The Contradiction That Is Humanity
(Necessity Resides In Us, Not In Our Reality;
Or Another Take On The Mind Body Duality)

Ren� Descartes said: �I think therefore I am�; and in this description of humanity he summed up that great snafu that would divide man from himself for all eternity, in the very enigma that is humanity itself.

Homo Sapiens seems to be a species that has evolved, and is indeed evolving, but by its very essence, cannot explain that evolution! Let me explain.

That versatile reasoning process, we are so familiar with, is useful to us, for that very same reason: because it is so versatile. It can proceed from, literally, anything, as its basis, and produce a logical chain from which it can grow. The snafu, I mentioned above, is its need of a basis � something upon which it starts the process. It cannot start with nothing. At the very least, as Descartes mentions above, there is the thinker itself, as this same basis. In other words, we always seek a beginning � a start � upon which all else relies. And, one thing more is essential: that basis is outside the process itself! We can take the basis as the starting point of our logical reasoning, but we cannot explain it from this process itself! Yet the process upon which all of this relies (causation or determinism) is itself beginningless. That is the contradiction, upon which all of our thinking is founded: we must always assume an unexplainable starting point, yet we have defined causality or determinism as a process without a starting point! Every cause must have an effect, and every effect its cause � that is the very definition of causality itself! In essence, we are brought to a beginning, yet the process of causality, which structures our logical necessity, makes us abandon all beginnings!

The reason is existence. Very simply, existence is! It is the beginning, which begins in the phenomenon itself. Yet, the reasoning process is itself actually outside of existence � the mind body duality now raises its ugly head.

Reasoning does not really exist, as does an existent. Existents exist outside the process, even though they �exist� in thought. We may think of the process as outside what it contemplates, even the same thoughts (the objects the mind creates in thought from existents) it contemplates. The process lives within a type of necessity we have termed determinism or causality. But do the existents and the objects of thought that are derived from them also live in this same necessity? This is very confusing, since we have been taught to think the reverse is the case.

Lets rephrase this. Necessity resides not in reality but in us 1 . It is the thing, or process, which has no beginning; but all of our reality must begin somewhere, if nowhere else than in us (for instance, our thoughts). So the contradiction is that we reason by using a process that denies that which it examines � existence! The process is not itself derivable, yet what it examines always is! This, in turn, leads us to the existential paradox we term a God; an existential paradox, because this God (as a beginningless entity) lies outside of existence where a beginning is always demanded.

So, we order our reality according to our reasoning process, not necessarily according to what reality actually is. This is what intelligibility is. So fate (and also chance), which is built on necessity or causation is actually a part of us, not a part of what we perceive.

This creates a conundrum, of sorts, because if our reality is determined by us, and not by that world on the other side of our sensations, where we have placed fate, then it seems that we should be able to control fate, yet experience tells us the opposite!

The answer seems to be that we have created two types of causality 2 , one, which is apart from the world we have created using the other. The one, mental causality (or the motivations) is at a higher level, in that it exists outside of the other that actually binds our reality together. The mental kind is bound to the self, or that one inside of us, while the other belongs to the many that make up our reality. Here we see plainly why the many reside within the one.

But the one also resides within the many, because, as we have seen, the one clothes the many in the perceptual clothing of the deterministic causality that springs from the perceptual apparatus of the one.

So, now, we can easily see where that religious instinct inside of us comes from. The one, suddenly becomes that God, which like the process of causality itself, has no beginning � an eternal something behind the process that determines all existence, yet is apart from existence, in that it requires no beginning or end.

So now we see how �freedom of the will� has become our �baby� so to speak; it is the freedom to create our own destinies (to evolve) through the interactions we forge between the many that live within us (in our reality), through the control we exert on ourselves. 3


To return to note's origin click the footnote number at left

1 This is why some philosophers term it a �modality�, apart from the existent it envelops. It, along with the other modalities, like time and space, create the perceptual display apparatus that the mind uses to display the continuum of existents the �world in itself� (that world we hypothesize on the other side of our sensory apparatus) provides us.

2 Please see my essay: �Modes of Awareness and Mental Causality.�

3 Please see further essays connected to this one: �Perception: More than all the facts�, �Order out of Chaos�, �The Limits Of Science Are The Boundaries Of The Self�, �Meshing Together Two Realities�, �Speculations Into The origins of Reason� and �The Fallacy Of Big Bang�.



Originally Published:

October 10, 2012


June 24, 2014