Originally posted by foodstamp
reply to post by arpgme
In Buddhism we touch on the subject of "Subjective reality" quite often. But I never have been able to wrap my head around the idea of it completely.
Because, If our reality was completely subjective, then how do we all generally perceive the same concreteness of this reality?
Unless of course, everything absolutley subjective and you're all figments of my imagination. If that were true then reality would be so mindblowingly
incomprehensible to me that I think I'd just have to roll over and die. Cause you guys seem pretty real to me. You seem to all walk and talk and think
for yourselves... How could you be an "extension" of my psyche and/or vice versa?
You are raising some good questions. In fact, this entire thread has been enjoyable to read. I think, though, that we need to be careful of the
concepts we are using and how we are using them. As long as we take the concept of "you" or "I" to be intrinsically real/existent, than everything is
purely subjective. In fact, it may be said that there are 7 billion realities on earth because each person experiences things differently. Now, as
socially conditioned beings with similar biological anatomy/neural structure, it is quite easy to agree upon certain concepts. We can agree that the
color "red" is "red" because our optical anatomy is similar and we were all taught that this experience is "red". We can agree that the pot is "hot"
because, again, our anatomy is similar and so we experience heat very similarly and have been taught this experience is called "heat" or "hot".
But none of this is proof of an objective reality. Even science, which prides itself on inquiring into objective reality, stands solely upon common
conditioning, which is why we have to go through years of school to learn all the concepts and terminology before we are considered "scientists". It
is all about conceptual agreements in relation to similar (but not identical) experiences, but nonetheless it is all subjective. We may call it
"objective" because we agree upon concepts due to our conditioning and similar anatomy, but the supposed person can never experience anything truly
objective. It is all subjective experience that is labeled as objective when enough people agree upon its existence.
Now, on the other hand, if we take the concept of "you" or "I" to be mere conceptual designations for spacial reference points, done for communication
purposes, but have no real intrinsic reality/existence to them, then everything is objective. Then there is nothing but one reality (or as the Buddha
called it, Absolute Reality). Then the body/brain is not experiencing reality (as a separate object) but is in fact part of reality itself, a
manifestation of reality as reality. And since the body/brain is not experiencing reality, rather is reality, then what we might call "objective
reality" still cannot be spoken of or conceptualized because there is no separate entity. If we establish the belief of a separate entity ("I" or
"you" or "we"), in order to talk about this "objective reality", then everything is subjective again. Which is why people like the Buddha and Lao Tzu
and others have said this reality (the Tao or Absolute) cannot be spoken of.
So, in short, objective reality exists. In fact, it is all that exists. Even this supposed "subjective reality" is objective reality. And this is
because there is no absolute boundaries or divisions within anything (there is no "I" or "You" or "that" and "this"), all is all. But the minute there
is the conceptualization of anything, then everything is subjective because it is being conceptualized from a specific spatial reference point. So in
this sense, there is no such thing as "objective reality", it only is theorized to be true through philosophical inquiry such as I am doing right now.
But on that note, so too is "subjective reality" just theorized to be true through philosophical inquiry.
Hope I didn't confuse anyone.
edit on 12-8-2012 by openlocks because: (no reason given)