Krishnamurti & the Art of Awakening
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Are we actually machines?


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Sun, 16 Apr 2017 #361
Thumb_avatar Peter Kesting United States 42 posts in this forum Offline

Jan: "the other Peter would be conscious just like you are."

A bit different here. I have to say that i don't know.

It could be that there would be "no one" there. This is the way i see what is inside of a computer that can beat the best chess players for example. I use the word blackness, just that "inside" of it.

This post was last updated by Peter Kesting Sun, 16 Apr 2017.

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Sun, 16 Apr 2017 #362
Thumb_017 John Perkins. United Kingdom 165 posts in this forum Offline

Jan Kasol wrote:
The timeless intelligence or energy manifesting behind the material process (that K is carefully and avoidingly talking about) is no more Peter. In this energy there is no more division, no more subject or object, no more matter or form. This energy is an intangible nothingness, yet out of this nothingness the whole universe is borne. We all are contained in this nothingness.

I agree almost entirely with this; but only almost.

When Insight (capitol 'I') occurs - which I differentiate from small 'i' insight in that the former represents a one off event affecting a permanent change in an individual (corresponding to a brain mutation) and is general (ie. is none specific) in its nature, while the latter always (and only) relates to some specific and might occur numerous times in the same individual - when Insight occurs it represents a sort of breakthrough into the physical realm of the 'timeless intelligence', the 'intangible nothingness' Jan talks about. A person to whom it happens knows that it has happened (witness K). Thus I'm not at all sure that it is right to speak of it as representing 'no more Peter', 'no more division', 'no more matter or form' and 'no more subject or object'. No manifest 'thing' is perfect as this underlying nothingness is perfect. K and the Buddha would be the last to claim, whilst they remain embodied, that they are Perfect. It is not possible to be Perfect. All manifest things are aspected. But nevertheless the whole of what K talks about in the teachings falls under the umbrella of what Jan has said above: it is indeed entirely about the 'timeless intelligence, the intangible nothingness, manifesting behind the material process'.

Que Sera, Sera.

This post was last updated by John Perkins. Sun, 16 Apr 2017.

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Sun, 16 Apr 2017 #363
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 300 posts in this forum Offline

You seem to me to be like kindergarten children playing with your ideas like colored beads. You were asked a simple question, are we actually machines, and you cannot stay on the topic for more than one minute without supervision. You run about, bumping into each other, immersed in your private fantasies.

Why do you drift back in the same direction every time? Is it safety in a fantasy world or is it safety in numbers? You love to dress up, to play at dressing up. Let's conduct a thought experiment, you say. Who will be Cinderella and pretend they have nothing? Who will bring the magic kiss that wakes the Sleeping Beauty?

For three days I have been watching. Not one post have I seen that relates to the question of the thread at all. But how the children love to play at it.

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Sun, 16 Apr 2017 #364
Thumb_hot-sale-font-b-cool-b-font-cat-animal-poster-custom-font-b-wallpaper-b-font Jan Kasol Czech Republic 174 posts in this forum Offline

Paul David son wrote:
You seem to me to be like kindergarten children playing with your ideas like colored beads. You were asked a simple question, are we actually machines, and you cannot stay on the topic for more than one minute without supervision. You run about, bumping into each other, immersed in your private fantasies.

But the question has been anwered. Thought is mechanical. We went into it and explored what it means. Thought is a mechanical reaction, response of memory to challenge. There is no freedom in thought. It is just a high-level version of a patellar reflex. These high-level reflexes give rise to the observer. This observer thinks that he is permament, continuous and alive. But that is an illusion, he is fragmented and mechanical. He is just a bundle of high-level reflexes. But then we explored if that is all there is. And no, it is not all there is. There is the possibility to go beyond the mechanical. There is the possibility to experience a state of silence, receptiveness, when the mechanical process does not interfere. And this state is a state of freedom, choiceless observation. And in this state something new arises. It might be a fantasy for you.

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Sun, 16 Apr 2017 #365
Thumb_017 John Perkins. United Kingdom 165 posts in this forum Offline

Paul David son wrote:

For three days I have been watching. Not one post have I seen that relates to the question of the thread at all. But how the children love to play at it.

I'd say it's probably at least partly because, out of respect for the nature and general operation of John R's forum, which unlike the others doesn't have an ethos of continually opening threads, participants have chosen to maintain the conversation within the current one - which I'll take this opportunity to duly thank you for - where ever it should lead. I'm sure that if you asked them you'd find that they'd all be aware that the discussion had moved on from the thread question.

Que Sera, Sera.

This post was last updated by John Perkins. Sun, 16 Apr 2017.

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Sun, 16 Apr 2017 #366
Thumb_017 John Perkins. United Kingdom 165 posts in this forum Offline

Jan Kasol wrote:
It might be a fantasy for you.

That's the long and short of it.

Que Sera, Sera.

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Sun, 16 Apr 2017 #367
Thumb_hot-sale-font-b-cool-b-font-cat-animal-poster-custom-font-b-wallpaper-b-font Jan Kasol Czech Republic 174 posts in this forum Offline

Peter Kesting wrote:
Jan: "The timeless intelligence or energy manifesting behind the material process (that K is carefully and avoidingly talking about) is no more Peter"
I don't understand this, can you explain a bit.

Humans possess forms and whatsoever has form is subject to formation and destruction whereas the "intangible nothingness" is formless and timeless and, being formless and timeless, is immaterial. This nothingness cannot be destroyed or created, nothing can be added to it, nothing can be taken from it. I can be likened to a vacuum. If you fill the vacuum with things, the things can be destroyed, but the vacuum is untouched. In this analogy, the vacuum symbolizes the "intangible nothingness" and the things represent humans. Google about atman, brahma, Absolute, sensorium Dei etc to get a feel. The self cannot identify with it, the self should not delude itself that it is it. Only when the mechanical self comes to an end, can this no-thing be "experienced" (there is no experiencer)

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Sun, 16 Apr 2017 #368
Thumb_2474 Dan McDermott United States 162 posts in this forum Offline

Jan Kasol wrote:
There is the possibility to go beyond the mechanical. There is the possibility to experience a state of silence, receptiveness, when the mechanical process does not interfere. And this state is a state of freedom, choiceless observation. And in this state something new arises.

For me i.e., a new understanding of that word 'enlightenment', Not a goal to be attained, not a result of self-knowing. Not a composite of insights leading to something in the future. Not a static mental state,etc. I see it as a 'movement' in the 'unknown'. Truly a letting go at each moment. The 'mechanical' then for me is the absence of this state: living in the 'known'.

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Sun, 16 Apr 2017 #369
Thumb_hot-sale-font-b-cool-b-font-cat-animal-poster-custom-font-b-wallpaper-b-font Jan Kasol Czech Republic 174 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
For me i.e., a new understanding of that word 'enlightenment', Not a goal to be attained, not a result of self-knowing. Not a composite of insights leading to something in the future. Not a static mental state,etc. I see it as a 'movement' in the 'unknown'. Truly a letting go at each moment. The 'mechanical' then for me is the absence of this state: living in the 'known'.

for me, it is a state when the mind empties itself of its content. There is no observer who can empty the mind. Rather, we have to let the mind empty itself, which means stop all supressing, stop all controling, not mould the mind accoring to a pattern. But really, let each reaction, each feeling, each thought, flower and flow. If we can do that, the mind empties itself, spontaneously, without any effort. And when it empties itself of its content, there is silence. It is not continuous, but discontinuous as intervals between thoughts. And it is bliss. Than there is a living reality, which is eternally new.

"So, the unknown, that which is not created by the mind, cannot be formulated by the mind. That which is unknown cannot be thought about. The moment you think about the unknown, it is already the known. Surely you cannot think about the unknown, can you? You can think only about the known. Thought moves from the known to the known; and what is known is not reality, is it? So, when you think and meditate, when you sit down and think about God, you only think about what is known, and what is known is in time; it is caught in the net of time, and is therefore not the real. Reality can come into being only when the mind is free from the net of time. When the mind ceases to create, there is creation. That is, the mind must be absolutely still, but not with an induced, a hypnotized stillness, which is merely a result. Trying to become still in order to experience reality is another form of escape. There is silence only when all problems have ceased; as the pool is quiet when the breeze stops, so the mind is naturally quiet when the agitator, the thinker, ceases. To put an end to the thinker, all the thoughts which he manufactures must be thought out. It is no good erecting a barrier, a resistance, against thought; because, thoughts must be felt out, the mind is still, reality, the indescribable, comes into being. You cannot invite it. To invite it, you must know it, and what is known is not the real. So, the mind must be simple, unburdened by belief, by ideation; and when there is stillness, when there is no desire, no longing, when the mind is absolutely quiet with a stillness that is not induced, then reality comes. And that truth, that reality, is the only transforming agent; it is the only factor that brings a fundamental, radical revolution in existence, in our daily life. And to find that reality is not to seek it, but to understand the factors that agitate the mind, that disturb the mind itself. Then the mind is simple, quiet, still. In that stillness the unknown, the unknowable, comes into being; and when that happens, there is a blessing."

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Sun, 16 Apr 2017 #370
Thumb_avatar Peter Kesting United States 42 posts in this forum Offline

Jan: "The timeless intelligence or energy manifesting behind the material process (that K is carefully and avoidingly talking about) is no more Peter" 

Are you saying here that the "timeless intelligence or energy" is no longer existing or that it is no longer beiang Peter?

It's what you have written that i don't understand.

This post was last updated by Peter Kesting Mon, 17 Apr 2017.

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Sun, 16 Apr 2017 #371
Thumb_avatar Peter Kesting United States 42 posts in this forum Offline

Paul, what i see as machine, what is mechanical, is anything that is functioning in a completely deterministic way. In that sense the air in this room is a machine. Baring some other factor the whole of the universe is a machine. And we too are machines.

This is not to say that there is no other factor.

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Sun, 16 Apr 2017 #372
Thumb_hot-sale-font-b-cool-b-font-cat-animal-poster-custom-font-b-wallpaper-b-font Jan Kasol Czech Republic 174 posts in this forum Offline

Peter Kesting wrote:
Are you saying that the "timeless intelligence or engergy" is no longer existing or that it is no longer being Peter?

I am saying that the entity called Peter is just a bundle of matter (his body) and memories (his mind). He is no permament entity, eternal entity. Both, his body and his mind, have form and exist in time and will disperse with time. His "self" cannot capture the nothingness, cannot identify with it, cannot operate on it. This Peter is like a vortex in water. When he dies the vortex disperses, but the water lives on. Peter has no immortal soul, no eternal identity.

The nothingness is the source, out of which the OM is spoken
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H7ofPdEgsoQ
(the OM is just a symbol, it has no deep meaning, but the video captures the "feel" of this nothingness and its relation to reality quite well)

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Sun, 16 Apr 2017 #373
Thumb_avatar Peter Kesting United States 42 posts in this forum Offline

Thank you for your latest reply.

Jan you wrote: "the other Peter would be conscious just like you are"

How is it you can be so sure of this.

K talks about freedom from the known.

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Sun, 16 Apr 2017 #374
Thumb_avatar Peter Kesting United States 42 posts in this forum Offline

Jan, I did watch the video. Thank you. Very pretty but i am seeking nothing more. OM is just a sound.

The key is the absence of self.

What is the self?

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #375
Thumb_hot-sale-font-b-cool-b-font-cat-animal-poster-custom-font-b-wallpaper-b-font Jan Kasol Czech Republic 174 posts in this forum Offline

Peter Kesting wrote:
Jan you wrote: "the other Peter would be conscious just like you are"
How is it you can be so sure of this.

because I know at what your "thought experiment" is aiming, to somehow prove that you are unique. If you went a little deeper into self-knowledge and became more aware of your conditioning, you would find out that you are not. You are a bundle o memories and influences, and if you recreated the same bundle atom by atom somewhere else, it would be conscious just like you are. But of course there is not way of knowing so your question is meaningless

Peter Kesting wrote:
The key is the absence of self.
What is the self?

the self is the bundle of memories and influences concentrated in the brain, the "known"

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #376
Thumb_a1056283319_2 Tom Paine United States 82 posts in this forum Offline

John Perkins. wrote:
The question I'm asking is, since Jan says we need to drop the one type of thought (and yet we need to retain the other) how are we to differentiate between the two types of thought when both of them are of the same material nature, ie. both of them manifesting as brain movement? Does that make my question more clear?

Just some thoughts that come to mind, John.
Simply, don't even attempt to differentiate....that's more of the me seeking some ideal or intellectual understanding. Just be aware of the 'me' in action...of the times when thought is acting in the psychological realm...when there's conflict.... when it's creating a goal or an ideal or a prohibition..a judgement of right or wrong. Thought in the psychological realm inevitably creates conflict...it IS conflict. In the practical realm, thought is no problem. If you really want to differentiate, then that's the difference....one type of thought creates conflict...the other does not. What more differentiation do you really need? Correct me if I'm off base on this.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Mon, 17 Apr 2017.

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #377
Thumb_avatar Peter Kesting United States 42 posts in this forum Offline

Jan you wrote: "the other Peter would be conscious just like you are" 
How is it you can be so sure of this.

because I know at what your "thought experiment" is aiming, to somehow prove that you are unique.

You cannot possibly know that sir, in fact it is exactly the very opposite.

Can we avoid being reactively in opposition one to the other? Perhaps as we talk we can see how easy it is to react. I can admit i have just been seeing it here in this one.

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #378
Thumb_avatar Peter Kesting United States 42 posts in this forum Offline

Just been watching the BGs special with Barry Gibb. Really really wonderfull music.

Good night.

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #379
Thumb_hot-sale-font-b-cool-b-font-cat-animal-poster-custom-font-b-wallpaper-b-font Jan Kasol Czech Republic 174 posts in this forum Offline

Peter Kesting wrote:
Can we avoid being reactively in opposition one to the other? Perhaps as we talk we can see how easy it is to react. I can admit i have just been seeing it here in this one.

Hi Peter, I am not in opposition to you, however I admit that I almost regret answering your question. As K would say "to find the right answer you have to pose the right question". Best, Jan

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #380
Thumb_017 John Perkins. United Kingdom 165 posts in this forum Offline

Hi Tom. I'll try to respond to your below point by point but I'm afraid to say it appears we still haven't managed to connect on this matter. It's doubtless my fault for not being clear enough in what I'm trying to get across.

Tom Paine wrote:
Just some thoughts that come to mind, John.
Simply, don't even attempt to differentiate....that's more of the me seeking some ideal or intellectual understanding.

Yes, you see, I wasn't actually suggesting that this differentiation even be attempted. On the contrary, I was pointing to the fact that it can not be possible to separate the technical and the psychological brain operation(s) on account they are physically identical and operate in the same box. It would be like trying to separate the oxygen from the oxygen in an oxygen bottle. Thus - which is what I was trying to point out - Jan's suggestion that we 'drop' the self-centred stuff was at best a poor way to put it. (He explains himself much better at #369).

Just be aware of the 'me' in action...of the times when thought is acting in the psychological realm...when there's conflict.... when it's creating a goal or an ideal or a prohibition..a judgement of right or wrong. Thought in the psychological realm inevitably creates conflict...it IS conflict. In the practical realm, thought is no problem.

Again yes ideologically, but this accentuates my very point. You see the 'me' cannot - it is impossible - 'be aware of the me'. In order for that to happen differentiation would be required, ie. between what is 'me' (as in psychological) and what is 'not me' (as in technical); the very 'differentiation' which I'm pointing out is impossible.

If you really want to differentiate,...

(Lol... ;-) hope you see the funny side)

then that's the difference....one type of thought creates conflict...the other does not. What more differentiation do you really need? Correct me if I'm off base on this.

Again yes, I think that generally the human condition tends to presuppose itself as having much more control (or perhaps much greater capacity) than it actually has. You see, the 'me' (or the 'I') is conflict, and yet we seem to automatically suppose that we can spot conflict, necessarily therefore differentiating it from non-conflict. It is the very impossibility of that that I am pointing to.

I hope I've managed to be a bit clearer here Tom but if not I think I'll just have to thank you for your efforts and we'll move on.

Que Sera, Sera.

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #381
Thumb_stringio Jess S Portugal 3 posts in this forum Offline

Peter Kesting wrote:
because I know at what your "thought experiment" is aiming, to somehow prove that you are unique.

Peter: You cannot possibly know that sir, in fact it is exactly the very opposite.

It's all very well - and somehow paraphrasing Krishnamurti - that we're 'a bundle of memories', eventually of influences, but we certainly are 'unique' in this life that we're just living and that's why it's so important to live now, in the present, because when we're gone, we're gone and only what we have done in this life can make a difference. It all comes to either getting back to the stream or stepping out of it.

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #382
Thumb_hot-sale-font-b-cool-b-font-cat-animal-poster-custom-font-b-wallpaper-b-font Jan Kasol Czech Republic 174 posts in this forum Offline

Jess S wrote:
It's all very well - and somehow paraphrasing Krishnamurti - that we're 'a bundle of memories', eventually of influences, but we certainly are 'unique' in this life that we're just living and that's why it's so important to live now, in the present, because when we're gone, we're gone and only what we have done in this life can make a difference. It all comes to either getting back to the stream or stepping out of it.

we are no more unique than blossoming dandelions on a meadow. Each is unique, yet all are the same. Each of us has a different set of circumstances, has grown up in a different soil, had different influences. But our psychological makeup is the same. And there is not a permament soul, a parmanent identity. And whether or not you live or die is about as important as whether an ant lives or dies, although you like believe differently. However, there is a timeless immortality, but this immorality is not of a personal nature. The ego, the self, cannot become immortal.

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #383
Thumb_hot-sale-font-b-cool-b-font-cat-animal-poster-custom-font-b-wallpaper-b-font Jan Kasol Czech Republic 174 posts in this forum Offline

Jan Kasol wrote:
Jan's suggestion that we 'drop' the self-centred stuff was at best a poor way to put it.

nevertheless, I feel that it is the best way put it. The problem is not knowledge. The problem is the self-centeredness which uses the knowledge. The self-centeredness perceives everything in terms of loss and gain. If there is no self-centeredness, the perception become clear, undestortred, although the mind still has knowledge and is able to use it, but it knows the right place, right value of knowledge. You can of course put it anyway you see fit, that suits your needs.

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #384
Thumb_a1056283319_2 Tom Paine United States 82 posts in this forum Offline

John Perkins. wrote:
You see, the 'me' (or the 'I') is conflict, and yet we seem to automatically suppose that we can spot conflict, necessarily therefore differentiating it from non-conflict. It is the very impossibility of that that I am pointing to.

Thanks for the clarification of your point about the two types of thought. It's clear what you were trying to get across now. Not sure that we can't 'spot' conflict, however. We all know what conflict feels like. One fragment of me is angry or violent and another fragment tells me that anger is wrong....is not spiritual....is not like K or Jesus. I want to go golfing but my wife wants me to take her to visit her sister, who I dislike. Like vs dislike. Yes, the 'me' is in perpetual conflict...IS conflict....I agree. For a few moments, when at the beach on a beautiful day...or when taken away by the beauty of a sunset or great art or music...when skiing or surfing, I may 'lose myself'. When everything seems to be 'going my way', do I really feel any conflict? When I'm lost in a good adventure movie...a good meal with a friend or family....a great concert? Not saying we're free of the 'me' necessarily, but we're not feeling any conflict or friction when we’re happy. I think we are not always in a divided state of conflict...just most of the time.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Mon, 17 Apr 2017.

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #385
Thumb_017 John Perkins. United Kingdom 165 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
Thanks for the clarification of your point about the two types of thought. It's clear what you were trying to get across now. Not sure that we can't 'spot' conflict, however. We all know what conflict feels like. One fragment of me is angry or violent and another fragment tells me that anger is wrong....is not spiritual....is not like K or Jesus. I want to go golfing but my wife wants me to take her to visit her sister, who I dislike. Like vs dislike. Yes, the 'me' is in perpetual conflict...IS conflict....I agree. For a few moments, when at the beach on a beautiful day...or when taken away by the beauty of a sunset or great art or music...when skiing or surfing, I may 'lose myself'. When everything seems to be 'going my way', do I really feel any conflict? When I'm lost in a good adventure movie...a good meal with a friend or family....a great concert? Not saying we're free of the 'me' necessarily, but we're not feeling any conflict or friction when we’re happy. I think we are not always in a divided state of conflict...just most of the time.

Yes Tom, for sure we can spot conflict, but what we're much less good at is spotting subtle conflict. What I mean by that is that we can see (and perhaps deplore) eg. anger, but we can't so readily see the violence inherent in eg. success (or hence, often, in happiness). Violence belongs to most if not all vicissitude and violence is closely related to conflict. We feel we can differentiate between conflict and non-conflict, just as we seem to suppose we can differentiate between psych and tech thought, but in fact it's all just more deception of and by the 'I'. We are fooled in the nth degree, and until we can see past our own skulduggery we can get nowhere.

I had a thread running on this forum a while ago which asked whether the 'I' can ever see past itself? I think it is still a very relevant question to examine.

Que Sera, Sera.

This post was last updated by John Perkins. Mon, 17 Apr 2017.

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #386
Thumb_a1056283319_2 Tom Paine United States 82 posts in this forum Offline

John Perkins. wrote:
Yes Tom, for sure we can spot conflict, but what we're much less good at is spotting subtle conflict. What I mean by that is that we can see (and perhaps deplore) eg. anger, but we can't so readily see the violence inherent in eg. success (or hence, often, in happiness).

Right....subtle conflict is normally not even noticed, since it's the norm for man, even in those who feel relatively contented with their life situation....their job....with their spouse...kids...entertainment. Yes, the I can't possibly see past the I. The known....consciousness....mind... can't know the unknown.

Let it Be

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #387
Thumb_017 John Perkins. United Kingdom 165 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
Yes, the I can't possibly see past the I. The known....consciousness....mind... can't know the unknown.

Quite, so how then, if the 'I' can never see past itself, might we ever reasonably suppose any of our ideas around the K stuff to have substance? All of it, unless there is Insight, must be conjecture mustn't it? And yet the only 'living' person we are willing to concede Insight to is K.

It's as if the 'I' continually ensures its own security by blocking off any possible escape route for its 'owner'. It has always been so. Was it the 'I' or was it Insight that put paid to JC? Was it the 'I' or was it Insight that put paid to Socrates? Why do the seers and the prophets almost invariably get persecuted? These questions are pertinent and yet we won't face them, why is that? Is it because we actually prefer to carry on in the same old way? Feeling, as ever, too secure in our blindness to dare to ask any truly searching questions?

Que Sera, Sera.

This post was last updated by John Perkins. Mon, 17 Apr 2017.

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #388
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 300 posts in this forum Offline

Peter Kesting wrote:
Paul, what i see as machine, what is mechanical, is anything that is functioning in a completely deterministic way. In that sense the air in this room is a machine. Baring some other factor the whole of the universe is a machine. And we too are machines.

This is not to say that there is no other factor.

"The whole of the universe is a machine"

Given your definition that a machine is anything completely determined, we may agree that everything in the universe is determined. That is to say, 'everything' is part of one cause/effect chain or another and that 'the whole' is a web of determination. Summed up, one could say that the universe is a universe, that is, one thing, not many. Everything in it moves together and nothing is separate, if the logic is followed through. But then it's rather a mystery that you add the aside of there being other factors.

Peter, if we are talking of "everything" and of "the whole" then there are no other factors. The moment you bring in "other factors" then the whole is no longer the whole.

It may be you are alluding to something that comes into play as a creational force: Something that is not itself 'caused' but which causes. You would be bringing in the 'undetermined determinant.' (Of course, if it neither causes anything nor is itself caused, then there is no way whatsoever that we can even talk of it. How would we know of something that has no effect at any level whatsoever?? We would not know. So lets leave this last possibility out, shall we?)

Okay, the postulate is that something acts within the universe that is not acted upon and that is not the consequence of any previous thing, not determined in any possible way by anything that has ever happened. Fine, then WHY does it act? Just think it through, Peter. Conduct a 'thought experiment' into it. See what you are alluding to in all its glory.

Historically, people have called this unmoved mover by the name of 'God,' whose unseen hand determines the fate of the world in some glorious way, 'his wonders to perform' etc. Basically we are referring to miracles and the miraculous.

But my question has always been, how is it possible for God (or whatever name you give to this 'other factor') to be moved to act if he is an unmoved mover?

Whenever I look at it, I arrive at the same point of having no credible explanation.

If we apply this to the K enigma, in which we are told that K was being 'cleansed' by unseen hands and that he was but as 'tool' of some great power, we have to face the same issue, why would something that is not moved, be moved to intercede?

Peter, as for your definition of what is a machine, I do respect the idea that everything is determined but I also find it useful to reserve the word 'machine' for that particular subset of determined 'things' that are made by man as semi-autonomous work tools. I like to think there is some qualitative and sustained difference between the electric toothbrush and the hand that directs it.

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #389
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 300 posts in this forum Offline

Jan Kasol wrote:
But the question has been anwered. Thought is mechanical. We went into it and explored what it means. Thought is a mechanical reaction, response of memory to challenge. There is no freedom in thought. It is just a high-level version of a patellar reflex.

Jan, if you were to step back a little you would see that the conclusions you express are your own, not shared by all those who entered this discussion. Several of us expressed doubt. I myself wanted to probe deeper into what exactly goes on in thought that we tend to describe as 'mechanical.' But the discussion was sidelined by conflictive comments that then needed to be justified, built upon and drawn back into the comfort zone, which has now been going on for three days. I invite all readers to go back and really study what happened.

Jan, I am struck by the jumps you make in your statement above. We agreed that thought is activated by challenge, but it does not follow that therefore there is no freedom in it. As Peter said above, everything in the universe is determined. Does it mean that there is no freedom in the universe?

The philosophers create dualistic concepts by which to delve into 'what is.' One of the dualities they created (or rather, they did not create it but they codified it in philosophical terms and debated their meanings) was that between determinism and freedom. I think that duality needs to be questioned, which is what this thread is essentially about. Rather than answering whether humans are machines or whether thought is mechanistic, we would delve deeper by asking what it is in the actuality that we are mechanically calling mechanistic.

I don't think we went into this very deeply at all and to say that the discussion came to a conclusion and moved on is . . . well, it's a very shallow answer.

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Mon, 17 Apr 2017 #390
Thumb_017 John Perkins. United Kingdom 165 posts in this forum Offline

Paul David son wrote:
I think that duality needs to be questioned, which is what this thread is essentially about.

So is the question now, whether there is duality? Just asking. I'm easy. Sounds interesting.

...what it is in the actuality that we are mechanically calling mechanistic[?].

Do you see this as another way of presenting the same question or are you suggesting a possible alternative? (Have to say it's making my head hurt a little trying to get a handle on it. Might you put it a little more clearly?)

Que Sera, Sera.

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