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Perceptions of Reality posted 25 Aug 2006, 22:08 by Entropic_existence, Moderator

Hey folks, this post may end up being more rambling than I intend but I want to get peoples opinions on reality, your perception of it, etc. Alot of post-modern thought tends (at least from my interpretation of it) to point that reality and truth are in a sense subjective, i.e. there is no such thing as absolute Truth. As a scientist I have a small problem with that because it seems to me there must be fundamental underlying Laws of nature that determine how the universe works. Of course on the other hand I've always liked the idea that to an extent human belief shapes reality. I think of course that that comes from some of the many sci-fi and fantasy books that I have read where concepts like gods where shaped and empowered purely on human belief. Anyway anyone have anything they would like to share on this subject? view post

posted 25 Aug 2006, 23:08 by Harrol, Moderator

Well certainly with out some sort of truth or reality then science is impossible to have. For example you can not have a measurement without a reference I am not a scientist but I work on their lab equipment and I know a lot of their findings in some way comes from what they can measure and reference. Without some form of truth and reality then what do we as people have to go by? view post

posted 26 Aug 2006, 00:08 by Entropic_existence, Moderator

[quote="Harrol":1szbe6ti]Well certainly with out some sort of truth or reality then science is impossible to have. For example you can not have a measurement without a reference I am not a scientist but I work on their lab equipment and I know a lot of their findings in some way comes from what they can measure and reference. Without some form of truth and reality then what do we as people have to go by?[/quote:1szbe6ti] Yea, thats my thought too, although when you start to delve too much into Quantum Mechanics it starts to get a little hairy. But it depends I guess if you think there is a differene of more than just scale between the quantum and the gross physical world. view post

posted 28 Aug 2006, 11:08 by Primal, Peralogue

This is a tough question. I don't know if it's answerable with our current knowledge and framework. If it is answerable, it may be one of a paradoxical nature. Let's define objective and subjective. -subjective: meaning and value given by the human -objective: the impartial, external, or non-dependent of the human Since we, ourselves, are part of reality (supposing reality is objective), then in this objective reality, there is no such thing as the subjective, unless reality, itself, is subjective and not objective. But how would reality know its either one or neither or both? Because we are human, and part of reality, whatever meaning we give is meaning from reality, unless we are specifically limiting the meaning to define human view from non-human categories. Reference for science. We can still have references for science even though they may not be absolute. For example, our systems of distance measurements: they're mathematically infinitely long. Complexity theory brings up an interesting point about gauging the distance along a coastline: how do you measure the exactness? You can't. You have to arbitrarily decide. You can't follow every contour and jaggedness. Even smooth surfaces, once examined microspically will have rough edges. A coastline and all lengths brake down infinitely. Smaller points can be found within points within points, and so on. The same with time measurement. Atomic time is derived from the revolution of an electron. (there's currently a rumor we are changing from atomic time to something more precise, involving the motion of a quark). We can talk about subjective and objective truth in regards to us. If, Entropic, as you've interpreted, other scientists believe there is no absolute truth, the reasoning that leads to that may lie in the fact that no one has yet discovered absolute truth. If you discover absolute truth, wouldn't that equate to absolute knowledge, and therefore godly knowledge (the power of a god, the experience of infinity, life, death, first causes and last events, etc)? Personally, I believe in absolute truth. I believe also that we are experiencing absolute truth but we cannot have the knowing of it, just like we experience reality but we do not have knowledge or or cannot fathom the infinite mechanisms that run it. Speaking of infinity....alot of scientific mentality, maybe most, for the past century or a few and currently, are geared towards reductionism. They believe that by breaking and isolating components, they can understand the working of the whole. I think there can be some understanding but not complete understanding. The other approach is a holistic approach, an attempt to analyze the whole (neither approach, the reductionis or the holis are mutually exclusive). I don't think we can have complete understanding either, since knowing the whole would preclude understanding the "infinite" aspects; also, in reductionism, studying only what is deemed essential leaves alot of room for error as well as alot of unknowing. Yet we can have some knowledge. Just like math. What the fuck is [i:3xwmjwym]ii[/i:3xwmjwym] (mathematical pie)? It's used to measure the length of a circle, a number between 3.14 and 3.15 that never ends. What is [i:3xwmjwym]i[/i:3xwmjwym]? We don't even understanding a square root of a negative 1, so we makeit into a variable, the letter [i:3xwmjwym]i[/i:3xwmjwym], and use it in electrical calculations. A letter in math that has no comprehensible or non solution, used in advanced fields of technology and sciences. What the fuck?! Since, we're speaking about's a rant on "cultural" perspectives. There are 6 billion humans in the world. They all have different perspectives, obviously. If you take clusters of them and compare, you'll find very distinct mentalities. The Arab world: they do not share the same sense of integrity and honesty like the US. If someone were to ask them if they knew where members of Al-Quaida were located, they would say no even if they knew and were not associated with the group in anyway and wanted those groups to be found and rooted out. Why? Family honor. They don't want any connections, of any kind, to be traced back to their family name because it would cause dishonor. This, of course, is a problem for coalition forces as well as integration of new values and principles. Another example of alien mentality: if you have ever seen Taxi Driver with Robert Deniro, there's a scene where he takes the female journalist to the movies. It turns out to be a porno film, and the character is completely oblivious to circumstance. The female is appalled, and he's casual. I was reading a review where they mentioned the scene and alluded to the character being "socially inept". I think it goes beyond simply that. The world he lived in was all he knew. He didn't know any better. The same with certain societies in regard to certain things. Another example of different mentality: in some societies, where children (say three or four years old) do not grow up with technology; introduce a helicopter flying in the sky. They won't know what it is. They may not even be able to formulate a distance-perception with it yet. It might be some small strange toy hovering only a mere few feet above him, ever eluding them as they chase it, much as the sun always eluded some ancients who tried to chase it =] . Different mentalities...different perspectives... view post

posted 28 Aug 2006, 13:08 by Harrol, Moderator

That was very good Primal. I agree that there is an absolute truth that we as people have not attained to yet or maybe never will. view post

posted 27 Sep 2006, 20:09 by Will, Peralogue

It seems self-evident, at first, that the world is objective and human beings are merely pieces thereof. This would lead directly to the conclusion that the math which describes that world (physics) is the deepest "truth" that exists. There are, however, pieces of evidence weighing agaisnt this, the quantum slit experiment comes to mind. I personally stop at Descarte, I think therefore I am, the rest of you, and obviously the world itself, may or may not be, and it doesn't make any particular difference to the only piece of reality I can know (me). view post

posted 28 Sep 2006, 01:09 by vercint, Peralogue

[quote="Will":3ibiqt93]It seems self-evident, at first, that the world is objective and human beings are merely pieces thereof. This would lead directly to the conclusion that the math which describes that world (physics) is the deepest "truth" that exists. [/quote:3ibiqt93] Or rather, math and physics are the closest we have come to describing the objective world accurately. Since our perception is inherently subjective it follows that we cannot achieve a perfectly true description of the world. The same, of course, goes for God. The imperfect (us) cannot apprehend the perfect (Him). Which is why "the wise think of God not at all. They know that thought, which is finite, can only do violence upon God, who is infinite. It is enough, they say, that God thinks them." view post

posted 28 Sep 2006, 04:09 by Harrol, Moderator

Well said Vercint. I could not have made that point. view post

posted 29 Sep 2006, 18:09 by DrunkenAfficianado, Commoner

In Hinduism, the Atman and the Brahman are One. That is, the Objective and the Subjective are One. J. Krishnmurti reiterates it, as does the fictional Dunyain. So called "objective" measures are tools created by humankind. An examination of number theory leads directly back to Euclid. An examination of standard units leads back to the Old English "rod" that got it's length from it's use as an astronomical device to calculate the 13 lunar monthes of 28 days each, with a day and 1/4 left over, with respect to the Solar year. Time is not "objective" or "standardized," unless agreed to by a populace. The Romans had no "0" or negative numbers despite the fact the Greeks had them for 350 years prior. If time is not a standard, then how can any objective reality exist simply because it is "framed" or "bounded", by physics or mathematical language? What if a sentient being deliberately disbelieves "math" as derived of Euclidean geometry? What if A. Crowley is correct in stating 0=63 in order to make Kabbhalistic sense, and thus creates a "new" metric which is an "accepted" "Objective" measure? Suddenly, the freewill of the individual observing sentience determines how raw sensory data is processed into usuable information. If another sentience, who assumes there must be an "objective" reality begins to attempt a meaningful communication with the first observer without the new metric, he will assume the first sentient being mad or insane, whereas the being might be working on a completely different and entirely legal level of insight. Thus, to argue for objectivity is the first shackle of slavery. Objectivity is allowing mere quantity rather than quality to affect one's perception of the IS. If you can control my method of perception and thus my gathering and use of meaningful information, then you have control of my mind. That is slavery. Metrics are tools to benefit sentient beings. When they lead to slavery, they should be eliminated. And yes, there are accepted non-Euclidean geometries such Reiman and Lobochevsky.... view post

posted 04 Dec 2006, 00:12 by Sorcerous-Words, Auditor

i tend to side with our perception of reality is from within view post

posted 06 Jan 2007, 13:01 by avatar_of_existence, Peralogue

It is important to keep in mind that we experience the world with severly limited sensory input (limited as compared to perhaps a cat or a whale). Science is based on 'objective' findings, meaning findings that fall within it's parameters. "Science is the myth of cause and effect." - F.N. Taking psychedellic drugs can shatter and redefine reality. I have had experiences where the day after intoxication I had a feeling that I would "never be able to go back". Of course, this can be entirely shattering, or it can be an experience of rebirthing. It can also be neither. I have mostly experienced it as a good thing, at one point it drew me back from the brink of suicide. Reality is defined to a large degree by that which we obsess about in our day to day lives. view post

Re: Perceptions of Reality posted 19 Jun 2008, 15:06 by jub, Peralogue

My thoughts as of now: We cannot perceve reality, we only have perceptions which influence our thoughts and even then what's reality can we find in that? Basically I feel, to us, reality doesn't exsist in external objects, thoughts included. Reality is that uncomprehensable thought that you sometimes get that's impossible to draw out no matter how hard you try. I do feel that you can extend that feeling of knowing but never can you grasp it. view post

Re: Perceptions of Reality posted 01 Jul 2008, 04:07 by Callan S., Auditor

I think you have to remember that, being alive, your essentially biased. You have an agenda in terms of life and continuation*. To a degree, that means absolute truth is absolutely worthless to you. It'd have to actually meet your bias somehow to be worth something and it wont. It's absolute truth, devoid of bias. At an elemental level and upward, you have no use for it, so at an elemental level and upward, you will not pursue it. Your essentially outside of truth, because of living bias. However, I'm quite against 'Oh, realities whatever you make it!' and such statements. There is a truth to the bias as well, and it is not that, as far as I can see. The bias has rules and structure. Your inability to percieve absolute truth doesn't mean your meeting the needs of your bias by throwing up your hands in the air about reality and the truth of it. It's not so much that we need absolute truth, its that we need to meet the goals of our living bias, and by the typical nature of that bias, some amount of absolute truth is a means to that end. I think, anyway. I've raced ahead a bit there - there's a few points which are long discussions in themselves, but I've moved ahead to further points, and points beyond those. Ah well! :) * If you don't, your probably dead and not reading this! view post


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