It is natural for the materialist to ask how any sense can function without a sense organ. It is natural for the mentalist to point to the experience of dreams for the answer. All the senses are functioning during the dream but they do so without the apparatus of sense organs. This fact alone indicates in the clearest possible manner to anyone sufficiently perceptive to understand the indication that it is the mind and the mind alone which is the real agent in all the senses' experience. When, because of distracted attention, our mind is not aware of a thing which stands before our eyes, that particular thing temporarily ceases to exist for us. This means, if it means anything at all, that the thing receives its existence partly at the very least from us. It does not stand alone. Sense-experience actually takes place in consciousness itself: the five senses do not create but limit, canalize, and externalize this experience. We receive the various sensations of hardness, colour, shape, and so on, but they are not received from outside the mind. They are all received from within our consciousness. This is because they are received from the World-Mind's master image within us. The objects which cause those sensations truly exist, but they exist within this image--which itself exists within our field of consciousness. The things of experience are not different from the acts of knowing them. Hence the world exists in our thoughts of it.
-- Notebooks Category 21: Mentalism > Chapter 1: The Sensed World > # 34
-- Perspectives > Chapter 21: Mentalism > # 36