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philosophy

  1. Alastar Packer profile image84
    Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago

    Who are We, Where are We, What is Reality?

    1. psycheskinner profile image79
      psycheskinnerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Generally we are people who put a bit off effort into making a proposition before inviting discussion.

      1. Alastar Packer profile image84
        Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        OK good, that is your take on who we are. What about where we are and what is reality?

        1. psycheskinner profile image79
          psycheskinnerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          I am asking you to go first.  That seems only fair.

    2. Cardisa profile image91
      Cardisaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      I thought the question was straightforward given that people ask these questions every day.

      So far, I am still trying to figure it all out and would like to see what others have to say.

      1. Alastar Packer profile image84
        Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Yea Cardisa, I have some thoughts for later but would first like to see what some others have to say.

        1. psycheskinner profile image79
          psycheskinnerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Then I shall wait too.

    3. Gnarles Snarkly profile image61
      Gnarles Snarklyposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      It is like asking, "What does ditty wah ditty mean?"

      If you don't already know . . . I can't tell you.

    4. A Troubled Man profile image60
      A Troubled Manposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      We are humans on earth, which is what constitutes our reality.

      1. Alastar Packer profile image84
        Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Good answer- would you say we have infinite awareness as humans on this earth?

        1. A Troubled Man profile image60
          A Troubled Manposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          What does that mean?

          1. Alastar Packer profile image84
            Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            Infinite=no limitation  Awareness=conscious  Do you believe our consciousness has the potential to be infinite?

            1. A Troubled Man profile image60
              A Troubled Manposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Probably, but only in the finite realm of our reality in that which is tangible. Everything else would pure speculation.

              1. Alastar Packer profile image84
                Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Wouldn't be infinite awareness in a finite realm of the tangible only would it? Speculation or not. What's new in the quantum and neurological sciences that could suggest infinite awareness? Anything?

                1. A Troubled Man profile image60
                  A Troubled Manposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  Perhaps, a thorough search through peer reviewed articles might reveal that.

              2. Humdrumconundrum profile image59
                Humdrumconundrumposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                You are speculating about that.

    5. kess profile image61
      kessposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      You are the sum total of all reality...including the what and where.
      For without you there can be no initiative to even begin to imagine the question muchless to formulate an answer.

      1. arb profile image81
        arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        I am the sum total of (MY reality) not all reality. I have nothing to do with your reality until you enter mine. Until then you do not exist.

        1. kess profile image61
          kessposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Reality is ONE not many....

          It must be One otherwise it would not be...

          You do interact with all even if each one (separate as an individual) is not at the front of your awareness.
          When the time is right you become aware of the individual..as in  right now.
          This happens according to purpose.

          1. arb profile image81
            arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            If there is but a single reality, then it is the one which I am in and if it differs from yours, then your either your supposition is false or 1 + 1 = 1 not 2 and the rest of human kind is mistaken.

            1. kess profile image61
              kessposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              You do see but not very clearly....Let me see if I can help you.

              In the equation 1+1

              Is not the first 1 exactly the same as second 1
              so when united they are not 2 but still 1

              So indeed 1+1= 1

              and that 1 is referred to 2 to show that  their unity makes them greater than their individuality.
              It is not that they are of a different substance.

              if they were of different substance they could not unite.

              In context of you and I.....

              You are 1 and I am 1

              In our unity are we not 1?

              If we are not united then, we are of different substance
              So therefore You are 1 and I am 0,

              And since we are not united only 1 will remain and what then happens to the other...

              it will become the reality of what it is...0 ..or what we commonly know as death.

              So if indeed we are of different reality then one of us would die...
              Which one is it?

              1. Alastar Packer profile image84
                Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                If what we perceive as reality is in actuality an illusion as some religions and researchers suggest- and what we see is only the energy vibrations our optic nerves relay to the brain to be decoded- then your supposition that 1 +1 = 1 may well be correct, as in all is one or all matter is interwoven. How explain someone who has a near-death experience and 'sees' their self on the operating table, or how do we 'see' in our dreams? Arb's position would be correct too in that context, wouldn't it?

                1. kess profile image61
                  kessposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  Every man is absolutely right according to his own eyes, and ultimately a man becomes whatsoever he believes. even unto his Death but preferably unto Life.

                  And a man cant help but magnify whatsoever he perceives as reality, thus his experiences will always align to his perceived reality. So a NDE can only be related via the perception of the one having it.

                  Taking note that "Death" is the operative word in the term "near death experience"

                  So there even though there are millions of different human experiences, as long as they are within the context of death, then death is that ultimate reality.

                  And with Life it is the same ...except in Life each and every experience is harmonious with each other.
                  Unlike death where they are contradictory.

                  So if one were to insist that there are more than one reality...
                  I would say they are absolutely right...

                  For there is a True reality, where all things are harmoniously intertwined so that each one adds to the other...This is Life.


                  And there is a false reality, where all thing are in disharmony, contradictory, with each striving to maintain their very own individual reality at the expense of another.

                  This is called death....

                  1. arb profile image81
                    arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    Hello Kess and excuse my prolonged absence. First I would preface my following contentions with some clarification; 1) Being right is not an illusion I suffer from. I do not hold that my opinion is either right or wrong and is always subject to change. It is simply an opinion constructed from my own reflection and gathered from my reality. 2) It is mid day here, where I am and yet, though the sun hovers above me, somewhere in the world darkness prevails. It is Friday here, but, somewhere it is Saturday. I suspect, depending upon our proximity to one or the other, present realities appear much different.
                    2) I believe, as many others, that there is a God responsible for creation. There are some, many others, who would believe there is no God responsible for creation. Both are rational conclusions predicated upon an individual interpretation of the prevailing evidence, which obviously, will launch debate unto eternity. The point is, dependent on which presupposition you embrace, reality will present itself in response to that presupposition and therefore, appear different to opposite individuals. If it is was your expectation that someone might define an absolute reality, then I think you will find disappointment in scientific journals and hub pages alike.

          2. recommend1 profile image72
            recommend1posted 4 years ago in reply to this

            This is right - up to the point where it assumes a purpose - there is no purpose, no pre-destination, no goal - for the whole of reality or for any part of it.

    6. arb profile image81
      arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      I am the sum of my experiences and the unrealised future of what is yet to come. That is my realty and I can not be, anywhere but now.

    7. janesix profile image61
      janesixposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      We are humans. We are on the Earth. Reality is this right here.

    8. Phyllis Doyle profile image94
      Phyllis Doyleposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Great question, Alastar.
      Who are we? We are called human beings. I believe we are parts of the One, the Great Mystery, Great Spirit, God, who allowed us to come to this University called Earth to learn and grow ever more spiritual each in our own belief system.

      Where are we? Well ....  in what sense? Physically we are on Mother Earth. Spiritually, we, most of us,  are seeking our full potential as human beings with the wisdom, compassion and creative abilities given to us at Creation. Collectively, we are civilizations and cultures that have not yet learned how to save Mother Earth and become One with Nature and All Creation.

      What is Reality? Reality is within each one of us. Truths are within us and often buried under "what society expects of us". Physical life is abundant with illusions -- Reality is in the spiritual realms where all truths come from.

      This is my belief system, my spirituality, and my truths. Many may disagree with me, but, none can say I am wrong for what I believe in -- for we each are on our own unique path to eventually reach purity and peace, and find our way home.

      Thank you, Alastar, for asking these questions.

      Walk in Peace and Harmony.

      1. Alastar Packer profile image84
        Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Phyllis your thoughts are mine as well and you said it so much better than I ever could hope to. If any one is in touch with who we are, where we are, and whats our reality, it's you. Very beautiful and a joy to see, Phyllis.

        1. Phyllis Doyle profile image94
          Phyllis Doyleposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Well, thank you very much, Alastar. This is what I have believe most of my life and it has been good for me. I am very happy to know that you have the same beliefs.

          We are here to do the best we possibly can for ourselves and others till it is time to go home. Thank you, Alastar.

      2. recommend1 profile image72
        recommend1posted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Cute,  but any peace and harmony comes from its creation by people, especially people like you.  It is not created by some super spirit and we were not 'allowed' to come here - we are the inevitable consequence of the formation of the universe, we could even be the universe becoming aware of itself.
        No god, great spirit or spaghetti monster needed.

        1. Phyllis Doyle profile image94
          Phyllis Doyleposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          It is true that peace and harmony comes from its creation by people and we all have that choice. We can, if we wish, ignore peace and harmony, ignore all others and live only for ourselves and our own thoughts, yet then would we have peace and harmony with self? What good would that do if you cannot share it with others?  I can create peace and harmony with you by accepting the fact that your belief system is different than mine and is right for you. I respect that. To create peace and harmony with others, it is done by accepting that we each have a right to our own beliefs. In my belief system, it is Great Spirit who, in the beginning of Creation, allowed us to choose Earth for learning experiences.

          As for "spaghetti monster", I do not think it has any purpose whatsoever, except maybe to throw in as a term for lack of anything else.

          We have purpose and that purpose is to at least try to reach our highest potential while on Earth. One way to do that is to be aware that out of over (what? 5 billion? wild guess) there will be many different belief systems. It is not possible, or at least not feasible, to say my belief system is the only right one. For me it is right, for you it is not -- and that is ok, for we each, in our own way, will obtain our goal, our peace and harmony.

          "we could even be the universe becoming aware of itself." This is very possible -- yet, what is the Universe?  I believe the Universe is, in a spiritual sense,  the collective whole of all thoughts, beliefs and truths, and from the Universe we receive help in spiritual growth, if we choose to ask for it.

          1. recommend1 profile image72
            recommend1posted 4 years ago in reply to this

            A purpose is only another word for goal - and having a goal helps us to think straight toward it.  There is no need for any great spirit, just the goal is enough.   The issue with your great spirit is that projecting your wishes, hopes and understanding onto a n other 'thing' just makes that thing look more right - this prevents us from truly looking over a wider range.  But if a great spirit works for you then that is fine, I prefer to reason my way through life and know the good and bad of it all.

            1. Phyllis Doyle profile image94
              Phyllis Doyleposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              And that is your inalienable right to do it your own way.  smile

            2. Humdrumconundrum profile image59
              Humdrumconundrumposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Reason fails when faced with the unreasonable.

              1. recommend1 profile image72
                recommend1posted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Reason never fails - it is only the maths of thinking.  Not getting an answer is always down to lack of information  - or faulty reasoning.

                1. arb profile image81
                  arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  It does not acount for the impact of feeling upon the human condition. Only upon the intelect.

    9. cheaptrick profile image64
      cheaptrickposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      In the opinion of an old man who's looked under rocks and up at the sky for wisdom...and found only confusion[I'm professing my ignorance here so please be kind].We are one of many sensory organs of our greater[reality]selves...who's purpose in the material world is to conduct consciousness just as wire conducts electricity...the more consciousness we conduct,the more awareness we create,and that is the fruit which our greater selves or self seek...or seeks.
      There is no reality,only moments of clarity when we focus consciousness on those possibilities which collapse into subjective momentary reality,then return to the realm of possibilities as we remove the tight beam of our consciousness so as to illuminate and create another subjective snapshot of those possibilities we deem important for our capacity to conduct consciousness..[Hows That for a run on sentence lol]
      In other words...The big us is sticking its finger[us] in the pool to see what the water's like before it dives in...Hmmm,better have another Heineken so I can make some sense here....

    10. pennyofheaven profile image81
      pennyofheavenposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Whatever you perceive it to be.

    11. Hyphenbird profile image94
      Hyphenbirdposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      "Who are We, Where are We, What is Reality?"

      **We are the authentic self that has come to know itself spiritually and is at peace with leaving the past behind and is looking forward to the future.
      **We are at a place and time of decision, choice and consequence. Every moment we are creating our future and consequences.
      **Reality is the intersection of the above, the moment we realize and accept who we are and how we got here.
      This may appear simple and naive but I find it to be very true in my own life. Alastar, you are an amazing man and a dear, dear friend.

      1. Alastar Packer profile image84
        Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        For the first time I have to categorically disagree with you on something, Hyph. It is not naive and simple, but is sagely shrewd in its magnificence and truth. And your the one who is amazing. We can agree on the dear, dear, friends though.

        1. Hyphenbird profile image94
          Hyphenbirdposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Awe Shucks!
          Thank you Alastar.

    12. 0
      Rad Manposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Humans (Homo sapiens) are primates of the family Hominidae, and the only living species of the genus Homo.  They originated in Africa, where they reached anatomical modernity about 200,000 years ago and began to exhibit full behavioral modernity around 50,000 years ago..

      Third planet from our Sun which is fairly far from the centre of our galaxy.

      Reality is the state of things as they actually exist, rather than as they may appear or might be imagined. When we let religion go we are open to reality.

    13. LewSethics profile image60
      LewSethicsposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Like Asimov said in the book "The Gods Themselves":  "I am god, you are god, but then again, who isn't?"

  2. psycheskinner profile image79
    psycheskinnerposted 4 years ago

    I am just saying that before I put my deepest beliefs on this forum (which is often a hostile place), it would be nice to see I am talking with people willing to lay out theirs as well.

    1. Gnarles Snarkly profile image61
      Gnarles Snarklyposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      That makes me laugh! How do you spell hypocricy?

      1. psycheskinner profile image79
        psycheskinnerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Not like that.

        1. Gnarles Snarkly profile image61
          Gnarles Snarklyposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Duh! Brits only get anal humor(humour).

      2. 0
        Motown2Chitownposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Um.  You spell "hypocrisy" like I just did.

    2. Alastar Packer profile image84
      Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Hopefully most of the replies here will be heart-centered, but we'll see.

      1. psycheskinner profile image79
        psycheskinnerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        So far your haven't offered anything along those lines.

      2. Alastar Packer profile image84
        Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        I'll respond with my thoughts on the question some, maybe lay it out more when appropriate. Don't wanna give away to much in the previews- you know, like that new 'Sinister' movie has.

        1. Nellieanna profile image84
          Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Alastar, it seems reasonable, when posing a large question to which a wide variety of valid OPINIONS could & probably will be responded, - without, as the questioner, assuming a dominant one-size-fits-all opinion/answer along with the question before any other replies have a chance to be offered.

          The questioner is, after all, the general manager of the forum which he started.  Were his opinion to be given along with the question at the beginning, it's likely that it might easily have an effect of squelching, intimidating or manipulating others'freely offered opinions which might be given otherwise, as in a 'salon' in which people simply discuss and share ideas and/or knowledge freely. 

          It will be good to read what you think, too, Alastar, when & if you see fit at an appropriate moment.  But nothing's wrong with exercising that option.  Anyone else having hesitation can exercise their option to stay mum about the question till they see fit to offer it. 

          It's probably especially wise to delay yours, as it turns out, since just doing so arouses a bit of animosity. What real issues might ensue upon your actually stating your opinion, if just NOT saying can be an issue? 

          Forgive me. I'm not a frequent participant in Forums and so am unfamiliar with their general format, but isn't it possible that if there's hostility expected, hostility may be the result?

          Thank you, Alastar, for your level-headed responses  to everyone's opinion, encouraging the free flow of ideas from all respondees. It's encouraging to a newbie such as I.

  3. Silva Hayes profile image93
    Silva Hayesposted 4 years ago

    The sheer variety of emotions that humans experience indicates that we are important in the scheme of things; that we are here for a reason, and that we have the potential to make a difference in the world.  When I ponder about whether there’s an after-life, and I wonder whether all our questions will be answered, I use that thought as my rationalization:  surely we wouldn’t be put through all this for no reason at all, would we? 

    Then I read about outer space, and think about the distances involved, and I look at the fabulous and truly frightening photos from NASA and I think about other worlds and other suns and other galaxies that are millions of light-years away and I think of us as specks, tiny little specks, and it seems so amusing and amazing that we are capable of making thousands of decisions, where to eat, whether to marry, what kind of car to buy, whether to declare war, whether to take that new job or stay put; it all seems to come to naught in the end.   

    Surely when we die, all our questions will be answered; it will all become clear, and we will think, Oh!  Now I get it!  But if that doesn’t happen, and nothing is waiting for us after death, then we won’t know that either! 

    I will follow this post with interest.

    1. Alastar Packer profile image84
      Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Surely a creation that can think, feel, and ponder on the things we do has purpose, well said Silva. What doesn't make any rational sense is for something like ourselves and really all living things to Be for a cosmic instant and then not to Be for eternity.

      1. arb profile image81
        arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        I prefer to think we are living in eternity even now and that we simply change our residence somewhere along the way. Then for some, purpose is simply confined to here and now. We are here and then, we are not.

        1. Nellieanna profile image84
          Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          A concept called "The Eternal Now" expressed that too.

    2. Phyllis Doyle profile image94
      Phyllis Doyleposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Very good thoughts, Silva. We are here for a reason and that is to find the reason, or we can just float along and not worry about any of these thoughts/beliefs in this forum.

      You wrote: "Surely when we die, all our questions will be answered; it will all become clear, and we will think, Oh!  Now I get it! "  For me, I would rather "get it" while I am here on Earth.  smile

      I, too, will be following this forum with much interest.

  4. Ciax profile image61
    Ciaxposted 4 years ago

    1) Who are We?

    We are a form of biological life (although there is no complete scientific definition of biological life, and no one cay tell where did it come from), slightly different from cats.


    2) Where are We?

    We are in reality.



    3) What is Reality?

    Reality is the opposite of a dream.

  5. ZipperConstantine profile image80
    ZipperConstantineposted 4 years ago

    We are life, we are here-we are there-we are connected, we exist.

    1. Ciax profile image61
      Ciaxposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Seemed like poetry.

  6. Nellieanna profile image84
    Nellieannaposted 4 years ago

    Our ability to perceive is determined by our subjective sensors, along with our limited experience and conditioning, making all we know of reality to each of us, merely what we have perceived and can perceive subjectively.  We each live in our own subjective reality.  Part of it may be and probably is a sense of what is bigger than ourselves, about which we have ideas and opinions about it, and perhaps occasional glimpses which may leave us limp with their magnitude; but we cannot KNOW about "It" as long as we are in these mortal bodies with their great abilities and narrow limitations.  It's what makes 'faith' possible.  If we could KNOW, we wouldn't need or have faith in the unknown which we may only sense and imagine, also subjective faculties.

    Objective reality - that which is or may be beyond our limited subjective perceptions - is limitless in possibilities.  "It" may consist of things we've been able to observe & conceive of, but "It" may be and probably is much more vast - or much more infinitesimal than we can begin to imagine with our limitations or our presumed wisdom and understanding.  It wouldn't be at all surprising to learn that "It" is all just various forms of energy or light, manifesting itself in the seeming multitude of 'things', bodies and beings.  Where we might BE in it is another unknown, except for what we can subjectively perceive of it.   Perhaps 'we' are only cells in the body of a larger being.  Perhaps only passing thoughts of such a being. 

    One thing is fairly certain, though.  What "IS", is.  What is NOT, isn't.  We're 'in it' either by some quirk or part of a master plan or - neither.  It's a thought.  How wondrous to be able to think!

    1. arb profile image81
      arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      what a delight you are!

      1. Nellieanna profile image84
        Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        What an honor for you, - whose opinion is important to me, -  to say that!  Thank you!

        1. arb profile image81
          arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          No more than yours is to my own heart.smile

          1. Humdrumconundrum profile image59
            Humdrumconundrumposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            I can feel da love!

    2. Alastar Packer profile image84
      Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Sometimes our objective life seems little more than go to work, buy this and that, consume stuff and finally shuffle off the mortal coil. But we're so much more than objective creations. It's the subjective of our dreams, our ideas, our faith in what can be. On the negative side it does seem at times as if something is holding us back from reaching heights of new understanding and a better world. Could something be feeding us illusions if you will. As the late Freddie Mercury sang- is this the real life, or is this just fantasy, caught in a land-slide, no escape from reality?

      1. arb profile image81
        arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Human nature is the invisible and immeasurable spoke in the provebial wheel, I think. We are driven by various passions, motivated by various stimuli and succumb to the self interest. Each of those is influenced by our foundational suppositions. I think short of physical disabilities, we aren't so much as held back, as we settle for comfort and gratification. We are confronted by an endless barrage of cultural stimuli, intended to steal and hold our attention. In answer to your question, I think we hold ourselves back. We are in pursuit of gratification which gives us the illusion of happiness and happiness is the goal 90% of mankind. If we settle for mediocrity, for the temporary gratifications of artificial stimuli, for an escape from hurt, pain, and disappointment, which we bandaged with the illusions of happiness, then there is little reason to move beyond our protective boxes. On a positive note, there are those who perpetually search the unknown. They have always been and they will always be. We will, because of them, know more tomorrow than we knew yesterday. We think. We reason. We live. Perhaps there is nothing so advanced, a species that does so.

        1. Nellieanna profile image84
          Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          When homo sapiens were still cavemen and women, there was, as yet, nothing so advanced.  At each step of advancement of the most advanced species, it's been the ultimate, so far.  Now is but the step in progress.  There is much more room for and possibility of further improvement.  We can reach a higher level while still mere mortals.  In fact. . .  if we don't, we may have settled for mediocrity on a grand scale.  The tricky part of this advancement is that it has never just descended on the whole species at any given time, but only upon individuals who balance their choices and priorities effectively to advance, somewhat along the lines of Maslow's process of actualization.  No matter the name given it, it's evidenced by the changes for the better in individual members of the species.  That's how the species moves along and up (or down if that's the case!)

          1. arb profile image81
            arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            I agree Nellieanna. Perhaps a focus on our beginnings and where we are today, would lend a quiet evidence to our hurry to know too much. I was also reflecting upon the things, which we thought we knew, only to discover our error. I suspect somewhere along the way, we will again, uncover existing error.
            It stands to reason, I think, that what ever is, must be understood, in its connection to its start (beginning, genesis,birth, coming). If we are becoming, where are we becoming from? As Aristotle held, there must be a first mover (God, big bang, spagetti monster, whatever) something from which beginning originated. Whatever we hold as such beginning will influence our conclusion. I would hold with Aristotle, that some universal truth must launch any search for answers. His was "a thing can not be and simultaneously not be". An now immutable universal in logic. Therefore, any collection of views will inherently reveal contradicting and opposing suppositions as a consequence of the foundation upon which our philosophy is constructed. Ex: There is either God or not God. There can not be both. Our truth then, is determined by our beginning point. Our conclusion according to the laws of logic, must arrive at validity if all our suppositions are correct. If any one of them is invalid then we may or may not arrive at a valid conclusion. In short, how likely is it that any one of us is free of an invalid supposition? I would then conclude that truth is the consequence of the elimination of bad building blocks and that over time (much time) the evolution of knowledge, eliminates the bad blocks and truth is consequently closer than it was. Illusion then is or isn't and for me it remains a building block born of man's imagination. I have no evidence that it is or isn't, but more importantly, I have no reason to suspect illusion above reality apart from inventing the question to begin with. It is also my observation that illusions are short lived and reveal themselves for what they are in time and they have had enough time to end the question. Inherent in the question illusion "is or isn't the real reality". It seems to me mathematically improbable that all of us would live the same illusion (like all of us having the same dream). It seems more likely that we are all experiencing reality and entertaining an imaginary proposition.

            1. Nellieanna profile image84
              Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              NHH: This is far too important and civil a post to just respond haphazardly, Alan.  I've brought down your words to speak for themselves & responded immediately after in my words following yours, like a real discussion.  I've tried to separate my responses from what you've said by a change of color for mine, but it may not appear in the forum thread.  So I've also prefaced your statements with your initials and my responses with mine.  Hope it's not too much of a muddle on the comment window.  Here goes:

              ARB: I agree Nellieanna. Perhaps a focus on our beginnings and where we are today, would lend a quiet evidence to our hurry to know too much. I was also reflecting upon the things, which we thought we knew, only to discover our error. I suspect somewhere along the way, we will again, uncover existing error.
              NHH: Little doubt that we’ll discover errors in our existing conclusions, but will continue to make faulty ones.  My point was that, at any time of our species’ devopement, whatever it is, - it is the most advanced, SO FAR AT THAT TIME, for us, and for all species if we are the most advanced of them.  So the idea that “Perhaps there is nothing so advanced” would be so - at any given time including now.
              
ARB: It stands to reason, I think, that what ever is, must be understood, in its connection to its start (beginning, genesis,birth, coming). If we are becoming, where are we becoming from?
              NHH: From its start, of course, and through its stages from then/that. 

              ARB: As Aristotle held, there must be a first mover (God, big bang, spagetti monster, whatever) something from which beginning originated.
              NHH:I think so, too; there’s an illogic with thinking there is no ‘first’ of an obvious progression, as all we can and do know is happening and all of it is a part.

              ARB: Whatever we hold as such beginning will influence our conclusion. I would hold with Aristotle, that some universal truth must launch any search for answers. 
              NHH: Of course, but the snag is in human presumtion of KNOWING what that truth is. 

              ARB:His was "a thing can not be and simultaneously not be". 
              NHH: That makes nothing but sense to me, though I have to add that my perceiving is limited to my mortal condition - as are those of others who live, have lived and will live as mortals here on Earth. Visions and other evidences reported by other human beings cannot exceed that level of their own knowing, which is limited, though they attempt to somehow assign divine immortal omniscient sanction to their perceptions and claim it.
               
              ARB: An now immutable universal in logic. Therefore, any collection of views will inherently reveal contradicting and opposing suppositions as a consequence of the foundation upon which our philosophy is constructed.
              NHH: Precisely. 

              ARB: Ex: There is either God or not God. There can not be both. Our truth then, is determined by our beginning point.
              NHH:  Key word: OUR; - it is merely our own subjective truth, which is sufficient for our existence as mortals on earth, but may be totally other than universal truth, if such exists. 

              ARB: Our conclusion according to the laws of logic, must arrive at validity if all our suppositions are correct.
              I like the adjective valid and its noun validity because they apply to subjective truth; what is valid for one person - with all  his mind and heart - may be invalid for another whose experience, faculties and other factors have led him to a different conclusion.  Both are  valid in this way but neither is likely to have or comprehend TRUTH. 

              ARB: If any one of them is invalid then we may or may not arrive at a valid conclusion. In short, how likely is it that any one of us is free of an invalid supposition?
              NHH: Again, precisely, keeping in mind that validity (or not) are subjective terms of measurement, invented and supported by our own minds and experiences as human beings, probably having little to do with objective truth.

              ARB: I would then conclude that truth is the consequence of the elimination of bad building blocks and that over time (much time) the evolution of knowledge, eliminates the bad blocks and truth is consequently closer than it was.
              NHH: Perhaps if the advancement of our species manages such heights, it will begin to comprehend and approach that state, but it’s far from the case now.  If individuals draw closer, perhaps they know a little more of truth - but if they’re that enlightened, they’d be unwilling to claim what they know to be partial, at best;  their little passel of truth would guide them to be compassionate and to be an example of however much enlightenment they may have reached, not to claim it or try to TELL about it so that unenlightened people could try to mimick what they haven’t personally achieved..

              ARB: Illusion then is or isn't and for me it remains a building block born of man's imagination. I have no evidence that it is or isn't, but more importantly, I have no reason to suspect illusion above reality apart from inventing the question to begin with.
              NHH: It’s a step toward understanding to know & value one’s own level and how to  direct it in the direction chooses to go.

              ARB: It is also my observation that illusions are short lived and reveal themselves for what they are in time and they have had enough time to end the question. 
              NHH: How true, except that they tend to gather followers who persist with the illusions with greater force and violence. 

              ARB:Inherent in the question illusion "is or isn't the real reality". It seems to me mathematically improbable that all of us would live the same illusion (like all of us having the same dream).
              NHH: Of course we wouldn’t and couldn’t - which is either proof that our ‘validities’ are limited OR that there are more facets to “TRUTH” that we tend to allow from our own subjective point of reference.  Is it any wonder that ‘beliefs’ almost invariably claim to be the only “right ONE” so that all others are, of course ‘wrong’ and misguided, at best. 

              ARB: It seems more likely that we are all experiencing reality and entertaining an imaginary proposition. 
              NHH: That’s how it seems to me!  What a great basis for mutual tolernce and peace among all of us!

              1. Alastar Packer profile image84
                Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Wonderful here Nellieanna, Arb- one of the best, deepest discourses I've ever seen in forums before. Delighted and humbled.

                1. Nellieanna profile image84
                  Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  Thank you, Alastar.  That's quite a compliment! I'm the one who is delighted and humbled that you think so!

                2. arb profile image81
                  arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  Perhaps discussion rather than argument is reflective of the character in the participants, in which case, we might each commend ourselves. I think that I shall do so.

              2. arb profile image81
                arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                It seems dear Nellieaanna that we are in mutual agreement. I should clarify my position regarding validity as it pertains to the ambiguity of my point. My reference to validity was meant in reference to the laws of logic and not the our opinions. In logic validity is absolute and objective. In short, a premise which is true is considered valid and a conclusion can only be true if each and every premise preceeding the conclusion is true. The conclusion being the logical consequence of its premises. In a simple stating of opinions, valdity is indeed, subjective because as you say, "our validities". I was refering to "validities" in regards to the law of logic, in which case validity is what is true. It does not change the basis of our agreement, but, lends clarification to my reference of it. You are right in concluding that such basis does indeed, make great allowance for expression and acceptance in discussions. We work with what we know for sure and in the absence of what we don't know, we formulate an opinion the best we can. What an absolutley rational exercise. Why it breeds such contempt escapes me. We are all simply thinking. Why does such an exercise offend or stir hostility?  Perhaps different conclusions infer that we ourselves, might be mistaken and being mistaken challenges our own acceptance of ourselves. To halt such danger we must defend our argument. The defense of an argument, it seems to me, is focused on a predetermined conclusion, rather than an examination of the validity of its preceeding premises. In such cases, there is no need for a discussion. One only learns that they leave with the same thought they arrived with. Kind of a circular exercise. Of course if one is convinced that you may catch your tail if you chase it long enough, then circular exercise is indeed, beneficial.

                1. Nellieanna profile image84
                  Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  I appreciate your clarification of your position abut validity as it pertains to your point.
                  So often taking time out to clarify does much to help along the discussion!

                  My Dad was a great debater in the formal sense.  I should get out some of his books on its rules and formalities, which I've never studied.  Even so, sometimes adhering to a system of proper assignment of definitions only serves within the system which has agreed upon them.   People outside the system need and devise logical meanings for words in order to think clearly too.  Systems can be as numerous as individuals, same as subjective realities are.  They can, fortunately, - coordinate and cooperate, though, if they're willing to respect and 'hear each other out'.  It's likely that there is more agreement lying under the language if we just can do that.

                  As I read the description of validity you laid out quite logically and well, I couldn't help but stall on the use of the the concept of 'true' and 'truth' cropping up frequently because those are simply whatever we as people (or some of us) have agreed upon, anyway.  Others may have agreed on the exact opposite and called it truth.  But we - no humans - simply do not KNOW.  We call something "truth" & where two or three agree. may accept it as THE truth. But by what stretch of the imagination? 

                  If we accepting it as valid for us, gives it stature,  that's something to get one's mind around -- and allows for the myriad of differences of what is perceived to be 'true' without the presumption to be universal, absolute TRUTH.  It might even turn out to be a multiple truth.  We don't know that either.

                  I could agree that this is true:  "Perhaps different conclusions infer that we ourselves, might be mistaken and being mistaken challenges our own acceptance of ourselves. To halt such danger we must defend our argument."   It has observed human nature's way and drawn a valid conclusion about it.  It's within the scope of reason and logic.  We can stretch our scope and reach for  other glimpses of understanding as well. What we cannot - TRUTHFULLY - do is claim it is all-time, all-circumstances, one-size-fits-all truth or one idea above all others - true.

                  Thinking that we can establish and validate that any conclusion reached by any person or committee or majority that 'each and every premise preceeding the conclusion is true' is surely the height of delusion and absurdity.   We can, though, compare and discover commonalities in conclusions with lend more likelihood of being reasonable, logical, valid conclusions - for that moment - before other evidence may be introduced to consider.

                  I so agree that we should all be able to mull over private or public propositions & conclusions, to weigh them, to think, to discuss, to find our agreements or not; - without arousing counter-attack and hostility, each of which smothers & snuffs out paths to better enlightenment.  It needn't exact, expect or require changes in people's perspectives, but, as you say, it can lend clarification and release freedom of thought, which people need in order to move closer to valid conclusions and along the way, more agreement, perhaps! 

                  I just happened to have watched "The Nun's Story" earlier.  What a story of dedicated, determined, honest effort to stop the flow of experience, to accept & embrace an ideal frozen in time, committed to stone,  and to doggedly turn off every other development which could occur which would further enlighten it, with the penalty of disgrace for being truly unable to be so frozen, even though & when the personal heart is willing to be frozen.  She really tried, but could not.  Not only a moral dilemma, but one which a truly good and alive heart just couldn't accept, rightfully.
                     
                  Now "Fiddler On The Roof" has come on and there are elements of the same disturbing anomalies between set rules and actual life depicted, which, without some "give" to the rules, results in freezing the heart and soul.  Tradition!  Ah, yes.

                  Yet rules have a place, too, and shouldn't be trivially rejected.  Now the song "Sunrise, Sunset" is being sung, looking at the progression of life from early to late.  All I can say is  wow.

                  haha - the chasing of one's tail is a wise and good-humor conclusion, dear Alan!

                  Have you thought lately of Plato's "Analogy of the Cave" or the "Analogy of the Lotus Flower"?

                  1. arb profile image81
                    arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    Truth in logic is absolute and immutable. Logic not as rational or possible, but, logic as science, as the "father of mathmatics". Truth in the discipline of logic or the science of logic is empirical. For ex: Water is wet. The lake is water. Therefore, the lake is wet. Logics syllogism would use letters and symbols. A=wet. B=water. therefore B=A. A sleepy example, but, a mathmatical example of syllogisms used in logic. The truth of A is absolute and objective. The truth of B is absolute and objective. Therefore the conclusion is absolute and objective. In logic (the discipline) inductive reasoning is subjective because the premises may or may not be true. A=I feel hot. B=fire is hot. Invalid conclusion=I am on fire. Valid conclusion= I may or may not be on fire. Premise A is subjective. Premise B is objective. Premise A may or may not be true. A valid conclusion is dependent on each premise being valid and A may or may not be valid. Truth then is not subjective in the field of logic. Logic is the science of verifiable objective statements. Opinions are subjective because they include unverifiable (or in the mathmatical language of logic) invalid statements. Statements which may or may not be true. God exist is an invalid statement in the field of logic because the statement is unverifiable. God does not exist is an invalid statement in logic also because it is unverifiable. Perhaps easier to follow is, an objective statement has to be either true or false. A subjective statement (may) be true or false. The truth of objectivity is verifiable and conclusive (valid). The truth of subjectivity is unverifiable and therefore may or may not be (valid). Valid statements are necessary in logic to reach a valid conclusion. Invalid statements may or may not reach a valid conclusion. All this may or may not clarify my use of the words valid and invalid.
                    In the allegory of the cave the perception of "reality" was actually a world of shadows. What has always interested me however isn't that the perception was flawed, but, that the perception gave some indication of reality. Even if our perception is flawed today, we are still left with an indication of that reality. We are closer than the man who lives in the cave and is blind all together. We have pieces of reality (maybe shadows) but still, some semblence of it, none the less.
                    From what I remember, the analogy of the lotus flower is buddist in origin. My studies of buddism are limited to a parallel study of Christianity and the claims of both. Such studies remind me of the judicial process in which evidence is gathered, analysed objectively where possible and subjectively where impossible. In the end a rational but, unverifiable conclusion is arrived at. The weight of the prevailing evidence will tilt us to one direction or the other. In my case, the weight tiltled toward Christianity. It does not mean that I am right or that I was wrong. The perpetual rebirthing of the lotus flower does indeed, reveal similarities to the human condition. The irony is, the similarities are interpreted according to ones overall life philosphy. The Buddist will find it analogous to his belief and the Christian to his and so on. In the end, we are all doing the same thing. Constructing a conclusion by interpreting the world around us. That interpretation is colored by want, by prejudice, by lack of information and by available information. Its kinda like looking at a puzzle that isn't put together and trying to identify the picture from all the scattered pieces. We must all have as much doubt about the whole picture as we have conviction. Just educated guess. One as worthy as another.

      2. Phyllis Doyle profile image94
        Phyllis Doyleposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        This is a great discussion and one that inspires deep thoughts and possibilities as to what life is and why we are here. At times there does seem to be something that holds us back, Alastar, and often it does seem as if it is we who hold ourselves back.

        I have a very close friend who I have discussed life and human needs with. We went through a very difficult time of different opinions and with his help, I learned that following the path that life intended is the best thing for the two of us. I wanted more than what he could give and he taught me to live in the moment. Since then we have become ever closer with greater understanding of each other and our needs, or desires.

        In following the path that life intended, I find that it falls in harmony with another close friend that strongly believes in following destiny. Are the two friends saying the same thing? I believe they are -- to follow destiny is to live in harmony.

        Destiny is a different path for each person and sometimes the destiny of two separate individuals merges into one path of harmony and balance.

        So - is this our purpose .... to find our destiny and follow that path?  I wrote a poem once about 'When Spirit Meets Destiny'.  The two (spirit and destiny) argued as to which was the right path: destiny or the heart?

        This brings up the question of "is destiny and the heart the same?"

        Just pondering out loud here, but if others have an opinion, I would love to hear it.

  7. Alastar Packer profile image84
    Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago

    Nellieanna, let me start off by saying your post is reasonable and very thoughtful. It definitely causes me to reflect on my short-comings as concerns starting this thread. As the 'general manager' I should have clearly stated a firm position on the subject to begin with; the reason I didn't was because that would have been untrue as i really didn't have an absolutely firm one. The intention was to hear from others and kind of go from there. This approach was in error; you see Nellieanna, I'm not that savvy in initiating forum threads and will try and do better next time. If I'd known asking who are we, where are we, and what is reality would cause anyone to feel any hostility towards anyone else, they never would have been asked to begin with.  Welcome to Hubpages Nellieanna, it's a great community of writers you've joined.

    1. Nellieanna profile image84
      Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      No, no, Alastar - My thoughts were definitely not criticism of your withholding your own position - - quite the opposite.  Waiting to make a firm statement (especially if you're hoping to learn more) is wise whether or not yours is firm.  It would seem high-handed to start off with a position that would, at best, challenge others' thoughts about the question and might even discourage them from replying from their perceptions of it.  No one is apt to have the final, unassailable answer to such a large question.  You've set off a genial discussion with most folks feeling OK about sharing their ideas about it.  That's its value.

      Your intention was right-on and your approach wasn't in error, at least not in my opinion!   You did it a nerve with your question, but not with anyone who is OK with discussing large questions amicably.  I don't believe anyone felt any hostility, just perhaps a little chagrin that you'd not stated your position.  My remarks were totally to agree with your reasons and  right to wait to express yours, and especially if it was an honest question whose answer you didn't claim to know for sure.  (No one does, for that matter!)  It's a great Forum!

      I'm not a newbie to Hubpages - been here nearly 3 years.  Just to active participation in Forums.  I agree that it's a great community of writers - of all persuasions, which makes it the more interesting..

      1. Alastar Packer profile image84
        Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        All is clear now- thank you Nellieanna!

        1. Nellieanna profile image84
          Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          :-)

    2. Phyllis Doyle profile image94
      Phyllis Doyleposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Alastar, I so agree with Nellieanna -- if you had stated your own feelings and answers to your questions, it may have influenced others to either agree with you, strongly disagree, or even not respond.

      I think you started the forum in the right manner by posing the questions and allowing others the freedom to express their viewpoints first. Not only did that give us the chance to explore our own inner truths first, but it gave you and everyone else the opportunity to read viewpoints that are sincere and coming from the heart center without any persuasion.

      Well done, Alastar. And .... well said, Nellieanna. I applaud you both!

      1. Nellieanna profile image84
        Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Thank you, Phyllis!

        1. Phyllis Doyle profile image94
          Phyllis Doyleposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          You are most welcome, Nellieanna.  This is probably the most interesting forum I have participtated on HP.... well, I do not participate that much in these forums, but this one is presented well by our dear Alastar and is really interesting with so many participating.

          1. Nellieanna profile image84
            Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            I definitely agree, Phyllis!  I love a good, lively, civil discussion on most any subject, and this one is especially interesting, dealing with thoughts most of us have about "What's it all about, Alfie?"  Alastar has presented it well and carries it along well.  Participation is excellent too.

            1. Phyllis Doyle profile image94
              Phyllis Doyleposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              I love that song, "What's it all about, Alfie?"  This is the perfect song for this discussion.  I have never been this enthused about a forum discussion and I check out every notification I get on it.

              So, "What's it all about, Alastar? Is it just for the moment we live?
              What's it all about when you sort it out, Alastar?"  smile

              1. Nellieanna profile image84
                Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Perfect! The song dos suit this hub.  By coincidence, I was just putting another Bacharach song on a hub - "Walk On By", which sometmes suits the moment's situations, as well.  :-)

                1. Nellieanna profile image84
                  Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  oops - 'does suit. . ."

                2. Phyllis Doyle profile image94
                  Phyllis Doyleposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  "Wait on the corner" and we can have a cuppa in the tea shop with a great discussion on this delightful forum.  smile

                  1. Nellieanna profile image84
                    Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    I  confess my ignorance of that "Walk on By", though I looked it up and heard the "Wait on the Corner" line in it - which is a lovely invitation for a cuppa tea!   When?  :-)
                    The "Walk On By" I referred to, however, is the Bacharach one, which Dionne Warwick (Whitney Houston's aunt) made famous in 1963, along with many other great Bacharach songs, including 'Alfie".

              2. Alastar Packer profile image84
                Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Isn't Alfie a ladies man who returns to his true love in the last reel, Phyllis? Perhaps we can use the movie's plot as an analogy; maybe with humankind returning to some deeper understanding of who, what, and why after mucking around with affairs that have no meaning in the end.

                1. Phyllis Doyle profile image94
                  Phyllis Doyleposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  Gee, I do not know, Alastar. I never saw the movie and only listened to the song. I thought it was a good analogy for what this is all about, and I like your analogy of returning to some deeper understanding of who, what, and why. hmmm .... I believe that this year has been a time of transition for all humankind and that we are indeed returning to the old ways of spiritual truths. As the year has progressed, so, too, have many people become more in tune with what is within them.

                  I do a lot of research into the ancient scholars and what many of them wrote centuries ago have meanings that are true for today as well. 

                  Plato believed that the meaning of life is to attain the highest knowledge possible, which is the Idea of the Good, from which all good and just things derive utility and value. He believed that humans are duty-bound to pursue the good.

                  Aristotle taught that if one wanted to become virtuous, he could not just study what that meant, but had to live it in order to become virtuous. It is true today that one must study AND practice to become what they want to be.

                  To realize why we are here is to discover what our place in the Universe is and to accept that 'task'.

                  Why am I here? To obtain my highest good, or potential, which is writing and helping others to find their spiritual path in life. For many years I had wanted to do what I am doing now: writing and spiritual coaching. I studied, read, memorized, read and studied more for many years. I did not BECOME what I wanted to be till I lived it. All the study did not give me all I needed .... by living it I learn more every day and become that much stronger in my truths.

                  Where am I? I am right where I want to be and need to be at this time in my life.

                  What is my reality? My reality is being the best writer and spiritual coach I can possibly be -- and to realize that I will never stop learning, for to stop learning is to stop growing. If one stops learning and growing, then what is the purpose of being here?

                  You amaze me, Alastar.  You ask questions and give out your thoughts in little pieces which inspires others to look deeper within themselves. This is a great gift that few people have and I admire you for opening this discussion. Thank you.

                  1. Alastar Packer profile image84
                    Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    My pleasure Phyllis. The ancient philosophers were fonts of high wisdom, certainly. I've also come to believe in my studies that very important writings on truths about who, what , when, and how have been lost over time- like the library at Alexandria, supposedly torched by those who didn't want its knowledge disseminated to future generations. Fortunately many things have been discovered-recovered recently, so that is very encouraging. Phyllis it took me quite a while to learn to trust that which is deep within us, and let it be my ever faithful guide.

                2. Nellieanna profile image84
                  Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  It's been a long while since I saw the original version of "Alfie" with Michael Caine in the leading role, Alastar; but I think you're right.  He is a womanizer who finally faces the consequences of his own choices & changes his lifestyle.  I'd agree that it exemplifies that one of the outcomes of life is to learn valuable lessons about living it more satisfactorily, effectively and happily.  Some of the lessons take the form of more difficult 'labs' than just mucking around meaninglessly as Afie did.  Guess it depends on how hard-headed the student is, how extreme the lessons must be to get through to him/her!

  8. misty95 profile image59
    misty95posted 4 years ago

    How can you get help on here. Quick.
    My 32 webpages have vanished off my profile.

  9. recommend1 profile image72
    recommend1posted 4 years ago

    I note that this thread is full of the idea that there must be a purpose for life - there is, it is the biological programming that every living thing shares.  The imperatives to eat and to recreate ourselves.  Why this simple drive to live should be  thought to be some high level of purpose I can't understand - maybe it has something to do with the nature of our ego and the way we think of ourselves.  Just because a higher level of thinking evolved in us does not make us any different in every other way to any of the amazing creatures and living things that have evolved on this planet with us - what higher 'purpose'  does a whale, or a dog or a redwood tree have ?  what makes us different to them ?

    1. Phyllis Doyle profile image94
      Phyllis Doyleposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Have you ever been in the redwood forest in California where these giants live, some for over 1500 years?
      Have you ever had a dog come and lay its head on your knee when you are hurting or lonely and need comfort?
      Have you ever heard the sounds of the whales as they call to each other and sing their songs of love or mourning?
      Every living thing on Earth has a higher purpose.

    2. arb profile image81
      arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      While it is true that all living things are driven, biologically, to  survive and to propagate their respective species, it remains interesting that man alone, questions his existence and seeks a purpose higher than mere survival. That we ask the question, does in itself, allude to a possibility that we may have further purpose. Possibility is the basis for our discussion, the basis for looking deeper and the basis for learning anything at all. If we contend that there is no higher purpose, we simultaneously, discount the basis for almost every religion on earth. If we are simply moved by a biological need to survive, then there is no basis for love, for longing, for grieving or a host of other living emotions, each of which is unecessary for survival. Why is man burdened with so many feelings, with such advanced intellect if surviving is our only goal?

      1. recommend1 profile image72
        recommend1posted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Or maybe it is a side effect of the 'higher level of reasoning ability' that we have, the ego, that demands that it must have some higher purpose because it is so damned important.  I suspect that belief in a 'higher purpose' is pure arrogance.  As proof of this I know many people who are far less important than the air they waste in breathing !  ps, this is a joke.

        1. arb profile image81
          arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          I conceed that our search for purpose may well be the side effect of an intellect that simply wants there to be a higher purpose. There are, however, unanswered phenomemnon such as instinct, intuition or a sixth sense if you will. Although there is no empirical evidence, there is consequential evidence. For instance: How dose one simply feel as though they are being watched and suddendly such suspicion is confirmed. A mother feels something is wrong with a sleeping baby, checks and finds it has quit breathing. Obviously, our history is littered with intuitive knowledge which we, nor science, can explain. Intuition, is an unexplained knowledge that we know exist and it has posed a problem for both philosophy and science since the dawn of time. It is a mysterious phenomenon, but, just the same a knowledge which most living things seem to share. It is, it seems a knowledge executed by feeling. If man feels this intense intuitive existence of someone watching or that there is something more (purpose, God or whatever) it is just as likely that intuition is manifesting  itself within his consciousness. It carries enough weight to consider possibility as much as the premise which simply considers it a side effect. We know things which we have no expalnation for. Because we have no explanation, they are simply refered to, as phenomenon. None the less they exist. I am not suggesting that I know "the purpose or the God" but I do sense, intuitively, that there is something higher, something more. That so many share this experience lends credibility to this intuition. So much so, that humans begin to question, try to get their minds around what it is and they search. It is a rational search because such feeling has verified in the past, that it can be trusted. Obviously, feeling has also taught us it can not be trusted. I suppose that we are like a bystander in a sense, perpetually feeling as though someone is watching. Is it not rational then, to look around, to examine the landscape and try to put our suspicions to rest?

          1. recommend1 profile image72
            recommend1posted 4 years ago in reply to this

            There are many reasons why intuition is a natural phenomenon, not least the many times we feel we are being watched - and we are not.   
            That you remember only the rare occasion that supports your intuition says everything about why you choose to see some kind of god in things - and no other reason.

            1. arb profile image81
              arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Your attitude in assessing intuitive knowledge refutes both the science behind it and 2000 years of philosophical thought from scholars more learned than either you or I. The possibilty does exist that you are wiser than all of them and science combined. My intuition tells me however, that although possible, it is not probable.

              1. recommend1 profile image72
                recommend1posted 4 years ago in reply to this

                You want to separate intuition from reason ? and give it some kind of spiritual source ?   

                There is no mystery about intuition - it is a natural operation of the mind.  There is no external input into intuition except what comes from the 5 senses and the mix and match operations of the subconcious, that it appears to come from 'outside' yourself is why Freud called it the 'subconcious' mind.

                1. arb profile image81
                  arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  renowm neuropsychologist and neurobiologist Roger Sperry says intuition is a right brain activity.Jung claimed that intuition was sheer intensity of perception.Randolf Steiner that intuition is the 3rd of three stages of higher knowledge.Yale University did a study in 1977 verifing that certain individuals with high intuitive knowledge could read cues before rienforcement actually occured.Carl Jung again defined intuition as perception via the unconscious. As defined by websters-immediate a priori knowlege apart from usual reasoning.No one claims that it comes from outside, it is knowlege reveald inside. I have never claimed that intuition came from a spiritual source. I merely stated that it may or may not. We can not prove that it does or doesn't therefore, the possibility does exist until it is eliminated. We may sense a "higher purpose"  than survial intuitively. I have simply offered a reason why many people feel that there is a higher purpose. It may be the consequence of intuition and it isn't yours to say there is no higher purpose unless you can eliminate intuitive knowlege. The bottom line is  - we don't know and the things that we don't know, are plausible in the world of possibilities. Given what evidence we have from the sciences, it remains a credible possibilty.

                  1. Nellieanna profile image84
                    Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    I (intuitively, perhaps) suspect that there is a form of intelligence throughout the body which culminates in an ability to act rationally and to "know" before the fact without passing it through the brain for response instructions or mental evaluation and conclusion.  It seems extra-ordinart at times, but is merely heightened awareness, alertness and perception.

                  2. recommend1 profile image72
                    recommend1posted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    Bit of a mental backflip there  !      All your sources agree that intuition is a function of the mind manipulating information that is in the mind - there is nothing outside.  So your only idea is that you intuitively feel that there is some greater force at work.  My normally functioning reasoning says there is not = and any greater purpose than staying alive and reproducing is pure arrogance and your ego insisting that it is sooooo superior.

          2. 0
            Rad Manposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            I hope you don't mind me interjecting here, but you said some very interesting things here and I thought I'd share my thought on the matter.
            A simple, but perfect explanation for intuition would be Carl Jung's "perception via the unconscious". The "right brain" is associated with intuitive processes such as aesthetic abilities which also makes perfect sense because that is where the unconscious mind exists. The study of split brained patients has shown us that the right brain can't talk, but understands, but by it's self is unaware of it's thought. Ask it to pick up the tool and it will, then ask it why it has the tool and it has no idea.
            So intuition is a product of the brain, specifically the unconscious letting the conscious know what it's thinking and not messages from anything spiritual.

            1. arb profile image81
              arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Hello Rad Man and welcome to the discussion. I would certainly agree that both you and Carl may be right concerning the placement and purpose of intuition. It does not, however, discount the notion that it was put there or that it is immune to an outside influence. It is, as you say, probably, little more than you ascribe to it. I simply speak to the possibilty that a higher power speaks through such vehicles. If a higher power doesn't exist, then the point is mute. If one does exist, it would be an appropriate place to communicate.

              1. 0
                Rad Manposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                The logical question would be, why would a higher being communicate through our unconscious mind rather then cutting to the chase right to our conscious mind? Would you communicate to another through this manner, hoping they get your message?

                1. arb profile image81
                  arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  A worthy point and one I have considered. If the principle of faith is a requisite of communication, then intuition fits the requisite where speaking to the conscious mind would leave no doubt and faith would be unnecessary. Of course, such hypothesis begs the question, why is faith a necessary requiste to communication? And that my logical friend, is entirely new discussion. Your question, however, reveals you prefer thinking to arguing. I commend you for an exercise which is uncommon in the forums.

                  1. 0
                    Rad Manposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    You correctly predicted my next question. Thanks for the kind words. Why in fact would a God choose to only communicate with those who have faith or and have been taught of his existence when he could simply make himself present? It seems to me the most likely scenario would be that because of how illogical that scienerio is no such God exists. Only the unconscious mind bringing forth it's ideas to the conscious mind makes sense to me.

  10. Alastar Packer profile image84
    Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago

    We're no different than other living things on the planet except that homo sapiens are on a higher evolutionary consciousness level. The Orcas and such are interesting in this regard, however.

    1. Nellieanna profile image84
      Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      One thing about Orcas and dolphins, each of which has shown to have high intelligence: - they've not used it to mess up their world and to try to annihilate each other as the home sapiens are obviously bent on doing to ours!  Makes one think!

      1. Alastar Packer profile image84
        Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        It does make one think! The Orcas, for example, are not only highly intelligent but are like us in their emotions and actions- they have an extremely complex way of communicating too. If our consciousness was somehow transplanted into their bodies would we act and behave any different than they do? I don't know of course but it is fascinating to ponder on.

        1. Nellieanna profile image84
          Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Recently I stepped out on the front porch and there was a brown grasshopper perched on the edge of its platform.  It sat very still as I leaned over & talked to it.  It tilted its head so that its eyes were gazing right at me, following me as I moved to look in the mailbox and told it I was leaving.  There was no mail yet then and when I came out again later to look, there was no grasshopper either.

          BUT, the next day - he was right there again, and this time seemed to notice me the moment I came out the door. 

          I frequently talk to cute little chameleon lizards and they seem aware, too.  Of course the squirrels always are attentive & aware; they know me now, know my voice! 

          But I have to wonder at the attention of insects and reptiles!  Were they merely interested from the standpoint of their safety?  Well, - making a quick exit would be a better response in that case!  I think I prefer to think they rather enjoyed the peaceful conversation and/or the intent of same!

          1. Alastar Packer profile image84
            Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            Nellie, they are charming creatures, those grasshoppers and even more so the chameleons. Why, watching the colorful lizards go about their business and cock their curious heads as they contemplate the giant staring at them...well, there is something positively human about it. Since we have a bit of the ol' reptile in us perhaps they have a tiny bit of the giant in them.

            1. Nellieanna profile image84
              Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              I wouldn't be surprised, Alastar, but either way, it's fun to give them regard and a kind word!  I do have a soft spot in my heart for them.  I almost cried that same day when I found a tiny little baby lizard dead. Silly, huh?

              1. Alastar Packer profile image84
                Alastar Packerposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Not at all silly, Nellie. Like I said there is something special about the chameleons, especially in their natural state. As to them having a little bit of us in them that was meant figuratively of course...or was it now? Once walked into the middle of a bushy field in a national forest that held dozens of them all around me. I watched them for maybe twenty minutes go about their community lives and must say...well, they do indeed seem to have something of us in them!

                1. Nellieanna profile image84
                  Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  Yesterday I saw a little chameleon on my patio door screen.  Went close to take a picture of it, then realized it was on he INSIDE of the screen, trapped in there. So I managed to crack open the glass door enough for it to escape and  tried to coax the little guy to take advantage!  But it reacted by going the opposite direction away from freedom; so I realized it was inhibited by my  proximity and I left & sat down, still able to watch what it did.   Poor little thing had a bit of a strruggle figuring it out, took wrong courses but finally got on the edge of the doorframe, right beside "freedom", but where it scooted UP and further from the bottom step.  So I moved the  glass door a bit, enough to scare it to hop like lightning onto the brick wall and escape rapidly!  It was a rather  gratifying mini-relationship. 

                  A mini-model of how we humans often ignore our own opportunities, except that we often seem deliberately to ignore ours and to doubt the prevailing good-will of nature and life!

      2. arb profile image81
        arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        We have the capacity to behave, to be kind, to love and to nurture, That we have the capacity to be otherwise might be what separates from such other living things. I wonder if they have such choice or if its a burden of man alone?

        1. Nellieanna profile image84
          Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          A good  question!! Provoked further thought. . . .

  11. Vinaya Ghimire profile image84
    Vinaya Ghimireposted 4 years ago

    Buddhist View: We are not the body but soul. We live in Samsara, the endless cycle of birth and rebirth. Nirvana, the liberation, is the ultimate reality.
    Hindu View: We are atma (soul) and our propose in this world to be merged with parmatma (God). Our life here on earth is illusion.

    1. arb profile image81
      arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Hi Vinaya, Such a view is as worthy of consideration as any other. In your case such view is your foundation and influences the shape of the house you build. In a sense it builds your view of reality. Your reality then is different than mine, but, no less as valid unless I can disprove your foundational premise and I can not. Again, our beginning point dictates our conclusions.

    2. Nellieanna profile image84
      Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Vinaya, are those two views in harmony with each other?  They could be or they could be somewhat 'at odds'.  What  is your view?

  12. pennyofheaven profile image81
    pennyofheavenposted 4 years ago

    Well I hope it continues. I was enjoying the dialogue.

    1. Nellieanna profile image84
      Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      I, for one, appreciate your input, pennyofheaven.  Your input is valuable.

      1. arb profile image81
        arbposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        I for two!

        1. Nellieanna profile image84
          Nellieannaposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Thumbs up!

 
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