about communication

The Anagogical Model

Derived from late Latin and late Greek, the term "anagogical" represents spiritual uplift and elevation. This model explores four methods of interpretation:

Late Latin anagōgē, from late Greek, spiritual uplift, from anagein, to lift up : ana-, ana- + agein, to lead.

Four levels

  1. Literal or concrete meaning: Drawing conclusions based on actual perceptions;
  2. Allegorical meaning: Describing an element through the use of another;
  3. Metaphorical meaning: Using metaphors as vehicles for conveying messages;
  4. Intuitive Anagogical experience: The point where the receiver assimilates the message and makes it their own.

These four methods point in different directions: Literal interpretation connects to the past, allegorical to the future, metaphorical to the moral and human aspects, and anagogical to the spiritual and heavenly.

To simplify, consider these questions:

  1. What do we perceive based on our subjective cultural context?
  2. Can our experiences be translated or interpreted differently?
  3. Is it possible to view a contextual message objectively?
  4. Can our perceptions provide a wider perspective, synthesizing all four levels of understanding?

In message design, communicative keys can be offered for the first three levels. The fourth level transforms within the recipient, requiring their active participation for complete communication.

Culture - A Delicate Layer of Communication

The means of communication may be more fragile than we realize. To explore this, we must examine the words "culture" and "tradition."


Firstly, let's think about how we use the words culture and tradition.

Tradition, in its literal sense, refers to passing a set of values from one individual or environment to another. The word originates from Latin, combining trance (over) and dare (to give) of Latin datus "given" past participle of dare "to give, grant, offer".

Culture, on the other hand, implies actively fostering growth and development. As a verb, it represents activity or action, something we consciously engage in. Personally, I often try using the word culture as activity or action, something we actively do.

Overcoming Preconceived Limitations

How much are we trapped by the legacy of tradition, and can we view ourselves as isolated individuals?


Individual consciousness is shaped by building blocks from the past, constructed through tradition or experience. Culture acts as a delicate interactive membrane, allowing information to pass between the external world and the individual core. Through this interaction, new building blocks of tradition can be formulated.


Being trapped solely in tradition results in stagnation and lack of growth. A core that doesn't actively cultivate its mental tradition cannot thrive.

Perception – The Anagogical Way

It's often said, "still your mind to become receptive." Is it our minds that hinder perception?

Can we become receptive to the outside world? While seemingly contrary to a strictly biological material approach, the answer is yes. Our cells can act as recipients for external information. This raises questions about inner vision, understanding, and the possibility of envisioning something yet to be perceived.

Language serves as a tool for communication, with various methods of interaction. Culture and tradition represent a dialectic way of perceiving and expanding our understanding of the world. But can we go beyond that?

Time and Perception – An Intricate Relationship

Is it possible to perceive something "in the moment" and be aware of it, or does time have to pass before we become conscious of our experiences?


Understanding and improving our perceptions require us to examine the relationship between time and consciousness.


© Hans E Andersson

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