If a Tree Fell in the Forest

“If a tree fell in the forest but no one was there to hear the noise, did it make a sound?”

My first philosophical question was posed to me by my father when I was a small boy. As I remember, there was no correct or incorrect answer. There was only the recital of various arguments and rebuttals. Finally after almost 60 years, I thought of a better question. If only my dad were still alive to appreciate it with me.

It’s this: if billions of trees in a forest all fell at the same time, could you hear the sound that one of them made as it crashed to the ground?

There are so many of us, each with his or her own desires, needs, hopes, stories, disappointments, fears, loves, and sadness; his or her voices, faces, bodies, pleasures, and pains. How can we possibly see or hear or touch them all?

Know that those who are unheard and unseen wither from the lack of hearing or seeing. That is the problem of other consciousness: being conscious of others who are unconscious of you.

Mike Stone

Raanana Israel

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Filed under Essays, Dilemmas, & Philosophy, Prose

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