Pure Consciousness?

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

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madera
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Re: Pure Consciousness?

Post by madera » Sun Jun 01, 2014 5:45 pm

Ginkgo wrote:
madera wrote:
Ginkgo wrote:I think you have covered a fair bit here. When you talk about types of consciousness you seems to be hinting at, the 'hard problem' of consciousness and the 'easy problem' of consciousness as articulated by people such as David Chalmers. I get this idea from your account of considering different types consciousness. People such as Daniel Dennett would of course deny there is any 'hard problem' and say that consciousness is adequately covered in the easy part of Chalmers explanation.

The easy problem of consciousness is basically the idea that we have the ability to discriminate and categorize by attending to a stimuli. We can articulate a deliberate response on the basis of a stimuli. This sort of consciousness is sometimes said to be exhibited in the working of a sophisticated robot.

The 'hard problem' of consciousness can be simply summed as as 'experience' or why do we have experience. Chalmers expresses the 'hard problem' in terms of, "What it is like" . In other words, human experience as a unique subjective quality about it that cannot be accounted for in terms of the 'easy problem'.

I am not sure if this is what you are getting at in terms of, "types of consciousness".

As far as 'pure consciousness' is concerned I think this is more of a tradition in Eastern philosophy. I don't think we find much of it Western thinking.


Ginkgo
No it is not more of a tradition in Eastern philosophy alone.
Becoming aware of each individual thought is being conscious.
Anything that we are aware of at a given moment forms part of our consciousness.
Awareness is the key.
Thanks for picking up that point, it lacked precision. What I should have said is that when it comes to physics and neurophilosophy there is no such things as pure consciousness.
You know Gingko, I am finding this conversation mute. I get the feeling that talk is cheap and no one puts their money where their mouths are. Do we have pure consciousness or do we just talk about it? And if we have arrived at pure consciousness what was the process?
Precision is lost here and you wonder why?
Sorry if I changed the subject, but, I don't know how to play these philosophical games.

Gee
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Re: Pure Consciousness?

Post by Gee » Sun Jun 01, 2014 7:00 pm

madera wrote: You know Gingko, I am finding this conversation mute. I get the feeling that talk is cheap and no one puts their money where their mouths are. Do we have pure consciousness or do we just talk about it? And if we have arrived at pure consciousness what was the process?
Please note that in the title of this thread there is a question mark. That is because we are questioning the concept of pure consciousness. As far as I know, you are the only person, who has "arrived at pure consciousness".
madera wrote:Sorry if I changed the subject, but, I don't know how to play these philosophical games.
Then what are you doing here?

G

madera
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Re: Pure Consciousness?

Post by madera » Sun Jun 01, 2014 8:55 pm

Gee wrote:
madera wrote: You know Gingko, I am finding this conversation mute. I get the feeling that talk is cheap and no one puts their money where their mouths are. Do we have pure consciousness or do we just talk about it? And if we have arrived at pure consciousness what was the process?
Please note that in the title of this thread there is a question mark. That is because we are questioning the concept of pure consciousness. As far as I know, you are the only person, who has "arrived at pure consciousness".
madera wrote:Sorry if I changed the subject, but, I don't know how to play these philosophical games.
Then what are you doing here?

G

good question Gee.
since I have discovered that there is no pure consciousness I came to share that.
to acquire consciousness one must go through a process and that process never ends which means there is no pure consciousness.(Unless one is a Saint) I am not=yet
During going the process one overcomes their fallen natures, anger, resentment, jealousy, making false judgments etc. and one acquires a quiet mind once all that falls away.
It can be a very painful process if one resents the truth. The demon hates the truth and puts up a good fight which it ends up losing in the process.
So I am here to learn as I go. There is no end to understanding what makes us tick and to learn what causes diseases and emotional conflicts that is so rampant among people.
Thanks for the question Gee.

Ginkgo
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Joined: Mon Apr 30, 2012 2:47 pm

Re: Pure Consciousness?

Post by Ginkgo » Sun Jun 01, 2014 10:30 pm

madera wrote:
You know Gingko, I am finding this conversation mute. I get the feeling that talk is cheap and no one puts their money where their mouths are. Do we have pure consciousness or do we just talk about it? And if we have arrived at pure consciousness what was the process?
Precision is lost here and you wonder why?
Sorry if I changed the subject, but, I don't know how to play these philosophical games.
I am sorry you find the conservation mute. Perhaps I could start off with the following explanation in the hope it might change your expectations.

Firstly, no one knows if there is such a thing as "pure consciousness", the concept may well have no meaning at all. It depends on the discipline you consult. Pure consciousness in philosophical terms is basically a philosophy of essences. In other words, such philosophies ask the question," What is pure consciousness?". Physics and neurophilosophy on the other hand ask the question, "What shall we call it?" and in the case of consciousness the question largely becomes, "What labels can we attach to consciousness?"

Secondly, what we end up with is two schools of thought. The first school is that of metaphysical essences, while the second school deals with demonstration. In other words, metaphysics and science are not compatible in a single methodology.

It is impossible to provide a full explanation in a limited space, so the above can only be a basic starting point.
Last edited by Ginkgo on Mon Jun 02, 2014 10:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

Gee
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Re: Pure Consciousness?

Post by Gee » Mon Jun 02, 2014 5:46 am

madera wrote:good question Gee.
since I have discovered that there is no pure consciousness I came to share that.
Thank you, but I think most of us already know that. If you read my original post, you found that I concluded it with the opinion that consciousness can not be pure.
madera wrote:to acquire consciousness one must go through a process and that process never ends which means there is no pure consciousness.
Acquiring consciousness is easy, one just has to be born and survive.
madera wrote:During going the process one overcomes their fallen natures, anger, resentment, jealousy, making false judgments etc. and one acquires a quiet mind once all that falls away.
It can be a very painful process if one resents the truth. The demon hates the truth and puts up a good fight which it ends up losing in the process.
Here, you are not talking about consciousness; you are talking about morality or maybe psychology. That is NOT what this thread is about. You apparently do not understand the subject matter, and you are attempting to pull the thread off topic. I resent that tremendously. If you wish to discuss moral issues or psychological issues, there are other forums and other threads here that fill your requirements.
madera wrote:So I am here to learn as I go. There is no end to understanding what makes us tick and to learn what causes diseases and emotional conflicts that is so rampant among people.
Thanks for the question Gee.
This thread is not about diseases or emotional conflicts either. It is not a subjective study.

This thread questions the reality of consciousness from an objective scientific perspective. It explores the ideas of whether or not consciousness is physically real, whether or not it works through cause and effect, whether or not we can understand how it works, and it's limitations.

The problem I am having is that consciousness is relevant to every perspective, every science, every religion, every philosophy, everything, so trying to keep it focused on my topic is difficult. It is a lot like trying to herd cats. Cats go where ever they want and do not "herd" well. It is impossible to learn anything when each person is discussing their own various perceptions of consciousness.

If you wish to discuss the morality of consciousness, then start your own thread, rather than disrupt almost a year's worth of my work.

G

madera
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Re: Pure Consciousness?

Post by madera » Mon Jun 02, 2014 6:42 am

Gee wrote:
madera wrote:good question Gee.
since I have discovered that there is no pure consciousness I came to share that.
Thank you, but I think most of us already know that. If you read my original post, you found that I concluded it with the opinion that consciousness can not be pure.
madera wrote:to acquire consciousness one must go through a process and that process never ends which means there is no pure consciousness.
Acquiring consciousness is easy, one just has to be born and survive.
madera wrote:During going the process one overcomes their fallen natures, anger, resentment, jealousy, making false judgments etc. and one acquires a quiet mind once all that falls away.
It can be a very painful process if one resents the truth. The demon hates the truth and puts up a good fight which it ends up losing in the process.
Here, you are not talking about consciousness; you are talking about morality or maybe psychology. That is NOT what this thread is about. You apparently do not understand the subject matter, and you are attempting to pull the thread off topic. I resent that tremendously. If you wish to discuss moral issues or psychological issues, there are other forums and other threads here that fill your requirements.
madera wrote:So I am here to learn as I go. There is no end to understanding what makes us tick and to learn what causes diseases and emotional conflicts that is so rampant among people.
Thanks for the question Gee.
This thread is not about diseases or emotional conflicts either. It is not a subjective study.

This thread questions the reality of consciousness from an objective scientific perspective. It explores the ideas of whether or not consciousness is physically real, whether or not it works through cause and effect, whether or not we can understand how it works, and it's limitations.

The problem I am having is that consciousness is relevant to every perspective, every science, every religion, every philosophy, everything, so trying to keep it focused on my topic is difficult. It is a lot like trying to herd cats. Cats go where ever they want and do not "herd" well. It is impossible to learn anything when each person is discussing their own various perceptions of consciousness.

If you wish to discuss the morality of consciousness, then start your own thread, rather than disrupt almost a year's worth of my work.

G
I know where you are coming from Gee.
It seems you do not love the truth and took offense.
If morality is not part of philosophy,
If that is all you care about than you have lost a year of growth.
Have a good one.

Gee
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Location: Michigan, US

Re: Pure Consciousness?

Post by Gee » Wed Jun 04, 2014 4:57 am

Arising;

Thank you for your condolences. Please consider my following thoughts, and respond when you can. You wrote a very long post, so I will probably split it up into two posts.
Arising_uk wrote:So we agree, dualism with respect to mind/body and reason/emotion is false?
Absolutely, but it is also true -- from a certain perspective. Is a sandwich dual? Of course, it is bread with something in between the slices. If it is peanut butter and jelly, then we could call it trio. But this is a very oversimplified almost childish description. The truth is that we can not have bread without grain, yeast, lard, salt, water, and often more, that it processed; then we need peanuts and butter, after the butter has been processed from milk and cream; then we need fruit, sugar, water, and something to gel it, and more processing, so there is nothing dual or trio about it.

People have energy and force, and we have body and mind. There are different types of energy, different types of force, different types of matter, and different aspects of mind, so I do not see how any thinking person can call us dual.
Arising_uk wrote:Got to be picky here. Aquinas et al were not scientists nor really philosophers as they've come to be understood, they were logicians and theologians and we owe them the debt of Aristotle (although we pretty much owe that to Islam ironically enough). It was Descartes who opened the door to the Natural Philosophers and hence scientists.
Got to be picky right back. What is a logician if not a scientist? What is a theologian if not a philosopher? A hammer is a hammer no matter what it is called. Descartes did a great deal, but he did not open that door; he bowed his way through it.

St. Augustine (400 AD) was a prolific writer and established much of the Church's early doctrine with his works like "Inner Illumination", "Original Sin", the "City of God", and "Confessions". His writings allowed for most of the misery of the Dark Ages by putting love of "God" above all else. He justified war which enabled the decimation of other peoples and cultures, he accepted testimony above evidence, and he made it clear that the Church and "God" were above thought -- especially Aristotle's thought.

Aquinas (1200 AD), as far as I know, is the next person to seriously affect Church doctrine with his "Summa" which incorporates Church doctrine with Aristotelian thought and logic. He convinced the Church that people were given minds by "God", and that those minds could be used for the greater glory of "God". Eventually reversing the Church's position that people need not think and only need to trust "God" and the Church as defined by St. Augustine. So Aquinas unlocked the door and started the hammering on it, but it still took centuries before Descartes (1600 AD) was born and able to be one of the first to walk through that door. If not for the work done by people before him, and his careful handling of the Church, Descartes could have gone the way of Galileo. This is why I called it a struggle by "many great scientists and philosophers".

What is really ironic is that St. Augustine's justification of religious war enabled the Crusaders to invade the "unbelievers" lands and rediscover Aristotle's work. Don't go around telling people that we owe Islam for Aristotle's work. The Middle East and Islam are supposed to be the "bad guys". Westerners can only deal with so much, so they do not want to know that the intelligent people of Islam understood the greatness of Aristotle's work and preserved and protected it from us -- the barbarians. Too much truth. (chuckle chuckle)
Arising_uk wrote:
Gee wrote: Science and religion created the false dichotomy with regard to the reality of consciousness. All of the mental aspects are part of our consciousness, but all of the mental aspects are not treated equally by science and religion. Realizing this frustrated me for a very long time until I considered the reason for the division -- the source of consciousness. Everyone was looking for the source.
Hmm...Descartes went with Dualism and Christian religion was happy with that as they had the Soul and since Descartes was a true believer and 'science' was still in its infancy I'm not sure your idea holds. As at the time the 'mental' was not really explored as everyone thought they knew they were mental. Descartes did explore what it was to be and specifically what it was to have a mental thought, i.e. clear and distinct ideas and perceptions.
Yes, we all know that we are mental. (chuckle) In Descartes time, I think that there were a lot of philosophers working on the mental rational aspect of mind, but few were working on emotion, or an understanding of the sub/unconscious aspect of mind -- until Freud's time. This would suit the Church because the "soul" is more related to the self, emotion, and the unconscious aspect of mind. It looks like a natural progression to me, where we would first look to study the obvious, the conscious mind, then progress to the more elusive, the unconscious mind.
Arising_uk wrote:I'm dubious that religion was looking for a source as they have the source, a 'god' given 'soul', much like GE's 'beon' in fact.
When I say that they were looking for the source of consciousness, what I am talking about is the source of life. As far as we know, there is no consciousness without life. Religion looks to "God" for the source; science looks to matter or the physical for the source. I think that you are misunderstanding Greylorn's beon theory. Greylorn, like me, understands that some parts of religion's ideas are true and some parts of science's ideas are true, so we are both trying to figure out how these very different ideas work and interact to make consciousness.
Arising_uk wrote:I agree that 'science' has come down on the side of 'consciousness' being the product of being a body with senses in an external world but I think the 'brain' idea is up for grabs in this model, as it's becoming clearer that the CNS is not just the lump at the top and the other supporting systems play a large role as well. But I agree that the religious still want a 'soul' of some sort.
It remains true that science still sees consciousness as being internal, so the supernatural/paranormal is not possible. But it exists. Which makes science partly wrong.
Arising_uk wrote:With respect to reincarnation, I think this a concept too replete with problematics to be anything other than wishful thinking. Although a perfectly natural assumption given the time it was thought of, i.e. nature appears to go through the cycles of birth, death and rebirth so why not us?
You are not the first person to tell me that reincarnation is "problematic", but no one has told me why they see it that way. Could you please explain these problems that you see? I would really like to understand these issues.
Arising_uk wrote:
Gee wrote:So I took the divisions as handed to me and study how the differences in the internal and external work individually and together, because I study all of consciousness.
I'm still not really sure what you mean when you say "consciousness"?
I see consciousness as a focused awareness that provides or exchanges information, so in essence, it is a communication. This communication is knowledge, thought, ideas, creativity, etc., which are acknowledged, stored in memory, or sometimes processed by a brain. The movement or activation of this awareness also seems to cause subjective feeling, which is the difference between a computer and a life form, as regards consciousness. If there is a great deal of information or it comes at a great speed, then it causes emotion. This is how I see feeling and emotion as being related to consciousness, until or unless I learn more and change my mind.
Arising_uk wrote:
Gee wrote:Knowledge is not shared unless we choose to share it. Emotions are shared automatically, unless we hide them. This is the nature of things we know and things we feel.
But I get your gist. The thing is, you make a judgement here between sharing and hiding? When young, kids share their knowledge automatically until they learn to withhold it, why is this not the same process with emotions?
Young kids do not share their knowledge automatically. They first have to be taught language, then they share their knowledge unthinkingly. Without some agreed upon language knowledge is internal and private -- not shared. When grown, we learn to be more discreet, but emotion can still slip out in body language and in the Freudian slip.
Arising_uk wrote:But many think in language so its not just an external communication. I do understand what you are saying but I think the difference between us is that you wish a division between thought and emotion whereas I'm of the opinion that a 'thought' has to have the emotions in congruence to be a thought.
I did not say that language is limited to external communication; I said that external communication is limited without language. I don't wish a division between thought and emotion, I am just studying them to see how they naturally work. Remember that I spent most of my life living with a deaf person. Although she had sign language, most people did not know it, so her language communication was very limited. She wrote to her deaf friends, and she was the person who always remembered everyone's birthday and sent a card. But at her funeral service, people were shocked to learn that she lettered in volleyball and basketball at school, she was involved in clubs, and was a very good student. She still had all of her old school memorabilia, so it was important to her, but no one knew. We didn't really know her. Our thoughts are private, so without language, we are really very isolated.

I will admit that most of our thoughts and actions are motivated by emotion; on the other hand, does the thought 2 + 2 = 4 require emotion?
Arising_uk wrote:Personally I think panpsychism makes a mockery of the terms "mind', "consciousness", et al but don't really understand what you mean by this, "that knowledge and memory can be hidden within matter and not be known outside of that matter"?
If I understand the current definition of panpsychism correctly, it is more about knowledge than mind. It is a theory that says that everything has a mental aspect, but this does not mean that everything has awareness. Atoms seem to "know" how to relate to a molecule almost like they are running a program. But there is no awareness, no sharing of information, no reaction, no actual consciousness. So what matter "knows" is hidden even from itself. Does a book know the story that is within it? Does it know it's title? Yet the book contains knowledge.

I think that panpsychism is another interpretation of the root of knowledge, much like Plato's forms, or ideas about a holographic or digital universe, or maybe even the "all knowing God" idea. These concepts are all very comparable, and the concept of panpsychism is very old. Many of the great philosophers have considered some kind of panpsychism from before the Ancients to now. To be honest, I think the only type of theory regarding consciousness that does not in some ways conform with panpsychism is dualism -- and science's idea that it is within the body. Go to Wiki and look up Panpsychism, but read the whole thing, not just the intro, which is not very good.
Arising_uk wrote:You didn't really answer my question, "what feeling or emotion you can have that is not kinesthetic(tactile)?"
Maybe I don't really understand your question. Could you give me some examples of what you mean?
Arising_uk wrote:Hmm...nerves are the CNS, the sensors are the CNS. We have a lot of awareness within the body but I accept that we don't notice many things until the messages are loud and clear, although there may be an argument that we could if we had a language to interpret all the subconscious 'signals' (just guessing here but I have heard it said that people do say things like, 'I just don't feel right', long before a major diagnosis is made).
So if I said that I just did not "feel right" for three days, then my Mother had a car accident, would you accept that I had a premonition? I don't think so. Neither would I. As far as I know, awareness is external and not within the body, but as Greylorn pointed out, it can be directed to within the body. That is what those self-healing feed-back studies are all about, and some of them are successful.

After talking to a neurologist about the sub/unconscious aspect of mind, I am convinced that it would be a bad idea to have a language to interpret unconscious activities. There is so much going on that it would be like having Phantom of the Opera full blast in one ear; Eminem's rap from Eight Mile full blast in the other ear; while sitting in front of the speakers at a Heavy Metal Rock Concert. It would be impossible to think.
Arising_uk wrote:We do know 'where' the 'mind' is, its the being of a body with senses in an external world. What type of 'mind' appears to depend upon what type of body.
So if my legs are amputated, I will lose part of my mind?
Arising_uk wrote:
Gee wrote:Hormones are very interesting. They are self balancing and work to keep the different internal systems in sync. But they are also very specifically linked to our most important instincts like sex drives, eating, sleeping, nurturing the young, and stages of life and death, so they help us to deal with the outside reality and work to keep us alive in the world. Recently I have begun to think that they also activate consciousness, so they are pretty important.
I agree they are important but only in the sense that they work within a system.
Pheromones work within an ecosystem. Does that mean that an ecosystem is a life form?
Arising_uk wrote:
Gee wrote:Consider that hormones are communicators and every specie has some form of hormone/s. Every specie does not have a brain. So if one considers that all life is sentient, conscious in some way, then it is more likely that hormones, rather than a brain, is what activates consciousness in life. Also note that the brain is "saturated" in hormones.
Hmm...not sure 'communicators' is the right term, signals may be better or communication method. It may well be the case that hormones are involved in the development of consciousness but without a complicated CNS and the other systems they'll just be a sentient not a consciousness in my opinion.
I didn't pick the term "communicators", and although signals might seem better to you, it does not explain a hormone's ability to be somewhat self directing. This is what makes them fascinating. But I do agree that life forms require a brain to accomplish consciousness as we know it.


This is a response to a little over half of your post. Take your time reviewing it because it will probably take me a few days to respond to the rest. This has been interesting.

G

Greylorn Ell
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Re: Pure Consciousness?

Post by Greylorn Ell » Fri Jun 06, 2014 9:35 pm

madera wrote: Becoming aware of each individual thought is being conscious.
Anything that we are aware of at a given moment forms part of our consciousness.
Awareness is the key.
You are writing about Buddhist and other styles of meditation, a curious and ultimately boring process in which beon (a.k.a. soul) sits back and observes the brain that brought it to consciousness. The brain is a busy machine. It never shuts down, processing information even during sleep. This information processing is similar to the activities of a digital computer, and has nothing to do with creative, beon-level thought. It is but indirectly related to consciousness.

Consciousness defined as beon's ability to observe its brain's activity is a step upward from mistaken notions that treat consciousness entirely as a function of the brain. However, this ability is just a simple manifestation of consciousness, and is unsuitable as a serious definition.

Consider, for example, post-death consciousness. In that state the brain no longer functions, so there is no activity for beon/soul to observe. How to you propose to define consciousness in that context?

Greylorn

Greylorn Ell
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Re: Pure Consciousness?

Post by Greylorn Ell » Fri Jun 06, 2014 10:27 pm

Gee wrote:Greylorn;

Well, now you have everyone's curiosity up. They are going to start thinking that I wrote about the second coming, so you had better post it and set them straight.

Although I admit that it was one of my better pieces, I don't think it was the best, and I am sure that I could have made it better if I had more time. Eulogies are like that; short on time, unless the passing was expected. Aunt Dorothy's eulogy was difficult to write because of her circumstance, but that was not the biggest problem I had. The problems were how to portray her strength and courage without also telling about the horrors that she endured -- alone. And how to expose the inner woman without offending all of the relatives and friends, who loved her and thought that they knew her?

To help you understand our relationship with Dorothy, consider the following: Many years ago the family vacationed in West Virginia, where we were given a tour of some deep caverns. The tour guide announced that he was going to turn off the lights so that we could appreciate the total darkness that the American Indians had to endure when exploring the caves. I screamed, "No!", and pushed through five or six people to get to Aunt Dorothy. I explained to her what was going to happen, held her hand, and then gave the tour guide the OK. If I had not acted, she would have been deaf and blind to the world with no idea as to why. She might well have panicked. Afterward everyone was proud of me. No one else realized the problem, so I was the hero that saved the day.

That is how it was with Dorothy, we were the heroes that saved her, and she appreciated us and made us feel like heroes. But a hero sacrifices. What was it that we gave up? A little consideration, a few moments of time, an occasional interpretation. There is nothing heroic about that. We were never the heroes, it was always Dorothy. She was the calm, quiet, hero that accepted her circumstances and thanked us for helping her with her burden. This is the Dorothy that I wanted to expose.

So yes, post it. Then add a link to the "7 Wonders" so that people can see what inspired me. Maybe some of the members who have family or friends in similar circumstance will understand the disabled a little better.

Then I want to get back to business. I am working on a very long post to you. Expect to post tomorrow.

G
Gee,

Sorry about the comeback delay. Apparently the gods in charge of PNow have severed my communication links. I am no longer apprised of posts to the forum threads in which I participate. I figured that I've been ignored, so went back to essay-writing. Today, bored, I decided to check up on things and found this and other posts. I shall whine to R. Lewis this weekend.

I do not know how to post a link to "7 Wonders," and would if I could. It came in via email from an ex-Special Forces commander, career military guy, the only commander to get all of his men out of Vietnam alive, but not necessarily well. He finds and forwards things that pique his interest, lots of intelligent politics, backside military info, excellent humor, and considerable beauty and wonder. He's read DUAS, did not like it. I don't care. I've never encountered a man with such eclectic tastes.

Blaggard must know how to accomplish your request, i.e. how to generate a link to an email post. He and I seem to have run aground on philosophical issues despite a promising start wherein he explained how to put up mathematical expressions in this forum. He knows the technical details of internet work better than I ever will. Or perhaps another participant might offer some ideas.

Back to your eulogy. You cannot improve it. A rewrite would simply make it different. I'll post it separately because it deserves to stand alone, without my comments or yours.

Greylorn

Greylorn Ell
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Re: Pure Consciousness?

Post by Greylorn Ell » Fri Jun 06, 2014 10:41 pm

Gee's eulogy to a schizophrenic friend:

In Remembrance of

Dorothy Marie


Dorothy was my Aunt, and she was special. Everyone said so. But she was not special because she invented something grand, or because she could build a rocket, or lead a community, she was special because she was broken. That is what we call broken people; we call them "special". But I think that sometimes we forget that underneath that "special" is a person who dreams and laughs and wants, and so that is what I would like to talk about, the Dorothy that was underneath and what she meant to me.

First one must consider that Dorothy was born in 1926, a time when medicine and science had little understanding of mental disabilities and no real help for deafness. Most people who lost their hearing in infancy and fought mental disability in adulthood would have been sent to an asylum where they would live a miserable and short life. The fact that Dorothy attained the age of 87 years is a testament to her strength, her Mother's strong will, and the devotion of a protective younger sister, Patricia. These three women fought the stigma that the deaf were also assumed to be "dumb" all of Dorothy's life, and fought the stigma of schizophrenia all of her adult life. This was beside the work of trying to teach Dorothy to adapt to a world that remained foreign to her.

Growing up with Dorothy gave me a unique education, and I find that her "specialness" had some surprising effects on me. My Mother tells me that my kindergarten teacher asked if I once had a speech impediment. Mom said no, why would you think so? The teacher explained that my diction was too perfect for my age and assumed that I had received training. Mom explained that I had a deaf aunt, who reads lips, so if I did not enunciate properly, I would not be understood. So my speech patterns were superior to my peers and probably made me look smarter than I am. Dorothy's deafness became a benefit to me.

In my early teens, I realized that Aunt Dorothy liked to watch TV, but often could not follow the plot because actors do not look into the camera when they speak. So she could not read their lips. I began to turn off the volume, so that I could study the shows, in hopes of finding something that she could enjoy. It didn't work. I quickly discovered that one could not tell the "good" guys from the "bad" guys by their actions -- one would have to be told in order to follow the plot. This was my first real lesson in truth, because I learned that we view the world through the veil of our beliefs, and those beliefs are what we are told -- not necessarily truth. An important lesson for me.

As I grew and matured, I became the one who could understand and interpret, the one who could solve the problem, the one who understood the world. While Dorothy's mental disease eroded her mind and corrupted her knowledge taking her back to childhood. By the time I was 14 years and learning about being an adult, Dorothy was approaching 40 years and regressing. Our positions had reversed. It became very difficult to see the woman that she should have become. I know she liked "slap-stick" because it is visual comedy, and we all like to laugh. She enjoyed watching sports on TV and played basketball at school in her youth, so she may have been a sports enthusiast like her sister, Patricia. She had expensive tastes and a flair for style and color, which would have turned into a sense of the elegant if she had led a normal life. And she dreamed. Dorothy used to watch shows about real estate, but I know she was not planning to buy a house. I suspect that she dreamed about her own home, just as she dreamed about movie stars in her youth. She had her favorite leading men, so she wanted the same things that all little girls and women want -- her own home, her own family, her own life.

Dorothy hovered on the edges of our life, like a shadow, always present, but not really participating. Her deafness isolated her from a great deal, but it never quieted the madness in her mind. She could not hear us, the people she loved, but she had no problem hearing the sly whispered lies and the terrifying nightmares that stalked her mind. THAT she could always hear. The medication that she took helped, but it never removed the whispers, the doubts, the fear. If I had to live with that, I would be angry, jealous of things denied that I have every right to, and bitter at the loss. I would not have handled it well. Some might say that Dorothy was so childish that she did not realize her loss, so she was not bitter. Nonsense. Even a five year old understands jealousy and fear. But Dorothy took all of the negative emotions, changed them into love, and handed them back to the people she loved. That is what made Dorothy special -- her love.

I used to tell my children that there was nothing I could do that would ever kill Dorothy's love for me. She had a strong sense of right and wrong, but it could never override her love of family. Her love was like a warmth in my soul on a good day, and a rainbow of hope on a bad day -- ever present. She was always impressed with our achievements and awed by our talents and abilities -- she was a one woman cheer leader for all of her family. She loved us.

Some people believe that when we die, we cease to exist. Nonsense. I will never be able to believe that. Others believe that we go to God. If this is so, then Dorothy is wrapped in the arms of love; right where she should be. Still others believe that we get another go at this old world. If this is so, then I wish for Dorothy to have another chance at life. But this time, I want her to wake to the sound of birds singing, to fall asleep hearing a gentle Mother's voice, to know music. I want the girl to have fields of flowers to dream in and run through. I want the young woman to know the excitement of a new dress and prom, to know the freedom of driving a car, to know the pride of earning a wage. I want the woman to know the love of a good man, to marry and have children of her own, and to enjoy her old age listening to the chatter and laughter of grandchildren. I want all of the love that she gave to us returned to her times ten, because she earned it. Dorothy was indeed special.

"Gee,"
A daughter of Dorothy's heart.

Greylorn Ell
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Re: Pure Consciousness?

Post by Greylorn Ell » Sat Jun 07, 2014 2:04 am

Arising_uk wrote: Descartes went with Dualism and Christian religion was happy with that as they had the Soul and since Descartes was a true believer and 'science' was still in its infancy I'm not sure your idea holds. As at the time the 'mental' was not really explored as everyone thought they knew they were mental. Descartes did explore what it was to be and specifically what it was to have a mental thought, i.e. clear and distinct ideas and perceptions.
Your statement that Christianity was happy with Cartesian dualism is false. The best that Christianity did with Descartes' ideas was to ignore them.

Evidence for my statement comes from 12 years of Catholic education, the last three years at the hands of well-educated Norbertine priests. I never heard of Descartes from these guys, or the local gaggle of nuns and priests who preceded them. I found him on my own.
Arising_uk wrote:I'm dubious that religion was looking for a source as they have the source, a 'god' given 'soul', much like GE's 'beon' in fact.
Multiple errors here.

1.) The religionists' "soul" is hardly the source for anything. How can it be, if it was created?

2.) The notion of a "God given soul" is anathema to Beon Theory, which proposes that beon has more interesting origins.

Why are you interpreting a theory that you've not taken the trouble to read? Are you really such an inexcusably arrogant jackass?

Are your other comments derived from similar levels of complete ignorance, filled in not by your creativity, but by your beliefs in the opinions of your peers?

Greylorn

Greylorn Ell
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Re: Pure Consciousness?

Post by Greylorn Ell » Sat Jun 07, 2014 3:32 am

Gee wrote:Greylorn;

Please consider my following responses to your prior post, which is now broken up into two posts.
.
Greylorn Ell wrote:Gee,
I've read this twice, as requested-- thrice, actually-- and find that it pretty much reflects mankind's diverse confusions about the onset, and ultimately the very nature of consciousness. Your opinions on the subject are mostly a mix of conventional ideas from religion and science, gathered up and placed in the same basket,
And yet with three readings, you missed the point. I asked you to read it, think about it, and read it again in the hopes that you could see it from my perspective -- rather than a my-theory-is-better-than-your-theory perspective. The reason that I seem to gather diverse things into the same basket is because I am comparing the different ideas in search of the truth of them. Holistic thinker? Remember?

The truth is that many people see the body as the self, others see the mind as the self, some see the soul as the self, but no one can validate their beliefs with any credibility. So the point of that post was to explore these ideas and point out some of the inconsistencies in these ideas. Also to consider possible alternative ideas that would be in the next post.
Gee,

Ah ha! We are nearing the crux of our disagreements. Still a long way off, but closer.

I understand your perspectives, and disagree with the conclusions you've derived from them.

Your perspectives come ostensibly from principles of psychology, which is, IMO, a soft science that serves to support $400/hr therapy sessions for dimwits on Medicaid, to be paid for by the grandchildren of dimwit voters; but which will never contribute a shannon of information to the question that supposedly intrigues you.

Of course I recall our conversation on holistic thinking. Perhaps you might want to revisit it.

Beon Theory is a holistic theory in that it was derived from diverse sources: At its experiential core, there are my personal paranormal experiences, including several deliberate experiments, including one with Uri Geller bending a spoon, and another in which I telepathed utter bullshit to a group of about ten (dimwitted) individuals.

At its conceptual core, Beon Theory depends upon classical physics, which it uses to explain quantum physics.

Beon Theory also engages the phony theories of Darwinism in the context of probability mathematics, and the phony theories of common religionists. It is an evidence-based theory, and unlike its competitors, Beon Theory does not exclude evidence. It embraces data.

Other theories survive on their ability to suppress information that would, if accepted, invalidate their premises. Darwinists ignore the horrid odds against the random assembly of a single, small human gene. Religionists pretend that parapsychological events do not occur-- except as approved miracles attributed to their illogically bogus omnipotent God.

If you want to treat our conversation as your holistic ideas vs. mine, you will lose. You do not know the requisite physics or microbiology, probably no neurophysiology either. If you insist upon engaging your ego, you will win, because you will define what winning means.

I'm not here to win anything. I'm here only to express unique ideas to the two or three people capable of comprehending them. For a few moments, I thought that you were one of them. However much I admire your intelligence and thoughtful applications thereof, you lack the courage to express that intelligence in the context of your ideas.

I know that you have had psychic experiences, and have mentioned this in a PM. You know that you have had such experiences, although you've neither acknowledged nor shared them with me. Your curiosity about consciousness derives from these experiences. Yet your approach to consciousness on this thread pretends that no such experiences have occurred.

So, are you seeking truth without the courage to throw your own experiences into the conversational mix, expecting anything other than bullshit? Why bother?

You've shown yourself to be a gentle, intelligent, and well-balanced individual. You've managed this thread expertly, without the overt assistance of moderators. You've established a high level of credibility. It's time to grow the female equivalent of balls. (And I do know the consequences of this recommendation. It has yet to work out in my favor.)

I've played roulette with people like you, observing their strategy and adjusting my game accordingly. Very profitable. When the players realized that I'd observed their strategy, they left the table, perhaps fearing exposure. Will that be your choice?

I hope not. You have much to offer, but your ideas are expressed as if there was no experience behind their source. You fear rejection by dimwits, and so do not expose your understanding to those who might understand.

Should you get the courage to fully open up, I'll take your six.

Ginkgo
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Re: Pure Consciousness?

Post by Ginkgo » Sat Jun 07, 2014 10:14 am

Arising_uk wrote: Descartes went with Dualism and Christian religion was happy with that as they had the Soul and since Descartes was a true believer and 'science' was still in its infancy I'm not sure your idea holds. As at the time the 'mental' was not really explored as everyone thought they knew they were mental. Descartes did explore what it was to be and specifically what it was to have a mental thought, i.e. clear and distinct ideas and perceptions.
A contribution to Christian theology was Descartes' formulation of the ontological argument for the existence of God, which you mention came from his formulation of "clear and distinct ideas". This type of argument was rejected by St.Thomas Aquinas, probably explaining its lack of appearance in the literature.

Descartes greatest contribution to science can be seen in the types of things rejected as being unreliable: viz. knowledge gained through the senses. Despite his contribution to science, Descartes relied heavily on logic and mathematics rather than empiricism.

Ontological arguments have gained renewed interests with some Christian apologists.

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Re: Pure Consciousness?

Post by Arising_uk » Sat Jun 07, 2014 11:17 am

Greylorn Ell wrote:Your statement that Christianity was happy with Cartesian dualism is false. The best that Christianity did with Descartes' ideas was to ignore them.
Which from the Church's history of such things is pretty much the sign of happiness.
Evidence for my statement comes from 12 years of Catholic education, the last three years at the hands of well-educated Norbertine priests. I never heard of Descartes from these guys, or the local gaggle of nuns and priests who preceded them. I found him on my own.
Given that 98% of people have never heard of him and if they have have ignored what he said I find nothing surprising in what you say. Although the 12 years Catholic education does go a long way in explaining your thoughts about 'God', the 'Soul' and your 'Beon'.
Multiple errors here.

1.) The religionists' "soul" is hardly the source for anything. How can it be, if it was created?
It's their source for who we are. Pretty much exactly the same as the purpose of your 'Beon'.
2.) The notion of a "God given soul" is anathema to Beon Theory, which proposes that beon has more interesting origins.
Either way it fulfils pretty much the same function as the religionists 'Soul'.
Why are you interpreting a theory that you've not taken the trouble to read? Are you really such an inexcusably arrogant jackass?
On my reading of what you have put out upon the weeb you don't really have a theory as you have provided no testable conditions nor falsifiable ones. What you have is a metaphysics and a phil of mind, apparently based upon your Catholic education.
Are your other comments derived from similar levels of complete ignorance, filled in not by your creativity, but by your beliefs in the opinions of your peers?
Not my peers but my readings of those apparently more creative and intelligent than myself.

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Arising_uk
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Re: Pure Consciousness?

Post by Arising_uk » Sat Jun 07, 2014 11:19 am

Greylorn Ell wrote:...
I've played roulette with people like you, observing their strategy and adjusting my game accordingly. Very profitable. When the players realized that I'd observed their strategy, they left the table, perhaps fearing exposure. Will that be your choice? ...
Really!? You ran a bent roulette game?

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