Skeptiko Roundtable with Seriah and Joshua from WhereDidTheRoadGo |339|

Discussion in 'Skeptiko Shows' started by Alex, Feb 7, 2017.

  1. It's interesting to me that many of my Western, non-Indian friends trend toward the idea that All is One and individual identity is - if not illusory - secondary to the fundamental One-ness...meanwhile I've become more confident that the individual consciousness is the irreducible focal point.

    It just seems to me that when one looks at the 3 big aspects of consciousness - subjective experience, thoughts about things, and the grasp of the logical/mathematical Universals - that at least the first two have a for-ness centered on the individual mind. Even the final one, the underpinning of rationality, is about the individual mind grasping the Universals.

    This isn't to say we aren't connected in the deep, as William James would say, but it would be a dual-aspect situation where both the One and Many have equal reality....or perhaps that the One gave rise to the Many but now the Many is here to stay...
     
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  2. Do you think the structure extends to what you call the Abyss and Martel calls "The Real"?

    It seems to me the mind is transcendent of structure, because I'm very skeptical of intrinsic mapping between a structure and what it represents. I can see Structure as part of the trinity you mentioned in the past, where Structure = Logos, but there must - or so it seems to me - be more?

     
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  3. Nelson

    Nelson Member

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    I agree with everything you wrote.

    Most Westerners are ignorant of the Sanskrit literature. Jon Rappoport even sees the focus on "we are all one" as a collectivist psy-op, and every year more and more evidence piles up that this is the case, regarding the development of the so-called "hippy" movement, etc.

    The Advaita branch of Indian philosophy was harmful for India too. In my experience, few Indians know much of Sanskrit literature. A case in point: The tradition that the Rig Veda is the most sacred text, but hardly anyone knows much from it, except maybe a hymn here and there. The same goes for Manu Smrti. Instead people know more from the epics, and I guess that's because they're more entertaining.
     
  4. I'd agree most people are not familiar with the Vedas or of the actual past arguments within Indian philosophy....but in general people are ignorant of the ancients' scholarship around the world which is disappointing.

    Can't comment on the psy-op portion, haven't looked at that though I think that many metaphysical conclusions can be taken in different ways toward different political ends. But to me "for-ness" of mental characteristics seems to suggest the primacy of the individual. The idea of connection seems to be a result of mystical experiences, but the challenge to me is at some level these are ultimately experiences in time had by individual minds.

    Even telepathy doesn't seem to be an erasure of persons, just the communication between them? I suspect minds are both the infinitely extending field of a particular object as well as the object producing the field...connected for sure but not to the point that the "object" mind is erased or illusory...
     
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  5. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

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    In a sense, that is fairly obvious. I mean, a truly separate entity would not interact with anything else, and would be irrelevant. Put another way, this is why I feel that the obsession with finding ever more 'fundamental' particles in physics (all of which are utterly unstable!) is stupid. Each candidate for being fundamental has to interact with other particles, and the nature of that interaction then needs explaining by yet more fundamental particles!

    David
     
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  6. Hurmanetar

    Hurmanetar New

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    Probably because that metaphor of Oneness is new and fresh to the Westerners and still yielding insights; whereas to anyone who has grown up with this metaphor as a cultural or religious dogma it seems a tired cliche.

    Yes I still agree the Abyss exists... it exists as an opposite to the Logos which means it doesn't "exist" in an intelligible way...and it is paradox, non-sense, ambiguity, and the well from which creativity and novelty arise. A little of the Abyss can be a good thing, but a little goes a long way! So there is an asymmetry between the Abyss and the Logos with the Logos being greater which is why there is something rather than nothing :eek: :)
     
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  7. Hurmanetar

    Hurmanetar New

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    I agree. But if we frame reality this way, doesn't that sort of solve the "hard problem"? If it's all pattern, and pattern by definition is the intersection of subjevtivity and objectivity, then we've made consciousness a part of our axiomatic understanding of the "objective" world.

    Saying that it's all pattern is a way to combine the metaphor that it's all matter and the metaphor that it's all awareness.
     
  8. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

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    Well first, I think chasing more 'fundamental' particles at higher and higher energies is pointless.

    I don't see that you can add consciousness like another physics axiom because consciousness isn't something with a fixed set of properties - you can be conscious of many things. Consciousness isn't a fixed piece of pattern. It seems to me hard to explain it without resorting to another realm in which it resides.

    In any case, I always baulk at hand-waiving explanations of consciousness - there have been so many, and they aren't theories, so they never get disproved, they just go out of fashion!

    David
     
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  9. Nelson

    Nelson Member

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    I wish that were the reason for it, I really do. There were scholars before the 1960s who looked at Advaita philosophy and thought it damaging to society, yet at the same time a valuable thought experiment. Maybe those scholars were not involved in the social engineering. But if one looks at people who definitely were involved on this level, such as Aldous Huxley (a member of the Fabian Society), then things appear in a sinister light. See here by Jon Rappoport, for instance:
    https://jonrappoport.wordpress.com/...nd-control-everyone-belongs-to-everyone-else/

    Furthermore, Joe Atwill has done a lot of research on the Beatles and the mind control agenda. It isn't stated in the following article by Atwill, but the Beatles were instrumental in bringing Advaita to the West. In the article you can also see the quotes by John Lennon about "Hare Krishna", and notice how the original Boer song has been changed to "I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together"... [Edit: note too in the photo in the article how the Eggmen are all wearing the one same suit: the suit is so big all these people are in it...]
    http://postflaviana.org/warning-oysters-beware-walrus/

    (Note too all the references to drugs, and even in Huxley's Brave New World, a key to stupefying the masses was "Soma", which is a reference to a drug in Sanskrit literature...)

    Another researcher, Dave McGowan, painstakingly documented how virtually all of the hippy/hippie music traced back to a place in California called Laurel Canyon; about how the fathers of the so-called "musicians" (most famously in Jim Morrison's case) were high up in military intelligence; and about how the songs were ghostwritten by just a few authors. You can look up interviews with Dave McGowan about Laurel Canyon etc. on youtube, and Atwill speaks highly of McGowan's research too.

    This is an extensive topic, but you can see throughout it the promotion of drugs and Advaita philosophy, which is masked in phrases such as "everyone belongs to everybody else", "I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together", etc.

    So it is the breaking down of the individual and the traditional family structure, in order for the state to take control. So there is motive, and the means have been very well documented.

    But all that aside, we are really discussing two different issues in this thread, and these should be separated. One issue is about what consciousness is, and to what degree consciousness is connected; the other issue is about how Advaita (All is One) is damaging to society and how this has been used as a psy-op against the West.
     
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  10. Hurmanetar

    Hurmanetar New

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    Very good points and I'm a fan of McGowan. I think it is correct that Advaita (Oneness doctrine) is destructive although as to whether or not destruction is a positive or negative thing is entirely dependent on context and whether what gets rebuilt after the destruction is better or worse.

    I believe the mystical experience is fundamentally the playing around with the mental boundaries that define the self to either expand them to encompass all (Advaita) or reduce them to nothing standing before the infinite. Zooming out or in all the way to redefine the self is a way of short circuiting the feedbackloop of self we call the ego. The ego is necessary for living in this reality, but the feedback loop can become pathological and painful if not tuned (like a mic in front of a monitor screeching or a cruise control that can't hold a steady speed which might be likened to narcissism or greed or depression or manic-depressive disorder).

    I think the problem comes when people get their mind blown with a mystical experience of Oneness and then don't have any structure to replace it with. Give a college dropout some LSD and his mind gets blown and he temporarily loses ego, and then he's malleable for a while until a new myth begins to take shape in his mind. If the state supplies his new myth I think we can agree that is not going to end well.

    Advaita as a rigid doctrine I can see being a terrible thing as it prevents a person from ever reconstructing themselves. Advaita as an optional metaphor about reality can be a good thing as it allows one to pull the mic away from the monitor if the the feedback loop of self gets out of whack and a little deconstruction/reconstruction remodeling of the self needs to take place.
     
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  11. Michael Larkin

    Michael Larkin Member

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    Isn't it amazing? There's not a one of us who doesn't know most intimately what consciousness does (thinks and experiences). But there's not a one of us knows what it is, and how it does what it does.

    However, if it's fundamental, the thing out of which all apparency arises, then it wouldn't be explicable, would it? It'd be impossible to find anything more fundamental that could explain it. In that case, why would we bother trying? Why wouldn't we just accept it?
     
  12. Max_B

    Max_B Member

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    One of my own favourite musing is that reality is stored as just 2 dimensions.

    Rather than thinking about 2D in terms of a 2D sheet. I like to think of points having something like 'virtual' vectors - that is unrealised vectors, that allow infinite degrees of freedom, and thus unlimited storage.

    When two points interact (to understand/interpret each other), in turn, each uses one of it's dimensions, to understand the other...

    ... so that one 2D point 'looking at' another 2D point... appears like one 1D point and one 2D point with now 'realised' vectors... that is an extrusion of the points 'virtual' vectors into 'realised' vectors spacetime... which would look like 1D + 3D... as a way of understanding. And thus interactions result in spacetime, as vectors get extruded. You get a sort of twisting/turning action as both 2D points interact.

    How we experience everyday 1D+3D reality, is an accurate representation, but also an alternative perception of 2D+2D.

    That translation of 2D+2D into 1D+3D means information actually connects up in a very different way to how we perceive it, yet the outcome of the translation is also correct. At present, we just don't have quite the right explanations about why things are joined up in the way they are.

    It's just a fun speculation... but I really am drawn to the idea of two things interacting to produce reality, rather than just a single thing. Sort of fits with much of the stuff I understand.

    (I still don't even know whether a point with virtual vectors could be thought of as 2 dimensional... as a layman it's very difficult to get solid information about these sorts of ideas.)
     
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  13. There don't seem to be a lot of references in those links?

    IIRC Soma isn't a drug in the Vedic literature itself, it's more like the equivalent of Grecian ambrosia?

    Historically it seems hippies were breaking out ideas of homogeneity, questioning ideas like going to an eternal concentration camp for not accepting the right version of god, traditional expectations that didn't necessarily have the backing of reason, etc. I'm not a hippie myself, far too personally conservative, but these claims of New Agers as part of some State controlled mind experiment do seem a tad ironic?

    I have to admit I've never gotten very convinced by conspiracy theories - part of the reason is it seems one would have to dig through mountains of evidence as people spouting such theories don't seem good at keeping references and referring to them when making claims.
     
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  14. Nelson

    Nelson Member

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    I agree, it's unfortunate that lack of citations is virtually a convention with non-academic articles... It looks neater/more artistic, but it leaves open questions about accuracy, even if the article has been well-researched.

    This is the exact quote from Brave New World, for instance, and with the context you can see how it is about destroying the traditional family unit:

    '
    Mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters. But there were also husbands, wives, lovers. There were also monogamy and romance.
    "Though you probably don't know what those are," said Mustapha Mond.
    They shook their heads.
    Family, monogamy, romance. Everywhere exclusiveness, a narrow channelling of impulse and energy.
    "But every one belongs to every one else," he concluded, citing the hypnop├Ždic proverb.
    The students nodded, emphatically agreeing with a statement which upwards of sixty-two thousand repetitions in the dark had made them accept, not merely as true, but as axiomatic, self-evident, utterly indisputable.

    '

    https://www.huxley.net/bnw/three.html
     
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  15. Nelson

    Nelson Member

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    That's a tricky one. At least at the time when Huxley was writing, the idea that Soma was a drug was gaining acceptance. And there could be truth in that interpretation.

    When one looks at the Rig Veda, it is clearly referring to priests preparing the Soma drink, and the drink is then offered to the gods, and the humans also partake in the Soma, which gives them immortality and visions of the gods. The Rig Veda begins with fire (Agni) being prepared/summoned; then the priest prepares the Soma; then the wind (Vayu) is summoned; and other gods, especially Indra, are called to partake in the Soma. See esp. Mandala 1, hymns 1-3:
    https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/The_Rig_Veda/Mandala_1/Hymn_1

    Sciborg, you are correct that Soma and Ambrosia have a common Indo-European root. On wikipedia it says that Ambrosia is etymologically equivalent to Amrita = another word for Soma. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amrita

    Nevertheless, by the time of the existing written records, such as of Homer and the Rig Veda, Ambrosia and Soma differed, in that Ambrosia was sometimes given by the gods to mortals, whereas Soma was prepared by mortals and given to the gods. Another change was that ambrosia was often considered a food, whereas the drink of the gods was called nectar.
     
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  16. Nelson

    Nelson Member

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    As with many phenomena, there was more than one reason for the hippie movement's popularity, and those you mentioned were some of the factors feeding into it, sure.

    Indeed. Gloria Steinem was also taken aback when the CIA started funding her:


    Again though, if the agenda is seen as the breaking down of traditional family ties in order to increase the power of the state, then it makes perfect sense.
     
  17. Nelson

    Nelson Member

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    Great points!

    But I still think it's worth probing what we can, even if it's like how C.G. Jung described, that one spirals around it, to find attributes of it that can be evidenced.

    In spite of all the psy-ops (phony science included), and turf wars in the fields of academia, a multi-disciplinary approach can be helpful, at least to show us what "evidence" is false and why it has been propagated.
     
  18. Michael Larkin

    Michael Larkin Member

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    To continue my line of thought, the concept of dimension would arise from consciousness. There'd be no such thing as 1D, 2D, 3D except as concepts originated by Decartes that enable us to describe what we experience as space. We would be mistaking the descriptor of our experience for the experience itself. All of science is about descriptors, i.e. ways of conceptualising reality, and depends itself on the underlying descriptor of language, which is built around the concept of different and separate things that interact in ways that physicists set about studying, with varying degrees of success.

    Our descriptors take on a life of their own. Before we know it, we're using them as causative agents in their own right, and modelling reality based on them. We construct laws, such as those of thermodynamics, and force reality into our way of describing it. If our model of reality should ever fail in providing adequate explanations, then we often make the serious mistake of preferring the model, which is the origin of dogmatism in science -- indeed, dogmatism in general.

    We've always thought, at any given time, that we're on the right track to understanding. Instead of using guarded language that keeps our descriptors fluid and able to change, we tend to latch onto present understandings, thus introducing inertia into the system. To overcome that inertia may require more effort than it need; in extremis, we'll even allow ourselves to have mutually incompatible theories (i.e. descriptive systems), such as relativity and quantum mechanics.

    In a sense, materialism is perfectly valid within certain bounds. We can go a good way towards describing reality and coming up with ways of manipulating our environment if we treat reality as if it's composed of matter. The language of materialism lends itself quite well to the way we experience reality, and science is a pretty successful method that has the added advantage that it is testable, so long as we stick with true empiricism.

    But we don't, do we? Increasingly, we've been formulating abstract theories and giving those precedence over observable facts; even ignoring those facts when they contradict theory. Most of the standard cosmological model can't be said to be materialistic precisely because it's not based on empiricism. People didn't detect dark matter or energy or black holes, etc., so much as inferred them from prior models, some of which, true enough, might have a certain degree of empirical grounding: albeit not enough to justify cosmologists' Kafkaesque peregrinations into fantasy land.

    To hear many cosmologists speak, you'd think that the standard model is rock solid. Millions of people confidently parrot their language, not realising that prevailing cosmological consensus is itself the work of a bunch of sacerdotal parrots who've convinced themselves of a certain metaphysical view: certainly not a hard-nosed, empirically based one. We're surrounded by such conjecture: about CAGW; the link between AIDS and HIV; neo-Darwinism; the efficacy of many drugs and the veracity of medical opinion in general; and on and on.

    It's becoming obvious even at the ordinary societal level (think fake news, for example) that we're basing our view of reality on officially sanctioned myth. Postmodern thought has become our reality, but increasingly it's being seen for what it is: speculative metaphysics. Something is in the air, and it might represent a more empirical approach to the description of reality -- ironically, a greater faith in materialism in its due place, as a convenient descriptor of empirical facts -- whilst at the same time recognising that that which it imperfectly describes, viz. reality, is something distinct from, and more fundamental than, it.
     
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  19. Nelson

    Nelson Member

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    So true! Even worse, dishonest people such as Richard Dawkins pose as champions of Science (in this case Scientism) and get massive airtime; yet Dawkins parrots these cosmological stories as if they were facts.

    For those interested, this other interview with Seriah and Wallace Thornhill is intense; the first half of the interview is Thornhill smashing down one nonsense idea in cosmology after another:
    http://www.wheredidtheroadgo.com/sh...hornhill-on-the-electric-universe-may-10-2014
     
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  20. Michael Larkin

    Michael Larkin Member

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    Thanks for that, Nelson. If you search for the video (which I agree is great) on youtube (using the term "Wallace Thornhill on The Electric Universe - May 10, 2014"), you get a version of it whose URL you can embed, like so:

     
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