What is "real", what is "not real", and what is "more real"?

#1
I have expressed my idea several times, but it seems I haven't ever successfully got anyone understand my meaning.

Now I take another try, wishing dear someone will get what I want to speak:

Nowadays many people and thinkers like to think one question: "Is our world ultimately an illusion or a virtual game?"

I have my own answer about this question.

First, let us make this thing clear:
Each of us use our own eyes, visual and other sensory systems, and our brain or consciousness' thinking ability to observe and understand this world, so everything we got is through a subjective curtain. None of us can find a way to "touch the real reality".

What conclusion we can draw from the above baseline?
The real reality might exist, might not exist, either is possible, we won't know with 100% certainty on which one is correct, which one is wrong, or both are right, or both are not precisely correct, or things should be stated in a more complex way.

We will use our own sensory organs and thinking ability which are all more or less subjective to observe and understand this world, whether it is real or an illusion, we won't be able to directly touch its reality or find and prove the genuine truth that it is sure an illusion.

We don't know. There is no way to know.

But it is very natural that we don't know, we should have understood that our sensory organs and thinkings are all subjective and possibly delusive, as early as when we were a kid who started to observe and think. We shouldn't have felt strange about the idea "our world might be a virtual game", it has always been like this. We should have asked the question: "Hey have you ever thought about that our world might be real?" rather than "Hey have you ever thought about that our world might be an illusion?"

So why we feel it is curious to say "our world might be an illusion", not "our world might be real"? Why we have got accustomed and subconsciously accepted about "our world is real", so as to feel startled and frightened about the idea "our world might be an illusion", not the opposite case?

Because we "FEEL THIS WORLD IS REAL", and this is further because "THIS WORLD HAS ALMOST INFINITE INFORMATION AMOUNT".

So, let us make this clear:
When we refer to the word "REAL", we actually refer to either of its two meanings without consciously noticing that sometimes we confused these two meanings:
1, one meaning of the word "REAL", is "the scientific definition of the ultimately objective reality", as I said before, we are unable to directly touch such a reality because everything our consciousness got is through our sensory organs and thinking ability's curtain.
2, another meaning of the word "REAL", is "we feel something real because it shows sufficient amount of information to us, and we feel something not real because it hides or is actually absent of sufficient amount of information".

When a person makes a "big claim" but shows the audiences very scarce amount of information, it is almost always the case of lying, either purposefully deception or self lying in the first place.
Although we are unable to touch the first meaning of "REAL" as I said above, we can touch the second meaning, as we get more and more information, the things in discussion seem more and more real to us.

A real person like you, they, and me seem very real to us, is because you, they, and me emit and will ooze many amount of information, whereas a fictitious person in a tale story or an NPC in a video game seems less real to us, especially when we try to hear and interact more and more with them, is because they show us very scarce amount of information, they start to be irresponsible or repetitive when we get to know them for a short while and try to further continue.

REAL IS ABOUT INFORMATION AMOUNT.

It is a big puzzle why near death experiencers stated that their experiences are "definitely real, more real than our physical reality and mundane world", but at the same time they provided far far less information amount than our physical reality. I don't understand this, because they seem to have no reason to lie.

But it almost always is a lie, when someone makes a "BIG CLAIM" while providing piteously little amount of information.

It is strange.
 
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#2
I have expressed my idea several times, but it seems I haven't ever successfully got anyone understand my meaning.

Now I take another try, wishing dear someone will get what I want to speak:

Nowadays many people and thinkers like to think one question: "Is our world ultimately an illusion or a virtual game?"

I have my own answer about this question.

First, let us make this thing clear:
Each of us use our own eyes, visual and other sensory systems, and our brain or consciousness' thinking ability to observe and understand this world, so everything we got is through a subjective curtain. None of us can find a way to "touch the real reality".

What conclusion we can draw from the above baseline?
The real reality might exist, might not exist, either is possible, we won't know with 100% certainty on which one is correct, which one is wrong, or both are right, or both are not precisely correct, or things should be stated in a more complex way.

We will use our own sensory organs and thinking ability which are all more or less subjective to observe and understand this world, whether it is real or an illusion, we won't be able to directly touch its reality or find and prove the genuine truth that it is sure an illusion.

We don't know. There is no way to know.

But it is very natural that we don't know, we should have understood that our sensory organs and thinkings are all subjective and possibly delusive, as early as when we were a kid who started to observe and think. We shouldn't have felt strange about the idea "our world might be a virtual game", it has always been like this. We should have asked the question: "Hey have you ever thought about that our world might be real?" rather than "Hey have you ever thought about that our world might be an illusion?"

So why we feel it is curious to say "our world might be an illusion", not "our world might be real"? Why we have got accustomed and subconsciously accepted about "our world is real", so as to feel startled and frightened about the idea "our world might be an illusion", not the opposite case?

Because we "FEEL THIS WORLD IS REAL", and this is further because "THIS WORLD HAS ALMOST INFINITE INFORMATION AMOUNT".

So, let us make this clear:
When we refer to the word "REAL", we actually refer to either of its two meanings without consciously noticing that sometimes we confused these two meanings:
1, one meaning of the word "REAL", is "the scientific definition of the ultimately objective reality", as I said before, we are unable to directly touch such a reality because everything our consciousness got is through our sensory organs and thinking ability's curtain.
2, another meaning of the word "REAL", is "we feel something real because it shows sufficient amount of information to us, and we feel something not real because it hides or is actually absent of sufficient amount of information".

When a person makes a "big claim" but shows the audiences very scarce amount of information, it is almost always the case of lying, either purposefully deception or self lying in the first place.
Although we are unable to touch the first meaning of "REAL" as I said above, we can touch the second meaning, as we get more and more information, the things in discussion seem more and more real to us.

A real person like you, they, and me seem very real to us, is because you, they, and me emit and will ooze many amount of information, whereas a fictitious person in a tale story or an NPC in a video game seems less real to us, especially when we try to hear and interact more and more with them, is because they show us very scarce amount of information, they start to be irresponsible or repetitive when we get to know them for a short while and try to further continue.

REAL IS ABOUT INFORMATION AMOUNT.

It is a big puzzle why near death experiencers stated that their experiences are "definitely real, more real than our physical reality and mundane world", but at the same time they provided far far less information amount than our physical reality. I don't understand this, because they seem to have no reason to lie.

But it almost always is a lie, when someone makes a "BIG CLAIM" while providing piteously little amount of information.

It is strange.
30 Doradus, you are correct about the lie concealed inside a big claim such as the nature of reality.

What we deliberate when we discuss 'reality', is the deontological sojourn of refining understanding into truth. An idea must go through several steps before it can be considered a 'truth'.

Scintilla​
Concept​
Construct​
Hypothesis​
Prevailing and/or Null Hypothesis​
Consensus​
Truth (by means of Embargo)​

Our problem is when people, who purport to be persons of 'science' - try and push a concept or construct (which is not even mature enough to be a true scientific hypothesis) to status as final truth - and skip all the intervening steps. This is what both materialists and theists are doing. The materialist in particular is too lazy and agency-insistent to wait for an actual hypothesis of scientific discipline - so they take the concept/construct that our reality is the only possible basal reality (singular, closed I E and M, and non-derivative),

...and promote that construct to status as consensus (and therefore truth). The warning flag of 'truth' being enforced is - when that person then asserts that no other competing idea need be researched any longer (embargo).

An Appeal to Truth always comes commensurate with an implicit Appeal to Embargo
When someone appeals to authority of truth, by means of enforcing an embargo of competing ideas - they are protecting a lie (even if they are accidentally correct in the end, it is still a lie because of the way in which it was enforced)​

In this particular example, this is religious activity, called Nihilism.

An ethical skeptic, is one who gets this Jedi Mind Trick, and knows thereafter how to spot it (regardless of what other costumes it might wear).
 
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#3
30 Doradus, you are correct about the lie concealed inside a big claim such as the nature of reality.

What we deliberate when we discuss 'reality', is the deontological sojourn of refining understanding into truth. An idea must go through several steps before it can be considered a 'truth'.

Scintilla​
Concept​
Construct​
Hypothesis​
Prevailing and/or Null Hypothesis​
Consensus​
Truth (by means of Embargo)​

Our problem is when people, who purport to be persons of 'science' - try and push a concept or construct (which is not even mature enough to be a true scientific hypothesis) to status as final truth - and skip all the intervening steps. This is what both materialists and theists are doing. The materialist in particular is too lazy and agency-insistent to wait for an actual hypothesis of scientific discipline - so they take the concept/construct that our reality is the only possible basal reality (singular, closed I E and M, and non-derivative),

...and promote that construct to status as consensus (and therefore truth). The warning flag of 'truth' being enforced is - when that person then asserts that no other competing idea need be researched any longer (embargo).

An Appeal to Truth always comes commensurate with an implicit Appeal to Embargo
When someone appeals to authority of truth, by means of enforcing an embargo of competing ideas - they are protecting a lie (even if they are accidentally correct in the end, it is still a lie because of the way in which it was enforced)​

In this particular example, this is religious activity, called Nihilism.

An ethical skeptic, is one who gets this Jedi Mind Trick, and knows thereafter how to spot it (regardless of what other costumes it might wear).
Several sentences of what you wrote, I can't confidently understand. It's my problem, I learned a lot from this paragraph but I lack background knowledge regarding skeptic deontology, embargo, the rightful means to achieve reality, Nihilism, Jedi Mind Trick, and some other concepts.

Let me try to do the understanding, when we overcome our laziness, like the laziness of materialism, the laziness of religion, then we enforce us to undergo every necessary step to achieve reality: Scintilla, Concept, Construct, Hypothesis, Prevailing and/or Null Hypothesis, Consensus, Truth (by means of Embargo), on each of which phases we need to gather as much information as possible to disperse any fog of doubts and refuting, denying, alternative interpretations.

But there are always doubts, refuting, denying, alternative interpretations. Not even INFINITE amount of information of evidence can give us 100% certainty on what the reality actually is. Am I suggesting that the process of finding reality is meaningless and futile because there is no way to achieve 100% certainty of realness? No, there is indeed no way to achieve 100% certainty of realness, but what we are expecting is not a 100% certainty of realness, we are expecting more amount of information to bolster a claim, id est, small claim requires small amount of information, big claim requires large amount of information, otherwise we are lying to ourselves.

A big claim with little amount of information is not only a lie, but is also a meaningless and dull, drab affair. For example, if one can't tell information about Jesus on what he looks like, what characteristics and temperament he has, and what he did, is doing and will do in some of the moments in history, now, and for future plan, if one can't provide any little information mentioned foregoing regarding Jesus, then "JESUS IS ONLY AS REAL AS A FIVE-LETTERS WORD: J-E-S-U-S", which is completely meaningless and has nothing to do to guide how we lead our lives which is abundant of information.

We have no way to strictly prove anything's realness, but it is not our expectation to prove anything's realness with 100% certainty.
We only expect a thing with sufficient large amount of information to explore further. For example, no matter what the afterlife near death experiencers were guaranteed is, an afterlife with not much information is completely meaningless and is in effect another name of oblivion, void.

Lie is a big claim with little amount of information, truth is a prudent claim with sufficient or more amount of information to bolster its genuine and meaningfulness.
 
#4
My above post is not very pertinent to your reply, I'm sorry.

Now let me add something a bit more pertinent.

Being honest, one shouldn't be a materialist, or a theist, there is no way for us to prove anything with 100% certainty, so no one knows whether materialism is right, or religion, or some other view of this world's reality and truth. Instead, we should be information seekers and prudent claimers.

A prudent and honest claimer, draws a conclusion and makes a claim, not excessive to the amount of information he has collected.

For example, whether Jesus exists? A prudent and honest claimer will say, as far as I know, Jesus is a FIVE-LETTERS-WORD-J-E-S-U-S, instead of a real person or an existent saint, because I haven't collected sufficient amount of information to regard it as a real person, I have never met him, don't know what he looks like, haven't made any conversation with him, got no idea about what kind of person he is. Therefore, Jesus is only a five letters word to me. As to whether there is a real person as Jesus, I don't know, I do not have relevant information so I can't tell.

When a prudent and honest claimer has read Bible, and has seen the famous painting "The last supper", he should say: Jesus is a character in a book, a story, and an image in a historical painting, the author of this painting might conceive its appearance based upon someone he recognized in his life, like a neighbor, a vagrant he once met on a street, or someone else in his time, or purely by his personal imagination and creation. I haven't collected any other information outside of the book, the legendary stories, and a moderately realistic painting, so I shouldn't say I know Jesus is a real person as described in Bible.

An honest claim never exceeds the amount of information it has gleaned.

Let us see what is an obvious lie:
An excessive claimer says: I saw Jesus in my near death experience, when I approached a light, there was a being coming out of that light, and I immediately knew he is Jesus.

This is an obvious lie, because it makes a claim but provides almost zero information about what that being looks like? is him a human? is him a spirit? what kind of spirit he is? what characteristics and temperaments he revealed? what he did in some of the moments when you were having your near death experience? did he talk to you? what he said? why he said those words? did you feel curious and ask why he said those words to you, not some other words? did you ask him that whether he had something to prove he is the real Jesus, not a fake one? was he nice? could he get angry? was him patient and friendly to you? did you mention religion to him? did you ask him whether what wrote in Bible about him was correct or wrong? how he responded?

No one should label himself a materialist, or a theist, because no one can prove anything with 100% certainty.
We just seek the information, and make prudent, honest claim or imprudent, dishonest claim, all depending on how much amount of information/how big the claim is.
An honest claimer always makes a claim based on the amount of information he can provide, whereas a fraud always makes a claim with piteous amount of information to bolster his claim.
 
#5
Several sentences of what you wrote, I can't confidently understand. It's my problem, I learned a lot from this paragraph but I lack background knowledge regarding skeptic deontology, embargo, the rightful means to achieve reality, Nihilism, Jedi Mind Trick, and some other concepts.

Let me try to do the understanding, when we overcome our laziness, like the laziness of materialism, the laziness of religion, then we enforce us to undergo every necessary step to achieve reality: Scintilla, Concept, Construct, Hypothesis, Prevailing and/or Null Hypothesis, Consensus, Truth (by means of Embargo), on each of which phases we need to gather as much information as possible to disperse any fog of doubts and refuting, denying, alternative interpretations.

But there are always doubts, refuting, denying, alternative interpretations. Not even INFINITE amount of information of evidence can give us 100% certainty on what the reality actually is. Am I suggesting that the process of finding reality is meaningless and futile because there is no way to achieve 100% certainty of realness? No, there is indeed no way to achieve 100% certainty of realness, but what we are expecting is not a 100% certainty of realness, we are expecting more amount of information to bolster a claim, id est, small claim requires small amount of information, big claim requires large amount of information, otherwise we are lying to ourselves.

A big claim with little amount of information is not only a lie, but is also a meaningless and dull, drab affair. For example, if one can't tell information about Jesus on what he looks like, what characteristics and temperament he has, and what he did, is doing and will do in some of the moments in history, now, and for future plan, if one can't provide any little information mentioned foregoing regarding Jesus, then "JESUS IS ONLY AS REAL AS A FIVE-LETTERS WORD: J-E-S-U-S", which is completely meaningless and has nothing to do to guide how we lead our lives which is abundant of information.

We have no way to strictly prove anything's realness, but it is not our expectation to prove anything's realness with 100% certainty.
We only expect a thing with sufficient large amount of information to explore further. For example, no matter what the afterlife near death experiencers were guaranteed is, an afterlife with not much information is completely meaningless and is in effect another name of oblivion, void.

Lie is a big claim with little amount of information, truth is a prudent claim with sufficient or more amount of information to bolster its genuine and meaningfulness.
Yes, what you are describing is the Pyrrhonistic view of skepticism. There is not enough knowledge to absolutely prove anything to 100% certainty. So what the materialist does, is contend that since no knowledge can be absolute, therefore knowledge can be ascertained simply be establishing some form of 'best probability' or 'simplicity' of that knowledge - even if the knowledge horizon is only 1% known... then my probable answer is the answer. This is called an acatalepsia fallacy.
If one has looked through 70% of a barn full of hay, and found no needle - then one can say that 'possibly a needle does not exist, but I do not know'.​
If one has looked through .03% of a barn full of hay, and found no needle - no claim to 'probability' or 'simplicity' can be foisted. Both options, needle and no-needle, remain in play - no matter how miraculous each alternative might appear. They are both necessary.​
Oh and...I forgot - Welcome to the Forum!! :)
 
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#6
Let us see what is an obvious lie:
An excessive claimer says: I saw Jesus in my near death experience, when I approached a light, there was a being coming out of that light, and I immediately knew he is Jesus.
Well, always keep in mind, there is a difference between an observation and a 'claim'. A claim is a hypothetical conjecture above and beyond a set of observation. If 5 million people have died and seen what they sensed to be Jesus in an NDE, then those are observations. They need to be dealt with. This does not prove Jesus exists, however it does stand as data indicative of something. To dismiss an observation because one does not like it as a 'claim' is called

Observational Occam's Razor Fallacy (Exclusion Bias) - through insisting that observations and data be falsely addressed as 'claims' needing immediate explanation, and through rejecting such a 'claim' (observation) based upon the idea that it introduces plurality (it is not simple), one effectively ensures that no observations will ever be recognized which serve to frame and reduce a competing alternative. One will in effect perpetually prove only what they have assumed as true, regardless of the idea's inherent risk. No competing idea can ever be formulated because outlier data and observations are continuously discarded immediately, one at a time by means of being deemed 'extraordinary claims'.
Patents work around this principle. I make disclosures of observation, ... then I create a separate section called "Claims" - those are what fall under scrutiny.

Observation: When I heard the doctor call code, I lifted from my body and observed a CNA in orange and a blonde pony tail in the hallway accidentally drop her testing kit on the floor. She was frustrated that she had to go back and obtain another one, thinking to herself 'Oh my god, my car breaks down and now this. This is just the worst day ever.' I then passed by my father in the waiting area who was banging on a coke machine which had taken his money and not dispensed a coke. Mom was telling him to go report it to the front desk. I was then lifted up through a dark tunnel and finally before a person whom I interpreted to be Jesus, standing there with my Nana - who had died four years ago.​
Claim: When a person dies, Jesus judges them according to their evil deeds and sends them to hell, unless they have done/said things like I have.​

What the 'Baloney Detection Kit' fake skeptic does, is upgrade these observations all to 'claims' and then dismisses them because they are not 'simple' or 'probable'. Thereafter they can say 'What evidence, there is no evidence'.

This is a trick of fake skepticism.

Observations are always cataloged, even if one does not like them. They are used as the basis to establish mechanism and eventually hypothesis. The hypothesis may not state that the observation is true, as a first order logic, however all observations are useful.
 
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#7
Well, always keep in mind, there is a difference between an observation and a 'claim'. A claim is a hypothetical conjecture above and beyond a set of observation. If 5 million people have died and seen what they sensed to be Jesus in an NDE, then those are observations. They need to be dealt with. This does not prove Jesus exists, however it does stand as data indicative of something. To dismiss an observation because one does not like it as a 'claim' is called

Observational Occam's Razor Fallacy (Exclusion Bias) - through insisting that observations and data be falsely addressed as 'claims' needing immediate explanation, and through rejecting such a 'claim' (observation) based upon the idea that it introduces plurality (it is not simple), one effectively ensures that no observations will ever be recognized which serve to frame and reduce a competing alternative. One will in effect perpetually prove only what they have assumed as true, regardless of the idea's inherent risk. No competing idea can ever be formulated because outlier data and observations are continuously discarded immediately, one at a time by means of being deemed 'extraordinary claims'.
I will give a very good and important example of "what forms an honest description of an observation", after this, I will compare it with "Jesus claim", and then you will understand what meaning I want to express:

Here we go an honest description of an observation: a person had a near death experience and then he narrated:
When I approached that light, there was a being coming out of that light, it gave me a sense that it was Jesus, but I don't understand how, that sense was quite like a telepathic impression imbued into my mind, by a means I can't understand. Now I'm awake and sober, recalling my recognition that being as Jesus when I was having my nde, I'm not sure its identity now. Also, it is strange why I didn't ask him to show an evidence that he is Jesus, why I didn't have a doubt in my nde? It was as if my mind was not freely controlled by myself, or my thinking ability was heavily limited and influenced by some mechanism or force. Now I think, honestly speaking, that being might be Jesus, might not, I'm not sure now, the most important thing is that I didn't get the chance to glean any evidence, for some reason out of my own control. That might be an illusion, or, as my vigilance is online, and my freewill has recovered, pondering the worst possiblity, that might even be a demon disguised as Jesus to fool me, although it didn't start to do malign activities to me or frighten me.

The above is an honest description of an observation, the narrator makes a claim as big as the amount of information he has collected in hand.

No one demands, urges, or compels every honest narrator to provide a whole document full of information, but if the narrator doesn't have much amount of information at all, why couldn't he make a prudent and smaller claim? Like, he shouldn't straightly use the specific word "Jesus", instead, to use "a person whose identity was not clearly shown but strangely gave me an impression of Jesus" can give his narration much much better credit.

"Jesus" is a serious word, it has a meaning requiring tremendous amount of information to let it stand as a sane claim, claiming anyone as "Jesus" without having gleaned sufficient amount of information, which should be considerably large, is clearly overtly shamelessly irresponsible.

When a narrator is not sure, he should use the description to make this clear: HE IS NOT SURE, otherwise, namely, if he is really very very sure, why couldn't he provide large amount of information? An honest narrator will try to urgently show you information with a large amount even more than you wish to know, not to make an audience bewildered like being tossed into the center of a desert without any idea what's wrong.

I agree with what you said, this kind of "big claim without sufficient amount of information" shouldn't be dismissed and ignored, they should be investigated as lies, there is probably something wrong or bad behind the phenomena why someone insists to tell such lies.

If they are not sure, they shouldn't use the plain word "Jesus", they should make a little additional and more prudent concern to clearly express the fact: THEY ARE NOT SURE BECAUSE THERE HASN'T BEEN SUFFICIENT AMOUNT OF INFORMATION. This is not difficult or impolite or something, this is honesty and responsiblity to both themselves and any audience, and respect and loyalty to truth. Vouching having seen Jesus without clearly telling why (necessary to provide extraordinary amount of information) is a shameless, reckless, tyrannical, irresponsible, indifferent lie, no doubt on this.
 
#8
I will give a very good and important example of "what forms an honest description of an observation", after this, I will compare it with "Jesus claim", and then you will understand what meaning I want to express:

Here we go an honest description of an observation: a person had a near death experience and then he narrated:
When I approached that light, there was a being coming out of that light, it gave me a sense that it was Jesus, but I don't understand how, that sense was quite like a telepathic impression imbued into my mind, by a means I can't understand. Now I'm awake and sober, recalling my recognition that being as Jesus when I was having my nde, I'm not sure its identity now. Also, it is strange why I didn't ask him to show an evidence that he is Jesus, why I didn't have a doubt in my nde? It was as if my mind was not freely controlled by myself, or my thinking ability was heavily limited and influenced by some mechanism or force. Now I think, honestly speaking, that being might be Jesus, might not, I'm not sure now, the most important thing is that I didn't get the chance to glean any evidence, for some reason out of my own control. That might be an illusion, or, as my vigilance is online, and my freewill has recovered, pondering the worst possiblity, that might even be a demon disguised as Jesus to fool me, although it didn't start to do malign activities to me or frighten me.

The above is an honest description of an observation, the narrator makes a claim as big as the amount of information he has collected in hand.

No one demands, urges, or compels every honest narrator to provide a whole document full of information, but if the narrator doesn't have much amount of information at all, why couldn't he make a prudent and smaller claim? Like, he shouldn't straightly use the specific word "Jesus", instead, to use "a person whose identity was not clearly shown but strangely gave me an impression of Jesus" can give his narration much much better credit.

"Jesus" is a serious word, it has a meaning requiring tremendous amount of information to let it stand as a sane claim, claiming anyone as "Jesus" without having gleaned sufficient amount of information, which should be considerably large, is clearly overtly shamelessly irresponsible.

When a narrator is not sure, he should use the description to make this clear: HE IS NOT SURE, otherwise, namely, if he is really very very sure, why couldn't he provide large amount of information? An honest narrator will try to urgently show you information with a large amount even more than you wish to know, not to make an audience bewildered like being tossed into the center of a desert without any idea what's wrong.

I agree with what you said, this kind of "big claim without sufficient amount of information" shouldn't be dismissed and ignored, they should be investigated as lies, there is probably something wrong or bad behind the phenomena why someone insists to tell such lies.

If they are not sure, they shouldn't use the plain word "Jesus", they should make a little additional and more prudent concern to clearly express the fact: THEY ARE NOT SURE BECAUSE THERE HASN'T BEEN SUFFICIENT AMOUNT OF INFORMATION. This is not difficult or impolite or something, this is honesty and responsiblity to both themselves and any audience, and respect and loyalty to truth. Vouching having seen Jesus without clearly telling why (necessary to provide extraordinary amount of information) is a shameless, reckless, tyrannical, irresponsible, indifferent lie, no doubt on this.
Gotcha...

Unless the entity in the NDE identified them self as 'Jesus' - then declaring them to be Jesus indeed, is a claim. That is correct. The 'smaller claim' you cite. However, it would not be 'shamelessly irresponsible'; rather Wittgenstein unsinnig (non-science or nonsense). People are free to express their tales and stories in the sense in which they experienced them; as that is part of the richness of human fellowship - they just cannot pass such stories off as constituting science.

In the example I used, the person relating the NDE uses 'whom I interpreted to be Jesus at the time'. In your example above the NDE experiencer uses the phrase 'it gave me a sense that it was Jesus'. This is also a disclosure statement, and not a claim.

Both of these examples reside in the blue below; falling back to the level of a disclosure, and not a claim. The things one poses in a patent for example are:

Background
Prior Claims History of Failure & Partial Failure
Prior Art
Disclosures
Apparatus/Mode/Application/System Description
Observations
Controlled Observations
Conjectures & Considerations

Claims - a final assertion in fact, conclusion and deed. An adoption of novel risk, which is being purposely posed for evaluation.

The patent examiner only conducts an office action on that final grouping in red. The rest of the patent is objective material to help him or her decide on the disposition of the claims. They may or may not however, use that material.

What you are objecting to is when someone sneaks a claim by in the observation set. Yes, nothing pisses me off more than that. A second thing which pisses me off, is when someone says 'you are deluded or lying' to the NDE experiencer - which is also a claim. Just a claim which never gets held to account.

Nothing so tyrannizes our knowledge than established wisdom claims which have never once been held to account.

Most NDE's pose their 'Jesus' elements inside the contentions in blue. Every once in a while I will find someone who actually claims they saw Jesus. However, arguing this point becomes a matter of semantic rhetoric. In other words, if given the opportunity to pose their statement in a more 'disclosure of observation' sense - I believe most would do so.
 
#9
Gotcha...
Unless the entity in the NDE identified them self as 'Jesus' - then declaring them to be Jesus indeed, is a claim. That is correct. The 'smaller claim' you cite. However, it would not be 'shamelessly irresponsible'; rather Wittgenstein unsinnig (non-science or nonsense). People are free to express their tales and stories in the sense in which they experienced them; as that is part of the richness of human fellowship - they just cannot pass such stories off as constituting science.
Of course this discussion is hypothetical, there are no actual examples given.

When we look at actual evidence from NDE accounts, there are those who say such things as "I went to heaven" or "I met Jesus". But those are how they describe things afterwards, it is how the person has tried to make sense of whatever happened, to fit it into a framework so they can begin to get a more solid grip on it.

But we need to look deeper, what really happened, go back to the original report, the description of the events during the NDE. We find something different. There may be a beautiful environment, whether it be a meadow with wildflowers, or a city with wonderful buildings. But these don't come with the label "heaven" tied to them. These are nameless places. Even more so this applies when there is an encounter with some being, perhaps as roughly human-shape, or perhaps as a glowing ball of light. This being never gives its name. I've looked long and hard, but there really aren't any reports where the being gives any name. *

So we start from a nameless place and nameless beings. Somehow in hindsight this is reinterpreted, and the names "heaven" and "Jesus" or "God" are added afterwards.

*There are some accounts which don't fit this picture but they are tiny in number, and there are reasons to consider they may be fictionalised or other explanation. It is the main body of evidence which I consider here, not the rare outliers.
 
#10
Welcome back Tarantulanebula (TES wasn't around when you first joined us).
I have expressed my idea several times, but it seems I haven't ever successfully got anyone understand my meaning.

Now I take another try, wishing dear someone will get what I want to speak:

Nowadays many people and thinkers like to think one question: "Is our world ultimately an illusion or a virtual game?"
In a way I baulk at that question, because at one level it is obvious that the world - made up of zillions particles obeying QM - is nothing like the world that we see and interact with. But also, the whole world can't be an illusion, because if it were our consciousness would be an illusion and we wouldn't be able to even think about this question.
I have my own answer about this question.

First, let us make this thing clear:
Each of us use our own eyes, visual and other sensory systems, and our brain or consciousness' thinking ability to observe and understand this world, so everything we got is through a subjective curtain. None of us can find a way to "touch the real reality".
True!
What conclusion we can draw from the above baseline?
The real reality might exist, might not exist, either is possible, we won't know with 100% certainty on which one is correct, which one is wrong, or both are right, or both are not precisely correct, or things should be stated in a more complex way.
Again I think something has to exist or we couldn't ask the question. This is where I think idea of the world being the result of a giant computer simulation goes wrong - the conscious experience still has to be real! It can't boil down to executable statements like:

if(looking_sexually_attractive(partner))simulated_excitement=simulated_excitement+152

We will use our own sensory organs and thinking ability which are all more or less subjective to observe and understand this world, whether it is real or an illusion, we won't be able to directly touch its reality or find and prove the genuine truth that it is sure an illusion.

We don't know. There is no way to know.
To me, everything has to be real in some sense. Even if the physical world is constructed by consciousness, that consciousness is real.
But it is very natural that we don't know, we should have understood that our sensory organs and thinkings are all subjective and possibly delusive, as early as when we were a kid who started to observe and think. We shouldn't have felt strange about the idea "our world might be a virtual game", it has always been like this. We should have asked the question: "Hey have you ever thought about that our world might be real?" rather than "Hey have you ever thought about that our world might be an illusion?"

So why we feel it is curious to say "our world might be an illusion", not "our world might be real"? Why we have got accustomed and subconsciously accepted about "our world is real", so as to feel startled and frightened about the idea "our world might be an illusion", not the opposite case?

Because we "FEEL THIS WORLD IS REAL", and this is further because "THIS WORLD HAS ALMOST INFINITE INFORMATION AMOUNT".

So, let us make this clear:
When we refer to the word "REAL", we actually refer to either of its two meanings without consciously noticing that sometimes we confused these two meanings:
1, one meaning of the word "REAL", is "the scientific definition of the ultimately objective reality", as I said before, we are unable to directly touch such a reality because everything our consciousness got is through our sensory organs and thinking ability's curtain.
2, another meaning of the word "REAL", is "we feel something real because it shows sufficient amount of information to us, and we feel something not real because it hides or is actually absent of sufficient amount of information".
Yes, I think that is getting close to the point.
It is a big puzzle why near death experiencers stated that their experiences are "definitely real, more real than our physical reality and mundane world", but at the same time they provided far far less information amount than our physical reality. I don't understand this, because they seem to have no reason to lie.

But it almost always is a lie, when someone makes a "BIG CLAIM" while providing piteously little amount of information.

It is strange.
I'm not so sure - according to what NDEers say, they (and thus eventually us too) experience a much more powerful version of consciousness, that can obviously handle much more information, but if/when someone returns to their body, that consciousness becomes downgraded again and loses track of most of that extra information.

I.e. people who make big claims with little information probably are generally lying or deluded, as you say, but not necessarily if they are reporting from and NDE, and maybe also an OBE.

David
 
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#11
But also, the whole world can't be an illusion, because if it were our consciousness would be an illusion and we wouldn't be able to even think about this question.
Consciousness is not necessarily a subset of our universe only. That is the alternative which nihilism supposes yes - but it is not yet mandatory as a model (I hope). One necessary alternative of science stipulates that consciousness is the substrate of our realm and not a derivative product constrained inside it. So we can have a simulated reality, wherein only ourselves and love are real. Both being derived from outside this place.
 
#12
When we look at actual evidence from NDE accounts, there are those who say such things as "I went to heaven" or "I met Jesus". But those are how they describe things afterwards, it is how the person has tried to make sense of whatever happened, to fit it into a framework so they can begin to get a more solid grip on it.
Yes, this was the very point of the post, in the paragraph where semantics were brought into play. The person is not being immoral, non-scientific, nor are they making a 'claim', by relating what or whom they felt like the person might be (a qualified observation). A claim may merely be an instance of casual choice of wording - not really a 'claim' in the Sagan Baloney Detection Kit sense.

"In other words, if given the opportunity to pose their statement in a more 'disclosure of observation' sense - I believe most would do so."​

This is a 'describing things afterwards in order to make sense of them' context. Yes. :)
 
#13
Observation: When I heard the doctor call code, I lifted from my body and observed a CNA in orange and a blonde pony tail in the hallway accidentally drop her testing kit on the floor. She was frustrated that she had to go back and obtain another one, thinking to herself 'Oh my god, my car breaks down and now this. This is just the worst day ever.' I then passed by my father in the waiting area who was banging on a coke machine which had taken his money and not dispensed a coke. Mom was telling him to go report it to the front desk. I was then lifted up through a dark tunnel and finally before a person whom I interpreted to be Jesus, standing there with my Nana - who had died four years ago.​
Claim: When a person dies, Jesus judges them according to their evil deeds and sends them to hell, unless they have done/said things like I have.​
Hey The Ethical Skeptic, this example narration you wrote is very intriguing and valuable, in my eyes.

Although the narrator gives almost zero amount of information regarding why he "interpreted that person who showed up somewhere in that dark tunnel as Jesus", the narrator indeed gives some detailed information about what some other people were doing in the hospital when the narrator was having obe or nde.

The part of the narration of the observation to some other people's activities, gives me more sense that at least this narrator is sane in some way, id est, he still is able to receive and retell and analyse some real information. This is a good thing. Glad to see sane people or sane moments when people talk about some real detailed information.

If every other people were to lose the sense of parsing real information (information with a decent amount and is somehow meaningful, not that blunt and dull like an instant Jesus claim), this world would seem a terrible illusion to me.

Your example dispersed my worrying and terror feeling, to a degree, thank you for your example.

INFORMATION, DETAILED INFORMATION is very important for our lives and existence. A world accommodating and only accommodating blunt and dull instant Jesus claim with almost zero amount of information, could be a total lie and terrible illusion.
 
#14
Of course this discussion is hypothetical, there are no actual examples given.

When we look at actual evidence from NDE accounts, there are those who say such things as "I went to heaven" or "I met Jesus". But those are how they describe things afterwards, it is how the person has tried to make sense of whatever happened, to fit it into a framework so they can begin to get a more solid grip on it.

But we need to look deeper, what really happened, go back to the original report, the description of the events during the NDE. We find something different. There may be a beautiful environment, whether it be a meadow with wildflowers, or a city with wonderful buildings. But these don't come with the label "heaven" tied to them. These are nameless places. Even more so this applies when there is an encounter with some being, perhaps as roughly human-shape, or perhaps as a glowing ball of light. This being never gives its name. I've looked long and hard, but there really aren't any reports where the being gives any name. *

So we start from a nameless place and nameless beings. Somehow in hindsight this is reinterpreted, and the names "heaven" and "Jesus" or "God" are added afterwards.

*There are some accounts which don't fit this picture but they are tiny in number, and there are reasons to consider they may be fictionalised or other explanation. It is the main body of evidence which I consider here, not the rare outliers.
Typoz, you told what I want to say, thank you.

My thinking is precisely as what you mentioned and reminded me, "nameless beings in nameless places" is the most honest description as what we know from near death experiencers' narrations, and is the exact epithet most loyal to truth.

The places they called "heaven" are probably not the heaven, "nameless places" is the best description as what we know, the same to nameless beings.

The real truth behind these nameless places and nameless beings may be something far far beyond my humble maximum ability of imagination and would strikingly startle me to death if I were to be given a chance to witness them. (Hey I tried to be relaxing and humorous when I am in awe and terror and seriousness. Bitter laughing. But indeed, your invention of the word "nameless places and nameless beings" actually gives this phenomenon some weight of fascinating aside from its weirdness.)
 
#15
Welcome back Tarantulanebula (TES wasn't around when you first joined us).

David
Thank you David, it's great to have all you here, with old friends and new friends ^_^

Welcome back Tarantulanebula (TES wasn't around when you first joined us).

I'm not so sure - according to what NDEers say, they (and thus eventually us too) experience a much more powerful version of consciousness, that can obviously handle much more information, but if/when someone returns to their body, that consciousness becomes downgraded again and loses track of most of that extra information.

I.e. people who make big claims with little information probably are generally lying or deluded, as you say, but not necessarily if they are reporting from and NDE, and maybe also an OBE.

David
I have been immersed in an occlusion seclusion for quite long time, doing a busy and drab job. My drab life and work, as well as some "blunt and dull instant Jesus claim I read in some nde accounts", made me feel the world is like an illusion with no one else being existent.

Your sentences in this paragraph along with what others say in this thread let me know that you understand me and I'm not alone.
 
#16
Hey The Ethical Skeptic, this example narration you wrote is very intriguing and valuable, in my eyes.

If every other people were to lose the sense of parsing real information (information with a decent amount and is somehow meaningful, not that blunt and dull like an instant Jesus claim), this world would seem a terrible illusion to me.
Dead on. To lose grasp of the objective and its contrast with the conditional and subjective - is the definition of insanity.

Your example dispersed my worrying and terror feeling, to a degree, thank you for your example.
Sure, ;;/? I think in this instance we had to use case examples, because semantics gets so heavy, it is hard to convey a precise point.
 
#17
So, let us make this clear:
When we refer to the word "REAL", we actually refer to either of its two meanings without consciously noticing that sometimes we confused these two meanings:

1, one meaning of the word "REAL", is "the scientific definition of the ultimately objective reality", as I said before, we are unable to directly touch such a reality because everything our consciousness got is through our sensory organs and thinking ability's curtain.

2, another meaning of the word "REAL", is "we feel something real because it shows sufficient amount of information to us, and we feel something not real because it hides or is actually absent of sufficient amount of information".
In my interpretation of what you are saying (not just in the above quote but throughout this thread), you are asking these three distinct questions:
  1. "What actually exists?" (an ontological question).
  2. "On what basis should we accept a proposition or claim about reality as well-defined?" (an analytical question).
  3. "On what basis should we accept a proposition or claim about reality as true?" (an epistemological question).
Your answer to the second is, in my interpretation, "On the basis that it is sufficiently richly described, or in other words that it has sufficient information associated with it". This seems reasonable to me.

I suggest that your answer to the third ought to be, "On the basis that it is sufficiently justified". I would frame this in terms of sufficient "reasons" rather than sufficient "information". I think that talking in terms of "information" in answering this third question could be mistaken, because we can have little information about the subject of a claim, but should accept the claim as true anyway if we have good reason(s) to.

I think The Ethical Skeptic has addressed these issues, especially with his reference to Wittgenstein (with whom I am not particularly familiar, at least not through first-hand sources), but I just wanted to make the three distinct questions explicit as I see them for clarity.

[Edited heavily after first posting to better reframe in terms of the three questions]
 
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#18
I have expressed my idea several times, but it seems I haven't ever successfully got anyone understand my meaning.

Now I take another try, wishing dear someone will get what I want to speak:

Nowadays many people and thinkers like to think one question: "Is our world ultimately an illusion or a virtual game?"

I have my own answer about this question.

First, let us make this thing clear:
Each of us use our own eyes, visual and other sensory systems, and our brain or consciousness' thinking ability to observe and understand this world, so everything we got is through a subjective curtain. None of us can find a way to "touch the real reality".

What conclusion we can draw from the above baseline?
The real reality might exist, might not exist, either is possible, we won't know with 100% certainty on which one is correct, which one is wrong, or both are right, or both are not precisely correct, or things should be stated in a more complex way.

We will use our own sensory organs and thinking ability which are all more or less subjective to observe and understand this world, whether it is real or an illusion, we won't be able to directly touch its reality or find and prove the genuine truth that it is sure an illusion.

We don't know. There is no way to know.

But it is very natural that we don't know, we should have understood that our sensory organs and thinkings are all subjective and possibly delusive, as early as when we were a kid who started to observe and think. We shouldn't have felt strange about the idea "our world might be a virtual game", it has always been like this. We should have asked the question: "Hey have you ever thought about that our world might be real?" rather than "Hey have you ever thought about that our world might be an illusion?"

So why we feel it is curious to say "our world might be an illusion", not "our world might be real"? Why we have got accustomed and subconsciously accepted about "our world is real", so as to feel startled and frightened about the idea "our world might be an illusion", not the opposite case?

Because we "FEEL THIS WORLD IS REAL", and this is further because "THIS WORLD HAS ALMOST INFINITE INFORMATION AMOUNT".

So, let us make this clear:
When we refer to the word "REAL", we actually refer to either of its two meanings without consciously noticing that sometimes we confused these two meanings:
1, one meaning of the word "REAL", is "the scientific definition of the ultimately objective reality", as I said before, we are unable to directly touch such a reality because everything our consciousness got is through our sensory organs and thinking ability's curtain.
2, another meaning of the word "REAL", is "we feel something real because it shows sufficient amount of information to us, and we feel something not real because it hides or is actually absent of sufficient amount of information".

When a person makes a "big claim" but shows the audiences very scarce amount of information, it is almost always the case of lying, either purposefully deception or self lying in the first place.
Although we are unable to touch the first meaning of "REAL" as I said above, we can touch the second meaning, as we get more and more information, the things in discussion seem more and more real to us.

A real person like you, they, and me seem very real to us, is because you, they, and me emit and will ooze many amount of information, whereas a fictitious person in a tale story or an NPC in a video game seems less real to us, especially when we try to hear and interact more and more with them, is because they show us very scarce amount of information, they start to be irresponsible or repetitive when we get to know them for a short while and try to further continue.

REAL IS ABOUT INFORMATION AMOUNT.

It is a big puzzle why near death experiencers stated that their experiences are "definitely real, more real than our physical reality and mundane world", but at the same time they provided far far less information amount than our physical reality. I don't understand this, because they seem to have no reason to lie.

But it almost always is a lie, when someone makes a "BIG CLAIM" while providing piteously little amount of information.

It is strange.
I understand what you are saying here and I like it. I myself have been trying to explore similar ideas. I hadn't thought in terms of INFORMATION AMOUNT as you describe towards the end of this post. It is a strong point, I feel. For me, it is good to question what it means when NDE people say "it was realer than real". For me, that doesn't sufficiently suggest the "existence" of some realm that is beyond our familiar realm. I think it is okay to say that the person might be "hallucinating" or "dreaming" without making oneself a materialist/nihilist. I prefer an agnostic outlook, which is a subtle outlook that many folks don't feel comfortable with. But the agnostic outlook is a strong position; to me, its strength is that it leaves open plenty of space for mystical experience, NDEs, psi, mystery, etc.

Every once in a while, some folks on this forum will agree that "it's all a hell of lot weirder than we can comprehend." But most often, folks prefer speculating about theories of some other realm.

I have a thread going where I try to post some resources for like-minded folks:
http://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threads/ways-of-not-knowing.4283/

It sounds like you may be interested in finding other folks who think like you, so I am posting some links. Let me know if you find them helpful. You may be especially interested in Robert Ellis's ideas here:
http://www.middlewaysociety.org/middle-way-philosophy/middle-way-philosophy-a-quick-guide/
Like you, Ellis specifically recommends avoiding metaphysical judgments (either positive or negative)
You may also be interested in David Chapman's site that is all about trying to carve out middle ground between "eternalism" and "nihilism". Some people, such as myself, tend to swing back and forth between eternalist and nihilist ideas. You may experience that too, as indicated by your comment about solipism in post #15.
https://meaningness.com/preview-eternalism-and-nihilism

Both Chapman and Ellis have a lot of material available to read. I'm still catching on to some of their perspectives.

I myself have lately been playing around with a combination of Ellis and the philisophical approach known as Pragmatism. In the model I have been playing around with, "needs" are the baseline of "my" existence (I put "my" in quotation marks to indicate that my experience of "self" is necessarily integrated with my environment and so is never just "me" in a vaccuum). My experiences of consciousness are all generated by the energy of my needs. So my interpretations of events come from my needs. My ideas come from my needs. My models come from my needs. My posts on this discussion forum come from my needs. This is not a materialist perspective; this is an agnostic perspective. There is plenty of room in my agnostic model for mystical experiences, NDEs, psi, UFOs, mystery etc. It's just that any commitment on my part to metaphysical interpretations of those mysterious experiences are bound to be red herrings. My interpretations are as much about me as they are about the events themselves.

In this interpretation, I can also try to relax any strong commitments to "representational" ideas; ie ideas that pretend to represent exactly the way the universe IS. Instead, I can just try to experience my ideas as "extensions" or "tools" related to some primal energies within me and my environment (for example, "my" primal needs for food, shelter, safety, relationships, survival, reproduction, etc).

Mystical experiences, NDEs, psi, UFOs -- all these things happen. In this model I'm playing around with, the nature of these experiences remains mysterious and its okay to let go of metaphysical speculations. (Metaphysical speculation can be fun, but engaging in it without also acknowledging the need it fulfills seems to be missing the full picture.)

Here are some older posts that are on a similar theme to what you are exploring:
http://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threads/dr-jack-hunter-anthropology-animism-panpsychism-and-what’s-next-383.4169/#post-124868
http://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threa...ts-potential-for-usefulness.4212/#post-126049
 
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#19
You may also be interested in David Chapman's site that is all about trying to carve out middle ground between "eternalism" and "nihilism". (Some people, such as myself, tend to swing back and forth between eternalist and nihilist ideas.
Context used in this post:
nihilism -> Monism
eternalism -> Plurality

This is a very good point. Our experience here can truthfully be monistic from a deontological sense. I don't dismiss the outcomes of science - they are often correct. But they are also only inductive in their inferential draw, so therefore reality can still be pluralistic at the same time. The broader reality does not care what we experience, measure, deduce or are constrained to. In some sense, both can be right - monism and pluralism as ontologies. The question is, which reality is more relevant, and therefore important to our future? It is possible that the universe is not asking us to declare a resolution to that. Monism v. Plurality might be a red herring.

So for me, it is not so much a middle ground, as it is a dual truth. I exist in a monist reality of science. I ponder that pluralism is highly likely to probable, based upon some of those science outcomes. I do not hinge my purpose on either one. To wit:

My personal bent is: The real question being asked of us by this realm is "Forget what I am. Who the fuck are you? Show me." (In the meantime you are gonna have some completely unfair suffering thrown at you...)

It reminds me of being screamed at by my Gunnery Sargent while crawling through the mud, swimming a mile and running up 100 ft sand dunes with a 40 pound pack and an M-16. "I wanna see who the hell you are sir... Are you gonna get all pouty-lipped and run. Ohhh I feel so sorry for myself... I wish I was back in college with my buddies, tapping kegs and poontang.... I am not up to this... SHOW ME WHO YOU ARE WOG... show me who the hell you are!!!"

Where the problem comes in then, is what we socially then DO with monism and plurality - we begin to abuse others with these two constructs:

Nihilism is the declaration that only monism is truth. It is giving further then, a lack of meaning (not purpose) inferred from monism. So it is imbalanced and hyperbole.
Materialism is the declaration that only monism exists, and science has proved this. Imbalanced and erroneous.
Secularism is a political discourse, which pretends to originate from science. Imbalanced, erroneous and agenda laden.
Atheism - is only a disposition toward gods. An atheist is free to believe in an afterlife, spirits or other worlds (plurality), a nihilist is not.
Theism - is the declaration that only plurality is truth - and that a specific person crafted this reality. It is a kind of claim to incredible science if you will. Imbalanced, erroneous and agenda laden, like secularism.

Knowing the full deontology of these things is not our goal. Showing who we are, is the goal. Comprehending a dual truth and disarming the temptation to abuse others with either - is an ability of a higher mind.

From my perspective... :)
 
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#20
Context used in this post:
nihilism -> Monism
eternalism -> Plurality

This is a very good point. Our experience here can truthfully be monistic from a deontological sense. I don't dismiss the outcomes of science - they are often correct. But reality can still be pluralistic at the same time. The broader reality does not care what we experience, measure, deduce or are constrained to. In some sense, both can be right - monism and pluralism as ontologies. The question is, which reality is more relevant, and therefore important to our future? It is possible that the universe is not asking us to declare a resolution to that. Monism v. Plurality might be a red herring.

So for me, it is not so much a middle ground, as it is a dual truth. I exist in a monist reality of science. I ponder that pluralism is highly likely to probable, based upon some of those science outcomes. I do not hinge my purpose on either one. To wit:

My personal bent is: The real question being asked of us by this realm is "Forget what I am. Who the fuck are you? Show me." (In the meantime you are gonna have some completely unfair suffering thrown at you...)

It reminds me of being screamed at by my Gunnery Sargent while crawling through the mud, swimming a mile and running up 100 ft sand dunes with a 40 pound pack and an M-16. "I wanna see who the hell you are sir... Are you gonna get all pouty-lipped and run. Ohhh I feel so sorry for myself... I wish I was back in college with my buddies, tapping kegs and poontang.... I am not up to this... SHOW ME WHO YOU ARE WOG... show me who the hell you are!!!"

Where the problem comes in then, is what we socially then DO with monism and plurality - we begin to abuse others with these two constructs:

Nihilism is the declaration that only monism is truth. It is giving further then, a lack of meaning (not purpose) inferred from monism. So it is imbalanced and hyperbole.
Materialism is the declaration that only monism exists, and science has proved this. Imbalanced and erroneous.
Secularism is a political discourse, which pretends to originate from science. Imbalanced, erroneous and agenda laden.
Atheism - is only a disposition toward gods. An atheist is free to believe in an afterlife, spirits or other worlds (plurality), a nihilist is not.
Theism - is the declaration that only plurality is truth - and that a specific person crafted this reality. It is a kind of claim to incredible science if you will. Imbalanced, erroneous and agenda laden, like secularism.

Knowing the full deontology of these things is not our goal. Showing who we are, is the goal. Comprehending a dual truth and disarming the temptation to abuse others with either - is an ability of a higher mind.

From my perspective... :)
Thanks for the reply, ES. I like what you are saying. I think the plurality ideas are neat.

The only thing that gives me pause is the notion of "goals" that you mention. For me and my model (for whatever that's worth -- LOL), the notion of some broader goals is perhaps too much weight on that which is "out there". I know you are working with eternalism/nihilism in your own way ... My reading of Chapman suggests that considering some goal to exist in some universal sense would be an eternalistic -- and therefore flawed -- stance. Not that Chapman has all the answers, I just offer it as a response. I'm guessing you yourself have some well thought out reasoning behind your perspective. ;)
 
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