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Old 04-21-2012, 09:56 PM
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kdt26417 kdt26417 is offline
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Default Philosophical Semantics, Part I

This is a spin-off from a discussion about the Lorax scale on Polyamorous Percolations. I can't say if or how this thread will affect that forum, but I'm a curious man, so I've wanted to create a thread around the following riddles. (There are seven riddles.)

Note: You don't have to answer all of these questions exhaustively, especially if you feel that brief answers to one or two questions will kind of explain what your answers would be on the remaining questions. Make your answers as long or short as you desire. You can even tweak the questions if you want.

Riddles #1 and 7 are the ones I especially desire your answers for. Try to answer those two if you possibly can. (The rest are like extra credit.)


Riddle #1:
  • Assume there exist three hypothetical people: Person I, Person II, and Person III.
  • Assume that all three of these people are polyamorous.
    • Person I is slightly polyamorous.
    • Person II is moderately polyamorous.
    • Person III is extremely polyamorous.
  • What reasonable conclusions (or educated guesses) can you draw about each of these three people? Describe the (intuition or) reasoning behind your answer.

Riddle #2:
  • Assume there exist three more hypothetical people: Person IV, Person V, and Person VI.
  • Assume that all three of these people are monogamous.*
    • Person IV is slightly monogamous.
    • Person V is moderately monogamous.
    • Person VI is extremely monogamous.
  • What reasonable conclusions (or educated guesses) can you draw about each of these three people? Describe the (intuition or) reasoning behind your answer.
*If you prefer, you can drop the word "monogamous," and use "monoamorous" instead, in Riddles #2 thru 6. Let me know if that's your preference.


Riddle #3:
  • Assume there exists a Person VII.
  • This person is half-monogamous, half-polyamorous.
  • Is that possible? If not, why? If so, how?
  • Draw any conclusions (or guesses) you can about this person. Describe your (intuition or) reasoning.

Riddle #4:
  • Assume there exists a Person VIII.
  • This person is polyfidelitous.
  • Which of the following labels would (statistically) most likely fit this person (assuming xe's "middle-of-the-line" polyfidelitous):
    • slightly polyamorous?
    • moderately polyamorous?
    • extremely polyamorous?
    • slightly monogamous?
    • moderately monogamous? or
    • extremely monogamous?
  • Describe the (intuition or) reasoning behind your answer.

Riddle #5:
  • Assume there exists a Person IX.
  • This person is a swinger.
  • Which of the following labels would (statistically) most likely fit this person (assuming xe's a "middle-of-the-line" swinger):
    • slightly polyamorous?
    • moderately polyamorous?
    • extremely polyamorous?
    • slightly monogamous?
    • moderately monogamous? or
    • extremely monogamous?
  • Describe the (intuition or) reasoning behind your answer.

Riddle #6:
  • What do each of the following mean?
    • slightly polyamorous,
    • moderately polyamorous,
    • extremely polyamorous,
    • slightly monogamous,
    • moderately monogamous,
    • extremely monogamous.
  • Describe your (intuition or) reasoning on each one.

Riddle #7: What does it mean to be "more polyamorous?"


I'll give my own answers to the above riddles after a few other posts have trickled in.
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Last edited by kdt26417; 04-21-2012 at 09:59 PM.
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Old 04-22-2012, 03:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kdt26417 View Post
Riddle #1:
  • Assume there exist three hypothetical people: Person I, Person II, and Person III.
  • Assume that all three of these people are polyamorous.
    • Person I is slightly polyamorous.
    • Person II is moderately polyamorous.
    • Person III is extremely polyamorous.
  • What reasonable conclusions (or educated guesses) can you draw about each of these three people? Describe the (intuition or) reasoning behind your answer.
Well, they're all human, since you said "people". Since you have not defined slightly/moderately/extremely or told us anything further about these hypothetical people, I cannot draw any further conclusions.

Quote:
Riddle #2:
  • Assume there exist three more hypothetical people: Person IV, Person V, and Person VI.
  • Assume that all three of these people are monogamous.*
    • Person IV is slightly monogamous.
    • Person V is moderately monogamous.
    • Person VI is extremely monogamous.
  • What reasonable conclusions (or educated guesses) can you draw about each of these three people? Describe the (intuition or) reasoning behind your answer.
*If you prefer, you can drop the word "monogamous," and use "monoamorous" instead, in Riddles #2 thru 6. Let me know if that's your preference.
Again: we know they're human because they're "people". We know no more than that.

Quote:
Riddle #3:
  • Assume there exists a Person VII.
  • This person is half-monogamous, half-polyamorous.
  • Is that possible? If not, why? If so, how?
  • Draw any conclusions (or guesses) you can about this person. Describe your (intuition or) reasoning.
As most definitions are relative, the vaguest guess possible is that here is a person who can take or leave polyamory and be happy either monogamous or polyamorous.

Quote:
Riddle #4:
  • Assume there exists a Person VIII.
  • This person is polyfidelitous.
  • Which of the following labels would (statistically) most likely fit this person (assuming xe's "middle-of-the-line" polyfidelitous):
    • slightly polyamorous?
    • moderately polyamorous?
    • extremely polyamorous?
    • slightly monogamous?
    • moderately monogamous? or
    • extremely monogamous?
  • Describe the (intuition or) reasoning behind your answer.
Well, what does this person think? Forget the statistics for a minute--what does zie consider middle-of-the-line? How would zie define any of those terms? Perhaps I am coming at this too mathematically, longing for "let" statements and agreed-upon terminology.

Quote:
Riddle #5:
  • Assume there exists a Person IX.
  • This person is a swinger.
  • Which of the following labels would (statistically) most likely fit this person (assuming xe's a "middle-of-the-line" swinger):
    • slightly polyamorous?
    • moderately polyamorous?
    • extremely polyamorous?
    • slightly monogamous?
    • moderately monogamous? or
    • extremely monogamous?
  • Describe the (intuition or) reasoning behind your answer.
Impossible to say, really. There are swingers who are poly, swingers who are mono, swingers who are just swingers...

Quote:
Riddle #6:
  • What do each of the following mean?
    • slightly polyamorous,
    • moderately polyamorous,
    • extremely polyamorous,
    • slightly monogamous,
    • moderately monogamous,
    • extremely monogamous.
  • Describe your (intuition or) reasoning on each one.
To me--and only to me--I can pop these along a continuum not unlike the Kinsey scale, where a 0 indicates "extremely monogamous" and a 6 indicates "extremely polyamorous". The problem is that when I puzzled this out in my head, I realised I needed two axes, and I haven't yet come up with the exact scales for each. So.

Quote:
Riddle #7: What does it mean to be "more polyamorous?"
Personally, I append "than thou" and let the statement stand.
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Old 04-22-2012, 03:50 AM
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Oh. My. Word.

What an exercise! What is the point?



Omigosh I would love to see Sourgirl chime in on this!
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Last edited by nycindie; 04-22-2012 at 04:21 AM.
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Old 04-22-2012, 05:52 AM
Shadowgbq Shadowgbq is offline
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I see a fallacy in this sort of question, in the form of an implied premise. It is possible that monogamy is simply an unnatural state of mind that is conditioned into us due to conformity & religious/patriarchal tradition. I wouldn't want to examine myself to figure out if I'm mono/poly any more than I would examine myself to see if I'm opposed to slavery. I believe that any possessive relationship is arrogant, contradictory and self-defeating. It's not a matter of sexual orientation, but of ignorance vs. enlightenment.
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Old 04-22-2012, 06:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadowgbq View Post
I see a fallacy in this sort of question, in the form of an implied premise. It is possible that monogamy is simply an unnatural state of mind that is conditioned into us due to conformity & religious/patriarchal tradition. I wouldn't want to examine myself to figure out if I'm mono/poly any more than I would examine myself to see if I'm opposed to slavery. I believe that any possessive relationship is arrogant, contradictory and self-defeating. It's not a matter of sexual orientation, but of ignorance vs. enlightenment.
Self-examination is always relevant to one's interests. If you are alive and conscious, you can still learn. Arrogance and ignorance happen when humans forget this part.
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Old 04-22-2012, 06:51 AM
Shadowgbq Shadowgbq is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovefromgirl View Post
Self-examination is always relevant to one's interests. If you are alive and conscious, you can still learn. Arrogance and ignorance happen when humans forget this part.
Very true. But what I'm saying is, if non-possession is right and people-owning is wrong, my self-examination shouldn't be about whether I'm a polyamorist or a people-owner. Nobody should examine themselves to figure out if they're a "It's okay to beat up little kids-ist." I'm not saying monogamy is tantamount to physical violence, I'm explaining the principle that IF something can be shown to be objectively immoral & unnatural, at that point it should be removed from consideration as just another subjective sexual orientation.
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Old 04-24-2012, 05:48 PM
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Re (from nycindie):
Quote:
"Who dreamed up the goofily-named Lorax scale?"
Ah, for that you'd have to go to "greatsexgames dot com." I don't dare make a link out of that as I'm thinking the site does sell something (games), though it also has its own forum of sorts. But that's either the original source for the Lorax scale, or the closest I can find to an original source. To get to it, you have to click on the "Register" link (top of page, left hand side), check the "agree to forum rules" box (on the next page), click on the "Register" button, and then finally (on the next page after that) you can scroll down a bit and see their version of the Lorax scale.

To make that a little more convenient, I'll copy/paste what they have right here:
  • Lorax scale: Pick the option that you believe you are, but don't necessarily practice.
    • 0 (monogamous): only one partner ever.
    • 1: serial monogamous.
    • 2: occasional threesome.
    • 3: frequent threesomes.
    • 4: one lover more important than rest.
    • 5: multiple lovers.
    • 6 (polyamorous): all lovers equally important.
Personally I'd prefer something more like this (but that's me):
  • Lorax scale: Pick the option that you believe you are, but don't necessarily practice.
    • 0: completely monogamous.
    • 1: mostly monogamous.
    • 2: largely monogamous.
    • 3: half-monogamous, half-polyamorous.
    • 4: largely polyamorous.
    • 5: mostly polyamorous.
    • 6: completely polyamorous.
... leaving the numbers more open to interpretation (especially since I'm not altogether down with the Sex Games site's interpretation).

Re (from nycindie):
Quote:
"Since there are myriad ways to live polyamorously, how in the hell can some 2-dimensional sliding scale even attempt to describe a person's experience or approach ..."
Indeed. That is the question.

Re (from nycindie):
Quote:
"What is this silly scale meant to do, anyway?"
I can only guess, but the originating site in question seems to want to use it (along with the Kinsey scale) to create a "quick reference" on people's forum profiles in the interest of "getting to know each other." (That's just my guess.)

Other than that, there seems to be a (probably small) group of people who see the Lorax scale as being useful for something comparable to what the Kinsey scale is useful for -- for those who find the Kinsey scale to be useful. As a sort of "reference number" estimating how "poly or mono" one is (where the Kinsey scale gives a reference number estimating how "gay or straight" one is).

Sorry I can't do better than that; it's just my guess/perception of how other people use/have used the scale. My personal interest in it is glossary-related. I just use it to educate people about a scale that some people use. Myself I remain mostly neutral on whether or not I find it useful beyond glossary purposes. Perhaps it even depends on what mood I'm in, I don't know.

Re (from nycindie):
Quote:
"I do think the Lorax scale can be done away with."
If it's okay with you, I will share your thoughts/viewpoints with the Poly Percs membership. Perhaps it will influence them to vote to take the Lorax scale out of the glossary. If such be the way it pans out, I'll have no complaints. I'm not that deeply invested in it.

Re (from lovefromgirl):
Quote:
"I was going to come at it from number of partners on one axis and commitment to partners on another ..."
Interesting approach; I like that.
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