Friday, April 17, 2009

A cognitive approach to diagnosing the media dream

Relative to treating psychological maladies or sociopathic behavior, perhaps reducing aggression with video games is just the beginning.

The human domain is a mediated reality in which human evolution can be measured in terms of its capacity to create tools for mediation. While it is not self-evident that human beings are superior to all other living organisms, it is self-evident that they have a unique capacity to communicate complex information from an “inner” reality and to articulate that data in the “outer” reality. The languages we call media range from a wink to a snarl, from English to Ebonics, from smoke signals to dreams, from hieroglyphics to computer programs. From the human perspective epistemology is a study in the philosophy of mediation. We humans have always shared a media age, but we are just beginning a media age that pushes the limits of technology and bleeds into the realm of psyche. If the nightly news and the “media dream” were diagnosed by Carl Jung, he would say that the collective psyche is in a state of trauma. Notwithstanding the mythic tools of metaphysics and alchemy, we have just recently acquired the tools necessary to address such a scope of psychosis in a scientifically predictable way. The tools include Jungian amplification, global workspace theory, neurobiological framing, and story-based video game technology. The common denominator that synchronizes these disciplines is narrative-metaphorical structure; which, applied to the media-sphere of the contemporary world, can first diagnose and then address the psychic imbalance of collective humanity.

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