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Is There Really One Reality?

Smacholdt's picture

 I found the essay, The World of Concrete Contents to be an interesting illustration of the idea that reality is relative. One good example of the relativity of human senses is that of the two people exposed to different external temperatures putting their hands into water that is the same temperature and not being able to tell if the water is “warm” or “cold.” Protagoras’s describes this phenomenon well; “the senses undergo transformation and alteration in accordance with one’s age and with other conditions of the body.” This ties into the idea that there is not absolute truth, and that everyone experiences his or her own reality because everyone’s body and mind is different. (“What a being will experience depends on its state.”) According to Sextus, “Man becomes the criterion of the existence of things.” This is true because the only way that humans have to experience the world is through their senses, which are fallible, and vary from person to person.

Another essay that I read was Gestalt Thinking and Buddhism. I did not enjoy this one as much because I was confused as to how the philosophies of these two thinkers related to the ecology movement. I was also slightly confused by some of the terms that the author used to describe the philosophers’ theories. (Anatmavada, Mahayana, svamarga, inochi, kuyo, etc.)



Smacholdt's picture

It makes sense that certain

It makes sense that certain can be "truths" that can be successfully argued by using scientific and mathematic proofs, but when it comes to human experiences, I would definitely argue that the truth is relative. Everyone experiences the same thing in slightly different ways.

Roy Nelson's picture

One reality?

I would say no... one can argue this one to death... some will say there is the mathematical/logical truths etc... these will be claimed as being the same all over the our multi-verse ;-) Godel put them to the sword most elegantly... I would agrue how do we KNOW... we can only EVER argue from our POV... as an experiment ask anyone to explain a simple thing like "time" to you... in this simple and most subtle thing we call "time" lays an infinitely complex labyrinth (note... I did not say maze)I think the we can only grasp our humanity... and use love (this is the one thing we have that we can share, for the most part postively) as our ultimate reality...


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