Krishnamurti & the Art of Awakening
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The Precipice


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Sat, 16 Nov 2019 #31
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1578 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
Saying "I am nothing" still retains the "I" and the "am" and then the "nothing" just becomes "something" that we are.

In 'nothingness, there is no 'I', no 'you', no 'we', no 'they' not even a this or that. So we are struggling here with our conflicts, fears, seeing the chaos of Man around us and in us and someone comes along and says the reason you're going through all this is because you can't see that 'you' don't exist...you are nothing, an illusion of permanency put together by the brain using a trick of separating out a 'thinker' from the thinking process. Why is a question. It's not that you remain 'you' in nothingness; there never was a 'you' or a 'me' only nothing, emptiness. So the 'problems' 'we' are going through are more or less exclusive to our species. They are 'problems' derived from thought which is a 'material' process in this 'new' brain. Thought has taken chronological time and imported it into the psyche: "I'm not this yet but I will be". "Becoming" as K. calls it. And it, the brain, is conditioned to hold onto this psychological 'me' accumulation and protect it against all perceived threats much as the physical body will fight to save itself from harm. So I see the 'folly' here if any of this is true, is the brain's intransigence of letting go of this self image which is nothing but an accumulation of memories. Which is not to say that the memories, feelings, thoughts, actions are not complex, they are, and touch the sublime at times: Shakespeare, Mozart, Leonardo, the great dancers, singers, poets, etc. But as we stand now, unless something is "broken through" how can there not just be more of the same frantic need for new amusements, entertainments, innovations...and always bigger and more deadly weapons to protect ourselves from the 'other'?.

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Sat, 16 Nov 2019 #32
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 775 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
In 'nothingness, there is no 'I', no 'you', no 'we', no 'they' not even a this or that.

I understand. But who is saying, "I am nothing"? Isn't the meaning of "I am nothing" essentially different from "there is no me, there is no self"? The illusion of self is dissolved by insight, but the brain is not dissolved, is it? What does the brain which understands the nature of the "me" actually perceive when it says "I understand that I am nothing"? The brain and the tree are not "nothing" in the sense that the self is. There actually is no self but there actually IS a material brain which perceives and understands and there is a material tree, isn't there?

As I see it, the brain which says, "I am nothing" is still tethered to an idea of the "I". The idea is still active but altered, more subtle.

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Sat, 16 Nov 2019 #33
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1578 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
There actually is no self but there actually IS a material brain which perceives and understands and there is a material tree, isn't there?

As I see it, the brain which says, "I am nothing" is still tethered to an idea of the "I". The idea is still active but altered, more subtle.

Yes thank you. This occurred to me after my post: this description that K. uses about this "nothingness", "vast emptiness" is of course only that, a description not the 'thing'. My opinion is that he is not lying nor is he demented, he is trying to communicate something to us. I would put it that he is trying to describe what it is like for a human being to "blossom". From the point of view of the material brain, as I see it, this 'blossoming' is another way to say that the brain is
resonating with this unnameable dimension. It can resonate with it because it is an 'instrument' of it (?) And this resonance is not possible when the brain is filled with what it is filled with. Flashes of insight into this 'dimension' produce great art but the blossoming remains a rare event. K. says it is because of fear. I don't know if that is true but I know there is great fear in me.

This post was last updated by Dan McDermott Sat, 16 Nov 2019.

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Sat, 16 Nov 2019 #34
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 775 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
I would put it that he is trying to describe what it is like for a human being to "blossom". From the point of view of the material brain, as I see it, this 'blossoming' is another way to say that the brain is resonating with this unnameable dimension.

Again, I don’t agree. As far as I recall, K never in fact tried to describe any other dimension or what it is like to blossom. He never encouraged speculation about anything unknown. He encouraged the listener to observe what his actual experiencing consists of, to be aware of the processes which govern his actions. What we actually experience - the sorrows, the joys, the anxiety, fear, bordeom - is not speculation. Speculation has nothing to do with awareness, attention and understanding. Thought - the part of the brain which is dedicated to thought - can see the truth about the self, the “me”, for itself. The self is not a thing, no thing.

I don't want to be harsh, but I don’t understand your insistence (not just you of course) on this concept. Or is it more than a concept for you? We have come to this disagreement you and I several times and I feel it is misleading and therefore wrong to insist on “nothingness” as a dimension when we know nothing about it except as an idea. At least I personally know nothing about it. What good is it to “believe” in this dimension of nothingness when the fact is that we still live in sorrow and discontent? Don’t we?

This post was last updated by Huguette . Sat, 16 Nov 2019.

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Sat, 16 Nov 2019 #35
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2900 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette: What good is it to “believe” in this dimension of nothingness when the fact is that we still live in sorrow and discontent? Don’t we?

K said that thought is conflict. Of course he was referring to psychological thought....ideals, beliefs, should and shouldn’t. If we’re thinking of that ‘vast emptiness’ or ‘being nothing ‘ of Ks, aren’t we making that into an ideal...something I think I should experience or understand? Something (an image of something) I want. So we are avoiding what we actually are....our emotions, thoughts, and/or actions....the reality of our life NOW. If we’re in conflict that’s reality, no? If I’m angry with my spouse for example, that’s what I escape from to some imagined nirvana. If I hate my boss, that’s painful, but that’s the reality of my life when it’s (the emotion) actually happening.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Sat, 16 Nov 2019.

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Sat, 16 Nov 2019 #36
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1578 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
What good is it to “believe” in this dimension of nothingness when the fact is that we still live in sorrow and discontent? Don’t we?

Huguette, I'm taking K. 'at his word' here which was supposedly said as he was nearing death:

K."If you only knew what you have missed – that vast emptiness”

How do you interpret that as anything other than what the words point at? It may not be of interest to you or others but it is to me. I don't know why. I've tried to understand it in the context of my own life. Of what is missing. Of what 'blossoming' might really mean for us.

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Sat, 16 Nov 2019 #37
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2900 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
that vast emptiness”

How do you interpret that as anything other than what the words point at?

Hope you don’t mind my butting in, Dan, but if I don’t experience that, then it’s obviously just an image or ideal or idea....nothing else. The word emptiness isn’t emptiness. No word is. Just as the word tree isn’t a tree. Can I search for something that is beyond idea or ideal? I can only search for something I know, not the unknown....not truth.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Sat, 16 Nov 2019.

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Sun, 17 Nov 2019 #38
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 775 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
I'm taking K. 'at his word' here which was supposedly said as he was nearing death

https://jkrishnamurti.org/content/if-you-are-no...

So can you be nothing, actually which you are? You may call yourself by a name, you have a particular face and so on, bank account, house, but strip all that, what are you? Strip your knowledge, your occupation, your endeavours, all that - those are memories, words. Remove the words, remove the memory - consciously, you know, not become insane or lose your memory, or senility, but actually when you are alive, full of energy, which is being wasted in occupation, when that is not occupied, when there is no occupation, there is tremendous energy in nothingness. Test it out. Don't accept a thing from anybody.

He says "you are nothing", meaning you ARE NOT your occupation, your endeavours, you bank account, your house, your face, your name, your memories, “all that”. To me, that negative nothing (i.e. what you ARE NOT) doesn’t mean that you ARE “that vast emptiness”. That’s what I understand. He also says, “don’t accept a thing from anybody”.

As he is dying, he says “if you only knew”, but he doesn’t say, “just take my word for it”. He realizes we do NOT know. In 60 years of talking, he never urged his listeners to take his word as authority. What good can that do?

I for one am not sure that at the end K's brain did not ramble or deteriorate. If it did happen, that would not invalidate the truth he spoke in his lifetime, as far as I'm concerned.

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Sun, 17 Nov 2019 #39
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5417 posts in this forum Offline

Without reading the above messages from the last day or so, I would say that being at the edge of the precipice, it is essential that we focus on the primary, fundamental problem which is the human self. The ego, the “I”, the “me”. While not disparaging practical action in the world, if the roots of the self are untouched, such action is in the end useless. I know most people 'out there' would not agree with this, but this is how it seems to me.

The World is in me, it is me. At this moment I feel that I am seeing this clearly. I may be wrong. As has been stated many times, I am the problem. So why is it so enormously difficult for the problem of the self to be resolved? I suggest this this is the reason - because the mind is deeply conditioned into the idea that there is a separate entity which can solve the problem. Separate from thought, separate from the self. Or rather the mind is conditioned to accept that the self IS the separate entity, superior entity.

This is false, but still the mind pursues it. So why does the mind pursue what is false?

My suggested answer, from observation of myself, is because we cannot face the perceived void, the emptiness, the nothingness, the absence of me, that seems to threaten if the falseness of the self is revealed. Please note that I said SEEMS TO threaten. It may well be that the mind is afraid of an illusion.

What do others say? Is this nonsense? Are each of these steps in reasoning correct?

This post was last updated by Clive Elwell Sun, 17 Nov 2019.

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Sun, 17 Nov 2019 #40
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 775 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
While not disparaging practical action in the world, if the roots of the self are untouched, such action is in the end useless.

Are you now feeling that it is useless to initiate a project such as the one you suggested in your "Have you ever sat very quietly without any movement" thread? (I did respond to you there.)

Can it be that the root of the self IS “touched” even where the brain has not been transformed? Can it be that something new IS acting even though the old has not been completely dissolved? So that where there is a strong, unrelenting impulse to act, one is unsure or unclear as to whether that impulse is driven by the old brain or whether it is a “new impulse”:

http://jiddu-krishnamurti.net/en/1957/1957-02-2...

...unless the mind is emptied of the old there can be no new impulse.

But where the impulse to act is strong and unrelenting, where one is attentive to motives, contradictions, attachments, beliefs, ideals, pretense, deceit, fears, and so on, can’t one ACT on the impulse even while being unsure whether or not it is thought driving the impulse? One might eventually realize that one has made a mistake and the “new impulse”, the “pure impulse”, might reveal itself to be rooted in the past. But I wonder whether one must repress the strong, unrelenting impulse and wait for certainty in order to act? There is no certainty.

Clive Elwell wrote:
So why does the mind pursue what is false?

My suggested answer, from observation of myself, is because we cannot face the perceived void, the emptiness, the nothingness, the absence of me, that seems to threaten if the falseness of the self is revealed.

It just now strikes me that discontent must be faced in the same way that fear is faced --- that is, without the word, without the explanation, without the rationale, and so on. Instead, our usual approach to "facing" discontent is to bemoan the fact that we have not changed, that the mind is still pursuing the false. Isn’t it?

We have followed thought to its source many times, haven’t we? We understand the nature of self and time and, still, we observe that “we cannot face the perceived void, the emptiness”. Isn’t that where our discontent lies? But in fact, as long as we are “naming” in this way, we are not actually facing discontent as we face fear, it seems to me. By naming, we are avoiding discontent. And so we are still caught in the web of words, knowledge, time, self.

This post was last updated by Huguette . Sun, 17 Nov 2019.

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Sun, 17 Nov 2019 #41
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1578 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
Can I search for something that is beyond idea or ideal? I can only search for something I know, not the unknown....not truth.

Why bring "search" into this? Doesn't it imply a 'searcher' looking for something? Can't one have this 'notion' of a "vast emptiness" beyond the movement of thought without searching for it? Can you search for 'negation'? One can have a notion of something that has been called 'Love" that one knows one doesn't have without searching for it, right? Someone spoke about its 'existence', it may be or not. Can't it be left at that? Searching can only be for the 'known' as you say. What may be beyond the known, is just that:unknown. Love, Intelligence, Wisdom, Compassion, Emptiness. The 'Blossoming'? The caterpillar doesn't aspire to become the unknown butterfly, it just 'does'.

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Sun, 17 Nov 2019 #42
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2900 posts in this forum Offline

Can't it be left at that?

Apparently not if we’re bringing it up here. Why bring it up here if we don’t think we want it or need it or aspire to it or are intrigued by it? I mean, why talk about it at all if we’re not interested in the notion? And why do we find it interesting? We want to find out I would think. Maybe I’m mistaken.

Let it Be

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Sun, 17 Nov 2019 #43
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1578 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
This is false, but still the mind pursues it. So why does the mind pursue what is false?

My suggested answer, from observation of myself, is because we cannot face the perceived void, the emptiness, the nothingness, the absence of me, that seems to threaten if the falseness of the self is revealed. Please note that I said SEEMS TO threaten. It may well be that the mind is afraid of an illusion.

Any image of 'emptiness', 'void', etc has to be an illusion. You can't imagine 'nothing' itself, only the absence of things, most notably, yourself! And ironically 'you' don't even exist...so isn't it a case of an illusion imagining the ending of itself. No wonder we act the way we do. Thought creates the illusion of 'you' which then drives itself crazy worrying about what's going to happen to itself! Sort of a tempest in a teapot?

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Sun, 17 Nov 2019 #44
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 775 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote at 31:
In 'nothingness, there is no 'I', no 'you', no 'we', no 'they' not even a this or that.

How do "I" know that? Does one perceive it directly? Direct perception drives action. How can something taken on authority have a crucial, revolutionary effect on the mind, and consequently on the action that is taken?

Dan McDermott wrote:
...someone comes along and says the reason you're going through all this is because you can't see that 'you' don't exist...you are nothing, an illusion of permanency put together by the brain using a trick of separating out a 'thinker' from the thinking process.

So I still don't perceive the fact of it directly. I still don't SEE that as a fact. Therefore it's a notion. Does it make sense to accept any notion for a fact?

But even though I DON'T see it, it does interest me, it pulls me to act because I live in discontent. So I look into it. There's nothing wrong in looking into it, is there? But I can't just assume that it's so and make assertions about it as though it IS so. No?

Dan McDermott wrote at 41:
Can't one have this 'notion' of a "vast emptiness" beyond the movement of thought without searching for it?

As I see it, we are skipping back and forth between the notions of nothingness and emptiness here. In this skipping back and forth, sometimes the 2 terms are synonymous and sometimes they refer to 2 distinct phenomenon. We are not clear and cautious about our use of the words ... we are unaware of the ensuing confusion.

This post was last updated by Huguette . Sun, 17 Nov 2019.

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Sun, 17 Nov 2019 #45
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1578 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
We are not clear and cautious about our use of the words ... we are unaware the ensuing confusion.

I think that thought is only too happy to keep the ball rolling...no matter what. Now is that a fact? Anything but, stopping. As long as it can question, investigate, explore, it can keep the illusion of the 'self, alive, the prober, the seeker, the explainer, the solver, etc. And K. has said (as well as others) that time/thought must have a stop.

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Sun, 17 Nov 2019 #46
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 775 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
I think that thought is only too happy to keep the ball rolling...no matter what.

Clearly it is a fact. I am in crisis - the crisis is my discontent. This is what I “know”, what I am intimately aware of. And then I avoid it by endlessly questioning, investigating, exploring” - turning away from facing it. The mind is chasing its own tail. All this is clear.

Dan McDermott wrote:
And K. has said (as well as others) that time/thought must have a stop.

This is clear. Then let’s “just do it”.

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Sun, 17 Nov 2019 #47
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1578 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
This is clear. Then let’s “just do it”.

Yes...let's just do it!

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Sun, 17 Nov 2019 #48
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2900 posts in this forum Offline

Yes...let's just do it!

Thought likes to pretend it wants to cease. Of course wanting is not doing as we know. Just speaking generally, not saying it applies to anyone in particular

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Sun, 17 Nov 2019.

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Mon, 18 Nov 2019 #49
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5417 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote #24:
The question for me is, are we, the 'problem' humans, acceptable (serving our purpose) in the 'scheme of things' at this point in time,

So you accept that there IS a purpose, do you Dan? Can you say why? I am not arguing that there is not.

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Mon, 18 Nov 2019 #50
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5417 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
I seem to be the one bringing up 'being nothing' and it has met with some resistance. In the sense of" why speak of being nothing or "vast emptiness", etc., that's not where we are...

You might care to listen to the words of Dr R P Kaushik on the issue of silence, Dan. And others of course. As in this partial talk:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wSm5BMLzWY0

The whole talk is interesting to me.

when you are in this silence, and of this silence, then you can go deeper, then various cosmic energies manifest in the silence

This post was last updated by Clive Elwell Mon, 18 Nov 2019.

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Mon, 18 Nov 2019 #51
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2900 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
You might care to listen to the words of Dr R P Kaushik on the issue of silence, Dan. And others of course. As in this partial talk:

I wonder if there’s any meaning to investigating this silence when we are in conflict. It’s perhaps like investigating oneness or wholeness when we’re in division. I’m just questioning its value when I’m feeling anger or craving or fear, for example. As I’m seeing it, it has none. How does one understand oneself? Self understanding seems to be central to Ks teaching. Our usual state is conflict ...division, suffering, no? We attempt to move away from what we are to something else....silence or peace. It’s like investigating non violence when we’re violent.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Mon, 18 Nov 2019.

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Mon, 18 Nov 2019 #52
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5417 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote, quoting K #30:

The now then is nothing. I mean, when we use the word 'nothing', zero contains all the figures. Right? So nothing contains all.

How does zero contain all the figures, numbers?

It seems the more I consider the statement “I am nothing”, the more confused I become. And Huguette makes the distinction of “There is nothing”. How can there be nothing, when there are galaxies, stars, planets, moons, trees,all sorts of living things? Then at the microscopic level there are atoms, electrons, quarks, all sorts of material things. And energy? Are these things nothing? My senses are telling me all the time that there is ‘something’.

I can accept, as do some scientists, that all there is is vibrations of energy.

My understanding of “I am nothing” is the obvious one, that the “I” is merely a concept invented, projected, imagined, by thought. It has no actual existence.

How does being nothing mean one is everything? Does anyone have an actual sense of this?

(It is a strange thing, but I can remember as a young child lying in bed and ‘becoming nothing’ in some way)

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Mon, 18 Nov 2019 #53
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2900 posts in this forum Offline

What to do when faced with the precipice? I think we’ve moved off the topic somewhat into discussions of silence and of being nothing. Here’s something from K that perhaps will take us back on track, though I admit I find it difficult

Madras 1st public talk 1936:

Please see the importance of a pliable mind, a mind that knows the intricacies of fear with its illusions and is wholly free from them, a mind that is not controlled by environmental influences. Before we can comprehend the full significance of life, its vital processes, thought unconditioned by fear is necessary; and to awaken that creative thought, we must become conscious of the complex, the actual.

What do I mean by "being conscious"? I mean not only the objective perception of the interrelated complexity of life, but also the complete awareness of the hidden, subtle, psychological processes from which arise confusion, joy, struggle, and pain. Most of us think that we are conscious of the objective complexity of life. We are conscious of our jobs, of our bosses, of ourselves as employers or as the employed.

We are conscious of friction in relationship. This perception of the mere objective complexity of life is not, to me, full consciousness. We become fully conscious only when we deeply relate the psychological to the objective complexity. When we are able to relate through action the hidden with the known, then we are beginning to be conscious.

Before we can awaken in ourselves this full consciousness from which alone can come true creative expression, we must become aware of the actual, that is, of the prejudices, fears, tendencies, wants, with their many illusions and expressions. When we are thus aware, we shall know the relationship of the actual to our action which limits and conditions thought-emotion with its reactions, hopes and escapes. When we are conscious of the actual there is the immediate perception of the false. That very perception of the false is truth. Then there is no problem of choice, of good and evil, false and true, the essential and unessential. In perceiving what is, the false and the true are known, without the conflict of choice.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Mon, 18 Nov 2019.

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Mon, 18 Nov 2019 #54
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5417 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote #36 :
It may not be of interest to you or others but it is to me. I don't know why.

I am interested, Dan.

Of course the mind can turn anything into a concept, including ‘nothingness’, ‘vastness’, as Tom says. It can imagine that such a thing does exist, and it can invent ways of pursuing it. We know the mind does these things, but we can be aware of that, and not give importance to it. What the mind does has nothing to do with this ‘vast space’, this emptiness – if it does exist. I think we have to start by saying, “well, it may or may not exist, I don’t know. I won’t get carried away by concepts, but neither will I dismiss the possibility.

I see that thought cannot take a single step towards emptiness. It can only take steps away from it. In fact every movement of thought is more ‘noise’, isn’t it? But I don’t want to imply that the emptiness, IIE (if it exists) is the opposite of noise.

I think that we would agree that the mind is noise. Perhaps necessary noise at times, but always noise. And the thing about noise is that while it is there, we can’t hear sound. We can’t hear anything else, in fact. So the natural question to ask is: Can this noise end? I think that is a real question, one that can be investigated, looked at. Isn’t this the first step? Obviously it can’t end by any sort of effort.

When one looks quietly, passively, one sees that there is a natural process of thought ending, all the time. And there is a space between thoughts. I used to think that silence lay in the space, but I surprised to read K recently saying this is not so.

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Mon, 18 Nov 2019 #55
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5417 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
when that is not occupied, when there is no occupation, there is tremendous energy in nothingness

Interestingly, science is now saying this, that there is a tremendous amount of energy in emptiness. David Bohm once calculated just how much. And 'empty space' is not longer seen as empty space, rather a seething caldron of creation and destruction.

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Mon, 18 Nov 2019 #56
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5417 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:

Clive wrote: While not disparaging practical action in the world, if the roots of the self are untouched, such action is in the end useless.

Huguette replied: Are you now feeling that it is useless to initiate a project such as the one you suggested in your "Have you ever sat very quietly without any movement" thread? (I did respond to you there.)

I know you responded there, Huguette, thanks. I will reply soon. Many things seem to have demanded my attention of late. I am seriously trying to make myself less busy.

No, I am not feeling that it is useless. I can see logically that might seem to be in contradiction to what I wrote above - but I accept that thought IS contradictory. I have been observing how we, I, the brain, keeps things in separate compartments - which is another way of saying it is fragmented. When the compartments start to leak into each other, then there appears contradiction and so conflict.

The project might be a useless gesture, but at the moment I feel like pursuing it - at least for the learning that is in it for me.

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Tue, 19 Nov 2019 #57
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 775 posts in this forum Offline

Re: #48 and #51

Tom Paine wrote at 48:
Thought likes to pretend it wants to cease.

Is this statement insight or is it thought pretending that it is above the struggle to be free? Is it thought pretending not to be thought? Is it thought splitting off once again in an attempt not to be thought, in an attempt to be free?

And does “thought” (me, you, the others) pretend it wants to cease? Doesn’t it actually want to end because it thinks that its own demise is the key to happiness, because it desires and hopes that by ending, “it” will become happy? So what it really wants is happiness - to be happy - and it thinks that the ending of thought is the means to become happy. At the same time, thought realizes that as long as “it” makes any effort to end --- thought is continuing. No?

Is there insight into the whole question - whatever insight IS - insight into this struggle, into the nature of self? If there is such a thing as insight, then there is such a thing as “not thought” in the human being. Everything is not thought, all action is not thought, perception is not thought, understanding, compassion, observation, intelligence are not thought. They do not arise from memory, although they are not totally unrelated to memory in the sense that if the brain is not healthy - if disease or injury destroys memory - intelligence, compassion, understanding, cannot act. It seems so to me, I’m not asserting that it is.

Where there IS insight, then thought must “leave it alone” so to speak, not interfere, not take over, mustn’t it? Where (if) there is insight, it affects the mind, it affects thought, as I see it. The brain itself then realizes its own limitations and when it observes itself once again making an effort to be still or an effort to overcome, it does not once again split off into condemnation or approval. Or if such thoughts arise, it understands what is going on and simply observes, as I see it. That, to me, is the meaning of “just doing it”. I could be wrong.

Tom Paine wrote at 51:
I wonder if there’s any meaning to investigating this silence when we are in conflict. It’s perhaps like investigating oneness or wholeness when we’re in division. I’m just questioning its value when I’m feeling anger or craving or fear, for example. As I’m seeing it, it has none. How does one understand oneself? Self understanding seems to be central to Ks teaching. Our usual state is conflict ...division, suffering, no? We attempt to move away from what we are to something else....silence or peace. It’s like investigating non violence when we’re violent.

So the only thing we CAN do then is to observe the movements of the mind - the thoughts/emotions, the inner conflicts, contradictions, division, avoidance, escape, violence, anger, craving, desire, fear, anxiety, and so on - isn’t it? That, the human being can do. Aren't intelligence, observation, understanding, and so on, also part of the human being? Intelligence and understandig can act on those inner movements that are THERE, that are observed. We cannot observe what is NOT there. We can observe our ideas about what is not there and we can observe our desire for “the thing” that is not there. But we cannot observe “the thing” itself --- silence, wholeness, etc. And in diligently observing the inner movements - thoughts, emotions, intimations - aren't we learning to distinguish between “what is” and “what is desired, feared, and so on”?

We can listen to those who speak about silence or wholeness as long as we don’t take what they say as guidelines, instructions, method or a path --- or as Truth. There may be value in listening to that - or not. I don’t know.

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Tue, 19 Nov 2019 #58
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2900 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote at 48:

Thought likes to pretend it wants to cease.

Huguette: Is this statement insight or is it thought pretending that it is above the struggle to be free? Is it thought pretending not to be thought? Is it thought splitting off once again in an attempt not to be thought, in an attempt to be free?

Tom: I think you're complicating things Huguette. I was speaking from my own experience of trying in various subtle ways over the years to not think(not saying I'm totally free of this now when I have conflict and attempt to simply observe...to NOT think)...but this trying was obviously coming from thought. Perhaps I phrased it in a way that wasn't clear. I hope this simplifies it.

Huguette: And does “thought” (me, you, the others) pretend it wants to cease? Doesn’t it actually want to end because it thinks that its own demise is the key to happiness, because it desires and hopes that by ending, “it” will become happy? So what it really wants is happiness - to be happy - and it thinks that the ending of thought is the means to become happy. At the same time, thought realizes that as long as “it” makes any effort to end --- thought is continuing. No?
d

T: Yes, that's pretty much the way I see it. However we do pretend don't we that we want 'silence' for instance? As you say, we want happiness...we want suffering to end. Do we really want to be silent when we're actively thinking? Isn't that a self deception? Isn't it like the person with the eating disorder who says I don't want to eat so much and then the next moment gorges on some more cake or ice cream. When we say we want thought to end we want suffering to end, that's all....we want the problem to end...and we read that suffering ends when we're silent...when we can look/observe silently...free of thought. So yes, we want this idea/goal of silence...or of not eating so much ....but it's an idea. And yet this wanting is based upon thought/division. I don't know, I'm just questioning here....how the human mind works...my mind...anyone's mind. I'm possibly way off base about some of it.

H: the only thing we CAN do then is to observe the movements of the mind - the thoughts/emotions, the inner conflicts, contradictions, division, avoidance, escape, violence, anger, craving, desire, fear, anxiety, and so on - isn’t it? That, the human being can do.

T: INdeed! we can't observe what's NOT there. Nor can we understand it...grasp it... by thinking about it....thinking /pondering about the idea or ideal of something(vast emptiness?) beyond thinking. Am I mistaken?

H: Aren't intelligence, observation, understanding, and so on, also part of the human being? Intelligence and understandig can act on those inner movements that are THERE, that are observed. We cannot observe what is NOT there.

T: Oh you said it yourself... what I've been trying to get at in some of my replies to Dan and others.

H: We can observe our ideas about what is not there and we can observe our desire for “the thing” that is not there. But we cannot observe “the thing” itself --- silence, wholeness, etc.

H: We can listen to those who speak about silence or wholeness as long as we don’t take what they say as guidelines, instructions, method or a path --- or as Truth. There may be value in listening to that - or not. I don’t know.

T: What could that value be? I've never perceived any value in listening to K or anyone talk about silence, but what do I know about what's helpful to anyone else? I do see great value in talking about how we observe...observing how we observe ...understanding division created by ideals and beliefs and psychological or 'spiritual' goals. I'm just questioning here the value of talks like Clive linked to above. Perhaps there is some value that eludes me.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Tue, 19 Nov 2019.

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Tue, 19 Nov 2019 #59
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 775 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote at 52:
How does zero contain all the figures, numbers? ... How does being nothing mean one is everything?


(and from K quotes above) If the structure of time and thought ends the now has totally a different meaning. The now then is nothing. I mean, when we use the word 'nothing', zero contains all the figures. Right? So nothing contains all. But we are afraid to be nothing.

… but pure insight, which means comprehension of the totality of things - … - it is the perception of completeness. Right? That insight is not of time-thought. Therefore that insight is part of that brain which is in a different dimension.

That is, “pure insight, which means comprehension of the totality … IS the perception of completeness”. Put the other way around, “completeness is perceived” where there is “comprehension of the totality”. The totality which is understood is the totality of the psyche, the mind, thought and time, as I see it. It does not include all scientific, mathematical understanding (not to say that the psyche, science and math are not part of the whole). And that understanding itself, that comprehension, is nothing. That is, it contains no thought, no emotion, no memory, no thing. So where there is understanding, “the now” contains no thought, no emotion, no memory, no thing. And yet, there IS understanding --- which is therefore itself “something”, in some way. Because understanding and “not understanding” are not equivalent or interchangeable. Understanding transforms and frees. “Not understanding” limits or restricts. In the moment, in the now where there is understanding, there is no movement of memory, but memory still exists.

So this understanding - which itself is “nothing” - contains “everything” since it it "the perception of completeness", percpetion of the whole psyche.

Does “understanding” show up on an MRI or other measuring instrument?

Therefore, in terms of man’s psyche, we can also say that one human being “contains” all human beings, as in “you are the world”. “The perception of completeness … that insight … is not of time-th0ught … that insight is part of that brain which is in a different dimension”.

I don’t know if this makes sense to you.


K said “zero contains all the figures”. I’m not sure what that means to mathematicians. That’s why I didn’t bold it. I ignored it. But it does mean something to me, if you’re interested!

Any number other than zero can only contain itself plus all the numbers leading up to it. That is, “one” contains only “one”. “Two” contains 2 and it also contains 1+1, and so on.

But zero is nothing. Does it therefore contain nothing?

“One” with a zero after it is 10. “Ten” contains itself plus all the numbers up to 10 but it does not “contain” zero. It contains 10, which is not zero. Similarly for 100, for 1000, and so on.

So “zero” in this sense is transformative: it transforms 1 into 10, and so on. On its own, zero is nothing. At the same time, if zero is placed before the 1, zero does not transform 1 etc.

If infinity is introduced :o) - e.g. 2 + zeros to infinity - then the presence of zero-to-infinity transforms 2 so that it “contains” infinity, but only going “forward”. What about “1” as well as 1? Can infinity exclude 1 + zero to infinity? Can there be infinity in one direction and not in the other? I can’t even venture there.

Plus I have no idea how to approach negative numbers. I loved algebra in school but I’m no mathematician as must be obvious to any mathematicians reading this. My apologies to math and mathematicians.

There is obviously order in math but I don’t understand much about math. I feel that math is a reflection of the fundamental order in the universe. And order concerns us, doesn't it? The universe comes - came - first. Then math is an expression of the order that is observed, as are other fields of human expression. But it is the same order in all fields.

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Tue, 19 Nov 2019 #60
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2900 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
So, here we are standing at the very edge of the human precipice. God knows what the world will be like in 20 years time. What is our response? K asked, decades ago “What will you do”, but I am not sure that is the right question. The question what ARE we doing perhaps deserves more our consideration?

Getting back to the subject of the OP, I'm sharing your question again, Clive. For me the issue has always been violence...violence and suffering. That's what the precipice means to me....man is violent and he suffers and causes suffering for his fellow man. So the questiion of the precipice to me is how do we act when faced with this violence...when faced with what we are....the human problem? If I've brushed aside talk about silence and 'emptiness' or 'being nothing',, it's because I dont see the relevance to the question in the OP... the present human crisis...the precipice. I've been reading some history lately of the Middle Ages, and the extremes of violence and brutality that man was capable of (and still is) becomes almost unbearable to read about. The question, 'can the self end', is of course relevant here because we see, at least intellectually, that the self is the cause of the crisis. But I don't have a clue how to end the self, so why ponder that question at all? What I do perceive quite simply is the conflict I face or may be facing...and how conflict in relationship manifests in living. This I CAN observe and attempt to understand...to understand the cause or causes. IDK, I'm just trying to get back on track here to the issue raised in the OP. I'm a little confused as to where some of the posts are going and how they relate to the question of the precipice.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Tue, 19 Nov 2019.

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