Mon, Feb. 21st, 2005, 05:04 am
sanityinwords: So I've been thinking...
As I was talking to my girl today I brought up the subject of conspiracy theories. And at some point in that short lived conversation a distant memory struck me:
My first day in Philosophy 101. An introduction began with the teacher telling us the basics of philosophy using key people such as Plato, Aristotle and Socrates to explain. I followed what I could, attempting to stay awake, so I could get my classes over with for the day. After the syllabus was passed out she issued our first assignment. An essay. What happened to the easy classes where you do almost nothing the first few weeks? Apparently I finished those in my first two semesters and it was time for some hard-core learning. Now, usually I am pretty good at writing reports or other literary works, so I figured I'd be able to breeze through it like I had done countless times in the past. My confidence left me as quick as a bulimic after dinner (bad joke I know) when I heard the subject of which we were to write about. Do we exist?
I soon felt empty and lost. I did not have an answer. The logic in my brain was constantly trying to prove or disprove my own existence. Is their proof in either direction? I struggled through the concept for several weeks (I never did turn in my paper) until that very question caused me to drop the class. It was much too complicated for my simple brain to process. And after several attempts to forget that class even existed I finally managed to do so. Until today.
So I ask you all to get into this debate as I am in the mood to do so. What proof is there to stand firmly behind our existence? Are you sure you exist?
Sure, we can all THINK that we exist. "Thinking" is nothing but rapid firing neurons in our brain. And if neurons control our thought process, our body, our emotions...what is left? What happens when those neurons cease to function? Do we still exist?
Mon, Feb. 21st, 2005 12:56 pm (UTC)
Do we exist? I guess you could say that we do simply because if we didn't, my wife would not hound me to clean the house and mow the grass and all the other mundane things that need doing around the old homestead. I won't go the "i think, therefore i am" route. That is too easy...If I did not exist, my yard would be a mess...and since there are flowers in the beds, bushes trimmed and the deck is clean, the dishes are washed and put away, yeah I guess I do exist...I have a feeling that this is not the type of response that you were looking for, but it is early in the morning and I have not gotten all of my "neurons" to fire, just yet.
Mon, Feb. 21st, 2005 01:40 pm (UTC)
sanityinwords: Re: Hmmm...
All responses are welcome.
You base existence on your actions or lack thereof...but your perception of those actions is based on those neurons that, I agree, are difficult to fire in the morning (in my case evening since I work nights).
Following the Matrix theory, what if there was no spoon? What if the flowers, the deck, the dishes...all material things do not exist but are merely objects created by our neurons to give meaning to life? Or to keep the mind sane?
Perhaps in reality we are single cell organisms on a vast planet attempting to cope with solitude by creating our own world? Or better yet perhaps the world revolves around me (or you) and the rest of the world is a product of illusion created by our mind? Maybe you are a subconcious thought manifested by my mind to offer an explanation to this precise question.
I appreciate your response I mean not to confuse or offend anyone that chooses to partake in this discussion. Truly I am as lost in this issue as I first was. I need to give my "mind" a break from this.
Mon, Feb. 21st, 2005 02:50 pm (UTC)
lark01: Re: Hmmm...
Perhaps in reality we are single cell organisms on a vast planet attempting to cope with solitude by creating our own world?
This is a question that I have asked myself on occasion over my life...and it seems to enter into a viscious circular manner of reasoning (probably those pesky neurons again). If that were the case, it would not change the reality that we experience as individuals making up that single cell. Each level has its own sublevel...organism, organ, cell, molecule, atom type of organization. Maybe we haven't been discovered yet...even though we have discovered our smaller parts, it is entirely possible that we are simply riding along on one of the billions and billions of electrons orbiting a much larger nuclear mass, and the Milky Way as we know it is a single cell... such circular thought patterns plague me for a while and then I finally think...what difference does it make anyway? I still have to cut the grass....LOL
Wed, Feb. 23rd, 2005 06:33 am (UTC)
sanityinwords: Re: Hmmm...
...it is entirely possible that we are simply riding along on one of the billions and billions of electrons orbiting a much larger nuclear mass, and the Milky Way as we know it is a single cell...
This is a fascinating concept. And I agree that it really doesn't make a difference because mundane things still have to be accomplished. However, if it was in fact discovered that this situation was true and we were the proverbial atom to a higher level organism, would it make a difference in your life?
Me personally it would. I have always been in search of more knowledge and this discovery would truly make us all gods in our own reality. This is because everything that we have been brought up on, i.e. values, ethics, religion...would become void.
This discovery would indeed cause chaos but it would be welcome to discover the truth in my opinion.