Universal Mind

Why do we know things — individually and as a society?

From a purely physical perspective, all knowledge is held within the collective minds of mankind. In other words, every individual is a redundant data-storage module, that when combined with all other individuals, contains the sum of human knowledge. Society’s memory is simply stored in the memories of individuals. No one person contains everything, but multiple people hold the same information for particular areas.

There is a slower archival-storage mechanism, in the form of books and videos and such. But this still requires an individual to know enough to seek out such books and know where to find them and how to follow them. So primarily, society’s memory is stored in the active memory of individuals.

We also know that memories decay over time. As new things enter our mind, old things become less relevant, the past becomes even more distant and details fade. And memories aren’t stored digitally, but in an analog format. For example, when I try to recall something from decades ago: I kinda remember, I know it sounds like “mara…” no, no, it was “Sara…” wait no, “Kara…” that’s it! But I might be wrong and the memory becomes corrupted.

The details of not-so-popular things are probably corrupted the most since less people hold them in memory. But what if my own memory contradicts the memory of the collective mind? When a few individuals share the same contradiction, this concept has been termed the “Mandela Effect” or sometimes “Retroactive Continuity”. Some adherents claim there’s evidence of archival-storage contradicting the memory of the collective mind (sometimes called “residue”).

Since I believe in Simulation Theory, I don’t adhere to the purely physical perspective. My belief is that knowledge is held in a Universal Consciousness located beyond the confines of the physical world. When inspiration or understanding comes out of nowhere, I assume it comes from this Universal Consciousness. In other words, parents and teachers do not impart the knowledge we possess, it’s simply unlocked at the appropriate time when needed.

In my experience, there is no wisdom of the crowd. Instead, an individual is instilled with an inspiring idea that subsequently influences the crowd. And this inspiring idea wasn’t passed down, it didn’t come from society’s memory, it was fresh information that radically altered society as a whole. Spiritual leaders, political leaders, philosophers, inventors — the things these people knew didn’t come from rehashing old stuff into something great — aging leftovers don’t make the best meals.

And I don’t believe the simulation is absolute and concrete in its ways. It’s more of a dream that flows and forms based on feedback from the player. And in dreams, continuity doesn’t matter, corruption of concepts is a regular occurrence — so in my thinking, things like the Mandela Effect or Retroactive Continuity could readily occur. (I’m mentioning these concepts because my friend mentioned them to me this morning and I’m writing this to help clarify my thoughts on the matter).

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Miscellaneous Beliefs

How can so many people hold so many varying beliefs? Are we each only able to grasp a mere fraction of sensory data, or are we all describing the same things just with different words, or are we literally creating the external reality that we individually perceive?

If we each only ever perceive a fractional amount of sensory data, we’d expect that our collected data would accumulate over time both individually and as a society — yet that’s not what happens, we’re as dumb as we ever were, repeating the exact same themes over and over and over again. Technology has the appearance of accumulating knowledge over time, but that’s about it.

Just to note, that’s not really true about technology building upon itself over time. If you examine it more closely, technology simply refreshes itself, changing its skin to fit the transforming scenery. Technology primarily deals with communication, entertainment, transportation, warfare, and household gadgetry. Letters become phone-calls, voice becomes video. Oral stories become books which become movies. Teams-of-horses become trains, horse-carriages become cars, boats/trains become planes. Rocks become bullets which then become missiles. Fire pits become stoves/ovens, ice blocks become refrigerators, candles become lamps. The purpose of each technological category is still the same: to communicate, to captivate, to travel, to dominate, to cook/clean/heat/cool within a dwelling. In other words: the overall narratives of humanity have stayed pretty static and the purpose of the props haven’t changed — only the way they look.

Are we all describing the same things just with different words? Everyone has their own perspective and we do interpret things differently, that’s true. For example, most of us imagine some force created the known universe and we just apply different labels. But that’s not an accurate depiction because our labels should overlap over time both individually and as a society. Additionally, this outlook presupposes a concrete external reality in which we all have access to the exact same stuff. And if we’re working with the same stuff, outcomes should be predictable. But that’s not true either — people and societies are often blindsided. One guy’s outcome can vary widely from another guy’s despite them both trying to do the same thing.

So, we’re left with option C. We are literally creating the external reality that we individually perceive. And not on a mere perceptual level, but on a summoning-into-existence level. What we seek, we find. Therefore, life is more like a lucid dream in which the reality we experience is projected outward from ourself, rather than a pre-existing concrete world in which we explore and consume. If we see something we don’t like for example, it’s our very own projection, an illusion that matches our turbulent mind. To control this dream, we must first calm the mind and direct its focus, projecting the most delightful scenes we can imagine.

In conclusion, the many varying beliefs exist because the world literally differs from one perspective to another. To some it’s a moss-covered rock, to others it’s a garden of Eden, to some it’s a hellish nightmare — it’s whatever the mind projects. As Hamlet said, “for there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so”. It is in our best interest then, to think the best thoughts. And to do that, we need to abandon our fears and suspicions about life, completely accept the paradise we’ve been provided, and live.

Knowing Things

When I want to select the best product amongst a few choices at Amazon, first I look at popularity. If everyone is buying that particular item, then that’s a decent metric to go by. But I also keep an eye on the reviews, because popular items can have their problems. I read through the reviews, carefully analyzing their tone, attempting to discern a narrative of praise or scorn.

When comparing multiple items with equivalent functionality, it’s the experiences of actual users that makes the difference. Descriptions won’t tell me if the product lived up to expectations or how durable it is. So my decision boils down to the reviews, unless of course it’s a new or obscure product-category that has little or no activity.

In these scenarios, my decision is only as good as the general accuracy of the reviews. If a seller pays for reviews of their product, then I’d likely succumb to such trickery if the reviewers aren’t obvious shills. Incentivized opinions degrade my ability to make accurate decisions because I can only evaluate the data I’m provided.

And that’s the same with any assessment I must make, I only know what I know based on the available sources of information. If a person gains in prestige, power, or profit by presenting a particular point-of-view, then I must be wary of such sources — as they are not peddlers of truth, but persuasion. Yet it’s often difficult to tell the difference.

So how can we find unbiased sources of information? Typically, we can get closest to truth by finding a theme within first-hand accounts that are recorded almost by accident, thus having the least bias or incentive. One account isn’t good enough, but when a chorus of independent individuals harmonize into a particular melody, then we can discern something approximating truth.

Groups themselves can be led, so raw-numbers are not a faultless metric — accounts must be independently derived. We must wade through a sea of small voices, seeking a common core. But even this has pitfalls as we often presume a conclusion, then we’re drawn to the pieces that fit the narrative.

And we often find that over time our narratives change. Facts are fashionable, often altering with the age we’re in. What’s right becomes wrong, what’s healthy becomes toxic, what’s just becomes villainy. We only ever know what’s best based on fleeting glimpses of limited illumination. What this means is that such a pursuit is a vain attempt.

We cannot know anything in the absolute sense, life is fantasy meshed together with dream-logic. And without a concrete foundation we are left floating in a misty haze of commingling imagination. A formless void surrounds us as we visualize events before our alleged eyes.

Therefore, I simply pointed at each item while saying “eeny, meeny, miny, moe…”

Revealed Understanding

Sometimes I wonder if learning is really possible. For instance, if life is a computer simulation then it’s possible people just appear to learn, and knowledge doesn’t accrue from study or experience. Additional knowledge or skill might be scheduled instead of organically attained.

It’s difficult to learn things we have no innate interest in. There’s an inertia-of-ignorance preventing us from knowing a broad spectrum of matters. So in one sense, we’re born with a limited scope of pursuable subject-matter.

The grasping of knowledge can’t be rushed. Previously impenetrable topics are understood all of a sudden. History often repeats itself. In other words, comprehension is beyond our control.

Perhaps the feeling associated with an aha-moment of insight isn’t the triumph of discovery, but fond remembrance. Maybe we already know what we know but it’s revealed as the fog of ignorance gradually fades from our life’s path.