• Lucid Dreaming - Dream Views




    Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
    Results 1 to 25 of 30
    Like Tree9Likes

    Thread: The determined "self"

    1. #1
      Basketball Player kidjordan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Sep 2009
      Posts
      218
      Likes
      11
      DJ Entries
      3

      The determined "self"

      Will determinism drive us crazy, or undermine an open society?

      Writing at the Edge forum on dangerous ideas, neurophilosopher Thomas Metzinger (scroll down after click) worries we might go literally insane believing in determinism: we wonít be able to integrate our conceptual understanding that we are determined creatures with our phenomenal self-models. But these donít conflict precisely because the former is conceptual, the later phenomenal. How does it feel to be a perfectly determined creature (on the assumption we are)? Just as we presently do, even if that feeling might involve what we conceptually know is the illusion of being undetermined or ultimately self-caused in some respect. We stay sane since the conscious self-model, as Metzinger himself shows in his tour de force Being No One: The Self-Model Theory of Subjectivity, is an extremely robust phenomenal construction of the brain, generally impervious to mere concepts. And besides, itís not clear that the feeling of being a contra-causal agent is essential to the self-model anyway. Thereís probably cultural variability in the contra-causal agent illusion, in that the feeling of being a self may not always be interpreted as having contra-causal freedom. And some people (such as Susan Blackmore) have gotten rid of it; they deny feeling as if theyíre ultimately self-caused or uncaused in any respect, and they get around in the world just fine. So thereís no insurmountable problem here.

      Currents

      Has anyone been like Blackmore and subjectively broken past the illusion of indeterminacy? I tried once, and I felt like I was possessed or schizo or something.

    2. #2
      Basketball Player kidjordan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Sep 2009
      Posts
      218
      Likes
      11
      DJ Entries
      3
      I found a new link that looks very relevant to the topic. I haven't read it yet, but thought I'd share it before I set aside enough time to read it.

      No-Free-Will, Determinism

    3. #3
      Diamonds And Rust Achievements:
      Veteran First Class Vivid Dream Journal Referrer Bronze Populated Wall 5000 Hall Points Made lots of Friends on DV Tagger First Class
      Darkmatters's Avatar
      Join Date
      Dec 2009
      Gender
      Location
      Center of the universe
      Posts
      6,952
      Likes
      5837
      DJ Entries
      172
      I want to read the links, but it's late and I need to crawl off now and get some shuteye. I'll dig in tomorrow when I'm all fresh as a daisy.

    4. #4
      D.V. Editor-in-Chief Original Poster's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 2006
      LD Count
      Lucid Now
      Gender
      Location
      3D
      Posts
      8,263
      Likes
      4135
      DJ Entries
      11
      Insanity? I find the idea liberating.

      Everything works out in the end, sometimes even badly.


    5. #5
      Basketball Player kidjordan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Sep 2009
      Posts
      218
      Likes
      11
      DJ Entries
      3
      Quote Originally Posted by Omnis Dei View Post
      Insanity? I find the idea liberating.
      Could you elaborate?

    6. #6
      Member
      Join Date
      Feb 2004
      Posts
      5,165
      Likes
      709
      Determinism isn't a problem, because it doesn't really say anything. It just says everything is caused by the stuff before it. That is obvious, and doesn't really effect if there is free will or peoples sense of self. People think free will and determinism conflict but they are actually work well together. If everyone acted randomly, there would be no free will. Free will only works in a determinist or at least semi determinist world.

      If you have thoughts, views, experiences and opinions, and they cause you to act, that is determinism. Your actions are based on your personality and past experiences. If there was no determinism and everything was random, and your actions were not based on your personality or past experiences, then there would be no free will. It would be only random action.

      Since it comes up so often, it is worth repeating. Free will isn't random action. Free will is based on your personality and preferences, which are determined by your brain, made up from your dna and past experiences.

      Free will is basically describing the point where the majority of cause for your actions come from inside yourself, and not from the environment or situation around you. There is no illusion, because we actually are in charge, and have full control over what we are doing. We are made up of all the stuff that makes our body and mind, so if we determine what we do, then we are in fact exercising free will. Otherwise it is like saying, "I am being control by my brain, and my actions are outside my control." Which makes no sense. You are your brain, so if your brain is controlling you actions, then you are in fact controlling your action.
      Darkmatters likes this.

    7. #7
      Basketball Player kidjordan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Sep 2009
      Posts
      218
      Likes
      11
      DJ Entries
      3
      Otherwise it is like saying, "I am being control by my brain, and my actions are outside my control." Which makes no sense. You are your brain, so if your brain is controlling you actions, then you are in fact controlling your action
      This is essentially what Darkmatters said in his second to last post on the "short argument against free will thread". But you are your brain, so really you are controlling that second personality".

      Again, it all depends on how we define the self. I personally don't see the self as a unified thing. I think there are many "selves" (thought patterns) and they are quite distinct.

      Basically, I believe that the brain is not "you". What would you say to someone with multiple personality disorder. "I'm sorry your brain is making that other personality come into your mind. You (this personality that is losing control) can't really control it, but really

    8. #8
      D.V. Editor-in-Chief Original Poster's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 2006
      LD Count
      Lucid Now
      Gender
      Location
      3D
      Posts
      8,263
      Likes
      4135
      DJ Entries
      11
      Quote Originally Posted by kidjordan View Post
      This is essentially what Darkmatters said in his second to last post on the "short argument against free will thread". But you are your brain, so really you are controlling that second personality".

      Again, it all depends on how we define the self. I personally don't see the self as a unified thing. I think there are many "selves" (thought patterns) and they are quite distinct.

      Basically, I believe that the brain is not "you". What would you say to someone with multiple personality disorder. "I'm sorry your brain is making that other personality come into your mind. You (this personality that is losing control) can't really control it, but really
      This is the elaboration I had in mind. Determinism (along with other realizations) enable people to remove this illusory division they have between themselves and their experience. Rather than trying to pinpoint a specific identity, they allow themselves to be a form that's really a collection of forms.
      Darkmatters and kidjordan like this.

      Everything works out in the end, sometimes even badly.


    9. #9
      Member
      Join Date
      Feb 2004
      Posts
      5,165
      Likes
      709
      The multiple personality disorder is still apart of you, but a part that you should want to get rid of. People are always changing, and it is obvious that as you change you want to get rid of the undesirable elements of yourself. Be it, exercising to lose a little weight or taking medication to resolve serious health issues.

    10. #10
      Basketball Player kidjordan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Sep 2009
      Posts
      218
      Likes
      11
      DJ Entries
      3
      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      The multiple personality disorder is still apart of you, but a part that you should want to get rid of. People are always changing, and it is obvious that as you change you want to get rid of the undesirable elements of yourself. Be it, exercising to lose a little weight or taking medication to resolve serious health issues.
      This is just a different way of defining the self that encompasses all the different selves within us. But, I think that since we can only experience one (smaller) "self" at a time, then it is "better" to look at our mind as a collection of selves rather than one unified mind.

      Separate note, drugs and psychiatry aren't really effective (though I don't have a better alternative. That's one of the subjects of my current (personal) research.) But, this is a topic for a different thread.
      Rosenhan experiment - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    11. #11
      Banned
      Join Date
      Sep 2011
      Posts
      22
      Likes
      4
      You guys r smart
      kidjordan likes this.

    12. #12
      Basketball Player kidjordan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Sep 2009
      Posts
      218
      Likes
      11
      DJ Entries
      3
      Quote Originally Posted by lilthugdollaz View Post
      You guys r smart
      Flattery will get you everywhere. Also, it's not so much innate talent as much as a love of learning and an inability to be really happy unless I'm learning.

    13. #13
      Basketball Player kidjordan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Sep 2009
      Posts
      218
      Likes
      11
      DJ Entries
      3
      Quote Originally Posted by Omnis Dei View Post
      Insanity? I find the idea liberating.
      Essentially, what I did was let multiple selves compete for position in my mind because I thought that my current "self" (thought pattern) was "illusory" and I should try to get let go of it. Of course, I did this in the course of day-to-day activity which probably wasn't very smart. From what I've read the "self" is quite useful on a day-to-day basis. So, basically I think I need to attain the enlightenment/ego-death described on the egodeath.com website. But, i'm still wondering if one can persist in that state. Put in other words, can we function on a day to day basis without our "selves"?

    14. #14
      Banned
      Join Date
      Sep 2011
      Posts
      22
      Likes
      4
      Quote Originally Posted by kidjordan View Post
      Flattery will get you everywhere. Also, it's not so much innate talent as much as a love of learning and an inability to be really happy unless I'm learning.
      There you go again. Who in ur opinion r the top 5 smartest ppl/debators in this forum?

    15. #15
      D.V. Editor-in-Chief Original Poster's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 2006
      LD Count
      Lucid Now
      Gender
      Location
      3D
      Posts
      8,263
      Likes
      4135
      DJ Entries
      11
      Quote Originally Posted by kidjordan View Post
      This is just a different way of defining the self that encompasses all the different selves within us. But, I think that since we can only experience one (smaller) "self" at a time, then it is "better" to look at our mind as a collection of selves rather than one unified mind.

      Separate note, drugs and psychiatry aren't really effective (though I don't have a better alternative. That's one of the subjects of my current (personal) research.) But, this is a topic for a different thread.
      Rosenhan experiment - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
      Rather than think of illusions as things that are not real they're really things we are perceiving in ways other than as they actually are. Buddhists often teach fallible, temporary truths that act as gateways in order for people to access the reality behind the lesson. This "collection of selves" is such a lesson. It's not what reality actually is, but it's a helpful platform to climb in order to understand the true nature of reality.
      Last edited by Omnis Dei; 09-12-2011 at 03:58 AM.

      Everything works out in the end, sometimes even badly.


    16. #16
      Banned
      Join Date
      Sep 2011
      Posts
      22
      Likes
      4
      Quote Originally Posted by Omnis Dei View Post
      Rather than think of illusions as things that are not real they're really things we are perceiving in ways other than as they actually are. Buddhists often teach fallible, temporary truths that act as gateways in order for people to access the reality behind the lesson. This "collection of selves" is such a lesson. It's not what reality actually is, but it's a helpful platform to climb in order to understand the true nature of reality.
      Illusions are perceptions of things, different than what they actually look like? If what we perceive is different from the actuality of an entity, then what we perceive is a non-actual entity. An entity that is non-actual is not real. Therefore, illusions are not real.
      Last edited by lilthugdollaz; 09-12-2011 at 05:20 AM.

    17. #17
      Diamonds And Rust Achievements:
      Veteran First Class Vivid Dream Journal Referrer Bronze Populated Wall 5000 Hall Points Made lots of Friends on DV Tagger First Class
      Darkmatters's Avatar
      Join Date
      Dec 2009
      Gender
      Location
      Center of the universe
      Posts
      6,952
      Likes
      5837
      DJ Entries
      172


      .. Is the elephant not real? Even if the blind men can't agree on what it is? One feels a wall, one a snake, one a rope, one a column and one a spear. Are they really wrong? Or perhaps partly right? And even if they understood the elephant in complete scientific terms, are they even then seeing it in its totality?
      Last edited by Darkmatters; 09-12-2011 at 05:34 AM.
      kidjordan likes this.

    18. #18
      D.V. Editor-in-Chief Original Poster's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 2006
      LD Count
      Lucid Now
      Gender
      Location
      3D
      Posts
      8,263
      Likes
      4135
      DJ Entries
      11
      Quote Originally Posted by lilthugdollaz View Post
      Illusions are perceptions of things, different than what they actually look like? If what we perceive is different from the actuality of an entity, then what we perceive is a non-actual entity. An entity that is non-actual is not real. Therefore, illusions are not real.
      Using the mind in that way, you're likely to think yourself into a hole.

      Everything works out in the end, sometimes even badly.


    19. #19
      Xei
      UnitedKingdom Xei is offline
      Banned
      Join Date
      Aug 2005
      Posts
      9,984
      Likes
      3082
      Acting on determinism is a fallacy, as is the idea that determinism implies no morality and hence that humans should somehow become despondent.

      Your choices being predetermined does not somehow mean that they weren't choices. Just as is intuitively obvious to us, when somebody commits a crime, they weigh up all of the effects using their moral code, and then they act upon it. Saying 'it wasn't their mind, it was their body' is totally absurd because you ARE your body; your body, and in particular your mind, is obviously the result of various formative influences, and patently that doesn't somehow free you of responsibility. The other thing to bear in mind of course, and a counterargument that elegantly highlights the ridiculousness of the argument, is that any moral judge is just as bound by determinism; if you're going to say, 'the criminal was always going to do it, therefore it's not his fault', it's equally valid to say, 'the judge was always going to (on the basis of the moral code he has deterministically developed) give the criminal what he viewed to be an appropriate sentence, therefore we can't fault the judge either'. And imprisonment isn't even about some kind of universal karmic exchange; we put people in prison because (regardless of your stance on determinism) it deters people from committing the same crime, and in some cases protects the public from a dangerous individual.
      Darkmatters and Omnis Dei like this.

    20. #20
      Diamonds And Rust Achievements:
      Veteran First Class Vivid Dream Journal Referrer Bronze Populated Wall 5000 Hall Points Made lots of Friends on DV Tagger First Class
      Darkmatters's Avatar
      Join Date
      Dec 2009
      Gender
      Location
      Center of the universe
      Posts
      6,952
      Likes
      5837
      DJ Entries
      172
      Quote Originally Posted by kidjordan View Post
      Essentially, what I did was let multiple selves compete for position in my mind because I thought that my current "self" (thought pattern) was "illusory" and I should try to get let go of it. Of course, I did this in the course of day-to-day activity which probably wasn't very smart. From what I've read the "self" is quite useful on a day-to-day basis. So, basically I think I need to attain the enlightenment/ego-death described on the egodeath.com website. But, i'm still wondering if one can persist in that state. Put in other words, can we function on a day to day basis without our "selves"?
      Wow, thanks for posting about Egodeath.com! I just read the introductory page and am still stunned by it. Entheogens used in early Christian initiations? I had never heard of it, but it makes perfect sense. But what they're talking about there, at least from what I've seen so far, is achieving the dissociative state rarely (or only once - in the initiation rites) and experiencing the ecstatic vision state known as ego death. Then from that experience you gain a new perspective - you're freed form the illusion that the ego is in control. Afterwards you would carry the memory of these revelations with you - you would not experience the revelatory state in normal day-to-day circumstances but only in a controlled ritual in a safe environment (similar to shamanic ceremonies and sweat lodges).

    21. #21
      Member really's Avatar
      Join Date
      Sep 2006
      Gender
      Posts
      2,676
      Likes
      54
      Illusions are those perceptions that, when examined thoroughly and honestly, will cease to be true. Because our perceptions of the world is presented through a limited biological (and psychological) lens; they are only true only to that extent, and they are only experienced to that extent. The downside is that it cannot see the bigger picture; it cannot immediately detect actual contexts, rationally. It needs to be spiritually sensitive and intuitive to do this fast, or it needs a thorough explanation. As this happens, we not only understand something properly, but the wisdom is that we are less likely to believe in literal thoughts and fresh beliefs; less likely to be unhappy because we are not subject to believing all our instinctual and cramped perceptions.

      By principle, to see through determinism is really to see through causality. Causality can be two things at once here: at a somewhat cynical level it is nothing but a mere description that is attributed to phenomena, and on another level it is an experiential truth that is innate to all animal life (not necessarily intellectually). This is because animals are instinctively wired to know their (our) bodies and selves as "causal agents" - this worldview is projected onto the entire world and remains forgotten (or ignored) as the same premise from which to act. It is absolutely necessary for survival and the ego, because without that underlying belief, it would have no motivation to care for itself and would not be afraid of potential enemies.

      The honest question of "why did the universe arise" becomes a problem because there is no sense in a universe that comes from an infinite series of causes.

      The truth is, causality is a linear concept that is only exclusively legitimate and never always-true (otherwise it would be the final answer to the universe). The question of all existence may take us on a spiritual journey that transcends causality, but as well as all beliefs, and challenge human consciousness to grow. Essentially this means determinism is a limited paradigm that can be re-contextualized and dismissed, because it ignores the creative mediator that is our consciousness.
      Last edited by really; 09-12-2011 at 03:57 PM.
      Omnis Dei likes this.

    22. #22
      D.V. Editor-in-Chief Original Poster's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 2006
      LD Count
      Lucid Now
      Gender
      Location
      3D
      Posts
      8,263
      Likes
      4135
      DJ Entries
      11
      Whether or not the X Factor that trumps causality is a creative consciousness, the theory of causality is still limited to our limited perception and the logic is incomplete. Logic leads us to conclude that the world is run purely by Causality but because we cannot comprehend a universe existing where Causality works as the only instrument, we are therefore not comprehending the whole picture here.

      Everything works out in the end, sometimes even badly.


    23. #23
      Basketball Player kidjordan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Sep 2009
      Posts
      218
      Likes
      11
      DJ Entries
      3
      The honest question of "why did the universe arise" becomes a problem because there is no sense in a universe that comes from an infinite series of causes
      I think if we start talking about causality it should be in a different thread. Personally, I don't see how there can be an uncaused cause, a beginning of time, or a smallest/indivisible unit of matter. To me infinity makes a lot of sense. There is an infinite series of causes, there is no beginning of time (what would come before that?), there is no indivisible unit of matter (everything gets infinitely smaller. If something has a left and a right side, it must be divisible. Then again, If something was 1-dimensional, by definition, it wouldn't have a left and a right side. But I don't think 1-dimensional objects (points) can exist because they could not lie contiguous to each other to create 2-D. If they did, they would have a left and a right side). I'm not entirely sure of any of the above. I don't have an extensive knowledge of string theory or any of that. Personally, I don't think knowing modern theories of physics has much to do with spirituality. I think we need a thread for the ethical implications of metaphysics as well as one for causality.

    24. #24
      D.V. Editor-in-Chief Original Poster's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 2006
      LD Count
      Lucid Now
      Gender
      Location
      3D
      Posts
      8,263
      Likes
      4135
      DJ Entries
      11
      Quote Originally Posted by kidjordan View Post
      I think if we start talking about causality it should be in a different thread. Personally, I don't see how there can be an uncaused cause, a beginning of time, or a smallest/indivisible unit of matter. To me infinity makes a lot of sense. There is an infinite series of causes, there is no beginning of time (what would come before that?), there is no indivisible unit of matter (everything gets infinitely smaller. If something has a left and a right side, it must be divisible. Then again, If something was 1-dimensional, by definition, it wouldn't have a left and a right side. But I don't think 1-dimensional objects (points) can exist because they could not lie contiguous to each other to create 2-D. If they did, they would have a left and a right side). I'm not entirely sure of any of the above. I don't have an extensive knowledge of string theory or any of that. Personally, I don't think knowing modern theories of physics has much to do with spirituality. I think we need a thread for the ethical implications of metaphysics as well as one for causality.
      I agree with the heart of your idea, but I think modern theories on physics are integral with spirituality. That being said, that still doesn't make spiritual impulses free of causation. Even if there are influences existing in more metaphysical forms they still arose from cause. Infinity not only makes sense, it becomes the only option to the logical mind. However, comprehending what that infinity means completely changes one's perception of causality and time.

      Everything works out in the end, sometimes even badly.


    25. #25
      Member
      Join Date
      Feb 2004
      Posts
      5,165
      Likes
      709
      Your ego and sense of self isn't an illusion, it is the result of higher, complex brain functions and thought. Ego death is basically removing complex thought and experiencing a lower level of conciousness. Which is why people who talk about ego death often use drugs that hinder high brain functions.

      In my opinion, people trying to experience things without a sense of self or ego are going backwards. They are trying to experience things more like animal would, where they are just in the moment, and not really thinking about other things. What you want is a stronger sense of self, and experience things through intense logic, which is where you gain a truer understanding of the world around you.

      Compare a shaman on hallucinogenic drugs who 'experiences' the world around them, to a scientist who actually understands how everything around them works. You would say the shaman has better spiritual understanding, but that spiritual understanding is entirely made up, which is why religions are totally different depending on where and what time period you lived in. Mean while, science is correct and is provable, and while it has gotten better as time passes it doesn't change based on where you live. Who actually has a better understanding of the world? The scientist does, by far.

    Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

    Similar Threads

    1. Replies: 9
      Last Post: 06-23-2012, 02:36 PM
    2. 08/11/2008 - "Match-Maker" / "Militiamen"
      By Oneironaut Zero in forum Dream Gallery
      Replies: 0
      Last Post: 09-02-2008, 03:17 PM
    3. "waking Life" & "eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind"
      By DreamGhost in forum Entertainment
      Replies: 10
      Last Post: 12-11-2006, 07:57 PM

    Bookmarks

    Posting Permissions

    • You may not post new threads
    • You may not post replies
    • You may not post attachments
    • You may not edit your posts
    •