Thoughts about thoughts

26 Aug

I’ve been thinking about thoughts. It’s common belief that all our thoughts are in language. I’m not so sure that’s true. Certainly language is our means for expressing our thoughts, just as I am typing my thoughts on this blog for you to read, however, is this how they live in my head? Full sentences? Each idea building on the last? Of course not.

My thoughts are more often than not unworded, unless I feel the need to put them into language, or if I’m thinking about talking to somebody, or doing something with language in them. My thoughts are also scents, images, vague emotions, watching from the back of the cave. Sometimes I imagine my thoughts are a great wheel turning and spinning, connecting this thing to that thing. Lost scents and tunes and memories that just turn and turn throughout the day, bringing something new up.

My mind is like a junk drawer, that knows that the smell of this day reminds me very specifically of the paisley pattern on my second grade teacher’s dress, and how, when she looked down, her own dress would reflect on her glasses. And that day where the wind went so hard that the hayfields sounded like a huge ream of paper tearing in half. I’m describing them now, but none of this is in words in my head, just images, sensations.

I imagine other people’s minds must be very clear places. Like a workroom, a white workroom without a speck of dust on it. Everything is orderly. I don’t know if I would enjoy that kind of mind.

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