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rmehta's picture

In our group discussion on

In our group discussion on Thursday, someone asked the question “what is the difference between imagination and fantasy”? Imagination perhaps has a distinct purpose, a knowing belief in a greater understanding that will lead to additional possibilities.  Fantasy contains a “negative” connotation in that there is this unachievable that is not believable.  It is within this distinction that I believe lies and interesting commentary to what Dennett is trying to propose with his desire to eliminate all skyhooks.  Perhaps he is afraid of the combination of these two words. We understand Dennett wants to provide meaning for a process of purpose; however, does meaning not exist within the realm of imagination or fantasy, the proposed skyhook? We cannot get rid of all skyhooks because these are what push us to move forward and develop as a society and culture; thinking of the unthinkable is a necessity, not a detriment. Perhaps his “fear” of skyhooks stems from a fear of uncertainty.  To him, perhaps certainty (more so a sense of reality) eliminates a fear of a dangerous, meaningless unknown.  Random note: In one of my Spanish classes, Borges y sus lectores, we studied several of Borges’s works.  One of my favorite quotes is from his work “Tlön, Uqbar Tertius” is which he says in regards to the main character, “In life, he suffered from a sense of unreality, as do many Englishmen.” Whether relevant or not, I thought I’d just add this in here.


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