The Essence of Mind

Discussion in 'Religion & Philosophy' started by Babe_Ruth, Oct 8, 2006.

  1. Babe_Ruth

    Babe_Ruth Sultan of Swat Staff Member V.I.P.

    Comparison. That's the essence of the mind.

    Whenever we think or perceive something, we are making comparisons. When we look at an apple, we identify it as an apple because we compare it with everything surrounding the apple. When we look at an apple and an orange, we are comparing and contrasting them in order to determine what is an "apple" and an "orange". When we analize cause and effect, we are comparing something in terms of time- what it was before and what it is now.

    All logic comes down to comparison. From comparisons come all the logical subjects such as epistemology, semantics, etc.

    So why don't we use a logic system based specifically on comparison?

  2. Dr. Fresh

    Dr. Fresh Mmmm.... Lesbians.

    It's because everyone thinks differently and one cannot force one specific way to base a logical system soley on comparison. It makes sense, yes, but everyone is different.
  3. The Abyss

    The Abyss Guest

    i agree. also people would have different comparison. Some might compare the outside of a squash to a cucumber. others an eggplant. (btw, thats just a bad example, theres more). but that is a good idea.
  4. I have a good anecdote that I'll throw in for this thread.

    Suppose you see a painting of a red couch in a dull, gray room. The red couch is very vivid and easily the most beautiful aspect of the painting. When you look at the painting as a whole you find the couch stunningly lovely and eye-catching, yet calming. The rest of the room is bare and, being gray, is seemingly unimportant and dull. Suppose that you remove everything but the couch. Is the painting as good as it was before? Does the painting need the gray room? Yes, it really does. It needs the context to explain or promote the couch's beauty.

    I see this logic every so often. It's on the Brave New World/Utopia thread. What good is found in a society without evil? We need context for something to have meaning. Thus is the value of comparison.
  5. SenatorB

    SenatorB J.S.P.S

    Cause it's the work of the ugly that highlights the beautiful, and in so doing ugly is beautiful too.
    (Cloud Cult - Your Love Will Life Forever)
  6. IronGhost

    IronGhost Guest

    One must be careful. There may be no difference between any particular object from another in any particular place. That we see "things" as separate "object" from each other is largely an illusion -- it's an artifical ordering system our brains are imposing upon reality -- but that reality is in our brains and not necessarily "out there."

    What is "out there?" The best answer seems to be "nothing what-so-ever." Our brains and minds are creating the illusion of a solid reality -- but it's like a dream.

    If you were dreaming of walking down a busy city street full of cars and people and objects, you would not insist it was "real" once you woke up. But it seemed totally real while you were dreaming. While you were dreaming you had no reason to question your reality.

    The same goes for our daily reality. We see no reason to question whether something is real of not -- but we can ask that question, and we can reach the conclusion that there is no reality. There's a hoard of mathematical and scientific evidence to suggest that there is no reality -- that, in fact -- nothing at all exists anywhere, not even ourselves.

    It's just a very tricky and persistent illusion we have. Remember what the great Swiss psychologist Carl Jung said: "Consciousness precedes being." It's our minds that are creating reality -- but ultimately, even our minds don't exist.

    Descarte said: "I think; therefore, I am." But he was wrong. He made the asumption that there was an "I" to do the thinking. There isn't.
  7. breathilizer

    breathilizer Resident Ass-Kisser

    I see the relevance of comparison, but I don't know about this "Essence of Mind" fluff.
  8. My head just exploded after reading this.

    Existentialism always gets my attention. Iron-I've had that notion rolling around in my head since I was quite young. Where can I find that evidence that reality doesn't exist? Isn't that positivism? I'm gonna have to take a break to allow my mind to grasp this...

    To me, the purpose of life is an endless search for reality and some connection to it.
  9. WindAndConfusion

    WindAndConfusion Registered Member

    Your're trying way too hard.

    Actually, modern psychology makes some tantalizing suggestions that contradict the OP. For example,
    Actually, that seems not to be the case. When we see an apple, it is because we expect to see an apple. This is mostly the result of experience: we are all very used to seeing apples, and (perhaps) ever since the day our parents first showed them to us, we have known what an apple is and how to recognize one.

    For example, if someone walks into an orchard, he might expect to see trees; and if he sees trees, he might expect leaves; and if he sees leaves, he might expect fruit. He already knows what he's looking for, so he has no trouble recognizing it. If he has a problem of attention, in the psychological sense, he won't know much what to expect. One of the most distressing things about these ailments (agnosias, gr "without knowledge") is that, because the patients can't think of what it is they aren't seeing, they have great difficulty establishing that something is actually wrong with themselves, and far greater difficulty naming what it is they've lost. For example, an artist who had lost his sense of color perception after suffering a concussion-- this is achromatoposia, by the way-- didn't notice anything was actually wrong until he got to a traffic light and realized he couldn't tell whether the light was red or green. (Story recounted from The Astonishing Hypothesis, by Francis Crick.)
  10. breathilizer

    breathilizer Resident Ass-Kisser

    Then how did we see the apple in the first place, before we could expect it? Clearly, this reasoning is flawed. I suspect you may have seen the film "What The Bleep Do We Know?"

    "The Aztec didn't see the ships because they didn't know what ships were!" *cough* bullshit!

Share This Page