Tag Archives: conscious experience

Soundless Falling Trees

It is a riddle we all know well: If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound?

5482-1920x1200

I admire the beauty of nature, but must remind myself, it is not nature’s inherent beauty that I am admiring any more than a deaf man can admire sound.  It is sensory perception.  It is cognitive processing.  It is human consciousness.

There is no sound without an ear and brain to receive and process the vibrations.  I see light, not because the form I observe is inherent to nature, but because the human eye and brain process certain frequencies of electromagnetic waves to “look” like what I see.  A deaf man doesn’t hear.  A blind man doesn’t see.  Electromagnetic waves outside of the frequencies we hear and see cannot be observed manually.  As Max Planck said, “I regard consciousness as fundamental.  I regard matter as derivative from consciousness.  We cannot get behind consciousness.  Everything that we talk about, everything that we regard as existing, postulates consciousness.”

All of that is just to say: The “wonder of nature” is the wonder of consciousness.


%d bloggers like this: