2009.11.28 01:00 - Discriminating Awareness

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    The guardian for the session was Scáthach Rhiadra, and the comments are hers.

    Scathach Rhiadra: Hello Bertrum
    Bertrum Quan: Good moring, Scath
    Scathach Rhiadra: how are you today?
    Bertrum Quan: I'm fine, thanks. How are you?
    Scathach Rhiadra: fine ty
    Bertrum Quan: Do you have any topics in mind for this session?
    Scathach Rhiadra: no, how about you?

    Bertrum Quan: I had a thought about the responsibility of awareness...
    Bertrum Quan: More a question really.
    Bertrum Quan: Hi Calvino
    Scathach Rhiadra: interesting
    Scathach Rhiadra: Hello Calvino
    Calvino Rabeni: Hello Bert and Scath
    Scathach Rhiadra: so how do you see the responsibility of awareness Bertrum?
    Bertrum Quan: If through one's practice becomes more aware of connections/inter-relatedness--say between all sentient beings, what responsibility to do have in that regard-- how you live you life day-to-day with that understanding?
    Bertrum Quan: left of a number of words...
    Bertrum Quan: left out a number of words
    Bertrum Quan: what responsibility does one have in that regard? how do you live your life day-to-day with that understanding?

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    Geoff Baily: hello everyone can i sit down
    Scathach Rhiadra: Hello Geoff, please sit
    Scathach Rhiadra: have you been here before?
    Geoff Baily: thanks good to be here
    Geoff Baily: yes twice
    Scathach Rhiadra: ah so you know about the wiki and recording of chat logs?
    Geoff Baily: no prob
    Scathach Rhiadra: ty:)
    Scathach Rhiadra: so, getting back to the question
    Scathach Rhiadra: is not awareness 'of the moment' so to speak, and does it not involve a knowing of what is, and how to act if at all?
    Calvino Rabeni: If I could recap for Geoff?
    Calvino Rabeni: Scathach Rhiadra: so how do you see the responsibility of awareness Bertrum?
    Bertrum Quan: If through one's practice becomes more aware of connections/inter-relatedness--say between all sentient beings, what responsibility to do have in that regard-- how you live you life day-to-day with that understanding?
    Geoff Baily: thanks
    Bertrum Quan: Yes. The "understanding" is not in the moment. But a reflection on it...

    Scathach Rhiadra: can you say more?
    Bertrum Quan: just received an Error 499--PaB webserver is not responding...
    Bertrum Quan: not sure what that means...
    Scathach Rhiadra: mmm, your text is still showing in the chat window, and I always log chat so it should be ok
    Bertrum Quan: Okay.
    Scathach Rhiadra: otherwise you may need to move out of range of the recorder and then come back maybe
    Scathach Rhiadra's PaB Listener: Sorry, the PaB webserver is not reponding. Error 499


    Bertrum Quan: I think you're right that awareness and understanding are not happening at the same time...
    Bertrum Quan: One is experiential and one is reflective...
    Scathach Rhiadra: but is awareness not a knowing, immediate without adding anything on?
    Geoff Baily: these are deep questions. the more one can let go of the grasping self the more one is aware of the connectedness perhaps
    Scathach Rhiadra nods
    Bertrum Quan: So is there responsibility in awareness?
    Calvino Rabeni: Do you mean in it, or resulting from it?
    Bertrum Quan: Resulting from it.
    Calvino Rabeni: thx
    Calvino Rabeni: If there is, what does it look like?
    Calvino Rabeni: I am trying to avoid "ought" thinking.
    Calvino Rabeni: The question seemed very general
    Bertrum Quan: I'm wondering about day-to-day application...
    Geoff Baily: if 'one' does not exist as such can there be responsibility?
    Calvino Rabeni: How doees / would it show up for you (or each person)
    Calvino Rabeni: Free will :)
    Calvino Rabeni: How could there be play either?
    Bertrum Quan: I guess in my novice state, I feel that I am aware of connectedness at various times.


    Bertrum Quan: At other times, I am moving pramatically in the world--but thinking about the connectedness. Free will is certainly involved. No one is policing...
    Bertrum Quan: I mean responsibility in a philosphical sense
    Scathach Rhiadra: um, I am not sure what responsibility means in a philosophical sense:)
    Calvino Rabeni: I don't relate well to philosophy "in a general sense" unless I feel something in my experience. So I am ppuzzled how to respond
    Calvino Rabeni: i can't say anything I believe true in general for everybody - but I think that's what philosophy wants
    Calvino Rabeni: So my response to your question is to look at how *I* feel responsible.
    Calvino Rabeni: If I did that a lot, and heard others do the same, I might create a more general idea of it
    Scathach Rhiadra: like a rule of sorts?
    Calvino Rabeni: And I might state it "in general" after doing the big look at it.
    Geoff Baily: where does compassion fit here?
    Calvino Rabeni: fits wel
    Calvino Rabeni: well
    Calvino Rabeni: this is a moral or ethical dimension I think
    Scathach Rhiadra: awareness of interconnectedness generates compaaaion
    Calvino Rabeni: How do you do it, when you have some issue come up?
    Bertrum Quan: Here's a specific example, if one feels connected to the sentient beings that are our companions on the planet, can ve justify killing animals for food? This despite the awareness, that it can also be viewed as natural...
    Calvino Rabeni: How do you experience that?

    Calvino Rabeni: It sounds like looking for a general rule.
    Calvino Rabeni: But if you feel the connection, you will become a vegetarian :)

    Calvino Rabeni: Unless you feel the other sentient beings have desire to sacrifice themselves for your wellbeing.
    Bertrum Quan: Not really look for a rule, and one still might not become a vegitarian (even if ones doesn't feel that any of the other beings are sacrificing in that way...
    Calvino Rabeni: When I feel compassion, I try to drink it in, and use it to motivate something deeper in myself.
    Calvino Rabeni: Part of that something is about becoming more discriminating
    Calvino Rabeni: BUt it doesn't feel like a "should" being imposed.
    Calvino Rabeni: Nor like trying to become something
    Scathach Rhiadra nods
    Calvino Rabeni: It feels like seeing more of what is
    Geoff Baily: agree Calvino
    Calvino Rabeni: And when I can't do that, I don't worry about it
    Calvino Rabeni: :)
    Calvino Rabeni: But when I can, I don't want to miss the opportunity
    Geoff Baily: ;)
    Bertrum Quan: That makes sense on the face of it.
    Calvino Rabeni: It calls to me, it is what I want
    Calvino Rabeni: That is the feeling
    Calvino Rabeni: Not like "how can I do the right thing"


    Bertrum Quan: I guess I'm strruggling opposites--as an example--Buddhists who are very articulate about the connectedness to all of the sentitent beings. Some are vegitarians; some are not.
    Bertrum Quan: struggling with opposites
    Scathach Rhiadra: we are discussing awareness and responsibility, but this is near the end of the discussion

    Scathach Rhiadra: so awareness is personal, can't assume everyone has same experience maybe?
    Geoff Baily: true i think but its also shared i feel
    Bertrum Quan: That's true. But there is the external discourse that speaks to connectedness.
    Scathach Rhiadra nods
    Scathach Rhiadra: wb Calvino:)
    Bertrum Quan: I'm not looking a the answer or a rule... but I wonder if one is aware but chooses not to act on something quite basic...
    Calvino Rabeni: Ouch, bad crash - dreaded Blue Screen
    Geoff Baily: .......... perhaps one is not truly aware


    Scathach Rhiadra: would your awareness fo your choice not be included in your awareness of what is at that moment, if that makes sense?
    Bertrum Quan: For me at least, most on my daily existence is pribable tangled up in day-to-day practical realities. Not much awareness in a global sense. My awareness is enhanced when I take "time out" from that... Then I'm left with internalizing it...
    Bertrum Quan: probably tangled
    Geoff Baily: I think thats true for most of us !!
    Scathach Rhiadra: yes I agree it is like that for us all
    Bertrum Quan: So the choice is not really "in the moment then?
    Calvino Rabeni: It is tangled, and I work at seeing through the tangle
    Calvino Rabeni: A moment lasts a long time. Until you are done with it :)
    Scathach Rhiadra: the presence of awareness is always in the moment
    Geoff Baily: Its really very difficult
    Scathach Rhiadra: we may not be, so that is why we try to have some continuity of presence
    Calvino Rabeni: I am thinking of this using a word that is pretttyy laden, in the western culture - conscience.
    Calvino Rabeni: Here is a quote from a buddhist viewpoint, which I relate to better
    Calvino Rabeni: Conscience is also a major feature of the Buddhist religion.[7] In the Pali scriptures, for example, Buddha links the positive aspect of conscience to a pure heart and a calm, well-directed mind: "when the mind is face to face with the Truth, a self-luminous spark of thought is revealed at the inner core of ourselves and, by analogy, all reality."
    Calvino Rabeni: Because it ties the matter into awareness
    Scathach Rhiadra nods
    Geoff Baily: yes
    Bertrum Quan: Yes.
    Calvino Rabeni: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conscience

    Bertrum Quan: But the "conscience" of vegitarian and non-vegitarian Buddhists may be highly evolved. And yet there is this contradiction.
    Bertrum Quan: On something that seems rather central...
    Calvino Rabeni: Ask each of them to PAB :)
    Bertrum Quan: Indeed!
    Scathach Rhiadra: :)
    Geoff Baily: nice idea
    Calvino Rabeni: ANyone have examples from experience?


    Scathach Rhiadra: we can only be responsible for our own actions, our own thoughts, and projecting them onto evertone else is it not like judging the actions of others?
    Scathach Rhiadra: or trying to change the world to be in accord with how we want it to be?
    Calvino Rabeni: we can influence, bear witness. but not control or make anyone elses mind be some way
    Bertrum Quan: I am not suggesting judging or influencing. But I find the particular contradiction difficult.
    Calvino Rabeni: I am interested, how do you work this within yourself - know what to do?
    Scathach Rhiadra nods
    Calvino Rabeni: I am interested on others experiences
    Calvino Rabeni: I can speak my own also
    Calvino Rabeni: :)
    Geoff Baily: can you expand the question, Calvino
    Scathach Rhiadra: you could say the contradiction is Samsara:)
    Calvino Rabeni: Yes, when acting, do you have a clear idea of right action, and if not, then what effort do you make, if any, to be discriminating or clear?
    Calvino Rabeni: I don't have any "answer", but do have things I try
    Calvino Rabeni: no general answer - perhaps none is possible
    Geoff Baily: mmmmm personal choice
    Calvino Rabeni: I try to observe compassion happening in myself - If I notice it, I clear the way for it - give it better attention and space, rather than rushing past
    Bertrum Quan: Scath, how would the contradiction in the specifiic instance be Samsara?
    Calvino Rabeni: If I encounter something that feels not compassion, I try to find the true kernel within it

    Calvino Rabeni: I am sceptical of my own motivations for action. Kind of like "bracketing"
    Calvino Rabeni: Learning to remember my insights
    Geoff Baily: I try to do the best I can but nothing is perfect. In realit life is a sequence of 'least bad' decisions often
    Calvino Rabeni: :)
    Calvino Rabeni: On one level one does the best one can always

    Scathach Rhiadra: Samsara in the sense of experiencing duality, wanting or expecting things to be as we think of feel, or as they should be?
    Calvino Rabeni: I mean, did you EVER make a non-optimal decision on purpose?
    Calvino Rabeni: Wanting is part of life. A person who does not desire, is dead.
    Calvino Rabeni: I mean, kind of broken
    Geoff Baily: a mistake? yes often
    Calvino Rabeni: Only in retrospect
    Calvino Rabeni: SOmething like that? "It seemed like the best idea at the time"
    Geoff Baily: devil or deep blue sea!
    Calvino Rabeni: THe feeling of making unholy compromise.

    Geoff Baily: first Noble Truth
    Calvino Rabeni: it is interesting, this session slot seems to have fewer people and deeper discussions - is it the time of day, or just the fewer number of people, do you think?
    Geoff Baily: We are all suffereing in Samara
    Bertrum Quan: Only at this hour!
    Calvino Rabeni: I'm not a buddhist. That sounds like it could be labeled play as well as suffering.
    Scathach Rhiadra: combination of all maybe:)
    Geoff Baily: ;)
    Scathach Rhiadra: it is getting late, maybe we can continue this discussion next week?

    Calvino Rabeni: First noble truth - I think "sin" a likely synonym
    Calvino Rabeni: Sure, any time. If you remind, it will be interesting
    Bertrum Quan: Thanks, Scath, everyone.
    Geoff Baily: Thanyou all of you
    Calvino Rabeni: Thank you all - I enjoyed this
    Scathach Rhiadra: thank you everyone for a great discussion, have a good day/night:)
    Bertrum Quan: Take care everyone.

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