MIND first checks to see if the art piece is "worthy", that means it tests to see if it has both a particular, and a general meaning. (as with every part, there is a loophole in the sense that it does not check that there is a "particular general" meaning, nor whether there is a "general particular" meaning).
by checking for patterns. If it finds patterns in the style, meaning it finds incidences with similarities consistently, then it knows that there is intention behind the work. (Knowing that there is intention behind the work is important, because it means that the work is not random. Human minds, if confronted by a random assortment, are always able to find patterns in it, and therefore glean meaning, however, this is extremely dangerous (which is most likely why a lot of people object to tarot cards and horoscopes).
Once the mind finds a pattern in the style, it is time to look for a pattern in the substance. By applying a pattern to the substance, the artist says not only did he make the work on purpose, but also that there is meaning in the world, or, that god is real.
Finding the particular meaning
once it has been determined that the piece has a meaning in general, (and to make things a little more complicated later, note that pieces can have meanings on various levels), it is time to find what the meaning is.
If all goes well, the meaning will be discovered directly, which is a particularly attractive thing about art pieces, and likely one of the main reasons so many people are drawn to it. While normally we glean meaning through experiences, by having multiple experiences with something in common between them, and at some point synthesizing these experiences into a particular meaning, art invites the opportunity that this particular meaning can be gleaned without the experiences themselves. If it is not obvious to you yet, this is ultimately very powerful and also very dangerous. Though it may not seem obvious, surrendering yourself to the artist, which is done not necessarily by choice, but only by coming in contact with the art. Therefore, if the artist is very careful, and perhaps also evil, the artist may choose to teach you something that is not true. To make things even more scary, while we understand where other experiences come from, when faced with an art piece that is trying to teach us something, we may not be able to trace the advent of this new "knowledge" which we are faced with by viewing that said art piece.
art is what we have invented to override the brain. That means, whatever is going on in our conscious mind cannot affect that which takes place in our unconscious mind, when we look at art. Art bypasses the area where our thoughts are to the hardware part of our brain, which out conscious mind touches only indirectly. Most of us are not aware which things that we do or think will affect the unconscious part of our mind, and which things will not.
How is the meaning Discovered?
The first layer of an art piece is made up by all the patterns. This is what deems the art piece worthy, and what directs our unconscious mind to enter into the piece. After bypassing the first door of the piece (which is why we are taught to stare at art pieces for longer than a second), we are ready to try to understand what the piece is trying to tell us.
The second layer of an art piece is made up of rules which form a system. There are rules everywhere in our world - laws that society has given us, unconscious rules that we follow, either for the sake of politness, or the sake of morality, as well as what we consider the physical laws of the universe - gravity, the law of attraction etc. The definition of a rule is something that happens every time, regardless of circumstances. However, it should be noted that the caveat to that definition is that every rule has an exception. Note that the caveat, which is also "always true," directly contradicts the definition. This is partly why law-makers have such a hard time understanding and deciding what rules to make and enforce. Though we believe ourselves to be very intelligent creatures, what we've gained in intelligence, we made up for in wisdom, and lack the basic understanding of the difference between rules that sound good on paper, and rules that work well in practice. If it were up to me, there would be a completely different set of rules that we are taught and that we are actually expected to follow (actually it already works like that, but we are taught not to admit it). This is not surprising. It is most definitely hard to conceptualize a rule which directly contradicts itself even in its very definition.
If we find it hard to understand this point that I have just made, let it be known that scientific discoveries in quantum physics, at perhaps exactly the same moment that every human accepted that science was so great and adequate that it was capable of describing all of the phenomena in the universe, proved that, at the greatest and least levels, the laws of physics, quite figuratively, fall apart. Which is to say that we have trouble applying the rules we have so painstakingly discovered in relation to the very very big things like black holes, and the very very small things, like atoms.
But, barring all that nonsense, in most of our daily life, rules function quite well. Besides that, there is an aspect to rules which says that they function as a system which means a) that they all kind of fit together.
and b) that, therefore, we can extrapolate (guess) which rules are going to follow: Once we have some of them we have more of them, and once we have more of them, we have all of them. (it should be noted that no system is or can be 'complete,' and that just when that very last rule is beginning to fall into place and the whole system looks to be in focus, we notice that the very last rule is the one which makes the whole system crumble, and we are back at square one again.
However, it certainly does not take every single rule before we are able to "see through the system."
Seeing Through The System
What does it mean to see through the system? It means that, by looking through "the system," by accepting the rules of the system, we are able to see something quite different from what we were looking at before. In looking through the system, we are now able to see the world "through the lens of what the system believes in."
It may be hard to understand what it means that a system could believe something, but we will understand this soon enough. First, let us imagine what it means for one to "accept" the rules of the system. There is an assumption lying under that, and the assumption is that we have made assumptions about our world. A system typically corresponds to a particular understanding of how the world functions, and therein lies the key, because it highlights the existence of a/the relationship between an understanding of the world, and the rules that we choose to follow based on that understanding. If you are not sure what it is that I am saying yet, let me be clear and say that a particular understanding of how the world functions begets a system of rules which it necessarily makes sense to follow. The way that people talk about things, this fact is eluded, and it is thought somewhat popularly that people's a) belief about the world b) understanding of how the world works, and c) decisions about what rules to make up and/or follow work not in tandem but independently of each other. If it is not clear that this is true, then inquire further.
And so, once we have accepted a point of view about the world, it is already clear both what we are going to believe, and what rules we are going to follow.
And so, once we have figured out what rules the art piece is projecting (which, as a reminder, is only possible if our mind has already accepted that the art piece is valid), we now get to the third and final level of the art piece - what the art piece "believes:" that is, what truth about the world, either a small fraction of the world, or encompassing an entire world view, does the art piece accept, and therefore make you accept, at least temporarily, about the world? Notice that throughout this explanation, it has been referring to various levels of abstraction - the abstract concept which is simply the general but not particular abstract concept of what the patterns have in common, the slightly more particular abstract concept of what the rules and the system denote, and now, in the final level, we begin to understand what it is that the art piece "means," with a capital M.
The meaning is going to be embedded in something which can be viewed either as a paradox, a contradiction, or simply opposites, depending on our vantage point.
Let us begin with the first possible view - of the thing as a paradox. A paradox is something in which there are two statements that are incompatible with each other. As a result of this incompatibility, it is very hard to conceptualize a paradox. As an aside, this is a perfect vehicle for the "meaning," which the artist is "planning" to convey to the viewer. In an art piece has been done correctly, which it must have been if the viewer has managed to arrive at the inner-most circle of its internal abstract structure, than at the inner most level, the "meaning" of the art piece will appear to be a paradox. I will tell you now why this is both ideal and also necessary.
Why is it ideal and also necessary?
Although it may seem an accident that no one has ever been able to comprehend the full extent of the world, (at least not consciously, and/or in a way that can be explained explicitly), it is actually very sensical that this truth remains elusive. And, actually, it is a testament to the validity of the truth itself. While we maybe have been able to understand the world by relating it to various things that it is similar to, either getting closer and closer to the actual way that the world functions, or else dancing around the truth, staying at a similar distance but approaching it from various angles and.or vantage points, we are unable to approach the truth directly. This is both a product and/or symptom of the way that our mind functions, and also a telltale sign in the search of trying to discover the way that our mind indeed functions.
We are unable to grasp the truth in all of it's fullness because our minds work in the way that they extrapolate meaning from things, which, inherently, is a process of reduction or simplification. However,, the truth about the world cannot be simplified. The world is exactly as it is and no amount of trying to reduce or simplify or extrapolate can ever work to achieve our means. However,, in keeping with the rest of this chapter, paradoxically, the simple acceptance of this fact - that the world is inherently itself and cannot be reduced to anything that is even slightly or miniscully different from itself, we are introduced to the very truth of it and our existence, and are allowed (by ourselves, if it can be put that way), to view once and for all, how the world really works and functions. That is, if we are able to accept the extremely ridiculous, non-sensical, and impossible to accept assumption that there is no truth about the world.
So why is this even a problem, I mean, wouldn't we have already accepted it by now?
While it may seem that we are simply processing the information that we are receiving in the world objectively, as it is presented to us, in actuality, the very act of processing the information we receive about the world changes that information so that we are unable to understand it in its fullest extent and in all of its completeness. Instead we are left with something that resembles the world but does not tell us fully what it is.
Making sense of the world means that we take a set number of things in the world, and make a statement about them. That statement is very likely going to be one which follows similar logic to what follows: there is a red thing, there is a red thing, and there is a red thing, therefore there are a lot of red things in the world.
Back to Paradoxes
And so, assuming that the artist has not tricked the viewer into thinking that the art piece is one when it really isn't, there is going to be a paradox at the very center of the system of rules, which has in its periphery, the many various patterns which led us to believe in the first place that the art piece was something worthy of being considered.
Now let's take a step back, and look at what it means that we first considered whether there were patterns or not.
..is a very simply mechanism, rather like a lock on a door, which ensures that...It goes like this. If it is true that the artist looked at the world enough in order to gain some modicum of understanding that is valuable enough to deserve repeating, then two other things will also be true, necessarily. one, it will mean that what the artist has seen is also worthy of looking at. the world works in a particular (strange, peculiar) way so that our brain picking up on patterns in a certain way, notifies viewers that this understanding is correct and worthy on a very basic level. and two, it will mean that it is a reliable source. If all the patterns check out accordingly, then we know that we can trust the artist, who is not lazy but very careful in observing the world, who is not deceived by tricks that either the world nor his own mind might play on him because he does not succomb to the lazy way of viewing the world which makes everything into easily consummable concepts but rather bypasses this automatic function of the brain by getting into the flow state, and therefore is able to view their own biological processes for perceptionw ithout a filter. Inquire for a further explanation of how the neuroscience of this works.
Let's also define, a little bit more explicitly, what exactly a pattern is. If you have never played the game SET, I recommend that you try it, barring the case in which you don't want to. In this game, players are presented with twelve cards. All of the cards have four features (color, quantity, pattern, and shape), and, in order to make a set, players must find three cards for which, in the case of each of the features, they are either all alike, or all different.
In the case of the kind of patterns that we are talking about, If there is any instance in which all of something except for one is alike, or else there are two instances of a feature which are the same, but one or more of the same feature which are different, then the viewer is told that this is not a valid art piece as the patterns could not be authentic nor copied from the world. Instead they must have gone through some programming which the artist approved of consciusly, or else they would read like a metaphor for all of the patterns in the whole entire real world.
Even more about patterns
Patterns, which are the smallest and most superficial of the elements of abstraction are also the most complicated to deal with and, as there are so many of them, can become quite unweildy. Therefore, we are able to use "pattern collectors" in order to keep track of them. These are actual physical things which can hold onto more instances or events than a normal human brain might be able to, ensureing and allowing us to keep track of all the events and/or instances that might be involved in a particular thing. However, they are also the same as the thing inside of our head which keeps track of patterns. While the physical version leaves room for mistakes if we, for example, forget or don't have time, to note an instance, the mental version does not allow for infinite memory, and we may have trouble remembering what we were to include and what not. Patterns exist in the world, in our mind, and in art pieces, and all of them function generally the same way with slight differences.
tabs are what tell us the most that we can know about a thing.
When we get to the very end of this discussion, we are going to note that it is patterns which in the end, end up referring to the particular paradox that we are concerned with. And if there is no particular paradox that we are concerned with, then they will be in charge of confirming the general paradox that we are concerned with.