"What is REAL ?" asked the rabbit one day..." ('The Velveteen Rabbit' by Marjorie Williams - 1922)
http://www.velveteenprinciples.com/velv ... /index.htm

I do not ask this question mischievously. It is a serious question - asked after I was abruptly woken up this morning from a very vivid dream.

There are some here who would say the picture images and accompanying thoughts & emotions, within that dream, were an illusion of reality - an hallucination, a delusion etc etc.

Maybe so to them - but it was 'real' to me.

So, with previous discussions on Dawkins 'delusions', Bering's 'illusions', Hypnotism (altered states of consciousness), Two Orders of Reality, etc, etc, I ask the question :

WHAT IS 'REAL' ?

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So Heather, for you is "reality" ONLY that which can be "observed" by the senses (ie if you can't touch it, see it, smell it, hear it or taste it, it's not reality) ? 

Actually, in my opinion, reality exists independent of the senses.  We can begin to verify some aspects of reality in those things that we can mutually observe, but it certainly doesn't end there, I suspect; at least we cannot prove that it ends there.  On the other hand, that which can only perceived by one is really only part of the subjective reality of that person's stream of consciousness, not objective reality.

Ummmmm..... "reality exists independent of

the senses".

 

Now THAT is an interesting idea Heather -

could you elaborate ?

 

That seems to me a form of philosophical

"Realism" (eg Moral Realism) ?

I'm just saying that the universe exists whether or not we observe it.  All in all, our existence is insignificant - there is a lot more going on in the universe than we will ever have a chance to know about.
"I'm just saying that the universe exists 
whether or not we observe it"

That's already saying quite a lot Heather.
So doone, is the "WE" (eg the you who has just used his mind to write this) also a reality like that one 'out there' in the universe ?
"Common-sense suggests at least "two orders of reality" (CEM Joad), so for Richard Dawkins to posit only one 'Science-based' reality, to explain what is real, suggests not least a lack of balance on his part" - Richard W. Symonds
(On seeing "What's real?" by Richard Dawkins - Front Page, Eureka Magazine, The Times, September 2011)

Bill, as I see it, you are asking me to buy the idea that, when I dream, I am experiencing an illusion (a dream) while at the same time living a created illusion of the objective world in my own mind,

 

Sorry, don't buy it.  

you have a better explanation?
Yes Bill - reality is both subjective (our inner universe)(inner space) and objective (the outer universe)(outer space)
There is an important point being missed here. When you are dreaming, you are experiencing the thing much as you do in waking life. Only your sensory input is detached by the process of sleeping and dreaming and what you perceive as external stimulus is actually being created in your own brain, in much the same way as a schizophrenic hears voices. Dreaming appears to be an evolutionary adaptation to allow one to play out troubling scenarios in a safe environment.

Maybe, maybe not Bill -it can't be proven either way - it's just a conjecture (theory/hypothesis) on your part.

 

My theory of dreams is that it is the mind's equivalent of bladder & bowel waste product - or the computer equivalent of 'clearing out the system of unwanted clutter' which slows everything up.

 

God knows. 

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