Experience and consciousness

Discussion in 'SCIENTIFIC and ANECDOTAL research' started by Deborah, Nov 3, 2006.

  1. Deborah

    Deborah Executive Director Staff Member

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    Hi Sly,


    Can you tell us what version of the Bible you are quoting? Translations can make a difference.


    Another thing to keep in mind is the possibility of a mistranslation. Not all Aramaic words translate into English or other languages. For example, in the Kabbalah, the personal name of God is sacred and was never to be spoken. His name was removed from religious texts.


    Gregg Braden challenges that interpretation with the help of Rabbi's and Jonathan Goldman; they suggest that his name is to be sung. In other words, it is about the vibrations.....the sound which leads to higher awareness and a spiritual opening. It was not to be spoken but sung. Just a small example of mis-understanding.
     
  2. Deborah

    Deborah Executive Director Staff Member

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    A good older thread for discussion.
     
  3. Alexnovo

    Alexnovo Senior Registered

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    Deborah, Your are really getting at very big and profound issues in this thread, and I thank you for that. This discussion takes me back to the basic question from my philosophy classes, can we prove that the external world exists? in other words, back to Descartes dreaming hypothesis. Using Reason to look for proof of facts, cannot take us, according to Descartes' early works, out of our own mind. Using his reasoning, I can prove that I exist, because I can think and even question my own existence; but beyond that, Reason cannot get us out of our own consciousness. While my consciousness may exist, I cannot even prove that my body exists much less any thing else in the external world including all of you readers - everything except my consciousness, therefore might be a dream. In other words, everything might be a figment of my imagination. Likewise I may be a figment of your imagination. You have imagined me typing this response. :D


    I say this not because I don't believe that the external world exists, but because I believe that everything we do is premised upon an unprovable, but utilitarian assumption that our senses give us reasonably accurate information about the external world (sometimes called "common sense" assumptions). Indeed I believe that science itself was created not to discover the ultimate truth, but to find "laws" that predict future events (e.g. if you do this, this will result). This is highly utilitarian and, I think, also a good way at getting closer to the ultimate truth. But now, I get the sense that science itself is running up against the underlying assumptions about the veracity of our senses of the external world. I am watching with amazement the advances in physics and the growing evidence that the universe is not as we perceive it (for example look at the recent discoveries lending support to the holographic principal).


    So where does this take me? I for one, am not ready to throw out all of my assumptions about the external world. For example, I am reasonably confident that you and the rest of the people out there, are indeed, out there as separate consciousnesses. However at the same time, I believe that what I perceive is such a small part of the bigger picture that I cannot be sure as to what that picture is. I like to think that my recovery of my past life memories, is a part of my evolution; in other words that I am beginning to develop an understanding that I exist not only in this physical reality (the one I perceive in my consciousness most of the time) but also in another reality that is either timeless, or of another time.


    Does any of this make sense? I hope so.
     
  4. -barry-

    -barry- New Member

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    My thought on this is that it isn't an either/or question - either the outer world is real or only consciousness is real. Rather, I see there being many layers of consciousness, each providing a different form of perception and experience - and hence a different kind of "reality".


    Ultimately, if you could strip away all consciousness, what do you have? Pure Being. This can be experienced directly as what we call a moment of enlightenment or awakening.


    An attribute of Being is consciousness, and layers of consciousness are wrapped around it, as it were.


    First, there is the consciousness of pure Being itself - "I am". This is blissful in the extreme!


    Then there is the consciousness of alternatives - "What else could I be? What am I not?" This gives rise to the conceptual realm of opposites and dualities.


    I have noticed both from personal experience and from others' accounts that slipping into this dualistic level occurs more or less instantly after an awakening experience. The bliss then starts to fade as thoughts take over. That's not a "bad" thing though - it's the nature of consciousness to keep flowing, to expand itself by asking questions.


    Then to explore our questions at the level of duality we drop into a level of consciousness that is very constrained - wired into a brain made out of matter. This modifies our consciousness such that our experience is dominated by sensory inputs - sensations, images, sounds. This creates the sense of being "in" a body as well as the belief in the physical world as the primary or sole reality.


    By meditating we can reverse the process, so to speak. First we let go of the overwhelming sensory input. This puts us in touch with our inner thoughts and feelings, and these slowly but steadily resolve themselves into a simple flow of consciousness itself. Then it's just another step of letting go to directly experience pure Being. :)


    -barry-
     
  5. Deborah

    Deborah Executive Director Staff Member

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    An interesting older thread for reflection.
     
  6. John Tat

    John Tat Senior Registered

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    I believe my consciousness is within one of my three identities My pure identity and awareness. Everything I am that is not physical.


    My pure self told me you are in touch with your consciousness when you can do the following. You are dreaming and while you are dreaming you can step back and say to yourself


    "I'm Deborah and I'm having this dream while I'm asleep in my bed at home.. try doing that
     
  7. BriarRose

    BriarRose Senior Registered

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    That's call lucid dreaming, John. It's a well known phenomenon, and many of us practice it. Do you have experience with it?
     
  8. John Tat

    John Tat Senior Registered

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    Yes It happens to me all the time


    As soon as I say who I am and I'm asleep in my bed at home I instantly wake up


    When I wake up I have either vivid memories of my past or incredible insight into why I believe what I do.


    Because the vivid memories are exact, such as the backyard at my parents home when I was around four years old and I see everything as it was then , even the hole in the back fence I used to look through to look at the kids next door play, the scratch on the garage door, the items stacked up in the backyard shed all long forgotten memories and there they are as though I was four years old again, leads me to believe the insight this gives me on what I believe must be just as accurate.
     
  9. Mere Dreamer

    Mere Dreamer Senior Registered

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    John, THIS right here is the type of remembering many of us experience when we remember a past life. This is the quality of memory we encounter, and the details are verifiable in many cases. You are conscious of yourself as having once been the four year old and you remember details that you had since forgotten, as an adult. For us it is the same, only we are remembering another lifetime. We know that we are no longer "four years old" or even the same body, and yet we remember those moments we lived in just this way.
     
  10. John Tat

    John Tat Senior Registered

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    Mere Dreamer


    Great reply I now understand As I said if those memories are so accurate then what is your opinion that the same experience's lead my beliefs in such a different direction to yours? My beliefs of us being three separate identities in one which makes it impossible for us to be only our souls is not just a little different it is way different
     
  11. Mere Dreamer

    Mere Dreamer Senior Registered

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    John, I can't explain to you how such different understandings fit together, because I don't know. I only know that we both exist and are able to communicate with each other about our perspectives. I think our personal experience only shows the differences in our ability to perceive.


    It isn't so much about who is right or wrong.


    We are communicating through a limited system of words (that have multiple uses) with minds that have entirely different experiences of life forming the filter of meaning. Of course it is difficult to explain our true perspective at times!


    There are a lot of people who don't believe in a "pure identity and awareness" ... They aren't so much wrong as they are unaware because they haven't experienced the ability to step back and notice yet. For them, it might as well not exist.


    To make this idea more tangible, we know why a blind man doesn't understand color. If we have the chance to give him functioning eyes ... then he will have the ability to notice color and he will figure it out for himself because he will finally have the awareness to process color. More likely than not, he will say, "It all makes sense why you say this apple is red, and the other green! I always wondered what the difference was."


    I think there are additional senses that we are all learning to access, and sometimes one person will have more of a certain type of perception than another. If I "taste the apple" and you "see the apple" we are not wrong ... just different.
     
  12. John Tat

    John Tat Senior Registered

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    Mere Dreamer


    Thanks for the reply it was great. This was an original post by Deborah about consciousness and reality What I'm about to say embraces both


    After reading hundreds of posts on this forum my reality is I'm on a different journey to the rest of you


    Yes we have many common beliefs about reincarnation, but our basic beliefs are like chalk and cheese. To begin with I do not believe in god or the Akashic records. To be fair I have not given reasonable consideration to the Akashic records. On the surface they appear to me like a belief in god. They both require more faith than I have to give them.


    I also have never had a previous life memory


    My belief we are three separate identities in one Our souls, our pure identity and awareness (everything about us that is not physical) and our physical identity and awareness prevents us from being only of our souls We are far more than just our souls, that is opposite to what everyone else believes.


    One of my most significant connections I have had with my soul was immediately after what Brair Rose calls Lucid dreams


    Most of the connection was personal. One thing he did say was this is how it will always be you and me Never, never forget that. My soul was acknowledging to separate identities "You and Me" Him and my pure identity and awareness


    I'm obviously on a different journey. It is emphasized to me over and over again that I must be pure and worthy. That can only mean my pure self, not my physical self. I must be pure and worthy for what I will become. Will that be a factory worker, doctor, politician? I have no idea


    You all believe through your souls you are already pure and worthy. I know I'm not and may never be. My journey will not be through a god or the Akashic records. It is all about my three separate identities There is three of us all blending and working together that creates who we are
     
  13. BriarRose

    BriarRose Senior Registered

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    My dear John Tat, :) , none of us thinks we are "pure and worthy"- we just think that we "are". If a voice in my head told me he'd always be with me, I'd think it was the Divine, or God speaking through my higher self. I think a lot of this is just a matter of our differing choices of words. I think your quest is a good one, and I wish you well on your path. We all have our own "paths", but one is as valid as another, as long as the heart and intentions are good. Blessings, Briar
     
  14. Mere Dreamer

    Mere Dreamer Senior Registered

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    We may not be quite as different as you may think, John. Whatever we may believe, we are all in search of reality.


    One thing is certain. I do not know everything there is to know ... and I think you would say the same for yourself. As Briar said, we simply "are" ... and part of that is learning from life.


    As I said before. I can only learn what I presently have space for in my identity and awareness. If an idea is too large for me, then it may develop over time as I become capable of seeing it. Future discoveries will certainly teach us more, and if new information doesn't seem to fit then it is up to us to study further and alter our assumptions if necessary.


    As you continue asking questions, you will continue to have new experiences to add to what you already know, and so will I.


    I've been enjoying our conversations.
     
  15. tanguerra

    tanguerra Moderator Emeritus

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    Yes. As mere dreamer said so eloquently, this is how it is. Past life memories are often as bright and sharp as this too. Your body has changed its cells several times since you were four years old. Why are these memories still so sharp and precise?


    The things we are taught about science and religion, 'human nature' and all sorts of other things are all very clever, but they are 'missing bits'. There is a lot we don't know for sure. There are many areas where we are really just guessing. 'Why' being the biggest one. All we can do for now is put the pieces that we do know together and see what we might come up with.


    Imagine if the world was the reverse of now and 80% of people were colour blind and 20% could see colour. How would the 20% convince the 80% that colour vision was not only perfectly OK, natural and normal... nothing to do with magic or astrology, but just a simple fact? Unless the other 80% had the experience for themselves, they would struggle to understand it. Even though it had been written about in ancient texts and discussed for thousands of years by many, many people, it would still seem incomprehensible.


    But, that doesn't mean there's no such thing as red or green. Actually, if you just 'squint your eyes' just so... you can see it. You are already maybe dreaming in 'colour'.... but you may not know that's what it is.


    Metaphor is sometimes a good way to explain things. I hope this helps.
     
  16. BriarRose

    BriarRose Senior Registered

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    I really love your "color blind" metaphor, Tanguerra. That is the difference between people with PL memories, and those who don't have them, in a "nutshell".
     
  17. Deborah

    Deborah Executive Director Staff Member

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    Great older thread -
    . Your thoughts?

    John Tat -
    I have - I was asleep in my bed - Out of body reading a book floating above my body and glanced at my body then went above my spirit form with the book into Golden light looking at the other two. There were 3 of me. Body in the physical form, spirit in the ethereal form, and then Golden light form. ;)
     
    cloud potato likes this.
  18. cloud potato

    cloud potato Senior Registered

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    that's beautiful! :)

    "The Total Number of minds in the Universe is One. In Fact, Consciousness is a Singularity phasing within All Beings..." Erwin Schrödinger, Quantum Physicist.
     

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