Krishnamurti & the Art of Awakening
A Quiet Space | moderated by Clive Elwell

There is a deep contradiction in the mind


Displaying all 22 posts
Page 1 of 1
Sun, 05 Apr 2020 #1
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5949 posts in this forum Offline

This suddenly came to me on waking:

Thought thinks about 'me'. That is, there is some thought that either contains explicitly the word 'me', or the word 'I', or makes some sort of reference to me, to a centre, in an implicit sort of way. I am this, or that, I am happy, I am unhappy, I want this, I don't want this, etc. So thought is 'claiming', assuming, that what it is thinking about, is me.

But at the same time the thing that is doing the thinking, the thing that is actually making this reference, the thing that is making this claim about me, is actually the me that is me. So there is a contradiction here. There are two 'me's'. simultaneously. The me is both the entity doing the thinking – perhaps better say the me is act of thinking - and it is also what is being thought about. what is being thought about is also claiming to be me. I see this as a basic contradiction. it is duality, it an is impossibility. It is false, a lie. And my whole mental existence is based upon this contradiction.

I don't know if this makes sense to anyone? It was very clear to me. This contradiction is what is, but I don't want to try to reconcile the perception with anything K said, I don't want to use his words.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Sun, 05 Apr 2020 #2
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5949 posts in this forum Offline

What is important is not to try to resolve the contradiction. Not to try to act upon it, not even to rationalise it. There IS no rationalisation of it, it IS a contradiction. And it must be faced as such.

As with all the 'issues' of the mind, the issue must be faced without any attempt to escape from it. If we try to escape, we cannot understand the issue. Only by facing the issue can the issue be understood, and so, perhaps, gone beyond. We might go into the question of what exactly 'facing' entails. But fundamentally it seems to me to mean not attempting to move away from it. Non to move it into the realm of the known. Then there can be a full impact of what is seen.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 06 Apr 2020 #3
Thumb_spock Douglas MacRae-Smith France 292 posts in this forum Offline

A few more contradictions:

In what way are my thoughts me? - I have no control over them - I don't choose what to think - sometimes they seem to have more control over me (or my emotions)

The same can be said for my emotions, beliefs, sense of self, brain etc. ie. in what way are my emotions me?

Also, in what sense is the world out there not me? All that I grasp or know about the world is sensed, interpreted, apprehended and given meaning by "me"

Question: What is this me that actually is me?

Look, see, let go

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 06 Apr 2020 #4
Thumb_avatar idiot ? United States 182 posts in this forum Offline

Quite a bit of thought is internal dialogue. What is internal dialogue? It is division. I have divided myself into the talker and the listener. And when I talk to myself about myself, I further divide into the talker and the talked about.

Thought, by nature, is division. It is the separation of this from that. Distinction. which means telling things apart.

No differentiation is no thought. In other words, can one look around without naming things, without identifying boundaries of things, without recognition? It's like looking at a printed page of words: Can one just look and see only black and white shape, without registering any meaning from reading the words? We are so, so conditioned to read that it is almost impossible to look at a page without any recognition. But it is a very interesting experiment.

This post was last updated by idiot ? Mon, 06 Apr 2020.

Sign in to recommend  This post has been recommended by 1 reader
Back to Top
Mon, 06 Apr 2020 #5
Thumb_profiel Wim Opdam Belgium 913 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
But at the same time the thing that is doing the thinking, the thing that is actually making this reference, the thing that is making this claim about me, is actually the me that is me. So there is a contradiction here. There are two 'me's'. simultaneously.

I don't see it as such

where is the contra of diction ?

"diction"

noun
style of speaking or writing as dependent upon choice of words:

the accent, inflection, intonation, and speech-sound quality manifested by an individual speaker, usually judged in terms of prevailing standards of acceptability; enunciation.

so to say : "ME is not ME or I" seems to me the contradiction!

Last year I had a conversation about my son saying "he is authistisch" and was corrected by
"No he has authisme" and indeed it's only one aspect of him, he is more than his sickness
but at the same time he is what he have.

Yesterday i heard someone saying about a good development of corona:
'We were on the edge of a ravine, but now we made a huge step forward'
that's for me a contradiction.!

In math, symbols are used to represent something, often referred to as "unknown."
If 'me' or 'I' is simply seen as an 'unknown' factor that gets better known as one progresses but is never completely resolved, there is no problem anymore.

I can live with this explanation, maybe it's some help for you

Truth will unfold itself to those who enquire their own actions.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 06 Apr 2020 #6
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3477 posts in this forum Offline

Douglas MacRae-Smith wrote:
Question: What is this me that actually is me?

The total content of consciousness? No part of that is not me as I see it.

Let it Be

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 06 Apr 2020 #7
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5949 posts in this forum Offline

Douglas MacRae-Smith wrote:
In what way are my thoughts me?

I have no control over them

I don't choose what to think

sometimes they seem to have more control over me (or my emotions)

Each of this statements is or was a thought, no? They occurred in the brain of Douglas. And when they occurred, did they not give the impression that they were "you"? The sensation of a you existing?

And each of these thoughts makes reference to a me -"my", "I", "me". So when the thought was occurring, what was "you"? Was it the movement of thought, the sensation of thought, or was it the what was referred to in words?

Put it this way, was it the thought, or the content of thought?

Douglas MacRae-Smith wrote:
Also, in what sense is the world out there not me?

it comes that any reference to "me" is a denial of the fact that I actually am the world.

Douglas MacRae-Smith wrote:
Question: What is this me that actually is me?

I have suggested above that there are two answers to this question, simultaneously. The thought and the content of the thought, what the thought references. And it is because of the fact that there are two answers, that I say there is a fundamental contradiction.

I did not want to use the K's words, maybe I don't understand them, but I will tentatively say: because the thinker thinks himself separate from the thought, there is contradiction. This is not just an idea, a theory - contradiction implies conflict, which is all too real.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 06 Apr 2020 #8
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5949 posts in this forum Offline

idiot ? wrote:
What is internal dialogue? It is division. I have divided myself into the talker and the listener. And when I talk to myself about myself, I further divide into the talker and the talked about.

Yes, this is another way of putting what I was trying to say. The essence of the issue is division, which means conflict.

idiot ? wrote:
We are so, so conditioned to read that it is almost impossible to look at a page without any recognition. But it is a very interesting experiment.

Very interesting, Id. Have you ever succeeded in doing this?

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 06 Apr 2020 #9
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5949 posts in this forum Offline

Wim Opdam wrote:
I can live with this explanation, maybe it's some help for you

In what sense do you think that I want help, Wim? As I said, I don't want to try and resolve the contradiction, to rationalise it. The contradiction is a fact, it exists. It must be SEEN, lived, Either I do that or I don't, but I don't see that anything can "help" with it. Perhaps living it fully, without any possibility of escape, will have its own action.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 07 Apr 2020 #10
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1856 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
Perhaps living it fully, without any possibility of escape, will have its own action.

Is "living it fully" a kind of (bad word?) method? Is it to have some different kind of "action" take place? 'How' is it that you will "live it fully" (in the future?)? Will it be different than the way you 'live it' now? That, now you 'run', but if you change and 'stay'...that will give a different (better?) result?

Just some questions that arise Clive.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 07 Apr 2020 #11
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5949 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
Just some questions that arise Clive.

Yes, they are all excellent questions. We will see what arises from them.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 07 Apr 2020 #12
Thumb_avatar idiot ? United States 182 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
Have you ever succeeded in doing this?

It is more like a mixture of success and failure. To see a page of words without reading comprehension, the visual focus may relax. Interesting things happen in terms of focus. But then again, instantly a word or two may be read and comprehended.

It's not really about achieving non-reading. It's about seeing what may or may not happen, and watching how swiftly and automatic the conditioned response of reading comprehension is. When I look at a page of Chinese writing there is almost no comprehension. Yet I still distinguish separate characters and patterns. So even then there is mental separation of this from that.

The same experiment can be moved from a page of words to the scene outside of your window or around your room. There can be a letting go of naming, of telling this from that, and just an opening to color, shades, the energy of what is seen. And that is just visual. All the senses can open wide. And then again instantly the translation or interpretation work that thought so rapidly and automatically does can be seen. It facilitates our practical functioning and yet it interferes. We normally don't notice at all. But if we look extremely closely, we can see thought swiftly coming in and swamping simple, pure sensory perception.

Sign in to recommend  This post has been recommended by 1 reader
Back to Top
Tue, 07 Apr 2020 #13
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5949 posts in this forum Offline

idiot ? wrote:
It's not really about achieving non-reading. It's about seeing what may or may not happen, and watching how swiftly and automatic the conditioned response of reading comprehension is.

Yes, point taken Id.

idiot ? wrote:
We normally don't notice at all. But if we look extremely closely, we can see thought swiftly coming in and swamping simple, pure sensory

I guess from the point of view of the brain, the process of recognition is a process of "making sense" of the sensory inputs, making sense of the world. And one can see that this is a useful process, indeed a necessary process in the material world. It recognises physical danger, or the possibility of it, it can decide what is useful or not for survival or comfort. All essential stuff, and perhaps this is what the brain was all about, originally.

Now a bunch of people are asking "can recognistion end?", or at least be put in abeyance. Need it always act? Why are we asking this question? What leads us to it?

The inference is, is it not, that there might be a world beyond the world of thought. There might be an existence that is not within the bubble that thought creates. A world not bounded by the known.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 07 Apr 2020 #14
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5949 posts in this forum Offline

I shared post #1 with a friend, and below is his response. I am not saying that I accept everything he says, I am still considering it in fact, but I thought I would share it here:

Clive, what you are describing, is the essence of human delusion, and the difficulty in trying to resolve it.
If I may play with this.
If a thought arises there is no duality.
If thought has an opinion or desire (the thinker) at this moment there still is no duality, conflict or resistance.
If I believe, trust or identify with the opinion or desire (the thinker) that is the point of resistance, conflict and duality.
If this is true, then if desire or opinion arise (which is what is) one can just gently, softly see the humanness of it (normal tendencies of a self common to all humankind).
It is a moment of understanding and there is no loss of energy.
This moment of understanding is seeing the human condition, not just my self. It's a moment of connection.
If I react to, or try to change or go beyond desire or opinion it suggests a higher self (it's still ego) and perpetuates the delusion.
Another way of saying this, if there is any movement to change desire or opinion then we're no longer seeing, we've become involved in the delusion.
I wonder within our circles that we are so interested in finding a freedom from the human condition, without completely understanding it?
The desire for freedom from the human condition creates it's own stickiness. To me the work is finding the human condition within myself.
Another words, is there one self with the same tendencies or 7.7 billion separate selves?

Sign in to recommend  This post has been recommended by 1 reader
Back to Top
Wed, 08 Apr 2020 #15
Thumb_spock Douglas MacRae-Smith France 292 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
Now a bunch of people are asking "can recognistion end?", or at least be put in abeyance. Need it always act? Why are we asking this question? What leads us to it?

We instill essence and meaning into the world (and ourselves) based on our conditioning - and react to what we see and feel, despite the fact that it is just a deluded, selfish point of view - ie. not based on an understanding of reality and thus a major cause of conflict, suffering and confusion.

Science (physics, psychology) tells us that what we apprehend via common sense is not reliable, is not as it is. The idea being that seeing the world as it is (or at least not being slaves to dangerous delusions) may be necessary for wellbeing.

Look, see, let go

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Wed, 08 Apr 2020 #16
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3477 posts in this forum Offline

Clive: rom the point of view of the brain, the process of recognition is a process of "making sense" of the sensory inputs, making sense of the world. And one can see that this is a useful process, indeed a necessary process in the material world. It recognises physical danger, or the possibility of it, it can decide what is useful or not for survival or comfort. All essential stuff, and perhaps this is what the brain was all about, originally.

Not just danger...I have to recognize the knife to cut the tomatoes and cheese for my lunch. And I have to recognize the cheese obviously. I have to recognize that my pants and my wife’s dress are different and what’s mine and what’s hers. Animals do most of this by instinct, but they don’t use tools like man does.

Now a bunch of people are asking "can recognistion end?", or at least be put in abeyance. Need it always act? Why are we asking this question? What leads us to it?

Because we read K? I’d never have asked it without reading a K book. Probably why most people never do ask.

The inference is, is it not, that there might be a world beyond the world of thought. There might be an existence that is not within the bubble that thought creates. A world not bounded by the known.

Not for me. The inference is that human relationships are beset by violence and suffering and perhaps thought is somehow responsible...thought dividing me from you...us from them. Psychological knowledge.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Wed, 08 Apr 2020.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Fri, 10 Apr 2020 #17
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5949 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
.thought dividing me from you...us from them. Psychological knowledge.

It's also dividing me from me.

I take your point, it is basically suffering that leads us to enquire, not the promise of a reward in heaven. And the creation of ideas, ideals, imagination in general, are inimical to real enquiry.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Fri, 10 Apr 2020 #18
Thumb_profiel Wim Opdam Belgium 913 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:

Wim Opdam wrote:

I can live with this explanation, maybe it's some help for you

In what sense do you think that I want help, Wim? As I said, I don't want to try and resolve the contradiction, to rationalise it. The contradiction is a fact, it exists. It must be SEEN, lived, Either I do that or I don't, but I don't see that anything can "help" with it. Perhaps living it fully, without any possibility of escape, will have its own action.

well, now you have given this sentence all the attention, while it was a simple politeness closing sentence, which might just as well have been omitted in retrospect.

the contradiction is still not thoroughly investigated, because it is assumed to exist, so to speak!

But doesn't that contradiction arise by
starting from it instead of wondering if it is there at all?

by the way, how do you know it's a fact?

Truth will unfold itself to those who enquire their own actions.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Sat, 11 Apr 2020 #19
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5949 posts in this forum Offline

Wim Opdam wrote:
well, now you have given this sentence all the attention, while it was a simple politeness closing sentence, which might just as well have been omitted in retrospect.

Hi Win, Sorry if I picked up on an inessential part of your post

the contradiction is still not thoroughly investigated, because it is assumed to exist, so to speak!

Well, we can investigate it now, at least as far as thought will take us. Or by even attempting to investigate with thought, have we not immediately hit a contradiction? Would you say a “thorough investigation” can only be done without thought, rather through choiceless awareness? Awareness assumes nothing, does it? Awareness only reveals what is.

Wim Opdam wrote:
But doesn't that contradiction arise by starting from it instead of wondering if it is there at all?

Starting from what, Wim? Do you mean starting from contradiction?

Wim Opdam wrote:
by the way, how do you know it's a fact?

I don't know that "know" is the right word here. One starts by observing thought (initially without putting the question just who or what is doing the observing). One lets thought 'run', in the way it has, thought after thought, association after association. Although it may start out logically, rationally, very quickly it reaches a contradiction in itself, does it not? I mean one fragment soon appears that contradicts another fragment. in my observation, this never fails to happen, sometimes almost instantaneously.

Do you not find this? Does "your thought" (if there is such a thing as your thought and my thought) function without contradiction? Maybe that is possible when it comes to practical matters, but psychologically?

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Sat, 11 Apr 2020 #20
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3477 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
I mean one fragment soon appears that contradicts another fragment. in my observation, this never fails to happen, sometimes almost instantaneously.

Do you not find this? Does "your thought" (if there is such a thing as your thought and my thought) function without contradiction? Maybe that is possible when it comes to practical matters, but psychologically?

Is it totally impossible for thought to function without contradiction because it’s fragmented by nature? And a fragment implies it’s opposite? Good implies evil...God implies absence of god...should implies should not, etc? Good point to explore further I think. Will come back to it later, time permitting.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Sat, 11 Apr 2020.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Sat, 11 Apr 2020 #21
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5949 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
Is it totally impossible for thought to function without contradiction because it’s fragmented by nature?

It seems that way. And the contradiction does not only materialise in one's own thoughts, thought has created a society, a whole world of contradiction - as in the contradictions between the existences of nation states, between the world's religions, etc. It IS thought that has created these structures.

And yet I would not assert that it is absolutely impossible for thought to function with contradiction. Upon waking today, for example, thought seems to flow harmoniously. I cannot say why.

We asked recently why thought could not function in full awareness of its limitations - accept those limitations as fact, so to speak, and not try to exceed them. So can thought accept that it will be in contradiction if it tries to function where it should not?

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Sun, 12 Apr 2020 #22
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1856 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
So can thought accept that it will be in contradiction if it tries to function where it should not?

Only with the utter awareness of its destructiveness in the psyche. That the security it seeks there is a fool's bet.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Displaying all 22 posts
Page 1 of 1
To quote a portion of this post in your reply, first select the text and then click this "Quote" link.

(N.B. Be sure to insert an empty line between the quoted text and your reply.)