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Are you pondering what I'm pondering?

I'll warn you right now, this post is just a bunch of random thoughts and ideas that I've had in that late-night time when I can't sleep, and insomnia gives way to contemplation. I'd like to know what people think about this kind of stuff, even if it's just that people want to leave comments saying that I'm insane. Really, the only reason why I'm writing this down is so that I can try to get things organized for myself.


Everything that's happened in my life, and all the religious conflicts within my family and in the world, has led me to wonder about the big questions in life. The "Does God exist?", "Why are we here?", that type of thing. Overall, I think that there was at some point some kind of supreme power. The image I have in my mind is of some sort of big kid setting up a huge pattern of dominoes. You know how people will set up dominoes so that when one falls, it knocks down the next, etc., etc. If you set up the dominoes with a bunch of branches from the main line, some of the branches won't fall. It's something that's not really predictable, which branches will fall and which won't. I sort of see everything that happens in life as an infinite number of branches, and branches off of branches, etc. As to which branches fall and which don't, that's where people come in. Every person's life can be seen as some sort of influence over the way the dominoes fall. A breath of air, a crumb, anything that could cause the dominoes to shift. The influence could be great or small, it can be combined with others or fighting against others, but every life is an influence. It's just up to us how we use that influence, and which way we'll make the dominoes fall.



Something that I read in my research for my thesis has started me thinking. Gregory Rabassa, a prominent translator, talks about how people interpret words in different ways based on their history. I think that idea can be taken further. Every word, every phrase, provokes some kind of images in the minds of the people who read or hear them. Because each person's mind is different, the images are differ in each person's mind. It makes sense, at least to me. For instance, if you read the sentence, "The dog ran across the street," there are so many variables that each person can imagine - the type of dog, the size, the type of street, if it's day or night, if there are cars on the street...the list goes on. It's one of those fascinating things about the human mind that needs to be taken into account when writing, speaking, or in any way communicating with other people. It sort of explains things about human interactions. For instance, the way people have trouble understanding something that seems so simple to the person who is explaining the concept. People just see different images, and we need to understand what kind of images the people with whom we communicate need to understand.


OK, it's not the greatest philosophical musing of all time, but it's what's been on my mind lately. Go ahead, tell me I'm nuts, that's fine. Questions are welcome, too - whatever makes me contemplate these things further.

Comments

( 1 bubble — Blow a bubble )
aetius
Aug. 11th, 2003 12:02 pm (UTC)
As I have said many times in many different places:

Words are an imperfect vessel for the communication of ideas. But we are limited in available options.
( 1 bubble — Blow a bubble )

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