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what is reality ?

Medusa

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tell what you think about it
 

MaggieD

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tell what you think about it
Everyone's reality is different, depending on one's perspective. Reality involves perception, in my opinion.

It's raining today. That's reality because it is indeed raining. Illinois farmers are grateful, probably doin' a dance in their fields. My neighbors are probably happy too, because they won't have to water their garden this evening. Woot!! The neighbors on the other side probably have unhappy kids in the house. This was their last hurrah at the village swimming pool. They won't be going. BooHoo!! The fishermen down at the pond are probably happy. It's a steady rain, but light, and the pan fish are probably biting like crazy. High school girls with curly hair are probably frustrated as it's humid and they're no doubt frizzing.

Reality isn't half as important as perception.
 

brothern

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Everyone's reality is different, depending on one's perspective. Reality involves perception, in my opinion.

It's raining today. That's reality because it is indeed raining. Illinois farmers are grateful, probably doin' a dance in their fields. My neighbors are probably happy too, because they won't have to water their garden this evening. Woot!! The neighbors on the other side probably have unhappy kids in the house. This was their last hurrah at the village swimming pool. They won't be going. BooHoo!! The fishermen down at the pond are probably happy. It's a steady rain, but light, and the pan fish are probably biting like crazy. High school girls with curly hair are probably frustrated as it's humid and they're no doubt frizzing.

Reality isn't half as important as perception.
... but you're now describing perspective. No one can own reality. Reality is the state of things as they actually exist, rather than as they may appear to someone. If you call reality what people perceive, then you're talking about perception and not reality.
 

brothern

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Reality is the state of things as they actually exist. It is what is when you remove all observers.
 

Medusa

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Everyone's reality is different, depending on one's perspective. Reality involves perception, in my opinion.

It's raining today. That's reality because it is indeed raining. Illinois farmers are grateful, probably doin' a dance in their fields. My neighbors are probably happy too, because they won't have to water their garden this evening. Woot!! The neighbors on the other side probably have unhappy kids in the house. This was their last hurrah at the village swimming pool. They won't be going. BooHoo!! The fishermen down at the pond are probably happy. It's a steady rain, but light, and the pan fish are probably biting like crazy. High school girls with curly hair are probably frustrated as it's humid and they're no doubt frizzing.

Reality isn't half as important as perception.
maggie but it seems there is still only one reality in this example and thats "raining"

what is relatively different is how it affects their daily lives
 

Hard Truth

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I like the definition that reality is what everyone can agree that they perceive. If everyone sees that tree over there, it is real. That angel that only a couple of people can see, is not real. It is not a perfect definition, since large numbers of people can hallucinate or be deceived, and there will always be some people who can´t/won´t see what is front of them. But its the best definition I have seen.

When people have visions or other ¨spiritual¨ experiences, it seems very real and important to them, but they shouldn´t expect others to believe or agree with their account of the experience. There may be many things out there beyond reality, or our ordinary ability to perceive, that exist, but unless we have solid evidence that they impact reality, they are irrelevant and unimportant to the real world, just like dreams or hallucinations. We don´t know if the visionary understood or perceived their vision accurately or whether the message they received is from an insightful or benevolent entity.

Of course, people can take actions that make these experiences matter to others (i.e kill everyone who doesn´t believe in the message of the experience), but in my view that is always a mistake, and the cause of much of the world´s violence and misery. If an individual receives insight or other value from an unreal experience it may be beneficial to them, but they should not try to bend reality to conform to their spiritual understanding without testing, in the real world, whether their insights are truly going to be beneficial.

Reality is complex and interesting enough that we don´t need people´s personal unreal experiences further confusing our attempts to perceive reality more accurately.
 
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NoC_T

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It's whatever you believe it is.
 

clownboy

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It's what whacks you upside the head when you ignore it for too long. :mrgreen:
 

Goshin

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Bah. Reality is what smacks you in the face everyday.
 

ashurbanipal

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brothern said:
Reality is the state of things as they actually exist. It is what is when you remove all observers.
How do you know there would be anything left if all observers were removed?
 

MaggieD

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... but you're now describing perspective. No one can own reality. Reality is the state of things as they actually exist, rather than as they may appear to someone. If you call reality what people perceive, then you're talking about perception and not reality.
Perception is reality.
 

ashurbanipal

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Hard Truth said:
I like the definition that reality is what everyone can agree that they perceive. If everyone sees that tree over there, it is real. That angel that only a couple of people can see, is not real. It is not a perfect definition, since large numbers of people can hallucinate or be deceived, and there will always be some people who can´t/won´t see what is front of them. But its the best definition I have seen.

When people have visions or other ¨spiritual¨ experiences, it seems very real and important to them, but they shouldn´t expect others to believe or agree with their account of the experience. There may be many things out there beyond reality, or our ordinary ability to perceive, that exist, but unless we have solid evidence that they impact reality, they are irrelevant and unimportant to the real world, just like dreams or hallucinations. We don´t know if the visionary understood or perceived their vision accurately or whether the message they received is from an insightful or benevolent entity.

Of course, people can take actions that make these experiences matter to others (i.e kill everyone who doesn´t believe in the message of the experience), but in my view that is always a mistake, and the cause of much of the world´s violence and misery. If an individual receives insight or other value from an unreal experience it may be beneficial to them, but they should not try to bend reality to conform to their spiritual understanding without testing, in the real world, whether their insights are truly going to be beneficial.

Reality is complex and interesting enough that we don´t need people´s personal unreal experiences further confusing our attempts to perceive reality more accurately.
Two comments:

1) If we were to take your definition at face value, there wouldn't be very much to reality. I don't think there's very much that everyone agrees they perceive. Indeed, even among a small group, my experience tells me that it's more likely people wouldn't agree on very much.

2) What you seem to be driving at is that reality is described by a set of propositions which have the property of intersubjective agreement. However, I can't think of a good reason to agree. I wonder if you can clarify and defend your claim, here.
 

Ikari

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Children going to bed hungry in the greatest country in the world.
Pffft, if you think that is bad, think about how much money is spent in total during the election cycles by the Republocrats and how many people in the world live in poverty and starve to death every day.
 

Sig

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douglas

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Reality is the state of things as they actually exist. It is what is when you remove all observers.
That describes an undefined scenario. Reality is defined by the observer, both in a philosophical context and in the physical context of quantum theory. Without someone to look in a box, it's contents might very well be variable. Reality has no meaning without being tested or observed.

I like the definition that reality is what everyone can agree that they perceive. If everyone sees that tree over there, it is real. That angel that only a couple of people can see, is not real. It is not a perfect definition, since large numbers of people can hallucinate or be deceived, and there will always be some people who can´t/won´t see what is front of them. But its the best definition I have seen.

When people have visions or other ¨spiritual¨ experiences, it seems very real and important to them, but they shouldn´t expect others to believe or agree with their account of the experience. There may be many things out there beyond reality, or our ordinary ability to perceive, that exist, but unless we have solid evidence that they impact reality, they are irrelevant and unimportant to the real world, just like dreams or hallucinations. We don´t know if the visionary understood or perceived their vision accurately or whether the message they received is from an insightful or benevolent entity.

Of course, people can take actions that make these experiences matter to others (i.e kill everyone who doesn´t believe in the message of the experience), but in my view that is always a mistake, and the cause of much of the world´s violence and misery. If an individual receives insight or other value from an unreal experience it may be beneficial to them, but they should not try to bend reality to conform to their spiritual understanding without testing, in the real world, whether their insights are truly going to be beneficial.

Reality is complex and interesting enough that we don´t need people´s personal unreal experiences further confusing our attempts to perceive reality more accurately.
That sounds like some sort of democratic reality. The only real definition I've accepted as a fact is,... nobody agrees on a definition. Mass hallucinations aside, we know that the world view of the vast majority of our ancestors has been completely wrong (by our understanding); if reality is limited by what the majority of people can conceive, we're doomed to have a stagnant society. Until all knowledge is known and defined, our perception and definition is inherently limited. It's part of the human experience if you ask me; a true challenge for humanity that is inherently impossible for us to conquer, but still a valid pursuit.

Perception is reality.
My dad used to tell me that alot when I was in highschool, in the context of getting a job. He was right, too. Your work ethic, effort, and ability aside, your career is much more dependent on your outward appearance more than how you actually work. For life in general, it all comes down to game theory; your strategy isn't based on your understanding of the rules, but on the other guy's. In context of "reality", it creates a system where the definition of reality is variable and dependent on the definitions of those you interact with. It's not necessarily the "democratic reality" I jabbed at before, but similar; if enough people tell you the sky is red and ice is hot, it will be, because your definitions and perceptions are based on the people around you. Even in the strictest scientific sense, we've had plenty of problems where we "knew" we had measured something, it was well repeated by peer reviewers, and had mathematical and logical proofs of existence, and then.... was completely non-existent. Look at ether theory of electromagnetism or gravity, or any of the first attempts at modern chemistry.

Reality isn't completely dependent on the observer or collective definition, but not completely independent either; our definition of reality changes reality.
 
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CriticalThought

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Reality are all the things I can't make go away by altering or distorting my perception.

I can, however, choose to the best of my ability to ignore those things by altering or distorting my perception.

Albeit, the consequences of doing so often outweigh the consequences of directly dealing with those things.

But until the consequences of ignoring those things do catch up to me, I will likely be unable to discern my altered and distorted perceptions from the real reality and will likely consider my perceptions to be reality.
 

Hard Truth

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Two comments:

1) If we were to take your definition at face value, there wouldn't be very much to reality. I don't think there's very much that everyone agrees they perceive. Indeed, even among a small group, my experience tells me that it's more likely people wouldn't agree on very much.

2) What you seem to be driving at is that reality is described by a set of propositions which have the property of intersubjective agreement. However, I can't think of a good reason to agree. I wonder if you can clarify and defend your claim, here.
1. I disagree. If you have a group of people and ask ¨Does everyone agree that there is a wall here? Do we agree that it is white? The thermometer says it is 70 degrees in here, does that seem about right?¨ etc. The group would agree on most of the readily perceiveable aspects of the environment.

2. I don´t understand how you can disagree. It is a definition that works for most people´s understanding of the word. It isn´t saying that nothing else exists, but that those other things aren´t reality as we know it.
 
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Hard Truth

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That sounds like some sort of democratic reality. The only real definition I've accepted as a fact is,... nobody agrees on a definition. Mass hallucinations aside, we know that the world view of the vast majority of our ancestors has been completely wrong (by our understanding); if reality is limited by what the majority of people can conceive, we're doomed to have a stagnant society.
What we can conceive and worldviews are not reality, those are intellectual processes that are subjective . Reality is what we all can perceive. A wall is real. Even if you choose not to believe in it, or can´t perceive it initially (i.e because you are blind) you can´t walk through it. The reality of the wall will impact you despite any other ideas you may have.
 
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