Consciousness Seminars planning thread

(john davis) #21

What I am learning from this organizational process is how easy it is to let things get lost in translation. I am still unsure of where anything begins or ends in cyber world and it is becoming more illusive than ever. We still require linear time frames to make anything happen. Curtain goes up at 8 pm.

In the room, the women come and go, talking of Michelangelo…

Sharing attention is becoming more and more difficult as more and more voices and faces get introduced on this little screen, appreciated, and then disappear, not to be heard from until they return somehow perhaps on another thread, another site, another topic. The technology giveth and it taketh away, as fragile as are our attention spans and our quickly evaporating ideas and alliances.

Good news. I do find that the meet up sponsored by Carolyn and Marco, focusing on Carolyn’s text, is a very good model to follow. A text generated a panel discussion and this was moderated well by Marco and I enjoyed it and learned from my participation.

What I learned is that our current fractured politics is more caught up in the Euclidean geometry of our founding fathers than I realized. Our political personas evolve out of notions such as " It is self evident that all men are created equal." This is like an axiom out of Euclid.

I learned that I yearned for a Politics that embraced Paradox rather than attempts to eliminate paradox. I yearn for the excluded middle. A deviant logic in which contradictions are sometimes true. This is not the same as Truth is relative.

I also learned that other panelists have rich and varied experiences and that we can support our fellow citizens in this turbulent period to re-organize our ways of knowing.

I proposed that a familiarity with Topo-Dimensionality is a great help in making a transition from the Euclidean/Newtonian political framework of our past to a more friendly relationship to alternate ways of knowing/being/becoming.

Our language is pretty clunky, our vocabularies stuck in the old ways of organizing thoughts and feelings. Metaphors are important and we are starting, I believe, to entertain with new metaphors and narratives. All of this is recycled from lots of conversations, threads, YouTube videos, workshops and seminars.

So hey kids! Let’s do a seminar!

So I am wanting to create some boundary around this Nov 14th event. We are gathering to discuss what the hell this vague idea about a conference on consciousness could be. We are looking at Young and perhaps others in the future.

This meeting is not about the Globes adventure scheduled for some other time. Or Aurobindo.

I am a great believer in open/closure. We have no freedom if we have no constraints. I would like to point to the excellent planning that Marco and Carolyn put into the ongoing series. I think it is a good model to follow.

I am interested in using a text to bounce my ideas off of. And so the texts are important. I am concerned though that if we cast too wide a net we loose track of each other’s attention very quickly.

I just point this out to Marco, TJ, and Ed and Geoffrey whoever else may be paying attention that I understand this is an organizational meeting for the consciousness meet up. Have I got that right?

If it isn’t about that it is fine. But I like to prepare and do some homework to make the most of these encounters of the third kind. Thanks for your kind attention.

(Marco V Morelli) #22

John, your thoughts above on a “politics that embraces paradox” deserves a dedicated thread, so I won’t touch on it here. Also, I’m heading out the door in a few minutes with my nuclear family to the Farmers Market, and then Target, followed by other errands, perhaps. So I will check in again later…

But TJ’s proposal, as I understood it, was to delve into Arthur Young on Tuesday on 11/14.

Do you think we still need a meta-conference on the seminar series per se? Or is it enough, at this stage, to assume that there is a time slot every Tuesday at 13:00 Mountain time (3 pm Eastern)—for some virtual meeting (on Zoom), which of course not everyone can or needs to attend every time, but which we know is reserved as topics arise?

If we assume this, then we could fill out a calendar with proposed seminars, topics, or meta-topics. I have some guests in mind whom I’d like to invite to present on themes of relevance to the micro-macro Cosmos. I imagine y’all might as well! But I like starting with our nucleus here; so it could be good to have our own planning meeting, too, if or when it feels needed.

Should we go ahead with Arthur Young on 11/14, but dedicate a future meeting to planning further seminars? How would we “plan” in trans-Euclidean space?

(john davis) #23

Thanks for the clarification. Perhaps that is not necessary, Marco, as it sounds like you have a plan. Thanks for making it clearer. If there is no need to be pro-active I wont be. I am off to smell the roses. Have a great day!

(Ed Mahood) #24

I, too, understood that we’d use the 14th to sort of beta test a seminar concept of sorts: TJ suggest a basic text and some questions on which we could focus to help us all concretize a number of topics, themes, notions, ideas, and concepts that have been kicked around as of late, from Sloterdijk to Carolyn’s essay-discussion series but even more importantly from a very foundational vantage point.

We would get together – whoever could make it – and use Young as a common reference point for sorting out our own fundamental assumptions and presuppositions about what we’re trying to figure out for and about ourselves.

While the very notion of “seminar” calls forth rather formal connotations, I found the idea of the café attractive in that … well, instead of holding the seminar in a classroom, why not meet in a café instead. Take a bit of the formal “learning” pressure off, open up the potential a bit more. It’s more than just meeting up to talk about G-d and the world; rather it’s more like who-is-this-God-guy-and-why-this-world? Chances are very good that we won’t “cover” all of TJ’s suggested questions and they will definitely serve as a springboard for follow-on, and these follow-ons would be enhanced, as I see it, but things, notions, ideas, reactions, feelings, and readings that each of us is bringing to the discussion. That is: a chance to explore, and to explore in more depth than if we were just bullshitting. It is a chance for us to “put our toes in the water”, if you will, to see if we’re reading to dive in or not.

You see, I see Young raising some profoundly fundamental questions about how we think/believe we perceive reality. He makes his underlying assumptions fairly clear and calls upon us to do the same for ourselves. Bringing those fundamental assumptions to our own conscious awareness will in turn have, I believe, significant impacts on what we think we are getting out of our readings (like Sloterdijk, or Ingold) and participation in other activities (like Carolyn’s series), as well in our everyday lives. Of course – and in keeping with the metaphor introduced in the preceding paragraph – I could be all wet about this, but when I picked up Young again this afternoon, I found myself struggling more than usual because of TJ’s basic questions on the one hand and John’s toroidal reservations on the other. In other words, I found myself thinking about the text in much different ways than I did the first couple of times I engaged it. (Personally, I think this is a good thing.)

And so, again, I think beta test is a good way to describe this. How structured must a seminar be? How open (free-form) is possible? Can/Should content be predetermined or should it reveal itself in the course of action? What might the Integral look like? Could it look like this?

(john davis) #25

I am reminded of a story about Wittgenstein. The great philosopher went to the chalkboard and said," The problem of Time." He wrote the word, TIME, on the board, took a long pause as the students leaned forward and then erased the word from the board. He announced," The problem of Time is solved."

I don’t know if the story is true but it charms me. He did conclude at the end of the Tractatus, ‘Whereof one cannot speak thereof one must be silent’ He later recanted, thank God. If the poets only spoke about what could be said we would be in real trouble.

Now I would be bullshitting if I claimed that I have mastered very much in life, literature or in philosophy. I can say with confinfidence that I’m a hopeless deviant, (departing from usual or accepted standards) and that my symptoms are getting worse.

So instead of trying to erase Time and consider the problem solved I would like to admit to defeat and accept that I don’t think anyone knows what Time is.

Nov.14th is a long way off (notice my spatial metaphor for time) and much can happen in the between then and now. As we use this shared space as a rehearsal for that event we could put on the table what is perplexing us or keeping us motivated. Keeping the energy flowing in this seminar, café, deep dive, is useful. I of course may be in more need than others of focusing on my motivation strategy. I just feel sometimes that opportunities are arising and disappearing so quickly that the experiment is already over before it began. But maybe I am just getting cranky.

A few days ago a terrorist attack killed eight people in NYC. They were killed on a bike path that I ride upon daily. Ask not for whom the bell tolls.

(T J Williams) #26

Hehehe. Daylight Savings. EST will be back to only 5 hours ahead of CET after today. Sigh

Ed’s post (two up from this) sums up my ‘vision’ for the first go round. We can always take it from there - maybe spend the last ten minutes of each session tentatively setting up the time and topic of the next. I’m sensing that lack of texts (or articles, interviews, lectures, etc) to talk about won’t be a problem!

(Ed Mahood) #27

Who does? What impressed me most about Gebser was his insight that coming to terms with this notion was a pivotal part of the consciousness mutation he intuited. That it is something that can only be conceived of and understood in one way isn’t what he was talking about. Young, with his focus on “process” needs the arrow to keep everything from happening at once, but the key notion he introduced was asymmetry which gives it a whole different feel.

My most-often, self-asked question is what is it that keeps me looking for meaning? Why not just give up and make as little sense as most of what I find around me. I mean the blither, the blather, the FB drivel, the daily news, the talks with my grandson’s kindergarten teachers, what I hear from my daughter and son-in-law from their work environments … this is not a good time to be alive for someone who’s greatest compulsion is that things make sense. Or it’s the best time. I haven’t decided, but at least I know why I’m so curmudgeony. :smiling_imp:

(john davis) #28

I am so used to being labeled and dismissed as a New Age kook I usually keep silent about anything that interests me. I am beyond curmudgeon! If I walked with a cane I would be raising it all the time to warn people to stay away from me. Bah! Humbug!

Fortunately, I recently met a very entertaining Gebserian couple at the recent conference in NYC. We were surprised to find out we read the same obscure authors. We shared our experiences of the third kind and they were shocked that I understood their research projects immediately, were surprised that we had access to similar liminal zones. It was like a Vulcan Mind Meld.

We finished each other’s sentences, we spoke in a sort of short hand, an odd conlang- in- the- making, a new language from another world, with eerily similar experiences to share of the Secret Body, that body of Light, that Hybrid body being fashioned out of physics and psyche.

After the conference, a few days later, as I walked towards my favorite library, I saw the mysterious Gebserian couple a block away. I waved at them, we embraced, I asked about a book she had mentioned, she pulled the book out of her bag and gave it to me. She had dinner with the philosopher I most admire the night before and she said she was putting us in contact.

Off they went to the airport to fly back to their place of origin, thousands of miles away. We are in contact and and they have put me in touch with their circle of contacts. I am now in dialogue with these obscure thinkers I much admire.

I realize there is a vast underground, a secret society, much like the alchemists of old, sharing recipes, articles, anecdotes, trying to avoid the Inquisition. They work inside and outside academia, are shop keepers, secretaries, urban monks, accupuncturists. I think Gebser is an attractor for those who work at the edge, comfortable with shadows, and delight in paradox.

Synchronistic events don’t just happen, they occur because you have knocked on a lot of doors many, many times. Then, one day, the door opens…

I have much to say about my toroidal resistance which you mentioned, Ed, previously. This borders on the highly esoteric and is almost impossible for me to articulate at the moment but at the next meet up on the 14th I hope to flesh out topo-dimensionality and get some feedback from you and the group. I expect we are doing more than just shooting the breeze here. Perhaps we can create a community of the competent! That is very hard to realize on FB.

It is about the either/or nature of the torus that I resist. Movement is eighter longitudinal or orthogonal but never both at the same time. However, if you take the Torus and instead of joining it end to end you allow it to interact with its own surface in the middle you have a Klein bottle which is an object that is has both/and dimensions, and inside and outside , a contained and uncontained aspect. It is I believe a gift from the fourth dimension. If you bow to the Klein bottle a few times a day, or contemplate it’s shape, a new self organization is possible. I have found my night yoga is much more effective with this shape in my mind’s eye.

If you add some proprioceptive exercises, going backwards into the observer’s space, rather than outward into the object space, anomalies produced by the 3D prison house is altered dramatically.

And it is curious that the Light emitted by the sun, is absorbed by the eye. And what is this coupling between the light and the eye? And what of the inner eye, when you go to sleep at night, that illuminates the interiors? Where does that Light come from? Is there a relationship between the eye of the mind and the ‘I’ we use to make sense with linguistically?

As I said this is beyond the scope of this thread. I was expecting, however, that at the Consciousness seminar some of these research projects could be developed.

I like to be not too loose and not too tight but I hope we can be enjoy the flow and be rigorous at them same time. I have too much respect for the scholarship of others to treat too loosely what they have generously given to me. It is much better to be silent than flippant. I have to watch this tendency in my self.

(Ed Mahood) #29

It is like a secret society, and I agree that Gebser is an attractor, but, to my mind, only one of many, and a too-little known one, but that’s actually beside the point. One of our jobs, if you will, is to recognize all those who don’t necessarily attract in through Gebser, for example, but through any of the other obscure channels we may be operating on (… or is it “in” … do we operate on or in channels … which preposition is most appropriate here?). You, John, do so through your psychic-etheral-astral connections, I tend to run into more esoteric, often heady, explorers, as well as the delightfully open as are found in these virtual realms.

Otherwise, they’d merely be coincidental, and we all know that wouldn’t be any fun at all.

Based on Young’s diagrams, I can see that, but I think there are other ways of perceiving what’s going on … I’ll bring my own toys with on the 14th; maybe that will open this up a bit.

Which I hope you will elaborate on further. Even one as simplicity-focused as I am, (trying to) follow(ing) other more baroque (and I mean absolutely nothing pejorative by that term) approaches always yields up something of value. Focusing on symbols and shapes meditatively, if I may phase it so simplistically for the moment, is a very powerful tool for getting oneself off center, to be sure. Of course, not everyone I’ve ever met has been as courageously willing to simply explore those domains as you are, John. Most people I know are just a bit uncomfortable with any reality that is not everyday, regardless of how much they complain about that one in particular.

Young, of course, speaks of light as if it were of the same nature wherever and whenever it manifested, but just like there is (light) matter and dark matter, perhaps there are different manifestations of light. I know of some who think so. Ever heard of white fire and black fire, for example? It could (doesn’t have to, but could) go in that direction, perhaps. Unfortunately, without some longer term background in such matters, this all becomes rather much to take. Rich meals should never be eaten quickly or capriciously.

This I would doubt seriously because it is so one-language based. It might be there phonologically in English … with a bit of of a strain you could get it orthographically in German (ich – Licht), but French and Spanish won’t play at all, nor will Greek, and in Ancient Hebrew the differences are so fundamental, it’s not even funny. Unfortunately, I know nothing else about any other language to say anything useful. Having said all that, though, I’d never discourage an English-speaker from pursuing that line of contemplation if they wanted to.

Yes, but such spin-offs are also what I sus-/expected might come of our “seminars”, and this regardless of what form the seminars themselves might take, initially, developmentally, or continually.

It’s like you said, John, there are a lot of open doors. Which ones you, I, we go through and who accompanies whom when is still a very unanswered question.

(john davis) #30

And the unasked question is operative too. Questions and questions about questions is a great fascination. What an interesting question presupposes can keep you up all night.

When you go to sleep at night and wake up in a dreamscape and it is illuminated by a sun, it is not a physical sun that illuminates what you are seeing. When you hear speech or music it not often accompanied by a voice or an instrument. Kinesthesis come in different shapes and sizes, from a wide range of senses, some remembered from the physical and some not available to the physical senses at all. We have to unlearn and relearn, much as we did when we first smelled the air and began to cry.

When ‘I’ refer to ‘I’ when I communicate with others in a lucid dream for example and ask them, as I have done," Who are you?", they inevitably use highly paradoxical concepts for the earth bound language games I use here. I have been told and shown things that are not easily translated into English or any other natural language for that matter. But I don’t think language is only a tool for communication it is also a tool for modeling. The real may not always exist but that doesn’t mean it is fiction or made up by a heat oppressed brain. I doubt that the brain has much to do with any of this. It is when the brain is asleep that we have access to what is beyond the brain.

From the dream side of the equation, the physical world is a faraway figment of another reality. I am I sense a bit of a messenger to these other communities.

I have often called into question, what the ‘I’ could mean. We are ‘inside’ a dream and we are also not ‘inside’ anything at all. When you can lift off the ground, pass through a wall, or pass a finger through the head of another person and touch the blue flame that illuminates them, the personal pronoun ‘I’ means a whole lot more than just a linguistic device for determining the location of a speaker. If you want to know what it is like to be a bat you can find out.

There is no container, The subject-as-object-before subject is deconstructed thoroughly. The sight is not limited to what is in front of the subject. And the voice(s) are omnidirectional as Bucky Fuller used to say. The sounds that you make don’t come from you, they come through you. Meaningless or meaningful, conscious or unconscious according to whom?

So the emphasis on the visual system, with it’s inside outside boundaries is obscured. And the sense of ‘I’ is pointing to a kind of different character, with a different range of potentials to actualize.

The ‘i’ of the observer is far from being an absolute observer. There is no such thing as an absolute observer. As communicative systems, we are Klein bottles all the way down.

And I don’t expect anyone to take my word for it. I do believe in the years to come, as the oceans start to rise, we may have need of other myths than those concocted by the mental rational, as powerful as they are. are they going to be powerful enough to get through the next phase, without a terrible struggle? I am forever open to doubt but it is not a Cartesian doubt.

(Ed Mahood) #31

Oh, I think the real always exists. It may not be manifested, but it exists.

We imagine human communication at a distance without wires. Radio waves are “discovered”. We have cell phones. There was once communication at a distance without wires; it was called psychic communion. It was real and exists. Now, with cell phones anyone can do similar. It was real then, and it existed. It is real now, and it exists. The manifestations were not always acknowledged, but that’s secondary, really.

(john davis) #32

Am getting a message from the critic in charge that I should consider replying to other people in the discussion or send you a personal message!

I am going to ignore the suggestion as I am aware of having included other people and not getting a response until a week or a month later. I tend to delete messages if they are unanswered after a day or two.

So since Ed is kindly responding and we are in a close rapport I trust that if there is another person who pays attention to this message, whenever they come across it, that they will respond appropriately.

Yes, Ed, I have noticed the relationship between technology and psychic experiences. I believe the relationships is a real one. I feel much like a dropped laptop, and the screen looks crooked and cracked, with a self generating fractal going round and round and it cannot be repaired but I am reluctant to throw it out. More and more the images I see are obviously formed by pretty, tiny pixels. I can only talk about what it is like, not what is. It is more like poetry, than prose.

" Only the Imagination is real."-William Carlos Williams

(Marco V Morelli) #33

@johnnydavis54: If you’re referring to the “get a room” message—that comes from the system. I didn’t program it in personally; it’s out of the box. FAKE AI Critic! I just haven’t gotten around to customizing the configuration for that in the forum admin. Please report suggestions to #tech-support channel.

But: let’s start a dedicated thread for the 14th. You are developing some interesting ideas already on qualities of light, telepathic communication (aka ‘metapsychosis’), attractors and fields, etc., and it would be good to gather those in one place.

What if I start a topic for that in ‘wiki mode’, where the main post at the top is editable by the group we use it to develop the format of call? This wiki could include key questions, common references, and agenda items, as well as important meta-data such as the date and time of the meeting, participants, notes, the Zoom link, etc.

The same post will then contain the video/audio and serve for follow-up discussion. A wiki post works just like a regular post, except it allows group editing while tracking changes, so you can go back and refer to an earlier version for forensic purposes, if needed.

(john davis) #34

That’s a great idea. Thanks, Marco.

(Ed Mahood) #35

Heh, heh, heh … yeah, I get those too. In fact, I just got another one now. I just chalk it up to too much artificial and too little intelligence. I’m not worried that “it” is going to take over soon. So, I’m following your lead, John.

And, @madrush, your suggestion sounds great to me.

(Douglas Duff) #36

Pardon the late young chap knocking at an inopportune hour, but I saw The Human Cycle and The Life Divine mentioned as potential discussion material and couldn’t resist seeing who is home. I would welcome such readings and discussions. Is there a list of potential topics on another thread? I was unable to locate any other mentions of The Human Cycle on this site other than from @patanswer’s post above…thanks in advance for “considering replying to other people”…!

(Marco V Morelli) #37

Hi Douglas, welcome, come in, have a seat, wherever you like…I just created a wiki page for suggested readings here: Collaborative Reading List [wiki].

I’m thinking we might organize a group reading of Aurobindo for the Spring/Summer? A few others I know have also said they’d be interested, and we could perhaps start a dedicated planning thread for that as well…

(Douglas Duff) #38

Thank you for wiki. Sounds grand.