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Ideology

 
 
coberst
 
Reply Tue 20 Dec, 2005 03:28 pm
The patterns we observe in nature convince the natural sciences to search for the immutable laws that guide these patterns. Society displays patterns but immutable laws do not guide these patterns. The patterns of society are man made. I am interested in understanding these patterns as a means for understanding who determines these patterns and why.

Those pattern makers, those public policy makers, determine and maintain the dominant ideology that functions as the laws of society. Every society, to some degree, is set upon a path of development and maintained on that path by a small group of individuals.

Everything is influenced by the dominant ideology and every society has a dominant ideology. "Marx's Theory of Ideology" is a great source for an understanding of this very important concept.

It appears that ideology became in the nineteenth century a major concept of epistemology as a result of the work accomplished by Karl Marx. It was a distinct form of reasoning about human society that was historical and universal in form. Ideology became an epistemological category designed to conceptualize a distinctive form of thought. Ideology refers to a systematically biased and self-contained study of ideas.

Most of us have been influenced to conceive our society as a natural evolution that is not to be questioned fundamentally any more than we question the sun rising in the east each morning. Society is a structured reality in which we all are naturally related to one another in a naturally determined position. Such is not the case, members of the society structure society and to understand it we must learn to understand what structure informs our thought, the categories in which we perceive and interpret the social world.

To view a society is to view it from a perspective and that perspective is formed by the assumptions taken. This represents the boundary of comprehension. A worldview "cannot transcend its condition of existence any more than a man can leap out of his skin."

We are all constantly bombarded with ideological propaganda and our intellectual balance is dependent upon our ability to judge well. Such ability is the purpose of Critical Thinking as is being taught in our schools and colleges. Critical Thinking is an attempt to teach youngsters how to think, which means how to make good judgements.

Ideology is like a gentle almost indiscernible mist that nourishes constantly and unobserved by the people. Ideology has a source and a target.

I seek to understand the who, what and why of these policy makers. To do so I seek to understand ideology and human nature.

I think that the bullfight is a useful analogy for my view of society. The matador is the policy makers, the cape is the ideology and the bull is the people.
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John Creasy
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Dec, 2005 08:15 pm
Oswald Spengler had a good quote about idealogies. It was something to the effect of, "man will continue to try new idealogies until he gives up the idea of ideals altogether."

I butchered that badly but I think you get my drift.
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coberst
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Dec, 2005 07:38 am
John

I do not see the connection between ideology and ideals. Could you elaborate please?
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John Creasy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Dec, 2005 09:40 am
coberst wrote:
John

I do not see the connection between ideology and ideals. Could you elaborate please?


I guess I meant Idealogies. Aren't ideologies just an extension of ideals??
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coberst
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Dec, 2005 02:30 pm
John

An ideal is a standard of perfection. Ideology is a systematic body of concepts relation to social situation.
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John Creasy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Dec, 2005 02:45 pm
OK, so replace "ideals" with "idealogies" and that's that. I told you I meant idealogies.
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