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 12562 Cognitive Models, Ritual, and the Patterns of NLP -Jerry Beach

3 Hour presentation

Where in NLP do we see the patterns of ritual and magic? How can the utterance of a simple “I Do” bring a marriage into existence? Clues from cognitive linguistics, and everyday rituals, provide hints about the magic in NLP -- A survey of metaphor theory, mental spaces, frame semantics and more.

By the time Bandler & Grinder came out with The Structure of Magic, sociologist Erving Goffman had devoted years to his 576 page  Frame Analysis, An Essay on the Organization of Experience, and linguist Charles J Fillmore was already publishing papers relating to “Frame Semantics.” Reframing, Neuro-linguistic Programming and the Transformation of Meaning would appear a few years later.

But where did this “frame” idea come from?
It is well known that the seeds for early NLP models were sown by Noam Chomsky in the late 1950s. But NLP has roots in other philisophical gardens as well, outside the formalisms of Transformational Grammar. Cultivated later, and not as well advertised in NLP circles, these other branches of learning have been flourishing in recent decades.

We will tour the grounds (so to speak) among certain branches of cognitive linguistics and point out some of the basic ideas tended by Lakoff, Johnson, Kövecses, Turner, Fauconnier, Sweetser, and others. And we'll spend a little time with one particular cognitive theory about the patterns of Magic and Ritual (Sørensen) and show how similar models can illuminate the structures within NLP itself.
Examples of correlations:
Anchoring can be seen as the “conceptual blending” of cause and effect. NLP "timelines" have been turned into things (that cannot be put into a wheelbarrow) and yet the “conceptual metaphors,” behind the scenes of timelines, reveal the impressive human facility for borrowing structure from one neighborhood of experience to shape the meaning of another.
It's all about the structure of subjective experience.
Most of the NLP processes can be described and supported using terminology and models from the cognitive sciences. A welcome side-effect is a very large body of research that can be seen as supporting NLP techniques.
It is also possible, using Turner and Fauconnier's “Mental Spaces Model,” to unify the descriptions of such diverse concepts as hypnosis, reframing, outcomes, congruence & parts, metaprograms, spatial anchoring, even submodalities, and refer to a common set of conceptual elements that unite NLP models.

One possible outline:
  1. Objectivism vs. Experientialism
  2. Brief intro to category theory and prototypes
  3. Frames – structured representations of categories
  4. Metonymy – entities within frames
  5. Metaphor – borrowing structure from one frame to another
  6. Conceptual blends and the Network Model of Mental Spaces
  7. One cognitive science approach to magic and ritual
  8. Possibilities for enriching NLP distinctions
  9. Where in NLP have we seen these ideas?
  10. How is this useful personally and helpful to clients?
  11. Proposal for a Special Interest Area to be sponsored by IASH

Jerry Beach

Jerry is a life long student: A former actor (student of Sandy Meisner) and database modeler (student of the works of EF Codd and Chris Date), he's an NLP practitioner (student of Andreas, Smith, Halbom, Faulkner, Dilts, Gilligan and many others) and for the past ten years has contributed to IASH, providing services through this website for the NLP community (student of the exotic behaviors of a species known as NLPer)


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