24 March 2022

Temporally trifocal mental presencing

 "2.5 Temporally trifocal mental presencing

The mind’s focusing on a present situation or on an absent situation (in the past or future), that happens in the present as a calling or occurring to mind (Vergegenwärtigung in German), has so far been conceived one-sidedly, or even one-dimensionally, insofar as the mind’s focusing in the present on essencing essents from any one of the three temporal dimensions amounts to a unifocal and thus single-minded presencing. Three-dimensional time, however, is passed through to the psyche in a fourth dimension as a unity (or identity) in which the three temporal dimensions both play into or proffer themselves to one another whilst being kept apart (in difference). This temporal multidimensionality implies that the mind not only can skip and hip-hop back and forth discontinuously and consecutively among the three temporal dimensions, but also that the mind maintains an encompassing overview in which the three dimensions relate by virtue of a temporally trifocal mental vision. The word ‘vision’ here is misleading, for mental vision does not imply literally a mental image. To substitute ‘perception’ for ‘vision’ also suffers from being tied to the senses. ‘Mental presencing’ would be preferable for its neutrality that does not imply any sort of imaging. The concept of mental focus introduced already in the first chapter is thus aufgehoben (lifted) to a phenomenally more adequate, more concrete concept. 

As already discussed in the context of bodily presencing-to-hand, the mind is both with the body’s present practical activity whilst ‘simultaneously’ recalling to presence its learned and practised know-how that is incorporated seamlessly and inconspicuously into the current bodily practice. This implies already that the mind has temporally bifocal ‘vision’ in order to presence ‘simultaneously’ from two different temporal dimensions. The third temporal dimension, the future, also comes into play because the mind is intent on an accomplished performance of the practice, on performing it well, and that accomplishment is yet to come.  

In general, the mind can hop among all three plaited, interwoven temporal dimensions whilst maintaining a coherent overview in what I call temporally triple or trifocal mental vision, or better, temporally trifocal mental presencing, to which all three temporal dimensions contribute ‘all at once’. Such mental presencing is employed not only in bodily practices but in dealing with all kinds of situations and matters that inevitably require a temporally three-dimensional overview in which temporally disparate situations and occurrences are coherently brought together and make sense. It may even be said that all mental presencing is bodily, even when the body is not performing a practical action. Sitting in a reverie or quiet reflection, for instance, involves the body, no matter how passive it may apparently be in such involvement."

Excerpt from a work in progress.

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