Ever since the first Matrix film was released in 1999, curious fans have asked: are we living in The Matrix? Although it may seem far out there, tech billionaires like SpaceX founder Elon Musk are bankrolling research to determine if we are merely existing in someone else’s elaborate simulation. If the thought alone doesn’t freak you out, this next statistic will most certainly do the trick: “Many scientists, philosophers, and business leaders believe that there is a 20-50 per cent probability that humans are already living in a computer-simulated virtual world,” read a Bank of America analyst report released in late 2016. Take a minute to let that sink in; 20-50 per cent is huge!
No longer wild theory relegated to the darkest corners of the Internet and late-night discussions over a blunt and a bucket of chicken wings, the idea of the human race living in a carefully-crafted fantasy world has reached mainstream.
The Bank of America report makes it clear that if we did, in fact, exist within a simulation, we’d never really be able to know. However, perhaps there are clues all around us if we look hard enough…
15. Uri Geller, Spoonbender
In one of the most-quoted scenes in the original Matrix film, Neo encounters a group of child prodigies at the modest home of The Oracle. Neo is fascinated by one in particular, a young boy sitting cross-legged on the floor bending a spoon with his mind. “Do not try and bend the spoon, that’s impossible,” the boy tells Neo. “Instead, only try to realize the truth. There is no spoon.”
In real life, illusionist Uri Geller is best known for his spoon-bending trick. On his website, he describes his first experience with spoon-bending at a house party in 1985 at which participants shouted “will you bend for me?” at various silverware plucked from a pile in the middle of the room. Since then, Geller has made a career out of showing off his self-professed psychic abilities, despite the fact that skeptics have debunked his spoon-bending performance as nothing more than a simple magic trick.