Donald Hoffman

This Scientist Proves Why Our Reality Is False

Most of us believe we perceive reality as it generally is, with perhaps some slight distortions. But mathematical models based on natural selection suggest that our strongest intuitions may be false. On this episode of Conversations with Tom, Donald Hoffman and Tom Bilyeu discuss the fascinating possibilities that stem from the theory that evolution gave us the equivalent of a desktop interface that hides the real truth from us so that we can take effective action. They discuss the nature of consciousness, free will, space-time, causality and the self.

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Most of us believe that we see reality as it is. But we don’t. [1:14]

Donald describes how mathematical game theory explains natural selection [3:42]

Donald talks about a game he created to simulate evolution [9:33]

Seeing the truth and seeing what you need to survive are very different things [13:51]

Evolution gave us the equivalent of a desktop interface, not the truth [18:11]

Every creature has a different user interface and perceives a different reality [24:57]

Science progresses because we push our best theories to their limit [29:05]

If we let go of logic and reasoning, then we have nothing left [32:10]

There will always be unprovable truths. You can never know it all. [35:14]

Evolution has created various forms of virtual reality [39:40]

Donald describes the process by which you “see” an apple [42:05]

Evolution tells us that the language of space and time does not describe reality [47:53]

Donald proposes that reality is a vast social network of conscious agents [49:39]

A conscious agent creates their interpretation from their experiences [53:32]

What is consciousness? [57:12]

What does a conscious agent need to do? [1:00:49]

Donald and Tom discuss fascinating cases of split-brain patients [1:08:13]

If your visualization tool is very good, it can focus on finer and finer detail [1:11:36]

If space-time is doomed then is causality doomed as well? [1:22:17]

Tom and Donald discuss the nature of cause and effect [1:24:35]

Donald discusses free will and its relationship to cause and effect [1:28:01]

The self is a construction just like space and time [1:30:27]

You can never experience yourself choosing [1:39:15]

Donald describes the experience of realizing that he is just inside a VR headset [1:40:01]

What created math? [1:44:53]

What’s the difference between math all the way down and turtles all the way down? [1:50:25]

Tom and Donald discuss the double-slit experiment in physics [1:56:18]

Donald talks about his wife and his marriage [2:01:49]

Donald and Tom discuss the possibility of taking off the headset [2:03:10]

Donald and Tom discuss why they haven’t used psychedelics [2:07:10]

Since space-time is doomed, what’s next? [2:13:27]







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