Re: virus:Other Reality

David McFadzean (
Mon, 06 May 1996 17:57:37 -0600

At 01:34 AM 05/05/96 -0500, John A wrote:

>reality). There are parts of the "absolute" (I almost hate using this
>word) reality which we cannot directly percieve with our five senses,
>but we can observe with some extension of our five senses. For instance,
>there are stars in the sky that cannot be seen with the unaided eye, but
>with the telescope we can easily see what appears to not exist.

Perhaps it would clear up some confusion to explicitly differentiate
between the two related concepts commonly referred to as "reality".
Subjective reality is what we all perceive, an interaction between
objective reality, our senses, and our preconceptions (or ontological
memes, what Brodie calls "disctinction memes" in _Virus of the Mind_).
We can infer the existence of an objective reality from out subjective
reality, but we can have no direct knowledge of objective reality.

Entities with different perceptions almost certainly experience a
subjective reality quite different from the one we know. I assume
other humans experience a subjective reality similar to mine because
we are closely related physically, and the fact we can talk about
a shared experience coherently lends evidential weight to this belief.
But as Marek has already mentioned, dogs can obviously hear and smell
things we cannot. A bat's sense of hearing is so acute it can locate
and intercept a small flying meal without sight. It is quite possible
that a bat experiences hearing more like we experience vision. Has
anyone else read Nagel's famous _What is it like to be a bat?_? We
can almost imagine what it would be like to be a different kind of
mammal, but I really have no clue what it would be like to be an
insect or an octopus. But even these creatures are close relatives
compared to what is theoretically possible, entities that live in
a vastly different physical scale (e.g. nanomachines) or time scale.

>Before we drag god kicking and screaming into this, I need to recite my
>USE OF THE TERM "GOD" DISCLAIMER. First of all, by "god" I DO NOT mean
>a.)the christian god, b.)any recognized religious deity, c.)any
>spiritual entity, or d.)any supernatural force. By "god" I DO mean a.)a
>rational force, b.)an algorithmic process similar to that of nature
>itself, c.)a postulate that unifies and (as Hawking said) "breathes fire
>into" physical equations and laws and d.)an natural energy which may or
>may not be have a conscience.

I think most readers will know what you are talking about if you
call this a "pantheistic god".

David McFadzean       
Memetic Engineer      
Church of Virus