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A real horror story for this Halloween season

Last week’s episode of “Sanctuary,” a new Sci-Fi channel series, presents once again the interesting possibility that somebody or something prevent us to see the true reality and we can only see the illusion that entity creates for us.

This issue about how to distinguish between reality and illusion is nothing new. During many centuries philosophers, theologians, and more recently also science-fiction writers have search the answer about how to separate truth from the appearance of truth.

Natural sciences teaches that, without any doubts, there is a reality (atoms, for example) that exists beyond what we can see with our naked eyes. But that doesn’t mean that reality is less real.

In the same way, in the area of social science surely exists a “true reality” we seldom see or experience during our everyday life.

In this challenging times, when on top of an economic crisis we face an uncertain political future at the same time we are still fighting two wars, the possibility of losing the lifestyle that for better or for worse we are so use to have generates such emotions inside us that we are probably blind to the true reality around us.

Watching a science-fiction movie or reading a science-fiction book we know in advance that by the end of the movie or the book the hero will be able to unmask the monster that has been creating illusions in the minds of the people, and, in doing so, the hero will also find the way to defeat the monster.

But in “science-fact” and in “real life” is not that easy to unmask the monster that is deceiving us, because it is an amorphous giant with many centuries of experience not only deceiving people but also hiding its own existence. And you can’t even attempt to unmask something you believe it doesn’t exist.

However, a keen observer will find cracks in the reality, elements that shouldn’t be there, situations that appeared out of thin air, unexplained actions, and circumstances too conveniently crafted not to be the results of carefully designed plans.

For example, if the economic crisis in this country is really as big as the foreclosures and the market lead us to believe, where the federal government is getting the $700 billion for an economic rescue package?

If the government already had the money and nobody knew it, there is a serious problem. And if the government didn’t have the money and it is just printing it, the problem is also serious, due to the possibility of hyperinflation. One way or the other, we can only see the illusion created by the monster.

Do you want to hear a really scary story for this Halloween season so you can see reality is not what it seems to be? According to NewScientist (October 22, 200 , the Pentagon is already testing dog-size robots that will “search for and detect a non-cooperative human.”

It’s impossible not to worry when the limits between science-fact and science-fiction become so blurred.

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