Our Brain is First-Class simulation software

I’m fascinated by the concept of “reality”, and lately I’ve seen and read from different authors references about the subject. Most recently I read a passage from Richard Dawkins on his book “The God Delusion” that deals with reality.

The human brain runs first-class simulation software. Our eyes don’t present to our brains a faithful photograph of what is there, or an accurate movie of what is going on thorugh time. Our brains construct a continuosly updated model: updated by coded pulses chattering along the optic nerve, but constructed nevertheless. Optical illusions are vivid reminders of this.

Imagine for a second that there’s no such thing as vision, that everybody on earth is limited to just taste, touch, smell and hearing. That “reality” as we know it, is represented, reproduced in our brains based only on the data of those 4 sensors. We all share the same reality and there’s nothing more than that. Then imagine you are given eyes. The difference on the perception of reality between darkness and full vision is eons apart.

Based on these two vastly different representations of reality imagine now that I give you yet an new sensor that you can’t even imagine, or eyes a million times better, that could allow you to see in every spectrum of light, that could allow you to zoom in to an atomic level, or that could allow you to see at will N frames per second thus allowing you to almost stop time.

There’s a hell of a lot more out there that we limited human beings can’t see, if we barely know what’s real I guess it’s understandable that many people believe in simple explanations of the universe such as god.