Imagine that there is a discovery by one of us humans allowing the full-blown creation of holographic simulations in which whole lives are born, live, and die – but all without self-awareness. They have no real meaningful perception of the world. They simulate sentience, yet they do not really have self-awareness, they just act and talk like they do, going through the motions with robotic design perfection - but, it is all cartoon stuff.
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Without a doubt, that type of simulation is virtually worthless. In other words, holographic simulations are meaningless until and unless we can explicate in deductive logical terms how a simulation would replicate or create the meaningful human experience of perception. The psychology of perception has been forgotten in every discussion about holographic simulations. It is the ineffable logic of meaningful perception, executed by our brains' neuroarchitecture that upholds our mental experience of being an interactive, self-aware creature. Every discussion I have read about holographic theory and simulations has succeeded in sidestepping and ignoring this fundamental and foundational insight. Therefore, they are each fascinating, but far from even approaching a real theoretical model or making a good argument for the viability of a holographic universe simulation. The real test of a holographic universe simulation, and the only point in pursuing it, is to be found in the development of a model that would allow for the human experience of perception to be simulated within an individual inside the simulation. The worthy holographic universe simulation will showcase an individual with the endowments of coding required in order to experience oneself as a sentient, self-aware creature. Anything else is just cartoon time.
As everyone has over the last couple of decades, I have slowly grown in my appreciation of the musings about holographic universe simulations. Lately, something happened and my thinking began to change. I began to realize that my meaningful perception of life might actually be produced in a holographic simulation. What changed my thinking? It had a lot to do with the explicitly logical nature of a holographic simulation and the notion that our brains must first acquire some kind of logic in order to experience meaningful perceptions of the world and become minds. At least part of the way brains become minds must involve becoming aware of the environment, and being able to make logical predictions about it.
One great insight into understanding the nature of our perception was provided many years ago by Susanne Langer. Her singular insight was that meaning, logic, and emotions are essentially the same thing, and they co-exist before and after words on a pre-verbal or meta-verbal level. Let me suggest that the real key to understanding meaning is to grasp that meaning and logic are identical. And if they are the same thing before we can talk, then they must also be derived from our emotions. In the first half of the twentieth century, social scientists and philosophers unanimously acclaimed language was the hallmark of human cognition, and formal logic was the only kind of logic that could ever exist. The truth is that none of them had any idea what to make of this lone woman in the boy’s club of the academe.
What I am getting at is that without some kind of logic there can be no meaning, and vice versa. And since this must be true on a meta-verbal level, then before we even learned to talk we could only have experienced emotions as intrinsic to meaning and to logic, as well.
Q: How do you know that logic is logical?
A: Because it just feels right.
In this century, more and more philosophers and scientists are saying that we are discovering all the tools required to explain how it is that we are living in a simulation. According to philosopher, Nick Bostrom; Nobel Prize winning physicist, George Smoot; and visionary futurist, Ray Kurzweil; it is all quite obvious and inevitable, and furthermore, it will require no unknown physics. That may be true, but it will require some unknown psychology, namely, the forgotten underlying logical dynamics of reflexive awareness. Humans are sentient. That means we are aware of the world, and we are aware that we are aware of the world. Yet, the social psychology of sentience eludes contemporary science and philosophy completely. I think all the gentlemen named above know that. They were probably hoping no one would not notice when they glossed it.