This whole area of consciousness is indeed difficult to encapsulate,
and I am sure everything I can think of has already been said. I
therefore try to use the format of MoQ to bring the idea of
consciousness into that metaphysics. As you and dmb say, this can be
viewed through the writings of W. James as a starting point. Despite
my teasing of dmb, I like W. James and find his writings thought
provoking. So, I am not suggesting we dismiss what he writes as
inconsequential, but rather try to take them to the next level (if we
assume to be able to do such a thing). I think this is what dmb is
trying to do. He will always know more of James' writings than I
will, so I defer to what he presents on the subject.
On 2/2/12, Carl Thames <cthames@cent...> wrote:
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "118" <ununoctiums@gmai...>
> To: <moq_discuss@moqt...>
> Sent: Thursday, February 02, 2012 11:07 AM
> Subject: Re: [MD] Metaphysics and the mystic.
>> Hi Carl,
>> Thank you for your post, this could be interesting; I may learn
>> something. While in my line of business I must always supply credible
>> references for what I present scientifically, I have not used that
>> method in this forum. However, I am happy to look through the books
>> on my shelf and do so if necessary.
> Sorry about that. When I read your message, I had just finished reading the
> article that I cited. That brings up the question: What do you think about
> synchronicity? That kind of stuff makes all kind of bells go off in my
> head, and further strengthens what Schroedinger said. You mention brain
> science, I read the article and pick up a couple of books on the subject,
> and then meet with a friend who hands me a brochure announcing a one-day
> conference conducted by Brian E. King, expert in Applied Biopsychology
> that's going to be in town next month. The conference is about how the
> brain forms new habits. Seriously, I couldn't make this stuff up.
Yeah, people with too much time on their hands and sometimes a little
too much arrogance. The structural approach is an objective view. It
does not replace the subjective view, nor control it. We can break
appart a painting into all of its components and material composition,
but that does not explain our appreciation of such painting. Beware
of those who tell you what you are, and why.
Don't get me wrong, I like references since that gives me something to
read. In this internet setting I just try to get away from constantly
having to find literary support for what I present as precedence. If
requested to do so, I can dig up an article that helped me with my
Synchronicity is a very interesting subject for me. It is difficult
to present outside some deterministic-like setting, but it does lie
outside of that in my opinion. A book I read a while ago called "The
Tao of Psychology" by J.S. Bolen, MD (a psychotherapist of sorts)
provides a presentation of the synthesis of Taoism and synchronicity
as presented by Jung. Jung was capable of incorporating Eastern
thought into modern psychology in a way that I believe to be thought
provoking of underlying phenomenon (perhaps the pre-conceptual). In
that book she attempts to persuade us of the importance of the concept
of synchronicity in modern psychology.
I could wax eloquent (?) on synchronicity, and still not say much.
One approach is to view the present moment as it unfolds as the
amalgamation of "all things" into a single instant. Each present
moment that we all partake in, as a team, requires the effort of "all
that is". Often we get glimpses of this in "obvious" synchronistic
events. I am sure you have experienced these as premonitions or
something. These "obvious" and perhaps enlightening connections, are
simple manifestations of what happens at a much larger and smaller
scale, but that we do not have the capacity to be aware of, in my
opinion. I have existed for intervals with the realization "as if"
synchronicity is present at each moment, and I can tell you that it is
very disabling and confusing.
If we remove the structured approach that we must use in life, say
through the intervention of normal thought processes through chemicals
(psychotropics) which provide such intervention we can also get a
glimpse into this. I have not taken that path for many, many years,
but I still remember what it felt like and can recall it to a degree.
Perhaps this is the dreaded "flashback" phenomenon. Yet, I can take
it or leave it, and therefore stay somewhat grounded. If I were to
get stuck there, I could not function to support my family. I suppose
this is a manifestation of schizophrenia if it persists. After all
schizophrenia is a loss of "normal" awareness.
All incoming information must be somewhat separated so that we can
distinguish sight from sound. This sensory integration is a
difficulty that many autistic have. Sight comes in as smell and so
forth. This can possibly be induced through certain chemicals. The
lack of such integrative capacity (or "normalization") also gives a
sense of a synchronistic "reality". Indeed the newborn child develops
such sensory integration in order to take part in the societal
structures that we create. It is not hard to believe that something
is lost in such taming of the mind.
In the past in this forum I have presented the concept of wave
function collapse. I just Googled this and the first few hits will
give an idea of what I mean. I don't particularly like Wiki, but it
will suffice. This is a quantum presentation of how the present
moment appears. It is important to note that the individual plays as
much of a role in this collapse as does everything else. This gives
birth to the idea that "we create what we measure" which is an
interesting result, at least in terms of metaphysical contemplation.
Of course Schroedinger and his cat that he can never look at is one
such conundrum. But these are thought experiments, so I am not sure
of the strengthen part of it. If everybody agrees with Schroedinger,
then I guess it becomes strong. But we can choose to agree or not.
Just because he is a physicist does not make him right.
Generally, I can present to you that "wave function collapse" suggests
that of all possibilities of the present moment, one must be the one
which becomes. The algorithm (if you will) leading to this actual
present moment could be seen as one of synchronicity. It is important
to bring free-will into this function, otherwise we are back to the
never ending unfolding of the original "idea" of the universe in a
predetermined fashion, which I do not find very convincing. In
addition to our own free-will, we must also assume that everything has
free will (as Pirsig explains in Lila), in my opinion. From this
attribution of free will to all, we can then claim that the universe
is moral. This is another conclusion that Pirsig comes to as I
understand it. Is Synchronicity moral?
I will leave it at that so that I do not confuse myself. I have
deleted the rest of the conversation that you have provided motivating
input to, and will return to it as time presents itself :-).
Thank you for your thoughts.
ps. I watched part of the Australian Open men's final. I got to hand
it to those guys, they are willful atheletes. It makes me proud to be