Post Reply Are We all "Really" here?
Posted 8/23/10 , edited 8/23/10
So here you are, reading my forum topic through your optical sensor known as the eyes. But what's to say that whatever you're perceiving with your own eyes is believable as the existence of an objective reality? Are you even a part of this existence for you are real simply because of your self-awareness? Had René Descartes assumed too quickly that "I think therefore I am" was a sufficient justification of self-evidence for our independent individuality? When our own awareness can only comprised of our own conscious rational selves, and even still it's plagued with natural fallacies known as "loss aversion", "confirmation bias", and "representativeness".

If anything, my questions only raised the many issues that associated with our own human intellects. That even before we independently encounter another mind(really?) other than our owns, our own mind was already subjective to our own sensory perceptions. In other words, what we individually came to believed as the reality as we know it, is still just a product of our own brain, which is itself constantly under the assault of our own sensory preceptors.

Now as if that wasn't enough to blew your mind, here's the real catch; what's not to believe the possibility of our self-awareness/"creation" was caused by manipulation of our sensory perception alone? As in how we can be sure that anyone of us really exist as we are now? When I've just made the analogy that even our own self-awareness is subjectively a byproduct of our own brain.
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Posted 8/24/10
Yes we are all here. Descartes got it all wrong. His coordinate system while at odds with the really existing universe, is but a product of the same logical error as his postulate, "And so something which I thought I was seeing with my eyes is in fact grasped solely by the faculty of judgment which is in my mind."(thanks wiki p) Descartes was a product of place and era; Holland during the first national revolution to overthrow a feudal order, the Spanish Crown (nationalism was something completely new, and was a revolutionary idea). While Descartes was pushed toward new philosophical ideas, he was tied to a bourgeois view of the world, as it was the bourgeoisie that was making the revolution. If I was living back then, I too would be fighting along side of Prince William of Orange against the Spaniards and the rest of the feudal order.

The consistently materialist, non-spiritualist, position is the opposite of, "I think therefore I am". "I exist, therefore, I have a remote possibility of self awareness (if I can avoid drinking too much)". Trees exist, but are not self aware. The same can said of some humans. Sentience is not a prerequisite of existence. But a functioning neural network is a prerequisite of self awareness. Thought is a product of really existing neurons. No neurons no thought. The problem of "is the universe a product of my mind?" is that it lets gods through the back door, because, according to Christian/Judeo/Islamic philosophy, the universe is precisely that, the product of an omnipotent mind. It's no mistake that Descartes believed in God.

Now back to studying (for the PE) and drinking...
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Posted 8/26/10


The questions brought up by this topic, as well as questions this topic has created for me tend to fit into the same general subject matter.
It is the concept of Fallacy vs. Fantasy: How is the mind able to distinguish between an out right lie & a merely entertaining intentional fabrication? I suggest two areas of cognizant mental function are necessary to understand our reality.

Somewhere I remember reading how, first, the maturity process of the brain develops a defined perception of self as a part of the universe instead of being the center of the universe, that is: all things do not belong to, nor are they subject to self. Toddlerhood vs. early Elementary- this maturity milestone begins somewhere around the 5th to 7th yr of life.

The next area of mental maturation is pretty well established between the 9th to 11th yr. It is the recognition of the concepts of 'true & false', both as an understanding of the consequences of lying, & a separation from the imaginary (no, Virginia, there really isn't- but you already knew that now didn't you?!)

Thinking back to my own childhood, the imaginary world was just as necessary to my life as food, water, family, & home. "Let's pretend" was a daily exercise of my existence, & tho it was also a completely separate part of my world, it was still treated by me as just as real as the non-imaginary one. I don't remember any specific moment of separation or recognition of real & make believe, but I'm pretty certain during my pre-school yrs. there absolutely were scary monsters in the closet, & then later in my early elementary yrs. only the suggestion that I once believed scary things were in the closet could still make me run at night thru the darkened hallway from the bathroom to my bed & pull the covers over my head. To this day, I do not, nor have I ever, enjoyed horror or slasher movies. Even tho I know it's all just movie special effects, there is still a part of me cringing at the suggestions, & I will lift my feet off the floor trying to get rid of the creepy tingling that threatens to rise up thru my legs & give me shivers.

Self-awareness of our reality is represented in many ways in our lives, right? It's how we interact daily, with people, with the job, in recreation or relaxation, thru organizing & planning our time. It is also present in how we perceive the fantasies of life. Do we enjoy fiction or non-fiction? TV dramas, cartoons, or reality shows, etc. How we feel about each of these sorts of things becomes a part of who we are & how we perceive ourself. Therefore, they are an integral part of our existence, our own personal reality, whether it is true for someone else or not has no baring on its validity to each of us as unique individuals, for we do indeed create our own reality. I frequently find myself smack dab in the middle of rejecting this or that reality & inputting my own. Life will then sometimes run smoother, when its not crashing into someone else's reality planted firmly in my path.
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Posted 9/22/10
Well, to me reality is perception. If you live in eternal deception, that is your reality. But that doesn't make it real.
I connect it with the need to be acknowledged, since that makes you perceived by others.
In that sense, some people create reality and others just dwell in it.
When an individual acquires acknowledgement and it stands the test of time, he creates a reality for the others to further progress, regress or deviate that reality.
In essence, some people exist a non-perceived existence and haven't contributed to mankind in any other way than it's numeric total, whereas others shape, touch, experience and progress existence so the dwellers can partake in their enhanced realities.
So thinking and questioning for yourself isn't enough...
Posted 10/4/10
Wow proving your own existence...that's the longest conversation ever that religion likes to say comes in a small bound book. I consider that book fiction. I wonder how those unaware or ignorant people see the world sometimes...but how I see the world. I have to say I don't trust my eyes half the time. And I don't even think people are in control of their own thought process...most of it is social pressures and environment forced reactions right?
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Posted 11/4/10
I had a couple of friends that were residents of Creedmore. One though he was a vampire, when he wasn't on his meds. Yes, he'd try to eat people. Still a good friend though. The other thought that the government was after her, and that her aunt was an evil capitalist government spy because she was a receptionist at Citi Bank. Faulty neural wiring, in these cases, is the cause of an incorrect perception of reality.

But Dom's question is quite valid; how do we know what we now is as accurate perception of a really existing universe, independent of our existence?

I encourage all to check out this book, Frauds, Myths, and Mysteries: Science and Pseudoscience in Archaeology, especially Chapter 2. I wish I could share more thoughts, however, I'm drunk once again. I was supposed to take a Professional Engineering exam, however, the brilliant bureaucrats at the State of New York Office of the Professions lost my application, and now I have to wait 6 more months to take the exam. There goes a 10% raise. Lovely.

Now I know this perception ain't no dream; it's a depressing nightmare!
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Posted 11/6/10

Fusev wrote:

Wow proving your own existence...that's the longest conversation ever that religion likes to say comes in a small bound book. I consider that book fiction. I wonder how those unaware or ignorant people see the world sometimes...but how I see the world. I have to say I don't trust my eyes half the time. And I don't even think people are in control of their own thought process...most of it is social pressures and environment forced reactions right?




el_nath wrote:

I had a couple of friends that were residents of Creedmore. One though he was a vampire, when he wasn't on his meds. Yes, he'd try to eat people. Still a good friend though. The other thought that the government was after her, and that her aunt was an evil capitalist government spy because she was a receptionist at Citi Bank. Faulty neural wiring, in these cases, is the cause of an incorrect perception of reality.

But Dom's question is quite valid; how do we know what we now is as accurate perception of a really existing universe, independent of our existence?

I encourage all to check out this book, Frauds, Myths, and Mysteries: Science and Pseudoscience in Archaeology, especially Chapter 2. I wish I could share more thoughts, however, I'm drunk once again. I was supposed to take a Professional Engineering exam, however, the brilliant bureaucrats at the State of New York Office of the Professions lost my application, and now I have to wait 6 more months to take the exam. There goes a 10% raise. Lovely.

Now I know this perception ain't no dream; it's a depressing nightmare!



To you both, these perspectives break my heart!!
On the other hand, I'm forced to wonder.... is my apparent confidence in life & mental outlook a result of my experience due to age, or laziness due to age....?
( I am a self declared optimist, but others have noted this about me, too)
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