What are your opinions on enlightenment/self-realization and what are they based on?
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03-02-2015, 06:21 PM
What are your opinions on enlightenment/self-realization and what are they based on?
(03-02-2015 05:01 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(02-02-2015 10:52 PM)Spirtic Wrote:  Yeah, that it's unclear and complicated is an unfortunate limitation of trying to use words to describe that which is ineffable. This is good to know though, because my aim in being here is to hone my ability to describe it so that it is both clear and precise.

There is nothing about "ineffable" that's has anything to do with science. You're just the latest in a VERY VERY long line of nuts coming here to try to peddle your pet shit.

You're right, something that can't be described doesn't have to do with the scientific method. However, what the products of the scientific method points to, and the truths that come from it, can certainly be described as ineffable. There is no way to put accurately into words, for instance, a peak experience, or the feeling of oneness that comes from drug trips or altered states of consciousness. Yet these things do happen.

This is certainly not "my" pet shit. This is reality. That I am not doing an adequate job of describing it is my own failing, and one that I'm here to correct.
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03-02-2015, 06:23 PM
What are your opinions on enlightenment/self-realization and what are they based on?
(03-02-2015 06:12 AM)bemore Wrote:  Last october I got a diploma in 'clinical hypnotherapy'. Sadly hypnotherapy is currently unregulated, so it is as open to woo and charlatans as much as its open to people like me, who would like to understand what happens in our brains and use it to try and improve other peoples lifes.

Some ineresting information on hypnotherapy can be found here on the British Psychological Societies website.

http://www.digest.bps.org.uk/2013/08/neu...nosis.Html

What is interesting is that, through guided imagery, I can change the way people see and react to the world around them, I am the intermediary to a person sculpting their own consciousness. I do not fully understand how it works, I am just repeating tried and tested methods that my hypnotic predecessors learnt.

This to me just re-enforces that the 'self' is illusory. I could potentially hypnotise somebody and give them suggestions to experience talking to god and that the experience would touch them deeply. If they were willing to accept these suggestions then they would experience this in their own subjective way, drawing upon all of their previous experiences and memories on what they percieve god is. They might see god as a man or a force.... whatever.

They would not be conversing with god, although they might believe they have done.

EDIT. Apologies the link I posted does not seem to work. I am using the internet on my ps4 and have to type links out as i cant copy them. If people google 'neuroscience gets serious about hypnotherapy' then you will find the link.

That's very interesting, I'll keep this in mind for my chapter on the illusory 'self.'
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03-02-2015, 06:31 PM
What are your opinions on enlightenment/self-realization and what are they based on?
(03-02-2015 08:30 AM)pablo Wrote:  Spiritic, you seem to be trying to'synthesize' a 'spiritual'(whatever that means) atheistish hybrid.
In other words, an atheist (sorta) who is willing to accept a certain amount of woo, and desperately needs to believe in something that (as you've described it) falls just a hair short of being called a god.

You claim to be an atheist, yet you believe (or want to believe) in a higher consciousness than yourself.
Perhaps Buddhism is what you're looking for?

I accept no woo and I don't "need" to believe anything. I came here because I know that what I'm describing is difficult to describe, especially without it sounding mystical, so I want to know where I go wrong in communicating it. Saying things like "awareness is not found in the mind" is one of those things that I have to watch out for saying.

God is just a term. If someone wants to call the whole universe god, then so be it, but it adds nothing to the conversation.

I assure you, I'm an atheist and a skeptic. I don't believe things without evidence. What I'm pointing is in fact the only reality that we can know, that we are present and aware. It's just so obvious and simple that it's overlooked. That's all I'm saying, except just saying that doesn't help people, because they know intuitively that it's true. You know for a fact that you're present and aware right now.

So, what I want to do is build a case for getting people to recognize its truth and the importance of the recognition.

I certainly DO NOT want to believe in a higher consciousness than myself. And buddhism is not what i'm looking for. Buddhism misses the mark, it adds things that don't need to be added. Rituals, rights, reincarnation; all sorts of stuff that is unnecessary for seeing the truth of ones being.

I get why you're assuming things about me that aren't true. I come here talking about awareness, and spirituality, and the ineffable. I'd be skeptical too were it not for the fact that I have seen clearly what it means to be awareness.

I'm happy I came; I knew i'd be faced with a tough challenge in trying to communicate this stuff. Sam Harris tried in his book, but I think he missed the mark as well. Plus, this stuff is really interesting to me, and I think it's important, so I want to try my luck and showing how science and spirituality are really pointing to the same fundamental truth of who we are.
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03-02-2015, 06:33 PM (This post was last modified: 03-02-2015 06:38 PM by bemore.)
RE: What are your opinions on enlightenment/self-realization and what are they based on?




You might appreciate this spirtic. The line of questioning.

In case link doesnt work.... Drop yourself-mooji

I feel so much, and yet I feel nothing.
I am a rock, I am the sky, the birds and the trees and everything beyond.
I am the wind, in the fields in which I roar. I am the water, in which I drown.
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04-02-2015, 01:00 PM
What are your opinions on enlightenment/self-realization and what are they based on?
(03-02-2015 06:33 PM)bemore Wrote:  



You might appreciate this spirtic. The line of questioning.

In case link doesnt work.... Drop yourself-mooji

Thank you for sharing. After I had gone through the rigmarole of meditation and seeking through a formal practice, I came to the notion of self-inquiry. I found this to be a more effective and direct route to understanding what it means to be awareness existing.

I sometimes revisit videos/books similar to this and smile, as I see now how they are all just pointers to the same thing. I may have watched something 10 times, and intellectually I would understand it, and at the moment of perceiving it, I could sense its veracity, but that sensing would slowly dissipate throughout the day. That is, until I recognized that the truth of what is being said never dissipates, because any thought of it dissipating, is itself something that arises in awareness. You can never not be what you are.
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04-02-2015, 09:05 PM
RE: What are your opinions on enlightenment/self-realization and what are they based on?
Wait, did you hear that. Oh, this is sure stirring up some ghosts for me. 3 decade flashback to when I was a student of Cherniak's Minimal Rationality and Martin's Would it matter all that much if there were no selves? Good times.




#sigh
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04-02-2015, 10:21 PM
Thanks
(04-02-2015 09:05 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  Wait, did you hear that. Oh, this is sure stirring up some ghosts for me. 3 decade flashback to when I was a student of Cherniak's Minimal Rationality and Martin's Would it matter all that much if there were no selves? Good times.

I've put "Would it matter all that much if there were no selves" on my kindle to read a little later. From the intro though, I'm quite intrigued. Thanks for introducing me to the work of Martin.
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04-02-2015, 10:41 PM
RE: What are your opinions on enlightenment/self-realization and what are they based on?
(03-02-2015 06:17 PM)Spirtic Wrote:  I fully agree that observing thoughts through mindfulness exercises is the brains normal function.

That's really what I'm getting at. I'm not proposing anything radical or woo (despite how the language may seem).

The 'self' or 'ego' is simultaneously assumed with whatever the current contents of consciousness are. Since most of our thoughts are self-centered thoughts, about what "I" have to do in the future, how "I" am feeling, etc. this further reinforces the illusion that the 'self' actually exists as some independent entity. However, as neuroscience and psychology demonstrates, this idea of a 'self' residing somewhere in the brain is illusory. That we believe we experience it is not illusory, but its existence is illusory.

Citation please.

(03-02-2015 06:17 PM)‘Spirtic Wrote:  The problem is, when people assume that the 'self' is real, then it creates all sorts of problems. Mental suffering, anxiety, depression, jealousy, guilt, etc. are tied to the false belief that we are this self. Now, even if people know that the 'self' is an illusion, they still live their lives as though it's not.

What I'm pointing to, is that when we're observing the contents of consciousness through mindfulness meditation or whatever, what we're really seeing is our true nature, as the awareness in which the contents of consciousness arise.

Now, to dispel the false belief that we're the sense of self, we need some truth to go back to. The only truth we can ever really know is that we are present and aware. This is the simple truth. This is recognition of spiritual enlightenment or whatever you want to call it. So, by focusing on that, and seeing yourself as that, you can dispel the false belief that you're a separate self, and live free of the trouble that comes from assuming your are the 'self.'

That was a bit of a ramble...

I’m really trying to follow you and give you the benefit of serious consideration.

So far what I’m getting is an unnecessary convolution of what we already know exists.

Our physical being.

Our self awareness.
"Self-awareness is a psychological state in which people are aware of their traits, feelings and behaviour. Alternately, it can be defined as the realization of oneself as an individual entity."
(Crisp & Turner, 2010)

Our consciousness.
The conscious mind includes such things as the sensations, perceptions, memories, feeling and fantasies inside of our current awareness.

Is there something else that you are alluding to? Something that falls outside what current psychology already tells us?

“I am quite sure now that often, very often, in matters concerning religion and politics a man’s reasoning powers are not above the monkey’s.”~Mark Twain
“Ocean: A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man - who has no gills.”~ Ambrose Bierce
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05-02-2015, 02:55 AM
RE: What are your opinions on enlightenment/self-realization and what are they based on?
(02-02-2015 01:24 PM)unfogged Wrote:  
(02-02-2015 12:38 PM)Spirtic Wrote:  ...the scientific evidence for our true nature, with the spiritual recognition of what we are.

I have no clue what you are talking about. What is our "true nature" and what scientific evidence supports that? What is "spiritual recognition" and what are we?

According to the thinking of the Dalai Lama, we have two distinct "selves". The ego-self, which is a product of our conditioning--a composite of the cultural memes which we have come into contact and have either assimilated or rejected. This is the "self" that is illusory. If we were brought up in a different culture, we would be completely different people (speaking from the perspective of our ego-selves). Ego-selves are largely self-created.

Our "real" selves, on the other hand, are what we are by virtue of being human. I think it is safe to say that the only solid pillar of human nature is that we have the desire for happiness and freedom from suffering. At least, normatively.

There is a Buddhist document that explains the difference far better than I can. I have attached it to this post, if anyone is interested.

The problems of using the term "spiritual" have been pointed out to me in another post, and it is probably better not to use the term, at all.


Attached File(s)
.docx  Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism.docx (Size: 30.14 KB / Downloads: 28)

If we believe absurdities, we shall commit atrocities.--Voltaire.

"To argue with a man who has renounced the use and authority of reason is like administering medicine to the dead." --Thomas Paine.
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05-02-2015, 01:06 PM
RE: What are your opinions on enlightenment/self-realization and what are they based on?
(02-02-2015 12:38 PM)Spirtic Wrote:  As a long-time atheist and skeptic, I recently came to the recognition of what is commonly called enlightenment/awakening/self-realization.

I'm currently writing a book that synthesizes the scientific evidence for our true nature, with the spiritual recognition of what we are.

I'm not sure what you mean by "spiritual". I'm probably one of the least spiritual people around.

However I do feel in my own way enlightened/awakened and I do relate this to self-realisation.
For me, acting in a conscious, calculated way means enlightenment or awake. Meaning that since I don't have religious dogma (I have always taken this for granted since I've never been a theist) and since I don't have moral beliefs (I used to have them, I used to think I knew the difference between right and wrong, that there were some clear unwritten rules of the universe for me to follow), without this dogma I am able to make decisions by being self aware, by calculating my future options, taking conscious and appropriate risks, making decisions for me.
It has opened doors for me, created opportunities, come with much responsibilities, much self confidence, less guilt, more self forgiveness.
Perhaps you could call that spiritual, I don't though.
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