The mind itself cannot know anything.

Is the mind the same as the body? What is consciousness? Can machines have it?

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Dontaskme
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Re: The mind itself cannot know anything.

Post by Dontaskme » Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:29 am

Dubious wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:33 am

How could Socrates have referred to the unknown knower if he knew the object asking the questions to examine what others knew?

Also, if I let it all go to see what stays then that what stays causes me to know something which defeats the Not knowing in order to Know!

Are you saying there is a neutral entity in each of us which conceptualizes not knowing in order to know?
Not-knowing is knowing. Non-duality is duality. Non-violence is violence, in not knowing nothing, everything is known. It is the not-knowing nothing that knows everything because there is only everything and nothing.

All colour is an appearance of the same white light. The white light is nothing, the colour is everything. Similarly, the blank screen behind the words appearing on the computer is the medium for knowing as soon as the words appear on it, and as the words or images appear,they are instantly recognised and known. The screen has to be first, it has to be for anything to become known. The screen is the knower, not the concepts, although the concepts are part of the knowing as they make the screen known to itself by their appearance. These two dynamics are working as one inseparable phenomena.

It appears there is an ''entity'' here, yet it has no Id.entity. The identity arises in it...so for identity to arise, become known, there has to be something existing that knows, just as there has to be pure white light in order for colour to be known. The knower in this instant is the white light of pure knowing luminous aware consciousness. What is consciousness but the identity that is the imagination of itself as coloured. In other words, the empty fullness.

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You are the non-personal stillness looking out at the personality playing.

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Londoner
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Re: The mind itself cannot know anything.

Post by Londoner » Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:13 pm

Not-knowing is knowing
'Knowing' is a word. It is a different word to 'not-knowing'. It takes its meaning from the way we use words, which varies, but our use of 'knowing' is not usually interchangeable with 'not-knowing'.

So, you would need to be clearer about what you mean when you use the word 'knowing'. For example, is it a description of a brain state, or a subjective mood? Or is it a claim of 'truth', in which case under what philosophical theory of truth?

The other paradoxes you mention seem to also hang on this lack of clarity. Are they ultimately any more profound than any other ambiguity that results from language? I might equally observe that 'mind is not mind'. This would indeed be true if it was construed as 'Mind' as I think of it is not what you think of as 'mind'.

Or, to leave any suggestion that we are doing some kind of deep philosophy behind, I might declare 'cheesey cheese is not cheesy', simply meaning there exists an alternative meaning of the word 'cheesy' and (maybe) I intend that different meaning.

marjoram_blues
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Quote of the Day

Post by marjoram_blues » Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:35 pm

Londoner wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:13 pm
Not-knowing is knowing
'Knowing' is a word. It is a different word to 'not-knowing'. It takes its meaning from the way we use words, which varies, but our use of 'knowing' is not usually interchangeable with 'not-knowing'.

So, you would need to be clearer about what you mean when you use the word 'knowing'. For example, is it a description of a brain state, or a subjective mood? Or is it a claim of 'truth', in which case under what philosophical theory of truth?

The other paradoxes you mention seem to also hang on this lack of clarity. Are they ultimately any more profound than any other ambiguity that results from language? I might equally observe that 'mind is not mind'. This would indeed be true if it was construed as 'Mind' as I think of it is not what you think of as 'mind'.

Or, to leave any suggestion that we are doing some kind of deep philosophy behind, I might declare 'cheesey cheese is not cheesy', simply meaning there exists an alternative meaning of the word 'cheesy' and (maybe) I intend that different meaning.
'Cheesy cheese is not cheesy' - Londoner
:mrgreen:

Your whole response made complete sense to me - in the round.

Dontaskme
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Re: The mind itself cannot know anything.

Post by Dontaskme » Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:54 pm

Londoner wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:13 pm

So, you would need to be clearer about what you mean when you use the word 'knowing'. For example, is it a description of a brain state, or a subjective mood? Or is it a claim of 'truth', in which case under what philosophical theory of truth?

The other paradoxes you mention seem to also hang on this lack of clarity. Are they ultimately any more profound than any other ambiguity that results from language? I might equally observe that 'mind is not mind'. This would indeed be true if it was construed as 'Mind' as I think of it is not what you think of as 'mind'.
Life is a paradox full stop.

Who is the knower of the known. What is the knower, what is IT that knows?

How can you know yourself as the knower? You would have to split yourself up in two, the knower and the known. But the knower and the known are ONE knowing.

IT is not some-thing to be known by some one. IT is the knowing that cannot be known. In essence you are that Knowing.

The Keppler telescope is finding more and more galaxies than there are grains of sand "out there" and "out there" is really Here as the very knowing Itself. The scientists are really looking at their Self, their own Self-Awareness. Awareness knows itself. Awareness does not need mind to know itself.

What is not known, will eventually become known, but that which is unknowable can never be known.

For further clarification...
Awareness knows itself. Awareness does not need mind to know itself. How does awareness know itself?

Awareness knows itself by virtue of being itself. That is to say that awareness is knowledge, the knowing principle, the consciousness that “lights up” the mind and makes knowing possible.

When we say that awareness knows itself, we do not mean that awareness knows itself in the same sense that the mind knows objects. Since awareness is both attributeless and non-dual, it is inherently non-objectifiable. Moreover, awareness is not an entity endowed with a mind conditioned by an ego or sense of individual “I-ness” by means of which it distinguishes itself as a unique object that can be known. Therefore, since it has neither a mind nor any delineable boundaries or characteristics, awareness cannot recognize itself as an object.
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IT is not some-thing to be known by some one. IT is the knowing that cannot be known. In essence you are that Knowing.

A someone is an object known and that which is known cannot know anything.


________

More clarity found here...

http://www.nevernotpresent.com/satsangs ... the-known/


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Londoner
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Re: The mind itself cannot know anything.

Post by Londoner » Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:31 am

Dontaskme wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:54 pm
Life is a paradox full stop.


I would say life is what it is. It cannot be a paradox because it doesn't attempt to explain itself. We get paradoxes when we attempt to describe it with words, to say things about it.
Who is the knower of the known. What is the knower, what is IT that knows?
The 'knower of the known/knower/IT' would be the subject of any sentence where the verb is 'know'. I cannot tell who they are yet because you have not fully formed such a sentence.

As I wrote before, these are not paradoxes about 'knowing', they are simply incomplete sentences. One could generate an endless stream of them; 'Who is the numberer of the number?', 'Who is the observer of the observed? and so on.
How can you know yourself as the knower?
I can and do 'know myself as the knower', just as I know myself as an observer, a husband, a mammal and so on. We might equally ask 'How can you know yourself as a human?' and the answer to that is: If I call myself a human other people accept that, so I can tell I am using the word 'human' correctly. The same is true when I use the word 'know'. By contrast:
You would have to split yourself up in two, the knower and the known. But the knower and the known are ONE knowing.....IT is not some-thing to be known by some one. IT is the knowing that cannot be known. In essence you are that Knowing.
That is not what people mean by the word 'know'. 'Knowing' is a verb. They do not think of 'knowing' as a place or substance, like a sort of bag, that contains people and the objects. So, if you mean something different you ought to make it clear by using a different word. (I make the same point about your use of 'awareness' below)

But pending an alternative word to 'know', at this point you are using that single word 'know' both in the sense that it is normally understood but also to mean something different.

I can do this. I hereby declare:

'X does not equal X'.

This is true - if the first X and the second X have different meanings. But people might comment that my using the same symbol was an attempt to be deliberately confusing...perhaps to suggest a profundity that wasn't there.

Having got past those paradoxes, the next step ought to be for you to explain your theory of knowledge, such that we can understand what you mean by 'know', should you wish to keep using that word. Then we could see how well your ideas held together and we would be doing philosophy.
For further clarification...

Awareness knows itself. Awareness does not need mind to know itself. How does awareness know itself?

Awareness knows itself by virtue of being itself. That is to say that awareness is knowledge, the knowing principle, the consciousness that “lights up” the mind and makes knowing possible...
To which I would respond that you are reifying 'awareness'. We do not think of 'awareness' as being a thing in itself. Lots of words are like that; 'husband' is a word that describes the marital status of many men, but the word 'husband' is not married to anyone. So once again, if you are putting forward your own philosophical ideas then the first step is to clarify your own terms. If you just borrow words used in ordinary speech, or other philosophy, and start using them in a different way then how can you hope to make yourself clear?

Walker
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Re: The mind itself cannot know anything.

Post by Walker » Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:41 am

Londoner wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:31 am

Having got past those paradoxes, the next step ought to be for you to explain your theory of knowledge, such that we can understand what you mean by 'know', should you wish to keep using that word. Then we could see how well your ideas held together and we would be doing philosophy.
Unless one can say for certain where we come from, and what happens to awareness after the body dies, one is no position to be an arbiter of philosophy.

Londoner
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Re: The mind itself cannot know anything.

Post by Londoner » Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:32 am

Walker wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:41 am
Londoner wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:31 am

Having got past those paradoxes, the next step ought to be for you to explain your theory of knowledge, such that we can understand what you mean by 'know', should you wish to keep using that word. Then we could see how well your ideas held together and we would be doing philosophy.
Unless one can say for certain where we come from, and what happens to awareness after the body dies, one is no position to be an arbiter of philosophy.
Philosophy would be about clarifying what those questions mean. In other words, what kind of answers are you looking for?

To put it another way, if Dontaskme writes something like:
Awareness knows itself by virtue of being itself.
I could say; 'I disagree'. In that case, how do we decide who is right and who is wrong? Do we find out by examining a brain, or by psychoanalysis, or by looking up the meaning of the words in a dictionary, or by looking in the Bible....?

If we can't say, if we don't know what would show the assertion was true or false, then it suggests that the assertion is meaningless. That asking 'how does awareness know itself?' cannot be a meaningful question, because it cannot have a meaningful answer.

Dontaskme
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Re: The mind itself cannot know anything.

Post by Dontaskme » Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:41 am

Londoner wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:31 am
So once again, if you are putting forward your own philosophical ideas then the first step is to clarify your own terms. If you just borrow words used in ordinary speech, or other philosophy, and start using them in a different way then how can you hope to make yourself clear?
I have a self?

Who or what is this self?
Londoner wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:31 am


I would say life is what it is. It cannot be a paradox because it doesn't attempt to explain itself.
Before we can continue this strange philosophical discussion, at least we should be clear about who it is exactly that seeks clarification in the first place, and why would it do that?

If like you say, life is what it is, and it cannot be a paradox because it doesn't attempt to explain itself...then any interpretation of it will always be after the fact of it just being the way it is...so what would be the point? would any interpretation of it ever be real or true?

So who and what are we talking about here? Who is this 'we' ? is it a word or is it something else? ..and what is the thing that is aware of the meaning of the word? ...or is there nothing aware of the word ''we''....since you've already stated that the awareness word is not a thing....now it seems you are not making yourself clear...if there is no awareness to be aware of it's meaning? where does any meaning come from, and who knows meaning?



Londoner wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:31 am
We do not think of 'awareness' as being a thing in itself. Lots of words are like that; 'husband' is a word that describes the marital status of many men, but the word 'husband' is not married to anyone.
Who is this ''We'' ..what does it mean and where does the meaning come from and to whom does that meaning of the word arise? Who is 'we'

If this is all words..then who or what is it that is attempting to make itself clear?

Does life really do philosophise with itself by explaining how to make itself clear?

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Dontaskme
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Re: The mind itself cannot know anything.

Post by Dontaskme » Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:46 am

Walker wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:41 am
Londoner wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:31 am

Having got past those paradoxes, the next step ought to be for you to explain your theory of knowledge, such that we can understand what you mean by 'know', should you wish to keep using that word. Then we could see how well your ideas held together and we would be doing philosophy.
Unless one can say for certain where we come from, and what happens to awareness after the body dies, one is no position to be an arbiter of philosophy.

Thank you, I've just attempted to clarify this exact same point to Londoner as well. I didn't see your post until after I had submitted mine, hmm, what a coincidence.

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What I find really weird and odd about some of the PN members is they try to pretend they know what they are talking about, but then when the question of who is the actual knower of knowledge comes up, they seem to be clueless as to what the answer really is...it's too funny.

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Londoner
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Re: The mind itself cannot know anything.

Post by Londoner » Fri Oct 13, 2017 12:26 pm

Dontaskme wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:41 am
I have a self?

Who or what is this self?
Your self will be a function of the way in which you distinguish yourself from things which are not you. You can do this in ddifferent ways, in different situations. For example you might sometimes think of your body as part of yourself, but at other times you treat your body as an object. There is a lot about this in philosophy.

And you do distinguish yourself from things which are not you. For example, you ask me questions. If we ask questions we are putting ourselves into a relation with something that is not ourselves, we are establishing a dualism.
Before we can continue this strange philosophical discussion, at least we should be clear about who it is exactly that seeks clarification in the first place, and why would it do that?
Me and perhaps other readers. You post on a philosophy board. Presumably because you wish to communicate something. I am one of the people who read your posts and I am saying I am having problems understanding what you are trying to say.
If like you say, life is what it is, and it cannot be a paradox because it doesn't attempt to explain itself...then any interpretation of it will always be after the fact of it just being the way it is...so what would be the point? would any interpretation of it ever be real or true?
No, the interpretation would not be 'real' - not in the sense that the object it is interpreting is 'real'. You write of the interpretation being 'after the fact of it just being the way it is'. What would be an example of such a fact? How could you know it?

People have attempted answers to such questions and that is mainstream philosophy. I am putting forward these considerations and am getting this puzzled reaction, but this is what philosophy is all about. All those big thick books on ontology and epistemology and mind are trying to address such questions.
So who and what are we talking about here? Who is this 'we' ? is it a word or is it something else? ..and what is the thing that is aware of the meaning of the word? ...or is there nothing aware of the word ''we''....since you've already stated that the awareness word is not a thing....now it seems you are not making yourself clear...if there is no awareness to be aware of it's meaning? where does any meaning come from, and who knows meaning?
Here is an example. If you are interested in such questions then you might try reading Wittgenstein.
Who is this ''We'' ..what does it mean and where does the meaning come from and to whom does that meaning of the word arise? Who is 'we'

If this is all words..then who or what is it that is attempting to make itself clear?
If you took my advice and read Wittgenstein, or perhaps Austin, then you would find his answer would be that the meaning of a word like 'we' arises in the intention of the speaker when they use it. (As opposed to it having some fixed meaning, some permanent reference, that the word 'we' is somehow glued onto one particular object or experience). You might then agree or disagree with that answer and give your reasons. Then we would be doing philosophy.

But there is no point just reeling off strings of enigmatic questions and refusing to listen to any attempts to answer them.
Does life really do philosophise with itself by explaining how to make itself clear?
I do not understand that sentence: is there a typo?

Dontaskme
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Re: The mind itself cannot know anything.

Post by Dontaskme » Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:04 pm

Londoner wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:32 am
Awareness knows itself by virtue of being itself.
I could say; 'I disagree'. In that case, how do we decide who is right and who is wrong? Do we find out by examining a brain, or by psychoanalysis, or by looking up the meaning of the words in a dictionary, or by looking in the Bible....?

If we can't say, if we don't know what would show the assertion was true or false, then it suggests that the assertion is meaningless. That asking 'how does awareness know itself?' cannot be a meaningful question, because it cannot have a meaningful answer.
There is no meaning in reality...meaning comes because you put it there...now all you have to do is know who that you is?

Any idea? ..who is the you that puts the meaning in the meaningless?

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Dontaskme
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Re: The mind itself cannot know anything.

Post by Dontaskme » Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:16 pm

Londoner wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 12:26 pm
No, the interpretation would not be 'real' - not in the sense that the object it is interpreting is 'real'. You write of the interpretation being 'after the fact of it just being the way it is'. What would be an example of such a fact? How could you know it?

Real reality is when what's happening is just what is happening and no one is making it happen, it is what is without any meaning or interpretation attached.

There is no one doing life, there is only being life. There is no one knowing life, there is only knowing life. Knowing is one unitary movement.

The mind is a manifestation of the the 'source', just as anything else is. There is no 'other' source of knowing, certainly not in an object.


In knowing itself, the "knower" would be altered by the knowing.

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Londoner
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Re: The mind itself cannot know anything.

Post by Londoner » Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:46 pm

Dontaskme wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:04 pm
There is no meaning in reality...meaning comes because you put it there...now all you have to do is know who that you is?
First, are you saying there that you agree meaning is found in the relation of the subject to the object?

And you are now asking a different question; 'who that you is?'

I would respond that the same thing applies. 'You' (meaning 'me') is relational. My idea of 'me' is built up from my encounters with things that are not me. I know myself as a negation; 'not that computer screen, not that keyboard, not (even) my fingers as they type...'

As I wrote earlier, this is the sort of question dealt with in philosophy. The particular formulation above would be called (loosely) 'existentialist'. But there are other answers, because there are different questions. And there are different questions because 'me' does not have a single meaning. It does not have a single meaning because there is no single thing we stand relational to. The meaning of 'me' when it is relational to 'my dreams' is different to 'me' when it is relational to 'my nationality' or 'my house' or 'my past' etc.

You may disagree with my answer, but you ought to say what is wrong with it, rather than just repeating the question.
Any idea? ..who is the you that puts the meaning in the meaningless?
Yes, as I have explained, there are numerous ideas and they are to be found in the philosophy section of the library, or the excellent online encyclopedias of philosophy. Otherwise, this seems to be repeating the same question you put earlier.

Londoner
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Re: The mind itself cannot know anything.

Post by Londoner » Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:58 pm

Dontaskme wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:16 pm
Real reality is when what's happening is just what is happening and no one is making it happen, it is what is without any meaning or interpretation attached.
OK. Then we would be unable to say anything about it. (Because any word we used about it would be saying it was like other things that word refers to, so it would be an interpretation.) We are not breaking new philosophical ground here.
There is no one doing life, there is only being life. There is no one knowing life, there is only knowing life. Knowing is one unitary movement.

The mind is a manifestation of the the 'source', just as anything else is. There is no 'other' source of knowing, certainly not in an object.
I disagree with all of that. OK. So how are we going to decide whether you are right, or I am?

If we cannot say, then it indicates that those assertions must be meaningless.

Dontaskme
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Re: The mind itself cannot know anything.

Post by Dontaskme » Fri Oct 13, 2017 2:03 pm

Londoner wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:46 pm

First, are you saying there that you agree meaning is found in the relation of the subject to the object?
Yes.
Londoner wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:46 pm
And you are now asking a different question; 'who that you is?'
Yes.


Londoner wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:46 pm
I would respond that the same thing applies. 'You' (meaning 'me') is relational. My idea of 'me' is built up from my encounters with things that are not me. I know myself as a negation; 'not that computer screen, not that keyboard, not (even) my fingers as they type...'


So what you are saying here, is that you only exist in relation with what is not you.....?

Well that is no different than what I've been saying, except to say the context in which we express this may differ slightly.

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