Are We Living in a Virtual Reality Simulation?

Are We Living in a Virtual Reality Simulation?


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#61 - Quote - Permalink
Posted Mar 18, 2013 - 9:19 AM:

Philosophy and Not Philosophy wrote:

naive realism: Only accepting as real what we sense to exist. This fallacy has been refuted long time ago, including by Descartes, the senses can deceive us. We can perceive a lamppost for a man, a mirage for an oasis, the rising and setting of the sun, optical illusions, hallucinations. If we only accepted what our senses reported we would end up coming to all kinds of false conclusions. This is what Seller means by the difference betwen the apparent manifest image and the scientific image. What we perceive as our apparent reality is not necessarily the same as its actual reality, and most often it is the exact opposite. For instance we perceive solid matter, space and time, but quantum physics tells us they do not really exist. We perceive the Earth as being static, but astrophysics tells us it is in fact spinning on its axis, and hurtling through space at tens of thousands of miles per hour.

Selective thinking: There is no such thing as a universal perception. There is only intersubjective perception(shared perception) We humans have similar sense organs and minds so we process reality similarly. However, not all humans have similar organs and minds, some humans have some senses(e.g. blind, deaf) or working differently(colour blind, seeing sound, hearing sound) Some humans have radically different perceptions e.g. hallucinations, people who see ghosts/orbs/auras, OBES and NDE's and mystics who claim superconscious perception. All humans also share the perceptions of altered states of consciousness waking, dreaming and sleeping. Animals have different sense organs and minds and because we cannot share their reality we cannot answer questions like what it is like to be a bat, because we do not have the same sense organs and minds to access reality as they do.

Great information especially about the indian philosophy, but the philosophy seems a bit spigetty rather than a system, you seem to be saying one thing, you will say size of body is an illusion and then you come around and say the body is infinite which doesnot make sense. But generally I am uplifted. Thank you.

In the mean while I have a problem with your arguments against naive realism. Normally we don't say someone is deceived by a perception like seeing a lampole instead of man or mirage instead of oasis: these are false judgements instead of false perception. There are no false perception only FALSE judgements. When a man sees a percepts x , they are seeing whatever they are seeing, calling it y is another matter. Infact coming closer to a mirage and seeing no oasis is another judgement, it is still suspectable to error.
Philosophy and Not Philosophy

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#62 - Quote - Permalink
Posted Mar 18, 2013 - 10:11 AM:

Please continue the discussion of materialism vs idealism in the new thread "Is reality a divine matrix" I started.

John, I have responded to your post in the new thread.
Dancing WuLi Master

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#63 - Quote - Permalink
Posted Mar 18, 2013 - 10:53 AM:
Subject: Who is right Bostrom or swstephe ?
Hi swstephe,

After reading the first couple pages I scanned the topic and didn't find any discussion of Bostrom (although his name was cited once without any discussion).

To me the opening post was a dead ringer for Bostroms recognized area of expertise en Philosophy. But I am not expert on this topic so perhaps I have missed something.

swstephe wrote:
Thinking about it, I would be interested on some more details on the claim that this reality being a simulation being the one of higher probability. When I tried to work it out, I kept coming to the opposite conclusion.

I've just glanced at Bostroms argument again.

Although I didn't bother with the math, his argument seems to be saying that if we are NOT living in a simulation then there are only 2 possible reasons for that.

1) Simulations are not allowed by the laws of phyics (This statement seems false to me)
2) Smart people wouldn't bother with simulations for some unimagined reason (thi statement seems false to me except for the part I haven't imagined)

So that line of reasoning seems convincing to me. I'd be interested in mapping it to your opposing view, but I don't know how, since I haven't understood all your points.

I understand your point about Occam's razor, which is similar to David Deutchs refutation of Solipsism. However, my feeling is that it doesn't work to refute Bostrom.

Start with the question, "What could explain the existence of intelligent conscious beings?":
1) God
2) The Big Bang + Darwian processes
3) A simulation set in motion by intelligent conscious beings

The problem with 3 is its circularity not its complexity so I don't see Occam's Razor as a way to dispense with it.

When I compare the 3rd answer to the first 2, the circularity doesn't strike me as a major flaw.

Is this the kind of approach you were expressing interest in ?

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