Our mind holds only a simulation of reality


To be able to grasp full reality is to take in and interpret the entirety of the universe/ reality with all its complexity in our minds. Our sensory apparatus and the capacity of our brains are literally incapable such task. Thus, it only ever holds a low resolution version of reality and works off of that.

From another angle, we always see the world through a frame to avoid the frame problem. Full reality, however, is combinatorially explosive. Thus, we can never comprehend it as we can never experience anything without a frame.

Related To: Modelling Reality MOC
Created On: 2020-08-09 from D - Common Reality
Last Updated On: 2020-08-09

Linked References

Common truth is found through the collective

Things like science is established on the basis of collective judgement and belief.

“Common” is used in the sense of common reality. If everyone agrees that something is true, regardless of its ‘cosmic’ truth or fullness of reality, it becomes the truth for us.

Reason doesn’t help us reach undeniable ‘truths’, but gives our most reliable method for having the largest amount of people reach the same conclusions.

What we deem real often has to be checked with disconnected others as evidence of our own version.

See also/ References:

  • From Anil Seth’s Ted Talk

    We’re all hallucinating all the time, including right now. It’s just that when we agree about our hallucinations, we call that reality.

  • Our mind holds only a simulation of reality

Related To: Rational Reasoning vs Emotions and Intuitions MOC
Created On: 2020-09-03 from B - The Righteous Mind
Last Updated On: 2020-09-06

Modelling Reality

Reality Proper

  • D - Full Reality

  • D - Common Reality

  • D - Accidental vs Absolute Reality

  • D - Realness


  • D - Simulation

  • E - When a simulation reaches the complexity of that which it’s simulating, it transcends onto the same plane of existence

  • E - Simulations are lower resolution gestural reproductions of reality

  • E - Our mind holds only a simulation of reality

  • E - The computational medium is simulation


  • Truth MOC


  • E - Given the same input, context changes the output

  • E - Everything stands in relation to everything else

  • E - Physical units are residues of human interaction

  • E - Common truth is found through the collective

Full Models

  • SPIO Model MOC
Common Reality

Common reality is the one in which most of humans operate in daily.

This is not full reality as it will never be conceivable to us because of it’s complexity. This is why our minds hold only a simulation of reality.

Related To: Modelling Reality MOC
Created On: 2020-08-09 from A - Personal Dynamic Medium
Last Updated On: 2020-08-09


Simulations are lower resolution recreations of a reality that either already exists or hasn’t been discovered yet. When a simulation reaches the complexity of what it’s simulating, it’s no longer a simulation as it has transcended onto the same plane of existence.

Not Yet Discovered

A reality that ‘hasn’t been discovered yet’ means, for example, the sound of a trumpet and piano combined. This fused instrument has not being created yet, but you could engineer the sound waves with software to simulate it.

Reaching Common Reality

The reality discussed here can only exist in common reality as our minds are only capable of recreating a lower resolution of full reality. If our simulation reaches common reality, we will deem it to be consistent with full reality.

What Makes it Real?

What makes something ‘real’ and no longer a simulation? I suggested that it’s when the simulation reaches the same level of complexity as what it’s trying to simulate (the target). But what if it’s not at the same level of complexity, but it’s behaviour is indistinguishable from the simulation target?

Just because it’s artificially created, does it make it ‘less real’? If we can no longer tell AI robots apart from humans, what stops us from deeming it to be as ‘real’ as us?

If everyone was in VR and there was no difference between VR and common reality (like some Matrix situation), how might we perceive complexity and its role here?

This question ultimately comes down to the opposite of simulation - ‘reality’.

  • What do we perceive to ultimately be ‘real’ and the truth?

Related To: Modelling Reality MOC
Created On: 2020-08-09 from A - Personal Dynamic Medium
Last Updated On: 2020-08-09

Truth is ungraspable

The really real and the truest truth is ungraspable by human beings. Our minds are limited, holding but a simulation of reality, capable of only producing low-res thoughts and concepts.

It makes sense that the most profound experiences (e.g psychedelic, spiritual etc) are totally ineffable.

See also/ References:

"There is no reason to expect the reality of immeasurable and unbounded life to satisfy your puny little thoughts." (Sawaki From Kōshō Uchiyama, Opening the Hand of Thought (OtHoT), chapter 6

If satori arises from any preconception of satori, that satori will not be reliable. True satori does not rely on concepts of satori, but comes from far beyond conceptualisation […] Know that satori is not an entity that exists. (Dogen From OtHoT, chapter 4

Life functions and the power of buddha is actualized, precisely at the point where we become completely From OtHoT, chapter 3

Related To: Truth MOC
Created On: 2020-10-13 from B - Opening the Hand of Thought
Last Updated On: 2020-10-13