Zac and I had an interesting conversation that started with how to understand boy-girl dynamics in the context of attraction, and then moved on to how much meaning ideas that are wholly self-defined are, and finally moved into some pretty ridiculous conceptual space: the definition of real.

It’s hard for me to talk about his perspective, so I’ll speak to mine.  In my discussion about friendship, I brought up that I want to emanate/broadcast this trust and devotion, regardless of whether (a) the other person in the friendship considers our friendship to “be about that,” and/or (b) the other person cares that I think it is.  I mean, I would hope that they care, but it is more important to me to treat people this way for its own sake.

Is my idea about how a friend should be treated grounded in reality?  Or, more interestingly, it is real at all?  I have certainly had people tell me that I’m wrong about what motivates me – my altruism is just glorified selfishness (more long term, perhaps, but selfishness just the same).  I would argue that in my ability to think and make decisions, I also have the capability of defining my actions in the world, at least somewhat independent of what the world is.

A final thought experiment on this topic today: Zac proposed the idea of a “four-sided triangle” to me.  He and I argued about whether the fact those two concepts, brought in juxtaposition despite being contradictory, is meaningful.  I think that it is, and here’s why: when he brings it up, he has some conception related to this squarangle in his head.  I have a potentially different conception.  Our shared mindspace devoted to the squarangle gives it meaning – and all that it needs it that meaning to be “real”.