quote: "Imagine that everything you see, feel and hear in three dimensions (and your perception of time) in fact emanates from a flat two-dimensional field. The idea is similar to that of ordinary holograms where a three-dimensional image is encoded in a two-dimensional surface, such as in the hologram on a credit card. However, this time, the entire universe is encoded“ said Professor Kostas Skenderis of Mathematical Sciences at the University of Southampton, where were discovered evidence to support the theory of the holographic universe.
The simulation theory doesn't imply that it's necessary for a god (a conscious being that created the universe) to exist, there could be a universe that created itself, like Hawking said.
So before the universe was created there was an imput (an event that created the universe), afterwards there was an output (the universe). If we can prove that the imput is real (which means it can be repeated multiple times and is always consistent), we can prove that our universe is real. But we can't prove that with the instruments that we have now, because we only know the rules of our universe which is really hard to measure. All we can say is that the universe is real for the conscious beings that live in this universe.
The reality could not be objectively real, but subjectively it is real.
Maybe we can't prove that we're not living in a world where there's a puppetter, maybe we are living in an illusion created by him, but that doesn't really matter because we couldn't get away from this universe even if we wanted to. All we can do is keep existing (even in death) in this universe, until the possible end of the universe. That is to show how small and big we are at the same time.
It's not like there is a puppeteer, a separate entity controlling/creating. The whole thing is conscious of itself. And you do escape when you go beyond the astral, causal and super causal. When you go back far enough, you escape the illusory world. That's my take on it.
As for our universe. Another thing to think of - and very seriously - is the computer game world. If you think of the advancements made in that one area in 20 years it's frightening. If you then think of that development and what it would mean in another 20 years, 50 years etc., then you're starting to look at a reality that could be entirely constructed by us.
I remember hearing Elon Musk talk about this and he said something about how virtual relaity will advance at such a rate that it will soon be impossible to tell what is reality and what is not.
Fast-forward that 200 years or more and you're into the realms of something wholly unimaginable. Coupled with AI (if it doesn't kill us all first!) and further technological advancements and yeah, I think it's fairly easy to imagine how things that seem real to us now could be something else entirely.
One thing I've thought of many times is that, if you take the computer game thing as an example, we want entertainment. We have already created spectator sports and we've created 'reality' TV shows and we have created computer games so that you can become a character... and we keep pets. Put those things together and fast-forward a few hundred years and you go beyond "Big Brother", go beyond "The Hunger Games", go beyond "The Running man" and into something that could get quite disturbing. We could potentially create realities for our own entertainment; maybe even have our own 'pets' (humans) to follow and keep, maybe even create. Lives to oversee, maybe even influence. We could become the image of what we call God. A crazy scary thought, but entirely possible given the way things are going.