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pgd
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29 Aug 2010, 8:42 am

Cogito ergo sum means?



lostD
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29 Aug 2010, 8:55 am

It means that even if reality did not exists, the fact that you would be thinking about it and conceiving it would prove your existence. No matter how hard you try to prove that nothing truly "is", you cannot prove that you do not exist because you are able to think, reflect upon this subject, your thoughts exist and you do too.



Philologos
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29 Aug 2010, 9:02 am

But of course, there is no evidence that "you" are actually thinking. If you buty into "it is all complex chemical reactions", then thought is illusion, and I only suppose that I think. I guess?



blue_bean
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29 Aug 2010, 9:22 am

I like the saying's alternative version, "I b***h therefore I am" :P



lostD
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29 Aug 2010, 9:32 am

Philologos wrote:
But of course, there is no evidence that "you" are actually thinking. If you buty into "it is all complex chemical reactions", then thought is illusion, and I only suppose that I think. I guess?


If a complex chemical reaction exist, then you exist too.

Either you belive that nothing truly exist and is an illusion, then you do not exist and nothing is real, or you believe that everything truly exist, that you exist and everything is real.

Wondering whether you exist or not is supposed to prove your existence (at least according to Descartes). One could argue that dreams are illusions and seem real, plus some people who are in coma seem to have a "dream" and to believe it to be real.

There is no way for me to know whether I am truly in front of a computer arguing over this sentence but I cannot turn off this existence, feel emotions and sensations, think and chose to believe that all of the people who are talking to me have these abilities (instead of them being the product of my mind).
However, I could just be someone else's creation. We could wonder how someone could imagine a whole word and create their feelings, thoughts and sensations, knowing all of their point of views, what they are doing, etc. (Yes, it does sound like a god-like creature). I do not see how a brain could deal will all of those informations but it could be the truth about our reality.

We could also wonder why this god-like creature would have chosen to make us wonder about our existence : would it be a prove that we do exist and that this is not an illusion ? Could anyone who is dreaming realize it is a dream without being able to go out of it ? Do people in coma wonder if all they living is real ?
-> Are one's abilities to ponder over the reality and its existence affected by illusion or do they remain intact so that I could actually be in a coma and still be able to question my existence and the fact that I am in the real world ?

Would it be a way to make us have no suspicion about its existence or our ? It could be a strategy to make us believe that since we can argue over this fact, we exist...

There is no way to solve this question (or at least, I have not found any yet and I have been wondering about things like that since I am seven XD).

Either you believe that nothing is real, that sensations, thoughts, emotions, cultures and everything are not real and you can either be :
-a creature controled by someone else
-a dream

Or you believe that everything is real because you cannot shut down this reality.

This reality could be an illusion, yet we are able to think (even if it is also an illusion) about it. Moreover, I can decide that other people are an illusion, a dream, creatures I have created but I still exist (at least, in a way), even if this is a dream, even if I am in a coma, I do exist somewhere and it is my mind which is making up this reality.

Reality is subjective in the way we perceive it, we can think that "real reality" is objective (but no creature can truly be objective so how could be truly observe it as it is ?), we cannot know where we are or who we are, we could be just like in the Matrix movie without knowing it, our thoughts are the only thing which can prove our existence, even it this existence is illusory.

And it is very hard to discuss this kind of things in another language. :lol:



_Square_Peg_
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29 Aug 2010, 9:43 am

I think therefore I am.
So what about things that don't think, like inanimate objects? Do they not exist?



happymusic
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29 Aug 2010, 9:50 am

_Square_Peg_ wrote:
I think therefore I am.
So what about things that don't think, like inanimate objects? Do they not exist?


Ok, this one I get - not like the rolling stone one. It's referring to the logical conclusion of a Self/soul. Inanimate objects don't have thought so they don't have Self. The only problem with this line of thinking is that it presumes that there must be a thinker behind the thought which is refuted in other schools of philosophy. Personally I follow the "no self" line of reasoning.



Ambivalence
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29 Aug 2010, 10:09 am

_Square_Peg_ wrote:
I think therefore I am.
So what about things that don't think, like inanimate objects? Do they not exist?


That isn't what it means. The inference is this:

Things which think exist.
We know that we think.
Therefore we exist.

It is an inference which applies only to things which think, and the special point is that we each know for certain that we ourselves think, therefore we know for certain that we ourselves exist.


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pgd
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29 Aug 2010, 10:16 am

_Square_Peg_ wrote:
I think therefore I am.
So what about things that don't think, like inanimate objects? Do they not exist?


---

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Animism



Moog
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29 Aug 2010, 11:59 am

If 'I' think then there is an 'am' to think, otherwise what would do the thinking?


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Oren
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29 Aug 2010, 12:05 pm

"I think, therefore I am"

My brain is obviously working, so I must be alive.


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29 Aug 2010, 12:11 pm

I hold the view that "I think therefore I am" is an uplifting statement which goes against the horriblel idea of solipsism. Solipsism is the idea that your whole expereince is no more than a figment of your imagination. To me if solipsism is right then there is no point living or doing anything on this earth.

I am sure you have all heard the saying "if a tree falls in the forest and none hears it fall, did it ever happen". I would say that if the world outside our minds is real then what we do and think can echo in eternity so life can have a point.


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Abu_Zarqawi
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29 Aug 2010, 1:01 pm

What's so lame about this is that thoughts being thought only prove the existance of thoughts. It doesn't prove that there is a thinker thinking those thoughts.


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ooOoOoOAnaOoOoOoo
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29 Aug 2010, 1:12 pm

pgd wrote:
Cogito ergo sum means?

Consciousness means you exist because you are self aware. If you have instinct alone, you are not aware of your ego, therefore it's like, to yourself, you do not exist.



Callista
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29 Aug 2010, 1:32 pm

Abu_Zarqawi wrote:
What's so lame about this is that thoughts being thought only prove the existance of thoughts. It doesn't prove that there is a thinker thinking those thoughts.
Yes, it does, though. The thoughts can be defined as an entity by themselves, and that entity is the self. Once you admit that the thoughts exist, you have to admit that the self exists, because one possible definition of "self" is "a collection of thoughts"--that is, the information that makes up a human being.

Even if you were being deceived into believing that you existed, the idea of "deception" has intrinsic to it that there must be someone there to be deceived--therefore, you exist, even in the extreme case wherein every input from your senses is an illusion.

re. Solipsism: If you're the only thing that exists, why are there things that you don't understand and/or can't predict?


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