Attention, or how to organize the mind

Sometimes our mind is a mess. Thoughts and experiences pile up, and our mind flips from one thing to another: I need to buy milk, I have an important meeting tomorrow, and, no, the bills have still
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Sometimes our mind is a mess. Thoughts and experiences pile up, and our mind flips from one thing to another: I need to buy milk, I have an important meeting tomorrow, and, no, the bills have still not been paid;  it’s my friends birthday, the face of that person reminds me of someone I met in college, and the advertisement blaring from the loudspeakers  tells me that a new shampoo will change my life. When our mind is such a mess, our life easily becomes a mess too. We forget to write the memo for the meeting, and return home with a shampoo we didn’t need. In such moments, it is easy to agree with Hume that a mind is just a heap of perceptions, feelings, and ideas. Luckily, most of our minds are not always like this. But why not? What aspect of the mind organizes it?  Attention, I argue, is an important part of the answer. Attention shapes perception, what and how we think, the way we feel, and how we act. But the deep integration with other aspects of our lives also gives rise to a. . .

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News source: OUPblog » Philosophy

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