Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Communications are experiences (not knowledge - knowledge is direct)

What we term communications, of all sensory sorts - the spoken or written word, images, sounds - including music, smells, tastes, touch - are not knowledge but are experiences.

Our mortal life is about experiences, and how we respond to them; so communications are very important. But we should not mistake them for knowledge.

Why not? Well, that is obvious - in the sense that we have many generations of philosophical reflection that emphasise how unreliable are communications, that they cannot be relied upon for knowledge (or 'certainty').

This for multiple reasons - to do with limitations of cognition, of biased and incomplete sampling, of the multi-step nature of communications and so on. Some have concluded that therefore there is no possibility of knowledge - e.g. that knowledge is entirely subjective, based on arbitrary information, a matter of opinion, contingent, labile, uncommunicable etc.

But the inference that there because communication is non-valid therefore there can be no knowledge includes a false assumption - which is that only the material world exists.

It is correct that since communications are all material, and they are indeed non-valid, communications are no basis for knowledge - but this leaves-out the non-material ('immaterial', 'spiritual') world, the world that cannot be (or is not, currently) detected by our senses - and is also undetected by the instruents of science.

We assume that this non-material world does not exist - but that is merely an assumption; furthermore a very modern and entirely Western assumption; an assumption restricted to a tiny temperospatial proportion of human reality...

If we instead assume that there is a further reality outwith the sensed and currently-detected material reality; then knowledge may be assumed to exist in this larger reality.

In other words, knowledge may be real (and vital) but not communicated.

This can be understood in terms of knowledge being directly-down, without any mediation; and if knowledge is to be more than delusion, the knowledge that is directly-known is one, single realm of knowledge - in principle, although not in every instance, all knowledge is universally knowable.

So here we have two very different things: one is the world of communications, which we ought to regard as experiences, or - in a sense as challenges to which we are called-upon to respond correctly... And on the other hand knowledge, which is only knowable by direct apprehension (which we could call intuition).

To know directly is possible, even if it is unusual - and this opens-up that line of metaphysical theory that I have been exploring as Primary Thinking.

One implication is that when we personally are communicating, we are providing experiences for others - but we are not transmitting knowledge. By contrast, when we are engaged in primary thinking we are engaged in direct knowing - and, because knowledge must potentially be universally accessible to be knowledge, others may also know directly what we know.

Thus knowledge is not communicated, and communications are not knowledge - this is useful to remember!