Volume 5 : 12 December 2005

Strength for Today and Bright Hope for Tomorrow

Editor: M. S. Thirumalai, Ph.D.
Associate Editors: B. Mallikarjun, Ph.D.
         Sam Mohanlal, Ph.D.
         B. A. Sharada, Ph.D.
         A. R. Fatihi, Ph.D.

Ranjit Singh Rangila


This writing promotes the concerns of C-semiology in general. The configurationality that runs through all the creations is the direct concern. When seen from the end of their expressive side the creations open up are architectures of varying spread and dimensions.  


The Trees


The invisible trees are trees of knowledge. This writing offers them as the deep conscious organizational base that has definite configurational shape at a given point of time, but is ever growing. This explains as to why they are more than one, and definite too.


The Position


The immediate position of this writing is that these knowledge trees, invisible as they are, are natural endowment of human beings. One does not have to implant them. They are just there like blood or any other element that makes human body what it is.


To place this position within the vision of C-semiology this writing proposes to visualize these trees of knowledge up to subtle conceptual enshrinement. In that sense this writing has its own locus, focus and role in vision creation.


But the writing as such goes much beyond the boundaries thus defined and to a considerable extent maintained also, especially for the sake of the building of the arguments in the areas of conceptual experimentation relevant to this writing. 




Much beyond the immediate concerns, however, this writing participates in a general inquiry that addresses a general issue: why the things are the way they are in the world of human beings?


As the question has it, the inquiry has at least three sides of the main problem. The first, why the things are? The second, why they are the way they are? The third, why they are in human life?


The definitional


Any knowable is a thing.


This basic definitional (see Rangila 2002 for a subtle distinction between the notion of ‘definition’ and ‘definitional’) makes the starting point of this inquiry.


Language, the object of language sciences, for instance, may be a thing as per this definitional.


A shade of this issue is formulated in some of the pervious writings (see especially Rangila 2001b Handoo) within the general framework of C-semiology. In that sense the present writing makes a continuation of a search for vision that illuminates the facts of human life, especially the creative play that makes life and gets expressed in civilized artifacts.


The intellectual context


The intellectual context this inquiry has lies in the general intellectual attitude on the nature of inquiry followed quite vigorously in the 20th century. At the center of the intellectual attitude lies the wisdom that believes in a dictum: to know a thing is to search for the nature, structure and function of the thing.


This, however, is more of an apparent side of the wisdom that sustains the attitude. There are rather deep sides of the wisdom, and they have their consequences as well. One such consequence of this attitude is that an attempt at knowing a thing leads to possibility the thing being there in the first place.


All the knowing that one may afford in this sense is what accrues through this possibility of the thing being referred to. One of the alternatives ways of saying this to suggest that a thing is given as it is already there as a possibility.


uncomfortable questions


There are many uncomfortable questions that one may have to answer very on behalf of this attitude. For instance, if a thing is to be taken from somewhere, where exactly this ‘somewhere’ could be? How is one sure that it is there? How is one sure that the thing that one is likely to get in to process is there at that ‘somewhere’? Even if the thing could be there in the first place, how is one sure that it could be given? Unless there is some commitment, either through identity assertion, or through possibility visualization, how could there be some giver such that gives any thing? Could something be given to somebody without a giver? Could giving an act with some giver? If taking is chained up with giving as the necessary initiation, is giving free to not to chain up with taking? 


The questions above are a small fragment of the list that may run into an enormously big mass that could include questions that might have even never been formulated in any language. Nevertheless, these questions help to create a possibility where the primitive bases of the 20th century attitude at knowing become comprehendible: things can be known as they are there.


It makes sense to asset in this context that though very coherent and seemingly well formulated, yet this intellectual attitude is a very cozy and comfortable faith that guided the 20th century attitude of knowing and by the same token of discovering. The attitude, however, remains comfortable only till one does not care to ask why the things are the way they are in the world of human beings?


It is quite likely that the statement above sounds harsh to some consideration. Under the circumstances a bout of ethics of inquiry, especially the daunting limitations that an act of investigation often proceeds through, gets evoked. Even in that case  


When translated into the language of the theoretical craft of linguistic theory, the present inquiry has very serious consequences for language sciences.  It cuts at the very root of the wisdom that sustains the practice of having ones definitional primitives themselves.


It amounts to asserting: Here is language; its own sonoranity itself is its definition, and sufficiently so; it runs on into its creations as syntagma and paradigma; the sonoranity signifies and makes sense to somebody somewhere; and all this, along with much more that may be counted as well as said in competing idioms, could serve a proof enough for its (language) being there. Hence follows a natural, and empirically justified faith that all one has to do is to observe it (language/object of study) to describe and explain it.


This writing proposes to ask the question given in the beginning because the question opens up the way for many more to be thought about, especially the ones that workout the possibility of the wisdom that has been the central intellectual force in conducting research into, say, nature of the things, language being one among them.


One may realize that in asking the question in this sense the writing does not get necessarily tailor made into a contribution to linguistic theory as it is popularly known among the contemporary intellectual culture. Nevertheless, the writing does have its contribution to make that could have its bearing on the problematics of language sciences.   


And, given the definitional above, language qualifies to be taken as a thing among all the vast spread of ones existential universe (see Rangila 1998 for an earlier statement).


The central focus in the theoretical debate is among all those efforts that are active in vision creation, especially that are interested in making sense of the ways and means through which human beings have been engaged in sense making and relating their efforts to their selves on the one hand, and to their universe on the other. 


It is understood that the issue demands a probe that gets subtle and searches for the primitive bases of the wisdom that was thought to be very productive and insightful in gaining the nature, structure and function of things.


The writing problematises only a fraction of this general issue does not need assertion.


The Invisibility Condition


This condition has some of its following properties:


  • The invisible trees are trees of knowledge.
  • This writing offers them as the organizational base of deep consciousness.
  • The trees have definite configurational shape with which they define the thingness of a thing at a given point of time.
  • These trees are ever growing.
  • This defines the continuing evolving flux that characterizes the treeness of the things that human beings live with.
  • The treeness of things is their configurational character that renders them cognizable and thereby makes them knowable. The Picture-1 has it:



                                                                                                            = site






A tree begins somewhere just as a presence that may be represented by just a dot (.); grows into its treehood, the objectal configuration; acquires some ideational value through multi-ended relations, and continues to grow as an ideational fact in ones life. This explains as to why the trees are more than one, definite too, and are specifically real to every individual consciousness.


The individual beings are endowed with these knowledge trees for a very natural reason and requirement: On the bases of these trees the individuals create, organize and operate their knowledge sources. This is possible because these knowledge trees are rooted in the wisdom potential of every individual. Somewhere in the wisdom potential lays ones deep consciousness. These trees may be seen rooted in the deep consciousness as well. The Picture-2 has it:





                                                                                                = site



   Deep consciousness




Seen from the end of this wisdom potential the trees are ever growing abstract maps that are primarily visible to mental eye. If this is taken as their primary character, then they are not visible to open eye, and hence are invisible.


This basic character of these trees, however, does not come in their way of getting expressed. When expressed in one form or the other, they gain visibility on the one end, and some configurational face, on the other. All the pictures in this writing capture this basic fact of these trees.


The acquisition of some visible configuration for the knowledge trees is sourced in their primary character. This primary character, and the definite role that they play are the two important considerations that suggest that these materials of wisdom potential be designated as the invisible trees within the general conceptualization.


the key to operationalise


Operationally, this writing is more of a fairy tale that does not have its persona and yet it tries to gain in the area of insight creating. There are details that may be called data in the sense of fieldwork experience. Analytical rigour takes place at a level of subtlety.


The insight being hoped may be too encompassing than a limited problematic of culture, mode of communication, modernity and so on would have it. The level of consideration, both for discovery making and wisdom creation, therefore, is that of culture and not of a/the culture (source of the distinction is in Rangila 1989: 11-16).


That is, culture in this writing is a subtle and ideational universe that rests in human propensity to create life and relate itself to variety. A/the culture in this understanding is more specific, and is an endowment of human beings of given blood-bone-zone character.


Such limited generalities are made to move through facts of real life experience. An analytical operation of considerable depth is conducted on a limited data set. This facilitates the writing in offering its conclusions as its inputs to the debate on the concerns of this conference. The statements that form parts of this writing have their sustaining bases. In other words, the writing conducts its own discovery to gain its statements.


A Site Has Something to Say


For a discovery to come about let us take washing as an activity area. Following the tools of C-semiology ‘washing’ may be considered as site (see Rangila 2000 for the basic proposition).


Incidentally, there is an observational primitive here. That is, to take ‘washing’ just as an element in language, for instance, would be to put it through the analytic operations of linguistic theory of one persuasion or the other. But that analysis takes the writing into categorial grammar (see Rangila 2001c for the subtle issues involved).


On the contrary, washing is put into an activity area to assert that it is a conceptual category that works in the lives of people. And this does not negate a linguistic side of  ‘washing’. Rather, among other things, it fulfills the requirement of concretization that Bakhtin’s formulation of meta-linguistics made.


Washing in an activity area is a whole detailed field of individual actions that are linked to one another, where every action has its oven definite identity. Further, washing as an activity, is such that has its agent-object and agent-tool prerequisites. There are materials also that are essential elemental requirement of all that is packed, or may be hidden under that which language just packs into one expression called ‘washing’.


Within an activity area, therefore, washing may be accepted as a site that has a pyramidal configuration (Rangila 1991) like in the details of the Pyramid-1:




                                    tools          agent        object


         washing surface        man         cloths (only)

            wash tub mug         woman

          the hitting wood

 soap water                              one or more



            a  c  t  I  v  I  t  y     h  a  p  p  e  n  I  n  g





















Note: this pyramid is not generalisable on some of the details. For instance, if one places utensils made of glass or china clay along with ‘cloths’ the effect of the whole happening would be something like what happened in the film ‘Crazy Boys at Super Market’ where a person took a whole laid table by the table spread and hit the same against a stone to wash the dishes. It goes without saying that any activity area offers its own dos and don’t. ‘(only)’ in the above characterization is the expressive of this.


Further, the specifics of washing as in an activity area are sensitive to some present stage of cultural development. Let this stage be sgate-1, as in the above case. A typical character of this stage is that all the specifics that matter in the activity share among them an essential link (the expression may not escape Kuhnian flavour). That is, together with the given field of specifics it is equally basic to happening of the activity that its appropriate linkage with other fields is available very accurately.


Now, if under certain conditions, such a stage is found dated, then the culture may have to strive to go beyond the given stage. Let the new stage be called stage-2. Evidently, this will have its bearing on the pyramidal structure of washing as well like in the following:























A close and contrastive study of the changes that occur between the two stages may be very useful for the concerns of this conference. One does not intend to take up that side of the issue here.


a pun has it


However, while passing one may respond to the current debate on modernity and post-modernism. Not that one ever intended such a response. Since this conference take the project of modernity, one has some reason to commit.


Honestly, one does not hope that debate may surface at the site of washing. May be the conceptualization of the issues is too innocently formulated. Or it could equally be the case that to hold on a position in the care of modernity vs. post-modernism thesis, one does not require ‘washing’ as one of the site within the scheme of knowledge making in this thesis. Or it could be the case that to hold on to post-modernism, especially, one is comfortable wearing unwashed cloths. Haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Or, as Kikkeri Narayan, one of the known post-modernists, responded –

: No, no post-modernists may be comfortable even without cloths.

: But we are civilized enough and cannot wish them pre-history.

: History will not move from its conceptual space. All that you need to realize is that

  post- modernists are helpful even in serving your pun.

: No, this pun is a small miaoo. I must look after the survival of an insight.

: How can you have an insight unless you are a post-modernist?

: This is precisely the question. That is why I say that post-modernists are out of Uberoi’s

   ‘semiology of civilization’ in principle. And out of compulsion, they are not allowed in

   C-semiology. Haaaaaaaa!

: Why this concession to post-modernists?

: Because they seek comfort in cothlessness.

: But this clothlessness does not make a post-modernist language.

: I know it will when they reach the post-post-post-modernism stage. HHHHaaaaaa!!!!


the question remains


Leaving the pun to its ha the two pyramids of reality offer two cases of an activity that may be interpreted. The immediate question that surfaces, given the concerns of interpretive theory, is as to whether the three cases (pun included) are the cases of interpretation or something else.


The question is called for by the fact that in each of the cases there is certain relationship that man/woman have with the reality that gets created at the site of washing. Yet the fact also remains that man-woman, that is, the agency elements in the pyramid are part of the reality as well. Further, if their centrality in the pyramid has anything to suggest, they are producers of the reality also. Said alternatively, given the part played by the other elements, man/woman play a more detailed part in the first case.


For interpretive leap numerous issues open up unwittingly.


1. To take up the last one first, the walk in of washing machine in the site is very consequential. A comparison of the two pyramids should suggest that with the machine entering into the picture, there is contraction under the tools node paralleled by expansion in the agent node.


The change in the composition of the material base results, to begin with, in the description of the activity happening. The size of the statements, and the number of them is differently constituted in both the pyramids. Equally important for change theory would be to note the configurational make up of the two pyramids.


It is too simplistic, bordering naivety of course, to suggest that the site of washing has gone through a technological advancement. That is evidently the case. A far more deeper observation would be to discover that the advancement = change has walked into the whole Pyramid of the site and altered the configurational character of it. The issue cannot be pursued to its logical end here.


Further, there are consequences of this discovery back in the contemporary linguistic theory that hold on to autonomy thesis. For instance, it could be too trivial to asset in the present situation that the change could only be internal to the system. But    that is besides the point here.


What is important, however, is to note that as the agency center of a pyramid experiences some addition, and is straight way mapped up in the statements that describe a happening. In other words, there is very direct and that too very sensitive relationship between the actential base and the expressed layout of the pyramids.


It takes just one step further to discover as to how the change from the Pyramid-1 to the Pyramid-2, technology initiated as it is, is a symptomatic of change from one mode of expression to another. This symptom is central to that desire that hopes to meet modes of interpretation somewhere and someday.


2. The issue for interpretive leap to deliberate would be that washing an otherwise simple and mundane activity is available with its three ends. These ends may even be called entry points, e.g. (1) being related, (2) being a part, and (3) being the producer. This presents methodological baggage, and hopefully heavy one too. The role multiplicity of agency may have the following representation:







Picture- 3


A given interpretive exercise would have to workout as to whether it could be willing to treat all the three points as the entry points for an act of interpretation; whether it would choose any one among the three points as the opening point and then move on to the other two in a systematic drive, or the act would not accept the three points as relevant to its operations.


There is, however, a more primitive issue for interpretive theory in general. The three points discovered above are from the point of view of the engagement of the ‘agent’ = man/woman who is an insider to the given activity. That human agent at the site of activity in its own role is engaged in receiving the roles of the other elements and negotiating its own contribution.


One may read some interpretation coming through in this reception and negotiation of reality at the site of this agency too. In this sense interpretation theory is invited to consider as to whether this kind of interpretation could be a genuine domain of its concerns.


This issue gains weight, especially when one is faced with a gap that is often placed between this reception-negotiation and interpretation. With interpretation placed at a distance from reception and negotiation (see Rangila 1999 for a detailed formulation of the issues touched upon here) at the site, one has to deny the possibility of interpretation at the level of creation of reality. In this sense interpretation would be a secondary activity in the over all game of discovery making and wisdom creation, including of course code creation. A formal picture of this position could be like the following:











Picture – 4


This, however, is not the all of it. With interpretation distanced from reception and negotiation, it no longer remains within the creative competence and productive power of the agent at the site. To make interpretation, the secondary activity as it were, either another agent-individual will have to walk in, or, the agent engaged in creating will have to play the role of interpreter. The Picture- 5 has it:







Picture - 5


But this leads to more of a press button notion of role enactment and to a mechanical reduction of human agency. You press a button, on goes reception; you press another button again, negotiation is off, and interpretation sets on. It is doubtful whether human beings are this kind of press button selves at the core of their nature.                 


3. The concerns of the conference would demand that one ought to take a position on the issue of mode by deciding as to whether a mode of expression could be mode of interpretation, or not. This is crucial, especially after the above discovery, because at least two possibilities are gathered there. An equally crucial would a decision as to whether a change in mode of expression could be construed as a change in mode of interpretation.


The results of the immediately above probe may not lead to some very decisive yes: no answers, because each one of them is equally plausible unless and until some insight brings in some principled criterion of choice, or rules out of the possibility of choice itself. But wherefrom such an insight should come is the question.


4. Similar is the case with the issue of modernity. One of the possible spaces for modernity to surface at the site of washing may be, as already indicated, where the activity shifts from what is described in Pyramid-1 to that of in the Pyramid-2. But problem with such a conception of modernity starts creeping up along with the possibility of another pyramid case at the same site.


Some holes in post-modernity thesis that were just bypassed by the pun above come back with an added force, because the issue by now has become more straight and direct. That is, if the case of Pyramid-2 is an instance of modernity, obviously in relation to Pyramid-3 (so far lying in its possibility), then what could the Pyramid-3, as and when realized, be the instance of?


The direction that led to the creation of pun reads the possibility of the Pyramid-3 as a case of post-modernity. A very large volume of literature on the issue may be cited that either explicitly asserts this (Noor 2000), or confirms this position through implicit assumptions. But this reading of the activity at that site, and also of the conception of reality that the site creates, starts to loose its feet and is pushed to stand on its tail if one refuses to read modernity at the point of Pyramid-2. Rather one proposes to accept the Pyramid-1 itself as the case of modernity, given the cultural milieu that the site of washing belongs to.


If one is pushed to take a position, then a conventionalized wisdom of calling the Pyramid-3 (even in its possibility) is justifiably a case of pot-post-modernity. In other words, with the modernity vs. post-modernity thesis, one is pressing for a formal representation like the following:


Pre-modernity      modernity      post-modernity      post-post-modernity …..

But this does not lead to insight creation where one is able to gaze through the deeper layers of human nature and conduct.


On the contrary, it simply decays into some linguistic jingo whose bluff is exposed by the time one proposes to carry human experience with reality beyond the occurrence of the 2nd ‘post’ in the above expression. As the activity on the site progresses into some more such points of the post-modernity, one has to convince oneself more hard to hold on to conviction that at the plain of expression language at least tolerates the constructions like post-post-post-modernity.


Moreover, the fun is that this does not promise to stop there. Language within which such wise creations are to be accepted has to by all means be ready for even more prolific constructions like post-post-post-post-modernity. The logical necessity, the demands of insight creation, the possible discovery and the rest may wait for the news on the limits of the tolerance of a mode of expression.


An ideology sensitive approach to the problem of modernity and its post avatar may not be willing to buy the idea of limits of language, especially of its expressive potential, and dub the above argument purely as a formalistic bite. Such an approach could be justified in demanding capacity to expand formal potential of language so as to accommodate hitherto unknown conceptual discoveries.


One could argue on their behalf that after all language cannot pretend to go on catering to the known and worn out conceptual material. It goes, in fact, against language itself if it cares only to support the already known, because that does lead to beyond a limit to garbage creation.


One may also argue that it is given to the genius of language to engage in a never-ending rejuvenation by giving rise to novel expressive materials. In this sense the modernity vs. post-modernity thesis is just trying to take care of the health of language even at the level of its terminological base.


But, to be fair to the sense of argument, one must be willing to make out as to whether one is invoking genius of language, or one is burdening ones observation with the weight of its own innocence.


It is known that the implicit assumptions that support this characterization of reality as modern vs. post-modern is well taken only in a universe where change takes so long time to take place that it is not even noticed. At some given point of time people do not remember whether some thing ever changed. For instance, it may require some labour to show some change actually ever took place before the stage that is referred to in the Pyramid-1 above at the site of washing.


In such a situation one can fix ones points called pre-modern(ity), modern(ity) and the like. In that case it is justified to make a demand from the genius of language to expand its expressive potential and come out with expressions like post-modern(ity). This can carry the ideological baggage also without much ado. The unnoticed, or unnoticeable that gets missed on the time plain of the change provides more than sustaining logic, including respectability to such an observational thesis.


If this thesis is taken out from the ebb of the unknown and is placed within a milieu of the carefully calculated, something very interesting is discovered. For instance, it is currently believed that the knowledge bases of computer science, artificial intelligence included, take eight days to undergo a change. If one cares to count the numbers of changes that these knowledge bases may undergo, then the formal representation of the issue presented above is rewritten as the following:


post-modern(ity)      rewritten 45.62 times / a year = 365 days.


In other words, one is demanding from the genius of language to expand its expressive potential that it should allow ‘post’ to be repeated 45.62 times over the period of a year that is made of 365 days. A language that creates such an expression does very noble service to the thesis, the thesis survives, but to ménage its own survival the language must grow into a post-modern(ity) monster. The derivation with its exact count of the occurrence of the ‘post’ may speak for itself:




Note: the letter ‘t’ is deleted in the last occurrence of ‘post’ as the compensation for the remaining .38 of the .62 of the given 45.62.


One of the ways to survive this rather unexpected consequence of a proposal could be to argue that a thesis is placed out of its locality of relevance and sense, both (my 2001a writing does offer a facility to argue on these lines). This makes the argument face the same linguistic jingo with which it is charged in the first place.


But issue here is more delicate than of the validity of an expression, of a site, of an insight, of a locality of relevance etc. The derivation above is worked out to show as to how all these items in the previous statement have their spheres of well createdness, beyond which either they fall flat on their own wisdom, or they require cycles of further resourcefulness to continue in any ideational culture.


That is, when culture is received at the level of its expressive resources, it makes sense to look for interpretation(s) wherever and whenever one intends to gain them, but it makes even more basic and better sense to be sure that one may have them only with reference to the limits of some well createdness of these sources.


It should demand that an act of interpretation in an ideational culture has to have its search for ones sense of well createdness also. And, to add, no interpretive leap may be free of this. This demand seems to be at the core of the essential link that is offered above for both reality and variety. 


a check


It is matter of detail only to discover that the realization gained through this limited play with data from real life experience is not likely to get disproved unless and until, of course, the modalities of the analytical technique employed are tempered with. It could be a good and productive exercise to carry this analysis on as many sites as offered for any, or many expressive systems.


To give a try some one may try to conduct a discovery through a presently very familiar site called enemy. The data that this site may generate and place within pyramid could be, perhaps, bigger in size than any one of the original pyramids of Egypt. It is a separate story that for a non-conformist it could stand as the size of the progress that human kind has gradually been able to make in making, or eliminating enemy. 


The whole package being offered makes sense if one is willing to anchor ones intuitive resources through the experienced facts of life in the first place. One is patent enough to respond thread bearingly to the demands of ones data and interpretive insight at one and the same plain.


Further, the insight being developed, the discoveries it may present, the conclusions that it may give rise to, and the contribution that it may make to interpretation theory as well as to culture theory will make sense only in a universe of value. This issue is taken up for details later.


More important than all, there has to be an essential condition that concerns of human being in that universe of value are very favorably inclined towards collective beneficence.


But if one is free of such bound, and is resourceful enough to churn out generalities through ones trained intuitions, then the statements that result may easily be charged of lacking empirical bases. If such claims are to be made on behalf of ones statements, then one will be obliged to conduct some version of inquiry that may role out  begged discoveries. 


The Treeness Surfaces


the lack


Some of the considerations that the discoveries above bring forth are indicative enough that there is some thing more basic and deep at play at the site of washing in particular, and within reality that gets culturated in general. And, our known comprehension of the whole problematic of reality creation, our experiential engagement with reality, our conceptualization of the problematic cultural praxis, our modeling of reality, our explanatory insights and our wisdom of making statements about the grasped configurationality of reality suffer from some kind of mismatch somewhere. Either we are suffering from an all-pervasive lack that does not allow us to measure up a level of optimal, or we are missing some link that is crucial in establishing the right connectivity.





the fact


Along with some of the discoveries that are gained so far it remains to be realized that it is given to mankind, womankind, or call it human kind, to cognize whatever comes on their way to individuation.


This leads to the growth of an ability of very great magnitude that puts together enormously large arrays of things, facts, percepts, concepts and the like into a device of life making where all that is ever gained goes on falling into its place as the elemental material. Whenever and wherever a call for, or motivation to role enactment is sighted to begin with, and in the process is appropriately received, the device serves as the resource of packing the elements into civilized behaviour (see Rangila 2001b, 2001b for a sum up on the issue).


Uberoi (1978) had a whole monograph that may be seen as the critique of the more of uncritical attitude that the above statements offer on life making and by implication on civilization creation. It may be added that from the point of view of C-semiology the Uberoi issue would be placed at the second level of ordation (see Rangila 2001a for details).


In other words, not that these issues are beyond the grasps of C-semiology, there is a processing side also of the order of things that has its bearing on the way things are, and on the way a theory may accommodate the nature of things. After all a theory is a facility created by somebody’s ability to design things.    


It also remains to be realized that the issues that the analysis of the activity at the site of washing has placed at the center of the debate are more subtle in detail as well as in their linkedness than those provided by act-theoretic thesis of Giddens (1976) and of Hans Gadamar (1970). They also invite a different directedness than the one that behavourists had to offer, or for that matter the one provided by linguistic cognitivism of Patanjli (see Joshi and Roodbergen 1975 Karka Ahinka).


One may add that the issue of civilized behaviour is just not at an adjective’s distance from the issue of behaviour as elementary grammars often present, and as cultural theory may possibly formulate. Linguistically speaking, again, the project of the civilized, and hence of culture is just not limited to the assertion, or inclusion of  ‘adjective’. It may take of, or say, get initiated with that. Its conceptual reality takes its full form and depth when it enshrines in a universe of value, and gets linked with variety to say the least (see Rangila 2001c for conventional side of the issue).


Other than what is too common to common sense the above discussion of the example of washing should suggest that every thing which is expressed, or is expressible, given the means and modes that may be used, including language, is a site that goes on changing. At the least of it, this change may be taken as a result of what is called enrichment elsewhere (Rangila 2001b). This is more of a constant investment of different kinds for the sake of wisdom creation.


Further, these sites are those wise localities that are at the core of the whole project of the civilized, because they are the resources that the continuation of activity is sourced through, on the one hand, and creation of reality and promotion of individuation go on getting realized, on the other.


So, at the center of life making praxis, therefore, is an essential triangle of a conceptual kind like the following:



                                                   Change                 connectivity


                                                            Picture- 6


And this defines the natural and the base rhythm of life making force that results into various forms including the ones that together may be packed into culture.


One may identify the totality of the description of this conceptual triangle as treeness. This conceptual property of treeness is the central property of the trees that are designated as invisible in this writing.


Within the enshrining there is a latent equation as per which some of the basic properties of a system of observation gain linkage. For instance, one of such equations that will be created for C-semiology one day is this: the opaque: mundane :: the subtle: cosmological. In this equation all the four properties open up into a zone of togetherness where their elemental makeup is preserved as it is, but the zone of togetherness imposes its order and renders them mutually responsive.


This has far reaching consequences for the mundane. That is, all that is mundane in life and is open to any amount of spread, gets limits imposed on to it, because it is now responsive to cosmological. It has sobering impact on the mundane, because its being responsive to the cosmological means that it is actually responsive to variety. The statement may be pictured in the following representation:




                                                     the opaque              the subtle

                                                      mundane                 cosmological




                                           Universe of value     the plane of culture

                                                                        Picture- 7


To illuminate the issues further, there is some gain in going to sociology of culture, and to reach the issue through evolutionary analysis. That cannot be attempted within the limited scope of this writing.


If this fact of responsiveness of mundane to cosmological is consonated with the activity taking place at the site of washing, then a lot more activity that has not been described there also comes to light. And if the side of the pyramid already explored is assumed to represent the mundane, which really is the case, then other side could be thought of representing the cosmological.


That is, going by this discovery, and keeping in view the conceptual scheme that the above picture creates, a reverted side of the earlier pyramids is a demand of the analysis being developed. The reverted side of the pyramid may open it up to receive variety. The additions lead to the following descriptions in the Pyramid-4:



















































Beyond their pronominal identities, the locale of I : you as such could be identified as the locale of Martin Boober’s I : thou, Julia Kristeva’s speaking subject, and it may as well be called the locale of ideating individual(s). One is free to identify the agent as the sphere of karta, or the agency that is the doer of the activity in case one is careful that they are not equated with subject. The two separate nodes account for this subtlety.


At a more wide plain of perspective, the fact remains that the site of ‘washing’, like any other site, and like all the ones that may be possible henceforth, irrespective of their category status, it treats words of the language and the statements that they make as  its resources.


In that the language side of the activity, the words and statements are at par with the human and other resources. And, all the resources, including the configurations, the directions they stand on, the linking lines and the other devices used, all of the material resources together make the site into a pyramid of activity that happens, and gets realized as describable statements in side of the total layout.


There is, however, a subtle difference that surfaces through both sides of the site. That is, the statements that constitute the description of the physical activity do create reality, but they are just statements of the physical facts. On the contrary, the statements that originate on the side of variety, they carry observations on to the activity that takes place on the side of reality. They also express opinions and offer information on the mutual relationship held between the individuals present.


Obviously, the statements on both sides of the site require different resources of insight that may be needed to interpret them. The interpretive insight may reach just matter of facts on the side of reality in the specifics of this pyramid.


The same insight should discover that the specifics invite a much in depth discovery. There are the matters of facts that get extended into the sphere of agency-power among other things. Further, the statements stand as the turns whose owners are more a single agency. This lifts the statements on the side of variety to the level of discourse.


There is a whole range of the possibility of the discovery of taxonomy in the types of interpretation, but that does not concern this writing immediately.


leaps methodology                                        


Methodologically sensitive observer may discover that most of the resources that are needed for activity happening on the reality end of the pyramid are the internal resources of the pyramid. With opening up of the end of variety, the pyramid just opens up as a zone of resource sharing. This is evident from the fact that no special resources are demanded by the end of variety to work out its activity. In fact the ‘tools’ and the ‘object’ are just there at the site and are followed to fulfill the basic requirement of an activity to come about.

At the locale of the node ‘agent’ a split in agency takes place. There emerges a case of agency that is multi-focal and multi-agential at one and the same time. This not only differentiates variety from reality even though the two sides share a site. More interesting, methodologically, however, is the impact this split has on the nature, type and content quality of the statements that come up.


This throws up a whole possibility for further research. That is, if with just opening of another side of the same site gives rise to a hitherto undiscovered version of agency, a whole field of agency research may be needed to find out whether there is something more lying hidden under those possible sides of the given site that are not even imagined in this writing. It could be equally fruitful to probe as to whether all the possible sites of a given medium of expression require same, similar, or different resources for activity happening.


The research thus visualized may be profitably integrated into different field, including artificial intelligence. That this may open up enormous possibilities for the field of C-semiology is very definitely clear to me.  


the co-operation.


To dig further into the reflective ‘I : thou’ may help in discovering a relationship of obligation, respect, reverence, command and the like between them.


But an even deeper discovery could be to realize as to how the two ends (of the pyramid) co-operate with each other is resources borrowing, lending, receiving and utilizing. And, when the whole co-operation at the level of resources is lifted from its area-action specifics, it works out into a co-operation between reality and variety themselves.


This discovery gets us something by far surprising and unexpected. That is, the activity that takes place at the site of so mundane an act like ‘washing’ happens due to a co-operation between reality and variety. One wonders what happens to the theories of those practitioners who have ruled variety in principle out of the observational base itself of the theories. What facets of human reality can they discover? How could those discoveries be relevant to human common sense? One does not have to have very special intuitions to seek answers. 


This seems to me the most powerful contribution that this writing has to make to the world of wisdom creation, on the one hand, and to the integrated problematic of knowledge, including its gaining. To make even a very mundane act like washing come about, a principle of co-operation between reality and variety is the basic requirement. That this discovery has its ramifications for interpretation theory, culture theory and also back in linguistic theory need not be stressed.


Further, it seems, methodologically speaking, the emergence of the real life looking and reflective agents must not have surfaced if the whole issue of discovery making and wisdom creation was not made to revert from reality creation and thereby its meeting with variety reception at the site was not achieved. This could be very important insight into to discovering any existential universe where culture becomes living reality and experienced truth.


It might sound odd, especially when asserted without at least primitive ground work, required sourcing and ideational support, yet there is sense in saying within the scope of this writing that traditional desire of making disciplines meet does not often take of essentially because certain links never surface, and therefore, the relevant insight at the desired meeting locales does not even surface.


An even more delicate methodological gaze may discover that it requires a very insignificant looking fragment of link that opens up a vast universe of hitherto unrelated facts of human experience where it just enshrines into a mega-sphere of relationship, togetherness and of co-operation – as if they have gained their natural places. But such a gaze may also realize that his surfacing of link(s), this emergence of relations, this essentialisation of the linkage is an ever flowing natural rhythm that is not captured through the idea of change as it is done in this writing above.


If this line of inquiry is pursued more systematically, and with sufficient depth, it may lead to interesting rediscoveries in to change studies. One realizes linguistics will be the most fortunate among the disciplines to reap the rewards.


The natural rhythm of flow and movement is build into, or better put, is a natural merit of the elements, and of the materials that constitute reality, as well as, of the materials through which reality is reflected. The discovery, in this sense, is not only a fact of analytical preoccupation, it is also an inherent property of the nature of things, facts and of all that which is discovered as the material relevant to reality creation and variety reception.         


interpretation leads


The fact unfolds into something subtle about what is called interpretation above. With the addition of the end of variety, the issue gains on clarity because now the equation ‘opaque: mundane :: subtle : cosmological’ falls. This happens with reality and variety coming under the sway of a co-operative principle. This proves the proposal made in the Picture- 7.


The discovery of this principle is hailed as the major contribution for many reasons, and one of them is the role that the principle plays at the conceptual bases of a general theory of interpretation.


Interpretation in the process affords to be something which has its own job to take care, but that does not take it to an absolutely non-sharing status. In this sense it has to follow the general principle of co-operation (for general background of this issue see Rangila 1998). This makes interpretation a general fact of human experience. In this sense a search for interpretation theory is to conceptualise the way things are in human experience, and what does one make out of them within ones general propensity to make life.   


In fact if this does not happen, then no sound may get into relationship to create a unite like word, for instance; no word in its own turn may create a sentence and so on. As a matter of fact, any thing that gets related, and any idea of link- relation-linkage etc. is sourced through this basic principle. This is equally true of what may possibly be called culture.


This line of argument, one may note, is primarily on conceptual plain. This plain was identified as that of conceptual structures by Gill (1980 and 1996).


Even on main methodological plain the same thesis is possible with the details of the Pyramid-4. To see this happening one must be willing to take all that happens under the site of ‘reflecting’ as the details of interpretation, to begin with. Then, one should set on a backward journey and relate these data on reflecting to ‘taking’.


It will take a very delicate insight to see a relationship between reflecting and taking at the site of washing. The insight will discover that the reflecting is directly related to what is due to taking and is packed into whole set of statements.


With this discovery the fact of interpretation is clearly established up to the onset of happening. And this brings the analytic intervention to a threshold of subtlety that has been converted into a blind ally by centuries of theory building.


The ally starts surfacing the moment one stops for a fraction of a second, gazes into what is familiarly called meaning making, and asks a very commonsensical question: what is meant by statement? Having raised the question, one does not waist time in waiting for an answer, because there cannot be any meaning of statement. All that somebody can labour about is to get at something and offer that thing in lieu of the meaning of statement. What a tragedy. To reach the meaning of statement you reach thingness of a thing!


So, instead of getting held by the meaning of statement, or for that matter of a statement, one may be quick enough to reveal what is packed under the word statement. The first discovery would be that each statement, like for instance, any one in the pyramids above makes a certain description of the things, acts and sequences of some actions. In every case the description involves some specifics that is brought into some order by some kind of combinatrics.


One must argue that all of this is not as innocent and simple as the conception of meaning in general, and the idea of statement would have it. As a matter of fact the idea of statement conceals more than what it describes. A description within a statement is much complex a reality, concealed and packed through all the devices that are found operating in the making of any of the pyramids above.


Could this packing of reality within the description of a so-called statement be possible through the exigencies of reception and negotiation only? The question still awaits answer. This was left as an undecided issue in one of the sections above. The answer is no.


But to realize that the answer has its validity one cannot stay within the limits of language. One should also be willing to learn that language provides a lingual version of reality, wherein it cannot but does the descriptions through its own ways, means and modes (see again Rangila 2001b for further conceptualization of the issue).


The hope of gaining a delicate and subtle insight, expressed at the opening of this writing, returns once again. And the realization is that the delicate and subtle insight may be available if it is sought at the material bases of reality.


An urgent caution is in order here. The suggested journey beyond language is not a walk in to wilderness, or a deal with madness. In fact, in the first place, it is to get rid of the blind ally which theory building imposed on the order of things; on the way things conduct their own creation; and also on the way they facilitate creation. Beyond language, one journeys into the universe of materiality (see Rangila 1989: 97-102 for an earlier statement on the issue).


Incidentally, the universe of materiality is the primitive base of culture, where reality is created, discoveries happen and wisdom is at its pure primitivity. By reaching the universe of materiality one discovers the root base of culturisation (see again Rangila 2001b for the details). For a project of communication that grants the concerns of this conference, therefore, this is a very natural requirement, because communication at its core is a function of culturisation.


These considerations have their lesions for the issue of interpretation. This journey would offer a position. The project of interpretation will have to originate at the point where things conduct their own creation. It moves through the architecture that language impose on both materiality and on material culture to lingualise reality.


to conclude


This brings the writing to its concluding contribution.  The project called interpretation does not close with this lingualisation of reality. In fact, if one just stops with lingualisation, one does not fully reach language even. Practically one reaches such phonational sequences that Chomsky (2000) hopes to tie with some kind of semantic materials.


This, however, might create some kind of lingual material whose cultural relatedness and validity is not the responsibility of the theory in question. All that one hears are personal judgments that are hoped to stand for some empirical proof. After all that which is validated on ones experiential testimony cannot be any thing other than empirically valid.

But is that rooted in ones hindsight? Or, is that also rooted in material culture? To answer these questions with sufficient theoretical insight and that too at a very delicate plain of discovery making, interpretation theory could be a value added tool.


The approach being conceptualized here, even in the case of verbal mode of culture, has its point of emergence where the journey takes of from materiality – the primitive culture base, continues beyond the lingualisation of reality, and takes the whole issue to conceptual universe.


The universe that this writing requires for its conceptualization may be called the universe of cosmocity. The present conceptualization of the issue can be pictured like the following:


                                                            Variety             lingualisation                            






            cosmocity                                                                               materiality






   condition of mergence                                          deep consciousness



                                                           Picture - 8


The wider circle presets emergence of culture as well as the condition of mergence. The doted lines outward indicate further possibilities.  


This universe is the sphere where variety is received and is open to the cosmos itself. This universe is also the relevant interactive zone for both reality and variety. It is this interaction that owns the responsibility of creation of act as well as of code.


The most delicate insight to be grasped in this case is this. It is not just creation of act and of code that takes place due to the journey that connects the material and the conceptual, rather it is merging of the two otherwise separate modes into one single and unitarily existing fact.


Culture surfaces at this merging point between act and code. The picture below has it:










This points to the existence of a deep seated condition as per which it is obligatory for constituting elements, facts, percepts, concepts, artifacts etc. to merge into one composite fact, call it mega-fact, if they are supposed to assert any membership claims over the culture (see Rangila 2001c for membership issue). The condition may be designate as the condition of mergence. The Picture-8 has it. 


There is then an existential obligation that both interpretation theory and culture theory have to fulfill. That is, these theories have to accept act creation and code creation as two co-operating makers of culture.


But there is no sense in face-counting initiated generalizations where an element-fact is pushed to its solitude and theorized on with a lip service to its linkedness and belonging elsewhere. This will not do any good to culture studies. Culture theory has to place the mergence condition at the core of its primitive base.


the creative dynamics


Ultimately, to this writing culture is always an ideational happening that has its multiple expressive modalities that keep getting linked up. It is ideational at the core because it is both sourced through wisdom potential and merges in the same potential. The happening dimension of it keeps it on as an ever evolving existential.


The side of culture is the most normal and natural to its nature, because culture has both a causal and consequential relationship with life. Its dynamics is directly related to any tiny and fractional happening anywhere in the universe where human individual live and create life.


The so called change studies must address this dynamics, and follow its flow to the possible limits of naturalness, if they are interested in creating insights directly relevant to culture.


This dynamics centricity would have its own demands. For instance, a lab-control and cut-piece approaches to inquiry into culture would be rendered as irrelevant reductions. Even otherwise very convincing trend-epoch rooted readings that grant modernity vs. post-modernity thesis could be objected as intentional representations. That one could read politics of representation being played through them, and that too as respectfully as any political agenda gets implemented, could be any body’s reading.


One does not say that the invisible trees that this writing offers do not assist, if demand is put, in implementing any intentional game plans. Seen from the end of these trees, any thing that happens in culture, and for that matter any thing that humans do, is act-fact first and then any thing else. They offer their facility, the resources as it were, to get the happening take place. But this does not also mean that they offer themselves as moot-helpless insignificancies. They are those delicately powerful resources that tell a person at the rate of every bile-second that he-she-it is a liar if it is the case.        


The trees sit in deep consciousness, as they are visible to mind’s eye. They are the road maps of the journey in this universe. They keep growing as and when they are called upon to organize a particular instance of the journey so that something is expressed, done and packed as the basic material that make a culture together. These invisible trees of knowledge in this sense define at a subtle level what is existential and what is natural to human beings.


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Rangila, Ranjit Singh (1998). On the bases of sociolinguistic theory – reason. In Ranganatha, M.R. at el eds. Indian Alternatives in Linguistics: 78-119. Mysore, Vishwamaithri Institute of Research & Rural Development.

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Rangila, Ranjit Singh     (2001b). The Wise Localities. In U. N. Singh ed. Culturation: 79-100. Mysore, Central Institute of Indian Languages.

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Ranjit Singh Rangila
Central Institute of Indian Languages
Manasa Gangothri, Mysore 570006