April 24th, 2003


What is self?

I had a really good time at phoebek's fondue focus group last night. It was interesting meeting two strangers to have an intellectual conversation with over the concept of "actual self" and "true self." Also, one of the participants, snakefeathers (hiya!), came up with a really interesting thought that individual molecules might have a type of individual sentience. While I don't necessarily agree with that idea (yet), I can see where the thought could and would come from.

I'm still struggling over the idea that my personality is more than just a series of reactions based on the outside stimulus of other people and things. We are more than the sum our parts. We are more than just chemical reactions. I am thinking that that unquantifiable "something" that I am striving to express is the idea of the soul and how it affects who we are.

I believe I have a core self. An inner person who I always am - no matter the circumstance. Then, on top of that core self, I have masks and filters that fit for the appropriate event. I have a 'work' filter, a 'gaming' filter, an 'alone with my lover' filter and many others... but, through it all, there is the core of ME. I am. I exist. I would exist without interactions with others. This person that is ME, that I may not show to everyone, makes up my basic personality.

Of course, Phoebe then asked, "What is personality?" I am still struggling to define what I mean by personality and how it relates to who I am.

Much intellectual thought in the last day. It feels good to stretch my brain in this manner.
  • Current Mood
    contemplative contemplative


This one is for the Catholics out there.

On the way to work, I saw the following bumper sticker:
"u can't b both
Catholic & Pro-Choice"

It was obvious that the "Catholic & Pro-Choice" bumper stick was originally separate. It was well done in purple and white and a stylized font. The first part "u can't b both" was in red, blue and yellow block letters that were a little uneven. It was also obvious that the person had made the first part to put in conjunction with the second part.

I'm curious at the idea of the separate "Catholic & Pro-Choice" commerically made bumper sticker and what my Catholic friends think of it. Also, I'm curious at the assertion that you "can't be both." Any thoughts out there on this one?
  • Current Music
    "Going Under" - Evanesence

Souls, the Divine and Jealous Cats...

Continuing in train of intellectual thought, zunger and I had a really fascinating conversation at dinner which cumulated in the set of questions: If everything is connected to the Divine, do we affect the Divine? If no, what is the purpose of being connected with the Divine? If yes, what does that say about the Divine? This final set of questions stemmed from the discussion of such questions as How can you tell if a person has a soul? With or without a soul, is there a purpose to existence? and Do beings within a 'perfect' simulation have souls or not and how can you tell?

I tell ya, I really enjoyed this brain stretching conversation but I don't think I want to do it on too regular of a basis. My head hurts and I have enough to really think about to last me a while. I'm not use to cordially discussing and debating things I believe based on faith alone. It is much harder when you don't have empirical evidence to prove your point. (Though, I'm still internally debating the idea of whether or not having a creative idea, one not normally found in nature, is proof of us being more than just a set of reactions to response stimulus and more than the 'sum of our parts'... thus, proving the existence of the idea of a soul.)

Amusingly enough, after dinner, while cuddling on the couch, Sir Marmalade seemed to get jealous of Yony's attention and, for the first time, crawled into my lap, then sat on my chest, doing the (painful) "I love you" kneading thing on my bare skin. When he finally got off me, I was covered in orange fur.
  • Current Mood
    contemplative contemplative