The Road To Becoming A Warrior Part 9

Ego is thought of by many as just the negatively selfish aspects of our character. The idea is that there is a place of selflessness where one can be egoless and still survive as an individual. These people are blissed out apparently. Their message is always love. But as I have shown, love is the most ego oriented thing of all as it is inclusion in to self.

It is self oriented behaviour that seems mostly to be the work of ego. But Freud’s definition of ego was simply the rational mind. The consciousness and the human ability to discern.

The dictionary will tell us something like this:

1. Ego is the “I” or self of any person; distinguishing itself from other beings or ”selves” and from objects.

2. In psychoanalysis ego is the part of the psychic apparatus that experiences and reacts to the outside world and mediates between the base drives of the id and the demands of the social and physical environment.

3. egotism; conceit; self-importance.

So ego is a wide range of related concepts. In number 1 it is the self and the ability or tendency distinguish oneself from others. In two the emphasis is on ego being a mediating point between instinct and interaction with the outside world. But in 3 we see these negative connotations of ego: egotism, conceit, and self importance.

There is another way to say ego: subjectivity. Subjectivity is all about how things affect you. Or me for that matter. When I ask: How does this affect me, I am asking a subjective egocentric question. What subjectivity usually refers to is the “I” or self.

If I am greedy I am looking out for number one, me. But am I? Greed can have negative consequences because it is not appreciated by other people. If they feel cheated by you they may retaliate. Anything could happen from calling police to beating you to having you beaten, to having you killed. But then again that is how some people get rich so it seems to have its merits, if you don’t get yourself in trouble on the way.

Karma will tell us this will backfire. The three fold law tells us it will backfire and come back on us giving us three times the misery we cause others. But in reality some people seem to get away with it. In fact the motto: Greed is good, seems to be one that is touted often in the news on financial shows etc. But we know that greed is not good because it is not sustainable. It is impossible to keep earning more money every year. Eventually the bottom drops out as has happened recently. But no one has learned a thing.

Well actually some people have and they have been shouting it from roof tops. But most people think its business as usual. Others just say oh well. Some got richer some went broke. Who cares? The strong survive. So there is a conflict in the mind of society.

Yes, society has a mind. It is the total mind of all those who participate in it. Like QM, societies are studied statistically to predict their behaviour. But unfortunately QM is far more exact in its predictions than social statistics or group dynamics are. That is because there are large factions of the social mind in conflict with each other. A society is yet another layer of reality like cells and atoms are. Some might even say they don’t exist but that simply is not the case. Societies exist in the sense of a group containing many individuals. It acts on its own, so it seems, but it actually acts on the momentum and the thoughts of the people that make up the group. The group contains an economy, traditions, culture, religion, etc.

It can even be egocentric as in nationalism. This is yet another pattern we see on many levels. It’s me against them and us against them. This is what causes all the wars.

So it is easy to see why some would think ego a bad thing; and it can be. But what is there if there is no self? Because that is what ego is, the self. Are you ready to give self up to find god or the source? That’s what enlightenment in the Eastern religions is all about. Life is an illusion. The I is an illusion. The only way to get out of the illusion is to lose yourself in the all.

Most people, of course, think the real I is a soul. The soul merges with the source or goes back to the source. So the human ego is unimportant and in fact a hindrance to becoming enlightened. It is easy if you have this extra device called a soul to find and rely on. Because if you don’t, then losing the self is the most absurd thing you can strive for. Can we assume we have a soul? No. We can’t afford to assume anything. There is no evidence for a soul that lives on after death.

So first off, is this all an illusion? Yes and no. Yes there is a lot more to the world than what we see or perceive. But the layers below us make up the layers above us. So is the atomic layer reality? Is the cellular layer the real reality? Does it matter that a copper pipe is made of billions of copper atoms with mostly empty space between them but has the illusion of being solid?

If that is the way the world works then no. It is irrelevant. The pipe holds water. We still have to go to work to make money to feed ourselves and our kids. We still need shelter and security. So even if what we see and interact with is due to nothing but a bunch of light reflections or holographic information, it is irrelevant. We are still born, live and die just the same. Does it matter that the type you see on your screen is not ink on paper? It is the illusion of type face. But at the same time it is not an illusion. It still conveys the same message.

In other words, as long as there are layers to reality, and they all reflect the underlying layers of reality, then this layer is a result of those underlying layers and by learning about this layer we can get real information about the others.

It is only when we run into the idea that all the layers we see and know about are part of the illusion that we get in to trouble. Then it is impossible to know anything about reality at all because reality is the source and we the dream. Yet we have to suffer as if it is real. It hardly seems fair. It’s also rather absurd because then nothing we say or do can get us to enlightenment because even the techniques to get us there are part of the illusion and yes, even the idea of enlightenment is just part of the illusion.

So? So what? No matter whether that is true or not we still are born and live and die and need food and shelter. The illusion is the reality on this level and we live in this layer of the illusion. To us it is real and for all intents and purposes it is real. It doesn’t matter that it is an illusion. Unlike the movie the Matrix, there is no dream for us to come out of because according to this hypothesis we are the dream.

So the dream scenario may be correct but it is irrelevant even if it is. We have to live as if this reality because it is here that we suffer and here that we find ways out of suffering.

To the Pantheist nature is the source. We don’t go back to it when we die because we never left it. We are nature. There is nothing but nature. This is what mankind lives. It rings true. When we die we do not retain the I or ego. That is to the best of our knowledge all we can rationally say without assuming. The I probably does not go on to heaven or merge with a god. We cannot know a heaven or a god or a soul exists, so we cannot assume they do. The Seeker and the Pantheist cannot afford to put stock in those ideas.

If I do not assume everything is an illusion, do I automatically assume not everything is an illusion? Or do I automatically assume some things are not illusion? No. But I can hold that opinion based on the evidence at hand without holding it as a belief. To assume is to believe.

Any model we have of reality must fit our human experience. The dream or illusion model does not fit our experience at all. It can’t because it claims our experience is the illusion. How can they know? They cannot. This is why U.G left his teacher. His teacher told him that there were things he could never know. If the knowledge was not accessible to U.G how could his teacher possibly know anything about it? And then how could he know U.G could never know? Even if you so called found the source, how would you be sure it was reality and not just part of the illusion?

Most monks who have attained enlightenment or seek to attain it live in communities where they can work with no distractions and no worry about food or shelter or other basic needs. They practice celibacy, often vow poverty. Some give away all their possessions so they will not have any attachments to worldly things. Usually they have followers who provide them with food. The sacrifice used to double as a way for priests to make a living. Western churches as yen percent of your earnings. A few live like hermits working alone in a secluded place far away from all of mankind. Some of them can give themselves up almost completely to the task. What chance does a person living in the world with a husband or wife and kids have of finding enlightenment? How can such a person lose their ego completely? Who would want to?

The object of many monks is to stop the thought process for as long as possible. Some monks have attained states of non-thought for days on end. But even they come back eventually to take a rest from being attached to the source. Try that with a baby waking you up every two hours.

I told you about how the ego or conscious thought process educates the instinctive. But the thought process gets educated as well. It can become more rational and more logical. To me, logic and rationality are the key. Throwing them away is not the answer. As the conscious gets more educated the subconscious gets more educated, and do when you do drop in to the subconscious in meditation it too has more skills.

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24 comments

Business Success 5 years ago

Namaste,

Slarty,

I am beginning to get a pretty clear picture of what it is your life experience has taught you and the perception of reality you hold. Before going further, I would offer this to you: Read - and Study- A Course In Miracles. Your writing shows that you do not suffer from a lack of curiosity, but a lack of experiences with which to offer explanations of the Truth as you see it outside of the box of your accumulated knowledge learned from other sources. (It took me three attempts and 15 years to to "pass" the Course... that is to say it took that much time and effort to read it, understand it and then to perceive enough of the things it discusses to "see" the Truth it contains. Not that it is the Ultimate Truth and Reality, but that it gives a very much needed personal experience in order to raise consciousness to a higher lever in order to glimpse a higher reality...)

Your writings show a lack of seeing a fundamental starting point from which to begin approaching life as a Seeker, even though your writings also show that it is the Seeker's process you seem to be trying to find in your quest. That starting point is the realization that there is in fact Ego Self, and that there is in fact, Spirit Self.

I would offer that Ego, is that which the Mind forms in an effort to best "deal with" what it begins to experience as it (Mind) is formed and becomes aware of the brain's input from the body's sensory input. There are those who will argue that this begins from the moment of conception at the cellular level, and those who argue that this begins at the moment of birthing.

The Ego Self is created as a sort of a defense mechanism so as not to let the incredible amount information flowing into the Mind all at once overwhelm and traumatize it into simply babbling at this information flow, and allow it to process it in a linear logical sequential way at a pace to form images and thoughts and words making it understandable at some level.

In performing this function, it creates an "imaginary" Self, a false Self as a natural result of becoming an observer and interpreter of the external experiences it is sensing. It creates a personality to deal with this new experience of becoming a human being. But it is not the True Self, which at some point any human being on any given day through intuitional processes can become aware of...

My experiences and accumulation of knowledge and greater wisdom has shown me that the Ego then forms a "Primary Directive" of the perpetuation of itself and the total domination of the Individual that then becomes its sole purpose. It then uses all means to keep us ignorant of the Truth of the Spirit Self.

For once each and any of us attains the stage of Enlightenment that allows us to become aware of and begin accessing and using our True Self to live and experience our lives, we ultimately discard the Ego and its negaive, Fear based methods of living, and begin a life being who we naturally are coming from the constructive, positive, Love based authentic Spirit Self.

And the Ego can present itself as a kind, gentle "nice" person or an intimdating, brutal "bully" person. It can be and do anything it needs to in order to always be number 1. One of the ways to become aware ot the Ego is to notice the emotions that flow into your awareness whenever you perform an action either in a thoughtful kindly way or in an unthoughtful hurtful way. For the Ego uses emotion to validate its actions and reinforce the "reality" of itself. It uses positive loving emotions to do this and in the same way, for the same purpose it uses negaitive destructive emotions. Emotions seem to be the primary tool, the biggest hammer, of the Ego Self.

This is just a starter thought. It has taken me a lifetime of study and experiancing my Path to gain the wisdom to know the truth of this. There is not time or space here to go much further, and the process also requires time and a variety of expierences to turn the knowledge gained from studying into wisdom allowing enough of a glimpse to "know" the truth of what it is I am just touching on.

And as I have said elsewhere, though I do know more than many others, I know nothing of what others know... :-)

Also as I have said elsewhere: "Before Enlightenment, chopping wood and carrying water. After Enlightenment, chopping wood and carrying water."

Namaste,


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Spirit Whisperer 5 years ago from Isle of Man

"In other words, as long as there are layers to reality, and they all reflect the underlying layers of reality, then this layer is a result of those underlying layers and by learning about this layer we can get real information about the others."

Am I to understand by this that you are claiming that though you accept that the world is an illusion but in studying the illusion truth will eventually be revealed?

I personally cannot see how the study of untruth can ever reveal truth and am interested in what you have to say about this.

"This is why U.G left his teacher. His teacher told him that there were things he could never know. If the knowledge was not accessible to U.G how could his teacher possibly know anything about it? And then how could he know U.G could never know? Even if you so called found the source, how would you be sure it was reality and not just part of the illusion?"

I think the above paragraph holds to key to an underlying belief you hold and by which a lot of your thinking is motivated. I will write separately about that as I have duties to attend to now.

Your hub is obviously a sincere outpouring and reflects a genuine and sincere quest for truth and that is certainly going to attract more of the same and that cannot be a bad thing. You force me to think more deeply about these things and for that I Thank you Slarty.


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Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada Author

Business Success

I understand your position but I don't believe in spirit.

Please give me your definition of spirit. ;)


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Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada Author

"Am I to understand by this that you are claiming that though you accept that the world is an illusion but in studying the illusion truth will eventually be revealed?"

No. I am saying this may be an illusion in a sense but it is a layer of reality so all reality is accessible through it.


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Spirit Whisperer 5 years ago from Isle of Man

Thank you for getting back slarty. I am confused by how you are calling an illusion a layer of reality. Could you explain this to me because I find it difficult to understand how reality can be accessed through something that is false.


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Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada Author

SW

The simplest way to say this is that this is reality, but only a portion of it. To think this is all there is is mistaken for all the reasons you suggest including the fact that our sensor array is limited at best.

So we are like a blind man in a cave trying to describe the elephant before us. The elephant is real but our description of it is perspective oriented. Therefore our descriptions are just models.

However, we do have some facts about the elephant. We have other means besides direct sight to discover the elephant.

Your perspective seems to be that everything is a pure illusion. But then you are stuck with the idea that your very notion that it is all an illusion is part of the illusion. You can never make a statement of fact including that there is a source which is truth which we can get to if we destroy ego. That too may be part of the illusion. In your world view there can be no way to know anything at all. That makes anything we say or do completely meaningless including making attempts at bettering ourselves.

So, to me, that perspective has a major flaw because it does not correspond to our lives. Here in this layer of reality we have to act in specific ways if we want to accomplish things. There are rules and there is order to the universe. We can invent toasters and they do indeed toast our bread in the morning.

It is meaningless to say that is an illusion. We gain nothing from it. But it is true that we gain inner peace with ourselves through following some basic principals.

And this we deem good. Illusion or not it is irrelevant. It is not an illusion to us. We live it. It is objectively true that we can help each other and ourselves lead happier more fulfilled lives. That is an objective truth in this layer of reality.

To me it only makes sense that we can get to other layers of reality through this one, because the underlying layers create this one just as we create entities like societies and economies.

You might say they are an illusion as well yet how the group goes, so goes the individual's resources. If the economy fails then the individual human suffers. If the society is cruel, the individual suffers. If it is benevolent then we prosper.

We study the society by statistics, which as I say in one of these hubs, perhaps this one, is also the way the micro world is studied.

So. I would agree that this is not the entire reality by any means. The self is not a solid fully integrated individual. But we are individual systems. This is a part of reality.

The illusion is in thinking this is it, and that we are solid individuals. We too are made up of a colony of atoms and a society of cells. Each cell independently alive.

So there are many illusions created by the fact that this is just part of reality and not the entire thing. But in and of itself it is the reality of this level of existence and because all levels are intimately related we can know about them indirectly if not directly.


Business Success 5 years ago

Namaste,

Hi Slarty,

If your starting point is and at your foundational belief system you don't believe in spirit then there is absolutely no way for me or anyone else to define that which will allow you to "see" or "believe", for as my grandmother use to say "It's not that you'll believe it when you see it. You'll see it when you believe it."

Namaste


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Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada Author

Business Success

I find that difficult to accept. You must have a reason for believing it? What good would me believing in it do? Either it exists or not. Why does it's existence depend on my belief?


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Spirit Whisperer 5 years ago from Isle of Man

Slarty says:

"So we are like a blind man in a cave trying to describe the elephant before us. The elephant is real but our description of it is perspective oriented. Therefore our descriptions are just models.

However, we do have some facts about the elephant. We have other means besides direct sight to discover the elephant."

SW says:

Whatever the elephant is we can but perceive it and each person perception may be different. I am now totally confused on how you can then jump from this situation to then say we have facts about the elephant. Where are these so called "facts" coming from?

There is a fundamental problem with this conversation and that is it seems to me that when it suits you you play the "facts" card and then justify these so called "facts" with elaborate and ingenious descriptions of perceptions you call patterns and models and at the same time negating anything that cannot be perceived through the senses. You can't have it both ways.

I thought that we had already established that the world is an illusion and all we can do is play with our perceptions of it. There is nothing you say to me that will convince me that our perceptions have anything to do with the truth. I can play with perceptions and I enjoy reading other's and they enable me to talk to you and share my perceptions with you.

I agree that there is something there but we cannot "know" it through the looking glass of the ego. No amount of questioning is going to help me know the unknowable. The ego keeps us busy imagining that we can and we fall for it every time but we are no closer to knowing anything except that we perceive everything and know nothing.

In order to progress we must entertain another way of being besides the tried and tested looking for the answers in our perceptions. I see it as a surrender. Surrendering to truth whatever that may be is a way of being rather than a way through reason.

Everything you say is based on belief but you seem to be so consumed by your beliefs that you fail to realise that the reasoning you use to describe your world view is based on belief as is everyone else's in this world.

We both seek truth but we do it differently. You are happy doing it your way and I admire you for that. But I am not convinced and have chosen a path which involves withdrawing my belief in the illusion. I can still function but I am inviting truth to take the place of the ego that needs my faith to exist. Where you are investing faith in ego I am doing the opposite.

If I lose your wallet in the street why would I go looking for it in the kitchen? In my view truth is unknowable to the ego and that is my reason for not investing any more faith in the world as it is presented to me by the ego. As you believe that truth can be known through the study of perception I believe that truth cannot be known through perception. As we walk our respective paths it matters little what we believe because I also believe that there is not just one way to truth and my way is no better or worse than anyone else's. I enjoy talking about it though.


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Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada Author

"Whatever the elephant is we can but perceive it and each person perception may be different. I am now totally confused on how you can then jump from this situation to then say we have facts about the elephant. Where are these so called "facts" coming from?"

Your entire comment hinges on this statement being a fact:"Whatever the elephant is we can but perceive it and each person perception may be different."

This may or may not be a fact. I think it is. We may all perceive it differently. So what? We are still perceiving something. You are not saying the elephant is not an object are you?

"There is a fundamental problem with this conversation and that is it seems to me that when it suits you you play the "facts" card and then justify these so called "facts" with elaborate and ingenious descriptions of perceptions you call patterns and models and at the same time negating anything that cannot be perceived through the senses. You can't have it both ways."

Is that a fact? lol.. What am I negating? If you can not get to it in some way how can you tell me you know it is there? You can not. I negate the possibility of almost nothing. I may negate the plausibility of many other things, and I may negate the probability of many more. But I can neither negate nor accept things that I know nothing about at all, and in your words: can know nothing about. What are these things that I negate that can not be seen with the senses? I don't see atoms but there is evidence for them through other means. But you may tell me they are an illusion. How can you possibly know that? Our models of them are just models. But again SOMETHING is going on. That something is what we named atoms.

That we named them atoms is a fact, is it not? At least you can admit to me that there are certain facts even if only within the illusion. Like the fact that we called a phenomenon we discovered: Atoms. They may be illusion according to you, but you have to admit that we have certain facts, even if they are facts about this illusion.

"I agree that there is something there but we cannot "know" it through the looking glass of the ego. No amount of questioning is going to help me know the unknowable."

How do you know you can not know it? Is that a fact you are telling me? How can you possibly know that? On the evolutionary scale we are just out of trees. Science is just starting. The logical human mind is just beginning to arise, and you are already calling surrender we can't know everything? You say that looking for answers is a surrender but surely not looking for them is the real surrender? How do you know what another thousand years of science and rational thought will bring? You can not put limits on something which is just getting started. We have zero idea of what the limits may be if any.

Again. What you advocate by telling me to destroy ego is the same as telling me we might as well all go live in the trees again. Because what you mean by ego is conscious thought. That's the tool we use educate the instinctive or subconscious.

Look at the primates. They have the same brain we have. The only difference in their evolution and ours was the development of complex methods of communication The word, written and spoken. So powerful in the subconscious that it is said that god spoke the universe in to existence.

And you want to eliminate that? How can you say you have eliminated that from yourself while still being able to communicate with me and function in the world? As long as you can read write, talk and make the kind of rational comments you make, you are thinking and using consciousness to do it.

And how did you come to you conclusion about consciousness being evil? Was it not through thought? If not then what or how?

You can not shut down ego/thought/rationality and function and communicate in this world. I know it from experience. You become completely isolated from the world which is why monks who want to achieve this state do exactly that. But seldom do they go all the way. Who would want to? You don't come out the other end in bliss. You just exist. Nothing more. You may as well be missing half your brain and in a hospital for vegetables. Your life is now like theirs.

You enjoy sharing your perceptions because you have them. In an egoless state you don't. There are no perceptions for you to enjoy. All you have known is gone and nothing is put in its place.

If you are correct and it is a fact that perception is all we have then we have to work with what we have. Because without it we have nothing.

So if what you are telling me is a fact and there is nothing but illusion, what does that change for my life?

I still have to eat, I still need shelter. The illusion s not going away. Who cares whether it is an illusion or not? We still have to live it whether we like it or not.

There are still rules of the illusion if you like. We can use them to find better ways to live in the illusion. So who cares whether it is an illusion or not, it is reality. What else is reality but how we all live?

If there is an underlying reality as you seem to agree that there is, but unlike me you do not think we can get to that underlying reality, then who cares? It does not affect us. We can't know anything about it including whether it is real or not. I'm willing to accept that there is no way to know the source if that turns out to be a fact.

But if your argument is that it can affect us, then we can know it like we know everything else: Through it's effects.

I suggest that it is you who can not have it both ways.

Good debate by the way. ;)


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Spirit Whisperer 5 years ago from Isle of Man

I do not say that consciousness is evil. Where did that come from?


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Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada Author

lol... It goes without saying that if you want to rid yourself of it you consider it undesirable if not evil. You mustn't take the words I use so literally.

You do confuse me with your opinion. I'm not sure whether you divide ego from consciousness or not. Though I do remember you saying thought is ego. To me consciousness is thought. But I suppose awareness could be consciousness as well without thought.

So is that more what you mean? Thought is what you want to eliminate and not consciousness as in awareness?


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Spirit Whisperer 5 years ago from Isle of Man

Evil is a meaning you have chosen to attach to my words not I! That says something.


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Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada Author

Come now. You are taking the word too literally. Perhaps taking it to mean something I don't intend. Perhaps attaching too much meaning to the word itself? Like I said, I'll amend it to undesirable. Would you say that is accurate?


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Spirit Whisperer 5 years ago from Isle of Man

You are missing the point I am making Slarty. Evil, undesirable, whatever word you use has meaning and that meaning is the meaning you have attached to what I have not said. So that says something.


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Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada Author

SW

But if you said it you meant something. If I am wrong about what you meant then that's fine. But you say we have to rid ourselves of ego. The reason you say that is the meaning.

So the sentence is usually: You have to rid yourself of ego IF you want to accomplish this or that. Meaning that if you want to accomplish those things you have to give up ego because it is undesirable to your goal.

Ergo ego is not desirable, IF; or more crudely: evil, if.

I am interpreting your meaning, and certainly if I am wrong please correct me and tell me your meaning.


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Spirit Whisperer 5 years ago from Isle of Man

Yes you are interpreting my meaning and giving it yours. That is what ego does and you have shown this clearly. You cannot know my meaning for anything you perceive. You only know your own. So from what you say, it seems for you that ego is an evil to be rid of because that is the meaning you have given to what I said. Do you see that now?


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Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada Author

Yes and no. I understand and agree with the idea that I can not know your meaning unless you tell me what it is.

I agree that it is a bad habit to infer what some one means but when I do that is often to get a response from the person, or clarification.

Usually when someone tells me I have to get rid of something it is because I would benefit from doing it. Unless they want me to do it so I will not benefit. I don't think you would do that. If there is no benefit why are you telling me that to reach my goal of understanding that I need to rid myself of ego?

You are the one who says we need to get rid of ego so you must have a reason for saying it.

I do not think ego is evil (in this case not beneficial) at all, but I infer from what you said that you think it is beneficial to remove it, which implies to me that it is not beneficial to keep it.

So yes I did say you imply it is evil. But not in the context of evil, but rather in the context of not beneficial.

But yes, you are right that my mind can make up a hundred different reasons you might say something in particular and never get what you mean. That is why it is important not to put faith in any of them.

Here you seem to be making it into a point of the discussion.

what you are saying and correct me if I am wrong, is that I am projecting my meaning on to you. I assure you I am not since I am not the one who thinks we need to be rid of ego.

I do not even think you think that ego is evil in the usual context. So I am not even projecting that on your meaning.

Ego can project meaning and create imaginary meaning. But the individual can be aware of that and not take it too seriously.


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Spirit Whisperer 5 years ago from Isle of Man

Slarty, you are the one who has given meaning to what I said. It is your meaning but yet you are now denying this. How can that be?


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Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada Author

How can I give meaning to what you say? I can only interpret your words. My interpretation may be wrong, but I am not giving your words any meaning. I'm trying to understand the meaning you intended them to have.I may guess but my guess is about what you might mean That doesn't place my own meaning or any meaning on your words in and of itself. I would have to believe my guess is fact to do that.


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rmichaelf 5 years ago from North Central West Virginia, where the green grass grows...

Slarty, often in your essays it begins to read with a similar pointlessness as the "how many angels can sit on the head of a pin" arguments of old. At the time, I'm sure it seemed important to those engaged in it. I don't think at all that that is your intent or purpose in these dialogues, yet because many of your discussions are of such an impersonal nature they read as though they are intellectual exercises. Learning as opposed to knowledge (and by extention, Wisdom)

I am a person who from a quite young age came to view - and believe - only that which I learned from pesonal experience. When I finally got around to Albert Einstein's statement on knowledge being a function of experience it validated my doubts and insecurities (I was 12 or so when I began this way of intepreting my reality, or percepectives. I was 16 when I began reading of Einstein)

I sometimes struggle with your posts because of this personal distrust in anyone who has learned, and then shares, that which he has read about, passed the tests, and passed that academic exercise.

I think I see shadows of what both of you are saying and this particular exchange is striking me as the angel on a pin model. Although, since I do hold a distinction which seperates Ego merely because Ego is a direct product of the mind and by no definition of which I am currently aware in any way real, or able to be perceived as real. Real as in biolically or chemically or in any other material way being created.

I also see that your assigning "evil" or "undesirable" to SW's use of the word as a value is in conflict with my perception of SW's use of the word for the sake of this discussion. You both have me confused as to what it is that each of you are attempting to make a point of. (ouch, forgive me please for using such a glaring error of ending with a preposition... I do that often, but for some reason this time really screams at me! lol)

Namaste


rmichaelf profile image

rmichaelf 5 years ago from North Central West Virginia, where the green grass grows...

Oh, and Slarty, I am not ignoring your question of me above. I actually addressed it in one of your next installments, I forget which right now but it is there. I hope I didn't breach any etiquette in doing so... it was just that while reading that one, my comment seemed to fit there.

Also, for me whether or not you place any value on anything I might pose as a belief has no personal consequence in my mind (I tend to hold no beliefs, but I have countless ideas.) All value is placed in the extended thought process it brings me. As I related a story elsewhere, a professor thought it important to once have me explain in class (after a debate with him which got a little heated) what answere I was searching for, to which I replied, " It has never been an answer I am looking for. My question is for a question to fit." Or words to that effect.


Business Success 5 years ago

I am now rmichaelf, not Business Success... I will explain later...


Slarty O'Brian profile image

Slarty O'Brian 5 years ago from Canada Author

"yet because many of your discussions are of such an impersonal nature they read as though they are intellectual exercises. Learning as opposed to knowledge (and by extention, Wisdom)"

Interesting comment. My discussions are impersonal for the most part on purpose. Objectivity seems to have that effect on people. They find it cold and impersonal. I actually don't see it that way and it is one of my missions in life to show people that it isn't. Never the less, I haven't succeeded yet obviously.

I assure you my thoughts are my own. I do not have any formal education past high school, except for some collage where I got a gas, oil and refrigeration license when I got married and had our first child.

"I am a person who from a quite young age came to view - and believe - only that which I learned from pesonal experience. When I finally got around to Albert Einstein's statement on knowledge being a function of experience it validated my doubts and insecurities"

Don't you love when that happens? I agree. I'm a person who has to reinvent the wheel. I rarely read up on any philosophical topic until I have had time to think it through and formulate my own opinion first. That way I can argue with Desecrate as an equal. Or Hawking or anyone else.

I then see the thought process they may have gone through because I had to go through the same ones. And very often I end up thinking I discovered something only to find ten people who lived before me discovered the same thing. But even Einstein made his discoveries on the backs of those who came before and he built on them.

Experience is definitely the way to go. But one can not always rely on the interpretation of their experiences to be true representations of the event. But I think you understand that.

"I think I see shadows of what both of you are saying and this particular exchange is striking me as the angel on a pin model. Although, since I do hold a distinction which seperates Ego merely because Ego is a direct product of the mind and by no definition of which I am currently aware in any way real, or able to be perceived as real. Real as in biolically or chemically or in any other material way being created."

Well you are a bit of a materialist then too. ;)I agree. Ego was defined by Freud as the conscious part of the mind or brain as opposed to the subconscious or I like to think it more as the non-conscious parts of the brain. So ego would be a material process rather any one thing you could point at with a stick.

But keeping with your analogy of how many angels can dance on the head of a pin: SW and I have a long way to go before we get the angels. We are trying to decide whether or not the pin is real, never mind it's head.

The argument can be broken down to this, I think, and SW can correct me about his means if I am wrong: SW is arguing that the pin is only a perception and does not correspond to an underlying reality because it is all in our heads. He does think there is an underlying reality which many people with this hypothesis do not.

I on the other hand see reality as layers of conditions. Atoms, chemicals, cells, humans, societies,etc. Each layer is made up of and is a result of the previous layer. So my contention is that we can learn about the underlying reality through this layer of it.

I agree that our issue is that we are subjective creatures and have a hard time with objectivity. But there are ways around the problem like the scientific method, logic and rationality. Along with a good dose of lack of belief.

So while SW thinks getting rid of ego is the only way to find the true pin. I think we have it in our hand, ego or not. And I think removing ego/conscious rational thought completely is not necessary and not desirable. But I do think the dictionary definition of ego can be safely removed and it is desirable to do so. That definition being more in line with egotism rather than consciousness.

> (I tend to hold no beliefs, but I have countless >ideas.)

It's funny but since I discovered lack of belief as a valuable tool I have noticed that a lot of others discovered it too. You must be reading my mind since so few have read my book, lol... j/k

"It has never been an answer I am looking for. My question is for a question to fit."

I completely agree again. Finding the right question is almost more important than finding the answer. You can never get an answer unless you know the question. ;)

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