allzermalmer

Truth suffers from too much analysis

George Berkeley’s on Immediate Perception & Mediated Perception Pt. II

Posted by allzermalmer on October 22, 2012

This is going to work off of a previous blog done on George Berkeley’s point about Immediate Perception and Mediated Perception.

All the human senses (sight, taste, sound, touch, and smell), are distinct from one another, like the sun is distinct from the moon. But these “naturally” distinct things are combined, connected, or associated, with one another. When they are combined, connected, or associated together, they bring forth new phenomena. One example is combining sight and touch together to form depth. We connect these two distinct senses together, and we get depth or three dimensions. This new phenomena is a human creation. It was not an immediate perception but was a mediated perception.

We connect each of the distinct senses together to help to form one “body” or “object”. You have a visual object, and this visual image happens to have color and shape. We also have tactical object, and this tactical feel happens to be hard, cold, and wet. We do this with taste, smell, and sound. We combine these distinct sensual immediate perceptions together to form one “object”, or “body”, and get the mediated perception of “the apple”.

Every sense is distinct from one another. Each distinct sense has their own immediate perceptions. So sight is distinct from touch, but touch has its own immediate perceptions and sight has its own immediate perception. Sight gives the immediate perception of red and touch gives the immediate perception of hot.

Now it appears that each sense would have its own “mediated perceptions” as well, or at least how the human mind has created somethings. Take this example, which is only dealing with sight. [**To speak clearly, these examples are not strictly immediate perceptions as Berkeley uses the term. But they are going to be called “immediate perceptions”, and what comes about from their combination becomes the “mediated perception”.**]

(1) You pick up a rock and look at it.
(2) You look at the rock with a magnifying glass. [(1) is not the same as (2)]
(3) You look at the rock with binoculars. [(2) is not the same as (3)]
(4) You look at the rock with a Light Microscope. [(3) is not the same as (4)]
(5) You look at the rock with an Electron Microscope. [(4) is not the same as (5)]
(6) You look at the rock with Infrared. [(5) is not the same as (6)]
(7) You look at the rock with X-Ray. [(6) is not the same as (7)]

Each of these visual “immediate perceptions” are distinct from one another. But similar to how we connect sight, touch, taste, smell, and sound, to form the “body” or “object” we call “the apple”, so too do we combine the different visual “immediate perceptions” to form the “mediated perception” of the visual “body, or “object”, we call “the rock”. This would hold with the other distinct senses, i.e. touch and taste, as well.

But the different “visual images” are obviously not of the same “body” or “object”. First, the “body” or “object” is a combination of different senses from one another. The rock is a combination of sight, touch, taste, smell, and sound. But each of these are “naturally” distinct from one another, and so the body that is the rock before us, is a creation of the human mind. Each of these senses presents a different aspect of the “same” object, (the object itself being a mediated perception and thus a creation of the human mind).

The senses themselves also have mediated perception, (in an analogical sense and not strictly). The rock has distinct visual aspects. And the human mind combines these distinct visual images and say they are different aspects of the “same” object, (the object itself being a mediated perception in a loose analogical sense, and thus a creation of the human mind). This would go on with the other senses as well, like touch.

Take the example of (1) and (5), or even (4). In these cases, when we look at (5), what we are looking at is something that we cannot touch. It is first of all the sense of sight, and the sense of sight is distinct from touch. Thus, we cannot touch what we see. But we have combined these two distinct senses to say that we can see what we touch. But now we have said that the sense of sight has shown us another “level” of the “body” or “object” that is “the rock” before us. And at the level of (5) or (4), what we see does not match up with what we touch. The rock feels smooth but image (5) or (4) does not feel smooth or even “look” smooth. So the image not only does not match up with the other images, it does not match up with the other senses or the minimum tangibly of touch.

 

 

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