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Suffering in a designed world

excreationist

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Probably in a simulation
I'm going to focus on being in a simulation but feel free to comment on the other possibilities...

Thoughts about suffering in various world views: (not necessarily very accurate)

Materialism/Naturalism - our minds evolved in a dangerous world and to survive and be fitter this led to anxiety, fleeting happiness, boredom, loneliness, selfishness, disappointment, etc. There are also health problems that can involve pain, etc (the pain is a signal that something is wrong). There is even sadism. There is no self-aware intelligent force to blame.

Simulation/video game (my view).

Christianity - suffering is because of "free will" and the curse, etc.

Buddhism - a noble truth is that existence in "Samsara" involves suffering. I'm not sure why this is necessary or if it is due to chance.

Why I think there is suffering in our possible simulation:

I think it is somewhat based on the "real world" of its creators' ancestors. (So it is partly based on the naturalism/materialism answer)

From Life Is a Video Game - Here Are the Cheat Codes (by Mark Manson)
https://markmanson.net/life-cheat-codes

I'm not sure if he actually believes it or if he is trying to be clever....
Life is designed to continually throw difficult and unexpected problems at you. ....If at any point, Life runs out of problems to give us, then as players, we will unconsciously invent problems for ourselves.... You will often struggle with self-doubt, feel overwhelmed by helplessness and loss...

The Roy game in Rick and Morty involves a life with some significant suffering that the player chooses to play (and temporarily forgets their original identity)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=szzVlQ653as&t=24s

"Life is a Dream" by Alan Watts: (relevant to a simulation)
https://www.findyourlight.co/life-is-a-dream-alan-watts/
.....you would naturally as you began on this adventure of dreams you would fulfill all your wishes....
[then after countless lifetimes you would want to]....forget that you were dreaming so that you would think it was all for real and to be anxious about it because it would be so great when you woke up. And then you would say well, like children that dare each other on things, how far out could you get? What could you take? What dimension of being lost, of abandonment of your power, what dimension of that could you stand?....

Perhaps suffering can help express the compassion and courage in people - e.g. the life story of Gandhi...

Conflict, injustice and suffering can make books and movies compelling... though the difference is that in immersive simulations pain and suffering is a lot more unpleasant....

In the Roy and Alan Watts examples the player chooses to live a life that involves suffering though in the game they forget this aspect of their original self.....

In simulations and video games the creator isn't necessarily perfectly loving.... it is possible that they are sadistic like this Sims player who set this sim on fire....

the-sims-3-20110504115544639-000.jpg


Or maybe they allow suffering because of "tough love".
 

OLDMAN

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For a character to die, it must suffer a fatal system failure. We don't see God or a designer just pulling the plug or making us disappear, so those two are out.
If there is time for a character to get away or alter the source of the pain, then there is a chance for survival and maybe recovery. So pain can be viewed as beneficial in the natural world.
Buddhism doesn't really add much to the equation to me except maybe in an philosophical way, but still fits naturalism.
 

excreationist

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Probably in a simulation
For a character to die, it must suffer a fatal system failure. We don't see God or a designer just pulling the plug or making us disappear, so those two are out.
If the plug was pulled of an entire simulation and characters only existed within the world then their consciousness would immediately end. They wouldn't be aware that the plug was pulled.
The Roy game ended when the main character died in a physical way. The plug was pulled on the other characters and the main character woke up and their original memories were restored...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=szzVlQ653as&t=24s
 
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