2008.12.28 13:00 - Struggling with perspectives

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    The guardian at this meeting was Maxine Walden.  All the comments are hers.

    When I got to the Pavilion Scathach was already there.  We greeted one another and soon were joined by Stevenia and Pema.

     Scathach Rhiadra: Hello maxine
     Maxine Walden: hi, Scathach
     Maxine Walden: and steve
     Scathach Rhiadra: Hello steve
     stevenaia Michinaga: hello Maxine
     Pema Pera: hi there, Maxine, Steve, Scathach!
     stevenaia Michinaga: hello Pema
     Scathach Rhiadra: Hello Pema
     stevenaia Michinaga: and Scathach
     Maxine Walden: a reindeer shirt, steve?
     Maxine Walden: hi Pema
     stevenaia Michinaga: wolf
     Maxine Walden: oh, missed by a mile, didn't I!

    And then Adelene joined us becoming a magnificent lioness blanket on Pema's lap.  Fefonz joined us soon thereafter

     Pema Pera: Hi Adelene!
     Maxine Walden: Hi Adelene, on Pema's lap it seems
     Scathach Rhiadra: Hello adeline
     Adelene Dawner: ^.^
     Pema Pera: Hi Fefonz!
     Pema Pera is ready for heavy snowfall now!
     Maxine Walden: with a lion blanket, Pema?
     Scathach Rhiadra: Hello Fefonz
     stevenaia Michinaga: it;s 60 out east today
     Maxine Walden: hi Fefonz
     Fefonz Quan: Hello everyone
     Pema Pera: :)

    And Fefonz, Threedee, Moon, Adams joined us as well.

     Maxine Walden: hi 3D
     Adelene Dawner: ^.^
     Threedee Shepherd: hi folks
     Pema Pera: hi Three!
     Moon Fargis: greetings
     Maxine Walden: hi, Moon
     Moon Fargis purrzzzzzzzzz
     Scathach Rhiadra: Hello Moon
     Maxine Walden: hi, adams
     Fefonz Quan: hi moon
     Scathach Rhiadra: Hello Adams
     Moon Fargis: ^^/
     Pema Pera: Hi Adams!
     Adams Rubble: Hello Everyone :)
     stevenaia Michinaga: watches Moon
     Moon Fargis: abra cadabra a pillow :)
     Adelene Dawner: :)
     Adams Rubble: Hello Threedee :)

    A little presence, Squee, had a few things to say, as I thought about whether it was inspired by Faenik.  In addition at this point Threedee was having trouble staying inworld.

     Squee: Don't ask what the meaning of life is. - Define it.
     Moon Fargis: wb
     Threedee Shepherd: big crash
     Maxine Walden: yes, wb,3D
     Threedee Shepherd: .
     Threedee Shepherd: big crash

    It was not about 15 minutes into our session and I tried to see if we could focus the discussion, but even now, given some of the responses, it felt that we were having some trouble with such focus

     Maxine Walden: any guardian issues today?
     Moon Fargis: my tea is cold
     Adelene Dawner chuckles. "That's definitely an issue, yes."
     Moon Fargis slurps his cold tea
     Moon Fargis: seems all are happy :)
     Moon Fargis: *meow meow*
     Moon Fargis: hmmm seems like a big lag atm :)
     Adelene Dawner: augh! *mute*
     Moon Fargis: yahh sorry wrong one :)
     Maxine Walden: Moon filling in the time and space?
     Moon Fargis: ahh i just looked if i saved the rotating pab  
    sign from the library
     Moon Fargis: seems not
     Moon Fargis: brb :)

    Threedee then tried over the next several minutes to pose a question, inspired by some of the exercises and discussion from the Kira phenomological workshop several of us were attending.  Even so it was still difficult to gain focus, several strands of conversation wending this way and that.

     Threedee Shepherd: OK, I can pose a question for discussion,  
    if there are no others?
     Adelene Dawner: Always :)

     Moon did bring back the rotating PaB sign and it rotated high above the fountain during much of the remaining discussion

     Maxine Walden: ah, Moon, intriguing to watch as 3D may be  
    posing a question for our consideration

    Threedee tries posing his question:

     Threedee Shepherd: Consider walking. On a sidewalk it is  
     simple. However, on a steep, uneven, rocky path in the forest, *I*  
     adapt my walking "style" to fit the enviroonment, often not even  
     conosciously. Question: if I thing of being as a me/world unity, does  
     the path in any way adapt to me?
     Threedee Shepherd: *I think
     Pema Pera: Can you express more about this "me/world unity",  
     how you see that, Threedee?
     Adelene Dawner: I think that how you're thinking of Being  
     doesn't have very much to do with it ^.^
     Fefonz Quan: if there is a unity, you and the path are  
     already adapted, aren't you?
     Moon Fargis: three: i think its more a matter of the right  
     Adelene Dawner: Well put, Fefonz.
     Threedee Shepherd: I am trying to come up with an example  
     that is related to the phenomenology exercise going on in the Cafe.  
     Fefonz Quan: (i was just playing with the words, not based on  
     deep meaning which i can tell off...)
     Maxine Walden: could you say a bit more 3D about your example  
     and the phenom exercises?

    Threedee tries to become more explicit about letting a non-animate thing or situation become an active agent

     Threedee Shepherd: first I "observe" the path and then the  
     path "observes me, and then there is the "situation" me & path as a  
     current phenomena. I am asking if there is a way to think of "the path  
     observing me" in a NON-metaphorical way

    Two visitors then join us, Grommit and soon thereafter Oas and some introductions to the PaB format are wended into the ongoing discussion

     Adams Rubble: Hello Grommit
     grommit Puddlegum: hello everyone
     grommit Puddlegum: what's happening here?
     Pema Pera: Grommit, have you been here before?
     Pema Pera: We get together a few times a day to chat about  
     the nature of reality, and everything else, and we have a wiki http://playasbeing.wik.is/
      -- we record our conversations there. Do you mind being included in  
     our blogs?
     Scathach Rhiadra: Hello Grommit
     Moon Fargis: three: the math as you describe is a collection  
     of millions of small things, stones, wood, leafes, earth, insects,  
     Fefonz Quan: observing the path sounds like it's a material  
     entity that can be observed directly
     Moon Fargis: path
     Threedee Shepherd: and a way to think of the "path" as an  
    *active* participant
     grommit Puddlegum: I'm new in this world
     Adelene Dawner: In that case, Three, you have to think on the  
     path's terms... it wouldn't observe in anything like the same way that  
     a human would.
     Moon Fargis: as what you see as path three, is in your mind  
     defining it as path
     Adelene Dawner: But I think it would still observe in a sense.
     Adelene Dawner nods at Moon, too.
     Pema Pera: Hi Oas, come join us if you like!
     Maxine Walden: I will IM grommit a couple of things about our  
     Oas Windlow: hi everybody
     Pema Pera: Oas and Grommit, We get together a few times a day  
     to chat about the nature of reality, and everything else, and we have  
     a wiki http://playasbeing.wik.is/ -- we record our conversations  
     there. Do you mind being included in our blogs?
     Threedee Shepherd: That I know. I want to explore the concept  
     of "non-sentient", as there are some who ascribe some aspects of  
     sentenience even to rocks
     grommit Puddlegum: no

    Trying to help focus things Pema then offers a question.  But to my observation, confusion still shines through in terms of some of the sidebars of conversation and slight frustrations which seem to be building.  

     Pema Pera: Three, if you take the movie or dream example, how  
     would you answer your own question?
     grommit Puddlegum: no
     Pema Pera: thanks, Grommit!
     Fefonz Quan: for me the notion of the path is so abstract,  
     that i don't understand how can it observe
     Pema Pera: Oas, okay to be recorded and added to our on-line  
     Fefonz Quan: can my "walking" observe me walk?
     Threedee Shepherd: I am not sure what you mean by the "movie  
     example" dreams are me playing with me
     Adelene Dawner: A path 'observes' where people walk, for  
     example, and reacts by not growing plants there.
     Fefonz Quan: Adelene, you describe the path as the road
     Threedee Shepherd: The plants do not grow for obvious  
     physical reasons of the footfalls destroying them
     Moon Fargis: "when you look at the spoon, the spoon looks at  
     you when it is just shiny enought to reflect your face in it"
     Adelene Dawner: yes
     Fefonz Quan: but that makes it an objective thing that exist  
     without me
     Threedee Shepherd: yes, as are you
     Adelene Dawner: Three... if you look at sunflowers, there's a  
     physical mechanism that turns the flower to facethe sun... it's still  
     a reaction, tho.
     Fefonz Quan: can my path me without me?
     Fefonz Quan: be*

    Threedee tries again

     Threedee Shepherd: OK, let me try again. Is a manufactured  
     spoon sentient?
     Moon Fargis: fefont: see buddhism, alot of going this path  
     without the one who founded it
     Scathach Rhiadra: is what you call path just your perceptions  
     of your sensory input?

    And asks for help in keeping the question in mind central and in focus

     In here Moon came up with a huge hammer, ostensibly to knock some enlightenment into some of us; but I also think the hammer might have been an expression of some of the frustration some members were having with conceptualizing that exercise in which an inanimate object becomes the subject and the observing self the passive object.

    Threedee Shepherd: Please help me to keep simplifing my  
     questioon so we have no"side-paths" :D
     Moon Fargis: hehe
     Pema Pera: :)
     Moon Fargis: what was it again ?:;)
     Maxine Walden: Pema, maybe we are struggling with the notion  
     of the spoon being able to become the subject and our witnessing that  
     in a passive way
     Fefonz Quan: as i understand, in buddhism each person has  
     it's own path - one reads a lot, and the other one gets enlightened by  
     a hit on the head
     Fefonz Quan: (for mooon)
     Threedee Shepherd: I asked: Threedee Shepherd: OK,  
     let me try again. Is a manufactured spoon sentient?
     Moon Fargis: fefonz: hmm intresting
     grommit Puddlegum: Isn't each persons path determined by the  
     decisions they make
     Fefonz Quan: i think we should listen to moon ;-)

     Scathach Rhiadra: if you perceive it as sentient then is it 
    not sentient for you?

     Moon Fargis: just want to give you enlightment :)
     Adelene Dawner: Perhaps we need to define 'sentient'?
     Moon Fargis: *giggles*
     Threedee Shepherd: Damn, I should have been savvy enough NOT  
     to use the word PATH in an example, with this group. It's not the  
     point of my question :D
     Fefonz Quan: when the student is ready, the hammer will come :)
     stevenaia Michinaga: may I have some please, Moon
     Fefonz Quan: lol, moon
     Moon Fargis: my pleasure :)
     Maxine Walden: feel better, steve?
     stevenaia Michinaga: Thought the pink heart hammer would do it
     Moon Fargis: nahh enlightment is something verry own :)
     Moon Fargis: some unique
     Squee: Explore your questions.

    Wondering about Threedee's efforts, I wonder aloud

     Maxine Walden: 3D, are you getting your question posed as you  
     Fefonz Quan: should we go back to te spoon 3D?
     Fefonz Quan: looks like we chose the wrong path here :)
     Threedee Shepherd: n ot yet. The problem with defining  
     sentient is that the words used then beg definition as in the  
     following from an oonline dictionary: 1. Conscious or aware.
      2. Experiencing sensation or feeling.
     Fefonz Quan: what's the problem with saying the spoon is no  
     Fefonz Quan: not*
     Maxine Walden: Are you wondering if the spoon can 'look back,  
     be the subject'?
     Adelene Dawner: hm... seems like a clear 'no' to me, in the  
     case of a spoon.
     Moon Fargis: if sire a spoon can have feeling
     Moon Fargis: emotiond
     Moon Fargis: emotions
     Moon Fargis: aslong you think it that he can

    Threedee and I exchange some questions which I then try to clarify by putting a question to Pema, but am then in doubt whether I had once again mis-understood the experiment, so that my frustration level also began to rise.

    Threedee Shepherd: yes, I want to know if there is anything  
     more than Metaphorical thinking about that Maxine?
     Maxine Walden: I have a question about that as well, 3D,in  
     terms of being able to do that part of the experiment. Have thought I need  
     an example of the 'spoon' becoming the subject
     Threedee Shepherd: Say again
     Maxine Walden: or spoon 'becoming the subject'
     Maxine Walden: Perhaps I could say it again in the form of a  
     question to Pema, whether he could offer an example of the spoon as  
     Fefonz Quan: that was the unchosen exersice, is i recall
     Fefonz Quan: exercise*

    Adams may have been offering an answer to my question about an example of the spoon as subject,  but at the time, my frustration level was not attuned to it.

    Threedee Shepherd: yes, I want to know if there is anything  
     more than Metaphorical thinking about that Maxine?
     Maxine Walden: I have a question about that as well, 3D,in  
     terms of being able to do that part of the experiment. Have thought I need  
     an example of the 'spoon' becoming the subject
     Threedee Shepherd: Say again
     Maxine Walden: or spoon 'becoming the subject'
     Maxine Walden: Perhaps I could say it again in the form of a  
     question to Pema, whether he could offer an example of the spoon as  
     Fefonz Quan: that was the unchosen exersice, is i recall
     Fefonz Quan: exercise
     Adams Rubble: The spoon sits in the bowl
     Moon Fargis: "and waits for the knive"
     Moon Fargis: *giggles*
     Maxine Walden: am I getting it wrong again? Would someone  
    tell me what 2B is about?
     Threedee Shepherd: I KNOW, that ANY object is what I use it  
    as. Thus, now that is a rock and when I sit on it, it is a chair. I am  
    trying to get past that kind of interaction that depends on my  
    viewpoint, and am asking HOW it is meaningful to consider if the rock  
    has a viewpoint?
     Maxine Walden: that is a question I have too 3D

    Pema tries to address the questions that Threedee and I and perhaps others are expressing:

     Pema Pera: The spoon example probably comes from the subject- 
     object reversal experiment, in the phenomenology group in the Kira Cafe.
     The idea is to let the spoon take a more active subject role and you  
     yourself a more passive object role.
     Hint: both you and the spoon are given in your field of awareness, and  
     when looked at as such, can be seen "as" experiences (also "as"  
     matter, but let's focus on seeing them "as" experiences). In that way,  
     we can freely experiment with new degrees of freedom, without  
     wondering about whether spoons have eyes or sentience.

    Reading Pema's answer reminded me that earlier I had understood that the question was not whether the spoon had eyes, but it was interesting that for some reason I had lost that clarity.  Others seem to be meandering as well.

     Threedee Shepherd: Maxine, it is the question I am meaning to  
     Adelene Dawner: Maybe we need to define 'experience'?
     Moon Fargis: hmm
     Threedee Shepherd: Experience in the way I am posing the  
     question of the moment is "the ability to have a viewpoint" and of  
     course someone will ask me to define viewpoint and we will go in  
     Adelene Dawner: Here's a useful question: If I am very deeply  
     asleep, and someone comes and draws on my face with a marker, and I am  
     not aware of them having done so, have I still experienced that?

    Perhaps Pema tries to help out again with a question to Threedee

     Pema Pera: what is the whole question, Threedee, about  
     Threedee Shepherd: I am not trying to be cute or  
     argumentative. I am trying to probes ways of exploring the subject- 
     object, object-subject distinction
     Moon Fargis: adelene: atleast not your logical mind
     Moon Fargis: adlene: but your subtle mind displaying you some  
     dream pictures them
     Moon Fargis: then
     Adelene Dawner: I'm not even thinking abot 'mind' - assume  
     I'm so deeply asleep that I'm not aware of it on any mind-level.
     Moon Fargis: adelene:: then you are in a state of zen :)
     Moon Fargis: when no ..even no dreams are there
     Moon Fargis: or okoma
     Moon Fargis: koma
     Moon Fargis: one of both
     Threedee Shepherd: no, it happened and in that case your mind/ 
     brain did not experience it, any more than it experienced the train  
    100 miles away
     Adelene Dawner: Ah, but I didn't ask if my *mind* experienced  
     it. My skin still did. ^.^
     Threedee Shepherd: Well, if you were wearing a shirt and I  
     gently drew a picture on the sleeve, did the sleeve experience it.
     Fefonz Quan: (i was going for your boot, but same point)
     Adelene Dawner was going somewhere with this, which is not  
     helped by changing the metaphor.
     Maxine Walden: I cannot seem to get past the notion that if I  
     cease to be the observing object, can I relate to the spoon in a  
     passive way? Do I not have to attribute qualities to the spoon in  
     order to have some relationship of it as the subject?
     Threedee Shepherd: ok, continue Ade
     Moon Fargis: hmm when it does... then i want to be reborn as  
     a bikini ment for super models
     Fefonz Quan: moon, you'll be stuck in some odd places :)
     Moon Fargis: i dont care then!
     Moon Fargis: *giggles*
     Scathach Rhiadra: can I ask, if the spoon and I are both  
     'experiences', am I trying to experience one 'experience' seen by  
     another, both objects, no subject?
     Adelene Dawner: Basically my point was that 'experience'  
     seems to relate to 'change'... my skin is changed by the marker. I  
     don't have to be aware of the change for the change to happen.

    Threedee and I exchange thoughts about our having to attribute qualities, such as eyes, to the inanimate spoon, perpetuating that aspect of confusion

      Threedee Shepherd: Maxine, you attribute qualities to the  
     spoon as an object. I am asking if that can somehow make the spoon an  
     active subject. A subject one who acts or can act independently with  
     Threedee Shepherd: *is one who
     Threedee Shepherd: agreed change can happen, where does that  
     take my question?
     Pema Pera: Scathach, I meant it far simpler than that :-)
     Moon Fargis: do you saw matrix three?
     Adelene Dawner: And so what if we can't, Three? I think  
     you're asking the wrong question there.
     Fefonz Quan: i thought the spoon was just a tool to change  
     our point of view
     Threedee Shepherd: yes I saw it
     Moon Fargis: remember the spoon ?:)
     Fefonz Quan: matrix one it was
     Fefonz Quan: it coould be a non-dimensional point on the wall

    Pema once again offers a simple way to conceptualize the experimental situation under consideration

      Pema Pera: just letting yourself be seen by a spoon is  

              simplicity itself -- no need to elaborate -- experience what it is, 
              describe it, and then start from there with further questions
              Threedee Shepherd: Changing MY point of view is interesting 
              and expands my ways of experiencing the world. I am asking "what 
              objects are capable of HAVING a point of view?"

    And for me at least Pema's next comment helps in the orientation

     Pema Pera: don't try to step in the "shoes" of the spoon
     Fefonz Quan: how can we know, 3D?
     Moon Fargis: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=28kOO6qDk7s
     Fefonz Quan: (or another answer: none, only subjects :))

    Pema continues to try to elucidate the many possible perspectives which the experimenter might adopt in this 'spoon as subject' aspect:

     Pema Pera: well, threedee, only animate objects, when you  
     pose the question within the normal way of looking at the story of our  
     life, right?
     Threedee Shepherd: I don't know, Fefonz, which is why I  
     brought this up
     Fefonz Quan: do you think we have enough data here to know?
     Pema Pera: but if you ask the question within a dream, what  
     answer do you expect? The answer that holds within the story of the  
     dream, or the answer from the point of view of the person lying in bed?
     Threedee Shepherd: I doubt it.
     Pema Pera: you have to choose your framework
     Fefonz Quan: me too.
     Pema Pera: we are talking as if there is something called  
      "the spoon" . . . there ain't -- not as such

    Pema returns to stressing that the issue is the set up of the frame, for perceiving, and the spoon within that frame is key

                Pema Pera: there is a spoon in this framework and in that, 
                they are very different

    Being a little concrete, I take up the dream, as the basic frame rather than one of many possible frames

    Maxine Walden: so this experiment as with as a dream of a  
    spoon as subject?
     Pema Pera: many possibilities Maxine!
     Pema Pera: experimenting is exploring many of those
     Maxine Walden: as if the spoon could be a subject
     Moon Fargis: maybe a spoon,waling on a pathway and asks  
     himself if the pathway is there or not weven with or without him, and  
     how the pathway notices him, or not 
    And Pema tries to help me out, focussing on the frame of the object (me) as key to this aspect of the experiment
     Pema Pera: the emphasis is on you, as an object, Maxine, in  
     that exploration
     Maxine Walden: or, not, that the spoon cannot be a subject,  
     that could be another way to go
     Moon Fargis: damn getting hungry for a soup now ^^

    Threedee is struggling as well and Pema tries to help out

     Threedee Shepherd: OK, let me do it aphoristically. I  
     subscribe to the following: "The knower is part of the known." I want  
     to reverse that and ask if the KNOWN has an active role if it is a  
     rock, or spoon or sidewalk.
     Adelene Dawner: ...'active'?
     Pema Pera: Threedee, if you asked that question concerning a  
     rock in a dream or in a movie, how woul dyou answer?
     Fefonz Quan: HI Gaya :)
     Threedee Shepherd: active -----> capable of intent
     Pema Pera: hi Gaya!
     Maxine Walden: yes, guess if I hold on to my own experience  
     as the potential object then there would be various ways to go
     Maxine Walden: hi, gaya
     Scathach Rhiadra: Hi Gaya
     Threedee Shepherd: "I am every part of my dream"
     Moon Fargis looks around trhys to spot gaya
     Adams Rubble: Hi Gaya
     Fefonz Quan: 3D, the weird part might be the other way around  
     - does the KNOWER have an intention?
     Pema Pera: could that answer possibly apply to real life too,  
     Threedeed, and if so, how would that answer your original question?
     Pema Pera: *threedee
     Adams Rubble: goodbye everyone :)
     Pema Pera: good question, Fefonz :)
     Maxine Walden: see you adams

    I notice we are at the hour mark in the session, 2pm SL, so as goc I mention this, which moreless brings the discussion to a close.  It felt that there was more to cover but that a good inroad had been made.

     Maxine Walden: yes, we are almost at the hour mark, and the  
    conversation seems to be only beginning
    Threedee Shepherd: Yes. intention is part of consciousness.  
    No, I cannot prove I am conscious. No, I cannot prove that coonscious  
    exists. Copnsiousness is a basic axiom in my system, jkust as is  
    gravitational force.
     Moon Fargis: hehe
     Moon Fargis: se i think 3d
     Moon Fargis: you got a intresting answer now
     Moon Fargis: ba accident
     Moon Fargis: by
     Pema Pera: Indeed, Maxine, I have to go too
     Maxine Walden: yes, me as well.
     Pema Pera: see you all soon again
     Moon Fargis: one said hi gaya, everyone assumed gaya is here  
    and said hi too
     Scathach Rhiadra: Bye Pema
     Moon Fargis: no gaya here but she was for us all for a short  
     Maxine Walden: yes, I will see you all as well. Bye for now.  
    If there is more to the chatlog maybe someone could send it to me and  
    I will post it

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