Line in the Sand?

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rachMiel
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Line in the Sand?

Post by rachMiel » Fri Jan 09, 2015 11:24 pm

It occurred to me today that take/belief on consciousness defines a kind of "line in the sand" for spiritual explorers.

On the one side is the notion that we arise from an all-encompassing Consciousness. Our bodies-minds are seen as expressions of this Consciousness. Consciousness begets us.

On the other side is the notion that an individual consciousness arises from us. Our bodies-minds are seen as the creators of this consciousness. We beget consciousness.

One's perspective of "what is" changes dramatically, I think, depending on what side of the line you fall on. It's almost like theism vs. atheism.

As with most of these kinds of issues, I'm an agnostic: I don't know which side is right(er). My gut feeling (fwiw) is that we create consciousness, but, once created, our individual consciousnesses connect and become part of a web that is at the same time whole and composed of individuals. So you end up with a kind of universal consciousness, but it's created by individual consciousnesses.

Whatch'you think?
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily ...

randomguy
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Re: Line in the Sand?

Post by randomguy » Sat Jan 10, 2015 12:50 am

Neti neti.
What experience of knowing does not not appear to what you are? This knowing of consciousness one way or the other is in either case an idea floating by. Even the self evident knowing "I am" appears to what you are. How is "us" not just an idea? Fitting the construct of "me" or "us" in comparable relationship to consciousness is a specious pursuit within imagination. It hangs on assumptions, though very convincing ones like 'I am this body'. Mind finds all sorts of evidence for that conclusion. There is the experience of the body. There is experience itself. Is any experience what you are ultimately as in an experience equates to an isolated player from some other rest of reality? Is there a sense of ever-presence? Why play find-the-truth within the transient structures of ideas? Is there really the truth found in doing so? Doesn't doing so result in a temporary experience of satisfaction in a brief marriage of sorts between the abstract overlay of the idea to a perception or memory of reality? Then where does it go? And what is ever-present? Is the truth not 'what is' with or without ideas or with or without ideas strongly identified with? What would an answer add to the grand existence that isn't already there? Doesn't a conclusion to either point of view or any point of view for that matter just go away and there you still are?
Do the yellow-rose petals
tremble and fall
at the rapid's roar?
- Basho

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rachMiel
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Re: Line in the Sand?

Post by rachMiel » Sat Jan 10, 2015 5:01 am

That's some good neti'ing there. ;-)

I realize my opening post is heavily concept-driven. But my main point is less: That here in the relative world, the world in which we all live, and in which this forum resides, one's take on the nature of consciousness can dramatically affect one's path, likelihood to accept this or that teaching, openness/closedness to others' points of view, etc. Hence the "line in the sand" thingie.

> Doesn't a conclusion to either point of view or any point of view for that matter just go away and there you still are?

Conventionally, no. Thoughts/beliefs matter a great deal in the conventional world.

Ultimately ... ? Truth-fully? Above my pay grade.
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coriolis
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Re: Line in the Sand?

Post by coriolis » Sat Jan 10, 2015 4:53 pm

The human mind grasps nothing it cannot chunk together and unchunk in conceptual units. Our minds are digital, episodic, and unit based which is why we can watch a succession of static pictures flashed before us and weave it into a convincing approximation of fluid movement. They say our eyes normally take in information this way too, in snpashots the brain weaves into an apparent continuous narrative for us.

Now in any digital system there are gaps between the conceptual units that can never be accounted for.
Reality, independent of the human mind, is analog.
Processed by the human mind it becomes a digitized approximation of the analog whole.

Conventional reality for humans, where we communicate using thought and language, is an approximation in the human mind of a reality it can never quite grasp because of the way it works.
It's close enough for most of us to get things done but never quite good enough to end dukkha, the nagging sense that something is missing.

In the digitized model something is missing but in the underlying reality it is approximated from nothing ever is.

So coventional reality is good because it works conventially for us.
But it is never quite what it purports to be.
At this point the Madhyamika concept of emptiness comes in to set us free.
Conventional reality is only real in so far as it is conventianally useful and lacks any inherent ontology (dependent arising).
That on which it is based, being forever out of reach of the conceptual abilities of the human mind, is therefore empty ( the gap in the lsliding puzzle that lets all the other pieced get moved in place while it remains just a gap).

It's like the Little Prince said in Antoine de Saint-Exupery's tale:
Whether it is a house, or the stars, or a desert, what makes them beautiful is invisible!
Look deeply inside yourself and try to find yourself.
The ensuing failure is the true finding
---- Wu Hsin

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rachMiel
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Re: Line in the Sand?

Post by rachMiel » Sat Jan 10, 2015 5:17 pm

coriolis wrote:Reality, independent of the human mind, is analog.
By definition, mind cannot know that which is not of mind. So, this statement is either speculation* ... or there is another faculty that can know that which is not of mind. Some would say this faculty is: pure awareness, perhaps in the form of insight. Others would say awareness/insight IS of mind. And there we are, back to that line in the sand. ;-)

* Which is fine; it's great fun sharing stories around the campfire!
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily ...

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coriolis
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Re: Line in the Sand?

Post by coriolis » Sat Jan 10, 2015 7:32 pm

rachMiel wrote: * Which is fine; it's great fun sharing stories around the campfire!
Agreed.
All these grave matters that weigh heavy on us seekers should be seen as such, and we just might be tempted to stop looking long enough to enjoy the fun....and what would happen if that became a habit? :shock:
Look deeply inside yourself and try to find yourself.
The ensuing failure is the true finding
---- Wu Hsin

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rachMiel
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Re: Line in the Sand?

Post by rachMiel » Sat Jan 10, 2015 8:08 pm

Life ... fun? No way ... it's GOTTA be more complicated than that! ;-) :lol: ;-)
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Onceler
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Re: Line in the Sand?

Post by Onceler » Sat Jan 10, 2015 8:47 pm

coriolis wrote:
rachMiel wrote: * Which is fine; it's great fun sharing stories around the campfire!
Agreed.
All these grave matters that weigh heavy on us seekers should be seen as such, and we just might be tempted to stop looking long enough to enjoy the fun....and what would happen if that became a habit? :shock:
Or a hobbit?
Be present, be pleasant.

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ashley72
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Re: Line in the Sand?

Post by ashley72 » Sat Jan 10, 2015 10:51 pm

Rach,

Do you understand what a discontinuity is? .... a jump out of a system into another. In computers the silicon transistors are the hardware which is one system. The other system is the symbolic software which runs on it. Whilst the software is flexible and modifiable, the silicon transistors are fixed and can't be modified.

Another well known discontinuity is the particle versus the wave. Whilst the wave oscillates dynamically, the particle is fixed or at least governed by the wave dynamics.

Think about these ideas in the context of what analogy and metaphor do by mapping from primary domain to target domain and how meaning arises by linking one abstract thing to a more primary thing across different domains (primary => target)

Lastly,think about how self reference arises or feedback loops when a kind of cycling back occurs between the output signal and the input signal.

Is it possible for the particle to modify the wave... or the software to modify the hardware? ... Or are these inviolate levels hidden and unchangably??

Now if consciousness feels like the subject (primary) looking at the object (target). How could self-consciousness arise in a human system (primary looking at its own abstraction) ?

Hint: Neuro-transmitters are like the silicon transistors in a computer. The inviolate or level hidden.
Last edited by ashley72 on Sat Jan 10, 2015 11:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

kafi
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Re: Line in the Sand?

Post by kafi » Sat Jan 10, 2015 10:58 pm

rM,
good point.

I think this is exactly the core element of awakening.
Pre-awakening world view: we beget consciousness.

Then Copernican shift in world view.

Post-awakening world view: consciousness begets us.


I recall of Jed McKenna's book, Theory of Everything:
He takes a blank sheet of paper and puts a dot in the middle.
He says, the normal consensus world view is that the paper is the universe, and the point is my consciousness.

And the awakened world view?

That is the reverse.
The paper is consciousness, and the dot is the universe.

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ashley72
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Re: Line in the Sand?

Post by ashley72 » Sun Jan 11, 2015 12:10 am

If the underlying nature of the Universe is a "continuous" superfluid.

http://www.scientificamerican.com/artic ... m-physics/

How does discontinuity (subject/object split) arise in human perception? Maybe the "discontinuity" that humans perceive is an illusion of perception!

Human perception cannot perceive the continuous nature of the superfluid....that is obvious. But why is it that he humans perceive a macro-level of the Universe in a discontinuous way as a form of abstraction?

Maybe because it's impossible for the "Continuous" Universe to see its Continuous nature... The moment you try and see the continuum you merely cut the continuum up into discreet bits or a part.

It is analogous to the ocean trying to see itself from within itself.

randomguy
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Re: Line in the Sand?

Post by randomguy » Wed Jan 14, 2015 12:23 am

rach wrote:Ultimately ... ? Truth-fully? Above my pay grade.
Don't believe it. It is much more simple. The truth is recognized in what already is. There isn't a path that get's you more here than here.
Do the yellow-rose petals
tremble and fall
at the rapid's roar?
- Basho

snowheight
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Re: Line in the Sand?

Post by snowheight » Wed Jan 14, 2015 11:26 am

randomguy wrote:
rach wrote:Ultimately ... ? Truth-fully? Above my pay grade.
Don't believe it. It is much more simple. The truth is recognized in what already is. There isn't a path that get's you more here than here.
Yeah .. :D .. drop "consciousness" or any other word like it as if it was on fire ... let the sand swallow it up.
Stop talking. Hear every sound as background. Look straight ahead and focus. Take one deep breath. This is you. This is Now.

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rachMiel
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Re: Line in the Sand?

Post by rachMiel » Wed Jan 14, 2015 4:53 pm

Consciousness's last stand:

Image
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily ...

randomguy
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Re: Line in the Sand?

Post by randomguy » Wed Jan 14, 2015 9:29 pm

:)
Do the yellow-rose petals
tremble and fall
at the rapid's roar?
- Basho

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