Where does meaning come from?

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Re: Where does meaning come from?

Postby gib » Mon Aug 07, 2017 7:53 pm

Arcturus Descending wrote:James S Saint wrote:

Discover the objective truth of what you are and from there the meaning of your life will spring



I was going to follow the pattern which is a part of me at times well, often actually, in responding to posts ~~ giving my own answer. But I decided to adhere to the Socratic method which is clearly not a part of me. lol. Don't expect that too often.

You have just left the student in the mighty forest. Where does he/she go from there? 8-[

So, what are you saying here, James?
How do we go about accomplishing this great feat?
What is our guiding light to get there?
Is there any one specific thing (or something which cannot be left out) which must be used in order to do this?


If I may, Arc, does James' comment remind you of the What Of Your Essence? thread? If we are ever changing creatures, is it even possible to discover the objective truth of what you are?
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Also just as irrational decisions are not always bad then rational ones are not always good no matter what the intention
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Re: Where does meaning come from?

Postby MagsJ » Thu Aug 10, 2017 6:24 am

...a need from within... everybody has their own agenda of what they want to get out of life, and so meaning is pertinent to the individual through input and output/a self-serving process, interrupted by work and modern woes.
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Re: Where does meaning come from?

Postby Arminius » Fri Aug 11, 2017 4:53 pm

Dan~ wrote:Thank you for your post.

I equate meaning to core qualities.

The core is like the existential everything of a being.
It has all kinds of temporary and changing aspects,
as well as repeating or old aspects.
Meaning can be found in the mental aspect of the existential core.
Meaning is like an alchemical biproduct.
A biological rare chemical complex.

That is the closest thing to an accurate description that ive got.

It would be like a forest supporting the life of monkeys.
In this case, the man suppports the life of meanings as memes.

Do you see what i mean?

Yes, I see what you mean. Thank you for your response, Dan.
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Re: Where does meaning come from?

Postby Some Guy in History » Fri Aug 11, 2017 6:27 pm

All I can think of that might relate in any way, shape or form that you all might be able to take to heart is something shown to me by a dog during my awakening. He showed me how so many had engraved a giant dick into the baseline of creation. I thought he had done it, so I told him 'bad dog', but turns out, as he explained to me, the balls symbolize the eternity symbol:

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The shaft then represented all those trying to escape from eternity, breaking free from the figure 8 to travel high only to crash back down and from both directions.

The engraved giant cock of existence and creation even had 3 little drops of sperm to symbolize their escape from eternity.

The meaning that was then perfectly clear to me was that there was no escape from life, reality or existence and that by sheer accident all those that tried had wound up creating a giant dick and it was funny as Hell to those who never even had it occur to them to escape but instead made it their meaning to try to make their lives as meaningful as possible, to live their lives no matter how hard things got.

Which coincides with my belief that penis-wrinkle is an insult not used often enough. A lot of people are like penis-wrinkles. When things get hard, they vanish only to come back around after the party is over all pissed off about not having been around for the fucking fun.
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Re: Where does meaning come from?

Postby gib » Fri Aug 11, 2017 8:08 pm

Some Guy in History wrote:All I can think of that might relate in any way, shape or form that you all might be able to take to heart is something shown to me by a dog during my awakening. He showed me how so many had engraved a giant dick into the baseline of creation. I thought he had done it, so I told him 'bad dog', but turns out, as he explained to me, the balls symbolize the eternity symbol:


Was it anything like this:

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It is impossible for a human being to go through life not thinking irrationally even if they think of themselves as rational
Also just as irrational decisions are not always bad then rational ones are not always good no matter what the intention
- surreptitious75

The rating of rationality can be higher and always is higher than the person trying to be rational. Rationality is less emotional than the person delivering it.
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Re: Where does meaning come from?

Postby encode_decode » Thu Aug 17, 2017 4:08 pm

    MagsJ

    I agree . . . everybody has their own agenda . . .

    MagsJ wrote:...a need from within... everybody has their own agenda of what they want to get out of life, and so meaning is pertinent to the individual through input and output/a self-serving process, interrupted by work and modern woes.

    I like what you wrote "a need from within". Meaning does tend to be interrupted by work and modern woes. I can only hope that despite the things that interrupt our individual searching to find meaning that we are able to hold onto . . . to the meaning gained - it is perhaps precious.

    :D
    It’s not that truth itself is being eroded per se, it’s that fragmental falsification appears to be increasing.
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    But the point remains that you can't get at that meaning before grasping the surface meaning
    - which is to say there is always meaning.

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    Re: Where does meaning come from?

    Postby Arcturus Descending » Thu Aug 17, 2017 4:54 pm

    gib wrote:


    ....If we are ever changing creatures, is it even possible to discover the objective truth of what you are?



    I'm an ongoing process, gib. I can only speak for myself here. Well, we are all ongoing processes.

    The way I look at it, I think that I can discover the objective (actual reality) truth about myself, I mean, see myself as I really am. But I think that takes an enormous amount of honesty and a lot of time and energy, a lot of investigation, a lot of agonizing moments when we see what we do not like. That can be a great revelation as to who we are.
    It also takes a lot of compassion and sensitivity toward ourselves because we are, after all, human.

    But don't you think that that can only happen in the moment, in each moment, in each phase or through each path of our existence - and there are many different ones, I think.


    I don't intuit that we just automatically come to discover this just as we do not automatically come to discovery the reality and truth of deep space or anything. And just how often has that changed?
    Everything unfolds at different times for us. Sometimes we see our light and sometimes we see our darkness. We need to see it all in order to see us at any given moment.
    Human beings are complicated creatures - at least I think that we are.

    Since we are ever-changing, I think that we can only discover the true reality of who we are as individuals step by step by step within the particular phase which we are in - if that made sense.
    Sometimes we can find this ourselves and sometimes it is something which just *happens to us* like an epiphany.

    I don't think that we discover this objective truth about ourselves all at one time. How can we?
    Time does not stop for us - it flows on. So as it flows, we have help discovering this map, this great big puzzle of who we are - though the pieces move around and the puzzle becomes a different puzzle. lol
    As you say, we are ever-changing.
    There is no straight line when it comes to who we are and we will never ever discover all of the objective truth about ourselves. There is just not enough time and we are after all FLOW.

    It's like climbing a mountain. Up we go, down we go sliding. Then we discover at some point that we have to edge ourselves around to another path that we feel will bring us closer to the summit. Then up we go, down we go....ad continuum.

    Too much.
    SAPERE AUDE!


    If I thought that everything I did was determined by my circumstancse and my psychological condition, I would feel trapped.


    What we take ourselves to be doing when we think about what is the case or how we should act is something that cannot be reconciled with a reductive naturalism, for reasons distinct from those that entail the irreducibility of consciousness. It is not merely the subjectivity of thought but its capacity to transcend subjectivity and to discover what is objectively the case that presents a problem....Thought and reasoning are correct or incorrect in virtue of something independent of the thinker's beliefs, and even independent of the community of thinkers to which he belongs.

    Thomas Nagel


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    Re: Where does meaning come from?

    Postby Some Guy in History » Fri Aug 18, 2017 3:27 am

    gib wrote:
    Some Guy in History wrote:All I can think of that might relate in any way, shape or form that you all might be able to take to heart is something shown to me by a dog during my awakening. He showed me how so many had engraved a giant dick into the baseline of creation. I thought he had done it, so I told him 'bad dog', but turns out, as he explained to me, the balls symbolize the eternity symbol:


    Was it anything like this:



    Naw, more like this:

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    Re: Where does meaning come from?

    Postby encode_decode » Fri Aug 18, 2017 4:21 pm

      gib

      As promised, I said I was going to answer this post twice.

      I have named the topic that you and I are discussing, Meaning Is the Foundation For Things To Exist, taken from your first post.

      Last time I answered my favorite part of your post: Incomprehensible meaning is like hearing a foreign language, You know it means something but you can't tell the difference between that and random meaningless babbling - You made the contrast between what we perceive as meaning and meaning that otherwise exists even when we do not become aware of it. This time I will answer the bit relating to reality being information expressed as matter. At a later date you might also be interested in a method I have devised that derives meaning from analogy - if you are, I will happily PM this method to you. My claim in this post, is that we do receive meaning from things that we come into close enough proximity with, even if it is only subconsciously.

      Meaning Is the Foundation For Things To Exist

      Meaning is in everything . . .

      gib wrote:My belief is that all reality is fundamentally information. In human terms, it is information expressed as matter.

      As meaning is the foundation for things to exist . . . It is the intention to communicate something that is not directly expressed as the underlying basis or principle for any object that one need not give a specific name and has objective reality or being. It can be communicated to any person by way of each individuals senses - and becomes internalized as a subjective copy to be integrated into that which we call consciousness. Meaning then has a special relationship with consciousness and is connected to the fundamental, driving forces of life itself, expressed as direction, from energy to matter, from the past to the future, from the unknown to the known et cetera.

      1 ► Here we are claiming that all reality is fundamentally information.
      2 ► Meaning is the intention to communicate something that is not directly expressed.
      3 ► We can say that meaning boils down to information.
      4 ► Communication is all about information.

      gib wrote:The question for me is: how to make meaning comprehensible? Many people look out at the universe and fail to find meaning - it all looks arbitrary and accidental, without purpose, without aim - and become nihilistic.

      To make meaning comprehensible is to differentiate between patterns by way of our conscious mind and has to do with some kind of fundamental ambiguity of things. It is the difference between these patterns that we turn into meaning - from enigma to transparency . . . from paradox to harmony.

      gib wrote:But how would you distinguish true meaninglessness from incomprehensible meaning? They would look the same.

      We do this through vicinity and analogy. The closer something is to us the more meaning it is going to have whether the meaning is consciously expressed or subconsciously expressed. The expression itself is by virtue an analogy - it is a comparison between one thing and another - a comparison of the objective version of the thing and the subjective version of the thing - a correspondence that is trying to reach harmony. Conversely to distinguish true meaninglessness from incomprehensible meaning still requires us to be in the vicinity of the objective element - if it exists then we can be in vicinity of it and therefore it has meaning - the meaning remains incomprehensible until enough correspondence is made to determine meaning.

      Meaning has a special relationship with consciousness and is connected to the fundamental, driving forces of life itself, expressed as direction, from energy to matter, from the past to the future, from the unknown to the known. We receive meaning from things that we come into close enough proximity with, even if it is only subconsciously.

      Meaning is the foundation for things to exist . . .

      . . . meaning is in everything . . .

      With any luck gib, my post is not analogous to random meaningless babble for you - if it is, my apologies that you drew close to it's vicinity.

      :lol:
      Last edited by encode_decode on Fri Aug 18, 2017 5:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
      It’s not that truth itself is being eroded per se, it’s that fragmental falsification appears to be increasing.
      (Anomaly654 - 2017)

      But the point remains that you can't get at that meaning before grasping the surface meaning
      - which is to say there is always meaning.

      (gib - 2017)

      Mind is an ever changing dimension that is bound to reality, logic and emotion.
      (Myself - 2017)
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      Re: Where does meaning come from?

      Postby encode_decode » Fri Aug 18, 2017 5:50 pm

        gib

        I have been told a few times that I am very structured - I know a couple of those times were not compliments - but my civilized exchanges with you online tells me something different - it tells me that you have taken notice of something about me - remember that time I said to you that I like your friendly nature? Well, it reminds me of that because I was taking notice of our interaction - I was aware that you were being genuinely friendly.

        I also really enjoy a civilized exchange online and I agree that it gives both parties a chance to express themselves to the wider world. Your metaphysics of consciousness sounds very interesting if your posts are anything to judge by. I really like how you describe it as a whole Pandora's box of philosophy.

        gib wrote:Think of it in terms of sensation. Our sensations are essentially information. What they tell us is: there's matter.

        There's also energy, of course, and physicists now-a-days tell us they're the same thing, but I'm a subjectivist (a specific approach to idealism). While that doesn't mean I disagree with science, I don't think science represents the "natural" or "intuitive" view of man. I think to get at the natural/intuitive view of man, one must appeal to one's subjective experiences. What we can glean about the world by appeal to our subjective experiences is that it seems to be made of objects--macroscopic sized objects around the order of chair, trees, TVs, human beings--that seems to be what's naturally "given" to us (or told to us if you buy my reality-qua-information spin). Energy's in there too, of course, but we experience energy as objects doing things, or changing, or perhaps as properties of objects, like light or heat, but objects are the basic units of our world, at least with respect to human subjective experience.

        I also think that our sensations are directional and contained within a feedback loop - our higher senses are able to build meta-information from those sensations. Essentially information about information. They tell us there is matter and because of their directional nature and their containment within the mentioned feedback loop they lead to us knowing information about that matter.

        Most certainly science does not represent our substance as beings - at most it can give us a meager description from the outside looking in. I think the term is introspection when you speak one one appealing to one's subjective experiences - and indeed that can give us a more natural view of man. In my last post I mentioned how vicinity and analogy help us to build meaning - the more meaning we have collected the easier it should be to connect the "future dots".

        Incomprehensible meaning is like hearing a foreign language:

          ► You know it means something but you can't tell the difference between that and random meaningless babbling.
        Yep. Still like it.

        gib wrote:Well, analogies are very powerful for getting a point across. I'm glad my use of them can make someone's day. :lol: Thank you!

        Have you ever wondered why? :D They seem to be a naturally occurring phenomenon. Your analogy did make my day and you are welcome.

        gib wrote:I think it requires a bit of hubris to think that where you can't find meaning there is none. It's even more challenging when the meaning is incomprehensible--it means you're not only failing to find meaning but can't find it even if it's right in front of you.

        What does hubris mean? :lol: Nah, kidding. Excessive pride or self-confidence reminds me of the saying: The bigger they are the harder they fall. What you are saying in the above quote is kind of like being in constant denial of reality from my point of view.

        Until next time . . . may the thinking be with you.

        :-k
        It’s not that truth itself is being eroded per se, it’s that fragmental falsification appears to be increasing.
        (Anomaly654 - 2017)

        But the point remains that you can't get at that meaning before grasping the surface meaning
        - which is to say there is always meaning.

        (gib - 2017)

        Mind is an ever changing dimension that is bound to reality, logic and emotion.
        (Myself - 2017)
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        Re: Where does meaning come from?

        Postby gib » Sat Aug 19, 2017 5:29 am

        encode_decode wrote:At a later date you might also be interested in a method I have devised that derives meaning from analogy - if you are, I will happily PM this method to you.


        Yes, please do.

        encode_decode wrote:As meaning is the foundation for things to exist . . . It is the intention to communicate something that is not directly expressed as the underlying basis or principle for any object that one need not give a specific name and has objective reality or being. It can be communicated to any person by way of each individuals senses - and becomes internalized as a subjective copy to be integrated into that which we call consciousness. Meaning then has a special relationship with consciousness and is connected to the fundamental, driving forces of life itself, expressed as direction, from energy to matter, from the past to the future, from the unknown to the known et cetera.


        Yes, and that's only the start. I'm particularly captured by your use of the phrase "subjective copy". Every played telephone? Is the final message received at the end of the line ever like the initial message?

        encode_decode wrote:To make meaning comprehensible is to differentiate between patterns by way of our conscious mind and has to do with some kind of fundamental ambiguity of things. It is the difference between these patterns that we turn into meaning - from enigma to transparency . . . from paradox to harmony.


        So do you mean the way we take phenomena that we don't understand and come up with some kind of explanation for them? And that makes them meaningful?

        encode_decode wrote:We do this through vicinity and analogy. The closer something is to us the more meaning it is going to have whether the meaning is consciously expressed or subconsciously expressed. The expression itself is by virtue an analogy - it is a comparison between one thing and another - a comparison of the objective version of the thing and the subjective version of the thing - a correspondence that is trying to reach harmony. Conversely to distinguish true meaninglessness from incomprehensible meaning still requires us to be in the vicinity of the objective element - if it exists then we can be in vicinity of it and therefore it has meaning - the meaning remains incomprehensible until enough correspondence is made to determine meaning.


        Here's where the nihilist might object: getting close to the phenomenon to be understood brings us no closer to meaning. If we found no rhyme or reason, no grand purpose, when we stepped back and looked at the universe from a holistic point of view, what greater reason/purpose would we find by getting acquainted with the details? Or perhaps this is not what you meant to say.

        Of course, I can see what you mean. If you take photosynthesis, for example, we can say that getting a better understanding of the biochemical process of photosynthesis (being in the vicinity, creating a subjective representation of the objective process) generates meaning for us: now, when we see sun light resulting in the growth of the plant, we know what that means: it means the process of photosynthesis is at work. <-- But I don't think this would satisfy the nihilist.

        My interest, on the other hand, lays in this question: what is the experience of the plant like? What does it feel like to undergo the process of photosynthesis, to be the process of photosynthesis? Capture that and you will get a little sample of incomprehensible meaning.

        encode_decode wrote:With any luck gib, my post is not analogous to random meaningless babble for you - if it is, my apologies that you drew close to it's vicinity.


        I was able to make sense of it. Though you might have to confirm whether I got it right.

        encode_decode wrote:I have been told a few times that I am very structured - I know a couple of those times were not compliments - but my civilized exchanges with you online tells me something different - it tells me that you have taken notice of something about me - remember that time I said to you that I like your friendly nature? Well, it reminds me of that because I was taking notice of our interaction - I was aware that you were being genuinely friendly.


        Well, it certainly wasn't meant as an insult--not even criticism--more like a quirk. Everyone's got their quirks, and that's what I like about people. It's what makes us all different. I'd encourage people to keep their quirks. Anyone who brings them up as criticisms simply doesn't appreciate the diversity of quirky people we are.

        encode_decode wrote:I also think that our sensations are directional and contained within a feedback loop - our higher senses are able to build meta-information from those sensations. Essentially information about information. They tell us there is matter and because of their directional nature and their containment within the mentioned feedback loop they lead to us knowing information about that matter.


        Yes, and I'd even say "matter" itself is already derived at a higher level of sensory processing. What's derived at the really fundamental level of our senses are very simple geometric data (they say that the first layer of neural networks our optic nerves hit at the occipital lobe are "line detectors"--so our world is essentially made of lines before anything else). But once "matter" as such is derived (or maybe objects), it seems to be at that level that the rest of our mind (our thoughts at least) say: that's what I'm looking at.

        encode_decode wrote:I think the term is introspection when you speak one one appealing to one's subjective experiences


        Well, I'm trying to get at what the world looks like without the effect of abstract preconceptions of what the world "really" consists of or how it "really" works. For example, when you look at an object, you might think: a network of molecules. When you look at the Sun (don't actually do that), you think: a burning ball of gas. But what would primitive man have thought? I don't think primitive man would have thought anything more than: it's an object (the sun might have been different, but you get my point). I'm saying the view of the world held by primitive man would have been: just a bunch of objects. Of course, primitive man probably would have had his own religion to taint the way he saw his surroundings, but I'm trying to get at the way we would look at the world if we somehow were able to brush away the tainting influence of what we've been taught (whether that be science, religion, our upbringing, our own crazy thoughts, etc.)
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        It is impossible for a human being to go through life not thinking irrationally even if they think of themselves as rational
        Also just as irrational decisions are not always bad then rational ones are not always good no matter what the intention
        - surreptitious75

        The rating of rationality can be higher and always is higher than the person trying to be rational. Rationality is less emotional than the person delivering it.
        - encode_decode

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        Re: Where does meaning come from?

        Postby encode_decode » Sat Aug 19, 2017 8:22 am

          Arcturus Descending

          Many of us make valuable exchanges of our thoughts on this forum, and you are no exception. I have witnessed you thinking with depth, curiosity and many times quite an impressive accordance to rationality. Your skepticism seems to serve you well Arcturus Descending. If both you and the others you have interacted with in this thread do not mind, I have taken the liberty to borrow/quote a couple of items of interest from those interactions.

          Arcturus Descending wrote:I'm an ongoing process, gib. I can only speak for myself here. Well, we are all ongoing processes. The way I look at it, I think that I can discover the objective (actual reality) truth about myself, I mean, see myself as I really am. But I think that takes an enormous amount of honesty and a lot of time and energy, a lot of investigation, a lot of agonizing moments when we see what we do not like. That can be a great revelation as to who we are. It also takes a lot of compassion and sensitivity toward ourselves because we are, after all, human.

          We are all ongoing processes - this is a humble perspective if one chooses to accept it. Anyone of us can only really speak for ourselves, so it is with hope that my intervention does not offend you or the others you are interacting with. Investigation, honesty, time, energy and agony - in a peculiar way I like it and otherwise I feel I have to respect it. I have great affinity to your last two sentences in the above quote Arcturus Descending.

          If I may Arcturus Descending, quote, edit and answer the following:

          Arcturus Descending, James and Aaron wrote:Regarding the statement: Discover the objective truth of what you are and from there the meaning of your life will spring . . .
          You have just left the student in the mighty forest. Where does he/she go from there? Logic is the path out of the dark clouds.
          A ► So, what are you saying here, James? Only when you can personally verify that there is no alternative.
          B ► How do we go about accomplishing this great feat? And you can only do that through careful use of Logic.
          C ► What is our guiding light to get there? Aspiration and Fortification through Logic.
          D ► Is there any one specific thing (or something which cannot be left out) which must be used in order to do this? Logic.

          Sprinkle a little beneficial emotion and reality over the top and one is well on their respective way to achieving a sound mind. The answers to C and D, I have provided. The other three answers come from this post in another thread. Many things are at the very least worthy of consideration.

          The interaction that gib and I are having in this thread is one of those things worthy of consideration.

          May you think about this for a moment please? When zero outcome has taken place then infinity outcomes are possible - lets transpose this to the physical reality by saying that existence can not be in a state of zero existence otherwise it would not exist - let us further state that when you have that feeling of zero thoughts flowing through your mind - or the silent mind - you are now connected to the totality of existence. This is a toy because why?

          You may now ask me any question.

          Arcturus Descending wrote:Yes?

          Ah nothing . . .

          Arcturus Descending wrote:That is a perfect scene to me, encode_decode.

          It is such a perfect scene that it escapes us. Why? Because we cannot know zero or infinity entirely. We can only know that one is there.

          Mr. List has left the garden, who knows where he went? He could be experiencing that kind of day now - even with the Eagle. A rare day that included the shining of the sun. There is no reason why you, Mr List or I could not have our very own Zen Gardens. Healthy skepticism is healthy, no? The trees are still because they are unaffected by the caress of the breeze due to the breeze leaving them to peace. They still breathe - they have decided to leave fear. Their moment is calm.

          Arcturus Descending wrote:Have you commanded them not to dance?

          Only when they command me to dance. Perhaps your subconscious is absorbing the meaning - only to surface as a memory in the future. A memory that you get to decide whether is pleasant or not. What is one wearing on one's feet?

          You may in good stead, attempt not to think in terms of what one is wearing on one's feet and instead you may think of what the wearing is.
          Even if you think you have nothing on your feet, you may ask yourself, if that is really true? Thoughts can be permissive that way . . .

          . . . judging things by appearance or not judging things by appearance . . .

          Three tall glasses - the company is already here - all around. The Koi just keep swimming. Does their movement experience them?

          Yes, what are your thoughts in this moment? Koi do swim in your mind when you are watching or remembering them. And then in the transition of thought from Koi to something else - the Koi become ripples in the water as a silent moment of contemplation enters.

          Arcturus Descending wrote:Yes, for many, it would have to be that way. It is for me too. We are social creatures. I think that without trying, that meaning just slips in. But I do not believe that it can be the same with any and all. Yes, like the meaning which comes from a sunny day after we have experienced days of rain - though I love the rain. A smile can be like a burst of the sun's rays.

          A smile . . .

          :D
          It’s not that truth itself is being eroded per se, it’s that fragmental falsification appears to be increasing.
          (Anomaly654 - 2017)

          But the point remains that you can't get at that meaning before grasping the surface meaning
          - which is to say there is always meaning.

          (gib - 2017)

          Mind is an ever changing dimension that is bound to reality, logic and emotion.
          (Myself - 2017)
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          Re: Where does meaning come from?

          Postby MagsJ » Sun Aug 20, 2017 9:49 am

          encode_decode wrote:
            MagsJ

            I agree . . . everybody has their own agenda . . .

            Namely.. self-survival.

            MagsJ wrote:...a need from within... everybody has their own agenda of what they want to get out of life, and so meaning is pertinent to the individual through input and output/a self-serving process, interrupted by work and modern woes.

            I like what you wrote "a need from within". Meaning does tend to be interrupted by work and modern woes. I can only hope that despite the things that interrupt our individual searching to find meaning that we are able to hold onto . . . to the meaning gained - it is perhaps precious.

            :D
            ..and pretty words from you in return, ED :)

            Individual precious moments gained are being lost in the present global social-unrest.. unless you have the money to hold onto them, so it isn't only the price of goods going up but of experiences.
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            Re: Where does meaning come from?

            Postby encode_decode » Sun Aug 27, 2017 5:52 am

              gib

              It looks like you understand what I am writing - I have been thinking about your post and that is why I have not responded yet.

              With a bit of luck I am understanding what you are writing as well as you are understanding what I am writing.

              Look out for my response soon . . .

              :D
              It’s not that truth itself is being eroded per se, it’s that fragmental falsification appears to be increasing.
              (Anomaly654 - 2017)

              But the point remains that you can't get at that meaning before grasping the surface meaning
              - which is to say there is always meaning.

              (gib - 2017)

              Mind is an ever changing dimension that is bound to reality, logic and emotion.
              (Myself - 2017)
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              Where does meaning come from? Inspired . . .

              Postby encode_decode » Mon Aug 28, 2017 3:49 pm

                MagsJ

                First of all, let me thank you for some of my recent inspiration to write - your concise thoughts have led to a cogitation explosion. Second of all, I want to give you a heads up that I have not paid the usual attention that I do to sentence structure - reason being - I just wanted to let the thoughts flow and see what came out.

                I agree . . . everybody has their own agenda . . .
                I guess years ago, our own agenda might have been less than that of the local community's agenda - just a thought. Having not lived that far back, I can not really say but I can say this - spending my high school years in a small community where everybody knew each other, felt very wholesome - what I mean by this, might have little to do with meaning though. I can say that throughout my adult life, there have been times where my high school years felt more meaningful than any arbitrary moment thereafter. Right now I am considering whether nostalgia plays a small part in providing meaning to us.

                Namely.. self-survival.
                Regarding self-survival; I imagine we are talking somewhat above physical survival. Meaning helps to reassure oneself in a confusing world that their own life means something. I wonder what living in a smaller tribe would have been like, whether the residents of that tribe found more meaning in life than we do. The larger the settlement(village, town, city etc.) the less meaningful one feels.

                Looking back . . .
                When we get to a ripe old age, I can imagine whatever meaning we have gained from life to be high on the list of best company. I have spent many an hour listening to an elderly person speaking of old times - I have received much enjoyment from these precious moments. I ponder whether the meaning might be so important to us that if in the event, we consider that we might not have gotten everything out of life that we were working to achieve, then meaning kicks in to save us from any disappointment we may feel.

                Self-serving process . . .
                Of course it is difficult for me to ignore what you wrote regarding an input and output connected to a self-serving process, that becomes interrupted - first because I like processes - secondly because I wonder whether the process is actually ever interrupted or whether it is only interrupted on a conscious level. I must say however it certainly feels like meaning is put on hold at times and our desire to get it back increases through these periods.

                When we leave it for too long . . .
                In this post I would like to add to my comment from before, about hope, that despite the things that interrupt our individual searching to find meaning that we are able to hold onto any precious meaning gained :: I will add that if left for too long, the maintenance of self-survival(related to personal meaning), can lead to one truly losing oneself in a ocean of meaninglessness - that is my observation of people - they may indeed have meaning but it seems it does not glow from them like some people - I can just see meaning in some peoples eyes.

                Pretty words and my rambling . . .
                :D ..and pretty words from you in return, ED :) Thank you MagsJ, I think your words are better - not only are your words pretty but they are more succinct than my own. I could not really help myself this time around but to keep typing - apologies if I became too long winded for your liking. :oops:

                MagsJ wrote:Individual precious moments gained are being lost in the present global social-unrest.. unless you have the money to hold onto them, so it isn't only the price of goods going up but of experiences.

                Indeed . . . and sad but true. Meaning comes at a price - we invest many years and dollars to make our lives meaningful and before you know it, the world has changed and what we have achieved becomes meaningless, or less impressive to those around us and perhaps even ourselves. Your comment also makes me think about tradition - in that it is quite possible that tradition while may not providing a full meaning to some, is at least a basic asset to building ones own meaning off of. I can assure you that I will be putting more thought into global social-unrest.
                I will call this section: When meaning seems lost . . .

                I have really gained from this interaction. Thank you. I can now consider how meaning drives our personality. How our personality can be watered down or diluted among the social noise of our respective environments - how it is that we become shells of people rather than humanely wholesome. How the "meaning process" is always running in the background and needs to be brought to the foreground periodically for reflection to maintain our conscious awareness of it - how this periodic reflection allows our personal meaning to shine through our personality. Finally, meaning I believe, is strongly attached to communication - our desire to talk/communicate and ask questions.

                It should be interesting where all of this takes us . . .
                It’s not that truth itself is being eroded per se, it’s that fragmental falsification appears to be increasing.
                (Anomaly654 - 2017)

                But the point remains that you can't get at that meaning before grasping the surface meaning
                - which is to say there is always meaning.

                (gib - 2017)

                Mind is an ever changing dimension that is bound to reality, logic and emotion.
                (Myself - 2017)
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                Re: Where does meaning come from?

                Postby Arcturus Descending » Tue Aug 29, 2017 4:17 pm

                encode_decode

                Thank you for your affirmations towards me.


                Your skepticism seems to serve you well Arcturus Descending. If both you and the others you have interacted with in this thread do not mind, I have taken the liberty to borrow/quote a couple of items of interest from those interactions.


                I do not mind but did you ask them? :wink:

                Arcturus Descending

                I'm an ongoing process, gib. I can only speak for myself here. Well, we are all ongoing processes. The way I look at it, I think that I can discover the objective (actual reality) truth about myself, I mean, see myself as I really am. But I think that takes an enormous amount of honesty and a lot of time and energy, a lot of investigation, a lot of agonizing moments when we see what we do not like. That can be a great revelation as to who we are. It also takes a lot of compassion and sensitivity toward ourselves because we are, after all, human.

                We are all ongoing processes - this is a humble perspective if one chooses to accept it. Anyone of us can only really speak for ourselves, so it is with hope that my intervention does not offend you or the others you are interacting with. Investigation, honesty, time, energy and agony - in a peculiar way I like it and otherwise I feel I have to respect it. I have great affinity to your last two sentences in the above quote Arcturus Descending.


                Yes, we are ALL ongoing processes though at times it may appear to us that we are not. We get an epiphany out of the blue sometimes but we forget the unconscious process that might have taken place to bring it to fruition. We think that an insight just landed within without any ongoing process beforehand and up to that point.

                Best not to speak of offence until one has confirmed that they were offended.

                All of the below was a little difficult for me to follow as is so I just responded to your words in color...

                What James had said was... Discover the objective truth of what you are and from there the meaning of your life will spring.


                In response to James' remark above, I said: You have just left the student in the mighty forest. Where does he/she go from there?

                You said: Logic is the path out of the dark clouds.

                I cannot agree with this. It takes a lot more than logic ~ but yes, that too ~ to discover who we are and it is not always a smooth path or a linear one. It also takes great emotional upheaval at times like Jacob fighting with his angel.


                A ► So, what are you saying here, James? Only when you can personally verify that there is no alternative.


                So what are you actually saying here, encode_decode? As you see, I just about repeated the words which I gave to James. What I take from that is that one has to be ready willing and able to let's say seek out the holy grail which is ourselves. Is THAT what you were saying?


                B ► How do we go about accomplishing this great feat? And you can only do that through careful use of Logic.


                Again, I disagree with that. Human beings are not mathematical equations. We can use logic for math equas. but not for ourselves.
                We are flesh and blood, with our own individual human psychology. We cannot Know Ourselves only through the use of logic. We may be able to solve some of our inner problems through honesty and good cognitive thinking but much more than that is required.
                You seem to be simplifying the human equation with logic. Learning about who we are can be quite the messy affair.

                C ► What is our guiding light to get there? Aspiration and Fortification through Logic.


                If someone is reading a book and the title of the next chapter is the above ~ then what happens, encode_decode? Does the author leave a lot of empty space for ourselves to fill out and then go on to the next chapter? As is, that phrase means nothing.

                Logic is very important yes, but you seem to be making a God out of it.


                D ► Is there any one specific thing (or something which cannot be left out) which must be used in order to do this? Logic.

                lol The old standby Logic.



                Sprinkle a little beneficial emotion and reality over the top and one is well on their respective way to achieving a sound mind.


                There are absolutely no shortcuts to our becoming and to our [incidentally] never quite getting there. We are an unending process and as such, as we change [if we can see the changes] there is still more to discover about ourselves.

                Again, James wrote:
                "Discover the objective truth of what you are and from there the meaning of your life will spring."

                Unless James had something absolutely and in particular in mind, like a particular purpose/life mission or personal destiny, not withstanding the objective truth of....., well, I do not know then.
                Also, within the objective truth is also subjective truth. We are dealing with human beings here, not rock formation.
                as is,


                - let us further state that when you have that feeling of zero thoughts flowing through your mind - or the silent mind - you are now connected to the totality of existence. This is a toy because why?


                Can one actually have a *feeling of zero thoughts*? I may be wrong here but if there is STILL the feeling, perhaps the thoughts are there too. I may have not expressed that well.

                How are You using the word *toy*?

                Arcturus Descending"]That is a perfect scene to me, encode_decode.

                It is such a perfect scene that it escapes us. Why? Because we cannot know zero or infinity entirely. We can only know that one is there.


                If I remember this is about the zen garden. I doubt very much if a perfect scene would escape me. Maybe I do not understand your meaning of *escape*.

                Mr. List has left the garden, who knows where he went? He could be experiencing that kind of day now - even with the Eagle. A rare day that included the shining of the sun. There is no reason why you, Mr List or I could not have our very own Zen Gardens. Healthy skepticism is healthy, no? The trees are still because they are unaffected by the caress of the breeze due to the breeze leaving them to peace. They still breathe - they have decided to leave fear. Their moment is calm.


                My zen garden is brought about through my emotions and my mind and their inter-connectedness with the outside world or environment surrounding me, nature, the elements, the sky, the stars, et cetera.

                What does a healthy skepticism have to do with the above - though i strive to keep my skepticism both healthy and real and not lean too far either way.

                Arcturus Descending"]Have you commanded them not to dance?

                Only when they command me to dance. Perhaps your subconscious is absorbing the meaning - only to surface as a memory in the future. A memory that you get to decide whether is pleasant or not. What is one wearing on one's feet?


                Or you might have just offered your hand and asked "May I have this dance?" lol

                I'm not sure how the latter part of that follows.

                ....only to surface as a memory in the future. A memory that you get to decide whether is pleasant or not.

                Some memories do play tricks on us. Do they live in truth or do they live in illusion allowing us the mistaken cocoon of security?

                You may in good stead, attempt not to think in terms of what one is wearing on one's feet and instead you may think of what the wearing is.
                Even if you think you have nothing on your feet, you may ask yourself, if that is really true? Thoughts can be permissive that way . . .


                When I asked that question, that was just my steady stream of consciousness. lol


                . . . judging things by appearance or not judging things by appearance . . .


                No judgment there - just curious.


                Three tall glasses - the company is already here - all around. The Koi just keep swimming. Does their movement experience them?


                Experience their selves or the company?

                Yes, what are your thoughts in this moment? Koi do swim in your mind when you are watching or remembering them. And then in the transition of thought from Koi to something else - the Koi become ripples in the water as a silent moment of contemplation enters.


                I once had a dream of being in a rowboat on a river surrounded by really dirty water and a lot of snakes. Could have actually been a healing dream though one would question that.
                It's beautiful imagery the koi. But as a moment of contemplation, what exactly is the movement of the koi? Are they like your avatar or in just what direction are they going and what are they doing?
                Or would you have them continue to go in circles following one another?


                Arcturus Descending"]Yes, for many, it would have to be that way. It is for me too. We are social creatures. I think that without trying, that meaning just slips in. But I do not believe that it can be the same with any and all. Yes, like the meaning which comes from a sunny day after we have experienced days of rain - though I love the rain. A smile can be like a burst of the sun's rays.

                A smile . . .

                Moonbeams leaving their wake on the river...
                SAPERE AUDE!


                If I thought that everything I did was determined by my circumstancse and my psychological condition, I would feel trapped.


                What we take ourselves to be doing when we think about what is the case or how we should act is something that cannot be reconciled with a reductive naturalism, for reasons distinct from those that entail the irreducibility of consciousness. It is not merely the subjectivity of thought but its capacity to transcend subjectivity and to discover what is objectively the case that presents a problem....Thought and reasoning are correct or incorrect in virtue of something independent of the thinker's beliefs, and even independent of the community of thinkers to which he belongs.

                Thomas Nagel


                I learn as I write!
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                Re: Where does meaning come from?

                Postby encode_decode » Thu Aug 31, 2017 10:28 am

                  Arcturus Descending

                  If any of my post came across as an affirmation then I am pleased for that. I encourage everybody to think for themselves above all of that. I did not ask anyone whether it was OK to jump in the middle of anything hence why I was offering hope. I like my manners and I think it would be best for me to keep them especially where I live. I will remember each interaction I have on this forum for the future and adjust my behavior appropriately unless there appears to be too many rules of engagement in which case I will back off. Communication is not a very difficult thing in my opinion. In those events where the rules of engagement show themselves in a cost outweighs the benefit scenario then there is no reason to push forward. Meaning is lost when there is no gain for either party.

                  The answers I provided were without the substance of the original author - it is a great example of where meaning is not to be found. I do however hold logic in high esteem. I hold people in higher esteem. Everybody has their own agenda and everyone has a different path in life. How we find meaning is very much up to each individual. I do not treat logic as a god. We are dealing with human beings, however I personally am also dealing with nature. I am glad you are able to perceive perfect scenes. I am unwilling to go into the zero versus infinity scenario as I do not feel it would benefit either of us. Your version of the Zen Garden sounds lovely. I am also thinking that metaphor was not the best choice of response toward you. It seems to have confused to situation even more than it was worth.

                  As for the rest - it is probably better for me to refrain from responding as there seems to be a lot of meaning getting lost into the abyss.

                  I am quite happy for each person to see things the way they want to - I have no real interest in the many, many futile philosophies of the world. This forum is a great place to exchange ideas. It seems some people like to push their ideas on others - if that is what it seems like I have done to you, then I sincerely apologize for that - it was not my intention. I never came to ILP to preach to anybody nor be preached to. My only interest is for meaningful exchanges.

                  Regarding debates - if there is a debate to be had that is worth my while then I will happily get into it. I have not been presented with many worthwhile debates so I refrain for the most part from participating in that sort of thing. I am lucky however that I do have two debates happening right now and a whole bunch of meaningful exchanges on top. I always keep in mind that philosophy is not just about ethics.

                  Peace,

                  Aaron.

                  :wink:
                  It’s not that truth itself is being eroded per se, it’s that fragmental falsification appears to be increasing.
                  (Anomaly654 - 2017)

                  But the point remains that you can't get at that meaning before grasping the surface meaning
                  - which is to say there is always meaning.

                  (gib - 2017)

                  Mind is an ever changing dimension that is bound to reality, logic and emotion.
                  (Myself - 2017)
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                  Re: Where does meaning come from?

                  Postby encode_decode » Thu Aug 31, 2017 11:12 am

                    gib

                    I prefer to stay away from conversations referring to nihilists, so I wont go there for the time being. You do not appear to be a nihilist - correct me if I am wrong - if I am wrong about this then I would be happy to include nihilistic themes in our interaction.

                    gib wrote:So do you mean the way we take phenomena that we don't understand and come up with some kind of explanation for them? And that makes them meaningful?

                    Hmm, it could be interpreted that way. The brain works with patterns, so even without language it is able to derive meaning. I guess this is something that one is entitled to not agree with but it is something that I have found many examples of correlation that show meaning is not necessarily related to language. Communication and information are definitely key players in meaning but language is not a mandatory component.

                    gib wrote:My interest, on the other hand, lays in this question: what is the experience of the plant like? What does it feel like to undergo the process of photosynthesis, to be the process of photosynthesis? Capture that and you will get a little sample of incomprehensible meaning

                    This sounds interesting . . . what is the experience of the plant like? I think you are onto something here. This gives rise to much thought.

                    gib wrote:Well, it certainly wasn't meant as an insult--not even criticism--more like a quirk. Everyone's got their quirks, and that's what I like about people. It's what makes us all different. I'd encourage people to keep their quirks. Anyone who brings them up as criticisms simply doesn't appreciate the diversity of quirky people we are.

                    I know it was not meant as an insult. I agree with the rest of what you say here. I for one do appreciate the diversity - we are on the same wavelength there.

                    gib wrote:Yes, and I'd even say "matter" itself is already derived at a higher level of sensory processing. What's derived at the really fundamental level of our senses are very simple geometric data (they say that the first layer of neural networks our optic nerves hit at the occipital lobe are "line detectors"--so our world is essentially made of lines before anything else). But once "matter" as such is derived (or maybe objects), it seems to be at that level that the rest of our mind (our thoughts at least) say: that's what I'm looking at.

                    This appears to be very similar to many lines of thought that I follow. I would be very interested in knowing more and what might stem from this.

                    gib wrote:Well, I'm trying to get at what the world looks like without the effect of abstract preconceptions of what the world "really" consists of or how it "really" works. For example, when you look at an object, you might think: a network of molecules. When you look at the Sun (don't actually do that), you think: a burning ball of gas. But what would primitive man have thought? I don't think primitive man would have thought anything more than: it's an object (the sun might have been different, but you get my point). I'm saying the view of the world held by primitive man would have been: just a bunch of objects. Of course, primitive man probably would have had his own religion to taint the way he saw his surroundings, but I'm trying to get at the way we would look at the world if we somehow were able to brush away the tainting influence of what we've been taught (whether that be science, religion, our upbringing, our own crazy thoughts, etc.)

                    This is really awesome gib - I wonder if primitive man and babies have much in common when it comes to the way they approach objects - I never really considered primitive man often, what inspired you to take this approach?

                    I have put quite a lot of thought into what you have posted - I do have some things to add but for now I am more interested in what you have to say on different things - I find your line of thought follows a divergent and semi parallel path to my own. It seems that we are independently discovering different things and at times converging on very similar items.

                    :-k
                    It’s not that truth itself is being eroded per se, it’s that fragmental falsification appears to be increasing.
                    (Anomaly654 - 2017)

                    But the point remains that you can't get at that meaning before grasping the surface meaning
                    - which is to say there is always meaning.

                    (gib - 2017)

                    Mind is an ever changing dimension that is bound to reality, logic and emotion.
                    (Myself - 2017)
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                    Re: Where does meaning come from?

                    Postby encode_decode » Thu Aug 31, 2017 11:31 am

                      Dan~

                      Thank you for your post. :D

                      Dan~ wrote:I equate meaning to core qualities.

                      The core is like the existential everything of a being.
                      It has all kinds of temporary and changing aspects,
                      as well as repeating or old aspects.
                      Meaning can be found in the mental aspect of the existential core.
                      Meaning is like an alchemical biproduct.
                      A biological rare chemical complex.

                      That is the closest thing to an accurate description that ive got.

                      It would be like a forest supporting the life of monkeys.
                      In this case, the man supports the life of meanings as memes.

                      Do you see what i mean?

                      I do indeed see what you mean Dan~. The way you are looking at it, is a way that I am a little unaccustomed to. My approach is more mathematical in nature involving sums and differences. There is similarity however in the following things you have written: the core, temporary and changing aspects, old aspects, bi-product and memes. I think there is synergy created through any related thought as well as any unrelated thought.

                      Biologically speaking, I merely equate things to a living computer - which your post is hinting at.

                      :D
                      It’s not that truth itself is being eroded per se, it’s that fragmental falsification appears to be increasing.
                      (Anomaly654 - 2017)

                      But the point remains that you can't get at that meaning before grasping the surface meaning
                      - which is to say there is always meaning.

                      (gib - 2017)

                      Mind is an ever changing dimension that is bound to reality, logic and emotion.
                      (Myself - 2017)
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                      Re: Where does meaning come from?

                      Postby Arcturus Descending » Fri Sep 01, 2017 4:21 pm

                      encode_decode wrote:


                      If any of my post came across as an affirmation then I am pleased for that.

                      Your kind words to me were definitely an affirmation.

                      I encourage everybody to think for themselves above all of that
                      .

                      I am not sure what brought on this statement. I will say here though that having been here for a while now, you must have observed that most in here actually do that. That is not to say that it is always done with the greatest cognition. I may be speaking of myself here. :evilfun:

                      I did not ask anyone whether it was OK to jump in the middle of anything hence why I was offering hope.


                      I do that and I observe that many others will do that. I see nothing right or wrong in it.
                      If we know of a particular person who ONLY prefers the person to whom they are posting to be the only one to respond -- well, then, I can't really say if that is right or wrong. I can't even know if that would be, in actuality, disrespect to do. What some *disrespect* is clearly not disrespect. It is a question of perspective. But to me it would be no big thing. I would simply not respond. I am in some ways a nihilist. lol


                      I like my manners and I think it would be best for me to keep them especially where I live.


                      We all choose for ourselves *how we ought to live*.

                      I will remember each interaction I have on this forum for the future and adjust my behavior appropriately unless there appears to be too many rules of engagement in which case I will back off.


                      That would seem to be reasonable and appropriate from my point of view. That doesn't mean that others will adhere to your mode of behavior. But then again, you will adjust that...

                      Communication is not a very difficult thing in my opinion.


                      :-k That would depend on what you actually *mean* by that. Communication can be very difficult and at other times it may not be. It might depend on whom we are communicating with and our individual styles of language.

                      In those events where the rules of engagement show themselves in a cost outweighs the benefit scenario then there is no reason to push forward. Meaning is lost when there is no gain for either party.


                      But one might give up just at the moment when meaning might come in. Did that make sense to you?

                      The answers I provided were without the substance of the original author - it is a great example of where meaning is not to be found.


                      Who is the original author? As for the second part, I don't necessarily agree with you there.
                      Isn't meaning and also truth (in degrees) :wink: to be found in one thinking for one's self, not necessarily mental copying and pasting of the work of others?
                      Oh, maybe I didn't understand what you were saying at first. Perhaps you are thinking like me in that respect - meaning is not to be found ONLY in the words of the author? Is that it?

                      I do however hold logic in high esteem.


                      I also hold logic in high esteem, along with personal experience.

                      I hold people in higher esteem. Everybody has their own agenda and everyone has a different path in life. How we find meaning is very much up to each individual.


                      Yes, it is and sometimes it is not even a choice which we make, as to the last part. Meaning at times *happens to us* because who we are *where we live* (not geographically) but because of our minds and emotions we also choose what meaning is for us.

                      I do not treat logic as a god.


                      Ah, the light goes on.

                      We are dealing with human beings, however I personally am also dealing with nature.


                      If we are dealing with human beings, encode_ decode, we are also dealing with nature. That's why it is called human nature. Even the nature which we observe around us is closely related to our own natures.

                      I am glad you are able to perceive perfect scenes.


                      You mean perfect moments? Yes I can but as I said they are not lasting/eternal though one can recall them through memory. They are absolute in a sense because they are real but for a time only. I say that with both my reason and my emotions.

                      I am unwilling to go into the zero versus infinity scenario as I do not feel it would benefit either of us.


                      I'm glad to hear this since i have no idea what it means. My pay rate is somewhere in the dirt where your's is in the celestial sphere. hahaha

                      Your version of the Zen Garden sounds lovely. I am also thinking that metaphor was not the best choice of response toward you.


                      Yes, I think that I can probably understand where you are coming from there.

                      It seems to have confused to situation even more than it was worth.

                      Ouch!! But at least it was worth something to me. We all see meaning and beauty differently though.
                      Can we help ourselves? Sure, some can try to arrive at more reason and some can try to arrive at more of the human experience. We as INDIVIDUALS are always going to lean more on one side or the other.
                      But can we actually come to find truth, some truth, if there is too much reason or too much of the human experience alone? Wouldn't a marriage of both be more conducive to truth?


                      As for the rest - it is probably better for me to refrain from responding as there seems to be a lot of meaning getting lost into the abyss.



                      I am quite happy for each person to see things the way they want to - I have no real interest in the many, many futile philosophies of the world. This forum is a great place to exchange ideas. It seems some people like to push their ideas on others - if that is what it seems like I have done to you, then I sincerely apologize for that - it was not my intention. I never came to ILP to preach to anybody nor be preached to. My only interest is for meaningful exchanges.


                      Are you speaking to me here, encode_decode? I am actually quite happy to try to see things from another's point of view. That may not change mine but maybe it will. We all see with different lenses and I think that we can see more if we can see another's point of view, no? At least, to think about it. We cannot know everything. Even a guy like Copernicus made that silly mistake about the Sun but was it so silly considering what they did not know at that time.

                      If you are speaking to me, kindly point out to me where you think you SEEM to have done that to me. I can't actually recall your having done that.

                      Don't worry about the preaching. Sometimes that cannot be avoided. I still have not learned how to get out of preaching mode when I am posting at times. :lol:
                      Maybe that comes from listening to too many homilies at Sunday Mass. I don't know.
                      I still have to learn how to not do that.

                      Kind regards to you too,
                      arc
                      SAPERE AUDE!


                      If I thought that everything I did was determined by my circumstancse and my psychological condition, I would feel trapped.


                      What we take ourselves to be doing when we think about what is the case or how we should act is something that cannot be reconciled with a reductive naturalism, for reasons distinct from those that entail the irreducibility of consciousness. It is not merely the subjectivity of thought but its capacity to transcend subjectivity and to discover what is objectively the case that presents a problem....Thought and reasoning are correct or incorrect in virtue of something independent of the thinker's beliefs, and even independent of the community of thinkers to which he belongs.

                      Thomas Nagel


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                      Degrees of meaning . . .

                      Postby encode_decode » Sat Sep 02, 2017 4:34 am

                        Arcturus Descending

                        You are welcome for the affirmations - they were meant as observations from what I can remember but affirmations are good enough for me - as I said, if any part of my post came across as an affirmation then I am pleased for that. You stated, "Your kind words to me were definitely an affirmation", and I wondered whether my intention was to be kind or honest - I guess you would see the two as rather synonymous based on differing degrees of context. I made mention earlier that many of us make valuable exchanges of our thoughts on this forum, and you are no exception - I stand by that statement.

                        I also feel that you are courageous and tenacious.

                        Our exchange is unique, as is any exchange, between any two given people, at any given time; our exchange is based on the scope of conversation, the space that you occupy and the space that I occupy - I suggest that the two different spaces are a result of modern internet communication - the relativity of exchange, between "days of old" regarding time: people would do this sort of thing through "snail mail", and the relativity of exchange, completing the between, at "days of new" regarding the completion of the time bubble: we now do this sort of thing in forums; the pace of response is variable, the relativity of exchange is different and the space has been split, further I will add, scope is in two parts(three), conversational, your scope and mine . . .

                        . . . and so, shall we proceed? Yes, with the ever changing degree of relative uniqueness :evilfun: and moreover with courage and tenacity.

                        Arcturus Descending wrote:
                        encode_decode wrote:I encourage everybody to think for themselves above all of that
                        I am not sure what brought on this statement. I will say here though that having been here for a while now, you must have observed that most in here actually do that. That is not to say that it is always done with the greatest cognition. I may be speaking of myself here.

                        This can be a complex topic in and of itself . . . I stand by my statement, so let us maintain the elegance of that statement. What brought this statement on is twofold, something you said(which would take away from my response) and something I said; I have witnessed you thinking with depth, curiosity and many times quite an impressive accordance to rationality. Your 'response to logic' which you say you hold in 'high esteem' was a detraction from your impressive accordance to rationality - however as I previously stated your skepticism seems to serve you well Arcturus Descending. Naturally a detraction such as I have mentioned is eventually going to make way into an interaction as sophisticated as the unique interaction we have been having, particularly when one of us is a skeptic.

                        I value your skepticism - so rather than fight it, I prefer to walk around it and come back to it later to make an approach of it as new. I have not directly perceived your nihilistic ways, I will keep an eye out for them now that you mention it. From what I have perceived, life does hold meaning to you. You stated: We all choose for ourselves *how we ought to live*, to which I agree. I do not expect that others will adhere to my mode of behavior, in fact I would discourage it. To enter into an interaction with myself will at times present a self-defeating puzzle that will not leave you frustrated as much as it would leave you yourself making adjustments. Communication 'for me' is not a very difficult thing, and in accordance to, as well as with due regard to, what you stated, I agree, is dependent on individual styles of language. Hopefully one's noodle is not baked yet.

                        Arcturus Descending wrote:But one might give up just at the moment when meaning might come in. Did that make sense to you?

                        Oh . . . please make no imagining that I have given up on anything. What you are saying here makes perfect sense to me - there you go, perfect.

                        Who is the original author? I should have said the three original authors, one of which is you. The answers I provided were without the substance of the original authors - it is a great example of where meaning is not to be found(As for this part, you don't necessarily agree with me) - meaning quite possibly is dependent on the essence of the individual - perhaps this is why we often misinterpret the authors of old. You are correct when you state meaning and also truth (in degrees) is to be found in one thinking for one's self, not necessarily mental copying and pasting of the work of others - degrees which the brain is dependent on follow through to our mind and interactions as we already understand it. Perhaps I am thinking like you in that respect - meaning is not to be found ONLY in the words of the author. Is that it? Hmm, more than likely.

                        You mentioned that you also hold logic in high esteem, along with personal experience; it makes me happy that you are thinking like this.

                        Meaning at times *happens to us* because who we are *where we live* (not geographically) but . . .
                        . . . because of our minds and emotions we also choose what meaning is for us.

                        Arcturus Descending(2017)

                        We should not treat logic as a god - perchance the light may stay on . . . We are dealing with human beings, however I personally am also dealing with nature.

                        Human nature is relatively different to nature however and that is why it is called human nature - the nature which we observe around us is closely related to our own natures. Tell me Arc, what is the difference between a perfect scene and a perfect moment in the context of our conversation? I am glad you say they are absolute in a sense because they are real but for a time only - that you say that with both your reason and your emotion. You should not underestimate yourself - not saying that you have inside our interaction - I am saying the pair of us should keep this in mind for many other interactions involving people and things.

                        We all see meaning and beauty differently though. Can we help ourselves? Sure, some can try to arrive at more reason and some can try to arrive at more of the human experience. We as INDIVIDUALS are always going to lean more on one side or the other.
                        Arcturus Descending(2017)

                        But can we actually come to find truth, some truth, if there is too much reason or too much of the human experience alone? Hmm . . .
                        Wouldn't a marriage of both be more conducive to truth? That would be one of the questions wouldn't it?

                        Meaning will keep getting lost into the abyss. Perhaps the abyss deserves some meaning too. My apology to you was contingent upon the event perceived that it be the case that I was preaching to you - I am glad that is not how you viewed what I was saying, thank you for illuminating me.

                        I can do my best to avoid preaching. We are all still collectively yet to become wary of our own preaching . . .
                        . . . at times we "fall in love" with what we ourselves are communicating.

                        I appreciate your kind regards. =D> In turn I would like to offer some kind regards of my own . . .
                        To you, Arc . . .

                        Peace,

                        Aaron.

                        :D
                        It’s not that truth itself is being eroded per se, it’s that fragmental falsification appears to be increasing.
                        (Anomaly654 - 2017)

                        But the point remains that you can't get at that meaning before grasping the surface meaning
                        - which is to say there is always meaning.

                        (gib - 2017)

                        Mind is an ever changing dimension that is bound to reality, logic and emotion.
                        (Myself - 2017)
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                        Re: Where does meaning come from?

                        Postby gib » Sat Sep 02, 2017 7:01 pm

                        encode_decode wrote:I prefer to stay away from conversations referring to nihilists, so I wont go there for the time being. You do not appear to be a nihilist - correct me if I am wrong - if I am wrong about this then I would be happy to include nihilistic themes in our interaction.


                        Encode, I am the farthest thing from a nihilist. Nihilist don't believe in meaning, I believe meaning is in everything. But something you should know about me is that I sometimes like to suspend my usual convictions and beliefs and argue from a position that isn't mine. Think of it as an attempt to scope out the other person's thoughts: if they present to me philosophy X, I will sometimes counter with anti-X (even if I'm an adherent of X myself) just to see how they react, what their thoughts are. It helps to flesh out the details of their position.

                        encode_decode wrote:Hmm, it could be interpreted that way. The brain works with patterns, so even without language it is able to derive meaning. I wholeheartedly agree. I guess this is something that one is entitled to not agree with I wholeheartedly agree. but it is something that I have found many examples of correlation that show meaning is not necessarily related to language. I wholeheartedly agree. Communication and information are definitely key players in meaning but language is not a mandatory component.


                        I wholeheartedly agree, encode. Meaning is just consciousness, awareness. It is the process by which meaning is drawn from an experience and used to beget further meaning in a new experience. (<-- This, again, coming from my theory of consciousness).

                        encode_decode wrote:This sounds interesting . . . what is the experience of the plant like? idunno. I think you are onto something here. This gives rise to much thought


                        As far as I'm concerned, subjective experience comes with all physical actions. If I throw a ball against a wall, I maintain that a subjective experience characterized by some quality is had by the ball/wall system. Only, I wouldn't say the quality of this experience is anything remotely like what we're familiar with in our own experience. It is incomprehensible for all intents and purposes. It is not the experience of vision, or hearing, or touch, or thought, or emotion, or anything we as humans are acquainted with. The latter experiences come along with a very specific kind of physical activity--namely, neurochemical events in the brain--certainly not a ball bouncing off a wall.

                        In general, I define consciousness, or more accurately "subjective experience" in terms of a trio:

                        1) quality
                        2) being
                        3) meaning

                        I believe the fundamental substance of the universe, the "stuff" that reality is made of, to be the above three aspects rolled into one substance (and at the end of the day, my theory of consciousness is really a theory of substance). It's aspect #3 (meaning) that, in my mind, makes the incomprehensible experience that the plant has meaningful, but like the man speaking in a foreign language, our brains are unable to imagine what it feels like, and thus have no direct access to the meaning therein.

                        encode_decode wrote:
                        gib wrote:Yes, and I'd even say "matter" itself is already derived at a higher level of sensory processing. What's derived at the really fundamental level of our senses are very simple geometric data (they say that the first layer of neural networks our optic nerves hit at the occipital lobe are "line detectors"--so our world is essentially made of lines before anything else). But once "matter" as such is derived (or maybe objects), it seems to be at that level that the rest of our mind (our thoughts at least) say: that's what I'm looking at.
                        This appears to be very similar to many lines of thought that I follow. I would be very interested in knowing more and what might stem from this.


                        Well, that's all I've got for now. I'll expand on this line of thought later if I come up with anything.

                        encode_decode wrote:This is really awesome gib - I wonder if primitive man and babies have much in common when it comes to the way they approach objects - I never really considered primitive man often, what inspired you to take this approach?


                        Well, I'm interested in knowing what the "animal" part of the human brain has to offer. I'm rather cynical when it comes to the influence that society or civilization has on the human psyche. I don't think it's healthy. At least, it's unhealthy in the way it conditions us to behave in pre-programmed way, or to behave and speak in ways that seem more like an attempt to adhere to the status quo rather then drawing from our authentic feelings and intuitions and instincts. They say that mankind first appeared on the evolutionary scene about 200,000 years ago (this, they say, is "mindkind" in the modern form, more or less genetically identical to the way we are today). I don't think man came onto the scene fully equipment with a whole resource of religious beliefs and superstitions and comprehensions of complex abstract concepts. I believe that when man first appeared on the scene, he wasn't that much different than an advanced animal... except for this one defining feature: he had the ability to not only build thought on past experience, and even build thought on prior thoughts, but the ability to pass on those thoughts to others, sort of naturally "downloading" pre-packaged memes. And "memes" is pretty much what this boils down to. Mankind evolved on the scene equipped with the ability to produce and pass on memes, and for memes themselves to evolve in the hardware of the human brain as they not only get checked and compared with further experience on the part of the individual, but in the very process of being communicated to others. IOW, the human brain is unique among other animal brains in that it was the first platform (as far as we know) on which a different kind of evolution could begin, an evolution of thought, of ideas, as opposed to biological evolution. This allows for a much speedier process of evolution, one that can go from quite rudimentary thoughts on the level of mere animals (like "I'm hungry") to a sophistication of thought on the level of multivariate calculus or quantum mechanics. As speedy as it is compared to biological evolution, however, it still takes time. They say that the advent of religion and ritual emerged about 40,000 years ago. But if we are the same animals we've always been since 200,000 years ago, what happened 40,000 years ago such that religion would spontaneously (from our limited point of view) emerge? The answer is: that's how long it took for religion to evolve. Memes being passed on, being built on top of other memes, memes transforming and evolving, becoming more and more sophisticate, until we get religion.

                        My interest in this, my a pantheist point of view (to bring God into the discussion), is to understand what God originally intended to convey to us. If religion, and all other forms of abstract thought we have today, is the culmination of an evolutionary process of memes, a process that we build, that we are involved in driving, then it could be argued that we are distorting the original message conveyed to us by God, the original message conveyed to us by the universe via the senses and the hardwiring of the brain, which I proposed is hardwired to take raw sensory data and build "objects" out of (like most other animals, I believe).

                        Science, I'm convince, is a kind of reconciliation of this departure from the original messagee. It is mankind learning to speak the language of God, to interpet our experiences in their own terms. Science is a Q&A session with God. The experiment is a question: is my hypothesis right? And the results are God's answer: yeay or nay.

                        In today's science, we have learned much about the inner workings of nature. Though this is obviously far from the original message conveyed to us by God (God never told us the world is made of atoms and molecular, of light photons, of black holes and quasars billions of light years away), I believe science offers a special edge by which God's response to experiments (when it's a yeay) can be interpreted as: well, that's not what I originally intended to convey, but it's more or less equivalent. <-- Like a person throwing a message back at you in his own words. You could respond "yes, that's right," even though it's not the words you originally used.

                        Boy I'm chatty today, ain't I? :lol:

                        encode_decode wrote:I have put quite a lot of thought into what you have posted - I do have some things to add but for now I am more interested in what you have to say on different things - I find your line of thought follows a divergent and semi parallel path to my own. It seems that we are independently discovering different things and at times converging on very similar items.


                        That may be, but I've been speaking too much about my own thoughts. You have yet to expound on your own. Where would one begin with encode's thoughts if one were to grasp the big picture in encode's head?
                        My thoughts | My art | My music | My poetry

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                        Also just as irrational decisions are not always bad then rational ones are not always good no matter what the intention
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                        The rating of rationality can be higher and always is higher than the person trying to be rational. Rationality is less emotional than the person delivering it.
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                        Response to gib - Part 1

                        Postby encode_decode » Sun Sep 03, 2017 4:31 pm

                          Hi gib

                          I am going to break my response up - I think it is easier to manage that way - I hope you have no objections.

                          gib wrote:Encode, I am the farthest thing from a nihilist. Nihilist don't believe in meaning, I believe meaning is in everything. But something you should know about me is that I sometimes like to suspend my usual convictions and beliefs and argue from a position that isn't mine. Think of it as an attempt to scope out the other person's thoughts: if they present to me philosophy X, I will sometimes counter with anti-X (even if I'm an adherent of X myself) just to see how they react, what their thoughts are. It helps to flesh out the details of their position.

                          I was pretty certain that you were not a nihilist. I really like your style that you suspend your usual convictions and beliefs and argue from a position that isn't yours - I have similar tricks - even arguing against my self - this keeps the mind very agile in my opinion. When scoping out other peoples thoughts, especially for the first time - I believe having extra tools like some trick is a great way to uncover their reactions.

                          gib wrote:Meaning is just consciousness, awareness. It is the process by which meaning is drawn from an experience and used to beget further meaning in a new experience. (<-- This, again, coming from my theory of consciousness).

                          Well, your theory of consciousness is going to be something that I will be very interested in reading.

                          gib wrote:As far as I'm concerned, subjective experience comes with all physical actions. If I throw a ball against a wall, I maintain that a subjective experience characterized by some quality is had by the ball/wall system. Only, I wouldn't say the quality of this experience is anything remotely like what we're familiar with in our own experience. It is incomprehensible for all intents and purposes. It is not the experience of vision, or hearing, or touch, or thought, or emotion, or anything we as humans are acquainted with. The latter experiences come along with a very specific kind of physical activity--namely, neurochemical events in the brain--certainly not a ball bouncing off a wall.

                          I assume you are referring to signals interpreted by the brain otherwise I am not following you precisely. I will attempt to offer my thoughts - let me make up a word - encephalosystem - because you are talking about a system - encephalosystem is the system inside the skull - the brain/mind system. The ball/wall system is a separate system to the encephalosystem. What we are familiar with when we experience translation of the outside world through the encephalosystem is different to what the ball/wall system "experiences". We can not truly comprehend the ball/wall system is what I think you are saying.

                          gib wrote:In general, I define consciousness, or more accurately "subjective experience" in terms of a trio:

                            1) quality
                            2) being
                            3) meaning
                          I believe the fundamental substance of the universe, the "stuff" that reality is made of, to be the above three aspects rolled into one substance (and at the end of the day, my theory of consciousness is really a theory of substance). It's aspect #3 (meaning) that, in my mind, makes the incomprehensible experience that the plant has meaningful, but like the man speaking in a foreign language, our brains are unable to imagine what it feels like, and thus have no direct access to the meaning therein.

                          OK . . . that is incredible and very interesting at the same time. I also believe the universe is one substance. This is a new way to think for me - thanks. I have been following James' idea of affectance for the one substance. This to me involves emergence of the three things you have listed. I keep my mind open because like the style you have mentioned above I am still able to learn by analogy or interpretation.

                          :-k
                          It’s not that truth itself is being eroded per se, it’s that fragmental falsification appears to be increasing.
                          (Anomaly654 - 2017)

                          But the point remains that you can't get at that meaning before grasping the surface meaning
                          - which is to say there is always meaning.

                          (gib - 2017)

                          Mind is an ever changing dimension that is bound to reality, logic and emotion.
                          (Myself - 2017)
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                          Response to gib - Part 2

                          Postby encode_decode » Sun Sep 03, 2017 5:21 pm

                            gib

                            And here it is part two . . . nothing super special - your writing is interesting however.

                            gib wrote:Well, I'm interested in knowing what the "animal" part of the human brain has to offer. I'm rather cynical when it comes to the influence that society or civilization has on the human psyche. I don't think it's healthy. At least, it's unhealthy in the way it conditions us to behave in pre-programmed way, or to behave and speak in ways that seem more like an attempt to adhere to the status quo rather then drawing from our authentic feelings and intuitions and instincts.

                            I think the animal part you refer to is what I refer to as the reptilian part. With the current state of affairs it pays to be cynical - certainly sociological influence is corrupt - I am studying this regarding emotions at the moment. It is so easy to study emotion when you have a whole society of people acting the same.

                            gib wrote:They say that mankind first appeared on the evolutionary scene about 200,000 years ago (this, they say, is "mindkind" in the modern form, more or less genetically identical to the way we are today). I don't think man came onto the scene fully equipment with a whole resource of religious beliefs and superstitions and comprehensions of complex abstract concepts.

                            Um, yeah, I would have to mostly agree.

                            gib wrote:I believe that when man first appeared on the scene, he wasn't that much different than an advanced animal... except for this one defining feature: he had the ability to not only build thought on past experience, and even build thought on prior thoughts, but the ability to pass on those thoughts to others, sort of naturally "downloading" pre-packaged memes.

                            Were the memes via language though? I know cave drawings played a part later on - sometimes I think there is still quite a lot of primitive man in a lot of the human race - not inciting racism, just saying. Building thoughts on prior thoughts is the most significant thing you mention here for me. When the baby watches man and continues to toddler and continues to watch man - all the way through the years to adult - the downloading is continuous of course - even without language. First signs of language could still be grunts and groans. Thoughts on prior thoughts I will leave alone because we are now talking about similar material in another thread.

                            gib wrote:And "memes" is pretty much what this boils down to. Mankind evolved on the scene equipped with the ability to produce and pass on memes, and for memes themselves to evolve in the hardware of the human brain as they not only get checked and compared with further experience on the part of the individual, but in the very process of being communicated to others.

                            These memes did not require language to begin with - it seems as those language now has intoxicated memes of the past - that modern man is currently a drunkard. Meaning has become adulterated and has become quite the promiscuous slave of each man.

                            gib wrote:IOW, the human brain is unique among other animal brains in that it was the first platform (as far as we know) on which a different kind of evolution could begin, an evolution of thought, of ideas, as opposed to biological evolution. This allows for a much speedier process of evolution, one that can go from quite rudimentary thoughts on the level of mere animals (like "I'm hungry") to a sophistication of thought on the level of multivariate calculus or quantum mechanics.

                            True - I have heard that our collective evolution has slow because of this. I honestly believe there is an after this - an after philosophy and an after science - super-powerful knowledge on the horizon - only for a select few.

                            gib wrote:As speedy as it is compared to biological evolution, however, it still takes time. They say that the advent of religion and ritual emerged about 40,000 years ago. But if we are the same animals we've always been since 200,000 years ago, what happened 40,000 years ago such that religion would spontaneously (from our limited point of view) emerge? The answer is: that's how long it took for religion to evolve.

                            Are all of us the same animals though - or are a small few just trudging through the treacherous waters of humankind as it stands now.

                            gib wrote:Memes being passed on, being built on top of other memes, memes transforming and evolving, becoming more and more sophisticate, until we get religion.

                            I believe spirituality is a part of our future, just not the way we have ever viewed it before now.

                            :-k
                            It’s not that truth itself is being eroded per se, it’s that fragmental falsification appears to be increasing.
                            (Anomaly654 - 2017)

                            But the point remains that you can't get at that meaning before grasping the surface meaning
                            - which is to say there is always meaning.

                            (gib - 2017)

                            Mind is an ever changing dimension that is bound to reality, logic and emotion.
                            (Myself - 2017)
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                            Response to gib - Part 3

                            Postby encode_decode » Sun Sep 03, 2017 5:48 pm

                              gib

                              And now for the third and final part of my response - I am getting a little tired so I hope I am going to be still making some sense - it is 2:27 AM here.

                              gib wrote:My interest in this, my a pantheist point of view (to bring God into the discussion), is to understand what God originally intended to convey to us. If religion, and all other forms of abstract thought we have today, is the culmination of an evolutionary process of memes, a process that we build, that we are involved in driving, then it could be argued that we are distorting the original message conveyed to us by God, the original message conveyed to us by the universe via the senses and the hardwiring of the brain, which I proposed is hardwired to take raw sensory data and build "objects" out of (like most other animals, I believe).

                              Hmm, interesting notions - a little foreign to me but I will humor them since I am a "believer". I am certain god did not intend this the way we live now - I ran an idea James had by a Christian friend of mine and my Christian friend asserted that James must be a very smart fellow. Cities I believe are a little too much if you are not indulging in communication with your neighbors but how can we when some of the neighbors are dickheads? Now I am a little off topic, I realize that but what has happened here is that your mention of God had inspired a thought and memory of something James once said to me about 75 people groups. Anyway - back to this.

                              gib wrote:Science, I'm convince, is a kind of reconciliation of this departure from the original message. It is mankind learning to speak the language of God, to interpret our experiences in their own terms. Science is a Q&A session with God. The experiment is a question: is my hypothesis right? And the results are God's answer: yeay or nay.

                              Well I must say that I do like this that you have written . . .

                              gib wrote:In today's science, we have learned much about the inner workings of nature. Though this is obviously far from the original message conveyed to us by God (God never told us the world is made of atoms and molecular, of light photons, of black holes and quasars billions of light years away), I believe science offers a special edge by which God's response to experiments (when it's a yeay) can be interpreted as: well, that's not what I originally intended to convey, but it's more or less equivalent. <-- Like a person throwing a message back at you in his own words. You could respond "yes, that's right," even though it's not the words you originally used.

                              I also think there is a lot of corruption in science and this corruption is on purpose - not so much conspiracy by a small group but a natural feedback that occurs when we as a race move too fast. There is just so much knowledge we do not need too - but it seems to be a law that to get something you have to pay more than it is worth - I am not talking about money now either.

                              gib wrote:Boy I'm chatty today, ain't I? :lol:

                              Chatty is good.

                              That may be, but I've been speaking too much about my own thoughts. You have yet to expound on your own. Where would one begin with encode's thoughts if one were to grasp the big picture in encode's head?

                              Hmm . . . I am not sure now is the time - a few brain malfunctions might take place :lol: I will read back over everything and produce something good.
                              After a good sleep.

                              Thank you for your extra thoughts and new thoughts - look forward to some new stuff of my own for your reading pleasure . . .

                              :D
                              It’s not that truth itself is being eroded per se, it’s that fragmental falsification appears to be increasing.
                              (Anomaly654 - 2017)

                              But the point remains that you can't get at that meaning before grasping the surface meaning
                              - which is to say there is always meaning.

                              (gib - 2017)

                              Mind is an ever changing dimension that is bound to reality, logic and emotion.
                              (Myself - 2017)
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