In response to a well-known question from both Elon Musk, Nick Bostrom and John Wheeler, a group of British and American scientists recently conducted a study to prove: The world we live in is real. not virtual.
They focused on two volunteers who had absolutely no touch. A man named Ian, lost touch after an illness. And the second is a woman, named Kim, who has lost touch since birth.
Most of us use the 5 senses to locate our conscious existence in the world. We can see a balloon flying towards us, we can feel the ground under our feet, we can hear cars passing, and we can smell delicious food first. when tasting.
Losing one of these five senses requires that we do something about it. And the very rare tactile loss in some patients can reveal to scientists whether the world we live in is real or virtual?
Why do scientists think we live in a virtual reality?
Nick Bostrum’s Oxford philosopher Nick Bostrum’s simulation hypothesis is perhaps the simplest of the theories that support the view that The world we live in is just virtual. Bostrum says the likelihood we’re living in a computer simulation is greater than zero, meaning it could happen.
The probability that we live in a virtual world is even higher than in the real world. Because Bostrum says just a civilization can create a virtual world, they can create millions of other virtual worlds, the same way we are creating millions of video games today.
Like a computer capable of 10 powers of 42 algorithms per second, it can simulate all of human history (including our own thoughts, emotions and memories) at no cost. one millionth of its processing capacity.
So there are always more virtual worlds out there than the real world. The probability that we are in a virtual world must therefore be greater.
In addition to the simulation hypothesis of Bostrum, there are many similar theories that suggest that the world we live in is not real.
Some have been made into films like Matrix, which says that humans are just energy cells embedded in an AI-created virtual dream. Our brains are actually filled with mucus and their containers are lined up in a large, dark warehouse.
Some theories have religious colors such as “Thursdayism last week“believe that the Earth and everything on it was actually created only last Thursday. The same is stated in”Creativeism “ say that the Earth is 6,000 years old.
Some people believe that our bodies are just the hard parts that contain the soul. That soul will still exist wrongly when we die. This reality, therefore, is only an illusion or a petty test of our final destiny.
But these are all hypotheses that lie outside the boundaries of scientific experimentation, which science cannot prove nor deny. There is no way to conclusively conclude that we are not living in a Matrix.
We are not just brains embedded in glass jugs
The theory that we are just brains embedded in a glass vessel, and this whole life is just our imagination, is like the Matrix, in which all humans are locked in energy battery cocoon.
But now, it seems that a study in the journal Experimental Brain Research refutes it. The scientists said they compared two very rare neurological conditions that were linked: the loss of perception and touch acquired in adulthood and the absence of this sense immediately. from birth.
“We compare individuals with these two conditions against each other and with normal controls to shed light on how they can actually position themselves and maintain that position without touch.“, the authors write.
In other words, this study is aimed at proving that the human brain can form a physical sense of self – what represents the consciousness within our bodies, the space we live in and the boundaries between us and what we’re not – even when we can’t feel our body or the outside world.
The scientists followed and experimented with two volunteers, Ian and Kim, each morning when they woke up. While Ian, after losing his touch, always repositioned his body every morning, Kim simply “welcome the world back to her embodiment“they write.
The person with congenital loss of touch has no need and no need to re-establish his or her perception of the body and its place relative to the outside world. This proves that their brain is still able to visualize the physical manifestation of itself without the need for sensations.
“It is very important to have a sense of self. It proves you are somewhere in this world. All of us are not brains dipped in glass jugs“, the study authors said.
Indeed, these results are consistent with some previous studies that have found an area called the junction of the temporal jaw in the brain, which is responsible for locating a person in space. .
We have the five senses and countless nerve pathways to process them, but our idea of reality remains unshaken when one or more of the senses are lost at the same time.
People born or raised without sight can still visualize things, people without hearing can still process information over time, and even Ian and Kim, who cannot perceive the world still has its own physical feeling.
Our brains obviously don’t just exist as a separate control entity housed in a skeletal mass. According to the evidence presented in the above study, the human brain is able to draw an internal worldview that encompasses the entire body, not just from the perspective or the sensory-acquired signals.
Therefore, if a brain exists in a real glass vessel, it must feel it in a vase, not in your head, whether it has touch or any of the senses.
The new study in the journal Experimental Brain Research is important evidence that our world is not an illusion and that it can rule out that we are living in a real-life Matrix.