The True Reality
Is augmented reality that which closes us off to the truth?
What is reality? Let’s delve into it as it relates to what human beings have come to know it as. Reality from our perspective is the things we see, touch and feel. It is the everyday life we live and breathe. It is the tangible and visceral existence not within our control. We didn’t create it and we do not know when it will end. Reality is not something we manifest, it just is, the creation of God, for those who believe.
The true reality is the idea of absolutes. It is the belief that this world is temporary, and while it may feel very real, the absolute reality is the one that belongs only to God, the source of all creation, the eternal, the ever lasting. This world is like a simulation, it’s a construct created by God for the purpose of testing us. This temporary existence is our gateway to the true reality, to the final resting place, to be with our creator.
If the true reality is with God, what is the opposite? What is the false reality? Is there such a thing? The false reality is one that denies the truth. It denies our test and God’s existence. It denies our purpose and final resting place. Denial of the truth is the path that leads towards ignorance, falsehood and lack of enlightenment.
What is ignorance? If we look at the definition of ignorance, it is a lack of knowledge or information. Denial of the truth, aka choosing the false reality, is to ignore what we have instinctively been engineered to do. We are here for a reason. We were created with a purpose. And we will be questioned as to why we did not seek out the truth.
We cannot claim ignorance when the truth is everywhere. It is in the signs of creation. The sun and the moon, the stars and the sky, the mountains and trees, the deserts and seas. It is in the creatures we can and cannot see. It is within people, who were all made special and unique. The truth is in all of creation. And we see that each time we attempt to replace it with our own man made constructs. The false reality is one of our own making. Let us define it.
The false reality is all the things that take us away from the truth. It’s what we use as escapism, for entertainment and to pass time idly. It is the realities we attempt to manifest for ourselves. The virtual ones. The augmented ones. The enticing ones.
The metaverse is a false reality. An attempt to build a digital world to replace this one. Billions of dollars are being funnelled into the creation of VR goggles and technology to blind us from the truth. To stop us from living the real life. The benefactors of the metaverse are attempting to sell us the illusion of paradise on earth. One that you can be part of if you just cover your eyes and ignore the truth.
In the Sunnah of the prophet, there are narrations that make mention of a man who will show the people a false paradise, one that will lead them to the path of ruin. Is this not the rejection of life by choosing fake one instead?
“The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: ‘The Dajjal (False Christ) is blind in his left eye and has abundant hair. With him will be a Paradise and a Hell, but his Hell is Paradise and his Paradise is Hell.’”
It is not uncommon for there to be scepticism about new technology. Much of which has come to dominate our lives. The desktop computer, mobile phone, internet and video streaming. Twitter, Facebook, TikTok, etc. They have all in some way enriched our lives yet at the same time, we have become enslaved to their addictive powers.
Technology will continue to evolve, augmented reality and virtual reality will become the norm for future generations and with that, the internet will transform into some sort of metaverse. Yet I would be remiss if I did not mention the dangers of these advancements. The technology can be used for both good and bad purposes.
Those from prior generations will remember life before the internet and we of this generation will remember life before the metaverse. Any technological advancement should be one for the betterment of mankind but because most is built by for-profit corporations, there is always an underlying agenda associated with such products.
Facebook helped the world become socially interconnected, yet it’s advertising model and algorithmic feed is hugely exploitative. The same could be said for other services like it. Streaming is now a binge watching bonanza with endless content that serves nothing more than to keep us addicted to the screen. What will the metaverse do?
Horizon Worlds is the attempt by Meta (formerly known as Facebook) to create this new world. What will happen if they succeed? How many people will forego real life for a virtual one? How many people will wake up each morning and immediately put on a pair of AR/VR goggles to escape into a false reality?
Apple has announced the Vision Pro which is in some ways a replica of Facebook’s Oculus Quest Pro device. Both of which are an attempt to place a veil over our eyes and create a false reality in which we choose the digital world over the physical.
These technologies like the ones in the past will advance our societies in ways we do not yet know, but at the same time they will become as addictive if not more so than what has come before. Why would someone choose the real world over an augmented one in the future? We must think deeply about these questions now before it's too late.
There is potentially huge benefits to virtual gatherings of communities that are completely disparate across the world or to experience the furthest corners of the earth that we could otherwise not afford to travel to. Yet it’s most likely the majority of use cases will be a form of escapism, to choose a reality other than the one we exist in now. To deny the truth of our existence, the purpose of creation and our Creator.
Which reality do we choose?