IT’S A MOUSE TRAP
& I’m the mouse!
PREVIOUS: DBs, Part 1
LOGICAL TYPES (cont)
DBs are best understood in a larger framework, as part of Cybernetics & Complex Systems Theory, which shows the inter-dependence of message components, providing an order to what looks like chaos (if you’re a Newtonian). The mind itself, & therefore human communication, functions inter-actively, like all ecosystems CIRCLEs ➡️
NORMALLY, context & body language (meta-language) allow participants to decipher the type of interaction they’re part of – not just the ‘words’.
EXP: As two puppies are playing, they growl & nip at each other gently. But their tails are wagging & their ears are NOT back.
Lower level message: “I am threatening you – I will bite”
Higher level : “This is play- fighting – I won’t hurt you.”
IN CONTRAST – DBs are based on Level-confusion, the contradictory statements being expressed on different Logical Levels of Abstraction in ‘orders of message’ sent – causing the bind. Are you confused enough? (MORE…..)
✦ Paradoxes are a special kind of contradiction, where the incompatible statements exist on different “logical levels” – one of them is part of the context of the other – which is a logical no-no. CHART
✦ A lose-lose evolutionary DB is the rhino horn – meant for protection & enhance ‘desirability’, for procreation. But the very same feature has caused their near extinction, the horn being harvested for the human desire for sexual potency. Ironic, since it only works for the rhino!
✦ Lose-lose in“Alice in Wonderland” exemplifies the need of the individual and its physical characteristics being mutually incompatible, one on a more abstract level than the other:
A: If the bread-&-butter fly, which lives on weak tea with cream, does not get its food, it dies. And / But –
B: If it does gets its food, it dies, because its head is made of a sugar lump, which will dissolve in the tea
MORE Confusion: If a R objects to or ‘outs’ the distortions in a D. Message, the Sender can reinforce the DB by disqualifying them, making the R’s objections seem unimportant & to be ignored, by: (from 32 DBs….. )
• negating the whole discussion, or evading it in some other way
• twisting the meaning or context of the objections
• changing ‘reality’, by doubting the validity of the objections
AND reminding the R who has the power: S claims to have a higher status, so what it says is of higher value. (More DB from NLP Institute)
• Q & A Confusion: Head-scratching is inevitable when a Q. is asked on one logical level but answered on another. This is the basis of much humor.
• Abbott and Costello’s routine “Who’s on First” works on two levels of ‘orders of message’ at the same time, incorporating Lower-order (literal) & Higher-order meaning (implied).
This is NOT a Q, only a statement of fact, but is heard as a Q, so the response is another Q (“I don’t know, who IS on first?”).
If said in a direct way, the higher-order Q. would be: “Who is the guy on first base?” & the lower order A. would be: “Mr. Who is on first base.”
• ACoAs – Discrepancies in Levels of Communication is one reason we go BLANK when someone responds to us from a different Logic Level than the one we’re coming from, or says something completely out of context.
We were taught to not pick up on twisted communications, having nothing to do with our intelligence. We know these people are ‘off’’, but not having learned to ‘hear’ distortions, we’re stumped!
Sadly – we realize it later & think what we could/would have said, but then it’s too late to defend ourselves, or point out the inconsistency or ask for clarification. It can be very frustrating & enraging – but never let it take you all the way to S-H!
In this example, some things you could say back:
“You just asked another question” , “That’s not an answer” , “What’s wrong with my Q?”, “I’m interested / curious / worried…..”
In other word, we don’t have to be stumped or blank out. By not giving up or disappearing (on ourselves), we may get useful / important info about the other person – OR we can decide to withdraw as an act of self-care, if the person is hostile or consistently unable to communicate. We don’t have to chase the unavailable, but also don’t have to take it personally!
NEXT: DBs – (Part 3)