B- but the universe, all the stars, the matter, would still carry on existing even if there were no mind capable of perceiving it. When you die the world carries on existing regardless of whether you are perceiving it or not.
A- it might cease to exist for me but if there were no minds capable of perceiving, if there were no thought or perception, knowledge or experience of it whatsoever then in what sense can it be said to exist? If it cannot be known or experienced then it effectively does not exist.
B- have you ever walked down some stairs and expected another step and found there was none? Surely that demonstrates that our formulations or ideas of the world have no bearing on physical reality. The stars burn on for billions of years indifferent to whether we confer existence upon them. They remain as they are regardless of the minds that might formulate an image of them.
A- but all that we know of them and experience of them is an image in our minds. You cannot perceive something without the perceiver. It takes eyes to see and minds to experience what is out there and say what there is. Didnt the stars and the universe create us? Didnt we grow out of it like planets grew out of it? Maybe there's not as much of a division between the outside and the inside, matter is in mind and mind could be in matter. The same way we could have no conception of mind without matter, matter could have no conception of itself without mind. There existence stands upon other just as darkness and light or tall and short.
Think of the stars forming eyes that can see the light. It is not us and them but one process. There is nothing in the universe completely apart or foreign to it no matter how divided it seems. It all flows from the same source and builds upon the old growing in complexity like a seed from a tree. The universe is not a thing, but everything, and everything is a part of it. We feel we our not the universe but ourselves.
What is matter? What is consciousness? If matter were unconscious then it might as well not exist, but it does exist and it takes up a particular time in space sustaining itself until something comes along and changes it. Unconsciousness is nothingness and matter is something. It maintains its form, has certain properties, reacts certain ways under certain conditions. If it were totally unconsciousness how could it maintain the form it holds? If it were unconscious wouldnt it be a nothing rather than a something?
B- is division and separation an illusion or a fact? It seems things are divided or at least they have differences. Each one knows only their own experience. Each one feels alone inside there own skin. My suffering, my ambition, my body, my mind, and it seems true enough.
A- but each one thinks that and experiences that so there is universality. And what is my mind or your mind? Are they really our own or are they borrowed from the environment? Each one accumulates ideas, takes things from experience, from the world already formed then refers to that mind as himself as though he were an individual.
B- Maybe what i mean most of all is my body. Surely i own that, or maybe it owns me, or maybe its just the flow of genetic information that emerges as me? Things seem to be more obscure than i thought, i still find it hard to imagine how mind could be in matter though.
A- it is there in the body, that is matter, isnt it? There it is matter in mind and mind in matter. I dont see why we cant extend that beyond the contents of our heads seeing as though all the scientists say we are matter. Arranged with intelligence and maybe with more complexity but the capacity for it must be there for it in matter or in the universe as a whole otherwise how could it have emerged?
B- Its like arranging bricks in a certain order and hoping consciousness will emerge out of it, it doesn't seem very likely. Why is it that we have this thing called consciousness? What is DNA? How did it encode itself into matter? Where did its intelligence come from?
A- these are all things we dont really know, its like we happen to occur in the world out of nowhere and have to try and piece it all together and make sense of it. Matter, consciousness, energy, life, death. All the building blocks that were there before remain a mystery, we understand spoons and football and tv and all the things we invented out of the ingredients of it all that were already there.
B- were just animals that emerge out of it all and when we die we cease to exist.
A- death is just as mysterious as everything else and i dont think we really know what happens. We see a body and assume the consciousness is dead with it but that's all we really know. It might be like going into a black hole or into the light or nowhere...though that seems impossible to imagine.
B- when we die we die and we cease to exist and that's all there is.
A- do you think you're nothing but a meat suit waiting to rot?
B- as sad as it is that seems to be the way it is.
A- would you agree matter is unconscious?
A- and you are matter?
A- then who is the one who talks and sees all this as true?
B- the thought doesnt exist without the body.
A- why not?
B- because the thought is contained inside the matter of the body.
A- if matter were unconscious then it shouldnt be inside the body either.
B- but all these words have been formulated within the body and have never been known or experienced independently from it.
A- and the body has never been experienced without a mind.
B- where does that leave us?
A- god knows.