Thursday, October 25, 2007

The Theory Of Mind and The Theory Of Art

The theory of mind states very simply that a normal individual can appreciate that other people have a perception (of events) that is different from theirs. Now, thats all great if we leave people with autism and others with certain neurological lesions aside. The problems starts when ever I see some artistic work. There are times when I feel extremely drawn in, communicated to, and feel some emotion. More often than not, I feel like this is all crap impersonating as profoundness. Now the theory of mind says that I am within my rights to think that way and there is nothing wrong about it. The problem starts when I start thinking as to how could anyone think that way, and that is when I think that I may be autistic. I mean here are all those fine critics that wax eloquent on all that stuff, and I just dont appreciate it and whats more, I dont even understand how anyone could like it!!! I am sure Tataastha will have an answer to this.


Nisha said...

It is 2.50 am and i came home bit late after a birthday party. I didnt feel like sleeping.. so i was lookin at your blog to see if u have posted something interesting.. I know this is not the time to speak about the theory of mind.. I am not even sure whether i understood u correctly..coz my mind is not working very well now. but i have a comment as usual hehe. here it is:

What does Theory of mind say? Well it is something that all ppl must develop in order to understand the minds of others. It is just a theory because we can never actually connect with another’s mind. There is no objective way to verify the contents of their consciousness or to assess their motivations and desires. However, when we interact with people we have to use our theory of mind to work out what they know, think and feel and these are only guesses.
There is an old East Indian fable about the Blind Men and the Elephant. Six blind men, having never been near an elephant, suddenly had an opportunity to touch one. After touching the flat, flappy ear of the animal, one blind man exclaimed that the elephant was like a fan. The pachyderm's tail and leg induced two others to conclude that the elephant was like a rope and a tree trunk. Other descriptions included: "... like a wall," "... like a snake," "... like spears." Unfortunately, with each blind man espousing a different story, a heated argument ensued. Soon, the elephant's owner was awakened by the ruckus and came out to quiet the group. After each blind man explained his case, the owner responded:
"The elephant is a very large animal. Its side is like a wall. Its trunk is like a snake. Its tusks are like spears. Its legs are like trees. Its ears are like fans. And its tail is like a rope. So you are all right. But you are all wrong, too. For each of you touched only one part of the animal. To know what an elephant is really like, you must put all those parts together. ( thanks to google, i got this story quickly than i thought)
So theories are theories. In order to understand the mind, we have to rise beyond the mind.. this is impossible.. perhaps the fish is the last one to know that it is living in the water.. u know what i mean? we dont have the whole pic and each of us only sees part of the picture. But it seems like to me (my guesses using the theory of the mind) that this theory is evoking certain emotions within you.. some sort of anger and frustration. I am not sure. Perhaps you can reflect upon these emotions and become more aware of yourself, coz self-awareness play an important role in TOM. hehe. Dont mind me.. i am very sleely now. good night or is it good morning? ;)

Shrinked Immaculate said...

Yeah...I need a coffee, I am getting more self-aware now. WOW!!!!

Nisha said...

:) there you go, u can satisfy ur own needs coz u are aware of them:) TOM agrees with that:P

A typical human self understands the world of the physical, of emotions and of self. A key difference is the quality of imagination between autistics and non-autistics

Autistic imagination does not connect with the emotional. An autistic can get angry at something, but not angry with something.

manisha said...

what utter bullshit!

desiree said...

It seems like manisha got good imagination and thanks to nisha i can clearly see that Manisha is not autistic as she is not angry at these posts but angry with these posts;)
The autistic self is fragmented - its emotions, will and intellect could not work together... but acc. TOM we can see that Manisha's self is not fragmented,her emotions, will and intellect are working together. She has an ablity to eloborate on her statment "what utter bullshit" and she will surely do that:P

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