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Thursday, June 7, 2018

What is a sense?


Photo source: Wikimedia Commons, Augustin Ruiz

Photo license: CC BY 2.0


What is a sense? Here is my definition:


A sense is a faculty that retrieves data


I believe that senses are the only way we can learn about reality. Although we are unaware of most data we receive in on a daily basis, everything we know about reality was originally received through a sense. I believe this includes sensing our thoughts and feelings. For example, imagine you are nervous for a presentation and you have many thoughts racing through your head. In this situation, you can become aware of your racing thoughts. This is a sense that allows you perceive your thoughts.


I also believe that machines can have senses. For example, light bulbs can have motion sensors that turn on the light bulb when somebody enters the room. I believe this qualifies as a sense. In this regard, unconscious objects can have senses.



License: CC BY-SA 4.0