What if life were a game?

Life’s a game!

I read a post today. It was about an AI created game-universe. Or something like that. It’s a nice post. Read it. The post ticked off a line of thought which I’ve tried to retrace. Hopefully, it’s going to sound a bit more lucid, out of my head.

I like playing games. Someday in the near future, I hope to get me a console. I am, of course, considering a PC too, but you know how these things go. I like playing games, but there is this thing that has been a fairly irritant part of most of the games I’ve played till date. They are played out in boxes. There is a limited amount of doors you can unlock, limited places you can go to, before, eventually, you face a wall you cannot cross. No matter how hard you press the buttons, no matter how many times you press them, there’s always a boundary you cannot cross, you’re always in a box.

The game is called “No man’s sky“, and the game contains within itself, an universe with no boundaries. You can go anywhere you want to, and there will be stuff there. Always. There would be no wall, anywhere. The tagline suggests it’s an infinite procedurally generated galaxy. I’m not here to discredit that.

Religion, interests me. Religion breeds ideologies, ideologies breed religion. So on, and forth. Religion, interests me. A crowd of humans, and the way it can be swayed, controlled, made into one entity, where they group-think, and act, instead of the individuals they live like most of the times, is too strong a force, too strong a phenomenon, to ignore, really. Plus, I really like to think, and all religion is really different philosophies. The Bhagavad Gita interests me. It is one of the greatest Hindu literatures, and is a fun read. The concepts, at least some of them are pretty awesome. Okay, maybe I should not be calling a holy scripture awesome. Maybe.

Read it too. It’s a good read.

All right, so, one of the concepts there, is that of atma, the human soul.., which is indestructible, which wears bodies like clothes, which is a small portion of paramatma, the supreme soul, God. At the risk of simplifying it too much, it says that the aim of atma, is to get better, via different methodologies, and join parmatma, quitting the circle of life, and death.

One interesting thing to think of, is, the concept, the possibility of us, living through a simulation. That’s where this morning’s article comes in. Imagine a game, with no boundaries, no boxes, nothing. Imagine a game where any door you opened, would lead you somewhere. A super-boring game, at times, where you had to go through the menial tasks of washing, and feeding yourselves, each day, in order to continue playing it. Imagine a game, where there was no obvious motive, no holding hands, no telling you that you were supposed to go there, do that. Imagine an infinite universe, in a game. We are getting there. I haven’t played GTA V, but I hear it’s fairly detailed. Someday soon, somebody might design such a game.

Maybe, you are already playing it. You, the one reading this, is just a character in the game, and the real you, the indestructible you, the let’s-see-what-happens-when-I-jump-off-this-cliff-or-kill-my-best-friend-to-see-if-the-game-allows-it-only-to-be-respawned-at-the-previous-checkpoint, is the soul, the indestructible little thing going through bodies like clothes, with just one crucial difference: you don’t respawn where you left off. This game, does not hold hands. This game, does not tell you what to do. This game does not have a motive, an ending you are supposed to get to. Maybe, it has one, but you can’t really tell it to anybody. I mean can you tell Lara Croft, you finished the game? No! There’s a cutscene!

That was confusing. I know. I would love it if you went through the last couple of paragraphs again.

Imagine a game, quite similar to the world we live in. When do you stop playing a game?

  1. You’re tired of it.
  2. You finished it.

But you continue playing games. You finish one, you go for the other. So on, and forth, until, you grow out of it. It is very easy, to be immersed in games… and with the recent advancement in technology, VR, and stuff, the immersion is going to go up, so then, the distinction between the game, and life, would continue to blur. The growing out of it part, hence, gets harder, and harder, till the game becomes life, or seems like it enough, that the distinction is blurred.

There’s a universe hidden inside each one of us. A micro-universe. Things too small for the eyes to look at, things we infer, through tools, science. Sometimes, I feel the people in the olden age were closer to the truth. About the point of it all. We are too immersed.


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