Scientific explanations?

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Scientific explanations?

Post by ninjin » Wed Jul 11, 2007 11:48 pm

One thing that strikes me with everything regarding enlightenment and living in the moment is the religious context of it.
Haven't talked to anyone who is into these things and also interested in how it actually works in the brain.
Oneness and the Brahman and whatever it is called always based in religious context. I'm an scientific atheist, do not believe in the separation of humans from the universe and the world. Everything is basically only variations on the same basic element whatever that is, pure energy probably.

Experience of oneness with the universe has been explained that the activity in the frontal lobes that has the spacial functions is lowered tests were conducted with monks in meditation.
They have pictures of when a thought is created in the brain.
There is a delay in the brain regarding all sensory inputs and so the experience of living in the now is indeed false, all information is buffered. You can't experience the now you can only shed the thoughts about the future and past.
Babies come aware that they are separate from the world when the reach about 2 years old. They have no connection between movement and the world before that age.

I'm interested in these things because they solve a psychological problem of mine. A cognitive psychologist was actually the one to introduce me to "living in the moment" without all the spiritual mumbo jumbo.

So is there anyone who has ideas to what enlightenment is based on the brain? Personally I believe that you replace a behavior and reprogram the brain.
A bit OT
The negative effect of this is that it seem to erase all that that has made mankind survive as a animal. Desires, passion and ambition. I honestly believe that when all people are enlightened the human race will die out, but that is thoughts about the future outside clock time ;).

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Post by Foxtrot » Thu Jul 12, 2007 1:22 am

So is there anyone who has ideas to what enlightenment is based on the brain?


Yes. You do. The first sentence in your second paragraph states:
Experience of oneness with the universe has been explained that the activity in the frontal lobes that has the spacial functions is lowered
You seem to be living so intensly in the present moment, that you forgot you answered your own question just moments before. :D
The negative effect of this is that it seem to erase all that that has made mankind survive as a animal. Desires, passion and ambition.
That is your experience is it ? You are currently enlightened, and you no longer have any desires, passion or ambitions.

My experience is that I now can become aware, of my thoughts and actions, that are creating suffering for myself and others, and stop them, rather than repeating them over and over, like a programmed robot, resulting in experiencing more love and personal satisfaction. I have also noticed, I seem to have more energy to pursue what I truly desire and feel passionate about.

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Post by Goldenflutist » Thu Jul 12, 2007 1:46 am

Everything is basically only variations on the same basic element whatever that is, pure energy probably.
when all people are enlightened the human race will die out
Tolle says and alludes to this and even states it much the same way you did time and time again in his writings. He supports science and says so. I tired to live only as a science-minded individual for years, and knew something was not right about that for me. Drop the word religion from your vocabulary. It’s just a word with so much baggage attached that it has become toxic to many.
"God" is that basic element you mentioned. Humans will have their time on this planet and will die out. This does not disturb me because life never dies, it just changes form. Life has no opposite.

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Post by Webwanderer » Thu Jul 12, 2007 2:01 am

ninjin, what are your thoughts on an intelligent cause behind the creation of the universe and all of its content?

How would you convey the flavor of an orange to someone who has never tasted citrus? Can you give the experience of love by words alone? How does one know that love actually exists?

Something in the movement in the frontal lobes?

Your curriosity is appreciated if it is genuine. If you have already assumed your current beliefs about life to be true then your search for truth has ended and, should there be additional understanding to be realized, your access to it is severely restricted.

Let go of your assumptions and take an honest look at all posibilities. If what you believe to be true is actually true, you will only return to where you are. No harm done. If however there is a flaw in your concepts, you stand a real chance to gain some clarity.

Anyone genuinely interested in knowing the "Truth" will drop what they believe regularly and take a fresh look, not in books, but directly into their own consciousness.

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Post by proudlybeing » Thu Jul 12, 2007 10:37 am

Webwanderer wrote;-


Anyone genuinely interested in knowing the "Truth" will drop what they believe regularly and take a fresh look, not in books, but directly into their own consciousness.



Simple , beautiful and for me , there is more truth in this statement
alone than 100 books could ever bring me .

great post webwanderer !
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Post by ninjin » Thu Jul 12, 2007 11:46 am

Foxtrot wrote: You seem to be living so intensly in the present moment, that you forgot you answered your own question just moments before. :D
Well there was suppose to say "anyone else" but I figured it would be understood anyway. I guess I was wrong. :wink:
That is your experience is it ? You are currently enlightened, and you no longer have any desires, passion or ambitions.
Based on the writing of the so called enlightened that is a consequence of enlightenment.
My experience is that I now can become aware, of my thoughts and actions, that are creating suffering for myself and others, and stop them, rather than repeating them over and over, like a programmed robot, resulting in experiencing more love and personal satisfaction. I have also noticed, I seem to have more energy to pursue what I truly desire and feel passionate about.
Ok good for you. Living in the moment is indeed a very good way to put all that energy to use that one earlier spend on worrying or thinking about negative things in the future.

ninjin

Post by ninjin » Thu Jul 12, 2007 11:52 am

Goldenflutist wrote: Tolle says and alludes to this and even states it much the same way you did time and time again in his writings. He supports science and says so. I tired to live only as a science-minded individual for years, and knew something was not right about that for me. Drop the word religion from your vocabulary. It’s just a word with so much baggage attached that it has become toxic to many.
"God" is that basic element you mentioned. Humans will have their time on this planet and will die out. This does not disturb me because life never dies, it just changes form. Life has no opposite.
GoldenF
Still Tolle uses the religious context to write about his thoughts. There is no need to use the religious context to explain these things or talk about them. But again that probably depends on the listener or reader.
Yes humans will evolve and so on. Eventually the universe will seize to exist but I will be long gone then so no need to worry about that.

ninjin

Post by ninjin » Thu Jul 12, 2007 12:26 pm

Webwanderer wrote:ninjin, what are your thoughts on an intelligent cause behind the creation of the universe and all of its content?
There is no need for such. Those thoughts are just speculation and doesn't really explain anything only bring more questions which cannot be answered.
Just as the hole karma rebirth and stuff in hinduism. Buddha wrote about all that even thou he stated that one should not speculate on that in his rules. Forgotten what they are called. It is interesting that a lot of the enlightened people in India and such does not free themselves from this concept. They do not know and yet speak of it as if they actually knew. See original Buddha, Ramana Maharashi and others.
How would you convey the flavor of an orange to someone who has never tasted citrus? Can you give the experience of love by words alone? How does one know that love actually exists?

Something in the movement in the frontal lobes?
Since all perception is based on your genetic makeup that is impossible. You cannot make people feel the emotions or feeling or taste with words since that is a personal experience. Just as with enlightenment and living in the moment. Also when I see the color blue you might see it in a different shade or not at all.
That love exists is easy that is just a hormonal input to the brain. They have actually researched it. Quite fascinating.
Your curriosity is appreciated if it is genuine. If you have already assumed your current beliefs about life to be true then your search for truth has ended and, should there be additional understanding to be realized, your access to it is severely restricted.
What truth is that? What I speak of here has nothing to do with any search for truth. Just understanding.
Let go of your assumptions and take an honest look at all possibilities. If what you believe to be true is actually true, you will only return to where you are. No harm done. If however there is a flaw in your concepts, you stand a real chance to gain some clarity.
Not really sure where you get all this truth stuff from.
Anyone genuinely interested in knowing the "Truth" will drop what they believe regularly and take a fresh look, not in books, but directly into their own consciousness.
I'm looking for a different outcome for the experience I have from time to time. I want to remove my "ego" because it gets in the way of the experience and causes me to panic leading to negative consequences. There is nothing to fear and yet I am afraid =).
I have noticed that the zenbuddhist approach of observing thoughts and not getting stuck in them might be a solution to the problem.
The approach of living in the moment helps in the daily life not really with problem.

But this was a bunch of OT stuff =).

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Post by JD » Thu Jul 12, 2007 2:01 pm

ninjin wrote:I'm looking for a different outcome for the experience I have from time to time. I want to remove my "ego" because it gets in the way of the experience and causes me to panic leading to negative consequences. There is nothing to fear and yet I am afraid .
Well, there is something to fear - until you understand its nature - fear itself.

To understand exactly what fear is (and how to overcome it) you might find these threads helpful:

http://eckhart-tolle-forum.inner-growth ... php?t=2637

http://eckhart-tolle-forum.inner-growth ... php?t=1878

I discuss my own experiences with fear in this post:

http://eckhart-tolle-forum.inner-growth ... 4774#14774
ninjin wrote:Haven't talked to anyone who is into these things and also interested in how it actually works in the brain.
On the whole, people who actually understand "these things" - as opposed to merely being "interested" in them - have little interest in brain physiology, because it's merely the secondary manifestation of the primary reality that exists on the level of consciousness.

I know this because, like you, I once had a great "interest" in the scientific paradigm of consciousness.

If you really thought it would help, I could tell you that thought-forms of fear are encoded by nucleoprotein macromolecules in cortical neurons, but such knowledge was of little help or comfort to me when I was caught in the grip of debilitating fear.

It was only when I put aside the crude models of neurophysiology and addressed myself to the problem of understanding what thought actually is that I found the key to ending my suffering. :D

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Post by Webwanderer » Thu Jul 12, 2007 2:10 pm

ninjin, would you be okay with it if the universe was intelligently designed? There is of course a long standing debate over the origins of life and the appearance of matter.

Most are emotionally invested in whatever particular fundamental concepts they hold. In order to reach greater understanding one must be clear on the emotional attachments one holds to a particular version of so called truth. It is those emotions that cloud awareness and clear understanding. If the word God, or the concept of Divine origins, makes you cringe, then that is a sure sign of a religious attachment to some other concept.

Creating straw men to to slay, in an effort to debunk ones fears, is a common tactic among those with strong emotional attachments to defend. An honest person will always be on the lookout for this diversion within themselves.
ninjin wrote:
Webwanderer wrote:
ninjin, what are your thoughts on an intelligent cause behind the creation of the universe and all of its content?
There is no need for such. Those thoughts are just speculation and doesn't really explain anything only bring more questions which cannot be answered.
So it comes down to a matter of need? The only need in this statement is what seems to be a need to protect an originless belief system. To do so one must avoid the question. And just because one believes a question cannot be answered, should it not be asked? Does it not have the potential of opening new understanding?

Is it not speculation (hypothesis) that has led to most scientific discovery? Is it not also just more refined speculation that has led to scientific conclusions, such as Darwinism? Is history not a junkyard of of previously held scientific "proofs"? Certainty is the death of understanding. It seems far better not to know, than to know (believe) wrongly. Appearances are often decieving.

ninjin

Post by ninjin » Thu Jul 12, 2007 2:54 pm

Webwanderer wrote:ninjin, would you be okay with it if the universe was intelligently designed? There is of course a long standing debate over the origins of life and the appearance of matter.
Yes I would. There is no debate over the origin of life however. We know the origin of life. We will also create entirely new lifeforms later this year that does not have an origin in nature. The origin of the universe is debated however because we cannot go further back than right after the universe the big bang. The most interesting thing is that we might even be able to create "our own" universes.
Most are emotionally invested in whatever particular fundamental concepts they hold. In order to reach greater understanding one must be clear on the emotional attachments one holds to a particular version of so called truth. It is those emotions that cloud awareness and clear understanding. If the word God, or the concept of Divine origins, makes you cringe, then that is a sure sign of a religious attachment to some other concept.

Creating straw men to to slay, in an effort to debunk ones fears, is a common tactic among those with strong emotional attachments to defend. An honest person will always be on the lookout for this diversion within themselves.
Of course. My view is: If one can explain things without the need to create new things then that is the approach to take. To explain the universe by creating a concept called God hasn't solved or explained anything. By creating the concept of God or god, Brahman or other things one uses the limited capabilities of ones own understanding as a reason for their or its existence. That is if we cannot understand it we make stuff up. When there is really now need to make stuff up.
Webwanderer wrote:
So it comes down to a matter of need? The only need in this statement is what seems to be a need to protect an originless belief system. To do so one must avoid the question. And just because one believes a question cannot be answered, should it not be asked? Does it not have the potential of opening new understanding?
You can ask and explore the question of origin without creating a concept of god or other things. Creating such entities only raises more questions about the origin. It doesn't solve anything or explain anything.
That is what I mean by need. If your keys are gone do you then explain it by blaming it on a gnome? or is it just that you have forgotten where you put them?
Is it not speculation (hypothesis) that has led to most scientific discovery? Is it not also just more refined speculation that has led to scientific conclusions, such as Darwinism? Is history not a junkyard of of previously held scientific "proofs"? Certainty is the death of understanding. It seems far better not to know, than to know (believe) wrongly. Appearances are often decieving.
Yes hypothesis is the foundation but your forget that those must be tested to see if they hold or not. One cannot test for the existence of god or test if the originator of the universe is intelligent. Also is there really a need to believe such a thing? or not believe? Or have a view at all.
Why do buddhists not eat animals but eat vegetables and plants? Well because they believe in something that has no proof. They are victims of their framework. There is no difference between a carrot and a rabbit. Why should the rabbit be more important than the carrot? Because it can feel? Because it can feel pain? So can you eat a brainless rabbit?
Trees when you cut them sends out the same signals as when you hurt yourself only they do not have a brain so they do no react to it.
When I wash myself I kill thousands of lifeforms. Have they not a right to exist?
Don't know if you hold the hindu/buddhist view on these matters.

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Post by Dongle » Thu Jul 12, 2007 5:50 pm

Hi Ninjin, thanks for the interesting debate
There is no debate over the origin of life however. We know the origin of life.
Please explain your knowing the origin of life.
Of course. My view is: If one can explain things without the need to create new things then that is the approach to take. To explain the universe by creating a concept called God hasn't solved or explained anything. By creating the concept of God or god, Brahman or other things one uses the limited capabilities of ones own understanding as a reason for their or its existence. That is if we cannot understand it we make stuff up. When there is really now need to make stuff up.
IMO God is not a concept, but since you feel it is, let us explore the origins of the word God, and in most cases the words assigned to other deities. Is it not possible that the word was used to label the inner peace and connectedness experienced by an enlightened human being?
That is what I mean by need. If your keys are gone do you then explain it by blaming it on a gnome? or is it just that you have forgotten where you put them?
This is a fair point, tell me without the word forgotten what would you have done with your keys?
Yes hypothesis is the foundation but your forget that those must be tested to see if they hold or not. One cannot test for the existence of god or test if the originator of the universe is intelligent. Also is there really a need to believe such a thing? or not believe? Or have a view at all.
Why do buddhists not eat animals but eat vegetables and plants? Well because they believe in something that has no proof. They are victims of their framework. There is no difference between a carrot and a rabbit. Why should the rabbit be more important than the carrot? Because it can feel? Because it can feel pain? So can you eat a brainless rabbit?
Trees when you cut them sends out the same signals as when you hurt yourself only they do not have a brain so they do no react to it.
When I wash myself I kill thousands of lifeforms. Have they not a right to exist?
Don't know if you hold the hindu/buddhist view on these matters.
Belief systems change, as has the requirements for what can be considered scientific proof, and they shall continue to change. Your post is based on a belief, a belief that some other belief is not necessary.

Newtonian Physics until the 20th century was the accepted scientific standard, until Einstein, since then quantum mechanics has challenged Einstein's established research. Does this mean that Newton should not have been a physicist or that Einstein should not have considered new ways of understanding the world, because the generally accepted rules assumed he could not prove what he was trying to?

IMO, each scientific discovery throughout the course of history has been a subjective representation of reality, a reality that is an illusion. It seems Ninjin you are arguing for and against this reality, and or your own.

You avoided Webwander's statement concerning knowing, what does knowing mean to you? Do you find there is a difference, between knowing and belief?

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Post by Webwanderer » Thu Jul 12, 2007 9:30 pm

ninjin wrote:There is no debate over the origin of life however. We know the origin of life.
That should come as quite a surprise to a lot of people that debate this issue on a daily basis.
We will also create entirely new lifeforms later this year that does not have an origin in nature.
Well maybe the form will not have an origin in nature. Even that may be cause for a deeper look. Life and nature, however, are inseperable.
Of course. My view is: If one can explain things without the need to create new things then that is the approach to take. To explain the universe by creating a concept called God hasn't solved or explained anything.
There in lies a significant difference in philosophy. One view attempts to explain "things" (a very ego-centric perspective), the other seeks to understand the nature of being (a more wholistic approach to perception and life).
One cannot test for the existence of god or test if the originator of the universe is intelligent.
Maybe so in a physical sense, but one can infer the existance of essential intelligence and design based on mathematical probabililties and complexities beyond commonly accepted evolutionary capabilities. This investigation is well established and gains more scientific credibility every day.
Don't know if you hold the hindu/buddhist view on these matters.
No, I'm not a buddhist/hindu. All my saced cows are conceptual. I do try to eat them however.

There is a great deal of enlightened thought in the worlds literature that did not come from scientists. One discounts their contributions to the understanding of life at the cost living life in conceptual blindness. Only the truth matters, not the path to its revelation.

ninjin

Post by ninjin » Thu Jul 12, 2007 9:39 pm

Dongle wrote: Please explain your knowing the origin of life.
Here I only meant that the origin is not "out of this world". Can easily been misunderstood. Since we have a hard time defining what is life the origin is also hard to define. When is something alive? Anyway the most theories regarding the beginning is about various chemicals and molecules interacting with the help of sunlight and stuff. But our research seems to be focus on conditions on this planet in "early" stages.
IMO God is not a concept, but since you feel it is, let us explore the origins of the word God, and in most cases the words assigned to other deities. Is it not possible that the word was used to label the inner peace and connectedness experienced by an enlightened human being?
God or god or whatever you label it is a concept or mental creation. "God" used to mean "invoked one". Probably has origin in the indo-european languages. As do a lot of words.
This is a fair point, tell me without the word forgotten what would you have done with your keys?
I have misplaced them.
Belief systems change, as has the requirements for what can be considered scientific proof, and they shall continue to change.
Of course.
Your post is based on a belief, a belief that some other belief is not necessary.
Well not really. I do not have to believe in gravity in order to stay on this planet. The belief that I can fly do not prevent me from falling. Gravity exist whether I believe in it or not. We can explain gravity without the need to create an explanation. Why should we need to create an entity or something to explain the universe? When we create that entity we create more questions and we are back where we started.
Newtonian Physics until the 20th century was the accepted scientific standard, until Einstein, since then quantum mechanics has challenged Einstein's established research. Does this mean that Newton should not have been a physicist or that Einstein should not have considered new ways of understanding the world, because the generally accepted rules assumed he could not prove what he was trying to?
Relative theory and quantum physics both exists and work. The problem is that they do not work together. RT for big things and QP for small.
Einstein never proved that his theory was correct. It was proven because it predicted behavior in the universe which could be observed.
RT and QP is the best we have at the moment and there is a lot of work to replace them with a single system.
Of course one should put forward new theories but they have to be testable in order for them to work. God cannot be tested. The Self cannot be tested. Therefor it has no scientific value. That is why I am interested in brain scanning and such because it can give an explanation to the experience.
IMO, each scientific discovery throughout the course of history has been a subjective representation of reality, a reality that is an illusion. It seems Ninjin you are arguing for and against this reality, and or your own.
Well not really subjective but yes all science does is try to explain the universe and other things as good as possible and it is a work in progress. Probably never to be completed.
The mental image of the world is an illusion. This world outside of you is not. Also the problem with saying that the world is an illusion is that it raises the question whether the illusion is only an illusion and so on. That is what you perceive as an illusion might not be an illusion, the perception of an illusion is only a side affect.
You avoided Webwander's statement concerning knowing, what does knowing mean to you? Do you find there is a difference, between knowing and belief?
Didn't see the statement.
Knowing is something that is based on proof that is outside yourself. Belief is something that has no proof hence you believe it to be true.
For example we know that we orbit the sun but we believe in a teapot orbiting the moon. We can prove the first statement the other one we can choose to believe in or not since we cannot prove or disprove it. Same goes with God or god. You can either believe in it or not but you cannot prove or disprove of it.

ninjin

Post by ninjin » Thu Jul 12, 2007 10:00 pm

Well maybe the form will not have an origin in nature. Even that may be cause for a deeper look. Life and nature, however, are inseperable.
Of course. It was only mentioned because of the origin of life statement. Creating new life can perhaps explain the origin of the life that created it.
There in lies a significant difference in philosophy. One view attempts to explain "things" (a very ego-centric perspective), the other seeks to understand the nature of being (a more wholistic approach to perception and life).
Yes it does. I try to understand things based on the explanations that I read. I do not read understandings. Scientists may very well work from the view that they wish to understand things most do but what they produce is explanations that may or may not be correct if we only view the theory.
Maybe so in a physical sense, but one can infer the existance of essential intelligence and design based on mathematical probabililties and complexities beyond commonly accepted evolutionary capabilities. This investigation is well established and gains more scientific credibility every day.
Yes you can but it does not solve anything or bring understanding. The idea does not gain scientific credibility. Not among those who actually research these things. If you want to find an atheist just pick one at random in the natural sciences. I think 80% or more of them are atheists.
There is a great deal of enlightened thought in the worlds literature that did not come from scientists. One discounts their contributions to the understanding of life at the cost living life in conceptual blindness. Only the truth matters, not the path to its revelation.
Don't really understand what this has anything to with what we are talking about. Don't know the truth either since I have no idea what your talking about =). And yes there is both wise and smart people in the world and they both contribute to our understanding.

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