Archive for the 'the mind' Category


on Recent Accomplishments

Good heavens, how can an entire month have gone by with only a measly 2-line post? And now I am taking off for Europe (as in half an hour from now) for a May term Anabaptist History class, so there won’t be much more for a little while yet.

Lest you think that I am frittering away my days in idleness, I offer two products of the final weeks of schoolwork.

First: My physics of music project, investigating ways of tuning oxygen canister bells.

Second: My paper for senior seminar, on the mind-body problem as it relates to consciousness. [MS Word document — sorry, I’ll get it up in HTML once I have more time.] My conclusion is essentially that if one claims to be both a scientist and a Christian, the most fitting philosophy of mind is one that sees the world as fundamentally of one nature yet not understandable solely in terms of low-level physical phenomena. That’s nonreductive physicalism, if you’re up on the lingo.

One of you has requested frequent blogging regarding my class. I’ll see what I can do, but no promises as finding Internet access will be a low priority. (This is the first time I’ve not been on call for work in *ages.*) When I return, look for musings about:
– Thoughts on graduating and where I want to be in 8 years
– Why being a Mennonite makes the world seem small even (especially?) when moving across the country



on Dreams and Youth

I woke up this morning* from an enjoyable dream in which I was lounging in an Arabic villa (thanks John) (only in my dream I had labeled it the Bellagio in Las Vegas, perhaps due to the large fountain (more parentheses!)) eating a picnic lunch. Along came a hard-up Southerner and his baby daughter, looking pointedly at my lunch–so I offered them a few things. The girl was singing and babbling away and I remember wishing I could still access that childlike mode of creativity.

Of course, the next moment I woke up and realized that this same mind of mine that had been thinking these wistful thoughts was at the same time filling in all of the material coming out of the girl’s mouth.** Cool, huh?

*The second time, that is. The first time was at 7:30 to retrieve a cup of coffee from my new programmable coffee maker***, and with high hopes of making inroads on my big paper for Senior Seminar. The coffee did not stop me from returning to bed until 10:57, three minutes before my first class of the day. Which was good for the sake of the dream, since I usually only remember mine when I wake up and then go back to doze some more. As for the paper–um, why the heck am I blogging right now?

**Or perhaps not. According to Ben, people who are lucid dreaming can sometimes interact with each other. But I’m not convinced.

***(Uh oh, now I am nesting footnotes too (and parentheses within footnotes (stop the insanity!))) A gift from my aunt and uncle–thanks! Now I’m ready to be a Seattlite for sure.