THROUGH OUR UNDERSTANDING

The world before it is perceived is an infinite collection of qualities. It is up to the perceiver to use some of these qualities to differentiate one event from another. This process of differentiation is driven by desire (relevance, need, meaning…). Note that the perceiver does not “construct” reality itself; rather the perceiver constructs an understanding of reality, a model or theory which guides perception and behavior. Neither does reality alone determine perceptions and behaviors, but rather reality as experienced “through” our understanding.

PERSPECTIVES THEORY C. George Boeree Perspectives web Seven Perspectives

(from the lead page)

Henceforth, my dear philosophers, let us be on guard against the dangerous old conceptual fiction that posited a “pure, will-less, painless, timeless knowing subject”; let us guard against the snares of such contradictory concepts as “pure reason,” “absolute spirituality,” “knowledge in itself”: these always demand that we should think of an eye that is completely unthinkable, an eye turned in no particular direction, in which the active and interpreting forces, through which alone seeing becomes seeing something, are supposed to be lacking; these always demand of the eye an absurdity and a nonsense. There is only a perspective seeing, only a perspective “knowing”; and the more affects we allow to speak about one thing, the more eyes, different eyes, we observe one thing, the more complete will our “concept” of this thing, our “objectivity,” be. But to eliminate the will altogether, to suspend each and every affect, supposing we were capable of this — what would that mean but to castrate the intellect? — from Nietzsche’s Genealogy of Morals

note — phenomenology and constructivism receive smart synthesis in Boeree’s accessible theorizing. We’d be in the same boat if his pragmatics were edgier.

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