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Symbolic Representations

Abstractions are useful in so many avenues. We use them to describe the world around us in a variety of ways.

Take the game of Chess, for example. It's origins lie in teaching war strategies to the royalty class of Old Europe. It is an excellent tool for learning how to put opponents into positions where they can be defeated or weakened in stature. Those lessons are useful in many real-life situations too. Instead of using actual violent force to enforce your will, you implement an inexorable process to wear down and wither the opposition through strategic means.

Language is another example of symbolic representations. We are able through words to convey thoughts from one person to another using references and abstractions making the exchange convenient and effective.

From the sublime to the sophisticated, humans can conjure up visions that may accurately reflect reality or merely substitute for it. That is a testament of the ability of the mind to formulate simple or complex thoughts using external references.


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