Reality is an objective matter and should be treated as such. There is no such thing as “subjective reality”, therefore, an objective reality is the only thing that is arguably correct. There are many different worldviews around the world, through the course of this essay a few of those worldviews and their systems of thought will be presented. Throughout this essay I will try to remain completely objective myself, but by the very nature of my argument, it cannot be done completely.
For my first example, I draw upon the Eastern Monist perspective of the world and its reality. Eastern Monism is a worldview, which abandons all logic. Monists believe that all is one, or that there are not separate people or beings but rather one collective mind. Monists believe that reality is what they make of it, since they are in fact the reality itself. They believe that everything is one, there is no good or evil and in the end, your “spirit” becomes lost in the great one-ness.1 There is, however a problem with the logistics of this religious worldview. People all over the world, including other Monists have different opinions and beliefs. How then, is it possible for all to be one if that supposed “one” contradicts itself through and through? It seems a bit odd to me that if you are reality and you decide what is included in such a reality, that your reality would be clouded with such a wide variety of worldviews.
The second point about objective reality that I have to share is of the perception of a cube. To certain people, reality is only what they can see. For these people, I would present the illustration of a large cube. Put a person at any given angle to the cube, and they can see anywhere from one to three sides at the most. Even though in true reality we know that a cube by its nature has six sides, the person standing to the side of the cube does not know this. They can swear up and down that the supposed “cube” has only one, two or three sides depending on where they are standing, and to them, they are right. This goes to show that no matter how much someone believes in something, if it is not true, it will not become true. Some people would say, “well from your perspective, it’s that way, but from mine, it’s different.” By saying this, that person has just made the statement that there can be more than one, equally valid reality existing and contradicting each other at the same time. By the laws of logic, specifically the law of non-contradiction1, which states that something must be either true or false, it cannot be both. I.e. A is A, A cannot be B and B cannot be A, B can only be B
The third point on which I will be discussing in this essay is that of multiple personal realities. I recently found a web site supporting a psychiatric facility, which teaches its patients that every person, has his or her own “personal” reality. The site stated that each person’s own personal reality went into creating the makeup of the one true “objective” reality3. First of all, if there truly is one all-encompassing objective reality, (and there is) then it is not possible for any other “subjective” or otherwise oriented reality to exist. Second, as with the point about the Monist’s, what happens when someone’ “subjective” reality infringes on such known truth-based phenomenon such as natural laws? This whole theory of multiple personal and subjective realities which compile the one overall objective reality is invalid simply because there are certain people who believe themselves to be exempt from things such as the effects of the natural laws. Also, the view that many different realities can all be correct at the same time violates the laws of logic, specifically the laws of non-contradiction, excluded middle and the law of identity.
The fourth topic of interest to be discussed is that of different people who believe that they are beyond, or exempt from the natural laws of this world. Natural laws being those that affect all people in all places objectively. Some people believe that by having enough faith in something, they can accomplish it. Even though the bible states that with enough faith, you can move mountains2, it is impossible to surpass the natural laws set forth to us by God. Some people might believe that they are immortal and therefore exempt from death. Others still believe that things such as natural disasters will never and can never affect them, and because these people have not yet been afflicted with such things as death, floods or hurricanes, it does not mean they will not be. By the mere fact that these people have been left “untouched” by such instances only re-assures them in their belief. However, when these people come face to face with some impassible natural law lying in their path sometime in the future, their old beliefs will be quickly dispelled and replaced with confusion.
My fifth and final point on the objectivity of reality is the illustration of a rock. A rock is a rock, simple enough, they are hard, heavy and inanimate. Indeed, all over the world a rock will hold those same characteristics. If someone were to kick a rock in America and observe the effects, then take that rock over to Africa and do the same, very similar if not the same results would be reached. Rocks are not edible, sure they can be ingested, but that does not make something edible. No matter how hard you believe that rock is food, you’re not going to get anything out of it. The same illustration can be made with any other object. Take a lightbulb, great for illuminating a room, not so great however, for flying thirty people overseas. No matter how much you believe that a lightbulb is some sort of airplane, it won’t get you off the ground. This rule doesn’t just apply in America and Africa either, go anywhere in the world, Antarctica, Australia, heck you could even go to the moon and a pencil isn’t going to grow your hair back for you.
Through the course of this essay, many different worldviews were discussed along with their ramifications and problems. Reality, is not the product of people’s thoughts and ideas, thoughts and ideas are based on those persons’ perception of reality. Reality is not always what it seems like; perception is a key issue in that, things may look quite different from different points of view. Reality does not bend for anyone, it is constant and objective, the same for all. Reality is also the same wherever, whenever you go. Reality is completely objective, and objectivity is the only valid way to interpret it.