Politics, God and Religion vs. Science

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WBraun

climber
Feb 6, 2014 - 07:37pm PT
within 20 years a self conscious machine will exist.

Every living entity on the material platform is a self conscious machine.

The modern egotistical scientist has no claim ever to credit for the self conscious machine already exists in it's entirety.

There are over 8 million different species or forms of these self conscious living entities on the material platform.

Thus the modern claims of these scientists are only poor imitators if anything at all ....
Dr. F.

Trad climber
SoCal
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 6, 2014 - 08:03pm PT
Credit: Dr. F.
Dr. F.

Trad climber
SoCal
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 6, 2014 - 08:04pm PT
Credit: Dr. F.
Jan

Mountain climber
Colorado, Nepal & Okinawa
Feb 6, 2014 - 08:18pm PT
Good point about explanatory fads in science as elsewhere, particularly in this age of intellectual ferment regarding particles and cosmology. String theory would seem a good candidate as well.

I know little about fractals but the idea of the universe as a hologram and that property explaining certain meditation experiences has been around for 20 years at least and fits well with the idea that sentience is a property of the universe.

As for why destruction of the brain brings about damage to sentience, how is that different than taking a hammer to a radio and then not being able to pick up radio waves anymore?

If different living species have different capacities for sentience, this could be true on a more universal scale as well. The receiving apparatus would be different and therefore the level of sentience also.

I used to pose a simpler version of this to my comparative religion classes when I could tell some students were having a hard time perceiving ideas outside their own narrow framework. What if there were other planets with life forms like ET, and Jesus or Buddha went to those other planets?

Would they appear as they did on earth, or would they take on the appearance of the locals? Would they explain their message in English, Aramaic, Pali or the local lingo? Would they have the same sense perceptions as the locals? And what if Jesus and Buddha actually came from other places with more advanced sentience? Wouldn't that explain some of the "miracles" attributed to them?

Needless to say, that provoked some very interesting discussions! And we learned that some students couldn't even imagine Jesus looking like an Asian or African though I have paintings so portraying him, that are used by missionaries in those places.

My favorite illustration that truly blew them away, is from a tribal area of India. It is a large white cross I bought in an Indian government handicraft store, with a black mask of the tribal version of Vishnu on it in the center, along with a star of David, a star and crescent moon, a conch shell, and the wheel of Dharma. Probably the illiterate tribals actually have a mental advantage here because they use symbols instead of dogmatic words to express themselves.

Tribal Vishnu / Christ from Orissa State in India
Tribal Vishnu / Christ from Orissa State in India
Credit: Wikipedia
WBraun

climber
Feb 6, 2014 - 08:56pm PT
Jan

That's actually Jagannath.

Jan

Mountain climber
Colorado, Nepal & Okinawa
Feb 6, 2014 - 09:26pm PT
It is Jagganath to those who worship Vishnu as the Lord of the Universe. In Orrisa they all refer to him as Vishnu except when talking about the Temple of Jagganath. For a new Hindu Christian, it can work both ways. Jesus and Krishna are both incarnations of Vishnu and Vishnu is Lord of the Universe in the sense that Christians speak of Jesus as the Word. "In the beginning was the Word".

When I first saw this image on a statue in the lobby of my hotel, I said to the clerk, "this must be some of the tribal art" and he replied, "Madam, that is Lord Vishnu and his brother and sister". I blurted out, "that's not what Vishnu looks like, he's blue", at which point the clerk looks at me with great disdain and says, "this is what he looked like before he incarnated as the form you're familiar with". Later I learned that the original statue in the Jagganath temple which is replaced every twelve years, is simply an upright tree trunk with no painting or carving on it.
PSP also PP

Trad climber
Berkeley
Feb 6, 2014 - 09:27pm PT


I got the nasty cold; but not so bad that I have to stay in bed too much. So I am turning it into a retreat. Today I sat a 40 and two 50 minute sessions and one more before bed. I started doing this a while ago when ever I got sick.

It creates a ripe opportunity to observe the "I" that wants things to be different; and to look at how attached we are to our bodies. What becomes clear Is you body is sick not your true self, which is not attached to thinking and feelings.

I thought Jgills comment the "folly of personality" was very interesting but not commented on. The beginning of the Heart Sutra says" all five skandas are empty and if you perceive that you will be relieved of all suffering and distress"; my understanding of skandas are they the aggregates of what we perceive to be ourselves i.e. personality . I am not a scholar on skandas, but it seems similar to what JG was pointing to.
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Feb 6, 2014 - 10:18pm PT
the Heart Sutra says" all five skandas are empty and if you perceive that you will be relieved of all suffering and distress"


Problem with presenting this wonderful stuff on this thread is that to know what this emptiness really means you have to do the sitting as you prescribed. People will insist that you don't have to, that you can reason your way there, as though emptiness is a mere concept, or that they are already doing some version of your sitting, and have never encountered this emptiness, or it's no big deal (it's the BIGGEST deal when you find it), or that they're "doing it wrong," and need a guru and a mystical rug to get things going and while the bantering goes on, much of it fun, no sitting is actually performed in the present.

That rather amazes me. If sitting were presented as simply the sober examination of our internal landscape, sans dividing (that's psychology), perhaps more folks would see the value in the work.

In the mean time we can just keep talking and amusing ourselves . . .

JL
WBraun

climber
Feb 6, 2014 - 10:58pm PT
aether (ether) is still material.

Woo woo is still much much higher .........

Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Feb 6, 2014 - 11:16pm PT
I've yet to hear anyone actually describe what mystical, woowoo, guru, and so forth actually mean to them. I think folks are just making stuff up. And if you don't understand something, call it woowoo.

JL
MH2

climber
Feb 6, 2014 - 11:16pm PT
Translating the subjective "heat" into tangible physical terms is part of the objectifying process I mentioned earlier. But qualia itself can never be an object.


That is philosophy. Physiology is what happens when you touch something hot. The nerves convert the energy to impulses and that is how you become aware of it. If it was painfully hot, your hand will be withdrawn from the hot thing before you become aware of it. The experience of warmth is a part of your brain being stimulated.

If qualia are not physical it is a very strange coincidence how often the "heat" qualia is invoked when you put your hand too near a flame.

Whatever qualia are they respond to physiological events and they can initiate motor responses, as for example when you say, "Ow!"

How do immaterial qualia interact with material physiology?



If there are some sort of waves that we pick up in the form of sentience, why are people so often not on the same wavelength?
MikeL

climber
SANTA CLARA, CA
Feb 7, 2014 - 12:05am PT
Largo: . . . My sense of this is that like mathematics, sentience is an inherent quality to reality that is not created at all. But that discussion is too abstract for this thread . . . ."

Ugh. My apologies, John, but I thought to myself when I read it, . . . "DUH." But then I remembered this was a forum.

Andrzej: How do you explain mental disorders, then? Ill brain creates ill consciousness. No brain, no problem ;)

You got two different arguments going on here.

#1: What's a disorder? Physical? Consciousness? Awareness? What is the basis for reference? (And then we can start getting politically correct about the subject.)

#2: No brain . . . no consciousness? Sure, . . . and no air, no head, no food or water, etc. Oh yeah, and then there's that person's mother and her mother, and the nation he or she was born into and so forth and so forth. (You can see where this is getting us, don't you?)

My suggestion is not to make the situation any more complex than it already is. Just say what sentience is, and I believe if you do so well, you'll have every other answer that your little 'ole heart and head could desire.

As for the testing of this, have you ever thought about meditation? I got this friend on this climbing forum website who's promised to pay for some guy's first meditation experience. I can get you his name (for a low price).
MikeL

climber
SANTA CLARA, CA
Feb 7, 2014 - 12:09am PT
MH2: That is philosophy. Physiology is what happens when you touch something hot.

My dear friend, physiology IS philosophy.

When you touch something hot, what happens is your experience. What you've got going there is a bunch of explanations for the most basic fact in the universe: you have experience. There is nothing that is so sure as that is, right?
MikeL

climber
SANTA CLARA, CA
Feb 7, 2014 - 12:14am PT
Oh, and yeah, Werner. Hysterical story about Chongo. Really funny. Like a cheech and chong vignette.
jogill

climber
Colorado
Feb 7, 2014 - 01:18am PT
I'm not talking about the phenomenology of objectifying at an experiential level . . . (JL)


This is beginning to sound like Philosophy 401 in the course listing in college. I bet JL could talk at great lengths about this.

Have any of you experienced a fleeting moment when you saw everything from the perspective of a different personality? You become literally someone else for just a moment and the world has changed. Then you are back to your original "I" and all is as it was. I've had this happen on rare occasions and the effect is stunning.

Maybe I have incipient multiple personality disorder!


;>(
Ward Trotter

Trad climber
Feb 7, 2014 - 01:50am PT
On a few rare occasions I've experienced perhaps something similar . It didn't seem to have much to do with any changing sense of ego identity , per se, but rather the environment to which I was intimately familiar suddenly seemed to transform into something strange and not so familiar.
The house where I had lived for 10 yrs. seemed inexplicably foreign ---it was as if I were experiencing that environment for the first time. It became as instantly unfamiliar as it was familiar.

This strange feeling lasted on and off for a few hours at varying intensity and then eventually dissipated. I couldn't help but feel a measure of concern as regards the possibility this unsettling experience could be nothing less than a grim indication or forewarning of an incipient neuropathology of some sort. Intuition told me otherwise but I stayed on my toes nonetheless for some time afterwards.
Actually it was a sort of pleasant experience ,despite the odd sense of very mild disorientation.
There was a distinct yet very subtle impression that I was somehow miraculously allowed to glimpse at some sort of alternate reality---one that seemed very near and yet not quite identical to the one I normally inhabit. This sense of an alternate reality most definitely was not an organic impression I may have subsequently superimposed upon that experience , superimposed in a desperate attempt to make sense of it ---but rather came naturally intact within the experience itself, right "out of the box" so to speak.

I also couldn't help but consider the possibility that I may have unknowingly consumed a hitherto unknown psychoactive fungus in my food that day . Lol ( a poor man's Albert Hofmann)

That famous line from Dicken's A Christmas Carol came to mind in this connection:

“You may be an undigested bit of beef, a blot of mustard, a crumb of cheese, a fragment of underdone potato. There's more of gravy than of grave about you, whatever you are!”




MikeL

climber
SANTA CLARA, CA
Feb 7, 2014 - 10:59am PT
^^^^^^^^^^^

I can't remember where he did this, but Tom told us a story about waking-up in a woman's body way back when. (I thought it was a gutsy story to tell here.)
Jim Clipper

climber
from: forests to tree farms
Feb 7, 2014 - 11:08am PT
"Probably the illiterate tribals actually have a mental advantage here because they use symbols instead of dogmatic words to express themselves."

I hope it brings them health, and prosperity.



MH2

climber
Feb 7, 2014 - 11:31am PT
My dear friend, physiology IS philosophy.


Or vice versa.


A notable difference is the way in which physiology accounts for reaction time, sensitization after being burned, paradoxical cold, and many other details of the experience of temperature. All philosophy has to offer for those experiences is, "I am." Good job, philosophy.
MH2

climber
Feb 7, 2014 - 11:59am PT
You become literally someone else for just a moment and the world has changed.

This is very like what the woman neurologist described in a TED talk. She had had a stroke which, if I remember, interrupted the communication between left and right cerebral hemispheres.

We know from the old surgeries which cut the corpus callosum that left and right hemispheres can work independently and even communicate to each other to some degree by vocalizing or writing.

I don't mean to say that this is what happened, but there are possibilities. Transient ischemia can mimic stroke symptoms, for example.

The amazing thing is how well our 2 cerebral hemispheres coordinate under normal circumstances, given the thin slow fibers in the corpus callosum that connect them. It is also amazing how stable our personality is from childhood through old age.
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