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Everything posted by StephenK

  1. Stupid kid deliberately puts himself in the wrong place at the wrong time looking to confront equally stupid protesters. Stupid protesters try to physically assault stupid kid armed with a lethal semi-automatic rifle. Get shot. Stupid attracts stupid. Stupid awards all around.
  2. @Someone here I'm sympathetic to solipsism as a view, albeit a bit different to the way it's typically conceived of. If we assume solipsism to be true, then we can not be certain that reality didn't come into existence 2 seconds ago. If we assume solipsism to be true, causality and time are logically just conceptual frameworks within perception -- nothing dictates that time ought to flow forwards, as opposed to backwards or being intermittent, since it is an emergent property of consciousness and not the other way round. So, that being the case, it is conceivable that you are personally experiencing all other minds within existence, jumping between them, but only conscious of one at a time. How would you know that your previous moment of consciousness was not mine? The only answer to that is 'memory', which isn't an answer at all, since you could have come into being 2 seconds ago. How does solipsism prove that consciousness ought be causal and localized to one spot within a causal framework? Solipsism is a really non intuitive and mind-fucky concept the more you dig into it.
  3. Yeah, I got pretty deep (too deep in fact) into this whole recent tic-tac UFO phenomenon with the US military. My conclusion is that it is a massive disinformation campaign to create a false 'outside threat / boogeyman' which in turn could allow for greater funding, as @Heart of Space pointed out.
  4. And some of us with elderly parents that have comorbidities are concerned since they are at a high risk. This is not simply a common flu. That being said, I am concerned largely with the effect on the global economy. This virus may lead to massive geopolitical and social instability. Yes, fear is causing this situation to be far worse than it needs to be.
  5. The comment that girl made at the end about there being a fundamental disagreement on first principals is an astute observation. This video is just an example of the chaos that emerges when we debate issues 'down stream' from the source.
  6. Can you give some examples of topics that you as a teacher feel unqualified to speak on but have a great interest in?
  7. @Chumbimba Yes. I had appendicitis a few years back and remember lying on the floor, reeling in pain. At some point, the pain remained (that is, the sensation of pain was still there) but there was no suffering -- just stillness. This only lasted for a minute or so, and I was back to suffering. @eputkonen Yes, the subconscious/unconscious aversions are really hard to catch as they come and go quickly, like shadows formed from a flickering light. @Lento Yeah, and I find that patterns that you thought you had unwired can rewire themselves when you assume you've 'overcome' them. I find that I often have to come back to the same issue over and over again and every time, the insight gets a little deeper. The ego structure is very much a malleable, adapting structure -- once you think you've got it pinned down, it slips away. This is my experience at least.
  8. I was meditating on my back-pain earlier, and noticed that once I dropped all desire to move away or towards the sensation of pain, it stopped being pain and became something else entirely: a neutral feeling -- just kind of floating there. In fact, I could see how I could learn to desire that neutral feeling of pain and turn it into pleasure. It was a really weird experience and contextualized suffering as merely the desire to move away from something, regardless of what it may be: a sound, sensation, thought, insight, pain etc. The experience has left me feeling a bit perplexed. Please share any of your insights on this topic! Thanks.
  9. I've killed my share of insects/pests to keep my veggies alive and thriving. Even the compost one enriches the soil with is made of the remains of once thriving, living organisms -- now long-dead decomposed microorganisms, insects, feces, plants etc. Even the veggies you do end up eating get turned into shit inside your bowels. A vegetable garden is truly a marvelous example of life and death on grand display. Life growing out of death.
  10. @Serotoninluv @Bno I'm enjoying the conversation between you two, but I'd like to offer my two cents. @Serotoninluv You seem to be doing a lot of redirecting of direct questions into your own conceptual frameworks. You've also argued for a narrative that is unfalsifiable which is naturally going to lead to a stagnation in the discussion. Are you wrong? Are you right? I don't know, but you definitely have your own narrative style -- as do we all.
  11. Because when the ego realizes it's not real, the only card it has left in its deck is the one that says: "Without me, you have nothing." Like a Girlfriend that won't accept a breakup ?
  12. @Annoynymous I'm doubtful. But I'm also a bit of a cynic I must admit, so I could be wrong.
  13. Maybe the US is not as 'civil' as you think they are. Appearances can be deceptive.
  14. @Leo Gura I can also see this terrorism being directed mainly at your politicians. Just going by the political videos I see on Youtube, even your 'moderate' Trump supporters will be enraged/shamed by this. Interesting times ahead...
  15. @Leo Gura Although I am not an American (so my opinion may be skewed), there seems to be a militancy among fringe elements of the Trump support base. If he is impeached, I can see their being a sharp rise in domestic terrorism as a violent response. Am I imagining this threat, or is it very real?
  16. @Inliytened1 Yes. It is a wonder that the ego ever managed to contain this for so long. A true marvel this ego is and continues to be! @Aaron p Yes, the immense emptiness is something wild/unimaginable. And I know I've only witnessed/embodied 0.00001% of it!
  17. I've been doing a lot of self-inquiry and contemplation over the last few years. However, something is different now. The self-inquiry has developed a momentum of it's own -- and it's accelerating. I can't stop it now. Insights are shooting through my ego like a 50 caliber rifle. It's like Spirituality has suddenly become REAL. There's been much great wisdom given to me by members on this forum, but it never really 'clicked'. Spirituality was always something I retreated into -- that is, I treated it as if it was something other than this world, something not of this world... ethereal if you will. Now, I see. It's right here. The door is open and it has become Actual. There is a silent force building up in me. Unapologetic. Will-full. Loving. It can't be stopped, even if this ego wants it to. The ego cannot contain this immense force. Everything you need is already in you. Thanks everybody.
  18. @Average Investor Yes, I got depersonalization during my early teen years, and like you, from sustained psychological trauma. Sometimes I manage to meditate on the feeling of dissociation directly and I can only describe it as a low frequency vibration that permeates all of consciousness -- kind of like a background noise. There is a fear associated with this vibration though, and I think that is how it sustains itself within consciousness. I find the depersonalization gets bad when I desire to get back to that state of mind I had before depersonalization. But there are times when I forget about depersonalization all together for weeks, so it's not as intense as it was. Just out of curiosity, where you susceptible to sensory overload as a child? Now that I've had time to reflect on things, I do recall being overwhelmed easily as a child.
  19. @Average Investor I've had depersonalization for over 12 years now. I know that the cause of it (for me at least) was a very intense sense of not-self during a nervous-breakdown. During my breakdown, my mind was searching frantically for a sense of self, but anything my mind grabbed onto evaporated into nothingness. There was an immense sense of doom that emerged from that space, and since then my brain has been permanently wired differently from before. I'd call depersonalization half-baked enlightenment at best, and it's antithesis at worst, since it touches on aspects of enlightenment, but is something else entirely in the way it manifests. I'd say depersonalization is simply a mangled ego, at least from my experience. I say this because depersonalization disorder is typically highly correlated with a shit-load of suffering/anxiety. And yes, I agree, when anxiety is not present, the dissociation is still there, however the suffering is absent so it's not an issue.
  20. What is there to do? Where to go? All the thought stories come along and say: "Do this!" "Do that!". But why? Why the constant drive to moralize, judge, create, destroy, run from death, shame, guilt, pain -- all this nonsense bombards my mind like a thick fog. I feel paralyzed, like a branch on top of a wave in a stormy ocean. I see all the bullshit, but I just. cant. drop. it. I just want to see clearly for once. All I want is that which is real, but everything seems so unreal. Then there is a voice in me that says: "So, desire nothing." And then I feel paralyzed. I am so god-damn confused.
  21. I'm imagining a system where all classes and lectures are online for free. Knowledge is completely open source. You then have testing centers all around the world that charge a minimal fee to write a standardized exam on a particular topic. So an employer could say, "Please pass Computer Science Exam A1B, A1C and Z43 with a average score greater than 80% to apply for this position." The only cost you have to pay is to simply write the exam. Sure, there are particular professions that require in-person training (like being a plumber, electrician), You can take as long as you want to study. Perhaps something like this does exist, but I'm not aware? Do you think online learning can replace universities? Do you think the internet can develop to the point where education really does become free? I mean, is kind of like an online university, except we don't have to pass any tests ?.
  22. @CreamCat I also wonder how Virtual Reality will embed itself in this space -- I can imagine that virtual classrooms will add to the social experience tremendously. From there, we might even start seeing virtual offices rock up on the scene. I imagine the costs potentially saved on transportation and office space would be immense. Going off on a bit of a tangent here, but this stuff makes me think that once a virtual simulation is more rewarding than 'reality', people will simply plug themselves into VR indefinitely. Why explore the universe when there are virtual realities orders of magnitude more appealing? We will end up creating virtual realities to fulfill our every desire. Whatever we wish to dream up will be there, pleasurable or frightening. Sounds kind of like GOD to be honest ?.
  23. Yes, this actually seems to be true of my observations as well. What do you think makes a person serious about learning? Is it upbringing? Can it be taught? Do you think that people that gain the required skills as a result of being self-taught are more competent than those that are pressured to attend university (by parents, society etc)? For instance, expanding upon my first example, would you hire a self taught developer over a developer out of university, assuming the same level of competency?
  24. I understand that one can not objectively own a thing, but I speak here in the context of society/government/politics. How do we go about deciding who owns what? Who gets to decide who owns what? Where does the power lie? I'm curious to hear your views.