Politics, God and Religion vs. Science

Search
Go

Discussion Topic

Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
Messages 15301 - 15320 of total 23481 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
go-B

climber
Hebrews 1:3
Jun 2, 2013 - 10:46am PT

Yeah
It's all in your mind baby
Little bit of daydream here and there
Oh !
MH2

climber
Jun 2, 2013 - 11:35am PT
All systems seeking enlightenment as opposed to a dualistic experience of God, say that the last attachment to be overcome before enlightenment is the desire for enlightenment.


I may misunderstand the use of the word 'attachment' here. Does this mean that the path to enlightenment means giving up at an earlier stage whatever attachment(s) the seeker had to other people? Giving up a feeling of being in the same boat as the rest of humanity?
WBraun

climber
Jun 2, 2013 - 11:40am PT
Attachment and desire can never ever be given up.

They are both eternal also.

Due to poor fund of real knowledge one "thinks' they must be given up completely.

Can never ever be done.

One must redirect their desires and attachments to the ultimate truth and dovetail ones desires and attachments to the ultimate truth.

Then one will become successful .......
High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
Potemkin Village
Jun 2, 2013 - 11:49am PT
re: free will
re: distinguishing brain from mind

This article should be read as a case study in philosophical confusion

http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2013/05/distinguishing-brain-from-mind/276380/

.....

Recall your chemistry. Amazing photo of chemical bonds...


http://whyevolutionistrue.wordpress.com/2013/06/01/amazing-photo-of-chemical-bonds/

"We should all be proud that our species can do something like this."
-Jerry Coyne
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Jun 2, 2013 - 01:24pm PT
Where does the discursive mind leave off? And more importantly, why, and how does this happen? I’ll get into this discussion by way of a paraphrased article by Andrew M. Ryan I recently read and saved on my desktop.

To understand mind it’s helpful to look at the concepts of infinity, an inherently irrational concept to the discursive. Though we may understand in a strictly formal sense what the word infinity means, our discursive minds cannot get around such a boundless quality so we lack an accurate representation IN our minds. Put differently, infinity cannot fit INTO our minds because we have the thing bass-akwards. Our minds ar infinite, and anything inside is discrete. The best our discursive mind can do with infinity is acknowledge that, however far it goes, it can always go farther.

In the same sence that our discursive minds can’t get “its arms” around anything truly boundless, the machinery of logical and mathematical reasoning also seems to break down when applied to infinity. For instance, the cardinality (size) of all infinite sets is the same, regardless of how those sets are defined. For example, the set of all integers is the same size as the set of all odd numbers, even though, intuitively, it seems like there should be twice as many of the former as the latter. The even numbers are missing from the set of odd numbers, but not missing from the set of integers. Therefore, the set of integers must, in some sense, be the larger of the two, even if we concede that both are infinite. But how could one infinite set be any larger than another? They both go on forever. Such a paradox introduces the idea trying to impose numerical correlates onto infinite qualities is at the very least problematic, while quantifying discrete quantities is really the pay dirt for quantifiers.

These sorts of paradoxes are interesting, but they are only relevant outside of pure mathematics if there are, in fact, genuine infinities in the physical world. Currently, infinities are largely rejected by physicists as meaningless, and it’s my understanding that none of the accepted laws of nature require them. On the contrary, an infinite answer to an equation describing a physical phenomenon is regarded as evidence of a mistake.

The reason for infinity getting short shrift is that quite naturally and correctly, physicists are looking only into the physical world, and the discursive mind can only deal with discrete things. To our rational selves, infinity is a non-starter.

That much said, consider for a moment that Mind itself is a kind of infinite field. It is, but lacking experiences for you to know as much, or that there is a higher knowing than discursive reasoning, you can just look at this metaphorically.

Within this boundless field of awareness (our sense organs have limits, but not awareness itself) are various data streams, such as feelings, sensations, memories, touch, taste, and of course, the constant mental grinding of the discursive mind. Now how, we ask, does the discursive mind actually do its business. Much as we humans do all of our business: one thing at a time. Even when multi-tasking, we simply flit from the thing and back to another. We never can actually play, with any faculty, two songs at once, or climb an offwidth crack and work on composing a sonnet at the same time. We can go back and forth, but we might pitch off the crack and the sonnet will likely be piss poor. Our discursive minds, then, are designed to focus on one task at a time. The admonishment to “pay attention” is basically telling someone to focus on one thing.

How deos this work? Consider your awareness to be like an aperture on a camera that can focus from infinity down to macro. Anytime the discursive mind has to buckle down, our awareness aperture narrow focuses down to one thing and stays like that so our discursive mind can concentrate its effort in a discrete and limited way. Going back to the visual metaphor, we can only photograph one thing at a time. A rose, say, or whatever our lens is focused on. Same with the discursive mind. It works best when steadily focused on a problem, then allowed to relax into an unfocused state for a bit to regroup, then it focuses down once more. The point here is that without the aperture of awareness narrowing down to this or that, the conscious discursive mind is largely ineffective. Most people, when really baring down, need quiet and no distractions that can pull open their focus onto needles distractions.

Now given that the discursive mind functions by way of narrow focusing on discrete things, how can we expect it to inform us about Mind, which is neither a thing nor a bounded quality? Note that the discursive mind will reject this outright. Simply know that this is how it works.

Anyway, say we want to examine Mind. For most all of us that means to focus our discursive minds NOT on Mind qa Mind, but on content/objective functioning, or some discrete aspect of brain function, since a boundless quality cannot fit inside a bounded discursive mind. The discursive mind must always pull something out of the soup to look at and study and quantify, and if it wants to know the forest, it will know so by way of the trees. But this strategy cannot work with Mind, because while a forest is about content (trees), Mind itself in totally empty, inherently devoid of any thing. As no thing, Mind is also Nothing at all, another paradox.
What’s more, the if the discursive mind was to ever get a perspective on the whole, it would somehow have to include itself in the infinite frame, to revisit our photography metaphor, meaning it would have to transcend being a subject discretely quantifying, and expand out to a boundless omniscient POV including itself. And as we saw early on, the discursive mind can only whistle one tune at a time, and as we have seen later on, you cannot discursively get jiggy with boundless qualities without cutting them down to size, into digestible bits, because that’s what discursive/quantifying actually is. Put differently, no photographer can fit EVERYTHING in one picture, because a picrture by nature has a frame which limites what's inside.

So how do you get jiggy with infinite qualities, which is our fundamental nature, our “face before we were ever born?”

The process happens by way of the back door. You’re told to simply sit down, keep your eyes open, watch your breathing and whatever comes into your mind, just let it go, let it grind, let it ramble, making no effort to move toward or to move away from the discursive juggernaut. You will invariably spend some amount of time locked into the discursive mind in an attempt for it to see itself. Then finally your awareness will break free and you can just watch and be with it rambling along and you won’t be fused to it via narrow focus. It’s just another tree in the forest along with feelings, sounds, etc.

Eventually you realize that you cannot look at or examine Mind with any accuracy because the second you try, you once more become a subject narrow focusing on some aspect of the whole. But what you can learn to do is to abide with, or be present with your own boundless nature, but this is very subtle work and for most of us it requires years, the impulse to narrow focus and to “find out” is so strong.

JL
jogill

climber
Colorado
Jun 2, 2013 - 01:59pm PT
Thank you, Jan, for your reply to my questions. That was quite instructive.

That much said, consider for a moment that Mind itself is a kind of infinite field. It is, but lacking experiences for you to know as much, or that there is a higher knowing than discursive reasoning, you can just look at this metaphorically

John, your commentary about infinities is entertaining but would have been more appropriate some 2,500 years ago when scholars were indeed concerned about such things. IMO, when you revert to metaphysical theory (infinite fields, unborn fields, quantum stuff & flux, etc.) you weaken your argument trying to convince us to attempt a meditative descent into the pit of no-thingness. Your metaphysics tends to irritate our rational minds. We are, after all, only human.

But you do seem to enjoy metaphysics and you write well. It's good to see someone doing what they like. Oh, I like your comment that there is a "higher knowing." Good to see you are not making value judgements.
Jingy

climber
Somewhere out there
Jun 2, 2013 - 02:11pm PT
Norton

Social climber
the Wastelands
Jun 2, 2013 - 02:32pm PT
Does John mean a god is the "higher knowing"?

or that the meditative induced change of consciousness from discursive "to" is the higher learning?

I have asked john a couple of times if he puts himself with the group that believes in a god of the traditional notion, responsible for an afterlife, the ultimate creator of the universe, able to intervene or choose to ignore human pleas, etc

but he does not answer me on this although I wish he would just so I know..
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Jun 2, 2013 - 03:06pm PT
Ed asked "why is this necessary?" to ever deatch from the discursive mind, when that mind is talling you it can do everything?

I look at this as a kind of trance state, a kind of cult of mind which will never let the subject escape till death do we part.

If you ever want to experince mental freedom, you must bust out of enmeshment to the parts.

Lastly, I tried to supply some very tangible examples of how the discrsive mind works, and where it falters. This is hardly metaphysical, as John suggested, but is easily verifiable for anyone who takes a few momnents and checks their process - now, or 2,500 years ago, the discursive narrow focusing has not changed a lick.

JL
jogill

climber
Colorado
Jun 2, 2013 - 05:23pm PT
I look at this as a kind of trance state, a kind of cult of mind which will never let the subject escape till death do we part.

OK, at least some clarity here: Reason as a cult.

Sounds vaguely like the Middle Ages.

And yes, Norton, all this sounds very religious to me. Do we partake of the mind of God when we assemble "things" out of quantum stuff & flux?
jogill

climber
Colorado
Jun 2, 2013 - 06:05pm PT
In the same sence that our discursive minds can’t get “its arms” around anything truly boundless, the machinery of logical and mathematical reasoning also seems to break down when applied to infinity. For instance, the cardinality (size) of all infinite sets is the same, regardless of how those sets are defined

JL, this is what happens when you, once again, wander confidently into areas where you have scant knowledge. The statement underlined above is exquisitely wrong!

Whereas the rational numbers have the same cardinality as the counting numbers, such is not the case with the irrational numbers, like the square root of two. Georg Cantor proved many years ago that the irrationals cannot be counted, and his argument is a delightful excursion into the world of reason.

Here's a scenario: Many moons ago philosophers were perplexed by the seeming "paradox" of a proper subset of an infinite set being in one-to-one correspondence with the larger set. Mathematicians and scientists moved on, absorbing these seeming anomolies with a broader application of logic. Others decided it was all too much and sought to turn off that annoying instrument in our heads and descend into the vacuum of emptyness.
I guess that's where you have gone.

I work with infinities constantly in mathematics, my area being complex analysis. My playthings, zeno contours, are the concrete results of extensions into the infinite. They are sequences of sequences, where in the limit as the number of subdivisions of an interval of time becomes infinite, they result in a kind of extension of the notion of sequence where there is no well-defined second term. The discrete merges into the continuous. This doesn't perplex me - it delights me. I am very comfortable with infinities.

You should not assume all scientists - or even the majority - reject the infinite or the continuous in physical reality. There are physicists who remain supporters of time being continuous rather than discrete, as there are physicists who place more confidence in the discrete. Ed knows a lot more about this than either you, JL, or me.
Ward Trotter

Trad climber
Jun 2, 2013 - 06:30pm PT
I look at this as a kind of trance state, a kind of cult of mind which will never let the subject escape till death do we part.

Oh for crying out loud. How absurd.
In many of my posts I have outlined the biological basis for the kind of thinking you are referring to and are critical of.
Human beings did not survive lions and tigers and starvation because they were able to instantly submerge themselves in a highly rarefied experiential state.
They did so because of measuring , calculating, forethought, and the cognitive ability to abstract out of the storm of sensory input a raging set of frothing incisors directed at the throat and the best way to deal with such a threat.
To effectively meet the real challenges of survival humans evolved higher reasoning talents and capacities that are the direct forerunners of empirical thought used today to cure polio and put man on the moon and discover the age of the universe.
This is not something bizarre or cultish. It lies at the very heart of human nature, history, and experience.

Geez Louise.
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Jun 2, 2013 - 06:48pm PT
John, the quote I cited above was from a mamtematician at Caltec - it is not my "knowledge," and you know as well as I do that he was not talking about irrational numbers. Any point can be refuted if that's what you want to do. The exaamples were to see if you could possibly gt a glimpse past the rational mind. Not only does it appear that yu cannot, by dint of my ppoor examples, but that you consider it a kind of affront to even consider such a tack has any possible viability in the real world. This is the cult of rationality I was speaking about, where the person is so enmeshed by a sub-personality they can't see it's limitiations, and then they place virtue on top of being enmeshed. Such are the wiles the rational mind. I said it was jealous, and there you have it.

The importat thing is that efforts to try and reflect my thinking as a kind of backwards prehistoric dream state as opposed to all-mighty reason are not, in fact, EVER backed up by your own experince of how we all actually live out lives. The cult of mind is not a cult of reason, it is the trance we live in till we can clearly see that discursive reasoning is limited.

I mentiond a higher level of knowing than mere discursive info, and this was quite naturally illreceived. Look at it this way, because this is how we all naturally live our lives. For instance, you might give me a binder containing 1 million pages of facts and figures on a woman named Roxanne, and every single fact has been backed up with empirical evidence and field tested in every way imaginable so the 1,000,000 pages of information is indisputable. From this million pages of quantified info we can know "everything" about this woman. Really? We all know this is entirely wrong. Or if you believe it is corect, you couldn't get laid wih a thousand dollar bill. To know Roxanne, you need direct experience over a long period of time, so yu can fil in the gaps that the figures did not provide, and see what her patterns are like per changing, which we all do. Same with a climb. You could read a 10,000 page description of a given route but when you dirctly experince it, you intake said climb by not only your discursive mind, but all of your other facilities, and you come to know it in a muck higher and more comprehensive way.

Even if we're talking about someone painting you house, the man who has memorized all the fact and figures about paintin is not our. We want the man who's painted 1,000 houses, who has tons of first hand experience with the work, who "knows" what they are doing, not just the data on what constitutes a good job.

And when it come to investigating Mind, we need tons of dirction experience WITH Mind, not extruded through our discursive mind, which will always give us a diced up version or a piece of the whole. You can knock my metaphors (math, etc), but this much remains indisputable.


I have tried to use language that would speak to this crowd but the process so far has been to be reminded abotu how little i know. So I'll abandon that tact and use language that is right in my wheelhouse.

For those to whom separating from the primary self of the rational mind feels impossible or even undesirable, glance over this material and you should get a little clarity on the process:

http://delos-inc.com/pdf/The_Basic_Elements_Of_Voice_Dialogue_Relationship_And_The_Psychology_Of_Selves.pdf


JL
jogill

climber
Colorado
Jun 2, 2013 - 07:03pm PT
John, the quote I cited above was from a mamtematician at Caltec - it is not my "knowledge," and you know as well as I do that he was not talking about irrational numbers

I do not. Am I mistaken if I assume you mean what you write?


Stop blaming everyone else. If you were rational when you paraphrased him you would not have blundered. So much for avoiding the cult of reason.
Ward Trotter

Trad climber
Jun 2, 2013 - 07:05pm PT
The cult of mind is not a cult of reason, it is the trance we live in till we can clearly see that discursive reasoning is limite

The opposite is true as well, namely that non-discursive experience is highly limited.
If you were to take 100 ordinary people randomly and present the case , as in a courtroom ,for and against Largoism: What side do you think would win?

Empiricism: produces protection from predators, adequate shelter, the cause of bubonic plague and hot showers.( to be fair...environmental destruction and the occasional nuke, etc)

Largoesque Subjectivism : uh......uh.... Might represent an interesting departure from ordinary
consciousness. Might even represent a higher form of consciousness one day, but only if we keep our consumption of high carb discursive thinking in check.
Ward Trotter

Trad climber
Jun 2, 2013 - 07:59pm PT
Anyone out there have any thoughts on the general effects that digital technologies are having on art, entertainment , and news?
cintune

climber
The Utility Muffin Research Kitchen
Jun 2, 2013 - 08:36pm PT
Norton

Social climber
the Wastelands
Jun 2, 2013 - 08:57pm PT

Briefly, the discursive mind gathers and interprets information through the senses.

It is the most immediate experience of mind—the busy, thinking aspect of mind that is also responsible for creativity, imagination, fantasy and dream states. The intelligent mind is concerned primarily with reason and rationality, discriminating between pieces of information. Here, reason is the process of producing one or more arguments to logically explain something observed; its rationality either accepts or rejects these arguments by testing them against a broader base of information and experience.

The heart mind, or the emotional mind, is chiefly concerned with memory and knowledge, creating the contexts and parameters within which the intelligent mind operates. Within the heart mind, knowledge is the ultimate union of information, reason, and discrimination or, more philosophically, the unification of the knower, the knowing, and the known. The ego mind, lastly, uses personal knowledge to form an individual’s perception of a unique and independent identity—a self with will.

The four-part subtle mind demonstrates how the mind is shaped from experience and helps contribute to an understanding of the search for meaning, but it explains neither the origin of consciousness, nor the nature of the intelligent mind, nor the process of the heart mind. However, this understanding of the subtle mind provides two distinct approaches to the search for meaning. First, life has meaning when it “makes sense,” in other words, when the bases for meaning are derived in epistemological and empirical knowledge. Second, life has meaning when it “feels right,” when meaning is found through idealistic and metaphysical systems.
http://www.hektoeninternational.org/Meaning_Cognitive_Default.html
jogill

climber
Colorado
Jun 2, 2013 - 09:06pm PT
Anyone out there have any thoughts on the general effects that digital technologies are having on art, entertainment , and news?

One is truly never alone.

When computer graphics were introduced I was delighted with the special effects in movies. Now I find the cacophony of images and sounds unpleasant and many times boring as well.

The young seem to be developing shorter attention spans, which bodes ill for the sciences. Of course the really smart kids who have an interest will always do well. Instant and constant communication is a sword having two edges.

just idle thoughts . . .

Re Norton:

Understanding the entirety of consciousness requires a new mode of acquiring knowledge, for instance, through the exploration of a natural, non-physical field—if only to offer a better approximation within the minds’ symbolism


Hmmmmm . . .
Ward Trotter

Trad climber
Jun 2, 2013 - 09:24pm PT
The young seem to be developing shorter attention spans, which bodes ill for the sciences. Of course the really smart kids who have an interest will always do well. Instant and constant communication is a sword having two edges.

I have been thinking a lot of late on the idea that social forms like art and entertainment are undergoing a tremendous shift in significance, especially as carriers of commonly shared ideals and collective norms.
With social media of various sorts (ST) it appears that we are entertaining ourselves. Could this be a major down- shift in the need for professional entertainment as hitherto constituted?
Messages 15301 - 15320 of total 23481 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
 
Our Guidebooks
Check 'em out!
SuperTopo Guidebooks


Try a free sample topo!

 
SuperTopo on the Web

Review Categories
Recent Route Beta
Recent Gear Reviews