A thought:

What if you were the blind man in the kingdom of the sighted?
Alternatively, what if you were the sighted man in the kingdom of the
blind? How would you tell the difference? Obviously, you can't.

Now take it a step further: aren't these two states mutually orthogonal
but indistinguishable states of the universe? (at least, until you learn
the truth in retrospect).  Isn't this similar to considering whether you
are Schrodinger's cat in the state of dead or alive? (please think somewhat
metaphorically for that...)

Now, I don't know about you, but I would be rather embarrassed (possibly
infinitely so) if I turned out to be the blind man in the kingdom of the
sighted, basically Truman on the Truman show.  But I would be feel the
weight of an awful lot of responsibility (possibly infinitely so) if the
opposite was the case and I was Neo in the Matrix. So I'd rather not think
that either possibility is true.  I'm going to bet neither case is, unless
I'm somehow God and hid the knowledge from myself.

However, think about this: you might not be Truman in Truman show, or Neo
in the Matrix, but you are almost certainly in the linear combination of
those two states. Basically, there must be conscious entities out there
wiser than you, and you must be wiser than other conscious entities. How
many times in your life have you felt embarrassed in retrospect about
something you didn't understand? Alternatively, how many times in your life
have you felt smarter than everyone else around you and responsible for
teaching them how to do the right thing? Probably lots, right?

Now let's examine the situation further. How many times were you in one of
these states or the other, and then things happened to show you you were
wrong and actually in the exact opposite state? Doesn't that make
everything much much worse? How do you avoid situations like that? I'll
tell you how: you have to make your algorithm for life a continuously
differentiable linear operator with regard to the Truman-anti-Truman axis
of symmetry. Basically, you should try your best to act completely and
totally indifferent between the two extreme possibilities, and you'll never
have to experience infinite regret (hopefully). This is the essence of
enlightenment: unbiased thinking in the most extreme way possible. At
least, you might think so, if you thought this far and agree with my

If you do though, you've got a problem: once you get this far, you're the
anti-Truman again, because you've just concluded that you're wiser than
everyone else around you. So what do you do? Why don't you try to teach
other people this concept, but make sure you do it in the most Truman-ish
way possible: why don't you stop answering questions and just start asking
them, and make them the best questions you can think of. This is the
essence of a religion known as Zen Buddhism (or at least, I think so).  I
mean, seriously, what's the sound of one hand clapping? ;-) Zen koans like
this are basically big jokes to test how deeply one is amused at the
symmetry between points of view.

Alternatively, you can answer questions, but make sure you never get caught
with your pants down, and try your best to help everyone else avoid the
same.  How do you do that? Make everything a very flexible metaphor. So why
don't we come up with stories about people who save the world in outlandish
ways, thereby resolving all others of the responsibility to do the same.
 And make sure you tell everyone that, as long as you truly believe this
happened, you'll never have to experience infinite regret (again,
hopefully). This, I think, is the essence of a religion that most people in
the Western world are quite familiar with: Scientology! Actually, that was
a big joke, since it's obviously the big C that I was talking about.  (Or
at least, you're probably pretty sure of that.  Just ask yourself one
question though: why are so many successful movie stars Scientologists? Why
do they swear by it despite how illogical it sounds to everyone else? What
was that space opera story they keep telling each other about again, and
why is it such a big secret?)

So I hope you're following me this far, because I'd like to ask an even
bigger question now: why do mental illnesses like schizophrenia exist?
Aren't the chemicals in our brain implementation substrates for our
personal algorithms for life? We already established that the correct one
needs to be linear, but who decided if you're linear or non-linear? Is
someone ill because their function along the Truman-anti-Truman axis is
more linear than yours or less linear? How could you ever tell the
difference? Interestingly though, mental illnesses (or at least those
involving psychosis) all tend to cluster around similar symptoms, like
thinking one is Jesus Christ, seeing conspiracy theories, seeing messages
directed at you from public sources, feeling creative and euphoric with the
need to share one's knowledge with the world immediately, etc. Isn't is
slightly suprising chemical charges in the brain be so consistent in their
behavioral outcomes?

Now finally, consider this: who's the most famous schizophrenic in popular
culture? John Nash.  What was he responsible for before the worst of his
illness? "Game theory". What did he start seeing afterwards? Conspiracy
theories, political intrigue, etc. Could he have been the anti-Truman? How
would we know? And by the way, if you take out the possibility of infinite
regret (i.e. hell), wouldn't that really imply that everything we're doing
is part of some game anyway? If the singularity exists and contains
conscious entities, won't they necessarily be playing more and more
convoluted and interesting games with each other in order to make life

Anyway, I'm not sure how far any of you have followed me, but I hope as
many of you can consider as many of the question I've asked.

Thank you,
Stephen Lin

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