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Is the mind pictures?


Forums Forums General Discussion Is the mind pictures?

This topic contains 311 replies, has 11 voices, and was last updated by  Citizenschallenge-v.3 5 months ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 312 total)
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  • #297317

    Xain
    Participant

    Kind of makes sense when I told her that meditation hurt rather than helped, it was followed by ” i dont know what you did but here its different”. Also every time I asked a question we ended up with either her personal experience or how I could come back there. But it always came back to the class. I spoke to actual monks who gave me better answers than “just take it”.

    #297318

    Xian: “It was surreal”

    You know Xian, me being a bit of a bleeding heart, dharma bum, leftie, I listened to that meditation advice, like you’re talking about, the cleansing of your mind, quieting all your thoughts.  I never took any guru’s seriously (I learned the skeptical eye early on) but the underlying ideas and goals made sense.

    I took it as a goal to achieve that mediative state of “clearing the mind” achieving the moment of inner silence, but according to my path.  In any event, early in my forties I was with some pals camping at Chestler Park, Canyon Lands NP (google it, it’s a landscape that evokes all the spirituality you got in ya bud.).  Amidst a tumultuous period in my life, this was a few days of pure geologic/spiritual experience with good friends.

    One day I joined my pals for a hike through the Joint Trail (look it up, it’s mind boggling, one moment you’re on top of the world, next your deep inside the bowels of Earth) and beyond to a prominent outcrop we wanted to get on top of.  There was a plastic Honeybear bottle along with ‘black honey’ in it – it happens when adding ground mushrooms, that was passed around.  As we were climbing and my cosmic side was kicking in, it seemed like this was a perfect time to try again.  I peeled off from my pals and found a splendid little niche under an outcrop with a grand view and started focusing on proper breathing, pushing that little talking man off the stage, mental silence, nothing.

    And damned if I didn’t break on through to the other side.  Silence and nothing.  What the fuk was I thinking!  The sensation was like being tossed out of a space capsule naked.  If I ever had a “Mr. Wizard” moment that was it, fuk this, its like death, absolute nothing.  I came back into the real world with relief and joy to be gazing out at that huge “empty” vista stretching out west and knowing my friends would be walking back down the trail before long and that I would be joining the party.

    And so, I touched the great meditation mystery and knew that I wanted nothing more to do with that bit of mental trickery.  I was alive, had a healthy body with healthy desires, I had friends and family, and a good life in a most amazing place.  I was cured, I learned to my satisfaction what “it” was about and wanted no part of it.  I wanted to experience living.  Not that I don’t meditate at all any more, but now it’s the breathing and then focusing on sensing my body, happy to be in the here and now.

    Xian, listen to others, be curious, learn, but follow your own gut impulse, save your money, and refine who You are.  The universe will provide the moments and the teachers if you’re perceptive enough to recognize it.  Oh and watch out for the predators, they are everywhere, studying you, looking for weakness and an opportunity to take what they want from you.  The glad hand hides a dagger and it comes in many guises.         

    gee that was fun, thanks Xian  ;- 

    #297321

    Advocatus
    Participant

    Xain wrote:  “Because I went to the site and saw a few bits of literature. One board talked about releasing all your attachments, along with some other things. Another was about touching “the source” and coming back.
    But rest assured it isn’t what Advocatus said.”

    All I did was go to the website and read the Overview, and I interpreted what they were saying there from the perspective of the mediation which I have tried.  From what you’re saying, you delved deeper than that.  Based on what you’re saying it does sound a bit fishy.

    • This reply was modified 9 months ago by  Advocatus.
    • This reply was modified 9 months ago by  Advocatus.
    #297324

    Lausten
    Keymaster

    Sam Harris has some great stuff on meditation. Unfortunately I’ve heard it as parts of his podcast here and there, so I don’t know if I can reference it. There was someone he was talking to about going to a meditation retreat. It’s silent, but you get a few minutes with a master each day to talk about how it’s going. He could overhear the guy ahead of him and noted that for the first few days, he wanted to talk about great it was and how he was achieving a state of letting go of his thoughts for several moments, repeatedly. As the retreat went on, he became more honest, admitting he was getting there much less and only for a few seconds before the thoughts came in about an itch on his foot or something he needed to do back at home. I use this to spot a fake. Anyone who claims they can sit for hours and be at one with the universe, with no sense of self, is most likely lying.

    Sam recently created a meditation app and I think he has a book.

    #297325

    Xain
    Participant

    To respond to you it sounds a lot more like the drugs rather than any experience of what “it”actually is. It sounds to me more like an idea of what “it”actually is. In response to the curious bit, no thanks. Being curious has led me down a LONG line of mental breakdowns and depression reading things I was better off not. The universe doesn’t provide moments or teachers, that’s just humans projecting what isn’t there upon the blank canvas. If it did then the universe has a sick sense of humor or just hates me because it seems to get great pleasure in watching me squirm. Plus following your gut is poor advice as anyone who knows the research behind it can attest. I can too as it causes me nothing but trouble and ignores the more reasoned part of me.

    To the matter of this center. Apparently by “you are not alive” they meant that you are not really living or living well if you have all these thoughts in your head (though they could have just said that). One of the reasons I hate buddhism is the not so literal meaning of things. But from what else I gather the “pictures” they refer to might mean our own experience and interpretation of the world. Kind of like how you see a person as what you think they are based on experience when things can change. Or to the point that reality is what it is and not what we think it is. Of course this begs the question of how do you KNOW that the “true” reality you speak of is really true. Seems to me like a case against subjectivity.

    They seem to paint the lens that which we view the world (I’m guessing subjectivity) as dark, flawed, dirty, and some other pretty negative terms. That the things we love and pursue in life are our enemies (regardless if you think otherwise). It just seemed like they were trying to paint your current state of affairs as awful and then offer their service. Sounds like too many religions to me. It was capped off by the fact that any further questions would involve paying for an appointment, or becoming a member.

    #297326

    Xain
    Participant

    In short, “you are not alive” because you are living in the world of your “mind” (I’m guessing that means what you believe things to be) and not in the present or real world which is empty of our perceptions.

    #297331

    Don’t underestimate your ‘gut” that much.

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-fallible-mind/201701/the-pit-in-your-stomach-is-actually-your-second-brain

    :- )

    As for the drugs, haven’t they been part of the human religious experience since like for eeva?  ;- )

    ________________________________________________________________

    Xian:  “They seem to paint the lens that which we view the world (I’m guessing subjectivity) as dark, flawed, dirty, and some other pretty negative terms. That the things we love and pursue in life are our enemies (regardless if you think otherwise). It just seemed like they were trying to paint your current state of affairs as awful and then offer their service. Sounds like too many religions to me. It was capped off by the fact that any further questions would involve paying for an appointment, or becoming a member.”

    At the risk of sounding snarky, from that paragraph sounds to me like you’ve got a pretty decent grip on the scene.  How much of that comes from your ‘gut’ level intuition?              :big smilie face:

     

    #297333

    Xian: In short,

    ““you are not alive” because you are living in the world of your “mind” (I’m guessing that means what you believe things to be*)

    and not in the present or real world which is empty of our perceptions.”

    _________________________________________________________________

    How can we not live in our mind?  It’s what processes all of the input from the objective world you are embedded within.

    “real world which is empty of our perceptions.”  Define “real” world.

    Can one say the real world is empty of our perceptions, though we interact within and upon it, meaning we effect and change things in the objective world.

     

    *My “mind” contains many thoughts that I don’t believe in, so I’m thinking your definition is missing something.

    I’m happy with the Mind as a processing tool, that helps me survive and thrive.

    #297342

    Xain
    Participant

    Psychology Today? Really? My assessment was not based on the gut level of intuition (which studies show isn’t more reliable than normal thinking processes), but from the obvious “you are damned if you don’t listen” style that religion plays to get you to listen.

    I am mostly referring to stuff like this:

    https://medium.com/dharma-talk/does-the-self-exist-22a2c3c847bb

    In the sense that these people claim to have an experience of “no self” or that “you are the universe”. She even linked a book about a woman who claimed she had an “awakening” the showed she had “no self”, then one where “she was everything”. Well they put it first as realizing you are nothing, then that you are everything. The lady who wrote that claims that it is beyond the mind, which is dubious considering religious experience can be replicated in a lab. In my experience my mind ended up imagining such things as solipsism and idealism, and it felt like that was real (of course it was only the appearance that it was so). Still I fear such claims being right and they might uproot everything I know and I am scared of that.

    #297343

    Xain
    Participant

    https://scholar.harvard.edu/sara_lazar/home

    https://www.richardjdavidson.com/

    They listed the above as research to support meditation but they neglect to show the studies about people who had increased depression, dissociation, psychosis, and suicide in some.

    #297348

    Xain writes:  “Psychology Today? Really? My assessment was not based on the gut level of intuition (which studies show isn’t more reliable than normal thinking processes *), but from the obvious “you are damned if you don’t listen” style that religion plays to get you to listen.”

    Well okay seems we’re talking past each other.  Okay, religious zealots and mystical gurus are con-artists, and in my younger decades, I was at the receiving end of many lectures from such.  Inevitable they’d tell me all about who I “really was” and what my future would look like if I didn’t do such and such.  And just as inevitably they were dead wrong as succeeding decades made clear to me.  But, in my youth I didn’t have the benefit of hindsight – what I had was an inner solidity and security, that a was conveyed by what?  The brain and all I’d learned to that point, but the brain has to deliver its knowledge to my body.  You simply dismiss “gut feelings” yet the deeper we learn, seems the more profound and complex our neural network turns out to be.

    • * Oh and which studies, what was the set up, who’s interpreting them, and how were they interpreted by the scientists compared to the news reporters writing their stories to sell.

    (You shared three links with me, two are big blogs that I don’t have the time to peruse, was there anything specific?  The third posits “Is the Self Real?”  I have as much contempt for that question as I do for anyone musing “Is Time Real?” – those seem to me questions for people who think the surface of a soap bubble is all there is to reality.

    https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/gut-second-brain/

    “Think Twice: How the Gut’s “Second Brain” Influences Mood and Well-Being

    The emerging and surprising view of how the enteric nervous system in our bellies goes far beyond just processing the food we eat”

    https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/healthy_aging/healthy_body/the-brain-gut-connection

     

    Or if you want to play with the big boys’n girls, there seems to be an awful lot on the topic over at Google Scholar

    https://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&as_sdt=0%2C6&q=++-+brain+and+gut+neural+connections&btnG=

    __________________________________________

    Allow me to just bring it back this thread back to Advocatus  at January 11, 2019 at 10:04 am, since I kinda like the way he summarized it:

    He’s certainly not saying that reality isn’t real.  He’s just saying that our perception of reality is a model put together in our brains based on the input from your senses.  We assume that our perception of reality is accurate, but we can sometimes see (in the case of optical illusions, for example) that it isn’t necessarily.  It’s just the best model our brains can come up with.  And your own existence as a conscious entity is another model your brain puts together from available data.

    The people talking about meditation are saying basically the same thing, that your “mind”, or your perception of reality, is based upon ideas in your head which are in turn based upon the input from your senses.  Meditation is way of sitting quietly and sorting through all those conflicting perceptions.  Nothing more mysterious than that, really.

    #297354

    Xain
    Participant

    That just talks about depression and anxiety not really about the decision making processes that people often try to attribute to the gut. As I said before, that intuition (or gut feeling) is no more reliable than the usual method of logical and drawn out thinking.

     

    “what I had was an inner solidity and security, that a was conveyed by what?  The brain and all I’d learned to that point, but the brain has to deliver its knowledge to my body.”

    The above statement is what they mean about the false mind, what they refer to. That this is not reality, just one’s experience of it and what they judge about it. Advocatus’s summary is incorrect since that is not what mediation is and it wasn’t what they were referring to (refer to my correction of his assessment). Their argument is that there is no solid self, no unchanging core to you that exists moment to moment. When I spoke to someone at the meditation place she just said stuff as though it was the truth. Like how you really are the universe and not the body (didn’t really prove that, but from what I read meditation can make it appear that way and some drugs too), or how the universe is eternal (it’s not), or that universe is righteous (it isn’t), even the sign up front talks about becoming “complete”, whatever that means. It just seems to me like she said a bunch of stuff as though it were true, but not how it is true. It’s kind of like people with the Bible.

    Additionally I don’t know what to make of the descriptions of the personal experiences that some of the people describe (like in the Medium article).  To me it seems like proof.

    #297355

    Xain
    Participant

    Also in regards to the “you are the universe”, the answer given to me was that before you there was the universe. Since they believe there is no death but just the passing of form, my guess is that the parts that make you up (molecules and atoms) don’t actually die, so therefor you don’t truly die. The pieces that make up your body go forth and bind with other pieces to make something else. At least that’s what I think they mean, they never actually use that part. From where I stand and see I am this body, which is MADE of the same stuff as other things in the universe, but eventually dies and breaks down when that happens. So when this body is no more I am no more, but the parts are still there. I am not the parts, I was the whole that those parts made.

    It’s confusing me.

    #297361

    Xain
    Participant

    #297362

    Why is it not you?

     

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