The mind melting reason Schrödinger's "What is Life" made my mind melt: in five logical steps
The mind melting reason Schrödinger's "What is Life" made my mind melt: in five logical steps stories
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jbooboo
jboobooCommunity member
Autoplay OFF  •  2 years ago
I told a friend that "What is Life?" by Schrödinger was one of the best books I've read recently and was asked why. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to provide a well articulated explanation at the time, but I promised him I would later. So...

The mind melting reason Schrödinger's "What is Life" made my mind melt: in five logical steps

by jbooboo

First two warm ups to get you in the mood

(also from the book)

Warm up: we can't see in three dimensions

We know there are three dimensions, but we see in two dimensions. We *experience* the third with our other senses.

Warm up: we don't look at people - we absorb their light

Eyes are windows. We use phrases like "he looked at her", but really we should be saying, he pointed his two bottomless light holes at her and absorbed her aura.

Okay, showtime

1. Time doesn't exist.

Time is a helpful way to organize cause and effect, but without 'events' time would not exist on its own.

2. Lots of things don't "exist"

Ex: Evolution doesn't exist but it is still real. You can't point at any step and say 'evolution!' Same with colors & consciousness. They're not point-at-able.

3. You technically don't exist

Sorry :( There is no piece of you that you can point at and say 'that is me!' You're a bunch of cells working in harmony. It's the way those cells work together that puts the 'I' in you.

4. Processes aren't victim to the same end as matter

"Change is the only constant." If it never existed in the first place, it can't cease to be. Evolution never stops. It can't "break" or "wear out".

5. The "process" of you could be immortal

If we figured out the steps in our process, we could replace worn out parts, or even switch mediums entirely, and forever retain our 'I'.

#newGoals

it's a great book. thanks Schrodinger

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2 years agoReply
@sydney awesome stuff here. @jbooboo I love your line of "figuring out what dominoes you can control". That was pretty inspirational.

sydneyVerifiedco-creator of Commaful
2 years agoReply
@iebest @jbooboo similarly, I've found that before you get angry or before things lead to an argument, you can often times feel the little knots developing in your stomach. If I can catch that and adjust myself to a more open posture and put on a smile, I tend to avoid heated arguments. Really cool stuff! I know people who do smiling and laughing exercises as part of their morning routine!

2 years agoReply
You know how when you smile it makes you feel better? Smiling is in the middle of the 'happiness process' and when you smile you get to skip into that process even when nothing external made you happy. When I try to make a practical application from this "we're processes not matter" idea, I think about how I can 'hack my body' and overcome anger by doing something as simple as unclenching my fists, or put myself in the zone by drinking green tea. Figuring out what dominoes in the chain of an emotion I can control and then tipping them or removing them based on if I want to see that chain come to completion or not.

2 years agoReply
So...if I'm reading this right, and made a logical path through that information...everything that exists can be parsed between matter and processes? I guess I've never considered emotion (or fill in the blank) as a process, since emotion is obviously not matter. But it makes sense, you have a trigger, your mind absorbs the trigger, your mind explains to your body the significance of the trigger, and your body then proceeds in a series of steps to articulate an emotion based on that trigger... Now the interesting bit comes from figuring out the impact of seeing the world like this. Any thoughts on how this knowledge can affect our day-to-day lives?

2 years agoReply
@sydney seriously! 😮💥 I stopped at each one and had to really ponder these thoughts

sydneyVerifiedco-creator of Commaful
2 years agoReply
This was mind boggling :O Haha @rch @kevinshin @andrew think you might find this one interesting. had to definitely think through it xD