Updated: Mar 26
A few weeks ago, I shared an article published in Maria Popova’s Brain Pickings. The subtitle of the article stated:
“Our modern conception of human excellence is too often impoverished, cold, and bloodless. Success does not always come from thinking more rigorously or striving harder.”
And so, RealitySeeker has approached a central contradiction. “Perfectionism kills creativity and excessive goal-setting limits our success.” Philosophy, however, values reason above all else, even though it would appear reason functions on the very same conception of human excellence mentioned above.
So, that formed the basis for our discussion Thursday evening as we continued our discussion of Bohm’s Wholeness and the Implicate Order. We talked about how reason sees how things come together and how they connect. Thus, reason should be sensitive to the natural process and the interconnection of all things. The wholeness of motion should give us the flow of life.
That’s the point of Bohm’s book: reality presenting itself to us through process. It’s a progression through which you make sense of sense data, but reason in that sense can be like drinking reality through a fire hose. This is evident when you try to enter the flow during a conversation. There are a great many things in which to attune yourself to be able to get into the flow of dialogue.
Reason is making sense of that flow by applying logical understandings and discerning the proper way to categorize what one finds there. However, there is something about that process that locks us into what we think we know and prevents us from coming up with more novel interpretations of what we encounter.
Interpreting sense data can be more of an artistic interpretation. Even though we’re applying a level analysis and trying to define it, it’s still only an interpretation. So, we discussed whether reason is something that exists within the phenomena, or whether it’s a set of tools applied to the phenomena. Similarly, a comparison of our understanding to actual nature is a way to think about our relationship to reality.
The notion that reason is an insight into what is experience, without trying to say what is the reality of it was raised. We can try to see the flow of thought and what the mind creates.
If we do an experiment, we get a result and a consequence, but observing the process of how my thinking works only fits in the domain in which it works. Sometimes whether something works in our particular domain is more useful to us rather than deliberating about whether or not it’s true.
In the flow, I can witness the ever changing process of life. I don’t focus on every detail because it is always changing. Trying to understand exactly what is and trying to capture it that way isn’t effective, because if I catch something, what I hold is only partial.
# # #