Tuesday, October 3

Intersubjectivity in chaos theory and psychophysics: everything makes sense in context


“Chaos theory has shown us that in everything that seems inconsistent, there is a hidden harmony.”
Dr. Psychotherapist David Hawkins

Psychotherapist and professor of psychology Daniel Stern began his sessions with the question:What did you eat for breakfast this morning?? Stern asked this question in order to reach the client’s internal references through objects that he uses on a daily basis, for example, the violence when he leaves the cup he drank tea with at breakfast on the table. Because, according to Stern, it is impossible to understand the macrocosm without understanding the microcosm, and relationships in the macrocosm lie in the microcosm (Ozakkash, 2014). The theory that claims that phenomena that appear to be very complex from the microcosm to the macrocosm in nature are in fact not complex, on the contrary, make sense in themselves, and that a fractal (micro)structure can create large and magnificent worlds by repeating itself is called chaos theory .

When we look at this through chaos theory, we see that while human life seems very chaotic and complex on the one hand, it can also be made up of very simple object relationships (fractal structure) which we call “attraction” or “attraction” . has a cyclic system and a center in fractal geometry, but we can say that a system where a little outside interference can lead to big results, which we call the butterfly effect (Özakkaş, 2014). In other words, some seemingly insignificant variables in the relationship between man and nature can radically change the whole life. So to say, life is not a linear line of arithmetic sums. Therefore, in order to understand man, we need to look at object relations here and now.

The purely linear and causal view that dominated science was, of course, influenced by Newtonian physics. According to Newtonian physics, the universe was a mechanical clock. However, at the beginning of the 20th century, the development of science and some discoveries, such as quantum mechanics and chaos theory, began to radically change the paradigm, the view of the universe. According to this new view, the universe is not a mechanical clock, but rather contains infinitely complex experiences that seem rather chaotic from the point of view of the current human perceptual system. As a result, since the observations made to understand the universe are also subject to humans, we are left with nothing but subjectivity. When it comes to the subjective and changing experience of human beings, a model of scientific understanding that does not compromise on objectivity is insufficient to understand the human being as a whole. The point that quantum mechanics and chaos theory have reached today goes beyond this limitation.

The fact that we do not have data beyond human subjectivity also directly affects attempts to understand nature by observing it. At the moment, the discoveries of Carl Jung and Albert Einstein, the founders of analytical psychology, overlap, and we even know that these two important scientists corresponded about whether a part of the psyche operates in accordance with the theory of relativity. In fact, the following words from Einstein of the time confirm Jung’s determination in this direction: “When you put your hand on a hot stove, a minute passes like an hour. An hour spent with a sweet girl is like a minute. It’s relativity.” (Performed by Akchakaya, 2022).

While these revolutionary developments that attempted to understand the universe and humans through linear causality and changed this inadequate perspective continued, Jung advanced another theory in his theory that causal relationships are insufficient to explain: what Jung defined as ” synchronicity” We can summarize this phenomenon as the realization of some significant events as a result of the joint and synchronous movement of many elements in the Universe, in addition to the criteria of three-dimensional space and linear (linear) time. At the same time, Jung describes some of the crises of life, the various problems or accidents that we face while our life flows in a straight line; claim to be of some importance in our lives. According to Jung, some elements of the cosmic system could come together and act in unison and bring some events to a person, and this event or crisis was a kind of herald that there are some elements in the psyche that need to be noticed and changed. In the same way, some other events that will affect the spiritual development and transformation of a person can act simultaneously, as if they are aware of each other, and reveal some significant coincidences in life (Jung, Akt; Akçakaya, 2022).

Jung’s theory of analytical psychology was criticized by the scientific community because it moved away from the scientific and moved into a subjective, relative, spiritual and chaotic realm that could not be a measurable subject of science, but at the time those who made all this criticism of Jung’s theory could not foresee anything else. There were some facts: at the subatomic level, the position and momentum of a particle could not be measured at the same time, because observing it itself changed the result of the measurement. Based on the countless interactions, possibilities and unpredictability in quantum mechanics, it was realized that nothing can remain the same and cannot be measured in the full sense of the earth, and that everything is constantly interacting within itself and with its environment in full motion. . In fact, when it came to the interaction of a person, who is a multidimensional being, with his environment or with other people, it was understood that phenomena become even more intertwined, chaotic and containing endless possibilities, and this was called “intersubjectivity” (Akçakaya, 2022) .

Here, intersubjectivity can be defined as a science that focuses on the interaction between the differently organized subjective worlds of the observer and the observed. In other words, the meaning given by the observer is not independent of the context of this field of intersubjective interaction. This situation shows us that trying to compress a person and their interaction to certain definitions can be extremely limiting and sometimes even misleading. In other words, man, a being quite unique and subjective, has elements that are too rich to be limited to certain patterns that are difficult to explain, that still retain their mystery regardless of time and space, so he must be considered from an intersubjective point of view, each relation and interaction in its own context, and we can say that each established relation has a deep dynamic waiting to be resolved within itself. In this context, although intersubjective theory in psychotherapy seems to be a new perspective today, we can also interpret that the basis of this view in modern psychology was laid by Carl Gustav Jung (Akçakaya, 2022).

Finally, if the universe and life consist of countless interactions and possibilities, if there is nothing on earth that is immutable and fully measurable, and everything is in full motion and constantly interacts within itself and with its environment, then the multidimensional being of a person, his environment, etc. e. When it comes to interacting with people, if the facts are even more intertwined, chaotic, and contain endless possibilities, would it be enough to honestly and confidently explain how you feel and what you are thinking right now?

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Akchakaya, W. (2022). The theory of intersubjectivity in psychotherapy and assessment of the phenomenon of “simultaneity” by Carl Gustav Jung at the present stage of quantum mechanics. Turkish Journal of Holistic Psychotherapy, vol. 5, issue 10.
Ozakkash, T. (2014). Journey between Jung’s theories of subjectivity. Publications of the Institute for Psychotherapeutic Education 167.

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