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What defines an observer for reality to exist externally?

  1. Oct 24, 2004 #1
    what defines an observer for reality to exist externally? (refer to Einstein)

    personally i am not convinced an observer must have conciousness (i am not sure about how Einstein defined it). what is consciousness anyway?

    i mean i believe i am consciouss, but it seems to me that there are many many levels/states of consciousness, not some generalised consciousness.

    cliche: if a tree falls in the forest and nobody is present to observe it, does it occur? (something like that :wink:)
    resulting question: what about the animals in the forest?
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2004
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 25, 2004 #2
    Well, a timeless traveller (who is also a universal observer) always see everything happen at time t = 0. A Superobserver ( as I otherwise call it) conceptually exists, but in actuality that's a different matter. If such an individual were to exist in actuality, nothing should stop it from seeing leaves fall or animals run around in the forest. Think about this conceptual possibility ....who knows... it may motivate you to actualise it!
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2004
  4. Oct 25, 2004 #3
    Actually, I think the whole thing begins with the differentiation between one thing and another. If, in fact there was only one thing -- which, would in effect be nothing :wink: -- without another thing to relate to and, in effect establish a relationship with, consciousness would not evolve. In other words consciousness comes about through the complex relationship between things.
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2004
  5. Oct 26, 2004 #4
    hmmm.... :bugeye: sometimes i think too much. the question of consciousness before or after physical existence is unknowable, no? paradox with no use...

    ...maybe for some. but i keep searching. the utilatarian ideals of physicalism will not bound me, although i have a physical body, so i must not be confused into thinking its all in my head....

    others exist and they heave heads and hearts too.

    so feel free to enter this 'light' (:rofl:) discussion on whether consciousness precedes physicality. i personally believe time is eternal and so is the interplay that accompanies it.
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2004
  6. Nov 16, 2004 #5
    Yes, the tree must fall in the forest, because everything is interconnected that way. Otherwise there would be no fallen trees to observe if, perchance we were to walk into the forest.
  7. Nov 17, 2004 #6
    and also (which i was hinting at in the first post) the animals and organisms in the forest are themselves observers. so the reality which is that place of forest at that time, existed due to the presence of many many observers.

    the question is really, was there a time without conscious lifeforms?

    and i believe this question is ultimately unknowable. i think even though someone can be enlightened, or illuminated, or scientifically knowledgable, as a human being, it would seem a little arrogant to enforce an answer.

    there are some things that can only be theorised, and i realise this now. not that theories aren't 'useful'! :wink:
  8. Nov 18, 2004 #7
    Yet how can anything in fact go unnoticed? Human beings are merely witnesses. While I'm sure far more goes into the aspect of creating things than the mere witnessing of it. :wink:
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2004
  9. Nov 18, 2004 #8
    For a reality to exist an observer must experience something. When that experience happens a conscious state is known.

    Analyzing human consciousness, there is many states but there also may be many other states that we just do not know humanly.

    In a forest there is always someone present to observe it, did you ever consider it could observe itself?
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