Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

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creativesoul
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by creativesoul » Tue Oct 18, 2016 10:06 pm

What would non-linguistic thought consist of?

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Terrapin Station
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by Terrapin Station » Tue Oct 18, 2016 10:13 pm

creativesoul wrote:What would non-linguistic thought consist of?
One example is that as a musician/composer, I often think musically--in terms of musical figures, patterns, textures, etc.

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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by creativesoul » Tue Oct 18, 2016 11:08 pm

Thinking without language, on my view, would require thought to be able to exist in an agent who had no language... ever.

Whatever that creature's thought consisted of would rightfully qualify as non-linguistic.

Music requires language. Thinking in music could not happen without the thinker already having language. Non-linguistic thought cannot consist of that which requires language.

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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by Terrapin Station » Tue Oct 18, 2016 11:22 pm

creativesoul wrote:Music requires language.
How does thinking musically as I described require language?

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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by creativesoul » Wed Oct 19, 2016 12:49 am

Terrapin Station wrote:...I often think musically--in terms of musical figures, patterns, textures, etc.
Terrapin Station wrote:How does thinking musically as I described require language?
Because the thought is about and/or consists of that which requires language. Musical figures, patterns, and textures require language. Thinking in 'terms' requires language.

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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by Terrapin Station » Wed Oct 19, 2016 1:18 am

creativesoul wrote:Because the thought is about and/or consists of that which requires language.
Give me an example or two of what language it requires specifically.

For example, say that one is thinking of an intervallic pattern, like 1-9-b7-11 (up a step) 1-9-b7-11 (up a step) etc. I'm not saying that one is thinking literally "1" "9" etc. One is thinking of the intervallic pattern as an intervallic pattern, in terms of the pitch relationships, or in terms of a fingering or fretboard or keyboard pattern, say. Well, what specifically is the language that requires?

Or if you don't like that example, you can offer one of your own.

"In terms of" by the way wasn't meant in an Aspie-ish, literal way where I'm referring to linguistic terms. It was meant a la "in the realm of."

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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by creativesoul » Wed Oct 19, 2016 4:45 pm

Terrapin Station wrote:...thinking of the intervallic pattern as an intervallic pattern, in terms of the pitch relationships, or in terms of a fingering or fretboard or keyboard pattern, say. Well, what specifically is the language that requires?
It's not a matter of any particular language. Rather, it's that language is necessary for all of those notions. Musical scales and/or instruments are existentially contingent upon language. Thinking about that which is existentially contingent upon language is also existentially contingent upon language. No language, no music. No music, no thought of musical concepts.

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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by Terrapin Station » Wed Oct 19, 2016 6:40 pm

creativesoul wrote:It's not a matter of any particular language.
You're saying that when I think of something like the example I gave, I'm necessarily thinking in language or linguistically, correct? I'm talking about that specific instance. You should be, too, because I'm giving you a specific-instance example of thinking that's not linguistic.

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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by creativesoul » Thu Oct 20, 2016 4:43 am

Terrapin Station wrote:
creativesoul wrote:It's not a matter of any particular language.
You're saying that when I think of something like the example I gave, I'm necessarily thinking in language or linguistically, correct? I'm talking about that specific instance. You should be, too, because I'm giving you a specific-instance example of thinking that's not linguistic.
Here's the question:Is it possible to think without language?

We agree that it is possible. We disagree that your example is possible without language. Without language there is no music, no scales, no fretboards, no keyboards...

Justintruth
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by Justintruth » Thu Oct 20, 2016 6:59 am

creativesoul wrote:What would non-linguistic thought consist of?
An imagining.

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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by creativesoul » Thu Oct 20, 2016 7:31 am

Justintruth wrote:
creativesoul wrote:What would non-linguistic thought consist of?
An imagining.
Does it make sense to say that thought/belief consists of the imagination, or that the imagination consists of thought/belief. On my view, the imagination is akin to an apple pie and thought/belief are akin to it's ingredients. That is, to be more specific, the imagination consists of a plurality of different but interrelated, correlated, associated, and/or otherwise connected thought/belief.

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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by Terrapin Station » Thu Oct 20, 2016 10:18 am

creativesoul wrote:Here's the question:Is it possible to think without language?

We agree that it is possible.
Hmm, I thought you didn't agree with that.
We disagree that your example is possible without language. Without language there is no music, no scales, no fretboards, no keyboards...
Okay, so what in that specific example of thought is the language part? Are you saying that the intervallic pattern is language somehow?

It sounds like you're commenting on language being a social precursor to things like the well-tempered tuning system and so on. But I'm not talking about that. I'm talking about the content present in a specific example of thinking.

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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by Terrapin Station » Thu Oct 20, 2016 10:25 am

creativesoul wrote:
Justintruth wrote:
creativesoul wrote:What would non-linguistic thought consist of?
An imagining.
Does it make sense to say that thought/belief consists of the imagination, or that the imagination consists of thought/belief. On my view, the imagination is akin to an apple pie and thought/belief are akin to it's ingredients. That is, to be more specific, the imagination consists of a plurality of different but interrelated, correlated, associated, and/or otherwise connected thought/belief.
I thought he was suggesting an identity in a non-linguistic case (although I also thought he should have said something like "a visualization" to be clearer, since we can imagine linguistic things, too).

Anyway, if it's an identity, it's not a case of one thing being comprised of another in a whole-part relationship sense where the whole is not the same thing as the part(s).

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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by creativesoul » Fri Oct 21, 2016 8:59 am

Terrapin Station wrote:Okay, so what in that specific example of thought is the language part?...
Ill-conceived question. Do not confuse what it takes to be without language and what it takes to be without talking.

I'm talking about the content present in a specific example of thinking.
I know, and you're doing it based upon an impoverished notion of what counts as being without language.

It's simple. Without language there is no possibility of music. Without music, there is no musical scales, fretboards, or keyboards. When there is no music, no musical scales, no fretboards, and no keyboards, there is no thought/belief about those things... unspoken or otherwise.

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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by Terrapin Station » Fri Oct 21, 2016 11:30 am

creativesoul wrote:
Terrapin Station wrote:Okay, so what in that specific example of thought is the language part?...
Ill-conceived question. Do not confuse what it takes to be without language and what it takes to be without talking.
I'm not making a claim about either. I'm simply asking you a question.

Let's try it this way. In your view, when I think of an intervallic pattern like "1 9 b7 11 up a step 1 9 b7 11 etc.", I'm thinking linguistically, correct?

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