Atheism with Thuse

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Nick_A
Posts: 2391
Joined: April 19th, 2009, 11:45 pm

Post by Nick_A » January 1st, 2010, 11:10 pm

Hi Thuse

One thing that became abundantly clear over the holidays is that in the eternal struggle between man and egg nog, that demonic liquid concoction is a truly formidable foe and not to be taken lightly.

There is an old expression that the higher can understand the lower but the lower cannot understand the higher. If true any genuine teacher student relationship would have to be based on this truism. This is why rather then trying to categorize those like Simone I try to be open to ponder what they bring.
Also, Socrates uses deductive logic to arrive at his conclusion. You are often using inductive logic to arrive at yours – for example, as above, you conclude that because Weil was right about certain things, she is therefore right about all things. This is a very extreme inductive argument.
I must be giving the wrong impression. People like Simone expect one to struggle to experience truth. The last thing either she or I would want is practicing blind belief. It is not blind belief to be open to the experiences of those that I know transcend me in intellect and heart. It is just useful humility.
Nevertheless, whether I would be right or wrong in my dismissal of this object’s existence, my methodology can no longer be called “empirical” i.e. scientific, if I could not prove this. For it to be empirical, I would be forced to abandon my entire notions regarding intrinsic existence etc. pending further data.
I agree but at the same time there are certain things we cannot prove or disprove but gradually have to open to.

For me a miracle for example is just the lawful conscious or accidental manifestation into a lower cosmos of the norm of a higher cosmos. Where the virgin birth for example would be impossible to logically explain without cosmology, this descent of being, of unity into diversity manifesting in a physical form is quite reasonable. The point is that we don't know but I believe it to be worthwhile remaining open to the question.
In science and philosophy, for thinking to be objective, it would need to be publicly accessible by other subjects. So, if someone is capable of objective thought, it would mean that we would be able to interact directly with their thought in some way.


Objective quality refers to the vertical quality of a moment while science connects the effects of laws connecting before and after. There is no way for science to measure NOW. It requires the consciousness of objective thought.

I don't really know of a better term that connects vertical levels of reality. I read once where someone asked when objective reason begins. The reply was that objective thought begins when subjective thought ends, It is a hard concept to explain.

The Akashic records” if they exist, must be in NOW. If the linear measure of time for us exists as a whole within NOW, it means that both the past and future exists in eternity and beyond our conscious limitations. All that is existing could then be experienced as an attribute of higher consciousness.

I think I understand why Nietzsche lost it. Pondering eternal recurrence will do it to you. Yet if a moment of existence is appreciated as eternal repetition and all the moments taken together of a person's life in eternal repetition is considered within eternity, I can begin to see the need for vertical objective thought as well as the potential for Akashic records as a product of eternal recurrence.
I personally believe that, rather than a change in perspective, a change in behaviour is what is significant. The experiences themselves do not guarantee any genuine transformation – and often times people, having these experiences, do not realise this. For me, the experiences themselves are always transient and not as significant as how much is actually brought back from them.

In this sense, when people claim that their experiences have enabled them to do such and such, it is not these claims themselves that interest me, but the extent to which they are able to actual demonstrate this in practice.
I agree and also why I take Plato's belief in objective morality as resonable. Objective morality is simply the result of objective experience that we deny ourselves through preconception.
So, I literally interpret him to be saying the opposite – that there is no space or distinction between the looker and the looked, the inner and the outer.
Fair enough. This is a basic difference between us. You interpret Jesus expressing one cosmological level and I see the higher observing the lower.
If I interpret you correctly, for you, the unity exists in a kind of hierarchy, a set of levels, at the top of which the plurality eventually becomes unified.
Yes, a balanced human being would be governed by the consciousness of the head supported by the energy of the heart and a healthy body to carry out the goals of the head.

Our trouble is that the head, heart, and body are not consciously connected but rather connected through imagination. In this condition the body fights for its needs, the emotions want to assert their objections and the head is occupied with daily activities and conditioned associations. These three aspects of our common presence are in opposition to each other.
For me, plurality and conflict are negatives, and when put together do not create something positive i.e. disharmony + disharmony = disharmony.
Lacking consciousness it must happen. However If the body demands its habitual needs and the head strives for consciousness, this is an essential opposition and disharmony. But when consciously experienced they can be reconciled by the heart which attracts the help of the spirit. The heart of man having opened attracts a higher conscious aspect of the head which is a positive.
If it is “ever-present” like this, then logically it cannot be achieved, realised, gained or attained in any sense. Nor can it be lost, removed or separated.
Consciousness may be ever present as an attribute of the human organism as a whole but we exist as a plurality dominated by our lower nature the chaos of which denies consciousness. Why cut your legs off to serve your head? I maintain that human meaning and purpose can only be actualized by the head heart and body functioning as a harmonious whole. I believe this is only possible through healing the heart serving to reconcile the head and body furthering the vertical evolutionary direction of being.
I also think though that we shouldn’t let the majority give a bad name to the few. There are some very open minds on RDF also, who are very capable of meaningful and positive communication, in spite of differences. There are even many Buddhists over there, so right speech is not a totally alien concept.
I agree. We can have our differences but nastiness is unnecessary. What happens is that posters create group condemnation which must feel good in numbers but doesn't lead to anything.

You are helping me to realize that the essential difference between open minded atheists and believers isn't the existence of God but rather what is Man. Is what we call our consciousness the highest form of consciousness? If it isn't what is? It seem more apparent that the more this question can be explored, the more, higher consciousness if it does exist will become more evident. does that make sense?
My own attitude is that you only become a better player by playing stronger opponents – therefore, for me, a site composed mainly of highly intelligent and extremely well-read materialists who viciously disagree with me is a blessing.


This is true in chess for example. But the study of ontology requires an attitude of humility. In chess we battle over what we know. The study of ontology begins with admitting what we don't know as Socrates did.

What could allow RDF to serve the transition from arguing what we know to the experience of what we don't know?
Perhaps not so different from what you are saying, I claim that, as long as there is an identification with any object, whether it be the ego, or the minimiser of the ego, we are moving further from the subject, or the self.


Simone Weil gives this profound description of "attention." It indicates a conscious separation between the observer and observed even though a person receives the impressions of the observed. Does this resonate with you at all?
"Attention consists of suspending our thought, leaving it detached, empty and ready to be penetrated by the object. It means holding in our minds, within reach of this thought, but on a lower level and not in contact with it, the diverse knowledge we have acquired which we are forced to make use of. Above all our thought should be empty, waiting, not seeking anything, but ready to receive in its naked truth the object which is to penetrate it." Simone Weil
So, I guess I can’t really answer the original question – how we can remember parts of a plurality and unite them – because I believe, in reality, there are no parts, only the illusion that there are.
Do you believe that fractions exist in math? ONE is unity. Yet it can be divided into halves, quarters, eights and so on. Each of these fractions, a half for example could also be considered a whole only of a lesser degree then the whole of it arising. Yet it can be divided into fractions.

Do lawful mathematical fractions have a basis in reality or are they only a measure of our imagination?

Do you respond to cosmological art? For example, take this classic by Aivazovsky called "Chaos" The Creation of the world. It depicts the first days as described in Genesis. Do you sense its levels?
Man would like to be an egoist and cannot. This is the most striking characteristic of his wretchedness and the source of his greatness." Simone Weil....Gravity and Grace

Thuse
Posts: 34
Joined: October 4th, 2009, 3:16 am

Post by Thuse » January 3rd, 2010, 6:15 pm

Hey Nick and Happy 2010.
Nick_A wrote:Hi Thuse

One thing that became abundantly clear over the holidays is that in the eternal struggle between man and egg nog, that demonic liquid concoction is a truly formidable foe and not to be taken lightly.
Ah, we don’t have any egg nog this side of the pond. Sounds like we’re not missing out too much though. Although, as they always say: whatever doesn’t kill you…
There is an old expression that the higher can understand the lower but the lower cannot understand the higher. If true any genuine teacher student relationship would have to be based on this truism. This is why rather then trying to categorize those like Simone I try to be open to ponder what they bring.
Although, you are categorising her, as “higher”.

But yes, I agree that it is better to try to see past mental categorisations, whether positive or negative, but investigate ideas for ourselves independent of our personal conceptions of their source.
I must be giving the wrong impression. People like Simone expect one to struggle to experience truth. The last thing either she or I would want is practicing blind belief. It is not blind belief to be open to the experiences of those that I know transcend me in intellect and heart. It is just useful humility.
Sure, I didn’t mean to imply you are blindly believing anything.

Your perspective is primarily built from your experience, as you state. Your belief or confidence in Weil is similarly built from experience also. This is perfectly reasonable.

What is problematic, at least to me, is that you arrive at a set of conclusions that are not related to either experience or Weil, but you seem to be associating them for some reason.

What I perceive as problematic is your view is that, if anyone poses any kind of opposition to your beliefs or perspective, your understanding is that it is simply because they are not open in the way that you are, or that they are not of such a “higher” class as you. Effectively of course your definition of what constitutes somebody as having a “lower” understanding than you is if they do not agree with you.

I simply think that it is feasible that somebody may exist that has a deeper insight than you currently have. Hypothetically, this person may not deny your experiences or current conclusions; just see them from a different perspective. However, as they would nevertheless disagree with you, you would therefore class them as “lower” to you as a result. However, in this hypothetical case, this would be an error.

With this in mind, it is possible that having the attitude that any differing viewpoint to your own is due to ignorance may, ironically, actually prevent you from being open to certain things in the future, should this be the case.

So, surely it is much more humble and useful not to assume this line of thinking, but instead simply investigate without judgment in all cases.
Nevertheless, whether I would be right or wrong in my dismissal of this object’s existence, my methodology can no longer be called “empirical” i.e. scientific, if I could not prove this. For it to be empirical, I would be forced to abandon my entire notions regarding intrinsic existence etc. pending further data.
I agree but at the same time there are certain things we cannot prove or disprove but gradually have to open to.
I agree. However, we do not choose what can and cannot be disproved/proved.

I think it is a mistake to class together those things that cannot be proved/disproved at all, and those things that have been disproved to empirical/logical satisfaction, but may be hypothetically explained in another way.

Here, you also seem to be equating being “open” with not taking a negative or passive belief in something you believe in the affirmative. However, in other situations, even you do not practise this.

In any case, this is not really what “open” means – not even in the sense that we have been using it.

This is kind of what I was getting at before – I am really not trying to be critical, but you are just defining other people with different views as “closed” pretty arbitrarily, to the point that you do not even fit your own definition of “open” anymore. I just don’t think this is a very beneficial way of thinking, in my opinion.
For me a miracle for example is just the lawful conscious or accidental manifestation into a lower cosmos of the norm of a higher cosmos. Where the virgin birth for example would be impossible to logically explain without cosmology, this descent of being, of unity into diversity manifesting in a physical form is quite reasonable. The point is that we don't know but I believe it to be worthwhile remaining open to the question.
Therefore, by these definition and terms, if I do not ponder the possibility that “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”, or “The Odyssey”, are both true, then I am closed and ignorant, since there is exactly equal affirmative evidence for these being true (they are in a book).

If you would not consider me closed because of this, then you cannot fairly consider me closed if I do not constantly consider the virgin births in various cultures.
Objective quality refers to the vertical quality of a moment while science connects the effects of laws connecting before and after. There is no way for science to measure NOW. It requires the consciousness of objective thought.

I don't really know of a better term that connects vertical levels of reality. I read once where someone asked when objective reason begins. The reply was that objective thought begins when subjective thought ends, It is a hard concept to explain.
Traditionally, the ending of subjective thought ends with a kind of unfiltered direct experiencing, rather than a new kind of mental process, or objective thought.

It seems you are not saying this, but that objective thought is another kind of thought process altogether.

The problem would be that, in order to experience the “NOW” or the present moment, one needs to not experience any kind of mental activity. So, if one is experiencing objective thought, one is not experiencing the “NOW”.

If one can experience the “NOW”, then during that experiencing no thought can take place. When the thought takes place, it comes after the fact, just like any other kind of mental activity.

So, it is still not clear why you feel your way of thinking is superior or more objective than any others.

There is also the very simple point that – are you experiencing this? If you are experiencing it, then it is not objective, but subjective. The word “subjective” means “referring to a subject”. The word “objective” means “referring to an object”. It still seems that you are talking about an experience, therefore, not something objective. Remember that an experience is never objective.
If the linear measure of time for us exists as a whole within NOW, it means that both the past and future exists in eternity and beyond our conscious limitations. All that is existing could then be experienced as an attribute of higher consciousness.
I agree.
In this sense, when people claim that their experiences have enabled them to do such and such, it is not these claims themselves that interest me, but the extent to which they are able to actual demonstrate this in practice.
I agree and also why I take Plato's belief in objective morality as resonable. Objective morality is simply the result of objective experience that we deny ourselves through preconception.
Perhaps. Perhaps though, even the very distinctions between objective and subjective are themselves eventually transcended.

If this were true, it would be unwise to become attached to any dualistic notions whatsoever.
For me, plurality and conflict are negatives, and when put together do not create something positive i.e. disharmony + disharmony = disharmony.
Lacking consciousness it must happen. However If the body demands its habitual needs and the head strives for consciousness, this is an essential opposition and disharmony. But when consciously experienced they can be reconciled by the heart which attracts the help of the spirit. The heart of man having opened attracts a higher conscious aspect of the head which is a positive.
Yet, to me, the most important question is the one you are not asking: who actually is it that seeks this harmony?

For now, we can very simply just call it the seeker that is doing the seeking (naturally).

However, just from this very simple and self-evident observation, there is the creation of conflict already – between what the seeker wants/seeks (harmony, unification) and what the intellect assesses to be the case (disharmony, plurality).

Hence, the very act of trying to create harmony creates further disharmony.

We cannot achieve this goal this way, for the very existence of the goal creates an imbalance between what is desired and what is (or what is perceived to be, it doesn’t really matter).

We can see then that, whatever you do, you will only create more conflict, disharmony and imbalance. This is why Buddhists call this the wheel of Samsara – it is circular, cyclical, a loop. You cannot get out of it from within it, this is the whole point. The more energy you direct towards it simply pushes it round faster.

Instead, the only way to stop a cycle is to first locate its source. Until the causes and conditions of a problem are first understood, one cannot begin to solve it.
If it is “ever-present” like this, then logically it cannot be achieved, realised, gained or attained in any sense. Nor can it be lost, removed or separated.
Consciousness may be ever present as an attribute of the human organism as a whole but we exist as a plurality dominated by our lower nature the chaos of which denies consciousness.
The chaos of our lower nature – where does this arise? In our experience, i.e., consciousness.

So, consciousness is still there, whether there is chaos, peace, conflict, harmony, whatever. It all arises in consciousness. Even the most ignorant, closed-minded wretched individual must possess consciousness, where all this arises.

This is a very simplistic, yet self-evident fact - that awareness is necessary for any and all experience. Yet, this is also why it is often missed.

I believe we all must investigate this and what it might mean, for ourselves.

As above, I believe that the priority is not to speculate on the how, but first and foremost assess the who and the why. If we do not know to whom a problem refers, and we do not know why it has arisen, we cannot know how to solve it.
Why cut your legs off to serve your head? I maintain that human meaning and purpose can only be actualized by the head heart and body functioning as a harmonious whole. I believe this is only possible through healing the heart serving to reconcile the head and body furthering the vertical evolutionary direction of being.
Why pull yourself up by your bootstraps?

We want one thing – harmony.

We accept another thing is the case – disharmony.

The very act of trying to change what is equals further disharmony, necessarily. There is a disharmony between what we want and what is the case, this is a very simple observation.

So, by trying to heal the heart and so on, you can only create more disharmony, never harmony.

Again, personally, I would put forward only the option that you are asking the wrong questions –not “how”, but “who”.

Rather than hypothesise on the solution, first, assess the precise nature of the problem. The problem is within. So, that is where we must look.

Just another possibility to ponder.
Is what we call our consciousness the highest form of consciousness? If it isn't what is? It seem more apparent that the more this question can be explored, the more, higher consciousness if it does exist will become more evident. does that make sense?
Sure, that makes perfect sense. I think these are really important questions also.

My take on it would be that, first, I would question the very notion of a “form of consciousness”, as I feel this is absolutely fundamental.

Whether during normal, waking consciousness, or “altered states” such as drunkenness or whatever, when we actually examine our consciousness, we find right away that we cannot define its shape, location, smell, size, limit, or in fact any identifiable objective qualities whatsoever.

So, if something has no discernible attributes, then we cannot observe any change in its form. If there is nothing there that we can see a point A, then at point B we cannot look and know if its form has changed.

Therefore, literally, consciousness cannot change form at all, as it has no form originally that we can identify. This is something we can all verify, at any moment.

The original question effectively asks whether our experience is normally limited, and whether these limits can be transcended. However, we have just acknowledged that consciousness has no identifiable qualities, such that the quality of being “limited” or “unlimited” cannot apply to it.

Immediately then, we can already deduce necessarily that in whatever sense consciousness “changes” is actually a change of the forms within consciousness, or the mental, experienced objects - never the basic awareness itself.

If the basic awareness cannot be said to change in any sense, as no qualities to which the term “change” could apply can be identified, then for all intensive purposes, it is changeless.

Logically then, we can deduce from this that, whatever “higher” experiences or states of mind exist, they cannot require a different kind of awareness that normally persists in everyday experience, since no qualities are there that can be said to be different in either case.

I don’t want to stray of topic or go on too long, so I’ll leave it there for now. What I am essentially getting at is that the question of “higher forms of consciousness” can surely only be asked when we have first investigated and understood what consciousness, the subject of the question, actually is.

Peace,

Thuse.

Nick_A
Posts: 2391
Joined: April 19th, 2009, 11:45 pm

Post by Nick_A » January 7th, 2010, 12:47 am

Hi Thuse
Although, you are categorising her, as “higher”.

But yes, I agree that it is better to try to see past mental categorisations, whether positive or negative, but investigate ideas for ourselves independent of our personal conceptions of their source.
What is so wrong about admitting her understanding as far greater than mine? I admit that Kasparov is a far better chess player then me. Though we've never played I know by looking at his games and his analysis that his understanding is far greater. It is the same with Simone accept that there is no checkmate. It is up to us to inwardly verify. Reading over my books and knowing her history It is clear to me that I learn ideas from her much like I would learn chess chess from Kasparov. So she's better than me. I don't see it as anything to be ashamed of.
I simply think that it is feasible that somebody may exist that has a deeper insight than you currently have. Hypothetically, this person may not deny your experiences or current conclusions; just see them from a different perspective. However, as they would nevertheless disagree with you, you would therefore class them as “lower” to you as a result. However, in this hypothetical case, this would be an error.

With this in mind, it is possible that having the attitude that any differing viewpoint to your own is due to ignorance may, ironically, actually prevent you from being open to certain things in the future, should this be the case.

So, surely it is much more humble and useful not to assume this line of thinking, but instead simply investigate without judgment in all cases.
I agree. I've discovered cosmology and am invited to verify it as it exists in me as part of personally coming to grips with the human condition. I believe it to be true and if Socrates and Jesus amongst others are right, the world struggles against it.

Of course I may be wrong but what is wrong with verifying a hypothesis even though it is a minority view?

Buddha may offer a minority insulting view as to the human condition but even though people may be insulted and believe they are god, if person is attracted to Buddhism they will seek to verify it.
Behold this painted body, a body full of wounds, put together, diseased, and full of many thoughts in which there is neither permanence nor stability. This body is worn out, a nest of diseases and very frail. This heap of corruption breaks in pieces, life indeed ends in death. What delight is there for him who sees these white bones like gourds cast away in the autumn? Of the bones a citadel is made, plastered over with flesh and blood, and in it dwell old age and death, pride and deceit. (Dhammapada 147-150)
Some will say Buddha never went to Harvard so doesn't understand what we've come to know as to the greatness of man. But suppose Buddha and Simone are right as to the wretchedness of the human condition and people as a whole resist being open to the experience of it at the cost of collective mutual suffering, then what?
This is kind of what I was getting at before – I am really not trying to be critical, but you are just defining other people with different views as “closed” pretty arbitrarily, to the point that you do not even fit your own definition of “open” anymore. I just don’t think this is a very beneficial way of thinking, in my opinion.


A person is closed IMO when they are not open to the conscious impartial experience of the human condition. Of course our reactions begin from societal conditioning forcing our personality to be closed. So somehow the personality must be convinced to take second place and allow the inner man to be nourished. I don't always succeed but at least I try to be open at the expense of my ego that seeks to remain closed.
If you would not consider me closed because of this, then you cannot fairly consider me closed if I do not constantly consider the virgin births in various cultures.
You say this because you don't discriminate between fantasy and a miracle. A flying teapot is one thing and the virgin birth is another. I cannot explain the theory and mathematics of a flying teapot but I can with the virgin birth making it a possibility. So for me we can experience either fantasy or a miracle. The question then is how to become able to discriminate between them.

So, it is still not clear why you feel your way of thinking is superior or more objective than any others.
There is also the very simple point that – are you experiencing this? If you are experiencing it, then it is not objective, but subjective. The word “subjective” means “referring to a subject”. The word “objective” means “referring to an object”. It still seems that you are talking about an experience, therefore, not something objective. Remember that an experience is never objective.


This is not easy to explain. Subjective associative thought seeks to reconcile yes and no. Our thought is dual in this way and we compare our appreciations of yes and no. We determine it to be right once we make a decision between yes and no in our intellect.

Objective thought is vertical affirmation so has no denying side. Pure affirmation is timeless and exists in NOW. That is why consciousness is so difficult to appreciate. We try to do so from dualistic associative thought which is in time and cannot be done.

Associative thought is reactive consciousness. It doesn't require self awareness but only the ability to react. Human beings are capable of a quality of consciousness that can affirm our lower reactive nature and at the same time allow what is observing to be in turn observed by higher more inclusive consciousness. It is like a tree being observed by the inclusiveness of the forest which in turn is recognized by the inclusiveness of the land mass. Of course this is not conscious but I'm trying to describe what I mean by consciousness being defined as a level of inclusion.

There is no denial in this. The experience of levels of reality is pure affirmation. Denial begins when we are in our more common states and our horned companion helps us to dualistically interpret vertical affirmation.
Yet, to me, the most important question is the one you are not asking: who actually is it that seeks this harmony?


Initially it is a facet of our personality. However the results of these efforts can serve to nourish our inner life or the unique essence we are born with allowing it to grow. then our questions deepen and evolve.
Hence, the very act of trying to create harmony creates further disharmony.


That is not what I am suggesting. we can consciously strive for presence or the foundation that makes inner harmony possible.
We can see then that, whatever you do, you will only create more conflict, disharmony and imbalance. This is why Buddhists call this the wheel of Samsara – it is circular, cyclical, a loop. You cannot get out of it from within it, this is the whole point. The more energy you direct towards it simply pushes it round faster.


The wheel of samsara exists for us because of our blind reaction and the tendency towards imagination and escapism to take the place of consciousness assuring that the wheel continues. Conscious efforts continue to be possible when we are open to experience what keeps us captive to the wheel. This is far from pleasant but necessary if the goal is inner freedom to become what we are.

"Only the descent into the hell of self-knowledge can pave the way to godliness." -Immanuel Kant
The chaos of our lower nature – where does this arise? In our experience, i.e., consciousness.


Our lower nature consists of three primary divisions: head, heart, and body. If we were balanced, head consciousness would rule and emotion would provide the force for the will necessary for the body to serve the head.

The chaos of our lower nature taken as a whole has instead allowed the body to rule, the emotions to be caught up in desire as opposed to will and all sorts of self justification including the dominance of pride and vanity over genuine self knowledge, and reactive associative thought that though uselful in its place, denies the consciousness necessary for "presence."
As above, I believe that the priority is not to speculate on the how, but first and foremost assess the who and the why. If we do not know to whom a problem refers, and we do not know why it has arisen, we cannot know how to solve it.
I agree. Both questions are answered for me through cosmology and the distinction between man's mechanical necessity and potential for becoming a conscious necessity. It is up to me to verify it through self knowledge.

Let the light in

Nick
Man would like to be an egoist and cannot. This is the most striking characteristic of his wretchedness and the source of his greatness." Simone Weil....Gravity and Grace

Thuse
Posts: 34
Joined: October 4th, 2009, 3:16 am

Post by Thuse » January 10th, 2010, 8:16 pm

Hey Nick
Nick_A wrote:Hi Thuse
Although, you are categorising her, as “higher”.

But yes, I agree that it is better to try to see past mental categorisations, whether positive or negative, but investigate ideas for ourselves independent of our personal conceptions of their source.
What is so wrong about admitting her understanding as far greater than mine?
Perhaps my point was not clear. In my opinion, it is better to suspend personal judgment in order to assess things with clarity of mind. Information should be investigated by virtue of itself, instead of judging them only with reference to our a priori opinions of its source.
I simply think that it is feasible that somebody may exist that has a deeper insight than you currently have. Hypothetically, this person may not deny your experiences or current conclusions; just see them from a different perspective. However, as they would nevertheless disagree with you, you would therefore class them as “lower” to you as a result. However, in this hypothetical case, this would be an error.

With this in mind, it is possible that having the attitude that any differing viewpoint to your own is due to ignorance may, ironically, actually prevent you from being open to certain things in the future, should this be the case.

So, surely it is much more humble and useful not to assume this line of thinking, but instead simply investigate without judgment in all cases.
I agree.
If you agree, then it is strange that you choose to act in contrast to this.

If we agree with one action, but do another, this is surely not helpful if we wish to rid ourselves of disharmony.
I've discovered cosmology and am invited to verify it as it exists in me as part of personally coming to grips with the human condition.
Yes, I realise this is what you believe.

I feel only that you should try to understand that this method and these ideas are not sufficient for others, like myself. This is because I seek “truth”, where I am defining truth as something that is both undoubtable and unchanging. Your method cannot provide this.

Your process of verification depends entirely on your experience. As with all subjective experiences, they are both doubtable and transient. Therefore, they cannot ascertain truth, nor represent anything that isn’t constantly changing – if we are using the definition of truth as something both undoubtable (or simply “known”) and constant.

So, in order to find something persisting and undoubtable (i.e. truth), experiences and what you call “verifying cosmology” is of no value in this regard.
Of course I may be wrong but what is wrong with verifying a hypothesis even though it is a minority view?
There is nothing wrong with that, but this is not what you are doing.

You often redefine words as you see fit – such as “verify”, “cosmology”, “empiricism”, “objective” and so on.

This choice of action, to use words already in circulation to refer to different things than they usually mean, create problems when you ask questions such as this, which implies that verifying a hypothesis in the normal sense has anything to do with “verifying cosmology”. The two notions are not really related.

Your definition of verification, which is effectively whether or not you “feel” something to be true, is not the same process that is called verification in all other instances.

In your process, nothing is being tested, no instruments are being used, no data pool is being collected, no comparative studies are being done, no repeated experiments exist, no variables nor constants are being isolated, no novel predications are being made, no independent verification is attempted, no publicly accessible aspects are involved in any way and no mechanism to remove personal biases, prejudices or external influences are in place.

All of these things must be necessarily covered in what is otherwise normally defined as “objectively and empirically verifying a hypothesis”. It may be argued that you cover a few of these things; however, all are required.

Your concept of verification basically means that you have a belief, X, you observe the world’s behaviour, Y, and you feel that belief X accounts for behaviour Y. This is fine, and may be correct, but has nothing to do with empiricism, verification or any of that, even though you are using these terms. There is much more to empiricism, objectivity and verification than just induction (see the above list).

These are simply how these words, terms and practises are defined, independently of our opinions about them. You are free to research all of these things for yourself, of course.

In any case, you choose to continue to call it “verification”. So, it creates problems when you say, “but what is wrong with verifying…being objective…testing a hypothesis…” etc. There is nothing wrong with these things, but they aren’t what you are doing, you are just calling them these things.

There is only something “wrong” with your current method if your aim is to establish truth, above all else. If this is your aim, then this method would be of extremely limited value. If these hypotheses are correct, we should be able to verify them in (all) other ways.

However, all other ways do not verify, but often falsify, them. Someone seeking truth, noting this, would surely find this all very suspect.

You may choice to accept this or reject it and continue to claim that the scientific community is conspiring against you personally because they are offended by your beliefs. Whichever choice you make, the primary problem will remain.

This is simply that if, hypothetically, all your beliefs and ideas were false, you would have absolutely no way of knowing this.

In other words, hypothetically, if in reality, everything you are claiming is false, all your results and “verifications” would be exactly the same. This is the difference between, and what is “wrong” with, you method compared with other methods. Whether you are absolutely right, or absolutely wrong, your results and conclusions would be exactly the same. This is really the essence of why your method is very problematic.
Buddha may offer a minority insulting view as to the human condition but even though people may be insulted and believe they are god, if person is attracted to Buddhism they will seek to verify it.
Yes – however, the two cases are completely different.

Firstly, the Buddha urged people not to cling to nor verify through their experience, which he claimed was transient and without substance (“sunya”). Your interpretation of your subjective experience, however, is the basis for everything you believe. So you part ways very early.

Secondly, many of those ideas that the Buddha expressed that are scientific hypotheses have been tested, and have been verified (e.g. interdependence, impermanence, lack of persisting essence in all things etc.). However, the ideas that you express that are scientific hypotheses have also been tested, but falsified.

Of course, you feel that this is because scientists and other seekers are insulted by your minority view and that a possibly proverbial devil has persuaded them to make all of this up. Perhaps, but this is a third difference. When you encounter problems, you choose to “shoot the messenger”, so to speak. The Buddha, however, responded to questioning by reasoning and presenting evidence to the questioner. He also encouraged questioning, while you claim that those who question you do so to a "horned companion". This is not related to what is meant by the process of verification.

Hence, “verification” to the Buddha and your definition of “verification” are simply too different to be compared meaningfully. So, really, there is no resemblance between the two views.

I detect a hint of disdain towards those who “believe they are god” (although I am sure you stated you were a Panentheist?). Presumably, based on your philosophy, you would consider the notion of one who believes they are god as arrogant or otherwise presumptive. Consider the thoughts of Rumi, who was commenting on the Sufi mystic Mansur al-Hallaj’s proclamation, “I am god”:

“People imagine that it is a presumptive claim, whereas it is really a presumptive claim to say "I am the slave of God"; and "I am God" is an expression of great humility. The man who says "I am the slave of God" affirms two existences, his own and God's, but he that says "I am God" has made himself non-existent and has given himself up and says "I am God," that is, "I am naught, He is all; there is no being but God's." This is the extreme of humility and self-abasement.”

Was Rumi also a man with an understanding “far greater” than yourself?
Behold this painted body, a body full of wounds, put together, diseased, and full of many thoughts in which there is neither permanence nor stability. This body is worn out, a nest of diseases and very frail. This heap of corruption breaks in pieces, life indeed ends in death. What delight is there for him who sees these white bones like gourds cast away in the autumn? Of the bones a citadel is made, plastered over with flesh and blood, and in it dwell old age and death, pride and deceit. (Dhammapada 147-150)
Some will say Buddha never went to Harvard so doesn't understand what we've come to know as to the greatness of man. But suppose Buddha and Simone are right as to the wretchedness of the human condition and people as a whole resist being open to the experience of it at the cost of collective mutual suffering, then what?
Then, as I believe the Buddha would suggest, we must not become attached to things that are going to rot, decay and fade away. Attaching to something constant, within something impermanent, is literally attaching to something that doesn’t exist – like a hand trying to grab smoke. What you may not have noted is that experience is included in this.

Contrary to the Buddha’s words, you are looking to find something stable and permanent from experience, whether objective or subjective, and verify various claims through it i.e. attain something else stable and permanent, namely truth. However, the Buddha is saying that we must not become attached to the transient aspects of reality, such as experience, as they bring only suffering.

So, it does not seem you have fully comprehended his words here.
If you would not consider me closed because of this, then you cannot fairly consider me closed if I do not constantly consider the virgin births in various cultures.
You say this because you don't discriminate between fantasy and a miracle. A flying teapot is one thing and the virgin birth is another. I cannot explain the theory and mathematics of a flying teapot but I can with the virgin birth making it a possibility. So for me we can experience either fantasy or a miracle. The question then is how to become able to discriminate between them.
If there is no reason why one should discriminate between the two, then one should not be expected to. There are actually more reasons to consider a flying teapot, as it doesn’t violate any laws of physics or biology, than to consider the virgin birth, as it violates many. So the argument doesn’t make too much sense.

That you can imagine a possible situation where said phenomena could arise, does not mean anything unless you can first prove why that situation would or is arising. Otherwise, there is nothing conceivable that could not be explained in this way.

So, to again place the problem onto others rather than reflecting on its source is not helpful. If you (or anyone) can provide any reason why something like this should be considered, then we will be happy to consider it. Until then, the question is not how to discriminate between them, but why we should at all.
Objective thought is vertical affirmation so has no denying side. Pure affirmation is timeless and exists in NOW. That is why consciousness is so difficult to appreciate. We try to do so from dualistic associative thought which is in time and cannot be done.
Another perspective is that all thought is dualistic, and associative.

The first thought, the primary thought, is “I am”. It is even necessary for thinking itself, as in, “I am thinking”.

By virtue of “I am”, the thought, “I am not” arises by relation. In order for, “I am” to exist at all, “I am not” must exist, and vice versa.

“Objective thought [as] vertical affirmation” is also dualistic. By it existing, “subjective thought [as] horizontal negation” must exist, even if it is only as its negation.

The very fact that thought takes places, necessarily creates somewhere where thought is not taking place (duality) and they exist precisely in relation to one another (association).

Hence, duality is necessary as long as there is thinking at all, therefore, all thought is dualistic, and associative.

I would claim that when people talk of “the ending of subjective thought”, they are not talking about a new kind of thought process. I think this is an important point, and why we should resist speculating or intellectualising about what they mean, but try to investigate it ourselves.
Associative thought is reactive consciousness. It doesn't require self awareness but only the ability to react. Human beings are capable of a quality of consciousness that can affirm our lower reactive nature and at the same time allow what is observing to be in turn observed by higher more inclusive consciousness. It is like a tree being observed by the inclusiveness of the forest which in turn is recognized by the inclusiveness of the land mass. Of course this is not conscious but I'm trying to describe what I mean by consciousness being defined as a level of inclusion.
Sure, this inclusivity of consciousness is what I was referring to earlier. I would claim that that the next part of this process is to identify the constant, the thing that is the same in all layers of inclusivity, rather than take the increasing levels to be the end purpose of this process.
There is no denial in this. The experience of levels of reality is pure affirmation. Denial begins when we are in our more common states and our horned companion helps us to dualistically interpret vertical affirmation.
So, the only reason people ever question you is because satan (whether symbolic or otherwise) persuaded them to do it.

I’m gonna go ahead and suggest that you might want to, just maybe, have a bit more of a think about that one.
Yet, to me, the most important question is the one you are not asking: who actually is it that seeks this harmony?


Initially it is a facet of our personality. However the results of these efforts can serve to nourish our inner life or the unique essence we are born with allowing it to grow. then our questions deepen and evolve.
I am sure your questions are much deeper and more evolved than mine. You’ll just have to try your best to humour me for now if that’s okay.

So, we have arrived at an answer: it is a facet of our personality.

Remember, our aim is self-knowledge. Immediately then, from our answer we know it is not the self. The self is the subject; “a facet of our personality” is an object.

We know that, simply because we observe this “facet of our personality”, that it is not us, but an object of mind: a thought.

So, for you, as you state above, your next question is: what is the best way to do the bidding of a thought?

I would argue that doing the bidding of a thought is not virtuous. Instead, I would claim that we must go deeper into the investigation.

For me then, the question would become: who is the one who observes this thought? rather than your question of how best to appease it.
Hence, the very act of trying to create harmony creates further disharmony.


That is not what I am suggesting. we can consciously strive for presence or the foundation that makes inner harmony possible.
I know this is not what you are suggesting.

It is the very act of striving for harmony that creates disharmony.

When you strive for one state of things, X, as oppose to another state of things, not-X, you are creating disharmony.

There is necessarily disharmony between X and not-X. Harmony would be when they are not in conflict. They are in conflict. Therefore, there is not harmony.

So, there is no logical way that you can create harmony by creating more disharmony.
We can see then that, whatever you do, you will only create more conflict, disharmony and imbalance. This is why Buddhists call this the wheel of Samsara – it is circular, cyclical, a loop. You cannot get out of it from within it, this is the whole point. The more energy you direct towards it simply pushes it round faster.


The wheel of samsara exists for us because of our blind reaction and the tendency towards imagination and escapism to take the place of consciousness assuring that the wheel continues.
Reaction – this is the key word.

This striving is a reaction to what you assess as a disharmonious situation.

So, you reaction is the direct effect of a disharmonious state, which is the cause.

“For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction”.

You entire striving is caused by conflict. It is an action that is a reaction, or what is called “karma” in Indian philosophy. This process of successive reaction is called the “wheel of karma”. This is not coincidence, but named because it is “karma” that drives the “wheel”. As long as you are reacting, the wheel keeps turning. You are reacting, therefore, your wheel keeps turning.

As you acknowledge: you are a disharmonious being, acting as a response to disharmony, with disharmony as a means, thinking you will achieve harmony. Do you see what is wrong with this equation?
The chaos of our lower nature – where does this arise? In our experience, i.e., consciousness.


Our lower nature consists of three primary divisions: head, heart, and body. If we were balanced, head consciousness would rule and emotion would provide the force for the will necessary for the body to serve the head.

The chaos of our lower nature taken as a whole has instead allowed the body to rule, the emotions to be caught up in desire as opposed to will and all sorts of self justification including the dominance of pride and vanity over genuine self knowledge, and reactive associative thought that though uselful in its place, denies the consciousness necessary for "presence."
What I am trying to point out is just that all of this arises in your awareness.

According to you, presence comes and goes, balance comes and goes, chaos comes and goes and so on. Okay, that is all fine.

We are seeking self-knowledge. Knowledge of the self – which is the one thing that cannot be lost, even if it is not known. So all these things, that come and go, are not the self, which cannot come and go. Do you understand what I mean by this? You cannot lose yourself, wherever you go.

So anything that is coming and going, anything that arises and ceases, is not the self. The self cannot be something that arises. So, if somebody is seeking self-knowledge, the nature of how certain things come and go are not of any value.

What is more is that if somebody seeks stability in something that is coming and going, and thus is unstable by nature, then they are going to be very disappointed.

All of these are ideas about things that come and go, and the ideas themselves are things that come and go. You have an abundance of these ideas and you believe that this is an achievement. Okay. But, for someone seeking self-knowledge, and balance or harmony, more things coming and going are not of any use.

Remember what the Buddha said in the quote you posted above – “Behold this painted body, a body full of wounds, put together, diseased, and full of many thoughts in which there is neither permanence nor stability.” (My bold).

So, do you see that all of these thoughts and ideas, which are impermanent, and the things that they are about, which are impermanent, is precisely what the Buddha is saying we must disregard, and precisely what you were earlier equating with man’s wretchedness?
As above, I believe that the priority is not to speculate on the how, but first and foremost assess the who and the why. If we do not know to whom a problem refers, and we do not know why it has arisen, we cannot know how to solve it.
I agree. Both questions are answered for me through cosmology and the distinction between man's mechanical necessity and potential for becoming a conscious necessity. It is up to me to verify it through self knowledge.
If that is what you believe, then fair enough. Some men seek answers, while some men seek something else. Just another one of those differences between us. I am not as interested in knowledge of objects, but only in knowledge of the subject, the self. So, my aim is not to acquire answers, but to rid myself of them.

Peace,

Thuse.

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