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Bent Pencil

“Let us consider the pencil-in-water example. The representation of the pencil in your head is bent. The real pencil is not bent. That which misrepresents reality is, by definition, wrong.”

That is right in one sense, but only when you extend your naive realism (the pencil looks bent) to additional levels of biased realism (I can tell that it only looks bent, and I understand that it is possible for things to seem one way in one sense and a different way in another sense).

What this means is that when you say “The real pencil is not bent. That which misrepresents reality is, by definition, wrong.” you assume that there is a “real pencil” based purely on the bias of perceptual capacities of your human body. Your psychological capacities elevate that low level perception to a more subtle level of  interpretation (which is still a form of perception of perception) in which you can entertain a difference between a real pencil and a visual appearance.

I submit that the bent pencil is, in a sense, a much more ‘real’ pencil than the understood straight pencil in that it reflects not only the distant object of physical surfaces of a pencil and water, but it conveys a condensed encyclopedia on optics and perception which lead directly to discoverable neurological truths.

It is the simplistic interpretation of a literal reality that ‘simply is’, independent of a perceptual experience of that reality which seems to be a misrepresentation of reality.

That’s right. Fiction is primordial, fact is contrived.

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