Misplaced** (Part One of Thoughts, Language, and Aversion)

Life’s a treat, isn’t it?

I’m serious.

I had like a dream last night, before I was falling asleep. Someone was talking to me and they were saying, they said, “Found you, we found one, here, we found one here that is good,” they said.

And I thought, ‘Wow, what does that mean about the rest of them, whatever they are?’

Let’s take a third bite at the apple of explaining this one particular thing about language, thought, words, and aversion.

(You know, I’ll just go this way, how about that?)

It is useful to think, of thoughts like words, if only to see that they are both like them, and not like them. Some of us are more aware of our thoughts than others, I contend; having at different times in my life been to different degrees aware of my own. It is hard for me to describe whether or not awareness of one’s thoughts should ever be a goal, recalling as I do those times when I was less aware quite fondly.  I find myself in the strange position of having been forced to examine my thoughts because I found so many of them so offensive.

Let me take time to describe what that means. There are thoughts which are offensive that are like statements which are offensive: if one were to be racist, or childishly crude. However, should one think these things, they would not be offensive in the sense that I mean the word.

Other thoughts are offensive because they cause us problems: they lead us to courses of action that are not good for us.  For example, an addiction, or worry. And these thoughts also are not offensive, in the sense that I mean the word.

Rather at times, some small number of us might find that thoughts occur to us that we cannot with any certainty say that we have thought. These are what I mean when I use this word offensive. Perhaps another word could be misplaced.

For example, were one to suddenly think that one was on fire, when one was not — and should one think this more than once, perhaps after checking and quickly determining that one was not on fire, one could not be certain that one was actually thinking such a thing: knowing, as one did that one knew that the actual state of affairs was quite different and that one had no intention at this time to speculate or pretend or imagine being on fire.

Should both of these conditions be met by any thought that one knows that one knows that it is not true; and that one knows that one knows that one has no intention to think about it– one cannot say that one has thought it, and must wonder instead about its source.

 

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