Everything’s Intentional

By BenduKiwi (Unknown) [GFDL (www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html), CC-BY-SA-3.0 (www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/) or CC-BY-SA-2.5-2.0-1.0 (www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5-2.0-1.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Image via Wikimedia Commons

Author Mark Haddonmakes the intriguing observation that we don’t have a word for processes that appear to be intentional but actually aren’t.


Is he right?

If so, I suspect that this is because at some level humans find intentionality in everything. It’s safer to assume there’s a predator behind every bush than it is to assume the opposite.

Witness, for instance, the horror implicit in Jacques Monod’s paean to ‘blind chance’. He surely wanted it to impart the feeling of sublime terror. Almost reads like HP Lovecraft…

“Drawn out of the realm of pure chance, the accident enters into that of necessity, of the most implacable certainties.”

Jacques Monod, Chance and Necessity. New York: Vintage Books, 1971

2 thoughts on “Everything’s Intentional

  1. I suspect seeing intention is all about the desire for meaning. We as a species don’t seem very comfortable with randomness. And yet it lay at the foundation of our existence. Or does it ?

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