On 2/5/12, Carl Thames <cthames@cent...> wrote:
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "118" <ununoctiums@gmai...>
> To: <moq_discuss@moqt...>
> Sent: Friday, February 03, 2012 11:55 AM
> Subject: Re: [MD] Metaphysics and the mystic.
>> Hi Carl,
>> 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.
> Since nearly everything I know about James is anecdotal, I'll leave it with
> people who know more about it. I was just making the point that we build
> upon what has gone before. While I firmly believe in innovation, most of
> what we call that is simply tweaking previous thought. Then again, with
> people like Gene Roddenbury, et. al., they were coming up with stuff that
> hadn't existed before, and science is trying hard to make those ideas a
> reality. An intersting aspect of that is that the person who comes up with
> the concept is rarely the person who makes it manifest.
Yes, old thoughts in new clothing. Science fiction is interesting
since it can fictionally project where technology will head.
Sometimes it is hard to tell if such story is ahead of its time, or
whether it creates such time. Perhaps it is a mix of the two. The
human part of the story is always the story of the human condition, it
is hard to imagine otherwise.
>> 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 read the Wiki article on it, and apparently Jung coined the term. I like
> the idea presented by Lewis Carroll, in which the Queen tells Alice, "It's a
> poor sort of memory that only works in one direction."
Indeed, Lewis Carroll is a place I can always find quotes for
everything. He was not a bad mathematician either.
>> 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.
> The way synchronicity normally appears to me is I'll get on a subject,
> usually something I don't normally work with, and suddenly I'll see
> references to it, articles about it, etc. for the next couple of weeks. A
> good example of that is treehouses. I got on the idea once, and it seemed
> like every time I turned around there was information about treehouses. I
> remember going to the V.A. hospital for an eye exam, sitting in the waiting
> area and picking up a magazine at random, and there was an article about
> treehouses in it. This was Time, or Newsweek, or some other national
> magazie that didn't normally have articles about esoteric topics. It was
> pretty weird for a while there. Something similar is happening now with
> brain structure, brain injury, and character.
Yes, exactly. Then I wonder why I got on the subject to begin with.
It is as if I am conspiring with everything else to create the present
moment. This collective realization happens so often to me that I no
longer wonder at it. I am part of it all, and glad to be. To ignore
that is to live in isolation, imo. What a strange world it is if we
assume that we operate outside of it. I believe that MoQ is an
attempt to bring humanity back into reality.
>> 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.
> That speaks more to a source monitoring error than to synchronicity, IMHO.
> I've had exactly ONE experience with psycilocybn <sp?> mushrooms, and didn't
> get much hallucinations from them. I got a bit of tracers that lasted about
> 5 seconds, then nada. I probably didn't take enough of them. After I had
> given up on the experience, I went inside the tent and laid down. Shortly
> thereafter, I got the idea to visualize a violet flame (do a search on it)
> above my head, and I fed most of the recurring images from traumatic events
> into the flame. I had been dwelling on them for almost twenty years. After
> that night, I stopped dwelling on them. I have thought of repeating the
> experiment, but I'm too paranoid about the illegality of the shrooms.
Source monitoring is one way to look at it. The way I look at it is
that we construct very simple appearances of what is. This structure
blocks much out since it would be too complex for our "cognisant
brain". By compartmentalizing we are able to function. Anthing
interfering with this compartmentalization will both confuse and open
up new ways of personal thinking (most often the former). These
chemicals are over rated, since the same think can be done without
them and without all the side effects of suddenly getting thrown into
the pool of senses. They are certainly eye openers, but do not have
to be the vehicle. In fact they should not be the vehicle for any
reality creation, imo.
These chemicals are still being used for psychotherapy, but the
results can often be disabling. Fear and regret is a big part of our
lives, and it is best if we keep those under some structured control,
with a little steam vent as it were.
>> 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.
> Agreed. I've long suspected that "reality" is more of a trap than most
> people realize.
Yes, a trap until one realizes it to be so, I think. Then one is
free. Then one can laugh at all the inconsequential nonsense that we
live our lives by, and one can actually become responsible for what we
create, imo. However, we must treat our reality with respect, since
it has been created over the eons by those such as we.
>> 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.
> I did a search on it as well. If that's what's happening, then we really DO
> co-create our own reality. Jung commented on it, along with Pauli, in a
> paper they presented together. According to them, it would appear that the
> reality we experience is totally dependent on the observations we choose to
> make. I'm not totally comfortable with that concept. Even less so since
> I've been reading "Descartes' Error" by Antonio Damasio. I've barely gotten
> a good start on it, (he describes the effects of lesions on different areas
> of the brain, and more significantly how those lesions affect character) and
> it's making me re-think a lot of previously held assumptions. I haven't
> read enough yet to decide what I'm going to end up thinking about it, but it
> is stirring the grey matter.
Damasio deals with patients who are ill. Freud did the same thing and
came up with all sorts of conclusions about sex. So I am always wary
of taking the example of a few individuals and projecting out. I
think we are responsible for those things we choose to attend to, but
we are not alone. Everything is involved. As we choose, so does all
else. I suppose that what we are is a product of that continual
choice process for which we have an input. This is where the moral
fabric of the universe that all things partake in. As humans we are
maybe more sensitive to creating a concept out of it, but this does
not mean that the underlying phenomenon is our creation. We just play
While we may claim that Morality is not some basic principle in the
universe, we seem to follow it without question. At least many of us.
For, why is something better? I suppose if one is an evolutionist,
in the sense that it explains Everything, then one can completely
release oneself from any responsibility. Yes, the 21st century could
well be the century of Victims. Poor me, give me more.
>> 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.
> The problem I have with the predetermined concept is that I don't know who
> gets to do the predetermining. If we do it ourselves, then Lewis Carroll's
> comment applies, if we attribute it to a divine being, then there's more
> going on than most are willing to admit. My shamanic background teaches
> that we are all here to learn, and generally we make an agreement before we
> incarn here what that's going to be. We decide before we come what the best
> situation will be to learn what we need to learn, and we incarn into that
> situation, with those parents, with that socio-economic status, etc. to
> facilitate that learning. The problem with that is that we don't come back
> with full knowledge of what we are supposed to learn. We have to figure it
> out as we go. We DO come back with specific interests and talents, so who
I suppose that we can do much by ourselves, but we cannot live in
isolation. From the simplistic way in which we treat reality, it is
possible to assume great power. It could well be that the devine
being includes us, and is made complete by us. If not for us it would
be something completely different (which it isn't). I am all for
learning. I could never be a guru of any kind. Not that I am drawing
a personal relationship, but I believe that many of the great thinkers
thought as much. Notice that Buddha, Socrates, Christ, and others
(that we will never know about) never wrote anything down. For to
write things down makes one a beaurocrat of some kind dispensing rules
Since we have the ability for decision, there is no reason to think
that this did not exist before this incarnation. If one sticks only
to the material, measurable world then one becomes stuck there,
complete sq. I think that there is knowledge in the form of human
learning during one's lifetime. Much of this can be placed in the
area of brain memory. Of course this is lost when the brain gets
eaten by worms. Interstingly there have been studies which show that
worms can assume knowledge by eating other worms. But I am not
condoning canabalism :-). Then there is another form of memory which
is the memory retained by the universe in general.
For example, homeopathic medicine (which has been around for too long
to say it is bogus), works by diluting a substance to a point where
mathematically it does not exist anymore. The theory behind its
efficacy is that the water "retains the memory" of the metal or
whatever. It is this "memory" that acts as a cure. Of course this
does not make much sense to the rigid scientific community but it
makes perfect sense. Have you ever walked into a room, say after a
party you were not at, and can still "feel" the party? This could be
one way of presenting Karma. We have created "memories" that we seek
to rectify or continue. The whole universe operates on memory, not
just our brains. Memory and Free-Will all under the umbrella of
morality! There that is a maxim if I have ever delivered one.
> >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 don't see morality in quite the same way. I see it as a cultural thing,
> and even then it's something that becomes a choice. Because of that, I
> don't see free will as being a contributor. Does that make sense? We have
> the ability to choose, within a certain set of possibilities, and we tend to
> make those choice based on our preconditioning. Descartes' Error begins
> with a discussion of Phineas Gage's accident, and the subsequent
> consequences. Following his accident, his character changed significantly,
> and he began making very poor moral choices, which would indicate that the
> "moral" aspect of his character had been damaged. This would indicate that
> what we call "moral" has a chemical, or otherwise structural, basis within
> our brains. Like I said, I haven't read enough of the book to make any
> rational decisions about the whole thing.
It makes sense. The way I see it, is that everything has free will.
If we want to take a statistical view of things (which is often
misleading) I could say that what we exist in is a synthesis of all
the free wills. This would also mean that any choice that we make
will change everything. Our memories affect our choices, but each
moment is new and therefore not determined by memory alone. This
could be a kind of "chicken and egg" thing. Perhaps we could say that
"accidents" diminish one's ability to stay in tune with a universal
morality. Just an idea, but abberant behavior is not considered
"normal", and we do not decide what is normal. I am convinced that
morality has a chemical or structural component, but it also has
umpteen additional components. I hesitate to point to one as being
more important than another. Umpteen means infinite in this case :-).
>> 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 :-).
> I'm looking forward to your thoughts.
> Ah yes. Focused human endeavor. It is a wonder to see at times. I'm
> looking forward to the Superbowl later today for the same reason.
Well as the game went on, I became more and more a Giants fan.
Perhaps I contributed to their victory in a very, very small way :-).
I am learning something here about my structure of reality, thanks for
Lewis Carrol below:
"'I never heard of "Uglification,"' Alice ventured to say. 'What is it?'
The Gryphon lifted up both its paws in surprise. 'What! Never heard of
uglifying!' it exclaimed. 'You know what to beautify is, I suppose?'
'Yes,' said Alice doubtfully: 'it means - to - make - anything - prettier.'
'Well, then,' the Gryphon went on, 'if you don't know what to uglify
is, you are a simpleton.'
Alice did not feel encouraged to ask any more questions about it, so
she turned to the Mock Turtle, and said 'What else had you to learn?'
'Well, there was Mystery,' the Mock Turtle replied, counting off the
subjects on his flappers, ' - Mystery, ancient and modern, with
Seaography: then Drawling - the Drawling-master was an old conger-eel,
that used to come once a week: He taught us Drawling, Stretching, and
Fainting in Coils.'"