I think therefore...

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Re: I think therefore...

Postby Event Horizon on April 30th, 2018, 2:08 pm 

RJG

How is it impossible to think when clearly everybody does it all the time? I already said that this is the common experience unless you are managing to create these posts without thinking which is quite possible it seems.

As for my not being educated in philosophy I would assert that you don't need to know how an engine works to drive a car, and I am perfectly capable of forming my own independent philosophy derived by my own life experiences. So you can drop the whole pseudo-superiority act.

If you take a view contrary to most of the rest of the world, that is your prerogative, but don't be surprised if nobody agrees with you.

You cannot prove thinking is logically impossible because quite clearly it is possible. You are adding nothing constructive to the debate by repeating falsehoods over and over again.

We create, edit, ruminate, consider, action and review our thoughts. Well, most of us that are not in a vegetative state do anyway. Again, IT IS THE COMMON EXPERIENCE..Descartes would not have been able to think through his philosophy for right or wrong had he not been able to think on it, and then think how to best convey it. THAT is logical, and an impossibility according to your stance.

Getting mired in worthless semantics lends nothing to the debate.

Best wishes, EH.
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby RJG on April 30th, 2018, 3:45 pm 

Serpent wrote:Descartes, in error, flawed, illogical and fallacious though he may have been, came to the same conclusion:
Goddidit

...maybe so, I can't disagree


Event Horizon wrote:We create, edit, ruminate, consider, action and review our thoughts. Well, most of us that are not in a vegetative state do anyway. Again, IT IS THE COMMON EXPERIENCE.

Your last word ("experience") defeats your whole argument. ...Yes, "experience" is the answer. We "experience" thoughts, not "create" them. Or can you actually create a thought 'before' you experience it? And if you experience it, isn't it then too late to create?

Unfortunately, we have to wait for the thought to pop into our head before we can know what we think.
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby Event Horizon on April 30th, 2018, 4:39 pm 

Ok, so what logic are you applying? You did not define that. You need maybe to redefine the model rather than trying to make reality fit the model.

Think of a creative artist, they can sit and do a portrait in a very considered way, or maybe create some original art and expresses it on a canvas. You can't do either without putting a lot of very deliberate thought into it.

And infinite regression might be okay in theory, for theoretical scenarios. But thinking is an electrochemical process you can map in a scanner showing your activity due to thinking. Now we're getting into biosciences and more comfortable territory for me. Helmets that could be thought activated by fighter pilots were designed. One even got stolen by the Russians. If you can't think, you die. That 's a bit of a problem.

Does it take thoughts to think? What do you think? I think one kinda leads to another, don't you?
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby Serpent on April 30th, 2018, 7:27 pm 

However many colours, italics, capitals and underlines someone uses to promote an absurdity, no verb can fulfill itself without a subject. If a thought is received, it must be received by someone; if it is given, it must be given by someone. A passive experiencer is still an experiencer and must exist before the gift of experience (never mind whence) arrives. If there is a logic that allows a recipient to post-date the receipt, that logic might allow him at both ends of the mental ping-pong table, serving and parrying.
As nonsensical images go, I quite like this one.
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby RJG on April 30th, 2018, 8:34 pm 

Event Horizon wrote:Ok, so what logic are you applying? You did not define that. You need maybe to redefine the model rather than trying to make reality fit the model.

Think of a creative artist, they can sit and do a portrait in a very considered way, or maybe create some original art and expresses it on a canvas. You can't do either without putting a lot of very deliberate thought into it.

The problem is that you have no "deliberate thoughts" of your own. Every thought you've got has already been created; already been scripted, ...right?

You say it takes thoughts to "think"; i.e. it takes thoughts to "create a thought". Okay, so from which thoughts do you use to create this new thought with?

Do you have any thoughts of your own? Or have ALL your thoughts already been created?

Can you actually experience a thought that has not already been created???


Serpent wrote:However many colours, italics, capitals and underlines someone uses to promote an absurdity, no verb can fulfill itself without a subject. If a thought is received, it must be received by someone; if it is given, it must be given by someone. A passive experiencer is still an experiencer and must exist before the gift of experience (never mind whence) arrives. If there is a logic that allows a recipient to post-date the receipt, that logic might allow him at both ends of the mental ping-pong table, serving and parrying.
As nonsensical images go, I quite like this one.

You fail to see that a "subject", aka "experiencer", can only 'receive', and NEVER 'give', (experiencing is one-way!), and therefore can never play ping-pong with himself.
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby Event Horizon on April 30th, 2018, 10:07 pm 

Well, its 3am. I'm off to play ping pong, and if there is no-one to evidence it I'll have to play by myself! Later guys.
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby RJG on April 30th, 2018, 10:32 pm 

...hope you enjoy the 'experience' :-)
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby Serpent on April 30th, 2018, 11:20 pm 

RJG » April 30th, 2018, 7:34 pm wrote:You fail to see that a "subject", aka "experiencer", can only 'receive', and NEVER 'give', (experiencing is one-way!), and therefore can never play ping-pong with himself.

In order to "receive", someone must exist prior to receiving. Someone doesn't come into existence through the act of receiving, or the act could not take place to create its own receiver. And if the receiver can NEVER give, WHO does all the giving of all the experiences? If it's not the thinker who does the thinking, then it must be some other agent, who, in turn, cannot have logically existed until after they ]received the gift of thought-distribution, from some previously-existing thought-distribution-ability giver, who couldn't have existed until after....
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby RJG on May 1st, 2018, 11:30 am 

Serpent wrote:In order to "receive", someone must exist prior to receiving.

Well, not a "someone" necessarily, but a 'some-thing', an object itself. Every experience (i.e. every experiential event) requires a subject and object.

Experiencing itself logically implies an experiencer (subject/receiver), and object (giver). Without a subject and object (a receiver and giver) there can be no 'experiential 'event' (i.e. no 'experience'; no felt 'effect').

We are experiential beings, we can only experience 'experiences' (effects/sensations), that's it, and never the 'cause' (object), or not even the subject himself. We can only presume causes/objects and subjects exist via logical deduction, but never through the 'experiencing' itself.


Serpent wrote:Someone doesn't come into existence through the act of receiving, or the act could not take place to create its own receiver.

I'm not sure what you are getting at. People are created like everything else in this universe. Virtually everything (in this universe) experiences (reacts) in some form or manner, but not everything can 'know' that they experience. Those things that possess memory (such as humans) have the capacity to experience 'recognition' (the knowing) of their bodily reactions (aka "consciousness").


Serpent wrote:And if the receiver can NEVER give, WHO does all the giving of all the experiences?

For us humans, it is our physical bodily 'reactions' that "give" us our experiences. The body reacts to the outside world and creates the sensations that we experience.


Serpent wrote:If it's not the thinker who does the thinking, then it must be some other agent…

No. There is no "agent"! Nor autonomous "thinker" of thoughts! The "thoughts" that we experience are just bodily reactions (from memory) triggered by other bodily reactions (i.e. chain reactions). Thoughts are a composition of sensory experiences/sensations (like notes of music) that form the meanings (words/images) that we understand as per the language (relationship rules) embedded in our memory. The non-autonomous "composer" of our thoughts is our 'reactive' body.

We can only consciously experience (recognize) our thoughts only 'after' they make their presence (react), which precludes any logical means of consciously "thinking" (creating thoughts).

In other words, 'anything' and 'everything' that we experience, including a thought, is an AFTER-effect (of its causer). "Thinking" is therefore logically impossible.
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby Event Horizon on May 1st, 2018, 11:49 am 

So many contradictions. So little time. RJG, your "theory", if it is a theory, is baloney. It's getting to the point where I feel you are trolling us now. I'm gonna have to refer you to the Mods if you don't pack it in. I suggest you go away and come back when you know what you're talking about.
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby Event Horizon on May 2nd, 2018, 5:34 am 

Sorry to all, I don't mean to be rude or anything, but if you read the thread though I think you'll find I tries to be understanding and inclusive, but I was trying to explore Descartes' paradigm for reasons already defined. It's no trivial thing to question such legendary, long-held beliefs. "I think therefore I am" only defines part of the reality of existing. I was hoping we might be able to think of a more conclusive and comprehensive alternative definition fit for the 21st Century. I don't think Descartes would have minded his theory being tested at all. It may not be possible to do any better, we don't know yet.
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby Serpent on May 2nd, 2018, 10:33 am 

Event Horizon » May 2nd, 2018, 4:34 am wrote:.. I was trying to explore Descartes' paradigm for reasons already defined. It's no trivial thing to question such legendary, long-held beliefs. "I think therefore I am" only defines part of the reality of existing.

I hope it's been made clear by now that that was never intended as a belief, as a theory, a proof, a definition, or even a sentence. It was part of an account of a personal meditation.
He found that he could not doubt that he himself existed, as he was the one doing the doubting in the first place. http://www.dictionary.com/browse/i-think-therefore-i-am

It gained widespread popularity as a quotation simply because it's facile - catchy.

I was hoping we might be able to think of a more conclusive and comprehensive alternative definition fit for the 21st Century.

In that case, you might do better to disregard seventeenth century thought and start from first principles, just as Descartes did in his own time, by his own lights.
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby Event Horizon on May 2nd, 2018, 4:15 pm 

Yeah, you make some good points. It is a comfortable phrase, and for most people..I think they tend to take it for granted. We have scanners and psychology and 300 more years of discovery than Descartes had.
What I'm trying to do is no disrespect to Descartes. The phrase is almost poetic. It's not easy for a single person to evidence themselves like that.
I'm not smart enough to re-write the great man. I think it would take a committee, endless debates and a long time by people more learned than me. But we can at least discuss it, and that's enough. I'd say that if you never explore, you never expand your horizons. As scientists isn't exploration in our DNA (so to speak)?
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby Serpent on May 2nd, 2018, 6:03 pm 

Sure, but this wasn't discovery. It was ass-covery. Just happened to turn into a meme.
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby mitchellmckain on May 2nd, 2018, 11:10 pm 

Event Horizon » May 2nd, 2018, 3:15 pm wrote:Yeah, you make some good points. It is a comfortable phrase, and for most people..I think they tend to take it for granted. We have scanners and psychology and 300 more years of discovery than Descartes had.
What I'm trying to do is no disrespect to Descartes. The phrase is almost poetic. It's not easy for a single person to evidence themselves like that.
I'm not smart enough to re-write the great man. I think it would take a committee, endless debates and a long time by people more learned than me.

But I think the point Serpent is making is that as personal meditation ANYONE can and should do this themselves.

I went through my rationalist phase at the age of 13, building up a system of thought much as Descartes did including a system of morality. But like I said such systems are never built from nothing but from the premises you have taken for granted for so long that they can be nearly invisible to you. As a child of two psychology graduates, much of my thinking derived from the psychology I learned from them. My system of morality was thus built around the assumption that psychological health was an innate objective of human existence.

I may now see the flaw in rationalism but the experience was worthwhile if only for reason I could later easily see the nonsense in the common Xtian claims that morality required authoritarian dictation by God. I knew it was possible to build our own system of morality because I had done so myself.
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby Event Horizon on May 3rd, 2018, 7:08 pm 

Morality is a many splintered thing. Many moral codes or directives have existed in all manner of ways. But I think we have a personal morality too. Good luck sorting that lot out!

I've literally gone and lived alone in the woods a la Walden. I am told I'm an existentialist, and also told i need to read Nietzsche because apparently I have that same mentality. Really? I am what I am, whatever that is. I don't know if that's been determined yet!
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby Serpent on May 3rd, 2018, 7:29 pm 

Event Horizon » May 3rd, 2018, 6:08 pm wrote:I think we have a personal morality too. Good luck sorting that lot out!

Yet, every adult has to. We are called upon to make decisions and take responsibility.

Giving in to animal instinct or personal whim is the a-moral option. Drifting with the majority opinion is also an option - then you don't have to sort it out, or understand why you take the stand you take (if any) - just follow the crowd. Accepting instructions/orders from an authority is another option where you don't have to sort out the reasons and principles.
But in neither of those cases are you an adult.
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby BadgerJelly on May 3rd, 2018, 9:54 pm 

Event Horizon » May 4th, 2018, 7:08 am wrote:Morality is a many splintered thing. Many moral codes or directives have existed in all manner of ways. But I think we have a personal morality too. Good luck sorting that lot out!

I've literally gone and lived alone in the woods a la Walden. I am told I'm an existentialist, and also told i need to read Nietzsche because apparently I have that same mentality. Really? I am what I am, whatever that is. I don't know if that's been determined yet!


Good luck with Nietzsche! Start with Beyond Good and Evil. I've had to stop reading him because it's just too hard (very condensed stuff for the most part and flits around a lot.)
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Re: I think therefore...

Postby Event Horizon on May 4th, 2018, 8:50 am 

What I might do is see if I can get Nietzsche as an audio book(s) just to see why people people keep suggesting it.

Serpent makes sense too, morals get taught from a young age. A basic set of morals accessible to *most* kids.
Life experience would seem to inform us which morals we can accept, and those that get jettisoned. But I think those core values remain largely intact, though a change in culture eg. A religious conversion could provide a new and transmittable change of morality. I recall doing ethics related to my field, biology, but it just seemed like common-sense to me.
In my warfare analysis I see all kinds of ethical boundaries getting not just broken, but willingly and deliberately broken. It's quite hard to take sometimes.
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