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Who am i? Why can't i be a ever changing entity?

Posted: Sun Sep 06, 2020 8:20 pm
by waverider
People say that i can't be my body, i can't be my mind. So i am that observer or whatever. Really? Why? Because body and mind change all the time. Our body and mind is not the same that it was 10 years ago. But to that i say, so what? Why can't the entity that is 'I' be ever-changing in it's nature? I was smaller in size as a kid and now i am in a grown up form. Why should 'i' be a constant (one that does not change)?

Re: Who am i? Why can't i be a ever changing entity?

Posted: Mon Sep 07, 2020 6:41 pm
by runstrails
Excellent fundamental question Waverider!

First, a basic assumption needs to be made that ultimate reality is infinite, limitless and unchanging.

That ultimate reality is ‘Infinite’ I think is intuitive to most of us.

But let’s look more closely at ‘limitless’ and ‘unchanging’ (which is your question, I believe).

‘Limitless’ suggests that the ultimate reality cannot be limited as a form in space or limited as an event in time. Logically this makes sense as well---something infinite, by definition cannot be made finite (i.e., reduced to a limited form in time and space). If it is made finite, then it cannot be infinite at the same time. As an analogy, milk when it changes into cheese—does not remain as milk anymore. So the infinite (milk) does not change into the finite or limited (cheese).

You can apply a similar logic to ‘Unchanging’ or ‘Changeless’: To take your own example, you say you were born, then you were a small child, now you are bigger physically, mentally and like all of us the body will be subject to further changes in old age etc and ultimately death. However, if infinite reality is to be born as a person, undergo changes and die, then by definition becomes finite. However, it cannot be infinite and finite at the same time, can it? Like a tree born from a seed. Once the tree is 'born' the seed does not remain anymore.

Therefore, if ultimate reality is ‘infinite’, then by definition—it cannot be changing and limited (by logic). It has to be changeless and limitless.
This also means that the world we see cannot actually be ‘created’ or 'born' from the ultimate reality. It is simply a projection, in that, ultimate reality is simply appearing as names and forms. Like water which can appear in a solid form as ice or in a gaseous form as steam. In both cases, it is just water (i.e., it does not actually change). Similarly, nothing is ever born, no one has ever really died (from the point of view of ultimate reality). But from the point of view of transactional reality, there appears to be a world, there are people, animals and plants that interact with each other and there is birth and death.

Hope this makes sense.

Don’t hesitate to ask if you have further questions or clarifications. These basic questions keep us honest in our own understanding too :D.

Re: Who am i? Why can't i be a ever changing entity?

Posted: Wed Sep 09, 2020 5:17 pm
by waverider
runstrails wrote:
Mon Sep 07, 2020 6:41 pm

First, a basic assumption needs to be made that ultimate reality is infinite, limitless and unchanging.
Thankyou for replying to my question. But again you are assuming that there exists somthing called 'ultimate reality'.

Can conciousness not be a function of the brain?

Re: Who am i? Why can't i be a ever changing entity?

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 12:41 am
by runstrails
Another very good question, Waverider!

Let's put the brain aside for now. In fact, lets imagine a world with no sentient beings at all. Let's just assume there are mountains on a planet. Now I have a question for you:

Given that the mountains exist, how are they known? Not known to you or me or any sentient being ('cause there aren't any humans or animals on this planet). But since the mountains exist--there must be a knowledge of them, is it not?

That is, if anything exists, then there has to be a knowledge of it. Even if nothing exists, that nothing has to be revealed (or known to exist as nothing), correct?

Therefore, when there is existence, there has to be a knowing of it. That is, existence and knowing (consciousness) are two sides of the same coin. They are synonymous. This is the pure consciousness we speak of. It has nothing to do with the brains or humans.

If you understand this, then you may ask the next hard question: "Well, how is this fundamental reality (existence/consciousness) related to my consciousness (which you say comes from the brain)?

That is a longer answer. But first we should be on the same page regarding the fact that there is a fundamental reality that is existence/consciousness, before we bring you (or the brain) into the picture!

Hope this makes sense!

Re: Who am i? Why can't i be a ever changing entity?

Posted: Fri Sep 11, 2020 11:19 am
by waverider
runstrails wrote:
Thu Sep 10, 2020 12:41 am

That is, if anything exists, then there has to be a knowledge of it. Even if nothing exists, that nothing has to be revealed (or known to exist as nothing), correct?
America was not known before it was discovered by columbus but it existed even before it was discovered. So did several planets, constellations before their discovery. So did several minerals, metals like uranium, silver, gold etc.

Re: Who am i? Why can't i be a ever changing entity?

Posted: Fri Sep 11, 2020 4:44 pm
by runstrails
Exactly! If something exists, there has to be an awareness, consciousness or knowing of its exixstence. Not by Columbus or any other being--but by the virtue of the simple fact that it exists. This is a subtle concept--but its the foundation for understanding your true nature.

Re: Who am i? Why can't i be a ever changing entity?

Posted: Fri Sep 11, 2020 8:57 pm
by waverider
runstrails wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 4:44 pm
Exactly! If something exists, there has to be an awareness, consciousness or knowing of its exixstence. Not by Columbus or any other being--but by the virtue of the simple fact that it exists. This is a subtle concept--but its the foundation for understanding your true nature.
America existed long before but it was not known. It was known only after it was discovered.

Re: Who am i? Why can't i be a ever changing entity?

Posted: Fri Sep 11, 2020 9:28 pm
by runstrails
I think we are speaking of different things here. There cannot be existence without awareness/consciousness/knowing. But I don't know how to better express it. Apologies.

Re: Who am i? Why can't i be a ever changing entity?

Posted: Fri Sep 11, 2020 10:23 pm
by waverider
Sorry my comment should have read : America existed long before but it was ever known. It was known only after it was discovered.

Are you suggesting that for something to exist it must be first known?

Re: Who am i? Why can't i be a ever changing entity?

Posted: Sat Sep 12, 2020 12:07 am
by runstrails
Waverider wrote: America existed long before but it was ever known
Yes. I agree. Here the 'known' means 'awareness'
It was known only after it was discovered
Yes. I agree. Here the 'known' means known to humans after they discovered it.
Are you suggesting that for something to exist it must be first known?
It's simultaneous. Anything that exists is known (as in 'awareness'). Existence and awareness are two sides of the same coin. If there is an awareness of something, it has to exist. And something cannot exist without an awareness of it.

Re: Who am i? Why can't i be a ever changing entity?

Posted: Sat Sep 12, 2020 2:17 am
by turiya
Good discussion :D

Waverider, have you seen this Rupert Spira video? To me, Rupert's explanation is very helpful in seeing/understanding that there is only Awareness/Consciousness and that everything that appears to exist outside of and apart from Awareness/Consciousness is actually just an appearance in Awareness/Consciousness.

Let me know what you think:

Rupert Spira - "Is There an Outside World?"

https://youtu.be/8hrwPpIpW0Q

Re: Who am i? Why can't i be a ever changing entity?

Posted: Sat Sep 12, 2020 2:22 am
by turiya
(By the way, I like the first comment in the comment section of that youtube video... A quote by Alan Watts: "Your mind is not in your head. Your head is in your mind." :D )

Re: Who am i? Why can't i be a ever changing entity?

Posted: Sat Sep 12, 2020 8:53 am
by waverider
runstrails wrote:
Sat Sep 12, 2020 12:07 am
Waverider wrote: America existed long before but it was ever known
Yes. I agree. Here the 'known' means 'awareness'
It was known only after it was discovered
Yes. I agree. Here the 'known' means known to humans after they discovered it.
Are you suggesting that for something to exist it must be first known?
It's simultaneous. Anything that exists is known (as in 'awareness'). Existence and awareness are two sides of the same coin. If there is an awareness of something, it has to exist. And something cannot exist without an awareness of it.
You are assuming that there is something called awareness/consciousness. In order to prove that awareness exists you must begin your investigation with the assumption that it doesn't.

Re: Who am i? Why can't i be a ever changing entity?

Posted: Sat Sep 12, 2020 11:13 am
by waverider
Can anyone prove that consciousness is not the function/feature of the brain?

Re: Who am i? Why can't i be a ever changing entity?

Posted: Sat Sep 12, 2020 6:07 pm
by runstrails
Waverider wrote: In order to prove that awareness exists you must begin your investigation with the assumption that it doesn't.
Good question waverider!
Now let me ask you a counter question: 'Do you exist'? Presumably you would answer 'Yes' :D.

No one can deny existence, can they?

What you need to dwell on is that existence and awareness are one and the same. They are two sides of the same coin. Nothing can exist without an awareness of it, and conversely, if there is awareness, there has to be existence.

In traditional Vedanta, your true nature is said to be 'sat,chit,ananda'. That is, 'existence,consciousness,fullness'. 'Existence' is explained first because it cannot be denied. But modern teachers don't take this route I think. Trying to understand awareness first can lead to the problems that you are having. I had the same problems initially. It was when awareness was explained in the context of existence that I finally understood.