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comfort? // an elaboration - Lograh — LiveJournal

Friday, 11.Apr.2008

8:46 - comfort? // an elaboration

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Date:20:10 11.Apr.2008 (UTC)
Am I being clueless, or did I miss the bit where this doesn't make complete sense to some people? We all have our own definitions for words and concepts, and we're all constantly refining (or outright redefining) those definitions. The example I always use is this: when I type or say the word "apple," the image and emotional content which rises in your mind is not in any way the same as what's in my mind. Your apple is not my apple, cannot be my apple. We mean completely different things... but they're alike enough that, if I ask if you'd like to have an apple, you can answer the question you're hearing, which is close enough to the question I'm asking that you'll get an apple if you want one. I think.

That we're able to communicate effectively at all is, I think, a function of language (and the minds using it) being flexible enough to accommodate differences in experience, and even in definition, as long as there's some shared frame of reference with which to measure against and adjust for error.

Also, thank you for sharing. ^_^
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Date:22:15 11.Apr.2008 (UTC)
You're very welcome. I'm trying to use this LJ as a place for putting stuff I'm thinking on. This of course being just an offshoot of my general shift to trying to live a more thoughtful life.

We'll see how long this phase lasts. :)

I've often had the same amazement as you mention at the fact that we can manage to communicate at all. Language is such an amazing thing sometimes. What really gets me is when I am talking to a colourblind person I know, and we're talking about something and mention what shade it is and he can identify it properly, but I *know* that's the shade he has trouble with. He's just saying it's some shade of red because he knows that when he sees something that looks like that shade of gray to him, it's really red and his eyes just don't register that. So what we are referring to as "red" he's actually seeing as a certain off-gray. Blows my mind sometimes.
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