Mod+ 248. BERNARDO KASTRUP SAYS MATERIALISM IS BALONEY

What is the general definition of evil for philosophers, say? Is it simply that which willfully causes harm to others? And what is that? Can people be evil or are there only evil actions? Is there a state of being that is good or one that is evil or are they restricted to behavior (and maybe intention as well)? What does it feel like to be evil or good?

I think when Julia Assante was on Skeptiko, she said that what we see as good & evil is really just conflict. That was interesting... She might not have even said this though. I don't know.
 
I'm not sure that the problem of good-evil is different from the problem posed by these other dualities, except in that a great many people seem uncomfortable with the former, and determined to explain all apparent evil as good in disguise. All I wanted to point out is that it's really hard to do that without invoking other dualities that are similarly uncomfortable. If the seeming existence of evil is really just a symptom of ignorance, well, why is there that ignorance? If the entire universe is pure love and goodness, why would it ever allow the existence of something that causes creatures within it to see the world in such a morally ghastly light and to experience something that certainly feels likes evil, even if it isn't "really"?
The other night I saw the movie: Deliver Us From Evil. I really enjoyed it; it was a very well written movie. Obviously if demons really exist, then their purpose is to wreak havoc (because it's fun) and to despise God and Jesus (for whatever reason). Do they really exist? Who knows. There are a lot of people with active imaginations as well as those with mental illness. But there are other people, very reliable people, who witness demons flouting the laws of physics. And if they did exist, they would make the Catholic church more powerful.
 
The other night I saw the movie: Deliver Us From Evil. I really enjoyed it; it was a very well written movie. Obviously if demons really exist, then their purpose is to wreak havoc (because it's fun) and to despise God and Jesus (for whatever reason). Do they really exist? Who knows. There are a lot of people with active imaginations as well as those with mental illness. But there are other people, very reliable people, who witness demons flouting the laws of physics. And if they did exist, they would make the Catholic church more powerful.
Are demons evil?

You know Ghost, maybe it's not evil to wreak havoc on inferior forms of consciousness. We certainly don't have a problem with it, and most of it involves deriving pleasure from pain. Anybody who has ever enjoyed a strip of bacon from a typical grocer is a demon in the porcine world. Perhaps evil (and this includes those demons) is an outward projection of our own collective evil of which we fail to recognize and incorporate into our definition of evil.
 
Are demons evil?

You know Ghost, maybe it's not evil to wreak havoc on inferior forms of consciousness. We certainly don't have a problem with it, and most of it involves deriving pleasure from pain. Anybody who has ever enjoyed a strip of bacon from a typical grocer is a demon in the porcine world. Perhaps evil (and this includes those demons) is an outward projection of our own collective evil of which we fail to recognize and incorporate into our definition of evil.
No, I think they're real; and they're dangerous and not to be played with. All this "unconsciousness projection" stuff sounds like psycho-babble. Sorry.
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

On the subject of demons, see Paranthopology Volume 4 Number 3 page 14:

Lord of the Flies: The Phenomenology of a Possession

A comparison of the ‘inner experiences’ of people suffering from involuntary possession offers unique opportunities for cross-cultural investigation. By ‘inner experiences’ I mean those arising from states of “cognitive, empathetic engagement” (Bowie 2012) that typify healer-client relations, especially in the area of natural healing. Coherence across accounts dealing with similar cases and derived from a range of healers and their clients establishes a pool of experiences that can then be interrogated. Nevertheless, ‘inner’ accounts of possession will always seem fantastical, contrary to science and threatening to our notions of common-sense, personal identity and autonomy. And yet, it is only by exploring these subtler aspects of reality that we can make progress towards understanding the deeper significance of the phenomenon (as well as certain other anomalous experiences).
 
I really enjoyed the interview. Not because I agree with Bernardo...I don’t...but because he does at least present his theory is a clear manner; and understanding why I think he is mistaken is helpful for me.

I would agree with the suggestion in part 3 of Alex's question - the idea that everything is mind is as incomplete and unsatisfying as the materialistic paradigm.
In my opinion this is just another form of reductive monism.

Personally I am a dualist; and I give equal importance to both consciousness (awareness) and matter. I regard what we experience as mind as a product of the encounter between consciousness and matter. So for me consciousness and matter are fundamental; and mind is secondary or derivative.

Different forms of mind and experience will arise in different realms of matter; mediated by different living forms or bodies. Our experience in the afterlife will have different mental characteristics than our experience has here.

I should also say, I believe the dualism of the realms of experience arises from a single unified Source - The Divine.

But dualism is the basic structure of the realms of experience or creation.

Experience is relational - dual.
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

They don't sound any worse to me than people can be in the physical world.
I think if spirits exist they'd have goals, desires, and so on - basically there'd be similar strains of good & bad spirits in the spirit world as there are people in this one.
 

2. Do we need a new philosophical paradigm to move us forward?
We are at the edge of a new frontier for working with love, relationships and consciousness, In today’s stress-filled environment, many people are feeling called to explore, understand and access pathways towards living in alignment with their heart’s true purpose. They are compassionate and highly intuitive, but held back by blocks and obstacles that resist clearing. The missing piece of the puzzle, is the awareness that consciousness surrounds us.”When we learn how to align our minds, hearts, and bodies with the consciousness that extends beyond our individual selves, we can comfort what disturbs us and become capable and empowered members within our communities of relationship.
 
I really enjoyed the interview. Not because I agree with Bernardo...I don’t...but because he does at least present his theory is a clear manner; and understanding why I think he is mistaken is helpful for me.

I would agree with the suggestion in part 3 of Alex's question - the idea that everything is mind is as incomplete and unsatisfying as the materialistic paradigm.
In my opinion this is just another form of reductive monism.

Personally I am a dualist; and I give equal importance to both consciousness (awareness) and matter. I regard what we experience as mind as a product of the encounter between consciousness and matter. So for me consciousness and matter are fundamental; and mind is secondary or derivative.

Different forms of mind and experience will arise in different realms of matter; mediated by different living forms or bodies. Our experience in the afterlife will have different mental characteristics than our experience has here.

I should also say, I believe the dualism of the realms of experience arises from a single unified Source - The Divine.

But dualism is the basic structure of the realms of experience or creation.

Experience is relational - dual.
Dreams have different mental characteristics as waking experience, if I'm understanding correctly what you mean by mental characteristics, but the external world is the same in its feeling of externality and concreteness and all that stuff that makes up the subjective experience of external matter.

Dreams are a sonofabitch in that way.
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

Dreams have different mental characteristics as waking experience, if I'm understanding correctly what you mean by mental characteristics, but the external world is the same in its feeling of externality and concreteness and all that stuff that makes up the subjective experience of external matter.

Dreams are a sonofabitch in that way.
Do you think the Source-Consciousness/Super-Mind is nonspatial? I think that's what is hard for me to wrap my head around.

I could sort of get that Mind is a Zero-Dimensional point, or that it's Infinite...but something possessing no spatial description is harder for me to grasp.

Why I can't help but think there's a Neutral Monist conception that has some spatial properties, though I don't think it's a reducible type substance.
 
Do you think the Source-Consciousness/Super-Mind is nonspatial? I think that's what is hard for me to wrap my head around.

I could sort of get that Mind is a Zero-Dimensional point, or that it's Infinite...but something possessing no spatial description is harder for me to grasp.

Why I can't help but think there's a Neutral Monist conception that has some spatial properties, though I don't think it's a reducible type substance.
Does a mind have spatial dimensions?
I'm totally non spatial.

Newborns are only aware of the oceanic flow.

You ever have those dreams where you morph in and out of different dream characters? I'll be doing something with my friend, then I will become my friend, and then I'll be like half my friend and half me. It gets pretty soupy sometimes... And, of course, it all makes perfect sense.

In altered states or 'transcendent' states folks often talk of having had the sense of being deep underground or tunneling.

I'm reminded of that Vallee talk here.
 
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Just thought Bernardo and all might like this I found...The Durham Emergence Project from Durham University, UK.

https://www.dur.ac.uk/emergence/

to look at the validity of "emergence" as a concept.

Reading through the really interesting "project description" PDF at the bottom of the link I came across this book called
The Waning of Materialism (2010) from Oxford Uni. Press where a whole bunch of high powered philosophers attack materialism.

http://www.oxfordscholarship.com/view/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199556182.001.0001/acprof-9780199556182

and you can scroll through the abstracts here.

Now I also know Durham Uni. have a Hearing The Voice Project (going for years)

http://hearingthevoice.org/about-the-project/

and I just wonder whether these two projects at Durham are in some way related? In that really if we, as persons, are so much more than
our bodies then voice hearers may be picking up something disembodied and real from these voices. And the philosophers are getting involved?

Anyway, "materialism" is getting questioned at a high philosophical level. :)
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

Does a mind have spatial dimensions?
I'm totally non spatial.
Good point. McGinn even noted that consciousness, by its very nature, suggests a new consideration of space.

It might just be my own weakness and inability to comprehend, but note I do think that even a spatial element would not necessarily correspond to anything we're aware of. As Hoffman stated, what we subjectively sense about reality could be like the icons in a user interface* - no reason to believe that has any indication of what the underlying physical hardware of the computer is like. Though Hoffman himself is an Idealist so maybe it is me who's lagging behind. :)

A lot of Bernando's metaphors suggest a substance that is eternally flowing, as you noted. Bohm, and later F.David Peat, are both physicists who suggest everything is process/flow and thus verbs are better descripiors of reality than nouns. Bohm had this to say about consciousness and matter**:

Consciousness is much more of the implicate order than is matter . . . Yet at a deeper level [matter and consciousness] are actually inseparable and interwoven , just as in the computer game the player and the screen are united by participation.
-Statement of 1987, as quoted in Towards a Theory of Transpersonal Decision-Making in Human-Systems (2007) by Joseph Riggio, p. 66

*More on Hoffman's Idealism here.

**More on Bohm here, and in the two subsequent posts.
 
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Dreams have different mental characteristics as waking experience, if I'm understanding correctly what you mean by mental characteristics, but the external world is the same in its feeling of externality and concreteness and all that stuff that makes up the subjective experience of external matter.

Dreams are a sonofabitch in that way.
Well if I understand you rightly...yes...dreams represent a different mental experience to waking.
I dont pretend to understand how sleeping & dreaming work...I base my observations about the probable differences in the character of mental experience in this world and other worlds on NDE reports. But I do think sleep & dream falls under the same structure....in that sleeping involves (I think) a partial disconnection between consciousness and the body (or at least a significantly altered relation).
 
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Do you think the Source-Consciousness/Super-Mind is nonspatial? I think that's what is hard for me to wrap my head around.

I could sort of get that Mind is a Zero-Dimensional point, or that it's Infinite...but something possessing no spatial description is harder for me to grasp.

Why I can't help but think there's a Neutral Monist conception that has some spatial properties, though I don't think it's a reducible type substance.
My own guess is...yes. Pure consciousness is non-spatial.
Mind however is spatial, since (imo) mind arises from the encounter of consciousness and matter.
Once mind arises that implies subject & object; and in that relation itself there is space; in the sense of place or location.

Space in the physical sense is an aspect of the 'extended' material aspect of creation.
In fact imo space is material....space is stuff.
 
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Sciborg_S_Patel

Speculative, yes, but I keep seeing more and more ideas from parapsychology that jive up with the Multiverse in these ways, that one can't help but wonder and re-evaluate their position on the Multiverse.
EthanT, wanted to note that your connection between the multiverse and the paranormal is something Josephson has also considered:

What are the implications for science of the fact that psychic functioning appears to be a real effect? These phenomena seem mysterious, but no more mysterious perhaps than strange phenomena of the past which science has now happily incorporated within its scope. What ideas might be relevant in the context of suitably extending science to take these phenomena into account? Two such concepts are those of the observer, and non-locality. The observer forces his way into modern science because the equations of quantum physics, if taken literally, imply a universe that is constantly splitting into separate branches, only one of which corresponds to our perceived reality. A process of "decoherence" has been invoked to stop two branches interfering with each other, but this still does not answer the question of why our experience is of one particular branch and not any other. Perhaps, despite the unpopularity of the idea, the experiencers of the reality are also the selectors.
The physicist Fred Alan Wolf also mentions this idea of parallel realities being able to possibly account for paranormal phenomenon & experiences. (Skeptiko thread here.)

While I'm very doubtful about the multiverse, one way I've thought about this - which admittedly is far out conjecture - is that both the "everything has happened" idea of a Block Universe and the Multiverse might both be true. So time is an illusion, as Barbour claims, and yet consciousness is moving through these possibilities. Our decisions take us into what would otherwise be frozen, timeless existences. The 'I-thought' of self-awareness switches the tracks, so to speak, and makes the possible experience into an actual one. There's no branching in the sense that new universes are created - the Multiverse is extant but fallow until consciousness is conducted into a particular branch.

But are there separate conscious entities going their own way into these otherwise timeless possibilities, or are we all collectively on the same train? This makes me think of the conclusion to Schrodinger's What is Life?, where he suggests that there is only one Mind going through the motions of living separate lives. A very Eastern take, but primarily motivated by the belief at the time that QM had no relation to macro-biology. But this idea, updated to account for quantum biology and coinciding with Morhoff's aforementioned take on QM which suggests Sri Aurobindo's "Supermind" dividing itself to experience evolution, offers the suggestion that we are all in fact One Mind and thus on one train.

So the future is a set of destinations already extant, but not experienced. Which future we end up in collectively is based on our choices made in the present. Precognition would then be a sort of reverse morphic resonance, showing us a future that resonates closely with where we seem to be headed. I think this helps makes sense of things like warning synchronicities, especially if you factor in Carpenter's First Sight model.

As always, the usual caveats that things like morphic resonance or synchronicity might have mundane explanations applies. Not to mention the philosophical issues one might see arising with morphic resonances concept of similarity....though it seems to me the concept of a universal mind - perhaps part of Bohm's Unbroken Wholeness mentioned earlier in this thread - would alleviate the issue Braude has with any concept of similarity that doesn't include evaluation by consciousness.
 
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