There's been a new book published which is all the rage among the effete drawing-rooms and lecture-circuits of the Liberal Elite. It's written by German professor Markus Gabriel and is titled, I Am Not a Brain.
Seriously, this is the title. We will quote Dr. Gabriel himself as to the substance of his thesis just to prove that he actually means this.
"What you call ‘mind’ in English does not exist. The ‘mind’ is a historical artifact of misguided philosophical theorizing in English. As a term, it does not refer to anything. Philosophers made it up as a technical term. But no one ever tells you what that means. If you look into any standard textbook, ever since John Locke, no one will tell you what it is."
That's right: along with religion, civilization, language, and gender we're now learning that belief in the human mind itself is an artificial social construct and that enlightened and sophisticated spirits have stopped believing in it. Gabriel gives an outline of his innovative philosophy in a recent interview. Like most of what passes for deep thought among the Academic Left, it is a meaningless mass of contradictions, unfounded assertion, and neologisms which no understands but which sound impressive.
Some of it too is blatantly false, such as the statement above that nobody since Locke has defined what the mind is. In fact, I have several books here in the library defining what it is. Taking one at random, here's Dr. James McCosh on the subject: "But it may be asked, what evidence have we of the existence of the mind? The answer is that we know its existence intuitively, by looking in on it as it is acting. We are conscious of it as perceiving, imagining, thinking, resolving, hoping, fearing, loving. We have thus evidence primary and not merely secondary; original and not derived; as certain as we have for matter." In other words, we know mind exists because it able to formulate concepts external to sensory perception. We know matter because we experience it sensually, but mind we understand through self-consciousness.
In contrast, Gabriel makes the strange assumption that the concept of mind is illusory because---according to him---the brain is not really the center of thought.
"The brain is not a conscious control center." he pontificates, "All the parts are connected in complicated ways. So, for instance, the mental state in which I am right now is that I’m trying to answer a question. I couldn’t answer a question without you asking me a question. The fact that you ask me a question is part of the mental state that I’m in. But this is nowhere in my body. It’s represented in my body – I need to have a working memory, but this conversation is nowhere in my body; it actually expands a much larger spacetime. Currently that’s England, Germany, as well as the communications networks – Skype etc. So my mental state is part of a larger network, it’s not just in my head."
If this is so, how was it possible for mankind to have created the 'illusion' of mind in the first place? Because according to his definition, imagination is impossible. And to further bolster his theory, he adduces this absurd example:
"The best thing to do is to accept that they are first order biases in human nature and psychology, economics, sociology, neuroscience etc. help us discover them. It’s a biological truth that we are not born with one of the two genders. A fact that has largely been ignored for thousands of years. Now these are all facts and it’s important to know them."
Where exactly does Biology teach this? Well, nowhere. It's one of several stupid assumptions which Gabriel asserts as self-evident truths. Such as when he calls the idea of an immortal soul 'bad propaganda' and the question of man's relationship to God "a pseudo-question." But about halfway through the article, we come to the real point of all of this nonsense:
"I think that the situation that we think we’re in – participants in the rational game of getting to, and asking for reasons, decision-makers, subjects to Freudian unconscious drives, etc. – the situation that we think we’re in is really the situation that we’re in. I’m against illusions. I think that the idea that human agency is an illusion is currently the most dangerous idea out there. Because that is exactly what propaganda leaders, the so-called ‘populists’, use to spread fake news. So if you tell people, ‘Oh, it’s more complicated, things are not what they seem; Brexit might not be such a bad idea, or Erdogan might not be a dictator, or Donald Trump might not be an idiot. Things are probably much more complicated than you think’, you then don’t trust your senses, your sensibilities, because people tell you that you shouldn’t."
There it is in all its brutal cynicism!
Liberals who lurk at this site really ought to do some serious soul-searching after reading this. For the last few days, there's been controversy over the 'NPC meme' depicting Liberals as mindless herd-followers. And now, here's one of your leaders telling you that---not only is NPC accurate---it's a metaphysical necessity to being a Liberal!
Because, no matter how you slice it, Gabriel is telling you that thinking is dangerous and that acting on impulse is enlightened behavior. He says exactly that: "We all do struggle with self-application in our everyday lives because we have become aware (thanks to scientific discoveries, of course) that there are all sorts of biases that we were unaware of earlier." Meaning simply that you are to take your marching-orders from the 'scientific' Elite; and to underscore the reason for this, he explains:
"Fundamentally, it’s a simple argument: we have no reason to believe there is a totality. Even if you think there’s just a material universe, the material universe has not come to an end. And we don’t know everything about it. So we have no empirical reason whatsoever to believe that there is a totality. Everything that we know empirically is limited by our perspective."
Thus, because mankind believes in a mind, he also believes in a 'totality'; or ultimate purpose. According to Gabriel, since there's no purpose to the universe and since we ignorant rabble don't know anything, we should defer to the educated elite because our common sense should tell us that they are smarter than we are.
And this is the kind of thinking that the Liberal Democrats and the Swamp RINOs would like to bring back. Don't be an NPC. Use your mind, and use it proudly.