Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Blindness pretending to see

We were all thrown into the world in a specific state; out of all possible ways to exist, the process of thrownness sculpted me and discarded, in my case, all other ways to cut the stone to end up with my unique instance of existence. The end point of thrownness isn’t static, it allows possibilities in life and the ability to choose; its as if thrownness built a house of limited size for you to live in but you are free to wander from room to room. The specificity of your “house” imposes limits to what can be experienced; how we view the world (e.g. through the limitations of our senses) limits what we see.

One of the most important achievements of our thrownness (we went through similar processes of being thrown into the world) is the ability to have a self-aware point of view. A point of view is grounded in thought and therefore must operate within the limits of how we think; for instance we think in successive thoughts (i.e. one after another) and are therefore limited to thinking from moment to moment. Also, our thinking is not perfect because we suppress all other possible thoughts to think our current thought; perfect thought would involve simultaneously thinking all possible thoughts successively and all at once in all possible contexts and times. Because we have a specific point of view this is impossible. We can think of the concept of perfect thought but we can never experience its perfection; this is because words do not carry the experience of something. Perfection is thought of as “not imperfect” and imperfection is something we can experience and not just a word.

Our point of view, whose dimensions and limitations were determined by thrownness, enables us to see but also makes us blind. For example, experiencing the future of my Parkinson’s is impossible because we think only in the present, moment by moment; even predicting the future is done by thinking in the present. Leaping into the future or into the past is impossible because of the thrown limitation of thinking successive thoughts. Similarly, experiencing God as the perfect being or trying to respond perfectly to Parkinson’s is impossible because we can only think in limited contexts; to know a perfect thing requires us to view the perfect thing perfectly.

We are all blind when we see. Those of us who claim to know the future or God are pretending to see despite being as blind as the rest of us.

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