All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Discuss any topics related to metaphysics (the philosophical study of the principles of reality) or epistemology (the philosophical study of knowledge) in this forum.
User avatar
Ginkgo
New Trial Member
Posts: 3
Joined: December 22nd, 2019, 4:41 am

All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Post by Ginkgo » May 10th, 2020, 12:17 pm

When I started thinking about who I was, I realized I had been wrong all along.
I am not an individual. We actually choose to be individuals when we let our conciousness emulate others', and start regarding things as objects so that we can become the subject. But that doesn't harbor any kind of logic, apart from self-preservation, or the search of selfish happiness.
But think about it. The universe is energy, waves, sines and cosines. Everything is the same, even what it doesn't exist. All is relative when we have to pick a subject. Why then don't we just pick none?
I have understood that I am all the universe. Every corner of it, all the past, all the future. Logic takes us apart from this one and only truth, and logic can take us back to it.
So after embracing this idea, I held the concept of unity.
Unity is the path to enlightenment, in the sense that we can finally see who we really are. It means to let go of the intersubjective world we build. It means to use our individual movement that makes the whole to share and bring light.
Nothing will be won or lost, but the beauty of the only absolute truth of self being able to contemplate itself is what keeps the wall of conciousness spinning.

User avatar
h_k_s
Posts: 1217
Joined: November 25th, 2018, 12:09 pm
Favorite Philosopher: Aristotle
Location: Rocky Mountains

Re: All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Post by h_k_s » May 10th, 2020, 5:56 pm

Ginkgo wrote:
May 10th, 2020, 12:17 pm
When I started thinking about who I was, I realized I had been wrong all along.
I am not an individual. We actually choose to be individuals when we let our conciousness emulate others', and start regarding things as objects so that we can become the subject. But that doesn't harbor any kind of logic, apart from self-preservation, or the search of selfish happiness.
But think about it. The universe is energy, waves, sines and cosines. Everything is the same, even what it doesn't exist. All is relative when we have to pick a subject. Why then don't we just pick none?
I have understood that I am all the universe. Every corner of it, all the past, all the future. Logic takes us apart from this one and only truth, and logic can take us back to it.
So after embracing this idea, I held the concept of unity.
Unity is the path to enlightenment, in the sense that we can finally see who we really are. It means to let go of the intersubjective world we build. It means to use our individual movement that makes the whole to share and bring light.
Nothing will be won or lost, but the beauty of the only absolute truth of self being able to contemplate itself is what keeps the wall of conciousness spinning.
Why don't you start over, with cogito ergo sum.

Then take it from there.

And get back to us.

User avatar
Terrapin Station
Posts: 4503
Joined: August 23rd, 2016, 3:00 pm
Favorite Philosopher: Bertrand Russell and WVO Quine
Location: NYC Man

Re: All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Post by Terrapin Station » May 11th, 2020, 11:10 am

Ginkgo wrote:
May 10th, 2020, 12:17 pm
When I started thinking about who I was, I realized I had been wrong all along.
I am not an individual.
What definition of "individual" are you using?

Atla
Posts: 1255
Joined: January 30th, 2018, 1:18 pm

Re: All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Post by Atla » May 11th, 2020, 12:30 pm

Ginkgo wrote:
May 10th, 2020, 12:17 pm
When I started thinking about who I was, I realized I had been wrong all along.
I am not an individual. We actually choose to be individuals when we let our conciousness emulate others', and start regarding things as objects so that we can become the subject. But that doesn't harbor any kind of logic, apart from self-preservation, or the search of selfish happiness.
But think about it. The universe is energy, waves, sines and cosines. Everything is the same, even what it doesn't exist. All is relative when we have to pick a subject. Why then don't we just pick none?
I have understood that I am all the universe. Every corner of it, all the past, all the future. Logic takes us apart from this one and only truth, and logic can take us back to it.
So after embracing this idea, I held the concept of unity.
Unity is the path to enlightenment, in the sense that we can finally see who we really are. It means to let go of the intersubjective world we build. It means to use our individual movement that makes the whole to share and bring light.
Nothing will be won or lost, but the beauty of the only absolute truth of self being able to contemplate itself is what keeps the wall of conciousness spinning.
Correct. One has to be a bit careful here though, because that unity is more like just non-separateness, it's not something "extra" either. And all these new realizations are technically still the thoughts of that human, inside that human head, not the entire universe doing the thinking or whatever.

The final stage is when one uses both identifications simultaneously on different levels: deep down one know to be all existence and non existence, but in the everyday life one continues to live as that human individual, with a human ego.

(Or not, the alternatives are usually to go crazy, or to become like a blissful plant, I would advice against those.)

User avatar
Steve3007
Posts: 8240
Joined: June 15th, 2011, 5:53 pm
Favorite Philosopher: Eratosthenes of Cyrene
Location: UK

Re: All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Post by Steve3007 » May 11th, 2020, 1:24 pm

The universe is energy, waves, sines and cosines.
Why do they always pick waves when they want to say something profound about the Universe? Why not, say, the Heaviside step function? I blame the Beach Boys.

User avatar
Terrapin Station
Posts: 4503
Joined: August 23rd, 2016, 3:00 pm
Favorite Philosopher: Bertrand Russell and WVO Quine
Location: NYC Man

Re: All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Post by Terrapin Station » May 11th, 2020, 1:36 pm

Steve3007 wrote:
May 11th, 2020, 1:24 pm
The universe is energy, waves, sines and cosines.
Why do they always pick waves when they want to say something profound about the Universe? Why not, say, the Heaviside step function? I blame the Beach Boys.
What I never get is the attraction to everything being the same, being "one"/"unified" etc.

My suspicion is that it stems from people who see themselves as outsiders in the outcast sense--maybe bullied, maybe incels, etc.--but who want to fit in, who want to belong, etc.--basically, prime candidates for cult recruitment.

I can't figure out why else people would devolve into nonsense like "everything is the same--existence and non-existence, cats and dogs, socks and shoes" etc.

User avatar
Steve3007
Posts: 8240
Joined: June 15th, 2011, 5:53 pm
Favorite Philosopher: Eratosthenes of Cyrene
Location: UK

Re: All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Post by Steve3007 » May 13th, 2020, 5:49 am

Terrapin Station wrote:What I never get is the attraction to everything being the same, being "one"/"unified" etc.
I suspect that there are a variety of different viewpoints that you're covering with this comment, some of which I personally find more interesting than others. You being a nominalist, who has specifically talked about rejecting "real abstracts", I presume one of your objections to most of them is the old "confusing the map with the territory" objection. i.e. mixing up the way we view the world with the way that it ontologically is; reification of abstracts.

Among these viewpoints, there is the desire for a holistic worldview because it is seen as a simple counterweight to what are perceived to be the flaws in Reductionism; i.e. the analysis of a system by considering its parts individually and assuming that the parts either don't influence each other or have simple, well-defined interfaces to each other. I think this is what creation/evolution is vaguely groping towards when he endlessly insists that he doesn't believe anything and that "thee[sic] truth" is simple and easy and that he alone knows it, and everyone else is blinded by their non-child-like knowledge and education. etc. etc.

There is also the simple observation that lots of the phenomena in Nature have very striking similarities and that those similarities can be expressed mathematically. I see nothing wrong with that observation. But I think you tend to balk at things like that because you immediately assume, as soon as something like mathematics is mentioned, that mathematics is being reified. I guess you assume that because you're always looking out for it, due to your strong rejection of "real abstracts".

If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail (my current favourite saying). If you're always on the lookout for people mistakenly reifying abstract concepts, you'll see them doing it everywhere. Clearly, having studied philosophy for a long time, you have a lot more than a "hammer". You have a large and varied toolkit, no doubt. But the "hammer" ( by which I mean the objection to the perceived reification of abstract concepts) seems to be your favourite.

User avatar
Greta
Site Admin
Posts: 9613
Joined: December 16th, 2013, 9:05 pm

Re: All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Post by Greta » May 13th, 2020, 8:06 am

There is no error in seeing separation, just as there is no error is seeing unity.

We are obviously at once animals, collections of atoms and molecules, colonies of cells and microbes, members of families, of subcultures and cultures ... never mind being part of the biosphere, of the Earth, of the solar system, of the Milky Way and Laniakea. Layers within layers, although most can only be appreciated intellectually.

@Steve3007 Re: the attraction of waves and vibrations, it's because they are felt rather than seen. It's probably not so much the "flowiness" of waves, but a reaction to materialism and the concomitant increasing visual focus in society at the expense of other senses. You cannot see waves, so it's harder to control waves. The ephemeral is being valued ever more by those struggling to "keep up" materially.

Vision is relatively precise and absolute, an ideal tool of rationalism. Strong focus on the visual tends to result in the dismissal of the nebulous. Yet the finest moments in life are almost always infused with subtleties that resist precise technical analysis - or at least any precise analysis would be so complex that the final explanation would be about as meaningful as forty-two. So there is some resistance to rationalism, and "unity" proponents are an expression of this.

User avatar
Steve3007
Posts: 8240
Joined: June 15th, 2011, 5:53 pm
Favorite Philosopher: Eratosthenes of Cyrene
Location: UK

Re: All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Post by Steve3007 » May 13th, 2020, 8:16 am

Greta wrote:We are obviously at once animals, collections of atoms and molecules, colonies of cells and microbes, members of families, of subcultures and cultures ... never mind being part of the biosphere, of the Earth, of the solar system, of the Milky Way and Laniakea. Layers within layers, although most can only be appreciated intellectually.
I think you had some kind of conversation about something like this with Terrapin Station in another topic, although I didn't see the whole conversation.

My understand of Terrapin Station's view is that he wouldn't dispute this but that those examples you give are examples of classifications/classes/groups. And his point seems to have been that classes etc are mental constructs that don't exist in the real world. It seems to be a reaction against the idea of the reality of Platonic forms and "real abstracts".

It's a subject which relates back to what I was trying to start in the "Delete/Create versus Move" topic, which in turn spun off a topic about money in which I was proposing that individual instances of fiat money, being an abstract concept, are literally identical to each other in a way that individual instances of cash - dollar bills - are not. This then relates to the proposition that individual electrons are literally identical; if they are, then are they abstract concepts?; If they are, can they be said to exist? etc. etc.

User avatar
Steve3007
Posts: 8240
Joined: June 15th, 2011, 5:53 pm
Favorite Philosopher: Eratosthenes of Cyrene
Location: UK

Re: All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Post by Steve3007 » May 13th, 2020, 8:21 am

Greta wrote:@Steve3007 Re: the attraction of waves and vibrations, it's because they are felt rather than seen. It's probably not so much the "flowiness" of waves, but a reaction to materialism and the concomitant increasing visual focus in society at the expense of other senses. You cannot see waves, so it's harder to control waves. The ephemeral is being valued ever more by those struggling to "keep up" materially.
When you say "material" and "materialism" here are you referring to the notion that nothing exists except matter or to the perceived attachment of some people to material wealth? These seem to me to be two distinct uses.

User avatar
Greta
Site Admin
Posts: 9613
Joined: December 16th, 2013, 9:05 pm

Re: All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Post by Greta » May 13th, 2020, 8:48 am

Steve3007 wrote:
May 13th, 2020, 8:21 am
Greta wrote:@Steve3007 Re: the attraction of waves and vibrations, it's because they are felt rather than seen. It's probably not so much the "flowiness" of waves, but a reaction to materialism and the concomitant increasing visual focus in society at the expense of other senses. You cannot see waves, so it's harder to control waves. The ephemeral is being valued ever more by those struggling to "keep up" materially.
When you say "material" and "materialism" here are you referring to the notion that nothing exists except matter or to the perceived attachment of some people to material wealth? These seem to me to be two distinct uses.
I don't think most "wave proponents" will much differentiate between them. It's all godless mammon, so to speak.

Still, while philosophical materialism obviously does not necessarily result in social materialism, it is necessary for it. We can safely count wealthy "spiritual" people who exhort the naive to save their souls by sending a donation to a PO box address as social materialists.

User avatar
Steve3007
Posts: 8240
Joined: June 15th, 2011, 5:53 pm
Favorite Philosopher: Eratosthenes of Cyrene
Location: UK

Re: All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Post by Steve3007 » May 13th, 2020, 9:03 am

Greta wrote:Still, while philosophical materialism obviously does not necessarily result in social materialism, it is necessary for it. We can safely count wealthy "spiritual" people who exhort the naive to save their souls by sending a donation to a PO box address as social materialists.
The correlation, or otherwise, between philosophical and social materialism. Sounds like another potential spin-off topic! (Probably been done at some point.)

User avatar
Papus79
Posts: 1044
Joined: February 19th, 2017, 6:59 pm

Re: All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Post by Papus79 » May 13th, 2020, 9:04 am

I tend to go in the opposite direction - that if we're being thrust into the direction of multiplicity and it's clear that we're nested in a structure where destructive competition makes embracing oneness impossible then developing ourselves within that framework to the best of our ability seems like it's the thing to do with what we've been given.

That the lights are even on, that we have locked-in loci of awareness that we can't simply get up and leave, these are mysteries that we may never quite solve although it's likely that our hints will continue to get better and we'll be able to continually rule out what it's not.
People aren't fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, we're fundamentally trying to survive. It's the environment and culture which tells us what that's going to be.

User avatar
Thomyum2
Posts: 183
Joined: June 10th, 2019, 4:21 pm
Favorite Philosopher: Wittgenstein

Re: All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Post by Thomyum2 » May 13th, 2020, 10:34 am

Greta wrote:
May 13th, 2020, 8:06 am
Re: the attraction of waves and vibrations, it's because they are felt rather than seen. It's probably not so much the "flowiness" of waves, but a reaction to materialism and the concomitant increasing visual focus in society at the expense of other senses. You cannot see waves, so it's harder to control waves. The ephemeral is being valued ever more by those struggling to "keep up" materially.
Yes, I think so too. It has occurred to me at times that there is a parallel between the duality in our understandings of waves and particles in science with that of the distinction in philosophy between substance and attributes. In observing a 'wave' behavior, there is always a presumption of an underlying substance - the thing which is doing the 'waving' - such as water or ether or any other observed thing that has a continuous substantive nature, with the wave being the attribute of that substance. As opposed to particles, which are objects made up of a substance themselves and which then take on attributes as we observe their behavior - their motions within an empty space and their interactions with other objects.

So I think that when we think of reality as being particulate, it naturally leads us to a materialistic viewpoint since we see the substance, that which is 'real', as being within the object. Whereas thinking in terms of waves tends to take us to a more idealistic point of view since in our observations we're focused on the attribute - the energy and behavior of the wave itself as being what is 'real' - not the underlying substance which is secondary and presumed to exist in the background. Does that make sense in terms of what you're saying here too?

Greta wrote:
May 13th, 2020, 8:06 am
Vision is relatively precise and absolute, an ideal tool of rationalism. Strong focus on the visual tends to result in the dismissal of the nebulous. Yet the finest moments in life are almost always infused with subtleties that resist precise technical analysis - or at least any precise analysis would be so complex that the final explanation would be about as meaningful as forty-two. So there is some resistance to rationalism, and "unity" proponents are an expression of this.
I think you make an interesting point here. I recently came across a passage in Iris Murdoch's book Metaphysics as a Guide to Morals where she brings up a similar idea in the context of discussing Marin Buber's thought:
I quote here a passage where Buber tells us that, influenced by Plato, European philosophy has tended to picture spirituality as a looking upward, rather than as a movement or making of contact here below. 'The Greeks established the hegemony of sight over the other senses, thus making the optical world into the world, into which the data of the other senses are now to be entered.' They also gaven an optical character to philosophy, 'the character of the contemplation of particular objects.... The object of this visual thought is the universal as existence or as a reality higher than existence. Philosophy is grounded on the presupposition that one sees the absolute in universals.'
This really struck me and I haven't had a chance to explore the idea much further, but it makes me consider how much of the way we conceive reality is based on our visual sense, or even how much could the emergence of intelligent life and the development of our thought and way of understanding our universe have depended on the very evolution of the eye. Would we conceive the universe in the same way (or could we conceive it at all) if we had not developed the sense of sight?

And to tie in with the ideas of waves and particles above, I wonder if it is more than just coincidental that it has been in light itself - which as the very thing that our eyes detect to make vision possible - that science has identified this ambivalent nature that has properties of both waves and particles, and that the speed of light also has been identified as a constant and an absolute limit of the speed of motion and of communication, and found to be such a fundamental underlying element in our conception of the material universe.

User avatar
Greta
Site Admin
Posts: 9613
Joined: December 16th, 2013, 9:05 pm

Re: All existence and non existence as the one Absolute

Post by Greta » May 13th, 2020, 5:36 pm

Thomyum2 wrote:
May 13th, 2020, 10:34 am
So I think that when we think of reality as being particulate, it naturally leads us to a materialistic viewpoint since we see the substance, that which is 'real', as being within the object. Whereas thinking in terms of waves tends to take us to a more idealistic point of view since in our observations we're focused on the attribute - the energy and behavior of the wave itself as being what is 'real' - not the underlying substance which is secondary and presumed to exist in the background. Does that make sense in terms of what you're saying here too?
Yes, it seems that way. For example, consider how we measure the size of planets. We disregard the atmosphere of rocky planets like Earth and Venus, but count the cloud tops of the giant planets due to the latter's lack of clear separation. We tend to treat the Earth's atmosphere and the life it contains as emanations of the planet rather than part of it, like the body odour and microbial clouds that surround us. I see all these as one entity, "part of the package" so to speak, with planets (and stars) being 4D hyperspheres, slowly and (usually) incompletely turning themselves inside out.

In context, though, I suspect that people with esoteric leanings gravitate towards wave ideas, rather than having their ideas shaped by their focus on waves.

Post Reply