BrianPansky Wiki

One concept I use sometimes is a chain of reasons.  Because almost every reason has further reasons why it is the case.  And nearly every conclusion logically entails further conclusions. 

So I conceive of this as a chain of items, all of which have reasons for their being, and all of which are reasons for the being of other items.  So they are connected, in a chain, or a tree shape, or a web shape.  Repeatedly asking "why" will move you in one direction of the chain.  Repeatedly concluding "therefore" will move you along the other direction.

When these are reasons for intentional action, I call it a means-ends chain.  When it's about reasons for belief, I might call it a why-because chain (though that sounds like it could still be about actions, need a better name). For causality, it's just cause and effect.

When someone asks you what you are doing and/or why, they are exploring your means-ends chain.  Usually, they are asking about the region of the chain just behind the most obviously apparent information. 

One end is the ultimate reasons behind everything (maximization of personal satisfaction) and the other end is the immediate actions they are currently doing (like sitting, or using muscles, or thinking).

Likewise for knowledge, one end is the ultimate foundations of epistemology (see more here), the other end is perhaps the most speculative suspicions and guesses.

I think these kinds of connections are what the word "meaning" means (for example "what's the meaning of these facts?" or "of that action?" or "what does that noise mean?"). Even the meaning of words and phrases looks similar when you look at semantics. "Narratives" too. And, of course, semiotics.