• LSDC
    7
    Hoping to bounce these ideas off the forum.

    Could you agree, or disagree with the following:

    A) a person = their thoughts, feelings, (including beliefs) and actions.

    B) thoughts and feelings govern actions, and vice verca.

    Probably nonsense but please tell me why.

    Cheers.
  • frank
    1.7k
    a person = their thoughts, feelings, (including beliefs) and actions.LSDC

    A person is the thinker, feeler, believer, actor. Thought has two poles: thinker and thought.

    Thoughts and feelings govern actions, and vice verca.LSDC

    Certainly seems so.
  • All sight
    241
    I think that it is true in a sense, the implication of which is that one is repeatable as thoughts feelings and actions are repeatable. Though a person could also be described with more unique features, but are less "personal" and about capacity for thought and action. The concept of a person first came about to explain the trinity, and is taken from persona, or the masks Greek theatre performers used to express different emotions. It of course has legal meanings about blood and cultural relatedness and potential for responsibility.

    As stands, the implication is that two distinct things at two distinct times and places could be identical people, if the thoughts feelings and actions were identical. So that, distinguishing between persons and objects isn't identical, in that just their physical attributes and circumstances do not constitute personhood, and this is implied in the original purpose for using the word in this context as well. In that the object and the person are distinct, so as on object could contain three persons. Like masks worn by the object.

    I think that some may quibble over your characterization of person, but I agree with it, and I think that seems about right to me!
  • DingoJones
    170
    A) a person = their thoughts, feelings, (including beliefs) and actions.

    B) thoughts and feelings govern actions, and vice verca.

    Probably nonsense but please tell me why.
    LSDC

    A) agree, but would suggest expanding a bit more. A persons thoughts and feelings are informed by some biology...lots of testosterone leads to certain thoughts, or lack of serotonin. I think these things are the person too, the chemical balances and the way we are built biologically are probably at the core of what people often think of as a “person”.

    B) Again, isnt it more than thoughts and feelings? Are you using either of those words to include logic and reason? Those govern action as well.
    In what way do you think actions govern thoughts and feelings? Im not sure I understand how that would be the case.
  • LSDC
    7


    Actions governing our feelings / thoughts in so far as our past 'experience' is determined largely by our past actions.

    Even if these actions were receptive, such as seeing, hearing, being told something etc.

    So while more specifically our experience governs our thoughts / feelings / beliefs, i see experience as being a product of our actions. Does that make sense?
  • LSDC
    7


    I agree that 'thoughts and feelings' is a very simplistic way of putting it, but i do mean it to include logic, reason, emotion etc. Any mental function really.
  • DingoJones
    170
    Actions governing our feelings / thoughts in so far as our past 'experience' is determined largely by our past actions.

    Even if these actions were receptive, such as seeing, hearing, being told something etc.

    So while more specifically our experience governs our thoughts / feelings / beliefs, i see experience as being a product of our actions. Does that make sense?
    LSDC

    It seems a bit strange to say experience is s product of our actions..experience is a product of being conscious, but ya that makes sense.
    So where are these queries leading to? Are the basis for something else you want to discuss?
  • DingoJones
    170
    I agree that 'thoughts and feelings' is a very simplistic way of putting it, but i do mean it to include logic, reason, emotion etc. Any mental function really.LSDC

    Alright, then I think what you said is perfectly reasonable.
  • LSDC
    7


    Yes. If we consider that thoughts, feelings etc + actions = who you are.

    And we also consider these 2 things cause the other in a cyclical way....what are the implications for being able to 'change' oneself? Does it suggest an inescapable loop that prevents this possibility?

    It seems to me that (if indeed the original ideas are valid) the only agency we have to change ourselves is to try to control our thoughts. (If this is possible) creating a knock on effect to our actions, thus our feelings.

    Feelings / emotions are inherently uncontrollable i'd say, up to a point. And if actions are a direct result of all these aforementioned 'mental processes' they can only be changed via attempting to control an aspect of these. ( ie thoughts ) which im sure some would argue is not possible - hence, we are doomed to failure if we ever try to 'change' ( i assume this touches on the question of free will)

    Other conclusions from this theory might be that mindfulness, meditation, is perhaps the key, as they seek to control in some sense, the chaos of our minds. "Watch your thoughts for they become your....etc etc etc"

    Just floating some half baked ideas here, equally hoping for some explanations as to why they are innacurate.

    Cheers.
  • Evil
    48
    Thought has two poles: thinker and thought.frank

    The thought of a thinker is just another thought
  • DingoJones
    170


    I agree, the traits you describe are dynamic, they play off of each other but in the end its a loop, its locked in. I think you are right it does put our agency into question. But, as we just discussed our agency actually encompasses some of that, thoughts and feeling informed by biology and interaction with environment etc etc, so as far as free will goes I think that if agency includes all that then there is room for us to be making choices. I think at the very least awareness plays a key role, it seems to me that it holds a unique place, by itself it can completely change the course of a choice.
  • LSDC
    7


    Yeah i'd agree with that. Seems to me that thoughts are a precursor to actions, and through effort and awareness we can exert some control of our thoughts. Thus choice and change is possible, theoretically.

    Appreciate the input.
  • macrosoft
    381
    The thought of a thinker is just another thoughtEvil

    Interesting point, which I've also contemplated, but it leads pretty quickly down the rabbit hole. If the thinker is just another thought, then everything intelligible is just a thought. So distinctions of mind and non-mind and self and non-self are all 'within' thought, derivative from thought. So thought becomes a misleading term. Reality becomes something like a network of meanings and sensations where the meanings are neither mental nor material nor anything, since the meanings 'bathed' in sensation are fundamental.

    It's the kind of daring thinking we can engage in now and then, and then we return to ordinary functioning where the 'I' or thinker is roughly understand as fundamental in the context of the roughly conceived non-I, also fundamental. What's nice about going down the rabbit hole is that it demonstrates how 'natural' consciousness can come apart if we emphasize a distinction that is usually employed both carelessly and successfully.
  • Evil
    48
    It's the kind of daring thinking we can engage in now and then, and then we return to ordinary functioning where the 'I' or thinker is roughly understand as fundamental in the context of the roughly conceived non-I, also fundamentalmacrosoft

    You're describing the fall
  • BrianW
    311
    A) a person = their thoughts, feelings, (including beliefs) and actions.LSDC

    Not quite. Thoughts, feelings and actions are expressed by a person but do not constitute that identity we may refer to as self. I think it's because the self is constant while thoughts, feelings and actions are transient.

    B) thoughts and feelings govern actions, and vice verca.LSDC

    There seems to be empirical truth in that, though exceedingly subjective in its manifestation.
  • TWI
    93
    As I believe everyone is the one consciousness, or God if you like, then your real identity is that consciousness, separate from the body/brain. So I conclude that the real you is independant of your body/brain which is the manufacturer of emotions. To identify the real you just observe your other you, anger, lust, greed etc, then hopefully it will separate from the real you, it might even fade out altogether leaving enlightenment.
  • LSDC
    7


    Im inclined to agree with that on some levels.

    But if I try to define what that 'self' (separated from minds / actions) constitutes, it seems utterly abstract, impercievable. Therefore I question that it 'exists'.

    Could you perhaps elaborate / further define what this 'self' constitutes?

    Cheers
  • BrianW
    311


    I would define the self as that point of reference which is fundamental to awareness or consciousness and from which it is operated. Also, the point of reference from which everything is external.
    All activity, mental, emotional, physical, etc, takes place through mechanisms employed by the self and are indispensable to its mode of expression. However, without awareness or consciousness, neither of the parts nor the sum of the mechanisms can be said to be a person.
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