Consciousness is Geologic, but Geology is unconscious

Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water

Can we truly explain consciousness out of geology, yet deny that same geology is at least part conscious? How could that be? There is a myriad of explanations and footnotes to inculcate a believable mythology* emergent property, yet, the simplest answer may be the correct one. Maybe we should start there?

If we can use this to explain that, we can just as easily describe that with this. That we can identify this mind with those elements, yet deny those elements have part of mind? Reason tells me that one cannot exist without the other. It’s tricky—so observation and testing takes a cold, hard leap-of-faith which has developed into a popular new mythology, but is a very ancient teaching.

The modern world is an extension of human consciousness, and human consciousness is an emergent property of minerals, crystals, and primordial soup lipids composed mainly of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen.

“However, “Emergent properties” is a scientific term, eerily similar to Pratītyasamutpāda in Sanskrit, commonly translated as dependent origination, dependent arising, or interdependence, a key doctrine of Buddhist philosophy, which states that all dharmas (phenomena) arise dependent upon other phenomena; “if this exists, that exists; if this ceases to exist, that also ceases to exist”. This is a sound principle. There is no such thing as a one way transaction. It contradicts what transaction implies.

Of course there are two sides of this debate. One is careful to re-coin terms to sophisticate an entirely scientific approach, while the original is a philosophy older than the dirt itself. Science has reinvented the wheel (or borrowed the wheel) from a religion. It is a re-emergent property already known for thousands of years through reason and deduction—and is the least complex answer. Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water. How this all happens will forever be missed as hypothesis continues solidifies into mythology. It is now the common sense of the modern world, yet takes some real mental wrangling to master.

Discarding what is useful with what is not—Shamelessly wasting water.

*Mythology: (from the Greek mythos for story-of-the-people, and logos for word or speech, so the spoken story of a people) “is the study and interpretation of tales or fables of a culture known as myths or the collection of such stories which deal with various aspects of the human condition”. The current hypothesis of emergent properties has become the accepted mythology of modern society—again. It is the current story of our people.

Author: jim-

One minute info blogs breaking the faith trap.

347 thoughts on “Consciousness is Geologic, but Geology is unconscious”

  1. To Jim: Your little post sure conjured up a lot of pointed responses, and deeply-held beliefs in how everyone thinks everyone else should live. The battle was furious. Even I gave fire, and took fire. It was even exhilarating at times.
    But, in the end, like most armed conflicts, little has changed… The realists are still realists, and the idealists are still idealists. The doers are still trying to do, while the dreamers are still wont to dream. Napoleon is back on St. Helenes, but he is still alive, and a potential threat to world order.
    A display worthy of a military spectacle, “full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.”
    I enjoyed it, but I have no need to ever repeat it.
    Somehow, I think I will be disappointed.

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      1. it is a fine community, but it harbours a number of bullies. I know all about bullies. I had enough of them in school. But they all paid me to do their homework for them. Without me, they wouldn’t have got out of kindergarten.

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          1. A fair question Jim. Really a fairly big question. The answer starts with my connection to all living beings. I recognize all living beings as being my siblings,no matter their size, their species, whether plant or animal, nothing matters but they are alive, and I can feel the connections.
            I care more for living beings than I used to. I won’t say I was a bad guy, but it didn’t bother me if I stepped on a bug. The bug was beneath my notice. Now I watch out for them when I can.
            Did you get to see the Australian commercial of the Dalia ama driving a car down a highway so as to miss all the bugs. That would be me, if such a thing were possible. And not just bugs. Even weeds. Birds. If it is alive, I care what happens to it.
            I am more tolerant of people. I try to give everyone respect though when it comes to humans, who are capable of choosing to be better than they are (not intentionally harming other living beings) I find myself less tolerant of those who do intentional harm.
            I am more fulfilled. I no longer search for meaning in life, it is meaning enough just to be alive, and learning how to make myself a better person.
            I am a nicer person than I was taught to be growing up. I was taught to be an MCP, not necessarily directly, but socially and culturally. It was normal for guys to own their women. I don’t know that I was as bad as some, but I wasn’t a great guy. I was a pacifist in most things, but it seems I picked up my father’s habits of verbally abusing women, and twice I hit women violently. I no longer accept those flaws, and fight against them in me, and in others.
            Spiritually I am much more secure in who I am. Growing up I had an idea, but I did not like that person. My experiences gave me a reason for change, a reason to go on when as another person I may have killed myself. I came close a number of times in my early teens still living at home. Now I could never commit suicide, not even to find out sooner if what I experienced is really true. I don’t doubt myself, but sometimes before I understood as I do today, I regretted making the choices to return to Earth in the 3rd Dimension. Now I know I made the right choices.
            I used to be conceited. After my first IQ test my teachers started treating me differently. Even in grade one I quickly realized I learned much faster than most of the kids around me. I had no male intellectual rivals, I was top of my class even after being skipped a grade. This is why I was bullied so badly, but I couldn’t stop being conceited. After being stomped down in all ways by my father, and told I was useless every day of my life, to be suddenly best at something went to my head. That stopped after my NDEs. Suddenly I understood I was the same as everyone else, We really are all equal, and not just with other humans. All life is equal, becauae for me, all life is one.
            I now know I have an ego. As a young person I was my ego, so I did not see myself as apart from my ego. My ego was me. This is no longer true. This is why I spell rawgod without a capital R. Jerry has a capital J, because that is my ego’s name, given to it/me at birth. Jerry drives the bus. rawgod tells the b
            s where to go. When necessary, we work together. But rawgod is always in charge.
            I could say more, a lot more, but I hope this answers your question satisfactorily for now. The thing is, you didn’t know me at all then, and you don’t really know me now. I can talk about the changes in me, but they probably seem trivial to you, when they are not. Ron I think it was who thought it necessary to tell me my body has totally changed several times over during my lifetime, but changing my cells did not change me. My experiences changed me big time, and that had nothing to do with cells or chemicals.
            Mostly it was my experience, and my ability to accept those changes as good and necessary things.
            I was already on my way to being an atheist just by logic, but I became a whole atheist by there being no god-like supreme/superior being anywhere in my otherworldly experience. There was just me, the spirits in process of having just recently dried, and, life. Nothing else. And that is why I say I know there is no god. God wasn’t home…

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            1. I simply have to ask, rawgod — in your efforts to watch out for all living things and avoid ending their existence … how far do you take this? Do you have a lawn? If so, do you ever mow it? Because if you do/did, based on your remarks, you would be killing a living thing.

              Also, you wrote: I could say more, a lot more. If we were so inclined, most of us have book-length experiences to share … but we don’t. Why do you think that is?

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            2. It seems this level of concern would make one neurotic. It would also suggest you are not a natural phenomenon at all, but a visitor here, which we are not.

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            3. In other words, stepping on bugs is most likely a healthy part of the ecosystem. Adding biomatter to the soil? Who can say how important that may be for a healthy environment?

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            4. To Jim, re stepping on bugs:

              There is no need to play God by stepping on bugs. The bugs will die on their own, or in the stomachs of those who feed on them. Their constituent parts, either way, will end up back in the ecosphere, to be used over and over and over again. That is natural. Humans, though, do not want that happening to their bodies. They want to preserve them, keep them from degrading, as if anything that happens to their bodies after death really matters. That is not natural.
              Our bodies are not visitors here, no. Our spirits, that is a whole different possibility. But do I seem neurotic? Maybe to you. All those things I said, they are not constantly in my awareness, as a neuroses would be. They are embedded within me, like breathing. I take very little notice when I breathe. Caring for others is automatic. You know this, you have children. Just expand your caring field. That is me.
              Funny, but these responses never showed up on my WP comments list. I have only just discovered them by actually visiting your site. I was baffled by your seeming silence. I can no longer trust WP.

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            5. Mowing a lawn does not kill grass, but it might cause pain, I don’t know. I don’t mow the lawn half as much as I used to.
              My spouse hates having bugs in the house. Those that escape the cats clutches are captured and carried outside, where they are released without harm.
              A mosquito sucking my blood gets shocked loose when I hit myself a quarter inch away from where the misquote sits.
              Weeds, especially dandelions, grow where they may.
              When we moved to our present location we planted many plants and shrubs and a few trees. I tried to grow two rows of lilac bushes from seeds to mark the property lines of our front yard. I planted about 60 of them, but our harsh climate makes it hard. We have about 20 bushes of varying sizes out of those 60. They are too sparse to be called rows, but they make a kind of line between us and our neighbours.
              Inside the house we have many houseplants, and now six cats to keep the house feeling lived in.
              We have a huge double-decker bird feeder right on our back porch. We can fill it without stepping outside, a good thing in winter. Before the 2019 wildfire we fed hundreds of sparrows a day, a few redpolls, and we were on the migratory path for a flock of evening grosbeaks as they flew north to breed, and as they returned south with their babies in tow. Their numbers have fallen considerably since the fires. We see no sparrows at all anymore. But the redpolls have flourished. Their numbers are significantly higher than before the fire, and I expect they will be even higher after this breeding season. Pine grosbeaks use our feeders through the worst parts of our winter, say November through early March. In summer we get a lot of blue jays, magpies, grackles, and a few crows. Ravens will not use the feeders, but we give them leftovers, and they scoop them up heartily.
              This is common for a lot of folks, to take care of the bird populations, the plants, etc. But I never used to even notice the wildlife around me. Now I not only notice, but I care.

              I was just trying to answer Jim’s question about how my experiences benefitted me. They did not benefit just me, but they benefitted those around me as well, human or otherwise.
              Why don’t we say more about ourselves? Humility, I guess. Most of us have no need to list all our accomplishments. Over the years, on various websites, I have listed a number of my accomplishments to try to show others there is no need to live in opposition to others, than we can all share this world together, that there is no need for conflict. When you say I am trying to convince others of believing my experiences, you are wrong. Believe is the wrong word. Accept is a much better word. You have obviously been following at least some of the back-and-forth on Jim’s blog, and now you are the first to comment on my answer to Jim’s question. You see me fighting, but I am not fighting to have others become followers, to worship and adore me, that’s bullshit. I am fighting to have others stop telling me what I can and cannot take from my experiences. I challenge them to open their minds to things they cannot allow others to be, or see.
              They tell me they want to show me that my viewpoint cannot stand up to their requirements, but they don’t realize they are demanding I stop being me! I don’t see the world as they do. I don’t need to put limits on myself. Reality is more than physical life for me. They want to confine me within the bounds of science, but they are learning they cannot do that. I have no need to prove. Life is what it is.
              Now I’m ranting, but if that is what it takes to get people to respect me, I will keep on ranting. If nothing else, it gets things off my chest. Ark still thinks I have a god! He has absolutely no respect for me. He does not hear what I say, he looks for things he can insult my intelligence with. And you will probably defend him. You want to be a mediator, and I respect you for that. But this is something that cannot be mediated! Anyone who tries to nullify my existence is in for one helluva fight. There would be no fight if they would just ignore me, but they won’t. They feel this need to crush me. They don’t have the weapons to do that. And the more they push, the stronger I get. But they have no idea…
              ‘Nuff said, for now. Sorry if I ruffled your feathers, but it just happened your comment was the straw that poked the bear. Maybe now I can rest awhile.

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            6. Couple of things … this: I don’t see the world as they do. is definitely your prerogative. However, what often comes across in your writings is that your way is superior. I don’t think you necessarily mean it that way, but the lengths you go to explain your personal perspective gives that impression.

              Second: I don’t really feel anyone is trying to “nullify” your existence. The impression I get is many simply don’t see life as you do — primarily because the “experience” that altered your worldview is relatively uncommon. Thus, there’s bound to be some arrière pensée.

              We all see life from our personal perspective — and we tend to mingle with those who have similar worldviews. This does not mean that anyone who disagrees with how you see things feels a need to “crush” you. They just feel more comfortable with those of like mind.

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            7. And I predicted you would feel that way.
              The thing is, they are used to their opponents being on the right, and so, especially Ark, tries to put me there. I am left of them, and you. They just don’t think there canbe anything left of them.
              No, my way is not superior, it is just different. I am its first vocal proponent, in our realm, that we are aware of.
              I don’t want to compare myself to Galileo, the conditions are not the same, but the Church forced him to recant, and he spent the rest of his life under house arrest. But that was science.
              I will not recant. No one has the power to keep me off the internet. But I am trying to expand the playing field, right or wrong. Expansion is the key.

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            8. Right? Left? To me those are words associated with politics, not spirituality … ???

              Anyway, there are no laws that say you can’t keep keepin’ on. But I would think after awhile you would notice there hasn’t been much “expansion” in those you have been communicating with. 😎

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            9. Gotta keep trying. Science tells us for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. You don’t like the word nullify, but I feel some people are trying to nullify me by watering down my experiences, telling me I am misinterpreting them. They might not realize it, but by saying I misinterpret them, they have at least conceded that I had some kind of actual experience. This is movement–not much, but nonetheless movement. Now I am fighting for interpretation. I AM NOT MISINTERPRETING. THEY ARE INCAPABLE OF CONCEPTION. So far, at least.
              (I do hope I do not have to explain the action/reaction allusion for any readers.)

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            10. My reality involves, eating, drinking, breathing, cooking, gardening, working, supervising staff, playing and listening to music, blogging, being with my wife and children, speaking to my folks, laughing, drinking, feeding the fish in my pond, shopping, driving, socialising with friends (plague allowing, of course!), reading, writing, watching soccer, especially Liverpool, on the telly, dealing with clients and suppliers, photography, walking the dogs, gardening, (current projects include clearing loads of cacti and raising the front wall,

              Does your reality not comport with such things?

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            11. Being an old man, mostly, no.But you know that is not the reality of which I am speaking. You seem to need science to confirm your reality–I just live it.

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            12. Science does confirm my reality, and whether you like it or not, it also confirms everyone else’s including yours.

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            13. Nope, it only defines that part of reality defined by the 5 senses. I have at least 6 senses, and science does not come close to defining the whole of my reality. Admit it, Ark, you are blinded by your own inabilities to be bigger than yourself.

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            14. Come on, Ark, do we really need to continue this. What are you getting out of it?
              Sense six: Knowing what is going to happen seconds, minutes, or even hours before it happens.
              Sense seven: Reading people’s thoughts, especially when what they are saying is not what they want to be saying. Calling them on it just to be sure.
              Sense eight: Feeling an emotion before circumstances warrant it. Kinda like Sense six, but not in a predicting an action or an event, just preparing yourself to be overwhelmed with that emotion before the emotion hits. This can include other’s emotions, not just your own, or my own.
              I can’t think of others right now, but I have experienced a number of others in my life, like going in search of someone you really want to see, and unerringly finding them, even in places out of their normal haunts. Or going in an emergency room. You just know you have to go somewhere, but not why, not even who. (The emergency room thing only happened once, so far, but once is enough! I’d prefer to never do that again.)

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            15. Why didn’t you say so earlier? All of this is very easy to understand and accept now: it’s actually God whispering in your ear. It’s self-evident.

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            16. You and I both know, there is no god. You just cannot stand anyone being different from you, so you slot them back into the God vein. You are safe fighting God. You are not safe fighting my reality.

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            17. No, but it’s the same method of thinking the religious use, that your beliefs define reality rather than allow that your interpretation of your experiences should still be subject to a reality-check. You refuse to admit you have interpreted your experiences but insist with the same rigidity as the most extreme religious fundamentalists that you know that your interpretation is identical to reality… and that everyone MUST respect that ‘knowledge’. Well, that’s not reasonable… unless you can demonstrate that they are one and the same. And this is what this thread has been all about: you inability to demonstrate why your interpretation is actually knowledge about reality and revelation that you are unwilling to admit there might just some difference.

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            18. What is your definition of interpretation? I experienced what I say I experienced. That has nothing to do with interpretation. It is as simple as that. I am quite well versed in reality as I experience it, as are you, just your reality is limited, mine is not. I am not demanding everyone MUST respect that knowledge, but that it is my knowledge. You cannot seem to grasp that nuance. That is up to you, not me. Jim and Nan have both suggested I quit this conversation, which I am willing to do. It is a study in incapacity and inability. I have no idea, have either of them asked you or the others to stop? If not, I will, again. Please stop. Or do you have an obsessive need to have the last say? If you do, this will go on till one of us is dead. If that is what you want, I will oblige.

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            19. “I experienced what I say I experienced.”

              No. This is exactly where you go wrong because you presume you experienced what you say you experienced.

              Test that. Find out why it’s a presumption we can’t trust. Hint: optical illusions. Testimonials. Hallucinations. Dreaming. The list is long. What we perceive is based in the brain and the brain can be fooled ALL THE TIME. You don’t even see your blind spot. You fill in about 8o% of your optical field of vision. You filter out 90% of auditory input. Magicians (and con men) rely on fooling your brain to make a living. You can teach your skin to see and your eyes to smell and your touch to taste and so on. Your senses are a means to relay environmental data; it’s your brain that does everything else. So if your brain can be affected, all interpreted perceptions can be affected. That’s why our brains check back in with reality to test its mapping. It’s how a brain develops. If you learn about child development, you see this process unfold over time where more and more brain sophistication builds layers upon layers of additional capabilities on this scaffolding processes. In reverse, we see the same breakdown occur with various kinds of impairments of the brain… especially using memory to fill in the now missing capabilities. That’s why the brain is so fascinating.

              So when you insist your experience is a direct one-to-one interaction with reality, you are failing to take into account the necessary go-between. That’s your brain. Of course you’re going to experience reality differently when there is chemical interruption, one that we know crosses the blood-brain barrier and is very well documented to cause all kinds of experiential interpretations. If you have a senior in your life that’s gone a bit loopy, you’ve probably encountered medical people who first check for a bladder infection! It’s well known that altered body chemistry really does affect the go-between organ, namely the brain, between reality and what the person interprets it to be. The person with an infection isn’t altering the reality they are experiencing; the infection is altering the brain chemistry in a way that alters reality’s interpretation of it. LSD is used medically for just this reason, to alter the perception of reality in a bunch of beneficial ways (most notably depression). Recently, the rage is to use micro-doses for a host of short-term benefits but there is also a long-term cost to this (especially at the genetic level).

              So it’s always a good reminder that how we think determines what we think and that how we think is subject to many elements not least of which is chemical. That’s why drunks shouldn’t drive: their altered perceptions can cause vast amounts of harm especially when they don’t realize their ‘experience’ has been impaired from accurately mapping reality. So any time we interpret mystical elements that don’t map well to reality as we know it to be in our relatively unimpaired state without creating realms and powers of non-material places to house our explanations, we should understand our interpretation are suspect. That is reasonable.

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            20. So none of your experiences are interpretations, but mine are. Try again. Do I have a senior in my life. I am a senior. I have lived a lot longer than you, seen a lot more than you have, and experienced a lot more. I know the difference between experience and interpretation.
              The brain IS fascinating, but only if you allow it to be as fascinating as it truly is. You are putting limits on it, in accordance with your culture, your upbringing, your schooling, your experiences. Being a Metis I come from three different cultures. I went to schools when young people were taught to think for themselves first, and learn by rote second. I was brought up to be stupid, in my father’s plan for me. I brought myself up to look everywhere for truth. You cannot put me in a box, no matter how hard you try. I do not fit. That was before I ever took LSD. The LSD just expanded my playing field. It opened my mind. It made me aware of spirit, which has nothing to do with the religious word soul. Above all else, it made me aware of life, how important it is, how fragile it is. I do not go wrong. You do not know your right from your left.

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            21. “So none of your experiences are interpretations, but mine are.”

              Nope. Never said that, don’t believe it for a second. I’m as susceptible as anyone.

              “I have lived a lot longer than you, seen a lot more than you have, and experienced a lot more.”

              Perhaps. As for seeing and experienced more, perhaps. But I’ve lived in different countries and traveled the world. The smartest woman I’ve ever known was Metis and we spent 3 years together in university. She was being hunted by an ex. Smartest guy was a Roma. Spent 2 years in seminars with him and we taught together for while. Learned a ton from both because I know I’m not the smartest person in the world and have learned that I can learn something from all kinds of people who see the world differently than I do. But you’re not offering me anything.

              “I know the difference between experience and interpretation.” Without reality to back up your assertions and a lot of reality standing contrary to your claims, there’s no way for you to know any such thing. So, apparently, you don’t know the difference.

              “You cannot put me in a box, no matter how hard you try. I do not fit.” I’m not putting you anywhere. You’re digging yourself a hole claiming you have a better view. I sincerely doubt that.

              “It made me aware of spirit, which has nothing to do with the religious word soul.” By all means define the difference. I make reference to religion in that you are using the same method of imposing your belief on reality and then utterly convinced yourself and now trying with others to go along with the belief that you have extracted it from reality. This is a methodological error. You believe something because that belief ‘explains’ your interpretation and gives it meaning in the same way a religious person believes something that ‘explains’ an interpretation of reality they’ve been taught and which they claim gives their lives meaning. It’s the same thing, the same method with a few different specifics but still produces a Just So story that does not comport with compelling evidence from reality but stands contrary to it. That it helps you in life with whatever is a non sequitur. So when you say, ” I brought myself up to look everywhere for truth” what you’re really saying is that you believe this is how you do it. Many here disagree and with good reasons… if you actually cared about discovering what’s true and didn’t presume you already ‘knew’ what was true as you’ve said repeatedly.

              “I do not go wrong. You do not know your right from your left.”

              This is why I made the God reference, because it takes a lot of hubris to assume this, a hubris often connected to a false certainty, the same kind of certainty you exhibit regarding your LSD experiences, and the same kind of dismissal used against those who raise salient points anyone concerned with what’s true should consider.

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            22. The troubling part for me is you have failed in 50 years to find these experiences without the LSD. Right now we know for sure that LSD has activity at the Dopamine, adrenergic, and serotonin receptors 2A, 2C, 5C, and 6. It’s like setting off a brain bomb where no one else in the room could see it going on in your head. I’m sure it seemed very real. The same types of experiences can be duplicated in a lab by applying mild stimulation to certain areas. Is this actually seeing a non ordinary reality? These tests can make one cry, laugh, see things and memories as plain as the day they happened, that simply are not there in the present. Doesn’t that at least make you question the overstimulation of lsd swarming your neurons into a frenzy that is frankly, impossible to interpret?

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            23. No, Jim, you should know by now, it does not. I believe there is more to life than meets the eye. Let’s leave it there. I’ll keep on reading your posts, and respond when inspired. Otherwise…

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            24. I understand your point on that. If what you say is true, by changing the shape, or configuration of the way our brains works (by whatever means) reality can actually be different than it normally seems to be? Does that actually make it different than it appears to be with a “normal” set of neurons? I recall reading some thoughts on this elsewhere, but we do live in the reality we are in—the one we’ve evolved to be in for our best chance of survival.
              Could another line of perception work out? Sure, if we as a species could pool our perceptions (agree) on a specific reality, I’m sure we could. But that is not the cards we’ve been dealt. This is the problem with religions. They don’t agree with our senses and how the world actually is in regards to those senses.
              The “spirit world” as you’ve alluded, is this one, with a tweak in the neurology. No? Anyone see a problem with this?

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            25. You can see any problem you want to see, Jim, but the point is still, you are only seeing what you are capable of seeing at this point and time in your life journey. You don’t believe you are on a life journey, no problem. You don’t have to believe anything you don’t want to. I see things differently.
              Because a group of people believe I am wrong does not make me wrong, nor does their inability to see make them right. I don’t doubt you and your friends believe you are right, but it seems there is no capacity there to accept that you can be wrong. I actually still think you, Jim, do have that capacity, but Ron, Ark, and tildeb, from the way they talk, the authority with which they call me a dickhead, just shows they are more set in their ways than I am.
              As a searcher-after-truth I actually thought you weren’t doing too badly, you seemed to be at least open to things different from what you can see. Now I am no longer so sure about even that.
              Please note, I am not ranting right now, but trying to speak to you in a calm but serious tone. I come to life from a different point of view than any of you. To paraphrase a Bobby Kennedy quote, I do not look to see only what is, I look to see what can be. If you want to believe we are stuck in this hellhole of a world with no chance of becoming better than we are, that is your choice. But don’t tell others, not only me, but others, we cannot dream. None of you have that authority.
              Science might make you temporarily right about what science can conceive of, but it does not make you right about what science cannot yet conceive of. Look at the history of science, it has been changing since the first person to discover science uttered his first scientific theory. The sun no longer orbits the earth, the earth is not flat, the building blocks of matter keep getting smaller and smaller. Once upon a time all these things and more were once believed without doubt. Now they are the laughingstock of the science world. I’m not up on currently-held scientific beliefs, but history tells us they too are going to change.
              Don’t get me wrong, I am not going to say science will prove me right someday when science discovers how to see the spiritual world, my ideas could be total dead ends, that has happened to more people than we can ever know. But all it takes is one person to look where no one else is looking right now, and discovering a way to see what cannot be seen at present. Galileo is the best example of that I know of. Again, I am not Galileo, but I could be a friend who might have said in passing that he thinks the earth moves faster than the sun. And Galileo then went out and proved it. He invented the tools necessary to prove what was up to then unprovable.
              I am like the friend Galileo might have had. I see something Eastern religions have been seeing for over 5000 years, but because of a small tweak I am seeing those things differently than the practitioners of those religions see them. Again, I do not purport myself to be a scientist. But all it would take is one scientist to develop the right tools to see what I see, and the world of science would be shifted. I don’t know how to do that, but someone else might.
              Remember, it was a scientist who developed LSD. All I did was use it. Has anyone else deliberately tried to use it as deliberately as I used it? Not that we know of, but we don’t know everything. Why not try it, and see where it takes you?
              No, it is easier to just call me crazy, to disregard what I tell you of what happened to me. You told me just yesterday how LSD is now being used as a tool. If you read back to something I said to Nan, I think, I talked about that very thing. LSD can be used as a tool to help heal injured minds. Not injured brains, injured minds. But according to your friends, minds don’t exist–they are part of the woowoo world. So why are scientists working on them?
              Depression, that’s one of the things they are looking at. Is depression a brain disease, or a mental disease. They have all kinds of chemicals to change the brain, and some of them actually seem to help some people. But nothing seems to help all people suffering from depression. I know that! I suffered from depression for years from trying to deny what my LSD experiences had shown me. None of those many drugs my psychiatrist tried me on did anything for me. Then one day a psychologist he sent me to for talk therapy asked me a question, What if you decided what you saw was real, and stopped fighting it? It actually worked! My depression went away. And it was a science-based guy who suggested it. But, that is a question none of your friends could have asked, because that would be woowoo.
              What it all boils down to is that you can only see what you are willing to see. Your friends are not willing to see anything that is outside their ability to conceive. Right or wrong does not matter. I can conceive what they cannot, what they have no will to see. They might as well belong to a new group of Spanish Inquisitors for all of their disabilities. As I told someone yesterday, they cannot see past their noses. Let me change that slightly. They cannot see past their lack of imagination!
              Last night I said I was going to drop this. Well, I did not answer Ark’s insults today. But, since you wrote the above comment to me, I decided to state my case one last time. If you, and no one else, choose to respond, then I will respond back if there is anything more to say. Your buddies, they have no respect for anyone who thinks differently than they do. Spanish Inquisitors! And there I will end this.

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            26. rawgod, this is simply where the conversation has led. You seem to disagree with me even when I agree with you. All I am saying is that there are other explanations for what you experienced. You seem unable to admit or even acknowledge that.
              I have a friend who was involved in a traumatic, near death encounter head first into a snow bank. Just when she was ready to die, asphyxiate, Jesus appeared to her and she got the strength to extricate herself. That is her reality. Is it true? Did she really see Jesus?

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            27. She saw what she saw. No, I don’t think she saw Jéesus, she has no idea what Jesus really looked like. But I am not about to dispute her publicly.
              Yeah there are times you are on my side, and I appreciate that. But maybe I am not hearing what you mean to be saying, or vice versa. This is interpretation on my part, and I admit that. But there is interpretation, and there is interpretation. Your friend saw what she expected to see, and interpreted it as she expected. I did not expect anything that I am aware of, so I had to interpret it according to what I saw. I had, and still have, no other choice. When I saw something completely out of my realm of possibility, I could have rejected it. I tried to reject it. But that caused depression, a mental illness. Removing my objections, that what I saw did not fit the reality I knew, made me better again. I accepted what I saw as a new reality, for me. Going back to rejecting what I saw would probably just send me back into another depression, and this time I might not be able to come out of it. So, I protect myself by believing what I saw was what I saw, and that means accepting the changes that came with it. It’s all or nothing. I cannot pick and choose what I want, now that would be being religious. I am not religious.
              So, maybe your brain chemicals are acting on my brain, but they are acting on it in a way that makes me believe what happened to me is real, for me. Or are you going to tell me I am interpreting what my brain is telling me in a way I want to interpret it. That must mean my “I” is separate from my mind, that it comes not from my brain, and that is exactly what I am saying in the first place. And the only word I have in English to describe that not-from-my-brain experience is spirit, there is no other word I know of.
              We can go round and round and round again, Jim, but it gets us nowhere. I am not going to give up my mental health just to satisfy a group of jerks who see only black and white when I am at my best when I see a million shades of grey. And please do not talk down to me the way they do. There are more ways to look at things than science can presently explain.
              I know you lean towards the science side of things, but you are at least open to other options, other ideas. I am not telling anyone to believe what I believe, despite what you sometimes think. I am just stating what I believe, anything further is up to you, or whoever else reads this here, or elsewhere. I do not mean to present anything as truth, for me truth is relative to what one is willing to accept as truth, and that includes science. Science is not a static thing, and only applies where one thinks it applies.Yes I see objects, and yes, I believe gravity keeps me stuck onto whatever is beneath my feet, even if what is beneath my feet is the floor of an airplane. But people who go into space stop believing in gravity as they float through the air. Or, maybe they don’t stop believing in gravity, but they are forced to conclude it does not reign everywhere. So what does that tell us about Newton’s Laws of Gravity? They are place-based, but they are not universal. Out in intergalactic space, how would one come to even posit a theory of gravity?
              Yeah, I am getting esoteric, but esoteric is me. I take nothing, including science, as gospel truth. If people cannot accept that, that is up to them, not me.
              Now I am rambling, my thoughts completely disorganised, but how does one organise chaos? Science tries, but it fails. Religion tries, but it fails even worse. No matter how you try, you cannot stop a random quark from flying through your brain. If you move into its path, you are going to get hit.

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            28. rawgod — again and again you point out that your experience was YOUR experience … in fact, you just wrote: I accepted what I saw as a new reality, for me. (Note those last two words.)

              So I guess my question is, why do you go to such great lengths to share your “new reality”? Just accept it. So what if others nay-say your experience? As you’ve said so many times before … it was YOUR experience. Until and/of if anyone else should happen to experience a similar mystical “trip,” they will never totally understand or accept what you felt/saw … AND they will discount it (which they have done, as you well know).

              I REALLY don’t think there’s anymore that you can say that is going to make a difference to anyone following this post. Of course, I’m not Jim … but as a reader, I am getting a bit bored with the repetition — on both sides.

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            29. I am glad you mentioned “both sides” for once Nan. I am equally as bored as you. But being bored does not mean I will stand down when pushed, bullied, and spat upon. A human needs to stand up and be counted, or they are relegated to the garbage heap of history. I understand, being a woman, and in no way being chauvinist, that women think differently than men.
              To wit, this example: A very successful and regionally famous woman I knew was at a party where she was being hit on by a very chauvinist pig, determined to get into her panties. When words did not stop him, he started grabbing her in places not meant to be touched except by those she allowed to touch her there. But yet she did not leave the party, nor do anything but try to ignore him–and they more she ignored him the more beligerent he became. So when I had the chance to ask her why she did not protest more loudly, or ask for someone to throw the guy out, she said, “I can handle him. Eventually he will pass out, and I can enjoy myself again. It’s just part of being a woman.” I wanted to protest, to say it is not part of what a woman should have to go through, but her look shut me up. She had been through this before, and she was handling it the best way she knew. And, of course, the guy did eventually pass out, but in the meantime he did not give up, repeating over and over she should stop playing hard-to-get. I told the guy he was an ass, but he didn’t care. Most people there did not even do that much. Maybe they were used to him, I don’t know, but he made me feel sick to be a male human. She just persevered. And that is all I mean by men and women thinking differently.
              But in this conversation, or whatever you want to call it, I am not going to just persevere. I spent years being bullied, but no more.

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            30. But being bored does not mean I will stand down when pushed, bullied, and spat upon.

              Histrionics at their finest.
              Here y’go … have a Bafta, on the house.

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            31. I did ask her if she asked him what his name was. No, she said she just knew it was him. I wish people would get the name… The whole thing smells of childhood indoctrination reopened. Had she been a Muslim she’d have seen Gabriel. But we’re still the best of friends. Like you and me.

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            32. Hey, Jim, don’t know if you ever read my posts on Teaching Others, parts one and two, but maybe they will help explain my reticence to looking at science as something to take more seriously than any ism.
              Here are the addresses, if you care to read them. The comments on part one are particularly interesting, I think. If there are comments on part two, Word Press is hiding them from me today.
              https://rawgodsspiritualatheism.wordpress.com/2018/08/31/teaching-others-why-part-one/
              and
              https://rawgodsspiritualatheism.wordpress.com/2019/04/05/teaching-others-why-part-two/

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            33. I see irony once again completely escapes your notice, busy as you are discounting teaching while using a taught language with taught symbols on a machine you have been taught to use and referring to a taught axiomatic system using taught symbols in a taught formula. Yeah, teaching is all hubris and arrogance.

              Good grief.

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            34. “I am like the friend Galileo might have had.”

              The depth of irony behind this statement could not be greater. Galileo was the first to unconditionally allow reality to arbitrate ‘known’ claims about it. And he stuck to this approach to make multiple contributions to our understanding of how reality operates. Sure, he came up with different hypotheses that reality later proved to be unlikely (I’m thinking specifically of his bathtub analogy to explain tides) but the major point is that he used reality to arbitrate claims about it.

              You do not. In fact, your assertions are the opposite approach to the spirit Galileo embodied.

              One his greatest friends was the Pope, with whom he had a lifelong friendship, but he presented his argument about the world orbiting the sun (On The World Systems) by dialogue and represented the Catholic model (stolen wholesale from Ptolemy) by the character Simplicio. This was quite intentional. Galileo defrocked the Greek notion (that constitutes the entirety of Christian ‘natural philosophy’ – what we call ‘metaphysics’ today) that things had natures. I cannot stress how revolutionary confronting this notion actually was. Galileo intuitively understood that you can’t just disagree with whatever; he had to produce a better explanation that did a better job addressing the evidence, and he put his life on the line to replace it. His founding and ‘immoral’ principle was that an independent and objective reality was the best guide to finding out how it worked regardless of how we interpreted it to be. I can think of many experiments he ran doing just this. This is why Galileo is the ‘giant’ Newton refers to in response to the accolades he earned from formulating and demonstrating his 3 laws. (“If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants.”)

              So for you to think you are representing Galileo’s courage and curiosity and principles in your brittle assertion that you do not interpret psychedelic experiences but that it accurately reflects a ‘hidden’ reality behind/within/ reality is really quite ironic and to an astonishing, astounding degree. You couldn’t be further away.

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            35. I do not claim to be a Galileo, but I do lay claim to his tenacity in the face of total opposition. Right or wrong, I believe what I believe.

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            36. Right or wrong, I believe what I believe.

              There are Flat-Earthers’ and Young Earth Creationists who have a similar outlook.
              I’m guessing that, as a former believer (?), you probably regard these people as anti-science and rather silly, yet here you are, demanding respect ( or this is what it sounds like) for your beliefs.
              Sorry, but in this case you don’t get to pass ‘Go’ and collect £200.

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            37. Not sure what this us in reference to, but a lot of science data is anecdotal, whether you like it ir not. The collect the data you want to see, and ignore the data that foes not fit your expectation. That is anecdotal. Thus the plural of anecdotes can be data.

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            38. I’m prepared to acknowledge there may be something in intuition – whichever number you feel inclined to attribute to it – but a perfectly good argument can be made that this is all evolutionary, based on previous experience/memory and simply a way to avoid being eaten by the lion hiding in the long grass.
              There rest of your answers are simply made-up-shit.

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            39. Numbers are arbitrary. But are you saying I am more evolved than you are? I doubt that, but your statement can be taken that way. I’m all for evolution, especially spiritual evolution, even though you cannot see that.
              But made-up shit? Even I could not make-up that shit. But thank you for thinking I can.

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            40. Not in the least. As I wrote in my previous comment, intuition can (possibly) be linked to evolution.
              I didn’t say you made up the rest of the stuff you listed. I wouldn’t necessarily credit you with that much imagination even from LSD usage.
              I meant it is simply made up. Unsubstantiated. Fiction. That sort of thing.
              As for your term Spiritual Evolution? Seriously, you’re just yanking my chain now aren’t you, as even you can’t be this much of a Dickhead.

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            41. Dickhead I must be, because spiritual evolution is as real as physical evolution, but not quite as slow.
              I’ll give you unsubstantiated, though I substantiated it by have the more-or-less same experience twice, about ten days apart. But only I know that. Fiction it is not.

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            42. Tildeb has done his darnedest to explain it to you with enough detail and patience that even a bloody sheep would have understood by now, and Jim has backed him up by mentioning how your experiences can be recreated without any difficulty in the lab.
              Do you acknowledge they both may have a point? No. Do you show the faintest inclination that you would consider further investigation merely to test the veracity of their assertions? No!
              In my book that is behaving like a Dickhead. So go forth, head held high my good man and wear the title with all the pride and hubris that you have demonstrated are the Hallmarks of one who is so Spiritually Evolved.
              Om?

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            43. Your senses don’t define reality. Reality does. Your brain collects data through your senses but there are all kinds of ways to do this (ie reading). Your brain then interprets all the information into a map and your test this against reality. If stuff doesn’t fit, it’s not reality’s fault.

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            44. Quit telling me how my brain works, Tildeb. That is how your brain works, I can accept that. It is not how my brain works.
              This is why I do not like you. You think because you work one way, everyone else must work the same way. But life is not like that. I know I have had some very unique experiences in my life, experiences few other people have had, but I do not expect everyone to be like me.
              But you are as bad as any Christian who wants everyone to believe in their One True God. You want everyone to worship science. I am not remotely religious, nor science-based. I live outside religion, I live outside science. For me science is a tool, but it is not absolute reality, and it never will be.
              You fight me because I do not believe as you do. And I refuse to let you prosthelytize your bullshit to me. You will never convince me only science can describe reality, because reality is more than the material, the physical. You can’t see it, no problem. But you do not control what I see, and think, or the way I live. GIVE IT UP!
              You, Ark, Ron, you live in that cement cave I described at one point. Have fun. But don’t think for one minute it is the only cave to live in. There are lots of caves. I prefer to live where there are no walls, on the bald prairie where I was born. When I look outward I see horizons, but I know horizons are not all there is. The horizon always moves away–there is always something new to see. When I look up I see sky, but I know beyond the sky is space, a whole helluva lot of space. Do all the laws that science tells us govern our world govern all of our universe? You will say, of course. I will say maybe, but probably not. Right here on our own little world science cannot explain life. What else is out there that science cannot tell us?
              You guys think you know it all, or can know it all if you ask the right questions. But you have no idea what the questions are. As long as your questions are limited by your science, you can never know anything but science. You bore me to tears.

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            45. That’s how brains work, cross species. It has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with what I or you want to believe and everything to do with how reality seems to work.

              You seem determined to believe that reality is an assortment of membership clubs. You assume it is therefore reasonable to presume that I have ‘my’ science’ and you have ‘your’ science (forgetting , perhaps rather conveniently, that science is a method that works to produce applications, therapies, and technologies for everyone everywhere all the time regardless of what either of us wishes to believe). So, until you can get past this ridiculous notion that your reality is different from mine, you are tilting at windmills that your belief creates while you demand that everyone go along with this. Not going to happen.

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            46. Again, you are being Don Quixote. Everything you say to me can be mirrored back at you. Consider me your mirror.

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            47. rawgod — Most people on this blog are aware that you had “an experience” that changed you. You often say it created a new vision for you … and that’s fine. But it’s incorrect to say that others are blinded by their inabilities to see life as you do for the primary reason your perspective was artificially induced.

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            48. Artificially induced? You are, of course, talking the LSD that opened new doorways in my mind. It is a man-made chemical. What are Ron and the others telling me? My thoughts are produced by the 1400 or 14,000 or 14,000,000 chemicals that are produced in my brain. What makes you think 1 more chemical negates all my experience. What about the chemicals naturally produced like psilocybin, or ayahuasca, do you reject what those chemicals do when ingested? They can produce very similar effects to what LSD does, or did for me.
              They are all just chemicals, Nan.
              You are all just so hung up on what you want to see you reject that which others can see.
              I am not saying this to insult you, Nan, at least I like you, which I cannot say for certain others. Nor am I trying to tell you what life should be like for you. All I am doing is protesting the idea that what is good for the gander is not good for the goose. Is that really so hard for you to do? Mostly you let me be me, which I appreciate. I have no trouble with you being you. But when someone tells me I cannot be me because I used a chemical they are afraid to use, I have to draw a line. I am me. And no one can tell me different.
              Now, can we go back to being friends, please?

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            49. From my perspective, yes. We shall remain friends. But you must admit, the “chemical” you used has a long history of what it can do to one’s system/brain. Of course there are other drugs that can alter reality! But LSD does stand in a category of its own simply because it’s the more commonly used psychedelic.

              IMO, you have “over” defended yourself. Most individuals are aware of your outlook and for their own personal reasons don’t agree with it. So what? As you yourself have said, it’s your life and experience. So enjoy it and leave the nay-sayers to their own devices.

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            50. They keep coming back for more. I’ll quit when they give up. As for LSD, I used it in an uncommon way. I did not do it for fun, or for escape. And now it is being used clinically to help people suffering from mental illnesses. The way even scientists are looking at it is changing.
              When you say Most you are far from correct. Jim has hundreds of people following his blog. There are only 3 who are actively challenging me, 4 if I include you. This is a very small minority. Most just either don’t read my comments, or ignore them. I don’t inspire them to take up arms. That is as it should be. We have no idea if they agree or disagree with me. For you to assume they disagree with me is wishful thinking on your part. For most, I think, I am harmless. But for the Big 3, I am the enemy, I don’t give science the credence they do, therefore I must be brainwashed to their way of thinking, or just eliminated. To me, that sounds like religion.

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            51. But for the Big 3, I am the enemy.

              Nah … enemy of what and of whom? To paraphrase the Life of Brian; ”You’re just a very silly boy.”

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  2. Tildeb to Jim:

    The former does not allay the latter but excuses it and permits it to hang around as if a legitimate method long after its usefulness is consumed. That’s what religion requires from its apologists.

    This is why organisations such as Templeton and Biologos, are in truth little or no better than Ken Ham and his wonderful ark adventure and thus, should be called out all the time for what they truly are.
    And if you are one that needs to have this explained, then you haven’t yet fully abandoned HMS Godship.
    To illustrate the point further: There is a word (it’s meant as a pejorative) in Afrikaans – soutie which refers to those who live in SA but still hanker for the Old Country. Thus they have one foot in SA and one foot in (usually) the UK while their ‘middle wicket’ dangles in the sea.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I beg your pardon, but in case you missed it, the HMS Godship and His/Her Majesty were unceremoniously replaced by the USS American Exceptionalism and captain God Almighty circa 1776.

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    2. Or, Ark, it just means the person has not read or experienced any or all these organisations and people, because they are meaningless within their lives. HMS Godship indeed! It amazes me how much your life is limited by what you look at, and expect that everyone else has looked at it too, and is as limited by it as you are.

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      1. I suspect this is one of those type of comments where the average reader dutifully nods their head, turns to the person next to them and mouths: WTF?

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    1. Possibly the fact that it can’t be found, no matter what avenue one peruses, is the proof. The one thing that can’t be identified is it.

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        1. That sounds very Buddhic of you. This is what I mean. The two approaches overlap a lot. If you push any philosophy far enough, they often wind up in the same place.

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        1. I don’t have an answer for that. I’ve seen what others have said about this. If you were looking to find “it” using “it”, it would all appear as the same thing and prove illusive—like seeing your own eye color. It would be right there the whole time, or on the tip of your tongue, yet always escape discovery. Awareness of it would mean there has to be something outside of itself to bring it to awareness of itself.
          Like a nerve ending on your skin, it never gets stimulated or sends a signal unless something brushes against it. This line of reasoning, carried all the way out to a universal scale, god would never know it is god.
          The Buddhist or Hindu says that’s you, it, is, I am that, I am, in Christianity. The wu wei says the seeker and the sought are one and the same. The shamanic principles are the same. Really it’s been universal outside of science.
          I don’t think it’s woo, but it just is a natural part of us we can’t explain. The Taoist says the universe is of itself, so. It self exists and life is a symptom of the universe like spots are to chicken pox. All these things happen and always have happened. It has some scientific/ evolutionary innuendo to it all, but so far we have no instruments to detect these beliefs. It sounds kinda cool in ways, but that’s the explanations taking over when we just don’t know and are impatient.
          I do find it interesting that virtually all indigenous people and their vision quests and rites of passage had this one common theme. Do they really see behind the curtain, or is it just a desperate neurology making up stories because there is no other explanation?
          People like rawgod are completely honest and convinced they saw another realm. It’s hard to know if it’s just imagination or neurons gone wild. It happens in every culture and belief system. Jesus thought he was god. He’s not the only person to think that after having that experience.

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          1. Sorry to get off-topic just a bit, but did Jesus actually think he was god or did others think so? From what I’ve read –if he thought about it at all– it was that he may have considered himself a messenger of god and/or perhaps directed by god, but that was as far as it went. It’s believers that like to make him more than he was.

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            1. If you believe the gospel of Saint John, Jesus did not only believe he was the son of god, but that we are too. He was trying to teach the method to his disciples, that they “may be one with the father (Hebrew terminology) as he was one”. He obviously did not see this as peculiar to himself. The term in Greek for son of god actually means “the same in nature and authority to god, or of the nature of god”. Realization of this was the awakening. If you read the Bible through another cultural perspective, he saw what others had seen. The Buddha, the shaman, the Bodhisattva, and even the occasional narcissist has this glimpse behind the scenes that the whole works is one organism, and you are it. There is a common thread to it all. But to someone steeped in eastern thought, there is no harm in realizing you are it. All of it. Some take it in stride, others think they’re the chosen one. I actually don’t know what it is that happens, but even Crazy horse reported the same thing. He was a great shaman as well as a warrior. He had no fear of life or death after his experience. Idk

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            2. Yes, I’ve seen that in John, but his writings are far more off-center than the other three. Further, son of god is not the same as being god. One Catholic website says he claimed equality with god, but never claimed to BE god.

              Overall, it’s not really a big issue — especially since it’s related to content that’s lacking in overall credibility anyway. Your statement just jumped off the page at me and prompted me to respond.

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            3. What’s funny (if you believe the scripture) is what’s the difference? Even in Roman 8:16-17 kjv it makes it pretty clear. The only reason you could separate yourself from it is monotheisms cultural taboo. The one biggest blasphemic taboo (sorry Dwain) worthy of death, acknowledging you are god. Hindus have no problem with it.
              I don’t know if this made sense at all because of the way I was raised, or what?

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            4. when the individual consciousness dissolutes (that sense of ‘me’) then only the pure consciousness which is there before the sense of separate identity arises remains.
              but, as long as the physical body is there, we can only say we are ‘like’ god.

              only when the physical body also goes, and we return to the primordial, pure consciousness that is our origin, can we say we Are god.

              it’s like making jewelry out of gold, and the earing suddenly realizes ‘hey, I’m gold’. but it’s only when it’s melted back into the whole gold pot, that you can say it’s all gold, no longer jewelry. makes sense?

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            5. But you used the term “god” — we are ‘like’ god. and we Are god. It seems like you’re saying, consciousness and “god” are connected. Do you thus believe in a “god”?

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            6. consciousness and god are one and same thing. as you create your own dreams at night (or… does someone else create built them for you?) so we ‘create’ our day-to day life without being consciousness that we are doing it, or how we do it. it’s paying attention to what you think, how your thoughts arise, which thoughts you pay attention to, and how that reflects in your reality/life.

              the so called spirituality is waking up to that realization😊 have an awesome day!

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            7. If you truly want to know what’s going on here, you have to study the brain. You have to learn about the brain’s physiology, the various brain processes and boundaries that are crossed, different kinds of receptors and how they work, how they interact, how these effects are then expressed, and so on. You have to look at and test the 1400 kinds of chemicals our brains produce and how these in various quantities then affect synaptic connections and how these are experienced, and so on. That’s a tremendous amount hard work to reach even the easiest kinds of general explanations and there are lots of people doing this hard work while making their results known to any interested audience. It is truly fascinating stuff and our knowledge is growing exponentially. Certainly monks have demonstrated that certain cognitive techniques can cause certain effects so I don’t mean to suggest anyone doing this work must fit into some kind of scientific template. There are many avenues of contribution but these need to be assembled into a cohesive explanatory model that keeps the ‘units of measuring’ so to speak the same (you can measure at your leisure if the units stay the same, goes the children’s rhyme when dealing with an axiom of math).

              But what I find disappointing is that many people have little trouble leaping into assertions and assumptions that define by fiat the ‘who’ and ‘what’ and ‘how’ all this stuff is going on in our craniums, assertions and assumptions assembled into a model that cannot be tested. What I know for sure is that this method is no way to increase knowledge. All this does is present known phenomena with Just So stories no different in quality than the age-old non-answer ‘Goddidit’ and then pretending this ‘insight’ (no, it’s not adduced from reality, from very real experiences, but interpreted and then imposed back on reality as if ‘true’) is reason enough to be satisfied that this model is equivalent to hard-won knowledge.

              I have found it very useful to always ask 2 connected questions of any and every claim made about reality: is it true and how do we know? If there’s no way to ‘know’ (hence the importance of ‘knowledge’ which is NOT synonymous with ‘experience’) then the claim is empty, and this cuts down a vast amount of work dealing with claims that cannot be known. These can be dismissed outright. But if there is some way to know, that’s when real conversations come about dealing with real stuff about real issues and where real learning can occur with an accumulation of relevant and useful and practical knowledge that can be shared across all other social differences.

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            8. it’s not knowledge we need. it’s knowing.
              knowledge refers to things outside. you can know all about the things in the world, that doesn’t change you inside at all.

              ‘knowing’ refers to knowledge of your self. when you know yourself, only then there is real change occurring. like, and angry man learn about his anger and understands its source, its effects, etc. and he takes action to change that behaviour. now, his whole life is transformed!

              all other ‘knowledge’ is decoration for our ego.

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            9. Well, sometimes being a little more pedantic helps.

              Knowledge, in a nutshell, refers to ‘justified true belief’. I think this is a very handy definition because it’s the ‘justified’ part that is usually the difference figuring out what are claims of faith and claims of fact. How we justify a belief of any kind rests on this differentiation. Without that element, there is no way to differentiate. All facts are equivalent to faith and all faith is equivalent to fact. This fractures any and all commonality with or reference to reality so anything claimed, including opposites, are equivalently ‘true’. Philosophically that may appear attractive to some but it doesn’t work very well when it comes to, say, identifying a poison. Obviously, there’s a problem here in this kind of unmoored thinking.

              So to justify a belief as knowledge requires something other than making the claim itself. What we need is a common system, hopefully a fully independent third party who can weigh and evaluate the claim and/or counter claim impartially. I think the best judge in such matters is reality. It seem pretty obvious to me that reality doesn’t care what I think or you think; it simply adjudicates claims that either work or don’t, simply fits or doesn’t. Reality’s rejection is absolute, whereas its acceptance gives us a conditional ruling. That’s as good as it gets.

              So if the claim – especially one that supposedly describes reality – includes no means for this adjudication by reality, then the claim is not relevant to reality. So, going back to what knowledge means, a true belief held firmly by some individual is not relevant to reality if it cannot be adjudicated by it so it cannot be classified as knowledge about reality. The claim ‘to know‘ necessarily must have some means to allow reality to adjudicate it independently of the person believing they know. Without that component, any claim someone makes to ‘know’ anything is not justified no matter how fervently or willfully the person insists they do. He or she does not. He or she simply believes something that has nothing whatsoever to do with knowing.

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            10. Isn’t joy part of reality? Is the joy someone finds in meditation irrelevant? Fiction still outsells nonfiction 3-1. Is it a sin to immerse oneself in fantastic journeys in their imaginations. Of course it should be put in its proper context, but there is no harm in it.

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            11. Cause your very serious. I don’t know anything but I enjoy the show. You must teach a hell of a class though.

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            12. Well, that’s a weird connection you’re assuming is true, that to be serious about something like understanding why some claims are justified while others are not must mean emotions and fiction are not appreciated. Some of the biggest sci-fi fans around are themselves reality geeks of the highest order. I think there’s ample evidence that the really good musicians are the really good mathematicians are the really good athletes are the really involved community organizers and so forth. The connection is actually about attaining excellence and you’d know this if you ever got between theoretical physicists expounding on why this episode of Star Trek is superior to that episode of TNG or why LOTR elvish isn’t as grammatically good as Klingon: in depth knowledge about the real world only adds to getting even more out of life – including fiction, including joy, including love and humor and so on . What detracts is the presumption of knowledge that isn’t justified which then tends to fail spectacularly at producing excellence in whatever venue it tries. Sci-fi writers, for example, who don’t do the work necessary to suspend disbelief to a discriminating audience are soon forgotten, but those who do are venerated. Those who add in layers of philosophy and myth and human foibles create astoundingly immersive and realistic fictional worlds. Star Wars is a good example. All this stuff doesn’t have to be true; you’re looking at the wrong end. It has to be justifiable to suspend disbelief, insightful to be funny, detailed to be respected.

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            13. Nicely said. I’m also not immune to misinterpret things either. I’ve had the most frustrating arguments with people I actually agree with who believe my intent was not what it was. Thanks boss.

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            14. Hmm. Do I hear the term Word Salad?
              Perhaps, Jim, you may now begin to appreciate why clear and straightforward are preferable to convoluted and vague?

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            15. Haha. Not every comment is a masterpiece. It helps though, to actually read the comments and not assume too much, huh? You know some people don’t even read the post and go straight to the comments. Which is fine, but it gets a little discontextual.

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            16. Based on my experience with bloggers, I find some of them consider a blank ”page” to be an open invitation to show off their literary/compositional skills. (or, as is often the case, lack thereof)
              Such people would serve their cause far better if they always bore in mind they were writing a blog piece and not composing a philosophical treatise or an abridged version of War and Peace.

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            17. No.

              However …. A suggestion: Start a new post and keep away from obfuscational, existenialistic confabulated, somewhat made-up over-the-top thesaurusly- inclined prose akin to food made primarily of a mixture of raw or cold ingredients, typically vegetables resulting in a jumbled mixture or combination of things.

              Oh … I said that already.
              Well … you catch the drift, I’m sure, yes?

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            18. So, no emergent properties, no scripture references, no mythology, no theory, no quotes appealing to authority, and no footnotes? Aah, you want me to do a photo post?

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            19. My average post is 384 words. At your rate I could cut out 2/3 of my posts and still not say anything.

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            20. Or double the word count and still be in the same boat?
              Perhaps it’s the more esoteric nature of the content which seems to elicit certain comments to enjoin that most erudite of replies: ”Huh?”

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            21. And it is you, tildeb, who knows you require justification. Others accept that what is, is. You can set yourself apart from others all you want, you must be the most superior intellect of anyone you have ever met, except, no one else cares. I laugh at “justified true belief.” There are more things in heaven and earth, tildeb, than are dreamt of in your philosophy. You are stuck in a similar concrete chamber to the one Ron and others are stuck in. I am not sure if you are a forest or trees kind of guy, but you are what you are. I could never be you, and thankfully, you could never be me.
              Meant in the most loving way possible.

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            22. I read a lot about neuroscience. I find it all rather fascinating.

              Jerry Coyne has a funny story about his LSD experiences I may have mentioned before but I think it encapsulates a key feature of personal experiences: we all interpret them. We interpret them at the time and again later. Intelligence has nothing to do with it whereas emotion and meaning plays a vital role.

              In his case, he experienced a window into reality that was truly profound but, unlike most people, he wanted so much to share his revelation that he jotted down the key aspect while in the midst of it in order to take it up again after the trip was over with a team of crack scientists. The note was carefully saved so that it wouldn’t get lost. The next day and with a great deal of excitement, he unfolded the note and read, “The wall is brown.”

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            23. And so you, tildeb, think you can judge all acid experiences by Jerry Coyne’s cute story. You even call it vital. My wall is not brown. I wrote nothing down, I was not about to forget it. 52 years later it is still as vital as the nights when I had these experiences. You cannot use your anecdotes to describe every situation. I just sent a comment to Ron about judgment. It applies to you as beautifully as it applies to him. I see no reason to repeat it in such a short space. Of course, you do not have to look. You already know what it says.

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            24. Oh, and by the way, I don’t find neuroscience fascinating. I am quite good at using my brain/mind/spirit quite well without knowing how it all works. That is but one more difference between us.

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            25. when the individual consciousness dissolutes (that sense of ‘me’) then only the pure consciousness which is there before the sense of separate identity arises remains.

              Could you please express this in a more practical manner so as not to sound as if you are simply making shit up?
              Thanks.

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            26. yes. sit and keep the mind quiet for 10 each day, and you will see how thoughts come and go, emotions come and go, feelings come and go, sensations come and go, and yet. they are not you. so there you are, sitting, and being aware of all this. so, when you able to watch your own thoughts, WHO is watching them??

              that is practice. learning the difference between what we experience. and what we truly are.

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            27. I am very envious of anyone like Ark able to capture the exquisite ever-changing details found in his garden. That requires both keen observation and a still mind so as to be living ‘in the moment’ not as a passive observer but as an quiet and aware participant in life unfolding. I find that kind of stillness admirable.

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            28. No kidding. One nice thing about the pandemic was my daughter and I went on over 30 mountain top Covid picnics. Really, finding a way to appreciate the little things is as rewarding as any grand discussion.

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            29. indeed. that ancient practice that teaches us how mind operates, and its consequences in our own life. wiki says it’s estimated between 200-500 million people meditate worldwide.

              so, i’m not the only lunatic, am i? don’t answer that😂

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            30. Boring as Gehenna I would imagine.
              In context, however, where communication of ideas on the widest front is (presumably) the objective then using language that is neither clear or straightforward would seem to defeat the objective of the exercise, wouldn’t you say so?

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            31. I would presume you know little about meditation. Her answer encompasses a brief justification to clarify. Word salad is completely arbitrary. It may just be the difference between an English expat in SA and a Canadian Romanian.

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            32. And you are entitled to presume.

              Word salad is completely arbitrary.

              Indeed it is. Cultural background may well be the reason why some feel they need a paragraph or more to express an idea. Meanwhile, the English language also provides us with a single word to convey the same idea.

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          2. If this “it” is elusive and beyond discovery, why postulate about “its” existence? In fact, why would anyone even infer “it” exists absent any evidence for “its” evidence? It’s the equivalent of postulating the universe is inhabited by invisible pink unicorns.

            And I think you answered your own question as to why do indigenous people all share tales of mystic experiences: we invent explanations as a coping mechanism to alleviate fear of the unknown.

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            1. Where is the fear, Ron? There is certainly fear in Christianity, they need Heaven to placate their fears. But where the fear in mystic experiences. Whatever you want to call the rite of passage experiences, those who experience them come out of it stronger and braver than they went in. Now it is you who are interpreting others’ experiences for them, yet again. You interpret, because you have no experience of your own in that particular process. And you live in fear that someone else knows something you do not. So you lock yourself up in your little concrete room where you are safe from all non-concrete ideas. You ask for proof when you know there can be no proof, that is your armour. Nothing can penetrate it.
              Meanwhile, life goes on all around you, and you have no idea how to participate. Fear! You are full of it!
              Are you listening Tildeb? And anyone else who can only see what they can experience with their body’s senses? You are living a half-life. I hope someday you will live wholly.

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            2. Where is the fear? All around you. If you need proof, just look at all the people walking around with masks on outdoors in fear of a catching a disease.

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            3. An anti-masker to boot. I guess I should have known. I do not wear a mask in fear, but because it is the logical thing to do. Are you an anti-vaxxer too?
              For some people wearing a mask may be from fear, but the need is to end the pandemic with the fewest cases possible. That is science! Masks work. Social distancing works. As a good side-effect, influenza cases are down 400% this year. With less planes in the air the pollution rate has slowed immensely. I guess you want air travel back too?
              But the fear I was talking about was not covid. I was talking about the fear of not knowing. Even you, with all your science, do not know everything. Yet you believe, because scientists say so. You won’t call science religion, but I will. You still need to have faith, you just call it reality.

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          1. Not everyone is just sitting. There are many scientists in the relevant fields who are exploring this.
            I am perfectly happy to wait until someone with the proper know-how discovers the answer. As science is unravelling so much of what we previously did not know then I don’t see why this question should elude us indefinitely.

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            1. I think it will likely take a fresh mind. A beginners mind. One that is not too entrenched in the way things are done. But that’s just me. Breakthroughs come in the most unlikely places, like in garages or basements and an idea. Or an unintended byproduct of another experiment.

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            2. I am saying, someone who is self taught that is not swayed by the opinions of experts. Once in a while there is a breakthrough, whether it be art, or music, or science, where something extraordinary happens. Then someone forms of school to try to teach that greatness, but there are no prodigies that arise out of the training. I think it will come from something that can’t be taught, initially. Someone with a beginners mind.

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            3. Emergence is an opinion. It is very convincing, but can’t be demonstrated. Science in this arena is interpretations and opinions. Is that a problem?

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            4. You’ve just taken your argument full circle. So we are back to: I don’t know and neither does anyone else.

              I don’t consider there is a problem.
              I suspect, however, that, should you try to suggest the answer may lie outside of science then this is where you are most definitely going to have a problem.

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            5. Well, the Hindus hit a road block in this 2000 years ago and it became their mythology, filled with stories and imagination. Science has hit the same road block. It now has stories of these emergent properties as well, and if you care to look, the web is full of beautifully worded prose that is the accepted mythology of today. We’ll see.

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            6. You are asking a scientific question – how did life emerge?
              Well, I am going to presume was are talking science as I have not encountered the word abracadabra!
              The scientific tools may not be available at this present time to give a comprehensive or definitive response, other than: ”We don’t know.”
              So yes, it’s fun to speculate. But why do seem to have the need to allude to / insert an answer that, no matter how advanced we (science) become, would fall outside scientific parameters?

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            7. I not presuming it would come from science at all. Here’s an example from Quora —
              “Antoine Gombaud, Chevalier de Mere, who was a French nobleman and an avid gambler; his contribution was to mathematics but it was a contribution that affects all of modern science. He was very interested in playing dice, and was interested in making “fair” dice games; this led him to enlist the help of mathematicians Blaise Pascal and Pierre de Fermat, and so they worked on various problems to do with how likely certain numbers would come up etc. These problems, and their solutions, lay the foundations of probability, which led to the creation of statistics.”
              And I’m sure you know how important probability is in science and working theory. This is what I mean. It could come from anywhere if we are open to listen.

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            8. Okay, but the eventual ”answer” is still scientific whether it is stumbled upon by a gambler, mathematician, a housewife from Iowa or a child genius.
              The answer to the origin of life will fall within the parameters of science/physics.
              Perfectly rational and no ‘woo’ involved.

              I presume you agree?

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            9. This is a misnomer. Even much of science backpedals their way in to the scientific method after the discovery. We can now explain how the microwave oven works, but it’s discovery was an accident. The way this ultimately will work is by working together. Then putting it to math which is an elite business these days

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            10. You are the one who expressed difficulty in accepting that life could ’emerge from rocks.’
              So the question here is, what alternate proposal, if any, are you suggesting?

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            11. First I want to point out the irony that you are faced with. Sure , eventually statistics developed out of scientist and philosopher Blaise Pascal, who was a theologian, who’s discovery you rely on for science. This is the point. We can’t disregard anything because of our bias.
              IBM back in the 60s and 70’s had a rooms full of creative people with no set task but to express their ideas. No time clock, no expectation. They created. It was a fabulous model. But today everything is highly regulated to profit and left to the lab rats. Formulas, time lines, mass marketing takes precedence over ingenuity.

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            12. It matters not what they ”are,” ultimately the answer to the question will be revealed through science. No magic, and nothing overtly mysterious.
              Creative brainstorming is an excellent way to share ideas, kickstart projects, pool resources and often, have fun.
              But this does not detract from what the objective is: to discover the origin of life. And this will all boil down to science.
              You agree with this I presume, yes?

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            13. I think so. Science will develop the instruments, but what to look for may use a little help. You know they hooked up eeg’s to meditating monks and determined that thoughts come into your head up to ten seconds before you’re aware of it? Very interesting what can be accomplished when both sides come together.

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            14. Yes, I read something about the monks somewhere.
              So, science it is.

              Very interesting what can be accomplished when both sides come together.

              What ”sides”?
              Science doesn’t have a side.

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            15. Sure they have a side arc. They want to discover the woo without the listening to the woo. The golden age of physics was much different than that, where they incorporated the ideas, the philosophies of Indians into quantum mechanics. I have no problem with that. Even Niels Bohr said, when I need inspiration I turn to the Upanishads to ask question. Ideas can come from anywhere. Especially a religious dialogue with a scientist, the imaginative side and the practical side.

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            16. Your trying to import something that you cannot put a name to.
              Ultimately, Jim it has to be science.
              But you seem to desperately want it to be something else.

              I won’t dignify your religious remark with a reply.

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            17. So you’d prefer to shut out 80% of the available ideas and stick to strict discovery by the scientific method, which ideas often have come from other sources? This will takes longer than it should.

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            18. You seem to have missed my earlier comment regarding brainstorming?
              Ultimately, whatever comes out of this will require science.

              You see, Jim, you have raised doubts/ objections to the idea that, to paraphrase, ”life came from rocks”, which on the face of it is a weird concept, not to put too fine a point on it.
              However, as far as I am aware, it’s all we’ve got at this moment and, for all your allusions to alternate ”woo” you have yet to posit a single plausible alternative.
              Perhaps if you did, it would be a far more interesting discussion?

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            19. Here we go again. Jim, you state as if true that “where they (physicists) incorporated the ideas, the philosophies of Indians into quantum mechanics.”

              This is NOT true as I’ve previously outlined.

              QM came about by many, many, MANY physicists over decades of time not studying Eastern philosophy or dipping into its claims as you continue to say but BY DOING SCIENCE. It is YOU who are confabulating what is not true to maintain an illusion you prefer, this artificial construct that religion informs or can inform science, and then using the confabulation (as if these physicists went from studying Eastern philosophies, putting down their Tibetan Book of the Dead or the Bhagavad Gita and then headed into the lab to come up the wave function) to justify your illusion. Knowledge remains a one way street from science to religion. But some religious practices that do offer some practical insight into reality do not come from believing in woo; they come from having a practical effect in reality BY reality and nothing whatsoever, no causal connection whatsoever, to do with the woo. Yes, you can do all the rain dances you want and enjoy the benefits that can come from rain but when you try to tell the meteorologist that the dancing is the source of meteorological knowledge because it can be shown to have a tenuous connection with rain, you’ve gone off the rails. This is what has happened when you talk about QM: you’ve gone off the rails when you keep drawing up some connection with eastern philosophy.

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            20. Sure, I agree. But according to them it was the infusion of eastern thought that brought it full circle. “Niels Bohr had famously said, “I go to the Upanishad to ask questions”. Schrödinger stated eastern thought was a needed infusion in western science. I guess you know better than them. Circle the wagons. You know more than a two time Nobel laureate, yet you’ve likely never read what they read. This isn’t my argument, it’s theirs.

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            21. These two were not the source of QM. They were part of several dozen specific physicists who developed a better understanding of what might be going on at the very small end of the physics spectrum. And they developed this not by Eastern philosophy but by a way to try to measure how certain properties presented. Because they couldn’t do this directly, they incorporated a novel means, namely probability. And they did this as a means to demonstrate predictability. If you asked any of the physicists at this time what they were doing, you wouldn’t hear diddly squat about Eastern philosophy. But if you asked them many years later about the effect of their success, you would start to hear about various connections including Eastern philosophy in the same way Einstein when asked later about special relativity commented about God. Yet you seem unaware the Einstein himself was and remained a huge skeptic about quantum entanglement, and for very good reasons. Just because some like Bohr attributes something revealed to be similar to an Eastern philosophy tenet doesn’t MAKE it so.

              I don’t know better than any theoretical physicist, but I’m not willing to presume you are correctly relaying the religious influences by a select pair, either. And I have read a lot about QM because I am interested in how reality works and have had many fruitful discussions with people involved with different aspects of QM – from math to computing to my fair share of philosophers and religious folk. So I know that QM has exactly zero to do with Eastern philosophy and everything to do with trying to understand why the wave function is so accurate.

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            22. It wasn’t just them. Not that it matters to you but others got culminating ideas from eastern thought. I really don’t care, but you should give credit where it is due.
              Werner Heisenberg, Carl Sagan, Robert Oppenheimer, Erwin Schrödinger, Niels Bohr, Nikola Tesla, all found confirmation and outright ideas from these philosophies. Coincidence? That’s a long shot. People weren’t as dumb as you think in past millennia.
              You know Buddhism isn’t really religion, but a dialog and questions. It just shows you can get pretty close with reason and philosophies alone.
              Developing instruments sensitive enough to detect these phenomenon is certainly going to be in the realm of science.

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            23. By all means please demonstrate these culminating ideas by Werner Heisenberg, Carl Sagan, Robert Oppenheimer, Erwin Schrödinger, Niels Bohr, and Nikola Tesla. Please show how Eastern though informed their contribution to science.

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            24. That was their words, not mine. It’s easily accessible. I truly could past link after link and you would balk it down. That’s ok though, everyone has a role to play. It won’t make you crazy to glean a little insight from religion. It didn’t start as a religion, but it’s now a mythology that hit a wall and stalled. This may turn out the same way with “emergent properties”. We’ll see.
              I do appreciate your teaching attitude and insight. I have a lot to think on.
              Think of it like completing the circle, vs competing with it. It is uncanny how similar these eastern philosophies are to modern physics. Maybe we’ve been here before as a civilization.

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            25. You make it sound like I know nothing about religions, that if I did, if I were just more ‘open-minded’ I would share an understanding I do not have.

              Well, the fact of the matter is that I know far, far too much about religious thinking in all its aspects because I spent far, far too much time studying them. I kept on finding the same method of thinking.

              Hell, I can compare bibles if you want, talk at length about how the koran, sutras, and haddiths are manipulated by various branches of Islam all under the banner of god instructing us. I can explain how global myths relate not just on how the imagery altered geographically and ethnically but on the evolution of meaning as our brains evolved and how that relates to psychology. I know far, far too much of how this element of human activity – this method of thinking unmoored from reality as arbitrator – has actually hindered the acquisition of knowledge because people think detail isn’t nearly as important to translate this kind of over-reaching, over-arching method of thinking successfully into applications, therapies and technologies that work.

              That’s the difference between us, me understanding the devil is in the details, a single thread of a colour that doesn’t match, doesn’t fit, that unravels the most ‘sophisticated’ theological models, that the power of imported assumption and assertion without compelling evidence from reality buries reality under mountains of useless religious, metaphysical, and spiritual esoteric garbage. Using this method of thinking is a guaranteed recipe to be fooled, to believe one understands something when one does not, that one has keen insight into reality when one does not. It’s a form of faith-based perniciousness presented as reasonable and justified and oh-so-insightful that continues to be paid by real people undergoing real suffering in real life because of it. And it is a method of thinking deserving of criticism no matter in what disguise or subject it may appear.

              Using QM to excuse spiritual claims of woo as if equally reasonable (QM is NOT reasonable) is now standard practice. What isn’t done by those who use this prop is a good understanding of what QM actually is, what it actually means, how it is actually used, and why it is so predictive. All of that resides in the detail, the very thing most people pay scant attention to because it’s hard to understand. And it’s easier to make what looks like, what appears to be, reasonable claims that gives oxygen and light to a greater possibility for woo than what is the case. QM is then used as a shield. It is used to fool people, to permit false equivalencies, and make the person doing the fooling look good, look like they are actually concerned with understanding what’s true, look like they are marveling at the universe and all the secrets it contains… just like the priests of old using religion to gain higher position and status while pretending great humility for themselves (nothing beats a good martyr) and criticizing those who confront them as full of hubris, all the while avoiding being held responsible for the lack of knowledge they have, the ignorance and harm they are actually promoting, actually causing by pretending to know something they don’t know anything about usually in an area where no one has great depth of knowledge.

              That’s why recognizing the same method of religious thinking no matter the subject IS the red flag all of us should recognize and be more not less leery. It’s very seductive.

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            26. I thought you were an evolutionist? How could any of this be more persuasive than the selfish gene? Religion would be every bit as natural as fighting it.
              Belief makes people fight. Fighting makes people strong. The selfish gene is winning after all. Nothing can be done about that.

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            27. If you read the Selfish Gene you’d understand just how out of context your comment is.

              What’s most interesting to me is you using the term ‘evolutionist’ as if this references a ‘belief’ I have rather than a basic understanding of reality. It’s like me claiming you are using belief in gravity if I call you a ‘gravitationalist’; it presumes there’s some other equivalent camp of belief, which is exactly the wrong way to think about facts.

              If you want to suggest motivated thinking is useful in evolutionary terms, we’ll find ourselves in agreement. But that doesn’t make it equivalent to critical thinking for gaining knowledge but its foe.

              You have been steeped in religious thinking, in a religious upbringing, for a long time. It’s hard to recognize the effect of this when it’s always so near but easy to see from a distance. You are actually using this same kind of thinking but in different contexts and this opens your thinking method up to legitimate criticism. In effect, you are using the same tactics common to religious apologetics like false equivalencies, motivated reasoning, metaphysical assumptions, assuming the conclusion, throwing in names like Sagan and claiming because you think he pays some kind of passing respect to some particular element of Eastern philosophy, he therefore has used religion to comport with his respect for science, that to disagree with you is equivalent to disagreeing with him, and so on. The usual one in religious terms is Newton (not understanding the 2nd law of thermodynamics but chronically used as an argument against evolution) and claiming that hubris must be involved if I dare question the religious person’s use of this law and inevitably accuse me of pretending I am ‘superior’ to Newton. No, there’s another explanation! In your case, it’s involving those more recognizable names associated with QM and so I must think more of myself than Nobel prize winners. No, there’s another explanation!

              This kind of response is just a tactic of diversion and dismissal in order to maintain legitimacy of motivated thinking. And we are all guilty of doing this. But we do less and less of it when we are aware of its use. You are using motivated reasoning that demonstrably wants to hold on to the idea that everything is one thing, one thing is everything, and that the one thing is consciousness, that consciousness can change reality. This is simply not true. It’s not a means of exploring what consciousness is in reality but it is a typical shortcut and a faith-based belief that permits a slew of thinking errors like jumping to a conclusion that one is motivated to keep. The problem with such asserted open-mindedness is that it leads one to risking having one’s brains fall out and suggest fire can produce rocks to keep the conclusion alive in spite of mounting evidence it’s not the case. Keeping firm to a conclusion that is not supported by reality is not the way to further one’s understanding of how reality operates but an obvious attempt to impose a belief on reality and maintain it in spite of contrary and compelling evidence. This is an example of the perniciousness of religious thinking, one that works hard to keep room for woo, for erecting ‘spiritual’ borders against the intrusion of reality, of assigning moral virtue in all kinds of forms to what amounts to a vice, that belief about reality should be reflected in our understanding of reality and, if it’s not there, to discard reality and denigrate our best method of investigating it in the name of some self-assigned virtue. It’s religious thinking to a tee.

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            28. Well, if you haven’t noticed I allow all types of criticism and all types of comments. Thank you.
              I have nothing to hide, although it would be easier to just pretend I am a hardened atheist. I see a picture of humanity as a whole and value the variety of a diverse ethnosphere—really humanities greatest legacy. All the thoughts and perceptions of every culture. Not failed attempts at being human, but each beautiful in their own way.
              Imagine if everyone thought exactly the same. Imagine if the whole planet was populated with entirely virtuous people? It would be a sick planet swelling with meddling good intentions incensed at the failures they’ve created. I’ll take the variety, every ecosystem thrives that way. This is no different.
              Sometimes my head is a little thick, but I appreciate anything that helps me see things a little more clearly. I’m not great with reasoning, so reach out. I do not have any beliefs or feel religious or spiritual in any way.
              True, all you said. That is why I post my ideas. I do not pretend to think differently than I do. Can you think differently than you do? I do see a change in my abilities to see things at a more critical level which is not natural for me at all. Largely because of the dialogues from people like yourself.
              I do understand why people believe, and I have a soft spot for anyone that is truly human without pretending to be something they are not. It’s all ok
              So, using the word evolutionist, I did not realize that was a trigger word. I would consider myself one. No problem there. But really, we think we can outsmart ourselves? Haha. I’ve accepted this and really just enjoying the show. It’s all pretty amazing.
              For what it’s worth, you act like science is beyond reproach and also fail to see how Christian thought influences the very methods you espouse. Emergence is not a falsifiable claim. It’s a possibility. That’s all.
              I’ve been suckered pretty badly in my life as a believer. I do see those same behaviors in science as well as religion.
              Thanks

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            29. Okay. Long comment. Fair warning.

              I don’t think poorly of you, Jim. Just the opposite. I think you’re searching for all kinds of connections and this speaks well of your bravery and curiosity. I’m serious. It’s relatively rare. Not many people can make the kind of break you have taken on and do what we in my clan call, “Throw the hat over the fence,” meaning you have to go over that fence and find out what’s on the other side if you want your damn hat back again. Most people won’t or can’t do this, start that journey and follow it wherever it may lead, but it is the essence of heading into the mythological wilderness and testing yourself to find yourself.

              But you also get rather enchanted with certain ideas that lead back to a kind of thinking that is more comfortable and familiar but will produce by poor results the same kind of anger and hurt and frustration you’ve felt when you realized you had been manipulated and emotionally betrayed by those who thought more highly of their beliefs than the health and welfare of those honestly questioning them. You know these people. They are toxic to honest inquiry.

              You can avoid that by learning how to recognize the same thinking traps that have ensnared people forever into staying on their side of the fence. And there is no greater hook that keeps so many of us trapped into foolishness than this idea of finding meaning through some belief in something out there and no greater despair than finding out it doesn’t exist. Sartre calls it ‘the absurd.’

              If I can shorten that path by suggesting that full frontal reality – and the kind of critical thinking that exposes the fraud of those who frame it for some other reason than respecting what’s true – is the greatest gift we can give ourselves, then I’ll take that chance. I know it often offends. Oh well. But this chance necessarily involves learning as best we can how not to fool ourselves. That is a lot harder than it first appears.

              If we do that, if we set a goal to try not to fool ourselves, then my desire is to show that reality as it really is holds far more than anything we could ever want or need to craft a deeply meaningful and purposeful life and attach ourselves firmly to it. By doing so we prepare the ground for a lifetime of delightful learning, and so are better prepared to accept all the suffering such an honest life must include. Even such suffering adds to the richness that is our lives. By putting into words ideas and notions and criticisms that are true and useful, that are contrary to so much distortion and foolishness, makes the process of interchanging thoughts a kind of brain nourishment that both challenges and satisfies real world honest connections and should end up to some lesser or greater extent benefiting both.

              How we think determines what we think. That’s the key. There are many ways to how we might think, but there are also many ways that produce support for really bad ideas really foolish notions, and even outright lies. Using respect for reality as the fundamental benchmark against which we can test our opinions and beliefs and level of knowledge offers us the means to test whether or not we are fooling ourselves or if we’re on the right track.

              If there’s one thing I’ve learned it’s that changing the belief, the opinion, the position, the answer, isn’t the solution because the belief/opinion/position/answer is not the problem. The problem I’ve encountered time and time again as a teacher is that how we were thinking is the root cause of what led us astray, led us into fooling ourselves in a variety of ways. Change that process, change the world we inhabit. For the better.

              And I’ve oodles and oodles of personal examples where you can actually see the lightbulb of understanding go on in the eyes of those who had been stymied throughout their lives by some concept or process or relationship as if these were beyond their capabilities to understand when, in fact, it was their capabilities that were being stymied by imported assumptions and assertions that were wrong, that didn’t work. A simple switch in how someone was thinking was always sufficient to succeed. Always. In every single case. Even brain damaged people. The most common question I received after the excitement of the breakthrough was starting to dim was, “Why weren’t we taught this way in Grade 2?” Yup, that’s a good question. I don’t know why how we think isn’t central to any and all education, but if not then, isn’t now the best time?

              The more ways we learn how to think (which allows me wide latitude in figuring out how to teach one idea many, many ways), the more creative and critical and honest we become, the more ways we discover to understand all kinds of stuff not just out there beyond our minds but especially in here, in our minds… many like the ones you mentioned. We are great mysteries right now. And we discover ourselves constantly throughout life. The more ways we can bring to bear on how we think, the greater the reward we can draw from living IN reality, recognize that we are an essential part OF it, and that we are connected TO it in all kinds of ways. No woo is needed. Reality suffices. And from understanding those connections we can then draw honest meaning and owned value and designed purpose… what Aristotle called the Right answers.

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            30. Thank you kindly. Long reply. Hah!
              One of the reasons I have gone on this exploration is, a while back I asked if we can disbelieve the gods and doctrines we know nothing about. I knew nothing of anything that wasn’t Christianity. So I started looking around and doing some thought experiments. I take a topic and essentially avoid expert opinion to see what one person alone will discover on their own. Sort of the Buckminster Fuller approach, to see what one can do.
              At first I was accused of being a Sam Harris disciple, and a Richard Dawkins. I had never read them. I was accused of all kinds of things I had never inquired of any book or video. I had the beginners mind, a clean slate of unbelief. I was actually honored because I was coming to my own conclusions what many prominent atheists were thinking. And so it progressed into other thought experiences.
              Not sure if you know this about me, but JZ, Ark, Violet Twisp, Violet (ain’t no shrinking) and Victoria, maybe a few others, were a big part of my wake up. It was because of them that I spent three weeks alone in the Panama jungle and finally began to see through the fog. It is hard to escape the faith trap when you’re in the faith community. I was lucky I had all those things come together for me.
              So, there I was. I had no personality of my own. Nothing I had ever said, thought, or condemned was me. I had no beliefs. I started to peek into things that interested me, things I shunned because they were faithless, forbidden topics like science and philosophy. So, here I am. Somehow I am a part of this community with some really damn smart people, but I leave no one out. I will never abandon anyone because they don’t believe the way I do. I know how that feels. I still have no friends at all from my prior life. Anyone that will embrace you over belief, will abandon you over unbelief. But I understand why. The fog. The faith.Hebrew religions are essentially like a guru challenge to his student. The world is stuck in belief mode and we will never be ready to assume the awesome power of personal responsibility until we surpass belief as a virtue mentality.
              It’s funny. I have more faith now as an atheist than ever as a believer. Real faith, the faith of an atheist, is total trust in letting go. The Christian still clings to his idol and imagery of the monarchial boss. It is crazy.
              On the other hand, I hope everyone has learned a little something about how the rest of the world thinks. Thanks Boss! Always a pleasure.

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            31. And, IMO, your comment should settle it. You are what you are — and have reached the place where you are via your own seeking and examining methods. I personally feel no one should try and “redirect” your thoughts to their POV. This is not to say that input from others is bad because what they say may challenge your thinking and imagination — and that is always a good thing. N’est pas?

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            32. And this ‘challenge your thinking’ aspect is why I so often point out ‘red flags’ in my long-winded comments to show that how one is thinking is suspect (which means what we are thinking is also suspect), not to try to get others to agree with a particular answer or opinion or whatever I favour but to learn how to be more aware of the reasons why certain conclusions have been reached… the red flag being not because they are true but because they follow (which is why methodology is so important here, not as a belief system but as a determinate to independent and honest arbitration of those ideas and opinions). Again, how we think determines what we think. Increase that arsenal, increase our ability to think well…. which is then tested by using reality to arbitrate our results and, hopefully, avoid becoming part of certain problems but become solutions to them.

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            33. But, tildeb, WHO is to say they are a “red flag”?

              You write: Increase that arsenal, increase our ability to think well. While I agree this is good advice, what I often see in your writings is disapproval of the other person’s outlook. Most likely not intended, but it often comes across that way. IMO, each person has to discover their truth on their own. Of course, a LITTLE help from a friend is always good, but it can be overdone. 😕

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            34. “But, tildeb, WHO is to say they are a “red flag”? ”

              That’s not the right question, Nan. Anyone can say it but the important point is to SHOW it, to explain WHY it is a red flag independent of the person pointing this out. It’s not personal: it’s epistemological. Claiming it can be interpreted as personal is a non sequitur even if it’s more polite and social.

              Understanding that epistemology informs ontology – that how we think determines what we think – is not a subjective understanding. There isn’t a ‘your’ truth versus a ‘my’ truth unless one first ASSUMES there is no means to find an objective truth to which both of our so-called ‘truths’ can be examined and tested. That assumption is wrong. It is factually wrong. It is demonstrated wrong every time we produce and use to affect yet another therapy, application, and technology that works for everyone everywhere all the time. There is ONE reality that overrides our hubris to presume our beliefs can, should, and do define what reality is for us. That’s delusional thinking because that doesn’t work – it never has, and probably never shall. Our beliefs do not define reality. But people continue to peddle the possibility that we define reality by imposing our belief on it it as if it makes the peddler seem more tolerant and open minded and kind to paint those who are firm that it isn’t the case, that our beliefs are subject to reality, seem strident and mean and, oh yeah, too fundamentalist. It’s the old ‘butter’ problem to smear another atheist, as in, “Well, I’m an atheist, too, but….”

              There is an objective means to determine if what we think FITS. And that’s why you will ALWAYS hear me use reality as that final arbiter, a methodology that requires this adjudicator. Again, it’s not personal, it’s not subjective. It’s trying to adhere to the best method available to ALL of us to align how we think with what we think based on whether or not it fits reality. That’s why so often it’s the DETAILS that matter and not the over-reaching, good-sounding, metaphysically soothing claims of ‘hidden’ or ‘beyond reality’ bullshit. Combined, all of that equals an unqualified “I don’t know and I have no method available to me to find out. Besides, tl;dr.”

              This is why attacks on reality – as if reality is variable and inconsistent and subjective and untrustworthy – is an attack on the ONLY way to arbitrate claims made about it. When reality is off the table to adjudicate claims made about it, we have nothing BUT variable, inconsistent, subjective, untrustworthy claims and no way to test how to differentiate one batshit crazy claim from its opposite.

              But isn’t this exactly where so many people want to head? Isn’t this the very source, the lifeblood of ignorance and gullibility? Isn’t the way to get around what’s true is to first claim nothing can be true, that ‘science’ is just another religious belief, that woo is fully compatible with whatever beliefs we want to impose on reality? Isn’t this dismissal of any way to know about reality the necessary condition for religious belief and all it claims to take over? Oh.. and all kinds of reality denialism rampant these days like ‘questioning’ mask wearing, ‘questioning’ vaccination efficacy, ‘questioning’ climate change, and so on, and so on, and so on. I mean, come on Nan. It’s a fricken treadmill of exactly the same epistemological error.

              You KNOW this is a problem that lies at the source of faith-based belief and is exactly the recipe used to cover up just how pernicious this method can be in reality, especially when accompanied by assertions about how MORAL this ‘born-again’ approach is to one’s ‘spiritual’ health, when the tactic happens to justify this abdication from reason, responsibility, and reality. That’s how religious indoctrination works. It’s how kids are denied medical care and concentration camps can find a ‘solution’ to some unwanted group. It’s a really bad method of how to think. And it has real world consequences.

              It’s just as indoctrinating a tactic in any other subject, too, where faith-based belief is held to be either equivalent or superior to knowledge. Are you going to pretend you approve of this to avoid the charge of appearing to disapprove of its use? Is it somehow better to self-censor and perhaps say nothing? Or do you understand why I have to accept the charge of disapproval in my commentary when I highlight a red flag tactic, especially one that is so pernicious? I’m commenting because I do NOT approve of it! Obviously. And neither should you or the person doing it if made aware. Poor thinking is highly contagious because it’s so much easier and doesn’t have to confront anything ever. Oh look, denying reality has no costs!

              So I’m no different: if I use a tactic that reveals a warning that how I’m thinking is poorly done, then regardless of my hurt feelings, it is of greater benefit to me to have it pointed out rudely than be accepted out of politeness. That’s why we learn much more from those with whom we disagree than even an exponential number of people with whom we agree. Disagreement is not a bad thing; it’s a vital thing especially when it comes to doing something more than nothing ,when it comes to stemming even if by one person the rising tide of horrendously delusional thinking.

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            35. This is all well and good for the physical world, but there is no truth in psychotherapy. There is no one modality that works for everyone. In fact if I were to classify it I would say certain therapists have a knack for helping people in various situations, but it is rare. It’s more an art than anything.

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            36. “oodles of personal examples”

              lol

              Are they even more voluminous than Mitt Romney’s “binders full of women”? 🙂 /jk

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            37. “It just shows you can get pretty close with reason and philosophies alone.”

              But the examples are plentiful that also shows you can move pretty far away with reason and philosophies alone. Just look at Western thought until 1600.

              The former does not allay the latter but excuses it and permits it to hang around as if a legitimate method long after its usefulness is consumed. That’s what religion requires from its apologists.

              Liked by 2 people

            38. Actually Ark, we do have a pretty good idea. Here is a text I keep ready which details the advancement sin the last 50 years, but especially the last ten, although I haven’t updated it for a year or two (which I should get onto):

              In 1953, Stanley L. Miller and Harold C. Urey set out to test Alexander Oparin’s and J. B. S. Haldane’s hypothesis that conditions on the primitive Earth favoured “chemical reactions that synthesized organic compounds from inorganic precursors,” and through their experiments successfully cooked up the first manmade Amino Acids in the lab. Since then NASA’s Stardust probe returned to earth in 2006 with Amino Acids it’d captured after intercepting the comet 81P/Wild (Wild-2) around Jupiter, proving that these fundamental building blocks of life occur naturally on earth and are found equally naturally in space. This has since been further verified by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft finding amino acids being ejected from Saturn’s moon, Enceladus.

              In 2009, Dr. Gerald Joyce of the Scripps Research Institute and his graduate student, Tracey Lincoln, pretty much nailed primitive ‘life’ – a progenitor of life if you like – when they developed a molecule composed of nothing but RNA enzymes in a test tube that replicated and evolved, swapping genes for just as long as the conditions were right to do so. Doing what molecules do it Xeroxed itself by using its own basic structure as a scaffolding from which to build new copies from pairs of smaller molecules. Incredibly, when incorrect copies were made mutations arose and the molecule quite happily passed on those changes to the proceeding generation, and so it slowly evolved.

              Also in 2009 John Sutherland of the University of Manchester went even further when he successfully cooked up two of the four ribonucleotides found in both RNA and DNA molecules and by doing so created the first stirrings of life on earth. Remarkably, with each passing phase the molecules became more and more complex and when phosphates were added in the very last stage Sutherland found himself staring at two ribonucleotides; half a naturally built RNA molecule.

              In 2010, Dr Craig Venter, actually created synthetic life (a man-made single celled organism) by manufacturing a new chromosome from artificial DNA in a test tube, then transferred it into an empty cell and watched it multiply… the very definition of being alive.

              In 2012, researchers led by Phil Holliger at the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge announced they’d successfully made the first synthetic RNA and DNA molecules which they called, XNA: xeno-nucleic acids. They achieved this mind-jarringly colossal leap in constructing artificial life by building synthetic versions of RNA and DNA’s nucleobase ladder rungs. By synthesizing enzymes (what they’ve called, polymerases) they could then bind the XNA molecules to DNA or reverse the process back to a single RNA strand; passing genetic information between the natural and synthetic molecules at will, leading MRC scientist, Victor Pinheiro, to observe “Thus heredity and evolution, two hallmarks of life, are not limited to DNA and RNA.”

              In 2014, Floyd Romesberg, at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California, also created synthetic life by producing completely new (alien) bases (X and Y) which bonded to DNA and were transferred in mitosis. Over time, though, the X and Y were lost, until in 2017 when the researchers simply created a new bacterium which would always retain the new bases. Alien life created.

              Liked by 2 people

            39. Nobody knows for sure. Nobody will ever know for sure. Science can only work in the realm of science. Life is not a science. Life is. And I can dream…

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            40. Because we cannot go back to the time this all started, whether it is the instant of the Big Bang, or whether it is the instant before that. Whether it is the instant the first living cell on earth managed to reproduce itself, and thus start immortality of life, or whether it started when the first cell found something to fuel it so it could survive longer than an instant, and teach itself to reproduce itself.
              Those times are past, those exact conditions will never exist again. It is said you can never pick up the same handful of sand off a beach twice. They are right. Some things are just impossible. The origin of life will never be fully known. The origin of consciousness will never be fully known. We
              can only work from origin plus one instant, at best. I doubt we will be able to do even that, ever!
              But we can entertain ourselves for eternity trying. I’m sure a few of us are stupid enough to try…

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            41. You are not the person you were yesterday, so therefore we cannot possibly know anything for sure about Rawgod today because we cannot duplicate the exact conditions. Therefore all conjecture is equivalent and we can conclude it’s all very mysterious.

              There’s something amiss in your framing of this issue.

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            42. You may not know rawgod yesterday or today, especially since you insist on calling me Rawgod, who is not me.
              But, it just so happens, I did rawgod yesterday, and I do know rawgod today, and I will go on record as expecting to know rawgod tomorrow, providing I am still alive tomorrow. If not, all bets are off.
              There is nothing amiss with the framing, the missing part is that you cannot see what is clearly right in front of your eyes. But what you see is science. The non-structure is a priori to science, so you cannot perceive it.

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            43. Technically, the person who posts under the avatar “rawgod” is not the same as yesterday, or the day before yesterday, or the day before that, because the cells in your body are constantly being replaced; which means the body you inhabit now is not the same one you had at birth, or even 20 years ago. It’s kind of like replacing every OEM component of your vehicle with an aftermarket one. It might still look and function the same, but it is no longer the one you drove off the showroom floor.

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            44. Ah, b ut, is rawgod the body, or is rawgod the spirit inhabiting the body? I am leaning strongly to the latter, and not giving too much credence to the former. And, since for me, Ron, rawgod is the entity inside the entity, we really should determine whether rawgod is ego, mind, or, once again spirit.
              Ego cares only about itself; everything is me, me, me. Nope, doesn’t sound like me. I care about others as well as myself. So maybe I am mind, the sum total of my thoughts. Definitely closer, but, no, not yet me. This me looks at everything around him, and asks, Is this the best there is, for everyone and everything? Mind might actually be advanced to where it could answer that question, but there is still more. Can mind be empathetic to the other living beings around him? That answer seems to be,”No!” To feel empathy one must be to reach outside oneself, beyond one’s own being. This is the realm of spirit. This is where rawgod dwells. This is where I am at home.
              But yet, I am attached to body, for now. So, yes, since my body changes, my Base changes. And yes, with experience, my mind changes, but does my spirit really change, or is it just my mind’s awareness of my spirit that is changing? Now we are getting so esoteric, so oogity boogity in tildeb’s words, that there is no real basis for discussion. But still rawgod persists. And will continue to persist.
              You tell me, Ron, do you remake yourself every instant, or do you already know who you are, the Ron alive right !Now!? So, there is the dilemma, you are constantly changing, but you are constantly you! You are the same you who existed 50 years ago, though you may define yourself differently today.
              Allow me to change the pronoun for a moment, and use your “I” for a moment. “I, Ron, am Ron.” Is that truth, or lie? Or, would you prefer, we Dan change the label every instant, Son, but Ton, or is it Uon, I bet you’ll stick to Ron, for convenience sake, eh, Eon?

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            45. What led you to conclude that you are comprised of a body and a spirit?

              And in the words of Captain James T, Kirk, “What does a spirit need with a physical body?”

              Can’t it exist on its own?

              In response to your questions: my personal views and perspectives on matters have changed over the years, so it’s fair to same that the adolescent “Ron” has been superseded by the “adult “Ron” and will eventually morph into the senior “Ron”. 🙂

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            46. I guess you just haven’t experienced the mind/body dichotomy yet, let alone the spirit body split. No bad accidents? No adverse prescription drug reactions? If not you are a lucky man in one way, but a very unlucky man in another way. Once you experience that difference, you never forget it.

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            47. You’re right: I haven’t experienced the spirit/body split. But this assertion sounds eerily similar to the charismatic’s proclamation that “you just haven’t experienced the power of the Holy Spirit yet”.

              What makes your claim any more credible than theirs?

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            48. My spirit isn’t holy, it needs no worshipping or adoration. My spirit is not omniscient, it has no understanding of itself, let alone of anything else. My spirit just wants to know why it is alive, same as all if us. My spirit is not purpose, it needs purpose.
              The only thing that makes my claim more credible than anyone else’s it that I ascribe it no superhuman abilities. This may not be enough for you, that is your choice. I am not asking anyone to believe like me, but I am saying this is what I experience every day of my life.
              I see you have asked more questions, or made more comments, so I won’t try to anticipate you. I will leave it with this statement, which I think is pretty much standard for all if us.
              What I want is to be understood, and accepted. Nothing more, but nothing less.

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            49. “The only thing that makes my claim more credible than anyone else’s it that I ascribe it no superhuman abilities.”

              But this amounts to little more than the special pleading employed by every theist: i.e., my beliefs are genuine and sincere whereas theirs are utterly false and completely whack.

              That’s why some of us require a better measuring stick than just personal feelings to evaluate the veracity of the claims being presented.

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            50. And you are limiting yourself to unprovable possibilities. That is your choice, Ron. It seems to me you are looking for something. You want more than you presently know. But you are looking inside a concrete chamber. You want something solid, while you already know what is solid, and it is not enough.

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            51. With each comment, you sound more and more like a religious fundamentalist. This may come as a disappointment to many, but there’s no “god-shaped” void in my life waiting to be filled. About the only thing I’ve ever sought after is a long reprieve from the meddlesome busybodies of the world who can’t see fit to leave others alone. But other than that, I feel “truly blessed” (to borrow a Christian terminology) with the way things have turned out following the path I’ve chosen.

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            52. The reason I asked that question is because you should have given up on this conversation long ago. Yet you keep on asking questions, and questions are usually used to learn. If you aren’t trying to learn, stop asking questions.

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            53. Why should I have given up on the conversation long ago? And not every question asked is meant to elicit a direct response. Some serve to invoke a critical re-examination of the question recipient’s core beliefs and principles.

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            54. I have no need to re-examine my core beliefs and principles. Otherwise they would not be core, would they? You are not asking any questions I have not heard before, though you might be using different words. None of it matters. I know my experiences, and if you do not want to hear them, that is your decision. I happen to like answering question because they often lead me to a deeper understanding of my answers. That is a good thing. But no matter how deep the understanding, if the words do not exist, then we are still at an impasse as long as you demand them in your terms.
              But it was fun to read the list of people you equate me with. Seems I am in some pretty rare company.

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            55. You state as if true, “I know my experiences.”

              But here’s the thing: that you had experiences is fine. I don’t think anyone is doubting that. What is being doubted is how you have interpreted those experiences. This is where belief unrelated to a reality beyond an altered brain state often takes root unrecognized as the interpretation it is but presented as if synonymous with the experiences themselves, that the experience ‘proves’ the interpretation. This is exactly backwards. So unless you can arbitrate your interpretation independently of what you assume and assert is the case, then that opens up the question:

              Is your interpretation true and how might any of us including you know it is correct, that it is likely, that it is insightful and revealing not about your brain state but about a part of reality beyond yourself? Because this IS what you are claiming: your experiences revealed a hidden aspect of reality.

              I don’t think you’ve offered anything to be able to claim to know your interpretation is accurate and reflective of reality beyond your assumption that your interpretation was correct, that your interpretation revealed this hidden aspect of a reality we share; in fact, much of what you’ve offered is actually contrary to the accumulated knowledge we have about how reality operates but fits much better with the kind of experience we get from an altered brain state. In fact, every indication is that you’ve misinterpreted your altered brain state to be reflective of reality beyond yourself. This incongruity lends support to the idea that your interpretation of your very real experiences are more likely not accurate but believed in spite of this. And it’s a perfectly human thing to do.

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            56. All I can say is, I repeated the experience about ten days after the first time, using a different brand of LSD. The experience was virtually the same, but I had more time to look around and absorb the experience, even while it was happening. How I interpreted the experience was beyond my experience at that time of my life. Whereas other people saw Christ waiting for them, welcoming arms outstretched, I saw and heard something far different from anything I could have imagined.
              That is just the way I experienced it. You can call it an interpretation, and while at times I also call it one, at the time it happened it was exciting/scarier than hell/>intimidating yet totally wondrous. Both times. And I never touched LSD or any other psychedelic again. Twice was enough.
              It took years to sift through the bits and pieces, and I’m sure you will love this part, I had no idea if inside my head I was insane or not. But slowly I put together information from all over the world (remember, there was no Internet at the time where I could find information at my fingertips) that made sense of my experiences, the biggest one being the description of reincarnation in Eastern philosophies. While similar, my experience was not the way it was described in translated texts. I would have loved to read it in Sanskrit, which may or may not have been it’s original language, to see what was lost in the translation, but aside from English, languages are not my forte. In fact, they are one of the weakest areas of my intellect.

              So, no matter how you try to force me into your boxes, you cannot. My experiences are my experiences. They are not interpretations. They are not chemical-addled brain farts, they are actual Near Death Experiences. It would have taken but a different response, and this body I still occupy would have had no spirit in it. I’m sure you know about the vegetables, as we called them, the bodies left behind when their spirits moved on without them. That could have been me, but I chose to come back, twice.
              And I really do not care if you cannot even think to believe me, it doesn’t change anything about me. Denial is a two-way street. And my experiences are stronger than anything you have not experienced. There is no incongruity in my mind, only in yours. Take it or leave it, it changes nothing.

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            57. The word “core” only describes the primacy of your beliefs, not their soundness. And if you’re unwilling to revisit/re-examine the soundness of your beliefs and principles from time to time, it reveals more about you than about me, because I’m always open to the possibility I might have missed some key element in formulating my own beliefs and principles.

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            58. Judgment yet again. You are not confidant in your beliefs and principles. I am. Why should I revisit them when they work so well for me? Because you think I should? You aren’t important in my life, other than as a sender of messages that could be attributed to anyone in the world named Ron, if that is even your real name.
              Do you not see how ridiculous this whole conversation/situation is? I had a series of experiences. You did not have the same experiences. I tell (indirectly to you) my experiences, and you respond (directly to me) that my experiences have no value. You do not have the courtesy to say they have no value to you, you arbitrarily tell me they have no value to anyone. Aside from the fact they have value to me, they do have value to the people I actually interact physically with. I am only a part-time asshole, instead of being a full-time asshole, as some people have considered me. I have changed because of my experiences. But that does not matter to you. The only thing that matters to you is evidence, proof. And when you cannot get your way, like a sandbox bully, you take your shovel and go home. “Mommy, that boy won’t play my game with me! I don’t like him.”
              The sandbox is bigger, the toy shovel is now a big machine, but still I refuse to play by your rules. Does that make me bad? I don’t think so. But you seem to.

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            59. Thou dost project too much. methinks. As tildeb pointed out in an earlier comment, no one is questioning the fact you had these experiences. What is being questioned, however, is your interpretation of those experiences. Your reluctance to even entertain the notion that you might be mistaken mimics that of the fundamentalist who refuses to let reason and methodological study intrude upon of his/her solemn held religious beliefs. You may very well have jettisoned the monotheistic baby, but you still cling to the irrational underpinnings that inform unevidenced belief.

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            60. My point is, just because you say it does not give it meaning IF you give no meaning to things that I say. It is a zero sum game.

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            61. I provided an explanation (backed by medical research) that comports with reality. What you choose to do with that information is up to you.

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            62. I just answered your comment about not wearing a mask to fight covid. Why does medical research count here, but not there. Good Christians pick and choose from their Bible. Apparently you do too.

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            63. Oops! Missed the most important part of your remark,
              “What does a spirit need with a physical body?” Can’t it exist on its own?
              Spirit exists on its own on the spiritual level, but that is the problem. Spirit is the spiritual level, as in only one spirit. It exists, but only in relation to itself. All spirit is one spirit.
              But, in order to learn, it needs to be in relationship with others. On the physical/mental level, spirit is allowed to be in relationship with others. I am sure you have heard the phrase, whether you believe it or not, accept it or not, living is all about learning. Here comes the oogity boogity again: spirit needs to learn. By having someone or something to be in relationship to, spirit learns. Except, oogity boogity: it cannot know it is in relationship, like a scientist cannot be the subject of his own experiment, except under very special circumstances. This is a different kind of special circumstance.
              I’ve led you by the nose far enough, Ron. If you can suspend your disbelief for even a few seconds, and think about what I just wrote, you will see it makes sense, even if you do not want to believe it. It is very much internally consistent. All you need is the different point-of-view.

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            64. No, Jim. Spirit needs to learn. Where do you think we get our drive to learn? You think it is a natural thing, but besides eating, screwing, shitting, and sleeping, living beings are pretty damn lazy. The main thing all life has is the drive to survive, which we humans have in abundance.
              And maybe this is where I went wrong in my exploration of cellular life. Maybe I mistook the drive to survive as a drive to improve, to progress–to evolve. While we humans are definitely related to all other lifeforms…
              I don’t want to go here, but maybe I have to. We have a drive to know. But did we always have it? When our forebearers were running around the jungles of Africa, were they busy trying to learn, or just busy looking for more area to survive in? We crafted rudimentary tools, mostly weapons, to help us kill the more dangerous or large species around us, either for safety or food. But were we trying to learn? You probably know better than I on that subject, if you understand exactly what it is I am driving myself at.
              At what point in the history of homo-whatever do we really start to pursue knowledge? Obviously this didn’t happen in just one place, homo-whatevers had spread across the globe before true civilization started to show up. Africa, China, India, Oceania including Australia and New Zealand, the Levant, Europe, the Americas, even the Arctic. Everywhere but poor Antarctica. Civilizations burst forth without necessarily being influenced by other civilizations. Somewhere in there, in the gap between just existing and really living (no offence to anyone or anything that is really alive but not human), something happened?
              No, I am not trying to reinvent the wheel. I realize this has all been covered by historical scientists, but I don’t have enough information in my little brain to be able to say, it happened here. But when was here?
              That is suddenly what I need to know.

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            65. Why would this spirit take such a roundabout way to create humans so it could learn? What possibly could be learned by an infinite spirit when you’ve had enough time to fully explore every grain of sand in the universe? Why is this contrary to most of the population who are end users from a handful of innovators? Endless binge watching Netflix and video games? The expression of this yearn to learn, doesn’t match the complacencies of humanity who are inherently lazy and want to be entertained?

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            66. Think about it Jim. A person in a total sensory deprivation tank. They have no contact with anyone outside the tank. What can they learn?
              Now take that one step further. A just-born baby in that same total sensory deprivation tank. What can it learn?
              We only learn in relation to others, to things. If one spirit is all there is, on the level of spirit, without sand beaches to count the sand grains, how does it learn anything. Can it even know itself? Can it have consciousness of itself?

              I’m sure you and I have been through this before, but I do not remember coming into any agreement on what such life could do or not do.
              And no, I do not know how spirit came to use life, or to be life, but it seems to me to be the way life is, the way spirit is.
              This has nothing to do with life on earth, where we are surrounded by life in all its forms and varieties. But I dream, and I use my imagination. And I use my experience, that I gained during my NDEs. All I can do is report what I found there. But I do not agree with anyone telling me I can not be who I am. That is unacceptable.

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            67. More claims unbacked by evidence. The challenge is not for me to suspend my disbelief, but for you — the spiritualist — to put some flesh on the bones of those claims.

              “That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence.” ― Christopher Hitchens

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            68. Hitchens is only right for Hitchens, and if you accept him at his word, you are being Hitchens, not Ron.
              You are putting me in the same category as all “believers,” and I get that. I know it is not possible to prove or disprove that which is not there. I went through all that years ago when I threw religion out with the bathwater. But after a while, even that did not satisfy me.
              How much you know about me, Ron, I have no idea. Probably as much as I know about you. Next to nothing.
              My experience includes some very uncommon things, which Jim will gladly tell you don’t count because they happened under the influence of psychedelics. Again, I don’t blame him for thinking that way, he does not have the experience of psychedelics to be able to understand they can be more real than reality. It does not sound as if you have any experience with them either. If I am wrong, my bad.
              The thing is, I know my experiences. I cannot reject my experiences. They are as much a part of me as your experiences are of you.
              And I know, if what I experienced was somehow false, it will not matter. If death is death then I will never know it, big deal. But, if my experience was real, and I know it was real–for me–then I have an inkling of what will happen to me when I die, and likely, but not assuredly, likely it might happen to you too, no matter what you do or do not believe. Whatever is going to happen to us, if anything, is going to happen to us whether we belueve or not! I hope we can agree on that much.
              It makes no sense, but if there is a possibility that what happens to us at death depends on what we believe here on earth, then I am going to be reincarnated. You will just cease to exist. And Mel will end up in Heaven, if he has passed muster, which I doubt. I personally see Hell in his future, but that us of no consequence. No matter what, if what we believe is what we get, so be it. If we all get the same thing, so be it! And if I did glimpse reality beyond the grave, so be that too.
              But proof, no, I cannot give you that, nor do I have any requirement to do so. What proof do you have life stops at death? None, but yet you believe it. Without proof!

              On to your next comment.

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            69. I know my experiences. I cannot reject my experiences And therein lies the dividing line.

              rawgod, you will never be able to convince anyone (and yes, that’s what you’re trying to do) that your perspective has merit for this one main reason … it was your experience. It changed how you see life –and “afterlife.” But experience is a PERSONAL thing. If/when/until others have the same experience, I’m afraid you are shouting to the wind.

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            70. Others have had similar experiences. But they don’t talk about it like I do. Most did not even look into their experiences the way I did, and still do. Their friends told them they were crazy. Others just want to live without causing waves. I like to cause waves. I like to ask people to think beyond what they feel are their limits.
              As I said to Ron, nothing any of us says is going to change a damn thing in what happens when we die, unless our beliefs can influence how things happen. Nothing we can theorize will have any affect on anything. But some humans like to stretch their minds. Whether it means anything or not.
              Yes, I believe what I say. But big deal. A lot of other people believe what they say. But nobody, theist, atheist, scientist, or flat-earther, or me can know. But that stops no one from speculating.
              Because I correspond with you does not mean you have to correspond with me. That us your choice, Jim’s choice, Ron’s choice, Ark’s choice, tildeb’s choice, anyone’s choice. Most reactions to what I say are negative. I expect that. But many of these people believe they are open-minded–freethinkers. I am showing them they are not. They only believe they are.

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            71. Won’t be long now before “cancel culture” deems Monty Python highly “problematic” and has it sent down the memory hole.

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            72. Not sure who you are referring to, Jim, but it can go many ways about many people. I like your blog because ofp its atheist content, and I like to comment on atheist themes.
              But I am a sucker for themes such as science, because I do not accept science as the be-all and all-end of knowledge. Like religion is filled with holes, science is filled with holes. I believe there are other choices, but not everyone sees them.
              I may have this wrong, but I think someone accused you lately of treating science like a religion–but I cannot remember whom. But I do remember thinking that the way they were talking about science was exactly like a theist talking about religion.
              But who am I?

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            73. Like religion is filled with holes, science is filled with holes. I believe there are other choices, …

              Fascinating. Please list a few of these other choices?

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            74. Sri Ramana Maharishi said self inquiry is where it’s at. After that, all practice is erroneous methods.

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            75. Lots of people say lots of things. It is your choice to believe them or not.
              When I was a practising Tibetan Buddhist, I did not read any of the masters, it was not a requirement. In fact, the only requirement was daily chanting. It was a form of directed meditation, but since the chants were in Sanskrit, we westerners had no idea what we were really saying. It could have been… No, I won’t go there. The words were not important, the sounds were. And after a few years, I could actually feel changes in my level of consciousness. I could think on different levels than previously possible. But the ceremony was too much like religious ceremony, to the point I began to think the Catholic clergy had taken lessons from the Tibetan Buddhists. I could not and cannot speak to any other form of Buddhism, Hinduism, Jainism, etc. I left the 8nfluence of the rinpoche, and struck back out on my own. The time spent with him was not a waste, but in the end it felt like a dead end. I do not suffer dead ends well. Meanwhile, I have a helluva lot more respect for the Dalai Lama than I do for the Pope.
              But the other masters, I have no experience with them. But anyone who speaks in absolutes, such as Sri Ramana Maharishi, Jesus Christ, or Immanuel Kant, I have no use for them. There are no absolutes in my world, beyond life. Absolutely all else is chaos.

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            76. You are a contradiction. You say what is important is “ But who am I?” But think self inquiry is stupid. They are the same thing.

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            77. Just using words, Jim. I pretty much know who I am, within the limits of being an embodied spirit having to deal with a physical world. There are limits to that me, such as being tied to the world around me. Until I leave this world I cannot go beyond these limits without endangering myself in the here and now. This world is my learning ground. It seems wrong to leave my school without the equivalent of graduating, a natural death–though I might never get there.
              But, probably I am a contradiction. I am not who you want me to be.

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            78. When I was a practising Tibetan Buddhist,…

              Did you have to practice a lot, and were you eventually any good at it?

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            79. If seeking a personal Nirvana is your thing or building a metaphorical stairway to heaven then rather than a balloon, perhaps a Led Zeppelin would be more appropriate?

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            80. Yes indeed! And a perfect specimen of this hivemind mentality is on full display at a website named “freethoughtblogs” (.com). 🙂

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            81. Be forewarned that you engage them at your own risk. Any opinion that hints of expressing even the slightest bit of dissent will be pounced upon like a pack of ravenous wolves. It really is a sight to behold. Many former contributors have received the banhammer for daring to disagree with the orthodoxy.

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            82. It would be a good exercise just to document the chains of freethinking in a group. Is it like the woke crowd, if you think you are, you’re actually not?

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            83. I only quoted Mr. Hitchens because his words more eloquently express sentiments similar to my own. And the underlying sentiment here is that the burden of proof remains with the person making the positive claim — not with the one who questions it. Otherwise, we’d be obligated to accept all claims made as valid until they were proven false.

              As for my drug experiences, I’ve tried many substances — including psychedelics and hallucinogens — but cannot report ever having had any “out of body” experiences while under the influence of any of them; which is why I’m skeptical of the claims of those reporting to have had such experiences. Moreover, if such experiences only occur while under the influence of mind-altering substances, shouldn’t that tell you something? (Hint: that messing with your brain chemistry alters your perception of reality to the point that you can no longer distinguish between reality and fantasy with reality.)

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            84. To the best of my knowledge, I have never had trouble distinguishing between reality and non-reality. Fantasy is something altogether different.
              “the claims of those reporting to have had such experiences.”
              That statement of yours should give you a hint of something to be investigated. I am not the only one making such claims. There are lots of us. To me that says, “Look!”
              As for being under the influence of these chemicals when these things happen, there are many chemicals, natural and man-made, that can achieve such experiences. Tell me, why do you only feel fight or fl8ght responses when you have adrenaline coursing through your veins, and calmness when the adrenaline runs its course. Same difference. If it applies for one chemical, it applies for most chemicals, depending on the proper conditions being present.. BTW, it does not surprise me you had no such experiences. It speaks to the control you keep your mind under.

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            85. People make all kinds of claims.

              A few years ago, a Florida woman claimed that demons told her to steal a rental car. A decade earlier, a Texas woman claimed that God ordered her to bash her three sons heads in with a rock. Around the same time, G. W. Bush claimed God told him to invade Iraq.

              Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard wrote a book claiming that an extra-terrestrial dictator named Xenu brought billions of his people to Earth in a DC-8-like spacecraft, stacked them on volcanoes and killed them off with hydrogen bombs. He went on to claim that the immortal spirits of these deceased aliens now attach themselves to human beings causing them great spiritual harm, and must be removed via his secret “Advanced Technology”, which commits believers to undergoing many hours of “auditing” whilst purchasing progressively more expensive courses.

              Adolf Hitler claimed his conduct was in accordance to the will of the Almighty and that he was fulfilling God’s mission. Nineteenth century American settlers claimed conquering the west was according to Manifest Destiny. Joseph Smith claimed the angel Moroni led him to a set of golden plates buried on a hill near where he lived.

              Monarchs throughout the ages have claimed they possessed the divine right of kings. The Muslims claim there is no god but Allah and that Muhammed was his messenger. Christians claim Jesus died and returned to life three days later.

              I could go on, but I think the underlying message should be clear by now: just because someone says it’s so, doesn’t necessarily make it so.

              Hence the reason I request more “concrete” evidence than the mere say-so of others.

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            86. I’m not sure how a simple request for empirical evidence constitutes a dictatorial position, but it seems a strange accusation to level in light of your unwillingness to consider the possibility that more practical explanations for your experiences may be a better fit than the ones you currently propose.

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            87. Who decides the better fit, Ron? What works for you obviously does not work for me. What works for me obviously does not work for you. Apparently there can be no compromise.
              You really think a request for empirical evidence is simple? When one is talking about unempirical matters it is not. Your shoe doesn’t fit, so please stop trying to force my foot into it. I prefer not to wear shoes anyway, though at times the climate I live in (Northern Canada) requires I wear them. I know not where you live, so I know not what your climate requires of you.

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            88. Who decides? Ultimately the choice remains with the individual. But if you decide to bring your beliefs into the public forum, expect them to be measured against the cold steel of fact and reason.

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            89. Measure how you will. Do not tell me to measure them by your standards. This is what I am trying to get across to you, but you are as blind as you say I am, but because you call it science tou deem it better than whatever fundamental fallacy you tell me I have. We are all equal. It is time you accepted that, not just worded it

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            90. Sorry, didn’t know whether to take your comment seriously, or as humour, so I decided in favour of the ridiculous. I hope you don’t mind?

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            91. So how do you think we know dinosaurs existed? When, where and under what conditions? Ken Ham?

              I’m sure a few of us are stupid enough to try …

              While others are simply too ignorant to even wonder.

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            92. We have fossil records of dinosaurs, Ark. I live in Alberta, where more and more actual dinosaur bones are being discovered all the time. They probably died here because they could not get over the Rocky Mountains, and their bones were preserved when the soil turned into desert.
              Show me a fossil of life, Ark. Better yet, show me a fossil of consciousness. You cannot.
              For all we know, consciousness is just a figment of our minds, and our minds are figments of our brains. Maybe we don’t even exist. Maybe you don’t even exist. But I damn well know for sure I exist, and I damn well know I am conscious that I am alive. You, I’m just seeing words on a screen. You might be a robot, for all I know. LMAO.

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            93. Show me a fossil of life,

              Well, first of, please explain what you mean by a fossil of life?

              Better yet, show me a fossil of consciousness.

              I was wondering how long it would take before you brought out ”The Stupid.”

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            94. Just a thought, Ark. Can you see love? If you have ever been in love, you know what love is. If you haven’t take it from everyone around you–you know when you are in love!
              But science cannot define love. There is no distinct love chemical, or even a discoverable chemical reaction. Yet, there is love.
              You want to call me Stupid, go ahead. All you are doing is showing your own prejudices.

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            95. So we go from -‘The Stupid’ to Wilfully Ignorant.
              You know about evolution, yes?
              Still waiting for answers to the questions I asked on your last comment.
              I didn’t call you stupid, ‘The Stupid’ is in reference to some of your comments. Read my response again.

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            96. We are all prone to say/write/do daft things from time to time. It’s all part of being human. But you seem to be insisting that wilful ignorance is something to be celebrated?

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            97. Oh, I know what it means, but I want to know that you do, because what you are accusing me of is an excellent example of how I see you. You are willfully ignorant of that which you cannot measure.

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            98. Based on this reply you obviously do not know what the term means.
              I suggest you use a thesaurus, It will explain and give you plenty of examples .
              If you don’t know what a thesaurus is, use a dictionary, Start from A and work forward.

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            99. Based on this reply, you don’t understand tools that do not belong to you, that you are only borrowing from others.
              Your suggestion I use a Thesaurus is contumelious.

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            100. Back it up a little.
              I’m still waiting for you to explain what is a fossil of life and a fossil of consciousness.

              At least have a go at an explanation.

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            101. A fossil of .use cannot exist, because while life is real, in that we are all alive, fossils can only be of physical bodies. Same with a fossil of consciousness.
              I do hope you will deny neither life or consciousness.
              They are words that are symbols of reality, but not physical reality, and that is what you seem to demand. I thought that was obvious, but now it is spelled out for you.

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            102. I continue to be amazed that you don’t seem able to grasp that words that describe processes are never physical objects. You keep using this ‘absence of objects that have discrete physical properties as if it’s insightful that these labelled processes are not things. Well, duh.

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            103. Then why do you ask for proof, or evidence, when those only describe the physical? While the word process exists in our language, they only talk about the idea of the process. They do not define the why of the process. What causes it to happen? What causes the result? All you are doing is describing the surface. You are not filling it with dimension.

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            104. The only time I ask for evidence is when people make claims about reality. Any claim about reality requires evidence from reality to substantiate it. Otherwise, it’s a Just So story being misrepresented.

              That’s what you’ve done throughout this thread. And it deserves criticism when presented as if true because respecting what’s true actually matters.

              Your description is fully subjective and so I have suggested that the fact your experiences have been interpreted by you means you have good reasons to NOT present them as claims about reality. You would hear nothing from me is you had presented them for what they: your subjective interpretation of reality when you’ve intentionally altered your ability to perceive reality with psychedelic drugs well known to skew perceptions about reality. There’s an actual and honest connection here. But it’s your steadfastness to refuse to allow any wiggle room from anyone questioning what you think is true about reality that I find very similar to the kind of religious belief presented as if true that stands incompatible with reality but still maintained in spite of all evidence from reality to the contrary. And that speaks to the faith-based method being employed – in your case belief that the interpretation you have imposed on all of reality is objective. Well, it’s not. Your conclusion is predetermined and has absolutely no connection whatsoever to being insightful about reality… other than your belief it must be so, a belief you are fully entitled to hold for whatever reasons you may have but not misrepresented as if independently true.

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            105. So, in essence, you are simply making shit up.
              To paraphrase the late Sir Alec Guiness: Perhaps this isn’t the reality you are, looking for? Please take care not to get your lightsaber stuck in your trouser belt.

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            106. Dream on, Ark. Have a nice life. Oh, I forgot, life doesn’t exist. You don’t exist. You cannot even dream…

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            107. Even your insults don’t reflect reality or make sense. Perhaps you suffer from the effects of residual LSD tripping?

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            108. You can observe the mannerisms of those expressing the emotion of love. And the neurologist can map the chemicals released inside the brains of those who claim to be experiencing feelings of love. In fact, people often take drugs (like Ecstasy) for the express purpose of triggering those feelings of love.

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            109. Ah … this sounds like a Bonus Question. Or have you perhaps jumped on board with Mr Rawgod and opted for ”The Stupid”?

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            110. You certainly have a way with misinterpretation of comments. Not sure how you believe this supports his position in any way.

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            111. As it was relevant to his claim, I offered hormones as an alternative. Perhaps the comment thread is a little out of sorts. In the past I have offered him a plethora of other explanations for his lsd experience. He activated all his neurons and receptors and I believe his experience was induced by brain overload. Just to be clear

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            112. Fair enough …
              Yeah, comments do tend to meander after a while especially when dealing with such a topic.
              Maybe be better to start a new post and narrow down the post to what you were really asking – The Origin of Life , yes?

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            113. My next post will be awkward. But it is just the common thread of all religious ontology. Nothing I personally believe, but maybe you’ll have some of your own special insight that has been revealed to you. The point is to show they are not unique or special, yet every one of them thinks they have some special information. It has a little to do with the Chladni plates and cymatics, which is Very interesting all by itself. .

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            114. I had to Google those two terms., never having come across them before.
              I think I will need to swot a little before your next post.
              Is this going to lead into anthroposophy?

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            115. Ah, feelings of love, but not lasting love itself, I expect. Far be it for me to doubt what X does to people, I already know what psychedelics did for me. Yet even my first reaction was, Ecstacy doesn’t give a person true love, even as other people tell me LSD did not show me true life. Maybe X can provide a feeling that can last beyond the exit of the drug from your body, if you meet the right person under the influence.
              But that was not part of my question, you changed it to make it your question. Good for you. So, have you experienced love under the influence of Ecstacy? Is it any different from love under natural conditions. Who cares?
              I asked my question in a definite set of parameters, though I think it was not you I asked it of. I asked, maybe not in these exact words, How do you prove you are in love, if you are capable of being in love. Love cannot be experienced using the 5 usual senses. You can think you see love in someone else, you can think you hear love in their voices, you can feel the excitement of touching their skin, kissing their lips, etc., ad infinitum. But you can create all those things just by wanting them to happen. Is the object if your love feeling the same thing for you? Maybe yes, likely no.
              Still, not important. Someone can ask you what is love, and you can pontificate about it until you die, but you cannot make anyone else feel like you are feeling. You can ask a religious person about God, and they cannot answer you except with words. And you can ask me about spirit, and all I can do is ask you to look inside yourself. If you can find it there, you will know it. If not, then you won’t.
              I am not telling you to find spirit, I am asking you to look, if you want to. I cannot make you look, I don’t want you to look if you don’t want to. But you asked, so I told you where you might find it. I am not saying, I believe so you should too, I am not forcing anything down your throat.
              I am saying this is my experience. This is me!
              Who are you?

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            116. Lasting love is also attributable to hormonal influences, because the neurologist has also mapped out the brain areas that light up whenever someone thinks affectionate thoughts about another a person. I realize this removes some of the “awe and mystery” of being “in love” with another, but the truth of the matter is that the truth doesn’t care about our feelings on these matters.

              I changed your question because it made no sense in its original form. Love describes an emotional state of mind, not a distinct physical entity.

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            117. Love is not a physical entity, that is what I was alluding to. But that does not make it any less real. Ergo, reality does not need a physical base.
              Meanwhile, the mapping of the love spot only tells you what part of the brain is affected. It does not describe or define the processes involved, nor does it tell you why the heart beats faster in the presence of one you love. 5he best you can say is look here, you but see nothing there when you look. In particular, you do not see love. As you say, love has no physical presence.

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            118. But you can think of your love out of their presence and still have those feelings. The flood of hormones triggered by thoughts. From your brain. This is a big part of what is manipulated from the pulpits. Heartfelt stories to boost your love, even through lies. The same result; The flood of hormones triggered by thoughts. From your brain. No brain, no hormones, no feelings.

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            119. Survival and… survival. There is no less joy or happiness in life than you have now by realizing you are o product of genetics and environment. It is this reality that brings closure to a futile search, and closure where there is none.
              When you die it will be like a good night sleep where you never wake up. How would you know it? No time passes and voilet! You’ll wake up and never know you went to sleep! Maybe… I know nothing.

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            120. For you. And I am happy you have closure before the experience. For me, it is different. My eggs are not all in one basket, but yet, we are not so different, you and I, Jim. We are living. We will die. And whatever happens, it will happen despite us.

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            121. There are many ways to skin a cat. All of them perfectly natural. I appreciate all of your sincerity and openness. Maybe you’re right about everything, maybe not. In the end it would be important to be all that you are without pretense and live life as fully as we know how.

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            122. I would prefer you skin no cats. They don’t do well in life without them. Neither do we.
              Being yourself, that is what life is about, and though you may not believe it of me, a main goal in my life is getting people to stop telling other people how to live their lives. Of course, that involves me telling others how to live, but I like to think there is no authoritarianism in what I would like to see result. No one of us knows what is in another’s brain, mind, or spirit. We can never know. We are each the experts at living our own lives, and as long as that does not involve harming oneself or others, it is best in my opinion if we just worry about our own lives, or the lives of those we care about, without pressure or force.
              Is it really too much to ask? It certainly seen to be.

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            123. By the way, Jim, is there any way to unconvulute all the convulutions of what comments go with what other comments. I mean, I know there isn’t, on Word Press, but this is one time those thread things could have made the mud a bit less murky. You almost have enough content here for a book, though I would hate to be the one to try to make it readable, and comprehensible, lol.

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            124. Of course it can. We can observe the increasing range of behavioural mobility as a direct correlation to an increase brain. It emerges. Same thing with the complexity of cells. It’s actually so obvious I’ve always been a little baffled why people have trouble seeing it.

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            125. I see it too. What I can’t see is how striking two stones together can make a conscious thought, as tildeb suggests. Rocks can make fire and fire can make rock, but thought? Help me out here.

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  3. Jim, you say, “Indian thought is the same (only older) that all these things are interconnected and arise mutually. They take it beyond our current level of comfort though, and say not only without these “things” you won’t have consciousness, but without consciousness we can’t have things either.”

    It’s this last part that is simply incorrect: “without consciousness we can’t have things either.”

    That is the mistake in thinking. Using my previous rocks to make fire (the emergent property) analogy, plug the terms back in and see if it’s still the case. You are saying, repeatedly and with a level of confidence that is NOT supported by reality, that without fire we can’t have rocks. It’s factually wrong.

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    1. Fire is not an emergent property—It is an analogy of equivocation, or is it, false equivalence, I can’t be certain. Can there be fire without matter to burn? True, rocks don’t require fire to exist, but without the geology there is no fire. That is one process.

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      1. The analogy holds because emergent properties are common but they are not reversible. Life is an emergent property of chemistry, which is an emergent property of physics. Processes on processes on processes. And then we slap a term (usually a noun) on this, that, or the other bit. What is conveniently forgotten by those who want to pretend everything emergent is synonymous with the constituent parts is the necessary interaction that yields the emergence.

        So emergent properties are not interdependent of their constituent parts (nouns) but are products of interactions (verbs) by their constituent parts. There is a world of difference between these two understandings because you’re missing the interaction part entirely with the former!

        What you are attempting to do is a ‘Bush-ism’, using language to try to make a noun out of a verb (“I’m the decider!”). Emergent properties are formed by interactions, by verbs, and so the product produced (say, consciousness) is not reversible to its constituent nouns without the complete reversal of the verb, the process, the interaction, that produced it! Exactly the same constituent elements undergoing different interactions over time can and do produce entirely different emergent properties (tardigrades to armadillos to goblin sharks to elephants) so these products are not synonymous with, not ‘interdependent’ only from their constituent elements. It’s the process of interactions that’s the main driver of what emerges and that is not reversible.

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        1. I must be crazy. Except for the assumed statement that “Life is an emergent property of chemistry” which can never be known (see my discussion of an experiment to reproduce life through recreating a bowl of primordial soup)–I am in conditional agreement with a lot of your reasoning. I did not think that possible, but I guess atheistic miracles might exist. But I doubt it will ever happen again…

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          1. Miracles?

            *sigh*

            This gets frustrating.

            In the mathematical model, the probability of life arising from the ‘primordial soup’ – as you term all the constituent parts of the universe – is P=1. It doesn’t get any better than that. Regardless…

            The chain of evidence for what we now know is an emergent property of chemistry and physics called ‘life’ leads backwards. Obviously. We can and do investigate this. Obviously. Does the historical evidence comport with this model? It doesn’t have to. But it does… in EVERY SINGLE AVENUE OF SCIENTIFIC INQUIRY, meaning it comports with the interaction between chemistry and physics, which THEN produces biology. You can’t have biology without this fundamental interaction. They are REQUIRED elements. The evidence comports in ALL the ways these avenues intersect and overlap. And it comports consistently and reliably with each new inquiry across time, scaffolds perfectly as our knowledge deepens and what is built today comports with what we knew yesterday. And each new breakthrough produces new knowledge that comports, not least of which is relevant today with the targeted RNA vaccine (mRNA) – a direct byproduct and application of this understanding. The evidence constantly collected continues to fit (remember, when it doesn’t have to be this way), which is why it’s a better explanation and a constantly testable one with EACH new inquiry about HOW the probability makes sense versus, say, Oogity Boogity! or some POOF! creation event, neither of which comports to the evidence that is available.

            So here’s the central point:

            It’s not an opinion or belief that life arises as an emergent property of chemical interactions affected by forces and fields; it is the ONLY explanation that fits ALL the evidence. And there is a HUGE amount of evidence to support this scientific explanation, which is WHY it has achieved that rare condition known as scientific consensus. All the evidence – so far – comports. So the explanation is OWED a great deal of confidence based on the very high level of likelihood it is the case. Evidence that comports is the driver here and not some personal opinion.

            If someone wants to disagree, it’s not reasonable to do so unless and until one can offer a BETTER explanation, meaning it falls to the person disagreeing to come up with a model that not just matches the current explanatory model and addresses ALL the evidence that supports it but offers ANOTHER explanation that is superior, that does a better job comporting all the evidence to it. It’s a tall order. It can happen but it’s rare for very good reasons. To disagree with a scientific consensus on the basis of – what? opinion/belief alone, cherry-picked info that only seems to fit another model, disinformation, outright falsehoods? – is not a sign of critical thinking or ‘another way of knowing’ but a sign of purely motivated reasoning. Motivated reasoning is a byproduct of some other agenda, a kind of indoctrination, and using motivated reasoning means the person doing so is serving some master OTHER than seeking or respecting what’s probably true.

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            1. Dang tildeb! You always take all the fun out of things! Where/when did you lose the ability to simply “imagine” things — whether “scientifically” proper or not?

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            2. The real world is FULL of stuff to stimulate wonder and awe. The deeper the understanding, the greater the reward. Or, as my art teacher used to say, you only get out of a subject what you are willing to put into it. We don’t need make-believe to stimulate fun and interest and grandeur and wonder.

              When I don’t take issue with something that refers back to something not true, then we get the kind of statement Jim makes that because rocks make fire, fire makes rocks. I mean, seriously. I don’t challenge it because it’s so obviously wrong. And the result? He continues to run with this false equivalency as if it were true, as if it bolstered his position that everything is synonymous with its constituent parts, and then uses it over and over again as if it were accepted because it’s not directly challenged. Yet we know it’s wrong; start a fire and see what rocks emerge. I mean, seriously, Nan, this is the kind of thinking that empowers woo, a twisting of words to make something not real seem real and rational when it isn’t. And if it’s not challenged, it grows or becomes ‘established’ as if true and then these kinds of claims when incorporated into larger and larger pools of influence end up causing real harm to real people in real life. Poor thinking is almost always the root cause of these unnecessary and factually wrong framing that creates room, provides oxygen and light for an ‘anti-scientific Confederacy’ to thrive.

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            3. No. Fire did not make rocks. There are 3 kinds. The two kinds you’re talking about are metamorphic and igneous. What is required are many process working together over time. Some of these processes are heat, pressure, magma, and time. If rock is ‘formed’ out of anything, it’s cooling where different kinds of crystals at different temperatures can form. Fire will not produce what we call rocks. Ever. Remember, verbs are what we’re looking for when it comes to emergent properties, processes, interactions, and not nouns, not things, not ever.

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            4. Hmmmm. But isn’t there some connection between rocks and fire since using two of them together can create fire? 😏

              (I’m just adding fuel to the discussion fire … so don’t take me to task, tildeb!)

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            5. Sure, Nan, poke away. I deserve it. But I’ll answer it all the same (See? I have no free will.)!

              There is always going to be a connection between emergent properties and where they come from. And we know this because when we remove one source from part of a process, we either alter the process or stop it from occurring, both of which stops the emergent property from forming. Emergent properties come from a process, an interaction. (That’s how we know consciousness comes from neurons; no neurons, no consciousness… damage the neurons, damage the consciousness, drug the neurons, drug the consciousness, and so on. The emergent property we call mind or consciousness comes from neurons interacting.)

              As for fire from rocks, note it takes a particular kind of rock that has iron and must be struck by a kind of rock with a hardness greater than 7 (It’s a scale to 10 so 7 is actually much rarer than less hard rock). So, out of all the rocks banging about, only a few are the right kind. They cause sparks, and only some kind of sparks are hot enough to cause an ember. Capturing that ember with material that can easily burn is another rare step. In spite of the rarity of this occurring naturally, it occurred often enough. Some of our ancestors – long before reading and writing – were able to figure out which two kinds of rocks produced the biggest ember AND pass that information along to the next generation. Archeologists have found lots of examples of shaped flint and shaped pyrite near burn pits and on skeletal remains – some sites tens of thousands of years old. The shaping teells us it was formed by humans and their placement together tells us they were connected. Even though the emergent property of creating an ember hot enough to burn was rare to find (because it only comes about from from a very specific kind of interaction), it was found and kept. Any other two rocks – in other words, almost ALL of them – will not produce fire and so we know fire is in no way related to the typical properties of rocks. It’s connected to TWO specific kinds when used together in a particular way. Then and only then is when this property emerges.

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            6. I knew there was no way I could be in agreement with you, td. The only miracle I mentioned might have been us on the same side for even a brief moment of time.
              I don’t have to prove anything. Life is what it is! Because all you can see is the best that is visible only means you don’t have eyes to see the invisible. You don’t have the mind to search beyond what you think is the limit of possibility. You are stuck in the mud of science! I hope you enjoy it.

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            7. Mud of science… says the guy pushing buttons and having the same symbolic representation appear on the monitors around the globe.

              yeah, mired in mud of science….

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        2. Thank you for the well reasoned reply.
          The analogy of emergence still holds because it is a mythology that cannot be proven or disproven. Layers on layers, processes on processes on processes. Unfalsifiable assertions of perfectly worded explanations of possibilities. Maybe that is why it has lasted in eastern thought thousands of years?
          emergent properties are common but they are not reversible”. This is a gem of a comment. I’ll concur on this point if emergence proves to be a verifiable process, I would think this is true. It seems on the macro level though that demergence appears pretty quickly, as evidenced in feral children and domesticated animals. What in life is reversible when you open a closed system? Everything.
          If you want to separate the stone from the fire, go back to when the fire made the stone, then we have a comparable discussion.
          But like I said in the piece, this is a sound principle that I like and I think emergence will be defined on some simpler level using frequency, vibrations, in layers and layers. Like cymatics on a Chladne plate, creating predictable images and form even at a very basic level. This is actually a principle at the heart of every known religious ontology, although most of them don’t even know it. I would explain it but I’d probably get beat up on it. Maybe a future post.

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  4. Emergentism, at least in its strong form, is an attractive and therefore persistent error. It demands a sort of “downwards causation” which is at odds with the scientific project as well as a reasonable concept of consciousness.
    I think that emergence remains so attractive because it allows us to retain the claim to a particular kind of realism, to which we are not entitled. The idea that, for instance, an electron is an electron simpliciter, and not a representation.

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    1. It may be less an error than other avenues. It can be reached by philosophy and by observation. It’s re emergence in the 20th century is telling there may be something to it.

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      1. Well, I think the popularity of emergentism has more to do with our bias towards agency (which agrees with the kind of realism that emergence entails). And to be charitable, emergence is not an uncontroversial position in philosophy.

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  5. A comedic break: Further, please tell me, what is shameless about throwing the baby out with the the bathwater? How is that a shameless waste of water? The water was well-used to bathe the baby, and is now dirty and must be thrown out, unless you have other small children to bathe in the same water. (As a child, our family did not have a plumbed bathtub in our house. We had a metal tub that was placed in the middle of the kitchen floor, and baths always involved at least 3 children at a time, if not more. I, being second youngest of ten in the family, except for my baby brother who was bathed in the kitchen sink, was always the last in the tub, meaning I never really got clean. I think that affected my libido, if nothing else!)

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  6. You connect emergent properties to being equivalent to a myth in the sense that both are stories. From this you claim both are faith-based in the sense they are believed. From this you claim ‘science’ is becoming a faith-based belief after reasoning. Something has gone off the rails here when what you’ve accomplished is to reverse meaning of the same terminology, that up means down and white means black, that science is faith-based. This word game is the very essence of producing misinformation and distortion. And it is dependent on going along with a founding premise that is a category mistake.

    The form of this kind of thinking uses a tactic that should raise a red flag every time we encounter it: the premise is that this is equivalent to that, and so (here’s the reversal) that is the same as this. Any reversed ‘conclusion’ – but we used reason to get there! – is really a conclusion disguised as a premise and it is as old as the hills (or should I argue that therefore it must be religious in origin?).

    You fall into the same trap. You claim:

    “If we can use this to explain that, we can just as easily describe that with this.”

    No, you can’t. That is a category mistake.

    An emergent property does not describe what it emerges from. It is a ‘property’ that comes about by interaction. The usual phrase to recognize an emergent property is something along the lines of ‘the sum in greater than the parts’.

    For example, fire is not a property of rocks and rock is not a property of fire. But bang quartz and pyrite together, you can cause sparks. Capture the spark in something like chaga (in my part of the world this fungus grows on birch trees) and, presto!, you can produce fire. To then claim that this (rocks) explains that (fire), we can just as easily describe that (fire) with this (rock) doesn’t work. You can’t describe the properties of fire by explaining the properties of rock.

    Another way to think of emergent properties are not the connections between the nouns from which they arise but the verbs of the interactions. Religious vocabulary does not help us to better understand emergent properties, and using poor reasoning to justify the religious vocabulary in order to game some appearance of origin of scientific ideas only adds layers of confusion, misinformation, and distortion.

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    1. It’s not a word game at all. That is not my intent. The fact that we are teaching a hypothesis now with story telling (Lucy, for instance) this imagery is becoming the current mythology. It is the new common sense when anthropology presents a “story” that is retold as completely plausible. But it has its purpose. To expand its influence and hopefully inspire greater insight.
      As to your fire analogy, that is one process. You don’t get fire without the other elements.
      property is something along the lines of ‘the sum in greater than the parts’.. Are there any parts that equal to nothing? You can pretend to have separate elements emerging to a greater whole, but neither can be one without the other. It’s one process, yet we try to explain it as several, separate events.

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  7. consciousness (synonymous with being ) is that which supports and allows all visible, experienceable universe. consciousness depends on, and arises out of NOTHING. consciousness is not a thing, it is the ground PRINCIPLE- without being, nothing is.

    pure consciousness is that state when you are aware of things, but have not yet formulated a thought/label//concept about them. do you need a concept just to be?? indeed NOT.

    what is there when there is not thought? no “I”. look at that. don’t confuse the body with the being. disappear and you’ll see, hehe

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    1. be aware, what in Hinduism is referred to as ‘consciousness’, buddhists call ‘mind’. there is a slight divergence of terminology here, but essentially they refer to same thing. the ground of all experience

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  8. Oh, Jim,
    Being non-scientific I can barely make sense of your words. What is geologic? I could go look it up, but I want to know what you mean by it? Others might send me in different directions.
    Next, how can consciousness be connected in any way to geology? If I understand you correctly, you are saying consciousness arose from the primordial soup, which after my recent series of post on cells and the life in cells can definitely be theorized by myself, but certainly cannot be concluded. It would be necessary to recreate all the conditions of the primordial soup to see what would become from it, but that is impossible for two reasons I can think of off the top of my head. 1) While we can postulate what those conditions might be, we cannot know what those conditions were. What forces were at work? What temperatures were being dealt with? (What temperature changes were happening at the time, between day and night for example, or between sunlight and cloud.) Where in the world (north, south, east, west, at sea level, above sea level, below sea level, in the ocean itself or in pools of ocean, or was water even available in the world yet, maybe it was all volcanic-type fluid)? Was there some ingredient there that we have no way of even postulating, such as the remnant of a meteor or comet in the exact vicinity of the primordial soup that successfully spawned the first reproducing cell that we today call life? And 2) Even if we could know and recreate all those factors, how would we prevent any bit of known life from entering into the area of experiment. We are assuming, hopefully correctly, there was no kind of life prior to the primordial soup. Certainly there was no life as we know it today that could have existed in the molten ball of failed star material (or is my scientific information theory on planetary formation incorrect?), but we have no way to know that either. Further, as you said about our observation of something changing that something, there was no us to observe those conditions so how could we create an experiment that we could not observe? Just in trying to recreate a primordial bowl of soup we are already making that soup impossible!
    Okay, so much for that.
    While I applaud this recent journey into finding science in religion, or philosophy I think is the better word at this time, the Upanishads (which I believe you brought into the equation at one point) far pre-dated Buddhism. Buddha was working in a five thousand or more year old system that had already been accepted as the mythos of the era. Like we take a lot of scientific knowledge as a priori to the world we were born into, so did Siddhartha accept his mythos.
    And, to try to keep this from becoming a thesis inspired by your short post, what do you mean by consciousness? I may be wrong, but I am hearing you equating consciousness with life. And while I do myself believe all life is conscious to some degree, I am not willing to proclaim life and consciousness as interchangeable. Nor am I willing to call electrons conscious, nor am I willing to call geology conscious. I am not even willing to say electrons can have experience. What does that even mean? Because electrons always act the same in a given circumstance, is there any other circumstance an electron can exist in? Yes, they can jump from one nucleus to another in a chemical reaction, but does that change the electron in any realistic way? As I said, I am non-scientific, so I do not truly understand electrons except by hearsay (heresy). And what I hear is once an electron, forever an electron, at least at the electron level. I do not believe electrons can have either life or consciousness, and it is beyond our ability to know that.
    And about geology being capable of consciousness, I do not find this possible by any stretch of my understanding of what geology is. If you want to postulate nature, as in Mother Nature, being conscious, I can almost go along with that in a weird way, looking at the mycelium that connects plants in ways we did not understand even just a few years ago (though my understanding of spirit actually requires all life to be connected to all life, so no problem there) but we know of nothing yet that connects animals directly to plants. And does mycelium exist everywhere, as, in deserts, on the bottom of the ocean, floating in the ocean connecting plankton to plankton to whatever else is floating in the ocean? Is there life floating in fresh water? I presume there must be at least at the single-cellular level. But the things we attribute to Mother Nature, like earthquakes, forest fires, hurricanes, etc. can they be conscious reactions in a defensive or offensive way against humans because humans are so dangerous to nature? Are we not part of nature? Are we helping ourselves to try to commit human genocide? If we are, I am all for it. We are a threat not only to ourselves, but to all known forms of life.
    These are just some of the thoughts your short post inspired in me, a relative few to what is in my mind. It is me asking a lot of you, but I would enjoy you addressing these questions/issues more than just in generalities. But that is up to you. Please at least address the three bolded questions in my comment. Without those I cannot reply to this post intelligently.
    rawgod

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    1. Geologic meaning everything living came from inert, earth and rocks. This is the current scientific model of emergence.
      How consciousness can arise from geology? I don’t know. That is up to science to prove. Right now there is an uncompromising assurance that awareness arises from unawareness by chemical reactions originating in rocks, crystals, hot gas and time.

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      1. “Uncompromising assurance”? Is that like military intelligence? Sure sounds like it to me. Looking only at my own consciousness, for it is the only one I can know, there is no way this arose “from chemical reactions originating in rocks, crystals, hot gas[es] and time.” Maybe you can believe that of your own consciousness, maybe not? It is not possible for me.
        Yet the very question is partly why I tried to look as deeply into cells as I tried to do. Cells are life, all life is made up of cells. So, in my mind, consciousness has to have started at the cellular level. And no, I do not know how. But I would love to know.
        Yet, deep in me is this niggling thought, this memory of a memory from my NDEs, that says life as we know it and consciousness as we want to know it did not begin as a team, and especially not as an entity.
        But somehow they found each other, did team up,and then started up the evolutionary ladder to where we are today, but this evolutionary process is far from perfect, and far from complete. Humanity is NOT the pinnacle of life. On the off chance that we are, we need to kill ourselves in order to give life another chance.
        Brave words. Possibly insane words! But I believe them, and until something better than us comes along, I always will.
        I want to go on, but I do not think it will serve any purpose.

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  9. In one of the arguments for theism, they ask how can unconscious matter lead to consciousness. Looks to me you are in the same trap though couching yours in not very clear language as the theists do.
    I see no contradiction in postulating the existence of some form of consciousness through time.

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    1. This is the point. That science (to many) here has become infallible and that nothing can be doubted about that process. Yet after thousands of years we are right where we started. Again. I am ok with doubt. These terms and stories are reinventing the past and becoming the story themselves. Like the Lucy parable. It is becoming our mythology and is believed. No more or less productive than other mythologies.

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        1. Sorry if it sounded directed to you. It wasn’t. There have been some long threads recently directed at me for espousing an idea that came from a religious text. I can talk about “emergent properties” all day long and not be accused of theistic-couching. But if I go to the origination of the idea, I have to be very careful of the words I use. If this piece were purely about Pratītyasamutpāda, it would have a different meaning altogether because of the source.
          Like I mentioned to JZ. To answer the question, has any scientific discovery ever been supplanted by a religious one? No, but science borrows from it and renames it into working theory. I am being completely fair, and in the process admitting that the science that I enjoy could benefit from open dialog without mincing words. A good idea is a good idea. But in science the source matters more than the idea.

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          1. The challenge you set yourself against in this line of reasoning would be first of explaining what you mean by a religious idea and two t demonstrate that an alternative explanation or origination of the idea is not available

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            1. Well in this case, emergent properties is the religious idea and has been bandied about, and if you look, libraries are being written about this mythology. It starts as theory, then becomes the common sense of the masses through repetition. It is doesn’t start as mythology, but has become one.
              Maybe it’s a good one because the Indians have been teaching this two thousand years—maybe what they have on it could add some further discovery, if it wasn’t Buddhic in its sources. No?

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            2. My problem that you haven’t dispensed with as yet is a demonstration of how emergent properties is a religious idea and what you mean when you say something is a religious idea. It is here that you have lost me

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            3. The term “emergent properties” and all of its support is identical to the Buddhic thought of interdependence. We can’t have consciousness without minerals, crystals, and carbon, forming into some lipids (brain mass). Without the geology there would be no consciousness. You can’t have this without that. Indian thought is the same (only older) that all these things are interconnected and arise mutually. They take it beyond our current level of comfort though, and say not only without these “things” you won’t have consciousness, but without consciousness we can’t have things either.
              There is no beginning or ending, but beginnings and endings. It is an interconnected process that has existed in time and timelessness. It manifests and it dies. It awakens and it sleeps. But I digress.
              It is the yin and yang. Everything exists interdependently.
              So the Indians got it right on one hand and copies of that are acceptable if it is rephrased into scientific lingo, but maybe they got it all right. They are 2 for 2 in this, maybe 3 for 3 if it got some real scientific consideration.

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  10. Someone on Twitter the other day was prodding Philp Goff (the Panpsychist), asking if protons are “conscious” why isn’t “pooh”, which is to say in the same way humans (who have protons inside) are? His answer was interesting, saying it’s a matter of parts involved in the whole, and perhaps easier to understand if we replace the word ‘conscious’ with ‘experience.’ Protons, of course, aren’t conscious like we are, but they experience in some fundamental way/manner.

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    1. Electrons and protons appear to react to being observed. I think another point is we are revisiting a sound principle. But this (to me) begs your question; has any religious doctrine ever supplanted a scientific discovery? There is some borrowing going on from Hindu thought wrapped in a shiny, new wrapper. I wonder when George Eliot coined the term if she wasn’t borrowing an idea from the Upanishads, like during our golden age of physics did?

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        1. If I could only pronounce it… Let me preface this “according to eastern philosophy” they are trying to put into words an experience they have had in the awakened state, not hypothesizing what might be. This sort of shows that we can get there by reason alone as these two paths have converged by different means. Btw, theirs is a method, not a faith based belief. Ours is becoming a faith based belief (mythology) after reasoning. That’s funny, really.

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