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Can the senses be trusted?

We trust our senses as a reliable source of information, and base our worldview on them. But is there any justification for this? Do our senses really show us the world as it is?

An example of an optical illusion, where we see movement in a still image
An example of an optical illusion, where we see movement in a still image

Marius Cohen Galileo Magazine

Our visual world is rich in colors, and the experience of color is one of the most enjoyable sensory experiences. But nature is completely devoid of color!

Our various senses, and especially the sense of sight and hearing, are a source of acquiring enormous amounts of knowledge: we see innumerable details in our immediate environment, and are able to hear what is happening even outside our range of vision. Our senses are the ones that teach us where we are, what things and what people are around us, what they are doing, what the weather is like, and whether we are in danger (crossing a road, for example).

We also say: "You have to see to believe", meaning that we trust our senses more than the testimony of others (and see "witness as a source of knowledge"). So, for example, if we are told that it is raining where we found it, but we see a clear sky above us, we will believe what we see with our eyes and not the person who reported to us about the falling rain, even if it was an expert meteorologist.

However, our senses also often deceive us: a spoon in a glass of water looks broken, a desert area may appear on the horizon, under certain atmospheric conditions, as a water fountain (the refraction of light rays in layers of air with different temperatures create a phenomenon called pata morgana), there are many optical illusions that make us see in pictures that we are presented with things that do not appear in the images themselves (for example in the illustration), and in certain situations (under the influence of hallucinogenic drugs, for example) we may experience hallucinations, which present our surroundings to us in a completely distorted way. This fact, that our senses may mislead us, means that their reliability can be questioned: the mikveh we see in the distance may be real, but it may be an illusion.

Since it is accepted to define knowledge as a justified true belief, and it is accepted that the belief is justified if it was formed reliably in relation to the circumstances that led to its formation, it seems that the fact that our senses may mislead us damages their credibility as a source of knowledge, and it is possible that we should question all the sensory information that our arts are fed by. If so, we might want to state that our arts about what is happening around us, and which are based on sensory information, are not in the scope of knowledge but in the scope of art only. It is possible that most of them are even real, but it is doubtful whether they are justified.
Indirect realism

Another facet is added to the problem of sensory information which casts greater doubt on the reliability of the information our senses provide us. There is a significant gap between the physical essence of the world and the way our consciousness perceives it: our visual world is rich in colors, and the experience of color is one of the most enjoyable sensory experiences. But nature is completely devoid of color! The experience of color is evoked in us by electromagnetic waves in a certain frequency range (the visible light range 790-400 terahertz), and the sensory stimulation received as a result of the arrival of light at different frequencies to our light-sensing cells evokes different color experiences in our minds (terahertz = trillion vibrations per second). Thus, for example, our brain interprets electromagnetic waves with a frequency of about 540 terahertz as the color green.

Our inner world is also rich in sounds: speech, music, information-carrying sounds, etc., but nature is completely devoid of sounds! It is our mind that instills in us, due to the sensory information coming from our ears as a response to air vibrations, a sensation of sounds (perhaps that is why the question is sometimes raised whether a tree falling in a place where no one can hear it makes a sound).

Nature is an odorless nose - the experience of smell is an interpretation of our mind reacting to the sensory information received as a result of entering different chemical molecules into our nasal cavity. And so on and so forth, as we examine the subject more and more, we will discover that the gap between the essence of nature and the way we perceive it is so great, that we have no choice but to adopt a position called indirect realism: we do not perceive the world as it is, and can only tap into it through The sensory information that reaches us, and this is contrary to our intuitions that our senses show us the world as it is (a position called direct realism).

It is commonly assumed that our mental experiences are foolproof, meaning that if I believe I see something red, I do see something red. If I believe that I am in pain, I am indeed in pain. Therefore, our beliefs about our mental experiences are in the nature of knowledge: these beliefs are real and justified by the perception that they are immune to deception. But these are news about our inner, mental world, not about the world! The red I see is not in the world itself, because nature is devoid of colors, and it is even possible that the particular lighting causes a surface that under normal conditions appears white to appear red to me at this moment. Since we can only tap into the world from the sensory information that reaches us, the beliefs we formulate about the world based on this information are not foolproof, and they may not deserve to be considered knowledge.


It seems that this gap between the properties of the world and the way we perceive it cannot be bridged, since we cannot experience the world directly but only through the mediation of our senses. This irreconcilable gap has led philosophers such as George Berkeley and David Hume to question the existence of a material external world that exists beyond our mental experiences. We can only be sure of the existence of mental experiences, and there may be no justification for assuming that there is something beyond these experiences, which is the cause of them.

Another great philosopher, Immanuel Kant (Kant) proposed an intermediate position that he called transcendental idealism, according to which although something external exists ("the thing when it is in itself"), we cannot know anything about it. This external thing is indeed the source of our sensory information, but the world revealed to us is not "the thing in its own right", but the way in which our consciousness perceives it. Even the space and time we experience are products of cognition (Kant called them "forms of observation") and do not belong to "a thing in its own right", which we are unable to perceive directly.

Although this position seems to be an extremely skeptical position, it actually allowed Kant to argue for the reliability of our arts: since we formulate art with regard to the world that cognition presents to us and not with regard to the thing in itself, then these arts are not mediated but directly (their source is cognition), and therefore it is appropriate to see including news.
Where do we stand?

Nowadays, there are few philosophers who still hold idealistic positions (in the sense described above), and although the position of indirect realism is accepted by many philosophers and scientists, the accompanying epistemological position often tends to be optimistic: we do learn about the world indirectly through our senses, but our scientific knowledge allow us to understand that colors represent electromagnetic waves at different frequencies, that sounds represent air vibrations and smells represent the composition of chemical molecules (epistemologically: that is, of the theory of knowledge).

Therefore, when we believe that something is red, our art network, which also includes scientific knowledge, allows us to understand that the experience of red is nothing more than a mental representation of an electromagnetic wave, and that under different lighting conditions we might see that object in a different color. Therefore the arts of this kind are real and based on our scientific knowledge they are even justified.

On top of that, the many conventions about the environment do not involve the convention about the nature of the world: if I believe that I am sitting in my room reading a book, then this convention is not accompanied by the convention about the book or the room (its spatial nature, for example), and therefore it is not threatened by The gap between the essence of reality and the way I knew it presents it to me. Hence, sensory information often leads to the formation of the real arts in a reliable manner, and therefore, taking into account the limitations of the senses described above, it is possible to see them as information.

Dr. Marius Cohen teaches philosophy at Ben-Gurion University.

On the same topic on the science site

113 תגובות

  1. This article has several layers, but we will focus on the layer of life

    optical illusions. What is their essence? And what do they mean?

    optical illusions. The five senses. Virtual Reality. illusions science.

    What is the essence of an optical illusion? And what does it mean?

    Optical illusion = when a person's sense of sight causes him to see what is not real = optical illusion.

    For example: a person rubs his eye and looks at some object and sees it in a double form. It's an optical illusion.

    Another example: a person looks at two completely identical colors, only each of them is in a different color environment. Each color appears to a person different from the other color, even though it is really the exact same color. This is also an optical illusion.

    Fata Morgana = Man walks in the desert thirsty for water. The intense heat and thirst affects the human mind and causes him to "see" water from afar. The great thirst creates the optical illusion and makes a person think that he sees water, even though there is no water, but only sand and sand.

    In the world there are many optical illusions, which cause the human sense of sight to deceive the person.
    There are other illusions in the world that work on all of a person's senses all at once.

    For example: virtual reality / artificial reality / imaginary reality = the person connects to some machine that creates for him an alternative reality / virtual reality that does not exist.
    Even when a person sleeps and dreams a dream, this is also a stronger kind of illusion.

    Man is in a space and time line that do not exist.

    In a dream, the human consciousness experiences a spatial space that does not exist in the place above it.

    In a dream, a person's consciousness experiences a timeline that does not exist in the time above it, because in a quarter of an hour of a very deep dream, events of many years can be dreamed. So for the one who is in the middle of a dream, there is an alternate timeline parallel to our timeline.

    What is the essence of an optical illusion? And what does it represent?

    Optical illusion = the human mind does not see reality as it really is.

    Reality is X, but the person mistakenly thinks that reality is different from what it really is. And all this because his senses make him imagine reality not as it really is.

    Optical illusions are performed using the human sense of sight. But there is a higher level of optical illusions. There are mental optical illusions.

    What is a mental optical illusion?

    Answer: mental optical illusion = the human mind does not see reality as it really is.

    The sense of sight = the eyes. The mind = the human's intellectual sense of sight and eyes.

    Man experiences reality through his emotion, as his mind understands it.

    The information that is inside the human mind is also absorbed through the senses, but not only.

    For example: the knowledge of a person's "I" is a mental knowledge that the person does not know through the senses.

    Man knows his desire / thought / feelings, not through the senses.

    In any case, when a person's mind does not interpret his information correctly = a mental optical illusion.

    How is a mental optical illusion possible? Why would it be like that?


    Reality is infinite and man's mind is finite = man's human mind is limited to understanding infinite reality = mind deceives man in certain things.

    Reality is infinite and its essence is infinite.

    optical illusions. What is their essence? And what do they mean?

    To fully and truly understand reality, one must understand the essence of infinity in truth.

    Because the human mind is limited to bringing into thought only a finite thing, it is not possible to put into thought the essence of infinity anyway.

    And since everything is first of all its essence, and only then its external form, then everything that has its essence is first of all the essence of the infinite reality, and only then is it what the person sees / knows / feels, etc.

    The essence of everything that exists is the essence of infinite reality.

    And because the human mind is limited to understand the essence of infinity, it is anyway limited to truly and completely understand the essence of any thing whatsoever.

    An example of a mental optical illusion:

    The whole subject of opposites is an optical illusion that arises from the limitation of the intellect.

    For example: good / bad, truth / lie, etc. These things are perceived by man as opposites, even though in reality the essence of all opposites is exactly the same.

    Each of the opposites that exist in the world is just one side of the same coin. The opposites are essentially exactly the same.

    See in detail in the articles: * Applied truth. Does it exist and how to get there? * Opposites are the same. What is the independent truth? What is the essence of all reality? * Nothing = Everything = Reality = God. How?

    The only reason a person has conflicts / evil / suffering in life, is only because his mind is limited to understand the essence of infinity which is the essence of reality.

    so what are we doing ?

    First one must understand the aforementioned limitation.

    After that, the person must know that there is only one possibility to understand a little the true nature of reality.

    The way is, the search for the objective truth in everything.

    The essential difference between illusion and reality is the objective truth.

    The independent truth is that reality is X, but the lie and imagination make one see reality differently.

    The only way to truly understand the essence of reality is by searching for the truth of reality itself = the independent truth.

    The essence of the lie of the illusion, is the subjectivity of the observer.

    Ego = subjectivity = illusion = imagination = lie.

    In contrast, the search for truth = objectivity = reality = reason = truth.

    When the person is constantly looking for the truth only in everything without considerations of eternity (the desire to win / the desire to be right), by this in the end the consciousness of the person understands a little bit of the reality as it really is.

    Through what does man understand reality, is the mind limited as above?

    Answer: Through the imagination. The imagination is able to imagine and understand a little the essence of infinity.


    Man must know that the senses and the mind may mislead him, due to their limitations.

    The only way to truly understand reality = searching for the objective truth in every field = without ego considerations.

    At the end of the process, the person sees reality as what it really is = happiness = joy = perfection.

  2. Avi:
    As I said - no one is described there as "blood abroad whose fingertips are in his hands and whose feet are of wood".
    The rest of your words are also nonsense.
    Those who got it, got it.

  3. I forgot to mention that you need a lot of knowledge in the field of science + if you write a certain comment here, please check
    Because you have the full knowledge and thought to answer the talkbacks.
    In addition, if I am talking about the science site, I don't think I need to explain more than what has been explained.
    Those who got it, got it .

  4. See ZONE REALITY + YouTube, the following link:

    The link directly to Maariv's website, this person is the most famous in the world.
    It should be noted that you need to think a little more deeply.
    There are no wrong assumptions, with a little creativity and putting the puzzle together, the complete picture is obtained.
    Try a little harder. Thanks .

  5. Avi:
    Although I certainly think there is no God, I cannot support your statements which are nothing more than a series of confused arguments based on false assumptions.
    By the way - where did you hear the story about a man whose fingertips are made of wood?
    All the rest of your words are mostly based on misunderstandings but at this point it looks like someone was working on you on purpose.

  6. I must comment on the topic of "Creator of the Universe" etc..
    Humans will always look for a rationale for everything, such as the existence of the world.
    There are even atheists who believe that there is such a thing as God, and even great scientists believed and believe that there is
    such a creature.

    The process of "creation" of all biological beings was terribly complex and consumed an astronomical number of materials and in addition
    Perfect temperature for creating life.
    It should be noted that indeed, man came from the earth. And therefore, the creation as a whole and its results, were not perfect as God's creation is often described as perfect (surprisingly even the atheists...).
    There is the subject of mutations, there is a man abroad whose fingertips and legs are made of wood.
    From this we also learn that the creation of man simply happened and there is no need to ask how the sun, stars, etc. were created.
    Because asking these questions plus stating that there is such a thing as God is already at the level of stupidity.

    It is already known that God is not needed to create man.
    The Big Bang theory is not something that can be denied at all as a fact, since there was a huge ball with all the materials,
    The heat inside the huge mass caused a grandiose explosion, and so according to the laws of gravity, all the stars
    arranged in a circle around the sun, and this is because the sun was at the center of these materials.

    It should be noted that part of the sun has been attached to a smaller sphere that is "blessed" with magnetic materials that cause the force of gravity,
    This small part of the sun is called "magma" which had a fairly high fusion power that caused creation
    Life according to KDA.

    Conclusion: In the Big Bang there was a massive mixing of most of the elements that created life on Earth,
    which is reflected in the following example; The fish has the omega 3 fat, the human brain is made of omega 3 and the nose
    A mixture of omega 6.

    By combining all the above data, we will find the causality for the food chain + the rationale for the common denominator
    For all biological creatures living on Earth.

    A simple equation, not complex - you just have to think more deeply and clearly, connecting the data obtained
    In modern times and even from the past, and this is how we see proof that the evidence supports each other - and this is how we get
    The obvious result.

    no God.

  7. Israel:
    He does not judge God.
    Sane people do not judge beings that do not exist.

  8. 11, if they fired every programmer who caused a bug, there would be no internet.
    By the way, have you noticed that with the same "weak" mind from which you deduce about God, you want to judge God? Kind of weird, isn't it?

  9. Yair Seligman:
    What nonsense!
    And more as a response to an article that shows that not only what we conjure up in our imagination but even things that we actually see with our senses do not necessarily exist.
    Your words only show that your faith disrupts your reasoning.

  10. to 11 The very fact that you bring up in your mind the concept of "creator of the world" causes you to enter a trap. If you need proof that there is no creator, then there is a chance that there is a creator. Only if the concept of the creator of the world did not come to your mind at all, then it would be possible to say that there is surely no creator of the world. Weird, embarrassing? Huh? (By the way, maybe you know how to define what "no" is?) But that's the catch and I, as a traditionalist, have no problem struggling with the idea that there might be a creator of the world after all.

    What not?
    Did you really think I thought you were going to consult his uncle?
    I just laughed at your threats and you justified the laugh.
    And by the way - there really were threats even if you claim a thousand times that it's a figment of imagination.

  12. By the way - see - it's interesting.
    Are you telling us that one of your goals here on the site is to "take care" of people?
    In other words - do you admit that the search for the truth and its disclosure is not what motivates you?
    I feel sorry for you.

    I hope you are not going to consult his uncle now

  14. Michael:
    You put her on me, there's nothing,
    Even though my intention was different.
    The opportunity will come and I will take care of you.

  15. It's much more than just "seeing colors"

    The senses (and not to forget the brain as the organizer of the sensory input) create a reality that is only a small window into the real "existing".

    I don't think we should be "fearful" of this insight, because we should still put some insurance in millions of years of natural selection during which we evolved to absorb and organize stimuli in the most efficient way we could as an organism.

  16. point:
    In case it was not clear from the above - existence does not have to be infinite in time.
    Archimedes existed in the past. Today he does not exist and before he was born he did not exist either.
    The fact that Archimedes lived at some point in our world is a fact that exists even today. Although it is difficult to conduct an experiment that proves this, when I talk about an experiment, I also include in the term the "experiments" that we use in the historical sciences (like, for example, the theories about the development of the universe or about evolution - as far as they relate to what happened in the past)

  17. point:
    To me - anything can - in principle - exist or not exist.
    It can be a certain body, from an elementary particle to the entire universe, it can be a form of organization of other (existing) things, and it can even be a process (like the demographic process that destroys our country and the more it exists, the more it exists may mean that the country will not exist in the end).
    In short - anything that can be described can, in principle, exist or not.
    So how do we know if it really exists?
    Simple - in an experiment, or as a logical conclusion from known facts.
    In other words - the claim of the existence of a certain thing is a scientific theory like any other scientific theory.

    Like it or not - even if I phrased things more clearly than usual - this is the usual meaning of the word.

  18. OK,
    I included too much with my counter-intuition.
    But still my general claim remains that there is and cannot be a debate. Just clarifying concepts.

    Basic concepts cannot be explained (names can only be taught if he can learn).
    Complex concepts are prone to different intuitions in different people. Therefore, they should be clarified and defined as much as possible.

    I hope you agree with me on this.

    And you still have to explain to me what you mean when you say something exists, as opposed to something that doesn't exist. What differentiates them.

  19. :) To the lover of wisdom: But every person is a world in its entirety... (at least potentially).
    We must have missed something valuable along the way.
    Or, maybe the point is waiting somewhere, beyond the 'impotence' illusions...??

  20. point:
    Not true!
    After all, suddenly now suddenly today you found yourself required to exactly those intuitive terms that you resisted before.
    After all, I argued this from the beginning and it was you who opposed it.
    If you agree with my opinion I am of course happy and I am even ready to forget that you opposed it before.

  21. Michael, it seems to me that you are just insisting, and I am not so clear about what either.

    After all, one of two:

    Or you accept that language can be used for communication and then you have to assume that the fundamental concepts in humans are the same or at least very similar.

    Or you claim that it is not possible to communicate because the basic concepts are different.

    And another point, if you accept the logic as basic rules, then no real dispute is possible, but only clarification of concepts or inability to clarify concepts.

    So you just insist, instead of trying to understand.

  22. I really didn't mean to
    But it definitely turned out crooked

    I'm officially sorry

  23. Philosophical:
    I hope it is clear to you that not only did you come off as arrogant, but you also came off - to put it mildly - as not telling the truth.

  24. point:
    Although even on the subject of basic concepts, I think you didn't do the job - I didn't ask for the definition of basic concepts from you, but the definition of some complex concept.
    Do you claim that all the concepts you used in defining the term "illusion" are basic?
    If so - you must change the definition of the basic terms.

  25. That's exactly what I said
    I was arrogant towards the people here
    but not towards "the world"
    Does not matter
    have fun

    And the truth, I didn't mean to offend

  26. Michael I explained above that it is not possible to explain to urbanization what it is to see, it is not possible to explain and define basic concepts

  27. point:
    You twist to dodge.
    Define - as I asked - all the words you used in defining the term illusion.
    As long as you haven't done that, you haven't provided a definition for the word illusion (or any other complex term)

  28. For philosophy:
    Indeed, you came off as arrogant towards the whole world (or at least towards all the commenters here) and this is expressed in phrases like "none of the commenters understood" and "arrogance towards the world like yours".
    In my opinion, there are several people here who understood without a doubt (at least four according to my calculations) and several others who did not say anything that could betray the answer to the question of whether they understood or not (such as giving examples of illusions or expressing appreciation for the author of the article).

  29. A basic concept is a concept that describes a mental process. For example, see, infer, think, understand, speak, etc. These are mental concepts.

    Illusion, on the other hand, is a complex concept. As I defined.

  30. It is amazing how many of the great "science readers" as Michael R. said. Did not understand the article. I think none of the commenters understood. On the other hand, there are relatively many responses to the number of respondents.
    But indeed, it is difficult to write an article in philosophy that will explain well to the public who is not familiar with this field.
    It's a bit of one-legged learning, which we all know doesn't work so well.

    I also came out arrogant in the end, but at least not human arrogance towards the world like all of you (:

  31. fresh:
    I also know what a dot means in the new interpretation he wants to give to the word exist.
    Point also knows that I know what he means and therefore responded as he did in response 55.
    You just didn't understand what the discussion was about now.

  32. Yehuda:
    This is a private case of what I said in response 59.

  33. point:
    you dodge
    Define what a basic concept is (and at the same time say if it represents an existing thing).
    Give an example of a concept that is not basic and the definition of this concept.

  34. That is?: There is no "existence" from nothing = existence./existence/universe.
    In fact: 'Illusion' is also a type of secret existence: Ash-li'ah.

  35. Ra'anan, you will notice that I have not defined "exists" yet, I just stated that one of the properties that we will require of an existing thing is that existence be a property of the same thing (which is clear) and this means that it is not possible for it to not exist in the past, or to cease to exist.

  36. Michael, the definitions end with the basic concepts. Just as you cannot explain to a blind person what red is, so you cannot explain to someone who does not think what it is to think.

    The concept of "existence" is not basic, and therefore requires a definition.

  37. For Michael and a point
    And by the way, in addition to the definitions, a "word" must be defined, and here there is a very serious problem because we will have to define it in words!
    A problem!
    Shabbat Shalom
    Sabdarmish Yehuda

  38. The definition of "point" for the word "existence" is very clear and intuitive, at least for me.
    He means existence in the sense of "existence in itself" for example we look at a human being, it has no existence in itself because it is made up of smaller parts which are molecules, and molecules also have no existence in themselves because they are made up of atoms, and atoms also have no existence in themselves Because they consist of galaxies/wave functions, only the particle/quantum where this reduction ends (quarks or maybe strings) has an existence by itself that does not depend on any other component. Those who want to understand more in depth can read the entries on complex system and emergent in Wikipedia
    These are systems that are made up of a number of elements and laws that create observable phenomena that are apparently more than the sum of their component parts, but as stated only apparently.
    Human intelligence is a good example of complexity/emergent, out of billions of neurons, each of which is "stupid" on its own, a consciousness is created that is apparently more than each neuron on its own, but only apparently.
    Therefore, everything is an illusion, at least on the macroscopic scales that are accessible to humans. In fact, the entire universe that human beings can be exposed to is several levels beyond the smallest dimension where those elementary particles exist that do not consist of any other (elementary) components. The dimensions to which we are exposed through vision or even through the microscope are dimensions that have already passed several "levels" of complexity/emergent. A level of complexity or an emergent level is a level of movement from laws and certain objects and data (laws = the laws of nature, and objects = for example elementary particles or neurons) that create products that are seemingly greater than the sum of the parts that make them up. The same product that is greater than the sum of its parts will serve as the basis for the next level of complexity.

  39. point:
    You mean it?
    "An illusion is any phenomenon we experience and which we conclude is not what it makes us think it is."
    This is not a definition because in order for us to know what you mean you must first clarify what is meant by the word "she", the word "all", the word "phenomenon", the word "we", the word "experience", the word "and we", the word "conclude", the word "Regarding", in the word "she", in the word "isn't", in the word "what", in the word "causes", in the word "to us", in the word "to think".
    And I let you off the hook because I didn't ask you to define the rules of syntax according to which I am supposed to decipher the sentence.

  40. Point - you define as "existing" something that has always existed. Like what, for example?

  41. point:
    It seems to me that your nihilism cannot be treated.
    Define one word for me.

  42. Michael,
    In my opinion, it is possible to create a common understanding and conversation beyond the confusion of postmodern minds without content, as you unconsciously suggest. After all, if everyone speaks according to their own concepts, then a serious conversation will never be possible. Commonsense is silly and childish for the most part.

    Understanding is only possible if the concepts being discussed are clarified. Otherwise we will end up with communication as shallow and devoid of content as possible (which is certainly accepted today by the general public).

    You just proved what I said when you said you were using the word exists in its intuitive sense. You just forgot to consider that everyone has a slightly different intuitive sense of this concept. That's exactly what I'm talking about.

  43. point:
    You are the one who is wrong.
    Language is a means of communication and it cannot function as such if you invent a private language for yourself.
    There is no obligation to define a word precisely in order to use it in the same field on which everyone agrees.
    This is also a requirement that cannot be fulfilled in principle because the definition uses words that must be defined even before the definition is formulated, but also to define these words words are necessary and so on.
    If you want to achieve something at all (and most of us do), then there is no logic in setting demands that cannot be fulfilled.
    What people do - for purely practical reasons - is to use intuitively received understandings as a basis for more precise definitions.
    The funny thing is that the word "exists" that you chose to criticize is such an intuitive word that it is used by us even in formulating the laws of logic.

  44. And another important point, when you use concepts in an unclear way, you are guaranteed that in the end you will reach a contradiction in your worldview, because it is built on the concepts. An example of this is your whole argument above with the other writers. In the end it's a debate about the concepts. Because it is impossible to argue about logic.

  45. You are wrong, Michael, I try to make the concepts well differentiated, bright and clear. What happens in language, because of bad education, apparently people use concepts that are supposed to be basic concepts, mixed with all kinds of other concepts and they cannot define exactly what they mean when they say something.

    To prove it to you, it's enough for me to ask you to define "exist" as you understand most people use it in language.

  46. point:
    I assume that it is clear to you that your interpretations of the word "exist" and the word "foundation" are different from the accepted interpretations in the language and I keep asking myself what is the point of defining a language that no one speaks and entering into a dialogue of the deaf where you argue with people about the interpretations of words when the people think that you mean the words in the spoken language and you ignore that and continue to argue with them based on your private definitions as if they were the accepted definitions.
    Beyond the fact that this is a waste of energy due to the difference in language, I must also point out that your choice of language is very bad in my opinion and that in the language you speak (only to yourself) it is impossible to reach any constructive conclusion. 

  47. Michael, I intentionally mentioned this, that's how I perceive the concept exists, precisely so that we don't argue about words. And I see that on the whole you agree with me, that if you too would define existence that way then nothing exists.

    Now I have to explain to you why this requirement of mine from the concept exists...but we will save that for another article 🙂

  48. Well - point - I stop arguing. Now you have invented a new meaning for the word foundation. I can only argue with those who speak with my mouth

  49. And again the same systematic error in interpretations of words.
    If something has to always exist in order to exist then apparently nothing exists - not even the elementary particles.
    But where does this strange demand come from?
    You are simply inventing a new language for yourself to argue with others about the meaning of words.
    It's just a waste of time!

  50. Foundation means that there is no need for a structure above the foundation. Everything is explained in the foundation itself. Everything else is an illusion of those who have trouble understanding the basics.

  51. In nature there is no red or anything that resembles it in any way, therefore red cannot be a representation of anything in nature. Besides, red is an invention of the mind, and inventions only represent themselves.

  52. point:
    Sometimes I find it hard to believe that you are serious!
    It seems to me that you show a lack of understanding regarding the meaning of the term "elementary particle".
    When something is a "foundation" then it is a foundation for a structure built on top of a foundation.
    This has nothing to do with the claim you are trying to make that is equivalent to the claim that the structure does not exist.

  53. In short, the soul does exist if we use the borrowed form of the word exists to denote everything we feel, experience and perceive, but it does not really exist. Its existence is an illusion.

  54. Yes Michael, particle pairs do not exist, atoms do not exist, and certainly not separate ones. If you don't agree then you probably don't understand what it means to say something that is an elementary particle. In any case, these elementary particles also do not exist by themselves, since they are complex (they have properties, so they are not truly elementary particles, but I was referring to the current physical concept).
    The soul (of humans) cannot be said to exist. From something that exists it is required that it has always existed and will always exist (this is how I perceive the concept of existence) and the soul as we all know ceases to exist every night when we go to sleep.

    There are many here who understand the theory of relativity and even to the point of being able to explain it.
    Of course - not everyone can explain it. I assume that as someone who claims that they couldn't explain it to anyone here, you should agree with the claim that it can't be explained to anyone.
    You do not know what you're talking about.
    I bet you don't know what you're talking about.
    You claim that you actually know.
    That is why there is a debate about it.
    According to Roa's lemma - what exists and debate about it is beyond the perception of humans.
    Since a seer is a human being - and there is a debate about the question of whether he knows what he is talking about, then the question of whether a seer knows what he is talking about is outside the perception of a seer.
    But if the question of whether a seer knows what he is talking about is outside the perception of a seer, then at least when he claims that he knows what he is talking about, he is talking about something that is outside his perception and therefore does not know what he is talking about.

  56. point:
    What is this nonsense about only elementary particles and forces existing in nature.
    Do not pairs of particles exist in nature? And what about triples? And what about particles that are organized as an atom? And what about atoms that are organized as separates?
    All these do not exist?
    Dahil Rabak - there is a limit to confusion!
    Beyond the elementary elements there are levels of organization in the world and one of these levels of organization is a human being.
    Yes! Humans also exist.
    Humans also have different states of parts of the brain. Most of them, for example, have a certain form of organization in the brain that represents what they call "red".
    It represents "red" because in the external reality there is a certain combination that there is an evolutionary need to diagnose, of wavelengths (and yes! even though there are only elementary particles and forces - there are also wavelengths, frequencies and much more).
    What you call "the current physical view" is a view that no physicist holds.
    I offer you as a challenge to point us to a physicist who claims that he himself does not exist.
    Since you won't find it, I can also suggest that you bring him together for a conversation with Descartes.


    1) A small correction to argument B that you brought: you wrote: "a mind that is not affected by the mind is needed" on the contrary: the mind is the ego and the private illusion that creates separation, similar to the 'blind' points in a holographic array. Ego, which serves all egos, small and large).
    2) If you allow us, a question for you: we put our hearts and eyes on the fact that your picture is emblazoned next to your name, and we know from your testimony that you are a tour guide (correct us if we are wrong) and you call yourself a 'seer' isn't that ego?
    3) Well, section 2 was for the sake of the great sentence: "Know thyself", more precisely "do your work and know yourself".
    4) A small tip: there is a good breeze outside, remember the 'spirit' that created the 'light'...that created...the internet...that created the multiplicity of illusion...

  58. And what about the things that are not visible and yet I treat them as visible???
    God?, the dark mass? , what kind of placenta are we able to think about them with our senses??, what color would they get?, transparent color?, like glass?, maybe aliens will see them?
    Philosophy in a dime!
    Shabbat Shalom
    Sabdarmish Yehuda

  59. Argument - no matter how much you argue and argue about something, you will not get anywhere because it is outside of human perception.
    Proof: the existence of the debate on the matter.
    Argument - you need a mind that is not influenced by the mind {and the ego - in the case of some "elite"} that can clarify the matter and even then it is doubtful if you will understand.
    Proof: Einstein's theories of general and special relativity, none of you understand them to the level that he can explain, and all this 75 years after they were said.

    Declaration - Hello.
    Its meaning is a political joke.

  60. fresh,

    Space, elementary particles and forces is not in doubt? Undoubtedly whose?
    There should be at least one entity that has the ability to doubt or not to doubt. If that entity is you or me then we are also part of the necessity that exists, aren't we? We are also not necessarily an illusion...

  61. Time may be an illusion but space, elementary particles and forces are not in doubt, I hope.

  62. fresh,

    Why is it clear that there are space-time, elementary particles, and forces?
    None of them are directly perceived through the senses.
    Of all things, maybe time is actually an illusion?
    Why do you disbelieve in what is absorbed by our senses and believe in abstract representations (like time), mathematical entities that describe reality?

  63. Point, you are right.
    Hugin is an illusion about you and a great reality for life: indeed, true and stable.

  64. To the point from response 29
    It is self-evident that the only thing that exists in nature is space-time, elementary particles and the forces between them. Therefore, everything we see is only a representation of reality and not reality itself.

  65. Sharon, in the end this is also an illusion.
    I'm just saying that things are an illusion even in relation to our physical knowledge of the world.

  66. In some things I completely agree with you. There are several things that are indeed an illusion.
    Among them are religions, spirituality, spiritualism and UFOs. So Hugin and your friends - you were not completely wrong that there are areas of life for some people that are indeed an illusion and that there are many people who are self-deluded.

  67. Space, time and elementary particles do not exist. It's all an illusion. The statements of the physicists are also just an illusion.

  68. Michael, the only thing that exists in nature (at least according to the current physical concept) is the space-time elementary particles and the forces between them. I don't remember that there is an underlying force that maps things. In general, the concept of maps does not belong to the physical world.

  69. An illusion is any phenomenon we experience and which we conclude is not what it makes us think it is.

  70. point:
    I'm in a hurry again but I have to address your comments briefly.
    You have a tendency to say about all kinds of words we use that they are an illusion.
    It leads nowhere and in the end all your responses will be "without words".
    You must understand that the words were created to convey information that differentiates between all the different things you call illusion and these are really different things and the fact is that people manage to understand each other.
    What you are striving for - consciously or unconsciously - is the abolition of language.
    I suggest you - as a regular procedure - as soon as you come to the conclusion that a certain word is an illusion - to think in what sense it is not an illusion. This is the true meaning of the word.
    For example - a representation of an external phenomenon in our mind is a mapping or matching between the phenomena in the real world and what we feel.
    Such a mapping exists - whether you recognize it or not.

  71. Why do you say elementary particles and forces with such great certainty? They are part of the illusion you describe, why do they exist and the fly that crossed my room right now is an illusion...?
    Out there there are elements much more complex than elementary particles... Hello, you live 14 billion years after the big bang.

    Animals are not robots, they are immeasurably more complex than any robot that man has created so far.
    And they also have internal representations. simple They can be tested in the laboratory. And I'm talking about all non-primates.

    Note that in all the illusions above we see the illusion/motion outside the center of the visual field (the fovea). When we focus on one object it stops moving, remains in motion, and God forbid.

  72. An illusion is persistent. Look at the examples of the illusions in the pictures, the illusion continues even after you have realized that it is an illusion.

    Outside there are no objects, outside there are elementary particles and forces, at most. It is clear that all sane people participate in this game of illusion. I'm not sure that animals are included under the category of sentient beings. Like a robot doesn't.

  73. point,

    It's a pretty stubborn illusion, I must say.
    Would you be willing to give me your credit card number? 🙂
    After all, it's all just an illusion!!!
    The nervous systems arrived as a new player in an arena that had existed for over 10 billion years.
    These representations are objects that exist outside of us, I agree that we give them our interpretation afterwards, obviously the representations I talked about can also be unstable and yet they are there. We and all animals respond to this illusion, experience it and try with considerable success to exist while interacting with it.

  74. Sharon, everything you described is a mental representation of mental objects. It's all part of the illusion.

  75. point,

    When you walk down the street and recognize hundreds of faces, you recognize a familiar face, you use the internal representation that exists inside your mind, a representation created inside your mind, a memory if you will, otherwise you wouldn't recognize the face. What is memory if not a collection of representations and the complex connections between them?
    I don't have a representation of an electron, I have a representation of the descriptions of the electron in the textbooks.
    Everything we see, hear, taste, etc. is a conversion of electrical/mechanical/chemical energy that has a representation in the brain, in the form of electrical activity, connections between nerve cells, structural changes, and the like. We can retrieve this representation when the time comes.

  76. In nature there is no "representing".
    An electron has no "representation", an electron is an electron and everything else is not an electron. So either you're an electron or you're not. There is no "representation of an electron".

    Therefore, everything we see and hear, etc., is not a representation of reality, we only convince ourselves that it is so.

  77. Our nervous system's entire purpose is to solve problems about the physical world outside of our bodies.
    The illusions, at least some of them stem from the prediction we have about the world. Our plastic brain, especially in our infancy learns to recognize patterns. Such a pattern mismatch creates optical illusions. This expectation which is represented through an internal representation is of course important for the survival of the animals. What's more, we live in a world with 3 dimensions of space. These illusions are created in the two-dimensional world of the page or monitor.
    It was clear to me that there would be those who would say the mind is "untrustworthy", "everything is an illusion". The fact that you are reading this article proves that the world is ultimately trustworthy. There are strategies that are not recommended, as Michael said - crossing the road at the same time as the approaching vehicle for example.

  78. Another way to examine the illusion of the beautiful checkerboards is to copy the image to Windows' "painter", mark with the mouse a piece of one square, then slowly drag it until it touches the other square, then you see that the colors merge into one color.

  79. Those who want to test the first illusion in the responses, will prepare a Bristol with two holes through which only the aforementioned squares can be seen.

  80. I was afraid, when I saw the subject of the article, that some people (some of those more known to us) would take advantage of it and distort the author's conclusions and spirit to convince that this is another support for their views such as spiritualism.

    As Michael and others before him said. The very fact that the form in which we see - perhaps not the entire spectrum of light waves and only the "visible domain" to us, and perhaps the form in which we see colors is unique to some people and so are smells - but it does not matter that these perceptions are also legitimate.

    Does the fact that a dog perceives the world differently from us because of a particularly strong sense of smell and black-and-white vision support the existence of ghosts or UFOs? No

    Fact. Every day we are helped by devices to strengthen our natural ability, devices for example that are able to see in wavelength ranges that we are not capable of, and do not see anything that "disappears" to us.

    Even the fact that we perceive and define with names the senses that we perceive is not limiting. It is true that we have "blind spots" in our senses and our senses can be deceived, but the logic that even the simplest animals have developed helps our minds to translate reality with a fairly high degree of success, otherwise they would not have survived to this day.

  81. I came to the article late and when I read it, a reaction formed in me which, according to the following reactions, is actually a combination of the reactions of Yigal G and Nano Ta Afor.

    The sensations of color, taste and smell, as Yigal said, are nothing more than a way to represent reality in our minds and there is no wrong or disadvantage in this representation compared to another representation.
    Marius Cohen claims that colors do not exist in reality. In a sense this is true but it is only the sense in which all the names we give to things do not exist in objective reality.
    Try for a moment to compare in your mind a production that sees "wavelengths".
    Suppose that he has a kind of visual image in his mind of the Fourier decomposition of the sound waves.
    Does this picture exist in reality? Of course not - after all, it's all about representation.
    Do not misunderstand my words.
    I am not belittling the existence of wavelengths - I just wanted to say that their situation is no better than that of colors because both wavelengths and colors are legitimate representations and a representation should not be rejected just because it is a representation and not reality itself.
    After all, it is logically impossible to contain external reality without representation (otherwise it would be internal and not external).

    Our senses did not develop in a vacuum.
    They developed as a result of a very cruel evolutionary process - one that would have caused any counterfeiting that occurs frequently - to simply become extinct.
    Whoever disbelieves in this is invited to cross the road when it seems to him that a car is speeding towards the point where he is crossing and is expected to get there with him.
    Then - let him check if the fact that he was run over is a reality or an illusion.
    Therefore, usually, in situations that exist in our everyday reality - our senses are very reliable.
    Pay attention to the fact that optical illusions are overwhelmingly products that man creates specifically to deceive the sense of sight.
    True - not always - petta morgana exists in nature, but it is not a common phenomenon.
    The reality we experience is three-dimensional, with light and shadow and color.
    The illusions usually eliminate part of the visual information we are used to receiving, so it is not surprising that our senses fail to interpret them.
    After all, in fact every two-dimensional image achieves such an effect in a certain sense when it makes us compare a three-dimensional reality before our eyes.
    "In order to" minimize the possibility of the influence of this type of deception, we are also endowed with the ability to think and analyze the input of our senses.
    Of course, those whose logic does not really work will try to eliminate both the importance of sensory input and the importance of logic, but we - the readers of science - are not like that.

  82. Are all illusions? - Not so simple...
    It should be remembered that human beings were not, are not and will not be the center of the world (except perhaps for their consciousness, they are...). And the world is indeed full of sounds, smells and voices!
    Let's think about the wonderful relationship between the plant kingdom and the animal kingdom:
    It is difficult to prove - but the accepted assumption is, for example, that the flowers with the different color, shape and smell and the fruits with the same properties would not have developed if it were not for the dependence of the plants bearing those flowers and fruits on the creatures that pollinate and pass the seeds on.
    That is, there was probably a certain stage in which all those features that were not there before - and on purpose!!!
    And this is one of the differences between the diverse earth and - for example - the moon.
    That is, from nothing, sounds, smells, colors, etc., etc., were created, real phenomena that can be interpreted by a similar and parallel sense in the almost total majority of cases by all living beings, and only "Hertz waves" and other physical waves without a basis were created Creator behind them!
    Break it down into small moments and say that everything is nothing and only our senses create the essence of the world? Philosophy in the empty sense of the word!!!
    And as the question: does a tree that falls in a place where you cannot hear it really make a falling noise, you can even ask: does a tree that is in a place where you can't see it actually exist at all?? And maybe they are only our senses that "plant" the tree in its place?
    Philosophy is the pinnacle of abstract thought - but it's such a shame that despite thousands of years of wonderful philosophers, man still hasn't learned anything: still corruption, hunger, thirst, hatred, denial, evil, war - and killing.
    So hand on heart: what use does it have in long-standing philosophy, except for verbal quibbling about the creation of the human mind - but never without applied conclusions?


    .. Don't attack me - I am of course exaggerating, but a little food for thought...

  83. Dr. Marius Cohen
    It is indeed an interesting article, but it seems to me that parts of it (or certain perceptions) went a little too far: it is true, the colors we see are interpretations that the brain produces from the reception of electromagnetic waves in the aforementioned frequency range, but both the scientific and quantitative statement, and the very scientific perception regarding the electromagnetic waves also They are our interpretations of natural phenomena. In fact, all perception (even the non-sensory, scientific one) is a collection of any interpretations of natural phenomena. It is possible that the scientific perception allows us to better understand, to perform various manipulations in natural phenomena and perhaps it is also a better way to understand nature, but it remains only an interpretation.
    Hence, the statement that nature is completely devoid of colors (or sounds) is meaningless! The words we produce (speaking, writing, etc.) are symbols that come to enable communication and understanding, and the difference between 'green' and '540 terahertz' (or 556 nanometers) is qualitative and quantitative only and is not essential. The essence does not change because it is given one interpretation or another. Hence there are 'colors' and there are 'sounds' in nature, and only the interpretation (the names, the symbols) and the meaning change and the phenomena of nature (such as the sound of the tree falling) do not cease to exist just because there is no one to interpret them (this last sentence does not hold in the quantum world).
    One can get an idea about the differences in interpretation and not in essence, for example the bat and the dolphin, who use the sounds to build an accurate map of the environment that is interpreted in their minds just as an image from the sight of our eyes is interpreted in our minds.
    Everything that is said here can also be applied to all the other senses.

  84. Such optical illusions only show how easy it is to deceive our brain and how many weaknesses it has, this is just another proof that we were not created by an almighty creator, because if so then he did a really bad job, you would fire him 🙂

  85. Now that it's clear as day that you can't accept what you see,
    Why was the latter imposed on me?
    Why is the appearance after the truth, and it seems doubtful to me?
    And what about the sound?
    And what about what is understood?
    And what about the known?
    The fool would do well to increase the weight of his modesty at the expense of his arrogance.
    Unlike many omniscients, who exist/do not exist even in their knowledge!

  86. Mr. Marius Cohen, thank you very much for the very interesting article, I enjoyed it....
    The first illusion with the link is simply amazing, it teaches us how unreliable our brain is, big, the other illusions are cool but with the same element, thanks to whoever uploaded the links

  87. The images of the "illusions" fool everyone into thinking that all the rest of the evidence is non-illusory.
    It's all an illusion, there are no colors outside.

  88. I read the article…
    Or I thought I read the article...
    Actually I believe I thought I read the article…
    And what is this article anyway? A sequence of words that we interpret as intention
    And what are words? In total, a cluster of letters
    And what are letters? Just a joke...

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