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roshan
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2007 2:59 am    Post subject:  Reply with quote

norwegian wrote:
roshan wrote:
It is a bit difficult to explain the atma, as words such as consciousness are quite ambiguous. A decent explanation would be something that allows one to be aware of consciousness.


Here's a version of how consciousness arise:

Dependent on Ignorance arise Volitional Formations. Dependent on Volitional Formations arise Rebirth Consciousness. Dependent on Rebirth Consciousness arise Mind and Matter. Dependent on Mind and Matter arise the Sixfold Base. Dependent on the Sixfold Base arise Contact. Dependent on Contact arise Feeling. Dependent on Feeling arise Craving. Dependent on Craving arise Clinging. Dependent on Clinging arise Becoming. Dependent on Becoming arise Birth. Dependent on Birth arise Ageing and Death and sorrow, lamentation, pain, grief, and despair. Thus there is the arising of this whole mass of suffering.

- Extracted from the principles from Dependent Origination (how things arise.)

If you notice, the first link of the chain is ignorance and the last link suffering. Ignorance is canceled out by enlightenment. If you break the chain at the very beginning, the rest will break away and cease to exist. This is the central philosophy of Buddhism.


Yes, Avidya (ignorance) is also regarded by Advaita Vedanta as being the root of it all.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2007 3:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Almost missed this bit:

Quote:
Can you elaborate on what this means? I mean what is the "practice of spirituality"?


Practice of spirituality is very varied. It includes trying to acquire knowledge about spiritual matters and understanding them (Jnana Yoga) and then trying to investigate it using practices such as various techniques of meditation and yoga (Raja Yoga), and using bhakti yoga (devotion, love) and dharma yoga (performance of ones duties and righteous action regardless of the rewards or penalties). Basically, practice of spirituality is anything that elevates your state of mind away from animal instincts, attachments and desires as well as improves your character, thereby calming your mind.

Here are the spiritual practices which form a part of the Raja Yoga system:

Yama. Conduct of life in relation to others- avoiding untruth, theft, injury to others, sensuality and greed.
Niyama. Conduct towards oneself-cleanliness, tranquillity, austerity, study and devotion.
Asana. Stretching, bending, balancing and sitting exercises. These exercises are nowadays collectively known as Hatha Yoga.
Pranayama. Breathing exercises that aim to control the mind.
Pratyahara. Withdrawing the attention from the body and the senses.
Dharana. Concentration of the mind.
Dhyana. Meditation.
Samadhi. Uninterrupted contemplation of Reality.

As you can see, practice of spirituality involves a variety of different activities. There are many other activies incorporated by other systems of spirituality. Spirituality has very little to do with belief - for example, even if you dont believe animals have souls, by abstaining from meat eating you are basically abstaining from a life that causes cruelty and pain to other living beings, as well as breaking away from the animal instinct of meat eating and therefore gaining self control. All of which will help your spiritual progress.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2007 10:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Roshan

I will have to get back to you on a later account.

But thank you for putting the effort into explaining your view on the world in a sound way. I appreciate it.

Cheers
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 16, 2007 10:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Roshan

I've tried to study some more of the vedantic philosophy and it seems to me that your point of view is quite similar with of one Sankara. It seems that this person also have monistic view on the vedantic litteratures. And come think about the book I told you about, with a theistic view has some references to this person as being the

Haven't read this site, but I presume it's the same person that I've read about:
http://www.advaita-vedanta.org/avhp/sankara-life.html

Cheers
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2007 2:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tvebak wrote:
Hi Roshan

I've tried to study some more of the vedantic philosophy and it seems to me that your point of view is quite similar with of one Sankara. It seems that this person also have monistic view on the vedantic litteratures. And come think about the book I told you about, with a theistic view has some references to this person as being the

Haven't read this site, but I presume it's the same person that I've read about:
http://www.advaita-vedanta.org/avhp/sankara-life.html

Cheers


Yes, my views are very similar to Shankara. But Shankaracharya also accepts the idea of a pantheistic god (called saguna Brahman or Ishwar) alongside the monistic absolute reality (called nirguna Brahman).

BTW, "as being the"? It seems you didnt finish the sentence.
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 30, 2007 2:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

roshan wrote:
Tvebak wrote:
Hi Roshan

I've tried to study some more of the vedantic philosophy and it seems to me that your point of view is quite similar with of one Sankara. It seems that this person also have monistic view on the vedantic litteratures. And come think about the book I told you about, with a theistic view has some references to this person as being the

Haven't read this site, but I presume it's the same person that I've read about:
http://www.advaita-vedanta.org/avhp/sankara-life.html

Cheers


Yes, my views are very similar to Shankara. But Shankaracharya also accepts the idea of a pantheistic god (called saguna Brahman or Ishwar) alongside the monistic absolute reality (called nirguna Brahman).

BTW, "as being the"? It seems you didnt finish the sentence.


Hi Roshan

Yes I must have missed something there or perhaps I thought ahead of my comment and forgot to fill out that space. I don't remember what I should have written.

Quote:
Well, the word used for this sort of philosophy is "advaita" which is translated into English as "non-duality" - it is called non dualism in the sense that it does not recognize that  there is anything dual to or existing independent of the absolute reality (Brahman). The material (which includes the individual soul, karma, and even god, of one exists) is regarded to be superimposed on Brahman - hence, only Brahman exists. The material (maya) arises out of Brahman naturally - sort of like sparks or flames emanating out of a fire, or how the theoretical god particle combines in multiple ways to produce all of physical existence. You could claim that this philosophy is dualistic because it does contrast reality in its absolute state (Brahman) with reality in its relative state (Maya) - but in the end, Brahman and Maya are not dual to each other since it is the same reality viewed from different perspectives, with Maya being illussory in comparision to Brahman - like a child thinking that a rope is a snake in the dark. Once one is enlightened, one realizes that the snake is just a rope.


So how does it manifest itself in the way that we get to experience this illussory Maya? Why don't we just experience the true Brahman right away?

Cheers
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2008 3:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I personally don’t believe in duality. After approaching things logically and rationally I cannot accept that something immaterial and yet eternal could somehow influence the material part of us. I don’t believe in a soul as such — at least not one separate to our body. I believe that everything about us goes to make up our soul, and it does perish upon death. I don’t believe it ‘floats away’ anywhere after we die.
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2008 6:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tvebak wrote:
Mutley wrote:
The weirdest part about humans is that they can ask the question "why" as it pertains to cause or reason or purpose of something happening. This is the one clear separation between us and animals, as far as we know. It's not a matter of us being able to do it better as is the case with other intelligent things we do. It's a matter of animals not even beijng able to do it at all. Another bizarre element of humans is that they can judge themselves and observe themselves as if it were somebody else. Again, animals simply can't do this at all, as far as we can tell. So who is this observer/judge?


Hi Mutley

Well actually, in my opinon, it's a matter of us being able to do it "better" or as I would say it differently.


I don't even see where animals can do it differently. I see that animals can have emotions,  make decisions.... but they just don't do it in as complex a fashion as we do it. However, I don't see ANY ability for an animal to judge itself or observe it's actions as though it was observing someone else.

Tvebak wrote:

Cause what is exactly better?


It's not a matter of us doing it better because animals don't seem to do it at all.

Tvebak wrote:

You have other animals working out systems of using tools to get food or to make something. This is a process of learning why with a cause/reason/purpose etc.


I thought that I clearly said "why" as it pertains to "purpose", not how it pertains to figuring out a cause for something.


Tvebak wrote:

On another acount, you can say another animal abillity of hearing (specific tones), seeing in specific light or something else distinguish them from other animals.


You've completel6y missed the point. There is a difference between asking why as to discover the cause, and asking why as to try and discover the purpose.

Tvebak wrote:

But of course humans is different from other animals. Likewise are other animals different from other animals  (incl. humans). There's being invested great amount of time to study sociological behaviour in other animalgroups these years, of course mainly other animals which is close in relation to us humans. So we might get some new answers on the consciousness of our fellow-animals.

Cheers and peace


Nobody, except for us, appears to even remotetly ask the question "why" as it pertains to purpose. Not how it works, and therefore why it works, but what is the larger purpose that it is supposed to fill. This is a very unique question.

And again, I'll repeat that we are also able to observe and judge ourselves as if we were observing someone else. So who is the observer and who is the observed?
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2008 6:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

norwegian wrote:
roshan wrote:
It is a bit difficult to explain the atma, as words such as consciousness are quite ambiguous. A decent explanation would be something that allows one to be aware of consciousness.


Here's a version of how consciousness arise:

Dependent on Ignorance arise Volitional Formations. Dependent on Volitional Formations arise Rebirth Consciousness. Dependent on Rebirth Consciousness arise Mind and Matter.


How does cloning fit into this?
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2008 7:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mutley wrote:
Tvebak wrote:
Mutley wrote:
The weirdest part about humans is that they can ask the question "why" as it pertains to cause or reason or purpose of something happening. This is the one clear separation between us and animals, as far as we know. It's not a matter of us being able to do it better as is the case with other intelligent things we do. It's a matter of animals not even beijng able to do it at all. Another bizarre element of humans is that they can judge themselves and observe themselves as if it were somebody else. Again, animals simply can't do this at all, as far as we can tell. So who is this observer/judge?


Hi Mutley

Well actually, in my opinon, it's a matter of us being able to do it "better" or as I would say it differently.


I don't even see where animals can do it differently. I see that animals can have emotions,  make decisions.... but they just don't do it in as complex a fashion as we do it. However, I don't see ANY ability for an animal to judge itself or observe it's actions as though it was observing someone else.


Well it's like other animals have some abillities we don't have aswell, as I said last. Some hear better, some see better and by that using some part of the brain in another complex way as we use our brain in that field. Just like that we use our brain in a more complex way at this specific field.

Quote:
Tvebak wrote:

Cause what is exactly better?


It's not a matter of us doing it better because animals don't seem to do it at all.


I don't agree. I think it's a matter of degree.

Quote:
Tvebak wrote:

You have other animals working out systems of using tools to get food or to make something. This is a process of learning why with a cause/reason/purpose etc.


I thought that I clearly said "why" as it pertains to "purpose", not how it pertains to figuring out a cause for something.


Alright and this is in the region of degree. The question of "why" pertaning to different elements, hence we are doing it differently, maybe better.

Quote:
Tvebak wrote:

On another acount, you can say another animal abillity of hearing (specific tones), seeing in specific light or something else distinguish them from other animals.


You've completel6y missed the point. There is a difference between asking why as to discover the cause, and asking why as to try and discover the purpose.


I don't think I missed, maybe I was not clear on what I mean. At least I thought the things you are talking about now was what I was giving some thoughts on.

Quote:
Tvebak wrote:

But of course humans is different from other animals. Likewise are other animals different from other animals  (incl. humans). There's being invested great amount of time to study sociological behaviour in other animalgroups these years, of course mainly other animals which is close in relation to us humans. So we might get some new answers on the consciousness of our fellow-animals.

Cheers and peace


Nobody, except for us, appears to even remotetly ask the question "why" as it pertains to purpose. Not how it works, and therefore why it works, but what is the larger purpose that it is supposed to fill. This is a very unique question.

And again, I'll repeat that we are also able to observe and judge ourselves as if we were observing someone else. So who is the observer and who is the observed?


I agree that the specific "question" seems to be unique, but I will still argue that it in a matter of degree compared to other animals. As to your other question I have said that plenty of other animal-groups have the abillity of feeling empathy, ie. putting itself in anothers position. As to other aspect of socialogical behaviour, observing, I said that there's is being comprehended a vast amount of interest in researching how different animals behave. Especially of those close relation we have, different variantians of chimps, gorillas etc.

As to your question you are the observer and you are being observed. I don't think there's a huge philosophical question in horizont there, but maybe you could give us your thoughts.

Cheers


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It's mine "." ...
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