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So now what?

by Langdon on August 30, 2009

So I've accepted the idea that my life is almost certainly likely taking place in a simulation, whether that be in a computer, or the imagination of a universal consciousness. So what should I expect from this acceptance? First of all I should observe that I said I've accepted the idea. There is of course a massive gulf between an idea and experience, yet it seems direct experience is crucial to understanding. As adeptly as we can rotate shapes, model space, and conjure imaginary worlds mentally, our ability to abstract seems insufficient to really allow this likelihood to be accepted.

So barring spontaneous or chemically-induced mystical experience or years of meditation, we seem stuck with that idea standing in for direct apprehension of our true situation. Buddhists say that understanding the nature of the illusion of independent existence is liberation, a profound shift in one's approach to living, and that seems to be precisely what I'm talking about. But if the trap is to confuse the finger for the moon, we must realize that the idea of living as a simulation is a mental artifact that must be let go of.

We're most likely the imagining of an alien computer, or own dreaming brains, or the entire Universe. Go far enough out into space and, such is the scale of our Universe, it is mathematically proven that we will run into ourselves. Examine our physical structure finely and closely enough and we find that we are nothing but vibrations of a seething medium of energy. These are really, really big ideas. Then why do they seem to be so insufficient to really perturb the patterns of our lives?

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