Adam Skibinski, Ph.D.

Institute of Linguistics

Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznan



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Alfred Korzybski’s map-territory metaphor and his time-binding notion are presented here as a potential framework for the explanation of the role of recursion in biological processes.of cognition. Korzybski’s self-reflexiveness principle is related to Gregory Bateson’s ‘ecology of mind’ and ‘radical constructivism’ in the work of Heinz von Foerster and Ernst von Glasersfeld. From this point the author postulates the possibility of metalogy as a recursive, topologically inspired model of the cognition in living systems. Cognition is understood as a self-referential, circular activity whose topological form avoids solipsism. Subsequently, the article considers the code-duality principle in biosemiotics of Jesper Hoffmeyer and Claus Emmeche. Second order code-duality serves as an explanatory principle for self-as-other-coding, where a ‘self’ is being established in ontogeny as a form of a dynamic stability of self- and other-reference on different logical levels, thus confirming the central role of recursion in the biological processes of cognitive development.

Metalogy: In-formation (organized complexity) could be considered an outcome of recursive processes of constructing and stabilizing of our own activities, which, in turn, serve for developing equilibration inside a biological cognitive system. If the process of in-formation production is based on heterarchy of logical levels, then, ‘meta’-levels and recursion both are necessary pre-conditions to minding/mental processes. In this sense, metalogy frames what Bateson’s metalogues were for - not only a means to discuss the probem but also to keep the structure of discussion   relevant to the subject of ‘heterarchy.’ But can metalogy be given a topological representation? Or is this an appropriate question?

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