The Hollow Ring of Mind-Reality Equivalence

Prolific these days are interpretations of reality science that equate “consciousness” and reality. The result is mind-reality equivalence, a tempting though hollow solution to the modern dilemmas created by information-rich systems.

Mind-reality equivalences are solipsistic. Only one's own mind is sure to exist. They risk conflating a mind that can conceive of reality with a reality that is mind. (Or conflating a consciousness that conceives of reality with a reality that is consciousness.) Further aggravating the problem, a modern scientific critic of M-R equivalence is likely to go further and conflate reality with logical or experimental proof. In that case, mind- or consciousness-based reality arguments are dismissed as groundless and anti-realist, therein enforcing science's overly rigid false equivalence between reality and proof.

Critics may level such arguments but are unlikely to convince. From the perspective of mind- or consciousness-centric logicians, mind-reality equivalence grants a transcendent quality to their own logic. Thus, conveniently, those who dismiss their logic can be dismissed because they are in denial of ultimate reality. And we get absolutely nowhere.

Both perspectives are workarounds to the theoretical physics and cosmology mess generously referred to as reality ‘science.’ Rather than admit it’s a mess, people continue to fuel these disputes by letting themselves be forced to choose a position between whether or not a coherent and fathomable physical basis for reality exists or not.

There is a neutral choice — a choice C: “Our institutionalized conceptions are a complete mess and until we clean up this act I won’t let myself be forced to choose between reality and mind (or consciousness).”

Original question on Quora -- What is your opinion on Chris Langan's idea that M = R?

Original publish date Dec 22, 2017