C-118. AT and IN The Frontier (BFEPS)

The Frontier is both edge and area. We are AT the leading edge of CEM-history. We are sometimes IN the area we have designated as R-spacetime, which is the area we can produce as the Present (C-96) so as to be able to realize via Sensery capabilities, cognitive and communicative especially (App. III), needed functionality for problem solving (C-110: What is called for – itself a Frontier marker, between IN consequence and OF consequence). This is the kind of Present we construct from, but independent of, the conditions before and after the (physical) space and/or time demarcations, such as those of past and future.

The edge is the brink we stand on between after-the-fact (ATF) conditions (past) and before-the-fact (BTF) conditions (future). This is a moving edge in CEM-history. Steps we now see after the fact, especially those of humans, were once minded before the fact. This can lead to inadequate and erroneous minding by observers, for they may seek only what is ordered in those behaviors, relegating much of the remaining behavior to “chance” and/or “error.” (See neglected analysis of off-diagonal cells in data matrices when correlations are the methodological objective: C-17.) This is also a reason why we persist in using success and failure as criterial for attempted steps, to the neglect of an accident perspective (App. IX) more respectful of problem solving’s challenge to compose, not just choose, a solution when, as now, so many problems lack solutions to choose from and we are going to have to work through all the problems of Realizing that solution.

While the Frontier is a moving edge, it is also a persisting edge. The Nature of Things’ general persisting condition of partial order dictates this. However much order we find and/or can produce … partial order endures and Frontier’s edge condition of CEM-history will also endure. This is the message that “World of Possibility” broadcasts.

(This is also why this Frontier does not take the plural. This is not one of those familiar frontiers of placed observers and their foci of attention, such as those particular frontiers, like Turner’s re the American West, that figure in human histories. With respect to this singular Frontier we are like Schrödinger’s cat. We are in two places at once: before the fact and after the fact. The great fault of questions about human behavior after the fact,it seems, is that such questions, typically hypotheses based on projections from previously observed behavioral particulars, neglect important parts of the problematic [esp. the behavioral problem: I] that inhere with Frontier’s before-the-fact condition. See above the failure to make something of the off-diagonal cell entries in the correlational analysis of data matrices [C-17]. [See too the diagrams and discussion in Topic XII on research methods re this omission in the “recipe” empirical model {Diagram 1}… a model which fails to do justice to the much-needed interdependence of problem => solution and question => answer in and by observer minding {XI; C-71}. We have to solve problems in order to answer questions {e.g., atomic particle technology} and ask questions in order to solve problems {e.g., “informed decisions”}.])

The Frontier area’s size is determined by our development of the Functional requisites (VII), such that behavior is not established by focal attention, memory qua recognition and their ordered moves (e.g., “instincts”) … but by meeting the requisites of cognition and (X: cognition-directed, especially) questioning as well as short-term and mid-term (App. III, App. XIV: via cognition communication aided) memory capabilities and capacities (the latter pair too are interdependent).

A Frontier philosophy turns a common observation on its head. Observers in the older sciences have made much of the relatively short period of human history compared to the vast expanses that biology, geology, chemistry and physics perspectives span. But in contrast, toward the Frontier, the area of the human segment has been growing bigger and bigger, and faster and faster. This while observer perspectives from the “older disciplines” (and disciplines using concepts and methods derived from these perspectives, such as the “social sciences”) fail and falter in representing the history of behavior (C-113, C-115) … the progression in changes from combinational to compositional (II) among the much more varied collisions (as consequences) and the consequences of those collisions here AT and IN the Frontier.

A Frontier philosophy says we should make the most of CEM-history’s contingent emergent materiality (App. XI, App. XVI; C-78), to realize via developed capabilities and technologies (e.g.,App. XIV: language’s cognition communication contribution), to extend our ability to solve our deepening behavioral problem (I; C-41, C-115) together with our situational problems (0:Sp, S-P, Ps and P).

A Frontier philosophy also says that the generalities of the Nature of Things (the general persisting conditions of partial order, consequentiality and [BE] discontinuity [III]; the BTF principles of requisites and imperatives [Topics VI-XI]) are ever relevant to Frontier life. AT and IN the Frontier the behavioral problem (I:Pbeh) is ever attendant, distinct from any situational problem that we find ourselves engaged with (see C-1). When it comes to the behavioral problem we are always ON that frontier too.

Of more than passing interest is what the Frontier tells us about the concept of “nothing.” At the Frontier, looking backward, we can readily see relationships that were once not there. We can also see that relationships can be prospective – i.e., not yet established but composable via materiality, which we have seen in humans who use cognitive and communicative capabilities to compose by relating relation(s) to elements (X) … that steps made and taken can bring about relationships. “There’s nothing there” … yet. Realization is yet to come. (See Realization’s “0” [C-108, C-111].

(c) R.F. Carter