Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

What did you say? And what did you mean by it?

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TimeSeeker
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

creativesoul wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:00 pm
You're conflating being in a causal relationship with having the ability to draw correlations.
No I am not. I am merely uncertain about your inclusionary and exclusionary criteria for "ability to draw correlations".

Suppose that we have a set of entities X (organism, organelle, protein, molecule, atom or as low down the abstractions as you wish to go).
Suppose I ask you to sort those things into two groups:

Group 1: Things which are able to draw correlations
Group 2: Things which are unable to draw correlations.

This is binary classification 101: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Binary_classification

Now, I am sure that you can successfully complete the task according to your own criteria/understanding of what "ability to draw correlations" means.
The problem is that I am not on the same page as you and so until you provide me with your classification rule: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Classification_rule I will probably sort the items differently to you.

Which would mean that we interpret "ability to draw correlations" differently.

There is no way for me to "check your work" and hold you accountable. Every single human distinction suffers from this problem. Because our taxonomies are different.

The only way I can actually get an understanding of your meaning is if you sort the objects and I sort the objects and then we debate why you put atoms in Group 1 and I put them in Group 2 etc.

TimeSeeker
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Would you say that a mechanical machine which is able to sort balls of two different size into two different bags is "able to draw correlations" ?

Or in general - any machine which is able to consistently sort things into two categories. Would that meet your bar for "able to draw correlations" ?

creativesoul
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

TimeSeeker wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:32 pm
creativesoul wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:00 pm
You're conflating being in a causal relationship with having the ability to draw correlations.
No I am not. I am merely uncertain about your inclusionary and exclusionary criteria for "ability to draw correlations".

Suppose that we have a set of entities X (organism, organelle, protein, molecule, atom or as low down the abstractions as you wish to go).
Suppose I ask you to sort those things into two groups:

Group 1: Things which are able to draw correlations
Group 2: Things which are unable to draw correlations.

This is binary classification 101: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Binary_classification

Now, I am sure that you can successfully complete the task according to your own criteria/understanding of what "ability to draw correlations" means.
The problem is that I am not on the same page as you and so until you provide me with your classification rule: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Classification_rule I will probably sort the items differently to you.

Which would mean that we interpret "ability to draw correlations" differently.

There is no way for me to "check your work" and hold you accountable. Every single human distinction suffers from this problem. Because our taxonomies are different.

The only way I can actually get an understanding of your meaning is if you sort the objects and I sort the objects and then we debate why you put atoms in Group 1 and I put them in Group 2 etc.
Finally.

I knew you had it in you.

That's a good point to make. It is indeed the ability to draw correlations that determines whether or not any particular candidate has the ability to form and/or have thought/belief. On my view, that line cannot be arbitrarily drawn because we're not the ones drawing it. Akin to the reasoning behind my arriving at drawing correlations as thought/belief is the reasoning behind determining what sorts of creatures have what it takes to draw correlations. Physiological sensory perception replete with the ability to draw spatiotemporal distinction between different things seems to be a necessary element.

Belinda
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

creativesoul wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 4:50 pm
Belinda wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 1:10 pm
Language is one of several symbolic media of communication. It's impossible to think as humans think without the ability to symbolise categories(frames, models, heuristics).
Yes, as humans we think in quite complex ways. However, if all of these ways include drawing correlations between different things, and drawing correlations between different things does not require language but still counts as a rudimentary form of thinking, then we arrive at an outline that serves as a continuum of complexity with the simplest kinds of thought on the one end and the most complex on the other.
Yes, I can see that it's a continuum.However it has been said that humans have evolved as they have, and differently from other animals, because unlike other animals,human culture affects genetics. Not, I stress, in a Lamarkian way but slowly like Darwinian evolution.

TimeSeeker
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

creativesoul wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:43 pm
That's a good point to make. It is indeed the ability to draw correlations that determines whether or not any particular candidate has the ability to form and/or have thought/belief. On my view, that line cannot be arbitrarily drawn because we're not the ones drawing it. Akin to the reasoning behind my arriving at drawing correlations as thought/belief is the reasoning behind determining what sorts of creatures have what it takes to draw correlations. Physiological sensory perception replete with the ability to draw spatiotemporal distinction between different things seems to be a necessary element.
This is easily formalisable though. 1 distinction = 1 bit of information.

And so it does not have to be a "living thing" which draws the correlations. Which is why I asked if a simple, mechanical sorting machine meets your criteria? Again. because I don't think there is anything magical about perception. It's a measurement apparatus.
Last edited by TimeSeeker on Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

creativesoul
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

TimeSeeker wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:32 pm
creativesoul wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:00 pm
You're conflating being in a causal relationship with having the ability to draw correlations.
No I am not.
Actually you were. When we say that quantum states correlate we're not talking about the quantum particles' ability to draw correlations. We're talking about the fact that the two are in a causal relationship or at least in some repeatable relation.
Last edited by creativesoul on Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

creativesoul
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Belinda wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:49 pm
creativesoul wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 4:50 pm
Belinda wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 1:10 pm
Language is one of several symbolic media of communication. It's impossible to think as humans think without the ability to symbolise categories(frames, models, heuristics).
Yes, as humans we think in quite complex ways. However, if all of these ways include drawing correlations between different things, and drawing correlations between different things does not require language but still counts as a rudimentary form of thinking, then we arrive at an outline that serves as a continuum of complexity with the simplest kinds of thought on the one end and the most complex on the other.
Yes, I can see that it's a continuum.However it has been said that humans have evolved as they have, and differently from other animals, because unlike other animals,human culture affects genetics. Not, I stress, in a Lamarkian way but slowly like Darwinian evolution.
Well, I do work from a framework of methodological naturalism.

TimeSeeker
Posts: 2866
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2018 8:42 am

Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

creativesoul wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:53 pm
No I am not.
Actually you were. When we say that quantum states correlate we're not talking about the quantum particles' ability to draw correlations. We're talking about the fact that the two are in a causal relationship.
[/quote]
It's debatable whether they are in a causal relationship. I am only happy to say that their states are correlated.

If you think there's a causal relationship there then you necessarily reject the speed of light (causality) as being constant.

creativesoul
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

TimeSeeker wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:52 pm
creativesoul wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:43 pm
That's a good point to make. It is indeed the ability to draw correlations that determines whether or not any particular candidate has the ability to form and/or have thought/belief. On my view, that line cannot be arbitrarily drawn because we're not the ones drawing it. Akin to the reasoning behind my arriving at drawing correlations as thought/belief is the reasoning behind determining what sorts of creatures have what it takes to draw correlations. Physiological sensory perception replete with the ability to draw spatiotemporal distinction between different things seems to be a necessary element.
This is easily formalisable though. 1 distinction = 1 bit of information.

And so it does not have to be a "living thing" which draws the correlations. Which is why I asked if a simple, mechanical sorting machine meets your criteria? Again. because I don't think there is anything magical about perception. It's a measurement apparatus.
I do not think that there is anything magical about physiological sensory perception either, but it is biological.

TimeSeeker
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

In fact, I would go as far as to say that if you take a perspective of the "objective observer" who sees all then the whole universe is one. unity.
There is no individuation possible there. It's a complete system.

To break it down into "parts" IS to display subjective values.

TimeSeeker
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

creativesoul wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:57 pm
I do not think that there is anything magical about physiological sensory perception either, but it is biological.
Sure. Abiogenesis.

creativesoul
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

TimeSeeker wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:56 pm
creativesoul wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:53 pm
No I am not.
Actually you were. When we say that quantum states correlate we're not talking about the quantum particles' ability to draw correlations. We're talking about the fact that the two are in a causal relationship.
TimeSeeker wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:56 pm
It's debatable whether they are in a causal relationship. I am only happy to say that their states are correlated.

If you think there's a causal relationship there then you necessarily reject the speed of light (causality) as being constant.
Well I do not delve too far into QM for it is math beyond my comprehension. The interpretations, however, are philosophy. I do think that we've not rightly understood light itself...
Last edited by creativesoul on Tue Nov 13, 2018 6:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

creativesoul
Posts: 771
Joined: Sat May 21, 2011 4:16 am

Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

TimeSeeker wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:58 pm
In fact, I would go as far as to say that if you take a perspective of the "objective observer" who sees all then the whole universe is one. unity.
There is no individuation possible there. It's a complete system.

To break it down into "parts" IS to display subjective values.
I avoid the historical dichotomies which are inherently incapable of taking account of that which consist of both, and is thus... neither; the objective/subjective dichotomy being one of several...

creativesoul
Posts: 771
Joined: Sat May 21, 2011 4:16 am

Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

TimeSeeker wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:52 pm
creativesoul wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:43 pm
That's a good point to make. It is indeed the ability to draw correlations that determines whether or not any particular candidate has the ability to form and/or have thought/belief. On my view, that line cannot be arbitrarily drawn because we're not the ones drawing it. Akin to the reasoning behind my arriving at drawing correlations as thought/belief is the reasoning behind determining what sorts of creatures have what it takes to draw correlations. Physiological sensory perception replete with the ability to draw spatiotemporal distinction between different things seems to be a necessary element.
This is easily formalisable though. 1 distinction = 1 bit of information.

And so it does not have to be a "living thing" which draws the correlations. Which is why I asked if a simple, mechanical sorting machine meets your criteria? Again. because I don't think there is anything magical about perception. It's a measurement apparatus.
I would reject the method. One thing that all uncontentious examples of thought/belief have in common is that they are formed/had by a biological creature.

TimeSeeker
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

creativesoul wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 6:19 pm
I would reject the method. One thing that all uncontentious examples of thought/belief have in common is that they are formed/had by a biological creature.
This sounds like special pleading. There is absolutely no reason to treat the mind as anything but a modular/mechanical system.

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