J.Iscariot

What IS a tulpa?

What is a tulpa, folks?  

50 members have voted

  1. 1. What is a tulpa, folks?

    • A tulpa is an imaginary friend. It inhabits the mind's imagination and is limited to the imagination. A tulpa possesses apparent sentience and no autonomy outside of their host's perspective.
    • A tulpa is very much like a simulation of a person; the human brain could not possibly take two or three constant thought processes going on at once, and tulpamancy originates from the subconscious and active imagination.
    • A tulpa is an entity that can be compared to other thoughtforms like headmates and soulbonds. Truth is, there might not even be any difference, and the tulpamancy concept is a highly subjective one.
    • A tulpa is literally what the definition on the homepage of this site says. It's a sentient and intelligent entity that probably originates from the subconscious and acts on its own with emotions and the likes.
    • A tulpa originates from escapism and detachment of sense of reality. Tulpamancy and plurality originate from the exact same roots, and we may never know if anything is true or not.
    • A tulpa is whatever the host wants it to be; an imaginary friend, a sentient entity, it all depends on the host and their will.


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I went with the third because I really think it’s a highly subjective one. If not, then in theory, the definitions from this site, which were probably formulated through various subjective frameworks, serves as a way for us to see them as some objective, absolute means of reference that can stand the test of time. This is why it’s easy for others to be more militant in aligning more to the site’s definition; it allows one to believe that there are objective statements while at the same time aligning themselves to validate their own subjective framework of the phenomenon.

 

And yet, finding what makes a tulpa, a tulpa, (e.g. ontology), seems to be an ongoing strife in spite of definitions being there in the first place. Embracing the definitions as end-all be-all implies they’ve become an objective norm. In other words, that one “ought” to refer to them because it-is-so. If the “it-is-so” is just a combination of subjective frameworks that seem to share a common tendency, or set of sound logic, then it’s merely an indirect appeal to the community.

 

At best, it’s an example of communal reinforcement. I mean, there’s nothing wrong with that since there’s a lot of dead-ends when it comes to validating this all through empirical means, but feeling the definitions are sound enough, and passing it off as something objective is ironically what the person wants to feel; their own subjective framework.

 

 

I'm only mentioning this because I realized that before tulpas, I was trying to treat dream characters with the same objective; treating them as sentient (e.g. them being capable enough to know I'm dreaming, and maybe aiding me in becoming lucid), and doing whatever it took to fulfill this yearning, albeit it was in a different context -- my nightly sleep. With tulpas, there's a strong tendency to let that sustained thought (treating as sentient) bleed over to where one wants that treatment to be made real within their own experience in this reality.

 

But that just screams the notion that life and experiences are obviously contingent on subjective frameworks.

 

Good day to you all.

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I see it as being in part defined by what it is, and in part what it is not. Sentience is a key part, but so is the thought form's autonomy from the host, their individuality and separation from the host mind.

 

It's almost impossible to include all the things about a term that define it based on what it is not. The list would be too long, practically a novel. Other terms, like soulbond, the come into play, because they clarify what makes them different from other terms, like tulpa. And its the job of older members, those who are familiar with these different terms, to guide newbies towards the right words.

 

Method plays a role in it, I think. Guides come and go, but forcing, conscious or unconscious, seems to be a constant in tulpamancy. Purpose falls on ethics which while important isn't part of the definition. Some of the end result will come down on the creation method. Forcing via storytelling will more likely result in a soulbond, which makes sense.

 

@Ayre

Personality =/= Backstory

I never once said anything regarding personality forcing in any of my posts.

Soulbonds and tulpa are as close as two things can get without being one, so a guide for one could easily be followed or modified slightly to end up with the other.

I care about terminology because words are important for conveying thoughts and meanings from one person to another. If words get muddled, communication gets muddled.


"When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth."

-Arthur Conan Doyle

 

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Other terms' date=' like soulbond, the come into play, because they clarify what makes them different from other terms, like tulpa.[/quote']

 

I can’t really argue with that, but the third choice also extends that it’s obviously a subjective one. So whatever combination of subjective frameworks another community takes to be distinguished from the rest is just another form of communal reinforcement. Again, nothing wrong with this, but what seems to be a nagging issue is the militant actions of others to take certain terms as if they can be considered objective in that no matter who puts in their own framework, said terms would be consistent for everyone—and yet, it would still rustle some jimmies.

 

I’m not saying this would solve anything as it’s just bringing awareness that yeah, jimmies are going to be rustled no matter what we refer to.

 

Purpose falls on ethics which while important isn't part of the definition.

 

If it isn’t part of the definition, or rather, a means to conceptualize the definition, then anything that screams intent...

 

And its the job of older members' date=' those who are familiar with these different terms, to guide newbies towards the right words.[/quote']

 

If it’s a duty, it’s essentially an ethic, in this case, a normative one, that is implied. Which means one of a certain category, the older members, “ought” to guide newbies towards the right words. To find the ideal set of words, the right ones, implies there’s a systematic way of assessing how one should conceptualize those terms. This falls on purpose, and if that can’t be part of the definition, it’s meaningless sentiment.

 

But that’s what I’m getting at—It’s not just about pushing in some ethics and morals into the definition, but understanding they are just other modes of language that help supplement it. If treating a tulpa as sentient, a normative ethic, IMO, isn’t part of the definition (in context of how one can expand on it), then what’s the point of having words on a homepage to guide newcomers in the right direction? It seems it’s guiding them somewhere that has context, but little to zero on the assessment part if the mode of action towards a purpose isn’t indirectly part of the definition.

 

Forcing via storytelling will more likely result in a soulbond' date=' which makes sense.[/quote']

What about narration? Would this mean those that read a story, or even engaged in some simulation in their minds that has fictional roots are likely to cultivate the existence of a soulbond? It seems that this notion is heavily dependent on action-to-id. In other words, the action leads to the validation of the distinctions of various thoughtforms (tulpas, soulbonds, dream characters). But when those actions are things people would use, except in a different context, we’re back to the drawing board as to what makes it distinctive in the first place.

 

To put this into context:

- If a person was more fixated in creating a soulbond (using the notion you mentioned with storytelling), and they were to use something like image streaming as a practice to enhance their experiences of storytelling in their minds, and if the terminologies aligned to advocating that practice, then yeah, it might lead to one creating a soulbond.

 

- But if a person who intends to make a tulpa wanted to go through a simulation in their head that has fictional roots (but just using it as a casual supplement), and wanted to use those experiences in their minds as a means to narrate to their tulpa, what makes the action any different than the former? It’s the framework, context, and intent behind it all.

 

Long and short of that: People could easily subscribe to similar actions, but just put them in different contexts. Forcing is an action, it could be viewed as inward attention towards something, but again, just another way of stating an action. But the action isn't all there is to it--there's more to it than that, and I know you're not just relying on actions; just making a point.

 

I care about terminology because words are important for conveying thoughts and meanings from one person to another.

 

Understandable, but didn’t you mention this:

 

Purpose falls on ethics which while important isn't part of the definition

 

If meaning of language isn’t part of the definition (and I think we could say indirectly), and yet you strongly advocate terminology as a vessel to convey thoughts and meanings, then perhaps there is an ongoing muddling of communication.

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I have to agree with LinkZelda's framework approach on this question. I believe the question of what separates a tulpa from another thoughtform is the host's perspective on what this thing in their head is. A host creates a thoughform based on an already defined character in fiction for example. Is this thoughtform a tulpa or a soulbond? Well this boils down to what the thoughtform and host believes. If they think that the thoughtform is the actual character that has come to life then this is a soulbond, but if they believe it is just based on this character, but, in reality, a separate form of the actual character, then this is a tulpa. What about a daemon? If they believe this is an actual part of the host's identity then this is a daemon. If they think that this thoughtform only started this way, but has developed into their own being completely, this is a tulpa. Origins have no say in what it is, it's all about perspective.

 

In reality, these thoughtforms are probably the same if they are sentient. It's what they are perceived to be by both parties that decides what they are defined as.


Host: Ayre

Tulpas: Coda and Segno

 

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It makes me chuckle that you forgot the last "a" in my name in all of those quotes, LinkZelda.

 

While a small part may rely on perception, the only bit that does is perceiving the traits about the thought form that put it in one category or another.

If you make a thought form based on a character, regardless of deviation from the source or not if it has a history this makes it a soulbond.

 

My understanding of daemons is if they are true daemons any "deviation" is indicative in a change in you the host, not the being itself. Since it is a reflection if you.

It's always possible to have mislabeled something, in which case just admit the mistake, correct it, and learn from it for the future.

 

I really don't thinks this is as complicated as people are making it. Based on the end result, a thought form falls under certain labels based on the various traits each label describes.

"A sentient thought form...." so on, describes a tulpa.

All if the above... "and they have a history/backstory/memories" describes a soulbond.

First description... "except instead of being independent/autonomous, they are a reflection of you" a daemon.

 

So example: you make a thought form and it has memories and a history. You see, oh the term tulpa seems to fit. And it may very well fit, however, there is the term soulbond, which more accurately describes what you have. Would it not make sense them to call the being by the more accurate term?

 

All squares are rectangles, but not all rectangles are squares. If you go calling squares rectangles, you'll end up confusing a lot of people and cause a lot of misunderstandings. One should always be using the most specific and accurate term they can when labelling things. This is true from as simple as shapes to complex, like thought forms.


"When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth."

-Arthur Conan Doyle

 

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All squares are rectangles' date=' but not all rectangles are squares. If you go calling squares rectangles, you'll end up confusing a lot of people and cause a lot of misunderstandings.[/quote']

 

Are you me? Because I used this exact argument when I was discussing thoughtform specifying with Falunel on reddit and how you shouldn't toss every form of multiplicity in the tulpa sub. I pretty much agree with everything you said, chapeau bas.


A wise man once said: 'Before judging a man, walk a mile in his shoes. After that, who cares? He's a mile away, and you've got new shoes.'

 

Graced are those who could avoid this phenomenon. This is perhaps the worst expression of evil in humanity's history, but who am I to judge?

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I chose the third option. For any further reference, I have very little care about the said "terminology" here, because it has no reliable foundation. That's my opinion.


I'm SomethingDire, and Céleste is my partner in crime.

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Drakaina, J.Iscariot, these terms are subjective. If we were to draw lines, though.

 

I'll go with the soulbond theme here, because I have the most experience with this other than tulpa. I feel like you, Drakaina, are missing the key difference here. I've talked very briefly to some members of the soulbonding community, they believe that these thoughtforms are the actual characters that have come to life in their head. So if one is from someone else's fiction, however rare that might be, this is still considered the ACTUAL character. This is the key, it is the real and actual character. The character jumped out of the novel, movie, TV show, and can now talk to this person. Maybe out of some other dimensional things, I'm not sure exactly. They are not all quite as based on psychology there as we are. Although, it is important to note that not all soulbonders believe the exact same thing, as with any other community.

 

I've talked to hosts in the tulpa community that have based their tulpas off of characters in fiction. MLP, anyone? For better or worse, this is a big part of Western Tulpamancy's history. Those thoughtforms were only based off the character and not the character themselves. They did not actually believe that they brought the real characters into this world. This is the difference here. A tulpa is NOT the ACTUAL fictional character in this case. They have a backstory, but it's not what they actually went through, just a basis of what they are like. A type of personality forcing.

 

Just let people use the terms they like if it matches their frame of reference. I'm sorry, but I feel like you are being needlessly difficult. I also know that I'll probably never change your minds. But please do your part to make people feel welcome here in the future. If someone were to come in here saying that they had a tulpa based on, I don't know, Goku from Dragon Ball Z, you can let them know about the soulbonding community and let them figure out which community suites them best. I would hate to see someone that didn't agree with soulbonding and completely identified with tulpas being shunned here by a few people. I'm not saying that you would do this, but please just keep it in mind. And this goes for any thoughtform as far as I'm concerned.


Host: Ayre

Tulpas: Coda and Segno

 

Shameless Progress Report Plug:

Ayre's Opus 1: Informal informative index of inhabitants in an invisible inner-world.

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Everything is subjective in this life. Objective reality is a reality we can only observe and never experience. Subjective reality is, or in this case, can be purely conditional because you can claim you have anything and whatever in your head and even you wouldn't really know; there is no actual way of knowing whether you have a delusion or an actual sentient person, as the image is not the actual projection of what a thing is but merely its render on paper. The issue is not with respect, the issue is with people expecting unwarranted praise. Nobody is on a 'sentient' train where the supremacists are at the lead, but some characters, some thoughtforms are not actually sentient, they provide an image of sentience, apparent sentience that the host qualifies as 'oh that's all that matters' when it's purely 'relative'. It's not relative in a general consensus, subjective reality can not, and never has outruled objective reality. Let's say that there was an infinity of universes, universes we could never access; objective reality dictates that there are plenty of universes, but our subjective reality dictates that 'since you cannot access those realms, then they're as good as non-existent to us'. That's just an example, but the point here is that what people experience isn't what is actually happening. Any host will always say that their tulpa is the tip top of sentience, that they are sentient and that they are fully fledged persons despite the doubt that goes in, intrusive and parroted thoughts, etc etc... I'm not speaking of differentiation between thoughtforms in this specific domain, but about differentiation between 'sentient' and 'apparent sentience'.

 

 

Let's take soulbonding for instance. Objective reality: the character is a psychological phenomenon due to emotional attachment. Subjective reality: The character shifted from one universe to the other. You BELIEVE your subjective reality without ever being sure, but the objective reality is one that cannot actually be discussed because it exists as a fact in most domains. In this domain, in the psychological domain (and without going to proving that a=b a=c so b=c it's purely linear), everything goes well together, and to anyone in the psychological domain of studying and researching, it would make a whole lot of sense; you write about a character. You are hugely attached to said character. It starts speaking and fading off. You start parroting (as in imagining this character's responses). Objectively in psychology this could count as MD or simply superactive imagination, because its source is imagination and it develops from there (and I do not mean to offend any thoughtforms on here, I am not calling them imaginary by any means). In SUBJECTIVE reality, though, the character supposedly comes from the story through a certain means. Some soulbonders do believes in astral realms and astral projection (which has a basis in psychology as a form of hallucination but to each their own).

 

So, what's the goal here, you may ask? The resemblances between soulbonds and tulpas are clear. The thing is that nobody ever went out of their way to describe HOW a soulbond functions. Their lives, how they think, how they perceive things, and then went out of their way to show how a tulpa functions and how the two may differ or even come in resemblance. That's the thing. The whole soulbond concept sounds, with due respect to all soulbonders, as 'imagined into existence' (which is what a notorious member of this community used to promote with his 3 decades old thoughtform and called us all deluded, you know who that is), while a tulpa 'crafted' or created through the ways of forcing has a certain difference on the level of creation. Not speaking of parroting or interpreting anything that goes in your mind as your tulpa's voice, I don't even believe in the fact that a tulpa's mindvoice comes off as familiar and just like your own at first. To any outsider who reads such a thing, it would seem like pure self-deception. And the tulpa, the soulbond, the headmate phenomenons are all subject to this type of judgement.

 

I don't even understand why people are so clunky over establishing such a resemblance. Except if we're all throwing ourselves in some type of hugboxes this conversation has no real point.


A wise man once said: 'Before judging a man, walk a mile in his shoes. After that, who cares? He's a mile away, and you've got new shoes.'

 

Graced are those who could avoid this phenomenon. This is perhaps the worst expression of evil in humanity's history, but who am I to judge?

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J.Iscariot, wait what? I actually agree with most of what you have said. That's odd.

 

Any differences in thoughtforms are inherently moot. In the end they are shaped by the views, beliefs, and experiences of the systems they reside in. We all are, of course, just arguing semantics here. The outcome of this conversation does not affect the actual thoughtforms, but if a consensus is reached, by some miracle, then all that would be changed is the words used to describe a thoughtform. We can always edit the definition on the front page, if that is what Drakaina is implying, but I see no reason for this.

 

As far as sentience goes in a thoughtform, I don't think there is a knowable difference in apparent and real. I suppose we could develop some sort of Turning test, but it still would be difficult to separate role-playing from self-deception and actual sentience. How can anyone know anything truly has a mind of their own? Even in flesh and blood humans there is a debate about it. Do we have free will, or are we just programmed to react a certain way based on coded DNA sequences and environmental/behavioral learning? Is sentience real, or an illusion? Maybe it's just a trick of perception. I think the same goes for thoughtforms. If someone says that a thoughtform is sentient, you have to either believe them or not believe them. If they claim that they view it as a tulpa, or any other thoughtform, all you have to go on it their words.

 

With this sort of phenomenon, you have to take a lot of what people claim at face value. You don't have to agree with them, but you have no way of proving it or disproving it. We don't need a hugbox, but the community lacks scientific data. We need brain scans, tests, data, and evidence. Until that scientific gap is filled, we are forced to just take it on faith (As much as I hate that word). We can't turn people away based on conjecture, that also means that we should be free to disagree with them.


Host: Ayre

Tulpas: Coda and Segno

 

Shameless Progress Report Plug:

Ayre's Opus 1: Informal informative index of inhabitants in an invisible inner-world.

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