I watched Inception with Leonardo DiCaprio. Everybody was having a hard time knowing whether they were in real life, or just another dream.
When we play a video game, we know we're playing a game. We don't just know that we're physically not in the universe of the game, but we know we are spending time playing this game. We have an understanding of ourselves apart from ourselves; we can see our consciousness seeing ourselves.
There are periods when we lose track of things outside of our entertainment. But they are brief, and when we snap out of it, we understand what happened, what we lost track of, and our external self again.
Augmented reality and virtual reality are set to become the new entertainment, and with them, new ideas about immersion--losing one's self in entertainment, in other worlds. This will be an iterative change to our current entertainment. No doubt some will be consumed by this, just as some are consumed by current entertainment. But I think there is a greater immersion of reality we have succumbed to, more along the lines of Inception. A level where we are not aware of our immersion, and we don't snap out of it.
As my wrists and fingers have started to hurt from carpal tunnel, I have had to consider no longer playing games. No longer spending hours glued to my computer every night building, writing, and conversing.
A thunderstorm rages outside my window, and I am innoculated to it. Thunderstorm, tornado, and flash flood warnings abound in the Spring, and yet, it has very little significance to me. I am safe in my home and my daily routines.
Certainly, watching thunderstorms and being "immersed in real reality" is just another medium. It can be another escapism. You can forget yourself anywhere. But sometimes I wonder if it would be a better escape to forget myself in the natural world. Glued to the reality TV of my neighborhood. Following the deposits from the owls and snakes in the backyard. Caring about things that don't affect my modern life.