Saturday, 24 May 2008

The bent oar illusion

Given that we categorise illusions (e.g. the oar bent in the water) as errors on the part of perception and therefore evidence that the mind is distinct from reality, how then can we verify the falsity of the illusion (that the oar is ‘really’ straight) with the very same perceptual apparatus that dealt us the illusion in the first place? The oar is ‘really’ straight only when viewed from certain angles, and not when viewed from the end on.