Thursday, November 16, 2017

688: The Self gets shape....

“For millions of years, many creatures have had an active mind, but only in those who developed a self, 
capable of functioning as a witness of the mind, its existence was recognized, and only after the mind had developed the language and could tell about it , it became widely known that the mind exists. 
The Self as a witness is an additional ability that reveals in each of us the presence of events that we call 'mental'. 
We would like to understand how that extra power has been created.” This is how Antonio Damasio formulates in “Self comes to Mind” (2010)
Slowly but steadily the Self gets shape. I even dare to say, that we KNOW things about our Self now.
To begin with, the Self is not  a “something” or a special sense, but it can be regarded as an ongoing proces, a special function of the mind.
A mind which lacks this witness, is still a mind. But because our Self is the only natural means to know our mind, are we completely depending  on its presence, its powers and limitations.

The Interpretations like Gilbert Ryle from the previous lecture, assumed that we do not have direct access to our mental states, 
but conclude that we have certain beliefs, desires and intentions based on perceptions of our physical behavior. 
An alternative view of self-knowledge and first-person-authority is encountered in Richard Moran's work. 
He is a Harvard professor of  Philosophy of Mind and Moral Philosophy. Moran's theory is based on the idea 
that there is a direct link between first-person-authority and actively determining what you think of something. 
Imagine someone asking you if you think there will be a Third World War. What are you doing in such a case? 
Proponents of the introspection theory suggest that you can answer this question by looking inside, 
and looking for the conviction that a Third World War is coming or not. 
But according to Moran something else happens: you do not look inside but outside.       
You do not ask yourself a question about something inside you, but instead you look at what's happening in the world. 
You ask yourself this question: "Are there any reasons to believe that there will be a Third World War?" 
Then you make a decision based on various events in the world that could give you reason to think that this is the case or not and come to a conclusion: "No, I do not think there will be a Third World War. ' 
You answer a question about what you think of something, a question about your inner world by answering another question about the outside world. 
Or, in other words, you answer a question about self-knowledge in terms of 'world knowledge'. 
What Moran is all about is, that it's Your business what you think of something. That constitutes your Self. 
When you say what you think, you do not act as a passive spectator of your own mental states. 
You appoint yourself as an authority in this field, as an active witness. Interpretationists, as we saw in the previous lecture, claim that self-knowledge is a matter of interpretation.     
We know ourselves in the same indirect way as we know others, by observing our behavior from a distance, and connecting certain conclusions. 
We therefore also say that the theory of interpretation presupposes a 'third person perspective' on yourself, so the perspective of an outsider. 
Moran, on the other hand, emphasizes that we initially know ourselves from a "first person perspective”, ​​as a thinking and acting subject.
From this first-person perspective, you do not wonder, "What's in my mind?" But "What should I believe as autonomous thinking creatures?"
Moran's theory is also called rationalistic or deliberative: self-knowledge is obtained by weighing reasons for or against a particular judgment. 
The question is what, for these reasons, you should believe as rational being about the advent of a Third World War. 
Or, to take another example, what you should think about the equality of men and women, young people and the elderly, Dutch and Moroccans. 
According to Moran, you can find out what you really think by thinking about the reasons for believing that people are equal. 
There is a certain amount of controlling power from such a thinking process: if you think there are indeed convincing reasons to believe that all men are equal, 
then you should conclude that you really feel this as a rational person. Otherwise, this leads to paradoxical statements, such as: "All people are equal, but I do not believe."
This sounds  all quite interesting:  the Self as a witness of the mind. The Self gets shape.
Thank you for your attention… ^_^

The Discussion

[13:25] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): Thank you Herman
[13:25] Ciska Riverstone: thanx herman
[13:25] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[13:25] herman Bergson smiles
[13:25] herman Bergson: My pleasure Beertje :-)
[13:25] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): difficult..I have to read it over
[13:26] herman Bergson: Yes I understand...
[13:26] herman Bergson: The ida is that what you call yourself
[13:26] herman Bergson: is some kind of reasoning...looking outward for arguments of your opinions
[13:27] herman Bergson: Talking about a Self always gives us the feeling that there must be SOMETHING...
[13:27] Ciska Riverstone: I disagree with Moran which might not surprise ;) - as to the why... thats complex.
[13:28] herman Bergson: I guess that us our first mistake...
[13:28] herman Bergson: You surprise me  Ciska ^_^
[13:28] Ciska Riverstone: I do?;)
[13:28] CB Axel giggles
[13:28] herman Bergson: explain?
[13:29] Ciska Riverstone: Morans self seems equivalent of the buddhist ego
[13:29] herman Bergson: ohh ...:-)
[13:29] herman Bergson: That's new to me...
[13:29] Ciska Riverstone: from my point of view his self is the rationalized expression of a feeling
[13:29] Ciska Riverstone: when u take the question : will there be a world war three?
[13:30] Ciska Riverstone: there is nor "correct" answer to that of course until we have it ;)
[13:30] Ciska Riverstone: that means that we start to rationalize all the information we have
[13:30] herman Bergson: his basic idea is that we constitute our self by looking outward for reasons why we have some opinion...
[13:30] Ciska Riverstone: around the gut feeling
[13:31] Ciska Riverstone: and then start to argue
[13:31] Ciska Riverstone: because we simply cannot know
[13:31] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): until trump and Kim start hurl nuclear bombs over the world but then it is too late and there will be no more minds cause we have all been blown up
[13:31] Ciska Riverstone: ah
[13:31] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): so i really hope there will be no ww 3
[13:31] CB Axel: Yes. That's why there won't be a World War 3. °͜°
[13:31] herman Bergson: no no...there you seem to be wrong, Ciska..
[13:31] Ciska Riverstone: thats exactly one reason  I disagree :  his basic idea is that we constitute our self by looking outward for reasons why we have some opinion...
[13:32] herman Bergson: There you are right....
[13:32] Ciska Riverstone: my thesis is
[13:32] herman Bergson: for it can apply to such empirical issues there coming a war or not....
[13:32] Ciska Riverstone: we have an opinion and looking outward to verbalize it
[13:32] herman Bergson: But it doesn’t apply to feelings...
[13:33] Ciska Riverstone: the verbalization is the point
[13:33] Ciska Riverstone: its the hen egg question
[13:33] herman Bergson: I agree..he is to rationalist...
[13:33] Ciska Riverstone: what’s there first - the feeling or the argumentation
[13:33] Ciska Riverstone: and the truth is
[13:33] CB Axel: But in the case of a world war, I do look outside myself for what I think about the possibility of war.
[13:33] Ciska Riverstone: in such questions...
[13:34] Ciska Riverstone: the feeling is there
[13:34] Ciska Riverstone: and we find arguments for it
[13:34] herman Bergson: Yes Cb....
[13:34] Ciska Riverstone: so there is still a we...
[13:34] Ciska Riverstone: who does that
[13:34] herman Bergson: his theory applies to such issues....
[13:34] Ciska Riverstone: of course u do cb - but you use it to describe your feeling
[13:34] Ciska Riverstone: which you already have
[13:34] Ciska Riverstone: its a communicational thing
[13:35] CB Axel: My feeling is based on what I know about Trump and Kim and what's going on in the world.
[13:35] herman Bergson: But where did that feeling come from Ciska???
[13:35] Ciska Riverstone: (and its the reason why I make a difference between consciousness and awareness)
[13:35] Ciska Riverstone: thats the question
[13:35] herman Bergson: from the outside...
[13:35] Ciska Riverstone: why?
[13:36] herman Bergson: because you read newspapers and follow the News on TV
[13:36] Ciska Riverstone: obviously there will be different answers to the ww3 question...
[13:36] Ciska Riverstone: some people will say yes
[13:36] Ciska Riverstone: some no
[13:36] herman Bergson: of course
[13:36] Ciska Riverstone: and both will have arguments
[13:36] Ciska Riverstone: which go together with their own experiences in lfe
[13:36] Ciska Riverstone: life
[13:37] herman Bergson: but that doesn’t change the fact that You have your own opinion about it...which is linked to your Self
[13:37] herman Bergson: That is you
[13:37] Ciska Riverstone: opinion is based on feeling and experience
[13:37] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ah
[13:37] Ciska Riverstone: so the self is feeling and experience
[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): its all that you perceive and you can then choose to communicate it to someone else
[13:38] herman Bergson: I think so yes
[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): else
[13:38] Ciska Riverstone: the strange thing about experience is... that you can connect it with wrong "sense"
[13:38] Ciska Riverstone: in the sense of language
[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ok
[13:38] Ciska Riverstone: want an example?
[13:38] Ciska Riverstone: (or does that go too far?)
[13:38] herman Bergson: plz?!
[13:38] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): tell us Ciska
[13:40] Ciska Riverstone: ok a child which was abused early on in childhood by its parents... grows up to have a distorted view of love... the word love is connected to negative stuff which has happened to that child early one
[13:40] Ciska Riverstone: so when that child does not learn to reflect early on
[13:40] Ciska Riverstone: what often happens is
[13:41] Ciska Riverstone: that love is connected for example with getting a beating
[13:41] Ciska Riverstone: its "normal"
[13:41] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aaa ok
[13:41] Ciska Riverstone: it does belong there
[13:41] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): then i get it
[13:41] Ciska Riverstone: the feeling of the child is still
[13:41] Ciska Riverstone: somehow this is wrong
[13:41] Ciska Riverstone: and that leads to a lot of confusion
[13:41] Ciska Riverstone: but the word love
[13:41] Ciska Riverstone: might have another meaning for this becoming grown up
[13:42] Ciska Riverstone: as for people who had caring homes
[13:42] Ciska Riverstone: with no such things
[13:42] Ciska Riverstone: so if you communicate with that person later on - and he or she has not learned to reflect that
[13:42] Ciska Riverstone: they might be confused by how you use the word love
[13:43] Ciska Riverstone: they might not be able to really express why
[13:43] Ciska Riverstone: they see on tv its very different then what they experienced (!!!)
[13:43] Ciska Riverstone: but if they haven’t learned how to reflect
[13:43] herman Bergson: I understand,,,,but what is the relation here with the Self as we experience it
[13:43] Ciska Riverstone: they simply stunned.
[13:44] Ciska Riverstone: the relation here lays in communication
[13:44] Ciska Riverstone: the self exists without communication
[13:44] Ciska Riverstone: its there
[13:44] Ciska Riverstone: it consists out of experiences
[13:44] herman Bergson: yes
[13:44] Ciska Riverstone: those experiences
[13:44] Ciska Riverstone: it strings up with words
[13:44] Ciska Riverstone: so it can exchange with other selves
[13:44] Ciska Riverstone: how it does that
[13:45] CB Axel: So animals without language have no sense of self?
[13:45] Ciska Riverstone: totally depends on the experience
[13:45] Ciska Riverstone: thats the question cb
[13:45] Ciska Riverstone: I would say they are aware
[13:45] herman Bergson: that is not true CB....a number of animals have a clear sense of a self
[13:45] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): one thing is for sure and that is that this person need to know about and experience what real love actually is, its a suh important thing to have
[13:45] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and feel
[13:46] Ciska Riverstone: but for consciousness - exchange about the awareness - they lack language
[13:46] CB Axel: I agree, Herman. I'm just trying to get my mind around what Ciska is saying.
[13:46] herman Bergson: mee too
[13:46] Ciska Riverstone: yes bejiita - but its really hard for folks... there is an incredible film in german about this...
[13:46] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ok
[13:47] Ciska Riverstone: (
[13:48] herman Bergson: But what is your point Ciska...that somepeople have a distorted self - image?
[13:48] Ciska Riverstone: no
[13:48] Ciska Riverstone: my point is that to exchange about consciousness we need language
[13:48] herman Bergson: ok
[13:49] Ciska Riverstone: but what we express in the language does not describe the same experiences
[13:49] Ciska Riverstone: because we connect experiences to words we get from others which can go "right " or wrong
[13:49] Ciska Riverstone: the self consists of experiences
[13:50] CB Axel: True. I tend to look at people's behavior rather than their words to try to understand them.
[13:50] Ciska Riverstone: the language distracts from that
[13:50] herman Bergson: as I is a process not a thing
[13:50] herman Bergson: Indeed CB
[13:50] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ah
[13:50] Ciska Riverstone: I said I disagree with Moran - and that pretty much why ;)
[13:51] Ciska Riverstone: rationalizing needs words
[13:51] Ciska Riverstone: ,)
[13:51] herman Bergson whispers: Well every one can reread all argumentation on the blog :-)
[13:51] Ciska Riverstone: sure
[13:52] herman Bergson: Guess we did a fine job again today ...:-)
[13:52] herman Bergson: So thank you all again for your participation...
[13:52] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): gives me a lot to think
[13:52] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[13:53] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): interesting ideas as usual
[13:53] herman Bergson: Class dismissed....^_^
[13:53] Ciska Riverstone: thank you herman
[13:53] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): cu next time
[13:53] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

687: Gilbert Ryle and Interpretationalism

Our present main question is how we obtain knowledge about our Self. One way is by means of introspection.
But according to Wittgenstein this does not give is exclusive private knowledge about our Self.
We first have to learn the meaning of concepts in our social context before we can apply them to our private experiences.
There is also an other approach possible. According to supporters of the so-called ‘Interpretation Theory'
there is no fundamental difference between the way we know ourselves and the way we know others. 
Gilbert Ryle (1900 - 1976), the man of the ‘category mistake’ in lecture 681, is one of the philosophers who have claimed 
that the asymmetry normally assumed between self-knowledge and the knowledge of others does not exist. 
Ryle writes: “… in principle, John’s ways to find out about John are the same as John’s ways to find out about his girlfriend Maralyn. “
According to Ryle, it is misleading to claim, as Descartes and other introspectionists seem to do, 
that we actually do two things when we think: thinking on the one hand, and thinking about something introspectively on the other hand. 
According to Ryle, the idea that we can sense our thoughts directly with our inner eye is absurd. 
How does self-knowledge work? Ryle claims that self-knowledge is a matter of interpretation rather than introspection. 
We do not have direct access to our mental states, but conclude that we have certain beliefs, desires and intentions based on perceptions of our physical behavior. 
For example, I'm aware of the fact that I'm tired when I'm yawning all the time. I notice that I'm happy when I jump singing on the bike and love to go to work. 
Furthermore, we often only find out what we really want, if we actually see it before us. You get a beautiful necklace as a gift and you think: Exactly what I had in mind! 
You order a pizza salami and when the waiter puts it in front of you, you think: I'd rather have had the lasagne. 
Although Ryle and other  Interpretationists do not fundamentally distinguish between self-knowledge and knowledge of others, 
they accept that you have access to more  information when interpreting yourself. 
If we try to understand the behavior of others, the information we have at our disposal is often limited to "external" information we derive from sensory perception. 
In the case of self-interpretation, we can often also use 'internal' information, for example about the position of our body and our limbs, 
or about our physical needs, such as hunger, thirst, oxygen deficiency and the like. In addition, we can sometimes "catch up" with an internal monologue.    
Just as we interpret the behavior of others based on the available information, we do that for ourselves too. 
Thus there is no contradiction between direct self-knowledge and indirect knowledge of others.
In fact, the knowledge we have of ourselves and others is indirect. It is based on an interpretation of the evidence that we have at some point. 
This means that in both cases we can make a wrong conclusion, for example because we have insufficient or incorrect information. 
For example, you can conclude that you are nervous while you have only drunk too much coffee 
or you are angry with your partner while you are actually disappointed about something. Such misinterpretations are typically human. 
Because Interpretationists do not fundamentally distinguish between self-knowledge and knowledge of other people, 
they do not seem to value first-person authority much. 
But maybe there are other ways to guarantee the special status of self-knowledge without calling for introspection?

Thank you for your attention… ^_^

The Discussion

[13:23] herman Bergson: In other words....
[13:23] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): dont know what to say since i dont agree
[13:24] herman Bergson: To know yourself isn't anything more special than to know your friend for instance
[13:24] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): to me that seems very very odd
[13:24] herman Bergson: yes Gemma
[13:24] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): strange thought
[13:25] herman Bergson: and that is because we seem to believe that introspection is special
[13:25] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): yes i do
[13:25] CB Axel: I suppose that could be the case when you consider the extra information we have about ourselves.
[13:25] CB Axel: That's the only difference
[13:26] CB Axel: But don't we gain the extra information we have about ourselves through introspection?
[13:26] herman Bergson: yes,but how reliable is that knowledge?
[13:26] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): but still we can "read" our own mind but we cant do telepathy into someone else’s brain so some difference it have to be
[13:26] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): why we need a psychologist sometimes i guess
[13:26] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hmm
[13:26] herman Bergson: They did experiments.....
[13:26] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): trying sore all out
[13:26] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): sort
[13:27] herman Bergson: They showed people two pictures ...a blond and a brunette woman...
[13:27] herman Bergson: then asked...which one do you like?
[13:27] herman Bergson: When someone said...the brunette they showed the person the picture of the blonde
[13:27] herman Bergson: and asked him why he preferred this one...
[13:28] herman Bergson: only 20 percent noticed that it was not the picture of their choice and gave reasons why they picked the shown photo
[13:28] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): ha
[13:28] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate) GIGGLES!!
[13:28] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): ...LOL...
[13:28] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): not all there
[13:29] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): hmm
[13:29] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hmm ok
[13:29] Ciska Riverstone: do not see the relevance
[13:29] herman Bergson: There were similar tests...
[13:29] CB Axel: That could be because it didn't really matter to them.
[13:29] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): right ciska
[13:29] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): or they were thinking about the turkey they would eat
[13:30] Ciska Riverstone: or it could be because they really found this stupid ,)
[13:30] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): true
[13:30] herman Bergson: People do not seem to know themselves that well regarding their preferences and choices
[13:30] Ciska Riverstone: ( I was in a test once - found it superstupid and did a lot of just answering out of the blue without any connenction)
[13:30] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): hope you passed
[13:31] Ciska Riverstone: people do not like to be nailed down to some sort of choices
[13:31] Ciska Riverstone: it was some marketing thing - I only did it for the price ;))
[13:31] herman Bergson: I agree Ciska...such tests do not explain much....
[13:31] Ciska Riverstone: there are tests which  do show much more
[13:32] Ciska Riverstone: but this particular one
[13:32] Ciska Riverstone: ????
[13:32] herman Bergson: But in the test I mentioned people were shown afterwards which picture they really had chosen....
[13:32] Ciska Riverstone: not sure what they wanted to show
[13:32] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): what do we mean when we way we know ourselves or others THE SAME WAY
[13:32] Ciska Riverstone: yes
[13:32] herman Bergson: some even didn’t believe it
[13:32] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): hte same process??
[13:32] Ciska Riverstone: maybe they were fed u p like me ;)
[13:32] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): thinking about the things we learn of others?
[13:33] herman Bergson: it means that we interpret their behavior the same whay as we interpret our own behavior Gemma
[13:33] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): ok well
[13:33] Ciska Riverstone: or their concentration was low - or they do not  really prefer any kind of hair colour over the other
[13:33] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): interpret is a good work i guess
[13:34] herman Bergson: This theme made me think about the neuroscientific discussion on Free Will
[13:34] CB Axel: Interpreting other's behavior the way we do our own is dangerous.
[13:34] herman Bergson: where some deny free will and
[13:35] herman Bergson: say that our rational part of the brain is just coming up with explanations of our acts afterwards
[13:35] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): yes'
[13:35] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ok
[13:35] herman Bergson: I know what I think when I hear what is say, seems to be the idea here :-)
[13:36] herman Bergson: Interpreting behavior of others like we interpret our own dangerous CB?
[13:36] CB Axel: Sure.
[13:36] herman Bergson: In what way?
[13:37] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): they may be lying
[13:37] CB Axel: I can see a man petting a cat, for instance. I love cats, so I would probably think, "Oh. He likes cats, too."
[13:38] CB Axel: But what if he was just trying to get close to the cat so he could catch it, kill it, and eat it for Thanksgiving dinner?
[13:38] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): omg
[13:38] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): OMG!!!
[13:38] herman Bergson grins
[13:38] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): Roof Rabbit:)
[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hehehe
[13:38] CB Axel: Not so dangerous for me, perhaps, but really bad for the cat.
[13:38] herman Bergson: You would notice that sitting at his table CB :-)
[13:38] CB Axel: And me, if he invites me to dinner!
[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): eating cats for thanksgiving? i prefer the turkey I think
[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and cuddle the cat
[13:39] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): we will never know what another person thinks
[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hehe
[13:39] herman Bergson: As I can make mistakes in interpreting behvior....guess we do that often
[13:39] CB Axel: And just look at Donald Trump? I don't think he knows what he thinks. It changes from day to day.
[13:40] herman Bergson: Well..not with 100% certainty indeed Beertje
[13:40] CB Axel: But if I'm petting a cat, I know it's because I like cats.
[13:40] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate) GIGGLES!!
[13:40] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): ...LOL...
[13:40] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): imagine knowing him
[13:40] CB Axel whispers: To pet, not to eat.
[13:40] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): Trump has Alsheimer
[13:40] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): never figure that out
[13:40] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): Trump just splutter non consistent goo
[13:40] CB Axel: I can't know for sure what the other guy petting the cat is thinking.
[13:41] CB Axel: Not by looking at his behavior.
[13:41] herman Bergson: Just keep a close watch on him CB might save a cat's life ^_^
[13:41] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): lol
[13:41] CB Axel: Behavior over time, I guess, would tell me. But jumping to conclusions about a stranger could be dangerous.
[13:41] herman Bergson: But CB....
[13:42] Ciska Riverstone: mh - but how do you get out of that usually?
[13:42] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): it will take a lot to convince me that the method or results are the same
[13:42] herman Bergson: never been in the situation asking your self...what  am I doing now????
[13:42] Ciska Riverstone whispers: (by introspection ;) )
[13:42] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): those people must havve been disputed by others
[13:42] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): I am aure
[13:42] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): sure even
[13:42] CB Axel: Yes, but I can usually answer that quickly.
[13:42] CB Axel: Through introspection.
[13:43] Ciska Riverstone: yes
[13:43] herman Bergson: By interpreting your behavior...:-)
[13:43] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): ryle that is
[13:43] CB Axel: Not necessarily.
[13:43] herman Bergson: We'll see next time Gemma...don't worry :-))
[13:43] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate) GIGGLES!!
[13:43] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): ...LOL...
[13:43] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): i wont
[13:43] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): never intended to
[13:43] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[13:44] CB Axel: I can ask myself, "Why am I finding myself attracted to someone who is bad for me?"
[13:44] herman Bergson: Very philosophical Gemma :-))
[13:44] CB Axel: I can't answer that through looking at my behavior.
[13:45] herman Bergson: As Ryle have some mor einformation about yourself than just your behavior...
[13:45] herman Bergson: you also can notice your personal feelings for instance
[13:45] CB Axel: And that information is found through introspection.
[13:46] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): for others we have just the behavior information
[13:46] herman Bergson: yes
[13:46] CB Axel: Right, Beertje!
[13:46] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): yay:)
[13:46] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ok
[13:47] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): but what do we have more for ourselves?
[13:47] herman Bergson: That is actually the question Beertje....
[13:48] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): and you will tell us that the next time?
[13:48] herman Bergson: We are searching for a self and a way to know this Self...
[13:48] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): all our life experiences from childhood
[13:49] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): hmm
[13:49] herman Bergson: Yes they exist makes us who we are.....
[13:49] herman Bergson: but those who assume the existence of a self
[13:49] herman Bergson: assume that there is something persistent through time in a soul or so
[13:50] Guestboook van tipjar stand: CB Axel donated L$100. Thank you very much, it is much appreciated!
[13:50] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): maybe we don't have a soul at all
[13:50] CB Axel: Persistent through all time or just through our lives?
[13:50] herman Bergson: and in the search of this Self, I still havent found something like that in my thoughts and experiences
[13:51] herman Bergson: through time = our life
[13:51] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): again some of these words are interchangeable depending you personal belief
[13:51] herman Bergson: And atm we can we KNOW this Self...
[13:51] CB Axel: That which persists through our lives is our memories.
[13:52] herman Bergson: I mean something persisting through our lifetime...
[13:52] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): yes
[13:52] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ah
[13:52] herman Bergson: Guess we have  to continue thinking about it :-)
[13:53] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): I guess
[13:53] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[13:53] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): what about people with Alzheimer? they don't have memories
[13:53] CB Axel: True
[13:53] herman Bergson: MAybe next time a little closer to an answer ^_^
[13:53] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): they do of old days
[13:53] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): for a while anyway
[13:53] CB Axel: I'm looking forward to next time. °͜°
[13:53] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): maybe is the word of the day
[13:53] herman Bergson: Me too CB ^_^
[13:53] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): month
[13:54] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate) GIGGLES!!
[13:54] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): ...LOL...
[13:54] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): project
[13:54] herman Bergson: Almost looks like I am loosing my self more and more here atm :-)
[13:54] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): yep
[13:54] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): why Herman?
[13:54] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): needs to run off
[13:54] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): ♥ Thank Youuuuuuuuuu!! ♥
[13:54] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): too much red wine?
[13:54] herman Bergson: just kidding Beertje :-))
[13:54] CB Axel: Bye, Gemma.
[13:55] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): cu ghema
[13:55] herman Bergson: So thank you all for your participation again :-))
[13:55] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[13:55] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): bye Gemma
[13:55] CB Axel: Thank you, Herman.
[13:55] herman Bergson: Class dismissed...
[13:55] Gemma (gemma.cleanslate): bye
[13:55] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): thank you Herman
[13:55] CB Axel: See you all on Tuesday. °͜°
[13:55] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): we get closer and closer but will we reach a conclusion
[13:55] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): well see
[13:55] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): cu next time
[13:55] CB Axel: Goedenavond, peeps

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

686: Wittgenstein on introspection...

An important criticism of introspectionism we encounter in the work of Ludwig Wittgenstein (1889-1951). 
When Harry strikes his thumb and says "I'm in pain," he does so, according to introspection theory, 
based on a certain mental state (a sense of pain) he has seen with his inner eye. 
However, Wittgenstein argues that we are making a fundamental mistake when we think this is the way we gain self-knowledge. 
The introspective theory leaves room for a radical form of skepticism. For example, how does Harry know that he means the same thing with "pain" like someone else? 
As his friend Barry strikes his thumb with the same hammer and also says "I'm in pain," Harry and Barry seems likely 
to mean the same thing with their pronunciation: they have seen a similar kind of internal condition. 
But how can we actually know if their verdict is based on introspection? Since Harry and Barry can only have knowledge of their own mental state, 
and not of the others, they can never be sure if the other feels pain or something else, “minx” for example. 
This is not just a problem for Harry's knowledge of Barry, but also for the knowledge Harry has of himself. 
After all, how does Harry know that the pain he felt after he hit the thumb with his hammer is of the same kind as the pain he felt when he stumbled across a tree stump?
According to the introspection theory, just as you can see, for example, a cup of porcelain or plastic, you can 'see' an experience of pain or itchiness. 
The meaning of the word 'pain' is thus derived from introspection. When Harry says, "I'm in pain," he means, "I have experience X." 
But when he stumbles over a tree stump, Harry does not have experience X, but experience Y. So how does Harry know that in both cases it is an experience of pain? 
With these types of skeptical questions, Wittgenstein wants to show in the first place something is wrong with the introspective theory and the idea of ​​an 'internal world' that we can perceive. 
You can not experience each others experiences, only your own. If we accept the introspective theory, it's impossible to know what pain means,
because everybody may have just another experience. Because of this private character of experiences, we will never know 
if Harry and Barry, when they both use the word 'pain', actually mean the same. And that also eliminates the ability to understand what it means to others to have pain. 
The introspection theory ultimately leads to a state of solipsism (solo =  'alone' and ipse = ‘self'), in which there is no such thing as a shared language or meaning. 
The knowledge we have of ourselves may seem to be a private matter, but that is not the case says Wittgenstein. 
Concepts like 'pain' but also 'hunger', 'fear' and 'happiness' derive their meaning from a social world, that is, from a common context in which these words are used. 
Language is, according to Wittgenstein, embedded in usage rules, and you must be able to follow and apply them.  
When we say we have pain or hunger, or want to go to the cinema, in those cases we play a particular game - a language game - that is bound to certain rules, as Wittgenstein calls it.

According to the rule you hit your thumb with a hammer and then show certain behaviour including uttering a word: pain.
This is because everybody does so in our language. Thus gets the word “pain” its meaning.
It is not so that you hit your thumb and then through introspection you ‘see’ the word pain.  

Significance and thus self-knowledge can not be achieved simply by linking a word to an experience. We must first know how that word is used in a social context. 
Proponents of introspection theory assume the idea that we should first of all have knowledge of our own mental states and, on the basis of that, acquire knowledge of others. 
Meaning goes from inside to outside. Wittgenstein turns this around: first of all, we need to know 
how to use the concepts in a social context before we can apply them to ourselves to gain self-knowledge. Meaning goes from the outside to the inside.
Thank you for your attention again … ^_^

The Discussion

[13:26] Ciska Riverstone: thanx herman
[13:27] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): we can tell the experience is the same for everyone by the reaction (jumping around yelling and swearing after hittng the thumb with the hammer)
[13:27] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): (aims haper at hermans head to give hom experience x and see if that is the same as well)
[13:27] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hammer
[13:27] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): experience z it would be
[13:28] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): lol
[13:28] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): depends on the impact of the hammer on the head or thumb
[13:28] herman Bergson: The main idea here is how we look at language....
[13:28] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): in all cases it hurts
[13:28] CB Axel: I tend to agree with Wittgenstein, but the language had to have started internally with someone who was the first to use a particular word like pain.
[13:28] herman Bergson: and how words get a meaning...
[13:29] herman Bergson: yes CB but that is a theoretical approach just like mankind had to start with at least one couple...
[13:29] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): all grts togethre
[13:29] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): DAMN CANt tyPE At ALL TODAY, ! too much rumbling around befor i guess
[13:29] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): im tired
[13:30] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): played floorball again
[13:30] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): but its fn
[13:30] herman Bergson: Logically you could come to such a conclusion but in reality...?
[13:30] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): you callit tired Bejiita, but what is tired for you?
[13:30] CB Axel: LOL
[13:30] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): wanting to sleep
[13:30] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): thats tired for me
[13:30] herman Bergson: We only understand bejiita when we use the same language game rules :-)
[13:31] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): i guess you all want to sleep as well when tired
[13:31] herman Bergson: rule 1....I want to sleep :-)
[13:31] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): just as me
[13:31] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): the reaction is same
[13:31] CB Axel: Tim Minchin wrote a song for the musical Matilda that starts out with this idea of what one person experiences may not be what another experiences.
[13:31] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): afraid of me John? i don't bite :)
[13:31] herman Bergson: means I can use the word "tired"
[13:31] CB Axel: So I've thought about this before.
[13:31] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): no no
[13:31] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): I crashed sorry
[13:31] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): not now I mean..
[13:32] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): just like hitting herman in the head with a hammer would be as much pain as him stumbling over a root only in different places
[13:32] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): in both cases its pain
[13:32] CB Axel: I've thought about how, if I could somehow get put into someone else's brain, would things look the same to me.
[13:33] encidious Opus: wow , 4 h's Hitting Herman in the Head with a Hammer
[13:33] CB Axel whispers: That's a lot of alliteration. LOL
[13:33] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): loool, that was NOT intentional!
[13:33] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[13:33] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): I think that in those years they didn't know the human brain as we do now
[13:33] encidious Opus: see you're not tired
[13:33] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): I am tired but clinging on
[13:34] herman Bergson: Teh main subjec there is the we have a slef and how can we know it...
[13:34] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): a what?
[13:34] CB Axel: self
[13:34] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): think Herman is tired too
[13:34] herman Bergson: The introspectionists link language directly to experiences....
[13:34] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): ok
[13:34] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): just like me
[13:34] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hehe
[13:35] herman Bergson: Wittgenstein shows us that this leads to sollipsism ultimately....
[13:35] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): self is a seemingly obvious yet complex thing
[13:35] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): as i get it
[13:35] herman Bergson: for the owrds I use for my inner experiences  have no meaning for others...
[13:35] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): to some extent, no
[13:36] herman Bergson: Wittgenstein points at the social context in which language functions
[13:36] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): maybe the language we use is too limited
[13:36] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): modern medicine confirms that the perception of pain is not the same in everybody
[13:36] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): and it varies between the sexes
[13:36] herman Bergson: meaning originates form the rules people use to use words
[13:36] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): so, you have some scientific evidence for it
[13:37] herman Bergson: pain is a difficult phenomenon...
[13:37] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): yes there is a difference between mans flue and womans flue
[13:38] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): mans flue seems worse:)
[13:38] CB Axel: hehehe
[13:38] herman Bergson: well at least there is some level at which every human being will say: I am in pain....
[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hitting the little toe in all cases also make you jump around screaming and swearing = same experience or?
[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): isn’t it?
[13:39] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): no. it's your experience
[13:39] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): The self or selfish part is what motivates us the most. The ego
[13:39] CB Axel: Same reaction to that experience, but if you were able to put yourself into someone else's brain and then hit your/his thumb with a hammer, would if feel the same as it would have if you were still in your own self?
[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): all i know react that way to that event
[13:39] herman Bergson: General conclusion is that the word pain does not derive its meaning form introspective observing pain
[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): interesting indeed, is it same for all or not
[13:40] herman Bergson: but according to Wittgenstein, from the social context a word is used in
[13:40] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): SCience says no, CB
[13:40] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): science says that we have a difference in pain threshold
[13:40] herman Bergson: oh yes...
[13:41] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi):
[13:41] herman Bergson: women seem to have higher tresholds than men :-)
[13:41] herman Bergson: the whimpeys :-)
[13:41] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hehe
[13:41] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ok
[13:42] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): Some part of the question has been replied by science since Wittgenstein
[13:42] herman Bergson: To know yourself and express it in language means that you use words which are not private, but derived from a social context
[13:42] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): He would probably formulate the question differently
[13:42] CB Axel: strike
[13:42] CB Axel: I'm not talking threshold. I'm talking about the actual feeling. Perhaps, if I were to enter your brain that hammer my feel like what I, in my own body and self, would feel like a tickle. But in that other body/self, it would be just as uncomfortable.
[13:43] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): so would dozens of others if they know what we know now
[13:43] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): now we know that the personality can be changed with few grams of a given chemical
[13:43] CB Axel: strike
[13:43] CB Axel: But to both of us that hammer would still make us pull our hand away and scream and, in my case at least, swear up a storm.
[13:43] herman Bergson: what chemical John?
[13:44] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): WE know that Depression can be cured by drugs. and without depression half of World's literature and art wouldn't exist
[13:44] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): art and literature, as well as philosophy are the product of sheer pain
[13:44] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): mental pain
[13:45] herman Bergson: That sounds too poetic John :-)
[13:45] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[13:45] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): we can expect a decline in creativity in future generation due to the advancement of Psychiatry
[13:45] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): generations
[13:46] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): I create literature and art without being depressed (my game/interactine story making projects)
[13:46] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): but also my projects are a bit special
[13:46] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): i guess
[13:46] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[13:46] CB Axel: Joy can be a creative force as well as saddness. °͜°
[13:46] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and i still cant type SIGH
[13:46] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): you're not famous, lol
[13:46] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): lol
[13:46] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): I said half, not the whole
[13:46] CB Axel: That's not poor typing, Bejiita. It's creativity.
[13:46] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): nope and also its not the purpose of it
[13:47] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): i just want to create stuff from my fantasy and reams
[13:47] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): dreams
[13:47] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): cool stuff
[13:47] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): how do you know Bejiita is not famous?
[13:47] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): Wittgenstein himself was in a huge pain
[13:47] CB Axel: Creativity born of excitation and exhaustion. LOL
[13:47] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): you don't know him
[13:47] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): Ok, I take it back, he's famous
[13:48] herman Bergson: Well, I guess...enough said about this issue....
[13:48] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): im not a star yet but i have at least been nominated to Swedish Talent for my dance abilities once, did not make it all the way though as there were so many seeking this year
[13:48] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): but i was really close and will try again
[13:48] herman Bergson: BEfore we get lost in the  metaphysics of pain,
[13:48] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): anyway, the greatest feats of art, science, literature and ultimately Phylosophy generate from a state of pain, anguish, fear, rage or anguish
[13:48] herman Bergson: I'd like to thank you for your active participation again :-)
[13:49] John Howard Cassio (sticaatsi): the greatest advancement in science and technology happen during or because of wars
[13:49] herman Bergson: So thank you all....class dismiised ^_^
[13:49] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): now lets hit ourselves in the head with a hammer and go to sleep
[13:49] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[13:49] CB Axel: Thank you, Herman.
[13:49] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): great again Herman
[13:49] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): welterusten Bejiita
[13:49] herman Bergson: If you like to continue the discussion plz feel free to do so :-)
[13:49] Ciska Riverstone: thank you herman
[13:49] CB Axel: And I still say that there has been great art that was spawned by joy.
[13:49] CB Axel: So there.

[13:49] Ciska Riverstone: welterusten beertje