35 2

True or False: How we think is determined by the mind, not how things really are.

Razorjelly 7 Apr 4

Enjoy being online again!

Welcome to the community of good people who base their values on evidence and appreciate civil discourse - the social network you will enjoy.

Create your free account


Feel free to reply to any comment by clicking the "Reply" button.


How we think or what we think about "things"? Perception vs. reality?

What we think about a thing is conditioned by environment. But the mechanics of the thought itself is conditioned by a priori asthetic.

@Razorjelly We are written: we do not write. Even when we change "perceptions," the "new" perception is not new. Explain "priori aesthetic": prior knowledge? Concepts instilled by society? Perhaps my understanding of "aesthetic," having to do with the arts, differs from what you intend? I cannot find "asthetic," so I assume that is a typo--correct me if I am wrong.

"a priori" is knowledge known beforehand. Prior knowledge. Whereas posteriori knowledge is that which we derive from experience. Asthetic means having to do with the senses.
Kant asked how is it that we know with apodictic certainty that mathmatical equations made in this space and time will hold true in another space and time we have not yet visited. He said it is because these things take place in the mind. So back when the astronauts were circling the moon we knew just how much energy was required and at what angle to fire the jets to guide them back to within a mile of a battleship in the middle of the pacific ocean. This was known before they got there. Yet when Armstrong's foot touched the lunar surface nobody knew just how far his boot would sink into the surface.

@Razorjelly Gotcha.


"We don't see things as they are. We see things as we are." ~Anais Nin

Well now, we all know what a naughty gal AnaΓ―s Nin was. A very gifted naughty gal I should say. I wonder if she and James Joyce ever corresponded? Some of his letters are truly inspirational. .

F her! I am NOT hitler!


Buddhism, in a nutshell.

Right on. Sorry, we have no prizes.

@Razorjelly Don't worry: I'm not attached to outcomes. πŸ˜‰


Perception is certainly shaped by experience.


How we think (imho) is determined by how we are trained to think. Luckily, with enough introspection, anyone can change the way they think, which supports your statement. How things really are, though, seems unknowable, since perception is reality. No one knows how things really are, only how they perceive them to be.


That's not a well-formed question.
You are positing that there is something called "the mind" which stands in opposition to "how things really are" and asking which determines "how we think".
I don't even accept the premises, never mind that all the terms are vague.

Read Kant's Critique of Pure Reason. Part II Transendental logic deals with this subject. It's not an easy read but about your 3rd time thru the question will begin to make sense. Try to have fun with it. We're all here trying to figure it out.

I studied Kant's "Kritik" as part of my MA. If you'd written "How we think is determined by the mind and not by how things really are" it would have been less ambiguous. Philosophers are sticklers for that kind of precision. It's not exactly the problem Kant was tackling (which was more about the limits of a priori knowledge) but good luck with getting some interesting responses.


I thought I knew but having read all the comments on here I'll have to spend some time re-evaluating..


I don't think this is false or entirely true.

I hate to seem indecisive, but I believe you've presented a false dichotomy.

In my opinion, how we think is determined very loosely by the mind and influenced by our experience, education, and reality.

JimG Level 8 Apr 4, 2018

I was going to give my opinion but I'll go with yours after reading it. I agree with you. I'm able at this stage of my life to see back into what I might have thought before. My thoughts and opinions have changed and might keep on changing as time goes by. This is proof for me that how things really are is not constant.

I hear what you're saying. Its a slippery slope. I think you are looking at things from a standpoint that the brain creates consciousness whereas I'm leaning hard on the premise that consciousness creates everything and destroys everything. The brain is a product of consciousness and can only operate in the field of time and space. When consciousness is done with the body it leaves and goes back to the oneness.


All about perception. Technically there is no right/wrong, left/right, Hot/Cold, blue/black/green/red... There is our brain receiving raw information and trying to interpret it... But we invented the concepts to describe certain kinds of input. To communicate properly we hold each other to the same standards when describing things. (ex. I saw a red car not a blue truck).
So when you say 'How things really are' that itself is information has already been processed and formed an opinion on, there is no way of truely knowing 'How things really are', all you know is what your body told your brain and then your brain processed and told your conscious self.

Ok that was wierd.
The site asked me to "Approve" your comment?
Somehow I am your authority (NOT)

I will assume because I made lvl 6?

Yes it is very much dependent on the brains processing, but the brain still had input, so to me that seems a combination of that raw input and the brains interpretation of it.

@Davesnothere Yes πŸ™‚


Id say its a bit of both. nurture and nature.


We were evolved to survive not to perceive some objective reality. What we perceive is intended to help us not to accurately reflect reality. For example we see patterns in everything. It is useful because seeing a pattern that identifies a predator means we survive but seeing the same pattern and there being no predator is essentially harmless as we still survive. So, we see patterns that like to us about reality.


I think, therefore I drink.

godef Level 7 Apr 4, 2018

I'll think to that!!


I'd say true. We can only consciously focus on a very small percentage of all the sensory information our brains absorb over any period of time. And what we focus on tends to affect our mood and behavior.

MrHIT Level 5 Apr 4, 2018

You're on to something there. Consider the fact that all of our perceiving & thinking is conditioned by the a-priori forms of our sensibilities (time and space) The thing in itself (will) is beyond our experience. It can't be a thing. To be a thing you have to be in time and space. So we're beyond time and space and that is our true being.


I think that it'a mixture both for far too many people. People tend to cling to things. Even when presented with evidence to the contrary.


All I can say is that my reality is all in my mind. Are things as I perceive them? Probably not very often but I would like to assume that reality mirrors my perception of it to a greater extent more often than not.


Influenced by both, determined by neither

twill Level 7 Apr 4, 2018

False Dilema, it could be something in between or a combination of both.


Are we talking mind & brain?
Or mind/brain?

Thinking more of the mind as a function of the brain.


Both. Thoughts are generated in the mind, more so with creative brains and experiences based on external stimuli. Our brain deciminates the information and stores it, as it is a biomechanical computer. All sensory information that has been stored is of the past, but our brains are engineered (by evolution) to incorporate our past (even our recent past) to function in the present. Healthy brains are able to decipher the real from the false. Also the brain can be taught how and what to think by means of education and or indoctrination.

Gohan Level 7 Apr 5, 2018

This is very true. When I talk to my ex husband about things that happened when we were together we see it very differently even though it was the same experience. It's all perception.


True. I've heard it said this way: we don't see the world as it is, but as we are.


I agree. And when you realize that it is enlightening.


That depends on the effectiveness of the cognitive schema we develop and on the accuracy of our cognitive structures.


Took a test once, says there are 4 types of thinkers, left brain (analytical), right brain (artistic) mixed (random) and combined (uses both sides equally).

not technically true... (almost) everyone uses their entire brain evenly

Technically, you are right, but the pathways in the brain a person uses to solve everyday issues differ on the micro level person to person. It is known that the left part of the brain solves math and critical thinking and the right for all intents and purposes is art and emotion. This is the reason for the "labeling" right and left. Yes, the hemisphere definitions are painted broadly the actual function is of course quite complex. What I am saying is that certain groups of people think and resolve issues in those four manners and, of course, to various degrees. Good enough?

Write Comment
You can include a link to this post in your posts and comments by including the text q:50295
Agnostic does not evaluate or guarantee the accuracy of any content. Read full disclaimer.