Saturday, May 28, 2016

On the Perception of Unidentified Entities

We can identify things that we percieve.  This does not mean that we do not

percieve things that we can not identify.


If the input perturbation is too small, we can not hear, see etc., identify the entity.

For example, in an orchestra, it is impossible for every violin player in the violin

section to play exactly the same color, pitch namely the sound.  It is impossible

for us, the listener to hear each performer's different sound but instead we hear the

rich, deep sound of the violin section, rather than the week sound of a single violin.


We percieve the minute differences in the violin section as a feeling, a warmth,

richness and depth.  We percieve small changes that can not be identified not

cognitively but emotionally.


This may be the reason why small changes are frequently used in music performances.

The key here is to make the change, for ex. a temporary tempo change, in such a way

that it can barely be heard but can not be identified or noticed, though can be

percieved emotionally.


The entities that are unidentified include not only very small values but also

unmeasurable continuous quantities.  This varies from the perception of physical

values of heat, light etc. to the social values such as risk, friendness etc.


The languages include words such as hot, cold, very hot, bright etc. or dangerous,

true friend etc. words to describe these entities.  If paid attention one can notice

that these are all emotion related words or concepts.


The reason that an entity is unidentified may be related to the modality of the

perception.  We cannot identify quantitatively any visual input.  We cannot

identify something if it is the first time we see it.


Color, hue, brightness etc. light attributes are all unmeasurable continuous values.

It is impossible to identify them objectively.  We cannot remember a view if it

is not identified in the related semantical memory.  We can only recall that view

if we see it again.  Namely,  we can remember a view only if it is recorded as

part of an event in the episodic memory.


Aural modality has some similarities with visual modality.  Timbre, loudness,

tempo, etc. many parameters are continuous unidentifiable values, except pitch.

Instrumental music can mostly not go to episodic memory.  There is a window of

attention of the listener which slides through the music piece which builds a

balance of recalled elements and freshness.  The unity of the piece is achieved

through making small or unidentifiable changes of the initial material.  The

listener can percieve this emotionally rather than cognitively.


This is the reason that music expresses things that words cannot.  Music touches

the heart through feelings aroused by unidentified entities.



Thursday, January 7, 2016

The Role of Belief in Cognition

The Role of Belief in Cognition


There are working, episodic and semantic memories in our brain among others.  It is not very clear whether these are completely seperate regions in our brain.  They can be easily detected functionally. 

Working memory is the memory we use when we are actually thinking or talking.  Episodic memory holds the information related to events and when/where they occur.  Semantic memory holds the abtracted concepts/knowledge.

An event first happens in the working memory, then it is recorded in the episodic memory.  If there is a knowledge that can be deducted, it is recorded in the semantic memory.

The semantic memory is specially organised so that generalization and instantiation can be done automatically.  For example we do not think too much to say an eagle flies.  In the semantic  tree, eagle is connected to bird and bird is connected  to flying animal and that to animal.  How the information is stored in our brain is possibly related with the formation of connections during the perception and further processing. It is not a surprise that categorical subject test have shown regions close to the perception/subject specialization.

When some concept is being inserted to the semantic memory, an appropriate location in the semantic tree is searched.  Actually this may be an innate procedure that is done automatically while forming new connections.  The crux of the issue is how it is established that a connection of the eagle to the bird occur. 

The context of the word eagle may establish the relation of eagle to bird if the context of the bird is similar to the eagle.  The more the contexts' similarity the better.  The better what? We answer this what question as: Belief.

The more the new item, the new leaf fits into the semantic tree the more it is confident.  On the other hand, the more confident the leafs of a semantic tree, the more confident it is.

Schachter says in his 'Memory, Brain and Belief', "I use the term 'belief' when I use the attribution of truth value to a particular thought content, either percieved of recalled."

The semantic tree holds not only the data items but also their belief factors. Harold Pashler says in his 'Encyclopedia of the Mind', "An alternative answer to the question of what justifies memory beliefs turns on the idea that memory is preservative not just respect to the content of beliefs but also with respect to their justification".

Belief helps us to feel our thoughts.
Belief is how we sense our brain.


Thursday, December 3, 2015

RUMI CANTATA lyrics and structure

Good news! My new work, RUMI CANTATA has completed the sketching phase. I am beginning to write the score now.

RUMI CANTATA is a religious cantata in the form and style of a BACH Cantata. It is for soloists (SATB) and a small SATB choir accompanied by a small string orchestra + oboe + flute.

It is based on 6 poems from:
Mevlana Celaleddin Rumi'de Seçme Rübailer
Türkçeleştiren: Talat Sait HALMAN

The piece is written with modern notation (Serocki - Ligeti) but with a strong modal flavour. The transitions from modal to atonal and vice versa are studied and experimented carefully.

1st movement is for choir + strings (Huseyni)
2nd movement is for tenor solo + vcl + CB recitative (Hicaz)
3rd movement is for soprano + alto soli + vln + vcl + CB + oboe aria (Karcihar)
4th movement is for basso solo + vcl + CB + flute recitative arioso (Kürdi)
5th movement is for alto + tenor soli + string orchestra + oboe aria (Suzinak)
6th movement is for SATB soli + choir + string orchestra + flute + oboe (Huseyni)

Modal chords is sometimes used as only colors without functionality. They are sometimes used with functional relations also.  I produced the text by choosing the poems in such a way that they could comply with the function and form of a BACH cantata.

It seems there is at least 2-3 months more to see the my final work. I hope you enjoy the text. Both texts may be altered a bit during the composition process. I am not happy about the English text but the composition will be done for both languages at the same time. This restricts the location of words etc. because of the prosodi.



Bir can vardır: Düşünce güç sağlar ona,
Bir başka can ormandaki bir arslana.
Dikkat et! Bir baltaya benzer düşünü;
Çok fazla düşünme: vurmasın balta sana.
And içtim: Çıkmadıkça kalbimden can,
Şaşmam tek yönden çıkmam düz yoldan.
Derken sağa baktım, sola baktım: Hep o var.
Hep sevgili çıktı... çekti sağdan soldan.
Gönlümdeki iç ve dış O'dur, bende can O.
Gövdem, damarım, ruhum, O'dur. Bende kan O.
Tek Tanrı'ya, çok Tanrı'ya tapmak bir mi?
Bak, benzeri yok varlığımın: Var olan O.
Peyda olurum, saklanırım, işte buyum;
Müslüman, Hiristiyan, Musevi olurum.
Kalbim yerleşsin diye her bir yüreğe,
Ben kendime hergün yeni bir yüz bulurum.
Ey dost, sana candan yakınız aşk duyarak;
Sen nerde yürürsen orda olduk toprak,
Aşk mezhebinin cilvesi: Görmek sende
Tüm evreni - ancak sana hep kör kalmak.
Dünyada ve ahrette O var, bir tek O var;
Tek taptığımız O. Sahte tüm varlıklar:
Gökler de yalan, güneş de; bağ bahçe yalan.
Her sözde, her anlamda O tek gerçek, O var.
A soul exists: Thinking gives strength to it
An other soul to the lion in the forest.
Be careful! Thinking is like an axe;
Don't think too much: may axe not hurt you.
I swear: Unless my soul leaves my heart,
I won't change my direction, I won't leave the straight way.
Then I looked right, and the left: It is always the same thing.
It's always the beloved... pulled me from right or left.
My soul's in and out is It, my soul is It.
My body, my vein, my spirit is It. My blood is It.
To a single God, to many Gods, is it the same to believe?
Look, my existence has no similar: what exists is It.
I appear, I disappear, I am this;
Muslim, Christian, Jew, I become.
May my heart find place in every heart,
I find everyday to me a new face.
Lo friend, we are closer than souls, feeling love;
Wherever you walk we were there the soil.
The game of love sect is: To see in you
The whole cosmos but remain blind to you.
It exists in the world and eternity, only It exists.
The only thing we believe in is It. False are all the creatures:
Lie are the skies, lie is the sun; Lie are fields, wineyards.
In every word, in every meaning, It is the single reality, It is.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

RUMI CANTATA introduction


I had difficulties when I tried to begin writing the score for RUMI CANTATA.  Many skecthes for all 6 movements of the cantata existed.  But it was still difficult even to decide the layout of the score.
I do not remember how I wrote the skecthes of the melody phase.  But the clearest section was written in syllabic melody:

 Gönlümdeki iç ve dış O'dur, bende can O.
 Gövdem, damarım, ruhum, O'dur. Bende kan O.
 Tek Tanrı'ya, çok Tanrı'ya tapmak bir mi?
 Bak, benzeri yok varlığımın: Var olan O.

 I noticed now that this is also the culmination point,  the peak of the 6 poems I chose.  Strage, it is asif somebody else  is writing this music.  The music transcends the consciousness of the  composer.

 The four parts harmony of the 3rd section was also written.  So, I decided  to begin writing the RUMI CANTATA from the 3rd movement.  This helped me to decide  easily which layout of score, location of English-turkish lyrics and also to make  continuo as vcl obligato + guitar or others.  This has made me think once more that a work of art does not necessarily begin   at its physical beginning.

 A musical piece may begin and continue for a while and then a very charming melody  comes and sets itself as the beginning.  The new melody or section overwrites and  even reshapes the previous material.  The human memory rewrites everything it remembers.  Moreover it may not only rewrite, it may change the memory it has accessed.  Simply, Beethoven 9th symphony chorus section begins as the real beginning of the  9th symphony.  Everything before it serves to prepare its entrance.

 The issue becomes complicated thinking of multiple movement works.   There are multiple entrances, multiple beginnings.  If the 1st movement sets a   semantic net of percepted material,  the second movement may have a contrasted  material or non-relative material.  The slow 2nd movement of the Sonata form for ex.   Contrast will add to the established semantic net but non-relative will  create a   new semantic net.  If the 3rd movement has to become the real beginning of the  piece identity, it has to establish a more dominant idea which will import  the previous semantic net of the first movement. This is where the listener  wakes up the idea and remembers that the 1st movemnt's material is being referenced.

 Music is endless... There will always be beginnings.

 But as simple human beings, we also have to make many beginnings almost everyday.  But are they really beginnings?  Or are they just a continuation of previous choices,  decisions? 

 Really, when was the last time we had done a real beginning?


We percieve the world in a semantic integrity.  When we see a Mercedes, we percieve it as a car, as a vehicle, as a product, as a composite material, as material and finally as a being and  we treat it according to the attributes and functions these categories/classes provide.

The semantic integrity arises from a semantic three that we form and maintain through our life experiences.  Anything we experience is recorded in our episodic memory together with the time/place information of  occurrence.  The pith of the information that is driven from the episodic memory is recorded into the semantic memory as knowledge.  Knowledge is transformed into meaning in the semantic memory.

The knowledge of Mercedes being a car attaches Mercedes to the car node in the semantic three.  This enables us to infer that Mercedes is a vehicle and thus it carries people and goods.  Semantic three comprises everything that we learn personally.  The common knowledge of humanity accumulated in the universal semantic three includes everything we know as human from the beginning till now.

There is no doubt about the lower leaves of the semantic three but there are different approaches to the understanding of the top node, namely the root.  The root of the universal semantic three is considered as creator, the 'creator' from which everything is inherited.

Some believe that the top node is 'matter' itself and everything is inherited from 'matter'.  I believe 'matter' and 'non-material beings' are children nodes of the 'creator' node.  The 'non-material beings' are inherited by ideas or different disciplines of thinking such as science, religion, ethics etc.

Religion provides an understanding of the creator and semantic integrity and a discipline of living according to this understanding.  There are/has been different religions with different  names and understanding for the 'creator'.  There is also 'agnostic' approach which accepts the status of the creator but does not instantiate it.

RUMI stresses the unity of beings, emphasizes that they come from the same 'creator' and states that they are the reflections of God the creator. This provides a mind-set of seeing the common points in conflicts rather than magnifying the differences.

RUMI points at a better understanding of the meaning of life which serves tolerance and tenderness.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Je ne suis pas Charlie.

I am not Charlie.

Je ne suis pas Charlie.

What is the purpose of all this mess:  Is the purpose of this type of caricatures improve the understandings of the muslim minority in France?   Simply no.  It does not help. You can not improve people by making fun   of their beliefs.
Quel est le but de tout ce gâchis: Le but de ce type de caricatures améliorer la compréhension de la minorité musulmane en France?    Il suffit de pas. Cela ne aide pas. Vous ne pouvez pas améliorer les gens en se moquant   de leurs croyances.

  On the other hand no body deserves to be killed for their opinions even if  they are opposing you.  Again this is a matter of intellectual maturity   which needs to be developed in the religious life of the French muslims.
D'autre part personne ne mérite d'être tués pour leurs opinions même si   ils vous opposent. Encore une fois ce est une question de maturité intellectuelle   qui doit être développé dans la vie religieuse des musulmans français.

These caricatures and other offenses done by the westerners are provocations  and muslims should not be manipulated by them.    
Ces caricatures et autres infractions effectuées par les Occidentaux sont provocations   et les musulmans ne doivent pas être manipulés par eux.

Ideally, these magazines could print many positive things about the muslim  religion in comparison to Christianity and then print some critics among  them.  This would not  hurt anybody and contribute to the interaction  between two brother religions that indicate they believe in the same God.
Idéalement, ces magazines pourraient imprimer beaucoup de choses positives sur le musulman   la religion par rapport au christianisme (par ex. le respect de la mère et du père), puis imprimer certains critiques parmi les   eux. Cela ne aurait pas de mal à personne et de contribuer à l'interaction   entre deux religions frères qui indiquent qu'ils croient au même Dieu.

To say 'I am Charlie' is a simple failure.  Charlie did a mistake and it is  no good to follow and repeat that again.  Time is not the time for   confrontation but it must be a time for consolation in peace.
Pour dire «Je suis Charlie 'est un échec simple. Charlie a fait une erreur et il est   pas bon à suivre et répéter cela. Temps ne est pas le temps pour  confrontation, mais il doit être un moment de consolation dans la paix.

Friday, January 2, 2015

On Believing in Belief

On Believing in Belief




“ACC might be the brain’s error detection and correction device.”[1]


ACC is the mechanism that helps us mentally to decide if something is right or wrong.  You may think of  it as conscience sometimes.  Thousands years before Christ, a Hittite king advised his son :


 “Mein Sohn! Tue das, was in (deinem) Herzen (ist)”

“My son! Do what in your heart is.”[2]


“The ACC has been implicated in monitoring conflict among external and internal cues, with the dorsal ACC modulating cognitive aspects and the ventral ACC more involved in affect.” [3]


Qualia is how the outer world represented as a semantic tree in our mind.  The tree’s output is the quale value for that phenomenon.


“In any presentation, this content is either a specific quale(such as the immediacy of redness or loudness) or something analyzable into a complex of such.  The presentation as an event is, of course, unique, but the qualia which make it up are not.”   [4] 


ACC checks if something is related and can be placed ina qualia coherently.  Our conscience checks if it can explain a phenomenon as viable according to our previous experiences, knowledge and beliefs etc. 


If something can be laced in the semantic tree of qualia it means it is belieavable.  If the connections are strong and many it means it is strongly belieavable.


“2.4 Degree of Belief

Jessie believes that Stalin was originally a Tsarist mole among the Bolsheviks, that her son is at school, and that she is eating a tomato. She feels different degrees of confidence with respect to these different propositions.”[5]


If the connections are made negatively, something will be accessed as unbelieavable.


We have many qualia, on different subjects, the nature of the qualia determines the belieavablety of the phenomenon.  Religion is one of the qualia.  Religion provides an easy to access qualia for the human to handle the unknown.  Believing in a power outside him/herself in any form, in any qualia, political, philosophical and other helps human to handle the unknown.  Religion simplifies this for the large crowds while providing a fertile environment for arts and science to develop sometimes.


If something is in the working memory it is checked by the ACC for its compliance with any qualia.

The difficulty is, this would be very burdensome if it was valid for all the time.  Automatic processing bypasses the evaluation of ACC.  People can do incredibly good or bad things when they act automatically without self consciousness.  On the other hand this faculty is desperately needed for human beings to perform extraordinarily, specially in life or death moments but also in daily life. 


The human mind has a mechanism to stop checking the validity of things, it is belief in belief.  If there is a special qualia created for that area, belief in that belief area helps to isolate the working area from the ACC, conscience and practically stops it.


I will close the subject with an advise of a father as I had began it.  My father was a commando training officer who taught survival in winter, wilderness and in the mountains.  He used to tell us:


“Do not bind yourself with anything to the end in your life”.



[1] Bush, Luu, Posner, ‘Cognitive and emotional influences in anterior cingulate cortex’, Trends in Cognitive Sciences – Vol. 4, No. 6, June 2000, Elsevier Science Ltd.

[2] Daisuke YOSHIDA,  “Die Syntax des althethitischen substantivischen Genitivs” p. 5

[3] Nitschke, Mackiewicz, ‘Prefrontal and interior cingulate contributions to volition in depression’, Waisman Laboratory for Brain Imaging and Behavior,  Departments of Psychiatry and Psychology, University of Wisconsin, Elsevier 2005.

[4] Lewis, Mind and the World Order, 1941