DocWatts

Materialism and Idealism are both flawed ontologies

21 posts in this topic

...at least to the extent that both Materialism and certain forms of Idealism make a-priori claims of ontological exclusivity towards thier given domains.

Or to put it another way: if Materialism's mistake is to conflate the most fundamental layer of reality (physical substrate) to be its most significant, Idealism's mistake is to confuse the most significant aspect of reality (consciousness or spirit) as its most fundamental.

Materialism is rather crude in the way it just outright denies any ontological status for non physical aspects of reality. The subject of physical reductionism has already been discussed to death here, so I won't dwell on it.

Idealism is a bit more subtle by collapsing physical aspects of reality to a projection of spirit or consciousness, ignoring how the subjective quality of consciousness is shaped by (but not reducible to) constraints within physical reality.

Both materialism and idealism seem to miss the boat when it comes to realizing that a crucial aspect of consciousness is that it is embedded and embodied within an environment.

This is easily demonstrable by contemplating how our conceptual system is inexplicably tied to what kind of creatures we are (social bipedal animals that metaphorically project our kinesthetic system- such as front and back, up and down- out in to our environment). Consider for a moment how differently a spherical creature with eyes on all sides of its body would experience reality.

An Embodied form of Realism which makes the more limited claim that both physical reality and conscious experience are ontologically valid seems far more epistemologically responsible than either alternative. 

Edited by DocWatts

"The mind is inherently embodied.
Thought is mostly unconscious.
Abstract concepts are largely metaphorical." - George Lakoff

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@DocWatts reality is exactly how it seems to be, until it seems otherwise, in which case, it's still exactly how it seems to be. 


"I could be the walrus. I'd still have to bum rides off people."

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Doesn't matter how many eyes you think you have. All of reality is still Mind, still all a dream.


You are God. You are Love. You are Infinity. You are Leo.

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@Leo Gura but leo everything taken to extreme is dangerous.the forum member who did suicide really thought none of this real and he took it to the extreme.extreme is always dangerous .why wont we all occupy the middle spot ie the sweet spot ie half way between everything is material and everything is an illusion.i think that would be the healthiest world.view

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1 hour ago, Leo Gura said:

Doesn't matter how many eyes you think you have. All of reality is still Mind, still all a dream.

This.

"So you should view this fleeting world -- 
A star at dawn, a bubble in a stream, 
A flash of lightening in a summer cloud, 
A flickering lamp, a phantom, and a dream."

- Diamond Sutra 

 

The problem with idealism is it doesn’t deconstruct deeply enough. Depending on the philosopher, they may recognize the immediately actuality and “irreducibility” of direct experience, but they miss an important part - there is still The Absolute, which is not form yet not separate from form. When the Absolute is grasped, all of phenomenal existence is seen to be literally non-existent, no more real than a dream, and even that‘s giving too much authority to its “thing-ness.” At the deepest levels of understanding, there is nothing, infinity, god, love, which is qualitatively, palpably, formless. It‘s an absolute mind fuck. 

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@itachi uchiha Once you see the truth and the illusion of reality, this becomes a tricky thing for someone in Leo's position to navigate. Even your belief that it's dangerous. This is just a belief you are holding. If you believe it is dangerous, that will be your experience. For example, I have no fear of physical death anymore. I know what we call death is an illusion. So my viewpoint on suicides or someone passing is very different from the majority of people. We are all free to explore to varying extremes what we desire as long as we are not hurting others. In many ways this human game we are playing is about exploring extremes. 

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@Leo Gura

If all you can know is mind, doesn't mean that you can know everything as mind.

Now you're gonna say that there's nothing outside of mind, because the abstract notion of "outside of mind" is a thought inside of my mind.

What I mean is: Obviously how the mind imagines external-reality is ILLUSORY, but it doesn't mean that it's non-existent.

IMO you go one step to far, I would just say: "All there is you CAN know is mind".

What am I missing?

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30 minutes ago, Endangered-EGO said:

 

What I mean is: Obviously how the mind imagines external-reality is ILLUSORY, but it doesn't mean that it's non-existent.

IMO you go one step to far, I would just say: "All there is you CAN know is mind".

What am I missing?

Higher consciousness :D

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6 hours ago, DocWatts said:

An Embodied form of Realism which makes the more limited claim that both physical reality and conscious experience are ontologically valid seems far more epistemologically responsible than either alternative. 

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You want this Neutral Monism? :D 


To balance beauty and complexity so perfectly is a divine mystery.

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1 hour ago, itachi uchiha said:

@Leo Gura but leo everything taken to extreme is dangerous.the forum member who did suicide really thought none of this real and he took it to the extreme.extreme is always dangerous .why wont we all occupy the middle spot ie the sweet spot ie half way between everything is material and everything is an illusion.i think that would be the healthiest world.view

This is epistemic delusion.

Truth is not the mid-point between any two positions.

It makes no difference if Truth kills you. Truth is still Truth no matter how much you fear-monger about it.

47 minutes ago, Endangered-EGO said:

@Leo Gura

If all you can know is mind, doesn't mean that you can know everything as mind.

Actually it does, since Mind is infinite.

Quote

Now you're gonna say that there's nothing outside of mind, because the abstract notion of "outside of mind" is a thought inside of my mind.

What I mean is: Obviously how the mind imagines external-reality is ILLUSORY, but it doesn't mean that it's non-existent.

It does mean that.

Quote

IMO you go one step to far, I would just say: "All there is you CAN know is mind".

What am I missing?

You're missing Awakening.

Awakening is the realization of Absolute Truth. There cannot be anything beyond or outside of the Absolute.

You are in denial that Absolute Truth exists.


You are God. You are Love. You are Infinity. You are Leo.

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@Carl-Richard

-Priority monism states that all existing things go back to a source that is distinct from them; e.g., in Neoplatonism everything is derived from The One.[1] In this view only one thing is ontologically basic or prior to everything else.

-Existence monism posits that, strictly speaking, there exists only a single thing, the universe, which can only be artificially and arbitrarily divided into many things.[2]

-Substance monism asserts that a variety of existing things can be explained in terms of a single reality or substance.[3] Substance monism posits that only one kind of stuff exists, although many things may be made up of this stuff, e.g., matter or mind.

-Dual-aspect monism is the view that the mental and the physical are two aspects of, or perspectives on, the same substance.

 

I think those are closer to my beliefs.

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The hysterical crying-laughter associated with the recognition that there's nothing happening and there isn't a reality... Oh my God... xD The best. There's...just what's appearing to happen...which is absolutely nothing...lol

Even philosophers who admit that reality is beyond logic... well they don't seem to believe it lol because they come up with logical explanations for an illogical reality. Sounds logical! xD

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28 minutes ago, Endangered-EGO said:

 

I think those are closer to my beliefs.

I know my experience is closer to my experience :) 


To balance beauty and complexity so perfectly is a divine mystery.

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@Carl-Richard Neutral monism is my favourite metaphysics, because it seems to me that both matter and mind are rationalisations of "This". This is the neutral monad. 

Edited by snowyowl

Relax, it's just my loosely held opinion.  :) 

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Embodied neutral monism seems to make the most epistemological sense from my point of view, as its a metaphysics that honors the defensible aspects of physicalism (objects outside of consciousness exist) while making room for the significance of consciousness.

(As a bonus, both the Great Chain of Being as well as Buddhist notions of the illusory nature of self seem fully compatible with this metaphysics. Whether the 'Substance' that physical reality and consciousness are aspects of or artificially subdivided into is conceptualized as Spirit, the Absolute, or something else makes no meaningful ontological difference.)

So while consciousness is of course irreducible, it's also inseparable from physical reality because consciousness is always embedded and embodied in an environment.

What gives consciousness its subjective flavor is that it's in interaction with its embedded environment. Color perception is a great example of this; color being something that neither exists "out there" as a pre-given feature of external objects, nor as an independent fabrication of consciousness (as evidenced by people blind from birth having no frame of reference for color). Rather, color is a codependent origination of a consciousness that's in interaction with an environment.

Both materialism and Leo's brand of absolute idealism seem extreme to me, not dissimilar to how a partial truth like postmodernism becomes problematic when taken to an extreme. 

Notions that consciousness can somehow become disembodied is a Myth.

Edited by DocWatts

"The mind is inherently embodied.
Thought is mostly unconscious.
Abstract concepts are largely metaphorical." - George Lakoff

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Keep in mind that I don't really teach idealism.

What I teach is that YOU ARE GOD.

God. Period. The end.

This is way more radical than any notion of idealism.

God is more radical than anything you imagine it to be. And it is not any kind of philosophy or ideology.


You are God. You are Love. You are Infinity. You are Leo.

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4 minutes ago, Leo Gura said:

Keep in mind that I don't really teach idealism.

What I teach is that YOU ARE GOD.

God. Period. The end.

This is way more radical than any notion of idealism.

God is more radical than anything you imagine it to be. And it is not any kind of philosophy or ideology.

Isn't it also good form to use healthy forms of skepticism to interrogate any ontological system that makes claims towards exclusivity/completeness (ie exactly what you've done towards Scientific Reductionism)?


"The mind is inherently embodied.
Thought is mostly unconscious.
Abstract concepts are largely metaphorical." - George Lakoff

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4 minutes ago, DocWatts said:

Isn't it also good form to use healthy forms of skepticism to interrogate any ontological system that makes claims towards exclusivity/completeness (ie exactly what you've done towards Scientific Reductionism)?

No, that's some bullshit game humans play.

God is Absolute Truth. The end.

Once you are fully Awake there is zero skepticism and zero doubt and no more philosophy.

Awakening kills all philosophy and all of science. Absolute Truth is the end.

If you still have even the slightest doubt or scientific thought, you're not Awake.


You are God. You are Love. You are Infinity. You are Leo.

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@Leo Gura I'd be curious as to your thoughts on some implicit assumptions that seem to be present in your metaphysics, or at least what seem like implicit assumptions from my vantage point.

(I'm happy to be corrected if any of this mischaracterizes your views):

  • The a-priori assumption that non-conceptual awareness is 'pure' in some sense, and not something that is mediated in subtle ways by a myriad of unconscious cognitive processes that structure the nature of our direct experience (regardless of whether or not these processes have a physical basis).
  • The assumption that everything there is to be known about the mind is accessible to conscious awareness through introspection and contemplation.
  • The assumption that it's possible for consciousness to be disembodied
  • The assumption that knowledge can be non-contextual, and that what you're perceiving to be Absolute Truth isn't contextual in ways that you're unaware of

"The mind is inherently embodied.
Thought is mostly unconscious.
Abstract concepts are largely metaphorical." - George Lakoff

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