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“It doesn’t come from outside.”

 
sojourner
 
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sojourner
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18 October 2016 15:53
 
Throwdare - 18 October 2016 02:12 PM

I’m just teasing yah…

...on a more serious note:

Here is one more definition of what I think meditation is all about:

Me-di-I-tat-I-on.

Contemplate on it. It’s worth the effort. (And consider, if you can, more than one language to understand what that term might refer to.)

By the way, I think I see yah, NL. This, my post here, is not meant to offend you or put you down. It’s meant to .....ah….pick an intention of your liking.


I think you said you’re German? Think we’re running into a language barrier, not sure what you’re conveying here - not in a “that’s so abstract zen way”, more a “differences in the subtle nuances of languages and syntax kinda way”. Could you phrase it another way?

 
 
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19 October 2016 11:20
 
NL. - 18 October 2016 12:08 PM
unsmoked - 18 October 2016 08:50 AM
NL. - 18 October 2016 06:31 AM


Well, I still think the mechanisms here are important, though. While I would prefer, at least I think I would prefer, maybe it would be a “careful what you wish for” situation . . .

Can you meditate while wishing for something?

 


Of course. At the broadest level, I’d say not only can you meditate on anything, but you couldn’t stop meditating if you tried. The question is should you meditate on it - Buddhists would likely say meditating on certain wishes (things like metta excluded) is meditating on delusion. But still meditating.

If you look carefully, is it possible to see what the mind is doing when we are wishing for something?  Does desire need thought?

 
 
sojourner
 
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19 October 2016 12:23
 
unsmoked - 19 October 2016 11:20 AM

If you look carefully, is it possible to see what the mind is doing when we are wishing for something?  Does desire need thought?


Who would see what the mind is doing? Do sight and observation require thought as well? I would say yes. Salt doll in the ocean situation again, to my mind, unless you invoke a non-materialistic metaphysical paradigm.


I will say, I think love is a sort of middle ground between these two states (love being, possibly, synonymous with pure attention, I don’t know. Maybe they are distinct in subtle ways.) I think possibly love is the sort of equivalent of the ‘salt doll’ state in a form that can be experienced by individual agents.

 

 
 
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19 October 2016 13:24
 

Sight is simply visual perception as an automatic function of the nervous system.  Observation requires interpreting what we see.

 
 
Throwdare
 
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20 October 2016 08:13
 
NL. - 18 October 2016 03:53 PM
Throwdare - 18 October 2016 02:12 PM

I’m just teasing yah…

...on a more serious note:

Here is one more definition of what I think meditation is all about:

Me-di-I-tat-I-on.

Contemplate on it. It’s worth the effort. (And consider, if you can, more than one language to understand what that term might refer to.)

By the way, I think I see yah, NL. This, my post here, is not meant to offend you or put you down. It’s meant to .....ah….pick an intention of your liking.


I think you said you’re German? Think we’re running into a language barrier, not sure what you’re conveying here - not in a “that’s so abstract zen way”, more a “differences in the subtle nuances of languages and syntax kinda way”. Could you phrase it another way?

I could, but I’m not allowed to give you more hints, NL.

My three zen-teachers agree that I said too much already. And being hit with a zen-stick ain’t no fun.

Anyway….

....what I wanted to point out is: Meditation is a means to an end, not an end in itself. Although it can be used like bruishing your (spiritual) teeth. But if you don’t have any teeth of that kind any longer, bruishing isn’t neccessary anymore….when “....mountains are mountains again…”


(Autsch!)

(We’re sorry!)

(You better are!)

[ Edited: 20 October 2016 08:18 by Throwdare]
 
 
unsmoked
 
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20 October 2016 11:04
 
NL. - 19 October 2016 12:23 PM
unsmoked - 19 October 2016 11:20 AM

If you look carefully, is it possible to see what the mind is doing when we are wishing for something?  Does desire need thought?


Who would see what the mind is doing? Do sight and observation require thought as well? I would say yes. Salt doll in the ocean situation again, to my mind, unless you invoke a non-materialistic metaphysical paradigm.


I will say, I think love is a sort of middle ground between these two states (love being, possibly, synonymous with pure attention, I don’t know. Maybe they are distinct in subtle ways.) I think possibly love is the sort of equivalent of the ‘salt doll’ state in a form that can be experienced by individual agents.

In his book, ‘WAKING UP’, Sam Harris comments, “An ability to examine the contents of one’s own consciousness clearly, dispassionately, and nondiscursively, with sufficient attention to realize that no inner self exists, is a very sophisticated skill.”  (end quote)  (Someone once noticed that “consciousness is not designed for self-examination.”) 

If the self does examine its own activity, can it detect when there is no waste of mental energy?  (for example, the mental activity of desire, or wishful thinking obviously demands brain activity beyond basal metabolism.  (Think of those animations of brain activity that look like a busy switchboard).

A favorite subject of traditional Zen artists is the heron standing on one leg in a pond.  He may be motionless for hours on end.  Asleep?  Day dreaming?  In fact, he is fishing, as a spider with its web is fishing - no wasted energy, but awake.  A fish or a frog moves within range of the heron’s long neck and harpoon beak and . . . zap!  He has it.

Getting back to the Harris quote - how many Christians (to name just one religion) could ever find out that ‘no inner self exists’?  Obviously discovery is stymied if there are established views.

Zen master Mazu comments:  “Human delusions of time immemorial, deceit, pride, deviousness, and conceit, have conglomerated into one body.  That is why scripture says that this body is just made of elements, and its appearance and disappearance is just that of elements, which have no identity.  When successive thoughts do not await one another, and each thought dies peacefully away, this is called absorption in the oceanic reflection.”

(Mazu quoted from the book, ‘ZEN ESSENCE - The Science of Freedom’ - translated and edited by Thomas Cleary)

 

 
 
Throwdare
 
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20 October 2016 11:12
 
unsmoked - 20 October 2016 11:04 AM
NL. - 19 October 2016 12:23 PM
unsmoked - 19 October 2016 11:20 AM

If you look carefully, is it possible to see what the mind is doing when we are wishing for something?  Does desire need thought?


Who would see what the mind is doing? Do sight and observation require thought as well? I would say yes. Salt doll in the ocean situation again, to my mind, unless you invoke a non-materialistic metaphysical paradigm.


I will say, I think love is a sort of middle ground between these two states (love being, possibly, synonymous with pure attention, I don’t know. Maybe they are distinct in subtle ways.) I think possibly love is the sort of equivalent of the ‘salt doll’ state in a form that can be experienced by individual agents.

In his book, ‘WAKING UP’, Sam Harris comments, “An ability to examine the contents of one’s own consciousness clearly, dispassionately, and nondiscursively, with sufficient attention to realize that no inner self exists, is a very sophisticated skill.”  (end quote)  (Someone once noticed that “consciousness is not designed for self-examination.”) 

If the self does examine its own activity, can it detect when there is no waste of mental energy?  (for example, the mental activity of desire, or wishful thinking obviously demands brain activity beyond basal metabolism.  (Think of those animations of brain activity that look like a busy switchboard).

A favorite subject of traditional Zen artists is the heron standing on one leg in a pond.  He may be motionless for hours on end.  Asleep?  Day dreaming?  In fact, he is fishing, as a spider with its web is fishing - no wasted energy, but awake.  A fish or a frog moves within range of the heron’s long neck and harpoon beak and . . . zap!  He has it.

Getting back to the Harris quote - how many Christians (to name just one religion) could ever find out that ‘no inner self exists’?  Obviously discovery is stymied if there are established views.

Zen master Mazu comments:  “Human delusions of time immemorial, deceit, pride, deviousness, and conceit, have conglomerated into one body.  That is why scripture says that this body is just made of elements, and its appearance and disappearance is just that of elements, which have no identity.  When successive thoughts do not await one another, and each thought dies peacefully away, this is called absorption in the oceanic reflection.”

(Mazu quoted from the book, ‘ZEN ESSENCE - The Science of Freedom’ - translated and edited by Thomas Cleary)

Can you please boil that all down, or “break it down” for me, as a self-proclaimed….you name it? I have no idea what you are talking about. Taking into consideration what I have been taught regarding zen by MY teachers. In other words, can you explain it to me as if I would just be twelve years old? In common terms and phrases? Thanks in advance.

 
 
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20 October 2016 17:14
 
Throwdare - 20 October 2016 08:13 AM

I could, but I’m not allowed to give you more hints, NL.


Not sure if you’re joking or not, but this is an awesome way to respond when you actually don’t know the answer to the question yourself. “Oh, I could explain quantum gravity to you Throwdare, but I’ve given you too many hints already…” I’ll have to keep this in mind if I ever need it in the future, ha ha!

 

....what I wanted to point out is: Meditation is a means to an end, not an end in itself. Although it can be used like bruishing your (spiritual) teeth. But if you don’t have any teeth of that kind any longer, bruishing isn’t neccessary anymore….when “....mountains are mountains again…”

 


Ok, but for this to track with the points I made in my earlier post, you’d have to assume that we don’t know what teeth are, why and even if they actually exist, and assume we live in a world where people perform a variety of rituals on their teeth, from brushing and flossing to painting them to saying incantations over them, with a general sense that all this seems to do some good for teeth, although we don’t know what we mean by ‘good’ and if said teeth actually exist and what part of that process works and what part is extraneous or only helpful in some situations (i.e., you could conclud that since filling cavities is helpful in a specific context, it’s always good practice to go around drilling holes in people’s teeth.) You’re assuming a known paradigm with a known mechanism of action, which is exactly what I wasn’t asking about.

 

unsmoked - 20 October 2016 11:04 AM

In his book, ‘WAKING UP’, Sam Harris comments, “An ability to examine the contents of one’s own consciousness clearly, dispassionately, and nondiscursively, with sufficient attention to realize that no inner self exists, is a very sophisticated skill.”  (end quote)  (Someone once noticed that “consciousness is not designed for self-examination.”) 

If the self does examine its own activity, can it detect when there is no waste of mental energy?  (for example, the mental activity of desire, or wishful thinking obviously demands brain activity beyond basal metabolism.  (Think of those animations of brain activity that look like a busy switchboard).

 


Who would detect it if there is no self? Why wouldn’t it go completely unobserved with no observer?

[ Edited: 20 October 2016 17:17 by sojourner]
 
 
Throwdare
 
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21 October 2016 11:24
 
NL. - 20 October 2016 05:14 PM
Throwdare - 20 October 2016 08:13 AM

I could, but I’m not allowed to give you more hints, NL.


Not sure if you’re joking or not, but this is an awesome way to respond when you actually don’t know the answer to the question yourself. “Oh, I could explain quantum gravity to you Throwdare, but I’ve given you too many hints already…” I’ll have to keep this in mind if I ever need it in the future, ha ha!

 

....what I wanted to point out is: Meditation is a means to an end, not an end in itself. Although it can be used like bruishing your (spiritual) teeth. But if you don’t have any teeth of that kind any longer, bruishing isn’t neccessary anymore….when “....mountains are mountains again…”

 


Ok, but for this to track with the points I made in my earlier post, you’d have to assume that we don’t know what teeth are, why and even if they actually exist, and assume we live in a world where people perform a variety of rituals on their teeth, from brushing and flossing to painting them to saying incantations over them, with a general sense that all this seems to do some good for teeth, although we don’t know what we mean by ‘good’ and if said teeth actually exist and what part of that process works and what part is extraneous or only helpful in some situations (i.e., you could conclud that since filling cavities is helpful in a specific context, it’s always good practice to go around drilling holes in people’s teeth.) You’re assuming a known paradigm with a known mechanism of action, which is exactly what I wasn’t asking about.

 

unsmoked - 20 October 2016 11:04 AM

In his book, ‘WAKING UP’, Sam Harris comments, “An ability to examine the contents of one’s own consciousness clearly, dispassionately, and nondiscursively, with sufficient attention to realize that no inner self exists, is a very sophisticated skill.”  (end quote)  (Someone once noticed that “consciousness is not designed for self-examination.”) 

If the self does examine its own activity, can it detect when there is no waste of mental energy?  (for example, the mental activity of desire, or wishful thinking obviously demands brain activity beyond basal metabolism.  (Think of those animations of brain activity that look like a busy switchboard).

 


Who would detect it if there is no self? Why wouldn’t it go completely unobserved with no observer?

That are awesome questions: “Who would detect it if there is no self? Why wouldn’t it go completely unobserved with no observer?” (NL)

Bingo! Nailed it!

 
 
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21 October 2016 13:16
 

Who would detect it if there is no self? Why wouldn’t it go completely unobserved with no observer?

That are awesome questions: “Who would detect it if there is no self? Why wouldn’t it go completely unobserved with no observer?” (NL)

Bingo! Nailed it!


That sounds like being dead or having the ‘experience’ of a rock, then, so it’s not particularly clear to me why one would strive for it. Again, unless you propose some kind of metaphysical solution, i.e., experience beyond observation. In the meantime, a Ramakrishna quote on this topic:

 

AMRITA: “Don’t you feel at that time even a trace of ego?”


MASTER: “Yes, generally a little of it remains. However hard you may rub a grain of gold against a grindstone, still a bit of it always remains. Or again, take the case of a big fire; the ego is like one of its sparks. In sam?dhi I lose outer consciousness completely; but God generally keeps a little trace of ego in me for the enjoyment of divine communion. Enjoyment is possible only when ‘I’ and ‘you’ remain. “Again, sometimes God effaces even that trace of ‘I’. Then one experiences jada sam?dhi or nirvikalpa sam?dhi. That experience cannot be described. A salt doll went to measure the depth of the ocean, but before it had gone far into the water it melted away. It became entirely one with the water of the ocean. Then who was to come back and tell the ocean’s depth?”

 
 
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22 October 2016 06:45
 

“When dudes cry.” (Prince, us-american pop-musician)

If I would be a psycho-therapist, who works with soldiers who come back from battle-fields, suffering from PTSD, telling me what happend and what they did, crying like they never cried before, I would recommend them a certain hindu-scripture to read for the sake of reliefing their grief. And then I would tell them that Jesus and Maria forgive them because of being honest and they can’t ignore tears as prove for that. If he (or she) then says somthing like, “forget it, I’m an atheist, couch-potato!”, I would say, “I’m sorry I’m not the right therapist for you. I can recommend you a colleage to work with, if that is what you prefer. My name is Maria and/or Jesus Christ.”

 
 
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22 October 2016 09:50
 
Throwdare - 22 October 2016 06:45 AM

“When dudes cry.” (Prince, us-american pop-musician)

If I would be a psycho-therapist, who works with soldiers who come back from battle-fields, suffering from PTSD, telling me what happend and what they did, crying like they never cried before, I would recommend them a certain hindu-scripture to read for the sake of reliefing their grief. And then I would tell them that Jesus and Maria forgive them because of being honest and they can’t ignore tears as prove for that. If he (or she) then says somthing like, “forget it, I’m an atheist, couch-potato!”, I would say, “I’m sorry I’m not the right therapist for you. I can recommend you a colleage to work with, if that is what you prefer. My name is Maria and/or Jesus Christ.”

 

What in god’s name are you talking about? Not sure what the above has to do with this thread, but as an aside, I’m not sure how I feel about the talk therapy culture in this country. I sometimes think it should be replaced with snuggle therapy. I’ve noticed that in horrible situations around the world where things are going really, really badly and yet people seem to get by and even smile anyways, counseling and talk therapy are rarely involved - instead what you see is intense community - usually in a much more physical way. People holding each other, cooking for each other, sitting afternoons together, and so on. Granted, I was raised in a western culture where I expect a lot of personal space and independence, so I don’t think this would necessarily translate well to our society (I remember reading an article about a group of women who were rescued from human trafficking in the Philippines - how when the journalist writing the article met them they were all in a sort of rescue hut together, the women with their arms around each other and stroking each others hands frequently. It’s hard for me to imagine people in this country doing that for hours at a time - again, we like our personal space) but in terms of efficacy, I can’t help but notice this seems to be what gets people through really hellish situations. I think more formal talk therapy of the “therapist on the chair over here, client on the couch over there” model is great for character development and self-improvement and such, but I see that as a different model.

 
 
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22 October 2016 09:57
 

I have the strange feeling now that I can’t communicate my point propperly. I wonder why.

Never mind….

...take care, if you can.

 
 
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22 October 2016 10:41
 
unsmoked - 20 October 2016 11:04 AM

In his book, ‘WAKING UP’, Sam Harris comments, “An ability to examine the contents of one’s own consciousness clearly, dispassionately, and nondiscursively, with sufficient attention to realize that no inner self exists, is a very sophisticated skill.”

Q:  What is your own definition of the self?  What are you?  Or, who are you?

Zen master Linji comments:  “If you want to be free, get to know your real self.  It has no form, no appearance, no root, no basis, no abode, but is lively and buoyant.  It responds with versatile facility, but its function cannot be located.  Therefore when you look for it you become further from it, when you seek it you turn away from it all the more.”

(Linji quoted from the book, ‘ZEN ESSENCE - The Science of Freedom’  -  translated and edited by Thomas Cleary

 

 
 
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22 October 2016 10:55
 

(W)horeshit!

 
 
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