In the far future, humans gone from Earth,
now disembodied as self-structured flows
of energy and information, woes
of the unknown replacing old Death, Birth
and even Copulation; when a dearth
of physical experience bestows
rich glamor on ideas of Nature’s shows–
sunset, moon rise, trees, seas–the planet’s worth…
they’ll lust after these days we suffer through,
marveling at the rich chaotic times,
enthralled by nearing immortality
while planetary destruction loomed in view.
Wrapping themselves in simulated climes,
they think them us… Are they?… We’re them?… Maybe!
One of my more obscure Petrarchan sonnets, perhaps… but Nick Bostrom of Oxford University hypothesises that, as simulations get increasingly complex, engaging and realistic, there will ultimately be many more simulations than the original reality… and therefore that there is a higher probability that you are living in a simulation than in the “real” world. Whatever the “real” world is. Or whoever you actually are. And seeing as Quantum Mechanics is drawing us all into a sense of the illusory nature of reality (particles being waves when they feel like it, or until closely questioned), then maybe somewhere between Ancient Hinduism and future physics we are all something that we haven’t come close to figuring out yet.
Published in Rat’s Ass Review – thanks, Rick Bates!
“Woman having fun with a VR set” by Rawpixel Ltd is licensed under CC BY 2.0.