Monday, April 21, 2008

Meditation One

I thought I would ease my mind into this with something simple: how do we know what we know?

Of course, it was in an effort to settle this question that Descartes proclaimed "I think therefore I am" or, more accurately translated, "I thought therefore I was". His basis for this seems sound though, doesn't it? If one is thinking, then one must exist in some way. Either that or one is being deceived by some other force. But how could one be deceived if one did not exist? Therefore, thanks to Descartes hard work, one can be assured that one exists. Can we get further then this, however?

Let us follow this path. Suppose one exists, this is proven by one's ability to think. Ergo, our thoughts are real as well. Meaning that the feelings we put into each thought are, themselves, real. Alright, so our thoughts are real, can that go further as well? Well, if thoughts are one's mind summoning forth a feeling, not a feeling like sad or like happy, but the essence of an 'idea' or mood, then what one associates with those feelings (the images that the mind represents them with) must be real too. One perceives them and then one's mind associates them. The only way these things could be perceived without being real is if the one is being deceived, much like before.

The next step is to see if we can cancel out the deceiver again, as was done previously. Suppose oneself was continuously being fed false information by a deceiver. One then could be presented with a great multitude of things, but in the end, there would only be oneself and the deceiver. Resting in a void as it were. If this scenario were true, then the knowledge of this should ruin the deception. If one knows that one's thoughts are being deceived and that one's thoughts exist much like oneself, then one should be able to find where the taint of a deceiver enters and seperate it from one's own essence.

Thus, since no dispelling of all things can occur, there can be no deceiver here. One is really perceiving these things. A quick recap is in order here I think. Following this logic, it seems as if we can say the following things:
1. It is true the one exists.
2. It is true that one thinks.
3. It is true that these thoughts are real.
4. It is true that one associates their own perceptions with their thoughts.
5. It is true that these perceptions are real.

Major questions that are still in the air:
1. Does one interpret their own perceptions correctly?
2. Does anything else that one can perceive think and have thoughts?
3. If the answer to 2 is 'yes', do these 'others' perceive things the same way as onself?

I will not answer these other three questions just yet, instead, my next meditation will, I hope surprisingly, show how the principals that have already been discovered can be used to truly understand the American presidential race specifically and human politics in general.

No comments: