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A Response to Slowlyetnthair

Posted March 27, 2012 by Jim Centi in Open

commented on April 1, 2012
by slowlygetnthar

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9

I’m posting this as a separate topic because it appears that the website will not accept lengthy comments.

slowlyetnthair,

You have voiced what lies at the root of the conflict in the world and what is often viewed as conflict in these discussions…..the illusion of separateness.

How can we overcome this apparent dilemma? If we look toward a perhaps unstated goal of IONS i.e. create unity between science and spirituality, we can move in an appropriate direction. Of course, even in this noble cause, we could meet resistance from what could be referred to as egocentric spirituality.

Overlooking possible resistance, let us move in the direction of finding one example of diametrically opposed worldviews coming together; Eastern spirituality and Western science.

In the beginning, it would be reasonable to expect to encounter a possibly mind boggling paradigm that unites these two previously existing diametrically opposed worldviews. I say previously existing opposing worldviews because; in my opinion the conflict between these two opposing worldviews no longer exists.

Looking at what could be considered fundamental principals in Eastern traditions, [Buddhism and Hinduism] we find that the material world is illusion, in Hinduism the term “Maya” is often used to designate this illusion. How deep does this illusion go? In the work of Jack Kornfield, one of the leading teachers of Buddhism in the West, he teaches that the experience of thought is a sensory experience i.e. there are not five human sensory experiences, but six.

For the sake of brevity, we will not go beyond the previous paragraph in describing the fundamental principles of Eastern traditions.

Now for what may be a mind boggling paradigm shift for some, at the cutting edge of western science we find that the emerging paradigm is that materialism or the material world is an illusion, a mirage. I find this no better illustrated than the video addressed in the topic “An Interesting Overview”.

So then, the question arises what are we to do with this mind boggling paradigm shift in Western science. How are we to cope with a worldview that instructs that not only is the material world an illusion, but the human sense self that is entrenched in that illusion is an aspect of the illusion.

Perhaps the new worldview will never be completely incorporated into Western Society because it conflicts with many of the foundational principals of our culture such as personal responsibility and the justice system. What follows is an excerpt entitled “The planet of Advanti” taken from a Hindu site.

I must state that I am not an expert in Advanti. This is intended only as an example of what could be the result of the marriage between western science and eastern traditions being incorporated into our culture. Of course, this assumes that our species will survive long enough to be a part of the wedding ceremony.

THE PLANET OF ADVANTI

Imagine if you will, that you awaken one morning in another world. As you rub your eyes to get accustomed to the bright sunshine, you see that it is in many respects a world not unlike this one. All around you there are creatures that, to your eyes, look identical to the human beings with whom you are used to sharing the world. You observe them going about their daily activities, living their lives, engaging in conversation with others, making the myriad choices and decisions that life inherently demands. The picture looks reassuringly familiar and normal.

But in this world, you soon discover that things are not necessarily as they seem. For these are not human beings. No, these are "body/mind organisms" which, unlike their human counterparts, do not have the ability to choose between options or to make decisions. In fact, these organisms do not have anything even resembling what we would call free will. The scripts of their entire lives were written in stone long before they were born, leaving them only to go mechanically through the motions of acting out their programming.

These seemingly human creatures, it would appear, are not unlike machines. While to all appearances they seem to behave like ordinary freethinking individuals, busily engaged in daily activities, strangely, when asked, they maintain that they are not doing anything at all. In fact, in this peculiar world, they say that there are "no doers."

Furthermore, no one in this world is ever held accountable for anything. Even when one of these beings appears to harm another, there is no remorse felt and no blame attributed. If you were to ask one of these body/mind organisms about it, the response would be that there was no one who had done anything. Ethics is an unknown concept here. The laws of nature do not seem to apply in this brave new world. Or maybe they have been rewritten here, since the beings do seem to observe some strange laws. You wonder where on Earth you could be. But you are not on Earth. You have landed on Planet Advaita.

Back to our discussion, someone once said something to the effect that a sign of high intelligence is to hold a core belief in something, but act and converse as though you do not believe it. Perhaps this is our immediate destiny, if we choose to accept the emerging reality paradigm shift from science…..Jim

  • 9 Comments  
  • slowlygetnthar Apr 01, 2012


    Jim, I find your comments insightful & salient. So, I don't know why you would feel excluded from the talking herd.

    Anyway, frequencytuner, I wonder if what we really need is a more contemplative society. Since this has become the world of speeding cars and eternal electronic device distractions, there is a more pronounced sense of separation from everything around us than ever. It seems to me that if folks had the quietude in their lives to make them stop, pay attention, reflect, then, they might arrive at understanding of their world in a different way~~feel more connected, thus, see the connections that noetic sciences are examining.

    Perhaps, when the planet becomes so frantic that folks can't stand it anymore, they will shift into a reflective mode?

  • Anonymous Icon

    Jim Centi Mar 29, 2012

    slowlyetnthair,

    Thank you for your comments. I will make an attempt to break long comments into smaller sound bites as you suggest. This was done in responding to the topic “What is Noetic Science”.

    Perhaps by following your advice, I will feel more like a part of these discussions rather than an outsider looking in……Jim

  • frequencytuner Mar 28, 2012

    Even if textbooks do not change, kids still learn the purely gross physical anatomy of biology, oblivious to the inner mechanism, will it make a difference when the kid loses him or herself in a project and experiences the inner mechanism through the "wrong" (wisdom, experience, direct, without knowledge) path? It will make no difference. "All roads lead to Rome" alludes to this inevitability.

  • slowlygetnthar Mar 28, 2012


    Jim, are you asking a question, here, or answering the other thread about overcoming the illusion? Maybe break long comments into smaller soundbites, for IONS, and also give folks smaller portions to read and digest and thereby, opportunity to respond more succinctly.

    Frequencytuner's comments are apropros. You are talking about the points where Eastern mysticism and Western science intersect. Frequencytuner's comments map the conceptual frameworks from Eastern, then, Western perspectives:

    Mind=Chi=Prana=Energy=Unmanifest=Potential=Infinite=Absolute.

    Body=Vessels=Channels=Form=Manifest=Kinetic=Apparent=Relative.

    What strikes me in these IONS dialogues is how polarized folks seem to be~~even open-minded folks who are willing to read this stuff, think on it all, and write their thoughts on these boards....

    I don't, however, see science as diametrically opposed to spirituality. This may be my own myopia, because I have always had a deep sense of spirituality connected directly to my sense of ecology, geology, ecosystems, etc..., ...plus, when I began studying quantum physics, 30 years ago, I was simultaneously studying Taoism. So, I have always thought that quantum physics would intersect or mechanically explain much of what people think of as paranormal and spiritual.

    On a personal level, I don't have a problem with the dualistic nature of reality. There are times when my mind and consciousness seem to have slipped the normal boundaries via meditation, numenistic experiences in Nature, or deep thought or relaxation states. My body is still here, typing, working, doing~~so even though I may intellectually grapple with this information about consciousness and matter, I must still pay my bills and take care of daily life.

    If we are asking folks to shift their thinking, it will take time. Until the textbooks in our classrooms espouse the new understanding of the nature of reality, people will not absorb, comprehend, and actively do anything about it. It will have to slowly saturate ways of thinking Even then, many people will not believe it, because all the proof they need to reality is their own hands in front of their faces to negate the quantum world they read about in books.

    By saying this, I think that science will eventually reach a more crystalized state of being regarded as merely a belief, at that point, than a compendium of facts and frameworks. (Some now argue it is as much religion as religion, due to the dogmatic adherence to its philosophical frameworks.) Folks may not ever believe in the quantum world, because they cannot see it. They may accept atoms, but they may not accept consciousness as the inception of matter.

  • Anonymous Icon

    Jim Centi Mar 28, 2012


    Another analogy would be like a shotgun blast that may hit something relevant.

  • frequencytuner Mar 28, 2012

    The relationship is like a Kaleidoscope.

  • Anonymous Icon

    Jim Centi Mar 28, 2012

    frequencytuner,

    Interesting information. Just curious, what relationship do you see between the information you provided and the point of my post?

  • frequencytuner Mar 27, 2012

    Science has always been an attempt to gain knowledge to deepen understanding. Science is the method and the means by which our existence is realized. Spirituality is the very same thing. They are our eyes: One eye sees the form, the other eye sees the life that generates it.

  • frequencytuner Mar 27, 2012

    Eastern Spirituality, at it's core is Science, but from a Eastern Perspective. Āyurveda, "the knowledge for long life", is an ancient Indian Medical Science. This is echoed through Buddhism into the Tao and Traditional Chinese Medicine. These systems are merging with the West, and have been for quite some time. Eastern Perspective centers around the mind, where as Western Perspective centers around the body. This can be branched out to include:

    Mind=Chi=Prana=Energy=Unmanifest=Potential=Infinite=Absolute.

    Body=Vessels=Channels=Form=Manifest=Kinetic=Apparent=Relative.

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