Mod+ 246. DR. MICHAEL GRAZIANO LIKENS NEAR DEATH EXPERIENCE RESEARCH TO ASTROLOGY

#81
Consider the human zygote. It's actuality is in its potential, but it's reality is a small smidgen of protoplasm. One can watch it grow cell by cell, but hypothetically, if it becomes imbued with a spirit force. Does it also develop cell by cell? If there is such a thing as a soul. At what point does it coalesce? Must it develop a sense of itself to have consciousness?
When does that Rubicon take place? We use the word rather loosely, but what does it mean?
 
#82
like others have said... when you are dealing with someone who is this deep into the denial game you can only go so far.
I don't think one can find a better example of the term 'group think'. Investigate? "I think pretty much most of my neuroscience colleagues would conclude that no, there are these experiences that are related to brain function. There is no mind or experience independent of the functioning of the brain." Dr Graziano.
 
#83
It would seem that there are millions of people who experience the oddities of the paranormal, God, ghosts, grey aliens and a myriad of other peculiar experiences. Yet science and engineering are hopelessly incapable of coming up with a computer chip that can experience these same things. They don't even have a general idea. Yet there are any number of stories and personal eye-witness accounts that suggest the existence of disembodied entities. Then there is the similarity between the Higgs field (an invisible field that acts on everything) and ghosts (which act on people and physical objects). Oh, and don't forget that there is five times more dark matter than there is visible matter.

My point is that we should remind that skeptics about all of these issues, frequently. I showed one of my co-workers a video of a metallic UFO flying along side an American fighter jet. He's a great guy, but he's still brainwashed by the skeptic community. When I showed him the video, he kind of yawned and said he had to get back to work.

http://www.siriusdisclosure.com/evidence/bae-photos/
 
S

Sciborg_S_Patel

#84
Oh, and don't forget that there is five times more dark matter than there is visible matter.

My point is that we should remind that skeptics about all of these issues, frequently. I showed one of my co-workers a video of a metallic UFO flying along side an American fighter jet. He's a great guy, but he's still brainwashed by the skeptic community. When I showed him the video, he kind of yawned and said he had to get back to work.
Yeah, I saw a planetarium film on dark matter narrated by Tyson - visually it was gorgeous, but the explanation was really underwhelming. Even the people I was with, who lean far more to the materialist side, thought it was pretty much trying to justify why we could say anything about the universe after discovering we know so little about it.

On the subject of aliens - I have to admit I'm surprised you're taking the Nuts and Bolts approach. I'd have figured you for a Jacque Vallee kinda guy. :)
 
#85
Yeah, I saw a planetarium film on dark matter narrated by Tyson - visually it was gorgeous, but the explanation was really underwhelming. Even the people I was with, who lean far more to the materialist side, thought it was pretty much trying to justify why we could say anything about the universe after discovering we know so little about it.

On the subject of aliens - I have to admit I'm surprised you're taking the Nuts and Bolts approach. I'd have figured you for a Jacque Vallee kinda guy. :)
Why thank you. :)
 
S

Sciborg_S_Patel

#86
I am curious though - Vallee's idea that aliens are essentially the same entities as fairies (and as Hancock would argue, the same as DMT entities) also seems more in line with your conception of the Astral, at least as far as I can tell.

For example, as long as we're going far off the beaten path, Teilhard has suggested that the conscious entities of earth will have to transcend their physical bodies as they move around space-time.

As Grant Morrison once wrote, "If we really want to go into space, we'll have to leave our bodies behind."
This would suggest older species have already gone through what - if you're an Iain Banks fan - you'd call Sublimation.

Isn't this more in line with your Theosophical leanings? I'm not saying any of this is definite, but it seems to fit better with your conception of different "bodies" than hyperdrives. I had a book about Theosophy once and I distinctly recall it mentioning the exploration of reality via OBEs...though this was awhile back so maybe I missed something.

Then again, the truth may lie somewhere between the "Nuts and Bolts" and "Transcendental Entities" positions or encompass them both :):

Seeing into the Unseen: A Personal Journey of Discovery

A bright, yet not blinding, light appears to his left, at the end of the cabin. There is a suggestion of a form within the light. A male voice comes to him, intimate and entirely nonjudgmental. He doesn’t know whether it is inside his head, or whether the others have heard it, too. The “voice” assures him that he is indeed dying, however in this case he is being given the choice to continue, or to return to his previous life. Then, to his continuing astonishment, he is told that he has completed what he has come to do. He is 33 years old. He is free to choose.

After a few moments of deep lucidity he decides to return to life. Upon which the cabin dissolves until his whole visual field is filled with singing, celebrating angels. He is escorted by his two companion angels, across a wide plain and taken into a large structure to be healed.

Sometime later, after being shown around and told that he'’d not recall what he is seeing, he is returned to his body to find himself fully healthy once again.
He is walking on a beach in Israel as dusk is starting to fall. Sitting for a moment on a large rock, he stares into the surf. It is at that point during sunset when the air can turn almost violet. The waves roll in with the surf throwing up sheets of spray that hang in the air before the next wave replaces them.

His mind is empty as he gazes idly into the violet haze. Yet his whole body jolts when he suddenly becomes aware that he is watching a group of ten or twelve beings, very tall--about twice the height of humans--with a couple of children amongst them, plodding slowly in single file up a slight incline.

This strange scenario, as real as anything he has ever seen on a cinema screen, persists in the violet mist as long as the waves replace the spray. As the light changes and the spray no longer refracts a violet glow, the figures dissolve and disappear.

It is no more a hallucination than the moving images of a film. The beings move. They walk slowly and deliberately for at least 20 seconds.
He is lying in his bathtub after a physically strenuous day. Looking up he sees two figures standing in his bathroom, just inside the door.

The taller of the two is definitely female, dark-haired, well over six-feet-tall, and very beautiful. In front of her is a far more curious affair. He can’t tell what gender it is. It’s bipedal, certainly, small, perhaps four feet tall and seemingly more crystalline than organic.

The tall one speaks. He learns the pair are extraterrestrials and that they have a large mothership parked in the fifth dimension over the mountains he can see out of his bathroom window. She explains how very different intergalactic races will often adopt one another, and she gestures at the small angular figure, when they are ready to move into the larger Universe community. She speaks of the star-system Arcturus, again gesturing at the small figure in front of her, and tells him how a planet in that system is a couple of thousand years in advance of Earth and wanted to be here to observe and advise when asked.

The language she uses is correct, fluid and sung more than spoken. A detailed and lucid 20-minute conversation follows before the pair appear to fade before his eyes.
 
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#87
Investigating deeper into Dr. Graziano's background, works and theories, I find parts of them entirely plausible. Im not open to the reductionist solution to mystery, because his interview did not seem new or insightful. I also listened to the podcast 3xs to catch the nuance of his schema, as he calls it. We are flesh and bone and neurons and that's it. The brain creates the idea of self. It is a wondrous biochemical machine and has evolved over time to operate along certain pathways. Injure those pathways and the importance of the integration of these pathways become evident. Stroke can skew perception and destroy awareness everything left of center. Alzheimer's not only slowly robs one of memories but of awareness too and demonstrates how memories form personality. I think we have to give the fine doctor his due on presenting a philosophical framework how the biochemical process of consciousness occurs, but doesn't it just become another hypothesis? Im sure there are other ambitious Neuroscientists looking to publish alternate theories too. Some are not pleased he's presenting theories to the public without peer review and professional scrutiny. I wonder how Dr Graziano fleshed out his theory? Was it through ploddingly reformulating accepted notions of brain functions through monkey brain research or was it through diligent quiet observation of how his own thoughts occur? Did he have that moment of insight as did Einstein or Krishnamurti? Einstein's insight changed how we view the world and Krishnamurti proclaimed individual spiritual and psychological freedom. We often refer to the ghost in the machine for a reason. How does a biochemical machine discover something totally new? Can there be complete attention without the observer? There is of course the wealth of research that demonstrates that mystery does not only exist but is the fabric of existence.
 
#88
The brain creates the idea of self. It is a wondrous biochemical machine and has evolved over time to operate along certain pathways.
The brain creates the idea of self to who or what? I want you to bottle up that "who or what", and put it on a computer chip. Do that, and you will be rich. Otherwise, it's just a neuroscientist pulling the wool over your eyes.
 
S

Sciborg_S_Patel

#89
Graziano thinks we'll become immortal by uploading our brains:

Endless fun

I find myself asking, given what we know about the brain, whether we really could upload someone’s mind to a computer. And my best guess is: yes, almost certainly. That raises a host of further questions, not least: what will this technology do to us psychologically and culturally? Here, the answer seems just as emphatic, if necessarily murky in the details.
I should have suspected he was one of those Singularity adherents from his bizzare position on consciousness. Lanier's critique is worth looking at, because it specifically targets this materialist religion:

One Half A Manifesto, by Jaron Lanier

Cybernetic eschatology shares with some of history's worst ideologies a doctrine of historical predestination. There is nothing more gray, stultifying, or dreary than a life lived inside the confines of a theory. Let us hope that the cybernetic totalists learn humility before their day in the sun arrives...

...Here is a partial roster of the component beliefs of cybernetic totalism:

1) That cybernetic patterns of information provide the ultimate and best way to understand reality.

2) That people are no more than cybernetic patterns.

3) That subjective experience either doesn't exist, or is unimportant because it is some sort of ambient or peripheral effect.

4) That what Darwin described in biology, or something like it, is in fact also the singular, superior description of all creativity and culture.

5) That qualitative as well as quantitative aspects of information systems will be accelerated by Moore's Law.

And finally, the most dramatic:

6) That biology and physics will merge with computer science (becoming biotechnology and nanotechnology), resulting in life and the physical universe becoming mercurial; achieving the supposed nature of computer software. Furthermore, all of this will happen very soon! Since computers are improving so quickly, they will overwhelm all the other cybernetic processes, like people, and will fundamentally change the nature of what's going on in the familiar neighborhood of Earth at some moment when a new "criticality" is achieved- maybe in about the year 2020. To be a human after that moment will be either impossible or something very different than we now can know.
 
#90
Consider the human zygote. It's actuality is in its potential, but it's reality is a small smidgen of protoplasm. One can watch it grow cell by cell, but hypothetically, if it becomes imbued with a spirit force. Does it also develop cell by cell? If there is such a thing as a soul. At what point does it coalesce? Must it develop a sense of itself to have consciousness?
When does that Rubicon take place? We use the word rather loosely, but what does it mean?
Clearly this is very unclear - but just as science in the past had to develop from within an incomplete framework (e.g. when the gas laws were worked out, nobody knew why different materials became gasses at different temperatures) - the understanding of consciousness needs to do the same.

I am somewhat persuaded by the idea that everything living (not viruses) is conscious to a certain degree - some single cells chase food, try to evade capture, even it is claimed learn!

Nevertheless, there is also a lot of research suggesting that reincarnation is real - which would suggest that there is a definite point at which the fetus is associated with a mind - that the mind doesn't just coalesce out of a lot of cell-minds.

David
 
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#91
like others have said... when you are dealing with someone who is this deep into the denial game you can only go so far.
Alex,

Do you think there is any way to persuade a skeptic into an open discussion about consciousness? I know you have a podcast with Donald Hoffman somewhere - didn't he have something more constructive to say?

David
 
#92
Graziano thinks we'll become immortal by uploading our brains:

Endless fun



I should have suspected he was one of those Singularity adherents from his bizzare position on consciousness. Lanier's critique is worth looking at, because it specifically targets this materialist religion:

One Half A Manifesto, by Jaron Lanier
Lanier's third point nails it for me:
3) That subjective experience either doesn't exist, or is unimportant because it is some sort of ambient or peripheral effect.
This, to me, is the essence of materialist fudge and obfuscation. Because many of them can't quite come out and say consciousness doesn't exist, they try to push it to the edge. Yet once you admit that consciousness exists, it clearly has to be important, and it is clearly meaningful to ask the question, "Can you explain consciousness?".

David
 
#94
1st Alex I wanted to say how masterfully I thought you handled that interview. I don't think there's much reason to be nasty, especially when you have the choice to end an interview early or not air it at all. You took him right to the edge of his tolerance to be challenged - to look at himself and the basic foundation of his assumptions, on air no less. Maybe, in the comfort of his home, without you asking him to look over the edge, he might wonder more deeply about his blindspots. What a kindness you would then have performed.

I don't care much for a "chicken or the egg" argument and certainly would do my best not to get trapped into one with an academic who is obviously unwilling to look at evidence, especially in his field of expertise, that is contrary to his own. That in itself should be all you need to know about his possible future contributions to this topic. It is very challenging for me to look at concepts that are contrary to my world view and so sometimes fall short of what might ultimately be in my own best interest. I try to be patient with others, knowing this about myself however, this man is purporting to be a scientist and an expert in this field. How sad for science and ultimately then, for us all.

I find myself coming back to this blog because of the quality of thought and the absence of unnecessary "meanness". My heartfelt appreciation goes out to all who challenge their own world views.
 
#95
I am curious though - Vallee's idea that aliens are essentially the same entities as fairies (and as Hancock would argue, the same as DMT entities) also seems more in line with your conception of the Astral, at least as far as I can tell.

For example, as long as we're going far off the beaten path, Teilhard has suggested that the conscious entities of earth will have to transcend their physical bodies as they move around space-time.

As Grant Morrison once wrote, "If we really want to go into space, we'll have to leave our bodies behind."
This would suggest older species have already gone through what - if you're an Iain Banks fan - you'd call Sublimation.

Isn't this more in line with your Theosophical leanings? I'm not saying any of this is definite, but it seems to fit better with your conception of different "bodies" than hyperdrives. I had a book about Theosophy once and I distinctly recall it mentioning the exploration of reality via OBEs...though this was awhile back so maybe I missed something.

Then again, the truth may lie somewhere between the "Nuts and Bolts" and "Transcendental Entities" positions or encompass them both :):

Seeing into the Unseen: A Personal Journey of Discovery
There is definitive evidence that "transcendental entities" exist. To the question of whether aliens use hyper-drive technology to fly here from other star systems, the evidence is not as clear as I would like. Apparently abductions are real things that happen to people, like the movie Fire in the Sky. I'm not clear why the victim was dragged through hallways, but didn't see a control room.
 
S

Sciborg_S_Patel

#96
There is definitive evidence that "transcendental entities" exist. To the question of whether aliens use hyper-drive technology to fly here from other star systems, the evidence is not as clear as I would like. Apparently abductions are real things that happen to people, like the movie Fire in the Sky. I'm not clear why the victim was dragged through hallways, but didn't see a control room.
Definitely check out Hancock's Supernatural and the work of Jacque Vallee - specifically Passport to Patagonia Magonia.

I think both works might go too far in their conclusions, but the commonality between DMT entities, medieval accounts of the Fey, and alien abductions is rather interesting from even a cultural, ethnographic standpoint.
 
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#99
I don't care much for a "chicken or the egg" argument and certainly would do my best not to get trapped into one with an academic who is obviously unwilling to look at evidence, especially in his field of expertise, that is contrary to his own. That in itself should be all you need to know about his possible future contributions to this topic. It is very challenging for me to look at concepts that are contrary to my world view and so sometimes fall short of what might ultimately be in my own best interest. I try to be patient with others, knowing this about myself however, this man is purporting to be a scientist and an expert in this field. How sad for science and ultimately then, for us all.
thx. I have a conversation with Jeffery Schwartz coming up... yea, the chicken and the egg is just a way to soften the blow, but hard for the true believers to get it.


I find myself coming back to this blog because of the quality of thought and the absence of unnecessary "meanness". My heartfelt appreciation goes out to all who challenge their own world views.
yes! big point for me... as soon as we get into the meaning game we've let the fairy dust slip through our fingers.
 
That's your belief. Though I tend towards idealism, even in that, it is not asserted that everything is conscious or possesses consciousness but that material entities are within consciousness. Everything is conscious, if and only if, panpsychism is true. In any case, this is not what Graziano is talking about.
Actually . .it's actuality. Matter is a manifestation of consciousness. (again by consciousness I do not refer to standard human/animal awareness)
BTW I don't know that actuality is in the business of checking in with the various human -isms. So quoting them as an attempt at refutation is meaningless.
 
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