IUBio Biosequences .. Software .. Molbio soft .. Network News .. FTP

Thinking without language?

Arthur T. Murray uj797 at victoria.tc.ca
Wed Nov 17 22:08:59 EST 1999

Peter Wang, engp9577 at nus.edu.sg, wrote on 18 Nov 1999 09:16:12 +1100:

> Dear all,

> Do you think we should use language when we are thinking?
> or we can use and can not use it too?

Thinking is a flow of associations.  As we walk down the street,
we may think absent-mindedly and entirely in images, pictures,
smells, sounds, and such -- without recourse to language.

However, when we do use language for thinking (and communicating),
we gain access to abstract concepts that only language can manipulate,
and we generate thoughts that can be communicated to other minds.
A Picasso painting does not so much communicate as *cause* ideas.

> Moreover, how about making decision? Does this also involves language?

Decision-making involves ALL the knowledge available to the mind,
whether linguistically associated or by non-verbal modalities.

For a discussion of decision-making in "Mind.Forth AI Source Code,"
please click-link on the "(volition)" module in the flow-chart at
http://www.geocities.com/Athen/Agora/7256/mind-fpc.html archive.

> In my oppinion, we can think and make decision without resorting to
> language.
> Thanx.  [...]

More information about the Neur-sci mailing list

Send comments to us at biosci-help [At] net.bio.net