Knowing without Thinking

Most people assume that in order to exist or to be; one needs to “think”.  René Descartes (a French philosopher and scientist) has suggested this in 1637 in his famous statement: “cogito, ergo sum”.  (I think, therefore I am)

He suggested this as proof of the reality of one’s own mind; there must be a thinking entity—in this case the self—for there to be a thought. With the latest insights from neuroscience however, we now know that the “separate self” is not an entity. Perhaps one could describe it as an activity, but the self is NOT a “thing”.

This article poses that what most people call “knowing” is actually “conceptual thinking”.  “Knowing” in the broader sense does not end however when thinking takes a pause.

You can test this for yourself: look at someone and see how thoughts come up like: “oh, he/she has nice hair/a big belly/a beautiful nose, etc. etc.”  Notice how the conceptual/abstracting thinking puts labels on what you perceive, puts it into a box and limits it. Most people tend to believe such thinking and take it as meaning something real and important.

Suppose the next day you are asked whether you “know” this someone… So what do you answer?  Perhaps in your mind thoughts come up which recall something about what you observed the day before, but what do you know really?

Test this out for yourself: look at someone or something but simply ignore whatever thoughts come up. Perhaps you’ll notice how now and then there is a pause between those thoughts. You may be astonished that what you may call “knowing” or “perceiving” does NOT end in the space between thoughts!  During this silence another form of “knowing” continues, one that is not limited by abstractions, labels, conclusions, or in other words by; “me thinking about something”!

That kind of “Knowing” goes much deeper, is free, immediate and needs no conclusions, it needs no thoughts actually. When looking at someone or something, you see and sense without the usual labeling and evaluating. To recognize such “Knowing” is the discovery of a great sensitivity, a great freedom. All of the above is not implying that (chronic) conceptual thinking is bad, but it does point to the limitations of it. There is much more to Life than that!

Have you discovered this too?  Feel free to share your experience in the comments below…


  1. The reason Descartes came to the Cogito was that he was trying to doubt everything he “knew” until he could find some knowledge he couldn’t deny. He tried believing his senses, but he realized that they could deceive him. He tried believing that his body physically existed, but then he remembered that in vivid dreams, one can believe they are something they are not. Therefore, he couldn’t know that his physical body existed. In addition to dreams, Descartes postulated that there might be an evil demon tricking him into believing everything he thought was real. But, no matter how hard the demon tried, it couldn’t deceive Descartes into believing that his mind didn’t exist. Because, by trying to prove to Descartes that Descartes didn’t exist, the demon would inadvertently prove to Descartes that he did exist. Descartes’ “I think, therefore I am” could probably be better phrased “I think, therefore I know that I am.”

    I would suggest reading Descartes’ book Meditations. While I don’t agree with everything he says, I feel that he explains his Cogito argument quite wel

  2. I’ve heard that Decartes changed his opinion on that near the end of his life to, “I am, therefore I think”. The way often quoted, “I think, therefore I am” would imply that the moment one stops thinking, they would cease being. So the moment we might hold own breath, we would vanish? (try it, can you think while holding your breath? No, the body overrides all thought so the only action is to take another breath) Thoughts depend on us, there has to be some sort of a basis for thought to move upon.

    Saying that, I end up in the same place as you, most of what is considered knowledge will simply come and go with time. There is a truth to the space between thoughts that is not influenced by the likes and dislikes of the ego, where perception is clear.

  3. I simply want to say I am just all new to blogging and actually savored you’re web page. Most likely I’m likely to bookmark your blog post . You actually have tremendous articles and reviews. With thanks for sharing your website page.

  4. I wanted to thank you for this good read!! I absolutely enjoyed every little bit of it.

    I’ve got you saved as a favorite to check out new stuff you

  5. you are really a good webmaster. The web site
    loading speed is amazing. It seems that
    you’re doing any distinctive trick. Moreover,
    The contents are masterpiece. you have done a wonderful job on this matter!

  6. Having read this I believed it was extremely enlightening. I appreciate you taking the time and energy to put this informative article together. I once again find myself personally spending a lot of time both reading and commenting. But so what, it was still worthwhile!|

  7. Fantastic post however , I was wanting to know if you could write a litte more on this subject? I’d be very grateful if you could elaborate a little bit more. Appreciate it!|

  8. What i do not realize is actually how you are no longer actually
    a lot more smartly-favored than you might be now. You’re so intelligent.

    You know thus significantly in the case of this topic, produced me in my view consider
    it from numerous numerous angles. Its like men and women are not involved except
    it is something to do with Lady gaga! Your own stuffs nice.
    Always maintain it up!

    My homepage – 먹튀검증

  9. Have you ever considered about adding a little bit more than just your articles?
    I mean, what you say is fundamental and all. Nevertheless think
    of if you added some great pictures or videos to give
    your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with
    pics and clips, this website could definitely be one of the most beneficial in its niche.

    Excellent blog!

    My blog – 구글상위노출

  10. Greetings! I know this is kind of off topic but I was
    wondering which blog platform are you using for this site?
    I’m getting tired of WordPress because I’ve had issues
    with hackers and I’m looking at options for another platform.
    I would be awesome if you could point me in the direction of
    a good platform.

    Feel free to surf to my web page; 사설바둑이

  11. You actually make it appear so easy with your presentation but I to find this topic to be actually something which I believe I might never understand.
    It sort of feels too complex and extremely broad for me.
    I’m taking a look forward in your next publish, I’ll try to get the dangle of it!

    My web-site 구글상위노출교육

  12. Hello There. I discovered your blog the use of msn. This
    is an extremely smartly written article. I’ll be sure to bookmark it and come
    back to learn extra of your helpful information. Thank you
    for the post. I will certainly comeback.

    Also visit my blog post … 온라인카지노

  13. Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally,
    it seems as though you relied on the video to make your point.
    You definitely know what youre talking about, why waste
    your intelligence on just posting videos to your weblog when you could be giving us something enlightening to read?

    Look at my page … 먹튀사이트

  14. Hey there would you mind letting me know which webhost you’re utilizing?
    I’ve loaded your blog in 3 completely different web browsers
    and I must say this blog loads a lot faster then most.

    Can you suggest a good hosting provider at a fair price? Many
    thanks, I appreciate it!

    Feel free to surf to my website: 먹튀검증

  15. It is appropriate time to make some plans for the longer term and it is time to be happy.
    I have learn this publish and if I may just I wish to suggest you few fascinating
    issues or suggestions. Perhaps you could write next articles referring to this article.
    I want to read more issues approximately it!

    my website :: Resorts Casino Online

  16. Hello there I am so delighted I found your web site,
    I really found you by mistake, while I was searching on Askjeeve for something
    else, Anyhow I am here now and would just like to say thanks a lot for
    a fantastic post and a all round exciting blog (I also love
    the theme/design), I don’t have time to read it all at the
    moment but I have bookmarked it and also added your RSS feeds, so when I have
    time I will be back to read a great deal more, Please do keep up the superb

    Look into my blog Best 온라인카지노

  17. Right here is the perfect website for anyone who would like to understand
    this topic. You realize so much its almost hard to argue with you (not that
    I actually will need to…HaHa). You definitely put a fresh spin on a topic which has been written about for many
    years. Wonderful stuff, just excellent!

    My website casino online Usa

  18. Oh my goodness! Incredible article dude! Thank you so much, However
    I am encountering issues with your RSS. I don’t know the reason why
    I cannot subscribe to it. Is there anyone else getting identical RSS problems?

    Anybody who knows the solution can you kindly respond?

    Have a look at my web site … 살롱게임

  19. It’s a shame you don’t have a donate button! I’d certainly donate to this brilliant blog!
    I guess for now i’ll settle for bookmarking and adding your RSS feed
    to my Google account. I look forward to new updates and will talk about this blog with my Facebook group.
    Chat soon!

    Feel free to visit my page – 스포츠토토

  20. Please let me know if you’re looking for a author for your blog.
    You have some really great articles and I believe I would be
    a good asset. If you ever want to take some of the load off, I’d really
    like to write some content for your blog in exchange for a link back to mine.
    Please send me an e-mail if interested. Kudos!

    Here is my web page: Hilda

  21. An impressive share! I’ve just forwarded this onto a co-worker who has been conducting a little research on this.
    And he actually ordered me dinner simply because I discovered it for
    him… lol. So allow me to reword this…. Thank YOU for the meal!!
    But yeah, thanx for spending time to talk about this issue here
    on your web site.

    Also visit my blog … 블랙잭규칙

  22. We are a group of volunteers and starting a new scheme in our
    community. Your website offered us with valuable info to work on. You have done an impressive job and our whole community will be thankful to you.

    Also visit my website … Eve

  23. Hi, I do believe this is a great website. I
    stumbledupon it 😉 I may revisit yet again since i have saved as
    a favorite it. Money and freedom is the best way to change, may you be rich and continue to guide others.

    Here is my web-site; 현금바둑이

  24. This is a good tip especially to those new to the blogosphere.
    Simple but very precise information… Thanks for sharing this one.
    A must read article!

  25. Awsome article and straight to the point. I don’t know if this is in fact the best place to ask but do you guys have any ideea where to hire some professional writers? Thx 🙂

  26. I like what you guys are up too. Such smart work and reporting! Carry on the excellent works guys I’ve incorporated you guys to my blogroll. I think it’ll improve the value of my site :).

  27. Wow that was strange. I just wrote an extremely long comment but after I clicked submit my comment didn’t show up.
    Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again. Regardless,
    just wanted to say excellent blog!

  28. I’ve been exploring for a bit for any high quality articles or blog posts on this
    kind of house . Exploring in Yahoo I ultimately stumbled upon this site.
    Reading this information So i am glad to show that I have
    a very just right uncanny feeling I found out just what I needed.

    I most no doubt will make certain to do not omit this web site and provides it a
    look on a continuing basis.

  29. Howdy! I could have sworn I’ve visited your blog before but after looking at many of the posts I realized it’s new to me.

    Anyways, I’m definitely pleased I found it and I’ll be bookmarking it and checking back regularly!

  30. I like the helpful info you provide in your articles. I’ll bookmark your blog and check again here frequently. I’m quite sure I will learn a lot of new stuff right here! Best of luck for the next!

  31. I loved as much as you will receive carried out right here. The sketch is attractive, your authored material stylish. nonetheless, you command get bought an edginess over that you wish be delivering the following. unwell unquestionably come further formerly again as exactly the same nearly a lot often inside case you shield this hike.

  32. Today, I went to the beach with my kids. I found a sea shell and gave it to my 4 year old daughter and said “You can hear the ocean if you put this to your ear.” She placed the shell to her ear and screamed. There was a hermit crab inside and it pinched her ear. She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is totally off topic but I had to tell someone!|

  33. This is the proper blog for anybody who desires to search out out about this topic. You realize so much its virtually exhausting to argue with you (not that I actually would need…HaHa). You positively put a new spin on a subject thats been written about for years. Great stuff, just great!

  34. This is a great tip especially to those fresh to the blogosphere. Brief but very accurate info… Thank you for sharing this one. A must read post!
    스포츠중계Pretty! This was an incredibly wonderful article. Thank you for supplying these details.

  35. My wife and i ended up being joyful Albert managed to carry out his investigation because of the ideas he got out of your site. It is now and again perplexing to just possibly be giving for free instructions which often the others could have been making money from. And now we do understand we now have the blog owner to appreciate for this. All the illustrations you made, the simple web site navigation, the friendships you can give support to foster – it’s all amazing, and it is helping our son and our family feel that that idea is exciting, which is very essential. Many thanks for everything!

  36. I have been surfing on-line greater than three hours lately,
    but I by no means discovered any interesting article like yours.
    It’s lovely value sufficient for me. Personally, if all site owners and bloggers made good content material as you did, the web
    shall be a lot more helpful than ever before.

  37. Hello are using WordPress for your blog platform? I’m new to the blog
    world but I’m trying to get started and create my own. Do you require any coding expertise to make your own blog?
    Any help would be really appreciated!

  38. Drug testing is becoming increasingly common in the real estate industry as a way for employers to ensure a safe and drug-free work environment. Prospective tenants or buyers may also undergo drug testing as part of a background check before entering into a rental or ownership agreement.

  39. Hey this is kinda of off topic but I was wanting to know if blogs use WYSIWYG editors or if you have to manually code with HTML. I’m starting a blog soon but have no coding know-how so I wanted to get advice from someone with experience. Any help would be enormously appreciated!


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here