Sometimes it's good to do a little bit of introspection or extraspection. In the former case, you see yourself from an internal point of view. In the latter, you see yourself from an external point of view, like in a video game. After all, isn't life role playing?
Seeing yourself as a character of a videogame that you control remotely offers some insights for personal development, as the video game programmer Steve Pavlina noticed in his podcast on reality.
Now it took me over a year to figure this out, but I think I finally understand it in a way that makes sense, and that seems internally congruent. So here's how I currently see the nature of reality.
I see that physical reality is the program, consciousness is the programmer, and the Law of Attraction is the interface between them. Or physical reality is a simulation, or a projection, of consciousness. There's only one consciousness, and that's what my identity is centered on, this one consciousness. Now, the consciousness is not my physical body, my physical body is part of my consciousness, just as equally as everything else experience, I experience.
So while, the physical body I control gives me perspective, it gives me a way of interacting and communicating with the simulation. But it's no more me, it's no more my real identity, than if I were, say, playing a video game? And I'm controlling a character on the screen. See, my physical body is just the character I control on the screen. But really, when I'm playing the video game, the game is the entire simulation. And my real being is outside that simulation.
Well, in this case, I'm saying that my real being is consciousness itself, and that the entire simulation of reality is taking place within that consciousness. I am that consciousness, but I have control over a part of the simulation, direct control, over my physical body. That's the part I can control the best. However, through the Law of Attraction, I also have control over every other part of the simulation as well. But there are some limitations on that.
See, the thoughts are the instructions, to the simulation. My thoughts. The thoughts of consciousness itself. But _every_ thought is an instruction. Or, in the language of the Law of Attraction, you would say, every thought is an intention. And physical reality is the sum total of every instruction or of every intention.
Now let's talk about some of the limitations on this, and some of the mechanisms by which this works. First of all, perception is also thought, which means it's also intention, which means it's also creative. See, there's no perception without creation. This answers the question, why does reality seem persistent? Why can't you just think of a thought that's totally incongruent with the reality you're experiencing, and have an immediate shift? And the reason is that you're always perceiving the reality you're getting. And so you can't have that immediate shift because your observations are also your thoughts, your observations are new instructions that are feeding back into the simulation. So the simulation has this persistence to it because the very act of perceiving it perpetuates it. Does that make sense?
So by observing the simulation, you're actually instructing it. Your observations about the simulations are in fact instructions to continue perpetuating what you're getting. This is why your life tends to be somewhat consistent from day to day to day - because your thoughts are persistent, because you keep observing the same things, you live in the same place, you keep observing the same location. If you changed your observations about reality, however, in a massive way, then reality itself, the simulation would be reprogrammed, and would shift in a massive way as well. And in fact, this is exactly what happens, but it happens in such a way that you don't even think about it.
In practice, it is possible to feel this body-mind dualism! Outer Body Labs, a "technologically induced out-of-body-experience game studio" who was present at Lift14, and whose pitch is see yourself seeing your self, offers such an experience. Imagine wearing a helmet or goggles (think Google Glass ou Oculus Rift) inside which you see what an external bluetooth camera pointed to you broadcasts. Or, imagine yourself wearing these electronic glasses, and carrying some big antenna with a camera mounted at the top directed downwards and feeding the glasses, in such a way that you would see yourself from an external eye.
See and control yourself from a third person perspective as you compete or collaborate in various physical tasks, games, activities and puzzles.
This is not virtual reality! At OuterBody Labs we move your eyesight, and your sense of self, into a video camera that is aimed at your body. This mind-hack has unique and wonderful dissociative effects. Will you be able to put your subjectivity into perspective?
So, what you see in the glasses is yourself, from the point of view of the camera (which can be fixed or mobile). On the screen, it appears as a character in a video game, that you can act upon remotely using your body as the controller, like real-life Sims. It offers a new perspective to your life!
The Machine to be Another project also goes in this direction. It "is an Open Source Art investigation on the relation of Identity and Empathy that has been developed on a basis of low budget experiments of Embodiment and Virtual Body Extension".
This interactive performance-installation is built in 2 identical spaces: one for the user and another for the performer.
Through immersive goggles (head mounted displays), the user sees a video with the eyes’ perspective of a different person (the performer), who follows the former’s movements. So, it all happens in a way in which the user kind of ‘controls’ the performer‘s movements.
The user can move and interact with objects inside a room, while listening to the performer‘s thoughts through a set of headphones. That generates the perception of someone speaking inside their mind.
The video transmitted to the user’s goggles is generated by a camera attached to the perfomer, that records his/her point of view in real time. The performer also wears a microphone used to tell a short story about his/her existence. This non lineal narrative is connected to the objects in the room (a photo of someone, a childhood toy, a pack of cigarettes, a mirror, etc), making them interactive: when the user interact with one object, the performer starts to speak about his experience and memories related to this object.
In general terms, the system merges technology with other variables: the performance, an interactive narrative (related to objects disposed at the same position in two identical spaces), the experiment’s assistants (with whom they can explore the touch sense), as well as sensorial/motor/physical stimuli disposed in the space, with which the user can interact. As for the objects, we always make use of mirrors and other different things that the user can either throw or feel (like a glass of water or a bunch of flowers).
Beyond augmented or virtual reality, it has to be kept in mind that such perspective can also be attained with spiritual practices like meditation or mind-altering subtances such as kratom or blue lotus. The movie Enter the void evocates dimethyltryptamine (DMT) as a chemical path to see yourself from the outside.
It can lead to larger, metaphysical considerations such as the universe being a simulation or our brains being a vat.
Much ado about nothing, or new perspectives for life?