2009.04.06 13:00 - Stop before it's too late!

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    The Guardian for this meeting was Stim Morane. The comments are by Stim Morane.

    {We reviewed a few options regarding the appreciation of “what appears”, and shuffled off in a very dangerous new direction.}

    Scathach Rhiadra: Hello Stim
    Stim Morane: Hi Scathach!
    Stim Morane: How are you today?
    Scathach Rhiadra: good, thank you, and you?
    Stim Morane: OK. A bit busy ...
    Scathach Rhiadra: Did you get to look at the wiki yet?
    Stim Morane: No, sorry. Could you remind me of where to look?
    Scathach Rhiadra: its at http://ways-of-knowing.wik.is/
    Fefonz Quan: Hello Scath, Stim, Qt :)
    Scathach Rhiadra: Hello Fefonz, QT
    Stim Morane: Hi Qt, Fefonz
    Qt Core: hi all
    Lia Rikugun: hello everyone
    Scathach Rhiadra: Hello Lia
    Qt Core: hi Lia
    Fefonz Quan: Hello Lia
    Trevor Berensohn: Oh hello all =)
    Scathach Rhiadra: Hello Trevor, Pema
    Qt Core: hi Trevor, Pema
    Stim Morane: Hi, Lia, Trevor, Pema
    Lia Rikugun: hello trevor and pema
    Pema Pera: Hi everybody!
    Fefonz Quan: hello trevor, pema
    Pema Pera: Shall we get started with our PaB theme meeting?
    Pema Pera: The topic is again "appreciate the presence of appearance"
    Pema Pera: with Stim and I as moderators
    Trevor Berensohn nods
    Stim Morane: Oh ... I was hoping you would forget ...
    Scathach Rhiadra: :)
    Scathach Rhiadra: Hello Pila
    Pema Pera: well, do you have another theme you prefer, Stim?
    Lia Rikugun: hello pila
    Pila Mulligan: greetings
    Stim Morane: No, just hoping ...
    Fefonz Quan: Hey Pila
    Stim Morane: :)
    Stim Morane: Hi Pila
    Pema Pera: Last week toward the end we talked about the notion of "existence"
    Pema Pera: and whether it was important to consder something as really existing in order to appreciate it
    Fefonz Quan: (ah, and mere appearances was dropped on us 8 minutes before the clock...)
    Pema Pera: and what existence could mean
    Pema Pera: Yes, Stim introduced "mere appearances"
    Pema Pera: as opposed to the "sheer appearances" that I talked about
    Stim Morane: Can you say a little re the latter?
    Pema Pera: for me, the term "appearance" is a useful way to indicate phenomena beyond teh subject-object split
    Pema Pera: phenomena are generally considered experienced phenomena, with an experiencer experiencing the phenomena
    Pema Pera: and those phenomena can be anything at all: sense impressions, memories, feelings, thoughts
    Wol Euler: hello everyone, sorry I'm late
    Gaya Ethaniel: Hello :)
    Pema Pera: so appearances are those phenomena in some sense, but without the subject-object split asumed
    Pema Pera: assumed
    Pema Pera: that I would call "sheer appearance"
    Stim Morane: So how is "existence" handled by "sheer appearance"?
    Pema Pera: the belief in the existence of anything is another phenomenon
    Pema Pera: that in turn can also be appreciated as an appearance
    Stim Morane: so you consider it an add-on, a belief
    Pema Pera: not an add-on from the every-day way of looking at things; there it is central
    Pema Pera: but from the angle of seeing everything arising as appearance, there is nothing but appearance, and all we can say about appearance is that it is present -- there is the presence of appearance that cannot be denied, and more positively, that can be appreciated
    Stim Morane: Yes, so you don't actually consider the existence of things given within appearance to be part of the appearance
    Pema Pera: that is mostly a matter of what words to hang off it . . . .
    Pema Pera: the sense of existence appears, for sure
    Stim Morane: OK, I won't push this. But it's actually a very complex matter, and dozens of different disciplines would have different views about it.
    Pema Pera: yes, agreed
    Pema Pera: so let us look a bit more carefully then
    Trevor Berensohn: Is it assumed that everyone has that sense, Pema?
    Pema Pera: In general, our tendency is to consider that the world exists prior to us, independently, as a backdrop, and we then appear on it at some point
    Pema Pera: that view would start with the existence of the world
    Pema Pera: and that view, while valid in a practical way, I would consider ultimately a fiction
    Trevor Berensohn: Ah ok
    Pema Pera: correct in the context of the story that we all buy into, of how things seem to be,
    Pema Pera: but not correct in a more fundamental sense
    Pema Pera: would you agree, Stim?
    Stim Morane: Well, I was suggesting a different view last time. But it's not necessarily important for this group's work.
    Pema Pera: I'd like to hear your different view, Stim!
    Stim Morane: Wouldn't you prefer to follow through on the one you started to lay out?
    Stim Morane: That might be the best place to start.
    Pema Pera: Well, let me give a simple example
    Pema Pera: perhaps that could be a starting point
    Stim Morane: OK
    Pema Pera: If you really appreciate a flower, in front of you, in its presence right here and now
    Pema Pera: then on the one hand, you don't care about the atoms and molecules it is built out of, you rather take in the whole flower
    Pema Pera: but on the other hand, if it would turn out to be a hologram, you might feel cheated
    Pema Pera: so material existence is and is not important
    Pema Pera: could that be a starting point?
    Stim Morane: Continue ...
    Pema Pera: What I tried to say is that the actual presence of a unique flower is important
    Pema Pera: and we would feel cheated with a "mere appearance" of a flower though a hologram or projection
    Pema Pera: but the sense of actuality and uniqueness is not necessarily tied up with a kind of solidity of material presence
    Pema Pera: -- for one thing, physics tells us that atoms are mostly empty and can best seen as kind of wave functions, whatever they may be --
    Pema Pera: so perhaps this helps in talking about different aspects of existence, no?
    Stim Morane: I have no particular comments. Does anyone else have a response?
    Fefonz Quan: (well the hologram sure ly have only some of a flowers characteristics.
    Fefonz Quan: tech geeks might appereciate it, but wouldnt be able to pick the flower from the hologram)
    Gaya Ethaniel: If the universe is hologram....?
    Fefonz Quan: if the hologram flower has all the atributes of a 'real' flower, what's the difference?
    Qt Core: then we are holograms too
    Pema Pera: I had hoped that Steven would defend his notion of existence . . . .
    Pema Pera: but I guess he won't :-)
    Pema Pera: oops, *Stim
    Stim Morane: I just don't want to redirect things too much.
    Stim Morane: IT's best to stick to one approach, probably. At least for a while.
    Pema Pera: which one, Stim?
    Stim Morane: Yous ... ?
    Stim Morane: *yours
    Stim Morane: :))
    Pema Pera: oh, I could go in many different directions . . .
    Trevor Berensohn: Hmmm seems helpful to know alternatives & think it through, Stim
    Stim Morane: all I could do would be to say a little more about what I was suggesting last time.
    Pema Pera: I think that would be interesting
    Pema Pera: many of us were puzzled
    Stim Morane: well ... ok
    Stim Morane: To take Buddhism as an example, some of its schools do use practices centering on seeing everything that “appears” as a “mere appearance”, like an illusion, a day dream or dream, a cloud castle, a fiction, etc. People do retreats where they concentrate on this perspective, day and night.
    Stim Morane: This would seem to suggest that such traditions actually think that ordinary things don’t exist, but are like illusions that can be penetrated by meditation practice. But that’s not actually true … the “theory” officially held in those cases is that things exist, but that we need to see more of what “existence” actually involves. This latter is what I was pushing last time.
    Stim Morane: The practices emphasizing things like illusions, dreams—and by extension, movies etc—are only used as antidotes to entrenched habits of attachment, and are not meant to speak for or represent the more sophisticated theory side of these traditions. Like all antidotes, they could be good medicine or poisons, depending on how clearly they’re understood.
    Fefonz Quan: And that was quite surprising, cause i thought thats' exactly what we do in APAPB
    Fefonz Quan: and it seemed you said we got it all wrong
    Stim Morane: well I certainly wasn't trying to say that, sorry
    Stim Morane: The question of whether the “existence” of a familiar object is actually perceived or is rather an assumption added on to perception (which could thus be bracketed or suspended) is extremely complex.
    Stim Morane: really, my only point is that if we bracket existence, or put it aside, we miss a lot of what it actually involves.
    Stim Morane: But I accept that there are many viable approaches, especially on the practice side.
    Fefonz Quan: So while doing APA, we just exersice in suspeding the existance of things?
    Stim Morane: I'm not sure about this ... Pema?
    Lia Rikugun: (I am sorry I have to leave...)
    Stim Morane: Bye, Lia
    Wol Euler: bye lia, take care
    Scathach Rhiadra: bye Lia
    Fefonz Quan: bye Lia
    Pema Pera: I am not sure either, Stim, I think there are many possible approaches
    Gaya Ethaniel: Bye Lia
    Pema Pera: and I think it is good to look at several of them
    Pema Pera: and compare them, so that we don't get stuck in one or the other
    Stim Morane: What I'm referring to is the traditional emphasis on "codependent arising" in Buddhism. This is not easy to see, and involves a great many levels.
    Stim Morane: So there one wouldn't really say that things don't exist, just that existence is a codependently-given thing. This is the entry into yet more subtle and higher ways of knowing.
    Stim Morane: For example, it would be rather ungrateful to say that the computers we're using to have this conversation don't actually exist.
    Stim Morane: :)
    Wol Euler: :)
    Pema Pera: yes, every utterance is made within a context
    Stim Morane: Yes
    Pema Pera: so the question is, are we willing and able to explore beyond the given context we find ourselves in?
    Pema Pera: and "willing" and "able" are connected
    Trevor Berensohn: Heh
    Pema Pera: if we think we are not able, then willing seems to be blocked
    Stim Morane: Yes. And my emphasis is usually on seeing more of what the ordinary context include, before trying to go beyond it. That's actually the Way to go beyond it.
    Stim Morane: *includes
    Stim Morane: But I admit there are other practices and emphases
    Fefonz Quan: so in what way appereciating appearances get us to see more of the ordinary context?
    Fefonz Quan: (or beyond it?)
    Tarmel Udimo: So is it a mattare of needing both object and subject , for the moment to exist or is it that in seeing existence one is seeing the potential of the ordinary so to speak
    Gaya Ethaniel: Could you say a bit more about co-dependence of existence Stim?
    Tarmel Udimo: matter
    Trevor Berensohn: Umm & is it co-dependence, or inter-dependence?
    Stim Morane: existence is something that involves a codependence on acts of the mind, and of the senses, and even thought etc
    Stim Morane: This can be seen
    Trevor Berensohn: Or is there a difference..
    Stim Morane: Both work
    Trevor Berensohn: k
    Stim Morane: one can suspend the existence issue and just concentrate on things as appearances, but that's a different approachh
    Stim Morane: anyway, I'm not pushing a classical path based on codependent arising. I was just mentioning it.
    Pema Pera: so in the light of all those options, we could try to be minimalist
    Pema Pera: and ask ourselves what is the minimum set of assumptions that seems reasonable
    Gaya Ethaniel: Thank you Stim, it sounds like something I'd like to look into further. :)
    Pema Pera: and "presence of appearance" was one candidate
    Pema Pera: since that would be hard to deny
    Stim Morane: :0
    Stim Morane: :)
    Fefonz Quan seconds Gaya re codependant arising
    Pema Pera: would you have another candidate, Stim?
    Pema Pera: such as starting with co-dependent arising?
    Tarmel Udimo: Yes that would be good
    Wol Euler nods
    Stim Morane: The reason why I was reluctant to even mention my own, more traditional approach based on codependent arising is that it’s hard, and requires a lot of practice and investigation. Also, here in PaB and in the pheno workshop etc, there is a particular approach that has cohesion and may be better suited to use in SL.
    Stim Morane: I think you should continue with the approach already in service.
    Stim Morane: You can always try others later ...
    Fefonz Quan: evidentaly we would like our approaches to get to RL, not only SL i guess
    Stim Morane: Yes, of course
    Pema Pera: the question is mostly what we can convey in SL, the extent to which we can unfold a program of exploration, to be carried out in both RL and SL, through meeting in the medium of SL
    Stim Morane: Yes
    Pema Pera: The 9-sec exploration was a deliberate attempt to package something simple to be conveyed through SL channels
    Pema Pera: almost like poetry: trying to express something significant in a few lines
    Pema Pera: and "appreciate the presence of appearance" is along those lines -- simple instructions
    Pema Pera: with very profound consequences when you pursue them
    Fefonz Quan raises an eyebrow for calling the PaB sessions few lines :) mostly after the lst chatlogs ;)
    Pema Pera: hehehe
    Pema Pera: it is all relative :-)
    Tarmel Udimo: Well we do speak about 'arising' quite a bit, as well as co-arising, so co-dependent arising felt appropriate as well
    Scathach Rhiadra nods
    Fefonz Quan nods
    Pema Pera: yes, I'd be happy to see Stim say more about that
    Pema Pera: perhaps next week?
    Pema Pera: Monday, April 13?
    Stim Morane: this is exactly what I was hoping to avoid!
    Stim Morane: :(
    Wol Euler: oh dear.
    Pema Pera: well, popular demand, Stim !
    Trevor Berensohn: Haha
    Tarmel Udimo: yes that was pretty clear Stim:-)
    Gaya Ethaniel: :(
    Pema Pera: you opened the can last week
    Wol Euler: vox populi etc
    Stim Morane: No I just read the label on it
    Pema Pera: and all of us are co-arisingly pleading you to talk!
    Stim Morane: seriously, I spent many years working on this kind of thing, and it isn't at all easy.
    Stim Morane: I'm not sure that anything of this emphasis would be best for PaB
    Fefonz Quan: we can be uneasy here ;-)
    Stim Morane: I only just mentioned it ... as Fefonz suggested, something of this may already be present in what you've been doing.
    Fefonz Quan: yet if it is we fail to see it, hence teh big interest :)
    Tarmel Udimo: Yes it is a big topic, is there perhaps a simple version that through your years of understanding you can impart to us
    Stim Morane: stop before it's too late?
    Tarmel Udimo: hahaaha
    Pema Pera: there is always another session :)
    Tarmel Udimo: it is too late
    Stim Morane: sigh
    Tarmel Udimo: us PaB obsessives are already doomed Stim
    Stim Morane: I'm beginning to think you may be right, Tarmel
    Fefonz Quan: are you suggesting it is a dead end path Stim? (i would guess not, juast asking)
    Stim Morane: it's a long and complex path
    Tarmel Udimo: blame Pema:-)
    Stim Morane: but you could do just a bit, perhaps
    Wol Euler: Stim, if your years of experience and your intuition are telling you that this is not right for the time/ability/situation that we have here, then I think you should stand by that.
    Stim Morane: well, take a simple case ... is there someone in your life that you're really angry at?
    Stim Morane: If so, you could use that as an opportunity to investigate codependent arising
    sophia Placebo: i have one in sl
    Fefonz Quan: like my anger arises codependantly of him entering the room?
    Stim Morane: :)
    Stim Morane: well, see what you see
    Stim Morane: I guess we have to stop now.
    Trevor Berensohn: Hmmm why do we have to stop now?
    Stim Morane: Sorry, I should have said I need to go.
    Pema Pera: well, let's see whether your presence next week, Stim, and our presence with co-dependently give rise to your talking about co-dendent arising!
    Stim Morane: Please continue
    Pila Mulligan: :)
    Corvuscorva Nightfire laughs..we're greedy for your words. Thank you, Stim.
    Pema Pera: I'll have to leave too
    Gaya Ethaniel: Thank you Stim, enjoy your day.
    Wol Euler: bye stim, thank you.
    Pema Pera: thank you all for joining us!
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: Thank you, Pema.
    Fefonz Quan: Thank you Stim :)
    Wol Euler: and bye again pema
    Stim Morane: bye everyone!
    Tarmel Udimo: Bye Stim & Pema
    Scathach Rhiadra: bye Stim, thank you:)
    Gaya Ethaniel: Same here. Good day all.
    Qt Core: Bye Stim, Pera
    Pila Mulligan: bye
    Fefonz Quan: and Bye Perma, Stim Gaya
    Scathach Rhiadra: bye pema, thank you:0
    Wol Euler: 'night gaya
    sophia Placebo: bye stim
    Pema Pera: And, by the way, I'm in Berkeley now, so I have lots of chances to try to convince Stim to talk next week :-)
    Trevor Berensohn: Later
    Tarmel Udimo: grins
    Wol Euler: :)
    Fefonz Quan: cool :)
    Scathach Rhiadra: :)
    Pema Pera: bfn :)
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: bye, Gaya
    Qt Core: bye all, i'm going too
    Fefonz Quan: bye Qt
    Scathach Rhiadra: bye QT
    Wol Euler: bye qt, take care
    sophia Placebo: bye qt
    Pila Mulligan: bye Qt
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: bye, Qt
    Trevor Berensohn: Bye Qt
    Fefonz Quan: well we got him this time hehe ;-)
    Scathach Rhiadra: :)
    Corvuscorva Nightfire stands and stretches...time to go for me, too.
    Pila Mulligan: sorry to have missed most of the discussion
    Fefonz Quan: bye Corvi
    Scathach Rhiadra: bye corvi
    Pila Mulligan: seems like it was an interesting one
    Trevor Berensohn: Good to see everyone
    Pila Mulligan: bye Corvi
    Wol Euler: yes indeed
    Scathach Rhiadra: bye Trevor
    Wol Euler: bye trevor
    Trevor Berensohn: I'm off to shop!
    Pila Mulligan: bye Trevor
    Fefonz Quan: bye trevor
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: bye all
    Wol Euler: I must go too.
    Wol Euler: goodnight all!
    Pila Mulligan: bye WOl
    Pila Mulligan: o*
    Fefonz Quan: night Wol :)
    buddha Nirvana: good idea
    Scathach Rhiadra: I'm off too, night all, Namaste
    buddha Nirvana: bye all :)
    sophia Placebo: though i dont know how i would see the anger co araising
    Pila Mulligan: bye Scatach
    Pila Mulligan: h*
    Ferocious Melody: Bye all :) Such a large group....reminds me that I'm never hear at this time of day :) Is Eliza btw
    Fefonz Quan: bye Scath
    Pila Mulligan: hi Eliza
    Fefonz Quan: hi Eliza :)
    Pila Mulligan: bye Tarmel
    Tarmel Udimo: that's a big Doggy
    Fefonz Quan: that's a nice fury avatar
    Tarmel Udimo: nice doggy, don't bite Tarmel:-)
    Ferocious Melody: :) Hello :) heheh...am learning how to function in this very different view!
    Tarmel Udimo: patting her head and rubbing her ears
    Ferocious Melody: heheh
    Tarmel Udimo: ahhhhhh
    Pila Mulligan: I felt great empathy for both sides of that little contention at the end
    Tarmel Udimo: no contention, I think Stim has an incredibly DRY sense of humour:-)
    Fefonz Quan: yep :) though he did try to dodge that
    Tarmel Udimo: of course
    Fefonz Quan: i i'm glad we stood still co-d arising interests me for a long time now
    Pila Mulligan: I thnk Stim has a genuine concern about words becoming entangled
    Ferocious Melody: Of course
    sophia Placebo: hi jon
    Johann Muhindra: hello
    Fefonz Quan: adn that's great, especially with the issues we deal here
    Tarmel Udimo: yes i think he does Pila and doesn't want to step on Pema's territory so to speak
    Tarmel Udimo: by the way who is GOC
    Pila Mulligan: yes
    sophia Placebo: you missed the meeting ,ended 10 mints ago
    Tarmel Udimo: Hi Johann
    Fefonz Quan: donno Tarmel.
    Tarmel Udimo: are you new to PaB?
    Ferocious Melody: It is also new...dealing with these things in SL, even if you've been hre a while, is "new"..."can't" have years and years of experience there
    Ferocious Melody: Dealing with people in this context I mean :)
    Tarmel Udimo: yes good point Fer
    sophia Placebo: i should review the araising co araising in chat logs in the wiki
    Tarmel Udimo: they may be more in Pheono ones Sophia
    Pila Mulligan: Stim has a comfort zone with his Thursday workshop, where he carefully extends ideas he sees will work through SL
    Tarmel Udimo: yes that is a good workshop
    Ferocious Melody: I love that workshop, but I added not to be added because of the paperwork....
    Pila Mulligan: but he is more cautious there than the environment here wouold seem to allow
    sophia Placebo: i should check there too i guess then
    Ferocious Melody: :(
    Ferocious Melody: *asked rather than added not to be added
    Tarmel Udimo: yes what paperwork?
    Fefonz Quan: Yes Sophia, though i am not sure codependent arising was discussed a lot here. but maybe
    Ferocious Melody: When we begin to keep logs of homework and such, which is where it has turned I think
    sophia Placebo: so basically arising is seeing the -thing - as it apears ?
    Pila Mulligan: well, I had to go adjust the appearance of some dirt with a tractor earlier
    Ferocious Melody: :)
    Ferocious Melody: That is my understanding Sophia...what comes and goes
    Pila Mulligan: and it appears to be still unfinished ...
    Tarmel Udimo: yes Sophia
    Tarmel Udimo: see you later Pila
    sophia Placebo: bye pila
    Pila Mulligan: bye bye
    Ferocious Melody: Bye Pila!
    Fefonz Quan: I would say that even as it appears to be stable in our senses, still the arising happens every second
    sophia Placebo: what about the other word ?
    Fefonz Quan: bye Pila
    Pila Mulligan: aloha
    Fefonz Quan: co-dependent. it means that nothing exist by itself,
    Fefonz Quan: everything shows and arises dependant on other (all?) thing
    sophia Placebo: i love that word aloha : hello bye and love you
    Fefonz Quan: things*
    Fefonz Quan: yep :)
    sophia Placebo: i see
    Tarmel Udimo: yes its cool
    Ferocious Melody: :) Both words are Nice
    Fefonz Quan: though it is much more complex than that,
    Tarmel Udimo: well hate to be a party pooper, but RL calls
    Fefonz Quan: so don't take my (short) words for it as it is
    Ferocious Melody: Although codependent sounds is also something people have support groups for :)
    Tarmel Udimo: will be back on again a bit later
    sophia Placebo: bye tramel
    Ferocious Melody: Bye Tarmel, good to see you
    Tarmel Udimo: hahahaa
    Fefonz Quan: bye Tarmel :)
    Tarmel Udimo: good one Fer, throw that at the group next time
    Ferocious Melody: :)
    Fefonz Quan: hehe, Fero
    Tarmel Udimo: anyway waves good bye
    Fefonz Quan: and test their support :)
    Ferocious Melody: Well...actually in Psychology it means attachment in a way
    Ferocious Melody: So...co-arising is clearer for me anyway
    Fefonz Quan: well in the buddhist the term is 'codependant arising', and those together give the meaning i guess
    Ferocious Melody: But the idea of interdependence...of actually living that way, without the "attachment" is appealing
    Ferocious Melody: Yes, Fefonz, I think so
    Ferocious Melody: I'm sure that is what Stim is saying
    Fefonz Quan: infact it is traslated sometimes as interdependance arising i suspect
    sophia Placebo: well i guess co arising means too things apear togather or with attachment -but not necessearly that one of them is dependant on the other in its existance
    Ferocious Melody: Ah....like that. I was just thinking that if we did google searches and such might get confused with the psychological connotations
    Ferocious Melody: Hmmm sophia, good point
    Fefonz Quan: in fact i found the co-arising in Pheno very confusing and hard to define for me
    Fefonz Quan: in that case Feroc, google the combination
    Ferocious Melody: yes Fefonz...I'm sorting so much out! Imagine coming in over the last few weeks and reading all the logs and reports!
    Ferocious Melody: heheh
    Fefonz Quan never read all of them....
    Ferocious Melody: I've read many at this point...even just trying to grasp the end of the threads
    Fefonz Quan: Ferocious, it is funny how your ears are moving :)
    Ferocious Melody: :) Cute, huh?
    Fefonz Quan: yeah, very
    Ferocious Melody: >BIG GRIN<
    sophia Placebo: i shall leave , nice to meet you both and thanks for helping me with the words
    Ferocious Melody: Bye for now Sophia, See you soon
    Fefonz Quan: bye Sophia, see you later :)
    sophia Placebo: bye
    Ferocious Melody: Bye Fefonz, See you soon as well :) Thanks
    Fefonz Quan: bye Ferocious :)

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