• Harry Hindu
    2.6k
    If behavior is the effect of some cause, the cause is the meaning of the behavior...
    — Harry Hindu

    That doesn't follow. Rather it fails to draw the distinction between causality and meaning. "Neglects" may be a better word choice here. "Conflates" works as well.
    creativesoul

    If causality and meaning aren't the same, then what is the distinction?

    When you ask me what I mean when I use words, what are you asking?
  • creativesoul
    6.9k
    When you ask me what I mean when I use words, what are you asking?Harry Hindu

    I'm asking you what you mean.

    The distinction between meaning and causality is one of elemental constituency. They are existentially dependent upon very different things.
  • creativesoul
    6.9k
    What has no meaning cannot be spoken of.I like sushi

    What are you speaking of then?

    When we realize what meaning is, we know what it takes, we know what it is itself existentially dependent upon, what the necessary preconditions are. Hence, we can know that when those conditions have not been met, there is no meaning.
  • Harry Hindu
    2.6k
    When you ask me what I mean when I use words, what are you asking?
    — Harry Hindu

    I'm asking you what you mean.
    creativesoul
    Your answer lacks substance. Care to elaborate?

    The distinction between meaning and causality is one of elemental constituency. They are existentially dependent upon very different things.creativesoul
    How so?

    I would have expected something to chew on rather than these empty claims and answers you've provided. Be more specific.
  • creativesoul
    6.9k
    If "pure" is meant to denote something in it's most unadulterated uncorrupted and/or basic state, then it doesn't get any purer that what I've set out here.
    — creativesoul

    By pure meaning I just mean the imagined context that can be moved from French to English. That somehow an English translation is the 'same' book suggest the notion of a language-independent meaning, though many translators will stress that they have only done their best and actually created a new, only similar work.
    Eee

    I would not say that translation suggests the notion of a language independent meaning. It does suggest that some meaning is neither bound nor completely determined by any particular language.
  • creativesoul
    6.9k
    When you ask me what I mean when I use words, what are you asking?
    — Harry Hindu

    I'm asking you what you mean.
    — creativesoul
    Your answer lacks substance. Care to elaborate?
    Harry Hindu

    Look at what you wrote my friend. Your answer lies in your question.
  • creativesoul
    6.9k
    The distinction between meaning and causality is one of elemental constituency. They are existentially dependent upon very different things.
    — creativesoul
    How so?

    I would have expected something to chew on rather than these empty claims and answers you've provided. Be more specific.
    Harry Hindu

    Do you know what elemental constituency is?
  • Harry Hindu
    2.6k
    If the answer was in my question, then it wouldn't really be question, would it? Why don't you start by explaining what "meaning" is.

    Do you know what elemental constituency is?creativesoul
    Nope. If I did I wouldnt be asking for you to clarify. I don't understand why you are finding it difficult to flesh out your argument because I have no idea what you're arguing for or against.
  • creativesoul
    6.9k
    What do you make of this?
    Language, Saussure insists, has an oral tradition that is independent of writing, and it is this independence that makes a pure science of speech possible. Derrida vehemently disagrees with this hierarchy and instead argues that all that can be claimed of writing - eg. that it is derivative and merely refers to other signs - is equally true of speech. But as well as criticising such a position for certain unjustifiable presuppositions, including the idea that we are self-identical with ourselves in 'hearing' ourselves think, Derrida also makes explicit the manner in which such a hierarchy is rendered untenable from within Saussure's own text. Most famously, Saussure is the proponent of the thesis that is commonly referred to as "the arbitrariness of the sign", and this asserts, to simplify matters considerably, that the signifier bears no necessary relationship to that which is signified. Saussure derives numerous consequences from this position, but as Derrida points out, this notion of arbitrariness and of "unmotivated institutions" of signs, would seem to deny the possibility of any natural attachment (OG 44). After all, if the sign is arbitrary and eschews any foundational reference to reality, it would seem that a certain type of sign (ie. the spoken) could not be more natural than another (ie. the written). However, it is precisely this idea of a natural attachment that Saussure relies upon to argue for our "natural bond" with sound (25), and his suggestion that sounds are more intimately related to our thoughts than the written word hence runs counter to his fundamental principle regarding the arbitrariness of the sign.
    — SEP

    To me one of the interesting themes is a destabilizing of the so-called mental realm, the idea of which is tied up with pure meaning. Of course we have intuitions of being minds, and we take this granted, the talk of minds filled with thoughts. But there's no private language, and we use 'I' fairly automatically.
    Eee

    "Natural bond" might be better rendered as one that is not existentially dependent upon the written word.

    "The destabilizing of the so-called mental realm..." is an interesting notion. I take it to be referring to the conventional notion of the mental realm at that time. It was wrong. So, if deconstructing it destabilizes it, then such an endeavor was needed as a means for acquiring greater understanding of meaning and/or our own thought and belief.

    The 'problem', of course, is that what counts as "mental realm" and "arbitrariness" is relative to language use. One of these notions can be said to pick out something that exists in it's entirety prior to language use, but the other not so much.

    Some signs are arbitrary. Some are not.

    Meaning is most certainly not properly accounted for solely in terms of "mental realm".
  • I like sushi
    1.8k
    The quote was in a given context. I simply meant that the ‘meaning’ is present in any utterance - nonsensical items are recognised as ‘nonsensical’. This is comparable to Kantian Noumenon only being possible in a ‘negative’ sense.

    It’s basically a trick of language. Everything is necessarily ‘meaningful’ to us if it is within our scope of attention. That is to say anything outside our scope of attention is ‘not meaningful’ in one particular way - potential. What can never have meaning to us is not something we can ‘attend to’.

    As a further example just try and bring up a topic that has no meaning. Even something nonsensical or gibberish has ‘meaning’ surrounding it.

    Note: I understand you probably meant ‘meaning’ in a more confined way. I’m not encouraging rhetoric here just presenting the limitation of worded thought in terms of what is ‘real’ or ‘existent’. We must necessarily limit our thought and scope to possessing ‘meaning’ - no talk is ‘free floating’, but we can still offer up analogies and metaphors like ‘free floating’ to explore ‘gist’ ideas.
  • creativesoul
    6.9k


    That's better. It seems that you're looking into(talking about) what all meaning takes and/or has in common. That's precisely the aim!
  • creativesoul
    6.9k
    Why don't you start by explaining what "meaning" is.Harry Hindu

    I did. From the first page of this thread...

    At a bare minimum, all attribution of meaning(all meaning) requires something to become symbol/sign, something to become symbolized/significant and a creature capable of drawing a mental correlation, association, and/or connection between the two.

    There are no examples to the contrary.
    creativesoul
  • Harry Hindu
    2.6k
    At a bare minimum, all attribution of meaning(all meaning) requires something to become symbol/sign, something to become symbolized/significant and a creature capable of drawing a mental correlation, association, and/or connection between the two.

    There are no examples to the contrary.
    creativesoul

    Does the correlation between symbol and what is symbolized exist only mentally, or is there an external, physical, causal relationship between the two that exists independent of any mind drawing the correlation?
  • creativesoul
    6.9k
    Does the correlation between symbol and what is symbolized exist only mentally, or is there an external, physical, causal relationship between the two that exists independent of any mind drawing the correlation?Harry Hindu

    Are those the only choices?
  • Harry Hindu
    2.6k
    I don't know. If there are then move the conversation forward.
  • creativesoul
    6.9k
    Can you think of any other way to talk about correlations drawn between different things aside from being either all internal/mental or all external?

    What if correlations consist of both?
  • Harry Hindu
    2.6k
    I would rather dispense with the use of external vs. internal, physical vs. mental dichotomies and just say that all correlations are causal.
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