September 11, 2011

metatalk

[Random Arrow has suggested I move Hear and Act to the top of the blog from time to time (something I hadn't known to be directly possible and don't mind any of us trying later!!!) but I think the discussion we've been having is on the nature of the universe we're embedded in...]

Specifically, we were talking about "How does communication work." Stephen Gaskin discussed two basic models:

1) An academically-fashionable one that works like this: RA gets an idea and codes it into words. He writes the words on a note, attaches the note to a handy rock, tosses the rock over the figurative wall to where my mind lives. I pick up the rock, unwrap the note, read and decode. From this I construct something in my mind vaguely similar to RA's.

2) "We're all telepathic." My ideas and RA's, the underlying meanings and understandings, are in the shared mental space Zen Buddhists call "Big Mind." Both of us access this space but are typically unconscious of the bulk of it. We enjoy a pastime much like model #1, because doing this helps us expand the domain of Big Mind we can consciously appreciate.

I mentioned an old friend who'd self-identified as "a psychic," whom I used to say "couldn't read his own mind." And realized that in Gaskin's model, this tends to be our common condition. We "see in a mirror darkly". We painstakingly draw in words, much as a working mathematician may scribble notes and doodles.

But if you take walks in the early morning, when there aren't too many people around, when all you're saying is at best "hello"... You may notice a semi-tactile 'aura', a feeling-tone to these varying encounters. Even when neither of you say a word, you go on feeling a little of who they are at the moment, and vice versa. [Capital-s "Skeptics" would insist that this is entirely done with subtle visual cues and imagination, but then there's a lot such people imagine not to happen. If life can't convince them, all I can suggest is that they occasionally look through this telescope, eyes open, just to reassure themselves it doesn't work!] We don't commonly send/receive text in this mode, because that isn't the sort of mental content that truly interests the part of our 'mind' that does this.

One troublesome implication is, as Gaskin says, that "This changes everything!"

If you posit a clockwork universe, there's no mechanism in it to carry those signals. (And neither is there a credible mechanism available in it for consciousness. For highly-complex, innovative, even 'creative' data-processing, yes. For the generation of entirely-convincing "personalities", yes. For someone "inside" to "read" and experience the activity and content of our own mind/heart/soul, no. We are the data who overthrows 'materialism'.)

We can still have a lawful universe, just as we can agree that "Pawns don't move sideways on this chessboard." But we may occasionally find ourselves playing Fairy Chess. If we don't cheat other sentient beings, there may be allowable forms of 'cheating'.

Working out the ramifications: "What are the ethical rules for telepathic beings?" Gaskin concluded that our common world-religions had already done the groundwork with rules-of-thumb like the Golden Rule & "As you sow, so shall you reap."

What think?

7 Comments:

At 9:46 AM, Blogger forrest said...

For this to happen, there must be an underlying coherent order-- and yet that order has to contain divergent ideas. I'm not sure how to resolve this-- some sort of hierarchical system of levels? ie, I 'contain' stories that take place in worlds quite different than this one. The ideas are there, but they don't conflict because they're localized to the setting of their particular story...

You can have Suzuki contradicting himself several times/page, because what he's talking about escapes the languages available for talking about it. But for most people, most of the time, there's just occasional mismatches between thoughts and their objects.

If I think of this as "just another metaphor", then maybe I can let the wigglier implications go... but then, What's the real nature of that metaphor's referent?

I'm confused again, may be about to learn something!

 
At 1:47 PM, Blogger Random Arrow said...

Whoa. I didn't see this. It's kind of back and out of the way. This is excellent. I've got catching up to do. And response.

 
At 5:12 PM, Blogger Random Arrow said...

I’ve drafted a few different responses.

I’ve tried to write coherently each time. I end up in circles. This is fun. I’ve decided to scrap coherence.

And to think out loud.

Interlinear.

.. ... Stephen Gaskin discussed two basic models”

1) An academically-fashionable one that works like this: RA gets an idea and codes it into words. He writes the words on a note, attaches the note to a handy rock, tosses the rock over the figurative wall to where my mind lives. I pick up the rock, unwrap the note, read and decode. From this I construct something in my mind vaguely similar to RA's.


Yes. And I infer too there’s something intentionally offered to me when I too find a code. How hard do I want to work at it?

2) "We're all telepathic." My ideas and RA's, the underlying meanings and understandings, are in the shared mental space Zen Buddhists call "Big Mind." Both of us access this space but are typically unconscious of the bulk of it. We enjoy a pastime much like model #1, because doing this helps us expand the domain of Big Mind we can consciously appreciate... ”

I like this theory. A lot. It’s tough. Since I’m not yet a holistic thinker. I come pretty close: because I feel that ‘trust’ can synthesize learning into a generalized field of trusting. I appreciate the possibility of a Big Mind. I do agree that whatever ‘it’ is, I’m typically unconscious of the bulk of it.

On psi stuff – I tentatively agree with Jessica Utts and Jahn that psi frequencies are about 2 to 3 out of 10,000 mental ‘events.’ Or possibly astronomically more frequent – just that we can’t measure psi effects. Yet. Even at the lower frequencies of 2 to 3 of 10,000 it’s possible that at 7 thoughts per second, we have somewhere around 60,000 thoughts a day (counting dreaming liminalia), or 40,000 thoughts per day (waking states only). The net result (outrageously simplified) leaves room for about 4 ‘miracles’ of psi encounter per day. What fun. Get’s trickier next.

I mentioned an old friend who'd self-identified as "a psychic," whom I used to say "couldn't read his own mind." And realized that in Gaskin's model, this tends to be our common condition. We "see in a mirror darkly". We painstakingly draw in words, much as a working mathematician may scribble notes and doodles.

Sigh. This is what I wanted to explore.

Oversimplified testimony. Misleadingly brief.

I did case mediations for a few years before I felt that I became clinically depressed. Mediation is between two or more parities – non-adversarial – to bring parties together. Guidance. Parties solve their own problems. With a few helpful explorations suggested when stuck. It takes longer than prescriptive law. More fluid. I got depressed. Or thought I did.

(continued)

 
At 5:17 PM, Blogger Random Arrow said...

(continued)

I finally went to a clinical counselor. He had expertise in psychometrics (not my co-counselor friends). I self-reported as depressed. Maybe I need to change my work? I can’t shake depression. It comes to me in other environments too. Please, help. MMPI test comes back: 96 percentile in empathy. It’s congenital at that high level. Not learned. No way to bring down this off-scale high empathy. It’s not pathology. Not depression. No pills (give me pills!). Hence: I absorb the feelings of all parties in mediation. My empathy absorption is so powerful and comprehensive that all my own feelings are displaced. Not transference. Displacement. My own feelings get lost. I’m an empath. I do not know my own feelings. The psychic who does not know his own mind. No pills – because empathy is a singular gift (I say a natural-charismatic gift from God) and virtue in my work – empahty catalyzes mediation. Helping people feel the feelings of others. Emapthy acts in trial practice too. Putting a client’s feelings before a judge. Extremely powerful. In negotiation to a lesser degree. It’s a gift. Depression and irritation happen as a consequence. It’s not clinical depression. Just a consequence of extreme empathy.

Advice – no pills.

Counselor says, “Jim, do you have a daily private devotional or meditation discipline? A daily discipline where you can spend an hour a day in total isolation from everyone else and get your own feelings back? Just be quiet and listen? For an hour? You know, sort of like Quaker silence? That’s the prescription here. The negative effects of extreme empathy are entirely rationally manageable! Just an hour a day in silent listening!”

DOH!

It’s one thing to know the path.

Another to walk it!

Private time daily. All alone. A flood of revelation comes. And Revelation. Daily. Healing.

(concluded next)

 
At 5:22 PM, Blogger Random Arrow said...

(concluded)

Who was that Weirdo who taught about going into the private inner room (or closet) and shutting the door? I keep forgetting that guy’s name?

It’s sorta like this:

But if you take walks in the early morning, when there aren't too many people around, when all you're saying is at best "hello"... You may notice a semi-tactile 'aura', a feeling-tone to these varying encounters.

I feel these auras and tones all the time. But, I need also to walk in the early morning – all alone :).

One troublesome implication is, as Gaskin says, that "This changes everything!"

Yes. It changes everything. For good and for ill. For good: to help authentic communication. For ill: because psi stuff (or empathy, or the tele’s) can be utterly overwhelming and too-much.

Bruce in Bruce Almighty gets God’s powers. And becomes nearly insane. Overwhelmed hearing all the prayers. He goes nearly crazy. He answers all prayers (Yahweh Email), “yes!” Just to get rid of too many voices. Too much psi. Answers all prayers, “yes!”

Then the world goes to hell in catastrophe.

This psi stuff isn't all it's cracked up to be!

It’s the differential assortative ‘listening’ and differential judgments of appropriate responses to all that ‘psi’ that takes work. Hard work. Work that can’t be bypassed. Especially for the ‘psi’ stuff. Women often complain how husbands are not empathetic. Empathetic ignorance is bliss. I explain this to women with a fair success rate. And then work on the men. It’s likely true that we can change these levels (empathy) only around a few percentiles. And that small change can be enough. Just enough for hearing the Spirit. It only takes just one or two Spirit-auditions (including hearing Spirit in others – mates) each day to change a whole life. With a possible pool of about 60,000 thoughts a day – just one or two authentic psi-auditions each single day add up over time. Add up to an entire vocation.

I think that’s what authentic vocation is. Across time. Vocation is listening to just those one or two ‘psi’s’ each day.

People who get much more than this number of psi daily – may need more daily time away from everyone!

Hear! Hear, just a few! And act!

Enough for now. More later on the clockwork universe.

Jim

 
At 10:24 PM, Blogger forrest said...

Up to here in computer guts all week, temporarily ruined my own system, screaming frustration ending in learning a little more and getting a lot less working.

Just now the blogger software ate my reply!

I'll need to wing it a little, too. Tomorrow.

 
At 10:48 AM, Blogger forrest said...

[Okay, moved this post up for another look.] When I was finally reinstalling my system, waiting for files to finish copying, I was rereading Gaskin. He's a bright guy, was running around talking to people like Suzuki & Sam Lewis-- but he was basically winging it onstage, serving as spokescritter for the 'collective head' of whatever group of stoned beatniks showed up each week. He was not writing systematic Theopsychology.

How this is looking to me: The first things any species ever learned to communicate were emotional: Safety, food, danger. So testing for psi by having bored people guess geometric symbols on cards was not an ideal approach.

Gaskin and his audience were primed to notice ongoing telepathy because they'd been jarred out of normalcy into intensely here-&-now, potentially 'overwhelming' experience. And noticing more patterns than usual, whether purely imaginary or actually present. (Most of the nervous system is, after all, set up to detect pattern rather than raw on/off stimuli. And there seems to be a natural mechanism that enhances when we get hungry... or have taken in certain chemicals.)

Even with emotionally-significant content, even for critters as dumb as for example chickens--They need (and have) different 'words' for "Oh dear! Hawk overhead!" vs "Oh dear! Cat sneaking up!" I was once utterly smitten by a pretty crazy young woman, because I'd been reading who she was emotionally-- but not realizing, until we'd been talking quite awhile, how much we'd disagree on how things were and what to do about them! [The Ching said, "You are very far from happiness," and I said, "Why am I asking a dumb book about who to love?" And then I said, "Ow!" And again, "OW!"]

And yes, psychic interactions can be pretty overwhelming. People in cities need to filter them, sometimes to such an extent that they don't notice them at all. In smaller communities... I think there's a tendency for people either to be dominated by the local zeitgeist-- or strongly cut off from it. What I've heard of/experienced of small town social dynamics-- even in a college town....

Spending time in one's inner space, tuned into God alone--- as you say 'that guy' recommended. Monks used to do this in the desert to get away from the spiritual influences of civilization-- and then needed to wrestle their own 'demons.' Even 'that guy.'

And we still need each other to help sort it out-- Anyway, that sure helps!

Gaskin also talked about 'feedback loops.' Two people picking up stuff from each other, then amplifying it back without necessarily realizing. Not stopping to wonder "Why am I so angry?" Or maybe feeling angry because the other person is, then looking for justifications!

And of course, people seeking out whatever interactions do it for them! Gaskin sayeth, where there's a lot of emotional static, the important question is likely to be: "Who's getting the energy from this?" Human attention being, as he says, a powerful source of 'energy'.

 

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