Talons Philosophy

An Open Online Highschool Philosophy Course



Now for some reason I thought that I had posted this last week, but I guess I forgot and it was just kicking around in my drafts.  I thought it had been posted, but maybe something went wrong, or I simply forgot.  So sorry to any of you that were eager to hear my mind-melting statements to do with perspective.



Ted Honderich talked a lot about objective and subjective physicality and what is real and not real.  One of the things that kept creeping up behind me was this idea of perspective.  Ted talks about how what is actual and objectively physical is what everyone sees, and is really real.  Still with me? Okay.  Then comes the idea of the subjectively physical.  Subjective physicality, is to my understanding, real, but can be interpreted differently.  For example, you and I could agree that the hypothetic table that sits in front of us is there, and real, but I may say it is blue, and you may say that it is red.  I may see something one way, and you may see it differently.  Is it in our heads? Is this difference in perspective just our imagination playing tricks on us?

I did some research and I learned the meaning of perspective in philosophical terms.  The idea of perspectivism is that  there are many different ways things can be perceived.   No perspective can be proven to be true or real, and not all perspectives are equal.  Perspectivism denies that anything can be objective, true, real or actual.  The idea of objective physicality or any metaphysical topic, so pretty much our entire existence, can’t be proven objective.  Woah!

A topic like this is interesting because it really just denies the idea or sense of reality for me.  How can it be that nothing can be objective?  But that goes back to the class conversation we all had about logic.  We argued endlessly about the idea of scientific objectivity for an hour or so, and came to the conclusion that science can’t be objective.  Objectivity is a man made idea.  Man is not capable of being objective due to opinion and memories and our past experiences.  I believe it was Vincent that made the point of saying that we can’t see our memories exactly as they happened because we filter it and change what happens in our head.  Forgive me Vincent if I’m wrong.  But I also really like the point about How nothing can be objective unless we don’t know what “it” is.

The more I think about it, the more the theory of perspectivism makes sense.  And it has been proven in our class discussion about scientific objectivity.  How can you know?  Like Kevin said, “If you hold the shoe in the air and drop it, the shoe will fall and hit the ground.”  We all know that the shoe will hit the ground.  But how do you know?!  As humans, if we agree on something, we see that as truth, or objective.  That it is what it is.  But we can never really know.  How can it be proven.  Perspectivism says that that these “greater ideas” can’t be proven.

Now, I’m not sure if I agree with the ideals of perspectivism, but I will say it has made me think about thinks from a different “perspective”  Perspectivism must be the most annoying theory to some philosophers.  Its like that annoying kid who listens to you tell an incredible story to him and his friends, and the story is true, but that annoying little kid just stands there and says “prove it!”  Because, how can you?  How can human beings decide whether or not something is real.  Who are we to say if something is true or not.  So I ask you…can things be proven to be real or objective?  Is perspectivism just a bunch of hogwash?  Is this even real?  Anyway, I hope that you all take a second to just think about it all.  Thanks!




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