Serendip is an independent site partnering with faculty at multiple colleges and universities around the world. Happy exploring!

Reply to comment

sgb90's picture

The Mind as Prison and Release

I would agree that in the absence of any absolute guidelines and in a reality defined purely by humankind, one is free "to become a maker and reviser of categories oneself, to be a creative individual in one's own right." In an abyss with no pre-determined meaning, one either must do this or, well, go insane. I think there is a paradox to this situation--it is both liberating and condemning (we are "condemned to be free" as Sartre would say). If you stop, though, and try to view the human situation from "the outside" as it were (as much as that is possible), you will see a species wandering around in its own self-imposed maze, and this maze I think is consciousness and its reflection in all human endeavors. It is impossible to exit the mind; the mind is both our ultimate prison and our sole release. Our minds, ever creating new narratives and new ways of being, are the source of an artificial light from within the perpetual darkness of a purposeless but continually generative existence.


The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
To prevent automated spam submissions leave this field empty.
6 + 14 =
Solve this simple math problem and enter the result. E.g. for 1+3, enter 4.