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Intelligent Design

Guy Incognito

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That just sounds like abstract philosophical nonsense, that sounds deep, but's just really confusing and doesn't really serve anyone in better understanding existence. Could you actually explain?

It's not really an explainable concept, it is experiential. That's why attempts at explaining the concept come across like poetry. Trying to apply scientific analysis to it will only push you further away from understanding, which can only be accomplished by direct subjective experience.

Better to try to understand the paradigm, the idea that the totality of the universe is greater than the sum of its parts, and the experience will come to you in time. As long as you leave yourself open to it.
 

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It's not really an explainable concept, it is experiential. That's why attempts at explaining the concept come across like poetry. Trying to apply scientific analysis to it will only push you further away from understanding, which can only be accomplished by direct subjective experience.

Better to try to understand the paradigm, the idea that the totality of the universe is greater than the sum of its parts, and the experience will come to you in time. As long as you leave yourself open to it.

So what, I need to meditate and connect with the spirit of Gaia? I'm sorry, but my spirituality is almost nonexistent, if not completely. What you're presenting seems to be another byproduct of the complex human mind's unending need to explain the unknown. This just sounds like one of the more abstract byproducts.
 
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Guy Incognito

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So what, I need to meditate and connect with the spirit of Gaia? I'm sorry, but my spirituality is almost nonexistent, if not completely. What you're presenting seems to be another byproduct of the complex human mind's unending need to explain the unknown. This just sounds like one of the more abstract byproducts.

I'm not sure how this constitutes an argument against what I'm proposing. The experience is an abstract byproduct of the human mind. Does this mean it is unreal? What does it mean for something to be real, anyway?

I'm sorry, but my spirituality is almost nonexistent, if not completely.

I'm sorry, too. Anything I can do to help?
 

marduc

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I'm not sure how this constitutes an argument against what I'm proposing. The experience is an abstract byproduct of the human mind. Does this mean it is unreal? What does it mean for something to be real, anyway?

If it is an abstract byproduct of the human mind than it is subjective. Where one person sees god in all things due to the inner workings of his mind, another does not. This is a personal, individualized God construct/perception, it is not universal and one mans mental perception of the supreme is a unique product of his mind, and does not extrapolate into the minds of others.
 

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I'm not sure how this constitutes an argument against what I'm proposing. The experience is an abstract byproduct of the human mind. Does this mean it is unreal? What does it mean for something to be real, anyway?

I have a tendency to just kind put down what I think, that was just the byproduct of my analysis. I have this way of studying everything. The human mind is part of reality, therefore any byproduct of it is real. But as the human mind is essentially an organic super computer, anything created without any basis in the world outside of it, is more like virtual reality, and carries only as much influence in the universe as that human being can project. For something to be real it simply has to have existence.



I'm sorry, too. Anything I can do to help?

No, I'm perfectly content with my facts. I really have no desire to seek out anything supernatural.
 
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That just sounds like abstract philosophical nonsense, that sounds deep, but's just really confusing and doesn't really serve anyone in better understanding existence. Could you actually explain? I am holding a laptop right now. It is comprised of plastic, metal, and glass. I do not see god, I see a laptop. Could you please define god, and how this god is somehow part of all existence?

Nondualism

Nondualism said:
Nondualism is a term used to denote oneness, or unity, rather than duality or separateness or multiplicity. In reference to the universe it may be used to denote the idea that things appear distinct while not being separate.

Neoplatonism said:
Michaelson (2009: p. 130) identifies what he perceives to be the origins of nondualism proper founded in the Neoplatonism of Plotinus within Ancient Greece and employs the ambiguous binary construction of "the West" [as different to 'the East', refer Saïd's utilization of the discourse of 'The Other' in Orientalism (1978)]:
"Conceptions of nonduality evolve historically. As a philosophical notion, it is most clearly found for the first time in the West in the second century C.E, in the Neoplatonism of Plotinus and his followers."

That nondual awareness is the only possible self-awareness is defended by a reductio argument. If a further awareness C2, having C1 as content, is required for self-awareness, then since there would be no awareness of C2 without awareness C3, ad infinitum, there could be no self-awareness, that is, unless the self is to be understood as limited to past awareness only. For self-awareness to be an immediate awareness, self-awareness has to be nondual.

"...[the seed of nonduality] however often sown, has never found fertile soil [in the West], because it has been too antithetical to those other vigorous sprouts that have grown into modern science and technology. In the Eastern tradition...we encounter a different situation. There the seeds of seer-seen nonduality not only sprouted but matured into a variety (some might say a jungle) of impressive philosophical species. By no means do all these [Eastern] systems assert the nonduality of subject and object, but it is significant that three which do - Buddhism, Vedanta and Taoism - have probably been the most influential."

Nondualism versus solipsism said:
Nondualism superficially resembles solipsism, but from a nondual perspective solipsism mistakenly fails to consider subjectivity itself. Upon careful examination of the referent of "I," i.e. one's status as a separate observer of the perceptual field, one finds that one must be in as much doubt about it, too, as solipsists are about the existence of other minds and the rest of "the external world." (One way to see this is to consider that, due to the conundrum posed by one's own subjectivity becoming a perceptual object to itself, there is no way to validate one's "self-existence" except through the eyes of others—the independent existence of which is already solipsistically suspect!) Nondualism ultimately suggests that the referent of "I" is in fact an artificial construct (merely the border separating "inner" from "outer," in a sense), the transcendence of which constitutes enlightenment.

Christianity said:
Jesus himself utters deep nondual statements, such as this, from John 17:11(kjv)— Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are. . .14b . . . because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. . . 21 That they may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us[.] And this, from Luke 11:34 The light of the body is the eye: therefore when thine eye is single, thy whole body also is full of light; but when thine eye is evil, thy body also is full of darkness.

Judaism said:
Judaism has within it a strong and very ancient mystical tradition that is deeply nondualistic. "Ein Sof" or infinite nothingness is considered the ground face of all that is. God is considered beyond all proposition or preconception. The physical world is seen as emanating from the nothingness as the many faces "partsufim" of god that are all a part of the sacred nothingness. Sometimes the faces are referred to as colored spheres "sphirot" that are the same as chakras in eastern traditions. sphirot are seen as eminations or fruit of the tree of life in the sacred garden of paradise. The tree exists and emanates through many, sometimes infinite, stages or levels of reality. All is considered one nondualistic whole. nothingness and somethingness are considered one united and inseparable thing. Duality is seen as an illusion of brokenness or contraction and enlightenment is the act of inner restoration or repair "tikkun" of god's unity.

Gnosticism said:
An English rendering from The Gospel of Thomas that showcases a nondual vision of reconciling opposites which are also preserved, that is "make the two one":
The Gospel of Thomas said:
When you make the two one, and when you make the inside like the outside and the outside like the inside, and the above like the below, and when you make the male and the female one and the same...then you will enter [the Kingdom].
The Gospel of Philip also conveys nondualism:
The Gospel of Philip said:
Light and Darkness, life and death, right and left, are brothers of one another. They are inseparable. Because of this neither are the good good, nor evil evil, nor is life life, nor death death. For this reason each one will dissolve into its earliest origin. But those who are exalted above the world are indissoluble, eternal.

Wahdat_al-Wujud
Islam/Sufism said:
The central doctrine of Sufism, sometimes called Wahdat-ul-Wujood[citation needed] or Wahdat al-Wujud or Unity of Being, is the Sufi understanding of Tawhid (the oneness of God; absolute monotheism).[citation needed] Put very simply, for Sufis, Tawhid implies that all phenomena are manifestations of a single reality, or Wujud (being), which is indeed al-Haq (Truth, God). The essence of Being/Truth/God is devoid of every form and quality, and hence unmanifest, yet it is inseparable from every form and phenomenon, either material or spiritual. It is often understood to imply that every phenomenon is an aspect of Truth and at the same time attribution of existence to it is false. The chief aim of all Sufis then is to let go of all notions of duality (and therefore of the individual self also), and realize the divine unity which is considered to be the truth.

Hinduism/Advaita Vedānta said:
Advaita Vedānta is a scripturally derived philosophy centred on the proposition, first found in early Upaniṣads (800-300 BC), that Brahman - the Absolute, the supreme reality - and the self (ātman) are identical. The identity is understood as an objectless consciousness, as awareness nondualistically self-aware. Arguments in support of the view that nondual awareness is the sole reality are developed by classical and modern Advaitins, from Gauḍapāda (c.600 AD) and Śaṅkara (c.700 AD), in hundreds of texts. Some of these are suggested in Upaniṣads.

Yoga said:
"Introducing the special tattva (principle) called Ishvara by yoga philosophy is a bold attempt to bring reconciliation between the transcendental, nondual monism of vedanta and the pluralistic, dualistic, atheism of sankhya. The composite system of yoga philosophy brings the two doctrines of vedanta and sankya closer to each other and makes them understood as the presentation of the same reality from two different points of view. The nondual approach of vedanta presents the principle of advandva (nonduality of the highest truth at the transcendental level.) The dualistic approach of sankhya presents truth of the same reality but at a lower empirical level, rationally analyzing the principle of dvandva (duality or pairs of opposites). Whereas, yoga philosophy presents the synthesis of vedanta and sankhya, reconciling at once monism and dualism, the supermundane and the empirical."

Taoism said:
Dechar (2005: p. 5-6) identifies that the terms "Tao" and "[D]harma" are etymologically rooted by identifying the etymon "da":
"The word Tao has no exact English translation, but it relates most closely to the Western idea of wholeness, to the unknowable unity of the divine. When used by the Taoist philosophers, Tao became the Way, the path or cosmic law that directs the unfolding of every aspect of the niverse. So Tao is the wisdom of the divine made manifest in nature and in my individual life. The Chinese word Tao has an etymological relationship to the Sanskrit root sound "da", which means "to divine something whole into parts". The ancient Sanskrit word dharma is also related to this root. In the Buddhist tradition, dharma means "that which is to be held fast, kept, an ordinance or law...the absolute, the real." So, both dharma and Tao refer to the way that the One, the unfathomable unity of the divine, divides into parts and manifests in the world of form."

Taoism's wu wei (Chinese wu, not; wei, doing) is a term with various translations (e.g. inaction, non-action, nothing doing, without ado) and interpretations designed to distinguish it from passivity. From a nondual perspective, it refers to activity that does not imply an "I". The concept of Yin and Yang, often mistakenly conceived of as a symbol of dualism, is actually meant to convey the notion that all apparent opposites are complementary parts of a non-dual whole. The Tao Te Ching has been seen as a nondualist text; from that perspective, the term "Tao" could be interpreted as a name for the Ultimate Reality (which, as the Tao Te Ching itself notes, is not the reality itself).


Mahayana Buddhism said:
Within the Mahayana presentation, the two truths may also refer to specific perceived phenomenon instead of categorizing teachings. Conventional truths would be the appearances of mistaken awareness - the awareness itself when mistaken - together with the objects that appear to it or alternatively put the appearance that includes a duality of apprehender and apprehended and objects perceived within that. Ultimate truths, then, are phenomenon free from the duality of apprehender and apprehended.

In the Mahayana Buddhist canon, the Diamond Sutra presents an accessible nondual view of "self" and "beings", while the Heart Sutra asserts shunyata — the "emptiness" of all "form" and simultaneously the "form" of all "emptiness".

Ngakpa tradition Buddhism said:
"Ngakpa Chögyam, a Tibetan Buddhist teacher from Wales, offers a perspective on nonduality that includes all of life as a direct expression of the nondual core of truth. He explains that nonduality, or emptiness, has two facets: one is the empty, or nondual, and the other is form, or duality. Therefore, duality is not illusory but is instead one aspect of nonduality. Like the two sides of a coin, the formless reality has two dimensions -- one is form, the other is formless. When we perceive duality as separate from nonduality (or nonduality as separate from duality), we do not engage the world of manifestation from a perspective of oneness, and thereby we fall into an erroneous relationship with it. From this perspective it is not "life" or duality that is maya, or illusion; rather, it is our relationship to the world that is illusory."

Sikhism said:
Sikhism is a monotheistic religion which holds the view of non-dualism. A principle cause of suffering in Sikhism is the ego (ahankar in Punjabi), the delusion of identifying oneself as an individual separate from the surroundings. From the ego arises the desires, pride, emotional attachments, anger, lust, etc., thus putting humans on the path of destruction. According to Sikhism the true nature of all humans is the same as God, and everything that originates with God. The goal of a Sikh is to conquer the ego and realize your true nature or self, which is the same as God's.
 

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I have a tendency to just kind put down what I think, that was just the byproduct of my analysis. I have this way of studying everything.

So why not study the subjective experience with the same vigor as you study objective experience?

The human mind is part of reality, therefore any byproduct of it is real. But as the human mind is essentially an organic super computer, anything created without any basis in the world outside of it, is more like virtual reality, and carries only as much influence in the universe as that human being can project.

How much influence is that? I still don't see an argument why the "byproducts of the mind" are insignificant or don't count in some way. Indeed, the subjective experience is the primary experience, and the external, objective world can only be known by way of subjective experience. It seems to me that this puts subjective experience in a place of primacy over that reality which is external to the mind.

For something to be real it simply has to have existence.

This is tautological, isn't it?
 

marduc

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So why not study the subjective experience with the same vigor as you study objective experience?

Because the human mind is deceptive and very adept at (even predisposed to) filling in gaps.. even if it does so erroneously.
 

reefedjib

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How much influence is that? I still don't see an argument why the "byproducts of the mind" are insignificant or don't count in some way. Indeed, the subjective experience is the primary experience, and the external, objective world can only be known by way of subjective experience. It seems to me that this puts subjective experience in a place of primacy over that reality which is external to the mind.

Indeed. Subjective experience is our only way of viewing the world. All is perspective and nothing is objective.



Arcadius said:
For something to be real it simply has to have existence.
This is tautological, isn't it?

The only existence is consciousness. Everything we perceive external to us is only a perception. It does not have existence. Therefore, it is not real.
 

reefedjib

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Because the human mind is deceptive and very adept at (even predisposed to) filling in gaps.. even if it does so erroneously.

True, but you have it backwards. It is the perception of "objective" experience which deceptive.
 

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Why are the statements that "God does not exist" and "God is all of existence" contradictory?
If god is all of existence, then god is of things that exist.
If god is of things that exist, then god exists.
Therefore, If god is all of existence, then god exists.
Assume: god is all of existence.
Conclusion: *god exists.
"God does not exist" is in direct contradiction to the above conclusion, and therefore in contradiction with "god is all of existence".*

Have you ever heard of a koan?
Yes, I have read about many of them. *Even the practitioners who use them admit they are contradictions. *If the use of them does in fact reveal something about the nature of our surroundings and ourselves, then whatever they do reveal cannot be put into words. *If you know some of these things that they supposedly reveal, then you know that you cannot put it into words. *And yet, you are using the irrational contradictions in rational arguments, something a practitioner of Buddhism would never undertake, at least not with the aim of reaching some sort of conclusion. *Either you are a practitioner, and have some other goal beside reaching a conclusion, or you are a simpleton who has stumbled across the notion of koans and is misusing them in an innocent, though also ignorant, manner. *Unfortunately for you, I don't sense a practitioner in you, but of course, I could be wrong. *But, in any case, it appears that you are misusing the notion of koans. **

God is everything and God is nothing (no-thing).
oh dear, here we go again with the contradictions. Everything is made up of things. *Combinations of things are also things. *If god is everything then god is a combination of things. *Therefore god would also be a thing.

*God is the largest scale (all of existence) and the smallest scale (found at the limit of the resolution of "reality" - smaller than a quark, smaller than a M-brane, etc...). *God is indivisible. *At the most macro scale, you will find the entirety of God; at the most micro of scale, you will find the entirety of God. *God exists without changing beyond the limits of space and time.
and yet more obvious contradictions.
Why do you think "logic" accurately defines true "reality"? *It is only limiting your awareness to the "rational". * The existence of the universe is not rational. *It transcends the rational.
. Ahhh, I see now ... You only appear to be having a rational discussion, and not succeeding very well appearing that way, I might add.

EDIT - your example of contradicting my statement is wrong, based on evidence. *Mine is not.
on the matter of natural phenomena I was showing the illogical outcome of allowing contradictions. *Allowing contradictions would also make evidence meaningless, so I am not sure what your point is there. *On the matter of the nature of god, if you have evidence, present it.
*
We can have a logical discussion or not. *I am only interested in logical ones, and you have as much admitted that you are disinterested in logical ones. *Are we at an impasse?

Please ignore the stars (*), they were added by something wrong with my computer, and now I am lazy.
 
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Because the human mind is deceptive and very adept at (even predisposed to) filling in gaps.. even if it does so erroneously.

This brings us to Desscartes's famous evil deceiver argument. Perhaps, the senses can distort the external world, it certainly seems to be possible to be deceived by the senses as to the nature of external reality. But nevertheless, the subjective remains the only window we have only the external world, no matter how unreliable that window may be. If the external world experience can be distorted by the internal one, what does that say about the power of the subjective over the objective? What does that say about the truth of the subjective and the truth of the objective? Can the objective ever be known at all, if it is unobtainable without reference to the subjective, which is unreliable?
 

marduc

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True, but you have it backwards. It is the perception of "objective" experience which deceptive.

No, with the objective (sparing getting onto any Cartesian Je pense donc je suis level of systematic doubt) things can be verified by the interactions of numerous observers collaborating to determine the veracity and consistency of their observations. With the subjective there is no peer review per se. Our existence is one where our senses tell us there are other minds and other individuals sharing this reality with us, unless we are subject to one hell of a scam job, there is little reason to doubt that there are other individuals, and other minds. Minds which can serve to qualify the objective much more reliably than an individual can the subjective.
 

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And yet, you are using the irrational contradictions in rational arguments, something a practitioner of Buddhism would never undertake, at least not with the aim of reaching some sort of conclusion.

Incorrect. There is a strong tradition of rational argument in Buddhism, particularly in the Tibetan school.

The purpose of a koan is to facilitate a subjective experience, but this does not mean that the concepts koans elucidate cannot be spoken of in a rational fashion.

Of course, there is the larger question of whether anything can be spoken of in a truly rational fashion.

One of the wonderful things about the perennial philosophy is that it heads these kind of concerns off at the pass. The contradictory nature of the universe does not need to be resolved by rational argument. It simply is.
 

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(sparing getting onto any Cartesian Je pense donc je suis level of systematic doubt)

You mean, sparing any argument that undercuts your position?
 

marduc

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You mean, sparing any argument that undercuts your position?

No, there is no reason to apply the extreme example of systematic doubt, we all exist in a realm where we are almost absolutely certain our existence is shared with other minds and other entities. It could all be a facade, sure there is that miniscule possibility, but the degree of certainty that it is not is astronomically high in comparison.
 
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So why not study the subjective experience with the same vigor as you study objective experience?

I do study it. I am deeply fascinated in the human mind. If I wasn't, I wouldn't even post in the religion and philosophy section. I may disagree with you, but I'm still curious about the thought process that leads you to these conclusions.

How much influence is that? I still don't see an argument why the "byproducts of the mind" are insignificant or don't count in some way. Indeed, the subjective experience is the primary experience, and the external, objective world can only be known by way of subjective experience. It seems to me that this puts subjective experience in a place of primacy over that reality which is external to the mind.

They are only as influential and significant as the human or humans that carry them. And as humans seem to be rather insignificant to the rest of the universe, I'd say on a universal standard, any byproduct of the human mind is highly insignificant. Even on a global scale we ultimately will have little to no impact on this planet. But based solely on the human experience of reality, it is very significant. It really depends on what you think makes something significant or insignificant.




This is tautological, isn't it?

That it is. I did not notice that at all.
 

Guy Incognito

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No, there is no reason to apply the extreme example of systematic doubt, we all exist in a realm where we are almost absolutely certain our existence is shared with other minds and other entities. It could all be a facade, sure there is that miniscule possibility, but the degree of certainty that it is not is astronomically high in comparison.

Where are you getting all these numbers from? I'd love to see your data.

Absent data, what on earth are you doing making all those proclamations as to probabilities? How unscientific of you!
 
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marduc

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Where are you getting all these numbers from? I'd love to see your data.

Absent data, what on earth are you doing making all those proclamations as to probabilities? How unscientific of you!

If you were to bet on whether or not I exist, which one would you be betting on? And note there are no specific odds.. I am speaking degrees of certainty.. which is very scientific of me.
 

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If god is all of existence, then god is of things that exist.
If god is of things that exist, then god exists.
Therefore, If god is all of existence, then god exists.
Assume: god is all of existence.
Conclusion: *god exists.
"God does not exist" is in direct contradiction to the above conclusion, and therefore in contradiction with "god is all of existence".*

Yes, I have read about many of them. *Even the practitioners who use them admit they are contradictions. *If the use of them does in fact reveal something about the nature of our surroundings and ourselves, then whatever they do reveal cannot be put into words. *If you know some of these things that they supposedly reveal, then you know that you cannot put it into words. *And yet, you are using the irrational contradictions in rational arguments, something a practitioner of Buddhism would never undertake, at least not with the aim of reaching some sort of conclusion. *Either you are a practitioner, and have some other goal beside reaching a conclusion, or you are a simpleton who has stumbled across the notion of koans and is misusing them in an innocent, though also ignorant, manner. *Unfortunately for you, I don't sense a practitioner in you, but of course, I could be wrong. *But, in any case, it appears that you are misusing the notion of koans. **

Yes, I am using contradictions.

oh dear, here we go again with the contradictions. Everything is made up of things. *Combinations of things are also things. *If god is everything then god is a combination of things. *Therefore god would also be a thing.

and yet more obvious contradictions.
. Ahhh, I see now ... You only appear to be having a rational discussion, and not succeeding very well appearing that way, I might add.

on the matter of natural phenomena I was showing the illogical outcome of allowing contradictions. *Allowing contradictions would also make evidence meaningless, so I am not sure what your point is there. *On the matter of the nature of god, if you have evidence, present it.
*
We can have a logical discussion or not. *I am only interested in logical ones, and you have as much admitted that you are disinterested in logical ones. *Are we at an impasse?

Please ignore the stars (*), they were added by something wrong with my computer, and now I am lazy.

A nondual reality implies that evidence is meaningless. Logical arguments are therefore suspect. Contradictions are allowed. Meaning ascribed to them may not be putt into words, demonstrating the limitations of words.

I suppose I have stated it wrong, that God does not exist, yet God is all of existence. No thing in the universe can be pointed to and claimed that that is God and the rest is not. It is all God. The more apt statement is that God has no form, in God's pure state, and that all of existence is God emanating form, in God's impure state. All is still God.

EDIT - fixed the bad quoting...
 
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True, but you have it backwards. It is the perception of "objective" experience which deceptive.
If subjective experience cannot be made to comport closely to objective experience, then there is nothing to discuss between two or more individuals. While it may be true that there is only the subjective, your attempts to convince others of your positions on things belies the fact that you don't really believe that it is all subjective. Oh dear... Are you here trying to get others to see your subjective experience in their subjective experience?
 

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It really depends on what you think makes something significant or insignificant.

Well said. That's the very crux of the whole thing.

Some people see a vast universe with trillions of galaxies spanning billions of years and endless space and it makes them feel insignificant. They think with so much big stuff going on around us we're as insignificant as bugs.

I see it the other way around. Even those bugs are more interesting than a dead universe, no matter how vast it is. Whereas the entirety of the universe operates by the laws of physics as predictably as billiard balls, we're in the one place that's actually alive, with all the incomprehensible chaos that that entails.

How lucky we are just to go about our "insignificant" lives every day and experience the universe! And what's more, we human beings are the luckiest of all because we can reflect on the universe, we can create art and things of beauty, we can destroy, we can rearrange the universe based on our own will and we can even learn a little bit about the nature of the world around us by observation and repetition. That's the most significant thing going on in the universe as far as I'm aware.

So why relegate the richness of our internal minds to some ash-heap, when our subjective experiences are really the rarest and most precious phenomena in the universe? We should prize out thoughts like diamonds, not feel insignificant compared to the vast deadness all around.
 
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reefedjib

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No, with the objective (sparing getting onto any Cartesian Je pense donc je suis level of systematic doubt) things can be verified by the interactions of numerous observers collaborating to determine the veracity and consistency of their observations. With the subjective there is no peer review per se. Our existence is one where our senses tell us there are other minds and other individuals sharing this reality with us, unless we are subject to one hell of a scam job, there is little reason to doubt that there are other individuals, and other minds. Minds which can serve to qualify the objective much more reliably than an individual can the subjective.

Shared subjective experience does not imply objectivity.

A common mistake is that people take the statement [Je pense donc je suis] as proof that they, as a human person, exist. However, it is a severely limited conclusion that does nothing to prove that one's own body exists, let alone anything else that is perceived in the physical universe. It only proves that one's mind exists (that part of an individual that observes oneself doing the doubting [i.e. consciousness is the observer]). It does not rule out other possibilities, such as waking up to find oneself to be a butterfly who had dreamed of having lived a human life.
 

Guy Incognito

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If you were to bet on whether or not I exist, which one would you be betting on? And note there are no specific odds.. I am speaking degrees of certainty.. which is very scientific of me.

I'm not a betting man, but if I were I would only bet based on verifiable data, not supposition. Show me your data that those probabilities you referenced earlier are correct, and I'll bet with you. Absent data, you've just got speculation. And if you're betting based on nothing but speculation, you might as well be playing roulette.
 

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Incorrect. There is a strong tradition of rational argument in Buddhism, particularly in the Tibetan school.
I didn't say there wasn't, and I was already aware of the fact that there was.

The purpose of a koan is to facilitate a subjective experience, but this does not mean that the concepts koans elucidate cannot be spoken of in a rational fashion.
We'll have to agree to disagree on this matter. I will simply add that I do have books, many books, written by buddhists, about Buddhism. I have never seen any of them use koans in the fashion reefdjib is doing.
 
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