Non-Duality: You experience the inside of your own mind

When most people think of the universe they live in, they think of themselves as looking out into an external world. However, what most people don’t realize is that in reality, just the opposite is true.

You are not looking out into an external world. When your eyes pick up light it transfers the light it receives into electrical signals that a small area in the back of your brain interpret. The same goes for all your other senses as well. At the root of everything, you are only experiencing electrical impulses interpreted as an external environment. So instead of looking out into an external world, you are actually looking at the inside of your own mind. It is only an experience and experiences do not have a physical, tangible existence. That means that the computer screen you are looking at right now 100% does not exist.

It’s exactly like a computer. When you are browsing the internet, watching a movie, chatting with a friend on facebook, etc. all you are actually doing is observing the computer’s interpretation of an enormous stream of “ones” and “zeros”. For example an EXTREMELY simple computer program might be something like…

11011011010100010101011010111110110100100101010000101101001000101010101001101010100101010101000101010110101010101010101001000000101010110101101011011111010101010101111010001010110101110101010101010001000010101110001011010101011011110101101010101001001010101010100101011101011010100101010101110101

…which the computer translates as the sentence “Hello guys! How’s everyone doing?”. An image is also composed of a giant stream of “ones” and “zeros”. A movie is a stream of images combined together to form the illusion of motion. So in reality a movie is nothing but one, long, giant list of “ones” and “zeros”!

In the same way you are only able to experience reality via electrical impulses that your brain interprets.

Think about this. Suppose someone took your brain out of your body and placed it into a container that kept it alive. If technology was advanced enough scientists could connect your brain to a computer and stream data via electrical impulses to your brain. You could then experience reality the way you do now with what you think is your body, what you think is your house, who you think is your best friend. As long as data was kept streaming to your brain, you would continue to experience reality based on what was sent to your brain. In reality you have no body. There is only your brain sitting inside a container. But to you, you have a body and live an everyday life.

This is the case with a dream. Nothing real is actually happening. It is simply your brain producing electrical impulses like it does in (at least what you think) is “real life”. It isn’t until you awake that you realize you weren’t a being with a dragon body, flying around visiting mountain tops. You were actually just a person laying in bed being fooled by your brain. You were experiencing a completely made up and artificial reality produced by your brain via electrical impulses.

So the question begs. How do we know that we’re not “dreaming” right now? After all if the way we experience reality at the moment is the same way that we experience a fictional reality in our dreams, then how do we know we’re not just experiencing a simulation? Well… the answer is… we don’t know. Even if reality isn’t a simulation and there really is an external world, you still have to remember that you only ever look at the inside of your mind and you aren’t actually experiencing reality directly.

Don’t close your mind to the things I have said above just because it seems absurd or ridiculous at first thought. If you really do some thinking and consider what is actually going on, I think you will come to the same realization.

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even if we are purely internal perceptive observers, that doesnt mean we are on the outside looking inwards at the world. so i am just saying that your statement that its the opposite isnt true.

dont know if you have read about morphic fields, but i think we are tangibly connected to the outside world. informations and perceptions of the mind are derivative, otherwise you wouldm’t know anything about the external world.

if fact everything in the universe is connected to everything else at the quantum and infinite levels. we only read what is relative to us, but given the instrumentation we can make further connections e.g. like this computer.

the duality mate, is in thinking that there is some manner of division between us and other things. when if you spoke of any such divisions we would soon find those lines blur and fade into nothing. i would go further and state that reality doesnt have any lines or divisions whatsoever.

reality = infinite = without limits. there is no cardinality.

I personally believe that there is indeed an outside world that causes the experience produced by our brains, but there is no way to know for sure. Reality could just as easily be a simulation.

I have to disagree, but for a different reason than you would think.

My issue isn’t one where I think that I am awake and wonder if maybe I am dreaming. My situation is that I know that I am dreaming and can’t wake up.

Analyzing that situation, I have to think about how much of what I see is delusion and how much might be real. The presumed dichotomy of either dreaming or awake is a false dichotomy. Everyone is necessarily always dreaming to some degree. The relevant question is “How much?”.

Imagine for a moment that half of what you saw, you knew to be a delusion, but you didn’t know which half. What would you do? Or perhaps only 1/10th of what you saw, you knew to be a dream, but again, didn’t know which 1/10th. The less you think of as a dream, the easier it is to decide what to do moment by moment, because you have a higher probability of guessing correctly and thus can be more confident. So the question really isn’t one of “Am I dreaming?”

The question is, “How much of what seems to be real, really isn’t?

In the long run, totally waking up such that nothing is a dream, is totally impossible. But it always has been impossible, so apparently one need not be totally awake. So how awake do I really need to be?

I think that would depend upon the circumstances. How forgiving is the real world going to be to you as you respond to your delusions? Again, the fewer delusions, the better. Or is that really true?

The reality that I am aware of seems to demand that I not only stay in a dream of a certain magnitude, but also of a specific type. If you watch TV, you are definitely in a dream. I don’t mean while you are watching. I mean that the information that you accept is more fantasy than you realize. But if you don’t accept the fantasy presented to you, you are seen as someone who isn’t going along. You become an enemy to the state/regime. You can’t get along with your neighbors or coworkers because THEY BELIEVE THE DREAM. And if you don’t, conflicts arise wherein you are seen as “the problem”. I seriously woke up once long ago. Someone didn’t like it. I wasn’t in a Buddhaistic country.

So should one wake up?

And that depends upon others who have not woken up as well as what you could do despite others still dreaming, because of what they are going to do and perhaps not forgive.

I agree with everything except this part. This is going to sound paradoxical, but I believe everything we experience is a product of our own mind yet at the same time is 100% absolutely real. I think we’re still in the grips of the Cartesian notion that if it’s mental, it isn’t real–that there is a divide between perception and reality (and we’re only lucky that the two coincide as often as they do). I believe that the chair that I see is really the physical chair, out there in 3 dimensional space, that it appears to be and at the same time is a visual experience belonging to me. They call my view idealism, but unlike the Berkeleyan variety of idealism, I’m not an immaterialist.

But before we get into that, I’d like to ask you: are you aware of the contending view of realism which opposes yours? You may call it naive realism, but I don’t think it’s so naive–wrong, but not naive. It’s the view that the signal which travels from your eye to the back of the brain does not function to create some visual quale, but rather to “inform” the brain of actual properties out in the world. For instance, I see the sky as blue, but this need not be explained in terms of my brain creating the qaule “blue” but rather my brain having a certain consciousness of blueness “turned on” by the signal that reaches it. The blue is really a property of the sky, and the signal which reaches my brain only enables my awareness of that.

You actually don’t even look at anything. You have no way of looking except through the knowledge you have of something. This knowledge is put into us during the course of our life. When you play with a child, you tell him, “Show me your hand, show me your nose, show me your teeth, show me your face. What is your name?” This is how we build up the identity of the individual’s relationship with his hand, with his nose, with his eyes, and with the world around. So do we look at anything – this so-called looking is a blurry experience of yours, but you have no way of looking at anything at all except with the knowledge. So it is necessary for us to have that knowledge, otherwise it is not possible for us to function sanely and intelligently. It helps us to function sanely and intelligently, and we have to accept the reality of the world as it is imposed on us. Otherwise we have no way of functioning sanely and intelligently; we will end up in the loony bin, singing merry melodies and loony tunes. So it is very essential for us to accept the reality of the world as it is imposed on us by culture, by society, or whatever you want to call it, and leave it at that, and treat it as functional in value, and it cannot help us to experience the reality of anything.

kenbrace

Well if there’s a cause…! then it is derivative. I think outside of what we are, that reality is fundamentally communicative and perspective based at the individual level. Point is that those two apparently disparate things ‘belong’ to a universal reality [see also my ‘what dreams are literally made of’ thread].

Fundamentally there is only one reality, so whatever is going on in there, in here, it is the duality which is illusory. It is for that very reason that there is no cardinality or edges to things in reality, and that is why there HAS to be something correlating informations and things universally.

In my religion [druidism] we can that caugant = the divine infinite, its a bit like nirvana except that it is the base of reality, joining all things at every level, informational, visual, sensual generally and even at the experiential level! Its simple really - if you’ll excuse, if there are no edges/cardinality, then everything must be connected, no? Then that because these disparate things are different, then that which connects them cannot be limited, and cannot be called a thing [is not physical even where some things within reality are].

Even a simulation is caused.