It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

Can You Prove The Existence of The Real World?

page: 5
9
<< 2  3  4   >>

log in

join
share:

posted on Mar, 25 2014 @ 06:24 PM
link   
reply to post by LesMisanthrope
 


"Existence requires perception" was in response to the poster who claimed that "sound exists whether or not someone is there to observe it"

Well, that poster is wrong, and didn't seem to grasp the concept.

Not only because sound is actually an experience that requires sensory equipment and perception (not just human based btw), but also because without perception nothing exists. You'll have to think deeply about what that means and try to imagine a universe devoid of all perceptive consciousness. There is no way for any living thing to be sure of an existence beyond the reality that the brain and nervous system produces. This is not just about human perception.

How do you know you exist?

I think therefore I am- right?

What's the antithesis of that then?




posted on Mar, 27 2014 @ 09:55 AM
link   
reply to post by PhotonEffect
 





but also because without perception nothing exists.


It is the strangest statement I think I've ever heard. It's to say that the planet we call Neptune didn't exist until we discovered it. Or that things magically pop into existence if they come across our highly limited, very weak perception.


You'll have to think deeply about what that means and try to imagine a universe devoid of all perceptive consciousness. There is no way for any living thing to be sure of an existence beyond the reality that the brain and nervous system produces. This is not just about human perception.


I have thought deeply about it, and it appears more and more absurd. The brain and nervous system, as things within "the reality that the brain and nervous system produces", are their own cause? How is that possible? Nothing has ever been its own cause. Before we ever perceived a nervous system, it simply didn't exist? Yet perceiving requires a nervous system? What?

If nothing exists outside of our perception, how do new things come into our perception? and from where?

Or what if Voyager 1 stops working and goes silent somewhere out in the deep expanses of space. Does it simply no longer exist?

The nervous system and brain do not produce a reality, they do not produce themselves. They compute a reality, meaning there needs to be input from something outside of itself. We do not perceive our perception, for perception requires something other than itself to perceive.

And using the term "perception" as if its some all-purveying substance is a little weird. Perceiving is performed by beings. If there was no beings with senses, there would be no idea of "perception". Perception is after the fact, in hindsight, an idea and nothing more.



posted on Mar, 27 2014 @ 07:52 PM
link   
reply to post by LesMisanthrope
 



PhotonEffect but also because without perception nothing exists.


LesMisanthrope
reply to post by PhotonEffect
 

It is the strangest statement I think I've ever heard. It's to say that the planet we call Neptune didn't exist until we discovered it. Or that things magically pop into existence if they come across our highly limited, very weak perception.

Really, that's the strangest statement you've ever heard? Even on ATS? Or is that hyperbole

I suppose any concept that challenges one's preconceived notions will come off as strange. You seem fine accepting the view you've been conditioned to adhere to, and I'm not inclined to challenge you on those beliefs- whatever they are or however you've reached them.

Did Neptune exist before we discovered it? Technically, no. For real intents and purposes, an undetectable object doesn't exist. We can imagine if we want, or even know for certain what could or does exist beyond our ability to interact or detect such things, but in terms of science and tangible physical reality, it would be unrealistic to say that unmeasurable or undetectable things physically exist. Science would not be science if we assumed an existence of something beyond our perception/measurement of it. Otherwise it would be religion.

An atheist relies on this idea regularly when telling someone who believes in God that God does not in fact exist. That atheist can feel confident in his assertion because, let's face it, there is no empirical evidence of God (supposing we could identify one if we saw it). It has neither been detected, nor observed. Therefore it's fair to conclude at this point that God does not exist.

One issue is that we rely on other observers to form a consensus of a/the reality, that when we point to an apple and ask "Red?" Those other observers will hopefully nod in agreement. Ok, phew, they agree it's red. Really it's just an approximation. But what is red to a color blind person, and how do we know for sure that it isn't all of us with the color perception problems? What is the true reality of red then? If we all suffered from achromatopsia, would red exist? No it wouldn't, and neither would any of the other hues of light we call "colors". There would be no way to know what color is or that it even exists.

Now suppose there are no other observers of any kind anywhere else in the universe. It's just you. Without the consensus of peers to agree to some form of reality how do you prove the existence of anything? Does the moon still exist when you are not observing it? The best you can say is you believe it to.


If nothing exists outside of our perception, how do new things come into our perception? and from where?

Once we perceive them. In our mind.


Or what if Voyager 1 stops working and goes silent somewhere out in the deep expanses of space. Does it simply no longer exist?

There is no way of knowing for sure is the best we could ever say. Whether you like that answer or not. If an asteroid took it out of existence sometime after it went silent we would never ever know. Either way we would be relying on faith.


The nervous system and brain do not produce a reality, they do not produce themselves. They compute a reality, meaning there needs to be input from something outside of itself. We do not perceive our perception, for perception requires something other than itself to perceive.

You're playing semantic games now.


And using the term "perception" as if its some all-purveying substance is a little weird. Perceiving is performed by beings. If there was no beings with senses, there would be no idea of "perception". Perception is after the fact, in hindsight, an idea and nothing more.

It's all ideas, isn't it? And I don't see how I've used the term in a way that should be considered weird. But alas, that's your mind, not mine. The universe will never be perceived by me how it is perceived by you.
If there was no perception, or whatever concept you want to use to represent the act of perceiving, then there would be no way to prove the existence of anything. Hence, my original odd statement- existence requires perception.



posted on Mar, 28 2014 @ 09:57 AM
link   
reply to post by PhotonEffect
 


Yes it is absolutely hyperbole.

So Neptune never existed until we saw it? I take it back, it wasn't hyperbole. I think you're discussing certainty and not existence.

My question still stands:

How were we able to perceive before we knew the nervous system even existed, if the nervous system is required for perceiving?

How were we able to reproduce before we knew about DNA, if DNA is required for genetics?

It would seem that both the nervous system and DNA were both present long before we perceived and knew about them, thereby showing that perception isn't required for existence. Perception is only required in order to name things.



posted on Mar, 28 2014 @ 10:52 AM
link   
reply to post by LesMisanthrope
 

Think of it more like quantum mechanics. The act of perception of something is a joint phenomenon of the nervous system and the environment. As you say, there is something there but the manifestation occurs the moment the abstraction happens.



posted on Mar, 28 2014 @ 05:38 PM
link   

Perceiving is performed by beings.

Seeing is happening yet it may seem that there is something seeing something. It is thought which tells a story of what appears to be happening.

Is there really a seer separate from the seen (scene)?
What is looking at the image seen in a mirror?

'Nervous system' is a concept, a word, a thought.

There is only ever what is happening, seeing is happening, hearing is happening, thought happens. Belief in other than what is happening also happens.



posted on Mar, 29 2014 @ 11:01 AM
link   
reply to post by saneguy
 





Think of it more like quantum mechanics. The act of perception of something is a joint phenomenon of the nervous system and the environment. As you say, there is something there but the manifestation occurs the moment the abstraction happens.


I understand what you are saying, but let's be clear that perception requires the whole body. Nervous systems and brains do not perceive without the senses, the various structures, functions and supportive systems of the rest of the body.

But yes, things are not perceived if things are not perceived. That seems quite obvious.

If we cannot know what something actually is or how it manifests outside our perception of it, then it could be just as likely that what we are viewing is its actual manifestation and how it concretely exists. For all we know, our perception could be dead on, that the thing we are seeing is how it actually persists in reality.

Just as one cannot prove reality or existence, one cannot disprove it, and the whole debate becomes a choice of whether someone will doubt the goings on around him, or not.



posted on Mar, 29 2014 @ 11:33 AM
link   

LesMisanthrope
reply to post by PhotonEffect
 

My question still stands:

How were we able to perceive before we knew the nervous system even existed, if the nervous system is required for perceiving

I'm not sure I understand the purpose of this question- perhaps it's your phrasing of it. We can still perceive without knowing we can do it. However, as far as I know nothing can perceive (on whatever level perception exists) without some sort of ability to do so. I don't think perception (or at least the act of experiencing and reacting to the environment) is limited to human type nervous systems either. For instance an argument can be made that single celled organisms can perceive their environment in some sense. Same with plants. Yet neither of these have a nervous system in the traditional sense.

The point I'm trying make is that there is no proof of anything existing if something can't perceive it. Otherwise it's just an assumption or a guess relying on belief/faith. Try to think back to before you were born and what that was like. How would you know anything existed if you don't exist? Impossible. The only reason you know that things existed before your existence is because 1) something (presumably your parents) brought you into existence, and 2) other observers have already confirmed through their observations (knowledge) that there's stuff out there. But what if we were all suspended in a state of "pre-birth non existence"?


How were we able to reproduce before we knew about DNA, if DNA is required for genetics?

Again, I'm not sure I get what you are asking. Either that or you're trying to bait me.... Obviously, the act of reproducing doesn't require the knowledge of DNA or genetics to be able to do it. Now if you are trying to make the point that DNA existed even before we were able to perceive it, then I would say we have the benefit of hindsight to be able to say that. But before it's verification how could anyone have said DNA existed without relying on belief or faith?


It would seem that both the nervous system and DNA were both present long before we perceived and knew about them, thereby showing that perception isn't required for existence.

Again we have the benefit of hindsight to be able to say that these things existed before they were observed in some way.


Perception is only required in order to name things.

Huh?

I consider existence to be an absolute. That is to say, nothing can be stated to only half exist. There is no grey area. So in this sense, the existence of anything must be verified empirically. If it can not be then the existence of anything is just a probability, a guess, a hope, a belief. There is no way for us to be sure of a reality that we can not measure or confirm in some way. HENCE: existence, in its most absolute sense, requires perception.

Is this really that bizarre of an idea?



posted on Mar, 29 2014 @ 02:36 PM
link   
reply to post by AlienView
 


quick go jump in front a moving bus, however believe by all means its just a stampede of beautiful models
edit on 29-3-2014 by Onyxzyv because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 30 2014 @ 12:20 PM
link   
reply to post by PhotonEffect
 


I'm not trying to bait you. I sincerely love this sort of discussion. It seems I misunderstood. When you said "existence requires perception", I immediately thought of idealism, which states that reality is mental—an age old idea. But I do agree that knowledge and any degree of certainty requires perception.




I'm not sure I understand the purpose of this question- perhaps it's your phrasing of it. We can still perceive without knowing we can do it. However, as far as I know nothing can perceive (on whatever level perception exists) without some sort of ability to do so. I don't think perception (or at least the act of experiencing and reacting to the environment) is limited to human type nervous systems either. For instance an argument can be made that single celled organisms can perceive their environment in some sense. Same with plants. Yet neither of these have a nervous system in the traditional sense.


Once again, you mentioned reality is the product of our brain and nervous system. It's a bold claim. That's where my confusion comes from. What I was trying to state was that it is the other way around, that the nervous system and brain are a product of reality, that we would not be able to perceive if there wasn't something first outside of perception to perceive.


The point I'm trying make is that there is no proof of anything existing if something can't perceive it. Otherwise it's just an assumption or a guess relying on belief/faith. Try to think back to before you were born and what that was like. How would you know anything existed if you don't exist? Impossible. The only reason you know that things existed before your existence is because 1) something (presumably your parents) brought you into existence, and 2) other observers have already confirmed through their observations (knowledge) that there's stuff out there. But what if we were all suspended in a state of "pre-birth non existence"?


I have to agree. But this isn't about ontology anymore. This is epistemology.


Again, I'm not sure I get what you are asking. Either that or you're trying to bait me.... Obviously, the act of reproducing doesn't require the knowledge of DNA or genetics to be able to do it. Now if you are trying to make the point that DNA existed even before we were able to perceive it, then I would say we have the benefit of hindsight to be able to say that. But before it's verification how could anyone have said DNA existed without relying on belief or faith?


Once again, my confusing questions arise out of your initial statements that "existence requires perception" and "reality is the product of our nervous system and brain". I am just following the logic and arguments. I didn't realize that you weren't actually talking about existence or reality, but something else entirely.


I consider existence to be an absolute. That is to say, nothing can be stated to only half exist. There is no grey area. So in this sense, the existence of anything must be verified empirically. If it can not be then the existence of anything is just a probability, a guess, a hope, a belief. There is no way for us to be sure of a reality that we can not measure or confirm in some way. HENCE: existence, in its most absolute sense, requires perception.

Is this really that bizarre of an idea?


Actually yes it is bizarre, because reality doesn't require perception. It's the other way around. Being sure of reality has nothing to do with reality. Whether we are sure of it or not doesn't change it in any shape or form. How we or an ant or a star perceive or interact with reality does not change it. Like you said, existence is absolute, and therefor it doesn't require anything but itself.

When Descartes came up with his "cogito", he could doubt himself out of existence until he could doubt no more, but it didn't change the fact that he was still sitting there in his evening gown. Even if he could doubt his existence, it didn't change anything about his existence. I think, therefor I exist is backwards, for thinking first requires existing to be able to do so. "I exist, therefor I think". Nothing can think, perceive or sit in an evening gown without first existing. Existence, like you said, is absolute, and is the prerequisite for everything, including perception.



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 12:24 AM
link   
'I think therefore I am'.

Thinking happens, words happen - I is a word that seems to be talking about someone. What is this I?
'I' might be believed to be something separate, something individual. That supposed I may then think it sees something when really there is just seeing happening.
'I see a tree'. Really oneness is treeing.

The observer is the observed - they are not two things.



posted on Mar, 31 2014 @ 03:43 AM
link   
And to 'Prove The Existence of The Real World' one must also consider to who [or what] are you proving this? Ants are real and exist in the real world - but the perceptual reality of ants is not the same as the perceptual [and conceptual] reality of Man - if you were to eradicate an ant colony would the ants have any idea who did it? How would a 'thinking ant' perceive his destroyer? And let us say that those 'hypothetical aliens' of a 'hypothetically advanced' civilization really exist, Is it not possible that their reality is so far different from mans so as to dwarf mans perception of reality to a degree that man dwarfs the perception of ants? That said, and to answer the original question 'Can You Prove The Existence of The Real World?', you will not, can not, and never will prove the existence of the 'real world' until you can prove an existent and unquestionable reality that defines all possible parameters of its nature and which can be defined in such a way so as to transcend the limitation of time - the definition must hold up as an eternal definition. You say no such thing; Agreed and that is why you can only prove the existence of the so-called real world in relative terms; 'THE' real world will probably never be provable as 'THE' real world does not exist.



posted on Apr, 6 2014 @ 07:03 AM
link   
What is seen and heard right now appears to be real but cannot appear to be seen or heard without being witnessed.
If anything is real then the witness is that.
The witness of this present happening never appears to be seen - only the scene is seen/heard.
The knower and the known arise as one.


edit on 6-4-2014 by Itisnowagain because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 7 2014 @ 04:51 AM
link   
Now consider this: If you want to prove the reality of one world you will find this to be impossible as there is no reason to believe there is either one world or one existent state of reality. By accepting that there are many worlds, possibly as many worlds as there are observers than you will begin to see that reality is a relative concept that requires an understanding of what any one observation means and how that observation is so related to the observations of others. Again, 'THE' real world would require a fixed observer who maintains superiority to all other observers - there is no indication or proof that such an ultimate definer exists. All observers that we know of are observing reality differently and we still know of no way to prove that one observer and his observations have any superiority over another observers view - Accept many worlds and many observers and seek a definition and observation based upon 'relativity' in a philosophical and physical sense - Yes the theory of relativity can be extended into concepts of philosophical importance and the quantum connections between observations, events, states of mind, and states of existence must be considered.



new topics

top topics



 
9
<< 2  3  4   >>

log in

join