Saturday, August 02, 2014


When you used to say that "perception is reality," were you reading a lot of Berkeley and Hume?

1 comment:

Taint Montgomery said...

Marchhare up outta nowhere damn yo.

Actually that was before I got into philosophy, back in the 98-00 era of donuts outside anna's.

The connection to Berkeley is right on though. My mind was blown when I learned that Berkeley's subjective idealism was an elaboration of my weaker 'perception is reality' thing.

'Perception is Reality' could be interpreted in (at least) one of two ways:

1) Perception is the substance of reality. Reality is in perception just as we might believe the world is in matter. Without persistent, enduring 'thought substance', things could not be, just as without persistent, enduring matter (or physical substance) objects in the physical world could not be. This interpretation is ontologically stronger, and it is closer to Berkeley's subjective idealism.

2) 'Perception is reality' in the sense that a meaningful reality can only have its 'meaningfullness' provided by a meaning producing mind. In the absence of such mind, it seems we would be unable to even use a meaningful term such as 'reality' to describe this meaningless something (again, same problem with the term 'something', and so on into the regress). Reality may still exist in absence of this meaning, but oh wait, what could 'exist' even mean in that case? This position could be called 'semantic idealism' though that sounds kinda lame. This is what I was talking about back in the day.

Then there is the bad ass culmination of enlightenment thought in the form of 'objective idealism', which is where the real money is at, but that's some other business.