Cognitive Mindfulness #9(a)
This passage covers a discussion of the conceptual domains of space and time while introducing the quantities of each domain and their instantiation in reality. I like this passage because it differentiates basic concepts in matter and action; since these are the components of productive creativity I feel that this clear exposition of these concepts enables me to be more creative with my art.
The quantity that exists in the domain of SPACE is matter, which may be either continuous or discrete. We return to these terms directly, but for the time being we can think of ‘continuous’ matter as having no inherent ‘segmentation’ in its composition; this type of matter is mass, illustrated by AIR. Discrete matter, on the other hand, does have inherent ‘segmentation’, and this type of matter characterises objects which can be divided into parts, like the entity BIKE. The quantity that exists in the domain of TIME is action, which can also be continuous or discrete. Continuous action, like (to) SLEEP, is called activity. Discrete action, like (to) BREATHE, is described as an act. The difference between these two types of action is that it is not possible to describe the sub-parts of sleeping (unless you are a sleep specialist), while breathing is characterised by a series of distinct subparts (inhaling and exhaling). [515, Evans & Green, 2006]
In a way, we can consider idioms to be continuous, they are unable to be interpreted by calculating the sum of their parts. Non-idiomatic expressions, on the other hand, may be considered to be discrete, since they are able to be understood in terms of their constituent composition. This is part of the grounding for my understanding that discrete matter and discrete action permit compositionality, but continuous matter and continuous action bridge gaps to permit skewing in composition, this is in line with Beekman, et al, and their diagram of level skipping in the grammatical and semantic hierarchies, but from a descriptive (as opposed to strict cognitive) perspective.
Beekman, John, John Callow, and Michael Kopesec, (1981). The Semantic Structure of Written Communication, 5th Revision, Summer Institute of Linguistics
Evans, V. & Green, M. (2006). Cognitive Linguistics an Introduction, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates