Author Topic: An Alternative explanation for psi (amongst other things)  (Read 7766 times)

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July 12, 2006, 04:52:12 PM
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DownRodeo

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***EDIT*** : I'm not sure why I posted this in here. I guess... I didn't want to post it in the psionics forum, because it's not just to do with psionics...it's quite a general thing infact... ***/EDIT***

Here's something I've pieced together to play devil's advocate for a little while. An opposing suggestion for a theory to the one generally accepted by the member base of veritas for the way things work. (And I would like to add that I am in no way attempting to debunk the now 'classic' view of psi as outlined by Kobok. I'm also not actually proposing a solid theory, in fact it's really not mine at all, I was thinking about it after seeing part of it found a few articles on it of interest that I shall attempt to paraphrase a little as well as providing links keeping both the lazy boy types and the scholar types happy xD...but it would be nice to see others who have the time (and brains) to flesh/workout this idea further and how it could impact out view of psi and other things of a spiritual or paranormal nature.)

The general theory for psi for example is as Kobok states in his article 'The true nature of Psi': (the full article can be read here: http://forums.vsociety.net/topic/4853.0)

Firstly Kobok proves that psi is not electromagnetic in nature by pointing out the following:

Quote
1.  Psi cannot be shielded by a faraday cage, lead wall, concrete wall, or by large amounts of dirt.  Electromagnetic radiation, by comparison, is shielded by each of these.
2.  Psi does not change in effectiveness or targeting with distance.  Electromagnetic radiation, by comparison, weakens in strength by one over the distance squared, or in the case of directed radiation suffers an identical weakening of aiming.
3.  Psi does not change in effectiveness when the subject and target are placed forward or backward in time with respect to each other.  Electromagnetic radiation, by comparison, only ever moves forward in time from source to destination

And that psi is also not a function of the brain by the following:

Quote
Psi and the Brain

In addition, I would like to address the often proposed theory that psi is a function of the physical brain.  First, the most obvious counterargument for this is that the physical brain is a biochemical organism which processes information by electrochemical impulses.  Thus the entirety of the brain's function is electromagnetic, and falls directly under the conditions described above which prohibit psi from being due to electromagnetism.

The second counterargument for psi as a function of the physical brain is that information in psi seems to be received and transmitted at a conceptual level, rather than exclusively at a linguistic or visual level.  In order to explain this as a function of the physical brain, there would have to be something fundamental about the wiring of each concept in each person, yet we know from neuroscience that there are enormous variations in how concepts are stored in each brain. Each concept is stored as a collection of neurons throughout the brain being activated simultaneously, and which collection of neurons are activated is different for each person.  As a consequence, the brain does not have a conceptual standard for relaying this information.  Therefore, psi information must be relayed by something which can convey conceptual information directly, and this is not the brain.

 The section, "What is psi?" elaborates then on what psi IS, after proving what it is not. The conclusion (and a well reasoned one it is) is that whatever we classify as 'psi' is something that has to have been brought into being by the soul. Psi is a function of the soul, the soul is connected to the brain (and thus the conscious mind and unconscious mind) and messages are somehow sent between the two after which we have a neat explanation of psionic ability.

The Anathema....xD

If one is to scroll the bottom of the article, one will see a short post by Athiril. Now I didn't know he had posted this until I read it just now, but he's sort of brought up what I'm about to in part, so credit to him is due. Hence I would like to bring to attention his second refute of Kobok's conclusion based on the 'interconnectedness of all things'. Here is the quote:

Quote
In point 2) (**in Kobok's section on the refutation of the idea of  'psi as electromagnetism'**) there is plenty of explanation for that, including everything is connected to everything else, quantum mechanics/physics.

I now will attempt to flesh out a little bit what Athiril may have been trying to say. (I'm not sure I haven't checked with him xD)

Kobok’s theory relies on the fact that something transcendent of usual physics, or the physics that control everything as far as our ordinary senses can see, exists, plainly put, 'the soul'. (Obviously other than watching psi being performed on say a RNG where you can watch the results change, as you can obviously observe the effects of psi if not the actual mechanism and so on...but you know what I mean... I hope). But what if there ARE other mechanisms that offer perhaps another way alongside of, or even instead of, the current model of our understanding? What if it is not something transcendent but something inherent in all things? This is and has been expressed in many ways, much better than I can do it throughout the ages and hell now that I'm looking on other websites, but I'll try and bring it together with my own twist. One can find this idea in a roundabout way in Taoist texts and even Judaeo-Christian texts and thought, but none come quite as close to this idea as the Buddhist idea of Indra's net translated as follows,

Quote
  Far away in the heavenly abode of the great god Indra, there is a wonderful net which has been hung by some cunning artificer in such a manner that it stretches out indefinitely in all directions. In accordance with the extravagant tastes of deities, the artificer has hung a single glittering jewel at the net's every node, and since the net itself is infinite in dimension, the jewels are infinite in number. There hang the jewels, glittering like stars of the first magnitude, a wonderful sight to behold. If we now arbitrarily select one of these jewels for inspection and look closely at it, we will discover that in its polished surface there are reflected all the other jewels in the net, infinite in number. Not only that, but each of the jewels reflected in this one jewel is also reflecting all the other jewels, so that the process of reflection is infinite.

THE AVATAMSAKA SUTRA
FRANCIS H. COOK: HUA-YEN BUDDHISM: THE JEWEL NET OF INDRA 1977


(For a little more on this topic and a nice visual that I once used as my avatar, if you're interested take a look here: http://faculty.berea.edu/richeyj/MAHAYANA.pdf)

Indra's net is a nice illustration of how we may all be interconnected like jewels on a net, the emptiness of appearances, the non-locality and non-origin of things and so on, we can go into Buddhist concepts all day here, but lets not! Unfortunately it's not very scientific, but it's a nice idea, but it needs some factual basis to back it up. To be honest I don't have a great deal to go on here, I have only one account to use here and it's purely anecdotal...but anyway, I'm procrastinating. This next piece I have grabbed off google, but was actually told to me originally by a fellow budoka at my local dojo. It goes as follows,

Quote
On the radio a while back, I heard an interesting account. A guy had a party at his house and hired a stage hypnotist for the evening's entertainment. At one point, the guy was told, under hypnosis, that he wouldn't be able to see his daughter when he was brought out of the trance. He was brought out and his daughter was positioned standing directly in front of him, so that he was staring right into her midsection. When asked if he could see his daughter, the man looked all around and claimed that she was nowhere to be seen. Even the girl's giggling did not alert him to her presence.

Now here's the really strange part: the hypnotist pressed a pocket watch to the girl's back and the man was asked to tell what was in the hypnotist's hand. "A watch," the man replied. Next, the man was asked to read the inscription on the watch and he read it, word for word, through his daughter's body.

Now, this can be explained easily through Kobok's theory of psi. Brain thinks it should know what is on the watch, because it has been duped into thinking the daughter isn't there. Then perhaps unconscious mind consults the soul, soul goes and does its thang and comes back with the answer and everyone's happy!

Or like before, is there another way, can we apply Indra’s net or an idea close to it to a situation like this, or any psionic situation? According to physicist David Bohm there is another way: (Full article here: http://www.myswizard.com/2005/06/29/92/

Essentially for those that don't want to read the article, David Bohm suggests that objective reality is a giant illusion. A Phantasm. He explains that the universe is somewhat like a hologram, that at all points there is the same information. He takes the classic study of Alain Aspect, one that rocked the physics world and sprung a whole load of ideas, like quantum entanglement. Entanglement only happens with a pair of particles (as far as I have read previously anyway) and so would be of no use to this theory. But essentially the most important quote from that article is this:

Quote
Bohm believes the reason subatomic particles are able to remain in contact with one another regardless of the distance separating them is not because they are sending some sort of mysterious signal back and forth, but because their separateness is an illusion. He argues that at some deeper level of reality such particles are not individual entities, but are actually extensions of the same fundamental something.

But is there any evidence for this? Indeed this article seems to propose some evidence (that could obviously have been interpreted in other ways) far too much for me to list here, it even goes so far as to state that the brain works in the same way as a hologram in how it encodes and decodes information and so on. I appear to have run out of steam for now, but I will be buying this book in an attempt to find out more:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0060922583/104-9466582-5901519?v=glance&n=283155

I'll re-post when I have more to discuss and direct to...I don't know how this would fit into say string theory, I'm going to give it a village idiot's attempt though!

But some important things to think about are re-interpreting what some here have experienced in the light of this other mechanism; it certainly seems credible and could hypothetically speaking effect the world in the same way as the classic explanation of psi, but without the need for a transcendent soul. Granted it doesn't tie the ends up anymore, but if we think of it in infinite terms, it might not have to. ("I mean, our senses tell us the world is flat, it's not, but it'll do for the immediate situation right? Same applies here...can't be doing with this theory applying in multiple dimensions as well...Whats that you say string theory??...10? Maybe more? DIE YOU UNTESTABLE THEORY YOU!!) Perhaps when I meditate and lose my sense of self, I attain a sense of this net, I drop into it, rather than look at ‘it’ (the universe) from a transcendent position. Perhaps when some of us have OBE's we are not using subtle bodies, but are instead seeing the desired reflection sequentially, or coherently through "the net" (for lack of a better term) in such a way that our brains are then able to decipher things more easily and make some kind of rational sense of them... Perhaps this explains RV in a different manner? Or even telepathy? Perhaps what is most interesting about this, is that it doesn't have to replace any other theory, but can be an alternative process that can happen "aswell as", not just 'instead of'....lol....or maybe not…I think my brain has died…I haven’t read or thought this deeply in a while, so forgive me if I’m as rusty as a knife you left in the back garden for 6 years…and i'm dead tired But in any case this is the best you'll get out of me till I get back up to speed...sorry :/. Anyway...to end I would like call on a quote from my favorite comedian, Bill Hicks,

"Today a young man on acid realized that all matter is merely energy condensed to a slow vibration, that we are all one consciousness experiencing itself subjectively, there is no such thing as death, life is only a dream, and we are the imagination of ourselves....here's tom with the weather"
« Last Edit: March 20, 2007, 12:00:23 PM by DownRodeo »
"There's a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart, that you can't take part, you can't even passively take part, and you've got to put your bodies on the gears and upon the wheels, upon the levers... and you've got to make it stop!"
Mario Savio

July 12, 2006, 05:43:37 PM
Reply #1

Big Boss

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from my understanding, Taoist belief is that we are all composed of the same energy (in a really bastardized paraphrase) so in a sense, the "net" or "web" of energy is everywhere, and our consiousness seems to be at all the vertices and connections of the web. since we're all connected, we all seem to "know" everything throughout the whole web. this particular belief of the combined and distributed soul doesn't really disprove or prove or even lead evidence to anything ever, it's just a way of explaining... stuff... unfortunately, it doesn't really explain the connection between the physical and... ethereal "soul" realms. maybe if you think about how a chemical reaction typically requires energy of some sort to react, then maybe you can explain that psi somehow effects the biological electromagnetic energy in our brains, causing us to think, and instigating whatever "feelings" or "thoughts" that the soul has. Do we -have- brains, or -are- we brains? more simply tell yourself, "I have a brain," and then ask, "I am a brain." Which one is more comfortable? I got that question from "The Mind's I" by Douglas R. Hofstadter. It's good so far. but yeah... dang, this is kindof deep. my brain hurts.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2006, 05:48:30 PM by Martial Thoughts »
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July 12, 2006, 05:57:25 PM
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Zake

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"Today a young man on acid realized that all matter is merely energy condensed to a slow vibration, that we are all one consciousness experiencing itself subjectively, there is no such thing as death, life is only a dream, and we are the imagination of ourselves....here's tom with the weather"

That would be the coolest news show ever.

...Its a nice theory (and kudos on taking the initiative to do a "heres what I think" post :D ); ultimately, the distinction between the two types of theory may end up being one of simply how one looks at it.  Certaintly, the properties of psi seem to contradict the notions of time and space- and without this, the universe would be one interconnected singularity of sorts.  The basic idea, it seems, is that on a sufficiently fundamental level, the universe is extremely different than we think it is (...well, quantum physics already tells us that.  But its even more different.)

Btw, you mention quantum entanglement as existing only between a pair of particles; though this is the case in most experiments, it is possible for any number of particles to be coherently entangled (in theory).  Note, though, that entanglement is a delecate phenomenon which falls apart (decoheres) rapidly in most environments- its a metaphysically interesting phenomenon, however, presumably is not involved in the actual mechanism of psi.
Act; for the universe will never forget your movement, nor will it ever forgive your stillness.

July 12, 2006, 06:16:11 PM
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zaigon

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Nice little thing there, really got me thinking, and i don't like thinking, especially about this stuff, because i will think and think, and it will lead to more things, and then i daze out for like 7 hours while i think of everything, and then the moment i snap out of it i forgetmost of what i just thought about.

Anywho, i guess that would work as a little counter-thing of Psi.

But if your saying that the physical realm is an illusion, then is the astral realm is, uhh, something involving the whole net thing i'm guessing, lol.

I dunno, i've thought too much, too much to think about after running multiple miles....

Maybe i'll be able to think right tomorrow and come up with something usful to say, or some question to ask.

Until then, thanks for the articles, i'm going to swim....
V|e|r|i|t|a|s my antidrug

July 12, 2006, 07:26:58 PM
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In my opinion from many a sleepless night, while theories about psi and the occult in general give us a feeling of knowledge and wisdom, trying to explain them from what we know is pointless.  It's a lot like trying to make a 3d model of the fourth dimension, we don't have the full picture.  But, being human we never will stop trying, and you have pieced together the broken fragments we see very well, good job.
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July 12, 2006, 11:29:09 PM
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DR:  I think this thread takes the cake as the wisest post made on these forums in months.

I'll simply say this in response: When the universe becomes aware of itself, moving an object is as easy for it as moving an appendage is for a human ;)
The thing that really fascinates me about people is their ability to have no idea what's going on even though it's going on in plain sight all around them and the even more amazing tendency to argue violently when one of these obvious things is presented to them.

July 13, 2006, 01:10:20 AM
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kobok

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Essentially for those that don't want to read the article, David Bohm suggests that objective reality is a giant illusion. A Phantasm. He explains that the universe is somewhat like a hologram, that at all points there is the same information. He takes the classic study of Alain Aspect, one that rocked the physics world and sprung a whole load of ideas, like quantum entanglement. Entanglement only happens with a pair of particles (as far as I have read previously anyway) and so would be of no use to this theory. But essentially the most important quote from that article is this:

Quote
Bohm believes the reason subatomic particles are able to remain in contact with one another regardless of the distance separating them is not because they are sending some sort of mysterious signal back and forth, but because their separateness is an illusion. He argues that at some deeper level of reality such particles are not individual entities, but are actually extensions of the same fundamental something.

Not to shock you too much...  But I agree with this.  In fact, not only do I agree that the separateness is an illusion, and that there is a deeper level of reality, a more fundamental existence, but I also have a name for it:  the conceptual domain.

The physical world with which we are familiar is nothing more than a projection of this conceptual domain into a subset of physical rules with which everything in the physical projection must interact.  Particles are able to maintain their entanglement because the information marking their states is fundamentally linked in the conceptual domain, and the spatial position is simply a manifestation of one part of this information, while the states marked which are entangled are another part of the information which we perceive as those particles.  In essence, each particle is simply a collection of information interacting by a set of defined physical rules.

However, there is an important aspect of this when we want to consider psi, and this is that from all observation, the objects of the physical domain have to interact by physical rules.  You can entangle the states of two particles, but only by their physical interaction at one point of time, and then leaving them isolated while they separate (and in addition, there is no physical mechanism by which information can be passed at a distance via this entanglement).  What you cannot do, is you cannot take a picture of a particle, consider that picture a conceptual representation of it, and then use the picture to entangle it to another particle.  While there is a conceptual connection between the picture and the particle, there is no physical connection between them.

Yet with psi, a photograph, or even just a name, can serve as a link.  This is a purely conceptual link, and not a physical one.  Thus, this link operates entirely within the rules of the conceptual domain, and not within the rules of the physical domain.

So for psi to operate, there must be a component of the self which operates by the rules of the conceptual domain, without being constrained to obey the rules of the physical domain.  (And thus we are brought back to that thing we call the "soul".)

It is tempting to look at the connection at a distance of EPR, and the connection and transfer of information at a distance of psi, and conclude that they must point to a similar truth about reality.  And in fact, they do.  The truth is most simply that information is more real than space.  But to control and interact directly with this realm of information outside of the limitations of conventional physical interaction requires more than conventional physical stuff.
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July 13, 2006, 03:52:27 PM
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DownRodeo

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Thanks for all the brilliant replies...this was recieved a great deal better than I thought it would be, I'll reply to them in-depth when I get a moment and feel up to it, thanks again.

~Kieran
"There's a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart, that you can't take part, you can't even passively take part, and you've got to put your bodies on the gears and upon the wheels, upon the levers... and you've got to make it stop!"
Mario Savio

July 23, 2006, 10:49:46 AM
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DownRodeo

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Sorry for the double post, but should bring a bit of attention to this...Well some people may find it an interesting read. Here's a programme I watched a few years ago that I found a summary of that may well slot into this idea, or just be of interest to some on here in some way, take what will:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/science/horizon/2003/godonbrain.shtml
"There's a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart, that you can't take part, you can't even passively take part, and you've got to put your bodies on the gears and upon the wheels, upon the levers... and you've got to make it stop!"
Mario Savio

July 23, 2006, 11:56:35 AM
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kobok

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Sorry for the double post, but should bring a bit of attention to this...Well some people may find it an interesting read. Here's a programme I watched a few years ago that I found a summary of that may well slot into this idea, or just be of interest to some on here in some way, take what will:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/science/horizon/2003/godonbrain.shtml

I'd like to emphasize an important point.  Some people have a natural tendency to use reductionist philosophy to explain "away" aspects of existence once they understand a mechanism relating to it.  It would be fallacious to do so in this case.  You can, for example, stimulate a certain part of someone's brain and cause the person to smell a banana.  This fact does not say anything about a banana or the reality of bananas.  It only says that the stimulated region of the brain is where the smell of a banana was imprinted.  The contents of this study should be examined with this perspective in mind.
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July 23, 2006, 01:17:03 PM
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DownRodeo

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Thats actually a very good point to think about. Though obviously I must stress people should also keep an open mind to that not being the case.
"There's a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart, that you can't take part, you can't even passively take part, and you've got to put your bodies on the gears and upon the wheels, upon the levers... and you've got to make it stop!"
Mario Savio

July 23, 2006, 02:47:33 PM
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kobok

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Thats actually a very good point to think about. Though obviously I must stress people should also keep an open mind to that not being the case.

It is always possible that there is no such thing as a banana and we are all just living in the Matrix.  But while keeping your mind open to possibilities is good, you should be careful not to walk around everyday life with it too open, or it just might fall out.  ;)
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July 29, 2006, 05:56:00 PM
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DownRodeo

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Whilst again that is a fair point, I would like to make clear my intent as I do not believe I have done so in my last post. Let me clarify my thoughts a little as I think it is rather rash to deny or play down the possible 'sole role' of the brain in things of psionic or metaphysical in nature.

If we are to consider what you have said in your last post Kobok in the context of the bbc article/program, one must consider the possibility that true religious/mystical/divine/metaphsical experience 'could' be attained through the brain or some other means that isn't transcendental in nature to our plane of space/time (though obviously not yet detected by the 'eyes of science'). Again, I must, simply for the sake of stimulating debate (and not for expounding what I believe), point towards a possibly more inherent alternative hypothesis (of which I am not sure to be honest lol, but it's healthy to ponder!  :cool:).

So let us now consider a few ideas... The article for example, considers the notion that the brain, or some regions on the brain when put in certain states (due to mediation or praying w/e) act as an 'antenna' to recieving 'the divine' or things of a metaphysical nature. Although this is obviously suggested in a very basic manner (as the intended target of the program was the english general public) It can be pondered and fleshed out to a greater extent. Perhaps instead of being an antenna to recieving things that are 'psi', 'divine' or mystical in nature (perhaps they are suggesting that it is an energy when they talk about it in relation to god? Holy spirit? thats one other avenue... but I shall not tread it for now.) It is instead something different that is taking place...

 One theory is that when meditation is being practiced or prayer is being practiced (and as the research shows the blood is drawing out of the regions of the brain responsible for the sense of self, space/time and so on) that we move into a state that is more basic and fundamental in nature. Perhaps allowing us to be more of aware of the tao within us (to borrow from one system of thought). Or from a buddhist point of view, perhaps we are touching the mind or buddha nature, past any conceptual thinking, just being. Essentially, what may be going on is that we are taking the blocks away that prevent us from directly experiencing things of a divine/metaphysical nature, from experiencing reality, the ultimate princinple, the base of our nature, which is fundamentally the same. Perhaps removing, or letting subside, what makes us an extension of said primordial something, Inner space if you will. What then could happen is we try and interpret these experiences in the light of our other mental functions (such as sense of self, memory, spatial awareness, language) returning to normal functioning status.

Anyway, cutting a rant short (as posing too many ideas will be detrimental (and I need some more time to think of good ones xD) to discussion), for me, this is an issue of defining the 'I' aspect of self, whether it could be called consiousness or not? Does the brain produce it? Is it the main aspect of self? Is there a soul connected to it...if so, is that really 'who/what I am'? Chariot analogy, blah blah blah.

~Kieran


edit: I've recently been doing a lot of research into the two drugs LSD and DMT. (For more information see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dimethyltryptamine and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LSD and for some interesting and at times amusing anecdotal information see: http://fusionanomaly.net/dmtthespiritmolecule.html)

Experiences attained by using these drugs (and alternative mediation methods) bring about a lof of ineteresting connections in my mind about the nature of things. One idea proposed by a lot of these drug users and also pracitioners of meditation is that of the "universal mind lattice". Something which is depicted numerous amounts of time on lsd fuelled artist alex gray's site. My favourite depiction currently being displayed here: http://www.alexgrey.com/netofbeing.html. Which is something  I feel lightbringer was touching upon when he posted this earlier in this thread:

I'll simply say this in response: When the universe becomes aware of itself, moving an object is as easy for it as moving an appendage is for a human ;)

I think lots of people percieve things of a spiritual nature in this way and not just the drug users, established spiritual traditions who have been researching things of this nature for years (buddhism namely for one) and it's something/an idea that we, as a site dedicated to the metaphysical and spiritual, need to seriously consider.
« Last Edit: August 01, 2006, 06:34:45 PM by DownRodeo »
"There's a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart, that you can't take part, you can't even passively take part, and you've got to put your bodies on the gears and upon the wheels, upon the levers... and you've got to make it stop!"
Mario Savio

August 01, 2006, 02:57:34 PM
Reply #13

Philosopher

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    Bah.
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If you looking in to DMT you’ll probably already be aware of this but if not you should definitely look up McKenna on ‘self transforming machine elves,’ it’s vaguely similar to your theory, and it’s one of the best theorise of existence just because of the looks you get when you tell people the world is in fact created by the dancing of invisible elves.   :)

I like your theory, I have a book somewhere that had a lot of relevent information but I think I lent it to someone who I have not seen in months, so I’m going to go away and think about it then come  back and try and say something more useful.

August 01, 2006, 03:18:22 PM
Reply #14

Sladus

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In my opinion, psi is a type of frequency, probably one very high in the spectrum...although I also agree that it is separate from electromagnetic energy.  If psi IS a frequency, then that would mean that psi isn't a type of unknown energy in itself, rather that it works with and/or affects energy in a one of two ways (or maybe both...)  1)  psi is able, some way or another, to affect the probability of any event happening to such an extent that anything that is possible can be, based on the psion's skill level, changed from a near impossibility to a an actual probability.  2)  psi is just an all-powerful tool that can be used to profoundly control energy in ANY way, shape or form, regardless of probability  (this theory doesn't seem AS likely as the first one, but it is still arguably feasible...).  It would probably be a bit of a mix of both, seeing as how psi does seem to do things regardless of probability and be able to affect any and all types of energy.  If psi does happen to be a frequency, I would surmise that psi would be of a higher frequency than even light, if that is possible, as psi has never been seen as limited by time, space or any similar laws that physics holds in such high regard...

-Sladus a.k.a Darth Vexon
"The most frightening truth of society is that there is no such thing as truth...only temporary constructs accepted by the majority of the public to conform to someone else's ideas just because it is psychologically comfortable."

-Sladus a.k.a. Darth Vexon