Sociology was at one time considered a means by which humanity might better achieve a more viable system of living by applying efforts towards a scientific analysis of society. However, as it turned out, the failure of such aspirations were altered to use the then established institutionalization of Sociology as a University subject which had garnered enough interest in the public sphere, that people would pay for the learning of such, and it could thus be transformed into a required area of study, at least to the extent of having a basic knowledge of preferentially taught elements in a given era.
During these very early days, because Sociology was the new kid on the block of already established academic pursuits, its parameters of defined limits were exceptionally narrow. If set to a general quantitative description, we could use the number 1 for the early days and the number 30 for today, though this is not meant to be a definitive representation of the main fields and sub-fields. While there two broadly labeled divisions termed micro (small-minutiae) and macro (large/overview) analysis of declared sociological themes we could add a sort of middle area for those who participate in the construction of ideas involving examples from both extremes. Along with these two are three noted theoretical perspectives labeled the Symbolic-interactionist (abstract/concrete), conflict (give/take, bad/good, right/wrong, etc...) and functionalism (latent/manifest... mechanical/organic... individual/group).
Whereas in the very early days of Sociological thinking there were those who thought it best to study society from the perspective of describing what they thought society should be, Sociology has generally moved away from this orientation and solidified itself in studying how society is. In other words, today's social thinkers often restrict their analysis to things as they are, like symptoms or issues, while those who think in terms of how society might or should be, are very often viewed as dreamers. Revolutionists are both dreamers and observers of society as it is, but think that things do not have to be as bad as they are. Such "institutional" Sociologists can be described as a factory worker whose routine thinking is something you can set your watch to. Listen to some of them is like being subjected to mind-numbing television re-runs.
The point to be made with the short excursion into introductory Sociology is to describe a laid out plan like that seen in a board game like chess. The limits of one's field of study are are like the edges of the board and the methodology of study is expressed by the 64 number of squares in which a black/white ensemble of a defined dichotomy permits one to choose a side in which to move one's ideas horizontally (left/right), vertically (up/down, yes/no), and diagonally (variations that may or may not be not be viewed as creative, original unconventional, etc...). Although Sociologists engage in a "numbers racket" of sorts as when the compile statistics (very often from government resources), the statistics are not seen as part of the social symptoms they are treating in their analysis; instead of focusing on the cause(s) of the disease, injury, or illness. Thinking outside of their defined sociological paradigms is tantamount to tipping the board game over.
And then there are those who think by turning the board game around, such as the perspective of some Black (or other ethno-centric) Nationalists who think social problems would be solved if more Blacks (or more Native Americans, Pacific Islanders, Asians, Hispanics/Latinos, Women, etc...) were to be placed into the "top" positions of wealth and/or power, to effect a "switch places" with those who now hold such positions. Whereas circumstances might well improve for such individuals, the overall social problems would persist. Nothing would actually be changed except for the assigned players. We could flip-flop the positions of players, but the "game" would retain the same number of players, the players would be restricted to move in any of the three directions, and the board itself would retain its size with the traditionally played 64 squares rule. Like DNA with a triplet coding system, amino acids defined with a total of 64 due to the 43 configurations, with only a limited (20) number of them particularly needed by humans... the "game" can not actually change until we move outside the constraints of the deteriorating box in which the board game is housed.
Whereas we can choose which insurance to buy (though they all together work in a market they control), which car, house, shoes, etc., to fit our changing lifestyles, we are not permitted to do so with respect to the government. We are forced to abide within constraints of a system that is anti-thetical to a growing consciousness of those who realized many of the public think with a conveyor belt logic and imagination. But such observers of social circumstances are like spectators of a contest between one and another perceived dichotomy. Sociology, like other areas of research have an over-riding entertainment value. The sit, watch, and catalogue events that, because it has attracted the attention of numerous people, becomes established as a "viable" field of study because it has become altered into an item of commerce that is bought and sold with emotion, collections of books, college degrees, and the application of ideas developed by one or another researcher whose cataloging efforts produce patterns from which can be derived a consideration, an hypothesis, a theory, or an attitude. Such studies are often rendered into a party favor, a social discussion, a social meeting, or something that may well produce a book, documentary, movie or degree to sell. Because of a common interest, it is commercialized and institutionalized. Thus, it is claimed to have social value, be it Sociology, Anthropology, bike riding, boat rowing, checkers, chess, card playing, mathematics, fruit growing, Botany, Psychology, and so on and so forth. But, as a social phenomena itself, or we should say as a form of social phenomena like a type of alternative species of thought, such ideas are not typically catalogued.
As a species of thought, though Hegel developed a name and pattern for a presumed type of recognized pattern existing in different ideas being tossed about during his era of living; the interest in looking for underlying patterns of thought become attached to efforts at looking for underlying patterns of behavior, without considering that the behavior may be an echo, reflection, or reflex of a more fundamental pattern. Nonetheless, when a fundamental pattern such as a dichotomy is realized in a given field of research, the resulting effort after such a recognition typically follows the path of identifying a few examples in nearby fields of research. However, like many a traveler into the depths of a field where few, if any others have ventured into, most people do not venture too far from the conventionalities of an established path... and therefore do not actually establish an original perspective. They stay close to a path that is often traveled, or at least sometimes traveled in order to have some sort of supporting evidence for what they think they witness, by the fact that another has said they saw the same thing or something similar. When more and more researchers venture to the edge of the path, then a spillage of one or another researcher may occur onto a virgin path because they want to get away from the crowding... the over-population. Most however, remain on well-marked paths and is such a common behavior in academics that the recurrence of so much mediocrity in research necessitates Masters and Ph.D review panels to make enormous amends and thus award advanced degrees to those who are not actually advanced thinkers, but in fact act as a cheerleading or spectator crowd for those few researchers who truly do take a road, a path, a trail not taken.
If you are a social thinker and recognize the recurrence of dichotomies such as micro/macro, and the very many examples of registered conflicts (white/black)... government/protestors... rich/poor... literate/illiterate... supply/demand... individual/group... cohesion/dispersal... industrial/pre-industrial... etc.), you may or may not then also apply this perspective to other subject areas, or even to other notions such as hot/cold, summer/winter, right/wrong, smart/dumb, etc... While you may call them a dichotomy as in the case of being opposites, contrasts, (or use the terms "duality" or "dualism), you might not refer to them as a pattern-of-two, because such a labeling might well require you to look at other patterned arrangements of concept formation. And as mentioned, you may not feel safe and secure enough to venture too far afield in your own subject area, much less in unfamiliar fields such as psychology. But, let us do so for a moment. Let us provide a few examples from a psychology course in order to reveal to you (that is if you don't already know), the prevalency of the same type of cognitive structure being expressed with different terms in the "species" called psychology:
Let me add one "two" example to the following list: Nature - Nurture. The list comes from:
Conscious mentalism - Unconscious mentalism: Emphasis on awareness of mental structure or activity vs. unawareness; coincides with rationalism - irrationalism dichotomy.
Behaviorism - Mentalism: Proper study of psychological focuses on objective content or on subjective content.
Determinism - Indeterminism - Nondeterminism: Human events completely determined by antecedents and explicable vs. determined but incompletely explicable vs. not determined.
Empiricism - Rationalism: Major, if not exclusive source of knowledge is experience vs. reason.
Functionalism - Structuralism: Psychology should describe adaptive activities vs. elemental classes and contents.
Mechanism - Vitalism: Activities of living beings completely explicable by physiochemical constituents vs. not so explicable.
Molecularism - Molarism Small versus Large units of behavior.
Monism - Dualism: Fundamental principle or entity in universe is of one kind vs. two kinds, mind and matter.
Nativism - Empiricism: Thought and behavior emerges from innate structures vs. emerges from experiences.
Subjectivism - Objectivism: Introspective accounts of experience do, or do not, constitute valid data.
Universalism - Relativism: Is the world an objective entity, the same for everyone, or is it relative to the perceiver?
And let us review a short list of patterns-of-three already mentioned in this series because some readers have short memories:
|St. Augustine's Philosophy:||Memory ~ Understanding ~ Will|
|Comte's Philosophy:||Great Being ~ Great Medium ~ Great Fetish|
|Hegel's 3 Spirits:||Subjective Spirit ~ 0bjective Spirit ~ Absolute Spirit|
|Plotinu's Philosophy:||One ~ One Many ~ One and Many|
|Aristotle's 3 Unities:||Unity of Action ~ Unity of Time ~ Unity of Place|
|Sir F. Bacon's 3 Tables:||Presence ~ Absence ~ Degree|
|Thomas Hobbes's 3 Fields:||Physics ~ Moral Philosophy ~ Civil Philosophy|
|Immanuel Kant's 3 Critiques:||Pure Reason ~ Practical Reason ~ Judgment|
|Averroes's 3 Commentaries:||Little ~ Middle ~ Great|
|Karl Marx's 3 isms:||Communism ~ Socialism ~ Capitalism|
|Woodrow Wilson's 3 isms:||Colonialism ~ Racism ~ Anti-Communism|
|Hippocrates's Mind Disorders:||Mania ~ Melancholia ~ Phrenitis|
|Emile Durkeim's 3 Suicides:||Egoistic ~ Altruistic ~ Anomic|
|D. Liesman's 3 Social Characters:||Tradition-directed ~ Inner-directed ~ Other-directed|
|Erich Fromm's 3 Symbols:||The Conventional ~ The Accidental ~ The Universal|
|Pythagoras's "fusion" idea:||Monarchy ~ Oligarchy ~ Democracy (into harmonic whole)|
|M.L. King Jr.'s "Middle Road":||Acquiescence ~ Nonviolence ~ Violence|
|Kierkegaard's 3 Stages:||Aesthetic ~ Ethical ~ Religious|
|Husserl's 3 Reductions:||Phenomenological ~ Eidetic ~ Religious|
|St. Augustine's 3 Laws:||Divine Law ~ Natural Law ~ Temporal, or positive Law|
|Witness Stand "Laws":||Tell the Truth ~ The whole Truth ~ Nothing but the Truth|
|Titus Carus's 3 Ages:||Stone Age ~ Bronze Age ~ Iron Age|
|Feuerbach's 3 Thoughts:||God, 1st Thought ~ Reason, 2nd ~ Man, 3rd|
|Magnus's 3 Universals:||Ante Rem ~ In Rem ~ Post Rem|
|Max Weber's 3 Authorities:||Traditional ~ Charismatic ~ Legal-rational|
|F. de Sausure's 3 "Signs":||Sign ~ Signified ~ Signifier|
|Charles Pierces 3 "Signs":||Qualisign ~ Sinsign (token) ~ Legisign|
|John Keynes's 3 Eras:||Scarcity ~ Abundance ~ Stabilization|
|George Mead's 3 Distinctions:||Self ~ I ~ Me|
|Thrasher's 3-group Gangs:||Inner Circle ~ Rank & File ~ Fringers|
|Abe Lincoln's 3-For-All:||Of the People ~ By the People ~ For the People|
|Jesus Christ's 3 Praises:||In the name of the Father ~ Son ~ Holy Spirit|
|Samuel Clemmons' 3 lies:
|Lies ~ Damned Lies ~ Statistics|
|Sociology's 3 traditional Social Classes:||Lower- Middle- Upper|
|Georges Dumezil's Indo-European Socio-religious categories:||Priestly/Regal class|
Artisan/Craftsman/Agriculturist worker Class
Do you recognize the pattern of two and three? Does the pattern "one" come to mind such as one god, nose, head sky, universe, etc...? Even though most of us do not make a list of items with such enumerated patterns, this too is a pattern referring to human cognition. The fact that such an exercise is not a commonality is a topic relevant for Sociology, Psychology, and Philosophy, though conventional so-called experts in these fields would no doubt pass the buck and make excuses for themselves not to engage in such a compilation. The fact that it is common to make excuses for not doing so is a common cognitive trait itself. It refers to a conservation of thinking in a particular way. It is part of an overlooked cognitive activity. While people do engage in various type of collections, they are collections based on criteria that may be more related to a hoarding behavior than a systematic form of cataloging for the purposes of analysis for some intent whose description may become an evolved hypothesis over time. In addition, it should be recognized that though there are trillions of other number patterns we could indulge in as a sort of collections model, humans tend to cluster observations into a conservative quantity and quality of representation. It's not that we can't think in terms of a hundred, thousand, million and so on, it's that we don't. Something is constraining our behavior. Just like there are millions of living speacies, all of them appear to be constrained to use a pattern-of-three (3 -to- 1) in their genetic code. And it's not that there aren't accompanying two-patterned biological activity, we simply focus on the "three".
The Sociological topics conveyed in the sentiments of "Feminism", White Supremacy, Black Lives Matter, LGBTQ community, etc., etc., etc., are all examples of singularity within the framework of ego-centricity. So is Nationalism, Imperialism, Colonialism, collateral damage, Republicanism (as opposed to Democracy), political party affiliation, ethno-centricity, etc... And though the notion of "colored peoples" is used as a means to group many different races into a singularity to give the impression of solidarity and strength through numbers (like the LGBTQ... "alphabet orientation" tries to give an impression of widespread acceptance for their self-centered world-view); the so-called "colored coalitions" typically become headed by a non- voted in Black spokesperson whose underlying motivation is to place themselves and their singular kind in a first and foremost position of reaping any rewards which might chance the group's way. Who made such Black's the repeated spokespersons for different "colored" peoples? They themselves did with their fat, obnoxious, intrusive mouths. And if a woman starts a social movement, it is quickly latched onto by men who want to take it over, because woman's groups do not make much headway unless men agree with them... since most authoritative positions have traditionally been "owned" by men... And such are some of the patterns preferred by social thinkers because they elicit emotions. Using numbers doesn't typically spearhead an emotional response unless they are symbolic representations of some abstracted sense of identification. Numbers are sometimes referred to as being cold and dry, not warm, moist and fuzzy... though we do have the notion of "fuzzy logic" now in the midst of consciousness.
OK, so now you recognize enumerated patterns of ideas in different subject areas. Or at least the one's herein mentioned. But you may not look beyond these examples because it doesn't have an immediate or potential of helping you get something you want, such as social recognition, sex, money, drugs, a social invitation or whatever it is you think you want or need. For Revolutionists, you are being provided with a different type of tool box (or arsenal) to be used (if necessary) to force a change in sociological thinking so that a New Government (a Cenocracy) can be established. We Revolutionists now have a means to force the status quo to venture beyond the confines of present social structures (based on ridiculous ideologies) by way of instigating a type of population growth hologram. The information being provided is like introducing the effects of population growth, to force needed social changes, before an actual population growth forces us into positions of social desperation which might be addressed with reflexed reactionary-isms such as perpetrating social conflicts, diseases, wars, "accidents", etc., with the sole intent of decreasing population size and/or establishing control by those who force an increasing population to compact itself so that a few can enjoy greater levels of personalized entitlement.
But the adoption of a social philosophy that will force the present status quo into changing its ways will no doubt be met by those who will stop at nothing to maintain their present type and level of social equilibrium, even if the presumed stability is that within an unrecognized decaying environment. Such a situation is also true for those who think of themselves as a Revolutionist, or anarchist, or social reformer, activist, etc... If they are confronted by a New Sociological philosophy which disrupts the equilibrium of their own status quo reactionary-ism, they may well reject the new idea. Even though they may view themselves as being anti-establishment, anti-status quo and otherwise progressive in their thinking, this type of thinking is itself a status quo that typically becomes established as a static form of thinking. Few Revolutionists actually embrace a philosophy of dynamic thinking. Their ideology is fitted to a containment vessel, even if it results in a large protest... like the "Occupy" movement. Though its participants thought they were on a Crusade for social change, they were actually like various intellectually-colored idealisms conveyed in individualized political motivations swirling around a politically offered drain (denoted as a "structured freedom of speech format") into which they were sucked into... thereby not accomplishing the larger goal of widespread social reform.
Not only did many people not appreciably understand what any presumed unified protest message was supposedly being voiced by the many protests; lots of people weren't even aware that such protests were occurring. Not everybody watches the news, reads newspapers, indulges in surfing internet offered news sites, nor have friends who have an ongoing interest in collectivized social interests from which a protest may arise. We Revolutionists for progressive social change must adopt a cohesion in our efforts by agreeing on the same premise to bring about a New Government... a Cenocracy. We don't want to merely change one set of politicians for another set who will eventually end up doing the same types of nonsense as their fore-bearers because their only legislative wiggle room is within the constraints of a social ideology(s) that has proven itself to be dysfunctional. And adding another amendment to the design of a Constitution is little more than adding another square to a game board with defined limits. So instead of a chess game board with 64 squares, we would add another to make it 65, which would create a conflict of inequality forcing the adoption of another amendment to produce 66 squares. Yet, the overall size of the board (environment) remains the same as it slowly succumbs to deterioration. We need Revolutionists, social reformers, Sociologists, Psychologists, social activists, housewives, journalists, biologists, mathematicians, laborers, etc., etc., etc., to think outside the box. Way outside the current limitations of their social philosophies.
...This "Sociology" (study of society) and its attendant 'Sociologists' were, in the beginning, supremely sincere and hopeful that a scientific approach (particularly from the time of Auguste Comte's impetus of using a "Scientific Sociology") was the means by which humanity could unravel the source or sources of social problems. We of today might refer to this idea as searching for a "source-code", given our penchant for "borrowing" terms used in other research fields. Unfortunately as time wore on, and the answers to social problems have remained stubbornly elusive by using the assumed predictive methods of analysis... and were/are compounded by disagreements amongst the community of Sociologists themselves; Sociology has surrendered its premier edict of solving social problems to become a philosophically-based textbook preface of simply studying (and classifying) society... with the younger generations of Sociologists quite comfortable with this arrangement— given the fact there is no further burdening pressure to resolve large social problems... even though some may enter the field of Sociology with a genuine desire to follow the sentiment of C.W. Mills (1916 - 1962):
While at Columbia University, Mills promoted the idea that social scientists should not merely be disinterested observers engaged in research and theory but assert their social responsibility. He was concerned about the ethics of his sociological peers, feeling that they often failed to affirm moral leadership and thus surrendered their social responsibility and allowed special interests, or people lacking qualifications, to assume positions of leadership.
("Mills, C. Wright." Encyclopædia Britannica Ultimate Reference Suite, 2013.)