In order to apprehend the essence of Uncommon Sense: A Theory of Human Purpose, as well as this Blog, it is necessary to have some basic concept of what the first part in our title is in reference to.
We might first begin with a dictionary definition of common sense:
“good sense and sound judgment in practical matters.”
Immediately we are confronted with the subjective and significant concept of “good” or “goodness,” Which if we consult our dictionary once again we are given:
“to be desired or approved of.”
A search of “sound” merely gives us yet another species of “goodness.”
A search of “practical” gives us:
“of or concerned with the actual doing or use of something rather than with theory and ideas.”
Firstly let us consider that it must not be “common” practice to apprehend meaning on an individual basis apart from socially constructed means of organizing and disseminating knowledge or information such as language, symbolism, Dictionaries, or Blogs, since that is precisely what we are engaging herewith – an organized system of communication (who is doing otherwise and how?).
“good sense and sound judgment in practical matters,” may be most efficacious in a primitive tribal setting where it makes “good sense” to go along with whatever rituals and practices sustain a particular tribe according to any given context, i.e., if a particular tribe has learned over time that a certain hunting ground under particular circumstances is most optimal in the sustenance of the tribe, then there evolves a species of “goodness” which is most efficacious to that particular tribe. And if, upon success of the hunt, the tribe decides to celebrate by dancing in a particular direction around a campfire, that too (according to the subjective dictates of the tribal hierarchy) becomes yet another species of “goodness” within that particular tribe.
Thus “common Sense” relates more to insular and primordial social structures and I would argue, is the basis of all information and knowledge. However in a much more complex society of high technology and plurality, “common sense” is outmoded and nearly useless as a means of sense-making.
We used to “know” what “Goodness” consisted of (particularly within the lower classes) thanks to the generous and magnanimous “authority” of the higher classes. Therefore we were less in need of alternate organizational means of communication and knowledge such as books, dictionaries, and Blogs.
In a complex and technological world, what may have in the past been construed as “good” and or “practical” as well as the definition/s thereof, have become the domain of higher and more complex modes of cognation than our ancestors were privy to. What now is required, is a much more sophisticated and much less taken-for-granted (common) approach towards sense-making, an approach which I refer to as, Uncommon Sense.