Whenever communication successfully occurs, the miracle of connecting and synchronizing separate consciousnesses has taken place.
If you can read the previous sentence and with certainty know what I mean by it, then, as if by a magic spell, a mental image that I saw in my mind has been recreated in yours.
But only if.
I have to stress that this phenomenon is never guaranteed to occur. In fact, it very probably fails to occur all the time, every day, in countless attempts. Reading these words may be an example of such a failure.
How would you know?
Going back to the introductory sentence, I would be surprised (pleasantly, but still) if I had already made myself so clear then that, when you reached the second sentence, you immediately found yourself in complete agreement. Didn’t I raise the bar a little high by requiring not just a vague sense of understanding, but certainty?
“Whenever communication successfully occurs, the miracle of connecting and synchronizing separate consciousnesses has taken place.” Do you see what I mean when I say that? Maybe you do. It would be a lucky coincidence.
But why would you? Maybe you recognize a thought that you’ve already had or a conversation you and I have had, so I’m probably talking about that, or at least what I’m saying isn’t in contradiction to that.
Maybe you did understand. Maybe you do understand.
But any attempt at communicating is a leap, a reaching for a miracle.
Did the miracle occur? If I’m still not sure, I could try and see if using more words might help us gather enough evidence that yes, we did and do in fact understand each other. Evidence, but never certainty.
Fortunately, certainty isn’t needed where there is habituation, where there are people already inhabiting a shared space together, specifically: a shared mental space. “We understand each other.” It’s possible to get over the surprise, to get used to the phenomenon and to just accept it, even rely on it. Apparently it just works, most of the time. We understand each other.
If it didn’t work, we would be alone. Isolated little beings unable to know whether there really is anyone else outside of their own minds.
Inhabiting and maintaining a shared mental space is a miracle worth reaching for and taking leaps for. As if by magic spells, we can make each other see things. What a strange space this is. I’m glad we’re all here.