| Von Glasersfeld's answers - October 2005  |


Question 1:

Dear Prof. Von Glasersfeld,
Thank you very much for this wonderful opportunity that you offer us the
possibity to ask you questions! My two questions are the following:
1. Which action, or which verb, can I use to describe what (my) mental
re-presentations "do"? They do not "refer", they do not "depict", they
do not "represent": do they "present"?
2. Ok, let's say they "xxx"? Then what is the object of their
xxx-action? They xxx what? They do not xxs reality They xxx my view of
Thank you very much!
Willemien Visser



Answer 1:
Dear Willemien Visser,
(1) Re-presentations do what you want them to do: enable you to assimilate
new experiences to ones already had, fill in blank spots in your
experiential world, serve as links in a train of thought, etc., etc. In
all cases they "present" constructs you have made in past experience, and
largely those that you consider viable.
(2) Answer (1) has answered most of your question (2). Re-presentations
should never be thought or said to represent "reality". They re-present
constructs you are inclined to rely on, but they can also re-present
constructs such as unicorns, angels, and dragons, which you should know to
have been derived from imagination (fiction) rather than actual
Best wishes,
Ernst von Glasersfeld





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