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A Relatively Detailed Outline

of a Carefully Constructed,
Overarching Worldview
at One Moment in Its Evolution
Timothy Ballan
© 2014 (And On)
Contents
Disclaimer......................................................................................................................................................5

Preface...........................................................................................................................................................6

Acknowledgements.......................................................................................................................................8

Section I: Introduction: One Given Worldview...........................................................................................9

Section II: A Definition of Reality..............................................................................................................12

II.1 Continuity
II.2 Contour––Spacetime
II.3 Infinite Internal and External Extension
II.4 Self-Illumination

Section III: Highly General Features of Reality.........................................................................................21

III.1 Groups (Abstract Objects)


III.1.1 Illusory Abstract Objects
III.1.1.1 Counterfactuals
III.2 Types of Groups
III.2.1 Infinity
III.2.2 "Ordered Groups"
III.2.2.1 "Degrees"
III.2.3 "Descriptions"
III.2.3.1 "Specialized Descriptions"
III.2.3.1.1 "Negative Descriptions"
III.2.3.2 "Relations"
III.2.3.3 Accuracy and Representations
III.2.3.3.1 Topics and Concepts

Section IV: Somewhat Less Highly General Features of Reality...............................................................44

IV.1 Types
IV.1.1 Uniqueness
IV.1.2 "Uniquely Similar Groups" ("Types")
IV.2 Abstraction
IV.2.1 Alethic Possibility
IV.2.1.1 Chance
IV.3 Contribution
IV.3.1 "Chains"
IV.3.2 Contribution (Generally)
IV.3.2.1 "Cause"
IV.4 Barriers and Enclosingness
IV.4.1 Unconscious Impressions

Section V: A Definition of the Self


(And of the Relationship of the Self with Reality Otherwise)..................................................56

V.1 Instantaneousness
V.1.1 Impressions As Instantaneous
V.1.1.1 Movement

Section VI: Highly General Features of the Self


(And of the Relationship of the Self with Reality Otherwise)................................................63

VI.1 Sensory and Non-Sensory Mental Impressions


VI.1.1 How Impressions Seem Formed
VI.1.1.1 Unavoidable Subjective Confidence in the Existence of More Than Just Myself
VI.1.2 Conscious Impressions
VI.2 Non-Sensory Impressions of "Beliefs"
VI.2.1 Beliefs of "Intentions"
V1.2.1.1 Reasoning
V1.2.1.1.1 Language
VI.3 Auto-Verifying and Non-Auto-Verifying Impressions
VI.3.1 Non-Auto-Verifying Impressions' "Filtering"
VI.3.2 Accuracy of Auto-Verifying and Non-Auto-Verifying Impressions
VI.3.2.1 Imagining
VI.3.2.2 Subjective Confidence
VI.3.2.2.1 The Dangers of Overconfidence
VI.3.2.2.2 Seemingly-Stable Non-Overly High Subjective Confidence
VI.3.2.3 Orderly Thinking
VI.3.2.4 Non-Orderly Thinking and Faith
VI.3.2.5 Intending to "Consistently Practice Orderly Thinking, Including Orderly Continual Questioning,
While Avoiding Overconfidence"

Section VII: Less Highly General Features of the Self


(And of the Relationship of the Self with Reality Otherwise)..............................................93

VII.1 Impressions and the Brain

Section VIII: Still Less Highly General Features of the Self


(And of the Relationship of the Self with Reality Otherwise).............................................96

VIII.1 Pain-to-Pleasure
VIII.2 Intrinsic Value
VIII.2.1 Degrees of Pleasure
Section IX: Less General Features of the Self, of the Relationship of the Self with Reality Otherwise,
and of Reality Overall, Regarding Morality.........................................................................101

IX.1 What Would Be Best


IX.1.1 A Guiding Code
IX.2 Moral Rightness
IX.2.1 Degrees of Moral Rightness
IX.2.2 Moral Aptitude
IX.2.3 Moral Responsibility
IX.2.4 Moral Character
IX.3 Morally Right Interaction with Others
IX.3.1 People's "Degrees of Value"
IX.3.2 Givingness and Ungivingness
IX.3.2.1 Hate
IX.3.3 Condemnation
IX.3.3.1 Inauthenticity
IX.4 Living By This Code

Section X: Reality As the Ultimate Self...................................................................................................119

X.1 "The Ultimate Self"

List of Relatively Idiosyncratic Terms or Idiosyncratically-Defined Terms.............................................121

References.................................................................................................................................................128

About the Author.......................................................................................................................................132


Disclaimer
I refuse to use quotation marks in such a way that envelopes any commas or periods not suggested by the
quoted material. For example, quoting a child saying the words "I don't want to go now", I did not put
the comma within the quotation marks, as the comma is not suggested by the child's words. On the other
hand, I will end this next sentence in a different way. As someone once said, "Use your head, not your
rule book."
With a similar emphasis on clarity over convention, I also follow dashes with commas at times.
Even if preceded by a dash––as I will now demonstrate––, I retain commas that retain usefulness.
Beyond just punctuation, though, I'd hope abundant clarity pervades my writing, from word order, to
sentence structure, to overall presentation of ideas.
Relatedly, in the words I use while writing about philosophy specifically, I avoid using terms that,
while customary in contemporary English philosophical writing, seem to me to alienate or mislead those
not accustomed to reading contemporary philosophical writing or academic writing in general. Some
terms that I find alienating in this way are "such that" and, when beginning a sentence and followed by a
comma, "indeed". Some terms common in contemporary philosophical writing that I find misleading, on
the other hand, are "if and only if" and "just in case", two terms used in ways distinct from how people in
everyday situations would use them.

All in all, I want to state that I am aware that my writing breaks from numerous conventions, and yet I
want to state that I believe I have good reason for breaking the conventions that I do.

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Preface
Searching for a Worldview
Upon coming to believe that honest critical thinking holds great importance, I was forced to abandon my
childhood religion––Evangelicalism, a religion that proclaims that reason-free "faith" is useful in addition
to, and even as superior to, honest critical thinking. While I overall don't regret abandoning this religion,
it was, for seventeen years, the cornerstone of my life. I went to church at least three times a week, most
of my friends were from my church or of a religious persuasion similar to mine, at least most of my
family was dedicated to Evangelicalism, and, in terms of a worldview, I viewed the whole of reality
through the lens of my religion. Abandoning my religion was, in many ways, like dissolving the mortar
of a building that was my life.
In terms of the worldview that it proposed, the religion I grew up with emphasized rigidity––things
are right or wrong, you are going to Heaven or Hell, there is one right way to behave in every situation,
one way dictated by God's law. (I define a "worldview" as "a relatively small group of beliefs where
someone believes each relatively accurately represents reality and/or its features––while it focuses on
themselves, the relationship between themselves and reality besides themselves, and reality overall".)
This type of religion played well into a tendency I've always had toward obsessive thinking, where I
tenaciously pursue clear answers to difficult questions. My obsessive mind helped reinforce my taste for
this religion, and this religion even reinforced my obsessive tendencies to look for clear answers.
For years I felt that I had all answers just a prayer or, through direct connection to God, a
spontaneous revelation away. While losing these once-comforting beliefs would be stressful for anyone,
the stress I experienced exacerbated my tendency toward obsessive thinking which, in turn, further
exacerbated my overall stress level and created an ever-intensifying storminess in my mind.
My abandoning of my childhood religion resulted in years of mental spinning where nearly all my
waking hours were spent feeling compelled to answer the nearly nonstop chain of philosophical questions
that would enter my mind daily. I would often lack both the time and energy to finish my attempts at
answers, however, as questions would nearly constantly arise within my mind both spontaneously and in
response to other thoughts (thoughts such as existing questions or partially-formed attempts to answer
those questions)! As evidence of the scope of the intellectual torment I experienced over these years, I
have retained several trash bags filled with scraps of paper each covered with written philosophical
questions and mostly partially-formed philosophical answers.
Despite years of lingering in a nearly constantly stressed state, with the help of family, friends,
therapists, and medicine, I was able to gradually stabilize. At the same time, I was able to gradually build
on some tentative conclusions I had been reaching. Although more slowly than I would have liked, I
ultimately developed a seemingly coherent worldview for the first time in years––although it has since
evolved and continues to evolve. Despite evolving, my seemingly coherent worldview has helped me as
much as I'd think anyone would be helped by a seemingly coherent worldview.
The new worldview I developed ascribed value to intending toward honest critical thinking, and it
ascribed disvalue to seeking absolutely certain, clear answers to all questions. Still, a strong desire for
clear answers remained engrained in me both from my Evangelical upbringing and my general tendency
toward obsessive thinking. Transitioning from a worldview that admitted of absolutely certain, clear
answers has increasingly helped me resist seeking such clear answers, however; and, over time, I have
come to find comfort in living without a sense of clear answers.
In 2010, I finished a short essay summarizing my worldview at that time. I wrote the essay both for
myself as symbolic of forming a coherent worldview and because I thought it contained what could be

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useful to others. Since 2010, though, my opinions on relatively fundamental matters have changed, and
my thoughts are always evolving. So, I wanted to write this book to capture my current worldview,
editing it as I update my beliefs––and, again, both for myself and for others. Hopefully, my current
worldview is more approaching of truth than previous versions of it. And, very hopefully, this book can
be helpful to some besides me––in whatever way.

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Acknowledgements
This book would be much less comprehensible without the guidance of some educators at the University
of Massachusetts at Amherst. I am also inevitably indebted to most educators throughout my life, from
East Longmeadow, Massachusetts, and from Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, Worcester State
College, Syracuse University, and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. I must also thank all of
the therapists and psychiatrists who I have seen over the years; without them, I would neither be able to
write this book nor write anything. And, whether or not we talk about philosophy often or even agree on
things when we do, my family and friends have offered great conversation to help me develop my own
philosophical thoughts. And yet, they offer far more than conversation; without them, I would either be
dead or, at best, non-functional. I most need to acknowledge my mother and father Darlene and David
Ballan; my brother Joseph Ballan; my friends Diana Spiegle, Melanie Cataldo, Molly Kienzler, Eric
Medawar, and Matt Barbis; and my supportive former roommates and friends Tyler Guilmette, Scott
Clark, Adam Kukulka, and Sean Speers. I would also like to thank my brother Joseph Ballan for his
extremely helpful feedback on drafts of this book.

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Section I
Introduction:
One Given Worldview
In this introductory section, I will describe how I think of my current "worldview", and I will describe the
general form that this book will take going forward.

To me, a "worldview" is a relatively small group of beliefs where someone believes each relatively
accurately represents reality and/or its features––while it focuses on themselves, the relationship between
themselves and reality besides themselves, and reality overall. Sections two through ten of this book will
serve as a relatively succinct but dense presentation of a given worldview––my current worldview.
My current worldview has undergone nearly constant evolution over time, and likely will continue
to undergo such evolution. (And, since I initially released this work, I have revised the presentation of
many of its ideas [which likely adds to a potentially already "patchwork-like" feel to this book].) I thus
lack confidence that my current worldview is as accurate as future versions of it may (hopefully) be.
However, I find that, over time, my worldview has generally only become more personally fulfilling.
I find that the increase in the personal fulfillment I receive from my worldview stems from, one, my
worldview's level of intuitiveness and, two, its level of coherence. In terms of my worldview's intuitive-
ness, while I am a consistently actively thinking person, I've generally felt only a decreasing level of pull
to doubt aspects of my worldview over the years. I've generally felt this decreasing level of pull to doubt
aspects of my worldview even on top of my generally decreasing obsessiveness. In terms of my
worldview's coherence, on the other hand, I've generally found only a decreasing amount of contradiction
within my worldview over the years. And, I've generally found this decreasing amount of contradiction
within my worldview even on top of my generally decreasing obsessiveness.
In any case, this book is not written specifically to defend my current worldview or any version of
it. A thorough defense of my ideas would make for a very long book, and I do not desire to persuade
others to believe as I do. Instead of a persuasion, this book is mainly written as an expression, written
both for myself and for others.
While I am not writing this book specifically as a defense of my worldview, I do want to portray
that I have reflected deeply on especially the main beliefs I present in this work. And, at times, this
portrayal only seems possible by specifically focusing on defending beliefs––i.e., "presenting beliefs that
support––i.e., 'contribute to'––my honest relatively high confidence in given beliefs".
As a whole, though, the main beliefs in this work are also defended simply by the degree of non-
contradiction among them, their relatively high amount, and the amount of general topics that they cover.
That is, a model of reality is ultimately presented that is relatively thorough, relatively detailed, and
seemingly non-contradictory––which would seem to raise a person's confidence in the truth of the
presented main beliefs.
Much more than a defense, though, this book is written as an expression for myself on two main
fronts. First, to me, this book symbolizes my rising out of years of inability to express any coherent
worldview. And, second, in presenting my seemingly coherent worldview in physical form, I can use this
book to reassure myself in times of mental disorientation. That is, I am still periodically pulled into a
state of mental disorientation because of my mental illness. In these times, I have found that reflecting on
my overall view of reality and how I fit into it offers me a helpful sense of grounding and orientation.
Putting my worldview into physical form can only make this reflecting easier, and for two main reasons.

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First, I can simply refer to this physical book in times of mental disorientation. And, second, in having
my worldview written out, my worldview becomes more pronounced in my own mind. Since my
worldview becomes more pronounced in my own mind, it becomes easier to reflect upon.
While this book is an expression written for myself, it is also meant to hopefully help other people.
In terms of its intention to help others, foremost, I'd wish that this work inspires people in the way that I
feel inspired by being able to present a coherent worldview after years of not being able to while
struggling with intense mental illness. Secondarily, but still importantly, I'd wish that this work is simply
found interesting and stimulating. And, thirdly, I'd wish that some people might helpfully adopt any
presented ideas of mine that happen to approach truth.
In terms of the format of this book, as said, this book's presentation of my worldview will be both
succinct and dense, and because it will take the format of an outline. An outline format would seem
beneficial in that a high amount of ideas can be presented in little space, allowing me to present my
worldview in a simple way. Also, clearly, an outline format allows this book to remain a manageable
length. If my goal were to do much more than attempt to relatively intelligibly express my worldview,
this book would lack a manageable length. It would lack a manageable length because any successful
defense––rather than mostly just expression––of my whole worldview would deserve an extreme amount
of space.
In terms of the content of this book, starting in section two, I will present my worldview by first
presenting beliefs I find to depict reality as a whole. Afterward, I will present beliefs about some of the
most "general"––i.e., "comprehensive"––features of reality. I will then present beliefs about progressive-
ly less general features of reality––which include features of myself and of the relationship between
myself and reality besides myself. I will not always present features in order of generalness, especially
when discussing my relationship with reality besides myself, but I will mostly be presenting my
worldview's beliefs in order of "generalness".
My presenting beliefs mostly in order of "generalness" seems helpful for two main reasons. For
one, presenting beliefs mostly in order of generalness allows for a basic sense of organization in
communication of my worldview. And, two, presenting beliefs mostly in order of generalness reveals
how beliefs within my worldview relate in terms of supporting one another. In terms of revealing how
beliefs support one another, beliefs I present about "less" general features of reality will helpfully often
already be introduced by, be explained by, and be logically dependent on already-discussed beliefs about
"more" general features. For example, a "less general" presented belief about how mental events alter
moment to moment will depend on and be supported by an earlier presented "more general" belief that
mental events can exist within only one moment.
As a note, in terms of what I mean specifically by "general" in the "general features" depicted by
my worldview, I am construing "generalness" here to mean "comprehensiveness", and, conversely,
"specificness" to mean "limitedness". Thus, to me, "general" features of some thing would simply
include more ("features" [or, rather, "sub-features", as section three will expound on]) of that thing, and
"specific" features of some thing would simply include less ("features" ["sub-features"]) of that thing.
Naturally, "generalness" can also be construed to mean "vagueness" or "simpleness", and
"specificness" can also be construed to mean "preciseness" or "detailedness", though. So, a "general"
feature of something could just be considered a "simple" feature, and a "specific" feature of something
could just be considered a "detailed" feature. In this book, however, at least in terms of the "general
features" depicted in my worldview, I will at least mainly be construing "generalness-to-specificness" to
mean "comprehensiveness-to-limitedness". Regardless of how I am conceiving of "generalness-to-
specificness" as I write, though, I believe it will be clear what I mean to reference.
In terms of what I mean by "features", I mean to reference what could also be called distinct, non-

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wholly-overlapping "aspects" of reality. Any of the following would be "features": a face's eyes, a face's
smoothness, and even a face's existence. However, two names for the same thing would only signify one
feature. For example, my face's contour and my face might arguably refer to the same, one thing.
As a related important note for what I write going forward, as I will discuss in section IV.1, when
I mention "types", I mean to reference what is actually a specific feature of reality. That is, by discussing
a "type" of thing, I mean to reference a group of things more similar to one another than to anything else
in reality. Also, by an "instance" of a "type", I mean to reference a member of a group of things more
similar to one another than to anything else in reality. (An instance of a type can be, loosely, called a
"type" itself, though. And, even without mentioning the word "type", the plural form of a noun––e.g.,
"pens", "apples"––often signifies a group of things that could be considered a "type".)
Relatedly, to me, any feature of reality could equally rightly be signified by a noun that either
ends in "-ness" (or a similar ending) or does not end in "-ness" (or a similar ending). However, some
features would more naturally be given words ending with "-ness" (or similar endings) than others. For
example, while I could call any given thought of mine either "thought" or "thoughtness", "thought"
would, of course, be a more natural term to use. On the other hand, features that can be called
"abstractions" seem often signified by words ending in "-ness" (and similar endings).
As I will discuss in section IV.2, an "abstraction" would be, roughly, the most similar group of
contained features of each member of any group. While I will often use words ending with "-ness" (and
similar endings) to signify abstractions, potentially confusingly, I will also use words ending in "-
ness" (and similar endings) to signify individual features that are not groups of "abstractions". In any
case, I hope that my usage of terms will clarify what I mean to reference: whether "abstractions" or
something else.
As another note, in terms of my writing, it will become clear that I write in a way that suggests
"reporting" of my beliefs over "claiming" them––such as in writing with a general tone of "expression"
over "assertion", and such as in writing while making liberal use of words like "seems". This partially
reflects my intention for this book to act as an expression rather than a thorough defense. However, even
more, I tend to write with a subjective tone in general. I tend to write this way in general because I am
not fully confident in any beliefs I present in any writing; and, I wish for of my writing to accurately
reflect my beliefs and attitudes whenever possible and reasonable. I am not fully confident in any of my
beliefs because, as I will discuss in section VI.3.2.2.1 of this book, I find that full confidence in beliefs is
dangerous––and also unwarranted.

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Section II
A Definition of Reality
In this section, I will present beliefs based on my worldview that I find to match reality as a whole.

•Reality could be defined as––i.e., represented as––"what exists", "the universe", or "everything". These
terms would stand for different relatively vague mental representations that, although vague, would
relatively accurately represent reality. That is, these representations would seem to correspond to reality,
but only vaguely, i.e., only to a relatively low degree. (On the other hand, representations of reality such
as "a dead toad" would not seem to correspond to reality at all.) (I will expound on my view of "degrees
of accuracy" in section III.2.3.3.)
Hopefully corresponding to reality and more accurately––i.e., more precisely––than "what exists",
"the universe", or "everything" would be a mental representation phrasable as (i.e., "linguistically
translatable" as): "self-illuminated infinitely internally- and externally-extending continuous
spatiotemporal contour". By "self-illuminated infinitely internally- and externally-extending continuous
spatiotemporal contour", I mean infinitely large and infinitely small spatiotemporal "smooth-to-jagged"
"variation" that is "continuous" (i.e., that exists without "interruption") and "conscious" (at least in some
way). I will begin detailing what I mean by terms I implement here in section II.1, which will follow
below.
Each of the terms extractable from "self-illuminated infinitely internally- and externally-extending
continuous spatiotemporal contour" or a similar formulation would stand for a representation that
relatively accurately depicts (i.e., represents, corresponds to) reality, but in its own way. However,
altogether, the terms would stand for a representation that much more accurately depicts reality. Such
terms on their own that would stand for relatively accurate representations include "self-illumination",
"infinity", "continuity", "variation", "contour", and others. The representations signified by these terms
would not be highly accurate (or even accurate to an equal degree), but a representation signified by a
combination of these terms would be much more highly accurate. One such combination of these terms
is "self-illuminated infinitely internally- and externally-extending continuous spatiotemporal contour".
Even more accurate than a representation phrasable as "self-illuminated infinitely internally- and
externally-extending continuous spatiotemporal contour" would be a far more complex representation,
phrasable as something much longer and more intricate. However, "self-illuminated infinitely internally-
and externally-extending continuous spatiotemporal contour" would be much more practical to refer to as
standing for an accurate representation of reality. That is, "self-illuminated infinitely internally- and
externally-extending continuous spatiotemporal contour" seems satisfiably succinct and seems to stand
for a satisfiably accurate representation of reality.

II.1 Continuity

•Again, by "self-illuminated infinitely internally- and externally-extending continuous spatiotemporal


contour", I mean infinitely large and infinitely small spatiotemporal "smooth-to-jagged" "variation" that
is "continuous" (i.e., that exists without "interruption") and "conscious" (at least in some way). Of terms
involved, I will first elucidate what I mean by the term "continuous" (along with its related word forms,
such as "continuity").

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•In reality being "continuous", I mean that there is no "interruption", no "disconnection", no true
"separation" within reality. In reality being continuous, reality's features are connected to––"touch"––all
other features at least indirectly. This allows for near or distant features to be "caused", "contributed to",
"explained by", "accounted for by" other features. And, this also allows for near or distant features to
"cause", "contribute to", "explain", and "account for" other features. No feature truly "separate" from
another would seem able to either contribute to or be contributed to by that other feature.
Alternatively, if there were true separation, this separation itself would not be contributed to,
caused, explained by, accounted for. And, this separation would not contribute to, cause, explain, or
account for anything else. And, yet, to me, everything in reality must be accounted for, and everything in
reality must account for something else. In other words, to me, reality must be "fully self-explanatory".
In being "fully self-explanatory", I mean that reality necessarily contains features that fully
account for reality in all its features. Such a reality would allow every feature in reality to be accounted
for (i.e., "caused", "contributed to") by another feature of reality, and such a reality would allow every
feature to account for another feature. In other words, upon accessing all of reality, one could have no
further questions about it, and no elements of reality would seem "random".
My belief that reality is fully self-explanatory arises out of my difficulty in imagining a non-fully-
self-explanatory reality (along with my difficulty in imagining believing in a non-fully-self-explanatory
reality). I find it much more imaginable that reality is fully self-explanatory than that the alternative is
true: that certain features of reality are explained by nothing and explain nothing, and that any
explanations tied to such features exist only in the form of mental representations.
My inclination to believe in the necessity of a fully self-explanatory reality reflects both "The
Principle of Sufficient Reason" and "Occam's Razor". The Principle of Sufficient Reason is a general
stance holding that everything must have a cause or reason. This principle has been held in one form or
another by a range of philosophers since antiquity (Belot 2001).
"Occam's (Ockham's) Razor", on the other hand, is so called because it is particularly tied to the
philosophy of William of Ockham (Ca.1287–1347), but widely assumed across philosophy throughout
history (Brampton 1964). It is the sentiment that "entities are not to be multiplied beyond necessity". In
other words, models of reality should not involve unnecessary structures––such as features that contribute
to nothing. This sentiment has proven a fruitful approach to explaining phenomena throughout the
history of scientific and philosophical inquiry.

(As I will detail in section three, "discontinuity" would exist––in the form of groups, which would be
features existing "on"/"over" reality rather than "within"/"in" reality. This "discontinuity" is not the
"separation" discussed above, though. The separation discussed above would prohibit reality as a whole
from being "discontinuous" [i.e., from being "discontinuity"]. And, instances of discontinuity [i.e.,
"groups"] themselves would be continuous with other features in reality. That is, groups would "touch"
what is not within the group.)

•As mentioned in section one, I consider "features" to be distinct, non-wholly-overlapping "aspects" of


reality. To offer more clarity, though, these features do not only include what features of reality humans
seem to naturally represent over others: namely features of distinct natures from their surroundings. That
is, humans tend to represent features with "enclosing" "barriers"––as will be expounded on in section
IV.4. For example, it is not very useful for humans to represent features such as half of a teapot along
with some of the air surrounding it. Still, both the teapot and the feature that is half of it plus some of its
surrounding air could be considered "features"––and, in one sense, even "objects". In normal usage,
though, the term "object" is reserved for features with clear boundaries such as whole teapots. So, I will

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avoid using the term "object" to refer to any given feature, except when it seems helpful. Throughout this
book, I will also usually refer to features that reflect what humans normally represent.

•To me, reality as being "fully self-explanatory" would necessitate its being "continuous", forbidding
"disconnection" (except in the case of "groups"). And, the non-existence of disconnection itself would
disallow three potential types of features of reality that would depend on such disconnection. For one,
traditionally-conceived "entities" would be disallowed; two, non-whole "irreconcilable divergence"––like
a "dualism" of "material and immaterial" as ordinarily conceived––would be disallowed; and, three, any
true "randomness" would be disallowed.
First, in terms of "entities" being disallowed, a continuous reality (i.e., "continuity") forbids
"disconnection", which forbids "entities" in their "traditional" sense. I am considering an "entity" here to
be "something independent from anything else", and I sense that such "entities" are normally conceptual-
ized as "disconnected" from anything. Additionally, to me, even reality itself would not be an entity––
since the continuity I see in reality would mean that even reality as a whole would be connected to all
within (and "on"/"over") it, and not "independent" from anything else. However, of all existent features,
the only one I would consider most like a classical "entity" would be reality itself. In any case, instead of
any traditional "entities", any parts of reality would be simply "aspects", "features" of reality that are at
least indirectly connected.
My view that only reality can even loosely be considered a classical "entity" overlaps with a
(currently unpopular) view termed "existence monism". Existence monism holds that there is really just
one concrete entity in reality, namely reality itself (Blanshard 1973). Even beyond this claim, though, I
consider that there is no entity––whether concrete or abstract––that can even loosely be considered a
classical "entity" other than reality itself.
Second, in terms of "irreconcilable divergence" being disallowed, irreconcilable divergence would
be a strong disconnection, and I cannot accept any true "disconnection" in reality. Such irreconcilable
divergence would exist between features of totally disparate natures, e.g., how "material" and
"immaterial" seem ordinarily conceived. And, since no such divergence would exist, either one of
"material" or "immaterial" as ordinarily conceived would not exist.
Also in terms of "irreconcilable divergence", the non-existence of irreconcilable divergence would
forbid the existence of any true "external features". All features "of" something would be "internal" to––
whether "in" or "on"/"over"––that other feature, not existing as tied to it somehow without any at least
indirect "touching" connection to it. Any other supposed "connection" between distant features seems
defendable only through insisting that the features "just are" connected somehow. There would then be
no feature of me "being part of x family" or "being next to y table", then. If accurate, mental impressions
(i.e., "thoughts and feelings") depicting my "being part of x family" or "being next to y table" features
would, instead, be depicting part of a "description". (I will discuss "descriptions" like this in section
III.2.3.)
Third, in terms of "true randomness" being disallowed, "true randomness" would involve features
that are unexplained or unnecessary. Unexplained features would have nothing accounting for, nothing
contributing to them. And, unnecessary features would themselves contribute to nothing. So, in either
case, features would lack contribution. Thus, true randomness would require a fractured, separated and
thus non-fully self-explanatory reality.
I admit that, without deep consideration, it seems that events in reality are more random than they
would be if reality were perfectly self-explanatory. However, such thinking would not occur when also
considering that, in a perfectly self-explanatory reality as infinite and complex as ours, there would
necessarily exist far more information (i.e., "accurate representations") relevant to reality's self-

14
explanation than a person could have access to. Given access to more of this information, what could
otherwise seem random would be represented as not random, since contributed to and explained.
Further, given all information relevant to reality's self-explanation, all of what could be considered
random is represented as contributed to and explained. So, despite my inability to access what would
explain everything, I can still believe that everything is explained. In other words, as I equate God with
reality as a whole––which necessarily holds all accurate representations––, everything makes sense to
God; and, I can rest in reflecting on this belief. (I will expound on my thoughts on God in sections IV.3.2
and X.1.)

II.2 Contour––Spacetime
•In "self-illuminated infinitely internally- and externally-extending continuous spatiotemporal contour",
"spatiotemporal contour" could also be called and considered "spacetime" (i.e., "space and time"),
assuming a certain view on "spacetime". Along the same lines, "spatiotemporal contour" could also
simply be referred to as "contour", assuming the same view on spacetime. Going forward, I will actually
often use the terms "spatiotemporal contour", "contour", and "spacetime" mostly interchangeably. I will
expound on my view on spacetime, but I will first introduce what is meant by the term "spacetime" at all.

•Regarding the term "spacetime" itself, based on what research has shown since the early twentieth
century, it is more accurate to say "spacetime" than "space and time", as "time" has been shown to be
more wedded into "space" than seemingly often naturally thought (Maudlin 2012). Also, instead of
saying "the dimension of time" or "the dimensions of space", it is more accurate to say "the timelike
dimension" or "the spacelike dimensions" (ibid.). And, rather than saying "a moment" or "an instant of
time", it is more accurate to say "a Cauchy hypersurface"––i.e., a three-dimensional "spatiotemporal
hypersurface" where all "non-spacelike curves" intersect it exactly once (Townsend 1997).
The contemporary scientific view of spacetime implies that time exists as "unmovingly" as the
dimension of space. That is, the future and past exist just as do distant parts of space. This view is
known as "eternalism" (Zimmerman 1996). Eternalism also implies a related view, known as
"perdurantism", that there is no "movement" of "enduring" objects throughout time; instead, every new
moment shows a new "version" of an object (Lewis 1986).
If there is no more realness to one moment than to any other, it would actually seem to me that there
wouldn't exist one moment with the special inherent status of being "the present" or "the current
moment". Instead, to me, every moment (Cauchy hypersurface) would be "present"/"current" to
(instantaneous) features that fully reside on them.
In terms of my view on "spacetime"––i.e., "contour"––, I hold four main beliefs. For one, I view
that nothing exists "outside" spacetime. To me, if anything exists outside of spacetime, its non-
connection with spacetime would necessitate "disconnection" and mean that reality is not continuous, a
position I cannot accept.
Two, I view that nothing exists in addition to spacetime at all. Anything existent would thus be
spacetime or be a feature of spacetime––including any "objects" traditionally believed to exist in addition
to spacetime. My view that nothing exists in addition to spacetime is similar to the view of "supersub-
stantivalism", that all objects are identical with only their spatiotemporal location (Sider 2001; Schaffer
2009). (By "identical" here, I mean "numerically identical"––i.e., the same exact, one thing [Hall 1933].
On the other hand, "qualitatively identical" would mean having the exact same "character", but being not
the same exact, one thing [ibid.].)

15
Three, because of my view that nothing exists in addition to spacetime, I view that all variation in
reality is accounted for by variation within spacetime. (Another term for this "variation" would be
"contour" itself. That is, representations phrasable as "variation" and "contour" could represent the same
features just about equally accurately.) So far, the mentioned three beliefs regarding spacetime imply that
spacetime is numerically identical with the universe and numerically identical with reality.
To expound on my view that variation in reality is (numerically) identical with variation within
spacetime, spacetime would involve variations that are more to less pronounced. Where there is only
little and/or only gradual shift in contour, such contour could be called "smooth"/"homogenous". Where
there is more and/or abrupt shift in contour, such contour could be called "jagged"/"variegated". Either
type of contour could be called an instance of "smoothness-to-jaggedness", though. And, either could be
called an instance of "smoothness" or "jaggedness"––when the individual terms are understood as
standing for a range of "smoothness-to-jaggedness".
Relatedly, as mentioned in the introduction to section two, each of the terms extractable from "self-
illuminated infinitely internally- and externally-extending continuous spatiotemporal contour" or a
similar formulation would stand for qualitatively distinct representations that each relatively accurately
depict reality as a whole, though in their own way and with different degrees of accuracy. However, not
each of these terms would signify a representation that accurately depicts any instance of (i.e., any
"feature" of) reality. For example, "infinity", "infinite internal extension", "infinite external extension",
"extension", "continuity", and other combinations of these terms would not signify representations that
accurately depict any instance of reality. On the other hand, any instance of reality could be relatively
accurately depicted by representations phrasable as "instances of" "spacetime", "contour", "variation",
"smoothness-to-jaggedness", or, as will be discussed, "self-illumination" or "self-illuminated contour".
Qualitatively distinct representations phrasable as "instances of" "spacetime", "contour",
"variation", "smoothness-to-jaggedness", "self-illumination", and "self-illuminated contour" would
relatively accurately depict any either contiguous or even discontiguous feature of reality. A discontigu-
ous feature in reality would be a certain group of features––an accurate representation of which could be
linguistically described as something like "x and y". So, a feature accurately depicted by a representation
linguistically translatable as "x and y" could also be accurately depicted by qualitatively distinct
representations linguistically translatable as "z smoothness-to-jaggedness", "z variation", "z contour", or
"z spacetime section". (Along these lines, even qualitatively distinct representations phrasable as "z red
wagon[s]", "z [instance(s) of] red", "z shape[s]", and other linguistic symbols could about equally
accurately represent the same one thing or group of things. [Again, I will discuss how I view "degrees of
accuracy" in section 2.3.1.2.1.])
As a note, my view that spacetime is essentially its contour is in line with the form of supersubstan-
tivalism that John Wheeler (1911-2008) unsuccessfully attempted to prove through scientific exploration
in the mid-twentieth century (Lehmkuhl 2018). After scientific exploration into this form of supersub-
stantivalism was abandoned in the early 1970's, the viewpoint unsurprisingly lost popularity. However,
while the unsuccessfulness of a scientific project should give one pause to question the views behind the
project, the views should not be thought fully negated. The history of scientific findings is often self-
contradictory (as is, even more so, the history of popular philosophical stances). Nevertheless, more
recent scientific exploration has revived hope in verifying a form of the supersubstantivalism championed
by Wheeler. For instance, the late Paul Wesson has more successfully led research into this basic form of
supersubstantivalsim while assuming five dimensions instead of four (Wesson 2006).
Even if new research into Wheeler's basic form of supersubstantivalism fails, though, the history of
science still demonstrates that developments in thought, research technique, and research outcomes
continually evolve and influence one another. Further, it is careful and orderly thinking itself (to be

16
discussed in section VI.3.2.3) that seems best to guide thinking patterns, rather than scientific findings
themselves. It is careful and orderly thinking itself that, one, ideally guides scientific research to begin
with and, two, can guide thinking patterns in general. If one values careful and orderly thinking,
scientific findings that implement demonstrably careful and orderly thinking should be valued as well.
However, since careful and orderly thinking can govern any type of thinking, careful and orderly thinking
should be be valued far more than only scientific findings that implement demonstrably careful and
orderly thinking. Even more, careful and orderly thinking can and should govern thinking about
scientific findings––even scientific findings that demonstrably implement careful and orderly thinking.
In terms of my fourth main belief regarding spacetime, my view on spacetime holds that spacetime
is the "fusion" of all points in spacetime (i.e., "spacetime points", "spatiotemporal points"). The term
"fusion" is a traditional English-speaking philosophical term referring to the one thing that any two or
more parts can be considered (Gruszczyński and Pietruszczak 2010). It is based on terminology coined
by Stanisław Leśniewski (1886-1939), but I do not hold fast to the original usage (ibid.). That is, I
consider fusions to be necessarily one continuous whole with no "discontiguous" parts. Also, to me, it
would be more accurate––though less natural––to say that spacetime is the fusion wholly "covering" the
group of all spatiotemporal points, rather than saying that spacetime is the "fusion of" all spatiotemporal
points.
Of course, my view that spacetime is the fusion "of" all spatiotemporal points assumes the existence
of such points. Such points would be zero-dimensional, though, which is extremely difficult to imagine.
To respond to this difficulty, zero-dimensional (less than infinitely small) "points" could be considered
merely aspects of mental models of reality (that exist within thoughts and feelings)––albeit mental
models that are used to produce consistent findings by experts in science and mathematics through
seemingly demonstrable careful, orderly thinking (Maudlin 2012). Zero-dimensional points would be
features that take up no area of spacetime and have no features "within" them, which could lead someone
to reject the existence of zero-dimensional points at all.
It is vaguely imaginable to me, however, that a feature could take up no area and still exist.
Additionally, as mentioned, the assumption of zero-dimensional points' existence in mathematical models
has helped produce consistent, demonstrably carefully and orderly thought-out findings in science and
mathematics. Both the imaginability of zero-dimensional points' existence and the clear and high
usefulness in assuming their existence leads me to find it less imaginable that zero-dimensional points
don't exist than that they do exist.
Also lending to the imaginability of zero-dimensional points' existence for me, though, is the even
greater imaginability of the existence of one-dimensional, two-dimensional, and three-dimensional
features: each of which would lack the spatiotemporal extension that larger dimensions (up to four or
possibly more) have. That is, one-dimensional lines would lack spatiotemporal extension in terms of
thickness, two-dimensional planes would lack spatiotemporal extension in terms of width, and three-
dimensional volumes would lack spatiotemporal extension in terms of temporal extension.
Zero-dimensional points would seem to have no spatiotemporal extension and yet somehow "add
up" to what is extended, though. This is highly difficult to imagine and can once again throw the
existence of zero-dimensional points into question. Specifically countering this temptation, though, it is
more imaginably true to me than not that decades of scientific findings based on the assumption of zero-
dimensional points are accurate than that they are wrong. Also, it is highly imaginable to me that I am
unable to clearly imagine everything that exists. My mental makeup is seemingly just incapable of
representing certain features of reality––such as how zero-dimensional points can add up to non-zero-
dimensional features and then on to even external infinity. Altogether, I am led to accept the existence of
(i.e., I am led to form relatively confident beliefs that there exist) zero-dimensional features.

17
If spacetime points do exist, their adding up to spatiotemporal extension would seem to require that
zero-dimensional points have some form of "contour", though––or, rather, are some form of contour.
This type of contour would need to be "non-extended contour", as difficult as this is to imagine. I find it
more imaginable that zero-dimensional points have some sort of contour and add up to non-zero-
dimensional features than that they lack any contour and yet still add up to non-zero-dimensional
features, however.
Further, if zero-dimensional points have distinct contours, this thought opens consideration over
whether any two seemingly qualitatively identical features may actually be qualitatively distinct. Even
given an internally and externally infinite spacetime, it is conceivable that no two features are qualitative-
ly identical. It is easily conceivable that two features are qualitatively identical. However, this ease of
conceivability might simply trace to the usefulness of considering various objects identical in practical
situations.

•Regarding "dimensions" of spacetime, I define the "zeroth dimension" to be the group of all zero-
dimensional points (i.e., of all zero-dimensional features), the "first dimension" to be the group of all
lines (i.e., of all one-dimensional features), the "second dimension" to be the group of all planes, the third
to be the group of all volumes, the fourth (i.e., "the timelike dimension") to be the group of all hyper-
volumes, and so on. (It has been suggested that there may be even several more than four dimensions of
spacetime [Bars, Nekoogar, and Terning 2010].)

II.3 Infinite Internal and External Extension


•In terms of "self-illuminated infinitely internally- and externally-extending continuous spatiotemporal
contour" being infinitely internally- and externally-extending, it is widely accepted among cosmologists
that at least space if not also time is infinite in extent (Demianski, Parijskij, and Sánchez 2003). If true,
then there would exist both "externally-extending infinity" and "internally-extending infinity".
"Internally-extending infinity" would be the infinite amount of points between any two points, and
"externally-extending infinity" would be the infinite distance extending beyond any given point in at least
the spacelike dimensions (if not also the singular timelike dimension).
More controversially, it has also been suggested that our––infinitely large––universe might be one
of even an infinite amount of others within a "multiverse" (Kragh 2009). Even if this is true, though, to
me, all of reality would still be "self-illuminated infinitely internally- and externally-extending continu-
ous spatiotemporal contour", and its infinite features would include the multiverse and the multiverse's
contained universes. And, similarly, all reality would still be "self-illuminated infinitely internally- and
externally-extending continuous spatiotemporal contour" even if there are more dimensions than the four
I can readily sense––as, again, some propose that there are even several more dimensions in addition to
the four we can measure (Bars, Nekoogar, and Terning 2010).

II.4 Self-Illumination
•In "self-illuminated infinitely internally- and externally-extending continuous spatiotemporal contour", I
consider the term "self-illumination" (and other forms of the term) to be roughly equatable with the term
"consciousness" (and other forms of the term). I am considering the term "consciousness" here (and most
of the time in this book) as meaning just "'brute' awareness", though––i.e., "experience"/"experiential-
ness", "primitive sentience". (In general usage, it seems that the term "consciousness" is also used in a

18
variety of other ways: such as "alertness", "self-awareness", and "awareness of surroundings" [Wilkes
1984].) More precisely than just "brutely aware 'consciousness'"/"experience", though, I find that "self-
illumination" is "experiential self-highlighting" of features.
Self-illuminated (i.e., "experiential", i.e., "conscious") features within my present, mental self, for
example, would include conscious mental impressions (i.e., conscious thoughts and feelings), parts of
conscious mental impressions, and combinations of parts and/or wholes of conscious mental impressions.
Parts (i.e., "sub-features") of conscious mental impressions would include "sub-impressions". A sub-
impression would be a "thought within a thought"––a "sub-thought"––or a "feeling within a feeling"––a
"sub-feeling". For example, a thought depicting an apple on a hand would contain distinct "sub-
thoughts" of the apple and of the hand. More precisely, though, a "sub-impression" would be a feature of
a mental impression able to be represented within another impression, whether or not the feature is also
an impression of its own. In addition to sub-impressions, though, parts of conscious mental impressions
would include self-illuminated features "smaller" than sub-impressions.
Features of conscious mental impressions smaller than sub-impressions would include features so
small that I don't seem able to represent them in the form of other thoughts. Even these very small
features would seem able to be self-illuminated, though––even if they are zero-dimensional points! Even
these very small features would seem able to be self-illuminated since, for one, they would add up to
larger features that are self-illuminated (such as sub-impressions). And, two, just as I can more easily
imagine that zero-dimensional points have (or, more precisely, "are") some sort of contour than not, I can
more easily imagine that zero-dimensional points have ("are") self-illuminated (or, more precisely, "self-
illumination") than not. That is, I can more easily imagine that non-extending but "contoured" spacetime
points add up to extending spatiotemporal area than that non-extending "non-contoured" spacetime points
somehow add up to extending spatiotemporal areas. Similarly, I can more easily imagine that self-
illuminated spacetime points add up to self-illuminated spatiotemporal areas than that non-self-illuminat-
ed spacetime points somehow add up to self-illuminated spatiotemporal areas. (This all implies that
either reality or any––even zero-dimensional––feature of reality could be relatively accurately represent-
ed as "self-illuminated contour", as was noted in section II.2.)
While very small features of mine would seem self-illuminated, they would seem self-illuminated
only to a degree mirroring their size. That is, very small features of mine would seem very dull in terms
of their self-illumination––which, along with their size, would seem to forbid my mind from representing
them in the form of thoughts.

•My view that all features of reality are self-illuminated––i.e., "experiential"––is in line with a general
view known as "panpsychism", which claims that everything in reality is "experiential" in some way
(Skrbina 2005). Like others who espouse panpsychism, I accept a form of "substance monism", where all
concrete objects are viewed as of one "highest type", usually "physical" or "mental" (Robinson 2003). I
don't necessarily consider there to be a "highest type", though, but I see that all reality itself––and all its
features––as self-illuminated. Addedly, I am not just discussing "concrete" objects, but all that would
exist in reality––all that seems to include both the "concrete" and "abstract". So, to me, even the
"abstract" is self-illuminated.
Abstract objects seem most often defined as objects that exist outside of space and time and that are
unable to interact with what is within space and time (Lewis 1986, 83). (Some types of abstract objects
include relations, numbers, and colors.) However, I find that this account of abstract objects assumes a
premise that I cannot accept: that anything exists outside of space and time at all. To me, if anything
exists outside of space and time, its non-connection with space and time would necessitate
"disconnection", which is unacceptable to me. As described in section II.2, I cannot accept that true

19
"disconnection" exists because I cannot accept that reality is not fully-self-explanatory, as any true
"disconnection" would imply.
I do accept that abstract objects exist, but just not as normally defined (thus taking a position of
"nominalism" regarding abstract objects [Goodman 1986]). As I will later demonstrate, beginning in
section III.1, I find that I can account for abstract objects by looking only to what's within spacetime.
Specifically, I find that all abstract objects would be "groups".

•In addition to considering that reality can be––relatively accurately––represented as "self-


illumination" (as well as "contour", "spacetime", etc.), I find that there is no "non-self-illumination" in
reality. I find that there is no "non-self-illumination" in reality because the existence of "non-self-
illumination" would imply the existence of "irreconcilable divergence" between "self-illumination"––
whose existence I can "verify" (within my conscious self)––and "non-self-illumination"––whose
existence I cannot "verify". And, as described in section II.1, the existence of "irreconcilable divergence"
would seem to ultimately indicate a reality that is not "fully self-explanatory"––which I cannot accept.
Instead, I find that "self-illumination" exists within (or, more precisely, relatively accurately "as") every
feature, and relatively accurately as reality.
On the other hand, one might attempt to claim that a feature of "non-self-illumination" is not
irreconcilably divergent from "self-illumination", in that either is just a feature of the other. For example,
"emergentism" is the view that experience ("self-illumination") is just a "property" (i.e., a "feature") of
the (non-self-illuminated, non-experiential) physical––namely of our physical brains (Lowe 2000).
However, emergentism still seems to unavoidably discuss two things of unavoidably irreconcilably
divergent natures: experience and the (non-self-illuminated) physical. That is, whether or not experience
is actually an "emergent property" of the physical, experience and the non-self-illuminated physical still
seem to be of irreconcilably divergent natures. (I do accept that the "physical" exists––but as "self-
illuminated" [i.e., "self-illumination"] rather than "non-self-illuminated" [i.e., "non-self-illumination].
And, more accurately, I consider that which is "physical" to be instances of self-illuminated continuous
spatiotemporal contour.)

20
Section III
Highly General Features of Reality
In this section, I will present beliefs based on my worldview that concern highly general––i.e., highly
comprehensive––features of reality as a whole. Going forward, I will mostly describe features of reality
in order of the more to less general.

•Reality is, of course, not the only thing that can be represented in a worldview. However, everything
else representable could be called a mere "feature" of reality. Of these features, some are more general
than others.
As presented in sections one and two, by "features", I simply mean distinct, non-wholly-overlap-
ping "aspects" of reality. These would include "sub-features" and "hyper-features". By "sub-features", I
mean features "contained within" larger features. By "hyper-features", I mean features "carried by"
features, i.e., existing "on" or "over" features (without being "separated" from the features they exist on/
over). "Hyper-features" would be groups of existing sub-features: whether or not these other features are
already groups. As I will detail in the section to follow, I consider groups to be "discontinuous or also
discontiguous features". (Standing in contrast to groups would be "fusions", which I defined in section
II.2 as "continuous wholes with no discontiguous parts".)
(As mentioned in section II.1, groups as "discontinuous" doesn't mean they involve the "separation"
rejected in section II.1. This "separation" was discussed as what would forbid reality as a whole from
being "discontinuous" [i.e., from being "discontinuity"]. Groups could even be called instances of
"discontinuity", but this discontinuity would be continuous with other features in reality and simply exist
"on"/"over" other features. True "separation" discussed would touch/connect to/contribute to/be
continuous with nothing.)
Except for zero-dimensional points––which would be without "room" for either sub-features or
hyper-features––, all features of reality along with reality itself would have both sub-features and hyper-
features. Fusions and groups would have different types of sub-features and hyper-features, though. That
is, fusions would only have sub-features that are other fusions contained "within" them. On the other
hand, groups would have sub-features that include fusions and potentially also groups (in the form of
"sub-groups"). Both fusions and groups would have groups––and only groups––as hyper-features,
though.
While zero-dimensional points would lack sub-features or hyper-features, they would still be sub-
features. Like all other features, they could equally rightly be represented as and called "features" or
"sub-features". Any feature could equally rightly be called a "feature" or a "sub-feature" because any
feature is contained within a larger feature. Additionally, of all features, some are callable "features",
"sub-features", and "hyper-features". These features are both contained within larger features and are
groups of other features.
Zero-dimensional points––and any feature––might be thought to contain numerically distinct and
yet wholly-overlapping "sub-features" like "self-illumination", "contour", "continuity", "zero-dimension-
alness", "pointness", "roundness", "blueness". However, it is much more imaginable to me that
(numerically distinct) features don't wholly overlap than that they do wholly overlap, mirroring a general
intuition among philosophers (Wiggins 1968). And, as noted in section II.2, the same thing can be
accurately represented in different ways to more or less equal degrees of accuracy. So, any feature that
could be seemingly relatively accurately represented as "containing" certain wholly-overlapping "sub-
features" would seem to, more accurately, be one feature represented in different ways. As suggested by

21
parenthetical notes in section two, though, while saying something like "a zero-dimensional point is self-
illumination" would be most precise, it is still more natural to say something like "a zero-dimensional
point has self-illumination".
(I see that no two things can wholly overlap especially because of my view that nothing exists in
addition to spacetime [and its locations] itself. I see that things can partially overlap, though. And, two
things partially overlapping may involve one larger feature wholly overlapping a smaller feature––while
the two don't wholly overlap.)

Taking reality as a whole itself for an example, since "continuous" (if "self-illuminated infinitely
internally- and externally-extending continuous spatiotemporal contour"), reality itself would be a fusion
rather than a group. And, the fusion that is reality would seem to include sub-features that are fusions
and hyper-features that are an endless array of groups. Additionally, as I will detail in the section to
follow, groups would even seem to include features like "reality plus myself", "(reality plus myself) plus
myself", "((reality plus myself) plus myself) plus myself" and so on for infinity. If groups like this with
"repeating" parts exist, reality itself would be a feature. More precisely, reality would be just a sub-
feature of its (endless) hyper-features.
Interestingly, if reality is just a (sub-) feature, though, and if it includes hyper-features that include
groups that go on forever, then no feature in reality––including reality itself––could have the "most" sub-
features, i.e., be "most general". On the other hand, reality would seem to have the "most" hyper-features
of all features. Reality would also be the most general fusion.
While reality would be the most general fusion, there would be no most general group. And, along
these lines, there would be no "highest group"––i.e., no "group of all groups". A mental representation
depicting a "group of all groups" would then seem not to correspond to anything existent.

As mentioned in section one, by "general features", I mean "comprehensive features"––i.e., features that
include relatively many sub-features of their own. On the other hand, to me, "specific features" mean
"limited features"––those features lacking relatively very many sub-features of their own. Various groups
in reality could be considered highly general––while, again, there would be no most general group.
While there would not seem to exist very most general groups, there would seem to exist various
most general types of groups of reality. ("Types" would be groups themselves whose members are more
similar to one another than to anything else in reality. Each member of such a group would be called an
"instance" of a type [or, very loosely, also a "type", in its own sense]. I will discuss "types" in section
IV.1.)

III.1 Groups (Abstract Objects)


•Before I discuss the most general types of groups in reality, I will expound on what I mean by "groups"
at all: "discontinuous features that are one feature and one or more simultaneously-existing features".
That is, any feature exists "individually", by itself, and as a "member" of a group––i.e., "simultaneously"
with other features. For example, x leaf on a tree exists by itself, but it also exists simultaneously with y
leaf on the tree. So, x leaf exists, and the pair of x leaf and y leaf exists. This means that there exists
what could be called a group that is leaves x and y––while there also exists leaf x individually and leaf y
individually.
Again, as individual features of reality, "leaf x" and "leaf y" are at once singular and "members" of
groups such as "leaves x and y". That is, "leaf x", for example, can be equally rightly represented as

22
either "individual (feature)" or as "member (feature)". As I will expound on in section III.2.3, though, a
representation phrasable as something like "member of z group" could not represent the same thing as
just "member". In being a "member" of group "leaves x and y", "leaf x" is "a sub-feature of a group
wholly discontinuous with the rest of the group".
While "leaf x" is representable as "individual feature" or "member feature", it is a member of
uncountable groups of which "leaves x and y" is just one––from "leaves x, y, and z" to "leaf x, baseballs
a, b, and c, and Jupiter". On the other hand, the group "leaves x and y" has only two members: "leaf x"
and "leaf y". While the group has other sub-features and also hyper-features, none of these sub-features
or hyper-features are also "members" of the group as are "leaf x" and "leaf y". That is, none are also
"sub-features that are wholly discontinuous with the rest of the group".
While no sub-features of the group "leaves x and y" are "members" of the group but for "leaf x" and
"leaf y", all sub-features and hyper-features of the group are members of uncountable other groups––as is
the whole group of leaves x and y itself. That is, while any feature is both an individual and a member, as
noted in the introduction to section three, any feature is also an individual feature and a sub-feature or
also hyper-feature.

As opposed to simultaneously-existing features like leaf x and leaf y, features that do not simultaneously
exist would not be members of a group. This would include one individual feature "and" itself. While I
can mentally depict one given leaf "twice" (or more), there would seem no existent feature of reality that
is that one leaf twice.
While there would seem no groups involving "direct" repetition like "x leaf and x leaf", there would
seem to exist groups involving "indirect" repetition like "x leaf and x-leaf-and-y-leaf", however. Such
groups could be called "hierarchical groups". While there would exist repetition within hierarchical
groups like "leaf x and leaves-x-and-y", this repetition isn't the "multiplication" of features or the "adding
to" reality; it is simply the simultaneous existence of groups.
"Hierarchical groups" like "x leaf and x-leaf-and-y-leaf" would seem to exist since x individual leaf
still exists even as there also exists a group of leaves x and y. And, since x individual leaf still exists even
as there also exists a group of leaves x and y, this would mean that x individual leaf exists simultaneously
with the group of leaves x and y. X leaf as existing simultaneously with the group of leaves x and y would
then mean that there exists a group that is "leaf x and leaves-x-and-y".
Any "hierarchical" group would be a "compound" group: a group that "groups together" features
where at least one is already a group. As opposed to "simple", "non-compound" groups, "compound"
groups have at least one "sub-group" as a member: such as "leaves-x-and-y" in the hierarchical group of
"leaf x and leaves-x-and-y". A non-hierarchical compound group, specifically, would not involve any
("direct" or "indirect") repetition, though. So, while a non-hierarchical compound group would have a
sub-group––e.g., "leaves-x-and-y"––, this sub-group would be "grouped" with a feature not already
within that sub-group. For instance, "leaves-x-and-y" might be grouped with "leaf z", forming the non-
hierarchical compound group "leaf z and leaves-x-and-y".
In terms of hierarchical (compound) groups specifically, though, at least one involved sub-group
would include as a member a feature that is present elsewhere in the group. That is, hierarchical
(compound) groups include at least one instance of (indirect) repetition. The highest amount of indirect
repetition within the hierarchical group could be said to add up to its amount of "levels". And, as
suggested in the introduction to section three, this amount of "levels" would seem to be infinite.
To provide an example of an infinitely hierarchical group, there would exist the hierarchical group
of "x grouped with already-grouped x and y, all grouped with x, all grouped with x, all grouped with x, all
grouped with x, all grouped with x...", and so on for infinity. Here, there would be an infinite amount of

23
levels, equalling the infinite amount of repetitions of x. In terms of which level is which, there would
seem to exist a bottom, lowest level that is "x and y"; the x grouped with this would form the second
level; the x grouped with all of this would form the third level; the x grouped with all of this would form
the fourth level; and so on.
In any hierarchical group, even if infinite, the "highest" level would be occupied by the already-
grouped members or also non-grouped (fusion) members that form the hierarchical group in total. On the
other hand, the lowest level of a hierarchical group would be occupied by the fusions involved in the sub-
group or sub-groups with the most amount of indirect repetition within the overall hierarchical group.
To provide examples, in the simple hierarchical group where each x and y are fusions, "x grouped
with already-grouped x and y", the individual fusions x and y would occupy the lowest level (of two
levels), and the group of "x and y" grouped with x would occur on the highest level (of two levels). As
another example, in the hierarchical group "already-grouped a and b grouped with already-grouped c and
d", each of a, b, c, and d would occupy the lowest level (of two levels), while the two groups of "a and b"
and "c and d" would occupy the highest level (of two levels).

Features in reality would seem to be either a fusion or a group––with no third option and with no
"combination" of the two. That is, if a fusion is (most simply put) a "continuous feature", and if a group
is (most simply put) a "discontinuous feature", anything besides a fusion or group would need to be either
a third option or a combination of the two. However, in terms of any combining of the two, any fusion
"combined" with a group would just be a group. And, in terms of a third option, something not
continuous would necessarily be discontinuous, and something not discontinuous would necessarily be
continuous. Everything in reality would then be either continuous or discontinuous––i.e., fusions or
groups.
If fusions are "continuous" and groups "discontinuous", the same could be said about the "contour"
that fusions and groups are, i.e., "have". Fusions––such as reality as a whole––"are" (i.e., "have")
contour that is "continuous" and without "interruption". Groups, on the other hand, are (i.e., have)
contour that is "discontinuous" and "interrupted". Fusions could then be said to have––i.e., be––"contin-
uous-contour", while groups could be said to have––i.e., be––"discontinuous-contour" (i.e., "disrupted-
continuous-contour", i.e., groups). Everything would then be either a fusion/continuous/continuous-
contour of a group/discontinuous/discontinuous-contour.
If everything is either continuous/continuous-contour/a fusion or discontinuous/discontinuous-
contour/a group, though, this would mean that even zero-dimensional points have/are one or the other.
There would be no room for discontinuity among the non-extension of zero-dimensional points, so zero-
dimensional points would be continuous or neither continuous nor discontinuous. There seems no third
option, though, so zero-dimensional points would seem necessarily continuous.
While the term "continuous" might imply spatial extension, zero-dimensional points can still be
considered continuous. As stated in section II.2, it is more imaginable to me that zero-dimensional points
exist than that they do not exist. Similarly, it is more imaginable to me that zero-dimensional points are
continuous than that they are either discontinuous or neither continuous nor discontinuous.
Anyway, if everything in reality is either continuous/continuous-contour/a fusion or discontinuous/
discontinuous-contour/a group, then a fusion could just as well be represented as and called
"continuous"/"continuous-contour" and vice versa. Just the same, a group could just as well be
represented as and called "discontinuous"/"discontinuous-contour" and vice versa. Continuous(ness)/
continuous-contour would then never be anything but fusions and discontinuous(ness)/discontinuous-
contour would never be anything but groups. Continuous(ness)/continuous-contour would then only
exist in the form of fusions and discontinuous(ness)/discontinuous-contour would exist only in the form

24
of groups.
If discontinuous(ness)/discontinuous-contour exists only in the form of groups, no sub-feature of
any feature would be discontinuous/discontinuous-contour/a group except in the case of a compound
group––which contains sub-features that are "sub-groups" (i.e., "groups"). All other sub-features of
features (i.e., "features" themselves) would only be fusions/continuous/continuous-contour. (As can be
seen, sub-groups exist as groups on their own, and groups exist as the sub-groups of other groups. So,
depending on the context, "groups" can also be called "sub-groups" and "sub-groups" can also be called
"groups".)
If all sub-features of features (i.e., "features") are fusions/continuous/continuous-contour except for
groups/sub-groups, no non-compound group would have any sub-features that are discontinuous, except
for sub-groups. The same would be true for sub-groups that are not themselves compound. At the same
time, a non-compound group/sub-group itself would be discontinuous(ness)/discontinuity. So, no sub-
features of a non-compound group/sub-group would "add up" to discontinuity. On the other hand, any of
a non-compound group's/sub-group's simultaneously-existing sub-features add up to a hyper-feature of
the non-compound group/sub-group.

As mentioned, in contrast with a fusion––a "continuous whole with no discontiguous parts"––, a group
could be defined as "discontinuous or also discontiguous features" or, more precisely, "discontinuous or
also discontiguous features that are one feature and one or more simultaneously-existing features". It is
worth pointing out then that while groups are usually considered to be discontiguous––like a group of
planets––, they may also be contiguous––like all cells of an apple would (imaginably) be. In either case,
though, groups have––and are––discontinuous contour. That is, they have/are a "quality"––i.e.,
contour––that is discontinuous.
Groups––and any features––may conceivably be "qualitatively identical", however. It might even
seem that any fusion––e.g., an apple––is necessarily qualitatively identical to a contiguous group that
wholly "covers" the fusion––e.g., all its cells. However, even while the group of all cells of an apple
would wholly "cover" the apple that is the fusion of those cells, its contour––i.e., its "quality"––would
seem distinct from the fusion of the apple. The contour/quality of the cells would seem distinct from the
fusion that is the apple because the cells would have highly "interrupted" discontinuous-contour, while
the apple would have smoothly-uninterrupted continuous-contour. (Here, "wholly covering" is not the
same as "wholly overlapping". As mentioned in the introduction of section three, to me, nothing at all
can "wholly overlap". However, features can partially overlap.)
In the same way, it may seem that a non-compound group and a compound group that "wholly
cover" each other might be necessarily qualitatively identical. For instance, the compound group of three
piles of apples might be considered qualitatively identical to the non-compound group of each individual
apple. However, it would seem that the pattern of "grouping" in the compound group allows a distinct
type of "interruption"––and thus a distinct type of (discontinuous-) contour––from the type of interrup-
tion in the non-compound group. Even two or more compound groups that "wholly cover" one another
would not necessarily be qualitatively identical–––as their patterns of "grouping" would be distinct,
allowing for distinct interruptions in their (discontinuous-) contours. (In terms of hierarchical [com-
pound] groups specifically, the "repetition" of members would seem to at least usually make for
distinguishable contours––along with the change in pattern of interruption.)

III.1.1 Illusory Abstract Objects

•As mentioned in section II.4, I find that all abstract objects would be "groups". These would include

25
descriptions, relations, and colors. However, there seem many features in reality that appear to be
"abstract" when they are not actually abstract. Some examples are "propositions", the number "zero", and
"nothingness".
In terms of "propositions"––i.e., "statements"––, I find that propositions could simply be described
as features that are one of two types. The first type of proposition would be a depicted belief that exists
as a thought within a thought (i.e., as a "sub-thought", a "sub-impression"). And, the second type of
proposition would be any actual belief across reality. (As I will discuss in section six, I consider a
"belief" to be a thought––as opposed to a feeling––that could be linguistically translated as a
"sentence"––rather than a "sentence fragment".)
In terms of the number "zero", as opposed to "zero-dimensional points", it seems to me that this
number would simply be a mental impression that is useful for mathematical problems rather than being a
mental impression that itself accurately corresponds to anything. Similarly, "nothingness" would seem to
me just an (inaccurate) mental impression.

III.1.1.1 Counterfactuals

•One notable type of illusory abstract object would be counterfactuals. Myself as being a penguin is not
the case, and thus myself as being a penguin can be considered a "counterfactual". A counterfactual like
"myself as being a penguin" is found within mental impressions, though. And, these mental impressions
are or contain "sub-impressions" that are built from "imagining"––i.e., "pretending"––holding some
belief: namely, that I am a penguin. (As I will discuss in section VI.3.2.1, imagining a scenario––like
being a penguin––would seem to involve, one, intending to form sensory impressions [i.e., "feelings"]
related to the scenario and, two, forming a belief that "I am able to have a belief that [I am a penguin]".)

•Counterfactuals can be used within accurate beliefs to represent features of imagined scenarios that
parallel features of real scenarios. More loosely, counterfactuals can be used within accurate beliefs to
represent what "would" be the case in counterfactual situations. One example of an accurate belief
housing such a counterfactual would be "If I were a penguin, I would never talk to anyone".
The purpose of the counterfactual within the belief "If I were a penguin, I would never talk to
anyone" can be more clearly observed upon rephrasing the belief. That is, the belief "If I were a penguin,
I would never talk to anyone" can seemingly more precisely be linguistically translated as "It is
alethically possible for me to believe that I am a penguin, penguins never talk to anyone, so it is
alethically possible for me to believe that I am a penguin who never talks to anyone". (As I will discuss
in section IV.2.1, "alethic possibility" can be defined as "ableness to happen". [White 1975].)
When rephrased like this, the belief seems to reveal that the imagined scenario of being a penguin
has been compared to the real scenario of penguins never talking to anyone. And, the belief seems to
reveal that this comparison yielded an updated imagined scenario: being a penguin that never talks to
anyone. As stated, the end result of the full belief then serves the purpose of representing features of an
imagined scenario that parallel features of a real scenario.
Just the same, a belief that "I would have been happier if I woke up earlier" seems to reveal that an
imagined scenario was compared to a real scenario in order to create a more detailed imagined scenario.
This comparison is more clearly observed upon rephrasing the belief as "It is alethically possible for me
to believe that I woke up around x time this morning, people who wake up around x time in situations like
mine experience a certain degree of happiness because of when they awoke, so it is alethically possible
for me to believe that I woke up around x time this morning and was of y higher degree of happiness".
If true, either of the two beliefs mentioned would seem to correspond simply to the contained

26
"conclusions" ("It is alethically possible for me to believe that I am a penguin who never talks to
anyone") formed in response to the contained "premises" ("It is alethically possible for me to believe that
I am a penguin" and "Penguins never talk to anyone"). As sub-beliefs, though, if accurate, the conclu-
sions "It is alethically possible for me to believe x" would correspond to the alethic possibility of
believing x.

III.2 Types of Groups


III.2.1 Infinity

•Infinity itself would appear to be a (type of) group. To me, the feature of "infinity" would simply be the
group of all (infinite) numbers––including whole numbers and fractions.
In terms of whole numbers specifically, a given whole number, such as "three" (i.e., "threeness"),
would seem to be a group that is the "abstraction" of all groups with three highest-level members. Here,
each group with three highest-level members could be called instances of "three" or "threeness". And, as
suggested in section one, and as I will focus on in section IV.2, an "abstraction" would be a special type
of group. That is, an "abstraction" is a group where, one, its members are each one or more sub-features
taken from each highest-level member of another specific group; and where, two, each of these sub-
features would be more similar to one another than any other group of sub-features taken from each
highest-level member of the same overall group.
Similar to the whole number "three", the feature of any given fraction––e.g., "one-half" (i.e., "half",
"one-half-ness", "halfness")––would seem to be an abstraction taken from each highest-level member of a
certain type of group, where this certain type of group could be called an instance of the given fraction.
Each of this certain type of group that is an instance of the given fraction would be composed of two sub-
groups which each hold a certain amount of members (within each sub-group) that differ in number from
each other. And, the sub-groups' members would differ in number from each other in a predictable
manner where a certain proportion is revealed.
More specifically, the two-sub-group groups from which the abstraction that is a given fraction is
taken would include one sub-group with a certain higher amount of members and another sub-group with
a certain lower amount of members. In addition, all the second sub-group's members would also occur in
the first sub-group. For example, one of the two sub-groups might include twice as many members as the
other, while the smaller sub-group's members would also occur in the larger sub-group. A concrete
example of such a group would include a group of six particular marbles "grouped" with three of those
marbles. Such a group of marbles could be called an instance of "one-half", while the abstraction formed
from all instances of "one-half" in reality would be called the fraction "one-half" itself.
More generally, as will be discussed more in section III.2.2.1, any given whole number or fraction
would be a "degree". In addition to the group of all whole numbers and the group of all fractions, types
of degrees would include all instances of volume, length, general size, colors, proportions, ratios, amount
of similarity, amount of pleasure, and amount of pain. Each of these types of degrees would be composed
of individual abstractions of a certain type, and where these abstractions exist as members of an "ordered
group", as will be discussed in section III.2.2.

•Even just the group of all whole numbers would show an infinity of numbers––but a type of infinity that
is called a "countable" infinity. Fractions, on the other hand, show "uncountable" infinity. Together, they
can be considered to simply show "infinity" (Grattan-Guinness 1971).

27
Even while infinity is definitionally limitless and thus unable to be "added" to, Georg Cantor
(1845-1918) used mathematics to display that infinities can be of different sizes (i.e., "cardinalities")
(Grattan-Guinness 1971). Even if some infinities would then––in a sense––be "more limitless" than
others, though, there could be no such thing as "infinity plus one"––as limitless infinity definitionally
cannot be added to, as difficult as this is to imagine.
As a note, "degrees" of "infinities" are more properly called "cardinalities" (roughly, "sizes")
(Grattan-Guinness 1971); and, any "groups" with infinite "members" are more properly called "proper
classes" (Van Heijenoort 1967). However, for simplicity, I prefer to let "infinite" signify any degree of
cardinality of a proper class. Also for simplicity, I prefer to let "group" signify either a "proper class" or a
"set" (a "set" being a group with a finitude of members) (Grattan-Guinness 1971).

•I am more subjectively confident that mental impressions depicting "infinity" and related features of
reality––like "infinitesimal features" and "smaller-than-infinitesimal (zero-dimensional) features"––are
accurate than that they are inaccurate. That is, I more subjectively confident that there exists infinity and
features related to infinity than otherwise. Similar to my justification for believing in zero-dimensional
features––outlined in section II.2––, my belief in features related to infinity is mostly due to (my beliefs
that represent) the consistent findings of experts in science and mathematics through seemingly
demonstrably careful, orderly thinking. More than just trusting such experts because of their intelligence,
access to privileged information, and demonstrated careful thinking, though, their findings are relied
upon repeatedly to repeatedly produce useful results, unlike any given finding within the fields of science
and mathematics.
While I am more subjectively confident that there exists infinity and related features, I am highly
confident that my mental impressions depicting infinity and related features are only accurate to a very
low, "vague" degree. Additionally, I am more subjectively confident that at least most human minds are
incapable of representing infinity and related features of reality to a high degree of accuracy than that at
least most human minds are capable of doing so.

•The term "numbers" here is considered to reference what are also called "cardinal numbers", rather than
"ordinal numbers". "Cardinal numbers" are numbers that indicate amount, size. On the other hand,
"ordinal numbers" are numbers that indicate the position of an item within an "ordered group". Ordinal
numbers would include what could equally be called "one", "two", "three" or "first", "second", "third".
Ordinal numbers would be abstractions of every instance of a certain type of group called "descriptions"
that will be discussed along with "ordered groups" in section III.2.2. (On the other hand, "numbers" as
certain figures––i.e., "shapes"––drawn on paper are neither cardinal nor ordinal.)

III.2.2 "Ordered Groups"

•"Ordered groups" would be hierarchical groups of an orderly, pattern-like nature. Ordered groups'
pattern follows a certain arrangement of their "levels". For example, a simple ordered group might
involve fusions a, b, and c, where the lowest level is a, the second-lowest is a and b, and the highest is a,
b, and c, and so on. There could be as few as two levels or as many as an infinite amount (i.e., "cardinali-
ty"), though. Regardless, even when a, b, and/or c are themselves groups, they could each be referred to
as an "ordered item" or "ordered member" (or, when [sub-] groups, "ordered sub-groups").
As an example, "the order that x actions were completed in" would be an ordered group. This
ordered group would be x actions, but where the first action would be grouped by itself, the second would

28
be group together with the first action (where the first action is "taken again"), the third would be grouped
with the first two (where the first two are "taken [yet] again"), the third would be grouped with the first
three (where the first three are "taken [yet] again"), and so on.
As another example of an "ordered group", the feature of "x direction" would, if in three
dimensions, be all zero-dimensionally-thin surfaces that (albeit only vaguely imaginably) add up to the
three dimensions. All these surfaces would be "sliced" facing a certain point in spacetime, and where all
the surfaces are grouped in the same manner as the ordered group of "the order that x actions were
completed in" is: the "first" surface is grouped by itself, the "second" is grouped with the first, and so
on––but where the "first" is furthest away from the point that the surfaces each face.
Unlike "the order that x actions were completed in" or "x direction", ordered groups may involve
dissimilar members as well. For example, an ordered group may involve vastly distinct concert pieces
played consecutively. Or, an ordered group may involve various objects placed in a row.

•In terms of "ordinal numbers" briefly discussed section III.2.1, any given ordinal number––e.g.,
"second" (i.e., "two")––would be the abstraction taken from the group of all "descriptions" that show a
given sub-feature as of x position––e.g., "second"––within an ordered group. Each of these descriptions
would be an ordered group with at least two ordered members, and the second of the two ordered
members would be "taken again". ("Descriptions" will be discussed in section III.2.3.)

III.2.2.1 "Degrees"

•As suggested in section III.2.1, a given "degree" of some type (e.g., "seven pounds") would be an
abstraction of a group whose highest-level members are of a certain type of a feature (e.g., where these
highest-level members are each things weighing seven pounds). Any of such highest-level members of
the group could be called an "instance" of the degree. However, since the term "instance" often suggests
"types", since "degree" is not synonymous with "type", and since any collection of degrees would already
belong to a "type" of degree (e.g., "weight"), I choose to instead use the term "exemplification" when
specifically discussing degrees. (As stated earlier, and as will be expounded upon in section IV.1, a
"type" is a group whose members––i.e., whose "instances"––are more similar to one another than to
anything else in reality.)
Just as it seems natural to give either "types" or "instances of types" the term "types", though, it
seems natural to give either "degrees" or "exemplifications/instances of degrees" the term "degrees". I
will at times choose to speak loosely in a way where I refer to "instances of types" and "exemplifications
of degrees" as respectively "types" and "degrees". However, I will try to only speak in this loose way
either when it is already clear that I am referencing either instances or exemplifications, or when speaking
more precisely would seem distracting to sentence flow or interpretation. In any case, though, stating that
a certain degree is attributable to––i.e., "of", "had by", "tied to", etc.––a certain feature of reality is a
relatively loose manner of speaking that does not explicitly equate an exemplification of a degree with
that degree––which can be preferable to either more more loose or more precise speaking.
To provide an example of a degree and an exemplification of itself, any "instance" of a specific
shade of blue (apart from mental images of itself) exists as a certain instance of contour. This contour is
of a certain type of makeup that allows for the reflection of a certain type of wavelength resulting in
humans' perception of the contour as a specific shade of "blue". Each such "instance" of a specific shade
of blue would be an "exemplification" of the "degree" that is that shade of blue.
It is not necessarily the case that each exemplification of a particular shade of blue is identical in
contour. However, each exemplification of a particular shade of blue would be examples of the same

29
color shade. That is, each exemplification forms a group whose abstraction is the particular shade of blue
itself––i.e., the "degree" that is the particular shade of blue itself.
To provide other examples of degrees, a "degree" that is "five feet" would be an abstraction
composed of every exemplification of five feet. That is, every feature relatively accurately represented
with a thought linguistically translatable as "five feet"––a certain depth into a certain pool, a certain
portion of a certain large ruler, a certain eleven-year-old human––could be called an exemplification of
five feet. As mentioned in section III.2.1, other types of degrees would include whole numbers, fractions,
volume, length, size, proportion, ratio, amount of similarity, amount of pleasure, and amount of pain.
As degrees come in types, though, a given exemplification of a degree would also be an "instance"
of a type of degree. For example, a given exemplification of a certain shade of blue could be about
equally accurately depicted with a representation phrasable as a given "instance of color"––where "color"
is a "type".
It wouldn't seem that such an exemplification of blue would also be an instance of blue, however––
where "blue" is (seemingly erroneously) considered a "type". That is, just as with "five feet", "five
through six feet", "x volume", "y amount of similarity", and "z shade of blue", "blue" would not seem to
qualify as a "type"––i.e., as a group whose members (i.e., "instances") are more similar to one another
than to anything else in reality. Instead, features accurately represented as "five feet", "five through six
feet", "x volume", "y amount of similarity", "z shade of blue", and "blue" seem much more accurately
represented as abstractions of groups who, neither in whole nor just in highest-level members, are groups
as "unique" as groups that are "types". That is, neither the group of exemplifications of a degree nor the
group to which the exemplifications are highest-level members are as "unique" as the groups that are the
"types" of "length" (i.e., "lengths"), "volume" (i.e., "volumes"), "similarity" (i.e., "similarities"), or
"color" (i.e., "colors").
(As a note, while accurate representations of "types" would seem to be linguistically translated as
either singular or plural, accurate representations of "abstractions" would only seem to be linguistically
translated as singular. That is, the "type" that is all lengths seems able to be accurately depicted with
representations translated as either "lengths" [plural] or "length" [singular]; however, the "abstraction" of
all lengths seems able to be accurately depicted with representations translated only as
"length" [singular].)

In addition to existing as an abstraction of a certain group of features, a given degree would also exist as
an ordered item of a certain ordered group that could be called an "ordered range" or simply "order".
Such an ordered group involves ordered items that are degrees of a certain type and where neighboring
degrees are most similar while furthest degrees are least similar. In addition, no degree of the type of
involved degrees would be "missing". That is, for example, with an ordered range of "lengths of rulers",
the degree of length of every ruler in reality would be included––while this wouldn't include every degree
of length in general. If length in general were the type, every degree of length would be included in the
ordered range.
An ordered range itself may have no end––such as with whole numbers. An ordered range may
also or instead have no starting point––such as with fractions, since there is no smallest fraction.
However, for degrees such as colors, there is a specific starting and ending point. (For colors, the starting
point would be a deep red shade and the ending point a deep violet. These shades are limited respectively
by the slowest and fastest wavelengths able to stimulate the eye and initiate human perception of color.)
Within an ordered range of color, for instance, the deepest red would be repeated the most and the
deepest violet repeated the least––assuming a certain direction to this ordered range. That is, every
ordered range relates to a version whose order is backwards. So, for example, accurate thoughts of "the

30
forward order of whole numbers" and "the backward order of whole numbers" would correspond to
different things. Nevertheless, a thought describable as "the order of whole numbers" would usually
seem to refer to the ordered range of numbers that proceeds in a forward direction.
As opposed to an "ordered range", a "range" of degrees would not involve repetition. So, for
example, simply the group of each degree of color itself––without mind to order––would form a "range"
of color. Since this range would involve all degrees of one type, though, namely the type that is "color",
the range could also be called a "scale". Ordered groups that are ordered ranges involving only shades of
green would also involve a range of colors––just not what could also be called a (or, rather, the) "scale"
of colors.
Related to ordered ranges would be "ranking groups". A ranking group would be similar to an
ordered range, but where, instead of degrees ordered, the ordered items would order groups of "exempli-
fications" of such degrees. For instance, an ordered range of volume is composed of ordered degrees of
volume. On the other hand, then, a "ranking group" of the volume would be composed of ordered sub-
groups that are the exemplifications of degrees of volume.
Whether within an ordered range or ranking group, though, an ordered item may not involve more
than one degree or exemplification. That is, in an ordered range, for example, a degree might relate to
only one exemplification of itself––namely itself. In this case, there is only one exemplification of the
degree, which is itself, and from which no abstraction could be formed––unless the singular degree/
exemplification here is also called an "abstraction". And, for a ranking group related to such an ordered
range, even if a group, the ordered item would not accompany fusions or other groups that could be
called exemplifications of the same degree.
To expound on cases of singular ordered items within ordered ranges and ranking groups, a certain
type of degree or exemplification at hand might be sufficiently narrow so that ordered members involve
only few or only a singular degree or exemplification. For example, an ordered range involving a certain
brand of clothing might include degrees that are abstractions of various released styles. And, some of
these styles might have been limited-edition or even custom-made. For limited-edition styles, the degrees
would involve only a relative few styles; for custom-made styles, the degrees would involve only one
style. So, in an ordered range involving a brand of clothing with limited-edition and custom-made styles,
certain degrees would involve relatively few exemplifications; others would involve only one exemplifi-
cation––namely themselves.

•For a given group of features each of a certain degree on a certain ordered range, the total group can also
be considered of an "average", or "net", degree on that same ordered range. For example, while a bowl of
grapes contains grapes of all different weights (i.e., of all different degrees of weight), the bowl of grapes
contains grapes with only one average weight (i.e., with only one "average" degree of weight). As can be
seen, what could be called an "average degree" of weight here is distinct from a degree of weight that
could be called an "individual degree" of weight. Although, any group of average degrees could be
aligned in an ordered group so that they form an ordered range whose "degrees" are what could also be
called "average degrees"!
In types of ordered ranges that include a "negative" side and a "positive" side, "average degrees" are
more normally called "net degrees". Examples of ordered ranges with negative and positive sides include
the scales of "inaccuracy-to-accuracy", "pain-to-pleasure", or "deficit-to-surplus". Someone with
multiple instances of both ("negative") pain and ("positive") pleasure in a day, for instance, will have a
"net degree" of pain-to-pleasure that is based on their "individual degrees" of pain-to-pleasure.

III.2.3 "Descriptions"

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•Features linguistically translatable as "x as a (sub-) feature of y" or "y as containing the (sub-) feature x"
would be hierarchical groups that could be called "descriptions". The first formulation––"x as a (sub-)
feature of y" ––would represent an external description, while the second formulation––"y as containing
the (sub-) feature x"––would represent an internal description. An external description focuses on what
is external to a contained feature, while an internal description focuses on what is internal to a containing
feature. (To be clear, no "description" would be of the form "x as a hyper-feature of y" or "y as having the
hyper-feature of x", though y could itself be a group.)
A description may be "non-specialized" or "specialized". A non-specialized description would
"show" x as one of all sub-features of y. On the other hand, a specialized description (to be discussed in
section III.2.3.1) would "show" x as one of only a select group of sub-features of y. Apart from these
hierarchical groups that could be called descriptions, confusingly, any "representation" could be given the
term "description". I am reserving the term "description" here for the type of hierarchical groups
presented, though.
In terms of an external non-specialized description specifically, a group of this type would include,
one, x grouped with all of y's sub-features (of which x is already a member, thus now taken twice) to form
the (sub-) group "x-and-all-of-y's-sub-features"; and, two, this "x-and-all-of-y's-sub-features" grouped
with y itself. External non-specialized descriptions like these would "show" x as contained within y,
where x is the "contained" and y is the "container".
In terms of an internal non-specialized description, on the other hand, a group of this type would be
the same as an external non-specialized description, but where y is also grouped with the whole external
description. So, an internal description non-specialized would include, one, the (sub-) group "x-and-all-
of-y's-sub-features" grouped together with y itself; and, two, this "y grouped with x-and-all-of-y's-sub-
features" grouped with y (again).
Internal descriptions like the above would "show" exactly what external descriptions show, but with
added focus on "y". This would allow internal descriptions to "show" "x as contained within y, where x is
the 'contained' and y is the 'container", just like an external description, but with the addition of "y as
containing x". So, ultimately, internal features could be said to "show" "x as contained within y, and y as
containing x, where x is the 'contained' and y is the 'container'".
With either external or internal (non-specialized or specialized) descriptions, though, the containing
y could be called the "context" of the description, and the contained x could be called the "emphasis" of
the description. And, in either case, both the (contained) "emphasis" and (containing) "context" could be
called "focuses" of the group, in that one is "repeated" most and the other is "repeated" least. That is, in
either an external or internal description, x is "repeated" most while y is "repeated" least.
In terms of the external non-specialized description "x knee as contained within y body", for an
example, "y body" would be the "context" while "x knee" would be the "emphasis". X knee would the
"emphasis" of the description because it is most repeated within the description. (If it were tied for the
most repetitions, though, it would be one of two or more emphases of the description.) Just the same, y
body would be the "context" of the description because it is repeated least within the description. (If it
were tied for the least repetitions, though, it would be one of two or more contexts of the description.)
And, whether an "emphasis" or "context", though, either x knee or y body can be considered a "focus" of
a description.
As suggested by a discussion in section II.1, "contexts" could be represented as and called "external
features" (not "external descriptions", though)––while not highly accurately so. Such a label would be
tempting, though, in that, for instance, my knee can be said to "have"––while not containing––a feature
of "being part of y body". Still, my rejection of irreconcilable divergence (detailed in section II.1) would

32
forbid the existence of distant features from somehow being "linked" unless there is at least indirect
connection of "touch" between them.
More accurate than the thought "my knee as 'having' the feature of 'being a part of my body'" would
be the thought "my knee as contained within my body" or "my body as containing my knee". And, rather
than there existing an "external feature" of "being part of y body", there exists a context of "y body"
within a description (internal or external) where "x knee" is the emphasis. (Representing the context of a
description––when not just representing the feature that happens to be that context––would be represent-
ing a new, specialized description that is the original description but selected with its context. This
representation would depict the context within its original description, rather than just depict the context
by itself. Also, in regard to the above referenced descriptions, the external non-specialized description
phrasable as "x knee as contained within y body" would be the hierarchical group of x knee, grouped with
all of y body's sub-features, all grouped with y body; the internal non-specialized description phrasable as
"y body as containing x knee" would be this but all grouped again with y body.)

•My view on "descriptions" suggests that descriptions are indeed distinct from––but contain––what they
describe (i.e., the focuses). That is, even if a candy has a sub-feature of sweetness, for example, the
feature of that candy would be a distinct feature from the feature that is the (internal) description of that
candy as containing sweetness. That is, the feature "y candy" is a distinct feature in reality from the
internal description "y candy (which contains sweetness) as containing x sweetness"––just as it is distinct
from the related external description, and just as x sweetness is distinct from these internal and external
descriptions.
Even while "y candy" and "z description of x candy" would be distinct, I wouldn't seem to intend to
form a thought depicting only "z description of x candy" without also intending to focus on "y candy" and
related non-descriptions. That is, I wouldn't seem to intend to represent a description that centers on y
candy without the intention of also focusing on "y candy" and one or more of its sub-features
individually.

•One notable type of hierarchical group related to a description would be a hierarchical group that is
simply a group of two or more descriptions––which thoughts akin to a complex sentence can represent.
Such a variation on a description could be called a "compound description".
Another notable type of hierarchical group more loosely related to a description would be a group
that could be simply called a "definition". In terms of a "definition", while any representation of a feature
could be considered a less to more accurate "definition", the term "definition" also seems used in a way
that stands for a representation of a certain type of hierarchical group. That is, the term "definition"
seems to correspond to a hierarchical group of descriptions where each has a focus (emphasis or context)
of x feature. More precisely, a "definition" here would seem to be a group of descriptions of x where each
description shows x as containing or contained by a certain other feature; and, of these certain other
features, no feature besides x would both contain all the certain other features that are contained by x here
and be contained by all the certain other features that contain x here.
More than one "definition" could apply to a feature (x) though––if there is more than one group of
contained and/or containing features of x where no not-x is both contained in all the features that contain
x and/or containing of all the features that are contained by x.
"Definitions" like this would seem represented by relatively detailed accurate mental impressions
that depict a certain feature of reality along with certain features "internal" and "external" to itself. On
the other hand, as stated, any representation of a feature can be considered a less to more accurate
"definition".

33
•While not technically "types" of "descriptions", types of hierarchical groups very similar to and closely
related to "descriptions" could usefully be referred to, loosely, as "descriptions". There would seem to be
an infinite array of types of hierarchical groups that might seem to fit this criteria, however. And, there
would seem to be an even larger array of types of hierarchical groups that are similar to be not related to
"descriptions".
Of all these types of groups, very few would humans find need to represent. For example, I don't
seem to naturally pursue accurately representing a hierarchical group of myself grouped with all sub-
features of Earth except for half of a shoe in Turkey. Neither do I naturally pursue accurately represent-
ing a hierarchical group of a sub-feature of an egg grouped with that egg (and not also all of the egg's
sub-features). This all points out that there are infinite variations on types of groups, and that hardly any
of them would be naturally desired to have accurately represented.

III.2.3.1 "Specialized Descriptions"

•As suggested, "specialized descriptions" would be descriptions where the emphasis (i.e., the highest-
repetition member) is grouped with ("selected with") an amount of sub-features of the context (i.e., the
lowest-repetition member) that is less than the total amount.
One example of a "specialized description" would be the external description "x cell in y tree".
Here, as opposed to a "non-specialized description", a cell is not shown to be one of all sub-features of
the fusion that is the tree; instead, the cell is shown to be one of only all cells in the tree. So, the
specialized description here would be x cell, grouped with all cells of y tree, all grouped with y tree.
One example of a specialized description that is a more complex group would be the external
description of "x group of eggs within y group of z groups of eggs". Here, the specialized description is x
selected along with y, so that the overall specialized description is x group of eggs selected together with
the, larger, y group of eggs.
Another, still more complex, example of a "specialized description" would be "approximately x",
such as "approximately five feet". "Approximately x" would seem to be a specialized external descrip-
tion that includes x, but also a certain range of other instances of a type of which x is also an instance.
For example, "approximately five feet" would include "five feet", along with a certain range of lengths,
where "five feet" is within such a range.
A certain range of lengths––e.g., "range of lengths z"––would be taken from the ordered group
whose members ordered are instances of a certain type of abstraction. Such a type of abstraction could
just as well be "lengths had by rulers" as "lengths (in general)". And, the members ordered would be
ordered from lowest to highest (or highest to lowest) lengths and may include all or just a segment of the
instances of the type of abstraction––such as all or just a segment of the instances of "lengths had by
rulers" or "lengths (in general)".
In any case, "approximately x" would not just be the group of x and a given range of which x is
already a member. The (hierarchical) group of "approximately x" would include this group, but alongside
the hierarchical group that is every specialized description composed of one ordered member of the range
selected together with the entire range––which already includes x selected together with the range. So,
"approximately x" would be a hierarchical group where x selected with range z is selected together with y,
where y is the sub-group of every ordered member of range z (including x again) selected together with
range z.
Relatedly, "approximately x" might involve an accurate mental impression phrasable as "approxi-
mately three" or, phrased more precisely, "of y range (where y range is one to four [which includes

34
three])". "Approximately x" might also involve an accurate mental impression phrasable as "approxi-
mately accurate" or, phrased more precisely, "of x range of degrees of inaccuracy (of mental
impressions)". (I will present my view of "degrees of inaccuracy" [which I distinguish from "degrees of
accuracy"] in section III.2.3.3.)

•Another notable type of specialized description could be represented as involving "or"––including


features of "a or b" and "any a". For a feature of "a or b", a would be shown as of the group of "a and b"
and b would also be shown as of the group of "a and b". So, here, "a or b" would involve a group that is
a description with two sub-groups that are also descriptions. In other words, "a or b" would be a
description with two emphases that are each themselves descriptions.
As for the description "any a", "any a" would be an extended version of "a or b"––where "any a"
would be a hierarchical group describable as "a1 or a2 or a3 or...". More precisely, "any a" would
contain as many highest-level members as there are members of a, and each of these highest-level
members would be descriptions that show a certain member of a as being of the group a.

III.2.3.1.1 "Negative Descriptions"

•Any feature describable as "x as not y"––however complex a feature "y" represents––would seem simply
a "specialized external description" where a specific "sub-impression" (i.e., "partial thought") within
reality linguistically translatable as "x as y" is shown to be one of all inaccurate mental impressions and
sub-impressions. Such a specialized external description could be called a "negative description".
As an example of a "negative description", an accurate mental impression phrasable as "that rose as
not black" would (depict and) represent a certain sub-feature within itself, (linguistically translatable as)
"that rose as black", as one of all inaccurate mental impressions and sub-impressions. A mental
impression phrasable as "that rose as not black" would then seem more precisely phrased as "'that rose as
black' as an inaccurate mental impression".

•A feature describable as "not-x" would not be a negative description like "that rose as not black", though.
Such a feature would seem simply a group of either all or any features (of a specific type or not) except x
feature (that would be of a specific type or not).

III.2.3.2 "Relations"

•One main type of "description" would be a "relation"––i.e., "a 'comparison' between two or more
features". More precisely, a relation would be a description with a context that appears twice or more
within the overall description; where, in each appearance, a distinct feature is depicted as a sub-feature
within the context; and where the distinct feature is depicted as either a sub-feature of all the context's
sub-features or of only some, making the context and its depicted sub-feature either a non-specialized or
specialized description (occurring within the overall description).
One example of a relation would be "you and I as within the same family". Here, a group that is y
family would be grouped with "you"; and, the same y family would be grouped with "I"; these two
specialized descriptions would then be grouped together. Here, the context of "y family" occurs twice
within the overall relation.
Relations may also involve a repetition of the same context where the context is a "ranking group",
which allows a more detailed comparison of features. As discussed in section III.2.2.1, a ranking group

35
would be similar to an ordered range, but where, instead of degrees ordered, the ordered items would
order groups of "exemplifications" of such degrees. One example of such a "ranking relation" would be
"you and I as small (to a certain degree)". Here, "you" and "I" would be shown separately as of the
context that is a certain extent of a ranking group of size, and where "you" and "I" would be positioned
on the same or nearby ordered sub-groups, where an abstraction of a given size of smallness (to-
largeness) could be formed from each such sub-group. Both "you" and "I" would "tie" for the "emphasis"
of the overall relation––affording the overall relation two emphases.
A similar type of ranking relation to "you and I as small (to a certain degree)" would be "myself as
smaller than you (to a certain degree)". This latter relation would be the same as the former, but where
"I"/"myself" and "you" are selected together, then "I"/"myself" (who is smaller) is selected again. Unlike
the former relation, which could be called a "non-directional ranking relation", "myself as smaller than
you" could be called a "directional ranking relation". The difference is that non-directional ranking
relations have two or more emphases, while directional ranking relations would only have one.

•As mentioned in section III.2.3, descriptions can be combined to create groups that could be called
"compound descriptions" (which are loosely callable descriptions). In addition, since relations are types
of descriptions, combined relations could be called "compound relations" (or "compound descriptions").

•While features depicted by representations linguistically translatable as "x as similar to y" or "x as near
to y" would seem to be "relations", no representations phrasable as simply either "x as similar", "x as
near", "similar to y", "near to y", "similar", or "near" would ever seem to be accurate, unless referring to
what could be called "all instances of x as similar to something", "all instances of x as near to
something", "all instances of something as being similar to y", "all instances of something as being near
to y", "all instances of something as being similar to something else", or "all instances of something as
being near to something else".

•In contrast to "relations", a "relationship" between x and y would be the group of all features that each
include at least one sub-feature that is a sub-feature of x and at least one sub-feature that is a sub-feature
of y. To provide an example, I would define the relationship between myself and all besides myself as
"the group of all features that each include at least one sub-feature that is a sub-feature of my present
mental self, and at least one sub-feature that is a sub-feature of something that shares no sub-features with
my present mental self".

III.2.3.3 Accuracy and Representations

•One type of description that I commonly (attempt to) represent would be "x mental impression (i.e.,
thought or feeling) as accurate". Such a (specialized) description would be what any accurate beliefs (i.e.,
thoughts linguistically translatable as sentences) would correspond to. More precisely, such a description
would first involve the group of all (grouped) pairs of features where one accurately represents the other;
then, the pair that is x given thought and what it accurately represents would be grouped with the overall
group; and, then, x given thought would alone be grouped with the pair of itself and what it accurately
represents.
One feature accurately representing another would be "perfectly proportionately similar" to the
other. By "perfect proportionate similarity"––i.e., accuracy, i.e., truth––I mean to reference a similarity
between (i.e., that "is") two features where the most detailed proportions of the variation in one feature

36
(i.e., a "representation") exactly match the most or less-than-most detailed proportions of the variation in
another feature (i.e., the "target of representation"). (If the most detailed proportions of each are equal,
the features are identical.) That is, the proportions attributable to the the greatest detail of the variation/
contour in one feature exactly match to the proportions attributable to any level of detail of the variation/
contour in another feature.
In line with discussion of "degrees" in section III.2.2.1, any group with two highest-level members
could be said to be an exemplification of a degree of "similarity". Just the same, any of these groups
could be considered an "instance" of the group that is the "type" that is "similarity" itself. So, in addition
to any group with two highest-level members being an "exemplification" of a degree of similarity, any
such group could also be accurately depicted with a representation phrasable as an "instance" of
similarity. It is the same with "perfect proportionate similarity", except that instances of––i.e., exemplifi-
cations of degrees of––perfect proportionate similarity are of a ("sub-") type within similarity.
The mentioned proportions of variation between the two members of an exemplification of a degree
of "perfect proportionate similarity" refer not to measured sizes, but to ratios between different variations
among features. These variations need not be spatiotemporally extended, however. For example, the
highest level of detail concerning a feature would count every nuance of contour down to the "non-
extended" contour of zero-dimensional points that are members of and/or overlapped by a given feature.
Additionally, by two such proportions "exactly matching", I mean that the proportions belong to the
same ordered item within an ordered group that would be a "ranking group". As discussed in section
III.2.2.1, a "ranking group" would be an ordered group similar to an "ordered range". That is, an ordered
range would be an ordered group whose ordered items are abstractions of the sub-groups that are ordered
items within "ranking group". So, the proportions of two features might both exist within a sub-group
that is one ordered item within the ranking group of all proportions.
In terms of lower "levels" of detail of the variation/contour of a feature, lower levels count
uniformly less detail akin to how a blurring visual field blurs the details of an object uniformly. That is,
the most pronounced variation/contour of an object will remain while less pronounced variation/contour
will blur, proportionate to how pronounced the variation/contour is. The very lowest level of detail
concerning the variation/contour of a feature would only count what is very most pronounced.
Altogether, then, one feature "perfectly proportionately similar" to another would correspond to and
perfectly map out another feature with some degree of vagueness-to-detailedness––i.e., with some
"degree of accuracy".

Any pair of perfectly proportionately similar features could just as well be called an instance of "perfect
proportionate similarity"––i.e., accuracy––itself, though. As stated in section II.2, an instance of two or
more things could about equally accurately be represented by representations such as "z variation", "x and
y", or "z contour"––or, less universally, as also "z red wagons", "z (instances of) red", "z shapes", etc. In
contrast to such a pair of perfectly proportionately similar features, however, a relation of "x as perfectly
proportionately similar to y" would include the emphasis x selected together with the pair of x and y,
where x and y are separately selected with the same ranking group of the overall range of perfect
proportionate similarity––where the pair already exists. A representation of "x as perfectly proportionate-
ly similar to y" could also about equally be represented by thoughts linguistically translated either "x as
accurately representing y" or even "perfect proportionate similarity as existing 'between' x and y".
As for degrees of perfect proportionate similarity (i.e., "accuracy") themselves, these degrees would
exist on the range based on all instances of perfect proportionate similarity (i.e., on the "scale" of perfect
proportionate similarity). This range takes from a certain ordered group (i.e., the "order" [or, "ordered
range"] of all degrees of perfect proportionate similarity) all its degrees, i.e., all its abstractions that are

37
ordered. Each of these abstractions is a group composed of one or more sub-features from each highest-
level member of a certain other group. This certain other group is composed of highest-level members
which are "exemplifications" of degrees of perfect proportionate similarity. That is, the members of this
certain other group are all the pairs of perfectly proportionately similar features accurately represented as
of a certain amount of perfect proportionate similarity.
For any groups of pairs of perfectly proportionately similar features where the pairs are qualitative-
ly identical, their abstraction would be the highest degree of perfectly proportionate similarity. All other
groups of pairs would form abstractions that are degrees of perfect proportionate similarity lower than
what would be "full" perfect proportionate similarity––i.e., exact similarity.

In terms of mental impressions (which can be abbreviated as simply "impressions"), every mental
impression would seem either accurate or inaccurate––and whether a feeling ("sensory impressions") or a
thought ("non-sensory impression"). Even a feeling/sensation that is a stinging sensation might be
perfectly proportionately similar to a bee sting that caused the feeling/sensation, for example. To me, a
representation would not just be something like an impression, though. A representation could be
anything––even a pile of dirt. In other words, everything existent could be considered a representation––
whether or not an accurate representation. Even a pile of dirt could happen to exist perfectly proportion-
ately similar to a certain target of representation, however. Thus, even a pile of dirt might be an accurate
representation.
As anything would be an accurate or inaccurate "representation", anything would also be an
accurately or inaccurately represented "target of representation". That is, any feature in reality would be
something that is either accurately represented by another feature (i.e., by a representation) or something
that is accurately represented by no other feature.
Relatedly, a "representation" could also be called a "depiction". However, the term "depiction"
seems used more when the degree of accuracy of a feature is not being considered. Instead, the term
"depiction" seems used more when simply the most detailed proportions of (i.e., "had by", i.e., "that are")
the contour of a feature are being considered––whether or not these proportions match the most or less
detailed proportions of another feature.
In terms of accurate representations specifically, though, an accurate representation may contrast
with its target of representation either in size or in being a fusion versus a group. In terms of the sizes of
representations, as the "proportions" referenced in the term "perfectly proportionate similarity" are
"ratios" and not "sizes", one feature representing another need not be of a size smaller than, equal to, or
larger than what it accurately represents––though it could be any of these. Even a giant painting of my
face would seem able to be perfectly proportionately similar to my face. (This painting would not seem
to accurately represent my face when considering all sub-features of the canvas and paint on it, though:
e.g., when considering bumps in the paint, the pulp of the canvas, any colors added in the "background"
of the painting, etc.)
In terms of representations being groups or fusions in contrast with what they represent, it would
seem that some fusions could accurately represent groups. This would seem so even while a fusion
would be only "continuous-contour" while the group also includes––and is––"discontinuous-contour".
To provide examples of how representations could be fusions or groups in contrast with what they
represent, a fusion that is a thought of mine seems able to accurately represent a group of marbles.
Similarly, a fusion that is a single-piece sculpture of three animals (at a singular moment in time) might
accurately represent one group (of likely very many) of three animals at a singular moment in time.
On the other hand, a group of even accurate mental representations of an apple would not seem to
accurately represent the fusion that is that apple––even though individual mental representations would

38
be accurate. The representing group's most detailed proportions would include discontinuous-contour,
which wouldn't seem to exactly match any level of detail of proportions of a fusion. Instead of
discontinuous-contour, a representing fusion would include only continuous contour––which both fusions
and groups include. While not all fusions would necessarily accurately represent groups, no groups
would seem to accurately represent fusions.

Whether a fusion or group, though, again, anything perfectly proportionately similar to another thing––
despite however "generally"/"vaguely" perfectly proportionately similar––could be considered
"accurate". Even a poor drawing or a simple type of arrangement of blocks could be called accurate in
this way. However, even a "vague" representation would still need to be "perfectly proportionately
similar" to something else in order to be "accurate". That is, even a "vaguely accurate" representation
would still require that its most detailed proportions––which include the proportions of its "non-extended
contour"––match the most or less detailed proportions of the target of representation.
It seems to me, though, that a given representation could be accurate just in part. For instance, even
in imagining a wildly fanciful creature that doesn't exist, certain sub-features of such a representation
would still seem to (more or less vaguely) accurately represent other features of reality (like parts of real
animals).
If representations can be accurate in part, there could be said to exist degrees of partial accuracy––
i.e., degrees that indicate what portion of a representation is accurate. Along these lines, there could also
be said to exist degrees of inaccuracy. That is, inaccurate representations––which include partially
accurate representations––would seem to fall short of perfect proportionate similarity to varying degrees,
which could be called degrees of inaccuracy. As opposed to "degrees of accuracy"––i.e., "degrees of
positive accuracy"––, which involve an (accurate) representation's degree of vagueness-to-detailedness,
"degrees of inaccuracy" would involve a representation's degree of nearness to perfect proportionate
similarity and upon considering a given "target of representation".
Altogether, degrees of inaccuracy, degrees of partial accuracy, and degrees of positive accuracy
would form a range that could be called a "scale" of degrees of inaccuracy-to-accuracy, which would
indicate how far or close a representation is to its target. Although potentially confusingly, this scale in
its entirety or in any segment could be equally intelligibly referred to as "degrees of accuracy".
Throughout this book, where I use the term "degrees of accuracy" without explicitly distinguishing what
part of the scale of "inaccuracy-to-accuracy" I am referring to, I will attempt to confirm that the answer
seems already clear from the context.
Anyway, as mentioned, on the very extreme positive end of the scale of inaccuracy-to-accuracy
would lie the highest degree of (positive) accuracy. This would involve two things that are qualitatively
identical (i.e., exactly similar), if there are any. Qualitatively identical features would necessarily match
in their most detailed proportions, and thus be "perfectly proportionately similar" to a highest degree. In
other words, either of these features would "one hundred percent" accurately represent the other. Other
accurate representations less than so fully accurate would have most-detailed proportions that are
identical only to less-than-most-detailed proportions of another feature––and thus be of a lesser degree of
(positive) accuracy.
Only qualitatively identical features would seem able to accurately "represent each other". In all
other situations where representations are less––even if overall highly––accurate, while the representa-
tions would accurately depict their target of representation, the target of representation would not
accurately depict the representation. For instance, while a high-definition recording might highly
accurately represent the sound of a concert, the sound of the concert would not represent the recording.
No non-identical features could be considered to accurately "represent each other" since accuracy, as

39
"perfect proportionate similarity", is a similarity between (or, more precisely, that is) two features where
the most detailed proportions of the variation in a "representation" exactly match either the same highest
level or any lower level of detail of the proportions of the variation in the "target of representation". This
account of accuracy (i.e., perfect proportionate similarity) doesn't allow for interchangeability between
the terms "representation" and "target of representation" except in a case where a representation exactly
matches the most detailed proportions of the variation in the "target of representation".
If a highest degree of accuracy only occurs when one feature is qualitatively identical to another,
then, it would seem that all mental impressions of non-mental-impressions would at least usually be less
than fully accurate. (There might be times where mental impressions and non-mental-impressions are
qualitatively identical while one would be called a "mental impression" and the other not.) In other
words, the degree of accuracy of any accurate mental impressions could always be improved. The degree
of accuracy of mental impressions would seem improved based on access to––i.e., contribution from––
situations that raise the accuracy of mental impressions. That is, the degree of accuracy of mental
impressions would improve based on access to more (accurate) information.

In my view that "accuracy" is "perfect proportionate similarity", two relatively highly differing
representations might represent the same thing, and with even equal degrees of positive accuracy. That
is, the same subject (i.e., target of representation) can be accurately mapped out by dissimilar representa-
tions that even equally vaguely-to-precisely map out variation of the same subject––and thus be equally
(positively) accurate. More precisely, the proportions of any level of detail of (the variation in) one
feature––a target of representation––can exactly match the proportions of the highest level of detail of
(the variation in) each of two or more other features––representations. And, this can be the case even
when these two or more other features––representations––relatively highly differ from each other (in their
variation). So, relatively highly contrasting representations can be said to positively accurately
correspond to the same, one thing represented––even equally accurately so.
On the other hand, my view also would allow for one representation to simultaneously positively
accurately represent different features. This would seem to go against how truth is usually conceived––as
involving one or more representations corresponding to only one target of representation. At least
mitigating concern over this thought that could be used to doubt my view on accuracy, though, one
representation would not necessarily accurately represent each of multiple things to the same degree of
positive accuracy. Also, even if someone has a mental impression (like a belief) that (positively)
accurately represents multiple things, other mental impressions related to that mental impression might
accurately represent only one thing. And, these related mental impressions might together imply only one
of the things accurately represented by the impression that accurately represents multiple things.
Further mitigating concern over my view's allowance for one representation to positively accurately
represent more than one feature simultaneously, it wouldn't necessarily be common at all for one
representation to positively accurately represent multiple things at once. Even more, reality could even
follow a pattern where a representation only ever positively accurately corresponds to one thing. This
would make for more variation within reality than otherwise, perhaps enough where no two features in
reality would actually ever be qualitatively identical––which would also disallow any two features from
accurately representing "each other".

•Reality itself can be represented, as reality itself can share perfect proportionate similarity with
something smaller than it––albeit within a hierarchical group that is a hyper-feature of reality. That
reality can be represented also simultaneously demonstrates two relevant points. As the first point, even
something as vast as reality could be mentally represented in various ways that appear of equal, higher, or

40
lower degrees of accuracy. And, as the second point, lower degrees of accuracy and higher degrees of
inaccuracy can interfere with successful interaction with reality. In other words, truth helps one interact
predictably with reality.
Reality can be pictured as a finite physical universe, as an infinite physical universe plus an
amorphous spiritual realm, as an infinite extent of possibilities, and so on. While some of these
depictions might be less accurate than others, maybe even only partially accurate, they are still able to be
utilized during mental processes concerning the subject of reality––just to different degrees of effective-
ness. On the other hand, if I represented reality as precisely three imaginary toy trucks plus half of a toad
living in Arkansas, I don't think I would get very far while thinking about reality. The ineffectiveness of
such a representation of reality would seem to follow from its relatively high degree of inaccuracy.
I could still hold inaccurate representations about reality that don't strongly interfere with my
interaction with reality, though. Some interference would seem to necessarily follow from inaccurate
representations, at least in terms of the process of thinking. However, it seems that, the lower the degree
of inaccuracy of a representation, the lower the chance of the representation interfering with interaction
with reality. To provide an example, if reality is most accurately physical, representing that reality is
specifically not physical would seem to necessarily be inaccurate. However, such an inaccurate
representation doesn't strongly interfere with one's ability to interact with reality. This non-strong degree
of interference seems to mirror the relatively low degree of inaccuracy of the representation––which is
low at least in comparison to a representation like reality as being imaginary toy trucks and half of a toad.
As suggested earlier, representations may be partially accurate and partially inaccurate. For
instance, I may represent reality as the physical universe plus three imaginary toy trucks. Here, part of
my representation is of a degree of accuracy and part is of a degree of inaccuracy. Arguably, views of
reality that include anything "immaterial" or "spiritual" are also only partially accurate. They would
seem to picture reality as "what exists", but with details that are inaccurate.

•A person accurately representing one thing in various ways––i.e., with contrasting depictions in the form
of mental impressions––helpfully multiplies the amount of accurate impressions representing that one
thing. However, the group of such contrasting representations itself would not seem to necessarily
accurately represent that one thing––especially if the one thing is a fusion, as described earlier in this
section. For example, even the group of the mental impressions linguistically translatable as "self-
illumination (that is reality)" and "contour (that is reality)" would together hold discontinuous-contour
that the fusion that is reality itself wouldn't include, i.e., have within it as sub-features (and thus only in
its hyper-features).
Despite the inability of groups of mental impressions (or groups of any representations) to
accurately represent fusions, more numerous accurate impressions representing one thing allows for more
options for forming more numerous accurate mental impressions of what is related to that one thing.
And, having more accurate impressions overall seems more helpful than having fewer accurate
impressions overall.
In addition, it would seem helpful to increase the amount of accurate impressions representing the
same thing even when not all of these accurate impressions are of the same (ideally, high) degree of
accuracy. For example, reality can be depicted as "self-illumination", "contour", "spacetime", or "self-
illuminated spacetime". While the latter depiction would be most accurate, representing reality also as
"self-illumination", "contour", and "spacetime" only adds benefit. For one, multiplying the amount of
accurate representations of reality allows for added opportunities to form accurate impressions of features
other than reality. And, two, the total number of accurate impressions is helpfully raised.

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•As an important note, perfect proportionate similarity existing between an impression and grand patterns
in reality can seem astoundingly "unlikely". However, many (held or entertained) beliefs can raise
confidence in the (held or entertained) belief that perfect proportionate similarity can exist between
impressions and large, complex, and/or spatiotemporally distant features.
One (held or entertained) belief to consider is that people are truly not cut off from the remainder of
reality, but they overlap grand patterns that are as vast as "perfectly" symmetrical galaxies and infinitely
large forcefields. As a second helpful belief, beings like humans seem to have evolved to hold accurate
sensory impressions (i.e., "feelings"/"sensations") and then build accurate non-sensory impressions (i.e.,
"thoughts") out of accurate sensory impressions. (I will discuss the relationship between sensory and
non-sensory impressions in section VI.1.1.) As a third helpful belief to consider, as mentioned in section
II.1, I find that everything in reality is able to be accounted for––i.e., that every feature in reality connects
with and is "contributed to" by other features in reality. That is, if all is so connected, then even large,
complex, and/or distant features can contribute to accurate mental impressions––even if indirectly.

•As a note on word usage, for multiple reasons, I explicitly avoid usage of the term "knowledge" when
discussing topics that could be said to relate to "knowledge": truth, probability, belief, confidence, etc.
For one, "knowledge" has varying agreed-upon meanings depending on the context. Two, in some
contexts, there is no clear agreed-upon meaning of the term. And, three, the term can imply that it is
possible to both fully access truth and to be completely assured that access to truth is had.
As I will discuss in section VI.3.2.2.2, it can be demonstrated that, one, most truth cannot be
directly accessed and that, two, no truth can be accessed without doubting that it is accessed. So, at no
time could someone be said to "know that x is true" if such knowing involves undoubtable access to x
being true.

III.2.3.3.1 Topics and Concepts

•In one sense of the terms, "topics" and "concepts" are types of groups commonly mentally represented
that involve "accurate representations". That is, a "topic"––i.e., "subject"––would be "all representations
of any type that accurately represent a feature in total or part, while also accurately representing all
descriptions whose emphasis includes that feature in total or part". For instance, the topic of music
would be all accurate representations of what could arguably be called "all instances of designed sound
waves" ("music") in total or part, along with all descriptions of music in total or part. Some of these
representations would seem "non-central" to the topic of music, however––such as one minuscule section
of a sound wave in 1923. So, there would be more to less "central" portions of a topic which involve
more of the feature that is directly and indirectly represented in the way that forms the topic.
Similar to but simpler than "topics", a "concept" would be "all representations that accurately
represent a feature in total" (and not also in part, and not while also accurately representing descriptions
of the feature in either whole or part).
With either "topics" or "concepts", though, one might consider that a topic or concept should extend
beyond all accurate representations involved into all potential accurate representations that could be
involved. For instance, the topic of gravity might seem to stretch beyond all accurate representations of it
and into all potential accurate representations of it. This intuition overlooks, however, that representa-
tions exist outside of human thought since when gravity was theorized up until now. The future of human
thought might include vastly more accurate representations of gravity than exist up until now. And, much
more importantly, far more accurate representations of gravity would seem to exist outside of human
minds across an infinite spacetime! So, while not all potential accurate representations of gravity might

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actually exist, it would seem that the feature of gravity, along with even an infinity of overlapping
segments of the feature of gravity, would be accurately represented within representations that directly
and––through descriptions––indirectly depict gravity in total or part.
Similarly, my definition of "concept" might seem lacking because not all potential accurate
representations of gravity would exist. However, there would exist at least a multitude of accurate
representations across reality that depict the whole of gravity to various high levels and in different
equally highly accurate forms. And, as mentioned in section III.2.3.3, more numerous of varying
accurate representations, even when not of high levels of accuracy, collectively form a group that is a
more accurate representation than any of the even highly accurate representations that are of its members.
I will discuss "potentiality"––or, more formally, "alethic possibility"––in section IV.2.1.

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Section IV
Somewhat Less Highly General Features of Reality
In this section, I will continue to present beliefs based on my worldview that concern highly general
features of reality. While the features focused on will be highly general, they are less general than
features discussed in the previous section.

IV.1 Types

•As mentioned in sections one and three, I consider a "type" to be a group whose members––i.e., whose
"instances"––are more similar to one another than to anything else in reality. (Instances of types can also,
very loosely, be called "types" themselves, in their own sense.) In line with this definition, I also call
"types" "uniquely similar groups". And, to best introduce "types"––i.e., "uniquely similar groups"––, I
will first discuss what I mean by "similarity" and "uniqueness".

•As a note, for me, "types" can be given the traditional philosophical term "universals", while any feature
besides types (i.e., "non-types") can be given the traditional philosophical term usually thought to stand
in contrast to the term "universals": "particulars" (Russell, 1912).

IV.1.1 Uniqueness

•As suggested in sections I.2 and III.2.3.3, two things can be accurately represented with differing
representations, such as "x and y", "z contour", "z variation", "z group". Two things can also be
accurately represented as "z similarity". That is, in line with discussion of "degrees" in section III.2.2.1
and as mentioned in section III.2.3.3, any group with two highest-level members could be accurately
represented as an instance of the group that is the "type" that is "similarity" itself.
As also suggested in section III.2.2.1 and mentioned in section III.2.3.3, though, any group with
two highest-level members can also be accurately represented as an exemplification of a "degree" along
the entire "scale" that is "similarity" itself. The definition of the feature of "uniqueness" can be described
while considering a group with two highest-level members not an "instance" of "similarity", but as an
exemplification of a "degree" of "similarity".
In considering two things to be an exemplification of a degree of "similarity", the contour within
any such exemplification would differ in some amount––even if not at all, relatively slightly, or wildly
contrastingly. Taking all such exemplifications whose contour differs to the same amount, the total would
form a group whose abstraction would be a certain "degree" of similarity. (In other words, these
exemplifications would form a group that is an ordered item within a "ranking group".)
Any given feature––say, x––could be paired with any other feature in reality in order to create a
group with two highest-level members that would be, together, an exemplification of a given degree of
similarity. Each such pair of x and another feature would be another exemplification of a given degree of
similarity. And, of all these pairs, an average degree of similarity between x and any other feature would
arise. This average degree, which could just be called the average degree of similarity attributable to x
feature, would show how similar x is to anything else.
This average degree of similarity attributable to a given feature (like x) could be ranked against the
average degree of similarity attributable to each other feature in reality. When the average degree of

44
similarity attributable to a given feature at hand (x) is lower than that of the majority of other features in
reality, the given feature at hand (x) could be considered "unique". And, the higher the majority of
features besides x that are lower in average similarity, the higher the degree of "uniqueness" of x.
It is not necessarily clear that any features in reality fit the above characterization of "unique"
features. However, in some specific groups of features, at least members could be considered "unique" in
comparison only to other members of the group. Additionally, members of a group may be "uniquely
similar". As suggested, members of a group that are "uniquely similar" are more similar to each other
than to anything else in reality. As also suggested, groups of such "uniquely similar" features would be
"types".

•It might be the case that, somewhere, two features are identical in their sub-features and are thus (an
exemplification) of a highest possible degree of similarity. While these features would be exactly similar
in their sub-features, though, no two features could be sub-features of only the same features. So, while
two features might be identical "internally", no two features would ever be identical "externally".
Features as "internally identical" could also be called "qualitatively identical"; however, as they are
not the same exact singular feature, they would not be "numerically identical".

•As suggested by a discussion in section III.2.3, even if x feature is unique, x feature would not be the
same feature as the description of "x feature as unique"––i.e., the specialized external description that is x
feature "shown" to be of the group of all unique features. Similarly, the (specialized external) description
of "x feature as unique" would not be the same as the (specialized external) description "x feature as
unique, and unique features as of the highest levels of uniqueness of all features". In other words, this
latter description would be a specialized external description that is x unique feature "shown" to be of the
group of all unique features that are also themselves "shown" to be of the ordered group of all features
ordered from lowest to highest uniqueness. And, even more complex specialized external descriptions
would "show" more, such as the degrees of average similarity attributable to each feature.
Yet, as discussed in section III.2.3, I don't seem to intend to form an impression of the complex
description of "x feature as unique" or "x feature as unique, and all unique features as of y ordered group"
without the intention of also focusing on "x (unique) feature" itself.

•As an aside on the topic of similarity, even an exemplification of similarity would contain at least as
hyper-features other features that are exemplifications of similarity. For instance, any compound
(hierarchical or non-hierarchical) group with two highest-level sub-groups would be an exemplification
of similarity––as would any groups with two highest-level members within that overall hierarchical
group.

•As mentioned in section III.2.2.1, while accurate representations of "types" would seem to be linguisti-
cally translated as either singular or plural, accurate representations of "abstractions" would only seem to
be linguistically translated as singular. That is, the "type" that is all lengths seems able to be accurately
depicted with representations translated as either "lengths" (plural) or "length" (singular); however, the
"abstraction" of all lengths seems able to be accurately depicted with representations translated only as
"length" (singular).

IV.1.2 "Uniquely Similar Groups" ("Types")

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•All momentary instances of my mind across my lifespan would seem relatively highly similar, and
maybe even to the point of being more similar to one another than to anything else in reality (where
members would be more similar to every other member than to anything else in reality). Such a type of
"group" would be callable a "uniquely similar group"––i.e., a "type"/"kind" of feature. And, the
"uniquely similar" members of "uniquely similar groups" could be called "instances" of a "type"/"kind"
of feature.
Any "uniquely similar group" would be "uniquely similar" in that all its members are more similar
to each other than to anything else in reality. That is, for each member of the uniquely similar group, the
pair it creates with any other member of the group is an exemplification of a higher degree of similarity
than the pair it creates with any other features in reality. However, no uniquely similar group nor member
thereof would necessarily be "unique" (as described in section IV.1.1).
A group might be considered "uniquely similar" or not depending on what various "external
features" are attributed to the group (such as "being near water", "living in a house", "being surrounded
by circles"). On the other hand, upon considering a group's "internal features", a group would only be
either, one, uniquely similar or, two, not uniquely similar. Although, as mentioned in sections II.1 and
III.2.3, "external features" are better called "contexts of descriptions", which are ultimately features
"internal" to features that are "descriptions". So, in considering various supposed "external features" of a
group, one is actually considering distinct features that are distinct "descriptions" though they each
contain the same "emphasis" (as described in section III.2.3). Any "uniquely similar group" is thus only
callable uniquely similar in terms of its internal features.

•At least most uniquely similar groups would seem fully housed by another uniquely similar group––i.e.,
they would be "sub-types" of a larger "type". For instance, the uniquely similar group of "fruits" would
be housed within the uniquely similar group of "plants". "Plants" would be housed within "life", "life"
within "sustained patterns", and so on (with multitudes of levels of other uniquely similar groups found
between each of these named levels).
On the other end of things, at least most uniquely similar groups would seem to fully house another
uniquely similar group. For instance, "fruits" would house "apples", which would house "McIntosh
apples", which would house other sub-breeds of apples, and so on. In any case, the more levels of larger
uniquely similar groups that house a given uniquely similar group, the more that the given uniquely
similar group could be called a "specialized" uniquely similar group.
Relatedly, there would even be types of "types" themselves, i.e., "uniquely similar groups" of
"uniquely similar groups"). For example, mathematician John von Neumann (1903-1957) considered
that "types" called "classes" contained other "types" called "sets" (Van Heijenoort 1967).

•It seems that at least most of any features that I accurately represent are, one, members of uniquely
similar groups and, two, the most unique members of their uniquely similar groups. This is in addition to
such features being normally considered "objects" of distinct natures from their surroundings, as
discussed in section II.1. For instance, even an accurately represented sign post on the street would seem
to be a most unique member of a uniquely similar group.
The sign post's uniquely similar group would seem to include the sign post plus or minus some sub-
features, such as the sign post plus or minus infinitesimal adjacent features. However, of the sign post's
uniquely similar group, I don't desire to represent any feature except the sign post.
But what would make the sign post distinguishable from other members of its uniquely similar
group? It would seem that it could only stand out in terms of being the most unique member. Similarly,
an instance of ink on a page, the group of "all ink", a specific mental impression, a "type" of impression,

46
and any feature I can imagine as hopefully accurately represented in my mind would seem to be the most
unique feature of a specific uniquely similar group.

•As a note, a mental representation of one simple feature that is x cloud could be linguistically translated
as "a cloud" (i.e., "one cloud"). Meanwhile, the phrase "a cloud" could also stand for a mental represen-
tation of the external description showing x as one member of––i.e., just an instance of––the uniquely
similar group of all clouds. In the same way, the term "a feature" could stand for a representation of
simply x feature or, more complexly, the external description showing x feature as of the uniquely similar
group of all features.
The group of "all features" (or, actually more precisely, "[all] features") would seem necessarily
uniquely similar and thus a "type". That is, the group of "(all) features" could also be represented as the
group of "(all) things"/"(every) thing". And, since there would be nothing else in reality in addition to
this group, this group of every feature in reality (which even includes reality itself) would be a group
whose members are more similar to one another than to anything else.
The group of "(all) features" could also be represented as the group of all instances of "self-
illumination", "things", "contour", "self-illuminated contour", "existence", etc., however. Along the lines
of a discussion in section II.4, though, the group of all features would seemingly most accurately be
represented as the group of all instances of self-illuminated contour, i.e., the uniquely similar group of
self-illuminated contour.

IV.2 Abstraction
•As discussed to some extent throughout sections one, three, and four, an "abstraction" would seem to be
the most internally similar (not necessarily "uniquely similar") group of all groups whose members are
each one or more (sub-) features of each highest-level member of some other specific group. So, an
abstraction accurately represented by a (mental) impression phrasable as "apple"/"appleness" or
"chair"/"chairness" would ultimately be a relatively internally similar group whose members are each one
or more (sub-) features from every apple or chair. And, as discussed in sections III.2.1 and III.2.3.3, an
abstraction accurately represented as the number "three" would be composed of one or more sub-features
taken from the highest-level member of each group with three highest-level members.
Whenever there is a tie involved in what is most internally similar between highest-level members
of a group, though, it would seem that whatever two or more sub-features are tied are all taken as part of
the "abstraction". And, similarly, for members of a hierarchical group that exactly "repeat", the same sub-
feature or sub-features would seem to be taken for each repetition.
As an important note, I say "apple" and "chair" here while meaning to reference something different
from one given apple or chair (which could also be linguistically translated as "apple" or "chair"––or as,
as suggested in section one, even "appleness" or "chairness"). And, similarly, I say "appleness" and
"chairness" while meaning to reference something different from how one given apple or chair could be
represented as "appleness" or "chairness" (which, as suggested in section one, could also be linguistically
translated as "apple" or "chair").
Along the same lines, while the following terms can be used to indicate (thoughts of) abstract
features that are non-abstractions, they can also indicate abstractions: "memberness", "containedness",
"containingness", and "biggerness". "Memberness", "containedness", and "containingness" would exist
as the abstractions of all descriptions showing x as a member of, contained within, and containing y. On
the other hand, "biggerness" would exist as the abstraction of all relations showing x as bigger than y. As

47
thoughts indicating non-abstractions, on the other hand, these terms could each stand for just one instance
of a description or other group.
In terms of "containedness" and "containingness" specifically, "containedness" (i.e., "contained")
would be the abstraction of all instances of external descriptions that show x sub-feature(s) as contained
within y. On the other hand, "containingness" (i.e., "containing") would be the abstraction of all
instances of internal descriptions that show x as containing y sub-feature(s).

IV.2.1 Alethic Possibility

•"Alethic possibility" seems to involve "abstraction". As mentioned in section III.1.1.1, "alethic


possibility" can be defined as "ableness to happen"––over "subjective confidence in x belief as being
true", which would define "epistemic possibility" (White 1975). In contrast to "alethic possibility",
"epistemic possibility" is the type of possibility involved in believing that x belief is, with a certain
relatively high degree of "subjective confidence", "possibly" true, for example. (As a note, in this book, I
will not always explicitly distinguish which type of possibility I am referencing; I believe it will be clear
which type I am referencing when I don't explicitly note which type it is.)

•An accurate impression phrasable as "x as alethically possibly y" would seem to correspond to a certain
type of group that involves abstraction. This certain type of group would be x as shown of a group where
x and group y are shown of group z. That is, "x as alethically possibly y"––which could be better phrased
as "x as alethically possibly of group y"––is a description depicting x as of a group that includes x and y
as grouped with group z. Group z would be a group including x, members of y, and whatever else adds
up to a group whose abstraction is a uniquely similar group. In other words, group z is a group whose
abstraction is a uniquely similar group and whose members happen to include x and all members of y. (If
there is ever somehow more than one group that could rightly be called group z or its abstraction, then a
representation phrasable as "x as alethically possibly y" would equally accurately represent more than one
feature.)
"Alethic possibility" itself, then, can be seen as the certain type of similarity between x feature and
members of group y that allows x and y to be members of group z. This similarity would be that which
exists between the sub-features within x and members of y that are part of the uniquely similar group that
forms an abstraction of group z.

•One example of an imaginably accurate impression of the form "x as alethically possibly y" would be "x
non-flying red duck as alethically possibly a flying red duck". Here, if the red duck in question that never
flies is alethically possibly a red duck that flies, then it would contain a feature that is a member of a
certain uniquely similar group. And, this certain uniquely similar group would be of a type where a
portion of its members include one specific sub-feature from every red duck that flies (where all the
members of the certain uniquely similar group would form the abstraction of at least all red ducks that fly
and the non-flying red duck in question).
If the non-flying duck in question doesn't contain a feature that is a member of this uniquely similar
group, i.e., if no red ducks (anywhere in reality) fly, the duck still might be accurately said to alethically
possibly fly in a broader sense. In this broader sense, the duck might contain a feature that is a member
of a uniquely similar group a portion of whose members include one sub-feature from, simply, each duck
that flies. Here, an impression depicting specifically red ducks as able to fly would be comparatively at
least less accurate (seemingly still at least vaguely positively accurate, though), and an impression

48
depicting ducks overall as able to fly would be comparatively more accurate.

•Similar to how a certain red duck might not alethically possibly be a red duck that flies and yet be
alethically possibly a duck that flies, if no one has or will ever place a pineapple on an elderly woman's
head, I could not alethically possibly do such a thing. That is, if no one has or will ever place a pineapple
on an elderly woman's head, I could not contain (in my present mental self) a feature that is a member of
a uniquely similar group a portion of whose members include one sub-feature from every person who has
or will place a pineapple on an elderly woman's head. However, it seems that I could alethically possibly
do something very much like placing a pineapple on an elderly woman's head––namely placing a fruit on
someone's head, or, even if no one has or will ever do this, placing a fruit somewhere like a person's head.
While I might not be able to precisely "place a pineapple on an elderly woman's head", I can do
something very much like it. And, it seems that, whether or not I can place a pineapple on an elderly
woman's head, believing that I am able to can still be relatively accurate (i.e., vaguely positively
accurate).

•Reality as a whole can even alethically possibly be of certain groups, seemingly. Reality as a whole
could only alethically possibly be y in that y is something "smaller" than reality, though, of course. For
instance, it would not seem true that "reality could have been bigger than it is". On the other hand, it
would seem relatively highly imaginably true that "reality could have only been the rocks (that are now)
contained in it". And, if reality as a whole alethically possibly only contained its rocks, then reality as a
whole would contain a feature that is a member of a uniquely similar group that forms the abstraction of
at least reality and the group of "all rocks".

IV.2.1.1 Chance

•As "possibility" would involve "abstraction", "chance" would seem to involve "possibility". "Chance"––
or, "degree of chance"––would seem interchangeable with the terms "degree of alethic possibility" or
"degree of objective probability". (And, to distinguish itself from degrees of "subjective confidence"––
i.e., degrees of "epistemic possibility", "subjective probability"––, degrees of "chance" could be called
degrees of either "objective chance", "objective possibility", "alethic possibility", or "objective probabili-
ty".)
If it is alethically possible for x to be a member of group y, there would necessarily seem to be a
degree to which it is alethically possible––i.e., a degree of chance. There would be zero degree of
chance––or "zero percent likelihood"––of something happening that is alethically impossible. However,
something that is alethically possible would have x non-zero degree of chance of happening.
Some non-zero degree of chance of x being a member of y would seem equal to a percentage of
members of group z, where group z is x, members of y, and whatever else added to this allows the
abstraction of group z to be a uniquely similar group. It would seem that the non-zero degree of chance
of x being a member of y here would equal the percentage of members of group z that are members of
group y (which may actually include x). The "percentage" discussed here would seem to be a feature
similar to features that are "fractions", which were discussed in section III.2.1. And, the "degree" equal to
the percentage would most precisely be the abstraction of a group composed of members that are
"exemplifications" of the degree––including the percentage discussed.

IV.3 Contribution

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•As suggested in section II.1, "contribution" could, loosely, be considered "connection" or, even more
loosely, "cause". Most precisely, it would seem that "cause" would be a type of contribution, however––a
type of (a certain type of) connection. I will begin to expound on the type of connection that contribution
is by describing features I call "chains".

IV.3.1 "Chains"

•A "chain" would seem to be a feature that is a group with at least two tangent members that are each
callable "links", where each "link" would be most (or "tied" for most) similar to the link "after" it
compared to all other features that the link is contiguous with. In terms of a chain with only two links,
what could be called the second link would be the most (or "tied" for the most) similar feature tangent to
the first link, but the first link would not necessarily be the most (or "tied" for the most) similar feature
tangent to the second link. In terms of a chain with more than two links, though, the first link would
necessarily be tangent to the second, but not necessarily tangent to the third, while the second link would
necessarily be tangent to the first and third––and so on. There would be no requirement for a degree of
tangency, though: two adjacent links could be compound groups where only two sub-features of the
group are tangent to the link's previous and following links––and, any of these "links" would be either
zero-dimensional, one-dimensional, two-dimensional, three-dimensional, or four-dimensional (or, if there
are more than four dimensions, five-dimensional or higher). Also despite the implication of "order" in
discussing links, they would not be ordered members of ordered groups.

•Since groups can be links in a chain, any chain could be a mere link of a larger chain. Similarly, every
chain would be overlapped by a longer chain. Still, every individual chain would have (what could be
called) an "initial" link and a "final" link.

IV.3.2 Contribution (Generally)

•"Contribution" would seem to be a certain type of "connection" that exists between one link and another
coming "after" it. For two tangent links in a chain, this certain type of "connection" would simply be
their "exemplified" "degree of similarity". And, for two non-tangent links, this certain type of "connec-
tion" would be the ("exemplified" degree that is the) average of the "exemplified" degrees of similarity of
each pair of tangent links between the non-tangent links. The exemplification of the "degree of
similarity" between (i.e., "of", "that is") any specific pair of links would be the exemplification of the
degree from the ordered range of "similarity" that the specific pair is an exemplification of.

•My view on contribution would forbid the fusion that is all reality from being a link in a chain. Reality
couldn't be a link because it wouldn't be "tangent" to another feature, but only wholly overlap or wholly
cover another feature. This would mean that all of reality––which I consider to be "God" (as posited at
the start of section two)––could not contribute, i.e., "divinely intervene", with features of reality.
While my view on contribution would disallow divine intervention as it might be traditionally
conceived, some form of "divine intervention" could still exist. That is, the fusion of reality except for x
feature (i.e., "nearly-God") would be tangent to x feature, and x feature––or a group containing x
feature––could be a link in a chain connecting to y feature. In this way, y feature could, in a sense, be
considered "divinely" contributed to by nearly all of reality––i.e., by nearly-God. Any link in such a

50
chain could also be considered "divinely" contributed to by reality-except-for-x, though. (Addedly, in
such chains, links would partially overlap. Any partially-overlapping links could still be considered
consecutive links in a chain, though, as long as they are tangent.)
To expound on the possibility of divine intervention, any product of divine intervention––y––would
seem to often follow out of a chain that begins with a link that is something like a prayer and has a
feature of "nearly-God" somewhere in the middle. More precisely than a "prayer", though, y would seem
to often follow out of a chain starting with a certain type of thought in someone's mind. Such a thought
would be a certain type of intention, i.e., "plan". This intention would simply be for y feature to
(somehow come to) exist.

•If reality is fully self-explanatory, as suggested in section II.1, then no feature in reality would exist
without contribution from or without contribution to something else. In other words, every feature would
be a link in multiple chains, where the chains do not only end or begin with the feature. If all features are
contributed to, they are each "explained". (And, beyond just being "explained", each feature can be said
to be "fully explained". That is, no feature has any sub-feature fully disconnected from its surroundings.)
And, if all features are contributive to other features, they each "contribute to" and "explain" other
features, so that none are superfluous, none are unnecessary. If any features were superfluous and
unnecessary, on the other hand, they would contribute to nothing and thus imply the existence of non-
fully self-explanatory "separation" within reality (distinct from the "discontinuity" of groups, though).
Additionally, as there would be no features not both contributed to by others and contributive to
others, there would be no links in chains that are the "ends" or "beginnings" of the chains. So, all chains
would be either loops or infinitely long. Even if any are loops, though, these loops themselves would be
contributed to and thus "explained".
Further, given the above, in addition to every feature of reality as ultimately at least indirectly
spatiotemporally connected to any other feature of reality, it seems possible that every feature is
ultimately at least indirectly contributed to by and contributive to any and every other feature. That is, in
addition to each feature as at least indirectly "touching" due to reality's being "continuous" (i.e., being
"continuity"), each feature might be a link in one or more chains that lead to any given other feature, as
well as a link in one or more chains that lead from the same given other feature. This possibility is
(seemingly) not forbidden by other statements in this book, and it appears to allow a reality less
"random"––and thus more "explained"––than otherwise. Regardless, even if reality is not so internally
connected, as long as reality is "fully self-explanatory", reality would end up as not random whatsoever.

•Two things could contribute to "each other", but only under certain circumstances. That is, two things
could only contribute to "each other" if a chain connects feature a to b that is distinct––though potentially
overlapping in part(s)––from a chain that connects feature b to a.

•The feature of "relatedness"––i.e., "unrelatedness-to-relatedness"––is both similar to the discussed


feature of "degrees of similarity" and involving of contribution. Unrelatedness-to-relatedness would
involve all instances of two things being related to a given degree. Two things would be related to a
degree based on how much a certain other feature contributes to both of them. If the certain other feature
contributes highly and near-equally to both, the two features contributed to by that certain other feature
would be highly related. And, the more that two features are related, the more similar they would end up
being.

51
IV.3.2.1 "Cause"

•In day-to-day life, it seems that I am at least usually only interested in chains that exist along the
timelike dimension of reality and in a "forward" direction of the dimension and where, except for the first
and last links, the chain's links necessarily fully exist on a singular Cauchy hypersurface (i.e., a
spatiotemporal hypersurface intersected by all "non-spacelike curves" [Townsend 1997]). I seem to
naturally deem such chains to be "causal chains" (i.e., "processes").
My preference for "causal chains" likely results from my residing within my body, which itself
appears to be a causal chain of three-dimensional bodies (though with each link residing on its own
Cauchy hypersurface). And, as my body is such a causal chain, I even seem unable to relatively directly
observe (i.e., "represent relatively soon after experiencing") any contribution besides causal contribution.
For example, every internal bodily process of mine (such as the evolution of my ever-unfolding mental
impressions) and every external event I relatively directly observe (such as a ball I roll down a hill) seem
contributed to by my body and/or other similarly "causal" processes.
While I seem to fully reside on Cauchy hypersurfaces and thus seem unable to relatively directly
observe non-causal contribution, this wouldn't mean that only causal chains exist. Momentary three-
dimensional slices of my body may even constantly act as links or overlap links of non-causal chains that
exist all around me. The same could be said for my present mental self and past and future versions of it,
which reside within moments of my body. So, in part, parts, and/or whole, I could constantly be
contributing to and/or be contributed to by what is non-three-dimensional.
Even while my body is a causal chain, as this doesn't necessarily forbid non-causal chains from
existing, this doesn't necessarily mean that there is anything especially unique about causal chains. It's
just that I––and presumably all other humans––are most familiar with chains that are causal based on our
bodies' and surroundings' position within the infinite universe.
In any case, the links of a causal "chain" may or may not each be most (or tied for most) similar to
the next link in the chain compared to all other features tangent with the link, however. So, a causal
"chain" may or may not most strictly fit the criteria of being a "chain"––though it could at least be called
a "specialized chain". That is, as the "specialized descriptions" discussed in section III.2.3.1 can be called
variations of "descriptions" when limiting factors considered, "specialized chains" can be called
variations of "chains" when limiting factors considered. Factors left out in order to consider "specialized
chains" variations of "chains" would include any features tangent to links in the chain that do not fully
reside on Cauchy hypersurfaces and that do not fully progress in the "forward" direction of the timelike
dimension.

•Reality as fully self-explanatory would disallow any features from existing without contribution both
from and to something else. And, the same would be true while only looking at the timelike dimension
and in the "forward" direction. That is, while only looking at the timelike dimension and in a "forward"
direction, all links in causal chains both contribute to and are contributed to by other links in causal
chains––necessitating "causal determinism".
"Causal determinism" states that chains of events in time unfold in one set way (Nagel 1959). In
contrast, "causal indeterminism" states that chains of events in time do not unfold in one set way. If
chains of events do not unfold in one set way, however, then events (i.e., features fully existing on a
singular Cauchy hypersurface) would occur without full predictability based on all that causes them.
That is, events would not occur with full explanation, full contribution along the timelike dimension in
the "forward" direction.
The branch of physics dealing with mathematical modeling of the motion and interaction of

52
elementary particles––known as "quantum mechanics"––has yielded evidence that suggests that
elementary particles may not move and interact in predictable ways (Messiah 1966). If elementary
particles do not move and interact in predictable ways, though, then causal determinism would not be
true. On the other hand, if causal determinism is true, elementary particles would move and interact in
ways that would be predictable given all relevant information.
While one might be led to reject determinism given information obtained through experiments in
quantum mechanics, there is no way of ascertaining that a person has all relevant information regarding
an instance of particles moving and interacting. Additionally, scientific findings consistently produce
new information that can update old working theories. Foremost, though, it is simply far more com-
pelling to me that all is fully self-explanatory––and thus determined––than not.

•As a note, any feature could be the final link of multiple chains at once. This would mean that x feature
would be "contributed to" by all the links (besides itself) of each of these chains. However, one or more
links in these chains could be considered to contribute most to x––and whether or not these links are
tangent to x (since degrees of contribution can occur between non-tangent links).
These one or more links could be called "primary contributions" to x (where more than one link
would be primary contributions to x only when the links "tie" for highest degree of contribution to x).
And, looking only at causes, of all causal chains that end with x, the one or more links in these chains
contributing most to x could be called "primary causes" of x.

IV.4 Barriers and Enclosingness


•A feature's "barrier" could be considered the sub-feature that "encloses" it from its immediate surround-
ings. This sub-feature would fully encapsulate and be one dimension lower than the feature. Such
barriers could be said to be of a higher degree of "enclosingness" when they are more contrasting with––
i.e., non-smoothly connected with––surroundings.
As discussed in section II.2, variation in contour would seem to be more to less
"jagged"/"contrasting". When there is high jaggedness (i.e., low "smoothness"), there would be high
contrast with at least some of what is adjacent to a feature. High "enclosingness" would occur as a high
degree of "jaggedness" (i.e., a low degree of "smoothness") "had by" (i.e., "that is") a feature's barrier.
However, this high enclosingness would only occur when the jaggedness faces only in the direction that
surrounds the barrier. In terms of its contour, high enclosingness would be a high "steepness" to a
feature's barrier that acts as a "cliff" with what surrounds.
A degree of––low-to-high––enclosingness, on the other hand, would be the degree to which a
barrier contrasts with its surroundings––i.e., the degree to which it is cliff-like in the direction of its
surroundings. Whether of a low or high degree of enclosingness, then, a barrier would still be of a degree
of enclosingness. Features to which the barrier can be said to belong can also be considered of this
degree of enclosingness.
Altogether, a "barrier" would be a feature's enclosing sub-feature that is of a lower or higher degree
of contrast with what immediately surrounds––i.e., of a lower or high degree of "enclosingness". Defined
as such, a barrier and its enclosingness––i.e., cliff-like-ness facing outward––would wholly overlap,
while the degree of enclosingness would not wholly overlap. As discussed in the introduction to section
three, though, I find that no two things can wholly overlap. Instead of a barrier and its enclosingness
being numerically distinct, then, I find that they are simply the same one thing that can be represented as
either. Just the same, a barrier or instance of enclosingness can also be considered an instance of

53
variation, an instance of contour, an instance of self-illumination, etc.
An instance of "enclosingness"––i.e., a "barrier"––could also be accurately represented as an
"exemplification of a degree of enclosingness". That is, as discussed in section III.2.2.1, I would consider
a degree to be the abstraction of all members of a group that can be considered to be composed of
"exemplifications" of that degree. Degrees would each also exist as ordered members of an ordered
group that would be an "ordered range"––i.e., "order". And, the non-ordered group of the ordered
members would add up to a "range" of degrees. In terms of a degree of enclosingness, then, the
abstraction of a group of barriers that could be said to be "of" the same degree of enclosingness would
form such a degree. And, such a degree would exist as an ordered member within an ordered group that
is composed of all such degrees of enclosingness.

Relatedly, as suggested in section II.1, normally represented features that are frequently considered
"objects" have relatively high degrees of enclosingness. (And, as stated in section IV.1.2, additionally,
such features are often also, one, members of uniquely similar groups and, two, the most unique members
of their uniquely similar groups.) As will be discussed, my present mental self is also one of these types
of normally represented features.

•When "felt" rather than just "observed", a feature with a barrier of a higher degree of enclosingness
could be described as "enclosed", "cut off", "confined away", even "separate" from what surrounds the
feature. For example, the degree to which my own present mental self feels "isolated" from its surround-
ings would match its degree of contrast with the immediate of these surroundings. Similarly, the degree
to which "repressed" thoughts of mine feel so "inaccessible" would match their degree of contrast with
their immediate surroundings.
I find that my high enclosingness is what naturally led me to believe myself "separate" from my
surroundings for a large portion of my life. However, as explained in section II.1, I now cannot accept
the existence of true "separateness". And, high enclosingness as described would not necessitate true
"separateness".
While I usually sense in myself relatively high enclosingness, I have once sensed a much lower
enclosingness between what was my present mental self and at least some features adjacent to my present
mental self. This experience occurred when I underwent an unexpected psychedelic experience while
using a certain strain of marijuana. I journaled during and after this experience that my "internal world"
and the "external world" seemed to exist as one.
I later researched and found that I described a common experience that occurs on psychedelic drugs
(which marijuana usually isn't considered) known as "ego dissolution" (Tagliazucchi et al. 2016). Recent
scientific research has recorded that such an experience coincides with increased connectivity between
areas of the brain associated with a sense of self and areas of the brain associated with receiving
sensations from the external world (ibid.). To me, this increased connectivity might also be describable
as a lowered enclosingness––i.e., a greater smoothness––between parts of what is usually considered the
present mental self and some adjacent features of what is not usually considered the present mental self.
What is not the usual present mental self would include unconscious mental impressions, features of the
mind besides impressions, and/or features outside of the mind or even body. (As I will discuss and
expound in the section to follow, if all is "self-illuminated", what we call "unconscious thoughts and
feelings" would even be "self-illuminated", i.e., conscious, in some way.)

IV.4.1 Unconscious Impressions

54
•If all is self-illuminated (i.e., an instance of "self-illumination"), my brain's unconscious impressions
would seem self-illuminated/"conscious" on their own. However, high enclosingness would obscure
sensed connection between these unconscious impressions and what I usually consider my present mental
self: my "conscious" mental impressions (whether "repressed" or not). (Even what I typically label
"conscious" impressions can be psychologically "repressed"/"isolated" from the rest of a mind's
impressions.) (As a note, while all in reality would be "conscious", for clarity's sake, I will label what I
normally consider to be "unconscious" mental impressions as "unconscious").
The high enclosingness between my "conscious" and any adjacent "unconscious" impressions
would seem to stem from the singular and stark difference between my conscious and unconscious
impressions. This singular and stark difference would be that what I usually term to be "conscious"
impressions seemingly initiate bodily (including mental) action, while unconscious impressions at most
initiate little bodily action. Since it seems that enclosingness between conscious and unconscious
impressions would stem from a stark difference, though, it seems that unconscious impressions would
need to initiate no bodily action.
If unconscious impressions initiate no bodily action, any bodily changes stemming from seemingly
unconscious impressions would truly stem from impressions that were conscious. That is, bodily changes
(that occur across adjacent, momentary mental selves) would have stemmed from impressions that were
conscious to an extremely low degree or for an extremely brief period of time. Impressions conscious to
a very low degree and/or for a very brief time may forbid the formation of other impressions that would
represent the minimally and/or briefly conscious impression.
Unconscious impressions would seem to initiate no bodily energy not only out of a stark difference
between conscious and unconscious impressions. Unconscious impressions would seem to initiate no
bodily energy also because the "degree of consciousness" of conscious impressions seems to exactly
correspond to the impressions' "action-initiating power". If the degree of "action-initiating power" of
impressions is the same as the degree of consciousness of impressions, then unconscious impressions
would all initiate no bodily energy.
While impressions' "degrees of consciousness" seem to correspond to impressions' "action-initiating
power", "degrees of consciousness" also seem describable as "degrees of 'intensity'/'activeness'". And,
conscious impressions' degrees of "intensity"/"activeness" would seem to reflect their degrees of "action-
initiating power". On the other hand, what are called "unconscious" impressions would still be self-
illuminated/"conscious"––just while lacking the feature of "intensity"/"activeness" that defines what are
called "conscious" impressions.
I will expound more on impressions' seeming relation to the brain in section seven.

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Section V
A Definition of the Self
(And of the Relationship of the Self with Reality Otherwise)
In this relatively brief section, I will move on from focus on reality overall to focus on my self and the
relationship between my self and reality otherwise. That is, I will begin presenting beliefs based on my
worldview that concern myself and my relationship with reality otherwise––while I consider all beliefs
within my worldview to collectively relatively accurately represent reality and its features. The section at
hand will introduce beliefs that I find to match what it is that I most naturally consider my self and my
relationship to all else. (Again, I consider a "worldview" to be "a relatively small group of beliefs where
someone believes each relatively accurately represents reality and/or its features––while it focuses on
themselves, the relationship between themselves and reality besides themselves, and reality overall".)

•At different times, it seems that "I" use first-person pronouns like "I" to refer to different types of things
in reality. For example, sometimes I consider "myself" as a past, present, and/or future body, conscious
mind, and/or unconscious mind. Despite my varied uses of first-person pronouns, though, it seems that
there is one type of feature that I most naturally and commonly refer to as "I"/"myself"/"me": a present
conscious mind. (And, yet, this most natural "self" would not exist during a coma or dreamless sleep.)
More precisely than a type of thing that is "a present conscious mind", though, while much more
wordily, it seems that "I" most naturally and commonly consider "myself" to be "self-illuminated
instantaneous spatially-extending continuous spatiotemporal contour that is a relatively 'enclosed' fusion
of conscious mental impressions". In other words, I am one specific currently-existing conscious non-
separated "whole" of a limited size relatively "closed off" from surroundings and wholly covered by a
hyper-feature that is a group of thoughts and feelings. (As I will discuss in section ten, there exists a
clear parallel between myself as presented and reality as defined earlier: "self-illuminated infinitely
internally- and externally-extending continuous spatiotemporal contour".)
To expound on some terms used, in terms of my being "instantaneous", I exist at a current moment.
In terms of my being relatively "enclosed", I sense that a steep "barrier"––as discussed in section IV.4––
divides my present mental self from what spatiotemporally surrounds me, while this barrier is less steep
along the timelike dimension. And, in terms of my being a fusion, I am a whole unit and not a "group".
However, I am a fusion "of"––i.e., "fully covering"––the group of all my thoughts and feelings.
Also, in terms of being "conscious", I am not just "self-illuminated", but I include conscious––
rather than (self-illuminated) unconscious––thoughts and feelings. As discussed in section IV.4.1, my
"conscious" impressions are "activated", while "unconscious" impressions are not so "activated".
"Unconscious" impressions of "mine" are still related to me, but they are not included in what I most
consider myself.

•To me, there is no obvious alternative to the definition of what is most centrally the selves of other
humans and human-like beings besides "self-illuminated instantaneous spatially-extending continuous
spatiotemporal contour that is a relatively 'enclosed' fusion of conscious mental impressions". I am not
notably distinguishable above other humans save for my "enclosingness" from them, and can easily
imagine that each has a mind that works generally the same. And, as is assumed throughout this book,
without information indicating otherwise, it is easily imaginable that a given person who appears to be
human as I am shares the most general features of my internal self.

56
•In terms of the relationship between myself and all besides myself, this relationship seems to be the
group of all features that each include at least one sub-feature that is a sub-feature of my ("truest") self,
and at least one sub-feature that is a sub-feature of something that shares no sub-features with my
("truest") self.

V.1 Instantaneousness
•In line with discussion about reality in section two, just as with reality as a whole, I can about equally
accurately represent my whole self with contrasting depictions. These depictions include "self-illumina-
tion", "instantaneousness", "spatial extension", "continuity", "spatiotemporal contour", and
"fusion(ness)". While I include high "enclosingness" and the hyper-feature of all my mental impressions,
neither this enclosingness nor this group of mental impressions would accurately represent my entire self.
Neither would seem to accurately represent my entire self because my high enclosingness is just a sub-
feature of myself among others, and my group of mental impressions is just a hyper-feature of myself
among others. At the same time, the group of all these impressions both of my entire self and of less than
my entire self hopefully add up to a group of relatively accurate representations of both my entire self and
its most notable features.
Of each of "self-illumination", "instantaneousness", "spatial extension", "continuity", "spatiotempo-
ral contour", "fusion(ness)", "enclosingness", and "mental impressions", only "instantaneousness" has not
yet be introduced in this book. Therefore, I will take the section at hand to expound on it.

•In terms of being "instantaneous(ness)", I am not a collection of people that include my present self and
past and/or future versions of my present self. For example, I am not myself as an infant up through my
present form, and I am not myself as an infant up through my future death. While such "elongated
versions" of myself seem clearly very related to me, they seem not what I most naturally and commonly
consider to be "myself". I seem to most naturally and commonly consider myself to be a specific present
thing, and a specific present thing that is "instantaneous" (or, in other words, fully residing on a three-
dimensional Cauchy hypersurface). Rather than an "elongated" version of myself, what is most
"myself"––i.e., "self-illuminated instantaneous spatially-extending continuous spatiotemporal contour that
is a relatively 'enclosed' fusion of conscious mental impressions"––could be considered my "immediate
self".
In being "instantaneous", I am only one self that, at one very specific instantaneous moment, is
writing this. Any past or future versions of myself would seem to be as merely instantaneously-existing
as I am, though. So, since this sentence has taken multiple (and even an infinite amount of) moments to
write, there would be multiple (and even an infinite amount of) people writing this very sentence. (More
than just "multiple" people, there would be infinite people because any span of time is divisible into
infinite parts.)
These people writing these sentences are not so different, however. On the contrary, they seem
more similar to myself, and to each other, than to anything else in reality. Since these versions of myself
seem so similar to myself, past versions could be called my "predecessors", and future versions could be
called my "successors". The collection of all these "momentary selves" would then also be a uniquely
similar group (i.e., a "type") that could be called my "grouped self".
My predecessors and successors would only be past and future versions of my immediate self upon
considering my immediate self as of "the present", though. In considering a certain predecessor or

57
successor as of "the present", I would be a predecessor or successor to it. Regardless, within the one
moment at hand, there would only be one immediate self writing about all this (though there would be an
infinite amount of immediate selves writing over any even small span of time).
When not considering "the present", along with my immediate self, each of my predecessors and
successors is simply a "momentary self". It is actually only (highly) accurate to represent something as
an "immediate self" when what is represented is the context of a certain non-specialized description.
(Again, as mentioned in section III.2.3, representing the context of a description––when not just
representing the feature that happens to be that context––would be representing a new, specialized
description that is the original description but selected with its context. This representation would depict
the context within its original description, rather than just depict the context by itself.) This description
includes one specific momentary self as the context, and where one specific thought is depicted as one of
all its sub-features. This specific thought is what seems to at least usually naturally occur in every
momentary self: a thought that accurately represents the specific whole momentary self that holds the
thought. This specific thought could be called a "self-representing non-sensory impression" (where "non-
sensory impression" will be discussed in section six as equatable with a "thought").
The "present" also seems best represented as a context of a non-specialized description, and where
this description includes a sub-group that is the non-specialized description just defined above. That is,
the "present" seems to (highly) accurately be representable as the context of a non-specialized description
which depicts self-representing thought t as a sub-feature of its housing momentary self m, and which
depicts momentary self m as a sub-feature of its housing Cauchy hypersurface c. So, the "present" is the
context of this description, the context being the involved Cauchy hypersurface.
Even further, anything represented as "present"––e.g., "present feature f"––would be the non-
specialized description that depicts "feature f" as a sub-feature of the non-specialized description whose
context is the "present" (just detailed), and then depicts "feature f" again as a sub-feature of all of this.
That is, looking at the non-specialized description whose context is the "present", self-representing
thought t is depicted as a sub-feature of momentary self m, and momentary self m is depicted as a sub-
feature of given Cauchy hypersurface c. For the non-specialized description "present feature f", though,
feature f is depicted as a sub-feature of this entire non-specialized description just detailed. For feature f
to break a tie with self-representing thought t for most repetitions within the new non-specialized
description, though, f would be selected again with what else remains. Feature f would then have most
repetitions and be the "emphasis" of the new, overall non-specialized description that is "present feature
f".

As an important note, just as perfect proportionate similarity as existing between an impression and grand
patterns in reality can seem astoundingly "unlikely", as mentioned in section III.2.3.3, so can it seem
astoundingly "unlikely" that, every moment, I naturally accurately represent my immediate self and can
accurately represent the "present" and any "present feature". Just as noted in section III.2.3.3, though,
people are not cut off from the remainder of reality; they overlap grand patterns that are as vast as
"perfectly" symmetrical galaxies and infinitely large forcefields. There is no reason we must not involve
"astounding" relationships with what else exists in reality.
As also noted, second, beings like humans seem to have evolved to hold accurate sensory
impressions (i.e., "feelings"/"sensations") and then build accurate non-sensory impressions (i.e.,
"thoughts") out of accurate sensory impressions. We seem to have also evolved to naturally accurately
hold non-sensory impressions of ourselves.
And, third, as mentioned in section II.1, everything in reality seems able to be accounted for––i.e.,
every feature in reality seems connected with and "contributed to" by other features in reality. That is, if

58
all is so connected, then even large, complex, and/or distant features can directly contribute to or, via
indirect contribution, relate to accurate mental impressions. For instance, each momentary self of mine
can predictably relate to its contained "self-representing non-sensory impression". And, the entire
Cauchy hypersurface on which I reside could contribute to my self-representing non-sensory impression.

•To discuss the "grouped self" and other variations on my "immediate self", the "grouped self" would
seem to be a "group" that includes (a seemingly infinite amount of) momentary selves that include me
and past and future versions of myself. This group would not only involve adjacent momentary selves,
though. That is, wherever the mind loses consciousness, such as in dreamless sleep, the immediate self
does not exist. Where it does involve adjacent momentary selves, though, such momentary selves form a
causal chain.
The grouped self as not a fully connected causal chain brings the question of what makes one
momentary/immediate self part of the "same" self as its predecessors and successors. This is one central
question of an array of related questions on the philosophical topic called "personal identity" (Ballie
1990). To offer a possible answer, since the group that is the "grouped self" is "uniquely similar", even
non-adjacent momentary selves can be said to belong to the same "grouped self". Further, even non-
adjacent momentary selves are connected by way of links within the causal chain that is the body. Every
instance of a momentary self within one grouped self is housed within a link in the causal chain that is the
body (while all adjacent such momentary selves are also causal chains, within the body).
Also in terms of my "grouped self", the group that is my grouped self would exist as a "hyper-
feature" "upon" what could be called my "full self"––which is the group whose members are fusions of
all adjacent momentary selves of mine. I consider my "full self" more "myself" than my "grouped self".
I consider my "local self" as even more "myself" than my "full self", though––while not as "centrally me"
as my immediate self. While my immediate self would be "enclosed" from both the "grouped" and "full"
versions of my immediate self, my immediate self is not "enclosed" from all versions of my immediate
self––including very nearby predecessors and successors, which add up to my "local self".
Altogether, in descending order of relatedness, the versions of my immediate self most centrally
related to my immediate self include: nearby predecessors and successors, my local self, nearby versions
of my local self, more distant versions of my immediate and local self, various fusions and groupings of
my immediate selves, my full self, and my grouped self. While all these versions of myself are different,
and while I am enclosed from many of these versions of myself, my immediate self is not necessarily
very different from these, compared to versions of "myself" such as my body at different points of time.

As suggested, while I, as one "momentary self", am not the same things as my predecessors or
successors, I do contain feelings of being connected to them. This feeling is based on certain mental
impressions depicting what are describable as "(immediate and distant) past versions of myself" and
"(immediate and distant) future versions of myself". This feeling is also based on how I am less
"enclosed" from very nearby predecessors and successors, in contrast to how I am highly "enclosed" from
what spatially surrounds me.
In being less "enclosed" from very nearby versions of my immediate self, I sense a subtle
smoothness, connection, non-enclosingness to very nearby predecessors of mine, with the very nearest
receiving the most sense of smoothness. And, I sense a very slight smoothness to the very nearest of
successors, and with the nearest of these receiving the most of this slight sense of smoothness. This non-
complete enclosingness surrounding my immediate self means that I sense boundaries beyond my
immediate self. In other words, the boundaries of my immediate self are less noticeable than boundaries
just beyond my immediate self.

59
Boundaries just beyond my immediate self are noticeable, though, and to the point where they
enclose myself from what lies beyond them––while more gradually so than the barriers between myself
and what exists around me spatially. This all also points out that, along the timelike dimension, my "full
self" contains barriers that are only relatively gradually shifting, like ripples, rather than cliffs. (As
mentioned, the version of my immediate self that is only slightly elongated, whose boundaries are the
nearby relatively gradually-rising barriers preceding and succeeding me, could be called my "local self".)

•I would define my "mind" in a way that simultaneously references various senses of myself: "all the
conscious and unconscious mental impressions, along with the processes involved with these mental
impressions, associable with some portion of a full self".

•It seems that I most naturally represent three-dimensional versions of beings and objects, rather than the
four-dimensional fusion of all their three-dimensional versions. When I consider "x red duck", "all
guitars", or "other people", I am depicting a momentary body of a red duck, all three-dimensional guitars
throughout time, and all momentary selves like me.

Relatedly, in this book, I am mainly discussing my "immediate" or "local" self when I speak of
"myself"––as has been the case so far in this book.

•As another note, if I am instantaneous, it would seem that all my (immediate self') features––including
mental impressions––necessarily are as well.

V.1.1 Impressions As Instantaneous

•If my immediate self is "instantaneous", so are the impressions within it. That is, it does seem that what
is most myself (i.e., my "immediate self") does not exist in more than one moment––i.e., in more than one
"Cauchy hypersurface" (Townsend 1997). My immediate self does not seem to be what I remember of a
"past" version of myself––i.e., what (conscious) memories depict of "me"––, nor do I seem to be a
"future" version of myself depicted in any impressions. (Here, I would define "memories" as types of
impressions depicting an impression formed in the past, and an impression of a type where it was "about"
what at the time was the "current" moment.) And, as stated, my "immediate self" would be distinct from
my "local self", though my immediate self is not enclosed from my local self.
I have memories of what seem like my immediate self as being "in the past". Also, I currently have
memories of the "immediate past", the immediate past before then, the immediate past before then, and so
on. Thus, I have a sense of having "moved through" time and having existed equally in the past as I do
now, and as the same thing, but just "at different points in time".
Despite having memories seeming like my immediate self in the past, and despite seeming to have
"moved through time", I seem clearly able to have inaccurate memories of predecessors of mine––even
of immediate predecessors, given "mental glitches"––, and where my current impressions thus only
seemingly "connect" to these predecessors. To me, the existence of inaccurate memories shows in clear
terms that my immediate self is much more centrally "me" than any portion of my "full self" besides my
immediate self.

•Potentially undermining a proposal that I am most centrally an instantaneous, momentary thing, though,
it might be considered that sensory impressions––of a certain taste, for instance––require more than just a

60
moment to exist. That is, non-sensory impressions depicting a past taste of a certain fruit depict a
(causal) chain of experiences continuously fluctuating over an amount of time. I contend, however, that
what is depicted need not be considered a singular sensory impression, but a chain of singular sensory
impressions.
Similarly, at least non-sensory impressions that depict events requiring more than one moment to
exist also might be considered non-instantaneous. For example, the non-sensory impression (i.e.,
"thought") of "a bird flying around a lake twice" or a specific storyline of a movie might––illusorily––
seem to require more than one moment to exist. These non-sensory impressions would seemingly require
more than one moment in at least two types of situations. The first type of situation would involve
someone who, based on a non-sensory impression had of a bird flying around a lake twice, intends to
"imagine" (in the sense of "visualize") a bird flying around a lake twice. This imagining would seem to
occur over some time, but only in involving a chain of sensory impressions. Similarly, intending to
"imagine" the taste of cotton candy would seem to result in a chain of sensory impressions.
In the second type of situation where non-sensory impressions (i.e., "thoughts") would seemingly
require more than one moment to exist, the communication of a non-sensory impression of a specific
movie storyline would seem to require time. The communication of the non-sensory impression is not the
same as the non-sensory impression, though. And, in terms of a non-sensory impression of a specific
movie storyline, there are many "sub-impressions" to be communicated that can't all be communicated
somehow simultaneously! The distinction between a non-sensory impression of a movie storyline and
the storyline as communicated is parallel to the distinction between a complete story already written on a
two-dimensional paper all at once and the non-momentary reading of the story.
If sensory impressions are instantaneous and occur in chains that add up to partial segments of the
full self, so are non-sensory impressions instantaneous and occurring in such chains (while chains of non-
sensory impressions would seem more stable, less fluctuating in nature than chains of sensory impres-
sions). However, when specific non-sensory impressions are represented (within/"by" other non-sensory
impressions), their chains do not usually seem represented as well (within other non-sensory
impressions). On the other hand, when specific sensory impressions are represented (within/"by" non-
sensory impressions), it seems usually only chains of sensory impressions that are represented––and not
any sensory impressions individually.
Regardless of how sensory and non-sensory impressions are naturally represented, though, sensory
impressions would not exist as somehow only temporally extended while non-sensory impressions exist
as somehow only momentary. And, given "abstract" thinking (to be discussed in section VI.1.1), it is
possible to hold a (seemingly accurate) thought about either chains of non-sensory impressions or
singular instances of momentary sensory impressions. It's just that non-sensory impressions directly built
from existing sensory impressions end up depicting chains of sensory impressions, while non-sensory
impressions directly built from existing non-sensory impressions end up depicting what is instantaneous.
This difference will be discussed in section VI.1.1. (And, as a note, throughout the remainder of this
book, I will try to be clear in distinguishing whether I am referring to one instance of or a chain of
impressions.)

A related important point to note is that, while my immediate self, local self, full self, and grouped self all
only involve "activated"/"conscious" impressions, "activated"/"conscious" impressions don't require
more than an instant to exist. That is, while an impression's activity exists over time, any instant of such
an activated impression is still an "activated/conscious impression" of the immediate self.

•Related to accuracy as coming in "degrees" (discussed in section III.2.3.3), my non-sensory impression

61
of "my immediate self" (i.e., my "self-representing non-sensory impression") might seem to––to some
degree of inaccuracy or partial accuracy––accurately represent temporally very nearby predecessors and
successors of my immediate self. However, of predecessors and successors, this impression phrasable as
"my immediate self" would seem to "positively accurately" represent only my actual immediate self,
which occurs in the present. Otherwise, a given thought, such as "myself as tired", would be simultane-
ously accurate and inaccurate, depending on which nearby momentary self is considered.
Besides the seeming improbability of the alternative, only my actual immediate self would seem to
be (positively) accurately represented at least because, one, momentary selves within a full self would
seem different moment to moment (however infinitesimally different). And, two, momentary selves
would seem different moment to moment in a way that allows every momentary self's "self-representing
non-sensory impression" to only (positively) accurately represent the momentary self at hand.
Just the same, my immediate self's (either sensory or non-sensory) impressions would seem to
evolve in the same way that my immediate self does (while sensory impressions would seem to alter
more than non-sensory impressions do). Thus, accurate representations of my immediate self's
(instantaneous) impressions would seem necessarily only positively accurately representing impressions
of the immediate self and not of even very nearby predecessors or successors.
Further, any features of my immediate self that are links in a chain, including but not limited to
impressions of my immediate self, would seem to evolve as does the immediate self and as do impres-
sions within the immediate self. So, accurate representations of any such features would seem necessari-
ly only positively accurately representing features of the immediate self and not of even very nearby
predecessors or successors.

V.1.1.1 Movement

•On the implied topic of "movement", the sense of my immediate self as "moving through time" traces to
sensory impressions based on the structure of the brain (Rao, Mayer, and Harrington 2001). Alterations
to the brain––such as through psychotropic drugs––can alter the character of these sensory impressions,
such as in making time seem "slower" or "faster" (Cheng, MacDonald, and Meck 2006; Tinklenberg,
Roth, and Kopell 1976; Wittman et al. 2007). Given a comparable type of brain functioning, however,
momentary selves belonging to a smaller chain of momentary selves would not perceive time as going by
any more "quickly" than momentary selves belonging to a longer such chain. However, altogether, there
would be fewer sensory impressions of the rate of time for the smaller chain, which could be said to add
up to an overall slower rate of time perceived. This is to say that smaller chains of adjacent momentary
selves means for a faster overall perception of time.
Interestingly, following this consideration on "overall" perception of time, a relatively large portion
of the "full self" might perceive time as overall "faster" in comparison to a smaller portion, and especially
in comparison to one momentary self. That is, if fusions of ranges of adjacent momentary selves
themselves have features similar to momentary selves' brain structures involving time perception (which
is just conjecture), the "overall" rate of perceived time flow for these larger fusions would be faster in
comparison to smaller fusions and, especially, individual momentary selves. And, if this is so, while we
may lament our overall perception of time as "slow" over a relatively large portion of our full self, it may
be comforting to consider that, simultaneously, overall perception of time could be very fast to larger
portions of our full self.

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Section VI
Highly General Features of the Self
(And of the Relationship of the Self with Reality Otherwise)
In this section, I will present beliefs based on my worldview that concern highly general––i.e., highly
comprehensive––features of myself and of my relationship to all else. These highly general features will
center around my mental impressions. And, going forward, I will mostly describe features of myself in
order of more to less general.

•As I am a fusion "of"––i.e., "wholly covered" by––a group of mental impressions, I have a "hyper-
feature" that is the group of all my mental impressions, which fully covers me. While not identical with
the feature of myself, the hyper-feature of my mental impressions necessarily includes a high amount of
my sub-features. I will detail my view of my mental impressions going forward.

VI.1 Sensory and Non-Sensory Mental Impressions


•To me, whether or not "conscious(ly-highlighted)", mental impressions include sensory impressions and
non-sensory impressions. Sensory impressions would be definable as "feelings" and non-sensory
impressions would be definable as "thoughts". A sensory impression would include an instant within the
experience of a bee sting, of an emotion of love, or of an imagined sound of a trumpet. On the other
hand, non-sensory impressions would include beliefs and other mental impressions that words and other
linguistic symbols can be considered to arise in response to and mimic. A given word might seem to
represent an instance of a given type of feature either besides an impression or that is even a sensory
impression. However, a word itself is a "translation" of only a non-sensory impression; and it is this non-
sensory impression that represents an instance of a given type of feature. Language will be discussed
further in section V1.2.1.1.1.
As opposed to sensory impressions, non-sensory impressions would contain a major feature of
"intentionality" (i.e., a feature that is a quality of being "about" something besides itself) and a secondary
feature of a given "subject" (Searle 1994). In having "intentionality", a non-sensory impression seems to
be "about", seems to "depict", something. And, in having a "subject", a non-sensory impression seems to
take something (a "subject") and prop it up on a stage, canvas, film screen, where this subject is supposed
to "depict" something else. In other words, to me, non-sensory impressions seem to be experiences with
a feature of intentionality and then a "central" feature on the "stage" that intentionality sets up. More
simply put, non-sensory impressions seem to have a major feature of intentionality and a minor feature of
a certain "depiction". Even while a non-sensory impression differs from sensory impressions as detailed,
though, a sensory impression––or any feature in reality––could still be considered a more to less accurate
representation.

VI.1.1 How Impressions Seem Formed

•Non-sensory impressions seem formed only out of other non-sensory impressions and/or sensory
impressions. On the other hand, intentionally "imagined" sensory impressions seem formed out of non-
sensory impressions, while remaining sensory impressions seemingly trace to bodily phenomena outside
the conscious mind. Intentionally "imagined" sensory impressions would be "imagined" following the

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activation––i.e., conscious-illumination, action-initiating––of a belief that is a "plan", i.e., "intention".
(The term "intention" here is unrelated to the "intentionality" discussed in section VI.1.)
In terms of non-sensory impressions formed out of sensory impressions, if a chain of sensory
impressions lingers long and/or strongly consciously enough, the form of these sensory impressions––and
not just one individual sensory impressions within this chain––seems transferred into a non-sensory
impression. For instance, a chain of sensory impressions that is the scent of a certain flower seems able
to easily become a non-sensory impression that depicts that chain if the scent lingers long and/or strongly
consciously enough across predecessors of an immediate self.
In terms of non-sensory impressions forming out of non-sensory impressions, on the other hand,
links can be added that join parts and/or wholes of existing non-sensory impressions (such as non-sensory
impressions that depict sensory impressions of scents) to create new non-sensory impressions. This
difference in non-sensory impressions built directly from sensory impressions and non-sensory
impressions built directly from non-sensory impressions explains a phenomenon discussed in section
V.1.1. This phenomenon involves non-sensory impressions directly built from existing sensory
impressions ending up depicting chains of sensory impressions, while non-sensory impressions directly
built from existing non-sensory impressions ending up depicting individual non-sensory impressions.
This phenomenon can be explained in that, in terms of non-sensory impressions built from existing
sensory impressions, only a chain of and no individual instance of sensory impressions allows the
formation of this type of non-sensory impression. And, in terms of non-sensory impressions built directly
from existing non-sensory impressions, the impressions simply link together and come to exist on the
same instantaneous Cauchy hypersurface. Non-sensory impressions built from non-sensory impressions
then retain the individual/instantaneous nature of their linked-to non-sensory impression. On the other
hand, while also existing only in a given moment, in the content of their "subject", non-sensory
impressions built from sensory impressions retain the temporally-extended nature of the chain of their
preceding sensory impressions.
Anyway, as stated in terms of non-sensory impressions forming out of non-sensory impressions,
links can be added that join parts and/or wholes of existing non-sensory impressions (such as non-sensory
impressions that depict sensory impressions of scents) to create new non-sensory impressions. (Links
added in this way might even include links added between part[s] [or even the whole] of a non-sensory
impression and part[s] of itself!) And, except for one particular (type of) situation where links are added
between existing non-sensory impressions, the adding of links between existing non-sensory impressions
seems to follow out of intentions to add links. In any case, though, except when a non-sensory
impression is destroyed, no non-sensory impression in total or part is "overwritten". That is, when pre-
existing non-sensory impressions and/or their parts are "linked" to create a new non-sensory impression,
the original pre-existing non-sensory impressions would remain as impressions of their own.
The one situation where intentions seem not to guide the creation of non-sensory impressions out of
other non-sensory impressions is the one situation where bodily energy would unfold in a way to allow
this creation apart from "plan-oriented" energy initiated by intentions. This one situation would mirror
the discussed singular situation where non-sensory impressions would form from sensory impressions:
when a chain of sensory impressions lingers long and/or strongly consciously enough. That is, similarly,
non-sensory impressions would form from other non-sensory impressions apart from intentions only
when wholes of non-sensory impressions linger together (across a chain of moments) long and/or
strongly consciously enough and thus develop a link between them. Otherwise, non-sensory impressions
seem formed in a more "focused" way that implies direction from a specific "plan", i.e., "intention".
Unlike non-sensory impressions that form out of other whole non-sensory impressions that linger
together enough, non-sensory impressions that form out of others based on the guidance of intentions

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have added links between wholes and/or parts of existing non-sensory impressions. To expound on
"parts" of existing non-sensory impressions, these "parts" are considered to be "sub-impressions" that do
not exist as their "own" impressions. As defined in section II.4, a "sub-impression" would be a feature of
a mental impression able to be represented within another impression, whether or not the feature is also
an impression of its own. When a sub-impression of a non-sensory impression is not an impression of its
"own", its entirety is not linked to any non-sensory impressions––and it can be called a mere "part" of a
non-sensory impression, or a "dependent" sub-impression. One example of such a "dependent" sub-
impression might be a feature of a non-sensory impression representing a just-formed sensory impression
of a visual image. Another example would be a depicted belief not actually held as a belief on its own.
While the entirety of a "dependent" sub-impression would not be linked to any other non-sensory
impressions, sub-impressions of the dependent sub-impression itself (i.e., "sub-sub-impressions") might
link to other non-sensory impressions. In this case, the (sub-) sub-impressions of the dependent sub-
impression would be non-sensory impressions on their "own". Even while they are (sub-) sub-impres-
sions of a dependent sub-impression, then, such (sub-) sub-impressions could be considered
"independent" sub-impressions.
Anyway, as non-sensory impressions can be formed by the intentional adding of links between parts
and/or wholes of existing non-sensory impressions, non-sensory impressions can also be destroyed by the
intentional removal of links between parts and/or wholes of existing non-sensory impressions. And,
except for non-intentional processes like forgetting, only an intention to destroy an impression would
seem to lead to its loss. For an example, when the process of reasoning reveals a pre-existing belief––"x
as accurate"––as inaccurate, the belief would then seem usually intentionally destroyed. (I will discuss
my view on the process of reasoning in section V1.2.1.1.)
In terms of the process of intentionally destroying the belief "x as accurate", though, only the
singular link between "x" and "as accurate" would need to be removed. Otherwise, if not only that link
but the whole substance of "x" and "as accurate" were destroyed, all non-sensory impressions linking to
this "x" and "as accurate" would be partially destroyed, all impressions wholly overlapped by "x as
accurate" would be fully destroyed, and all impressions linking to any wholly overlapped by "x as
accurate" would be partially destroyed.
Regardless of how non-sensory impressions may be destroyed, however, in whatever––intentional
or non-intentional––way non-sensory impressions are formed from other existing non-sensory impres-
sions, higher "levels" of non-sensory impressions can be created. These higher "levels" of non-sensory
impressions develop as non-sensory impressions are formed out of other non-sensory impressions that are
formed out of still other non-sensory impressions and so on. Here, an original, "first-level" non-sensory
impression would be a non-sensory impression that depicts a specific chain of sensory impressions.
Higher "level" non-sensory impressions would be built from this "first-level" non-sensory impression.
To provide examples of "levels" of non-sensory impressions, non-sensory impressions just "three
levels" away could be very different, and where the newest impression is highly "removed" from an
original, "first-level" non-sensory impression. In starting with a non-sensory impression depicting a
certain scent, for instance, after a three-"step" process of, one, adding other non-sensory impressions to
the original, two, taking away from the newly-created non-sensory impression, and, three, adding to that
new creation, it seems that we would end up with an impression quite different from the original
depiction of a certain scent. Also, the non-sensory impression three "steps" away from the original could
be much more "abstract"––"general"––than the original in that it could depict something much less
specific, i.e., something that includes many more features of reality.
An example of a "high-level" and "abstract" non-sensory impression would be a belief. Beliefs may
be formed out of non-belief non-sensory impressions or out of other beliefs. And, in either case, the

65
process of creating beliefs itself could be called "thinking".
Overall, it seems that every non-sensory impression is traceable to another non-sensory impression
and/or a chain of sensory impressions. This tracing back reveals either the materials that were "used" in
the "building" of a certain non-sensory impression and/or the intention that caused a certain non-sensory
impression to come into existence. Similarly, intentionally imagined (i.e., intentionally "visualized")
sensory impressions are traceable to both an intention and one or more non-sensory impressions depicting
sensory impressions like the ones intentionally imagined. The referenced intention and one or more non-
sensory impressions seem ultimately traceable to sensory impressions, however––and not ultimately to
merely intentionally imagined sensory impressions.
All non-sensory impressions, at some point in their evolution, seem to have formed out of a chain
of sensory impressions. However, only intentionally imagined sensory impressions seem to have formed
out of existing non-sensory impressions. That is, when not intentionally imagined, sensory impressions
seem to have arisen out of something besides predecessors to the immediate self. Instead of predecessors
to the immediate self, "non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions"––as they can be called––seem to
have arisen out of unconscious mental or non-mental bodily activity.
Depending on how these non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions arose from the uncon-
scious body, they seem describable as more to less "spontaneously-arising". That is, non-intentionally-
imagined sensory impressions arise with some degree of disconnection with "predecessors" of the
immediate self. And, based on their degree of more to less disconnection with predecessors of the
immediate self, they can be considered more to less "spontaneously-arising". (In being describable as
relatively "spontaneously-arising", "non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions" are represented
[within/"by" non-sensory impressions] as having arisen seemingly "spontaneously", "surprisingly".)
Non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions that are least disconnected from predecessors
would arise indirectly from predecessors. Such non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions––which
could be called "emotions"––would arise in response to bodily reactions to existing non-sensory
impressions. These bodily reactions would include increases or decreases in activity in various parts of
the body. In terms of bodily reactions that involve increase in activity, some non-sensory impressions
might initiate an increase in heart rate or flow of pleasure-inducing hormones. In terms of bodily
reactions that involve decrease in activity, on the other hand, some non-sensory impressions might
initiate a decrease in muscle tension or adrenaline level.
Non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions slightly more disconnected from predecessors
would include those arising out of unconscious mental activity––such as with sensory impressions that
are hallucinatory visions. (As a note, dreams themselves could be considered hallucinatory visions. And,
in this vein, sensory and non-sensory impressions in general that occur during sleep would seem to mimic
such sensory and non-sensory impressions as they occur during wakefulness. However, as mentioned in
the introduction to section five, what I consider my immediate self doesn't seem to exist during a coma or
dreamless sleep.)
Further disconnected would be non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions arising in response
to bodily activity that stems from other bodily activity––such as with sensory impressions of nausea.
Most disconnected from predecessors of the immediate self, though, would be non-intentionally-imagined
sensory impressions that seem to stem from bodily interaction with the environment. Such most
"spontaneously-arising" sensory impressions include the "surprising" feeling of a caress or a bee sting.

•As suggested, sensory impressions may be accurate or inaccurate just as non-sensory impressions.
However, except with intentionally-imagined sensory impressions, the form of sensory impressions is not
under what could be said to be "our control" (i.e., formed due to non-sensory impressions of

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"intentions"). Instincts behind bodily interaction with itself or its environment and apart from intentions
determine the form of non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions.
Inaccurate non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions can be problematic, just as inaccurate
non-sensory impressions of beliefs can be, however. Whenever an impression positions the body in
reference to something that is not happening, there is risk of acting problematically out of sync with
reality. Inaccurate non-belief non-sensory impressions––such as "the Easter Bunny"––would not seem to
impact the body so negatively. However, any other type of inaccurate impression would seem to present
a risk.
In terms of non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions, risk would present itself where
emotional, mental, or environmental non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions are not perfectly
proportionately similar to anything in reality. In terms of inaccurate emotional such sensory impressions,
one might problematically experience pleasure in response to a thought depicting having just broken a
bone; in terms of inaccurate mental such sensory impressions, one might problematically observe a deer
crossing the road while driving; and, in terms of inaccurate environmental such sensory impressions, one
might problematically see a red traffic light as green and a green traffic light as red.
Unlike with inaccurate non-sensory impressions, intending to think carefully and orderly would not
necessarily correct inaccurate non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions impressions. However,
such careful, orderly thinking might assist in producing beliefs that help the self accommodate to
situations where these inaccurate sensory impressions are held. Situations where these inaccurate sensory
impressions are held would seem usually tied to a diagnosable bodily malfunction instead of random
anomaly, though. So, in this case, a habit of careful, orderly thinking would seem more impactive than if
these situations occurred randomly and without warning.
A singular sensory impression of pleasure, a deer, or the color red might be thought necessarily
accurate, though, because simultaneously accurately representing countless features besides itself.
However, as noted upon introducing perfect proportionate similarity in section III.2.3.3, for something to
be "positively accurate" and not simply "partially accurate", it must map its target of representation in a
precise manner. That is, even a "vaguely accurate" representation would still require that its most
detailed proportions––which include the proportions of its zero-dimensional "non-extended contour"––
match the most or less detailed proportions of the target of representation. This means that sensory
impressions are not unavoidably accurate. Sensory impressions would normally seem accurate, though––
and while seemingly normally accurately representing only one target of representation.
As discussed in section V.1.1, one immediate self would morph moment to moment, even if
infinitesimally so, creating an array of immediate selves existing moment to moment. This morphing
allows a given impression of "the (very) immediate self (at hand)" to accurately represent the immediate
self at hand instead of also very nearby predecessors and successors to the immediate self. Just the same,
sensory impressions within one immediate self would morph moment to moment along with the
immediate self, even if infinitesimally so. This morphing allows a given sensory impression (within its
usual housing chain of sensory impressions) to accurately represent what bodily, mental, or environmen-
tal feature prompted its formation––instead of also other sensory impressions of other very nearby
predecessors and successors to the immediate self at hand. The morphing of sensory impressions within
an immediate self moment to moment also forbids a given sensory impression from accurately represent-
ing features spatiotemporally very nearby and similar to what prompted the sensory impression's
formation, which also morph alongside the immediate self moment to moment. These similar features
would include features spatiotemporally very nearby one instance of damage to a ligament, one instance
of a dog in the middle of a road, or one instance of the color purple.

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•As discussed in section IV.4, a process of "ego dissolution" that can occur under the influence of
psychedelic drugs expands what are usually representable as "barriers" of the "local self". In this case,
(non-intentionally-imagined) sensory impressions can form based on events outside what would normally
be "barriers" of the local self and yet not be describable as "spontaneously-arising".

•As with seemingly any mental process, the formation of sensory and non-sensory impressions would be
extremely quick. Thinking about the process thus does not rely on easily noticed, gradually-unfolding
processes. Instead, thinking about the process of impressions' formation relies on reasoned conjecture.

•Given the complexity of human biology, there are likely exceptions to and variations on the formation
of, structure of, and functioning of mental impressions that I have laid out.

VI.1.1.1 Unavoidable Subjective Confidence in the Existence of More Than Just Myself

•Non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions seem to naturally depict what exists outside of the
immediate, local, full, and grouped self––whether a racing heart, caress, or sting. When accurate, such
non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions would seem to necessarily accurately depict what is
outside of the immediate and full self. So, if someone contains accurate non-intentionally-imagined
sensory impressions, then that person would seem to hold impressions that accurately depict something
besides just the self.
However, it is conceivable (while not inducing high subjective confidence) that all non-intentional-
ly-imagined sensory impressions of mine are inaccurate––whether or not they are inaccurate because
based on a bodily malfunction such as a hallucination. If it is ultimately true that all non-intentionally-
imagined sensory impressions of mine are inaccurate, I would have no non-intentionally-imagined
sensory impressions that accurately depict what is outside of the immediate or full self.
Non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions do seem distinct from other impressions in that
they arise seemingly "spontaneously" with no discernible direct tie to predecessors of the immediate self.
Even if all such sensory impressions are inaccurate, their seemingly spontaneous arising can be seen to
imply the existence of something besides the full self, from where the sensory impressions would stem.
However, it is also conceivable that these impressions are simply able to be described via other
impressions as arising seemingly spontaneously––though nothing besides the full self, or even immediate
self, exists.
The view that nothing besides the full or even immediate self exists would be incorporated under a
view called solipsism, normally defined as the view that only the mind exists (Russell 1948). Depending
on how "mind" is defined, solipsism could count for a variety of views. These views would each deny
the existence of at least what exists outside of the "mind" when defined as "all the conscious and
unconscious impressions, along with the processes involved with these impressions, associable with some
portion of a full self". However, the views would also include that only the full self and its individual
immediate selves exist; only the immediate self and its (momentary) unconscious mind exists; or even
that only the (momentary) immediate self exists.
Beyond leading to solipsism, if it is true that all non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions of
mine are inaccurate, then all impressions of mine would trace back to mere inaccuracies. And, if all
impressions of mine are either inaccurate or built from inaccuracies, it seems that even all of my
impressions might be inaccurate.
All in all, I cannot deny that I hold at least some subjective confidence in the three entertained

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beliefs that all of my non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions are inaccurate, that some form of
solipsism is true, and that all of my impressions are wrong. However, I seem to unavoidably hold
relatively high confidence in the countering beliefs I hold that not all of my non-intentionally-imagined
sensory impressions are inaccurate, that there does exist more than my mind, and that not all of my
impressions are either wrong or based on inaccuracies. My low confidence in the former three enter-
tained beliefs and high confidence in the latter three held beliefs stems from my inability to clearly
imagine that the former entertained beliefs are true. That is, I cannot more clearly imagine that all my
non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions are inaccurate than that they are accurate; I cannot more
clearly imagine that some form of solipsism is true than that no form of solipsism is true; and, I cannot
more clearly imagine that all of my impressions are wrong than that at least some are correct.
Ultimately, my seeming inability to hold high subjective confidence concerning the above three
entertained beliefs provides no tangible "proof"––i.e., truth to directly access––against them or for their
alternatives. However, this inability discourages further serious investigation into the three entertained
beliefs and relieves some anxiety stemming from imagining that the beliefs are true, along with
imagining the troubling situations that could come along with the beliefs being true. Additionally, in
considering "proof" to be "truth that can be directly accessed", there is no tangible proof for nearly any
entertained or held belief. As I will detail later, I find that I cannot "access" the truth or non-truth of
beliefs that represent more than just myself.

VI.1.2 Conscious Impressions

•As discussed in section IV.4.1 and as suggested in VI.1.1, an impression's degree of activeness/intensity
seems to mirror both its degree of consciousness and its ability to initiate bodily action. In other words, a
higher-consciousness impression will initiate more bodily energy because of its degree of
"excitation" (activeness/intensity). The energy initiated wouldn't seem random, though, but informed by
the structure of the impression. For example, sensory impressions of a salty taste produces relatively
reliable types of reactions in a given person, just as a non-sensory impression depicting a cat produces
relatively reliable types of reactions in a given person.
The type of reactions that follow from a salty taste would differ from the type of reactions that
follow from the non-sensory impression of a cat. However, in either case, the reactions would seem
informed by the form and degree of consciousness of the impressions. And, in either case, energy would
(instinctually) be initiated that allows similar-content non-sensory impressions to rise in degree of
consciousness. In the case of the non-sensory impression, though, other instinctual reactions might also
occur.
In terms of the salty taste, energy would be initiated that activates or further activates existing
unconscious or conscious non-sensory impressions involving similar tastes. For example, memories
about similar tastes might rise to consciousness ("memories" here as types of impressions depicting an
impression formed in the past, and an impression of a type where it was "about" what at the time was the
"current" moment). Just the same, the conscious non-sensory impression of a cat would at least initiate
energy that similarly "seeks out" and raises the degree of consciousness of existing non-sensory
impressions of similar content.
While the non-sensory impression of a cat might not instinctually initiate energy besides raising
degrees of consciousness of similar non-sensory impressions, a belief that the cat is vicious would seem
to instinctually initiate energy besides just raising the degrees of consciousness of similar non-sensory
impressions. A belief that the cat is vicious would seem to initiate bodily reactions such as an increase in
heart rate and an increase in adrenaline flow. In response, sensory impressions that depict these bodily

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changes might form, where any and all of these sensory impressions could be labeled "emotions", such as
"fear" or "anxiety".
In terms of any sensory impression, though, whether fear or a salty taste, sensory impressions seem
only to initiate energy toward raising the degree of consciousness of existing related non-sensory
impressions. Existing related non-sensory impressions might include "I should always run from vicious
cats" or a memory of eating a salty pretzel on a beach. While sensory impressions might have arisen
from instinctual bodily energy flow––such as a certain type of salivating given salt on the tongue––, they
do not seem to then instinctually initiate any bodily energy toward anything but raising the consciousness
of existing related non-sensory impressions like these. Even if sensory impressions––such as fear or a
salty taste––are intentionally imagined instead of arising seemingly "spontaneously", it would seem that
the sensory impressions would arise due to bodily activity that their intending also induces.

•In terms of non-sensory impressions that instinctually initiate energy toward something besides raising
the consciousness of existing similar-content non-sensory impressions, the energy initiated might not be
of one, singular, inevitable type. That is, energy instinctually initiated might not be successfully seen
through or even initiated, based on interruption from some external or internal situation.
In terms of "external" situations interrupting non-sensory impressions' instinctual energy initiation,
a situation external to the body might inhibit completion of energy flow initiated by a non-sensory
impression. For example, an intention that would usually lead a person to move their body in a certain
way could be stymied based on how much empty space surrounds one's body. On the other hand, in
terms of "internal" situations interrupting non-sensory impressions' instinctual energy initiation, certain
bodily energy might nullify or redirect bodily energy initiated by a non-sensory impression. For
example, someone might instinctually jump based on a loud sound, and this jumping would take energy
away from the intentional process of retrieving a memory that began in quiet moments prior to the loud
sound.
In terms of "internal" situations interrupting non-sensory impressions' instinctual energy initiation,
simply unconscious bodily states can alter the course of––nullify or redirect––initiated energy. These
unconscious bodily states would include general states like excitation (such as from jumping),
exhaustion, anxiety, depression, or illness. More local bodily states would also be included, such as
localized injury. On the other hand, energy initiated by non-sensory impressions themselves can alter the
course of energy initiated by other non-sensory impressions.
One example of interference between energy patterns initiated by separate non-sensory impressions
would involve how energy predictably initiated by one non-sensory impression can change over time.
That is, for instance, just because someone instinctually panics upon conscious illumination of a non-
sensory impression depicting any spider doesn't mean that this predictable reaction cannot change. Over
time, one might accumulate many non-sensory impressions that depict enjoyable interactions with
spiders. Conscious illumination of a non-sensory impression of any spider would then also trigger
activation of non-sensory impressions of these enjoyable interactions. Once activated, the impressions
depicting enjoyable interactions with spiders would seem to override a (still-existing) instinctual reaction
to the non-sensory impression of any spider.
While various types of bodily energy can interrupt energy initiated by non-sensory impressions,
energy initiated by non-sensory impressions can also interrupt various types of bodily energy––even
bodily energy that is unconscious or non-mental. For example, the non-sensory impression of an
intention to breathe deeply can help modulate an overall state of anxiety.
As an important note, instincts themselves appear able to change. That is, neuroscience research
has found that most genes actually interact with the body in order to express themselves or not, i.e., to

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turn themselves on or off (Rossi 2002).

Just as energy instinctually initiated by non-sensory impressions might not be successfully seen through
or even initiated based on interruption from some external or internal situation, such is also the case with
sensory impressions––while the energy instinctually initiated is of a much more limited type. One
notable situation specific to the interruption of sensory impressions involves "sensory adaptation".
Sensory adaptation describes the observed process where, given extended and unchanging exposure to an
internal and/or external situation, sensory impressions that usually follow from a certain type of bodily
phenomenon gradually stop forming, along with the bodily phenomenon itself (Chung, Li, and Nelson
2002). To provide an example, when someone sits on an uncomfortable chair, they may at first develop
chains of sensory impressions of some amount of pain. However, the longer that this person sits in the
chair, the less that this person will develop such chains. (Sensory adaptation will be expounded upon in
section VII.1.)

•In terms of degrees of consciousness, while the energy initiated by impressions would seem bound by
(potentially changeable) instinct, the degree of activeness/intensity (i.e., consciousness) of impressions
would vary with situations. For example, a great deal of damage to a bodily area would seem to result in
more sensory impressions and of a higher degree of intensity. This higher amount and intensity of
sensory impressions would then seem to activate related non-sensory impressions with a high degree of
intensity.
Relatedly, not all bodily energy would activate the formation of even any sensory impressions,
however. For instance, the slow growth of my finger nails would seem to initiate no reaction that results
in the formation of sensory impressions. It seems that only bodily activity of a certain type and intensity
ends up forming sensory impressions.

•While conscious impressions seem to instinctually cause a certain type of bodily energy to arise, neither
this cause nor energy would be "experienced" by myself (in terms of my immediate or local self),
however. More precisely, neither the cause nor the energy would be part of myself. Both the cause and
energy seem to relate to myself more than most other things in reality, though.

•As mentioned in section VI.1.1, given the complexity of human biology, there are likely exceptions to
and variations on the formation of, structure of, and functioning of mental impressions that I have laid out
here.

VI.2 Non-Sensory Impressions of "Beliefs"


•Non-sensory impressions would also be dividable into beliefs and non-beliefs. Beliefs would be
linguistically translatable as sentences, and non-beliefs would be translatable as "sentence
fragments" (like just one word). Beliefs would also depict another impression (even a belief) as
"accurate", while non-beliefs would not depict any other impression as "accurate". As mentioned in
section III.2.3.3, a given accurate belief would correspond to a "description" that groups together x given
mental impression with a pair of itself and what what it accurately represents, then altogether with the
group of all (grouped) pairs of features where one accurately represents the other.

VI.2.1 Beliefs of "Intentions"

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•In terms of a type of belief that can be called an "intention" (again, not related to the term
"intentionality"), intentions seem to be desires about the self initiating some action. And, to me, desires
are beliefs, i.e., non-sensory impressions linguistically translatable into sentences). Intentions would then
be a specific type of desire.
A belief that is a given desire could be linguistically translated as "X possible situation includes
more good than not-x possible situation". (Here, "x possible situation" is one specific possible situation,
and "not-x possible situation" is a possible situation where "x possible situation" does not happen.) As an
intention is a type of desire, the phrasing "X possible situation includes more good than not-x possible
situation" would accurately stand for any desire, whether or not an intention. However, a more specific
phrasing that applies to only desires that are intentions would more accurately represent a given intention.
More precise than just "X possible situation includes more good than not-x possible situation", "X
possible situation (the situation being 'myself as initiating y action') includes more good than not-x
possible situation" would seem to better represent a given intention (where "myself" means "my
immediate self"). (A still more precise phrasing would be "Y impression of 'X possible situation [the
situation being 'my immediate self as initiating y action'] as including more good than not-x possible
situation' as accurate".)
An example of a common type of intention would be asking the self a question. Such an intention
could be phrased as "The possible situation of myself causing x type of existing or not-yet-existing
thought to either come into consciousness or be created and be conscious includes more good than the
possible situation of this not happening". Clearly, we wouldn't naturally linguistically interpret a question
we ask ourselves in this way. It's just that this linguistic presentation seems to me the most precise
manner of linguistically interpreting a given question we ask ourselves.
An intention to ask the self a question illustrates how intentions are not always "successful",
though. Even while I may form an intention to answer a question, I will not necessarily realize the
situation where I answer the question.

•The type of "possibility" referenced while discussing intentions would be "alethic possibility"––as
opposed to "epistemic possibility". As discussed in sections III.1.1.1 and IV.2.1, "alethic possibility" can
be defined as "ableness to happen"––over "subjective confidence in x belief as being true", which would
define "epistemic possibility" (White 1975). In contrast to "alethic possibility", "epistemic possibility" is
the type of possibility involved in believing that x belief is, with a certain relatively high degree of
"subjective confidence", "possibly" true, for example.

•Like any mental impression––and like any feature in reality––, intentions and other desires would be
accurate or inaccurate, even while intentions and other desires might not normally be considered able to
be either accurate or inaccurate. If desires are statable as "X possible situation includes more good than
not-x possible situation", though, then it seems clear that "X possible situation includes more good than
not-x possible situation" could be true or not. For example, "x possible situation" might not be possible.

•As opposed to desires that are not intentions, intentions would seem to cause bodily energy to be sent to
create intentions' depicted "possible situations"––in line with proposals about conscious impressions
made in sections IV.4.1, VI.1.2, and in the introduction to section five. If "successful" in realizing the
depicted possible situation, though, non-sensory impressions would seem to form depicting this success.
Then, if the original intention has not already dissipated on its own (like all the short-lived non-sensory
impressions that flood a mind hourly and do not linger as unconscious impressions), another intention

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could be formed to destroy the original intention. If an intention lasts this long, the process of reasoning
would guide the formation of an intention to destroy the original intention. I will discuss my view on the
process of reasoning in section V1.2.1.1.
As suggested in section VI.1.2, intentions do seem to cause bodily energy to be sent to create
depicted possible situations, neither this cause nor energy would be "experienced" by myself (in terms of
my immediate or local self), however. More precisely, neither the cause nor the energy would be part of
myself. Both the cause and energy seem to relate to myself more than most other things in reality,
though.

•Unless incurring some psychological aberration, people would seem prone to act based on any of their
intentions, even when intentions are based on poor reasoning or other "bad thinking" (which will be
specifically discussed in sections VI.3.2.3 through VI.3.2.5). One relevant example of such bad thinking
would involve trying to believe that "X possible situation includes more good than not-x possible
situation" against natural, honest inclination. Such bad thinking could also involve trying not to believe
that "x possible situation includes more good than not-x possible situation" against natural, honest
inclination.

•Intentions' created situations include the forming of new impressions––while new impressions seem
created not just by intentions. Even the impressions of intentions seem formed via intentions at least
some of the time, though. For example, upon having an intention to run when I hear a gunshot marking
the beginning of a race, I intend to form an intention to run.

•Notably, even if all reality is equally real, I seem naturally inclined to believe that I can "create the
future" through my intentions––a future that is "pliable" and only "partially real" until "created". That is,
when I form beliefs depicting intentions of mine as just fulfilled––like in successfully picking up a jar as
"planned", skipping over a puddle as "planned", or forming an intention itself as, through another
intention, "planned"––, it seems that certain unconscious mental activity unfolds that results in a non-
intentionally-imagined sensory impression of (i.e., describable as) "having created" or "control" (Wegner
2003).
Non-sensory impressions depicting non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions of "having
created" seem to contribute to a natural inclination to find more confidence in a belief that I can "create
the future" than not. This natural inclination seems also contributed to by my non-sensory impressions
depicting the "past"––which are greatly more numerous and more confidently-held than non-sensory
impressions depicting the "future". Beliefs of mine depicting inability to "create the future" have
ultimately allowed me to have relatively high confidence in the belief that I cannot "create the future",
though.
Even if I do not and cannot "create the future", though, it seems to me that, at every moment, things
"could" go differently from how they do––that there is an "ability" in reality for things to be different
from how they are. That is, it is alethically possible for things to be different. And, if things could, at
every moment, go differently like this, then I could be considered "free" in being able to do other than I
do (through intention, i.e., "will")––though I couldn't be considered "free" in actually ever "creating" the
future (Moore 1912).
Just because I believe that I cannot "create", i.e., "control", the future, though, does not mean that I
believe intentions are not impactive on––i.e., contributive to––surrounding reality or that I should expend
less energy on seeing through with intentions. Even upon believing that the future cannot be changed
(and that all is "determined", as mentioned in section IV.3.2), it is possible to hold that I am not simply a

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passive "observer" above reality, but an embedded cog among all of the intricate clockwork that is reality.
And, believing that intentions are impactive and worth seeing through would seem to mean that I end up
contributing more to reality than otherwise. And, with certain intentions over others, this impact would
seem able to be more "positive" than otherwise.
Even if my life ends up not contributing to much positivity after all, though, and even if things
"could have" gone better, what ends up happening is ultimately fully explained, fully contributed to from
something else (as described in section II.1 and IV.3.2). That is, what ends up happening is not just an
option equal with what is alethically possible; what is alethically possible is only embedded within what
already is. So, while things "could have" alethically possibly gone differently, these alternatives are not
"lost options" due to personal failure.
The structure of reality contributes to what ultimately happens, not personal failure on my part to
have "controlled the future". While it seems best to hold intentions to maximize positivity, it also seems
best to rest in belief that, while perceived failure can be considered a scenario to learn from, this
perceived failure ultimately was fully contributed to within reality (which includes being "determined"
along the forward timelike dimension).

V1.2.1.1 Reasoning

•The mental process of "reasoning" seems a type of intending. However, it does not seem clear to me
that reasoning necessarily involves intentions all of or even most of the time.
To me, reasoning seems definable as the forming of a new belief out of at least some "sub-
impressions" of each of two or more combined specific pre-existing beliefs, where these pre-existing
beliefs all share content, and where the newly formed belief does not repeat content found within the pre-
existing beliefs. In other words, reasoning takes two or more related pre-existing beliefs, combines them
into one, and forms a new belief out of at least some of each of the two or more beliefs; but no elements
from any of these two or more pre-existing beliefs is repeated.
To provide an example, reasoning could occur with the following three related beliefs: "My hand is
uncomfortably hot", "My hand is under hot running water", and "Hands under hot running water become
uncomfortably hot because of the hot water". Reasoning could occur after combining these three beliefs
into one and extracting at least some from each one part to create a new belief: "My hand is uncomfort-
ably hot because of the hot water that my hand is under".
In reasoning, the beliefs started with can be called "premises", while the resulting belief based on
these premises can be called a "conclusion". The following is an example of an instance of reasoning
with the premises and conclusion labeled as such:

Premise 1: If I go fishing, I will end up carrying my fishing rod to the pond.


Premise 2: I will go fishing.
Conclusion: I will end up carrying my fishing rod to the pond.

•"Deductive reasoning" is a type of reasoning definable as "the forming of a conclusion upon premises
where at least one premise is a more general claim than the conclusion"; on the other hand, "inductive
reasoning" is definable as "the forming of a conclusion upon premises where no premise is a more
general claim than the conclusion" (Cohen, Copi, and Flage 2007). "General" here seems well-defined as
"'more' of reality (assumably accurately) represented". And, while deductive reasoning produces
relatively obvious and unavoidable conclusions, inductive reasoning only produces what seem to be

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merely probable conclusions.
In opposition to most contemporary English-speaking academic philosophers, I would propose that,
while a person can produce different types of lists that are labelable as involving inductive or deductive
reasoning, there is only one type of reasoning that ever occurs in a person's mind: deductive reasoning.
For example, I can produce the following lists, the first labelable as involving deductive reasoning and
the second as involving inductive reasoning:

Premise 1: If I go fishing, I will end up carrying my fishing rod to the pond.


Premise 2: I will go fishing.
Conclusion: I will end up carrying my fishing rod to the pond.

Premise 1: In the past, I have always remembered to bring my fishing rod with me when I go
fishing.
Premise 2: I will go fishing in the future.
Conclusion: When I go fishing in the future, I will probably remember to bring my fishing rod with
me.

In considering how processes of (undisrupted) reasoning may unfold in the mind, it seems that the
second list above––which is describable as involving inductive reasoning––does not represent such
processes as accurately as does the first (the first being describable as involving deductive reasoning).
The second list doesn't seem to represent mental processes as accurately as the first because, in the
second list, there seems no mention or obvious implication of a thought linguistically interpretable as
"probably" in the premises, and, yet, the mention of "probably" in the conclusion seems necessarily
caused somehow. Therefore, it seems that a process of reasoning anything like what the second list
would represent would involve some element not accounted for by the list as shown.
The second list's unmentioned element would seemingly involve some non-sensory impression
linguistically interpretable as including "probably". To me, the unmentioned element would be another
premise: "Things that have always happened in the past will probably happen in the future". As this
premise is more general than the conclusion in the second list above, the list thus comes to represent what
would be better called an instance of deductive reasoning. Adding the new premise into the list would
form the following list:

Premise 1: In the past, I have always remembered to bring my fishing rod with me when I go
fishing.
Premise 2: Things that have always happened in the past will probably happen (i.e., have a high
chance of happening) in the future.
Premise 3: I will go fishing in the future.
Conclusion: When I go fishing in the future, I will probably remember (i.e., I have a high chance of
remembering) to bring my fishing rod with me.

V1.2.1.1.1 Language

•One notable feature of myself that involves reasoning is my use of "language". To me, "language"
seems well defined as "intentionally produced written numerical figures, brail/written/signed/spoken/'vi-
sualized' words, and any other (more or less 'arbitrarily') 'chosen symbols' culturally (or sub-culturally, or

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even, given an idiosyncratic shorthand or other code, privately) agreed to, upon intentional production,
accurately represent a specific type of non-sensory impression".

•In terms of communication and reception, language would involve sensory impressions of "sounds",
"images of letters", "sensations of brail", etc. On the other hand, in terms of initial production and
comprehension, language would involve non-sensory impressions that depict sensory impressions of
"sounds", "images of letters", "sensations of brail", etc.

•The production of language would seem to involve a process of "linguistic translation" of non-sensory
impressions. This process would seem to begin with an intention to represent a specific non-sensory
impression(s) with a certain type of linguistic symbol. Energy initiated by this intention would then seem
to necessarily access certain currently unconscious beliefs. These currently unconscious beliefs would
depict different types of linguistic symbols as culturally (to privately) agreed to, upon intentional use,
accurately represent specific types of non-sensory impressions.
An intention to represent a specific non-sensory impression with a certain type of linguistic symbol
would then seem to initiate energy toward the creation of a written, signed, spoken, or "visualized"
word(s) or other symbol(s). These symbols would produce sensory impressions in the self and/or others
exposed to the symbols.
In the reception and comprehension of language, then, it seems that sensory impressions would be
reasoned out as intentionally caused by some person (even the [nearly-immediate-past] self), and
reasoned to be believed by that person to be symbols representing some specific culturally (to privately)
agreed-upon type of non-sensory impression.
Relatedly, I (in my local self) seem to use language not just in communicating with others, but in
communicating with my (local) self. And, much of this linguistic communication with myself seems to
occur while reasoning. Even much of my reasoning would seem to involve linguistically communicating
premises to myself.
In using language for reasoning, it seems that I first intend to "communicate" specific non-sensory
impressions to myself by intending to have sensory impressions of faintly "hearing" and/or "seeing" and/
or otherwise "sensing" a symbol(s) that represents the specific non-sensory impressions. These sensory
impressions would then seem reasoned out as intentionally caused by myself (in terms of a near-
immediate-past predecessor), and reasoned out as representing a specific intentionally-communicated
non-sensory impression that is seemingly an at least nearly identical version of one had by the immediate
self.
Using language in reasoning would seem to be an extremely quick process––as it seems at least
most mental processes would be. However, using language in reasoning would seem to allow "focus" on
given instances of reasoning in order to avoid distractions that might leave instances of reasoning
unfinished. ("Focus" here would be "intending to suppress all or most conscious impressions but for
some".)

•As a note, this whole book is just a reporting of non-sensory impressions of mine, reported after
intentionally "linguistically translated". In other words, this book is the result of intentionally communi-
cating non-sensory impressions through "language" after intentionally matched with a non-sensory
impression of a "symbol" used in "language".

VI.3 Auto-Verifying and Non-Auto-Verifying Impressions

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•To me, "auto-verifying impressions" are accurate non-sensory impressions whose accuracy and
represented feature is not enclosed away from the immediate self and thus "experienced"/"accessed" by
the immediate self. At least usually, auto-verifying impressions of mine only depict either one or more of
the local self's conscious impressions and/or one or more features of (one or more of) the local self's
conscious impressions––and nothing else. And, at least usually, auto-verifying impressions' accuracy and
target of representation are not enclosed away from my immediate self because they are already sub-
features of the immediate self or at least the local self.
While auto-verifying impressions' accuracy and represented features would at least usually exist
within the local self, an auto-verifying impression's accuracy and represented feature might both exist
outside of the local self. Such a scenario might involve the use of psychedelic drugs that result in "ego
dissolution", as noted in section IV.4. "Ego dissolution" can be defined as the sense of being directly
connected to the external world. An auto-verifying impression's accuracy and represented feature as both
existing outside of the local self would involve the use of these psychedelic drugs as mentioned if "ego
dissolution" is actually "the reduction of the local self's enclosingness from its immediate surroundings in
some amount and degree".
As opposed to auto-verifying impressions, a "non-auto-verifying impression" would simply be an
impression that is not an auto-verifying impression. Such non-auto-verifying impressions might be auto-
verifying in part, however––i.e., in a contained sub-impression. When auto-verifying just in part, such
non-auto-verifying impressions could also be referred to as "partially-auto-verifying impressions". These
"partially-auto-verifying impressions" would only be non-sensory impressions and not sensory impres-
sions, though.
No sensory impression would be auto-verifying. While sensory impressions would at least often
seem to accurately represent what exists outside of the immediate self, sensory impressions would never
accurately represent another impression within the local self. Even while a sensory impression might be
accurately represented by a non-sensory impression within the immediate self, this doesn't mean that this
or any sensory impression would be able to accurately represent a non-sensory impression within the
immediate self. As discussed in section III.2.3.3, only a representation and target of representation that
are identical could be considered to accurately represent "each other". Two co-existing identical sensory
impressions would accurately represent "each other", but I consider sensory impressions to lack the
boundaries that would allow any instance of co-existing identical sensory impressions.
As for non-sensory impressions, except for a vaguely imaginable instance of ego dissolution, no
belief would seem ever auto-verifying. No belief would ever seem auto-verifying because, as mentioned
in sections III.2.3.3 and VI.2, accurate beliefs would correspond to a "description" that groups together x
given mental impression with the pair of itself and what it accurately represents, then grouped with the
group of all (grouped) pairs of features where one accurately represents the other. This description would
necessarily involve what is not within the local self––but, instead, what is everywhere in spacetime.

VI.3.1 Non-Auto-Verifying Impressions' "Filtering"

•Even if reality contains no "non-self-illumination", anything naturally depicted as self-illuminated


besides myself still seems to really involve something as "compared" with a self-illuminated feature of
mine (except in the case of ego dissolution). For example, certain emotions of other people seem
imagined based on impressions representing my own types of emotions. Similarly, any "conscious
being" represented seems represented as such in reference to myself as having such a self-illuminated
feature.

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More precisely, except in the case of ego dissolution, auto-verifying impressions (which are non-
sensory) and non-sensory impressions that are partially-auto-verifying seem to naturally only depict
something as self-illuminated via one or more impressions making up my immediate self. (Partially-
auto-verifying impressions––which are impressions with only auto-verifying "sub-impressions"––would
include impressions that depict something as "like" me. Also, in the case of an auto-verifying impression
that depicts the immediate self, all ["conscious"] impressions making up my immediate self would be
depicted [however extremely vaguely].)
My impressions would not seem to just happen to naturally represent some things as self-illuminat-
ed and others as non-self-illuminated for a random reason, though. Except in cases of ego dissolution,
only what is part of my local self or compared with my local self seems depicted as self-illuminated. In
other words, non-auto-verifying impressions seem to naturally depict features as non-self-illuminated.
Non-auto-verifying impressions seem to naturally depict features only as non-self-illuminated
because of how impressions are naturally formed. That is, one, as discussed in section VI.1.1, all non-
sensory impressions trace back to "non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions". Two, these non-
intentionally-imagined sensory impressions represent what is beyond the "local self". Three, except in
the case of ego dissolution, what is beyond the local self is "enclosed" from the local self via a "barrier".
Four, this barrier would seem to affect how precisely non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions
represent what is not the local self. And, five, the barrier would seem to lower their accuracy to such a
degree that would allow the self-illuminated nature of what is represented to be lost within the "subject"
of all non-sensory impressions built from these non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions. (This
doesn't mean that non-sensory impressions or their "subjects" [discussed in section VI.1] are non-self-
illuminated, of course. It just means that non-sensory impressions "depict" something as if it were non-
self-illuminated. On the other hand, sensory impressions do not have a "subject" with which to depict
anything as self-illuminated or non-self-illuminated.)
While the "subject" of a non-sensory impression may not clearly depict self-illumination, the
impression would still seem perfectly proportionately similar to a given feature even while including the
feature's self-illumination. That is, while I might naturally depict another (self-illuminated) person as
non-self-illuminated until "compared" with self-illuminated impressions of my own, the original
impression depicting the person as non-self-illuminated could still be considered accurate to a relatively
low, vague degree.
Any non-sensory impression depicting something self-illuminated as non-self-illuminated could be
qualified with related non-sensory impressions, though, in order to form a collection of impressions that
are more accurate than otherwise. For instance, an impression phrasable as "this (seemingly-non-self-
illuminated) chair" could be qualified with a more accurate related impression phrasable as "this
(seemingly-non-self-illuminated) chair as somehow 'self-illuminated' like me". Here, even while I may
not be able to clearly depict a chair as a self-illuminated feature, I can at least depict the chair as self-
illuminated in a vague way, where this even vague depiction would seem more accurate than the more
natural non-self-illuminated depiction.
Here, the qualifying more accurate related impression would not necessarily seem to "replace" the
other less accurate related impression. For instance, I seem unable to "revise" especially long-standing
non-sensory impressions of mine (like "my body", "reality", "apples"), replacing them with versions
mentioning that they are really "somehow 'self-illuminated like me'". Still, such long-standing impres-
sions could be qualified by another more accurate related non-sensory impression mentioning that they
are really "somehow 'self-illuminated' like me".
More accurate qualifying impressions would not seem to represent the same thing as the impression
qualified, though. For instance, the impression "(seemingly-non-self-illuminated) apples as somehow

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'self-illuminated' like me" seems to depict "apples" and along with the group of what's self-illuminated
like me––rather than just "apples" and depicted more precisely/accurately.
Attempting to qualify all or many of my pre-existing and constantly-newly-formed non-auto-
verifying impressions would, naturally, be futile, however. Such attempting would also seem to
necessarily cause me to forego assessing pre-existing and newly-formed impressions for potential
inaccuracy; so, such attempting would seemingly end up sacrificing greater accuracy for less accuracy.
Additionally, an impression phrasable as "this (seemingly-non-self-illuminated) chair as somehow
'self-illuminated' like me", for example, would still be less accurate than a relatively highly clear
depiction of the self-illuminated chair, though. An example of an accurate relatively highly clear
depiction of something self-illuminated would be any given "auto-verifying impression".

•A natural "filtering" of non-auto-verifying impressions would have implications such as seemingly never
being able to "observe" the experience of others as anything but something non-self-illuminated––except
given an imaginably possible form of ego dissolution. For example, if we ever observed another's
experiences via scientific equipment––where we would form non-intentionally-imagined sensory
impressions––, we would (at least usually) observe the experiences not as self-illuminated, but as
something like "physical" neuronal activity (as will be discussed in section seven).

VI.3.2 Accuracy of Auto-Verifying and Non-Auto-Verifying Impressions

•One auto-verifying impression might be considered to relatively accurately (i.e., "vaguely positively
accurately") represent more than one (instantaneous) feature within the local self. For example, an auto-
verifying impression might relatively accurately represent my immediate self's (instantaneous) non-
sensory impression of "math" as well as the momentary self's (instantaneous) impression of "math" that
occurs two nanoseconds from now, within the same "local self". However, at least when an auto-
verifying impression is accurately representing an (instantaneous) feature belonging specifically to the
immediate self, the auto-verifying impression would seem to most accurately represent only one thing.
That is, as mentioned in section V.1.1, the immediate self seems to evolve parallel to how accurate
impressions depicting its whole or its features evolve, allowing for the intuitive result of such impressions
most accurately only depicting one thing.

•As noted, the "accuracy" of any representation would seem to simply exist as the perfect proportionate
similarity existing between (i.e., that "is") the representation and what is accurately represented.
Accuracy would then always be contained between (i.e., "as") the pair of an accurate representation and
what it represents (and not just in one or the other). (Again, as mentioned in section II.2.3.3, a pair of
features where one accurately represents the other is better represented as an instance of perfect
proportionate similarity [i.e., accuracy] itself.)
In line with this view, accuracy within my immediate self seems to exist as the perfect proportionate
similarity between one auto-verifying impression and what the impression accurately represents: one or
more other impressions and/or other features within my local self. Just the same, the accuracy of a non-
auto-verifying impression of mine would seem to exist as the perfect proportionate similarity between the
non-auto-verifying impression and what the impression accurately represents: what would not just be of
my impressions or features of impressions.
As a note, since the "accuracy" of any accurate non-auto-verifying impressions of mine would
definitionally be "enclosed" from myself and not within myself, this accuracy could not be

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"experienced"/"accessed" by myself. Additionally, if the accuracy of accurate non-auto-verifying
impressions is outside of myself, the non-self would seem to necessarily exist. Alongside other beliefs
that I detailed in section VI.1.1.1, my belief that the feature of accuracy of non-auto-verifying impres-
sions exists outside of myself adds to my confidence that there exists more than just myself.

•I seem to contain within my local self features that are actually instances of "perfect proportionate
similarity" that exist between (and, more accurately, are) auto-verifying impressions and the impressions/
features that they accurately depict. These instances of perfect proportionate similarity would suggest
that auto-verifying impressions are necessarily true. Nevertheless, auto-verifying impressions are still
"imaginably" untrue.

VI.3.2.1 Imagining

•I can "imagine"––i.e., "visualize"––the sound of a trumpet in intending to form a chain of sensory


impressions which I already have a non-sensory impression depicting: the sound of a trumpet. On the
other hand, I can also "imagine"––i.e., "pretend"––holding some belief, like in imagining that I am
currently on a ferris wheel.
Imagining holding a belief ("pretending"), like that I am currently on a ferris wheel, would seem to
involve imagining (chains of) sensory impressions that I already have non-sensory impressions depicting
("visualizing"): e.g., sights, sounds, and emotions related to the riding of a ferris wheel. However,
imagining holding a belief ("pretending"), like that I am currently on a ferris wheel, would also seem to
involve the forming of a belief that another belief is able to be held: e.g., "I am able to have a belief that
I am currently riding a ferris wheel".

•While believing that I am currently riding a ferris wheel would seem necessarily inaccurate, imagining
that I am currently riding a ferris wheel would seem to involve a necessarily accurate belief: that I am
able to hold a belief that I am currently riding a ferris wheel. Beyond just a belief that I am currently
riding a ferris wheel, though, it seems to me that I am able to hold even any specific belief.

•While it does seem to me that I am able to hold any specific belief, it is harder to "imagine" holding
some beliefs over others. In other words, imagining holding some beliefs comes with more indistinct
visualizations than imagining holding other beliefs. For example, no matter how strong my imagination
is, it is harder to imagine that I am currently on ferris wheel than that I am currently at a desk writing.
That is, an intention to pretend that I am currently on a ferris wheel results in more numerous and more
vivid sensory impressions than an intention to pretend that I am at a desk writing.
When it is easier to imagine holding one belief over another, it can be said that the "imaginability"
of one belief is "higher", "clearer", "more precise" than the "imaginability" of the other belief.

VI.3.2.2 Subjective Confidence

•A degree of subjective confidence would seem to exist as the discovered "difference" between the
discovered imaginability to x belief and the discovered imaginability to not-x belief. That is, the
subjective confidence to x would seem to form after forming a belief "X belief is y1 degree imaginable,
and not-x belief is y2 degree imaginable". The subjective confidence to x would exist as the sub-
impression "y1-minus-y2 degree imaginable" within a formed belief "X belief is y1-minus-y2 degree

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imaginable". As a belief involving the confidence toward another belief, a formed belief phrasable as "X
belief is y1-minus-y2 degree imaginable" could be called a "confidence-oriented belief".
When y1-minus-y2 is positive, this would mean that x's imaginability is higher than not-x's
imaginability. And, when y1-minus-y2 is negative, this would that x's imaginability is lower than not-x's
imaginability. And, when y1-minus-y2 is zero, this would mean that the imaginability of x and of not-x
are equal.
When the imaginability of not-x is zero––i.e., when one cannot imagine believing not-x––and the
imaginability of x is higher than zero, subjective confidence in x could be considered "one hundred
percent". In other words, when y1-minus-y2 would be y1-minus-zero, the resulting degree could be called
"one hundred percent" confidence in x. At the same time, y1-minus-zero could be called "zero percent
confidence" in not-x.
Just the same, when the imaginability of x is zero––i.e., when one cannot imagine believing x––and
the imaginability of not-x is higher than zero, subjective confidence in not-x could be considered "one
hundred percent". In other words, when y1-minus-y2 would be zero-minus-y2, the resulting degree could
be called "one hundred percent" confidence in not-x. At the same time, zero-minus-y2 could be called
"zero percent confidence" in x.
Whenever y1-minus-y2 is itself zero, the subjective confidence of both x and not-x could be called
"fifty percent". That is, regardless of the degree of imaginability, when it is the same in both x and not-x,
subjective confidence in x (and not-x) could be called "fifty percent".

•Either x or not-x belief would seem able to be "held" (i.e., as "pre-existing") or merely "entertained" (i.e.,
as a "non-pre-existing belief depicted within a pre-existing belief"). Entertained beliefs would become
held once a link is created between the sub-impression that is the depicted belief to "as accurate". In any
case, when both x and not-x are initially merely entertained, one would initially hold neither x nor not-x.
And, when both x and not-x are already held, one necessarily holds directly contradicting beliefs.
When not-x is merely entertained, the imaginability of x would seem usually much higher than that
of not-x. However, x belief might just happen to actually contradict much of one's other pre-existing
beliefs while not-x does not contradict so many pre-existing beliefs. In such a case, imagining holding
the currently held belief x against an entertained belief that directly counters it would seem to reveal
greater "imaginability" to the latter belief. (Although, if one practices faith [as will be discussed in
section VI.3.2.4], they may hold an intention to avoid questioning certain parts of what they already
believe. And, depending on its strength, this intention could undermine an intention to question such
parts of what they already believe.)

•Degrees of imaginability to one belief over a countering belief would seem influenced by general
limitations of the mind (the "mind" as "all the conscious and unconscious impressions, along with the
processes involved with these impressions, associable with some portion of a full self"). Additionally,
these limitations would seem at least partly influenced by the immediate self's mind's specific collection
of conscious and unconscious impressions. So, within one's "full self", a degree of confidence had about
a certain type of belief at one time might differ from a degree had about the same type of belief at another
time. And, this change might be due to changes in one's repertoire of impressions––potentially in
addition to other changes.
Relatedly, beliefs about certain degrees of "chance" (i.e., degrees of "alethic possibility", degrees of
"objective probability") can influence degrees of subjective confidence (i.e., degrees of "epistemic
possibility", degrees of "subjective probability"). For example, I might believe that there is a high
percent chance that it will rain, and this might influence the subjective confidence I have in a certain

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belief I hold that it will rain. While there is this correlation between chance and subjective confidence,
though, chance and subjective confidence seem distinct types of things with relatively little overlap––
despite both being able to be considered "types" of "probability".

•It would seem that, the higher the percentage of confidence in x above fifty percent, the more strength x
is referenced with in creating new beliefs. That is, the higher degree of subjective confidence within a
"confidence-oriented belief" about x belief, the more x belief seems used to create more beliefs.
(This would account for why low-confidence non-intention desires, for example, would seem to
rarely lead to intentions based on them. Low-confidence non-intention desires would be of the form "X
possible situation [that is not the self initiating some action] includes more good than not-x possible
situation" and where one has low confidence in such a belief. Low-confidence non-intention desires
would seemingly rarely lead to intentions based on them if low-confidence beliefs in general are not
referenced with much strength in creating new beliefs. In low-confidence beliefs not referenced with
much strength in creating new beliefs, at most few beliefs would be created in response to low-confi-
dence beliefs. In terms of low-confidence non-intention desires, then, at most few beliefs that are
intentions based on the low-confidence desires would be created.)
It would seem that higher-confidence beliefs might be used more in "thinking" (i.e., in "creating
new beliefs") since they would seem to necessarily "link" with a higher amount of other non-sensory
impressions. Higher-confidence beliefs––such as x––would seem to necessarily link with a higher
amount of other non-sensory impressions since holding more of beliefs similar to x would seem to
directly influence the degree of imaginability attributable to x. With a high degree of imaginability to x
over not-x, one would seem to hold more of beliefs similar to x than not-x. And, with more beliefs similar
to x over not-x, more links would exist between x and other impressions.
Here, it is not that a higher degree of subjective confidence itself would contribute to a higher
degree of "use" for x. Instead, whether x is pre-existing or merely entertained, it would seem that a
higher degree of subjective confidence in x would form because x is already linked with more of other
non-sensory impressions. When x is pre-existing and high-confidence, regardless of how recently it was
formed, it is a belief already linked with more of other non-sensory impressions. When x is merely
entertained and high-confidence, regardless of how recently it was formed, it is a sub-impression already
linked with more of other non-sensory impressions. (In line with a discussion in section VI.1.1, the
entirety of the sub-impression of the entertained belief would not seem linked to anything, though.
Otherwise, the sub-impression of the depicted belief would also exist as an impression of its "own".)
On the other hand, relatedly, a formed "confidence-oriented belief"––a belief that represents the
imaginability of x belief versus not-x belief––can seemingly activate the forming of an intention to
destroy the lower-confident of contradicting x and not-x, when it is a pre-existing belief. And, a formed
confidence-oriented belief can seemingly activate the forming of an intention to create a belief out of the
higher-confident of contradicting x and not-x, when it is only "entertained". (Again, the creating of a
belief out of a mere "entertained", depicted belief would involve the adding of a "link" to the impression
"as accurate".)
Also relatedly, a newly formed confidence-oriented belief might concern a pre-existing or
entertained belief already accompanied by a confidence-oriented belief. In this case, if there is a
difference in the depicted degree of subjective confidence, the new confidence-oriented belief would be
more accurate; it would reflect an updated assessment of a belief's current imaginability. In this case, an
intention would seem to form to destroy the old confidence-oriented belief. However, if both confidence-
oriented beliefs indicate the same degree of subjective confidence, neither would need to be destroyed.
In fact, if impressions are built through linking to other impressions and sub-impressions instead of

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creating facsimiles of other impressions and sub-impressions, any seemingly numerically distinct
impressions that are qualitatively identical would seem more likely to be numerically identical than
numerically distinct.

•As opposed to (necessarily non-auto-verifying) beliefs, (auto-verifying/non-auto-verifying) (non-


sensory) non-beliefs don't seem able to be "held" with a "degree of confidence". And, as opposed to
beliefs' degrees of accuracy, non-beliefs' degrees of accuracy don't seem able to strongly impact my and
others' degrees of pleasure/happiness in life. Thus, I find myself far less "interested" in non-beliefs'
accuracy than I am in beliefs' accuracy. For instance, I don't care that I have an inaccurate (non-sensory)
non-belief linguistically translatable as "the Easter Bunny", but I do care that I have an accurate belief
that "Cyanide is poisonous" over an inaccurate belief that "Cyanide is not poisonous". (I also care how
confidently I hold specific beliefs, though, and how seemingly "stably highly confidently" I hold specific
beliefs––as I will address in section VI.3.2.2.2.)

•In terms of specific degrees of subjective confidence, as suggested, "fifty percent confidence"––or a
sense of "mere possibility"––would seem to occur upon discovering the same degree of imaginability
between one belief and a countering belief. On the other end, someone holding a given belief with one
hundred percent confidence would seem unable to imagine a given belief as untrue, i.e., unable to
imagine holding a countering belief (and thus hold zero percent confidence in this countering belief).

VI.3.2.2.1 The Dangers of Overconfidence

•While holding any belief with one hundred percent confidence might bring about degrees of pleasure
(i.e., good feelings, happiness) at times, holding any belief with one hundred percent confidence would
seem risky and even often damaging to a larger degree. One hundred percent confidence would seem
risky because, one, it seems that there is always a chance that a belief held with full confidence is wrong.
Two, full-fledged vigor (stemming from full confidence) in referencing a wrong belief to build others
would multiply its wrongness more than necessary. And, three, wrongness seems to lead to problems in
life, i.e., less pleasure/happiness than seems otherwise possible.
In terms of the constant possibility of being wrong specifically, it seems that there is always an
(objective) chance that a belief held with full confidence is actually wrong. That is, it seems clear that at
least some of beliefs held with full confidence across reality are wrong. At least with me, for example, I
believe now that (while without current full confidence) previous beliefs of mine that I held with full
confidence were indeed false.
In addition to being risky, one hundred percent confidence does seem often damaging. One
hundred percent confidence seems often damaging in that it would seem often accompanied by a belief
that questioning the truthfulness of beliefs held with one hundred percent confidence is, along with
considering beliefs contradicting these beliefs, useless. This belief accompanying one hundred percent
confidence would seem to motivate dismissing the words of at least some other people. And, this
dismissing of others would be damaging to others' degree of pleasure/happiness, and it would thwart a
possibility of a stronger, more pleasureful two-way relationship.
Alongside full confidence, any relatively high degree of confidence shares an amount of the risks
and damage that full confidence brings. It would then seem helpful to lower such relatively high degrees
of confidence––as long as greater harm weren't caused by such lowering. Any relatively high degree of
confidence that can be lowered without added harm could be considered "unhelpfully" high confidence––

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i.e., "overconfidence".
Acknowledging the dangers of overconfidence would add to one's repertoire of impressions and, as
mentioned, one's repertoire of impressions would influence the degree of imaginability to one belief over
a countering belief. So, gaining beliefs about the dangers of overconfidence would seem to contribute to
lower imaginability had about both newly-formed beliefs and reassessed existing beliefs. Many other
types of beliefs would also seem to contribute to a repertoire of impressions helpfully less conducive to
anywhere near full confidence. Such beliefs would seem to include a belief that degrees of imaginability
seem to rely on limitations of the mind; a belief that one can have high confidence and still be wrong; a
belief that one is usually missing relevant information––i.e., access to what would contribute to higher
accuracy in beliefs; a belief that one cannot directly "access" reality apart from their auto-verifying
impressions; and other similar beliefs.

•Even while any belief can be imagined as somehow wrong (i.e., a countering belief can be imagined as
held), focusing much on beliefs' imaginable wrongness can be anxiety-provoking and dizzying. Focusing
much on beliefs' imaginable wrongness can be especially anxiety-provoking and dizzying upon
considering how even a belief that "any belief can be imagined as somehow wrong" could be imagined as
somehow wrong––and then any other related beliefs. On the other hand, moderated focus on beliefs'
imaginable wrongness can help temper overconfidence.
To alleviate anxiety stemming from focusing on beliefs' imaginable wrongness and to avoid
returning to such a focus, though, it seems most helpful to simply find one way or another of psychologi-
cally accepting that any belief can be imagined as somehow wrong. One means of psychologically
accepting beliefs' imaginable wrongness would be merely observing how beliefs and frequently-
accompanying degrees of subjective confidence occur regardless of anxiety over imaginability of
wrongness. Additionally, one can simply practice allowing themselves to feel and not attempt to push
away the anxiety. As psychological research has shown, someone allowing themselves to feel and not
push away anxiety can, over time, adapt to this anxiety––as I will expound on in section IX.1.1
(Blackledge, Ciarrochi, and Deane 2009).
In addition to experiencing anxiety from unmoderated focus on beliefs' imaginable wrongness,
though, such unmoderated focus can also lead a person to resist forming beliefs on a variety of topics.
That is, someone might hold a new or long-standing belief with a certain high degree subjective
confidence and a countering entertained belief with a certain low degree of subjective confidence. Upon
engaging in unmoderated focus on beliefs' imaginable wrongness, though, the person might be moved to
form an intention to resist forming conclusions based on their higher-confidence belief, since it might be
wrong.
This intention to resist forming conclusions based on a higher-confidence belief––i.e., to resist
"taking a stance"––can be helpful in situations where acting based on the higher-confidence belief could
be highly damaging if it turns out to be wrong. However, in everyday situations and even situations
concerning socially and personally important topics, avoiding "taking a stance" also avoids forming
conclusions that might just be helpfully accurate. And, at the very least, to habitually avoid forming
conclusions based off of the higher-confidence of opposing beliefs also avoids taking action on everyday
and important topics, which can lead a person to depression. This depression can arise from both a sense
of inability to trust one's own mind and a lack of sensed direction and movement in life.

•As mentioned, degrees of subjective confidence seem formed based on degrees of imaginability, and
degrees of imaginability seem influenced by general limitations of the mind that are at least partly
influenced themselves by the immediate self's mind's specific collection of conscious and unconscious

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impressions. So, one's degree of subjective confidence about a held or entertained belief seems impacted
by what one already believes––which might seem to raise doubt in any link between subjective
confidence and actual truth. That is, one might be led to suspect that exemplifications of degrees of
subjective confidence would be unable to be contributed to by the thing of "accuracy" itself. However,
exemplifications of degrees of subjective confidence would seem able to be contributed to by accuracy.
Exemplifications of degrees of subjective confidence would seem able to be contributed to by
accuracy, and for five main reasons (i.e., based on five main "supporting beliefs", five main "beliefs that
contribute to subjective confidence in another belief"). For one, accuracy would seem to contribute to
accurate non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions, where at least some non-intentionally-imagined
sensory impressions would be accurate (which were discussed in section VI.1.1.1). Two, all accurate
beliefs seem to be fully traceable back to accurate non-intentionally-imagined sensory impressions.
Three, accurate beliefs would seemingly tend to last and accumulate more in the mind because of their
non-contradiction with other (accurate) beliefs that are fully traceable to accurate non-intentionally-
imagined sensory impressions. Four, this greater amount of accurate beliefs in a mind would allow
accurate beliefs to have greater influence over the degree of subjective confidence found regarding other
(entertained or held) beliefs than otherwise. And, five, the more similar that high-confidence (entertained
or held) beliefs are to the accurate beliefs influencing the (entertained or held) beliefs' high degree of
subjective confidence, the more it seems that the high-confidence (entertained or held) beliefs would be
accurate as well.
All in all, there seems no way to ensure that a belief held with high subjective confidence is
accurate. However, at least subjective confidence seems able to be contributed to by accuracy. And,
thus, the overall feature of subjective confidence could not be said to lack any link to the overall feature
of accuracy.

VI.3.2.2.2 Seemingly-Stable Non-Overly High Subjective Confidence

•Despite my interest in having accurate beliefs, it seems at least somewhat imaginable that I actually have
no accurate non-auto-verifying impressions at all––and thus no accurate non-auto-verifying beliefs at all
(which are types of non-auto-verifying impressions). This scenario is at least somewhat imaginable to
me partly because, as opposed to my auto-verifying impressions, my non-auto-verifying impressions
don't seem unavoidably accurate.
If I indeed lack any accurate non-auto-verifying impressions, though, no "non-intentionally-
imagined" sensory impressions of mine (which are non-auto-verifying impressions) would be accurate,
and any non-auto-verifying belief of mine would not only be inaccurate but unavoidably inaccurate.
Most of the beliefs represented so far in my writing, as non-auto-verifying impressions, would then each
exemplify a self-contradiction. These consequences of a scenario where no non-auto-verifying
impressions of mine are accurate seem to contribute to my ultimately low confidence that such a scenario
accurately represents reality.

•Even while it seems to me that at least some non-auto-verifying impressions of mine are accurate, it is
clear that I cannot "access" their accuracy in the way that I can with "auto-verifying impressions". And,
if I believe (as I do) that I can never access the accuracy of non-auto-verifying impressions and that I can
always doubt the accuracy of auto-verifying impressions that I seem able to access, I can never be
"assured" by a connection to accuracy or convinced of access to accuracy. Further, just as with constant
imaginable wrongness, focusing much on an inability to be convinced of having (i.e., an inability to form
one hundred percent confidence about having) access to truth can become extremely troublesome. This

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trouble takes the form of both general anxiety and a depression-inducing tendency to avoid acting on
one's own beliefs in case they are wrong. Just as with constant imaginable wrongness, though, it is
possible to alleviate associated anxiety by simply finding one way or another of psychologically
accepting that I cannot be honestly convinced that I have any access to accuracy.
Though doubtably, I can (seemingly) access a feature related to accuracy that is almost as desirable
as "accuracy", and I can access this for both auto-verifying and non-auto-verifying impressions: non-
overly high subjective confidence that is seemingly stable across momentary selves. That is, while I do
not contain any non-auto-verifying impressions' accuracy and accurately-represented features, I do
contain "seemingly-stable non-overly high subjective confidence" about some non-auto-verifying
impressions. This "seemingly-stable non-overly high subjective confidence" would seem to be the
feature related to accuracy that is next-most preferable to hold behind the feature of accuracy. (I say
"seemingly-stable non-overly high subjective confidence" because I––in my immediate self––cannot
confirm the stability of non-overly high subjective confidence within a confidence-oriented belief, as this
stability would occur over more than one momentary self within my "full self".)
One hundred percent or otherwise extremely high confidence might be seen as actually next-most
preferable to hold behind––or even instead of––accuracy. However, the described resulting pain for the
self and others tied to overly high confidence would seem to––at least usually––lead a person away from
desire for extremely high confidence in and of itself. Extremely high confidence may not necessarily be
overconfidence in some situations, but extremely high confidence would seem to necessarily involve
overconfidence––and its dangers––more than "seemingly-stable non-overly high subjective confidence".
(By considering a feature to be "preferable"/"desirable", I consider that holding it as a sub-feature would
at least usually contribute to relatively high good/pleasure.)
"Seemingly-stable non-overly high subjective confidence" would also seem preferable to
"extremely high confidence" because, when an extremely confident belief turns out to be later
disbelieved, an unpleasant abrupt change in confidence level would follow. On the other hand, when a
more moderately confident belief turns out to be disbelieved, a less extreme change in confidence level
would follow. While the extreme confidence in the first belief might seem preferable, the extreme change
in confidence level results in an overall less preferable instability to the belief that is further from
"seemingly-stable non-overly high subjective confidence". On the other hand, while the other less
confident belief is still unstable, it is preferable because of its relatively higher stability nearer to
"seemingly-stable non-overly high confidence".

VI.3.2.3 Orderly Thinking

•When forming intentions to implement "good thinking" in forming a belief, and when observing that
"good thinking" was seemingly used in forming a belief, subjective confidence in such a belief seems
increased. Additionally, such subjective confidence is seemingly stable––albeit not necessarily non-
overly high. Regardless, alongside other related intentions to be discussed, intentions to habitually
implement good thinking and habitually assess that good thinking was used in forming a given belief
seem able to help approach "seemingly-stable non-overly high subjective confidence" much more than
otherwise.
Simply put, "good thinking" would occur when a process of creating beliefs is "orderly". "Non-
orderly" thinking would occur when, for instance, a process of thinking is disrupted by some mental
"glitch". Non-orderly thinking would also occur when someone intentionally forms a belief that is
merely "wanted"––when a belief is depicted as better to hold than not, but where this circumvents a
normal process of forming beliefs.

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•To me, "non-orderly thinking" is at least usually accounted for by what is called "cognitive bias".
Cognitive scientists––who study thought processes ("cognition")––describe cognitive bias as "a
systematic pattern of deviation from norm or rationality in judgment" (Haselton et al. 2005). What is
considered the "norm" here does not concern how the average person consistently thinks, but how the
average person seemingly usually thinks. And, what is considered "rationality" is simply "undisrupted
reasoning". Altogether, deviation from the norm in thinking and disrupted reasoning seem to add up to
the described "non-orderly thinking". And, "a systematic pattern of deviation..." would then mean the
same as "a tendency toward non-orderly thinking".
Commonly discussed types of such biases include what are labeled as "fundamental attribution
error", "confirmation bias", "self-serving bias", "belief bias", "framing", and "hindsight bias" (Pohl 2012).
"Fundamental attribution error" is the tendency for people to under-emphasize the role that situations play
in others behavior. "Confirmation bias" is the tendency to seek out information that confirms what one
already believes. "Self-serving bias" is the tendency to interpret ambiguous information predictably in a
manner that serves personal interests. "Belief bias" is the tendency to evaluate the logic of an argument
for a belief with strong influence from whether or not one already holds the belief. "Framing" is the
tendency to apply an overly narrow means of interpreting an issue. And, "hindsight bias" is the tendency
to consider past events as predictably leading to what is now observed about them.
Cognitive biases are thought to arise for three main reasons. First, natural selection (one of the
forces of biological evolution) has allowed for "mental shortcuts" that are efficient but lack thoroughness
and thus can predictably lead to wrong conclusions in some situations. Second, specific cognitive biases
can form and be reinforced based on experience where a specific type of "unbiased" thinking results in
more problems than biased thinking. And, third, cognitive biases can develop as a means of forming
conclusions concerning situation that the mind isn't well equipped to form conclusions about apart from
bias.
Altogether, cognitive bias is considered––by scientists using seemingly demonstrably careful,
orderly thinking––both instinctual and learned, and even helpful in some situations. When "learned",
beliefs and other non-sensory impressions form that depict certain types of non-orderly thinking as good
in certain types of situations––stemming from such situations actually directly experienced. When
instinctual, energy initiated in thinking processes (i.e., the forming of beliefs) is informed by genes to
follow a certain course that excludes orderly thinking.
As said, cognitive bias indeed seems helpful in some situations. For instance, when needing to
quickly answer a question, an efficient albeit non-thorough mental process can produce more good than a
more orderly, longer mental process. Still, specifically intending to implement non-orderly thinking or
observing that it was used never seems to contribute to "seemingly-stable non-overly high subjective
confidence".

•Again, both intending to implement orderly thinking in forming a belief and assessing that orderly
thinking was seemingly used in forming a belief seem able to help approach "seemingly-stable non-
overly high subjective confidence". That is, seemingly stable non-overly high "subjective confidence"
seems to follow out of seemingly successful intentions to either implement orderly thinking or to assess
and then discover that orderly thinking was seemingly implemented in forming a specific belief. (In line
with discussion in section VI.3.2.2, the mentioned degree of subjective confidence would be formed or
revised only after the successful completion of, one, either mentioned intention and, two, another
intention to specifically assess or reassess the imaginability of the involved belief in contrast to the
imaginability of its converse.)

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In terms of specifically assessing if and then discovering that orderly thinking was seemingly used
in forming a belief, even if an involved belief is already held with high subjective confidence, such
assessing and discovering can further increase confidence in the belief. And yet, the dangers of overly
high confidence should be noted to avoid developing overconfidence about assessed beliefs. In any case,
one means of assessing whether or not an existing beliefs was seemingly formed via overly thinking is to
assess whether or not the belief can be reconstructed as if formed via orderly thinking.
As mentioned and as will be expanded on in section VI.3.2.5, though, intentions to habitually
implement orderly thinking and assess that orderly thinking, alongside other intentions to be discussed,
seem able to help approach "seemingly-stable non-overly high subjective confidence" much more than
otherwise.

VI.3.2.4 Non-Orderly Thinking and Faith

•As mentioned in section VI.3.2.3, while specifically intending to implement non-orderly thinking or
observing that it was used never seems to contribute to "seemingly-stable non-overly high subjective
confidence", non-orderly thinking can still be helpful at times. In addition to situations where a split-
second decision is needed, intending to believe what is comforting can be helpful in situations that are
extremely dangerous and require extra strength to remain calm. Still, it would not seem helpful to intend
to habitually engage in––i.e., "practice"––non-orderly thinking. On the other hand, it would seem helpful
to intend to practice orderly thinking––both in order to approach "seemingly-stable non-overly high
subjective confidence" and in order to approach good otherwise.
In intending to specifically practice non-orderly thinking––especially "faith"––alongside orderly
thinking, one can still help secure seemingly "somewhat stable (but not necessarily non-overly) high
subjective confidence", though. However, "seemingly somewhat stable high subjective confidence"
seems less desirable to me than "seemingly-stable (but not necessarily non-overly) high subjective
confidence". I would prefer more stability over less stability to high subjective confidence, and this
would seem a common a preference.

•To me, "faith" seems a common type of non-orderly thinking that involves either intending to form a
belief just because it is desired to be held, or intending to avoid forming beliefs just because they are
desired not to be held. Specifically in terms of intending to avoid forming beliefs desired not to be held,
such beliefs would include any that contradict currently existing beliefs desired to still be held. Intending
to avoid forming beliefs desired not to be held would then also seem to be coupled with intending to
avoid questioning currently existing beliefs desired to still be held. (As a note, faith is not limited to
thinking about the "spiritual".)

•I say that one can help secure seemingly "somewhat" stable high subjective confidence through
intending to practice faith because, with seemingly at least most people, practicing faith causes at least
periodic at least mild senses of doubt about––i.e., low confidence in––beliefs formed through faith.
These bouts of doubt result in unstable degrees of subjective confidence. While this doubt seems
dismissible with further applied faith, this––uncomfortable, undesirable––doubt (and related impressions)
seem at least usually unavoidable.
Doubt about beliefs formed through faith seems at least usually unavoidable because all people
seem to value and normally practice orderly thinking whether or not they also value and practice faith.
That is, with conclusions made moment to moment, all people seemingly normally attempt to form

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conclusions in an orderly manner even if they fear an undesirable conclusion––and even if they also
regularly apply faith. Normally practiced orderly thinking would then, at times, seem to necessarily
overlap thinking about beliefs formed through faith. Doubt about beliefs formed through faith would
then arise when orderly thinking exposes these beliefs as warranting little confidence.
Orderly thinking would seemingly normally be applied in most situations, such as when one
considers what habits of theirs might be unhealthy and worth attempting to stop, even if this attempting
would cause some pain; when a person suspects they are running late and looks to a clock to confirm the
time, even if reading the clock yields a painful anxiety by resulting in a belief that the person is much
further behind schedule than they suspected; and, when someone considers what another is intending to
communicate to them, even when it is believed that the other is unfairly and upsettingly criticizing them.
On the other hand, faith seems only ever applied when there is desire to believe or disbelieve
something without this very believing or disbelieving immediately and obviously resulting in some
amounts of pain. That is, faith seems applied mostly in situations where faith-oriented belief or disbelief
does not have immediate and obvious negative impacts: such as upon believing that a pleasant
occurrence was divinely authored, upon disbelieving a doctor's negative prognosis, or upon believing that
the upcoming week's weather will be thoroughly milder than forecasted. Even when faith is applied in
these and other situations, though, more frequently and universally applied orderly thinking would
reliably cause doubt in beliefs formed through faith.
As one example of where orderly thinking might cause doubt in a belief formed through faith,
someone might use faith to conclude that some feeling of connection to a very specific type of spiritual
entity in the universe is not simply culturally- and/or sub-culturally-enforced pleasant delusion.
However, this person might also conclude that it is likely that there are instances where people feel such a
connection and where this is culturally- and/or sub-culturally-enforced pleasant delusion. This can lead
the person to question what the difference is between their believed non-delusion and others' delusion.
If the person here were to realize orderly thinking, I find that they would conclude that the only
difference between their believed non-delusion and others' delusion is that they simply don't want to
discard a belief that they are not deluded. However, a person who embraces faith would seem to, instead,
intend to form and/or raise in consciousness a wanted conclusion that contradicts the unwanted potential
conclusion. For example, a person who embraces faith might form or raise in consciousness a wanted
conclusion that their experience of a spiritual entity is simply more valid than multitudes of others'
experiences of spiritual entities. This wanted conclusion would then seem to assist in intending to
dismiss any further related questioning.
(As a note, given the sheer number of those now and throughout history who claim experience of
the divine, it would seem that at least some aspect of at least some of these claims is not mere delusion.
On the other hand, the sheer number of conflicting specific descriptions of the divine suggests that at
least most of these specific descriptions––found within the conflicting details of different religions,
spiritualities, and personal beliefs––are delusional. So, while there might indeed be a way to connect to
what is describable as the divine, any one specific description of the divine would be much more
doubtable. These specific descriptions would then seem to require faith to sustain.)

•From personal experience, I find that the practice of faith can bring about five main problems (where
more pain and less pleasure/happiness results than would otherwise).
First, I find that faith brings about desirable results, but only in the way that giving in to "instant
gratification" brings about desirable results––and only in the way that instant gratification is desirable
only in very limited situations. That is, faith brings about desirable results in that consideration for
ultimate truth is neglected in favor of consideration for what is most comfortable to believe. However,

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like habitually giving in to instant gratification, the habitual implementation of faith is self-sabotaging
and destructive. Habitually giving in to faith is self-sabotaging and destructive in that attempting to
believe what is wanted over what is suspected true often leads to becoming blinded to what can actually
most hurt and help the self and others.
Second, in addition to resembling giving in to instant gratification, I find that faith is addictive.
That is, I find that faith can grow to become a habit used not just while thinking about the "spiritual", for
example. Faith infecting broad areas of thought would then only multiply its pitfalls. So, in order to
ward off temptation to practice faith, even when faith is best to engage in in limited situations, orderly
thinking must be remembered as preferable in the vast majority of situations.
Third, even if faith is successfully contained to one area of thinking, I find that doubt about beliefs
formed through faith is at least usually unavoidable, as stated. So, even if faith is contained to one area of
thinking, it would seem that, in valuing and practicing faith, less "seemingly-stable non-overly high
subjective confidence" would be experienced than otherwise. Instead, "seemingly somewhat stable high
subjective confidence" would seem realized––or at least approached. And, less "seemingly-stable non-
overly high subjective confidence" than otherwise would seem to mean less experienced pleasure/
happiness than otherwise.
Fourth, embracing faith requires overconfidence––and its dangers––in order to sustain beliefs
formed through faith. That is, in order to protect beliefs formed through faith from doubt, further beliefs
formed through faith must be materialized to support the original beliefs formed through faith. These
additional faith-formed beliefs include beliefs that appear to provide logical support (e.g., "evidence") for
original faith-formed beliefs. However, additional faith-formed beliefs include those describing a one-
hundred or near-one-hundred percent degree of subjective confidence in the original faith-formed beliefs.
This overconfidence carries all the potential harm listed in section VI.3.2.2.1, where the dangers of
overconfidence are listed and described.
Fifth, embracing faith would seem to cause more pain than otherwise because beliefs formed
through non-orderly thinking would seem to have lower chances of being true than beliefs formed
through orderly thinking. Here, as will be discussed in section VI.3.2.5, it wouldn't seem that orderly
thinking necessitates true impressions, but that truth is seemingly less often instantiated in beliefs that are
formed "haphazardly"––"badly"––than in beliefs that are built in a more orderly way.
As opposed to the higher amount of wrong beliefs to which faith would seem to lead, true beliefs
would seem to avoid the pain of the potential problems that wrong beliefs can result in. Such potential
problems would include, for one, acting in ways informed by wrong beliefs, where this acting results in
situations yielding less happiness and more pain for the self and others than imagined. Such potential
problems would also include the pain of disappointment in being faced with situations that would
naturally lead to forming a belief of having held a wrong belief.

VI.3.2.5 Intending to "Consistently Practice Orderly Thinking, Including Orderly Continual Questioning,
While Avoiding Overconfidence"

•Even while intending to habitually implement faith seems able to help one secure seemingly somewhat
stable high subjective confidence, intending to habitually implement orderly thinking and habitually
assess that orderly thinking has been used seems to help secure what is more desirable: seemingly-stable
non-overly high subjective confidence that is more stable than what faith can bring about. And, intending
to consistently habitually engage in (i.e., "consistently practice") specifically "orderly thinking" would
seem to generally help bring about beliefs of higher seemingly-stable subjective confidence than
otherwise.

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In addition to an intention to "consistently practice orderly thinking", though, an intention to "avoid
overconfidence" seems to allow for a higher chance of (seemingly) stable non-overly high confidence
than otherwise. First, the intention would seem to help avoid overly high confidence. That is, the
intention would seem to help form confidence-oriented beliefs with helpfully moderate degrees of
confidence––i.e., non-overly high degrees of confidence about other beliefs. Also, the intention would
seem to help avoid unstable degrees of confidence. That is, as mentioned in section VI.3.2.2.2,
overconfidently-held beliefs risk extreme change in confidence level that would occur when the beliefs
are later disbelieved. This extreme change would mean that the beliefs' confidence has overall been
extremely unstable. On the other hand, more moderately high confidence in beliefs would result in a less
extreme change upon later disbelief. This less extreme change would mean that beliefs' confidence level
has been overall more stable than would be the case if the beliefs were held with higher confidence.
More beliefs of seemingly-stable non-overly high subjective confidence seems preferable to less
beliefs of seemingly-stable non-overly high subjective confidence, however. And, one means of allowing
for more beliefs of seemingly-stable non-overly high subjective confidence than otherwise seems to
involve an intention to "continually question with orderly thinking"––i.e., "to implement orderly thinking
while continually asking the self questions (about the truth of specific existing beliefs or about something
else)". Such an intention helps produce new orderly-formed beliefs that either replace or add to existing
beliefs. Whether adding to or replacing existing beliefs, though, the number of beliefs formed through
orderly thinking is increased. And, seemingly-stable subjective confidence about such beliefs is
increased upon assessing that the beliefs were formed through orderly thinking––while avoiding
overconfidence helpfully tempers confidence level.
Intending to avoid overconfidence alongside "continually question with orderly thinking" helps
further increase the number of beliefs formed through orderly thinking. That is, overconfidence would
result in fewer beliefs, and seemingly especially fewer beliefs formed through orderly thinking.
Overconfidence seems to prevent the formation of intentions to ask the self questions, especially about
the truth of existing beliefs. Intending to avoid overconfidence would then both lead one away from
overconfidence and lead one away from fewer beliefs formed through orderly thinking––and thus toward
more beliefs formed through orderly thinking.
An overarching intention capturing the desirability of, one, beliefs of higher seemingly-stable non-
overly high subjective confidence than otherwise and, two, more beliefs of seemingly-stable non-overly
high subjective confidence than otherwise could be phrased as: "consistently practice orderly thinking,
including orderly continual questioning, while avoiding overconfidence". Such an intention, especially
when (intentionally) emphasized in the mind, would seem able to lead to intentions and other mental
impressions that would assist approaching the represented goal of the intention: consistent orderly
thinking, orderly continual questioning, and non-overconfidence.

In yielding increased "seemingly-stable non-overly high subjective confidence" along with increased
"orderly thinking, orderly continual questioning, and non-overconfidence", the intention to "consistently
practice orderly thinking, including orderly continual questioning, while avoiding overconfidence"
increases chances more than otherwise for one to believe they are approaching truth in their beliefs.
Simultaneously, as mentioned in section VI.3.2.4, truth is seemingly less often instantiated in beliefs that
seem formed non-orderly than in beliefs that seem to be built in a more orderly way. If true, neither of
these stated thoughts would mean that orderly thinking necessitates or always results in true beliefs.
However, there still seems a much stronger correlation between orderly thinking and true beliefs than
non-orderly thinking and true beliefs. So, out of interest in approaching truth, intending to consistently
practice orderly thinking, including orderly continual questioning, while avoiding overconfidence seems

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more worthwhile than not.
Relatedly, as mentioned in sections VI.3.2.3 and VI.3.2.4, non-orderly thinking can be preferable to
orderly thinking in limited circumstances, while not overall preferable. To match behavior with what is
most preferable in a given situation at hand, it would be of interest to hold accurate beliefs about whether
or not it is best to engage in non-orderly thinking over orderly thinking. If an intention to "consistently
practice orderly thinking, including orderly continual questioning, while avoiding overconfidence" offers
better chance for true beliefs than otherwise, then, such an intention would be useful for finding true
beliefs even about when to implement non-orderly thinking. So, at no time would non-orderly thinking
seem preferable to orderly thinking when one specifically intends toward truth. At the same time, even
non-orderly thinking might lead to true beliefs in certain situations––but seemingly not specifically due to
its non-orderliness.

Of note, I have written this book while intending to consistently avoid overconfidence and practice
orderly questioning and orderly thinking otherwise, and I will proceed writing while continuing to intend
for it.

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Section VII
Less Highly General Features of the Self
(And of the Relationship of the Self with Reality Otherwise)
In this relatively brief section, I will present beliefs based on my worldview that concern highly general
features of myself and of my relationship to all else. While highly general, the features discussed will be
less general than those focused on in the previous section. Features focused on in this section will center
around the topic of the brain.

VII.1 Impressions and the Brain


•Research suggests that, "physically"––i.e., when observed through the filter of "observation" discussed
in section VI.3.1––, my (conscious and unconscious) non-sensory impressions relate to observed
structures of different neurons (brain cells) that are associated with different numbers of connections to
other neurons to different degrees of strengths (Altevogt and Hougan 2008). In other words, a given non-
sensory impression could be relatively accurately represented as some amount of neurons and some
amount of the pathways of structural connections between them. In terms of my (seemingly necessarily
conscious) sensory impressions, research suggests that chains of sensory impressions can be observed as
"physical" electrical patterns that wash over neurons and their structural connections (ibid.). As
discussed and implied since section V.1.1, sensory impressions would seem to fluctuate and/or change
otherwise moment to moment––and much more so than non-sensory impressions; this distinction would
agree with a view that, physically, chains of sensory impressions are "electrical patterns" and non-sensory
impressions are more stable "neural structures".
As described in section VI.1.1, it seems to me that non-sensory impressions can form from either
chains of sensory impressions that linger long and/or strongly consciously enough or non-sensory
impressions activated in together long and/or strongly enough. Viewed through the filter of observation,
chains of sensory impressions that are strong and/or sustained electrical patterns could form non-sensory
impressions by forming new connections between neurons. Similarly, non-sensory impressions that are
brain structures intensely and/or prolongedly activated in synchrony or near-synchrony could form non-
sensory impressions by forming new connections between neurons. However, non-sensory impressions
would also seem to form out of other non-sensory impressions based on energy directed from intentions.
This energy initiated by intentions, based on the form of the intentions, would more or less directly add
new connections between neurons.
In terms of the "physical" loss of non-sensory impressions, as noted in section VI.1.1, it would
seem possible that links––"structural connections between neurons"––within at least beliefs could be
intentionally destroyed. It would seem that links within at least beliefs could be intentionally destroyed
when one belief, "x as accurate" is contradicted by a new higher-confidence belief that "x is not
accurate" (or, rather, "'x is not accurate' as accurate'"). The link between "x" and "as accurate" within the
pre-existing belief "x as accurate" would seem then usually intentionally removed.
In a situation where a non-sensory impression desired to be destroyed cannot be destroyed for
whatever reason, though, one would seem to intentionally "repress"––"isolate"––the impression
(Furnham 2015). Physically, repression would seem to occur through intending to allow at most limited
activation of and/or linking to an impression. When one desires to limit "exposure" to an impression,
they would intend to allow at least some amount of limited activation of and/or linking to it. However,

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when one desires to destroy the impression, they would intend to continuously avoid activation of and/or
linking to the impression whatsoever. When starved from activation or linking for long enough, it would
seem possible that the repressed impression might eventually fade away.
Research shows that various types of memories (i.e., "non-sensory impressions" here) die away
when links between neurons and/or neurons themselves die away (Carrier and Pashler 1992). This dying
can be an expected process of age or disease. Otherwise, the process can occur when a non-sensory
impression is not activated enough. That is, the less a non-sensory impression is accessed, the weaker
involved connections between neurons become, even to the point of dying away (ibid.). And, conversely,
the more a non-sensory impression is accessed, the stronger involved connections become––in turn
resulting in even more frequent usage of these connections (ibid.).
Relatedly, when a brand new link is formed, if not used relatively immediately, it would seem to
allow for the near-instantaneous forgetting of the involved non-sensory impression. In this way, links can
be very temporary. Although, all (conscious and unconscious) impressions (whether viewed "physically"
or, more accurately, self-illuminably) exist as tangent instantaneous features, anyway.
It would seem extremely problematic to forget an impression like "as accurate", however. If "as
accurate" were destroyed, all beliefs in my mind would be simultaneously destroyed. This would seem
such a rare situation that "as accurate" would seem a necessarily central and/or large impression in the
brain.

•As suggested in section IV.4.1, the introduction to section five, and throughout section six, I find that
degrees of activeness/intensity of impressions equal to what we call degrees of "consciousness". (As
research has shown, however, this degree of activeness/intensity is most precisely a degree of frequency
of electrical signals [Kandel, Schwartz, and Jessel 1991].) If this is so, and if chains of sensory
impressions are "physically" "electrical patterns", sensory impressions (even individually) would
necessarily be of some "activeness"/"intensity" physically––and, thus, seemingly likely, of some
"activeness"/"intensity" also self-illuminably. All sensory impressions would then be conscious to some
degree––even if very minimally as such or if existing as such in very short-lived chains.

•As mentioned in section VI.1.2, the energy initiated by a conscious impression wouldn't seem random,
but informed by the structure of the conscious impression. This energy would also seem to always at
least partly work to "seek out" and raise the level of consciousness of––i.e., activate or further activate––
existing non-sensory impressions similar in content to the activating conscious impression. However,
this "seeking out" and activating of similar-content non-sensory impressions is better characterized as the
incidental activation of partially and wholly overlapped non-sensory impressions. The more that a
conscious impression overlaps an existing non-sensory impression, the more likely that that overlapped
non-sensory impression will also become activated.
For non-sensory impressions fully overlapped by a conscious––i.e., "activated"––impression, such
non-sensory impressions would seem necessarily activated as well. Only a conscious non-sensory
impression could fully overlap an existing non-sensory impression, however. That is, (conscious) sensory
impressions only add up to electrical patterns that flow over neural structures; conscious non-sensory
impressions are activated versions of these structures themselves: some amount of neurons and some
amount of the pathways of structural connections between them.
Conscious non-sensory impressions would fully overlap all those whose links––i.e., neural
connections––"build" the conscious non-sensory impressions. As noted in sections VI.1.1 and VI.3.2.2,
non-sensory impressions formed by way of other non-sensory impressions differ only by certain added
"links"––which would be neural connections. In this case, when a certain non-sensory impression is

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linked with others in order to create a larger non-sensory impression, all linked non-sensory impressions
would fully overlap the larger non-sensory impression. When the larger non-sensory impression is
conscious, so would these fully-overlapped non-sensory impressions be. Although, all of these fully-
overlapped non-sensory impressions could also be called "sub-impressions" of the overlapping conscious
non-sensory impression. In this case, they would even more obviously be consciously-activated along
with the overlapping conscious non-sensory impression!
In contrast to fully-overlapped non-sensory impressions, partially-overlapped non-sensory
impressions would only be partially activated. "Partial activation" would be a certain non-full degree of
"activation", which would not be the same as a non-full degree of "activeness", i.e. consciousness. No
partially-activated impression would ever be conscious to any degree. However, partial activation would
indicate that a partially-overlapping impression is conscious and fully activated.
Whether partially overlapped by a (conscious) sensory impression or conscious non-sensory
impression, though, a non-sensory impression would tend to come to full activation based on the degree
to which it is already activated. That is, the more of a non-sensory that is already activated, the less there
is to activate before the whole is activated, and the higher chance there is for the whole to be (fully)
activated. Given all of the activity going on in the brain simultaneously, much of which is highly
interrelated, the chances of a small fraction of an already mostly-activated non-sensory impression to also
become activated seem high at least much of the time.

•As noted in section VI.1.2, a process called "sensory adaptation" occurs when, given extended and
unchanging exposure to an internal and/or external situation, sensory impressions that usually follow
from a certain type of bodily phenomenon gradually stop forming, along with the bodily phenomenon
itself (Chung, Li, and Nelson 2002). Physically, this process involves a gradual lessening of the rate at
which electrical signals pulsate based on the bodily phenomenon of nerves' and/or specialized cells'
interaction with the body and/or environment (ibid.). These nerves––fibers extending from neurons in
the brain––and specialized cells connect to neurons and allow the formation of sensory impressions.
They would also seem to be the bodily structure by which "non-intentionally-imagined sensory
impressions" arise.

•As noted in sections VI.1.1 and VI.1.2, given the complexity of human biology, there are likely
exceptions to and variations on the formation of, structure of, and functioning of mental impressions that
I have laid out here and elsewhere.

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Section VIII
Still Less Highly General Features of the Self
(And of the Relationship of the Self with Reality Otherwise)
In this section, I will present beliefs based on my worldview that concern relatively highly general
features of myself and of my relationship to all else. While highly general, the features discussed will be
markedly more particular than other features of reality focused on earlier. These features will mostly
involve the topic of value.

VIII.1 Pain-to-Pleasure
•In terms of some additional general features of my immediate self (that are less general than features of
myself focused on so far), I seem to contain a relatively general feature of relatively "unique" types of
(non-intentionally-imagined) sensory impressions describable as pain or pleasure. An instance of a
sensory impression of "pain" could be described as "discomfort". On the other hand, an instance of a
sensory impression of "pleasure" could be described as "comfort" (or, loosely, an instance of
"happiness").

•Pain and pleasure would themselves be types ("uniquely similar groups") made up of individual
instances of sensory impressions that fit into the types of either "pain" or "pleasure". While any instance
of pain or pleasure may have varying intensities––matching their degree of consciousness––, they would
not necessarily each be qualitatively identical (i.e., "internally indistinguishable"). Further, it would not
necessarily be common for any two features of reality to be qualitatively identical––as initially suggested
in section II.2.
Pain and pleasure––as types––might themselves seem to include an array of types (i.e., versions) of
pain and pleasure. That is, pain and pleasure might seem to come in different types that reflect the array
of different types of sensory and non-sensory impressions that accompany sensory impressions of pain or
pleasure. For example, the pain occurring in the set of impressions that could be called "sorrow" might
be considered of a different "type" of pain than that occurring in the set of impressions that could be
called "sharp physical pain". And, the pleasure occurring in the set of impressions that could be called
"pride" might be considered of a different "type" of pleasure than that occurring in the set of impressions
that could be called "sensory enjoyment". However, neither pain nor pleasure would seem to actually
come in such "types".
In terms of pain, instances of "sorrow", "sharp physical pain", and "embarrassment", for example,
can each be characterized as an instance of pain simply accompanying impressions of other types. That
is, an instance of "sorrow" could simply be an exemplified (i.e., "an exemplification of a") degree of pain
accompanying a non-sensory impression that a loved one died; an instance of "sharp physical pain" could
simply be an exemplified degree of pain accompanying sensory impressions of a scraped leg along with
non-sensory impressions about the scraped leg; and, an instance of "embarrassment" could simply be an
exemplified degree of pain accompanying non-sensory impressions that others suddenly think less of me.
(As a note, what are above described as "exemplifications of degrees of pain and pleasure" can also be
described as "instances of pain and pleasure".)
On the other hand, in terms of pleasure, instances of "pride", "sensory enjoyment", and "peace", for
example, can each be characterized as an instance of pleasure simply accompanying impressions of other

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types. That is, an instance of "pride" could simply be an exemplified degree of pleasure accompanying
non-sensory impressions about a child's success; an instance of "sensory enjoyment" could simply be an
exemplified degree of pleasure accompanying sensory impressions of a certain food along with non-
sensory impressions about the food; and, an instance of "peace" could simply be an exemplified degree of
pleasure accompanying sensory impressions of stillness and non-sensory impressions that no energy need
be currently spent.
Various "degrees" of pain or pleasure would not correspond to different "types" of pain or pleasure,
then. Instead, various degrees of pain or pleasure would seem to simply correspond to the "degree of
consciousness" of an instance of the sensory impression of pain or pleasure. (Again, as suggested in
section IV.4.1, the introduction to section five, throughout section six, and section VII.1, and throughout
section three, an impression's degree of consciousness would seem to mirror and be the same as an
impression's degree of "activeness"––i.e., an impression's degree of "bodily action initiating power".)

While "degrees" of pain and pleasure would not involve anything but degree of consciousness of pain and
pleasure, a given instance of pain or pleasure could still be considered as of––i.e., as an exemplification
of––a degree on a scale of "pain-to-pleasure". And, a "net degree" (i.e., "average degree") of pain to
pleasure would take the net (i.e., average) of certain individual degrees on the scale of pain-to-pleasure.
Here, in line with discussion in section III.2.2.1, a degree of "pain-to-pleasure" would be the
abstraction of a group of instances of pain or pleasure of a certain intensity (i.e., of a certain degree of
consciousness). These degrees would also sit as "ordered members" of an ordered group that ranks all
such abstractions from the most extreme pain existent to the most extreme pleasure existent. This
ordered group could be called the "ordered range"––or "order"––of degrees of pain-to-pleasure, and the
group of all the ordered group's ordered members (which are the abstractions that are "degrees") would
be called the "range" of degrees of pain-to-pleasure. Since this ordered range would be comprehensive
regarding degrees of pain-to-pleasure, however, it could more precisely be called a "scale". All in all, the
ordered range/scale of degrees of pain-to-pleasure would rank the highest to lowest degrees of conscious-
ness of instances of pain, and then the lowest to highest degrees of consciousness of instances of pleasure,
with the middle degrees approaching zero degrees of consciousness.
In total, the complete scale of ranked pain and pleasure could be called "pain-to-pleasure". Along
these lines, x degree(s) on this scale could be called "x degree(s) of pain-to-pleasure" or, for short, just "x
degree of pain" or "x degree of pleasure". Potentially confusingly, though, the term "pain-to-pleasure"
seems able to intelligibly stand for (i.e., indicate an accurate representation of) any instance or instances
of the sensory impression of pain or pleasure. And, either the term "pain" or the term "pleasure" could be
considered to stand for (i.e., indicate an accurate representation of) any instance or instances of the
sensory impression of pain or pleasure.

•It seems that the (non-intentionally-imagined) sensory impressions of pain and pleasure predictably arise
when there is danger to or opportunity for the body's and/or species' survival. That is, the impressions of
pain and pleasure follow from bodily activity that moves energy in either a protective or exploitative
manner. Later, when activated, memories of (i.e., non-sensory impressions depicting) instances of pain or
pleasure as arising in a certain situation initiate energy in line with the protective or exploitative energy
that resulted in the original pain or pleasure. By initiating energy in line with the original instance of pain
or pleasure, non-sensory impressions act to protect from or exploit situations without need for direct
interaction with potentially dangerous situations.
If pain and pleasure function to aid the survival of the body and/or species, pain and pleasure could
then be considered the biologically adaptive product of evolution, as similarly adaptive features of the

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body have arisen out of the forces of evolution (Seligman 2002). This wouldn't mean that such instances
of pain and pleasure always could be said to aid survival. In addition, it should be considered that
evolution as contributing to the existence of pleasure and pain only considers "causal" "chains". As
noted in section IV.3.1, causal chains are a highly specific vehicle for contribution. So, far more than
evolutionary forces must contribute to the existence of pain and pleasure.

•Alongside pain and pleasure, there doesn't seem to be a specific type of sensory impression that is
"neutralness". The term "neutralness" could be assigned to features that are either, one, a group of
impressions lacking both pain and pleasure, or, two, a group of impressions including both pain and
pleasure whose "net degree" of pain-to-pleasure is neutral. (A group of impressions lacking both pain
and pleasure could also be considered of a neutral "net degree" of pain-to-pleasure, though.)

•"Pain-to-pleasure", in the sense of all instances of pain and pleasure, would ultimately be all sensory
impressions of pain and pleasure. These sensory impressions would seem to exist not just in human
animals, however. And, some form of these sensory impressions might very well exist as sub-features of
nonorganic features. When existing in nonorganic features, forms of sensory impressions would not
necessarily be most accurately represented as and called "sensory impressions", though.

VIII.2 Intrinsic Value


•Pleasure (in the sense of the sensory impression of "comfort", rather than in the sense of "discomfort-to-
comfort"), seems of "intrinsic value", "good in itself"; and, pain (in the sense of "discomfort") seems of
"intrinsic disvalue", "bad in itself" (Smith 1948).
It might seem that at least truth is also of intrinsic value, and falsity of intrinsic disvalue. Robert
Nozick defended this possibility through a thought experiment deemed "The Experience Machine" (Noz-
ick 1974). In his thought experiment, Nozick describes a coherent imagined situation: that a machine is
invented that allows people to enter into it and be caused to have extremely pleasurable simulated
experiences. Nozick then questions whether or not anyone would choose to live in a machine like this
over non-simulated reality. Nozick proposes that, if pleasure were the only intrinsic value, people would
have no reason not to enter this machine.
A seeming natural resistance to entering into the "experience machine" could be accounted for by
considering truth to be of intrinsic value in addition to pleasure. However, even upon considering
Nozick's thought experiment, I find that only pleasure is of intrinsic value (and that "pleasure" can be
considered synonymous with "intrinsic value"). This view that only pleasure is of intrinsic value is
known as "hedonism" (Feldman 2001).
I hold three main beliefs that seem to support both my belief in hedonism and my denial of the
proposal that, if hedonism were true, people would have no reason not to enter the experience machine.
For one, pleasure seems good "in itself" in a very immediate way that neither truth nor anything else
does. Two, while truth seems to be of some type of value, it could just be of value in that truth can cause
pleasure. As described, truth seems able to cause pleasure in that it allows someone to relate to
surrounding reality "harmoniously". That is, someone with more accurate mental impressions than not
would seem allowed a life of less negative surprise than otherwise; and, this person would seem able to
manipulate their surrounding reality in a way that satisfies their desires more than otherwise. And, three,
while I would resist entering into Nozick's experience machine, this seeming natural resistance could be
accounted for in a way besides denying hedonism.

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I would account for a seeming natural resistance to entering into the "experience machine" by
clarifying what it means to me for "pleasure" to be considered as synonymous with "intrinsic value".
That is, to me, it is not just my pleasure––i.e., the pleasure of my immediate self to full self––that is of
intrinsic value, but pleasure in general, i.e., pleasure across all reality, across what could be called "the
ultimate self". (As I will discuss in section ten, since sub-features of reality mirror sub-features of my
immediate self, and since my immediate self is only illusorily "separate" from all else, all of reality could
be considered my [or the] "ultimate self".) My belief that "pleasure" is of intrinsic value instead of "my
pleasure" is mainly influenced by two other beliefs: one, the value of a given instance of pleasure
wouldn't seem altered just because it "belongs" to one person over another; and, two, my immediate self
would not be "separate" from all other features of reality.
If "pleasure" is of intrinsic value instead of "my pleasure", then entering the experience machine
would seem naturally resisted (by non-sociopaths). This is because entering the machine would mean
abandoning one's ability to contribute much to the pleasure of anyone besides the full self and its parts
(though others' pleasure could be very indirectly––and likely very minimally––contributed to). Although
the full self's "personal pleasure" might be high in the experience machine, "global pleasure" would seem
lower than it could have been given a life of commitment to "pleasure in general" in non-simulated
reality.
Someone living in non-simulated reality would seem able to have a much higher impact on net
global pleasure than someone living in the experience machine. This is because, as opposed to pleasure
occurring only within the walls of the experience machine, pleasure occurring in non-simulated reality
can influence the pleasure of others. And, when one person influences the pleasure of another, the
influenced person's pleasure can in turn influence the pleasure of yet another, and on and on. Within the
experience machine, a person is limited to impacting only the pleasure of their full self.

VIII.2.1 Degrees of Pleasure

•As I find that pain-to-pleasure involves "degrees" along a scale, I find that levels of pleasure––i.e., levels
of intrinsic value––are measurable quantitatively over qualitatively (Crisp 1997). This necessitates
accepting "quantitative hedonism" over "qualitative hedonism" (Feldman 2001). In accepting "quantita-
tive hedonism", I find that there are no distinctly more-to-less valuable types of pleasure. I also find that
qualitative hedonism would actually implicate something besides pleasure as being additionally of
intrinsic value. I find that qualitative hedonism would implicate this because qualitative hedonism would
seem to necessitate something in addition to pleasure that would account for the "rank" of different types
of pleasure.

•As pleasure is of "intrinsic value", something that contributes to some degree of pleasure would seem to
be of some degree of "indirect intrinsic value", i.e., "extrinsic value" (Bradley 1998). That is, something
contributing to a certain degree of pleasure would be of a matching degree of "extrinsic value". For
instance, while money or a medical report would not be "good in themselves", they could be of extrinsic
value; that is, they could contribute to pleasure in a shopper or a relieved healthy patient. Just the same,
even people can be of extrinsic value. Specifically, a given person would be of a degree of extrinsic
value that matches the degree of pleasure that they contribute to.

•As a note, tangent "momentary selves" (that are "predecessors" and "successors" of one another) could,
collectively, be considered to have a certain "duration" of a given "singular" instance of pain-to-pleasure.

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However, like any impressions, instances of pain-to-pleasure would only be instantaneous and exist
within only one momentary self. So, more accurately than having a "duration", a given instance of pain-
to-pleasure would be a member of a certain-length "(causal) chain" of instances of pain-to-pleasure,
where each member would seemingly be at least nearly identical.

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Section IX
Less General Features of the Self,
of the Relationship of the Self with Reality Otherwise,
and of Reality Overall, Regarding Morality
In this second to final section, I will present beliefs based on my worldview that concern general features
of reality that are slightly less general than features presented in the last section––even while this section
will not only focus on features just within myself. Like the features presented in the last section, however,
the features discussed in this final section closely relate to "value"––though more closely to "morality".

IX.1 What Would Be Best


•Since what's good in itself––i.e., what is of "intrinsic value"––would be pleasure, what would be best
would seem to be a situation where there is the most pleasure possible. "What would be best" would be
the possible scenario where there is the most good possible––in amount and net degree. So, considering
what is good to be "pleasure", "what would be best" would be the situation where, of all instances of
pain-to-pleasure, there is a highest possible amount of instances of pleasure, and there is a highest
possible net degree of pain-to-pleasure. In other words, to me, what would be best would seem to be,
relatively accurately, "the possible situation (of all possible situations) where all instances of pain-to-
pleasure include the highest possible amount of instances of pleasure and the highest possible net degree
of pain-to-pleasure".
"Most pleasure possible"––roughly, "what would be best"––would look to the net degree of pain-to-
pleasure and the amount of pleasure across reality. Whether considering all or a lower amount of
instances of pain-to-pleasure, though, "net degree of pain-to-pleasure and the amount of pleasure" (of x
pain-to-pleasure instances) could be more succinctly phrased as the "degree of magnitude of pain-to-
pleasure" (of x pain-to-pleasure instances)––or, shorter, the "magnitude of pleasure" or "pleasure
magnitude". So, "what would be best" could be relatively succinctly referred to as "the possible situation
where all instances of pain-to-pleasure together are an exemplification of the highest degree of pleasure
magnitude" (i.e., "the possible situation where all instances of intrinsic disvalue-to-value together are an
exemplification of the highest degree of magnitude of intrinsic value").

•There would only be one actual magnitude of global (pain-to-) pleasure across reality. However, there
would also seem to be at least multiple possible magnitudes of global pleasure across reality. In line with
my view of "alethic possibility" discussed in section IV.2, these possible degrees of global pleasure
magnitude would be the degrees of pleasure magnitude taken from the features of reality that reality as a
whole could (alethically) possibly be (i.e., "have been"). (What reality could possibly be/"have been"
would include features that each belong to a group where reality is also a member, and where the
abstraction of the group is a uniquely similar group.)
Addedly, as suggested by discussion in section IV.2 as well, what reality could possibly "have been"
would only include groups already within reality. So, "the possible situation where all instances of pain-
to-pleasure together are an exemplification of the highest degree of pleasure magnitude" ("what would be
best") would be instances of pain-to-pleasure with the highest degree of pleasure magnitude, which is a
given feature within reality that reality as a whole "could have been". Here, in comparison to other such
features that reality "could have been", the pleasure magnitude of the given feature is the highest––or tied

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for the highest. If "tied" for the highest pleasure magnitude, both (or more) features tied for the highest
pleasure magnitude would each be accurately represented by an impression phrasable as "what would be
best".

•For humans, what is believed to be "best" would naturally be desired more than what is not believed
"best", as I define desires to be beliefs linguistically translatable as "X possible situation includes more
good than not-x possible situation" (discussed in section VI.2.1).

IX.1.1 A Guiding Code

•In terms of my immediate self and its successors, "what would be best within my remaining life" would
be "the possible situation where all instances of pain-to-pleasure within my momentary selves that add up
to my remaining life together are an exemplification of the highest degree of pleasure magnitude". In
other words, "what would be best within my remaining life" would be "the possible situation where all
instances of intrinsic disvalue-to-value within my momentary selves that add up to my remaining life
together are an exemplification of the highest degree of magnitude of intrinsic value". On the other hand,
"what would be best that can be contributed to by my remaining life" would be "the possible situation
where my remaining life contributes to instances of pain-to-pleasure that together are an exemplification
of the highest degree of pleasure magnitude". In other words, "what would be best that can be con-
tributed to by my remaining life" would be "the possible situation where my remaining life contributes to
instances of intrinsic disvalue-to-value that together are an exemplification of the highest degree of
magnitude of intrinsic value"––or, more clearly, "the possible situation where my remaining life is of the
highest degree of magnitude of extrinsic value".
Whether considering my remaining life's highest possible degree of magnitude of intrinsic or
extrinsic value, "the possible situation where all instances of pain-to-pleasure (across all reality) together
are an exemplification of the highest degree of pleasure magnitude" would ultimately be of a higher
pleasure magnitude (and higher value at all). That is, "what would be best" would include a higher net
degree of pain-to-pleasure, and thus a higher (net) degree of intrinsic value. In addition, as "what would
be best" would also include a vastly higher amount of instances of pleasure, it would "have" (i.e.,
"together have an exemplification of") a higher degree of pleasure magnitude.
While "what would be best" is ultimately of far higher value and far higher magnitude of value than
my own remaining life could ever be (intrinsically or extrinsically), a remaining life of highest possible
magnitude of extrinsic value (over intrinsic value) would seem to help more closely approach a reality
where what would be best is actually realized. And, simply most focusing on a certain singular intention
could help me approach my highest possible extrinsic value magnitude than otherwise: that is, "the
possible situation where my remaining life contributes to instances of pain-to-pleasure that together are
an exemplification of the highest degree of pleasure magnitude". Simultaneously, what would ultimately
be best would be more closely approached than otherwise (i.e., "the possible situation where all instances
of pain-to-pleasure together are an exemplification of the highest degree of pleasure magnitude").
This certain singular intention that could help me approach my highest possible extrinsic value
magnitude––and, simultaneously, what would ultimately be best––would be a simple intention that can
efficiently inform all other intentions in my remaining life. That is, rather than having multiple intentions
of highest focus, choosing one would be most efficient, and especially when this one intention can align
all other intentions with it. Such an intention could be called a "guiding code". I would also define a
"guiding code" as a type of intention held by an immediate self who believes that the intention influences
other intentions that their successors will hold to a more "positive" degree (to a degree that contributes to

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more "good" [more "pleasure"]) than any other intention that the immediate self holds.
The guiding code I find to be most clearly helpful for maximizing extrinsic value and ultimate
intrinsic value would be to "realize the highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what my immediate
self and its successors can contribute to, aided by consistent practice of orderly thinking, including
orderly continual questioning, while avoiding overconfidence". This guiding code can be more simply
put as "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what my remaining life can contribute to,
with non-overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual questioning", though. This guiding code
intends that, of all possible scenarios of my remaining life's contributions, I realize the situation where
what is contributed to is of the highest (or tied for the highest) pleasure magnitude, while maximizing my
mind's ability to work toward that. The guiding code chiefly aims for maximized good, but not
necessarily maximized orderly thinking. That is, as mentioned in section VI.3.2.5, through orderly
thinking, continual questioning, and non-overconfidence, it may be discovered that it is best in a situation
to allow a limited amount of non-orderly thinking, such as faith in very difficult circumstances.
As would the intention "consistently practice orderly thinking, including orderly continual
questioning, while avoiding overconfidence" discussed in section VI.3.2.5, the intention to "realize
highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what my remaining life can contribute to, with non-
overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual questioning" would seem to influence the creation
of similar-content intentions and similar-content non-intentions. This influence would seemingly most
notably occur when the guiding code instigates reasoning before the forming of broadly impactive
intentions. Regardless, created similar-content intentions and non-intentions would seem to contribute to
a good amount of pleasure. (Most precisely, though, in contributing to pleasure, an intention is first
acting to put in place situations of unconscious bodily energy in the self and/or others that then seems to
reliably result in sensory impressions of "pleasure".)

•A guiding code as an overarching goal of most "focus" is sustained by another intention to most focus
on––i.e., emphasize––the guiding code. This intention to most emphasize the guiding code "strengthens"
the guiding code. As discussed in section VII.1, "strengthened" non-sensory impressions are more likely
used and based on more frequent usage. Thus, "strengthened" intentions are more frequently used and
then also lead to further frequent usage.
Relatedly, a highest emphasis on the life goal precludes higher or equal emphasis on other
intentions. Such other intentions equally or more highly emphasized would undermine the impact of a
guiding code. For example, emphasis on an intention to "feel good" equal to or higher than emphasis on
a life goal to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what my remaining life can
contribute to, with non-overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual questioning" would direct
more energy to action toward feeling good than otherwise, even when this brings about action good for
the self and yet not ultimately best.

•Intending for something is not the same as expecting it or believing anything short of fully realizing the
intention is some sort of "failure". If one expects to wholly fulfill an intention to "realize highest possible
global pleasure magnitude of what my remaining life can contribute to, with non-overconfident orderly
thinking and orderly continual questioning", or if one believes that non-complete fulfillment of the
intention is "failure", one will in both situations meet extreme disappointment (that could undermine even
the approaching of fulfilling the intention). One would meet extreme disappointment because an
intention to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what my remaining life can contribute
to, with non-overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual questioning" is highly unlikely fully
realized.

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An intention to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what my remaining life can
contribute to..." is unlikely fully realized for three main reasons. For one, there is a low chance of
realizing "highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what my remaining life can contribute to..."
simply given the sheer number of alternative possibilities. Two, I cannot fully confidently directly access
any accurate representations about anything, much less about what realizing the "highest possible global
pleasure magnitude of what my remaining life can contribute to..." would exactly entail. (As noted in
section VI.3.2.2.2, I can only directly access the accuracy of "auto-verifying impressions", but I cannot
access the accuracy of even these without doubting that I can.) And, three, I find it difficult to always
follow what I believe would be best to do, even when I have high confidence about what would be best.

Relatedly, failing to remember the extreme likelihood of daily personal and global pain (from inconve-
nience to tragedy) can bring about unnecessary added personal pain as well as distraction from realistic
intentions toward good. Personal pain involved would include disappointment as well as frustration from
struggling to make situations "pain-free" that cannot be made so pain-free. Altogether, though, failing to
remember the extreme likelihood of daily pain would result in greater personal pain than otherwise and
fewer realistic chances of contributing to high pleasure magnitude than otherwise. However, acknowl-
edging the extreme likelihood of daily personal and global pain allows one to forego disappointment and
frustration, focus on realistic intentions toward good, and work "around" pain when the pain cannot
realistically be removed. One example of working "around" pain would involve accepting and allowing
the self to feel uncomfortable unclarity regarding an unanswered philosophical question when it would
not be best to take the situation at hand to attempt to answer the question.
Also relatedly, failing to acknowledge or admit the benefit of sacrificing some high good for a
greater good can also bring about unnecessary added (personal and global) pain as well as missed
opportunity for contributing to high pleasure magnitude. That is, similarly highly good possible
scenarios can be mutually exclusive where, in one situation, something good happens that cannot happen
in the other situation. Even when one of these scenarios is accurately believed as better, it can be
personally painful to let go of a highly good possible situation in favor of another––even if the result
would ultimately be preferable. Even while choosing the better path, global pain can still be contributed
to and an opportunity to contribute to pleasure magnitude is lost. Still, unnecessarily greater pain or at
least unnecessarily missed opportunity for greater pleasure magnitude would result from choosing the
worse path––whether the worse path was chosen out of failure to acknowledge or out of failure to admit
the good of sacrificing the worse path. And, once acknowledging the higher good in sacrificing the lower
good, as noted in section VI.3.2.2.1, psychological strategies can be implemented that help one adapt to
anxiety and other emotional pain that may arise upon admitting the good of and then actually sacrificing
highly good––but not best––paths of action.
Adapting to anxiety would mirror a process of adapting to any "emotional pain"––e.g., depression,
sadness, guilt, etc. Emotional pain would involve instances of "pain" (in the form of "emotions") rising
together with and accompanying other emotions. When instances of emotional pain are "adapted to",
they do not yield the response they once did. Such adapting would occur given the accrual of non-
sensory impressions whose initiated energy works directly against the formation of or sustainment of
emotional pain. One example would be the collection of non-sensory impressions depicting positive
experiences with spiders, even when spiders are instinctually feared, as described in section VI.1.2.
Along with and/or instead of non-sensory impressions working against emotional pain, adapting to
emotional pain could result from altered instincts based on altered genes. As also discussed in section
VI.1.2, most genes naturally interact with the body to express themselves or not––to switch "on" or
"off" (Rossi 2002).

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One common result of emotional pain is its multiplication by way of the ongoing creation of non-
sensory impressions representing existing emotional pain––which seems to predictably occur when
attempting to force emotional pain out of consciousness (Blackledge, Ciarrochi, and Deane 2009). Such
non-sensory impressions that depict existing emotional pain would only seem to initiate energy in line
with bodily activity that the original emotion is already representing. So, impressions depicting existing
emotional pain would only seem to create more of the bodily process represented by the existing
emotional pain, predictably resulting in more of such emotional pain. On the other hand, psychologically
strategic non-sensory impressions such as intentions to generally permit emotional pain to remain in
consciousness can interrupt this and related processes that contribute to heightened degrees of emotional
pain.
In terms of the mental impressions involved in failing to admit the benefit of sacrificing some high
good for a greater good specifically, though, multiple desires would be at play. These desires would
include an intention to sustain yet another intention toward a situation depicted as highly good, and even
amidst a (non-intention) desire toward a situation depicted as even better but mutually exclusive to the
first situation. Without an intention to keep the intention toward the first situation, the non-intention
desire toward the better situation would seem to usually activate a chain of mental events that lead to,
one, an intention toward the better situation and, two, an intention to destroy the first intention and related
desires. Desires related to the first intention would include intentions and non-intentions which, if left in
place, risk the reproduction of the destroyed intention.
Uncompromising intentions to sustain intentions toward non-best situations would seem obviously
problematic. However, as suggested, impressions depicting the situation of destroying an intention that
could have brought good can bring about much pain. Simultaneously, impressions depicting not
destroying the intention and then missing out on what would be better would also bring about pain. For
those not admitting the benefit of sacrificing some good of a particular situation, though, desires related
to keeping the intention toward the non-best situation happen to be especially strong, for whatever reason.
Those with especially strong desires toward sustaining intentions toward (depicted) good but not
best situations could have "perfectionistic" tendencies. My own perfectionistic tendencies seem to
contribute to my own damagingly "uncompromising" intentions. Perfectionistic tendencies would flow
from false beliefs that abandoning what would be good is horrible "failure" and/or from simple instinctual
strong aversion to any intentions to abandon what would be good.

•An intention to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude..." focuses on the future rather than
all time because it seems that humans can only observe the ability to impact the future, via intentions or
at all. That is, as noted in section IV.3.2.1, since our bodies exist as causal chains whose links are three-
dimensional Cauchy hypersurfaces, it seems that the only type of chains that we can relatively directly
observe (i.e., "represent relatively soon after experiencing") are causal chains––whether we are a link in
these chains or not. While non-causal chains would exist and as likely all around and involving of us,
there is no indication of what we would be effecting––if anything at all––by intending to make contribu-
tions via non-causal chains. Intending to contribute via non-causal chains would then both indicate
problems in reasoning and a waste of energy that could be directed toward causal chains. And, unlike
non-causal chains, we can both observe causal chains and observe contributing to causal chains.

•In terms of how the guiding code speaks of "remaining life", considering when I will most likely die can
impact how closely I approach my maximum possible extrinsic value magnitude. That is, depending on
when I die, I may or may not need to sacrifice anything for my relatively distant successors' health and
ability to continue following my guiding code. For example, if I will die soon, behavior that might have,

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given a longer life, sabotaged a long-term plan for "realizing highest possible global pleasure
magnitude..." might actually be the best way for using what time my full self has left.

•In intending to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what my remaining life can
contribute to, with non-overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual questioning", one should
seemingly most focus on those beings in closest proximity to themselves––including successors of the
immediate self. One should seemingly most focus on those in closest proximity for two main reasons.
First, the needs of those in closest proximity to a person are known best. And, second, those in closest
proximity can be most hurt by a person neglecting them in order to focus on those who the person is less
fit to help.

•On its own, the pleasure of my immediate self and successors is of very low importance when contrasted
with the pleasure of my "ultimate self" (which is all of reality). In other words, "personal pleasure
(magnitude)" is of very low importance when contrasted with "global pleasure (magnitude)". However,
"personal pleasure (magnitude)" is related to intending to "realize highest possible global pleasure
magnitude of what my remaining life can contribute to, with non-overconfident orderly thinking and
orderly continual questioning" in three main ways.

For one, personal pleasure is related to intending to "realize highest possible global pleasure
magnitude..." in that successful intending to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude..." would
require making sure that I am able to even approach such realizing. That is, successful intending toward
my guiding code would require being healthy mentally and otherwise, i.e., effective. Such effectiveness
would seem helped through health-minded behaviors like expression, relaxation, recreation, moderation
of energy, and simple and essential rest. And, health-minded behaviors can even involve and/or result in
greater happiness––i.e., greater "pleasure magnitude"––for my immediate self and successors.
At times, however, health would be necessarily sacrificed in order to most contribute to the
approaching of maximum global pleasure magnitude. For example, it can be necessary to sacrifice health
when worthily caring for a very young, elderly, or sick person. On the other hand, serving one's own
health might mean neglecting or otherwise harming some amount of others at least temporarily. For
example, expressing toward another person negative feelings harbored against them might––sometimes––
worthily protect one's mental health, though the other person might experience at least temporary
emotional pain.
Relatedly, even when personal health is not centrally in question, best options of action (i.e., of
"intended behavior", i.e., of "bodily changes that were intended") might involve harm to some amount of
others. For example, whether or not the cause of personal health is served, attempting to correct others'
beliefs might sometimes be best even when emotionally painful to others. (As discussed in section
VI.3.2.2.2, though, at no time can someone directly and undoubtedly access truth, including the truth that
correcting another is best or that one person or another is right or wrong.) When it is best, attempting to
correct others' beliefs would seem to worthily contribute to the helpful propagation of truth––which is
also helpful for all parties.
The helpful propagation of truth would involve subjects as grand as science or as specific as actions
of the self, though. And, while true beliefs about the self are not as monumental to humanity as true
beliefs about science, it can still be best to correct false beliefs about the self. When it is best to correct
false beliefs about the self (such as false beliefs wrongfully criticizing beliefs or outward actions of the
self), it would seem mainly out of interest in social harmony and out of interest in protecting the
effectiveness of the self.

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In terms of social harmony here, correcting others' wrongfully critical beliefs about the self can
allow for a more honest and positive relationship with those misrepresenting the self. And, in terms of
protecting the effectiveness of the self, correcting others' wrongfully critical beliefs can restore an
accurate, positive reputation held by the self. Given an intact positive reputation, a person is more likely
to be candidly interacted with, allowing for more positive interactions and for more receptivity to positive
actions performed by the self. Correcting beliefs wrongfully critical of the self can also prevent the
spread of this misinformation, and thus prevent the spread of lost social harmony and lost personal
effectiveness.
Whether or not personal health is centrally in question, though, it is important to consider the
character of the person allowed to be harmed––whether they are harmed through neglect, through
expressed negative feelings, or through the correction of their beliefs. Some particularly volatile people
will not only react with pained emotions; they may also retaliate by intentionally spreading harm as
retribution. "Picking battles" by placating such volatile people might seem to be wrongly rewarding,
magnifying, and reinforcing their behavior. In some situations, this may be the case. However, in many
situations, volatile people like this are already widely understood to be of character not worth rewarding,
magnifying, or reinforcing. Instead, they are understood as worthy of placating only out of interest in
minimizing the damage that they could cause.

Anyway, as for the second way that "personal pleasure (magnitude)" is related to intending to "realize
highest possible global pleasure magnitude...", personal pleasure would seem a symptom of socially
helpful actions. Such socially helpful actions would range from helping the needy to being fair with a
roommate. And, such socially helpful actions seem to create short-lived and/or sustained pleasure for
successors of the immediate self.
Successors of the immediate self seem to form short-lived (chains of impressions of) pleasure
when, for example, they perceive that they (in their predecessors) performed a certain socially helpful
action (and then experience pleasure seemingly instinctually). On the other hand, successors of the
immediate self seem to form sustained (chains of impressions of) pleasure when, for example, the
immediate self relatively highly contributed to a "positive immediate social environment" for its
successors––where others in proximity to the immediate self are treated well and are thus (in their
successors) more apt to treat the self (in its successors) well in return.

Third, "personal pleasure" is related to intending to "realize highest possible global pleasure
magnitude..." in that, as mentioned, one should seemingly most focus on those beings in closest
proximity to themselves––including successors of the immediate self. By focusing most on those beings
in closest proximity to one's self, one's successors' pleasure is benefited.
Personal pleasure seems clearly related to intending to "realize highest possible global pleasure
magnitude...". And, this personal pleasure seems related to intending to "realize highest possible global
pleasure magnitude..." in ways that could potentially help motivate a person to intend to "realize highest
possible global pleasure magnitude..." more than they might otherwise. However, it seems that one could
be most motivated to intend to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude..." by acknowledging
that those outside the immediate and full self are not so separate that their pain and pleasure are not felt
by the "ultimate self" that everyone is simply a feature of.
Even without accepting the existence of non-separate entities in an "ultimate self", though, it seems
necessary to consider others' pain and pleasure as equally valid to our own (i.e., equally "real" and
"special"), which would motivate intending to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude...". It
seems necessary to consider others' pain and pleasure as equally valid to our own because it seems

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difficult to defend a belief that our own experiences are more valid, more "real" and "special" than
others'––even while such a belief seems to somehow naturally arise due to our inability to directly access
others' experiences. It seems especially difficult to defend such a belief, though, upon believing that, if
we are all at least members of a group of any or all conscious things, even if we are "separate", we also
exist as members of such a group. And, if we are members of such a group, it wouldn't seem that any
member of such a group would have more "real" and "special" experiences than another.

While personal pleasure does seem clearly related to intending to "realize highest possible global pleasure
magnitude...", maximizing personal pleasure would necessarily be less emphasized than the guiding code
of "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude...". Otherwise, not only would the guiding code be
undermined, personal pleasure would seem likely compromised.
For one, personal pleasure would seem likely compromised because, as psychological research has
shown, focusing on personal pleasure rather than on "what matters" to a person (e.g., "realize highest
possible global pleasure magnitude...") can––albeit counterintuitively––undermine that person's own
happiness (Blackledge, Ciarrochi, and Deane 2009). This is because, one, working toward what matters
to a person often leads to greater happiness; and, two, attempting to control one's own feelings will often
backfire. Attempting to control feelings can backfire when, for example, one avoids and resists any
emotional pain. Attempting to avoid and resist any pain will often only multiply pain. Alternatively,
psychologically accepting––in addition to maybe learning from––the existence of pain in general and in
specific instances can quash such multiplying, in conjunction with then doubling down on efforts to focus
on "what matters".
Two, personal pleasure would seem compromised by focus on personal pleasure over "realize
highest possible global pleasure magnitude..." because, as mentioned, personal pleasure would seem a
necessary symptom of socially helpful actions. Focusing on personal pleasure would limit socially
helpful actions, along with their benefits of personal (and global) pleasure.

As a note, "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what my remaining life can contribute
to, with non-overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual questioning" could indeed necessitate
personally painful self-sacrifice!

•To me, at least many non-human animals likely experience––i.e., "include sub-features of"––pain and
pleasure. And, it seems likely to me that at least many non-animal features of reality also include sub-
features that could be called pain or pleasure. However, I am not subjectively confident that I can pick
out which specific non-animal features of reality experience pain or pleasure. And, I don't think that it is
possible to have such confidence, if using the "realize orderly thinking, including orderly continual
questioning, while avoiding overconfidence" discussed in section VI.3.2.5 of this book. So, the
effectiveness of an intention to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude..." seems limited by
my mind's shortcomings. However, it still seems a desirable guiding code to me.

•"What is (i.e., would be) 'best' to do"––i.e., what one "should" do––at a specific point in spacetime
would involve the highest possible extrinsic value magnitude of possible action(s) ("intended
behavior[s]", i.e., "bodily change[s] that were successfully intended"). In other words, y action would be
best in that, of all possible actions that could occur at x point in spacetime, y action contributes to
instances of pain-to-pleasure that, together, are of the highest global pleasure magnitude (or tied for the
highest).
"What would be best to do" over a remaining life, on the other hand, would involve a certain group

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of actions alethically possibly attributable to myself. And, applying the guiding code "realize highest
possible global pleasure magnitude of what my remaining life can contribute to, with non-overconfident
orderly thinking and orderly continual questioning" would seem to be one of these "best" actions––along
with actions that follow from related intentions.

IX.2 Moral Rightness


IX.2.1 Degrees of Moral Rightness

•"Moral wrongness-to-rightness" assesses intended behaviors of a self, i.e., "actions" of a self, i.e.,
"(causal) chains primarily caused by a 'successful intention' of an immediate self along with other
features in a mind". (See section IV.3.2.1 for discussion of "primary contribution" and "primary
causality".) Here, again, I see the "mind" as "all the conscious and unconscious impressions, along with
the processes involved with these impressions, associable with some portion of a full self". Also, I find a
"successful intention" to be "an intention that would be accurately believed as having been a sub-feature
of the first link in a causal chain leading to what the intention seemed to have depicted (a possible
situation that includes more good than the situation not happening)".
To me, it seems that the degree attributable to the moral wrongness-to-rightness of an "action" is its
degree of magnitude of extrinsic value––i.e., the degree of pain-to-pleasure magnitude of instances of
pain-to-pleasure contributed to by that action. A particular degree of "moral rightness" that's specifically
on the "positive" end of the scale of "moral wrongness-to-rightness", then, would be the degree of
pleasure magnitude of pain-to-pleasure contributed to by an action. And a particular degree of "moral
wrongness" that's specifically on the "negative" end of the scale of "moral wrongness-to-rightness" would
be a degree of pain magnitude of pain-to-pleasure contributed to by an action.

•One might consider a guiding code of "realize highest possible moral rightness of what my remaining
life can contribute to, with non-overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual questioning" as
equal or even somehow preferable to a guiding code of "realize highest possible global pleasure
magnitude of what my remaining life can contribute to, with non-overconfident orderly thinking and
orderly continual questioning". However, a guiding code that replaces "global pleasure magnitude" with
"moral rightness" unnecessarily narrows the focus of a guiding code from all pleasure magnitude to the
pleasure magnitude that only intended behaviors can effect. This narrowed focus would seem to risk a
lower impact on global pleasure magnitude than otherwise and unnecessarily so. Still, an intention
"realize highest possible moral rightness of what my remaining life can contribute to, with non-
overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual questioning" would seem necessitated by the
guiding code to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude...".

•If moral wrongness-to-rightness (which can be abbreviated as "moral rightness") is only assessable on
such a case-by-case basis, then one type of action that is morally right in one situation may be morally
wrong in another. And, actions of the same type and even in the same type of situation may differ in
degree of moral rightness. Even if someone's action is not "morally right" in a given situation, though, it
can still be "morally apt".

IX.2.2 Moral Aptitude

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•To me, "moral aptitude" is "the chance that a particular action in a particular situation contributes to
what adds up to a 'positive' degree of pain-to-pleasure magnitude (i.e., to what adds up to a degree of
pain-to-pleasure that's on the 'pleasure' side of pain-to-pleasure)". In other words, a degree of moral
aptitude (or, just as well, a degree of "moral inaptitude" or "moral inaptitude-to-aptitude") corresponds to
the chance that a particular action in a particular situation would be morally right in the type of situation
at hand.
This "type of situation at hand" would not just be any "type" ("uniquely similar group") to which
the situation at hand belongs, though. The "type of situation" at hand would mean a type of situation
where each member contains a sub-feature that is an instance of the most "specialized" ("smallest") type
to which the original action in question (part of the original situation in question) belongs. However,
there would seem to be multitudes of types of situations that fit these parameters. Only the most
"specialized" of these situations would qualify as the "type of situation at hand" considered in judging
moral aptitude, though. ("Specialized uniquely similar groups" [i.e., "specialized types"] were introduced
in section IV.1.2.)
Overall, more simply put, a "morally apt" action is usually morally right in the same type of
situation––even if not actually morally right. Even if not actually morally right (i.e., "moral" for short),
though, a morally apt action would still have a high chance of being moral.
In line with discussion of "chance" in section IV.2.1.1, the "chance" of an action being moral would
seem equal to a certain percentage of members in a certain uniquely similar group. This certain uniquely
similar group would form the abstraction of, one, each member of a most "specialized" uniquely similar
group to which the original situation in question belongs (where each member of this type contains an
instance of the most specialized type of the original action), and, two, any other features in reality that
allow this overall group to be uniquely similar when added to it. The percentage upon which moral
aptitude is based would then look to what members of this overall uniquely similar group are sub-features
of the described "specialized" type of situation to which the original situation in question belongs. The
percentage of members of the overall uniquely similar group that are sub-features of instances of the
described "specialized" type of situation and where the instances' contained actions end up as morally
right equals the degree of moral aptitude of the original action in question.
For actions of low moral aptitude, the described overall uniquely similar group––that forms an
abstraction which includes sub-features of each instance of the described specialized types of situations––
would contain a relatively low percentage of members that are situations housing moral actions. On the
other hand, for actions of high moral aptitude, the described overall uniquely similar group would contain
a relatively high percentage of members that are situations housing moral actions.

•Even if someone (in conjunction with their mind) performs an action of low moral aptitude, however,
the action might have been performed out of "good intentions", where actions typifying "good intentions"
could be considered of high moral aptitude. For example, someone might (in conjunction with their
mind) perform an action that is the formation of an intention to "do the right thing", which would
seemingly at least usually have a relatively high chance of contributing to what has a "positive" pleasure
magnitude. However, the action resulting out of the intention to "do the right thing" (which would come
to pass across nearby successors of the immediate self) might be the formation of an intention to do what
is actually morally "inapt" (i.e., of low moral aptitude).
On the other hand, someone (in conjunction with their mind) might perform an action of high moral
aptitude, but for "bad reasons"––i.e., with an intention to do what is morally inapt. For example, one
might work effectively at a socially helpful nonprofit, but only out of the intention to receive personal
praise. While their effective work would seem morally apt, their intention to receive personal praise

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would seem morally inapt.
Relatedly, someone might intend to perform an action that they explicitly believe to be less than
what is "best", even while the action does indeed turn out to be "best"––or at least of some degree of
moral rightness. (As mentioned in section IX.1.1, a "best" action would be a possible action contributing
to instances of pain-to-pleasure that, together, are of the highest [or tied for highest] global pleasure
magnitude of what degrees of global pleasure magnitude each possible action at x point in spacetime
contribute to.)
It would seem that actions believed less than best could be both morally right (and even most
morally right) and morally apt. However, the action of intending to perform an action believed less than
"best" would seem necessarily morally inapt. Similarly, intending to perform an action believed to hurt
someone would also seem necessarily morally inapt. (This points out that morally right and most
morally right/morally best are distinct, and that what is most morally right/morally best would definition-
ally be preferable.)

•An action can be morally right and not just morally apt even when the action might be considered to
have no clear positive impact, though. Such actions would include telling the truth even when no one
seems helped or hurt by doing so. However, the act of telling the truth can––in a given case, but not
necessarily every case––strengthen a habit of telling the truth, which contributes to other more clearly
morally right actions.
Relatedly, based on cold calculations, it might seem morally apt to act out a situation believed with
60% confidence to be mildly positive even though it is (dis)believed with 40% confidence to end up
causing extreme horror. However, everyday common sense would dictate that acting out this situation is
an unworthy "risk". Even while mild positivity might be realized, acting out this situation overlooks the
high chance and (usually) high subjective confidence that one is incorrect in their beliefs about how
situations will unfold at least frequently––and even more frequently when borderline degrees of
subjective confidence (like a 60%-40% split) are involved.
So, while mild positivity might be realized in acting out a situation, a habit to act on borderline
degrees of subjective confidence in risky situations is contributed to, which contributes to falling on the
painful side of risk at least sometimes. And, with such risky situations, falling on the painful side at least
sometimes can mean even far greater pain contributed to overall than in avoiding forming such unwise
intentions to act out risky situations.

•Even more than "realize highest possible moral rightness of what my remaining life can contribute to,
with non-overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual questioning", "realize highest possible
moral aptitude of what my remaining life can contribute to, with non-overconfident orderly thinking and
orderly continual questioning" would seem necessitated by the guiding code to "realize highest possible
global pleasure magnitude...". Also, in order to maximally approach an intention to "realize highest
possible global pleasure magnitude...", "realize highest possible moral aptitude..." would seem worth
emphasizing more than "realize highest possible moral rightness...".

IX.2.3 Moral Responsibility

•Looking at one specific situation, one immediate self would be "morally responsible" for their action to
the degree that they could act––or, put another way, "could have acted"––differently. More precisely, an
immediate self's moral responsibility here would match the degree of chance that this immediate self has

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of performing an action of a different type in the same type of situation.
In line with moral aptitude, moral responsibility looks to a "specialized" type of situation that
contains sub-features each of which is of a most "specialized" type. More directly, moral responsibility
looks to the most specialized of types of situations where each instance of the type houses, as a sub-
feature, an instance of the most specialized type to which an immediate self at hand belongs. The degree
of moral responsibility of an immediate self at hand then involves a uniquely similar group at least some
of whose members are taken from the described specialized type.
The degree of moral responsibility of an immediate self at hand matches a certain percentage of a
certain uniquely similar group (i.e., "type"). The uniquely similar group would be one whose members
form the abstraction of at least, one, each member of the described specialized type (the most specialized
of types of situations where each member contains a sub-feature that is an instance of the most special-
ized type to which the immediate self at hand belongs), and, two, any other features in reality that allow
this overall group to be uniquely similar when added to it.
The percentage upon which moral responsibility is based would then look to what members of this
overall uniquely similar group are sub-features of the described "specialized" type of situation to which
the original immediate self in question belongs. The percentage of members of the overall uniquely
similar group that are sub-features of instances of the described "specialized" type of situation and where
the instances contain actions different from the original immediate self's actions beyond a certain degree
would equal the degree of moral responsibility of that original immediate self. The degree of difference
beyond which is "allowed" would seem to be any amount of difference that places an action outside of
the most "specialized" uniquely similar group to which the original immediate self's original action
belongs.

•One could do something morally wrong or even morally inapt and yet be of no moral responsibility.
Here, while the person would have done something morally wrong, or even something that could not
have been morally right, no one in their situation could have done something more than marginally
different. Thus, one would not be "morally responsible" for their action.

•A degree of moral responsibility could be assigned to a specific momentary self who (in conjunction
with their mind) performed an action, or, while more indirectly, to a "successor" of that momentary self
about the action of that momentary self. In the latter case, it would seem that, the more unlike the first
momentary self the successor is, the less directly the successor can be considered "morally responsible"
for the action of their predecessor, though. This would have implications for situations like an old man
being tried in a court of law for an action they performed while drugged against their will at a very young
age.

IX.2.4 Moral Character

•Whenever someone is morally responsible for morally inapt actions, they could be considered
"blameworthy" of their morally inapt action. And, whenever someone is morally responsible for morally
apt actions, they could be considered "praiseworthy" of their morally apt action. A degree of "blamewor-
thiness-to-praiseworthiness" would then be the degree of moral responsibility had for an action that is of
some degree of moral inaptitude-to-aptitude.
"Blameworthy" and "praiseworthy" are just traditional descriptive terms, though, and should not be
taken to suggest any specific treatment of an individual (Smart 1961). Additionally, "blameworthiness"

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and "praiseworthiness" shouldn't be thought to suggest that someone "freely" "created" the future and can
then be fully characterized by the good or bad created. (As discussed in section VI.2.1, a naturally-
occurring non-intentionally-imagined sensory impression of [i.e., describable as] "having created"
contributes to an inclination to find confidence in a belief that the self can freely "create the future".) So,
it is not necessarily good to demean someone just because they can be called "blameworthy" in some act.
And, (near) certainly, it is not good to hate or form malice toward someone because they are "blamewor-
thy". Likewise, it is not necessarily good to laude someone just because they can be called
"praiseworthy" in some act. And, (near) certainly, it is not good to consider someone more deserving of
love just because they are "praiseworthy". ("Malice", "hate", and "love" will be discussed in section
IX.3.2.)
In any case, an immediate self's "moral character" would seem to be their net degree of moral
praiseworthiness (-to-blameworthiness) (for all actions that the immediate self [in conjunction with its
mind] caused). Potentially seemingly problematically, though, moral character would involve a self's net
"moral aptitude" indirectly––as moral praiseworthiness is based on "moral aptitude". However, as moral
aptitude requires a specifically-defined situation that houses a specific action, each action of a self has an
infinite amount of "situations" that house it, each with potentially distinct degrees of "moral aptitude"
afforded to the same given action. Regardless, a net degree of praiseworthiness taken from even infinite
degrees of praiseworthiness would still seem to exist.

•Those with a "neutral" net degree of responsibility that is exactly between praiseworthiness and
blameworthiness would seem of neither low nor high "moral character".

•Just as people can be considered as of a net degree of moral praiseworthiness by looking to all actions
that an immediate self (in conjunction with its mind) causes, they can also be considered as of a net
degree of moral rightness and of a net degree of moral aptitude by looking to all actions that an
immediate self (in conjunction with its mind) causes. And, any portion of a "full self" (including groups
or fusions of momentary selves) can be considered of a net degree of either moral praiseworthiness,
rightness, and/or aptitude. Any portion of a full self can also be considered of overall degrees of extrinsic
value (along with degrees of magnitude of extrinsic value). For any of these degrees assessed to an
immediate self, though, successors to an immediate self can even drastically change over time––for better
or worse.

•In comparison to "realize highest possible moral rightness..." and even "realize highest possible moral
aptitude...", an intention to "realize highest possible moral character..." is more necessitated by the
guiding code to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude...". And, in comparison to the same
two intentions, an intention to "realize highest possible moral character..." would seem more worth
emphasizing in order to maximally approach an intention to "realize highest possible global pleasure
magnitude...".
Even more necessitated by the guiding code of "realize highest possible global pleasure
magnitude..." and even more worth emphasizing is an intention to "realize the highest possible extrinsic
value magnitude of my remaining life, with non-overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual
questioning". In comparison to the discussed intentions involving highest moral rightness, moral
aptitude, moral character, and extrinsic value, an intention to "realize highest possible extrinsic value
magnitude..." is most worth emphasizing because, as suggested in section IX.1.1, it is synonymous with
the guiding code to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what my remaining life can
contribute to, with non-overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual questioning". That is, the

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intention to "realize highest possible extrinsic value magnitude of my remaining life..." linguistically
translates a representation slightly different from, but only slightly less accurately representing the same
thing as, the guiding code to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude...".

IX.3 Morally Right Interaction with Others


IX.3.1 People's "Degrees of Value"

•Even (momentary or larger) people of low net moral character, aptitude, or rightness would always seem
at least able to contribute (whether or not causally) to some amount of pleasure somewhere, though.
And, even if these people are of low extrinsic value magnitude (in contributing to a low net degree of
pain-to-pleasure and a low amount of instances of pleasure), they would, like seemingly any person,
seem to necessarily contain or be able to contain intrinsic value––i.e., they would seem to necessarily
contain or be able to contain pleasure. In at least containing or being able to contain intrinsic value, some
sub-feature of them is or at least could be ("of") high intrinsic value.

•Since any type of person would seem able to experience pleasure, no person would seem worth
"dismissing" by someone intending to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what my
remaining life can contribute to, with non-overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual
questioning". Even if someone could somehow in good thinking believe that another person is of low
extrinsic value magnitude, demeaning the importance of any given person's at least potential to contain
intrinsic value would undermine an intention to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude...".
The guiding code would be undermined in that demeaning the at least potential intrinsic value of another
person would seem to mutually exclude action toward "realizing highest possible global pleasure
magnitude..."
Additionally, believing that someone is of low extrinsic value magnitude would seem to often (but
not always) indicate problematic thinking, i.e. bad thinking––which would seem at least often morally
wrong. Bad thinking would seem generally morally wrong because, for one, beliefs flowing from bad
thinking would seem less frequently true than beliefs flowing from good thinking. And, two, true beliefs
help one congruently relate to surrounding reality, which at least often seems to result in higher pleasure
magnitude than otherwise.

•Considering any person to be of necessarily extremely low extrinsic value magnitude would seem to
require as much problematic thinking as considering any person to be of necessarily extremely high
extrinsic value magnitude. That is, in no case does anyone seem able to, in good thinking, ascertain the
degree of extrinsic value magnitude of anyone to an exact or even relatively precise degree. Further,
given more experience dealing with other people and the self, it becomes increasingly easy to believe
with high confidence that, at most, very few people are near the extremes of very low or very high
extrinsic value magnitude.

IX.3.2 Givingness and Ungivingness

•Even if not all (momentary and larger) people are equally intrinsically and extrinsically valuable, it
would seem usually (but not always) immoral ("morally wrong") to intend to flatly deny a degree of
pleasure magnitude and/or inflict (an exemplification of) a degree of pain magnitude on others (at least in

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their full selves). And, such denying of pleasure magnitude and/or inflicting of pain––which could be
called "ungivingness"––would seem usually wrong whether or not the denying or inflicting is based on
the value, value magnitude, or on any attribute (i.e., any [sub-] feature) of a person. (And, again, it would
seem to require problematic thinking to believe that someone has a certain given degree of intrinsic or
extrinsic value or value magnitude.) Acts of ungivingness––intending to deny pleasure and/or inflict pain
on others––would then seem usually (but not always) morally wrong and even more usually (but not
always) morally inapt.
Standing in contrast to "ungivingness" is "givingness"––i.e., the act of intending to raise pleasure
magnitude in another or others (in their full selves). Maximum givingness would seem to involve
intending to raise pleasure magnitude in all others (in their full selves) and to equally or near-equally high
levels. Acts of givingness would seem usually (but not always) morally right, and even more usually (but
not always) morally apt.
As opposed to givingness, ungivingness would seem usually immoral and for at least two main
reasons. For one, intending to lower others' pleasure magnitude can cause them anger or miss an
opportunity to lift them––to whatever degree––out of a general state of pain that they may be in. And,
two, in a state of anger or a general state of pain, people can intentionally and/or unintentionally spread
some amount of pain.
On the other hand, givingness would seem usually moral for opposite reasons. For one, givingness
would seem to at least often successfully raise others' pleasure magnitude. And, two, raised pleasure
magnitude in others would then free them to the intentionally and/or unintentionally spread pleasure.
Maximum givingness––i.e., aiming to raise all others' pleasure magnitude and to at least nearly
equal levels––would seem usually most moral of all types of givingness and for at least two main reasons.
For one, aiming to raise all others' pleasure magnitude and to at least nearly equal levels can help
contribute to a more just (i.e., "universally, equally happy") world. Such a world would include higher
pleasure magnitude and less pain of "resentment" or "observed unfairness" ("observed unfairness" being
"observed potential to highly increase the pleasure of some to at least the levels of others"). And, two,
intending to raise all others' pleasure magnitude and to at least nearly equal levels can both minimize any
possible intentional and/or unintentional spread of their pain and influence them––to whatever degree––
to spread pleasure intentionally and/or unintentionally themselves.

•Ungiving acts would seem more morally right than giving acts at times (i.e., morally preferable, more
extrinsically valuable). That is, at times, intentionally denying another person instances of pleasure and/
or inflicting on them instances of pain would be morally preferable. In such instances, givingness (i.e.,
"giving acts") would be less moral, if not immoral. Such morally preferable ungiving acts (i.e.,
"ungivingness") would include disciplining a child in a way that benefits the child's full self, abandoning
contact with a predictably malicious person, publicly condemning problematic beliefs or outward actions
in some amount of others, or harming another in order to protect the safety and happiness of a large
amount of others.
When it is morally right, denying of pleasure and/or inflicting of pain is at least usually a byproduct
of an intention to provide a positive net degree of help (i.e., positive net degree of pleasure). And, an
intention to provide such help toward another seems always giving and always right, though intentions
that work toward that help are not necessarily in themselves giving. So, morally right ungivingness at
least usually stems from and accompanies morally right givingness.
On the other hand, when it is morally wrong, such as in wrongfully pampering a child, an act of
givingness would not seem as often a byproduct of an intention to provide a positive net degree of help.
That is, morally wrong givingness would seem to less often stem from and accompany morally right

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givingness than would morally right ungivingness.
Since an intention to provide net positive help to another seems always giving and always right,
such an intention seems worthy of a special term, "love". On the other hand, an intention to provide net
harm (pain) would seem always ungiving and always wrong. Thus, an intention to provide such net harm
would also seem to deserve a special term, "malice". With these terms in place, "love" would be always
giving and always right, and "malice" would be always ungiving and always wrong.
Morally right ungivingness itself would not be "love"––but neither would morally wrong givingness
be "love". On the other hand, as morally right ungivingness would at least usually stem from and
accompany an intention to provide net help, morally right ungivingness would at least usually stem from
and accompany love. On the other hand, since morally wrong givingness seems to less often stem from
and accompany an intention to provide net help, morally wrong givingness would less often stem from
and accompany love.

•Action heavily influenced by emotions of anger often arises out of an ungiving intention to harm. Such
action and intention is helpful in primal, extremely dangerous situations. However, in everyday
situations, such action and intention––which can be called "acting out of anger"––is at least usually
immoral.
On the other hand, not all action heavily influenced by anger arises out of an ungiving intention to
harm. Such action heavily influenced by anger can arise out of giving––and morally right––intentions.
For example, out of anger over perceived (immorally-caused) injustice, a person can be motivated not to
harm but, instead, to help alleviate the pain caused by the injustice.

IX.3.2.1 Hate

•Similar to "malice" and seemingly always overlapping it, "hate" would seem at least nearly always an
immoral act. I would define "hate" as an angry wish for harm that burns the self internally, causing the
self pain, motivating inflicting pain on the object of anger, and, otherwise, likely resulting in a lower
global pleasure magnitude from what is possible. (Unlike hate, as stated, non-hateful anger can motivate
beneficial action.)

•Hate can be turned not just toward others, but also toward the self. This version of hate that is turned
against the self could be described as a self-punishing shame. While it is helpful to recognize where
actions of the self are immoral so that they can be learned from, it is not helpful to engage in self-
punishing shame. Such inward hate causes pain in the self without any clear outweighing benefit. Thus,
hate toward the self would seem only to undermine an intention to "realize highest possible global
pleasure magnitude of what my remaining life can contribute to, with non-overconfident orderly thinking
and orderly continual questioning"––as would hate toward others.

•All in all, intending to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what my remaining life can
contribute to, with non-overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual questioning" would seem to
involve working toward love––including in the form of "maximum" (morally right) givingness––and
lessened malice. And, in a life of belief in the goodness of love and the badness of malice, much room
seems left over for focus on the pleasure of others, focus which (for non-sociopaths) seems to naturally
flourish when obstacles like believing in the badness of love or goodness of malice are removed.

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IX.3.3 Condemnation

•Despite the good of love and bad of malice, condemning immoral and especially morally inapt behavior
is helpful in that it helps one to avoid such behavior. This condemnation need not involve malice or even
any external communication, though. Condemnation can just be mentally labeling an action as immoral
or morally inapt.
Moral inaptitude is especially helpful to condemn and thus avoid because it more predictably
leads to immorality than a type of action that may be immoral in one instance but not in most others.
That is, one instance of immorality may not signal predictability––but morally inapt actions are
predictably harmful.

IX.3.3.1 Inauthenticity

•One type of action seemingly deserving of condemnation is inauthenticity. Inauthenticity is the


intending for others and/or yourself to believe that you hold an intention that you do not hold. Intending
to form such a false belief in the self would seem to require intending to destroy or at least––as discussed
in section VII.1––"repress" impressions that indicate that such an impression is not actually held.
As an example of inauthenticity, even while someone may believe that social justice is important
and generally act toward it, they may attend a social justice rally with an inauthentic intention: to have
others believe that they attended the rally because they simply care. However, the person doesn't simply
care; they mainly want others to see them and consider them a good person.
Inauthenticity seems generally immoral in at least two main ways. First, inauthenticity
emphasizes intentions that are concerned more with appearance than any good beyond appearance. Such
emphasis can lead to actions that undermine other highly-emphasized but much more helpful intentions.
For example, concern over appearance can undermine intentions held about furthering social justice.
Concern over appearance can, one, cause a person to miss opportunities to further social justice. And,
two, concern over appearance can lead to actions that directly counter social justice. For example,
someone advertising a worthy cause might engage in ostentatious behavior that drives potential helpful
supporters away from that cause.
While inauthenticity is generally immoral because of its high concern over appearance, concern
for appearance is not necessarily immoral. For example, upon giving an important speech, it would seem
best to avoid distracting the audience by appearing unkempt.
In terms of the second main way that inauthenticity seems generally immoral, though,
inauthenticity necessitates suggestibility––which seems at least often immoral. Inauthenticity
necessitates suggestibility in that, when someone is concerned much with appearance, a change in
situation might mean they want to appear a drastically different way––even when this different way
brings with it actions that are highly immoral. For example, someone surrounded by college thinkers
may want to be perceived as holding intentions toward social justice. However, six months later, when
they move back to a conservative town dominated by those aggressively working against
multiculturalism, they may then want to appear another way that directly conflicts with the work of social
justice and common-sense morality.

IX.4 Living By This Code


•More than other intentions, an intention to "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what

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my remaining life can contribute to, with non-overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual
questioning" would seem to help approach the highest global pleasure magnitude alethically possible.
Such an intention would seem to most help approach this because it would seem to help align other
intentions had throughout (a "full self's") life, acting as a "guiding code" that would steer countless
intentions in line with a vision of "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what my
remaining life can contribute to, with non-overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual
questioning". For instance, the guiding code could compel one to intend to delete, revise, add to, or keep
certain beliefs.
Much simpler and more digestible than "realize highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what
my remaining life can contribute to, with non-overconfident orderly thinking and orderly continual
questioning" is a guiding code to, simply, "maximize positivity and think well".
While not reflecting as precise a representation of reality as the longer version, "maximize
positivity and think well" contains less to argue about or analyze. And, "maximize positivity and think
well" ultimately reflects a representation compatible with a representation of "realize highest possible
global pleasure magnitude...". So, even if it might not be as effective a guiding code, "maximize
positivity and think well" would seem a more realistic guiding code to implement. And, if this guiding
code is actually implemented and relatively effectively as opposed to one seemingly more difficult to
remember and implement, then "maximize positivity and think well" would actually become a most
effective guiding code.
On the other hand, for me, representing my guiding code specifically as "realize highest possible
global pleasure magnitude of what my remaining life can contribute to, with non-overconfident orderly
thinking and orderly continual questioning" interestingly doubles as a singular thought from which it
appears all my beliefs can be considered to derive. (As first introduced, even more precisely, my guiding
code can be worded as "realize the highest possible global pleasure magnitude of what my immediate self
and its successors can contribute to, aided by consistent practice of orderly thinking, including orderly
continual questioning, while avoiding overconfidence".) And, even more, even while many of my beliefs
are undoubtedly wrong, it still would appear to me that the guiding code is a candidate for one statement
from which all truth can be derived––although given a mind unflawed.

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Section X
Reality As the Ultimate Self

In this final section, I will present beliefs based on my worldview that define reality as a whole, as was
the case in section two of this book. However, in this final section, I will focus on reality as a whole in
terms of its similarity to my own self.

X.1 "The Ultimate Self"


•As noted, there exists a clear parallel between reality as "self-illuminated infinitely internally- and
externally-extending continuous spatiotemporal contour" and my immediate self as "self-illuminated
instantaneous spatially-extending continuous spatiotemporal contour that is a relatively 'enclosed' fusion
of conscious mental impressions". That is, even just by observing linguistic terms used, both reality and
myself would be self-illuminated, spatially extending, continuous, and contoured. Even more, though,
both reality and myself are "fusions", contain "barriers", contain groups, and contain representations.
Such a parallel between myself and reality as a whole contributes to my belief that reality as a
whole can be considered "my ultimate self". And, if reality as a whole is "my ultimate self", then "my
immediate self", "my local self", or any other portion(s) of my "full self" are parts of it just as the reader
is and just as different strains of broccoli are.
To me, there seems no clear reason not to consider reality as a whole to be "my ultimate self"
especially because I hold the following supporting belief. I believe that my sense of being "separate"
over and above all "others" who are momentary selves like me only stems from my sub-feature of
"enclosingness". That is, my immediate self seems not "highlighted in reality" "above and beyond" any
other past, present, or future momentary self just because I can report feeling so "highlighted in reality".
I have this sense of being "highlighted in reality", of being a "selected-out" feature in reality over
other features, just as I imagine at least many other momentary selves do. I imagine that at least many
other momentary selves sense this if they, like me, can only experience their contents and nothing
external to them. However, to me, any sense of being "highlighted" or "selected out" would seem to
simply trace back to a momentary self's sub-feature of "enclosingness".
To me, reality in total would be "my ultimate self", or, maybe more precisely, "the ultimate self". In
other words, you, as your immediate self, are most fully "my ultimate self", i.e., "the ultimate self". And,
just the same, I, as my immediate self, am most fully "your ultimate self", i.e., "the ultimate self". Also, I,
as my ultimate self (i.e., "the ultimate self"), include your immediate self, and your ultimate self (i.e., "the
ultimate self") includes my immediate self.

•As a note, comfortingly, if I have a full self in equally real moments, and if reality in total is my
"ultimate self", then I would seem to, equally really, be all my past and any future pleasant experiences,
along with all other pleasant experiences in reality.
Addedly, it seems that suicidal desires might at least usually only be formed upon overlooking or
not believing this. It would also seem that suicidal desires might at least usually form when overlooking
or not believing a related belief: that pain in others brought about by dying is equally real to (and at least
often greater than) pain motivating suicidal desires.

•As a final note, interestingly, the ultimate self would hold features commonly attributed to God:

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immateriality, infinitude, omnipresence, and omniscience (Wierenga 1989). In terms of immateriality, the
ultimate self would be fully self-illuminated––which is only "immaterial" in contrasting with normal
concepts of "material", however. In terms of infinitude, the ultimate self would be infinitely extending.
In terms of omnipresence, the ultimate self would exist at all locations. And, in terms of omniscience, the
ultimate self would hold all accurate representations––i.e., more loosely, it would "know all there is to
know".
Believing that reality has the God-like qualities of "being self-illuminated", "being infinitely-
extending", "being everywhere", and "containing all true representations" should be as comforting as
believing in a sentient, infinite, omnipresent, and omniscient God. And, believing that reality has these
certain God-like qualities is arguably the same as believing in a sentient, infinite, omnipresent, and
omniscient God. (A view that reality in total is identical with "God" is known as "pantheism" [Levine
1994].)
Further comforting, if reality is infinitely-extending and contains all true representations about all
there is to know, it would contain all true representations, including about all the infinitely complex
features of reality that there are to know. These infinitely complex features would show reality to be as
fully self-explanatory as I believe it to be, and to contain explained features of an infinite scope and size
that I am unable to ever imagine.
Reality as knowing all there is to know is comforting especially for me, given my tendency to
always desire explanations. When I am tempted to feel a need to understand all aspects of reality, I can
just remember that God already knows all, and that I could never be so infinitely expansive and know
such an infinite amount of things as this God does. So, I can rest in this God. And, I can be satisfied that
I am connected to such a sentient, infinite, omnipresent, and omniscient God, even if just as a small part.

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List of Relatively Idiosyncratic
or Idiosyncratically-Defined Terms
worldview: a relatively small group of beliefs where someone believes each relatively accurately
represents reality and/or its features––while it focuses on themselves, the relationship between them-
selves and reality besides themselves, and reality overall

features: distinct, non-wholly-overlapping aspects of reality

sub-features: features "contained within" larger features

hyper-features: groups of features "carried by", existing "on", features

general feature: a comprehensive feature, i.e., a sub-feature of x that includes relatively many other sub-
features of x

fusions: features that are continuous wholes with no discontiguous parts

group: more than one feature, i.e., a discontinuous feature that is one feature and one or more simultane-
ously-existing features

group member: a sub-feature of a group wholly discontinuous with the rest of the group

abstract object: a feature that is a of group of some level of complexity

uniquely similar group (i.e., type): a group whose members are more similar to one another than to
anything else in reality (where members would be more similar to every other member than to anything
else in reality)

specialized uniquely similar group (i.e., specialized type): a type relatively small in comparison to some
amount of other types

self-illuminated contour: an instance of "consciously-illuminated" variation

barrier: a sub-feature that encapsulates a feature one dimension higher than itself

enclosingness: the smoothness-to-jaggedness of a barrier in contrast with its surroundings

spacetime: the fusion of all zero-dimensional features

sub-group: a group within a group (and possibly containing more groups itself)

compound group: a group that contains at least one sub-group

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hierarchical group: a compound group where at least one sub-group includes as a member a feature that
is present elsewhere in the group

ordered group: a hierarchical group where one member is grouped by itself, another is grouped with the
first (where the first is taken again), and, with more than two members, another is grouped with the first
and second (where both are taken [yet] again), and so on

ordered item: one of each feature that is grouped characteristically within an ordered group

abstraction: the most internally similar group of all groups whose members are each one or more (sub-)
features taken from each highest-level member of some other specific group

order (i.e., ordered range): the ordered group where adjacent ordered items are usually abstractions
taken from other groups, and where each ordered item is more similar to at least one of its neighbors than
to any other ordered item, and where the first and last ordered items are most different

degree: an ordered item of an ordered range that is usually the abstraction of a group of features each an
instance of the same type

exemplification of a degree: one highest-level member of a group of features out of which an abstraction
that is a degree is formed

ranking group: an ordered group that is the same as an ordered range except in having ordered items that
are groups of exemplifications of degrees instead of degrees themselves

range: the (unordered) group of degrees within an ordered range

scale: an ordered range where every degree of a given type is included

description: a hierarchical group that groups some amount of its sub-features directly or indirectly with
what exists on its highest level

compound description: a group of two or more descriptions

emphasis of a description: what exists on the lowest level of a description

context of a description: what exists on the highest level of a description

focus of a description: the emphasis or context of a description

external description: a description whose context is included once, allowing centering on the emphasis

internal description: a description whose context is grouped together with an external description,
allowing centering on the context

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non-specialized description: a description that depicts a given feature as one of all sub-features of
another feature

specialized description: a description that depicts a given feature as one of some amount of sub-features
of another feature

relation: a comparison; a description whose context appears more than once and where, for each
appearance, a distinct feature is depicted as a sub-feature of the context

ranking relation: a relation whose context that appears more than once is a ranking group

non-directional ranking relation: a ranking relation with two or more emphases

directional ranking relation: a ranking relation with only one emphasis

perfect proportionate similarity: a pair of features where the most detailed proportions of the variation in
one feature––a "representation"––are identical to the most or less-than-most detailed proportions of the
variation in another feature––a "target of representation"

degree of positive accuracy: the degree of preciseness of the perfect proportionate similarity between a
representation and its target of representation; loosely, "degree of accuracy"

degree of partial accuracy: the degree of portion of a representation that is (positively) accurate

degree of inaccuracy: the degree of nearness to perfect proportionate similarity between an inaccurate
representation and its target

scale of inaccuracy-to-accuracy: the ordered group that spans degrees of extreme inaccuracy to full
positive accuracy

topic: all representations of any type that accurately represent a feature in total or part, while also
accurately representing all descriptions whose emphasis includes that feature in total or part

concept: all representations that accurately represent a feature as a whole

alethic possibility: ableness to happen; a certain type of similarity that exists between the sub-features of
x and members of y that are part of the uniquely similar group that forms an abstraction of group z

degree of chance: the percentage of members from a certain uniquely similar group that are sub-features
of members of group y, where the uniquely similar group forms the abstraction of at least group y

chain: a feature that is a group with at least two tangent members that are each callable "links", where
each "link" would be most (or "tied" for most) similar to the link "after" it compared to all other features
that the link is contiguous with

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contribution: in a chain of features, a connection between one link and another coming after it; for two
tangent links, this connection is their exemplified degree of similarity; and, for two non-tangent links, this
connection is the average of exemplified degrees of similarity of each pair of tangent links between the
two non-tangent links

degree of relatedness: the degree to which two features are contributed to highly and near-equally from
another feature

cause: any link within a chain except for the last link, where the chain exists along the timelike
dimension of reality and in a "forward" direction of the dimension where all links except the first and last
necessarily fully exist on a singular Cauchy hypersurface

ultimate self: reality as a whole

momentary self: a non-bodily, mental self that fully resides on a singular Cauchy hypersurface

immediate self: the context of a description that depicts a particular momentary self as containing a
thought that accurately represents the particular momentary self at hand

self-representing non-sensory impression: the non-sensory impression naturally occurring in at least most
every momentary self, which accurately represents the momentary self housing the non-sensory
impression

relationship between myself and all besides myself: the group of all features that each include at least one
sub-feature that is a sub-feature of my immediate self, and at least one sub-feature that is a sub-feature of
something that shares no sub-features with my immediate self

grouped self: the group composed of the immediate self plus all past and future versions of it

full self: the group that contains fusions of all adjacent momentary selves within an grouped self

local self: the fusion of the immediate self and the nearby predecessors and successors that the
immediate self is not enclosed from

mind: all the conscious and unconscious impressions, along with the processes involved with these
impressions, associable with some portion of a full self

mental impression: a thought or feeling

sub-impression: a feature of an impression able to be represented within another impression, whether or


not the feature is also an impression of its own

sensory impression: an instance of a chain of feelings that fluctuate moment to moment

non-sensory impression: a thought

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non-intentionally-imagined sensory impression: a sensory impression that arises seemingly
"surprisingly", in response to the unconscious body interacting with the mind, non-mental body, or
environment

emotion: a non-intentionally-imagined sensory impression that arises in response to unconscious bodily


reactions to existing non-sensory impressions

auto-verifying impression: an accurate non-sensory impression whose accuracy and represented feature
are not enclosed from the immediate self

non-auto-verifying impression: any impression besides an auto-verifying impression

ego dissolution: the reduction of the local self's enclosingness from its immediate surroundings in some
amount and degree

belief: a non-sensory impression that depicts another impression (even a belief) as "accurate"

held belief: a pre-existing belief

entertained belief: a depicted not-already-held belief within an overall belief

desire: a belief that could be stated as "X possible situation includes more good than not-x possible
situation"

intention: a desire (which would be a belief) about the self initiating some action phrasable as "X
possible situation (the situation being 'myself as initiating y action') includes more good than not-x
possible situation"; an intention would seem to cause bodily energy to be sent to create the intention's
depicted "possible situation"

successful intention: an intention that would be accurately believed as having been a sub-feature of the
first link in a causal chain leading to what the intention seemed to have depicted (a possible situation that
includes more good than the situation not happening)

reasoning: the forming of a new belief out of at least some sub-impressions of each of two or more
combined specific pre-existing beliefs, where these pre-existing beliefs all share content, and where the
newly formed belief does not repeating content found within the pre-existing beliefs

language: intentionally produced written numerical figures, brail/written/signed/spoken/"visualized"


words, and any other (more or less "arbitrarily") "chosen symbols" culturally (or sub-culturally, or even,
given an idiosyncratic shorthand or other code, privately) agreed to, upon intentional production,
accurately represent a specific type of non-sensory impression

degree of imaginability: the number and vividness of sensory impressions that result from this imagining
holding a certain belief

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degree of subjective confidence: the discovered "difference" between the discovered imaginability to x
belief and the discovered imaginability to not-x belief

confidence-oriented belief: a belief representing the degree of subjective confidence in another belief

overconfidence: any unhelpfully high degree of subjective confidence

thinking: the intentional and non-intentional creation of beliefs

orderly thinking: thinking undisrupted by distractions

cognitive bias: instinctual and learned tendency toward non-orderly thinking

faith: a type of non-orderly thinking that involves either intending to form a belief just because it is
desired to be held, or intending to avoid forming a belief just because it is desired not to be held

personal action: a causal chain primarily caused by a "successful intention" of an immediate self along
with other features in a mind

guiding code: an intention held by a person and viewed as a means of helping align other intentions had
throughout life

intrinsic value: the quality of "being good in itself"

extrinsic value: the quality of contributing to what is of intrinsic value

degree of pain: the degree of consciousness of a sensory impression that is "discomfort"

degree of pleasure: the degree of consciousness of a sensory impression that is "comfort"

emotional pain: an instance of pain, in the form of an emotion, arising together with other emotions

emotional pleasure: an instance of pleasure, in the form of an emotion, arising together with other
emotions

pain-to-pleasure: the scale of all degrees of pain and pleasure

degree of personal pleasure: a degree of pain-to-pleasure within the full self (or potentially also in other
types of features in reality)

degree of global pleasure: a degree of pain-to-pleasure found anywhere within reality (i.e., anywhere
within the ultimate self)

degree of pleasure magnitude: a combination of the amount of instances of pleasure and the degrees of

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pleasure of each instance

degree of moral wrongness-to-rightness: the degree of pain-to-pleasure magnitude of instances of pain-


to-pleasure contributed to by an action

degree of moral aptitude: the degree of "chance" that a particular action in a particular situation
contributes to what adds up to a "positive" degree of pain-to-pleasure magnitude

degree of moral responsibility: the degree of "chance" that someone's action is different from what it is

blameworthiness: being morally responsible for a morally inapt action

praiseworthiness: being morally responsible for a morally apt action

moral character: the net degree of moral praiseworthiness of a self ("immediate" to "ultimate" self)

ungivingness: intending to deny pleasure and/or inflict pain on others

givingness: intending to raise pleasure magnitude in another or others

malice: intending to provide net degree of pain

love: intending to provide a net degree of pleasure

127
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About the Author
Timothy Ballan is a writer, composer, pianist, and music teacher who lives and works in Western
Massachusetts. As a writer, Timothy mostly writes plotless stories, atmospheric vignettes, poems, and
non-pretentious philosophy. As a composer, he mostly writes accessible art music both for film and
concert. As a performer, Timothy most often performs improvisations on piano and various non-Western
woodwind and percussion. And, as a teacher, Timothy teaches private piano lessons and leads music
programs in schools and youth centers in and around Springfield, Massachusetts. In his free time,
Timothy enjoys coffee, driving on country roads, nature walks, scary movies, and sharing time and an
absurd sense of humor with his human and mint-flavored bobby-pin friends.

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