About “Abstraction”

Here I think about “abstraction”. When you talk concretely, you might give an example to begin with “for example” and show that it’s just one of many. This is to look at limited and narrow range, that’s why it comes into focus. To put it the other way around, you will not be able to see on a broad scale.


For example, you come to like one character when you read a novel. You would dream to be like him. It’s pretty abstract up to this point. To go deeper in detail, this character is 30s college teacher, his way of thinking is for science.


So you would think you’d like to be a student who major in science and become a teacher at college before 30. You would drink coffee if he likes to drink it. You would also speak in the way he does.


This kind of case is not that rare. I often get surprised how people are so easily influenced by TV stars by looking at them eating the same food and wearing the same clothes. Well they are free to do whatever they want.


It could be said, these visible characteristics how what you like look like are representative examples of “concrete” things. To take all of them in you, I wonder if you can be that character you like. Actually not.


Because there are people who you don’t like, people who are also college teachers and drink coffee. There are many of them who meet this conditions. It is obvious that you can’t capture the type of human only by looking at exterior surface.


Then which part of the character do you like? It’s his lifestyle, way of thinking, a little reaction to people or his life itself. You can’t just point it out like “here!”. It’s more like you just like this type of person for sure.


This nebulous picture “this type of person” which you have in your head, that’s the “abstraction”. You might not be able to tell people about it. It could never be a clear image.




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