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Spirituality & Philosophy

Moderated by: Weird Occurance Lord Denida

What is life? What happens after death? How do we live morally to become our best selves? Let's discuss!

How much can the brain reasonably be seen as playing tricks on you?

Posted 2 Weeks ago by Grey Echelon

This thought came to be from a conversation, but if "the brain is playing tricks on you" can be used to explain anything, then where does that stop exactly? What stops that line of thought from ultimately justifying something like solipsism? And from there, could a person slip into extreme subjectivism? Because if you think your brain can always play tricks on you and can't be trusted, how do you know reality itself isn't just an illusion of the brain?

There are 20 Replies


Hasn't this been explored since Descartes' time? lol

¤¤♅êîrÐ Øccu®@n瀤¤

2 Weeks ago
Weird Occurance

Hasn't this been explored since Descartes' time? lol

Probably and I've no doubt thought about it before, but I'm thinking about it again, and this is the philosophy subforum so might as well discuss it anyway even though there's probably going to be no definitive answer ever!

2 Weeks ago
Grey Echelon

Please keep this on topic Learna. I tagged it for now.

¤LðŗРУŋįd@¤

2 Weeks ago
Lord Denida

This is a very complicated question. The short of it, at least for me, is that the fact that what we perceive of reality is a vague experiential soup does not matter too much because we have established very clear and very fundamental laws of rationality that neither depend on nor dictate our experience of reality.

There can be very clear disorders of perception and cognition. They are exceptions to the firmly established and consistent reality that we generally have good reason to believe in and to use as a foundation for reasoning.

2 Weeks ago
galbraith

Probably and I've no doubt thought about it before, but I'm thinking about it again, and this is the philosophy subforum so might as well discuss it anyway even though there's probably going to be no definitive answer ever!


Fair! haha

I often go down a similar rabbit hole with the whole determinism vs free will debate.

You can't know so it's best to err on whichever side makes you feel most comfortable in life.

Usually, that is believing in free will.

In this case, applying the same advice, it'd be believing we're not alone.

¤¤♅êîrÐ Øccu®@n瀤¤

2 Weeks ago
Weird Occurance

This is a very complicated question. The short of it, at least for me, is that the fact that what we perceive of reality is a vague experiential soup does not matter too much because we have established very clear and very fundamental laws of rationality that neither depend on nor dictate our experience of reality.

There can be very clear disorders of perception and cognition. They are exceptions to the firmly established and consistent reality that we generally have good reason to believe in and to use as a foundation for reasoning.

A fine enough answer.

2 Weeks ago
Grey Echelon

Also a fine answer.

I often go down a similar rabbit hole with the whole determinism vs free will debate.

I have this debate with myself a lot lately, and I was much less for a while. Ultimately, I think it's to a degree a mix of both that varies on a case by case basis. But free will is usually what would be preferred.

2 Weeks ago
Grey Echelon

Elite, please be more respectful.

Grey, I wouldn't entertain posts like that. Don't feed the trolls.

I'm tagging your responses to Elite & Learna, as their posts were tagged already.

¤¤♅êîrÐ Øccu®@n瀤¤

2 Weeks ago
Weird Occurance

Sorry, the demons made me do it.

2 Weeks ago
Elite

I'm tagging your responses to Elite & Learna, as their posts were tagged already.

I think it's important to make it clear that this post isn't about my behaviors whatsoever, and if anything the original topic is about my criticism of distrusting your brain to a fault and thus that part doesn't reflect something I'm doing. And if anything as I said in that thread, the demons bit was actually something I saw as a means to self-improving potentially. Anyone who has known me long enough knows that the demon thing wasn't a new thing for me. Else I won't be able to talk about anything of my beliefs without someone jumping to conclusions. Especially since things like this may well keep happening. But if you feel the need I guess, tag this too.

2 Weeks ago
Grey Echelon

Sorry, the demons made me do it.


We'll leave it, but you were asked to be respectful Elite, so remember with any further replies.

¤LðŗРУŋįd@¤

2 Weeks ago
Lord Denida

I think it's important to make it clear that this post isn't about my behaviors whatsoever, and if anything the original topic is about my criticism of distrusting your brain to a fault and thus that part doesn't reflect something I'm doing. Else I won't be able to talk about anything of my beliefs without someone jumping to conclusions. Especially since things like this may well keep happening. But if you feel the need I guess, tag this too.


Nah, this response is fine.

It's more a matter of, I don't think people should keep continually harassing you in every thread you make for your past transgressions. You have apologized, and while that doesn't justify everything, harassment is not, and never will be, allowed on GT For All.

¤¤♅êîrÐ Øccu®@n瀤¤

2 Weeks ago
Weird Occurance

Many illusions — indeed, most I know about, but I probably don’t know about lots of others — are results of your brain doing things that are often helpful, in circumstances where they’re not.

Examples are blind spots, or the “Mandela effect”, and others.
Your brain often fills in details you can’t observe based on what you can observe and on what you have learned is likely.
Ordinarily that lets you react to true things you can’t really know yet.
Sometimes though it convinces you of something plausible that happens to be false this one time.

Almost anything your brain “tricks” you into “believing” is (usually) a probably-useful fiction or illusion or maybe “truth” you don’t really know.

It is my opinion that the existence of the self is one of these.
I wouldn’t mind being convinced I was wrong about the existence of a self, or even a soul.

However I think belief in any afterlife other than reincarnation is dangerous to the planet.

…..

As for solipsism:
I don’t have that, based on one or the other of two extremely opposite possibilities.
A solipsist believes they’re the only self that truly exists.
I either believe everybody truly exists, not just me;
or else I believe no one, not even me, truly exists.

My views on ethics are somewhat similar to solipsism, however.
I believe I should act as if I’m the best available authority on ethics.
And everyone else should also act as if I’m the best available authority on ethics! [;-)] 😉

2 Weeks ago
chiarizio
 

Examples are blind spots, or the “Mandela effect”, and others.

Your brain often fills in details you can’t observe based on what you can observe and on what you have learned is likely.
Ordinarily that lets you react to true things you can’t really know yet.
Sometimes though it convinces you of something plausible that happens to be false this one time.
Ya unfortunately that can be true.

However I think belief in any afterlife other than reincarnation is dangerous to the planet.

Interesting. Why do you feel that way?

2 Weeks ago
Grey Echelon

@Grey Echelon:
I wrote:
However I think belief in any afterlife other than reincarnation is dangerous to the planet.


You responded:
Interesting. Why do you feel that way?


Because people who think that, after they die, they’ll live anyplace but here, think they’ll escape from the mess humans are making of this planet.

2 Weeks ago
chiarizio
 

Because people who think that, after they die, they’ll live anyplace but here, think they’ll escape from the mess humans are making of this planet.

Hm ya I suppose so. But people do that anyway assuming there is no afterlife. In fact it might be a pleasing thought! In fact, fear of the possibility of hell is one of things that keeps me from considering things too much and has been for a rather long time!

Though I can see how it may go that way too.

2 Weeks ago
Grey Echelon

If unreasonable, unfounded threats, whether the threat of eternal hellfire at the hands of a brutal tyrant or the threat of merely experiencing the world that one has created, are what is required to convince a person to act in a way that is beneficial, then they are doing it for the wrong reason and are no more morally justified than the people acting in deleterious fashion for equally unfounded reasons.

I deeply question the experiences and qualities of people who have, apparently, never developed the compassion, the basic reasoning or even the vague social notion to conclude that doing what is beneficial for the world in general is preferable. This would seem to me to indicate a significant and probably systemic failure; something has gone very wrong for these people where, instead of reaching conclusions that many easily grasp, they have been either enabled or goaded or otherwise made morally destitute such that it requires these bizarre and specious means to adjust (at most a part of) their behavior towards the general direction of good.

2 Weeks ago
galbraith

If unreasonable, unfounded threats, whether the threat of eternal hellfire at the hands of a brutal tyrant or the threat of merely experiencing the world that one has created, are what is required to convince a person to act in a way that is beneficial, then they are doing it for the wrong reason and are no more morally justified than the people acting in deleterious fashion for equally unfounded reasons.

I was talking about suicide in general there which I thought he was what he was saying, people choosing to die to prevent having to deal with shit here. But I may be out of it. Of course, environmentalism is ideal regardless and I would advocate of that regardless.

2 Weeks ago
Grey Echelon

I was mostly addressing the issue of how justifiable it is for me to make value judgements about other people’s beliefs.
I am slowly and gradually losing a few chips off my stone wall faith in religious freedom.

2 Weeks ago
chiarizio
 

I am slowly and gradually losing a few chips off my stone wall faith in religious freedom.

Well sometimes "religious freedom" ends up meaning the ability to freely have an edge over other people. I do think people should be able to practice their religions within reason, but not to the extent that church isn't separated from state, sensible things or other people's freedoms get outlawed on religious grounds, ect. I do think people should be free to practice their religions within reasons, but society should of course also be secular. Religion shouldn't be grounds for getting away with things anyone else wouldn't be able to ect. However, when that extends to religion being outlawed people go underground or get more secretive about it and imo it doesn't really root out the base problems anyway. It's ultimately counterproductive I think, I think it's usually better to get people to see their religion in a better light.

1 Week ago
Grey Echelon

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