[percy-l] animal communication and consciousness

Parlin, Steven PARLINS at culver.org
Thu Dec 12 16:00:59 EST 2002

Dear Jim (I apologize for the previous informalities. Too much in a hurry to
get my ideas out there)

Thanks for the feedback and interesting ideas. All due respect though, I'm
not sure what you mean by "the discovery of the abstract notion existence".
Doesn't this imply that the notion existed before its "discovery"?  If so,
doesn't that mean that the "thing" is not contingent upon our constructing
ideas about it?  That consciousness was something that existed prior to our
notions of it and was made available to us, either by grace or evolution,
and not something that sprang forth?  Hmmm. I have to chew on that for
awhile. But, I think I hold to my first contention that language attempts to
get at the consciousness we participate in, instead of consciousness being a
manifestation of a language we use. Interesting stuff. 

 -----Original Message-----
From: 	James Piat [mailto:piat1 at bellsouth.net] 
Sent:	Thursday, December 12, 2002 3:42 PM
To:	percy-l at lists.ibiblio.org
Subject:	Re: [percy-l] animal communication and consciousness

> Jim,
> I was just about to leave the office, but I wanted to offer a quick reply.
> Consciousness, it seems to me, is not contingent upon being able to create
> an abstract notion of existence. Existence is. Consciousness of existence
> is. Language, the signs and sounds we use, is merely a vehicle for
> an incarnate and thus shared form to our consciousness. I am currently
> working out a theory about God's consciousness made sacramental in Christ,
> the first incarnate word. In the beginning was the word sort of stuff. I'm
> sure I'm not the first to hit upon this, but it's a fun discovery
> Steve

I think you are much in line with how Percy would describe the matter.
However  I think a case can also be made that the discovery of the abstract
notion of existence was the seminal event from which consciousness sprang
and not vice versa.  But whatever may be the case,  I'm delighted to hear
your take on this and look forward to your further thoughts.

Jim Piat


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