Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

OBE's, NDE's, lucid dreams, and the like...

Re: Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

Postby coriolis » Fri Dec 21, 2012 10:59 pm

"Without me there would be no chicken" , said the egg.
"Without me there would be no egg", said the chicken.

They are both right and both wrong in strangely entangled ways that bode no clear answer between the dualistic polarities between which the human mind operates.

So it seems for mind and matter, corporeal and spiritual.....

Since what we make the distinctions between them with is apparently the only thing in the universe that makes distinctions it is highly likely that their existence says a lot more about how we think than it does what we think we are thinking about. :lol:
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The ensuing failure is the true finding
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Re: Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

Postby Webwanderer » Fri Dec 21, 2012 11:23 pm

ashley72 wrote:conceptual metaphor of so-called consciousness?.

Consciousness is just 'so-called? How do you know....?

Webby, you're physical hardware is a complex biological system which has the ability to 'map' symbolic representations of the source domain (physical) into abstract ideas, like consciousness & even your own complex symbolic thought making (self-reflective) system. These are mere symbolic mappings from the source domain (physical) to the target domain (symbolic representations).

I know you keep saying that, and it must seem logical to you in the narrow perspective of materialistic thought. However, that does not make the concept true, only logical. But if there is indeed a greater reality of conscious being - call it a spiritual or purely consciousness realm differentiated by qualities of vibration more so than appearance - then the logic you cite is just a mental box to live in.

More and more quantum physics is revealing evidence of this primary position of consciousness as top-down. Here is a short article on consciousness and quantum physics. It certainly won't answer all the issues, but at least it comes from materialistically acceptable science. A shout out goes to kiki for pointing out this aware scientist.

http://www.amitgoswami.org/consciousnes ... m-physics/

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Re: Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

Postby downeyjr » Sat Dec 22, 2012 12:01 am

Aha, keep citing these people... You know there are many many many scientists (Creationists ) in the respective fields who ,,disprove,, Evolution and believe in the classical biblical God?

,,Goswami is convinced, along with a number of others who subscribe to the same view, that the universe, in order to exist, requires a conscious sentient being to be aware of it. Without an observer, he claims, it only exists as a possibility.,,

So according to this brilliant theory, if all humans on Earth die, and may be all animals too, must die, everything will disappear and turn into a possibility? Or I don't know, is an animal a ,,conscious sentient being,, ? Are all of them Self-Aware? I'm not sure, how the hell do we have proof that the Earth existed before any conscious life was created on it ? Or may be, there was conscious life in 100000 billion, trillion, light years away, that actually kept the universe alive. So to sum it up, as long as there is a conscious being anywhere at any point in the entire Universe, everything will exist as we know it? Otherwise it just zips up in a non-physical Dream, that please note - EXISTS. Please tell me more about how we can use in one sentence the words EXIST and NON-PHYSICAL. Yep, I think this theory, disproves the majority of the materialistic theories in a very elegant way.


,,Now consider something even more intriguing. Imagine for a moment the entire history of the universe. According to all the data scientists have been able to gather, it exploded into existence some fifteen billion years ago, setting the stage for a cosmic dance of energy and light that continues to this day. Now imagine the history of planet Earth. An amorphous cloud of dust emerging out of that primordial fireball, it slowly coalesced into a solid orb, found its way into gravitational orbit around the sun, and through a complex interaction of light and gases over billions of years, generated an atmosphere and a biosphere capable of not only giving birth to, but sustaining and proliferating, life.

Now imagine that none of the above ever happened. Consider instead the possibility that the entire story only existed as an abstract potential—a cosmic dream among countless other cosmic dreams—until, in that dream, life somehow evolved to the point that a conscious, sentient being came into existence. At that moment, solely because of the conscious observation of that individual, the entire universe, including all of the history leading up to that point, suddenly came into being. Until that moment, nothing had actually ever happened. In that moment, fifteen billion years happened. If this sounds like nothing more than a complicated backdrop for a science fiction story or a secular version of one of the world's great creation myths, hold on to your hat. According to physicist Amit Goswami, the above description is a scientifically viable explanation of how the universe came into being.,,

SEEMS LEGIT...
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Re: Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

Postby karmarider » Sat Dec 22, 2012 12:42 am

I hope that parents have enough respect for the intelligence of their eight year olds to tell them that the Santa Claus myth which interestingly is originally pagan and predates christianity does not equate to love and generosity, any more than the disney fables which try to equate physical beauty to goodness, or any other myth; and tell them still it is okay and fun and human to celeberate the sentiments of the myth. My eight year olds were happy to hear this. I suspect Virginia too was more intelligent than given credit for.

I have no stake in the physical/non-physical argument.

There obviously are dimensions to life and reality which I do not understand. I don't need to--it makes no difference to the lightness of being which is now already extra-ordinarily satisfying. I don't believe anyone who claims to understand reality; neither the rationalists nor the believers nor quantuum scientists can claim exclusive understanding. Understanding in human form is necessarily limited. Yet it's perfectly valid for people to want to investigate these dimesions, if that's what they want to do.

I see the non-physical enthusiasts' point that rationalists may be closing themselves off; and I see the rational point of view that people believe because they want to, and not always because it is true.

I like Anita Moorjani's story, for she tells only her personal story. I read only about her; I have not and probably will not read her book. But I think she has something which rationalists can look further into. And perhaps non-physical enthusiasts can see that what makes her story compelling is her willingness to say I don't know.
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Re: Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

Postby Webwanderer » Sat Dec 22, 2012 2:09 am

downeyjr wrote: You know there are many many many scientists (Creationists ) in the respective fields who ,,disprove,, Evolution and believe in the classical biblical God?

Could you point out any that have been cited in these discussions? There are also many others that are revealing interesting evidence in favor of consciousness not dependent on physical form who are not adherents of the classical Biblical God. These are the ones I'm mostly interested in.

By the way, are you saying Goswami believes in the classical Biblical God? If not, why do you mention, in a post largely dedicated to him, such a curious reference? And what is your understanding of a classical Biblical God? ...maybe we can avoid any unnecessary and offensive distractions if we understand your concerns.

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Re: Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

Postby Yutso » Sat Dec 22, 2012 4:53 am

Whether consciousness created the brain or the brain created consciousness remains a philosophical choice.
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Re: Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

Postby ashley72 » Sat Dec 22, 2012 11:24 am

Yutso wrote:Whether consciousness created the brain or the brain created consciousness remains a philosophical choice.


Yes.... and whether believing that Santa Claus is physically real (source domain) or merely a symbolic fictious character (target domain)... is also a choice. We make choices everyday some intelligent ones....& some not so intelligent ones. :wink:

I choose to believe that human consciousness is a strong emergent property of a complex biological system, which is a result of our species unique ability to symbolic map our physical behaviours.

I've read Goswami's book... he believes in an inviolate (hidden) level... because he's trying to find a 'logical way' to exit a logical paradox - when attempting to explain human consciousness from a reductionist perspective with bottom-up causality. His whole thesis is based around ideas found in Douglas Hofstadter's book - Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid. However, Hofstadter's explains very succinctly in his book, that a strange loop arises...whereby a flipping around occurs as causality shifts from bottom-up to top-down in respect to the symbolic-self (target domain) being able to act back downwards on the physical domain (source domain).

Goswami's book basically took all of Hofstadter's earlier ideas, and vainly tried to put some ad-hoc-hocus-pocus together called an inviolate level, as a poorly understood explanation for how our symbolic-self (symbolic thought processors) can be conscious (self-reflective) of both our symbolic & physical behaviours (a tangled hierarchy of integrated levels).

I'm sticking with Hofstadter on this one, besides his "daddy" won the Nobel prize for his notable discoveries in quantum physics! :lol:
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Re: Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

Postby ashley72 » Sat Dec 22, 2012 12:09 pm

coriolis wrote:"Without me there would be no chicken" , said the egg.
"Without me there would be no egg", said the chicken.


The problem is 'chickens" or 'eggs' don't speak. :lol:

But seriously, consider the phenomena of mutation in biological systems.... on top of Self-replication which is any behavior of a dynamical system that yields construction of an identical copy of itself. Biological cells, given suitable environments, reproduce by cell division. During cell division, DNA is replicated and can be transmitted to offspring during reproduction.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/38238685/ns/technology_and_science-science/t/which-came-first-chicken-or-egg/
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Re: Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

Postby downeyjr » Sat Dec 22, 2012 1:52 pm

By the way, are you saying Goswami believes in the classical Biblical God? If not, why do you mention, in a post largely dedicated to him, such a curious reference? And what is your understanding of a classical Biblical God? ...maybe we can avoid any unnecessary and offensive distractions if we understand your concerns.


I just said that about the scientists because not all scientists are equal, no matter how intelligent they are, I'm telling you that even a very intelligent person in one field can still believe in the Biblical God. That's because you keep saying many intelligent people etc. believe in non-physical etc.

I'm not saying Goswami believes in the classical Biblical God, no. And what I understand of a classical Biblical God is a fettuccine monster :lol:

Oh come on, you get offended by everything, 'offensive distractions' ? You're oddly sensitive :roll:
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Re: Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

Postby Webwanderer » Sat Dec 22, 2012 4:09 pm

downeyjr wrote:Oh come on, you get offended by everything, 'offensive distractions' ? You're oddly sensitive :roll:

Not so much as you might imagine. I'm having more fun than you know. It's quite easy to see this kind of debate methodology. It helps some avoid discussing issues in which they are uncomfortable honestly considering.

I just prefer more of an adult conversation than wading through all the pejorative references that don't apply to the discussion, so I point them out when they appear - which unfortunately is quite often. It seems to be a favored way of distracting from the real issues. You're welcome to believe whatever irrelevant connections you wish to support your ideology, but when you make them as if they were actually in context with reality in this forum, I consider it fair game to point them out.

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Re: Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

Postby Testigo » Sat Dec 22, 2012 5:55 pm

Dear Ashley, you wrote:
"The only non-physical realm that can be discussed is any sensical way is symbolic thought, but that is a meta-physical realm not a non-physical realm because all its manifestions are directy derived from the physical (source domain). Some mappings (symbolic representations) like ghosts, angels, gods, devils, Santa Claus, Easter Bunny are just 'delusional' or 'fantasy' mappings."

In one of my posts I recently pointed out that all those "beings" are at the very base and the origin of ALL religious systems, and that I have many reasons to believe that they REALLY exist or have existed. Now I add that some of them have found a very credible way of coaxing credulous by performing spectacular "miracles" to get from the crowds of believers whatever they want: Places to become sacred for purposes that only those beings know (and probably related to crossing streams of geological energies), creation of centers of pilgrimage, cathedrals or other monumental temples, sacrificies, offerings, multitudinary prays...
My questions are:
What are they? Are they in some upper scale of spiritual evolution? And if so, is there an evolutionary process of spirituality, and we humans awake to one of the first steps of that scale? And if so, is there then a way to climb up a scale of spiritual evolution? Are they Superior expressions of the One Conscience?
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Re: Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

Postby ashley72 » Sun Dec 23, 2012 1:39 am

testigo wrote:In one of my posts I recently pointed out that all those "beings" are at the very base and the origin of ALL religious systems, and that I have many reasons to believe that they REALLY exist or have existed. Now I add that some of them have found a very credible way of coaxing credulous by performing spectacular "miracles" to get from the crowds of believers whatever they want: Places to become sacred for purposes that only those beings know (and probably related to crossing streams of geological energies), creation of centers of pilgrimage, cathedrals or other monumental temples, sacrificies, offerings, multitudinary prays...


There were hundreds of "Gods" in Ancient Greek times. http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Greek_mythological_figures

The number of mythical "Gods" have been culled back significantly, as seemingly science's influence on symbolic thought & conceptual metaphor has grown over the modern ages.

An interesting Theory is Julian Jaynes "Origin of Consciousness: & the Bicameral Man". Jaynes theorised that the early human species may have attributed gods to "command voices" coming from the right hemisphere of the brain. Jaynes's theory includes evidence relating to the ecology of language, brain anatomy, mental conditions such as schizophrenia and historical events (explosion of earlier primitive tool, Cave Art, Language etc).

testigo wrote:My questions are:
What are they?


Mythical Gods or Mythical Places are simply fictitious characters and fictitious places that manifest from symbolic thought. Symbolic thought maps our physical space & physical behaviours from the source domain to the symbolic domain (target domain) using conceptual metaphor.

When author J.K Rowling wrote the fantasy novels "Harry Potter" she used symbolic thought and metaphor.

The Sorcerer's Stone is a great metaphor for human greed and the fascination with unending life. Dumbledore says to Harry, "the Stone was really not such a wonderful thing. As much money and life as you could want! The two things most human beings would choose above all-the trouble is, humans do have a knack of choosing precisely those things that are worst for them." Destroying the stone also served as a metaphor for the fact that, although unending life may (magically) be possible, life will always end.

There are many metaphors in Harry Potter. Some aren't exactly obvious. For one, there is the Mirror of Erised. It works by showing someone what their heart truly desires. Mirrors are often used as metaphors of perception. For example, in Sylvia Plath's "Mirrors," she writes, "Now I am a lake. A woman bends over me./Searching my reaches for what she really is./Then she turns to those liars, the candles or the moon./I see her back, and reflect it faithfully.

testigo wrote:Are they in some upper scale of spiritual evolution?


I think our species will always have a fascination with mythology... as it's an inherent or intrinsic attribute built in to our symbolic creating "biological hardware".

Delusional beliefs (conceptual metaphors with inaccurate mappings from source to target) will always be apart of the human species symbolism.

testigo wrote:And if so, is there an evolutionary process of spirituality, and we humans awake to one of the first steps of that scale?


I think there is a decline in traditional religions, but an uptake in New Age Spirituality. The net change is most likely zero. :roll:

testigo wrote:And if so, is there then a way to climb up a scale of spiritual evolution? Are they Superior expressions of the One Conscience?


Being a true-believer of mythical characters and mythical places only keeps you stuck in the mud of delusional symbolism... Our source nature is physical the target is symbolism.... IMO you need to balance symbolism with physicality for a balanced life. :wink:

You can do this by shifting your attention away from the symbolic (target domain) back onto the physical (source domain). Our attentional control is an "amphibian" between "symbols" & the "physical".

Attention => Amphibian between the physical & the meta-physical
Attention => Amphibian between nature & god
Attention => Ambhibian between the non-symbolic & the symbolic
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Re: Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

Postby rideforever » Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:28 pm

Poor Santa Claus and Easter Bunny !!

Gosh how terribly mean spirited to criticise these wonderful people who bring joy and presents to the world every year.

What do you think you are contributing to the world by vilifying them ?

You think you are "telling the truth" about them ?

No, you are just telling the truth about how miserable and lacking in humour you are.
I was proud, and I demanded the finest teacher
.. .. and when he appeared
.. .. .. .. I was so small
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Re: Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

Postby Testigo » Sun Dec 23, 2012 7:10 pm

There were hundreds of "Gods" in Ancient Greek times. http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Greek_mythological_figures

The number of mythical "Gods" have been culled back significantly, as seemingly science's influence on symbolic thought & conceptual metaphor has grown over the modern ages.

An interesting Theory is Julian Jaynes "Origin of Consciousness: & the Bicameral Man". Jaynes theorised that the early human species may have attributed gods to "command voices"


Dear Ashley:
Certainly not the Greek Gods, nor the romans or the thouthands of divinities from India, Egypt, Ireland, Mexico... or at least, not the huge majority of them. I am refering to visions, dialogs, revelations, ”miracles”, and similars. Certainly in the cases of Moses, Muhammad, the three children of Fatima, Joseh Smith the fundator of the Mormons, and many others, it was something more than voices. Let’s see some opinions:
* Whitley Strieber, Communion. A True Story. p. 90. ”Maybe we have a relationship with our own planet that we do not understand at all, and the old gods, the fairy and the modern visitors (aliens) are side effects of it... Perhaps the visitors are the gods.”
* Jacques Vallee. Dimensions, quoting Evan-Wentz, p. 185”...ancient gods are continued under new names as myths evolve from civilization to civilization. Could it be...that every land has its own psychic and telluric forces, contributing to the appearance of certain spirit entities, regarded by human beings as gods and goddesses?”
* Salvatore Freixedo. Author of Defendiamoci degli Dei (Let’s deffend ourselves from the gods) ”Man is merely a creature of the gods… immensely powerful and non-corporeal entities who have masqueraded for centuries as the God. The worst offender among this gallery of entities is the biblical Yahweh, Freixedo tells us in Israel: pueblo contacto (Israel: the contactee nation). These gods (always with a small "g") avail themselves of humanity much in the same way that we make use of animals: we kill them without hesitation for their meat and hides, but we do so with little, if any, animosity. Earth is a farm of the gods, he writes, and they exploit us for two things--blood and the waves emitted by our brains when we are either in pain or suffering. (And I would add, praying). He has said of these "gods" in a recent television appearance:
...the ones from within have always been here and have created humanity much in the same way it has bred animals. They have toyed with us since the beginning. [...]
* Sergio Donoso Ovnis y Paranormal (UFO and Paranormal)
http://sergiolacroix.blogspot.com/ 9 de junio de 2011 (Translation mine): These beings are opperating from ouside the plane of space and time. That is why the manipulation and control is so imperceptible for the population in general. This trascends our comprension and it functions through our own minds. It is the sutility of this phenomenon what produces the deceit so difficult to see because it is already assimilated in our way of life, our culture and civilization. The most ancient legends of humanity talk about these beings in ancient Europe... goblins, airies, elfs, ondinas, etc. In Christianity they are spirits or angels... in Hinduism they are called Devas. In the Islamm, Jinas... Nevertheless it seems obvious that they are the same entities. They come from other plane of existence (another dimmension) its food are energies, not necessarilly materials. Everything point out a preference for the vital energy of living beings from this plane, and finally, they communicate psychically with sensible humans to set up a point or place of concentration that garanties them a source of food for as long as possible: temples and sacred places of pilgrimage.
*J.J. Benítez. Las Astronaves de Yavé. (The Spaceships of Yavé). México, D.F., 1992 (Translation mine). P.281)
”I invite the reader to informe himself... about the miracolous events that happened in... Fátima. Perhaps he will find details and descriptions that seem to be taken from any ”encounter... with UFOS...”.
”... those sudden and ”estrategic” apparitions warmed up the spiritual energy of the men...”
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Re: Criticisms of Non-Physical Perspectives

Postby ashley72 » Mon Dec 24, 2012 2:45 am

testigo wrote:They come from other plane of existence (another dimmension) its food are energies, not necessarilly materials. Everything point out a preference for the vital energy of living beings from this plane, and finally, they communicate psychically with sensible humans to set up a point or place of concentration that garanties them a source of food for as long as possible: temples and sacred places of pilgrimage.


That plane of existence or new dimension you refer to, is the target domain (symbolic thought). Symbolic thought maps the physical behaviours & physical space (source domain) using conceptual metaphor onto a target domain.

Gods, Spirits, Angels, Heaven, Devils, Hell... all manifest from symbolic thought - which is the unique ability for the human species to map it's source domain (physicality) into the target domain (symbolism).

All religions are built on symbolism & doctrine. I just recently visited a Buddhist temple in Northern Thailand where my partners father conducted a birthday ceremony in a Buddhist Monastery. During the ceremony there was chantings, dignitaries, offerings, prayers, rituals, (all based on symbolism in the target domain). It's the social construct of their local 'Thai' cultural. From where I'm born, Australia, it has a completely different set of 'symbolism' and social construction.

Julian Jaynes believed that Religions evolved to replaced "command voices" from the Gods.

What I have tried to present to you is a long and complicated story. It leaves us with a different view of human nature. It suggests that what civilized us all is a mentality that we no longer have, in which we heard voices called gods. Remnants of this are all around us in our own lives, in our present-day religions and needs for religion, in the hallucinations heard particularly in psychosis, in our search for certainty, in our problems of identity. And we are still in the arduous process of adjusting to our new mentality of consciousness. The final thought I will close with is that all of this that is most human about us, this consciousness, this artificial space we imagine in other people and in ourselves, this living within our reminiscences, plans, and imaginings, all of this is indeed only 3,000 years old - Julian Jaynes


Therefore, Jaynes theorises that Human Consciousness is merely an 'artificial space' we may be introspecting on at this very moment. This artificial "space" is merely a symbolic (target) mapping from physical space (source).

Douglas Hofstadter argues that the psychological self (symbolic-self) arises out of a similar kind of paradox. We are not born with an ‘I’ – the ego emerges only gradually as experience shapes our dense web of active symbols into a tapestry rich and complex enough to begin twisting back upon itself. According to this view the psychological ‘I’ is a narrative fiction, something created only from intake of symbolic data and its own ability to create stories about itself from that data. The consequence is that a perspective (a mind) is a culmination of a unique pattern of symbolic activity in our nervous systems, which suggests that the pattern of symbolic activity that makes identity, that constitutes subjectivity, can be replicated within the brains of others, and perhaps even in artificial brains.
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