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In exploring the questions of existence, I came to this concept. I am curious if anyone has any feedback or can point me to any other materials or ideas that relate to this? I am sure I am not the first to conceptualize existence this way.

Premises:

  • Reality is not fundamentally physical; it is mental/spirit for lack of a better term. It simply "exists" in a formless state.
  • Everything we can perceive exists. Therefore, everything exists in a formless state of non-physicality.

Before we are born we exist "floating" in eternity as pure existence (souls) but with no form or self-knowledge. Because we are aware of nothing else, there is no contrast, so we do not even realize that we exist. Existence-awareness requires contrast (subject-object).

God created the physical spacetime world as a medium for our existence to become existence-aware through awareness of others. Humans in particular were created with complex brains that serve as translators (not generators or receivers) for existence to manifest itself. By being able to see others, we realize that we too exist. This is the knowledge we gain in the physical world. We are here to make connections to other souls and validate each others' existence. Perhaps God was lonely and wanted to share experience-awareness.

Animals and other physical matter are not existence-aware. That is what makes humans unique. Animals, for example, exist as formless existence underneath the physical reality - just as we do - but they will never know it. Same as an apple or any other matter.

When our bodies die we return to eternal existence; floating in eternal mental space if you will. But this time we take the knowledge of existence-awareness with us. Maybe not actual memories, but knowledge that we are not alone and that we and others exist. I posit that we then have an eternal connection to those other souls in the afterlife/heaven/eternity. Our purpose here is to build those connections so that more people can bring more existence-awareness with them to eternity.

Those that misuse their gift of existence to hurt others are condemned to an eternity of existential terror and torment. This is why murder is the gravest sin - a murderer ends the chance for the other soul to manifest its own existence.

To me, this is a logical conceptualization of existence that conforms to tenets of religion and also to our understanding of the underlying quantum nature of matter. It also avoids the hard problem of consciousness (I think).

Thoughts?

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  • To avoid having this comment closed for pushing a personal philosophy, you should give some links or citations to people who have expressed these views. Apr 10, 2023 at 18:14

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Reality is not fundamentally physical; it is mental/spirit for lack of a better term. It simply "exists" in a formless state.

Idealism. Start with subject idealism for a radical view.

Everything we can perceive exists.

Meinong had his Sosein, which leads to an "ontological jungle". You might want to start with SEP's Nonexistent Objects.

God created the physical spacetime world as a medium for our existence to become existence-aware through awareness of others.

Sounds like God the watchmaker. Try Deism.

Animals and other physical matter are not existence-aware.

This is the Cartesian view as animals as automata. However, be aware that contemporary ethologists have amassed a wealth of research to demonstrate animals have consciousness in the same way we do. Frans de Waal is my go to, though there are others. Start with SEP's Animal Consciousness. If you reject animal consciousness, and you don't contort yourself to the point of absurdity, you'll likely have to reject human consciousness. Or science.

Those that misuse their gift of existence to hurt others are condemned to an eternity of existential terror and torment.

The Christian notion of Hell. Start with Revelations in the Bible.

Good luck!

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