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The "etched in the universe" mindset: a different approach to optimism & outcome independence

A few days ago I had an exchange with L., a user on this forum.

L. said "how sad" that women used to chase him for a kiss, and that it didn't seem to happen anymore.

I thought that approach was overly negative and disempowering, and I not too kindly pointed it out.
Later L. said he wanted to work on himself on being more "optimist".

As I reflected on it though I realized that it wasn't so much about optimism for me.

It's that I have a very different approach and way of looking at bygone "glory days".

WHATEVER YOU'VE DONE, YOU'VE DONE IT FOR EVER

There is a part of me that sees it this way:

What happened in the past is not done and dusted, but "stays for ever".

And that's true especially for the good things you've done, achieved, or enjoyed.

Whatever cool thing you've done, achieved, enjoyed, or shared... you've done it, achieved it, enjoyed it, or shared it forever.

In some coordinates of space in time, you've done it.
That remains.
You might not even be able to do it again, and that's too bad. But it still doesn't change the fact that what you've done stays forever.

EXAMPLE 1: FORMER CAPABILITIES ARE FOR EVER

With this different approach, L. was a guy that women chased for a kiss.

L. might not have the same experience today -albeit I actually think he can-, or tomorrow.
And that still doesn't change the fact that L. is a guy that "had" it. Even after L will eventually turn to dust like we all will -we all hope in a veeeery long time, L. :)- L. still "had" it, in some point of space and time.

Similarly, I used to be able to run faster than most of my peers and jump higher, on tabletops that reached my belly button.
Today, I don't think I can.
But I feel good about what I used to do, not bad.
I still feel good about the old "performance", even if I can't do it at that level today. And I will always feel that way. With this mindset, athleticism is part of how I feel about my persona, and it will stay that way, I believe, even when I'll be decrepit -or if I'd get overweight-.

EXAMPLE 2: ROMANTIC (& EMOTIONAL) CONNECTIONS TO ETERNITY

I conserve great memories of almost all the women I had a good time with, no matter that it ended -or how it ended-.

Some might think it's because I didn't care too much, or because I'm "kind".
But I think that, in good part, it's because of this mindset.

No future events, words, or actions can cancel the fact that in some coordinates of space and time, you and a partner of yours were great.
When you have that mindset, you're almost bound to cherish and be glad for all the good times you've had.

Same for all types of relationships.

You see an old friend, an old brother-in-arms, an old mentor... And that connection is forever.

I was saying this to a former associate of mine when he linked back reminiscing of the old times.
It felt a bit as if he was sad that it was gone.
But to a part of me, they weren't "old times". Or at least, definitely not like something you have to miss, or feel like you've "lost".
It was a great time.
But since the past stays forever, for me it's less about missing those times, and more about being grateful for having them:

EXAMPLE 3: SCIENTIFIC KNOWLEDGE WIPE-OUTS

In a way, this mindset also saves you from having to make sure that what you do keeps on having an effect, for ever.

It's freeing.

Think for example of the Roman minds and scientists.

Romans knew the earth was round.

But during middle age, that knowledge was lost.

Still, with this mindset, Romans' scientific achievements weren't for nothing.
As a matter of fact, it wouldn't even matter what happened after. They reached a high watermark, that achievement and their value-adding efforts remain, no matter what the clueless zealots that came after them will do with it (the flat earth religious zealots).

This mindset unlocks another level of outcome independence.
You become outcome independent of your legacy as well.

selffriend has reacted to this post.
selffriend
Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

Some quick notes:

I agree that your mindset is very positive and even worth others to replicate. This mindset will help people to become more confident, optimistic, abundant, and possibly content.

I am kind of at the opposite: for example, if I had a very good time with a girl, and now we are like strangers, I will often feel regret and reflect on myself what I did wrong. Now I understand that this must be changed, I might need to adopt a mindset like yours.


Regarding my specific example on girls initiating kisses or makeouts:

I used to brag a lot about my stories when chatting with my friends. However, now, I don't take those events as glories, because, as your said, initiating makeouts usually imply that they are at higher status.

However, this does not mean that I won't take your suggestions on mindsets seriously. I think your mindsets will be very nurturing, independently. Since John pointed out that my username "selfoe" could be more positive, this, along with all the posts in this forum, have truly motivated me to build towards positive mindsets, and I cannot express how much I appreciate all of these.

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StefTransitioned

In some coordinates of space in time, you've done it.
That remains.

I agree that the past in some way is "set in stone" forever as no one can "go" back and change it, yet the idea that the "past still exist somewhere else" I think is a mistaken interpretation of reality.

let me elaborate: in modern physics they define time as what a "clock" measures, and they define clock as an instrument to measure time (circular logic).

if you ask "where is this entity called time" that the clock is measuring, there is nothing to show and nowhere to find this thing we call time!

space is easy to find by comparisson as any empty or occupied space would satisfy.

I think that definition of time is wrong, to me the only real time in the physical sense is the present (and it is way shorter than a second) that would be "real time" and I think we can not measure it directly at least, as measuring is a process and all human processes even the "quickest" take too much time compare to the quantum of time. ( it would be like trying to see an atom with the naked eye)

when we look at the sky I think it does not makes sense to say that we are "looking at the past"  if we see a distant star that in his own frame of reference  (or local place of existence) does not exist anymore, we are not looking the past, we are only looking information about the past, this information travels at light speed as electromagnetic waves or slower but that is inmaterial to the point. (this applies even to objects we see close to us, as there is a little lag in time for their images to reach our eyes/brain, so in a sense the human brain always perceive the past, but with the power of imagination it can predict the future so as you can dodge a ball that is coming to your face without needing to be 100% sure about the future, all that mash up memories from the recent past, information from almost the present an predictions about the future creates "psycological or subjective" time and lets us appreciate what we call "the flow of time"but this times that flows  with so many relatively long proceces happening during it, do it only in our minds, as in reality the only "flow" is the change from one instant to the next,a more simplified "flow" or quantum flow, as if it where every pulse of the entire universe every moment sometime is "different"

it is like, if i send you a note on monday and you get it on tuesday, in no way you are "looking" or experiencing the past, you just have a lag in geting the information about a "past configuration of the universe" (they day I wrote the note)

in the same vein in my opinion every "atomic instant" can be defined as a new and different configuratio of the whole universe, the thing that changes faster in the universe would serve as the "atomic second", maybe what they call a planck time, i dont know...

and I am happy that at least I found a professional philosopher with ideas  very similar to mine (i also know i need to avoid confirmation bias, but the idea of "block universe" or all times existing forever just seems to me to violate simplicity) here are his paper for more clarity.

https://sites.google.com/site/smithjcnparadigm

Of course i think it is a good and healthy mindset to believe/think that al the good we have done in some way stays forever, and it will also be nice to have a time eraser to erase only the mistakes and bad stuff! but in a way that would be like having your cake and eating it.

the interesting thing is , that if this interpretation of reality is right, "present reality" ( the only thing that can be say to exist at every moment) is something EXTREMELY "short", so short that in fact when you say reality is here it is here no more! long gone by!

this helps me to understand why some eastern religions talk about the importance of living in the here and know, yet i now in some cases the capacity to mentally go to the past or the future and "live" there can also be useful under some circumstances, at least if you are still not in a nirvana state i suposse!

 

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Lucio Buffalmanoselffriend

thats why i also belive time "travel" in the proper sense is impossible, the closer thing you could theoreticaly do would be to revert all the processes and atomic trajectories of particles in a local space, if you were like a powerful being capable of doings things that are supposed to be impossible even by the most bold scientist, lets say you do it with the whole universe, yet i would argue that you only "contracted " or crunched/reverted reality but as that would be the second "time" the univeres have that configuration, even if no one notice it ( cause mental phenomena would also be reverted so no one will be able to remember that "this is the second time), it would not be the original time, it would just be a perfect copy of the past.

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selffriend

"The theory, which is backed up Einstein’s theory of relativity, states that space and time are part of a four dimensional structure where everything thing that has happened has its own co-ordinates in spacetime.

This would allow everything to be ‘real’ in the sense that the past, and even the future, are still there in spacetime – making everything equally important as the present."

to make measurements and all what science can do relativity is great ( i suppose) as the fastest measurements would depend on light speed, but as a philosophy this is baffling, i would say if science is about what you can measure, then science will always be just a useful aproximation to reality, but never "real reality" as all measurement takes time as information is "physical" in a sense and does not travel intanstaneously, that was one of the greatest contribution to science  made by the quantum physicist, so science will always have a lag and interacts with reality by proxy (information) so it is funny cause the nature of physical phenomena precisely put a limit to the  human science of physics. and then human psycology (mental habits) and language ( common expresions about time) make the situation more convoluted.

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selffriend
Quote from Stef on April 7, 2021, 9:36 am

In some coordinates of space in time, you've done it.
That remains.

I agree that the past in some way is "set in stone" forever as no one can "go" back and change it, yet the idea that the "past still exist somewhere else" I think is a mistaken interpretation of reality.

let me elaborate: in modern physics they define time as what a "clock" measures, and they define clock as an instrument to measure time (circular logic).

if you ask "where is this entity called time" that the clock is measuring, there is nothing to show and nowhere to find this thing we call time!

space is easy to find by comparisson as any empty or occupied space would satisfy.

I think that definition of time is wrong, to me the only real time in the physical sense is the present (and it is way shorter than a second) that would be "real time" and I think we can not measure it directly at least, as measuring is a process and all human processes even the "quickest" take too much time compare to the quantum of time. ( it would be like trying to see an atom with the naked eye)

when we look at the sky I think it does not makes sense to say that we are "looking at the past"  if we see a distant star that in his own frame of reference  (or local place of existence) does not exist anymore, we are not looking the past, we are only looking information about the past, this information travels at light speed as electromagnetic waves or slower but that is inmaterial to the point. (this applies even to objects we see close to us, as there is a little lag in time for their images to reach our eyes/brain, so in a sense the human brain always perceive the past, but with the power of imagination it can predict the future so as you can dodge a ball that is coming to your face without needing to be 100% sure about the future, all that mash up memories from the recent past, information from almost the present an predictions about the future creates "psycological or subjective" time and lets us appreciate what we call "the flow of time"but this times that flows  with so many relatively long proceces happening during it, do it only in our minds, as in reality the only "flow" is the change from one instant to the next,a more simplified "flow" or quantum flow, as if it where every pulse of the entire universe every moment sometime is "different"

it is like, if i send you a note on monday and you get it on tuesday, in no way you are "looking" or experiencing the past, you just have a lag in geting the information about a "past configuration of the universe" (they day I wrote the note)

in the same vein in my opinion every "atomic instant" can be defined as a new and different configuratio of the whole universe, the thing that changes faster in the universe would serve as the "atomic second", maybe what they call a planck time, i dont know...

and I am happy that at least I found a professional philosopher with ideas  very similar to mine (i also know i need to avoid confirmation bias, but the idea of "block universe" or all times existing forever just seems to me to violate simplicity) here are his paper for more clarity.

https://sites.google.com/site/smithjcnparadigm

Of course i think it is a good and healthy mindset to believe/think that al the good we have done in some way stays forever, and it will also be nice to have a time eraser to erase only the mistakes and bad stuff! but in a way that would be like having your cake and eating it.

the interesting thing is , that if this interpretation of reality is right, "present reality" ( the only thing that can be say to exist at every moment) is something EXTREMELY "short", so short that in fact when you say reality is here it is here no more! long gone by!

this helps me to understand why some eastern religions talk about the importance of living in the here and know, yet i now in some cases the capacity to mentally go to the past or the future and "live" there can also be useful under some circumstances, at least if you are still not in a nirvana state i suposse!

 

Short comment:

Hi Stef, I think your points make perfect sense physically.

From my understanding, Lucio meant that the information of past events is always there and keeps propagating. One need to remember the best of himself/herself, in order to be more confident and optimistic. He does not mean that the past events are still physically existing in the current moment.

So, by saying "existence", Lucio might mean "existence" in a subjective, mental sense, rather than a physically measurable sense. For example, when you say to yourself: "I am the best", or "I am great", these words "best" and "great" are subjective judgement on yourself, rather than the accurate, objective, physical measurement.

Let's have Lucio to clarify.

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Lucio BuffalmanoStef

well what you say is very interesting, as information in a way is part of reality, and it is capable of self replication like the genes, so in a way information "keeps" something very real about the past alive!

this is a moot point that i will surely ponder about.

there are even some  theories that postulate that information is more "essential" than mater or energy.

unluckly to the best of my understanding information can easily be lost, or at least the possibilty of some concious mind understanding it can be lost. supposelly that is also one of the things black holes do, they destroy information, no idea!

so maybe black holes are good to destroy incriminating evidence, but very bad to put there your cherished family foto albums, lol.

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selffriend

Yes, as Lucius said: it's more of a mental way of looking at it, rather than being physically "stored" -or "retrievable".

From a scientific point of view, you may be right Stef.
From a religious point of view, one might say that God could store your record and/or retrieve them -or maybe show them to you as he explains why you must do a longer stretch in purgatory than you believe is "fair" :D-.

However, the way I see, this mindset does not need to either argue pro or against either science or religion.

It's more of a way of looking at what's happened to you, and integrating it into your persona.

You feel proud when you do something good, usually.
The fact that the moment you do something it's already in the past, and that the past might be "gone forever", does not necessarily mean you must stop feeling good/proud.
This mindset just extends that attitude.
It's a way of integrating your past into the way you look at yourself.
"You did that / stood your ground against abuse / behaved correctly in spite nobody was looking" or whatever it is that you've done or experience, and that becomes part of who you are.

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Stefselffriend
Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

Yes maybe i went  off topic, i understand what you mean and it is a good mindset to have for sure!

I am pretty sure a lot of helpful mindsets do not need to align perfectly with religion nor science (or be perfectly congruent with ones philosophical ideas. )

Maybe sometimes even a false idea may be useful to achieve a goal that may be valued higher than truth i would think.

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Lucio BuffalmanoTransitionedselffriend