Do you believe in reality as an independent phenomenon or as a constructed one?

Jump to Last Post 1-3 of 3 discussions (4 posts)
  1. discourse profile image70
    discourseposted 22 months ago

    Do you believe in reality as an independent phenomenon or as a constructed one?

    Does reality exist independent of our interactions and experience or it is brought into existence as a social construction? Is there a truth at all? or just different versions of reality?

  2. Lindsay Bloom profile image59
    Lindsay Bloomposted 22 months ago

    Great question for one of those late-night Big Question discussions!

    Reality exists independently of anyone's and everyone's constructs. Someone dies, but life, the world, the universe go on, even though that person is no longer around.

    However, individual and social constructs of reality do exist and do affect Reality. Belief is a powerful thing; so is the social contract. As an example, there is no such thing as money. Paper dollars have no inherent value. We (society) have decided that dollars have value; we have constructed the reality of money.

    To take another example, when a person gets a shot, the syringe causes pain. That's a subjective reality, as the person giving the shot can't feel the pain. but it's not a constructed reality. However, some people have been trained to feel no pain when getting a shot. Whether through hypnosis, biofeedback or personal "power of thought," the reality is that the events that would normally cause pain are still happening, but the brain is able to not register the pain. Is that independent reality or constructed reality? Maybe it's right on the boundary line between the two?

    Oliver Sacks wrote a fascinating book, Hallucinations, that covers several phenomena involving perceptions that aren't reality. Even though a hallucination seems completely real to someone having one, it's not. Slimy worms aren't crawling on you even though you can see and feel them. So even though your mind has constructed that hallucination, true reality (no worms on you) exists independently.

    1. discourse profile image70
      discourseposted 22 months agoin reply to this

      Just imagine that someone unable to feel pain was brought to the human community like Tarzan and had no conception of pain. Wouldn't it be that describing pain and showing how it affects others make it real?

  3. discourse profile image70
    discourseposted 22 months ago

    I tend to take reality as contingent upon our recognition and knowledge of phenomena. That is, as long as phenomena are falsifiable and their reality can be questioned or rejected, unless we can falsify them they are real.

    Unicorns or Santa are not real because we have no proof of their existence.
    Once we find one example they become real.

    Reality then is only a relative term based on our socially justified belief system.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)