Monday, January 18, 2010

Emotional Signals

As conscious beings we exist only in response to other things, and we cannot know ourselves at all without knowing them. Moreover, there is nothing in theory and certainly nothing in experience, to support the extraordinary judgment that it is the truth about himself that is the easiest for a person to know. Facts about ourselves are not peculiarly solid and resistant to skeptical dissolution. Our natures are, indeed, elusively insubstantial, notoriously less stable and less inherent than the nature of other things. And insofar as this is the case, sincerity itself is bullshit.

Harry G. Frankfurt wrote those thoughts in the final paragraph of his 2005 best selling book, On Bullshit. Facts about us do stir our emotional pot especially if those facts are distorted in some way. We do exist to respond to things. Feelings are the signals that give our responses energy. Our feelings never bring us to a dead end. There is always another feeling waiting for us to embrace it. Our bodies change when we are emotionally charged, and our beliefs are front and center in the heat of any moment.

Our feelings represent our truth, but our truth as Frankfurt points out, may be riddled with insubstantial facts about the self. When we are fully engaged in an emotional state of bullshit as Frankfurt describes it, we express energy using natural aggression. Aggression and creativity are cataysts for cellular growth. Creativity is at the root of natural aggression. It is the energy behind our emotional signals. Our feelings, like flowers that bloom in joyful aggression, manifest with the same impetus and zest for life. Those feelings may be considered bullshit, but to us they are sincere expressions of our individual creativity.

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