Mike Aparicio

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What is Reality?

The concept of Reality is profusely used in posts, replies, comments and arguments. But the fundamental and strongest meaning of Reality seems very confusing and subject to multiple interpretations.
Is "reality" something to do with the past? Is there any reality in the future?
Our human nature, evidently equipped with a collection of senses, seems to be designed to operate in a timeless environment, where there is no past or future.
We can only see, hear, smell, touch and taste IN THE PRESENT.
If we consider the intellect a 6th sense we can only think in the present too!
The present, but the actual present is a very narrow point between what is called past (actually memory) and future (actually dreams).
Or is it we can call "present" part of the past or even worse, a segment of the future?
People, mostly intellectuals have a very diluted sense of the Present. Some speak of the "present years"; others of the "present centuries", which seems to be a total aberration of what the Present actually is!
The Present is OUR Moment of Power. We can only act in the Present.
Or is it any other way?
According to most psychology views, a person is suffering from some mental dysfunction in proportion with his or her separation from the actual, the real Present.
Certainly we can do NOTHING in the past. The same is true in the future.
Of course we can study the past, we can imagine about it, we can accept many fantasies about the past but we can do it all NOW!
Yes, we can make plans, we can speculate about the future, we can even predict it but we do it all NOW!
All those appreciations of time are illusory as the only time we have is NOW. Our NOW is permanent, never changing but always different!
We can't trap it as if we do we are holding to the past and getting out of focus from the actual Reality.
Can it be different?
Could it be there is something more REAL than the subtle, fast moving, always staying, never delayed, never going ahead PRESENT?
I am really interested

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    Jul 26 2013: @ Mike.......Amen !!!
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    Jul 25 2013: For me....reality is knowing yourself as you really are. Then you know that you do not KNOW. But I believe that Absolute reality exists and I call it God.

    then you realize that you are not absolute
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      Jul 25 2013: I agree with you 101%, Helen.
      Be prepared for some nasty responses!
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        Jul 26 2013: Thank goodness I am able to disagree without being disagreeable. It seems reasonable to me that if you follow your belief to the end you encounter Absolute. In my book there has to be an end to beginnings. Something uncreated !! Thanks much.
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          Jul 26 2013: Helen: Avoiding getting into religious subjects, my studies in comparative religions, philosophy and theology strongly suggest the Absolute (Omnipresent) logically can be found in the Present (Real Time). It also means can be found everywhere.
          You are right on track!
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    Jul 23 2013: The past is past reality... As you also have past fiction...

    The present reality is our current cosmos.

    'reality is what remains after you eliminate all fantasy' someome once said.

    Our descriptions of reality are approximative models, and some of them are so good, that it's better to stick to them until you or others come with an even more refined version of it.
    The best ones have been provided through scientific investigation and observation and research and critical thinking.

    as for time: you can consider it as the arrow of thermodynamics we happen to follow. This description seems to fit reality quite well... Time is a part of reality... however you like to describe it.
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      Jul 24 2013: Man! That is the kind of "flexibility" I mentioned at the topic start post.
      The past is not "past reality".
      It is just past memories or records.
      Reality cannot be the past or the future.
      There are no things "in the past or the future".
      The whole universe of universes is full of stuff being or existing NOW!
      And not when I just said NOW! it is past memories already.

      Except if we take the B-Theory of time, where other physicists say ALL events exist permanently, including past, present and future.

      One notice: No one can be absolutely right or capable of accusing any other of being wrong, about ideas on time.
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      Jul 25 2013: All those you describe are relative realities, not an absolute one.
      Does your opinion imply there is not an actual fundamental reality, from the human standpoint?
      I do think there is one.
      When people is being asked to concentrate into something, like watching a series of events or performing a certain analysis, the concentration takes place in RealTime.
      The time gap where we can individually concentrate and deepen our focus is the Present or an ultimate reality.
      Paradoxically, it is different for each individual but it is the same in essence. It is the gap between past and future.
      If a human on Earth and an alien in Tralfalmidor are focusing to the Present Instant they are sharing the Reality of Time, no matter the perceptions are totally different, the act is the same.
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        Jul 26 2013: The assumption of time is a rather good one, as it gives a really coherent model of the cosmos/fundamental reality.

        I think you focus on how we humans experience the present (you refer to memories and records). I would not assume that our experience of the present is sufficient to build a sound theory.
        It strikes me as odd that you ask a question while you seem to have your own answer already very fixed.

        Note: one can show one is wrong (this is called falsification cfr Popper). Showing one is right is the hard part. This is due to inductive reasoning (cfr Jayness).
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          Jul 26 2013: Christophe:

          We can make questions although we might have already an answer. I don't see anything "odd" in it. As I explained before, I issued the question to grab as many different ideas as possible to establish a comparison in concepts.
          If I have extended my point of view is to stimulate others contradict, as you are doing, so the conversation gets richer with more ideas.
          When you say "The assumption of time is a rather good one", which assumption of time are you referring to?
          Mc Taggart, Einstein, Hawkins, A-series, B-Series...?
          The Human Present is the one you think I am focusing on, but not exactly. I am pointing at the True Present which would be the same with or without humans.
          With or without clocks; with or without observers.
          The main flaw in the Time Flow Theory is the supposed "time speed" cannot be figured out.
          How fast actually time flows? (If it flows?)
          Einstein's Relativity proposes a static time-space plane, where events occur along the plane in more than one dimension. Weird but with it's own mathematics.

          I think I am free from Popper's and Jayness as I am not trying to be right or wrong.

          P.S. I see you are a TEDx organizer! Great! We at Galileo University in Guatemala have also done something within the program and TEDx participation! (I think....)
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        Jul 27 2013: Thanks for the clarification Mike,

        I see time probably according to Einstein, but I'm no physicist and don't know the equations nor how they operate.
        I see time as a dimension, such as the spatial dimensions. There might be more time dimensions, but there is no experimental data that underpins such idea.

        I sometimes compare time as a 'falling to the future', metaphorically such as gravity pulls us.
        And if nothing were to move (i.e. all particles and probabilities stay the same), then there would be no time.

        As we see it, through experiment, we uncovered the idea of entropy (where I roughly follow the
        Boltzmann's interpretation) and see that entropy and time seem to have a relationship.
        If you look at Wolfram states when he talks about computation, I think he also needs change and a time axis that implies the unfolding of the algorithm.
        This is for me sufficient to accept there is an "arrow of time" (from past to present) that we experience on our scale (even if it might be different on a sub-atomic level)

        If you indicate points on the time line (or plane, or (n)-space depending on your assumptions), and compare them to the "current point", you can measure the distance and compare.
        Being able to measuring time, indicates it exists, and thus I see the past (where the now has passed and the that state of the universe was then) something that was real (compared to fantasies that were not present in that state then). Same goes for the future: which will be the case then, will be real, and the other things will be fantasy.

        Whether we can assume a perspective where you can see it all, or "remains" somewhere... in imagination we can, but I don't know if that's real.
        If you say that there is 'only now', then it is probably something that is relative, as Einstein showed.
        I imagine that kind of 'now' as a snapshot (space- curved) and such snapshots are different for each position you take in that space-time)
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          Jul 27 2013: Very nice and illustrative Christophe!
          Very good interpretation of Einstein's concepts. Might it be you are adapting some of the concepts to your particular view, but that is good for the purpose of this conversation.
          Perhaps you forget mathematical demonstrations are valid when there is no possibility of doing experimental research.
          Another lateral conception, maybe not accurate is the notion of "measuring time". It seems so far, there is no real way to measure it. What we do is to measure some kind of motion. Plain displacement with mechanical clocks, electronic flow while charging capacitors in electronic clocks, particle emission (motion anyway) in atomic clocks, shadow motion in clepsydras (solar clock), sand motion in sand clocks, etc. Hence, what we measure is motion: How many turns the clock hands did, how intense is the charging current in a capacitor, etc.
          Time is not really measured.
          Thermodynamics entropy changes could simply be different states at a given time-space plane and no "time motion".
          When you say "the now passes" I would think it twice... Does the NOW really pass? Try to sit down, calmly, emptying the mind from ideas and watch. does the NOW pass? To me it looks permanent, single, unmovable but paradoxically ever changing but not "passing".
          We cannot escape from the NOW except with delusions with the past or future, but we escape only mentally. There is no way we can escape from it physically. It seems to me we are permanently (as long as living) in the HERE and NOW.

          This is really interesting and it is very pleasurable to converse with you!
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        Jul 27 2013: - I don't know exactly how Einstein thought about time, but I think he and I might have differed in opinion if we lived in the same "now" -

        I agree that as a human, I cannot but experience something that is "now"-like (though there is a severe problem when you realize that our brains do have some processing delay that are influenced by your attention: http://www.jaimeoliver.pe/courses/ci/pdf/levitin-1999.pdf for example).

        The speed (distance over time) of your neurons (especially synapses) give a problem. Our brain tries to solve it by making projections, so we'll get adjusted for the near future (i.e. an illusion) by the time we realize it. (This also has been shown in a number of experiments).

        As I stated: you can see time as an amount of change (relative to other things that change slower. Change (displacement of clocks, photons, atom decay) is coupled to time and time cannot exist if there is no change. Change happens (this text wasn't here before your last post). whether this is continuous or discrete: I experience it as continuous, but maybe, as the Planck-constant, there might be a finite minimal amount of time.

        As a human, I cannot but say: yes, my experience is what I call the 'now', and only there lies my experience. The recorded changes from past experiences give me the idea that there is something we call a time-line, and that seems to be a really good way to interpret the world on our level (given our size, expected lifespan and sensory limits).

        This conversation does stretch my thinking a great deal.
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          Jul 28 2013: Christophe:
          I just read again the Jaime Oliver article you linked, and It is interesting to know I worked together with InStep Systems in Canada to develop a Neural Analysis System to meassure differences in response to stimuli!

          Although interesting it really has not a deep relation to this thread, because "speed of reaction" is not really transcendental to discuss what is Reality!

          I said before, Actual Reality has to be the same with or without an observer or human perception of any kind.
          Subjective Reality is part of the personal ideas about reality but not common features, as the true Reality should have.
          I hope you continue to exchange your good ideas on this thread!

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        Jul 29 2013: Mike,

        I mentioned it because we humans have temporal processing. But indeed, I think that at the time of the dinosaurs, there was also the reality, so we can try thinking without an observer (while still using observed evidence).

        So what would you call history? Something that once was reality?
        If you then place this "once reality" on an axis (to simplify a linear one dimensional Euclidean one, but the same goes for other versions), then you have things that were further away. If we project that line to things to come, then we have our axis that we call "time"

        If you assume there is only the now, and the rest is no longer existing or not existing yet (only when the now slides by). Wouldn't time be a very useful concept to describe our cosmos?

        So if we say "only the now is real, all the rest isn't real", then we still need to differentiate between past and future and what was real at that time and could be real at that future.
        In this sense, I think I can agree, though I would suggest we coin some new words in order to express these things: pre-reality and post-reality for example.
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    Jul 22 2013: Change is reality.

    Every moment, every second the world is changing.
    In a moment furure arrives and become present and present becomes past.

    Past is only in thoughts, pictures and history books.

    Present is changing every second and becoming past.

    Future no body has seen and is yet to arrive.

    Change is the constant feature which nobody living or non living can escape.
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      Jul 23 2013: I like your description Adesh!

      It helps us realize what I said before: The Present, no matter how elusive, is our ONLY MOMENT OF POWER.
      Our Present Reality, which by deduction is very short and fugitive can be expanded by making each of those instants fruitful and connected.
      I will talk in general about this ideas later.
      Thanks for your contribution!
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        Jul 24 2013: Live in the moment.

        This moment is real.

        which by deduction is very short and fugitive can be expanded by making each of those instants fruitful and connected. Thanks Mike.
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    Jul 22 2013: Change is reality
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      Jul 22 2013: Adesh:
      Your statement is too short to contribute effectively to the conversation.
      I can imagine a "changeless" reality, or a situation where NO CHANGE would be the real fact.
      My original question has to do about Reality in relation with the concepts of Past, Present and Future.
      Could you elaborate on this?
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        Jul 23 2013: Change is the constant feature which nobody living or non living can escape.

        Nobody can revisit past,

        Nobody can hold on to present,

        Nobody can see future.

        But every one has to go through the change.
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        Jul 23 2013: I am a miser Mike

        I always believed in consolidating my thoughts in few words.
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    Jul 22 2013: The more attention you pay to the small details the more reality you will notice perhaps. If you do not see it does it exist?
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      Jul 22 2013: Good point Joshua!
      I believe we often create and nurture our own reality based on what we choose to see, hear, experience, accept and focus on. So, it makes sense to me that if we deny the existence of something it is not part of our "reality".

      Welcome to TED conversations:>)
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        Jul 24 2013: Collen!
        Our "own reality" is a fabrication.
        True Reality should be something common to ALL.
        Being in the Past or Future, as many people do under the influence of their psychological traumas or delusions is "personal"
        What is common to all?....
        The Present. No matter how "fast" it moves according to some speculators it is always on reach.
        It is the Moment. The Actual Moment. You are having it NOW. Me too. The whole Universe is as well.
        We can't escape from it. We live in it and if we ARE dead, we are presently dead. (if we could talk)
        Think it over.
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          Jul 24 2013: What am I to think over Mike?

          Our own reality is a fabrication? Yes....I said that in my previous comment....."we often create and nurture our own reality..."

          I do not agree that "true reality should be something common to ALL"

          We, as individuals are different....we perceive things differently, often based on information we have been given. Why do you think/feel "true reality should be...common to ALL"? That does not seem logical to me.

          I have no desire to "escape" from "the actual moment"
          What the heck are you talking about???

          You say...." if we ARE dead, we are presently dead"......???
          Yes...I agree!
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        Jul 24 2013: I understand you say then There is no common reality.
        (phrase was enclosed in quotes, removed by the Host suggestion)

        What then if ALL of us, I mean ALL HUMANS, would disappear, or "vanish" as a good folk says here?
        What remains, without our abstractions of reality should be the actual Reality...
        It was COMMON while we are not "vanished".
        If we "vanish" the common Reality is holding... Permanently and changing according to other forces.

        I didn't say Colleen is trying to escape from the actual moment? at all!
        Where did you read that?
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          Jul 24 2013: Mike,
          Please DO NOT put words in quotes, that I did not say. You have done that before, and it does not adequately support your argument.

          I DID NOT write.....there is no common reality.
          I wrote..."I do not agree that true reality should be something common to ALL"

          You are twisting my words again, and I do not appreciate it at ALL!!!

          You are absolutely right Mike...
          If ALL humans disappear, or vanish, then we might have a "common reality".

          You wrote..."We can't escape from it. We live in it and if we ARE dead, we are presently dead. (if we could talk)"

          Who is the "we" you refer to?
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        Jul 25 2013: Well... I can see you are very sensitive to quote marks! Sorry about the awful behavior from my part!

        Interpreting is not "twisting". Does it mean you don't accept me to interpret your words?

        Let's remove the quote and substitute it for a simpler -You mean then-

        That is what can be derived from you assertion or what is called an interpretation of your words.

        You said: " Why do you think/feel "true reality should be...common to ALL"? That does not seem logical to me."
        You find it illogical! I would try to explain my view: Without the personal aspects of perception or abstraction what remains should be COMMON to all. Being COMMON it would be a common reality for all. Maybe it is a fallacy. I don't know.

        And by "we" I just mean "we all earthlings". It is a means to say if "someone" is alive is alive PRESENTLY and if someone is dead is also PRESENTLY dead.
        "We" WERE alive before and it is recorded as memory or data, but we are not living in the past. We are living NOW! We will eventually die but we are not dead in the Future. We cannot be in either place.
        Isn't it: To be or not to be... That is the question....?
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          Jul 25 2013: I am not sensitive to quote marks. I am aware of misrepresentation and do not accept it.
          My words are clear....no need to try to interpret them Mike.

          I do not agree that "what remains should be COMMON to all". You are presuming that what you think/feel is "common to all", and that is not reasonable.

          You cannot speak for all "earthlings", and there is no reason to believe that you can.

          I agree...."if "someone" is alive is alive PRESENTLY and if someone is dead is also PRESENTLY dead".

          What is your point with this statement?

          I totally agree that we are living NOW. I have not expressed anything different.
          Yes, I agree...."to be or not to be....that is the question".

          We don't need to speak in riddles to know thyself, where we are at present, or where we have been.
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          Jul 25 2013: You can go back to your post, Mike, and edit out the quotation marks. This would make it clear to any reader that you are not quoting something Colleen actually said (which is how quotes are usually used) but only stating in different words what you understood her to be claiming.
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        Jul 25 2013: Somehow Colleen, you are interpreting my words because I don't feel you are getting exactly the meaning of what I say, which seems to be the case when I read yours.
        My poor understanding tells me language is incomplete and we MUST try to interpret in order to understand.
        If we are subject to misinterpretation it is not a matter of being upset but to find new ways to express to avoid the wrong interpretation from others.

        Can we claim the "right to be correctly interpreted"? I think the Christian teachings tell us to "say nothing" when we don't want to be misinterpreted.

        If I tell you, today a hen came into my patio and ate lots of buds from my wife's garden...

        Do you grasp which color the hen was? Were there any chicken after her? Did they also ate the buds? Were the buds from roses or broccoli?

        Do I have a fence to stop chicken from getting into it?

        And so on an on!

        If a dear person tells someone, for instance: "Why are you wearing that color?"
        The person will have to interpret the question and respond things like: "Do you think it does not fit me? or... Is it so ugly? or... "Because it is your favorite color!"
        Aren't those interpretations of the actual question?

        So words do not convey a solid meaning and we are constantly subjects to interpretation.
        Unless we don't want someone to respond with his or her impressions on our words.
        Then we MUST state it!


        You say: "I agree...."if "someone" is alive is alive PRESENTLY and if someone is dead is also PRESENTLY dead".

        What is your point with this statement?"

        I respond: Please... Interpret it!
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          Jul 25 2013: I agree with you Mike, that it is wise to "say nothing" when we don't want to be misinterpreted"

          With that said...I am finished with this conversation.

          Nice try Fritzie:>)
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        Jul 25 2013: Oh! Colleen!
        You see how you interpreted my last post?

        Anyway I enjoyed your participation and hope in the "future" we engage in a mutual misinterpretation!
        Nice try Fritzie!
        Quotes removed but participant too! lol!
  • Aug 21 2013: Is the present only made up of what we call the present or is it made up of more? Someone already said that this topic reminded them of the race between Achilles and the hare/tortoise, broken down to smaller and smaller segments. Maybe that is kind of what it is, but we interpolate over them. Well, think about the act of reading, it must take place over time. We don't sound out words any more, once we can read proficiently, but we do only grasp one word at a time. We hold the gist of what we are reading as we read, and then we add parts we expect to be there. When we add those parts we test to see if we are right by keeping going and seeing if our additions work in the context, or if what we add did indeed appear. We glance over slight differences, but rethink over bigger ones. We ignore spelling or syntax errors as long as we can understand meaning.

    If you can consider it you will see that reality has a great bit of dependency upon our judgments. Our sense of right and wrong colors everything we perceive. Our knowledge of good and evil determines our reality, both for the individual and for the masses. Reading is not the only activity in which we judge. All of life is judgment. There is real truth in the statement, "Judge not lest ye be judged."
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      Aug 21 2013: OK Micah!

      You are pointing to another view of Reality. It makes sense although it escapes certain considerations I made on the subject.

      It is true, when we read we go "over time" piling letters into words, extracting meanings, etc.

      But the subject here is not exactly time,as I think time does not really exist. I am trying to find a timeless Reality which to me is the pure instant, where only one event occurs, constantly and eternally.
      If we take a simple second of "time" (which is really the distance covered by a moving needle in a watch) we can get deeper and deeper into that split instant from seconds, down to milliseconds, microseconds, nanoseconds, possibly in and endless division of "time".
      What I define as actual Reality is that split fraction, probably indivisible, but we are still needing to clearly define it.
      Curiously, our human consciousness dwells in IT. We cannot exist out of it. It is that nanosecond but divided into a zillion of smaller parts! No machine can really graphic it but we are constantly perceiving it, unless, we are immersed in DAILY DREAMS, which is the most common and natural state of man.
      • Aug 21 2013: I think you are referring to something scalar. I tend to think more relatively.
      • Aug 21 2013: The one thing that is outside of time, any concept of it, is the bend in space-time over which energy moves. The bend which defines gravity. The bend which is intrinsic to the atom. But what is bent in order to provide it, strings, energy, some aether, consciousness, nothing? Whatever it is the whole universe is made of it. The way you want to see it is scalar, I perceive, but my intuition says not to separate it from everything else. The atom is a system, one which encompasses the distance of the universe. We like to leave the atom at the shells, but it goes beyond that, as evidenced by gravity.

        If you want to find peace and quiet, that stillness, look there, in the kind of loop only the acceleration of a super nova can produce, or the furnace of a star, or the big bang. Those are the places where something comes from nothing. There, or in our thoughts.
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    Aug 17 2013: Hello Mike,
    If you can accept we are spirit beings of consciousness, then reality is what we can currently perceive, what we are currently aware of. Realities are probably going on at other levels and in other dimensions, but if we are not able to experience them, then for us they do not exist - like a fish unaware of dry land.
    Of course you can argue that dry land is part of the bigger realty in which a fish lives, and the fish may only become aware of it if (for example) it lives in a lake that suddenly dries up; the fish will then expand its consciousness to accept that reality includes dry land as well as water. (Of course the fish may only realize this in its last gasps for breath before it dies).

    Humans who report back from near-death experiences often say they have become aware of new-to-them realities (such as time standing still) which enable and inspire them to live differently afterwards as they then live in a 'bigger' reality, even though the experience of "time standing still whilst having a whole life review" is then in the past, ie their level of conscious awareness has been expanded.
    Much more everyday things (such as prayer & meditation, reaching out to others in compassion, holding down a job, tending a garden, patiently knitting a jumper, etc - all of life is an opportunity to expand our reality, to expand what we are consciously aware of in terms of "what's going on" around us.
    Our minds also have several faculties (intellect, imagination, instinct, intuition, etc) and the more these are developed, the more conscious we will become of a bigger reality going on around us.

    Ultimately the theologians would tell us that God = Reality, since nothing can exist outside of God. But to consciously experience that level of reality requires us to integrate all the global dualities on planet earth - a task I believe is our ultimate goal but is many, many lifetimes away into the future now.
  • Jul 30 2013: Hello Mike. I love your sentence "Our NOW is permanent, never changing but always different!" . Yes, we live in the present right now. But what makes me think of deeply is that time only goes forward not backward. I mean, we can memory and make pictures of the past but they are just stacks of memories. It is so great for ordinary people to get lesson from the past. In fact, the moment we are living is now. So we are too busy only to focus on current situation:)
    The future is kind of goal setting which makes human lives more flourish.
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      Jul 30 2013: Thank you Sophia!

      Your view on the subject is very sensible and of a very human nature.
      As long as we realize the NOW is the only Moment of Power, we can play with our particular memories of the past or future speculations and plans, but it is our responsibility to be focused in the Present to be able to do things right.
      Your view is quite a good view of Reality!
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    Jul 28 2013: Folks in this conversation:

    I am sorry to notice many comments were deleted by his author, under the nickname John S.!

    In a sense it is a really bad action against my OP. I have treated John S. with courtesy and responded to his insisting comments with points of view only. In an actual conversation it is not possible to "erase or vanish" what we said to the participants. I cannot imagine how could we have a talk without remembering or knowing what the other parts said.

    I am going to suggest the System Manager to protect conversations against deletion, when a post has been answered properly. If that is not done, the conversation gets distorted and difficult to follow which is a lack of courtesy to other participants and a demonstration of bad manners.

    I am not going to delete my responses, because they contain interesting points of view to preserve as much as possible the integrity of this thread!

    Too bad John S.!!
    • Jul 30 2013: I agree. I feel a little loss every dang time I see that - especially when there are so many! Certainly there was something there to learn - if it was a mistake, then at least to see someone say "you're getting me all wrong," or an apology, is nice.
      People are so serious.
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        Jul 30 2013: Yes Steve!
        Some folks cannot understand Human diversity of thoughts and creeds.

        No one is holding the Absolute Truth and this conversation was open to ask for ideas and opinions and to express mine too.
        It is very delightful to exchange until a radical mind pops in. Then it can become funny if you have a sense of humor or plainly annoying when it is too much!
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      Jul 31 2013: Mike, on very rare occasions, someone violates the terms of use to a degree that causes TED administrators to delete an account. Even if such over-the-top behaviors did not happen in your thread, they may have happened in another thread.

      The administrators work hard to promote productive discourse and freeze or eliminate a participant very seldom and only after working with the party privately. I think I have seen this happen only three times, perhaps, since I have been here. Sometimes the offender is here using multiple pseudonyms, so it can look like lots of people disappear simultaneously when it is, in fact, one person.
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        Jul 31 2013: I understand.
        Thanks again Fritzie!
  • Jul 28 2013: I consider the human vomeronasal organ to be 6th sensory organ.
    Recent scientific studies, [Dean Radin], have found that our bodies are reacting to effects somewhere within a third of a second before before an event is decided by a computer; so that may be our 7th-sense.
    "...the only time we have is NOW." That's a good point; even with all my combined I.Q. points I've never once asked "what time was it 5-minutes ago?" (But, the term "present" reminds me slightly of Zeno's paradoxical Achilles/turtle race; where an infinite amount of demarcations are implied, but never ever actually computed by the math/philosophers.)
    Interesting you didn't delve into physical reality as well! Physical reality apparently has 3 dimensions, why can't time {past, present, future}? (Also interesting that in any point in space _shares_ those three dimensions; so do separate dimensions exist, or is reality more holographic?)

    Someone recently asked me: "Do thoughts change reality?" (Yes, I think he meant it that way.) It's an interesting question, and I'd watch to make my thoughts a lot more positive, I think, if I thought that were a looming possibility.

    If something happedned in the past, "a tree falls;" that becomes part of the present reality, as now you have to step over the tree, in a layering or weaving of causes. It's not "just past memories or records."

    Joshua Bowles says "If you do not see it does it exist?"
    Colleen Steen replies "...we choose to see, hear, experience, accept and focus on."
    I think we can create a better reality this way: we can choose to "accept and focus on," but if we make others angry & then ignore them, we may just end-up with an arrow in the back.

    And all this talk of "objective reality," is it just a way of meting-out our adopted distrust/devaluing of another's self-centrism? Must we have our way at all cost?
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      Jul 28 2013: Hi Steve!
      Thanks for coming in!
      I could not understand the part where you say "our bodies are reacting to effects somewhere within a third of a second before before an event is decided by a computer". which are the events "decided" by the computer?

      I also have some ideas on thoughts changing reality but I might open a new conversation on the subject.

      To my view, when you say "If something happedned in the past, "a tree falls;" that becomes part of the present reality" it makes sense to me!

      The tree fall happened in the present, at that moment. While no other event moves the tree, the state of the event is preserved along the present. Why would it change? It would only if another Present event would move the tree. It is like the last tree event, not happening anymore, "extends" itself and becomes a permanent "present" until a new event changes it.

      I hope no one is trying to "distrust"/devalue the comment makers here!

      You a e surely not, me neither!
      • Aug 1 2013: The event 'decided' by the computer was a picture; either a picture of something innocuous, or a picture of something really unsightly. The computer made the decision, to which a human would react; maybe it was within a tenth-of-a-second-before - probably. I'm having trouble finding the initial sourcebook, by Dean Radin.

        "The tree fall happened in the present, at that moment." Good point. (Here I thought I had something worth embossing!)

        To "distrust"/devalue is, maybe subtle, part of our society, how we use our machines, how we relate to our environment - and ultimately yourself.
        (I have my distrusts/devaluations, but I'm trying to learn.)
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    Jul 25 2013: As I have been placed in doubt by some comments regarding the concept of RealTime, where these comments argued RealTime is just a graphics term, here I publish some references to other science realms, where the concept is widely used, and not only in Computer Sciences or Graphics.

    Below some interesting books on the subject

    RealTime Physics-Electric Circuits
    by David R. Sokoloff, Priscilla Laws and Ron Thornton
    Includes experiments exploring current and voltage in simple DC circuits, Ohm’s and Kirchhoff’s laws, capacitors and RC circuits, inductors, and simple AC circuits.
    Available from Wiley Publishing »

    RealTime Physics-Mechanics
    by David R. Sokoloff, Ron Thornton and Priscilla Laws
    Includes experiments exploring kinematics, Newton’s laws of motion, passive forces, gravitational forces, impulse, momentum, collisions, energy, and projectiles.
    Available from Wiley Publishing »

    RealTime Physics-Heat and Thermodynamics
    By David R. Sokoloff, Ron Thornton and Priscilla Laws
    Includes labs exploring thermal equilibrium, thermal energy flow, specific heat capacity, changes of phase, gas laws, and heat engines.
    Available from Wiley Publishing »
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        Jul 25 2013: Oh My....
        It would be good to read the books, no?
        After all, Real Time Physics must have something to do with physics.. Or are the authors nuts?
        But I NEVER said it is a theory. Or worse "my" theory!
        I used the term the same way. To say. The Ultimate NOW!!!!!!
        The INSTANT.... Real-Time!
        Real time is NOT a theory is a fact. IT points to the split moment between past and future.
        Live video is Real Time video.
        Live Action is Real Time Action.
        History is NOT Real Time.
        Science fiction is NOT Real Time.
        The exact position of your watch seconds hand is "almost" Real Time (but not exactly)
        The thing you say "moves" and which I say it does not, is Real Time.

        Scientist do not uniformly agree. You know that. We disagree, I accept that. Do we have to keep turning the loop forever?

        My post was to help readers see there is a disagreement and proof for both ways of thinking, so they can make their own views, and if possible, explain them here.

        Is that really so hard to understand?
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    Jul 25 2013: Mike, If we take one event and follow the reality we may see how the reality changes from person to person.

    The event is a car wreck. Man and wife. Man killed. Wife injured.

    Police arrive: Reality = traffic control, crowd control, investigation, emergency actions as necessary, supervisory notification. Death notification, lots of paperwork.

    Fire arrives: Assessment, safety evaluation, extraction, suppression if necessary, life saving steps if required, securing the scene, clean up, etc Lots of paperwork.

    Ambulance arrives: Assists fire upon request for patient safety and concerns, assesses vitals, notifies hospital, secures and transports, stabilizes patient, transfers patient to hospital care. Lots of paperwork.

    Hospital: Emergency room actions, notifications, continuing care involving many departments and personnel. Loads of paperwork.

    Insurance investigator: Evaluation and reports

    Lawyer: Evaluation and reports

    Morgue: Body recovered, prep, service, burial, etc ...

    From this one event there are many realities .... all are real ... all are occurring in the present .. all are both the same and different ... the event is the same and the actions / responses are different.

    I wish you well. Bob.
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      Jul 25 2013: Robert you are EXACTLY touching the spirit of my original post.
      You are gluing together a series of events as if they were one single event.
      All you narrated is a very LONG list of individual events which were in turn REAL at the moment but immediately became past events.
      They are not occurring in the present at all. They happened one AFTER the other, becoming past instantly!
      If the dramatic scene you just wrote (You could write movie scripts, by the way) was filmed, you would see in the film strip every event would have its own set of frames. The film would tell us clearly the events DID NOT HAPPEN at the same time.
      So they individually happened in Present Time but once a new event of the series you narrate occured, the previous events became past.
      That is undeniable.
      And I wish you even better!
      • Aug 21 2013: I find this subject very interesting, and the way the topic is being discussed here revealing. What it points out is the effect that now has upon tomorrow, by changing the way energy (in a universe that consists of only energy) moves over time. If the atom is merely the place where an energy must appreciate other energies moving within its sphere over time, then today is formed of yesterday, but also of the nature of the appreciations.

        Whether the appreciations, beyond changes of state in the presence of more or less energy per some unit used to measure it over time (over mass times the speed of light squared), is possible to disrupt or not is a question. And can the flow of energy be manipulated?

        The place of appreciation, though, the location in space-time would be determined by the way that energy moves over time, like how stocks cluster to an average in a large enough group or index, defining outliers, and changed by events that take place outside of the world of the chart (only our 'chart' leads somewhere in space-time). Space-time, it seems, bends. It is bent around the atom, thus energy moving over time always converges upon the atom. The position of the atom is reliant upon how the atom reconciles all of the converging energies at any one period of relationship.

        And so it can be explained in one esoteric way. There are others. Nice thread!
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          Aug 21 2013: Hey Micah!
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          Aug 21 2013: Hey Micah!

          Your comment is quite advanced for the general reader!
          I can agree with "the effect NOW has upon TOMORROW"!

          I also like you esoteric explanation about. "There are others" 1

          I really would love you write again with a more readable explanation of your great ideas!
  • Jul 24 2013: I guess the closest humans can come right now is to simply say, "Reality is a word."
    That's about it. All we know about it keeps changing in drastic ways and sometimes it seems
    they all are valid or were valid at one time.
    How can it be one thing, even if it is what one thinks or believes, or experiences it to be,
    at or in any given moment, when in reality it may be something completely different, and
    usually is?
    A steel beam is actually electrons speeding around at tremendous speeds, obeying certain
    laws only they can obey and if you hit it, you don't really hit the beam.
    You hit the force field produced by the electrons speeding around.
    Some will believe that and some will not.
    One will think it is real and reality and another will think it isn't reality and isn't real, that the
    quantum level is actually more real, but to the electrons, they have a different reality.

    I have seen things in real life that cannot exist unless one just happens to see them.
    They have been glimpses of completely different realities and no, I wasn't high or anything
    like that. I just happened to be walking along, looked up and found myself looking at or into a
    completely different reality that extended into infinities. Infinities because they were separate and
    extended into all directions at once, away and up. Each one was infinite and went on or into
    infinity and it was amazing.
    Experiencing when time stands still is experiencing a reality that time doesn't really exist.
    Time can only be measured backwards, never forward.
    Time never moves into the future. It can't and nothing else can. Not even death is in the future.
    Time seems to flow backwards, but we cannot go backwards.

    I guess what ever is happening at the moment is reality,
    but who knows whatever "what is happening" really is?
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      Jul 24 2013: Oh Yea!
      Random Chance!
      We think VERY similar! IF time would move forward then all events would have to go backwards, like when driving a car on the road. The road and trees move backwards!
      The whole idea of time "moving" is quite silly and primitive.
      I would say our consciousness MOVES through time, which is static, like an immense plane.
      And of course the nature of matter, 99.999999999% empty space accounts for a total illusory world, built by consciousness.
      The fugacity of the MOMENT, the Real Time or Present is our total limitation but at the same time our great Moment of Power where and when we can DO!
      So a Master of living is the one capable of enhancing those infinitesimal moments into a chain of fruitful events.
      That is the magic of living!
      Final: "What is happening" is not, because instantly becomes "what happened" and future events "have not happen yet".
      So.... Happening cannot be described, grabbed or stopped but the magic is we DO THINGS within such infinitesimally small window of action!

      That is OUR Reality!
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    Jul 22 2013: Absolute reality is the state of things as they exist (thanks Wikipedia). Personal reality are our perception of this absolute reality. Absolute reality seems to only be the present and because of that always changing. The past would just be an old absolute reality. The past determines our current absolute reality and our personal realities all affect the future absolute realities in the way that we act, communicate (technically acting but w/e), and think.

    Don't know if that helped or was what you were going for haha, but please reply with questions asking to clarify or expand!
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    Jul 22 2013: Thanks Wayne.
    This is a good example of what is a subjective reality according to many people.
    As long as it is individually based, as you say, the description is good enough.
    But the question includes to answer if there is an absolute Reality in terms of events.
    Are past events real? Are future events real?
    I am NOT speaking of the consequence of events or about the cause for events to occur.
    I am speaking of actually happening events in what is called: Real Time.
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        Jul 24 2013: A book on physics will explain it well.
        It is precisely what you say does not exist! Isn't it paradoxical?
        A waveform monitor is a good example of a Realtime portrait machine.
        It is always RIGHT NOW. Not after of before.
        That infinitesimally narrow point seating PERMANENTLY between past and future.
        That is Real Time!
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        Jul 24 2013: Oh yea?
        You really dislike me John!
        By the way I could not find where Hawkins said what you implied I have "taken" as my theory. Also I am NOT stating any theory. I am just conversing about the different theories.
        The one you didn't know is the Mc Taggart theory:
        "A and B Theories of Time
        Now, let's take a look at the concept of time from a philosophical point of view. We have what is called the A theory of time and the B theory of time. These were introduced by the philosopher John McTaggart at the beginning of last century as well.

        The A theory of time says that the only "real" time is the present; the past is gone and the future exists as just a probability distribution, a potentiality of possible things that can happen. There is no set future – on a kind of imaginary line "laid out there" for us – just waiting to happen. Therefore, the future is not "real".

        On the other hand, the B theory of time says that past, present and future all co-exist, and are as "real" as each other. The B theory says that the distinction between past, present and future are just an illusion of consciousness."
        If I "stole" someone was Mac Taggart

        Would you start trying to be gentle with poor Mike Aparicio?
        You might be as wrong as you think I am!

        You said: "You are not using physics and have simply come up with your own theory not based on any science i am aware of."
        Aren't you doing the same?

        Look at these: (Later I'll post more)

        Jernej Barbič and Doug L. James, Real-Time Subspace Integration of St.Venant-Kirchhoff Deformable Models, ACM Transactions on Graphics (ACM SIGGRAPH 2005), 24(3), pp. 982-990, August 2005.

        Doug L. James and Dinesh K. Pai, DyRT: Dynamic Response Textures for Real Time Deformation Simulation with Graphics Hardware, ACM Transactions on Graphics (ACM SIGGRAPH 2002), 21(3), pp. 582-585, 2002.

        Doug L. James and Dinesh K. Pai, BD-Tree: Output-Sensitive Collision Detection for Reduced Deformable Models, ACM Transactions on Graphics (ACM SIGGRAPH 2004)
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        Jul 24 2013: Well... Read Mc Taggart. He is not speaking of "graphics". It was a fast search in Wikipedia but totally crude.

        I am sorry you don't like yourself John, because you are also misusing science concepts and spreading theories. Worse if you actually teach somewhere.

        Are you a scientist? Please explain your area of study.

        I am so sorry you truly dislike theories in opposition to yours but this is what the TED conversational forum is. Not to go trying to diminish or put down participants with "ad hominem" attacks.

        I am sorry I cannot fulfill your desire for me to not be able to think, or to say whatever I think Is relevant.

        And I repeat again: I suspect you also quickly jump to Wickipedia to get the "ultimate" answer!
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        Jul 24 2013: So this is a Wikipedia fanatics forum?
        The "arrow of time" Oh! That really sounds like Hawkins!!!!!
        Or the Thermodynamics fans!

        If you stop trying to put me down I will also.

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        Jul 25 2013: Getting cool again, we must discuss then: IS Computer Science not a science?
        Or are Computer scientists not "real scientists"?
        IF computer Science is science then:
        real-time operation [′rēl ‚tīm ‚äp·ə′rā·shən]
        (computer science)
        Of a computer or system, an operation or other response in which programmed responses to an event are essentially simultaneous with the event itself.
        An operation in which information obtained from a physical process is processed to influence or control the physical process.

        Let's take a note on the fact Computers are really TIME AMPLIFIERS as they can split a mere second into Zillions of events. As I said before, computers work only in the Present as they can do nothing to change past or future, being both non existent.
        So if Computers amplify time they are essentially working with time.
        If there is a "computer real-time" then there is a scientific concept of Real-time.
        The analogy with the human experience is possible because we can only operate in the Present.
        Truly we might have worked before but we are not working "there", as it is the past, and therefore it is only a memory or record of a REAL-TIME event.
        If someone disagrees with this it is fine with me! It won't change a bit the concepts under.
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        Jul 25 2013: John: I am not applying the Real-Time theory as an "actual time theory". It is an actual theory in Computer Science and the ultimate goal for a Computer system.
        What I am trying to do with this thread, if we read the title as a question and not as an assertion you will understand I am trying to do some conceptual comparison to find converging points in Reality related views.
        I am not intending to "theorize", to compete with Hawkins, Einstein or Groucho Marx at all.
        My wife also says "l seem like a decent man" but she might be somewhat wrong. lol!
        IF I use the term Real-Time is precisely to focus into the gap YOU mentioned between past and future. I am a computer scientist so I play with time "all the time" Wow!
        Working with time is an advantage to understand time better, as we constantly deal with micro and nanoseconds and find they behave as "eternities" by the many things you can do within such short interval.
        The notion of time NOT moving or passing is not mine, dear John and I don't think it is Hawkins theory either.
        Avoiding to cite, I will say philosophically the whole subject could be seen in a different way, purely relativistic.
        Time is an infinite "plane", multidimensional which is not moving at all. Events occur at different places of such plane and it is our consciousness which moves through the static time-space plane.

        Do to the relativity we might see we are static and time is moving but it also might be the other way around. Being an infinite time-space plane we can never reach it's end, no matter the speed travelling so there is no problem with the hypothetical "future" to collide on us. Hence it is perfectly natural and possible to theorize any way you want.
        The most important thing is we as loving humans must be to keep our sense of fraternity and mutual respect.
        No matter what we think of time or reality our main duty is harmony , tolerance and mutual understanding.
  • Jul 22 2013: Reality is individually based. I was walking down the street and someone said Hi. Saw them and said Hi back. Never saw the 2nd person next to the 1st person. In that moment, to my reality, the 2nd person was not there.

    this is the classic question if a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it, was there a sound?
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    Jul 22 2013: Again Joshua your comment reflects the notion we generally have about what is "real". You identify it with our ability to perceive as most details as possible.
    The "nonexistence" you mention is an abstract concept, and I agree if a person does not perceive a thing it is practically nonexistent to him or her.
    But such lack of perception renders the thing actually non existing?
    Anyway the subject of this conversation is not exactly related to existence or not.
    What is Reality?
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      Jul 22 2013: Thanks John!
      You are looking at subjective reality or the phenomena occurring in a person's mind regarding his or her perception of events of subjects as real or unreal.
      That is the individual reality or what I would call a demi-reality for its personal characteristics.
      While your observations are of great interest, mine is related to an Ultimate Reality.
      We could say a common Reality. a Universal Reality.
      We could call it the "environment" where things are and exist.
      Not in memory or in imagination but in actual existence, no matter if it is physical, material, immaterial, visible or invisible, subject to proof or not.
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          Jul 22 2013: ohn:
          I don't think I am capable of "writing something in the past". Are you?
          I always write in the Present. Anything I do is just in the Present. I suppose it is the same for you unless you are luckily endowed with super natural powers of some sort. (Which could be, of course)
          Is there anyone capable of doing something in the past or the future?
          I would be amazed!
          As I said: My strong understanding is the ONLY MOMENT OF POWER we have is in the Present. We can do nothing outside of it.
      • Jul 22 2013: This reality that you mentioned seems to me to be what is sometimes referred to as "the outside world". Our limited senses retrieve data from the outside world and our brains interpret this data.
        Reality would be to experience the outside world without the limitations of the senses and without the subjectivity of the mind.
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          Jul 22 2013: Craig:
          I enjoy your opinion.
          It brings me to the notion that we might have an ulterior purpose. It is to work and function in a constant Present. We capture the "outside world" and our potential evolution would be to be able to capture it in its integrity, without the limitations you mention.
          It would then mean an increasing perception of reality.
          There is the danger we immediately perceiving something we engage in an analytic process, and while we do that we stop the process of deep perception.
          An analogy is to compare with a camcorder. When we are recording we must assume the recording is good. If we stop in order to playback what has been recorded we are recording no more!
          By the analogy, if we stop perceiving and engage into thinking about the perception we are missing or skipping details of the "outside world" reality.
          But we must not forget we also have an "inner reality". It is what goes in us as an internal activity.
          Hence we need "two sets of senses". One for the capture of the "outside world" which is one reality and the other to grab our internal process.
          What is interesting is both worlds are only in the present as any other possible observation takes place in memory or in imagination, both highly inaccurate or deluding.
          Are we maybe pointing at the MAJOR ROLE a human being has?
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          Jul 22 2013: Hey John! You are FAST!
          The time stamp is also placed by the computer in sync with me. It is also placed in the Present. Computers can work only in the Present. Oh! ANYTHING and everything can happen only in the Present.
          I can see and you also can, how the illusion of time constantly catch us!. You are seemingly trying to demonstrate something can happen in the Past! (Or the Future)
          This requires a deeper thinking more than convincing arguments. If you can demonstrate something can be done in the past or the future you are holding to the greatest invention of human kind!
          What seems to be the eluding element is your are confusing the action with the record. The typed words and time stamp are PRESENTLY deposited in the systems memory. As actual bits and bytes. It is no past or future; is existing data which we translate as a thing of the past when it is not!
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          Jul 22 2013: It is not a theory, but I respect your view.
          You are demonstrating not giving enough "time" to reflect about what I am saying.
          You are missing to see this is:
          You typed in the ONLY present, which is also my present as I am existing while you type. I read it in the ONLY present, which is also YOUR present as you are truly existing right NOW, where we both exist.
          When I look at the "time" you typed I am looking at a record of your typing and not at the time when you typed!
          It is a BIG difference John!
          If you are not typing now, that is your reality. If I am not reading NOW that is my reality.
          It has nothing to do with the fact we do it ALL in the Present only!
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          Jul 22 2013: I am really surprised at someone saying "The present does not exist"
          And Time-Space is not "my" theory but a well know fact among serious advanced mathematicians and physicists.
          If you miss to see my point I can do nothing about it but truly I could never admit the concepts you are conveying about the "non existence" of the present and worse the idea of time moving.
          Speaking of "imaginary", that is your understanding of time as something moving. It was a primitive supposition but not anything else.
          If you cannot realize your ONLY chance of acting is in the present we are reaching a total impasse as I could never accept such ideas a the Present being non existent.

          At least you have expressed your own THEORIES and I have talked about the simple fact the Present is undeniable, as it is not trappable, therefore very difficult to understand for minds clinging on watches and clocks as a demonstration of time flow.

          I think it is time for the audience to express their own views.

          Thanks for the exchange!
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          Jul 22 2013: Ha,ha,ha!

          ALL pictures are photographs of a present event!!!!!!!!!
          You cannot take a picture of a past event, John!
          You take the picture in the Present. You look at the picture in the Present. You burn the picture in the Present. You can do NOTHING out of the Present.

          And I am the "disingenuous" one! Thanks for the amusing morning!

          And "Hawkings is a dummy!" Oh yea!!!!!! Forgive me for laughing!
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          Jul 22 2013: I am not the one implying Hawkins is a dummy.
          I would think so if he would theorize the present does not exist.
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          Jul 22 2013: John: I don't feel obliged to accept the "intended pun" but for the sake of polite conversation I invite you to recover a mutual gentleman's attitude towards each other.
          I refuse you asseveration about ME citing Hawkins. I never did. I notice you are the one who mentioned his name first. I am not "using someone else theory" as I am very capable of using my own training in physics and mathematics. I would recall to your attention: The one who is proposing theories is you with your word play about time records and things like that.
          The subject of this thread is "What is Reality" and not "How to prove the Present exists or not".
          You have made your point which ca be resumed as:
          "There is no Present. There only exists Past and Future. We can do nothing in the Present because it does not exist. Whatever we do is in the Past and by deduction in the Future but never in the non existent present" .You also sated science "proves nothing" and I suppose you have a good theory for that but it is not the topic on this conversation.

          After unscrambling your proposition I come to your response to my original question: What is Reality?

          You are telling me and the participants: According to John S. Reality is Past and Future.

          OK! Your opinion is taken and rebuilt. Is there anything else I am missing?

          Forgive my "disingenuous" qualities!
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          Jul 22 2013: I still refuse your induction of my holding to Hawkins.
          I have the right to think by myself and in any case many people can think the same way.
          I really dislike suggestions of me being dishonest.
          Anyway, according to your way of seeing things, if the event has "vanished" you are confirming what i said:
          Past and Future do NOT exist.
          I also hope you will listen!
          Actually it is not important if you or me don't listen at all!
          The Present is the only time there is!
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          Jul 22 2013: You have a very elegant White Horse, John!

          Time is moving.... OK!

          Let it move! But... If time "moves" it must move through space. Where is it going? Where is it coming from? What is then the moving thing? an object?
          Can you move something without space?
          Or the word "move" you use is a metaphor suitable to justify your arguments...
          Let's "move on" This conversation has gotten to an impasse!
          And please, leave Hawkins alone. I have note ever read his statements on Space-Time.
          Surely you did but certainly could not understand.
          That is comprehensible.
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          Jul 22 2013: But you did not at all answered me when I resumed your thinking.

          "There is no Present. There only exists Past and Future. We can do nothing in the Present because it does not exist. Whatever we do is in the Past and by deduction in the Future but never in the non existent present" .You also sated science "proves nothing" and I suppose you have a good theory for that but it is not the topic on this conversation.

          Any confirmation and answer to this?

          I do have a donkey but it is a humble donkey not a proud limp horse! lol!
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          Jul 22 2013: And... I cannot prove it to you because you said science proves nothing.
          Also, I would have to be interested in proving it to you, but if you cannot see it,... Who could?
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      Jul 22 2013: Thanks for coming in Deepak but I am afraid to say you are taking the wrong route.
      This thread or conversation is NOT a discussion on religious concepts or dogmas. Honestly I do not think TED is a place to get into religion promotion or a means to spread particular dogmas, no matter how right and accurate you can be.
      Taking the religious parts away I extract your concept, which has its validity and is: "Reality is something human beings know nothing about."
      I would agree with that in principle but not as a generalized assertion as I think there is lots of people which understand perfectly what Reality is.
      Your participation can be very valuable if you avoid religious concepts and dogmatic expressions, mainly for people who has no particular affiliation to religious concepts, including Hinduism or any other.