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What we “look at” is not the real world itself but our internal model of it.

The answer to the famous philosophical question, “What is it like to be a bat?” might be “Pretty much the same as to be a fast flying, visually hunting insectivorous bird such as a swallow.”

. When visual animals such as swallows or people look at the world, we construct a simulation model in the brain, which is continuously updated by incoming data from the eyes, and hence bears enough similarity to the real world outside to allow navigation through it and pursuit of moving targets. The remarkable phenomena of visual illusions are best interpreted on the hypothesis that what we “look at” is not the real world itself but our internal model of it.

We may look at a large rock and presume its solidity but Density can refer to the number of molecules in a substance. This can apply to gases, liquids, and solids

So the empirical argument, not the malleable rational argument, goes
that the rock does not have density in fact think of a football stadium with a fly in it and that is the measure of the density of a rock.

Dr Johnson may have attempted to refute this by kicking the rock 'I refute it thus'
but he was being rational not empirical.

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