Thursday, October 7, 2010

Metaphors 1

“to grasp a concept”
Target:  understanding
Source: holding something in hand
Ground: manipulation, control, knowledge
Tension: abstract idea/ action
Effect: gives better idea of the sense of understanding. Visual/tactile representation of thought
“seafaring” (for “human existence”) absolute metaphor
Target: Human Existence
Source: Seafaring
Ground: choices made have consequences. Vastness, lack of power/knowlege 
Tension: takes place in boat on the sea.
Effect: associates memories of romantic seafaring/ the sublime. Overwhelming, sense of adventure/dread.

Whose Beard?- Nasrudin dreamt that he had Satan's beard in his hand. Tugging the hair he cried: "The pain you feel is nothing compared to that which you inflict on the mortals you lead astray." And he gave the beard such a tug that he woke up yelling in agony. Only then did he realise that the beard he held in his hand was his own.
–    Idries Shah
Target: Self
Source: the devil
Ground: causes all pain. Source of all sin.
Tension: devil is deity, fictitious. Other.
Effect: realizing we make up our devils, we are the true source of our own pain.

the grim reaper Allegory
Target: Death
Source: skeletal figure in black robes
Ground: mysterious, frightful, familiar, dark.
Tension: state of being (or lack there of) and allegorical fictitious character
Effect: visual representation of a concept. Scary.

the cave in Plato's Republic
Target: truth
Source: vision in a cave
Ground: limited, possibly incorrect, only a shadow of the real
Tension: humanity does not literally live in a cave.
Effect: a more clear illutration of the limit of understanding.

“my people from my land”
Target: individuals, geography
Source: my self
Ground: familiarity, genetics, histories,
Tension: individuality, lack of connection, essentialization, simplification, generalization, subjectivity
Effect: creates false connection, stereotypes.

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