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The truth of Fact, The truth of Feeling

So as im reading through Exhalations(see first weekly review) i come across the short story titled the title.

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First of all, it’s a great story. Second its about Language and Cognition. so even better.

two things i’m really really into.

it feels like no one really talks about stuff related to it, like say, the first person internal experience of feeling the passage of time and aging.

No one talks about the experience of self when speaking different languages.I moved to Canada 6 years ago, and since then i’ve not gotten (or let myself) speak in other languages, i understand 2-3 more on top of english, and suck at speaking/writing them. (always been better at listening/reading over speaking/writing. idkwhy🤷)

but a week or so ago i spoke a few words in Urdu while driving in my car alone.

and it felt weird…

i felt like i was a different person in that moment.

that no one talks about that. i guess people take it for granted, or dont bother noticing it cause its not really practical. idk.

This story had something of that going on in it.

it deals with how cognition changes because of technology.

how the invention of writing affected oral cultures.

how the invention of AI-based Video recorded history changes your memories. reveals how fabricated your own sense of reality truly is. how we create narratives through reshaping pieces of our memories to support the current version of our self.

theres this moment in the book, where an individual from a writing culture starts teaching someone, an adult, writing,

and he had to explain what a word is,,

that reaaallly got me thinking about how this guy is weird for not knowing words when he is speaking them, not being able to notice what he is speaking.

but my brain chewed on it more and more and realized, to him all he is making is a smooth stream of sounds, not unlike music.

it also got me thinking about web design.

and how that in itself is language, a tool for communication.

where you have to setup pages to convey a certain feel,

transmit certain information, in a specific ways.

how me learning about how a web page works behind the scenes, and how i’m now able to glimpse the “words”, the “divs”.

I wonder how malleable cognition truly is. surely theres a cap, its evolved in a specific environment to do specific things.

I wonder about Musicians, or people who know music, and if they listen to music the way i listen to English, distinguishing distinct “words”.

I know after learning how to do counts for dancing, that im definitely able to distinguish the “beats” as different divs.


the worst part is that even if i learn Music theory, my mind will change slowly, and adapt through the whole process. i wish i could just Know a whole language, so i can just compare and contrast the first person subjective experiences…

the qualia

Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows: Onism

imo this is what great scifi does, instills

Wonder and Awe.

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