The Understanding of the Subjective Mind

2 years, 3 months ago

If a tree falls in the woods, and no specific human or entity who bares an ear drum is around to intercept the vibration, does it make a sound?

What is life to us? We have eyes, so we can intercept light; we have ears, so we can intercept vibrations; we have nerves, skin, touch, so we can feel. We even have a voice box so we can project our own vibrations.

But what is life to a rock? A rock bares no eyes, so the world is a dark place. It has no ears, so it is a quiet place. It does not bare nerve endings, so it can never feel. What a dark lonely place for a rock, eh? What is its subjective purpose? It obviously doesn’t know, and cannot comprehend – anything.

Anyone can be a philosopher – for what philosophies include complete and absolute truth? If you go to school to study philosophy, wouldn’t your mind be flooded with the arrogant ideas of others? Fill your mind with your own arrogant ideas and fight for them, because isn’t this all subjective anyways?

October 9, 2012 at 1:30 pm

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Profile photo of Zykanthos Zykanthos M (@chodebalm) 2 years, 3 months ago ago

But a rock IS a vibration – just like everything else in existence. Everything is really one thing, but our senses perceive things as separate.

This is deep conversational stuff and is great to think about. I like where your head is at. Mine has gone there often! :)

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Profile photo of Mr. Arbiter Mr. Arbiter (@snaysler) 2 years, 3 months ago ago

I like the tree falling in a forest problem. In the dictionary, the word “sound” has two definitions, one in terms of the physical compression of air waves, and the other for the subjective perception of this phenomenon. So, it’s sort of ambiguous. I do, however, believe that nothing “exists” without being perceived. Existence is perception. If there were no conscious being in the universe then for all practical purposes the universe wouldn’t exist. Some people think that that consciousness exists so the universe may exist, but consider that consciousness “is” existence, and the universe came into being so that consciousness would have a subject for perception. Sort of a duality that creates reality. I love discussing “far-out” philosophies; so many unprovable, yet irrefutable possibilities :D

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Profile photo of Space Ed Space Ed (@spayced) 2 years, 3 months ago ago

You see, there you have asked too many questions at once.

There is a big difference between academic philosophy and folk philosophy. Anyone can think of simple philosophies like “everything in the universe is the same thing just at different vibrations”. To develop complex ideas which truly represent your beliefs requires determination against immense scrutiny and understanding of others beliefs which chellenge your own.

Seeing others views are arrogant is simply the most arrogant thing you could ever say!!

#undergrad philosophy student

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Profile photo of ProgressiveKnowing ProgressiveKnowing (@bodhisattva) 2 years, 3 months ago ago

@spayced,

I am sorry to have offended you. I do not think philosophy is bullshit :) I guess I put it pretty plainly and didn’t expand more. I do not think anyone who studies philosophy is arrogant, it is an awesome subject! I meant to make the point that even if you think up the craziest philosophy it shouldn’t be thrown to the back of your head and forgotten, that is why I said follow your OWN “arrogant” philosophy, no matter how arrogant it may be, because no one has the right to correct your subjective world. :) congrats on your studies, you can learn and grow from many philosophers and there teachings.

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Profile photo of ProgressiveKnowing ProgressiveKnowing (@bodhisattva) 2 years, 3 months ago ago

their*.

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Profile photo of Ben Ben (@cognizantelephant) 2 years, 3 months ago ago

@bodhisattva,

I dislike when people think school is school in the sense that it is the same anywhere you go. In the college level you are literally under the wing of another human. The mediocre teachers will just be there, willing to answer questions. But they typically won’t inspire any sparks or most importantly SHARE their emotions and interests towards the students, which does wonders for learning. The good professors don’t follow a bullshit curriculum where they just state facts in a teachy way -they fight to make you understand the concepts they present.

In the name of subjectivity, I have no idea what you’re talking about with the rock thing. Well, I do, but it’s past me -now. I too went through a period of awe towards everything and luckily came out an expanded person.

Looking at how I looked at philosophy and the universe led me to question why I’ve only chosen those things to decipher. It became a hard thing to feel that anything aside from that was different from anything else, when it really is – at least to us (humans). Even now I still marvel at how enclosed I became towards life when my mind was chock full of esoteric stuff which was difficult to communicate to others. That we are composed of everything, like a vast black empty space filled with globes which represent every bit of information to ourselves that we ‘ve experienced – AS WELL AS our reactions, feelings and thoughts towards them. This train of thought for me was like a way to naturally understand behavior.

We need sparks to fuel our creativity. Glimpsing through a different lens does this very well.

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Profile photo of ProgressiveKnowing ProgressiveKnowing (@bodhisattva) 2 years, 3 months ago ago

@cognizantelephant,

When I mention the rock, its just a simple example on how to understand subjectivity. We have eyes so we see the world as a colourful, bright place. A rock does not, so it is dark. Maybe not the best example because a rock simply does not have consciousness but what exactly is defined as consciousness? A brain? Or something that can pass on vibrations. A rock can definitely do so.

As for school and such, I am a scholar myself and am moving towards my second degree. Nothing anyone studies is wrong or bullshit. My philosophy example threw a few people off but I mean to just make a simple point, not to dig up philosophy itself. :)

There are many teachers out there who miss the important concept, which should be the enthusiastic passing on of “vital” information. Many a teacher I have had who are miserable, no enthusiasm, etc. The teachers that have more of a spark and motivation are the ones you really learn from. Not so much even the information they have to give, but their need to express and excite.

This is my first post on this site, and I am thrilled with the results and people’s input. I will definitely be a permanent member of this site. :)

Peace

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Profile photo of Ray Butler Ray Butler M (@trek79) 2 years, 3 months ago ago

Technically nothing existed before the capability of conceptualization, but perception certainly must have because the concept results from perceiving and perceiving results from adaptions. If matter could not adapt then there would be no life, and so if matter can adapt why would it unless it is responding to stimuli? And if it responds to stimuli, then it must have some manner of perception otherwise it would not respond at all.
To automatically conclude that life is the only thing with qualities and behaviours is an automatic misconception. A rock may well not be capable of conceptual understanding but he displays natural values more so than many humans, I envy the rock :)

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Profile photo of DANM!! DANM!! (@deej) 2 years, 3 months ago ago

Dude rocks are not living in a lonely world. I can see how you would put that that way but being a living thing you can only put thing of things as how you perceive or have perceived. A rock does not experience nor does it feel loneliness, it simply is.
I’ve had this conversation before with my dad. My understanding is that everything is vibration like it has been said and discovered with the double slit experiment http://www.highexistence.com/this-will-mindfuck-you-the-double-slit-experiment/
. When you are not looking at light, is it light? Let me put it in this scenario, if your kitchen light is on and you are not at home, is there light in the kitchen? Practically you can say “yes it is, I came home and turned it off!”. But light is perceived. The eyes transmit the signal of the energy to your brain creating light. Light that isn’t perceived, does not exist. It never will until we turn it into light. Everything is in relation to one another like that. Everything that you know is in relation to you.
To feel this idea I like to imagine a rocky pointless lifeless planet way way out in space, somewhere in the universe where it will be there unbothered infinitely. Nobody knows about it. Nobody has ever had a thought of it. Seen it or even hypothesized about it. Does it exist? Even if it is “really” there?
I think it may even just be a potential at that point and just vibrations.

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Profile photo of DANM!! DANM!! (@deej) 2 years, 3 months ago ago

Before I read the rest of the comments I assumed too much but you seem to have thought about this a lot so let me know if you have anything to add and just ignore anything I wrote that isn’t new for you. I like the different ways people have at looking at this one. :)

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Profile photo of ProgressiveKnowing ProgressiveKnowing (@bodhisattva) 2 years, 3 months ago ago

@trek79,

That’s the beauty, we can only really understand within our conceptualization, and imagine how much more there is!

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Profile photo of ProgressiveKnowing ProgressiveKnowing (@bodhisattva) 2 years, 3 months ago ago

@deej,

I guess I could have explained and expanded more in the original post, but at the moment of creative-philosophy-spewing you can never fully describe how you truly feel, because at the time its more important to feel it!

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