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Mythological Certainty and the Delusion of Dualism

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posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 12:39 AM
I consider mythological certainty to be that which a person asserts about reality without recognizing or taking into account the reality of the conditions that act upon the way and manner that they think.

I just finished watching game of thrones, episode 4 (spoiler alert) and for most part I tend to enjoy it, yet, at times, I feel bothered by what seems to me certain unsavory metaphorical allusions. Of course, I don't know for certain, but I would bet that George R.R Martin is structuring some Gnosticism into the story line, so that the name, character and other associations come to represent some "spirit" or archetype of the unconscious spiritual realm.

A few scenes stuck out, but what really struck me was Brans statement that "chaos is a ladder". In a spiritual drama, borne from an intrinsic commitment to the therapeutic value of trauma, Bran is seeing it all - the pain, terror and whatever may follow upon it. He is disembodied, dissociated, and disconnected from his two sisters. He cannot identify with anything but the "higher" perspective - barely even noticing how much it bothers his sister, his mission, he feels, forbids him from stepping away.

Is this real, this event of clairvoyant seeing? Would it surprise you to know that quantum physics, complex adaptive systems, as cells, bodies, and minds, all predicts the reality of such a sphere of "complex seeing"? Would it surprise you to know that what these mystics are "seeing", is not reality in its whole, but merely a probabilistic direction given the conditions the "seer" is seeing from?

In studying the evolution of human beings, It is not unusual in the least bit, given the reality of mirror neurons, that brains match and compare in point-counterpoint fashion each self's object relation to the environment.

As an object-subject, the human being can sometimes wish that he were simply a subject, or simply an object. The person who "needs" reality to be in the mode he expects to find it isn't generally open, particularly if the subject-matter hasn't been explored in his semiotic milieu, to ideas which conflict with his meaning-narrative. Indeed, we may honestly say: people 'fend off' the dissonant ideas produced by others the way we shoo away the fly, or chase a mouse out of the house. Ideas are things, and they are in COMPETITION if they are contradictory in some way.

Now, I talk about the brain a lot - and for good reason: its a massive-freaking wake up call to people who hold to a dualistic metaphysics, because all of the evidence shows that the body produces mind, and that all of the behaviors of mind come from actual interactions with the surrounding environment. All of these processes are material, made of granular parts, which in their interactions give rise to a teleological process. Furthermore, all of these processes can be made sensible simply by tracing cause and effect back through time, to the origin of the universe.

Now, I have read, that the "psychological self" is not important, and I wonder, is this the demon of the west - the demon that afflicts this part of collective humanity with a monstrous dehumanization of the other, all the while fitting the other within their metaphysical scheming? Chaos is a ladder may indeed be true - its certainly true from a systems theory perspective, yet it harsh, cruel, and unnecessary.

Teleology means "to have purpose". Humans are governed by teleological processes, yet we mostly hide from it - at least Plato did - but not the great Aristotle. Not uncoincidentally, Plato, the initiate of Pythagorean mysteries didn't like democracy, whereas Aristotle, tactician of the psyche and organizer of the logic of cause and effect (the 4 causes), was a supporter of democracy. Plato, it seems, was hiding something, and indeed, he was:

“If I thought it possible to deal adequately with the subject in a treatise or a lecture for the general public, what finer achievement would there have been in my life than to write a work of great benefit to mankind and to bring the nature of things to light for all men? I do not, however, think the attempt to tell mankind about these matters a good thing, except in the case of some few who are capable of discovering the truth for themselves with a little guidance. In the case of the rest to do so would excite in some an unjustified contempt in a thoroughly offensive fashion, in others certain lofty and vain hopes, as if they had acquired some awesome lore.” – Plato, 7th Letter

Sometimes I wonder: is this the theorizing of someone who only has a "top-down" view on things, and not a bottom-up one? Aristotle made science possible, whereas Plato has driven the theological fantasies of the elite class, who still believe that their view of things is a coherent way of thinking. Yet, doesn't it all hinge on what mind even is? Do the people who post here even care - as they certainly should and would if they were rational - that molecular events underlie neural processes, and neural processes are intertwined in a complex network of relations with neurons, glia, endothelial and the rest of the cells of the body?

The what of the "dynamical system" part is lost on them - so trusting they are in the reality of their vision.

On the other, being as I am, I criticize basically any tradition alive today that claims 100% accuracy for their view on things. Judaism, obviously, is guilty of all sorts of projections deriving from life experiences projected into the words of their God; it is THEIR anger, THEIR pain, and yes, THEIR desire to gloat at some future period, when the world will see "how right they are".

Being a student of religion in general, I have interfaced with so many different worldviews that I am made dizzy by my own understanding sometimes. Which is true, which isn't? Are all true, or only some? Or how bout none?

edit on 7-8-2017 by Astrocyte because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 12:39 AM
Yet, we can thank the absurdist author Douglas Adams for the poignant description of chaos theory on James Gleicks backcover: an awe-inspiring book. Reading it gave me that sensation that someone had just found the light switch."

The light switch. If that is an anvil on Plato's metaphysics, I don't know what is. Epistemology can no longer be the same because of systems theory - not unless human beings truly do want to be emancipated from the sort of ignorance that makes us barbarically mindless towards one another - that is, to induce suffering in one another, all the while receiving an unconscious certainty based upon a supposed sense of certainty that the universe provides such and such an ability.

Why does the world seem so plastic to some people (dualists) whereas to others, there's a unity (monism)? Science, as any scientist will tell you, is very much committed to a single metaphysical category of description i.e. materialism. Materialism simply assumes that all things that exist exist because of the matter we operate through. As a general premise on reality, I couldn't agree more with materialism, but at the same time, since I take mind to be causally efficacious i.e. on the matter of our brains, and perhaps more, there needs to be a clear ideational component to it, ala Charles Sanders Peirce, that American logician who mystified even William James, the famed psychologist. His system, termed "objective idealism", means all things have a mental-property to them, but that these mental-properties have rules-of-organization that control whether things do or don't exist i.e. symmetry.

Symmetry theory, taken literally, was fleshed out by the scientist/philosopher Camelo Catillo in his book "Origin of Mind", which left even Antonio Damasio floored by the significance of this authors intellectual pursuits. Indeed, Castillo traces the obvious fact that symmetry, or complementarity (he doesn't use this term, but Neils Bohr would), moves upwards i.e. accretes, so that more and more energy/structure is built into the emerging "things" of the universe. Symmetry theory simply implies a "middle-point" or "balance", that every individual ontological unit from quark, nuclei, atom, molecule, cell, etc, must maintain in order to build and sustain itself. But again, this is a NEVER-ENDING process. It is happening right now inside of you, so that the feelings you feel can be described as emergent "translations" of these processes i.e. as "reading off" the quality of the interactions between parts-within-your-bodily system.

I do not rave often about people, but the Dalai Lama, and his courageous openness and willingness to subject his own Buddhist teachings to neuroscience and physic,s speaks to this mans remarkable wisdom and intellectual fortitude. I mention this man, because, despite those who commit themselves to harsh metaphysical practices, the Dalai Lama is refreshingly level-headed about what he needs to function well: 8 hours of sleep, three meals a day (around the same time) 3 hours of meditation in the morning, and acts of service, care, and loving-kindness towards Others.

When you grew up, and were faced by ignorant and hateful Chinese soldiers inspired by the gnostic destructiveness of Mao's revolution, as the Dalai Lama was, and was also expected to be the leader and thus, the source of support/inspiration for your people, as he has been trained to be, then what the Dalai Lama has become is not at all surprising, but a testament to a man who grew up within a culture that provided the means for him to become what he is today - an icon of level-headedness, compassion, care for the body, for the mind, and for other human beings.

The Dalai's metaphysics is small and not very "certain" about things. He is open enough to recognize the superiority of the empirical scientific method, and also fairly interested in the neurosciences, and in recruiting Buddhist monks for neuroscientific studies, so that the physical nature of what their life and living is all about.

Not surprisingly, what you find is a great deal of left brain activity, as if to imply a controlled awareness on the contents that flow through cognition. The shaping of awareness is what mindfulness is all about, and it is precisely this capacity to "know" how to be vis-à-vis your own experience, that allows what I believe to be an important and necessary sensibility: a knowledge of yourself not from a perspective of fear, but a perspective of love. What Buddhist mindfulness incarnates in its suggestion is this: that you can look upon yourself with love, and so be without criticism or negative judgement when you interact with a content of your consciousness. This position indeed seems to be a "middle point: neither dissociating from the content nor hyper-focusing on it in identification, but observing it, and, indeed, seeking to better understand the nature of the contents relation to other relevant contents/themes/objects.

You do not know mental activity, or the extent to which we can become mentally active, until you combine the ethic of the east (which already has a very sophisticated psychological system) with the scientific subtlety cultivated in the west, particularly in the semiotic areas of philosophy. Indeed, the mind can reveal itself to you in its myriad and perhaps infinite manifestations, but what is perhaps most useful about this method is the way it helps us parse truth from falsehood i.e. to cultivate a rational skepticism so that we do not let ourselves get fooled by appearances.

Within the west today, there exist people who, being like all people, are full of good and bad, and reasons for acting in good or bad ways. Most of these people have never heard of or even had the opportunity to realize that contemporary science and philosophy possesses the means to figure out much about the way the human mind operates, i.e. with a system of symmetry, and, when it comes to the contents of consciousness itself, at an ontological level of semiotic and noetic clarification as it relates to a particular articulation on a slice-of-reality.

It is here, in the slice, that I find the west to be naïve - or maybe, the whole of the religious world, so trusting of their thinking, of their "spiritual channelling", to just not realize the degree to which we are vulnerable to delusion.

Of course, being human, and not, of course, subscribing to any sort of evil doctrine of putting one group of humans in one category (an elite) and another, into another (an infirm, inferior human, i.e. one that utterly denies everything the sciences reveal), I do not demonize in my head, but try to realize the significance and meaning of one part of a system "fighting" with another part of a system - because, in all reality, humans share a common source i.e. are referencing against the same core-attractors, the same dynamics that makes every human a function of a particular principle, one acknowledged by most sane people i.e. love.

I cannot imagine a universe which doesn't "know" its parts. It is just not a reasonable assumption to make. Rather, co-determination of state, between "gnostics" and "jews" has everything to do with the history of the middle-east, the traumatizing context, and hence, the birth of religions which sprouted from different contexts, and from different conditions

posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 12:40 AM
Civilization roared forward because of the spiritual ethos of the west, with its belief in the utility of transformation through chaos, which appeared, at least, to be how reality "motivated" humans, wherever they were and whatever conditions they were under, to come forward, and predict the future.

The future, and end, of many religions, are coming upon the present day situation: a convergence in prediction is occurring, probably because the same basic references are structuring how the world is experienced/known from different perspectives.

As I said, Aristotle gave the world science, even though his works went missing until the Arabs brought them forward - an opportunity for humans to forge a way-out of the miasma that Plato-inspired doctrines release upon people.

Again, it can almost seem trite to say; if you don't have comfortable physical surroundings, your thinking will be off. But its true. The ability to control temperature, diet, sleep, rest, and exercise, allows humans the opportunity to "increase coherency" at the embodied level, simply by becoming aware of the fact that the body evolved in such a way as to be fundamentally vulnerable to "breakdown" when eternal conditions changed.

This is a symmetry that matters, even though it is impersonal and lies beyond the bounds of mytho-theological certitude. In fact, the ancients had to become adapted to the environment around them, not realizing - being mere humans with primitive assumptions about reality - that simply because their brain learns to dissociate a certain signal, doesn't mean the bodily system isn't being asked to perform "more work", and hence, undermining the stability/flexibility of the system in question. When the heat goes up, body's perform more work - whether or not the person is a spiritual magi. When you don't eat, when you don't sleep, when you don't exercise, or rest, you are putting yourself in a sub-optimal bodily-affective frame for thinking, athough, of course, it is probably a narrative-consciousness to begin with which compels the ascetic goal of "destroying the body".

I find todays contemporary religions to be extreme - traumatic - and overwhelmingly over-certain about reality. Dualism is mainly a metaphysical concept, saying that there exist "two different orders" to reality. But trauma is an order that doesn't speak "human" - it speaks "biologically", as in other animals, as in homeostasis, as in affect and the way feeling frames perception. Traumatized minds who aren't adequately aware of the nature of trauma on perception are very prone to project their fantasies and ideals - derived from their living/interactions in a world with others - and one may indeed wonder whether the ideals of Judaism, or Islam, or Christianity, are coherently in touch with realities nature.

Think of the Kaaba in Mecca, or the Temple Mount in Jerusalem (with the Jewish Temple). It is square - it is representing a hoped-for ideal: a perfect cube. Of course, people will be inclined to justify what they're already connected with, so I can only say this: ecological psychologists have rightly wondered, and also shown through experimental psychology, that people become much more "fixed" in their thinking when interfacing with idealized geometrical forms, whereas, when interfacing with natural forms, our brains biodynamical genetic properties respond much differently - as if a more fitting correlation is occurring between the system which observes through fractal-dynamics, and the world which is observed - with its natural forms. A natural fit, in fact.

Natural forms, quite obviously, is what is taken as "symmetry" by our brains visual systems: not rectangle streets, square houses, etc; yet of course, if it were not for the restless promothean spirit of rebellion against nature and being, look how worse off we would have been! In a relative sense, we can say that reality has been made worse by our "leaving Eden". Yet, one must admit, humanity has been united together, and indeed, we have brought forward with us a compendium of knowledge and technological skills for much beyond what could have been imagined before.

Do not try to see too far, as no one can claim to be free from the conditions that interfere with a more natural/healthy/symmetrical perspective.

We too often identify with our needs at the expense of what is important in our living. Everyone becomes an idolator, as much as the Jew who puts his God in front of the other persons face and needs (an idea "rules" their behavior) or the atheist who think by some other "name", or set of ideas, which he worships for his own needs.

Not paying attention to consequences - to the way things actually work, is the problem. Climate change is a first big step in discovering just how systemic everything is. The next step, ideally, is to increase awareness in society about how people function, so that, ideally, freedom can be enhanced (i.e. freedom to be) but, and this is the glue that keeps the system coherent - everyone is knowledgeable/perceptually attuned to those elements which actually effect how we behave in the world. That is, mindfulness, in being developed, will move us a step-further into the truly unknown.

What I also want to emphasize is this: holiness, or the idea of holiness, is a pretentious concept that contains within it the kernel of pridefulness. An interest I have, for instance, is to show how nihilistic comedy needn't be a "shutdown" thing, inasmuch as it is fun to play with ideas and concepts that are absurd, and so, hilarious. The notion of "not laughing", or not appreciating laughter, is something only someone with unresolved trauma, and a massive super-ego, would have trouble realizing. Further, the idea that a God "frowns" upon us 'mocking' others, even if the relevant others aren't present, contradicts the reality that mind-within i.e. the human being, is an expression of mind-above, and so, if mind-above exists, and takes pleasure in playing with absurd themes, as in Family Guy, American Dad, The Simpsons, or South Park, you are again being an idolator - putting your thinking/theology ahead of the other and their innocent enough needs.

My goal is not to take away, but to equip people with the knowledge/awareness to play safely - so that play in all its many forms, can be enjoyed and relished, and not inhibited or unnecessarily restricted. The '"priest" does not need to exist as an intermediary in a world where minds are able to reason according to common knowledge about how minds work. Reality can be enjoyed, then, without harming others, or the world.

posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 01:03 AM
edit on 7-8-2017 by mericks74 because: Ewuhhh

posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 01:45 AM

originally posted by: mericks74


posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 05:57 AM
The Gnostics seemed to believe in a demiurge that controls the world with his minions the archons. They supposedly collectively feed off our energy, hatred, fear, anything that makes us feel insecure. In other words, as might be said, they gave us their mind which is short-sighted and tempered, restless, selfish and petty. To identify with that mind will make you think you are somehow magically separated from god, the creator, existence, bliss, 'all there is' or whatever you like to call it. Pick a tradition, there are plenty.
I ask you, when did this happen? No-one can be separate from god, existence that is, no matter how much you wish it, you would have to cease to exist. However, you can always choose ignore this connection with existence, as we all are taught to do, unless we happen to have some very enlightened parents or happen to be very attentive ourselves. Most, I would say end up more or less slaves of a dull materialistic and mechanistic world view in which anything spiritual is far removed or at least tightly cloistered and institutionalized. What better way is there to control people? Make them think they are nothing and even god has turned his back on his people. The irony and absurdity of this disease is of course that it exists because the sheep we have become, we allow it. Who will rather roar like the lion?

posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 08:00 AM
RE: " massive-freaking wake up call to people who hold to a dualistic metaphysics"

One day two monks were in a garden arguing subjectivity versus objectivity. The Zen master hearing them arguing approached the two students. The Zen master asked, "that rock over there, does that exist inside your head or outside your head?". One of the monks looked up at the Zen master and replied, "Well, our religious bible tells us that all truth is subjective so that rock over there only exists inside my head." At which point the Zen master replies, "Then it must be pretty heavy all day walking around with that rock in your head!"

posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 11:23 AM
Dualism, good an the bad, the beauty an the ugly, logic vs creativity. where evidently one must make a choice..The monkey in the middle a good example of it isn't, where the money forced to contend between to polar forces, making the monkey go on circle.

But when then monkey got tired, it realized it didn't have to play the presidential games, and decied wether to rip their limbs off or just walk away an ignore so it doesn't have to play stupid game anymorw. Now the monkey free from the cycle dualism.

It always been about choice, now I chose to feat four kings.
edit on 7-8-2017 by Specimen because: (no reason given)

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