The Philosophy of Perception: An Explanation of Realism, Idealism and the Nature of Reality

50 Pages Posted: 16 Mar 2017

Date Written: March 15, 2017

Abstract

This paper investigates the nature of reality by looking at the philosophical debate between realism and idealism and at scientific investigations in quantum physics and at recent studies of animal senses, neurology and cognitive psychology. The concept of perceptual relativity is examined and this involves looking at sense perception in other animals and various examples of perceptual relativity in science. It will be concluded that the universe is observer dependent and that there is no reality independent of the observer, which is knowable to the observer. The paper concludes by an investigation of what an observer dependent universe would be like and that recognition of an observer dependent world would lead to a more open minded and tolerant world.

Keywords: realism, idealism, perceptual relativity, observer dependent universe, nature of reality, perception of the universe, observers and the universe, metaphysics, animal perception, cognitive psychology, neurology, copenhagen interpretation, Thomas Reid, general relativity, Einstein, epistemology, Bohr

JEL Classification: A00

Suggested Citation

Forrester, Rochelle, The Philosophy of Perception: An Explanation of Realism, Idealism and the Nature of Reality (March 15, 2017). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2933212 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2933212

Rochelle Forrester (Contact Author)

Independent ( email )

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