> Dear John and Morlock,
> You both jump immediately to the mind/body connection. Does that mean that whether we think or do something, it is the same and has the same consequences on the body or the mind? are there no distinctions or nuances at any level? Fiction works, for instance, because there are also checks and limits to action in our brain. Is a neural pathway forged through corporeal motion exactly the same as one forged through following intellectual pursuits? Are you ready to equate the consequences of mental and physical labor when it comes to aging and the life course?
Hi Margaret -
Difference lies everywhere, I was just pointing out that, contrary to the
dominant Western world-view, that the divisions of physical and mental are
artifacts. (Well, they are 'reality' if you follow the assumptions of a
materialist Cartesian world-view). I do not follow that world-view, and so, the
division makes no sense to me. (And it's not merely a 'connection' that is at
issue, it is the underlying assumptions that there is a dis-connect possible).
So, it depends on your world-view -- if you 'believe' in a cosmos with a
continuous energized fabric, change and difference take on a whole different
character. Physicality and mentality are simply different manifestations of the
same phenomena of energy moving through the (open/non-isolate) body-system.
Receiving energy through the eyes and thus into the neural system is rather
similar to nerve stimulation elsewhere to the body system which is likewise
transmitted through the neural system. The 'effect' of the stimulation coming
from either takes place both at the point of application (entry) of the stimulus
and along the way and in the brain... The brain/mind, whatever you want to call
it, is altered by either, though qualitatively differently... The fact that
alteration takes place regardless of the sensual input is for me a crucial point
which a mechanistic view simply gets bogged down in its physicality...
for example, 'doing' and 'thinking' both are activations of neural flows neither
may take place without the other... (personally I think English is a lousy
language for dealing with such issues -- Sapir's dictum seems quite applicable!:
"Human beings do not live in the objective world alone, nor alone in the world
of social activity as ordinarily understood, but are very much at the mercy of
the particular language which has become the medium of expression for their
society. It is quite an illusion to imagine that one adjusts to reality
essentially without the use of language and that language is merely an
incidental means of solving specific problems of communication or reflection.
The fact of the matter is that the ‘real world’ is to a large extent
unconsciously built up on the language habits of the group . . . . We see and
hear and otherwise experience very largely as we do because the language habits
of our community predispose certain choices of interpretation."
It comes down to what you believe to be the nature of reality in how you 'see'
and 'experience' these two situations (sexuality and mentality or so)...