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Consensual Reality or Consentual Reality?

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posted on Dec, 23 2010 @ 10:35 PM
Consensual Reality or Consentual Reality?
Submission of Theory of Plenary Metaphysical Solipsism for Peer Review on ATS

In former days, pre-1999, I'd say, in an old psychology book, which I can't remember the name of, consensual was defined as what was detectable by more than one of the 5 senses. An example would be, you look at an apple, by sight, it seems to be a certain size, and sure enough, when you hold it in your hand, it still seems to be that same size. The two senses concurred, therefore consensually, the apple is a certain size. That definition has disappeared from usage, it seems.

I will relate a true story to illustrate the old usage, and the transition to the current usage.

It started out as a normal noc shift, formerly known as graveyard shift, in the alzheimer ward of the local nursing home. I was a CNA (certified nursing assistant) on duty with another CNA I'll call Jane. The alzheimer unit was separated from the rest of the facility by a keypad locking door.

About an hour into the shift, Jane and I both heard banging on the locked partition. I opened the door, looked on the other side; nothing to see that would account for the banging; lack of consensual verification according to the old definition, but consensually real by the newer definition, in that we both heard it and agreed that yes, there was in fact a banging sound occurring on the door.

Jane went to the phone and called the charge nurse at the other nursing station while I narrowed down possible explanations. The banging, as far as I could tell, perfectly matched the pattern of sounds made when Tillie(made up name) one of the residents, banged her walker against the door, wanting to go through. So I did what I thought was reasonable by waking Tillie up, transferring her to her chair and telling her to look out the picture window and think about walking around by the tree. It made sense to me, she wouldn't be dreaming about getting through the door.

Meanwhile, Linda, the nurse, had come down to our unit and was discussing with Jane the recently fired employee. And wouldn't you know it, but the banging on the door noise stopped. I went outside to have a smoke. When I came back in, Jane jumped all over me. "What are you doing? You can't open the door! Don't you know that Dwayne has a gun? He could have killed you, then come in and killed the rest of us!"

"What?", was all that I could reply, because it seemed quite obvious to me that the banging noise that we had already agreed was coming from an inside partition door had nothing whatsoever to do with a disgruntled ex-employee with a gun. But evidently, Linda and Jane had some disconnected scenario that they decided to agree on. Consensual reality for them. As far as I was concerned, I wasn't in on it. Did not consent, therefore their consensual reality was not my consentual reality.

Then, to add to the disagreement about reality, the outside door started rattling. Linda said, "Thats it, I'm calling the cops," and ran down to her own station. I went up to the door to get a closer look. Jane yelled, "don't open the door!" I watched how the door moved, how the latch moved, and determined to my own satisfaction that it was being rattled from the inside rather than the outside.

"Jane", I said, "It's being rattled from the inside, I'll show you, there's probably no one out there." And I got my hand in position for a quick flinging open of the door.

"No", pleaded Jane, just as the rattling resumed.

I flung open the door, "see, no one there." But Jane was running down the hall screaming.

The police called back and said they had a couple of patrolmen walking around outside the building and recommended that the doors remain locked. They didn't see anything like evidence of a prowler.

There were a couple of other less than explainable occurrences that night that also had nothing to do with Dwayne having a gun.

I still don't consent to the accepted explanation. Do I lack consensual reality or consentual reality?

I know I didn't get to the theory yet, but I'm a slow type writer, and I still haven't got an outline yet. Illustrative stories can be told chronologically.

edit on 23-12-2010 by pthena because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 23 2010 @ 10:46 PM
reply to post by pthena

Very interesting post! Can't wait to read the rest.

I guess I would say that your reality isn't made up of the information given to you by your senses but by how your mind chooses to interpret the raw data given to it by them.

If for example the two ladies had actually SEEN someone walk past a window with a gun they obviously they would have different information with which to interpret the sensual data of the rattling door.
As to why your interpretation didn't match up to theirs on that particular night, I can't say, but I assume that it could have been influenced by many things, maybe something as simple as them feeling more threatened by the situation because Jane felt more responsible for the person being fired (thus being the likely target) and managed to pass her paranoia on to someone else.

Just for the record as a side line there are WAY more then 5 senses.
The count is somewhere around 21 I believe, including things like thermiception i.e. ability to feel temperature and nociception
edit on 23-12-2010 by davespanners because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 23 2010 @ 11:11 PM
reply to post by davespanners

Jane felt more responsible for the person being fired (thus being the likely target) and managed to pass her paranoia on to someone else.

Now that you mention it, I think they both had something to do with the guy getting fired. I knew nothing about it because it happened on my day off, just the day before.

Still, from my perspective, there was zero reason to connect observable phenomena to any one outside the building. They probably would agree that I was acting in an irrational and reckless manner, but that's them, I can rationally explain my actions.

Just for the record as a side line there are WAY more then 5 senses.
The count is somewhere around 21 I believe, including things like thermiception i.e. ability to feel temperature and nociception

I'm glad there's more senses. I'm awfully night blind. And I don't know if there's a name for it, but recently I've lost the ability to tell what direction sound comes from. You know how some cordless phones, when lost can be made to beep from the docking station? No help. Just cuz I hear the beep, doesn't mean I can locate it.

The incident told in the story happened about 15 years ago, when I could still use directional hearing.

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