If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it,

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If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?

yes
120
66%
no
63
34%
 
Total votes: 183

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Philalethes
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Re: If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear

Post by Philalethes » November 18th, 2017, 1:36 pm

Yes, just not the sound "you" would hear. Reality is real but you don't experience it as it is.

Namelesss
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Re: If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear

Post by Namelesss » November 18th, 2017, 9:11 pm

If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it,
your poll is woefully inadequate to answer the question.
Besides, philosophy and science are not 'yes/no' propositions!

About your question;

If a tree falls in the forest, and there are none to hear (goes the old Zen koan), does it make a sound?

~~~ sound
from dictionary dot com)

1. the sensation produced by stimulation of the organs of hearing by vibrations transmitted through the air or other medium.
2. mechanical vibrations transmitted through an elastic medium, traveling in air at a speed of approximately 1087 ft. (331 m) per second at sea level.

^^^^^^^^^^^
According to the first definition, no.
There would be no "organs of hearing" (assuming that there are no other "organs of hearing" around; squirrels, warthogs, bluebirds of happiness, faeries, whatever...) present.

And no, according to the second definition;
If there is no one perceiving those 'vibrations', they cannot/do not exist.
Only that which is perceived, exists!

That which is perceived exists!
That which exists is perceived!
Not a thing exists that is not perceived!
Not a thing is perceived that does not exist!
(There is no, nor can there be, any evidence to the contrary!)
All inclusive!!!

^^^^^^^^^^^
Actually, to 'know' that there is a forest and a tree, they must be perceived!
"Knowledge is perception!"
It is not possible that there can be Perspectives perceiving the existence of the tree, and that it falls, without being there to perceive accompanying sounds, if any.
A tree cannot fall in the forest unless the forest and the tree and the falling are all perceived (even by a rock!)!
The very question is, from that Perspective, in error.

StayCurious
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Joined: January 11th, 2018, 6:34 pm

Re: If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it,

Post by StayCurious » February 17th, 2018, 4:12 am

The only answer needed, unfortunately, is...it depends.

On how you define sound, that is.

Jan Sand
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Joined: September 10th, 2017, 11:57 am

Re: If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it,

Post by Jan Sand » February 17th, 2018, 12:57 pm

As someone who writes poetry, I might ask a similar question. If I write a poem and no one reads it, is it still a poem?

Namelesss
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Joined: November 15th, 2017, 1:59 am

Re: If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it,

Post by Namelesss » February 17th, 2018, 10:31 pm

Jan Sand wrote:
February 17th, 2018, 12:57 pm
As someone who writes poetry, I might ask a similar question. If I write a poem and no one reads it, is it still a poem?
You cannot write a poem and no one reads it.
You have thought/written/read it, even if no one else, and already decided that it is poetry.

"A word is not a Word until Spoken,
a heart is not a Heart until Broken!" - n

StayCurious
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Re: If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it,

Post by StayCurious » February 17th, 2018, 11:11 pm

These types of conversations can become very repetitive and monotonous because our general assumptions surrounding the definitions of particular words vary, as well as our own personal theories and opinions on what separates abstractions from reality. It almost belongs in a port regarding semantics and communications theory.

Jan Sand
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Re: If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it,

Post by Jan Sand » February 17th, 2018, 11:55 pm

But then, the world only exists for me alone and what I have not read or perceived may have some theoretical existence but it has solidity only within the shadows of possibility.

Jan Sand
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Re: If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it,

Post by Jan Sand » February 18th, 2018, 1:17 am

Since our sense abilities have been developed to permit us to survive, each of us must piece together the fragments of whatever we can perceive and what we consider relevant to make consistent patterns of what existence might be. To a very large extent the brain is a guessing machine and if there are blank areas in our perceptions such as the area in our vision where the nerves connect to the retina, the brain manufactures what it supposes exists there. This ability to artificially construct the blanks in perception is massively used by each of us to create what we presume is reality. If it functions, we must accept it until, as with Einstein and Newton, we must revise our creative presumptions to resume proper functioning. Science advances by discovering its mistakes and that is why any advance in our knowledge is through finding out where we have been wrong.

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LuckyR
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Re: If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it,

Post by LuckyR » February 21st, 2018, 11:44 am

StayCurious wrote:
February 17th, 2018, 11:11 pm
These types of conversations can become very repetitive and monotonous because our general assumptions surrounding the definitions of particular words vary, as well as our own personal theories and opinions on what separates abstractions from reality. It almost belongs in a port regarding semantics and communications theory.
Great post. This topic was exhausted way, way before post #900+
"As usual... it depends."

Jan Sand
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Joined: September 10th, 2017, 11:57 am

Re: If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it,

Post by Jan Sand » February 21st, 2018, 1:34 pm

The question can be rephrased as, if you do not perceive something,does it exist? Perhaps a lot of unaware people might find that more intriguing.

StayCurious
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Re: If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it,

Post by StayCurious » February 21st, 2018, 5:38 pm

LuckyR wrote:
February 21st, 2018, 11:44 am
StayCurious wrote:
February 17th, 2018, 11:11 pm
These types of conversations can become very repetitive and monotonous because our general assumptions surrounding the definitions of particular words vary, as well as our own personal theories and opinions on what separates abstractions from reality. It almost belongs in a port regarding semantics and communications theory.
Great post. This topic was exhausted way, way before post #900+
I agree, but it's just a too popularly discussed question to not get loads of reactions and people that "know what they're talking about".

Jan Sand
Posts: 510
Joined: September 10th, 2017, 11:57 am

Re: If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it,

Post by Jan Sand » February 21st, 2018, 11:48 pm

Anything that questions reality is always interesting since reality itself is a matter of guesswork. The general presumption is that something out there is a source of our nerve system reactions and that makes sense to me. But the brain is a mechanism to formulate high and low probabilities out of nerve impulses and past experience and inheritance of basic concepts for survival out of genetics. It's all a matter of good or bad guesses. There are many ways to fool our nervous systems and absolute proof of existence seems to me to be an impossibility.

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