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I was working from the basis that reality is reality, and our senses interpret it, and then our feelings are an interpretation into "mind language" of what our senses are reporting, and then with each step we get further from the origin of what we understand to be "reality". I'm sure this was given a name 2000+ years ago. What is it?

Thank you.

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  • I don't have any references for it, but I've always called it a "worldview."
    – Cort Ammon
    Sep 3 '16 at 2:08
  • The "worldview" is the mental model formed by the set of beliefs about reality. How a particular thing appears in the mind is going to be similar, but it is more about a specific event or object, rather than the thing as a whole.
    – Shammoo
    Sep 3 '16 at 9:20
  • I am not sure if you are asking about the philosophy you describe (called sensualism or sense empiricism), or the process (perception?), or the result of it (percept? mental construct?). However, our feelings are not interpretations of sensations, perceptions already have interpretative aspects, and the idea that disparate sensations as opposed to synthesized perceptions are "closer" to reality would be disputed by many realists. They might say that scientific reconstructions are the closest.
    – Conifold
    Sep 4 '16 at 6:53
  • Perfect, yes, a percept. Thank you. Just as a quick debate though. Yes it is a more organised view of reality once all the information has been combined in the human machine, but this may very well make it LESS close to reality, despite being more organised. Surely there is limited argument in saying more understandable equates to more real.
    – Shammoo
    Sep 5 '16 at 20:29
  • If you call reality the world as it appears to your senses, no more or less, then your view is called naive realism.
    – user20253
    Dec 30 '18 at 13:33
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The word you're looking for is umwelt. It's a German word scientists and psychologists use to mean one's subjective reality.

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    Would you have references where this word is used or described in more detail? That would support your answer and give the reader a place to go for more information. Welcome to this SE! Nov 29 '18 at 13:28
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The word you may be looking for is "appearance" as in contrast to "reality". To see this in use, here is a quote from Edward Feser (page 14):

If all this is right, then it is indeed possible to know that the physical world outside one's mind really exists, despite arguments about dreams, evil spirits, brains in vats, and hallucinations. As we've seen, consideration of such arguments nevertheless implies that there is a gap between our experience of the physical universe and that universe itself; between appearance and reality, mind and world. [my emphasis]


Feser, E. (2006). Philosophy of mind: A beginner's guide. Oneworld Publications.

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