I alone exsist and the rest of the world is only my idea

I was reading some book, I can’t recall which one, and it said that the author’s main idea for the book was, “I alone exsist and the rest of the world is my idea”. I found this intriguing, but I’m not sure why since it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me.

Is he basically saying that if didn’t want my computer to be in front of me then it would just disappear? I know I am going to spell this wrong, but I think his name was Fredrick Nietzche.

Please help me to understand this concept.

It is better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool, than to open it and remove all doubt. --Mark Twain

Life is but a dream and if you can wrap your mind successfully around that gargantuan idea, life can be a lucid dream for you?

Sounds rather Buddhist to me.

When I was in grade school, I saw a show that made enough of an impression on me that I still remember it. A woman was having a picnic with her romantic, loving, handsome husband. It was a beautiful. The birds were singing and life was wonderful. Suddenly, time began skipping. Like she’d reach over for the wine and then time would skip backwards for one second and she’d reach for the wine again…like a record skipping. It kept getting worse until everything just stopped and went black. She opened her eyes and she was standing in a factory-type place inside this machine that was beaming the whole thing into her head. She wasn’t really on a picnic. Everything was actually a dream being beamed into her. All around her were other people in similar machines. She steps out of the machine and a man walks by. She flags him down and he says that they keep having trouble with her particular machine so he walks over tinkers with it abit and declares that it should work now. She steps back into the machine, closes her eyes, and there she is on the picnic again.

Whenever someone says this or something like this, I punch them in the face. When they get angry, I just say, “Hey, man, it was your idea!”

He he, wicked. :slight_smile:

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If you really want to understand this idea, be careful. When I tried it, I had no clue who Frederick Nietchze (sp?) was, and was having a serious identity crisis. When someone found me I was banging my head into the wall repeatedly in the vain hope that something would become real.

First, question every fact you can think of. Sometimes it takes a while, but eventually you will start wondering things like “How do I know the sky is really blue? Am I just defining the word blue to mean ‘sky-colored’ because that’s what color someone told me the sky was when I was a toddler? How do I know the sky is real?”; then start to question who or what told you to believe all of this stuff.

When you start to do this, it’s really easy to slide off the ramp and grasp at a quick answer like “my parents” or “society”. Don’t do it. Ask why you think they are any more real than the definition of “blue.”

CAUTION: I strongly suggest you take a break when you get to this point. When I started to ask why I knew I was real, I had no clue what “cogito ergo sum” meant and had been told my entire life that G-d (see, I’m learning the board rules) had created me. I got caught in a loop of “How do I know if I exist independantly of the Creater?” and “How do I know G-d is real?” I snapped like a twig under a 5-ton.

See you in my dreams.

And me in yours.

DK, this concept is known as solipsism, and you can read more about it in many basic “introduction to philosophy” books. Here are two quotes on the subject from Raymond Smullyan’s 5000 BC:
…Melvin Fitting…: “Of course I believe that solipsism is the correct philosophy, but that’s only one man’s opinion.”

…the lady who wrote to Bertrand Russell: “Why are you surprised to hear that I’m a solipsist? Isn’t everybody?”


I have had this problem since I was a tyke. It’s a low-level form of schizophrenia, which tends to run in my family. I deal with it by working in a hotel. There’s no way I could dream up ALL of the flakes I deal with. Get out, travel a lot, and meet a lot of people. Beats staring at the ceiling for a week straight (no kidding, I did that in HS manny times)

Personally, I kinda like Sartre. I also enjoy his useage of words like ‘quinquagenarian’. Gotta love those philosophers. Even if we don’t know what they are talking about. Like the Doors.

Rene Descartes is taking a break one day, and after his second cup of coffee, the waitress says, “A refill, M. Descartes?” He says, “I think not”–and vanishes.
Sorry, couldn’t resist. --Alan Q