ForumsWEPRIs reality real?

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MattEmAngel
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MattEmAngel
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This stems from BFR's post on facts. On pages 4 and 5 it branched off into nihilism and existence. I am calling into question the concepts from "Inception," since they make some rather interesting suggestions, as well. Regardless of whether you liked the movie, or whether it made sense, it references some very unique and complicated theories.

Are we in a real world, is this a dream, or does it not exist at all? Does the phrase "I think, therefore I am" apply, or is it incorrect because I don't realize I'm not actually thinking? What if death is merely a literal awakening into the real world, if there is one?

True, you could pass this off immediately, but it merits at least a little discussion. I personally consider it all ridiculous and untrue, but I find the concept rather interesting. I may argue in favor or against nihilism and the possibility of an existence in a "dream-state," depending on the way the arguments flow.

So: Is reality real?

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FishPreferred
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FishPreferred
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So: Is reality real?


Yes, because what is being defined as "reality" is contingent upon what is being defined as "real". Reality being the entirety of things that are real and nothing else, it is real by default.
09philj
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09philj
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Yes, because what is being defined as "reality" is contingent upon what is being defined as "real". Reality being the entirety of things that are real and nothing else, it is real by default.


Reality is real, but we can't know the extent of reality. "I think, therefore I am" is flawed in that we only believe we are, so a more true statement is "I believe I am thinking, therefore I believe I am." This is also the extent of reality that is certain.
HahiHa
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"I think therefore I am" must be correct. Or answer me this, how could you think if you are not?

09philj
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09philj
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how could you think if you are not?


It is not certain that what we perceive to be our thoughts are the exclusive creation of our own minds and not affected in by an external agency.
HahiHa
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HahiHa
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What we perceive and what we think is most certainly the result of a combination of internal and external stimuli. But there has to be an existing being at the core of that, so independent of the nature of the stimuli, if you think, you are.

Or from another point of view, if you were a mere construct of another existing being, you wouldn't perceive your induced thoughts, because there would be no you.

09philj
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09philj
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But there has to be an existing being at the core of that,

However, can you demonstrably link thought to existence?

HahiHa
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HahiHa
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However, can you demonstrably link thought to existence?

I would say that thought originates from existence. As in my second approach, a non-existent "being" cannot think, or can it?

Or can you demonstrate that thought can be independent of existence?
FishPreferred
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FishPreferred
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"I think, therefore I am" is flawed in that we only believe we are, so a more true statement is "I believe I am thinking, therefore I believe I am." This is also the extent of reality that is certain.


To think is to be something that thinks, which must be real. To believe that one thinks is to be something that believes, which must still be real. To do anything at all is to be something which does things, and therefore real.

It is not certain that what we perceive to be our thoughts are the exclusive creation of our own minds and not affected in by an external agency.


In what way would thought be independent of external stimuli? Why do you regard the origin of that thought as relevant?
MageGrayWolf
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MageGrayWolf
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Mentioning whether what we are perceiving is real or not. I don't think it really matters. Even if what we are perceiving is just some simulation, this is still the world in which we all have to interact with collectively. This world does exist in some form, even if just an illusionary one. So as such it would seem to be in our best interest to treat this world as real to us.

If we are just a simulation within a simulation, than how is that any different from the perspective of being a simulation to being in a real world?

I was thinking of the concept of this world being nothing more than a fabrication of the mind rather than the result of external stimuli being perceived. We do have a frame of reference to compare a world that is created entirely within the mind to the one we perceive as realm that is when we dream. The dream goes by different rules from dream to dream, then we wake up and still have the same rules apply here consistently. We don't see any sort of disconnect as we do with dreams.

It is not certain that what we perceive to be our thoughts are the exclusive creation of our own minds and not affected in by an external agency.


Would that not still require something (ie myself) to exist to input those thoughts into?
09philj
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09philj
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In what way would thought be independent of external stimuli? Why do you regard the origin of that thought as relevant?


If we are not the agency that thinks of our thoughts, our consciousness is not real according to "cogito, ergo sum".
hezdog
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hezdog
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The only thing you can be certain exists is the only thing you actually experience: your consciousness. All input from your senses could be "real' as in from reality. It could also simply be something similar to the matrix, inception, a "brain in a vat", etc.

One of my favorite possibilities to your possible inception state is that you are god. What if you just decided to go live a life in a universe of your creation and forget everything about omnipotence. Then the moment you die you go back to allknowingness and think to yourself "well that was rather fun"

MattEmAngel
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MattEmAngel
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One of my favorite possibilities to your possible inception state is that you are god. What if you just decided to go live a life in a universe of your creation and forget everything about omnipotence. Then the moment you die you go back to allknowingness and think to yourself "well that was rather fun"


As a god, I would expect that I would have been able to see that my created world was full of drugs, hatred, war, famine, disease, corruption, pollution and death, and I can't imagine why I would want to spend a lifetime there. "Welp, it's the year 1992. I've already seen two world wars, several plagues, political corruption, hatred between race and gender, incurable diseases and overall selfishness. I think I'll go check it out for a lifetime and see what it's like."

I'm pretty sure that if that was true, the universe would have been incinerated long ago. Unless everyone is in their own universe of people, in which case how are we communicating?

Let's say we have a room of six people. Is one of them the god of the universe, who was stupid enough to become a man in a world so full of evil? Or are they all gods, in which case six universes would be overlapped, yet independent? Neither seems to make much sense.
FishPreferred
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If we are not the agency that thinks of our thoughts, our consciousness is not real according to "cogito, ergo sum".


That's still irrelevant. You are placing an unnecessary requirement upon existence by your interpretation of Descarte's words. Thought is something you are aware of through experience, regardless of its agency. How would you experience it if not for your existence?
09philj
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09philj
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Thought is something you are aware of through experience,


This is evidence gained through observation of a reality that may or may not be real.

(I do actually think this is real, and I exist. I'm just playing devil's advocate)
HahiHa
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HahiHa
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This is evidence gained through observation of a reality that may or may not be real.

I am still unsure about whether this sentence actually has a meaning, but here goes..

First off, as FishPreferred defined at the very beginning, "reality" is real, by definition. I can't think of a better word, but there must be one suiting your point better.

Secondly, I think this doesn't matter. If you experience thought, you must be real, whether in this "reality" or through observation of an illusion.
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