Friday, April 25, 2008

I now see colour differently

Daniel Dennett:
"... the color of objects: they have indeed coevolved with the color-vision systems of the organisms that perceive them"
- Review of Varela
I hadn't thought about this before. Colour is so personal and vivid, it affects our moods and emotions so strongly. It is still real - just as the oxygen in the atmosphere that was put in there by photosynthesis and which preceded animal evolution is real. But it's harder to intellectually detach ourselves from our perceptual systems.

Organisms act on their environment and contribute to their environment - they do not just adapt to their environment. At some level everyone knows this but I hadn't realised how deep it went. That in the process of our evolution we created colour itself, as distinct from the particular wavelength of certain radiations.

I have to think about this more. I had more of an OMG than an AHA response.

It might be similar to the idea that we coevolve with our language, that language is a mind tool that grows with us. As we learn language we grow a little, which enables us to learn more language in an ongoing spiral.

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