Krishnamurti & the Art of Awakening
Experimenter's Corner | moderated by John Raica

Are we actually machines?


Displaying posts 181 - 210 of 551 in total
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #181
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

richard viillar wrote:
the center is thought , thought is a fact yes

Of course, and what applies to the centre also applies to the periphery, and everything in between, all thought/emotion.

But the centre/periphery model is a metaphor borrowed from geometry. The mind is not like that. The metaphor serves as a dull pointer. Even K had trouble with it and for some time was asking people if their 'centre' had a 'point' at its centre. What we are really looking it (if we do look) is that thought is organised into interacting clusters of ideas and associations, some of which are more active, dynamic and commanding that others. It has seemed to me for some time that the more a cluster of interacting ideas are activated, the more force they gather around them, the more they begin to dominate the surrounding clusters . . . reinforcement through use.

One can call the result a 'center' but that kind of reduces things to a single dimension.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #182
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

richard viillar wrote:
and The confusion in which the brain is enclosed, is a fact also

The brain is not enclosed in confusion, even in its own confusion. The fact that it is so open to every kind of confusion no matter whose it is and that it is very willing to share its own, is testimony to the lack of enclosure. Maybe 'mired' is a more suitable verb. Its action becomes bogged down by the accumulated weight.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #183
Thumb_avatar Ravi Seth India 5 posts in this forum Offline

Paul David son wrote:
So, I have to throw it all out the window and start from . . . where?
The question posed most succinctly is, is thought simply a machine?

Throwing all out of the window is itself a starting point. Do it.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #184
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

Ravi Seth wrote:
Throwing all out of the window is itself a starting point. Do it.

I will . . . first throw me a window :-)

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #185
Thumb_a1056283319_2 Tom Paine United States 49 posts in this forum Offline

Paul David son wrote:
Ravi Seth wrote:

Throwing all out of the window is itself a starting point. Do it.
I will . . . first throw me a window :-)

Good one Paul! So do we see that there is no way out? Nothing I can do to escape from 'me'?

Let it Be

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #186
Thumb_avatar Ravi Seth India 5 posts in this forum Offline

Paul David son wrote:
I will . . . first throw me a window :-)

You cannot be such a fool to ask how to lift your finger.

Stop thinking.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #187
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

Ravi Seth wrote:
You cannot be such a fool to ask how to lift your finger.

But you are confusing things, I fear. In saying to throw it out the window I was referring to the inherited ideas of the world being mechanical, life being mechanical and man being mechanical. I threw all that out my window but people keep throwing it back through. I could close the window, of course, but I don't want them to break the glass. Maybe I should knock another window in the other side so it goes straight through, I don't know. What I've been doing up to now is trying to straighten things out, wash and iron and throw them back out again, as best I can. Or, I could just lift a finger, as you suggest. Would that be a middle finger, Ravi?

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #188
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

Ravi Seth wrote:
Stop thinking.

That is just another thought, dear Ravi.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #189
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
I can do to escape from 'me'?

"Wherever I go, there I am." Mullah Nasruddin

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #190
Thumb_avatar Ravi Seth India 5 posts in this forum Offline

All nonsense , nothing else.

If by passing time you got nothing else to do, do not confuse those who are serious .

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #191
Thumb_avatar Ravi Seth India 5 posts in this forum Offline

Paul David son wrote:

Ravi Seth wrote:

You cannot be such a fool to ask how to lift your finger.
But you are confusing things, I fear. In saying to throw it out the window I was referring to the inherited ideas of the world being mechanical, life being mechanical and man being mechanical. I threw all that out my window but people keep throwing it back through. I could close the window, of course, but I don't want them to break the glass. Maybe I should knock another window in the other side so it goes straight through, I don't know. What I've been doing up to now is trying to straighten things out, wash and iron and throw them back out again, as best I can. Or, I could just lift a finger, as you suggest. Would that be a middle finger, Ravi?

When thought ends, there are no people who throw them back to you as you aren't there. If you are there, whether you shove middle or fore or little finger, you are back to same game again. In this there are no 'you'. The sorrow , the challenge you respond to is only when you are there.

You can play as long as you like.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #192
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

Ravi Seth wrote:
When thought ends

Stop right there, Ravi. Your thought has not ended. You are drenched in it.

Secondly, I was not referring to throwing thought out of the window or ending thought. That may be your concern but it is not mine. Please don't tell me you are the serious one, that others are playing games and that you have ended thought. Don't point that finger at others unless and until you have learned how to point it at yourself.

Ravi Seth wrote:
The sorrow , the challenge you respond to is only when you are there.

And you are not there?

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #193
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

Ravi Seth wrote:
do not confuse those who are serious .

?

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #194
Thumb_img_20150716_212047-1-1 richard viillar France 37 posts in this forum Offline

Paul David son wrote:
what applies to the centre also applies to the periphery

what applies to the thought also applies to the periphery (which is also thought)

Paul David son wrote:
The brain is not enclosed in confusion, even in its own confusion

If it's not the case, there is no suffering

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #195
Thumb_avatar Ravi Seth India 5 posts in this forum Offline

Paul David son wrote:
Stop right there, Ravi. Your thought has not ended. You are drenched in it.

Secondly, I was not referring to throwing thought out of the window or ending thought. That may be your concern but it is not mine. Please don't tell me you are the serious one, that others are playing games and that you have ended thought. Don't point that finger at others unless and until you have learned how to point it at yourself.

F**k ravi seth.

How did you know my dear
Paul, k ended thought? ?

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #196
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

richard viillar wrote:
what applies to the thought also applies to the periphery (which is also thought)

Yes Richard.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Mon, 13 Mar 2017 #197
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

Ravi Seth wrote:
How did you know my dear
Paul, k ended thought? ?

I do not know it. Furthermore, I do know that I do not know it.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 14 Mar 2017 #198
Thumb_a1056283319_2 Tom Paine United States 49 posts in this forum Offline

John Raica wrote:
I was just thinking, Tom, that the 'underwater' part of our self-consciousness is intimately related to the known (as in ...I know who I am). So, there is the greater field of the known - that of all the accumulated experience & knowledge of mankind and our self-consciousness is always finding itself a personalised 'niche'. It follows that the deeper issue is not our circumstantial egoticism, but this collective option of safely living in the 'known'.

Can you say more, John, about how the 'underwater'/unconscious part is related to the known...to the personalized 'niche' of me and 'my' life....living in the security of the known?

Let it Be

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 14 Mar 2017 #199
Thumb_2474 Dan McDermott United States 159 posts in this forum Offline

JR:... the deeper issue is not our circumstantial egoticism, but this collective option of safely living in the 'known'.

How does one see this "deeper issue"?

When there is only fear without any hope of escape, in its darkest moments, in the utter solitude of fear, there comes from within itself, as it were, the light which shall dispel it."

This post was last updated by Dan McDermott Tue, 14 Mar 2017.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 14 Mar 2017 #200
Thumb_a1056283319_2 Tom Paine United States 49 posts in this forum Offline

John Raica wrote:
Tom Paine wrote:

Can you say more, John, about how the 'underwater'/unconscious part is related to the known...to the personalized 'niche' of me and 'my' life....living in the security of the known?

J: Well, Tom, I guess that K calls all these by the very synthetic term 'attachent'. But I would say even more: it is a gut attachment; and the particular object of any psychological attachment (money, objects, ideas, people) is always part of a larger set of 'values' assigned by the cultural background of the culture we're living in (in short, to our collective 'known')

T: Just saw this in the excerpt you posted just now on another thread. It relates to the 'underwater' part. The part responsible for our 'mechanical' reactions....our 'machine like' thinking and acting:

Krishnamurti: What does it mean to 'explore'? What is the state of the mind which explores ? Now, I do not know the (deeper) causation of my actions. There may be obvious causes and other causes which are undiscoverable by the conscious mind. I can see the superficial causes for actions, but they may have very deep roots in the recesses of one's own being. Now, (a) can the conscious mind not only examine the superficial but also uncover the deeper? (b) Can the conscious mind ever examine the deeper layers? And (c) what is the state of the mind which explores?

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Tue, 14 Mar 2017.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 14 Mar 2017 #201
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote (quoting K):
'Can the conscious mind ever examine the deeper layers?'

K saw through the crude division of mind into two parts or two things, conscious and unconscious. For K, there was only one movement, that of mind. I think I'm correct in saying that. Insofar as there is a division, it is not crude, not a Trumpian Wall, but is a simple fact: The ability of the mind to observe its own movement is an extremely limited affair.

Put another way, the mind is almost wholly unconscious, which means, unconscious of its own movement. Freud called it the "it," as opposed to the "I." But it seems to have a 'tongue,' something that can curl back at the tip and touch itself, just a little. K pointed out that there is not a conscious and an unconscious. He said that the unconscious is part of the conscious.

It gets confusing, doesn't it? Why? Because we are using the same words and giving them different meanings. The word 'consciousness' in one usage means the whole (including the unconscious) and in another meaning means just the self-reflective part. In using 'consciousness' to describe the whole it gives the misleading impression that that which is unconscious is a little pocket within consciousness, when it is, in fact almost the other way round.

So, in the quoted line above, things are a little clearer. There is the mind. At the 'surface' is a small area of self-refecting movement and at the deeper areas there is little or no self-reflection at all. And K is asking if the superficial can penetrate the profound.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Tue, 14 Mar 2017 #202
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

Interesting in the following article (click on the link) how machine intelligence is being built, step by step, through refinements that increasingly mimic the human cerebral functioning:

"Google’s DeepMind makes AI program that can learn like a human"

https://www.theguardian.com/global/2017/mar/14/...

This post was last updated by Paul David son Tue, 14 Mar 2017.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Wed, 15 Mar 2017 #203
Thumb_leaping_fire_frog_by_sirenofchaos natarajan shivan India 11 posts in this forum Offline

Paul David son wrote:
There is the mind. At the 'surface' is a small area of self-refecting movement and at the deeper areas there is little or no self-reflection at all. And K is asking if the superficial can penetrate the profound.

'Mind' is a tricky word, if we understand it is an extension of movement as 'body', i.e.without separating the two, then, examining/uncovering deeper layers is not a discovery which leads to an end in something bound by psychic parameters, but a never ceasing movement, a sensitivity to something but yet non-participating at the level of movement and division.

Paul David son wrote:
and at the deeper areas there is little or no self-reflection at all.

Would that aspect, of being almost wholly non self-reflective, qualify us as machines?

contraria sunt complementa

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Thu, 16 Mar 2017 #204
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

natarajan shivan wrote:
'Mind' is a tricky word, if we understand it is an extension of movement as 'body', i.e.without separating the two, then, examining/uncovering deeper layers is not a discovery which leads to an end in something bound by psychic parameters, but a never ceasing movement, a sensitivity to something but yet non-participating at the level of movement and division.

An intelligent comment. Sense and sensitivity is at the core. It seems endemic to life.

natarajan shivan wrote:
Would that aspect, of being almost wholly non self-reflective [of the unconscious - PD], qualify us as machines?

I was asking way back if my cats were machines. They are wholly non-reflective. I don't see why we should define life as a machine and make an exception of man on account of his self-consciousness.

I think Nat, on the other hand, that man has made machines and then creates his ideas of everything that is not man in that image. There is a history to it.

Having condemned the universe as a giant machine and animals as being small machines, man put himself aside, being blessed with a god-given soul. As man began to doubt the existence of this soul and as positivist science became a dominant part of his thinking, his philosophy began to tell him that as animals are machines, he must also be one.

Are we now to rescue man from the conundrum of his own making and give him a psychological 'get out of jail free' card? Ah, it is being said, we have self-consciousness and this allows us to escape the world of machines and become real people . . . if only we give up the self.

I don't know HOW MANY versions of that argument I plowed through in my hope of finding an answer.

Why not instead simply drop the idea that anything at all in this wonderful universe is a 'machine' except for the machines we ourselves make?

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Wed, 22 Mar 2017 #205
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

I was considering the following:

Machines run pretty well. You set a machine up to do a certain task and provided nothing untoward gets in the way (machines figure low on the 'adaptivity to new challenges' scale) you will get the result you expect.

With thought, you hardly ever get the expected result.

A machine runs along the certain, prepared lines that it is supposed to run along. When the engineer drops a spanner in the works the machine breaks. A machine can only go in one direction. There is an inevitability about it.

Is that the same with human affairs? Certainly, in retrospect, we all say that a certain thing was inevitable, it was bound to happen. But then, why could we not predict it? The terrorist attack in London today . . . sure, it was bound to happen - in general.

Sociologists generally try to find causal links for social phenomena. One comes up with absurdities such as that poverty breeds crime or that competition breeds excellence. General theories abound. But they are all based upon the notion that human behaviour is mechanical, that this leads to that. What I see is that such theories are themselves the product of mechanical thinking.

Thinking is not mechanical unless and until we are thinking in a mechanical mode, which we certainly do much of the time.

A machine, when it errs, cannot go back and check itself, redress is working and improve its own performance. The scientists and technicians are trying to invent machines that can do just that, of course, but this only goes to show just how much the machine is increasingly mimicking the human rather than visa-versa. I would propose that machines are becoming more 'human' (at least, in the manner of their appearance and performance) rather than humans becoming more machine-like.

I also think it worth considering that this apparent convergence between man and machine is actually much more superficial than we imagine. One might envisage a time in the future when that convergence reaches deeper levels, but that for now is science fiction.

One further observation: When humans are forced into mutual interactions in which they have only an indirect interest (such as K talked about, working together for a joint 'cause' - co-operation rather than communion) they need not think deeply, the superficial level is sufficient. More and more do we operate at that level. Anecdotally, it seems to us or it gives us the impression that the noose is tightening, and the room for creativity is diminishing. But, at the same time, I see so many examples of this not being so, or not being exclusively so.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Sat, 01 Apr 2017 #206
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

On a different note:

"There is no man alone, because every man is a Microcosm, and carries the whole world about him." Thomas Browne (1605 - 1682)

How do we react to that statement . . . mechanically?

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Sat, 01 Apr 2017 #207
Thumb_2474 Dan McDermott United States 159 posts in this forum Offline

Paul David son wrote:
"There is no man alone, because every man is a Microcosm, and carries the whole world about him." Thomas Browne (1605 - 1682)

This whole deal (in a nutshell) seems to me one of 'negation'...that one way or another, we all have wound up building (or having built) a psychological "wall" around ourselves and that we can go through our lives without ever 'realizing' that that is the case. K. and others say that that is the case. If that 'sounds' right to you you start to investigate it in whatever way you can...and where it leads who knows. It's interesting, going into that possibility of being 'cut off' and not realizing that you might very well be.

When there is only fear without any hope of escape, in its darkest moments, in the utter solitude of fear, there comes from within itself, as it were, the light which shall dispel it."

This post was last updated by Dan McDermott Sat, 01 Apr 2017.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Sat, 01 Apr 2017 #208
Thumb_hot-sale-font-b-cool-b-font-cat-animal-poster-custom-font-b-wallpaper-b-font Jan Kasol Czech Republic 101 posts in this forum Offline

Paul, I think that K differentiated between the mechanical (reaction of memory manifesting as will = the known) and the spontaneous, creative, unpremeditated (= the unknown). Se here
http://www.jiddu-krishnamurti.net/en/1936-1944-...

the goal is to die to the known and experience the new, unpremeditated, creative.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Sat, 01 Apr 2017 #209
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

Jan Kasol wrote:
the goal is to die to the known

The moment you make it as goal . . .

Jan Kasol wrote:
and experience the new

The moment you have an experience . . .

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Sat, 01 Apr 2017 #210
Thumb_screen_shot_2017-04-11_at_14 Paul David son Brazil 202 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
one way or another, we all have wound up building (or having built) a psychological "wall" around ourselves and that we can go through our lives without ever 'realizing' that that is the case.

We are mostly aware of the things we have intended to do. We didn't set out to build a wall, we don't remember intending it and we never realised it as the consequence of our actions. So, what built it? Why did it happen? And, what was it built of?

Let's keep the focus on the mechanical while discussing this, if we can. At least, I feel that still to be of importance. I wanted to write about something that happened to me yesterday. Perhaps I will . . . tomorrow.

Sign in to recommend
Back to Top
Displaying posts 181 - 210 of 551 in total
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.)