Suppose we were able to share meanings freely without a compulsive urge to impose our view or conform to those of others and without distortion and self-deception. Would this not constitute a real revolution in culture?
Thought is generally considered to be a sober and weighty business. But here it is being suggested that creative play is an essential element in forming new hypotheses and ideas. Indeed, thought which tries to avoid play is in fact playing false with itself. Play, it appears, is the very essence of thought. This notion of falseness that can creep into play of thought is shown in the etymology of the words illusion, delusion, and collusion, all of which have as their Latin root ludere, to play. So illusion implies playing false with perception; delusion, playing false with thought; collusion, playing false together in order to support each other's illusions and delusions. When thought plays false, the thinker may occasionally recognize this fact, and express it in the above words.
co-authored with F. David Peat