Dialogue: Concepts-1


I am interested in peoples own thinking regarding concept formation. Not in theories they might have learnt and not in received wisdom. But completely their own thinking, presently. That thinking and beliefs about concept formation may be a result of their experience, reflection or extensive study in psychology, epistemology or whatsoever. The issue here is what are their own views on the question written below, and not what theories they can mention in this regard.

I invite you to express your views on the question below, try to express in less than 200 words please, but if you find necessary write as much as you can. This is the first question in a series. Hope you will participate in the whole series.

Concepts-1: What are the necessary conditions for, say X, to form concept of a tree? (Considering X as a human being.)

अवधारणाएं-१: किसी मानव के लिए पेड़ कि अवधारणा बना पाने कि क्या आवश्यक शर्तें होंगी?  


11 Responses to Dialogue: Concepts-1

  1. vishnuagni says:

    A concept has validity in thought and language only if at least one other person shares a similar idea of the concept. He must have seen at least one tree at some time (so visually challenged from birth may have a different concept of tree, but perhaps this concept is more shareable with other visually challenged people). No concept is communicable without a shared experience.


  2. jaiti03 says:

    There can be the following necessary conditions on the basis of the following:-
    Nature of the tree that is how it grows initially.
    Visual characteristic that how it looks or the characteristics one can identify after touching/sensing the same and smell can be the one.
    Different parts of the tree and their behaviour during day or night or different seasons
    Its life that is how much longer will it live and what are the components required for the same.
    Some other characteristic as well like around carbon and oxygen can be used to define.
    May be the reasons can be considered that the way it can be home for various birds and animals.


    • Anonymous says:

      Thanks. Everyone is talking at a much more advanced level than I was looking for. 🙂 what I meant was: humans have concepts like trees. what conditions they should fulfill so that concept formation becomes possible? for example: if they do not have five senses can they form concepts like a tree? if no, then possession of senses is one necessary condition. are there any more necessary conditions at this level?

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Aruna says:

    Conditions for formation of concept of tree:
    1. A sensory experience of a tree ;visual, auditory or kinesthetic
    2. A symbol or a sign that signifies an object as a tree. So the sign ‘tree’ here is that signifier
    3. All other or some basic properties which typify a tree and differentiate it from.other objects
    # now the necessity of condition one is doubtful, but a general feeling is that it is necessary for helping young humans form a concept of tree.


    • Anonymous says:

      “now the necessity of condition one is doubtful” so are you claiming that one can form concept of a tree even if has no sensory impressions/inputs?


  4. Saurabh Todariya says:

    Well, what is the concept? It is the abstraction born out of encountring the number of individual entities. The necessity of concept formation may arise because of the practical necessity of functioning in the world. Our brain forms concepts so that we can operate easily in the world. So in order to form the concept of tree, the foremost thing is that tree should be meaningful in the practical engagement with the world. The pragmatic relationship with the world and the necessity of repeated usage of the object in the meaningful context of the persons lead her to form the concept of it. That is why, different communities have different concepts of the things around them, depending on their practical context.


  5. प्रिय महोदय, आपके कथन “अवधारणाएं-१: किसी मानव के लिए पेड़ कि अवधारणा बना पाने कि क्या आवश्यक शर्तें होंगी?” के सन्दर्भ में मैं समझता हूँ कि किसी भी सामान्य मानव में पेड़ की अवधारणा बना पाने के लिए उसके ज्ञान और कर्म वाले इन्द्रियों का सक्रिय और उनमें समन्वयन होना आवश्यक है, जिसकी सहायता से वह किसी भी मूर्त या अमूर्त वस्तुओं के बारे में उन्हें देखकर, छुकर, सुनकर और चखकर, उस देश काल और परिस्थिति के सापेक्ष अपने अनुभवों या विचारों को समाकलित कर अवधारणा के रूप में प्रस्तुत कर सकता है| हालाँकि इसमें उसके किसी ख़ास अवधारणा (यहाँ पेड़ का की उदाहरण रखते हैं) या उस अवधारणा से मिलती-जुलती अवधारणा जैसे पूर्वानुमान या अनुभव की भी महत्ता है लेकिन उसके लिए भी उपरोक्त अंगों का क्रियाशील होना मुझे जरुरी लगता है|
    अगर पेड़ के उदाहरण से अगर मैं यह समझने की कोशिश करता हूँ तो मुझे यह लगता है कि अगर किसी मानव में पेड़ की अवधारणा बना पाने की शर्ते यह होगी कि –
    उसके ज्ञान और कर्म वाले अंग सक्रिय हों और उनमें समन्वयन हो|
    मानव में पेड़ या उससे मिलते जुलते रहने वाली वस्तुओं की अवधारणा पहले से मौजूद हो
    मानव में अवधारणाओं के वर्गीकरण और समूहन की क्षमता मौजूद हो, आदि.


  6. Psychological perspective, the concept has come up with knowledge inculcate with some idea. Ideas may come from experiences or the intellectual which may get from nature or nurturing. For concept formation, our mind should have a familiar with milieu of tree, in schematic form it is in our mind. Also, schemas may have some connections with emotions or events which happened or acquired unconsciously. I am trying to say is, matter is in existence, someone has directly or indirectly may get chance have a connections but some may not. People who don’t have a vocabulary of this term Tree he may imagine or make a different concepts which may not relate to tree which is in existence. So, very important thing for making concepts, about objects or things there individual should have knowledge, vocabulary and information about environment in which it exists.


  7. Anonymous says:

    I have a little difficulty with this question. Early concept formation may be very sketchy, perhaps based mostly on the sensory perception of a tree that the person has received. But the concept keeps changing with incoming inputs or experience. My difficulty is- there is no single, unique point in time (or evolution of concept) when it can be said now the person has acquired the concept of a tree. So, listing necessary conditions assumes that we are able to reliably say that the person has indeed gained the concept to a level acceptable to us. This judgement can be subjective, unless you specify it in your question. To my mind, a concept is a slowly built and ever expanding continuum, which may evolve through life. Is there a ‘minimum satisfactory level’? I find it very hard to pinpoint.



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