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Do we see things the way we want to, because that is the way they really are? or

  1. Apr 19, 2004 #1
    Do we see things the way we want to, because that is the way they really are?, or is that the way we really want to see them?

    I far as I can see there is three factors, which to use, to arrive at a conclusion.

    01-Education is first.
    02-Religious background
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 19, 2004 #2
    I think you forgot a very important factor in your list, and that is whether your knowledge is consistent or not. Because any consistent description of anything appears to be true, things like education, religion, environment, are not that important.

    When you have a consistent description of reality, the question of whether things really are as they appear ceases to become meaningful. It's only because we don't have a consistent description of reality that the intellect perceives reality to be different from our sensory image of it.

    I happen to think the reason we don't have a consistent description of reality is because we misunderstand a very basic fact about ourselves. We perceive the world through our senses, but we use the mechanisms of language to think about our perceptions. As a result of that process, we project attributes of language into the world of our perceptions without realizing it. When we find that the world of our perceptions fails to conform to our linguistic expectations of it, we seldom think the fault is with our language, but instead come to think of it as a problem of perception.

    Language actually prevents us from understanding the world. In fact, it prevents us from understanding almost anything, including language itself. Language creates an illusion, and then uses that illusion to assert its dominance over everything else. We are, in a sense, prisoners of it.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 19, 2004
  4. Apr 19, 2004 #3
    thought experiment

    You mean consistent with your own perception of things or the general world view, or of reality?

    We all suffer from this dilema, how can we resolve it, is it because we are not enlightened?

    So then the problem of understanding is linguistic failure, due to our perceptions, through our senses, not being able to be expressed as we perceive them.

    In short words can not express the way we feel. Whats the solution, speak in a cohering way. :smile:

    I did something diferent here, and tried to understan only what you wanted to say, up until this last word. I read each phrase and answered. I notice a linguistics manlfunction, in the way that you build up to your point, from the first to last phrase. Your first phase I had no idea of what you wanted to say, until I read the second and so on. Am I correct in understanding you?

    Now this is my opinion before reading and answering yours from what you wrote.
    Do we see things the way we want to, because that is the way they really are?, or is that the way we really want to see them?

    Now without reading your answer to my question, this is the way I would have ansered: We see things the way we want to, because we can not perceive what the other is really thinking, so we attach our own meaning to there words.

    While I have complained on other post that words do not express what I am trying to say, I have also thought exactly what I have written as my reason.
    So how many more answers are there. Why we do not understand each other? Because we are not good linguists.
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2004
  5. Apr 20, 2004 #4
    I mean consistent with your own perceptions, in the sense that you can explain any experience you ever had or will have.

    I'm not sure it's a dilemma, so I'm not sure it should be resolved. Maybe it can be resolved. Those Buddhist monks claim to have resolved it, but somehow I'm not particularly attracted to their lifestyle.

    I wouldn't say linguistic failure, I would say failure to realize the limitations of rational thought (language being its expression)

    There are many ways of expression that overcome the limitations of reason. There's art, poetry, music, religion.

    There really isn't much to be understood. If we help people realize something they didn't know before, then we're being understood. If not, it could be we're not being understood, but it could also be we have nothing of interest to say. The point being, it's up to you to know if you understood what other people told you.

    Yes, but they also have the same problem. They also have to attach their own meaning to words they did not create. If you think about how language works, you'll see that it is impossible to communicate ideas in a logical way. All you can accomplish with logic is to communicate relationships between ideas. So we can never know for sure what a certain word means; all we can know is how that word relates to all other words we know.

    That is one way of putting it. I suppose I agree. If language is meant for communication, and we are not communicating, that can only mean we don't know how to use language.
  6. Apr 20, 2004 #5
    oh boy, the individual and mass reality. tuff subject.

    from what i've seen, we all witness a reality that is a creation of our inner beliefs. with that, we co-create a mass reality that we share with others.

    the mass realities observed are not the exact same, but include primary points of agreement tween the observers.

    when we have a super bowl, a small portion will see a great game. about the same will see a terrible game. the majority will not care. are there 3 different games? 100? or as many as there are observers??

    bottom line for me is that the reality i observe is my creation. it is what my inner self wants to exoerience. it is my comscious ego that needs to learn how to accept and deal with the experience. when the subconscious and conscious self are working together we create a desired reality. a very simple example is the power of positive thinking. unfortunately, too many of us focus on our fears and doubts, giving them the energy for fulfillment and creating our disappointments.

    if you do not believe yourself worthy of any style of success, you will not prevail.

    i experience - witness - observe the reality that uniquely mine. part of the reason for being physical is to understand how i/we do it.

    love & peace,
    olde drunk
  7. Apr 20, 2004 #6
    For what my two cents is worth, I like your post very much today and agree with what you say. :smile:

    Sometimes I see things the way I want to, because I can not perceive what the other is really thinking, so I attach my own meaning to his words.
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