2009.03.28 19:00 - Agreements in our Disagreements

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    The Guardian for this meeting was Pema Pera. The comments are by Pema Pera.

    This would become a two-and-a-half-hour-long session, in which Threedee and I somehow managed to go slow enough to trace out our agreements and disagreements in quite a bit of detail.

    Threedee Shepherd: 2008-03-28 17:00
    Pema Pera: Hi Threedee!
    Threedee Shepherd: Hi Pema
    Pema Pera: Hi Bertrum!
    Bertrum Quan: Hi Pema. 3-D
    Threedee Shepherd: Hi Bert
    Pema Pera: How's life Threedee? Still a lot of snow?
    Threedee Shepherd: melted quickly, as is typical of spring storms here. another possible Monday
    Pema Pera: I love that kind of mountain weather
    Threedee Shepherd: This afternoon I watched my 1-year-old granddaughter move things around, manipulate them, and knock them over with a toy golfclub. I see that as the essence of embodiment without verbal translation
    Pema Pera: wouldn't it be nice if we could remember how it was to act without words!
    Threedee Shepherd: yes
    Pema Pera: but memory as we normally use it may rely too much on words
    Pema Pera: though we can of course remembers smell and touch
    Threedee Shepherd: mmhmm
    Threedee Shepherd: I also think that without words she is not even going through some symbolic translation such as Oh look, I can move things far awayu using a stick
    Pema Pera: but chimpansees can do quite a lot, without the kind of grammar we use
    Threedee Shepherd: mmhmm, so do chimps and my granddaughter (Rose) KNOW what they are doing using "tools"
    Pema Pera: yes
    Threedee Shepherd: I wonder?
    Pema Pera: well, it depends what you call "knowing" I guess
    Pema Pera: they don't know in a conceptual way, at least not the way we are used to, I presume at least -- we have to be rather careful here
    Threedee Shepherd: At age one, she will pick up anything that she can, and if it is small immediately taste it first. Wired in behavior I suggest
    Pema Pera: yes, the genome is far too small to contain much details
    Pema Pera: they provide enough to explore
    Pema Pera: and the rest will be learned from the environment
    Pema Pera: more flexible that way too
    Threedee Shepherd: mmhmm, which makes sense given environment is not static
    Pema Pera: yes
    Bertrum Quan: knowing and being...
    Bertrum Quan: one is situational and the other doesn't exist?
    Threedee Shepherd: being doesn't exist, you are saying?
    Bertrum Quan: Pema has said that. I'm still pondering it.
    We thus got onto the topic of `existing'
    Threedee Shepherd: Being exists, I accept as a basic axiom. All that I can know about it is virtual
    Pema Pera: well, talking about Being is always very tricky -- "existance" is a concept that doesn't apply very well to Being
    Pema Pera: Being IS, that's about all you can say about it
    Pema Pera: but that doesn't mean that you cannot work with it . . .
    Threedee Shepherd: why resist saying IS == exists
    Pema Pera: well, what we normally mean with "exists" is that it is part of the world that we know
    Pema Pera: and here the appearance of a world arises within Being
    Pema Pera: including the appearance of existence of the world
    Pema Pera: I'm not trying to play a word game here
    Pema Pera: the distinctions are essential
    Threedee Shepherd: I don't take it that way. I accept that there is a "world" both physical and containing forces--I am aware that is not able to be proved, but I take it as a pragmatic axiom.
    Pema Pera: the word "existence" already buys into so much that we take for granted
    Pema Pera: sure, you can do that, but I think that move excludes Being as a meaningful term then
    Threedee Shepherd: I also accept that I can know nothing about the world directly.
    Pema Pera: I would say "there is the presence of appearance of what can be interpreted as a world"
    Pema Pera: and for me the experiential difference between the two formulations is enormous
    Threedee Shepherd: wait, thtg is the second formulation, please repeat the first formulation
    Pema Pera: your formulation
    Pema Pera: [19:19] Threedee Shepherd: I don't take it that way. I accept that there is a "world" both physical and containing forces--I am aware that is not able to be proved, but I take it as a pragmatic axiom.
    Pema Pera: so your "is = exist" I replace by "there is the presence of appearance of what can be taken as"
    Pema Pera: a few more indirections :)
    Threedee Shepherd: mine accepts that the appearance arises BECAUSE there IS a world (axiom)
    Pema Pera: ah, there we differ then
    Pema Pera: for me there seems to be a world because there are appearance arising from Being
    Pema Pera: (still not quite correct, because there is only the appearance of arising, but that's yet another point)
    Threedee Shepherd: OK, I understand our difference.
    I then bring up a pragmatic point:
    Pema Pera: now here there is an interesting point, if I may:
    Pema Pera: IF you are right, then I claim that even so my attitude may give more leverage in the world than your belief, even though your belief is more accurate, in the folloiwing way:
    Threedee Shepherd: yes, more please
    Pema Pera: if you were correct in believing there is a world, most likely your understanding of it would be more limited that the world itself
    Pema Pera: and my mistaken belief would leave more room for those extra parts of the world
    Pema Pera: do you see what I mean?
    Threedee Shepherd: true. In that sense I am a "naturalist" in the way that word has recently evolved.
    Threedee Shepherd: Yes I see what you mean.
    Pema Pera: not that I have my sentiment for that reason, but it is an interesting point, I think
    Pema Pera: believing in pragmatic limitations is likely to limit you in an impragmatic way
    Pema Pera: by viewing too small a picture
    Threedee Shepherd: Until a situation causes me to pragmatically entertain the idea, I do not behave as if there is anything that happens that is supra-natural
    Pema Pera: in science that has happened all the time ; science fiction writers often predict the future better than scientists!
    Pema Pera: doesn't have to be supra-natural
    Pema Pera: cell phones must seem like magic to people a few hundred years ago
    Threedee Shepherd: I am always open to new experiences and new interpretations needed to make sense of them.
    Pema Pera: yes, and I appreciate that, Threedee
    Pema Pera: but by incrementally adapting your view, step by step, you may miss an extra dimension, so to speak
    Threedee Shepherd: I suspect I am less willing to go looking for "just anything" I could imagine (including tooth fairies). I already have so much I apprehend that I do not *understand* or have the ability to explain
    Pema Pera: something that cannot be reached incrementally
    Pema Pera: not just anything, Threedee
    Pema Pera: there is a whole world literature out there, and with more and more personal experience that all can begin to fall in place, and become recognizable from many different angles
    Pema Pera: Bert, do you want to say something?
    Pema Pera: I see you typing furiously, but no text so far
    Threedee Shepherd: What if I was to alter my axiom to start with the phrase "There is at least...
    Bertrum Quan: OKay, I have a question for both of you.
    Bertrum Quan: From the perspective of science... this is a question I've raisied before: If there ever is a proven unified theory, wouldn't that be an equation for IS--for Being?
    Just at that point, the new 90-sec bell rang, and text appeared in green, not echoed in this chat log
    Pema Pera: (sorry Bert, we have this new experiment: 90 seconds silence after the quarter hour -- perhaps you don't have the "local chat" window up)
    Pema Pera: So to answer:
    Threedee Shepherd: Perhaps not it would account completely for what we know of, not for what else there may be
    Pema Pera: No, that wouldn't be an equation for Being
    Pema Pera: Being is totally outside the story of the world, or anything in/of the world, like physics
    Pema Pera: Plato's allegory of the cave is a nice one
    Pema Pera: our understanding, including anything incremental, is in the realm of shadows
    Pema Pera: and the idea is to let something wider be seen
    Threedee Shepherd: Pema, a meoment ago I said "[19:29] Threedee Shepherd: What if I was to alter my axiom to start with the phrase "There is at least..." also add after the words forces, "and essences" ?
    Pema Pera: alas, every metaphor is partly wrong, so can be misleading, that's why we need a modicum of experience first
    Pema Pera: yes, but essences as we normally use the word, are still projected into the world of ours, with us here to experience the essences
    Pema Pera: Hi Corvi
    Threedee Shepherd: Ahh, dear Corvi :)
    Threedee Shepherd: I hoped you would be here tonight :)
    Corvuscorva Nightfire smiles and scritches Three's head...hi, Pema, Bertrum.
    Threedee Shepherd: If there is "something else" that I neither experience, not experience the effects of (in the broadest sense of "experience", why does it matter than I know it?
    Bertrum Quan: hi
    Pema Pera: take the example of a dream, Threedee
    Pema Pera: if someone were to try to explain within a dream that all the dread you may feel in a really bad situation is ultimately not a problem, since you can wake up from the dream, you could make the same objection
    Pema Pera: "waking up" can never be reached incrementally from within the dream
    Pema Pera: it is discontinuous
    Threedee Shepherd: it is discontinuous, but it IS/Happens
    Pema Pera: yes
    Bertrum Quan: that is looking at the content of dream. WHat about dream as a kind of processing?
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: oh is that true? doesn't one know meta stuff within a dream at times?
    Pema Pera: and you can also have dreams where you know that you are dreaming
    Pema Pera: yes, Corvi
    Corvuscorva Nightfire nods. and dreams when one is awake.
    Pema Pera: yes
    Pema Pera: but I mean the metaphor as a response to Threedee's "what is it good for"
    Threedee Shepherd: I let WORLD encompass all possibility. I deal with what I apprehend.
    Pema Pera: then I would say: that locks you into the dream
    Threedee asked another pertinent question about the practical use of all this, which I'm always glad to discuss, since without that there would be no meaning to our conversations.
    Threedee Shepherd: why does it lock me into anything if I have no control over the things that are the basis od my apprehending?
    Pema Pera: I'm really glad we have this discussion, btw, and it is nice to go really slow here, to see what our differences are, if they are real differences
    Threedee Shepherd: so am I
    Pema Pera: let us go back to "experiences"
    Threedee Shepherd: ok
    Bertrum Quan: that's content--what about the mechanics/biology of dreaming
    Pema Pera: for there to be an experience, there has to be an experiencer
    Pema Pera: that's outside the metaphor as I used it Bert, sorry :)
    Threedee Shepherd: No, there has to be an "experiencing"
    Pema Pera: so the experiencer in the dream, as far as the dreamer is concerned, is identified with a dream body
    Pema Pera: and that dream body cannot wake up
    Pema Pera: whereas the real intelligence and awareness that is actually "playing" the dream body is already outside the dream body, different from the dream body
    Pema Pera: and that can wake up
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: ah, i see..
    Pema Pera: so what can wake up to Being is not our body, not our mind, not our soul even or our personal history or anything that is "in" this (seeming) world of ours!
    Pema Pera: it is Being itself that can wake up to Being
    Threedee Shepherd: Why is dreaming anything more than a state-distinction of brain/body activity
    Pema Pera: that and only that
    Pema Pera: you see, that's were my analogy doesn't work -- it is only a partial metaphor
    Pema Pera: (an airplane is like a bird, yes, but doesn't flap its wings :)
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: corvi can't wake up to her being..only the typist can.
    Pema Pera: corvi and typist are both appearances within Being
    Pema Pera: :-)
    Corvuscorva Nightfire nods..i get it..but htat's my analogy...
    Threedee Shepherd: I want to take notice of the idea that ALL explanation is only metaphor or allegory, fingers pointing...
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: where dreaming is yours.
    Pema Pera: ah, I see, sorry, Corvi, yes, I took it too literally
    Corvuscorva Nightfire grins.
    Pema Pera: yes, nice one!
    Pema Pera: so waking up from Corvi to typist to . . . ?
    Bertrum Quan: can we look at dream outside metaphor?
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: being cams around the typist
    I loved the way Corvi brought a playful levity into the conversation, and at the same time put her finger on some of the paradoxes we were discussing
    Pema Pera: (sorry, this was the new 90-sec experiment -- are you all familiar with that one?)
    Corvuscorva Nightfire grins..yes..and forgot..
    Bertrum Quan: I am not.
    Pema Pera: if you open your "local chat" window, Bert
    Threedee Shepherd: [19:29] Threedee Shepherd: What if I was to alter my axiom to start with the phrase "There is at least...
    Pema Pera: you will see the green lines
    Pema Pera: also the fountain becomes misty for 90 seconds after each quarter hours
    Pema Pera: *hour
    Pema Pera: and there are two bell signals at beginning and end
    Pema Pera: we've tried to give as many clues as we could think of :-)
    Pema Pera: yes, Threedee, but then the question is where the "possibly more than" is pointing to
    Pema Pera: incrementally further in the world or in a new dimension, so to speak
    Threedee Shepherd: a locus in that multidimensional world, or an essence
    Pema Pera: what do you mean by essence?
    Threedee Shepherd: an example would be that it is possible" that consciousness is an essence of existance that behaves according to non-magical rules, "akin" to gravity
    Pema Pera: I see
    Pema Pera: but every magic that works is than non-magical according to your definition?
    Pema Pera: *then
    Threedee Shepherd: "magic" is already a metaphor. I am trying to express the idea of orderliness/causality in the scientific sense
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: magic being something without "cause?"
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: an effect without cause?
    Threedee Shepherd: OK, I am caught there with a bad definition, given that I will not accept fatralism
    Threedee Shepherd: So, I "believe' that if consciousness is ever understood it will be of a kind differnet than anything know, apprehended by a jump, not incrementally.
    Threedee Shepherd: *anything known
    Pema Pera: yes, I agree that that is very likely
    Pema Pera: and how about "essence of existence -- does that exist/happen with our world of space and time?
    Pema Pera: [19:50] Threedee Shepherd: an example would be that it is possible" that consciousness is an essence of existance that behaves according to non-magical rules, "akin" to gravity
    Threedee Shepherd: So, Pema, it may sould like I am waffling on my original definition, however, I do not see a basic difference between your starting point and mine.
    I then took a step back, to summarize.
    Pema Pera: let me try to rephrase then, from an experiential/phenomenological starting point
    Threedee Shepherd: I revise that to say "that behaves according to rules, analogous to gravity"
    Corvuscorva Nightfire nods..better.
    Pema Pera: when we feel/sense moments of timelessness, we have a choice of interpretation -- even if there is no "belief" involved
    Pema Pera: let us say we have a choice of two hypotheses to follow
    Threedee Shepherd: ok
    Pema Pera: 1) we exist in the world, and for whatever physiological/psychological reasons, we have that kind of wonderful sensation
    Pema Pera: 2) those are moments that show cracks in the too limited belief in a world that exists in space and time, and something wider shines through "out of Plato's cave" so to speak, totally different
    Pema Pera: I sense that you follow hypothesis 1) and I follow hypothesis 2)
    Pema Pera: Does that seem plausible?
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: one can be true even if 2 is
    Threedee Shepherd: wait while I ponder
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: in this movie..1 is true.
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: just as light falling "there" creates a certain image...
    Pema Pera: yes, relatively true as part of the story, Corvi, indeed
    Corvuscorva Nightfire nods.
    Pema Pera: yw :)
    Pema Pera: (to the second bell)
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: i think we can all agree one is true..at least in some sense..the question is..do we agree that 2 is true?
    Pema Pera: and I think Threedee taking the position that 1) is actually true, not as an illusion within 2)
    Threedee Shepherd: I accept that there may be "dimensions" (need i define?) beyond the usual 4-dimensional space-time that equates with the normal use of the word world
    Pema Pera: which is different from 2) then
    Pema Pera: Corvi's position is not different from mine
    Threedee Shepherd: I thought it was, Corvi?
    Corvuscorva Nightfire nods..it is..i'm saying i don't know if i believe 2.
    Bertrum Quan: why are they both not illusions?
    Pema Pera: ah, okay
    Pema Pera: well, 2) goes far beyond extra dimensions of space and time, goes beyond the notion of time as we know it, independent of how many dimension, goes even beyond the distinction illusion and not-illusion .. . . .
    It was great to be able to really take our time in the conversation.
    Pema Pera: but perhaps we should go slower, shift back a few gears, back to 1) and 2)
    Pema Pera: so hypothesis 2) implies that 1) is only provisional, an in fact an illusion, which may be pragmatically helpful to some extent
    Pema Pera: whereas hypothesis 1) implies that 2) is an illusion, and not true in any sense
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: no..it doesn't.
    Threedee Shepherd: what if I say I behave according to (1) AN also am open to the idea that "anything" is possible.?
    Pema Pera: I think they are quite distinct. and it seems that Threedee follow hypothesis 1) and I follow hypothesis 2), but it would be interesting if I were wrong
    Threedee Shepherd: AND
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: in 1 the whatever could BE the cracks.
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: or not!
    Pema Pera: yes, Threedee, but now we have to go very very slow here . . . .
    Threedee Shepherd: ok please do...
    Pema Pera: "anything is possible" can mean two things . . . it can mean that within the framework of 1) anything could happen or appear . . . OR . . . it could mean that the whole framework of 1) could turn out to be an illusion. Those two are really very distinct
    Pema Pera: (sorry Corvi)
    Pema Pera: (this may answer your question too)
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: no, don't be that's closer to what i think.
    Threedee Shepherd: OK, I see that, let me ponder
    Threedee Shepherd: So, you are saying that any consistent statement of (1) already denies that it could be an illusion. Is that correct.
    Threedee Shepherd: And if so, trhen (2) is the more encompassing belief.
    Pema Pera: well, let me ponder now . . . .
    Pema Pera: . . .perhaps more that attempts *from within* 1) to imagine what 2) would be by definition deal with shadows of 2) that are projected within 1) and hence part of 1) -- like you cannot lift yourself by pulling at your shoelaces
    Pema Pera: * would be, by definition deals with
    Threedee Shepherd: this makes perfect sense to me, so Ineed to ponder the inverse "[20:12] Pema Pera: . . .perhaps more that attempts *from within* 1) to imagine what 2) would be by definition deal with shadows of 2) that are projected within 1) and hence part of 1) -- like you cannot lift yourself by pulling at your shoelaces"
    Threedee Shepherd: Question, from within (2) is the case that (1) is NOT an illusion, a possibility?
    Threedee Shepherd: Pema?
    Pema Pera: well, no . . . but . . . . it is tricky
    Pema Pera: well, let me start with "no" but I may have to qualify what that "no" means since it is a "no" within the realm of 2) not a "no" within the realm of 1) -- different logic there
    Pema Pera: in other words, we would have to ask what it could mean within 2) that 1) would not be an illusion
    Pema Pera: how could it not be?
    Threedee Shepherd: ok
    Threedee Shepherd: a good and rigorous approach
    The notion of a `standpoint.'
    Pema Pera: there is no place to stand in 2), so to speak
    Threedee Shepherd: really, (2) is not a standpoint? If so (2) appears to deny itself
    Threedee Shepherd: (2)
    Pema Pera: 2) is most definitely not a standpoint
    Pema Pera: and when taken within the logic of 1) it is completely paradoxical and inconsistent
    Pema Pera: 1) is too small to contain it
    Threedee Shepherd: one sec, reading back
    Threedee Shepherd: To check. Is this a statement of (2): " "there is the presence of appearance of what can be interpreted as a world"
    Pema Pera: yes!
    Threedee Shepherd: what is implies by " IS...PRESENCE"
    Threedee Shepherd: *implied
    Pema Pera: Perhaps it may help if I could give a phenomenological description of what it is I am trying to hint at with 2) ?
    Pema Pera: it would take me a few minutes, but it would add an extra angle
    Threedee Shepherd: and yes gie the P description...
    Threedee Shepherd: give
    So I tried to describe how it felt, what I had been trying to describe earlier more abstractly.
    Pema Pera: Right now, I am trying to open up to the kind of awareness that corresponds to 2).
    Threedee Shepherd: Yes, I know that
    Pema Pera: As soon as I do that, something so drastically changes in the atmosphere, in the air it seems, though I know that it is not the physical air, but that's how it feels; it is very much akin to looking up from a gripping novel, or looking sideways in a movie theater, or beginning to notice I'm dreaming while still in a dream.
    Pema Pera: It is so very different from words, arguments, it is gripping, it is physical, it is *real* in such a way that what we normally call real is just a shadow.
    Threedee Shepherd: burt IS PRESENCE to me implies a point on which to stand, so why is it important to say (2) has no standpoint, that seems to me a peripheral issue
    Pema Pera: (I'm trying to report as accurately as I can; though it may still sound like I'm using concepts -- this is a report, not a set of arguments)
    Pema Pera: It comes with a conviction that is so strong, what strikes me as a kind of direct seeing, that it can empower people to stand up to anything.
    Threedee Shepherd: direct seeing implies something(s) to be seen
    Pema Pera: I'm not saying that for me the conviction is that strong, but it gives me a way to understand why for example Christian martyrs can smile in the face of the most terrible torture, because their direct seeing is stronger than whatever can happen to them.
    Pema Pera: Note: I do not consider this a proof that 2) is more true than 1), this is still purely a phenomenological account. I just want to convey the strength of the awareness that comes with a consistent seeing and living as/in 2).
    Pema Pera: end of account :-)
    Threedee Shepherd: I am not doing semantics. what does "direct seeing" encompass?
    Pema Pera: (perhaps this makes 2) a bit more tangible, at least the experience of 2, or better the attempt to express the projection into 1) of what a 2) kind of awareness could be)
    Bertrum Quan: It doesn't for me.
    Pema Pera: well, that is what I cannot express in words, Threedee
    Pema Pera: but it is what allows people to stand up to the most terrible conditions
    Pema Pera: so it is not just an idea -- an idea is not powerful enough to do that
    Pema Pera: and it is not a proof in any way -- you could consider it like hypnosis or whatever explanation in 1)
    A new visitor entered the pavilion.
    Pema Pera: Hi Claudio!
    Claudio Marialla: hi Pema, how are you
    Pema Pera: have you been here before?
    Claudio Marialla: Never
    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?
    Claudio Marialla: not at all
    Pema Pera: thank you!
    Pema Pera: So Threedee, my report was an attempt to give more flesh and blood to 2) so to speak
    Pema Pera: there is no way we can argue or derive which one is true, 2) or 1)
    Pema Pera: but I think they are very distinct
    Threedee Shepherd: OK, for me to accept (2) I need to go beyond brain/body that is the basis of its doing.
    Pema Pera: which was the question we started with, whether you and I have really differnt hypotheses we are working with
    Pema Pera: oh yes, and much more than that
    Pema Pera: beyond space and time
    Pema Pera: so independent of "accepting" a hypothesis, the very attempt to s
    Pema Pera: "see" what it might mean is already very worthwile
    Pema Pera: and that is far from trivial
    Pema Pera: Sorry, Claudio, let me repeat the 1) and 2) we are talking about :-)
    Pema Pera: just a sec
    Claudio Marialla: okay
    Pema Pera: [19:57] Pema Pera: let us say we have a choice of two hypotheses to follow [19:57] Threedee Shepherd: ok [19:57] Pema Pera: 1) we exist in the world, and for whatever physiological/psychological reasons, we have that kind of wonderful sensation [19:58] Pema Pera: 2) those are moments that show cracks in the too limited belief in a world that exists in space and time, and something wider shines through "out of Plato's cave" so to speak, totally different [19:58] Pema Pera: I sense that you follow hypothesis 1) and I follow hypothesis 2)
    Back to differences.
    Threedee Shepherd: Well, while it would appear that (2) is the more "liberal" hypothesis, and offers greater possibility, I must admit that the doing of this brain/body on a daily basis is grounded in a pragmatic acceptance of (1). So I suspect we do differ.
    Pema Pera: yes, I think we do -- which makes life interesting :)
    Threedee Shepherd: what I need to poonder is how (1) could coexist with (2) and not be a hindrance to ever finding (2)
    Pema Pera: the answer is what you quoted of what I said
    Pema Pera: for 2) there is the presence of appearance of what can be interpreted as 1)
    Pema Pera: still not completely correct, but as a first approximation
    Pema Pera: when we say a dream is not real we do not deny the experience of dreaming
    Pema Pera: similarly I don't deny that there is the appearance of what we call a world -- it would be foolish to deny that
    Pema Pera: but I deny the reality of all the layers, all the conceptual handles that we are adding constantly!
    Pema Pera: far more than we are normally aware of
    Pema Pera: we are buying into twenty layers, and then try to liberate us from the twentyfirst layer
    Threedee Shepherd: we may not have different standpoints as much as, instead, different viewpoints.
    Pema Pera: or perhaps we could say that I don't have a point :-)
    Pema Pera: that my story is pointless
    Pema Pera: neither viewpoint nor standpoint
    Pema Pera: although I have to use words that sound like that to make any sense at all, provisonally
    Threedee Shepherd: OK, let me be blunt for sake of argument. If (1) is true and is all there is, the (2) is a fool's errand.
    Pema Pera: yes, absolutely!
    Pema Pera: and if 2) is true that 1) is a foolish way to shackle yourself into an imagined world of suffering
    Threedee Shepherd: agreed
    Pema Pera: agreed
    Our first version of agreement; another one would follow later.
    Pema Pera: so we agree to disagree ?
    Pema Pera: :-)
    Pema Pera: I mean: it seems that we agree that we have different working hypotheses, not necesarily different beliefs or anything heavy like that, I mean
    Threedee Shepherd: Pema, I have come a long way during my time in PaB. I have learned that there is no *I* other than my doing. I have some sense that "everything arises perfectly" (but still may have a quibble). Going all the way to (2) will require a non-incremental jump.
    Pema Pera: yes, and trying to force that will never work
    Pema Pera: the best thing to do is to consider both hypotheses, 1) and 2)
    Threedee Shepherd: I find it humorous that I just thought theologically of Tillich's Leap Of Faith ^.^
    Threedee was referring to the German theologian Paul Tillich, who fled Nazi Germany to immigrate into the U.S.  I responded in a bit of a flippant mode :-).
    Pema Pera: and at least try their flavors
    Pema Pera: yes, that is actually connected
    Pema Pera: even theologians, who I . . .hmmm, how to say it politely, on the record . . .hmmm. . .. xxxxxx, even they can have a real intuition of 2)
    Pema Pera: :-)
    Threedee Shepherd: When I try to consider (1) and (2) from the *standpoint* of (1) [which is still where I stand], I am hampered in giving (2) a fai explorations, for many of the reasons stated earlier by you.
    Pema Pera: yes, that is a very important conclusion, and totally right, I think.
    Pema Pera: In fact, that is what religious practitioners see in full force, after years of meditation trying to "get" enlightened, with the best of intentions
    Pema Pera: and when they really really see that, something can be so totally dropped that 2) opens
    Pema Pera: it is fascinating to read the account of "waking up" written by the great practitioners of whatever tradition
    Threedee Shepherd: mmhmm
    Pema Pera: their first statement is pretty much what you just wrote
    Threedee Shepherd: You can lead a (1) towards (2), but you can't make him increment ^.^
    Corvuscorva Nightfire giggles.
    Pema Pera: "how could it be that I never saw what was staring me in the face all that time -- I was trying to reach it in a round-about way, for which I now see that it could neither work, nor was it necessary or even possible"
    Pema Pera: hehe, Threedee
    Pema Pera: You don't have to lead a 1) toward 2) because he/she is already in 2) :-)
    Pema Pera: always already was
    Another visitor showed up and joined us.
    Pema Pera: Hi Zoey
    Zoey Warwillow: hello
    Pema Pera: how are you?
    Threedee Shepherd: Yes, I lately asserted a new aphorism: You are already enlightened--Perhaps you have not noticed this.
    Zoey Warwillow: okay i suppose, feeling a little off balance today
    Pema Pera: have you been here before?
    Threedee Shepherd: However, the discussion is all hidden in the word "enlightened" then.
    Claudio Marialla: I'm exploring this SL, I will check the website, thanks for inviting mee Pema...
    Pema Pera: yw, Claudio!
    Zoey Warwillow: no, first time here for me, i've been in SL about two weeks
    Pema Pera: feel free to come back any time!
    Pema Pera: Do you enjoy exploring SL so far?
    Zoey Warwillow: yes i do, it's a bizarre place
    Threedee Shepherd: Pema is it possible that a "danger" of (2) is ignoring important practicalities of (1)
    Pema Pera: haha, perhaps our place is the most bizarre . . . just wait and see.
    Pema Pera: As for us: 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?
    Pema Pera: Threedee, that danger means a misunderstanding of 2)
    Pema Pera: 2) implies all of 1)
    Zoey Warwillow: no, exploring the universe inside me is about the most controlled thing I can think of doing here
    Pema Pera: nothing excluded
    Pema Pera: ah, I am an astronomer, exploring the universe outside us as well :-)
    Zoey Warwillow: lol, i'm just a former professional emoter....used to be an actress
    Pema Pera: and I also like to explore consciousness, and I think we are in consciousness rather than consciousness being within us -- we are discussing just that point
    Pema Pera: so my view is that we are all actors and actresses :-)
    Zoey Warwillow: in consciousness being a more active definition?
    Pema Pera: in short, the world as seen stretching in space and in past-present-future may ultimately be an illusion
    Pema Pera: but sorry, Threedee, didn't mean to stop you.
    Zoey Warwillow: this isn't one of those "we are all brains in jars receiving electrical impluses" is it?
    Pema Pera: on the contrary, Zoey
    Zoey Warwillow: sorry, i get a little smart assed
    Pema Pera: we try to see what happens when we drop all concepts and ideas about what we could possibly be
    Threedee brought up a very important point, a kind of self-sensorship that we all feel; in the flow of the conversation I didn't get a chance to respond to this, but I hope we can come back to this aspect soon.
    Threedee Shepherd: Pema, it would seem that for someone in (1) the leap to (2) would have no disadvantages--at least logically. Yet, there is a clear feeling within me (at least now) that keeps the muscles from jumping. Not a wish, a sensed embodiment.
    Pema Pera: and see what happens when we stop, drop, and see - short summary of long story -- and I'm happy you ask questions -- we all do here, to each other!
    Pema Pera: well, let us take that one sentence, Threedee, and very carefully analyze it
    Pema Pera: strictly speaking someone in 1) cannot leap to 2), for starters
    Pema Pera: I may sound pedantic, but it really is such an essential point.
    Zoey Warwillow: define "jump"
    Threedee Shepherd: So to get to (2) I must return to (0)?
    Pema Pera: For Zoey: here is how we can started:
    Pema Pera: [19:57] Pema Pera: let us say we have a choice of two hypotheses to follow [19:57] Threedee Shepherd: ok [19:57] Pema Pera: 1) we exist in the world, and for whatever physiological/psychological reasons, we have that kind of wonderful sensation [19:58] Pema Pera: 2) those are moments that show cracks in the too limited belief in a world that exists in space and time, and something wider shines through "out of Plato's cave" so to speak, totally different [19:58] Pema Pera: I sense that you follow hypothesis 1) and I follow hypothesis 2)
    Pema Pera: we are already in 2)
    Pema Pera: there is nothing we have to do
    Pema Pera: nothing we can do
    Threedee Shepherd: unless there is no (2), in which case we are in a dangerous illusion.
    Zoey Warwillow: i am not so logically driven as you, can you give an example of these instances of something shining wider so i can try to catch up
    Pema Pera: completely agreed, Threedee
    Zoey Warwillow: i live in the moment much of the time
    Threedee Shepherd: That is you suggested a moment ago that I at least consider both (1) and (2) as hypotheses. Yet what you just said is that in fact only (2) exists
    Pema Pera: (sorry, Zoey, we have a habit to stop for one and a half minute, after each quarter of an hour, that's were we were temporarily silent)
    Zoey Warwillow: yes, i waited for the little note to come up and say thank you
    Pema Pera: Zoey, let me send you a few lines in IM in a moment, of what we said more concretely, just a sec
    Zoey Warwillow: sorry to slow things down
    Pema Pera: meanwhile, Threedee: yes, I may have said "exists" because I have to use words, but didn't mean that in a heavy way
    Pema Pera: no, Zoey, I'm glad you joined us :)
    Pema Pera: so I'm speaking from the 2) hypothesis, that says: only 2 is real
    Pema Pera: or super-real, beyond the notion of what can be real in 1)
    Zoey added a nicely vivid perspective:
    Zoey Warwillow: i try to view life more or less in a constant state of wonderous disbelief
    Threedee Shepherd: Implied by what you say Pema is that there is no way you can hear me suggest that you consider (1) and (2) as equally plausible hypotheses, without your being self contradictory?
    Pema Pera: that's a nice summary of what I call working with a working hypothesis, Zoey
    Pema Pera: contradictory within which framework, Threedee?
    Pema Pera: that of 1)?
    Threedee Shepherd: (2)
    Pema Pera: there is no framework for 2)
    Pema Pera: no standpoint
    Threedee Shepherd: as in assuing (1) OR (2)
    Zoey Warwillow: so it's more or less a cosmic kick in the head that tells you that there is something larger than yourself, a "looking behind the curtain" of the mundane?
    Pema Pera: but then you need a meta framework in which to compare both, which there isn't
    Pema Pera: you could call it that way, Zoey, to make it more expressive :-)
    Pema Pera: may I put what you said in different words, Threedee, as a try?
    Pema Pera: Starting with 1), 2) makes no sense
    Threedee Shepherd: pema is it possible that "assertion of no framework"=tautology
    Zoey Warwillow: that's the only way i quantify, stats and clinical termsa don't grab ahold of my spirit and shake it
    Pema Pera: Starting with 2), there is no such thing as 1) since 1) is part of 2)
    Pema Pera: ergo: we cannot talk about 1) and 2) as two comparable hypotheses, strictly speaking
    Pema Pera: they are not even apples and oranges, the differences run so deep!
    Pema Pera: sure, that is possible Threedee, within 1) -- within 1), 2) really really doesn't make sense
    Pema Pera: yes Zoey, I also try to start with experience
    Zoey Warwillow: so does 2 destroy 1 or is it possible that 1 never existed to begin with?
    Pema Pera: 2) doesn't have to destroy anything since for 2) nothing ever existed or can exist
    Pema Pera: neither 1 nor 2
    Zoey Warwillow: so with the Christian martyr example it is seeing beyond what we call "reality" and instead can gleam a deeper more "real" reality?
    Threedee Shepherd: So, Pema, it sounds like all you can say/suggest to me if that i keep watching "out of the corner of my eye" on the off chance that one day i will ceddenly realize that it is infact the central view after all?
    Threedee Shepherd: *suddenly
    Pema Pera: yes, that is a way to put it, Zoey -- but when putting it that way, we necessarily have to use words, which all get their meaing from 1, so the next thing to do is to be very careful what each word can possibly mean in 2
    Pema Pera: not so much "one day" Threedee, and not an all-or-nothing
    Zoey Warwillow: must jet
    Pema Pera: see you, Zoey, feel free to come back here,
    Pema Pera: we get together four times a day
    Pema Pera: 1 am 7 am 1 pm 7 pm
    Zoey left and we continued with the question of gradual/incremental.
    Threedee Shepherd: but not incremental, you suggested
    Pema Pera: I would say, Threedee, that just doing the 9-sec is one way to gradually open up for at least the possibility of 2)
    Pema Pera: of what that could mean
    Threedee Shepherd: Agreed
    Pema Pera: to see more and more glimpses of how radical and non-gradual it is
    Pema Pera: the increasing frequency of glimpses is a gradual process (as seen from within 1)
    Pema Pera: but what the glimpses are glimpses of is something non-gradual, 2
    Threedee Shepherd: Well, one can teach an old lion new tricks, but it takes longer.
    Pema Pera: you never know, Threedee :-)
    Pema Pera: you may get hit by lighting :)
    Pema Pera: *lightning
    Threedee Shepherd: ok, but being hit by lighting seems safer
    Pema Pera: hehehe
    Pema Pera: Perhaps I am wrong!
    Bertrum Quan: you haved a good deal of faith Pema
    Bertrum Quan: in 2
    Pema Pera: I really do want to keep considering that possibility!
    Pema Pera: I have the faith that it is very much worthwile to explore the hypothesis that 2 is right
    Pema Pera: that is differenf from blind faith that it is right
    Pema Pera: I can be wrong, but so far 2 has helped me more in my life than 1
    Threedee Shepherd: Simple statement: I suspect (2) is an aspect of the *Mystery* I will never comprehend, But maybe not.
    Pema Pera: that is the *only* thing that I can really say -- the rest is and remains hypothesis
    Threedee Shepherd: thank you, that is a useful and honest statement
    Pema Pera: you as Threedee or your typist will never . . . . the you you really are already understands it (according to 2)
    Pema Pera: so I am pragmatically 2 and you are pragmatically 1
    Pema Pera: perhaps we are rather similar after all :-)
    Threedee Shepherd: indeed
    Pema Pera: we agree to agreeably see agreements in our disagreements
    Threedee Shepherd: yes ^.^
    So this was our second agreement, and it felt like a deeper one.
    Pema Pera: thank you so much for a wonderful discussion!
    Threedee Shepherd: Yes, It is the one I have been hoping to have for a long time
    Pema Pera: I'm glad we got a chance. It feels like we made a kind of foundation, upon which we can then build
    Threedee Shepherd: yes, I will be pondering on this muchly
    Pema Pera: I also learned a lot, by trying to put into words what seems to resist doing so -- each time I try, I see/feel/sense it all just a bit more clearly
    Pema Pera: very much like in mathematics: explaining a complex theorem you thought you already knew helps you see it more clearly yourself
    Threedee Shepherd: I agree that such is one of the greatest benefits of persistent attendance at PaB, for me.
    Pema Pera: yes, for me too
    Bertrum Quan: persistence in vision allows to see the illusion of real movement in time and space.
    Bertrum Quan: (as in the cinema)
    Threedee Shepherd: Oh Bert, MUCH to late to go there now :D
    Pema Pera: :-)
    Pema Pera: persistence helps see what any hypothesis really entails . . . .
    Bertrum Quan: only 24 frames per second
    Pema Pera: I think I'm going to try to sleep for a few hours, before my next session, at 1 am SLT :-)
    Threedee Shepherd: true, Pema, and perhaps it is also relevant to examine hypothesis netrails.
    Threedee Shepherd: ;D
    Corvuscorva Nightfire nodsnods.
    Threedee Shepherd: *entrails
    Pema Pera: netrails?
    Pema Pera: :-)
    Pema Pera: oh yes, inside and out
    Pema Pera: working hypotheses are to be worked with
    Pema Pera: with a great work-out :-)
    Threedee Shepherd: I thank you for staying up rest well
    Bertrum Quan: 'night Pema
    Threedee Shepherd: I too will be off, goodnight
    Pema Pera: see you all soon again!
    Pema Pera: be well
    Pema Pera: and thanks again!
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    Originally written on 18:36, 23 Apr 2009
    This was a long, hard slog to read through, but it's a brilliant discussion. Candidate for our "greatest hits" page, methinks!
    Posted 07:39, 9 Apr 2010
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