Dolphins use electrosensing to locate prey: http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn20732-electric-dolphins-cetaceans-with-a-seventh-sense.html?full=true&print=true
A Serbian boy manifests magnetism strong enough to hold onto metal objects, http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1360081/Bogdan-The-seven-year-old-Serbian-boy-appears-magnetic.html
Animals of course migrate by way of earth’s magnetic field and recently it’s been discovered that humans carry a gene in their eye http://www.bionews.org.uk/page_97703.asp
that makes a protein, cryptochrome, which in insects senses the earth’s magnetic field.
Consider that it would be logical that these capacities didn’t stop evolving at that point, but continued to evolve into the behavioral modules of consciousness, or, looking at it another way, energy provided the template on which mental states and cognition evolved, which would then explain why human beings intuitively describe emotional experience in terms of energy; “wired,” “chemistry between them,” “animal magnetism,” “drawn together as if by gravity,” “electricity was in the air,” etc., etc., etc..
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In his last book _Modes of Thought_, Alfred North Whitehead addressed your point directly, saying:
“The energetic activity considered in physics is the emotional intensity entertained in life.”
The book is online, and your readers might find Chapters 7 and 8 very interesting, as he discusses :Nature Lifeless” and “Nature Alive.”
ANW: “The truth is that our sense-perceptions are extraordinarily vague and confused modes of experience. Also there is every evidence that their prominent side of external reference is very superficial in its disclosure of the universe. It is important. For example, pragmatically a paving-stone is a hard, solid, static, irremoveable fact. This is what sense-perception, on its sharp-cut side, discloses. But if physical science be correct, this is a very superficial account of that portion of the universe which we call the paving-stone. Two conclusions are now abundantly clear. One is that sense-perception omits any discrimination of the fundamental activities within nature. For example, consider the difference between the paving-stone as perceived visually, or by falling upon it, and the molecular activities of the paving-stone as described by the physicist. The second conclusion is the failure of science to endow its formulae for activity with any meaning. The divergence of the formulae about nature from the appearance of nature has robbed the formulae of any explanatory character.”
I’m not challenging the central premise that nature has meaning, but rather I would like to qualify that our senses are not so vague or confused as it may appear. In my mind, what leads to confusion are the thoughts that become attached to what we feel. For example, from my experience building stone walls, while at first a stone may look to us as a hard, static object, when you start to position a few stones with pleasing lines, you then can’t escape the feeling that the stones are fluid as you can see the lines flow one into the other. You then start looking for more stones that have this fluid quality in order to increase the visual effect. They no longer strike you as hard and static. So the senses make an aesthetic experience possible which can then apprehend the molten magma from whence the stone emerged millions if not billions of years ago. Likewise I’m proposing that if we don’t project thoughts into animals when we feel what we feel about what they do, we can also apprehend invisible forces that reveal a far deeper meaning in what they are doing.
KB: “Likewise I’m proposing that if we don’t project thoughts into animals when we feel what we feel about what they do, we can also apprehend invisible forces that reveal a far deeper meaning in what they are doing.”
Perhaps your concern can be vividly expressed by placing yourself before your young infant as you focus on their acts and how this resonates in your body and creates emotional affects.
So much of what infants do is in fact misinterpreted by their parents because they project various motives onto what their child is doing and see the child as testing them or defying them when he is altogether innocent of such intentions. Likewise we ascribe human intentions of competition, possessiveness, territoriality, dominance onto the behavior of animals and then develop a psychology which in essence represents an “us-versus-them” matrix of motives.
What you sy here is to a large extent right. But not everyone and not at all times is it so. I was thinking of observations of infants and animals void of such rationalizing projections. People merely watching/interacting with no intent to figure something out about the presented behavior.
Such experiences, I feel, will yield the same affective responses w/r infant and animal behavior – this is how we empathize, and it is how they will develop to do so as well.
What utter nonsense. And you didn’t even bother to get the story right. Cytochromes don’t sense the magnetic field as you deceptively claim. Read the article again. Your take on evolution is fantastical and has no evidentiary support.
The second part about how humans describe emotion is also ridiculous and shows how little you think about these things. It’s a classic display of linguistic and temporal chauvinism. I can assure you that ancient people weren’t using wired, magnetic, etc., these are all relatively modern words. Typical failure on your part.
Right, ancient people not knowing of electromagnetism and gravity of course didn’t describe emotional states in such terms so I didn’t think I had to make that disclaimer. They also didn’t describe the phenomenon of inherited traits in terms of genes either, I think they used expressions such as “in the blood.” But nevertheless they understood that there was a phenomenon of inheritance and likewise when it came to describing peoples’ emotional proclivities and makeups they used terms like “humours” and earth, wind, fire and water as their means of speaking to the energetic phenomenon of behavior. So as our understandings of nature are updated, then current usage makes it way into how we intuitively describe the nature of our fellows. It’s the same thing, point not taken.
Here’s the verbatim quote from the article:
“Humans may retain a diminished ability to see the Earth’s magnetic field, claims a new American study. Experiments were carried out to investigate the function of light-sensitive proteins called cryptochromes, in the eyes of fruit flies and Monarch butterflies. These proteins were found to endow these insects with the ability to detect magnetic fields. The same protein is also present in the human eye, raising the possibility that humans may also retain this ability to some extent.”
“…energy provided the template…”; makes good sense to me. Think “sewing”…”patterns”…you can alter the pattern to suit your desired outcome, but only to a point. No matter how many alterations you make to what you are sewing, or to the original pattern, it will never result in a power drill! LOL
Each generation re-interprets energy, physics, force fields… through contemporary eyes and by using the current scientific paradigm and its associated language. If we take a global perspective we find that life force – the auric or magnetic energy field, (to provoke further discussion here) – is a recognized cultural phenomena all over the planet. It’s important to have these discussions, not for purposes of being “right” or “wrong”, or insulting contributors, but to advance our thinking and evolve ourselves. And that takes a combination of fantastical thinking and empirical evidence.