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InvisibleSalomon
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language is a barrier
    #14920938 - 08/14/11 03:38 PM (9 years, 8 months ago)

between concept and understanding.



take for example, intangible concepts succh as the colour blue.



describe the colour blue to somebody who is colourblind.



it's impossible.



words are just mechanisms used to describe senses.



but just imagine if we could directly communicate senses.

cut out the middle man of verbal and written communication.


concidering howmany advances have come about since the advent of the telephoe, cellphone, internet.


the possibilities to come about as a result of direct communication are astounding.





the body is an outdated vessel of the mind


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EVERYTHING EVENTUALLY BECOMES A DESERT



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OfflineFreedom
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Re: language is a barrier [Re: Salomon] * 2
    #14921254 - 08/14/11 05:02 PM (9 years, 8 months ago)

language is not the barrier

language is the technology we use to get around the barrier. It does not work 100%.


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OfflineNetDiver
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Re: language is a barrier [Re: Salomon]
    #14921267 - 08/14/11 05:04 PM (9 years, 8 months ago)

I wouldn't say the color "blue" is an intangible concept, any more than the existence of atoms or magnetism.

Or, if you insist that colors are intangible phenomena, then so is everything else, and there is no place for words, logic, or anything other than the immediate perception of the present moment.

In any case, there's absolutely no way to directly communicate perceptions. Take this thought experiment along those lines from the philosopher Daniel Dennett:

(btw, "qualia" are supposedly the subjective, intangible aspect of how things seem in my perception.)

Quote:

Suppose, in [thought experiment] #4: the Brainstorm machine, there were some neuroscientific apparatus that fits on your head and feeds your visual experience into my brain (as in the movie, Brainstorm, which is not to be confused with the book, Brainstorms). With eyes closed I accurately report everything you are looking at, except that I marvel at how the sky is yellow, the grass red, and so forth. Would this not confirm, empirically, that our qualia were different? But suppose the technician then pulls the plug on the connecting cable, inverts it 180 degrees and reinserts it in the socket. Now I report the sky is blue, the grass green, and so forth. Which is the "right" orientation of the plug? Designing and building such a device would require that its "fidelity" be tuned or calibrated by the normalization of the two subjects' reports--so we would be right back at our evidential starting point. The moral of this intuition pump is that no intersubjective comparison of qualia is possible, even with perfect technology.




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Invisiblesonoffox
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Re: language is a barrier [Re: NetDiver]
    #14922899 - 08/14/11 11:15 PM (9 years, 8 months ago)

love dennett. "consciousness explained" is a classic. reading "breaking the spell" right now.


--------------------
"Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself, I am large, I contain multitudes." ~Walt

"Surprised, are you? Yes, I am extra, a gift, superfluous to the necessary, a proof of the generosity concealed in everything." ~Doris Lessing

"I searched for God and found only myself.
I searched for myself and found only God." Rumi


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Offlineblingbling
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Re: language is a barrier [Re: Salomon]
    #14923774 - 08/15/11 02:35 AM (9 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

Salomon said:

the body is an outdated vessel of the mind




what makes you say that?


--------------------
Kupo said:
let's fuel the robots with psilocybin.

cez said:
everyone should smoke dmt for religion.

dustinthewind13 said:
euthanasia and prostitution should be legal and located in the same building.

White Beard said:
if you see the buddha on the road, rape him, then kill him. then rape him again.


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Invisiblevenetianblinds
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Re: language is a barrier [Re: blingbling]
    #14923811 - 08/15/11 02:43 AM (9 years, 8 months ago)

i thought quite a bit about the idea of visible language years ago, it just seems so out of reach at the moment. in fact the only way it seems to be getting done right now is through art and shamanism, but thats another story i guess


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How do you know but ev’ry Bird that cuts the airy way,
Is an immense world of delight, clos’d by your senses five?


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OfflineNoteworthy
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Re: language is a barrier [Re: venetianblinds]
    #14924322 - 08/15/11 05:57 AM (9 years, 8 months ago)

Just as Dennet describes, it seems impossible for us to consider communicating one person's experience to another person's experience. Even if you got some information across, you would have no way of knowing whether or not the information you are getting is trully the information that they are sending.

But Dennet goes on to conclude that qualia does not refer to anything. Perhaps he does not experience colours? Or perhaps he lacks the introspective abilities to think about the colours he is seeing?
Of course, if he trully did lack these abilities, he would simply think that the person who sees colours are just psychotic.

And many contemporary philosophers do act this way - as if qualia are figments of our imagination, or perhaps mistakes of our language. All because they cannot verify someone else's qualia. It is an odd situation, for anyone experiencing the world, to hear that someone else thinks that the experiences dont exist at all.

It seems obvious from the outset that a subjective experience can never be verified. Thus anyone experiencing a subjective reality is naturally confused when someone suggests that a lack of objective information means a lack of existance. It means a lack of objective existance - obviously! but the very notion of objective comes from the duality between subjective and objective. It seems that the subjective is accepted as soon as the word objective is used... in which case the notion of objective reality presupposes unverifiable subjective realities...


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Invisiblesonoffox
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Re: language is a barrier [Re: venetianblinds]
    #14924503 - 08/15/11 08:02 AM (9 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

venetianblinds said:
i thought quite a bit about the idea of visible language years ago, it just seems so out of reach at the moment. in fact the only way it seems to be getting done right now is through art and shamanism, but thats another story i guess




i like this. mythology is also a more complex language structure, growing out of shamanism. is it possible we had more effective ways of communicating in our past? that we have limited ourselves to our language?


--------------------
"Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself, I am large, I contain multitudes." ~Walt

"Surprised, are you? Yes, I am extra, a gift, superfluous to the necessary, a proof of the generosity concealed in everything." ~Doris Lessing

"I searched for God and found only myself.
I searched for myself and found only God." Rumi


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OfflineAlphaFalfa
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Re: language is a barrier [Re: Noteworthy]
    #14926634 - 08/15/11 05:19 PM (9 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

Noteworthy said:
Just as Dennet describes, it seems impossible for us to consider communicating one person's experience to another person's experience. Even if you got some information across, you would have no way of knowing whether or not the information you are getting is trully the information that they are sending.

I agree so much with this. Adding in the fact that humans are emotional when they use language and thus language takes on emotional states that themselves need to be defined and if left undefined do not reflect the entirety of what the individual was attempting to communicate.

But Dennet goes on to conclude that qualia does not refer to anything. Perhaps he does not experience colours? Or perhaps he lacks the introspective abilities to think about the colours he is seeing?
Of course, if he trully did lack these abilities, he would simply think that the person who sees colours are just psychotic.

And many contemporary philosophers do act this way - as if qualia are figments of our imagination, or perhaps mistakes of our language. All because they cannot verify someone else's qualia. It is an odd situation, for anyone experiencing the world, to hear that someone else thinks that the experiences dont exist at all.

It seems obvious from the outset that a subjective experience can never be verified. Thus anyone experiencing a subjective reality is naturally confused when someone suggests that a lack of objective information means a lack of existance. It means a lack of objective existance - obviously! but the very notion of objective comes from the duality between subjective and objective. It seems that the subjective is accepted as soon as the word objective is used... in which case the notion of objective reality presupposes unverifiable subjective realities...


Can you Elaborate on this one? What does being confused about a lack of experiece have to do with this?





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if you ever feel lost, just remember, life is not a journey, it is entertainment, all 4 fun...



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Offlineflaps
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Re: language is a barrier [Re: Salomon]
    #14928322 - 08/15/11 10:30 PM (9 years, 8 months ago)

What are your thoughts on the following: When we try and express our internal feelings/emotions/sensations, that we have not experienced before, to ourselves we listen to our inner voice.  When we listen to our inner voice, we do not know what thought the inner voice conveys until it is voiced internally.  That voice expresses the closest thing to its vocabulary (IE, happy,sad,stress,anxiety) which can cause one to jump to the wrong conclusion.  If it can't find a match we use metaphors/similes or just dismiss the feeling/emotion/sensation all together.


Edited by flaps (08/15/11 10:38 PM)


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OfflineNoteworthy
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Re: language is a barrier [Re: AlphaFalfa]
    #14928350 - 08/15/11 10:34 PM (9 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

AlphaFalfa said:
Quote:

Noteworthy said:
Just as Dennet describes, it seems impossible for us to consider communicating one person's experience to another person's experience. Even if you got some information across, you would have no way of knowing whether or not the information you are getting is trully the information that they are sending.

I agree so much with this. Adding in the fact that humans are emotional when they use language and thus language takes on emotional states that themselves need to be defined and if left undefined do not reflect the entirety of what the individual was attempting to communicate.

But Dennet goes on to conclude that qualia does not refer to anything. Perhaps he does not experience colours? Or perhaps he lacks the introspective abilities to think about the colours he is seeing?
Of course, if he trully did lack these abilities, he would simply think that the person who sees colours are just psychotic.

And many contemporary philosophers do act this way - as if qualia are figments of our imagination, or perhaps mistakes of our language. All because they cannot verify someone else's qualia. It is an odd situation, for anyone experiencing the world, to hear that someone else thinks that the experiences dont exist at all.

It seems obvious from the outset that a subjective experience can never be verified. Thus anyone experiencing a subjective reality is naturally confused when someone suggests that a lack of objective information means a lack of existance. It means a lack of objective existance - obviously! but the very notion of objective comes from the duality between subjective and objective. It seems that the subjective is accepted as soon as the word objective is used... in which case the notion of objective reality presupposes unverifiable subjective realities...


Can you Elaborate on this one? What does being confused about a lack of experiece have to do with this?








If you experience something, it is confusing for someone else to tell you that you dont experience something. IT seems like there is no way for them to get that sort of information - especially since the information is wrong! (when you do experience something, it is undoubtable that you are experiencing something)


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OfflineNetDiver
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Re: language is a barrier [Re: Noteworthy]
    #14932720 - 08/16/11 06:38 PM (9 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

Noteworthy said:
But Dennet goes on to conclude that qualia does not refer to anything. Perhaps he does not experience colours? Or perhaps he lacks the introspective abilities to think about the colours he is seeing?
Of course, if he trully did lack these abilities, he would simply think that the person who sees colours are just psychotic.



Obviously you haven't actually read any of the arguments against qualia; if you had, you would know that it isn't colors or conscious experience that he's arguing against; merely an intrinsic, subjective "way that the color looks," apart from neural representations of received stimuli.

A quote from Dennett's article Quining Qualia:

Which idea of qualia am I trying to extirpate? Everything real has properties, and since I don't deny the reality of conscious experience, I grant that conscious experience has properties. I grant moreover that each person's states of consciousness have properties in virtue of which those states have the experiential content that they do. That is to say, whenever someone experiences something as being one way rather than another, this is true in virtue of some property of something happening in them at the time, but these properties are so unlike the properties traditionally imputed to consciousness that it would be grossly misleading to call any of them the long-sought qualia.

Quote:

And many contemporary philosophers do act this way - as if qualia are figments of our imagination, or perhaps mistakes of our language. All because they cannot verify someone else's qualia. It is an odd situation, for anyone experiencing the world, to hear that someone else thinks that the experiences dont exist at all.



This is a strawman attack. The claim is not that experience does not exist, but that qualia (intrinsic, subjective features of experience) do not. Dennett, for instance, would not argue that you don't taste beer when you drink it, but rather that there is no specific way that the beer tastes. The taste is the neural representation and subsequent judgement of the interaction between the chemicals in the beer and your taste buds.

Again, this isn't an argument against the existence of experience; it's an argument against the qualia popular among many contemporary philosophers (such as David Chalmers) that supposedly exist in addition to physical processes. For instance, Chalmers states that it is a "logical possibility" that there could be a Universe that is physically exactly like ours, but in which nobody experiences anything. Really, this is just an overly complicated way of stating that dualism is a "logical possibility," to which I would respond that his definition of "possibility" must be so absurdly broad as to include anything that can be linguistically formulated. I, for instance, can think the sentence "there is a gigantic teapot sitting on top of my head, which has no mass and is invisible," but considered critically, what would then make it a teapot? Real teapots (especially gigantic ones) have mass and look a certain way. Similarly, Chalmers' experience-less Universes are "possibilities" only to the extent that he can formulate a sentence like "it is possible that there are people physically exactly like us who do not experience." In reality, though, we have every reason to believe that a person physically exactly like me would be me, and would have my experiences. Real things with my neural structure would have experiences in the same way I do, just like real teapots are visible and have mass.

Quote:

It seems obvious from the outset that a subjective experience can never be verified. Thus anyone experiencing a subjective reality is naturally confused when someone suggests that a lack of objective information means a lack of existance. It means a lack of objective existance - obviously! but the very notion of objective comes from the duality between subjective and objective. It seems that the subjective is accepted as soon as the word objective is used... in which case the notion of objective reality presupposes unverifiable subjective realities...



Exactly, and the idea of qualia is actually what supports a distinction between "subjective" and "objective." Those who argue against qualia are really arguing against dualism, and hence against the distinction between subjectivity and objectivity, despite the fact that they may formulate it in "objective" terms.


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Edited by NetDiver (08/16/11 06:52 PM)


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Offlinetim.johnson717
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Re: language is a barrier [Re: NetDiver]
    #14935027 - 08/17/11 02:07 AM (9 years, 8 months ago)

I agree with the name of this thread.
When someone says that language is a barrier, he usually means communication between people of different nations. But doesn't every single person speak in its own way? How can we be sure that when we say the same words as someone we also mean the same? No way.


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OfflineNoteworthy
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Re: language is a barrier [Re: tim.johnson717] * 1
    #14935127 - 08/17/11 02:27 AM (9 years, 8 months ago)

Well Samurai, I have read these arguments many times, and you will notice that they are semantic in nature - the two sides are defining 'experience' differently.

Qualia are experiences, in the way that I use the term.
The arguments above involve a different definition of experience whereby experience is a functional state of a physical system.

If you define experience as a functional state of a physical system then you dont consider qualia to be experience, because qualia is something beyond the functional state of the brain.

Its quite simple - you might think that these views (such as Dennetts) are not denying 'experience', but they are, if you maintain that experience involves qualia.

So you might argue that it is only the functional state of a physical thing that matters. You might think there is only one significant use of the word 'experience', and that it is the functional one. But that would be jumping the gun. Why is the functional state all that matters?
IF you trully had an experience with qualia / qualities / sense impressions / etc then you could not claim that it is the functional state that matters. Because qualia are not situated in space, they have no physical properties, and they could concievably be mixed around without any functional difference in the organism. Qualia are not the neurons or the neural functions, these things are merely the processes that ensure that our experience of the world is 'mapped' or 'calibrated' to the physical world that affects our brain.

The consciousness that Chalmers talks about is an 'experience' of the sort with intrinsic properties, ones that are not included in the physical story. Obviously these properties are related to the physical story, because we see red in certain physical situations.
The consciousness that Dennet talks about is a functional state of the brain which is related to people's facial muscles when they say something like 'I am aware that I am seeing red' or 'I am aware that I desire a Beer'. In order to understand these utterances, we need to consider a functional system that underlies the behavior - this particular system we call 'consciousness'.

So in the end it comes down, again, to a mere denial or acceptance of phenomenal, qualia, subjective, experience.

But no one denies the functional experience, ie, the state i nwhich a cognitive creature is being affected in a specific way by a specific external stimulus


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InvisibleRebel_At_War
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Re: language is a barrier [Re: tim.johnson717]
    #14936381 - 08/17/11 12:04 PM (9 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

tim.johnson717 said:
I agree with the name of this thread.
When someone says that language is a barrier, he usually means communication between people of different nations. But doesn't every single person speak in its own way? How can we be sure that when we say the same words as someone we also mean the same? No way.




Agreed..
People define certain words in diffrent ways...
Like say u go into a huge mass of people and tell them to define the word LOVE, and your going to end up with a hundred diffrent definitions of it...


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The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives his life to the fullest is prepared to die at any time...





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