KleinGeld Phenomenology: Pieces and Moments.

Pieces and Moments. Copyright 2009: Knut Skjærven.

Pieces and Moments. Copyright 2009: Knut Skjærven.

It is extremely important that you get this. You need to know of, and be able to distinguish between, pieces and moments.

Let’s take look at my iMac since it is right in front of me. It is my machine for writing and viewing at this very moment. As it is every moment that I sit here at my desk.

I perceive my Mac as a whole. My Mac is the  screen, the mouse, the cable connectiong the mouse to the keyboard, the internal and external hard drives, the USB ports on the back of the screen and the ports at both ends of the keyboard, the cable that connects the keyboard to the USB port at the back of the screen. All of this and many more things are what I refer to as my Mac.

I could go one.

It is not hard for me recognize that what I call my Mac is s composite of many different things. Some can be split up and taken apart and others cannot. For instance I can unplug the keyboard, take it onto another room and study the keyboard for it own sake. I can do the same with the Mac mouse. They are still parts of my Mac even when split.

When I take the screen with me and study it another room that piece becomes a new whole and takes on a life of its own. Parts of the screen are now the screen itself, the foot that is stands on, the glass that I look at, et cetera. Parts are the cable ports on the back side.

Parts, however, does not only come as pieces like the a screen, the mouse, the cable, the USB port and the like. Parts can also come as moments, and moments are of a different breed than pieces. A moment is the color of the keyboard, or its extension, or its weight, or its feel, or its temperature, or its mass.

If pieces have the ability to take on a life of their own not so with moments. You don’t take the color away from the mac mouse to study it in another room. The mouse comes with. So does temperature and mass.

It is necessary that you distinguish first and foremost between wholes and parts. And you need recognize that parts can be or two sorts: pieces and moments. The former  can be dismantled and becomes themselves then wholes consisting of parts. The latter cannot be dismantled and will never become wholes for and in themselves.

Pieces are independent parts. Moments are nonindependent parts. That is the phrases Robert Sokolowski uses about them. Read more.

The difference is huge and of major importance.

I hear you say: Why are you telling me this? I have known this all along. Everyone knows the difference between pieces and moments even if they might have other words for it. And I will tend to agree with you. If this is what phenomenology has offer that is not much, is it?

First of all it is not what phenomenology has to offer, it is only part of what it has to offer. I tiny little part. Don’t forget we are doing kleingeld stuff in the posts. Not the big bills.

But I will say this: we have forgotten to live by this. And so has science and so has modern life. One of science’s biggest problems is how to connect man and world. We have, some say, the consciousness inside our body and we have the world outside our body, how do they connect? Big, big problem for many clever people, but only if you start our wrongly. If you consider consciousness and world as pieces you will have problems connecting them. If you consider them as moments, you don’t. Consciousness never left the world.

When I reflect, it is not something inside that tries to connect to something outside. The two poles are already part of the reflection process. When I dream, it is not something inside that tries to connect to something outside. The two poles are already part of the dream process. When I speak, it is not something inside that tries to connect to something outside. The two poles are already part of the speaking process. And so forth.

What’s in it for communication?

What’s  in it for communication? What’s in it for barebones? What’s in it for advertising, for instance? What’s in it for photography? Well, you don’t want to do the mistake of treating a piece as a moment, or a moment as a piece when you address people, do you? Before, however, we get to know the full implications of this, let us gather a bit more Geld. Small Coins. Change, if you must.

Here are a couple of questions that you may consider in the mean time: Are pieces and moments so different that we need to speak of them, treat them, in different languages? With the use of a different words, symbols or pictures, for instance? Please think about it.

Pieces and moment are not a pieces of phenomenology, they are moments of it. Now you know.

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