predictable, Perceiver thought can ‘watch’ passively through the mental window. However, when situations are twisted or incomplete, then Perceiver strategy must manipulate connections in order to rearrange Mercy experiences or remind Mercy thought of experiences which can complete the puzzle. It is during these types of situations that damage to automatic Perceiver strategy becomes most evident: “Right parietal [damaged] patients are impaired at recognizing familiar objects from unfamiliar angles.” “Identifying an incomplete representation of a face or object is especially sensitive to right parietal damage.” 2

Neurology tells us that the right parietal lobe of the brain is strongly interconnected with the dorsolateral [top half] right frontal cortex. This suggests that the right dorsolateral frontal cortex contains theinternal world for Perceiver thought. Unfortunately, because most neurological papers treat the right and left dorsolateral frontal cortices as a single system, it makes it difficult to distinguish between the two. Some specific evidence, though, does exist. For instance, it has been found that “right frontal and right frontocentral patients were significantly inferior in the ease of production of drawings.” 4 In other words, patients with a damaged internal Perceiver world lose the ability to create and manipulate mental objects.

As I mentioned before, viewing the right and left dorsolateral frontal cortices as a single structure actually makes sense from a behavioral standpoint. The superior (top half) frontal cortex operates as an interconnected system, since the Perceiver internal world (on the right side) interacts heavily with the Server internal world (on the left). I suggest that this is because Contributor strategy builds mental connections between individual Perceiver and Server memories. This interaction can be seen in the behavior of the typical Perceiver person. When he thinks, he often makes nervous or repetitive movements with his hands, indicating that conscious Perceiver processing is spilling over into subconscious Server actions.

Having said this, let us examine what neurology in fact has discovered about the dorsolateral frontal lobes. I should mention first that the overall distinction between orbitofrontal cortex (associated with Teacher and Mercy emotional thought) and dorsolateral frontal cortex (connected with the internal world of Perceiver and Server modes) is well established: “In general terms, ablation studies indicate that the cortex of the dorsal and lateral prefrontal surface is primarily involved in cognitive aspects of behavior. The rest of the prefrontal cortex, medial and ventral [middle and bottom], appears to be mostly involved in affective [emotional] and motivational functions.” 7

Normal behavior involves the interaction of these two aspects of the internal world. This is illustrated by the case of a gentleman who had much of his orbitofrontal cortex removed because of a cancerous growth. The operation completely changed his personality. His ability to plan was still present—because dorsolateral frontal cortex was reasonably intact. However, these schemes lacked emotional depth—because orbitofrontal cortex was missing. For example, soon after he returned to work, he “established a partnership with a man of questionable reputation and went into business, against sound advice. The venture proved catastrophic. He had to declare bankruptcy and lost his entire personal investment…His wife left home with the children and filed for divorce…He married within a month after his first divorce, against the advice of his relatives. The second marriage ended in divorce two years later.” Ten years further on, at the time when this paper was written, he was “considering a third marriage to a woman 14 years his senior and planned to establish a luxury travel business in which he would drive vacationing persons around the country in a motor home.” 5 Notice that his internal world was full of Perceiver facts, Server actions, and Contributor plans. These entities, though, were unaccompanied by either Mercy feelings of appropriateness or by Teacher understanding, and he completely ignored the Mercy feelings and Teacher words of those who were close to him.

Researchers have discovered two behavioral tests which can only be completed with an intact dorsolateral frontal cortex. The first is a simple one that researchers use on monkeys, called delayed response. An animal is placed in front of two covered containers. The monkey watches as a person lifts up one of the lids, puts some food in the container, and then replaces the lid. After a delay of a few moments, during which the animal is forced to look away from the containers, the monkey is then permitted to reach for the food, which requires remembering in which container it was placed. If the monkey finds the morsel, then for the next test, the food is placed in the other container.

“Delayed Response performance in monkeys has been shown to depend upon dorsolateral prefrontal [another word for frontal] cortex…The association between Delayed Response and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex is one of the best established brain-behavior relations in the study of cortical localization.” 8

I suggest that the delayed response test depends upon the knowing of the Perceiver internal world. Remember that a Perceiver fact is a set of connections between Mercy experiences. In this case, Perceiver strategy must know which container is connected with the food, and which is not connected with the food. The alternation and distraction ensures that automatic Perceiver thought is insufficient: The location of the food alternates, therefore repetition cannot be used to build up a sense of reasonableness. Moreover, the location of the food must be remembered. Thus, the visual object recognition provided by automatic Perceiver cortex is inadequate. In order to remember the current location of the food, the monkey must observe where it is placed and pull this connection between food and container into the internal Perceiver world as a belief.[KKK]

This connection between belief and behavior is seen clearly in the second test, called the Wisconsin card sort, which is given to humans. Performance of this task also depends upon the integrity of the dorsolateral frontal cortex. The test uses a set of cards similar to a normal deck of cards. Each card has symbols printed on it, which vary in number, shape and color. The subject is given the deck, and told to sort the cards, but not given any instructions on how they should be sorted. Instead, after the subject makes some particular choice, the examiner tells him whether his sorting decision has been right or wrong. Whenever a person has made ten correct decisions, the examiner then changes the criterion for judging, also without telling the subject. For instance, the tester may begin by expecting the subject to sort the cards according to color. He may then change to accepting decisions based upon shape.

In order to complete this task successfully, a person must use Perceiver thought to decide how Mercy experiences are connected, believe in those facts, and then on his own initiative, change these beliefs when they are no longer correct. It is this altering of belief which humans with dorsolateral frontal damage find especially difficult. Instead, they tend to stick with the first sorting rule that they discover. Amazingly, when the criterion for sorting changes, they may even tell the examiner the new rule while simultaneously continuing to sort by the old one, even saying “This is wrong, and this is wrong,” while repeatedly making those same incorrect decisions.8

We have looked at the brain locations for Perceiver automatic thought and for the Perceiver internal world. I suggest that the brain also contains a processor which handles Perceiver thought, called thehippocampus. There are two of these brain centers, one located underneath each temporal lobe, behind and above the amygdala.

The neurological evidence connecting Perceiver thought with the right hippocampus is quite clear. In fact, some researchers even make a distinction between the right and left hippocampi, associating Perceiver-like thinking with the former and Server-like thought with the latter: “Evidence from single unit and lesion studies suggests that the hippocampal formation acts as a spatial or cognitive map…Computations within this framework enable the animal to identify its location within an environment, to predict the location which will be reached as a result of any specific movement from that location, and conversely, to calculate the spatial transformation necessary to go from the current location to a desired location…In infra-human species such as the rat, the cognitive map is confined to the analysis and manipulation of spatial information; but for the human the concept is broadened to include the notion of a semantic map in the left hippocampus. This map acts to organize abstract linguistic material into a map-like narrative. The right human hippocampus is held to function as a purely spatial system.” 9

Objects in Space and Time

Let us review. We started this section by looking at object recognition. I suggested that this task is performed by automatic Perceiver strategy working together with automatic Mercy thought. I then suggested that automatic Perceiver and Mercy thought and the internal world of Perceiver and Mercy thinking operate in exactly the same way, and that the only difference between these two aspects of thought lies in the method by which information is allowed to enter. We then compared the advantages and disadvantages of each of these two methods. Finally, we took a detour into neurology.

If automatic thought and the internal world operate in the same way, then we can gain some clues about how one works by looking at the operation of the other. Therefore, I would like to take another look at the topic of object recognition,the simplest form of Mercy-Perceiver interaction.

Normally, when we think of an object, we are reminded of some specific thing which just ‘sits there’: a car, a knife, a pair of scissors—in other words, a collection of bits which is spatially related. You can see this type of fact illustrated by the diagram of the ‘car.’ Notice how the Perceiver fact of ‘car’ ties together the individual Mercy elements of wheels, motor, steering wheel, doors and seats. All of these Mercy experiences are connected by space: The wheels are at the bottom, the engine is (usually) at the front, the doors are on the outside, and the steering wheel is somewhere in the middle.

When we discussed facts and Perceiver processing, however, we said only that Perceiver thought notices connections between individual Mercy experiences; it looks for events which belong together. We did not say anything about space. We only assumed that these connections involved space—that the various bits were above, below, inside and behind each other.[LLL]

It is also possible for Perceiver processing to tie together Mercy experiences which are connected by time. Analyze, for instance, the process of jumping off a cliff. First a person jumps, then his body sails through the air, and finally it goes ‘splat’ at the bottom of the slope. Unlike the Mercy experiences which make up the fact of a ‘car,’ these Mercy experiences do not occur at the same time. Rather, one event occurs, and then the next.

As far as Perceiver thought is concerned, however, all that matters is connections. Are individual experiences linked? If they are, then Perceiver strategy has discovered a fact. Therefore, if ‘jumping off the cliff’ is always connected with ‘going splat,’ then Perceiver mode will decide that a fact exists about ‘falling.’ We give many names to Perceiver facts which involve time: cause and effect, sowing and reaping, cost/benefit, work and wages. In each case, Perceiver strategy tries to connect Mercy experiences which are separated by intervals of time.

 Actually, I suggest that the division between space and time is somewhat artificial. Events which are connected over time are generally related spatially as well. The bottom of the cliff, for example, always lies below the top where the jump occurred. A similar ambiguity occurs with space: The mind seems to be incapable of grasping all of a spatial object at the same time. Rather, the eye scans a scene and focuses upon one aspect after another, building up a mental image over time. Advertising makes a science out of guiding what the eye sees when. Even physicists have given up referring to space and time as separate entities and now speak of a ‘space-time continuum.’

Art and Belief

We have come up with a few principles about Mercy and Perceiver strategies. First, we learned that object recognition is carried out by automatic Mercy and Perceiver thought. Then, we realized that automatic thought and the internal world both operate in similar ways. Finally, we saw that objects actually come in the two flavors of spatial objects and temporal objects. If automatic Perceiver and Mercy strategy work with two types of objects, then we should also find these same two kinds of structures present within the internal world. What are these mental objects? Let us use logic to construct an answer out of our existing pieces of information.

First, we know that Mercy experiences enter the internal Mercy world either because of their innate overwhelming emotion, or else through a willing identification with an experience. Second, we also know that Perceiver facts are ushered in through the step of belief.[MMM] Third, we have learned that Perceiver facts build connections between Mercy experiences. Therefore, we conclude that the interaction between the internal worlds of Perceiver and Mercy thought will involve Perceiver systems of belief tying together individual Mercy experiences related to feelings and to identity. And, we should also find that these mental structures come in two flavors—one related to space and the other to time.

Now that we have come up with a theoretical idea, let us see if we can find some examples which can lasso this ‘castle in the air’ and bring it down to the solid earth of real experience. We will start by expanding upon the idea of a ‘spatial’ internal object.[NNN]

Think, for instance, of a picture hanging on a wall, or a sculpture sitting in a museum. These definitely are spatial objects—they sit there and do nothing. But, they are usually more than just objects. Rather, the artist or sculptor is attempting to say something: First, he is trying to tell us about his system of belief. If he puts a soup can on top of a pile of garbage, he is making a statement about consumerism. He believes that there is a Perceiver connection between trash, food, and society.

Second, not only is the artist telling us about his beliefs, but his identity and his feelings are usually involved as well. Have you ever tried to criticize a work of art? The average artist takes this as apersonal attack.[OOO] When you condemn what he has produced, he thinks that you are condemning him. The relationship between art, identity and emotions is so strong that it has become almost taboo to denigrate the work of an artist. These days, in fact, one can produce just about anything without being condemned as long as it is called art.

I suggest that another example of an object living within the internal world of Mercy and Perceiver thought is religion. First, every religion is based upon some set of beliefs—a group of Perceiver facts which fill the internal world of Perceiver thought. Second, religion is strongly related to identity. It touches meand tells me what I should think, say, do, and so on. Finally, religion definitely addresses emotional topics. If some person wants to know facts about issues such as life, sickness, death, morality and God, he turns traditionally to religion for answers.

I suggest that religion and morality are often viewed as something static—like a picture hanging on the wall. We speak of attaining a ‘state of perfection’ as if it is some location or place to be reached. We ‘quiet our hearts’ and ‘become still’ so that we can ‘meditate on God.’ We view God as Someone who is ‘sitting’ on a throne. Art and religion themselves are related. Many religions use static art as an aid in worshipping a static God.

The Greek Stoic philosophers took this idea of static religion and carried it to its logical extreme. If perfection was a passive state, then God had to be immovable, since any shift would take Him away from His state of perfection. Changing matter became evil, by definition, since anything which moved obviously did not staywithin a perfect place.

The problem with static objects is that they are ‘dead.’ An object just sits there; it does nothing; it is not alive. When a body does not move or breathe, we conclude that it is a corpse and we bury it. I suggest that the same principle appears to apply to systems of belief. When they become static, they also ‘die.’

I suggest that we have stumbled across something which is quite significant. Remember that the goal of this book is not just to understand the mind. Rather, we want to build an understanding which can guide us in programming the mind. Therefore, when we come up with a relationship involving ‘static lack of motion’ and ‘death,’ we need to examine the topic further. So, let us look at the interaction between time, movement and life. I suggest that we will discover insights which are not found within the average book or news magazine, even if the name claims a connection with time or life.

[A] To avoid convoluted language, I will follow normal English rules of grammar and use ‘he’ for both male and female. My observation actually suggests that there might be more female Mercy persons than male Mercy individuals.

[B] I have suggested that males tend to emphasize abstract thought, whereas females concentrate on concrete thinking. This means that Mercy traits are usually more pronounced in the female Mercy person, while the male Mercy person generally places more of an emphasis upon subconscious Teacher and Perceiver thought. The ‘furniture’ of thought may vary, but both male and female Mercy persons still ‘live’ in the same mental room of Mercy strategy.

[C] Perceiver strategy is also associative. We will see that with Perceiver thought, the memories are abstract facts and the labels measure confidence. However, the type of thinking in both cases is associative.

[D] How does the Mercy person get away from his past? We will see later that when memories are reconnected, they can become a vision of the future.

[E] Those of you who have studied neural networks will recognize the concept of self-organizing memory.

[F] We will look at the relationship between ‘me’ and Mercy identification later on.

[G] A defining experience always forces its way in. However, a mature mind can allow emotional experiences, even strong ones, to enter the internal Mercy world without feeling coerced. We will examine this topic later.

[H] We will see later that the first and third aspects involve Perceiver mode. Perceiver facts are the ‘glue’ which holds Mercy memories together.

[I] We all know from personal experience that ‘me’ is very fundamental to human thought and existence. Therefore, whenever I am referring to my identity within the Mercy internal world, I will put the word in boldface: me. As we go through the book, we will see that me can take on many forms.

[J] What is the relationship between these two me’s? That is one of the basic questions which we will be examining throughout this book.

[K] We will look at concentration in more detail later on. Both behavior and neurology suggest that mental concentration is handled by three of the seven mental rooms: Mercy, Teacher and Contributor.

[L] The leaders may have other motivations. However, the rank and file revolutionary fighters are usually either peasants or manual laborers.

[M] We are looking here at the mental circuits involved in schizophrenia. We are not examining the cause of schizophrenia. An individual could block off part of his Mercy room for many different reasons. In addition, minor brain damage can predispose a person into becoming a schizophrenic.

[N] It is possible for the emotional center of personhood to move elsewhere, but because of the human body, its first location is within Mercy thought.

[O] Unfortunately, we have to mention things here which we have not yet discussed. Teacher strategy, for instance, is involved in symptoms of schizophrenia. Treatment for schizophrenia, in contrast, involves Exhorter thought, because the drugs which are given to schizophrenics affect Exhorter strategy and not Mercy thought.

[P] We said that the Exhorter part is the source of emotional drive. It gets its input in turn from the Teacher and Mercy parts. These two strategies provide the emotional labeling which controls Exhorter thought.

[Q] When we look at the interaction between Perceiver and Mercy strategies, we will see exactly why it is that logic goes out of the window. I know from personal experience that it is totally impossible to use logical reasoning with a schizophrenic individual.

[R] I suggest that each of these fragments still has the same cognitive style. What happens is that the Mercy person with multiples finds himself ‘yanked’ from one partition of his conscious room to another. Each section of this room contains its own mental ‘furniture’; therefore, memories, skills and knowledge will vary from one mental fragment to another. Each part of the room will also be connected to a different set of memories from the rest of the ‘house.’ The size of each partition can vary—some of the multiple personalities may appear very single-minded, others may be capable of more varied emotional response. Yet, each retains the original cognitive style.

[S] There is one exception. When looking at the human brain, neurologists do make a clear distinction between the right and left parietal lobes and between the right and left temporal lobes. Here it is easy to find the correspondence between cognitive styles and brain location.

[T] The orbitofrontal cortex is located right above the orbits of the eyes—hence the name. It is the lowest region of the inferior frontal cortex.

[U] In this book we examine only the simple styles.

[V] The very back of the cortex, the occipital lobe, behind the temporal and parietal lobes, is responsible for analyzing visual information.

[W] We will be using two different terms when discussing the bottom half of the frontal cortex. The inferior frontal cortex refers to the entire lower half, whereas the orbitofrontal cortex is a more specific region limited to the bottom of the bottom half.

[X] Some of the fibers connecting inferior (lower) frontal with temporal lobes also pass through the arcuate fasciculus.

[Y] Aphasia is a medical term for speech deficit.

[Z] Note the use of the term ‘non-verbal.’

[AA] Why would activitation go up? Because the secondary personality can access many of the Mercy experiences which the core personality has suppressed. Accessing Mercy memories would activate the region of the brain which contains the Mercy ‘storage shed.’

[BB] Amygdala is Latin for almond-shaped.

[CC] The logical necessity for a connection between the verbal thinking of the left temporal lobe and the feelings of the left amygdala seems rather obvious, and yet I have not found it mentioned anywhere in the neurological literature. There may be a psychological reason for this oversight. Scientific research tries to remain objective and to avoid emotions. Therefore, it would shy away from the idea that the theories of science themselves generate an emotional response.  

[DD] Notice that I said raw Perceiver thought. The rest of the mind can help to bring order and meaning to Perceiver associations.

[EE] The presence of a road can bring locations close together which are physically far apart, while the absence of a good road can make locations quite far apart, even though they are not separated by great distances. We will see later that this warping of maps occurs when Server strategy influences Perceiver thought.

[FF] In the language of Plato, Perceiver strategy works with the forms of reality, and not reality itself.

[GG] Here is a silly question. Why are left and right reversed in a mirror image but not top and bottom? The answer lies in the fact that a mirror does not flip an image, but reflects it correctly. We, in fact, flip left and right when we turn to face another person in real life. In order to answer this riddle, one must uncover the implicit assumption: We think that standing face to face is normal and not reversed. Time and again I have found that apparent paradoxes resolve themselves when I let go of my assumptions and ask the right questions.

[HH] Not all of these topics are contained within the first volume.

[II] Similarly, we will see that Server confidence in skills can be either positive or negative. I can know that I can do something, and I can also know that it is impossible for me to carry out a certain action. Some people know what they can do while others are much more certain about what they cannot do.

[JJ] The Facilitator and Mercy persons also use intuition. While this involves subconscious Perceiver knowing, I suggest that these cognitive styles approach the Perceiver storage shed of information in different ways: The Mercy person gets the ‘tool’ along with the label, but he cannot ‘see’ into the shed. In contrast, the Facilitator person can see all of the shed, but the label of confidence which he receives is limited to either right, wrong, or unknown.

[KK] This book was written before we analyzed MBNI with its iNtuition, Feeling, Sensing and Thinking. The term intuition in this book has a meaning very different from that of iNtuition in MBNI.

[LL] We will look at reasons for this later on.

[MM] Notice the nested levels of knowing. In the situation, I lost confidence in my ability to determine confidence. We will see later that Perceiver confidence affects both general knowledge and the knowing associated with personal identity.

[NN] The Exhorter person has a similar trait. Truth for him is that which survives confrontation. Therefore, he may drop a verbal bomb into a group and see what remains. Or, if a piece of equipment is marked ‘unbreakable,’ then he may test it by throwing it out of the window.

[OO] Reading through neurology, I have found only one solid connection between personality and birth date: It appears that babies who are born in the spring have a greater chance of being either very smart or very dumb. I guess that explains why I feel so clever at times and so stupid on other occasions—my birthday is in the middle of March.

[PP] But what about all of the facts which we learned from our parents, acquired from our culture and studied in our schools? Didn’t they come with suggested labels of right and wrong? Yes, they did. However, I suggest that every one of these labels was placed there by some person or institution; the label was learned along with the fact. Unlike physical feelings of pain and pleasure, none of these intellectual labels was inherent.

[QQ] We will see later that facts which are repeated within automatic Perceiver memory are suggested as beliefs to the internal Perceiver world. However, this mechanism of reasonableness only moves the problem to an earlier stage. I must acquire many facts in order to determine the reasonableness of a new piece of information. But, how can I know whether the knowledge which gives me my sense of reasonableness, in automatic memory, is itself reasonable?

[RR] Even the ‘politically correct’ person believes in absolutes. He is ‘absolutely’ sure that Perceiver truth can be based in his own personal feelings about what is politically correct.

[SS] Remember the footnote with the riddle about why a mirror image is backwards but not upside-down. The answer came easily when we discovered the right question.

[TT] When I wrote the book, I thought that this concept was original with me. I realized later that Immanuel Kant came up with exactly the same principle, which he called the first formulation of the moral imperative.

[UU] You may be asking, “What does the mind have to do with Electrical Engineering?” If the mind can be viewed as a type of computer, then the answer is “Quite a lot.” In my research, I used Engineering concepts and ideas to decipher the wiring and the programming of the mind.

[VV] Thank goodness for carpet.

[WW] How does the environment program the internal Perceiver world with facts? We will look at that in a moment. However, I suggest that Perceiver knowing is not possible when facts are continually being overturned.

[XX] It is interesting that the father of this individual wrote many books warning people not to take a ‘leap of faith.’

[YY] Of course, if I block off a certain approach as ‘wrong,’ then I am falling into the same mental trap. Therefore I am examining things carefully and building connections.

[ZZ] The Contributor person is also capable of making the ‘leap of faith,’ as the Exhorter individual is able to live within a form of schizophrenia. Like the Mercy person, the Exhorter can control Mercy thought; the Contributor, like the Perceiver, has access to Perceiver beliefs. However, because the Exhorter and Contributor persons exercise this control from a room ‘next door,’ they can live with these mental conflicts and survive as ‘almost normal’ humans.

[AAA] In terms of our analogy, Perceiver strategy has a big ‘picture window’ view of Mercy thought. However, Perceiver thought cannot ‘see’ into any of the other modes of thought. The main ‘observer’ of the mind is Facilitator mode, equipped with a whole bank of ‘surveillance monitors’ that allow it to see most of the mind—from the limited viewpoint of a ‘television screen.’

[BBB] Because the male mind tends to emphasize abstract thought and the female mind gravitates toward concrete thought, I suggest that these problems are most severe when the male is the Perceiver person and the female has the cognitive style of Mercy. Therefore, I describe this example in terms of Perceiver husband and Mercy wife. If she is the Perceiver person and he is the Mercy individual, then the subconscious rooms will tend to operate more strongly and each partner will usually find it easier to see the other person’s point of view.

[CCC] On the other hand, suppose that a person developed his mind around the concept of mental symmetry. In that case, he would actually be attracted to his opposite.

[DDD] When knowledge is limited, then Perceiver strategy tends to base confidence in the possibility of contradiction. Specific facts will be accepted with great confidence, because the chance of finding a contradiction is very low. General theories, in contrast, will be believed less strongly because the possibility of finding a counter-example is so much greater. For example, an isolated fact about ‘the price of tea in Shanghai, China in September of 1903,’ will be accepted without reservation. On the other hand, general statements about the mind or personality will be questioned; Perceiver thought is certain that a contradiction is bound to be found somewhere within the vast landscape of experiences encompassed by so large a collection of facts.

[EEE] Or, as we said before, this set of connections is permanent. It does not change, no matter what is examined.

[FFF] If a Perceiver absolute is related to repetition, then it should be easy for Perceiver thought in a person to find absolutes, right? Wrong. As finite individuals with limited experiences, it takes a lot of sifting and thinking to figure out which facts really are repeated and which ones are simply temporary combinations of elements. Besides, this mental sorting work must all be accomplished under the ‘incoming fire’ of Mercy emotions.

[GGG] Of course, Perceiver strategy won’t know that it is 327 times. This is because numbers are handled by Teacher and Server thought. Perceiver mode just thinks about objects. While Perceiver strategy may not know that it is exactly the 327th time, all of these separate incidents will add up to create a certain level of confidence.

[HHH] The Contributor person is especially driven to find an area of expertise in which he can be ‘the expert.’ While specialization solves the problem of uniqueness, I suggest that it often leads to limited knowledge and restricted skills. Later on we will examine how one can specialize without becoming narrow-minded.

[III] Yes, I mean to say it this way. See the next section.

[JJJ] Information enclosed in brackets within a quote is added by me for the sake of clarity. It is not part of the original quote.

[KKK] Belief, I suggest, involves the right dorsolateral frontal cortex. The monkey must also choose to do the action of reaching for a container, or not to do the action of reaching for it. This choice involves the internal world of Server thought, which I have suggested is located within the left dorsolateral frontal cortex. It is possible that either the Perceiver or the Server internal world would be sufficient for carrying out this test. Thus, the monkey would only be impaired after damage to both right and left dorsolateral frontal cortices.

[LLL] Here is another example of being tripped up by an assumption.

[MMM] Like Mercy identification, Perceiver belief can either be voluntary or else forced upon the internal world. We will examine this topic in detail later on. Right now we are ignoring the source of Perceiver beliefs.

[NNN] This section illustrates how I did much of my research. First, I would use the theory to come up with some new ideas. Then I would look at real life to see if my ideas made any sense.

[OOO] Art usually involves Teacher emotion as well as Mercy feelings.