Carl-Richard

Should you tell physicalists about your mystical experiences?

97 posts in this topic

No point.

Almost always regret it.


 "Unburdened and Becoming" - Bon Iver

                            ◭"89"

                  

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I've heard people say, wait till they come to you and ask, or use your intuition, try to offer it without your name or label attached, or I when I had them more regularly, I used to offer it in a way that was thinking of them rather than me. Myself, I'm mostly wanting to hear these things from people, because I could use more of these insights in my life.

For me, spiritual experience cuts through reality to different points in time or permeates it. There is no static answer or point when it starts or ends. So there is no one comprehensive answer to your question of when spiritual experiences should be represented or not represented.

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6 hours ago, Sincerity said:

Own it & talk about stuff like this like it's completely obvious to You. Don't impose a worldview on others but at the same time share your truth (about your experiences). This is the right attitude in my opinion.

You are doing the world (and yourself) a disservice by keeping stuff to yourself when You have a genuine urge to say something. Because 1) You are being timid and 2) others don't get the chance to learn from You. Even if it stings them at first, it is useful to them and everyone. Truth about your experiences should be shared. (in my view :)) (when it feels right) 

If I wasn't so sleep deprived, I think I could've ended up saying it in a nice way without coming off like an absolute wizard at first, and then taken it from there. It's just that: I need to come to lectures less sleep deprived so I know how to function like a human being and not say stupid things like "not in a stressful situation" and without elaborating xD. Anyways, that's the real lesson here: never compromise on your mental clarity xD


Intrinsic joy is revealed in the marriage of meaning and being.

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7 hours ago, UnbornTao said:

If they ask and are open to it, you might as well share some of them.

That's the thing. The guy was asking for our experiences with OBEs, but it was in the context of colloquially "stressful" situations. I don't count my OBE as that (although you could probably classify it as a stress response in a more dry theoretical sense), so I would be changing the subject in a way and pulling it into truly woo-woo territory.

 

7 hours ago, UnbornTao said:

Aren't universities supposed to be comparatively open environments?

Well, they're comparatively open-minded within the physicalist paradigm, although psychology has its own skeptical slant on it (although it's not quite where we're at here to put it that way). My bachelor's degree did touch on psychology of religion and mystical experiences, but I think that's rare for most degrees in my country, so I wouldn't expect many people in the field to be familiar with that outside of personal interest (which is also rare, although it's growing). I know of one other guy who is into meditation and spirituality in my university (he studies a different branch of psychology), but that's it.

Edited by Carl-Richard

Intrinsic joy is revealed in the marriage of meaning and being.

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21 hours ago, Anonman90 said:

No.

Why would you?

Are you seeking attention? 

Do you think you're going crazy?

Why else would you share personal mystical experiences then? Unless they're spiritually on the same level and path

It would just be nice if I could share relevant things that spring to mind while talking with people. It's not like I'll try to convince them that non-duality is true and that enlightenment is the highest thing you can pursue. It's just like "ah yes, since you were asking, I've had an OBE, but it was when I was meditating, not when I was being hit by a car". I think I could say that in a way without even making it about metaphysics, but of course, it would be nice if I could share my metaphysical views as well :D

I'm perfectly aware that if I'm talking to somebody who has basically zero chance of understanding something, it makes little sense to bring it up. My question is really only about how they will view me as a person if they find out that I have these views and these experiences. Like, if I were to ask myself back when I was an atheist if I met somebody at my school who talked about OBEs, would I think they were a little cuckoo? Maybe, but if I thought they were smart or sociable in other ways, maybe that would that make up for it? Isn't that how cults are made? xD Anyways, I'm rambling now.

Edited by Carl-Richard

Intrinsic joy is revealed in the marriage of meaning and being.

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5 hours ago, Leo Gura said:

Test for openmindedness before casting your pearls.

I have been probing them a bit outside of this one situation, but they don't seem to take the bait :(


Intrinsic joy is revealed in the marriage of meaning and being.

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@Carl-Richard Seek out better theys.


You are God. You are Truth. You are Love. You are Infinity.

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I mean we need to start talking about this things more openly, make all the profound knowledge that here is talked about everyday available to the common public. Not hidding, that's all! Talking straight as we really think reality is and just showing that another way of life is possible where Awakening changes it all.

Otherwise, the normie has no chances as he is fish in water


God-Realize, this is First Business. Know that unless you live properly, this is not possible.

There is this body, you should know the requirements of your body. This is first duty. We have obligations towards others, loved ones, family, society, etc. Without material wealth we cannot do these things, for that a professional duty.

There is Mind; mind is tricky. Its higher nature should be nurtured, then Mind becomes mature and Conscious. When all Duties are continuously fulfilled, then life becomes steady. In this steady life God is available; via 5-MeO-DMT, ...                       Lovingly discipline Life & Realize Absolute Infinity

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22 hours ago, zurew said:

If you have fun debating these topics you probably should. It can be a fun challenge to craft a sound and persuasive argument for some of these topics in a way, that can be persuasive and or mind-opening .

I can think of two ways how to approach these debates/convos:

1) Try to ground your argument in a premise or premises, that can be compatible with physicalism (or in other words, try to ground it in a premise , that they more than likely already agree with and slowly step by step build an argument from there that ends with your conclusion).

2) or if the first doesn't seem to be possible , then you need to debate physicalism (which will be very unproductive with most people).

The guy who asked the question about OBEs has said (in class while introducing himself to our seminar leader) that he describes himself as a physicalist, and when it was my turn to introduce myself, I said "and opposite to him, I'm maybe a little more skeptical of physicalism, but that's of course not that important B|".

And while walking home after class, we had a little talk about what I meant by that, and we touched a little bit on the difference between physicalism and idealism, intelligence vs. consciousness vs. meta-consciousness, the Hard problem and some kind of thought experiment he brought up that tries to illustrate the distinction between phenomenal consciousness and conceptual understanding. But other than that, he sort of ended up expressing in a chill and non-polemic way that he views these kinds of philosophical questions as kind of meaningless ("svada" in Norwegian) and that he didn't seem that interested in it after all.

He strikes me as generally very openminded and grounded, but he is a bit different than me temperamentally and in terms of background. Interestingly, he has said he always struggled with science in school, yet he wanted to study neuroscience exactly because he thinks "it's the shit" (hence physicalism). He also has a background in politics (he is the former leader of one of the main youth parties in one of the counties and recently ran for office at a muncipality level). I've yet to ask him if he knows one of my childhood friends who used to be the deputy chairman of the same youth party at a city level (which would be a very fun conversation).

But yeah, I'm not really interested in convincing anyone, although the point about choosing premises that land close to home could be something to have in mind for conversations in general, even without having a strong agenda (it could be a fun way to bounce arguments around).

Edited by Carl-Richard

Intrinsic joy is revealed in the marriage of meaning and being.

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1 hour ago, BlueOak said:

I've heard people say, wait till they come to you and ask

This happened with my mom. She literally asked me "what did you do?" xD. We went to this debate together before Christmas (damn, it has over 500k views now):

 


Intrinsic joy is revealed in the marriage of meaning and being.

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Most people cannot fucking compute how someone can be an idealist. But that's because they haven't put serious thought into it like ever in their lives. 

Though, if someone had put serious thought and started to identify as a materialist reductionist or physicalist, I have a ten feet long pole to distance myself from such people.

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9 hours ago, Thought Art said:

Almost always regret it.

Why?

I have never regretted sharing genuine spiritual wisdom with anyone... except at times when I took too many psychedelics and rambled on about my substance-induced God delusions in between trips. Yeah, that never went particularly well, lol.

When everyone who listens to your spiritual "insights" thinks that you have lost it, chances are that they're right.


Why so serious?

 

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18 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

Certain experiences seem to correlate with certain brain states. That is an uncontroversial statement. However, to say that experiences are caused by brain states is an entirely different statement, and it's usually based on metaphysical assumptions rather than empirical observations. As for empirical observations, there are many problems that should make you doubt such a claim, and there is no conclusive evidence that confirms it.

Jesus christ why do you have to do the snippet thing!

 

18 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

For example, psychedelics lead to an overall decrease in brain activity, measured by correlates of glucose metabolism (e.g. blood flow in fMRI). Those images you see on Google where psychedelics make the brain light up like a Christmas tree are most likely showing functional connectivity, which is when different parts of the brain fire together. It's not the same as increased "brain activity", which again is measured in terms of correlates of metabolism. Now, if psychedelics decrease brain activity and we know that psychedelics are typically associated with an enhanced experience of reality, that is a problem for the claim that brain states cause experiences.

I don't think increase in brain activity necessarily means increase in intensity of brain states. For example, you could have a neural structure of two, which taps into the substance of pain, and have it be infinite pain vs no pain, two states.

Adding neurons might not lead to higher pain experiences, but simply to more distinctions between these states, so you can half it, quarter it and so forth. But we simply do not understand how the brain works, so we can't say anything about how these relationships in the end work.

 

18 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

Similarly, in near-death experiences (NDEs), particularly in cases of cardiac arrest where the heart stops pumping blood to the brain and brain activity ceases; according to a set of prospective studies involving 334 survivors of cardiac arrest, during the moments when the patient's brain showed no signs of functioning, 18% of patients reliably report having experienced an enhanced state of consciousness (NDEs). Again, if brain activity purportedly causes experience, it's weird that a complete lack of brain activity is associated with an enhanced experience, often life-changing experiences.

Sure, but the brain doesn't work like a computer. It's not "more activity = more intense activity", the entire mystery is that certain structures give rise to substances, like color and so forth. We don't know what even truly constitutes brain-consciousness activity, we are just making wild guesses. Obviously this is more sophisticated than more = more.

 

18 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

Other examples include terminal lucidity, where dementia patients show a surprising return to normal functioning right before their death, despite their brain having been reduced to something you can hardly call a brain. Other than that, some of the experiences that the survivors of cardiac arrest report are especially puzzling if you believe the brain and sensory organs cause experience.

I'm not a physicalist so I don't subscribe to these notions. We aren't discussing intensity of experience or intelligence, but whether or not information can be gathered as if you had a second body that was floating through space.

What do you think happens, that somehow the universe makes a copy of your physicality, lets it float in space, photons reach your astral projection and you can see through your eyes like you can when you are in your body? It just makes no sense on so many levels.

And again, we have no reason to assume this is the case, given that such experiences do not lead to information that could not have been acquired otherwise, and further problems like why evolution did not explout these mechanisms if they are so easily accessed.

 

18 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

There is no conclusive evidence that your personal dreams are caused by brain states either.

But we have a model of the brain that is explanatory of such dreams, we have hecking machine neural networks that can basically simulate dreams now. it's nothing fancy.

 

18 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

Here is how: the world really exists out there, and our sensory apparatuses and perceptual machinery are like goggles that color our experience and limit it. When you take off those goggles, you go outside of those limits. Sadhguru describes spirituality as "creating a little distance between you and your physicality". In a very real sense, that is what is happening in certain states of meditation where all your sensory experiences and your sense of self and time disappears (which I've also experienced), and also in OBEs where your experience is decoupled from your "goggled" sensory experiences. That is also why some psychic phenomena are called "extra-sensory perception" (ESP). You go beyond your mere physicality, your mere goggled sensory experience of the world.

It doesn't make sense that you could see the world as if you had a body if it is not your body. Why would you see the world in vision, if you have no "astral" eyes that can interact with photons? And if they do interact with photons, we should be able to test this.

If you go beyond your goggled sensory experience, you should be able to acquire information that you otherwise could not, and evolution should have found a mechanism to exploit such states.

 

18 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

If you grant that I've described everything accurately (which you could doubt, but I sincerely tried my best) and you're doing your very best to be metaphysically impartial, I think it's pretty hard to honestly conclude that I did not gain information about the world extra-sensorily.

This isn't good evidence. I have premonition type of experiences all the time, and they are incredibly strange. I am not a physicalist so I can fathom the possibility that they are mysterious, but I am not epistemically founded to make conclusions about OBE, especially if I have not recorded such an incident and clearly established that I couldn't have known.

Even if premonition is possible somehow, it does not mean OBE is possible in the way we describe it, nor are we epistemically justified to affirm it, especially in scientific context.

 

18 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

And also one that is not that.

Sure, but you have no clue what this world is. Again, in the end what is going to be rational to conclude might not even fit reality, but given that you have no better alternative, that is what you are left with.

 

18 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

I think it's mostly a metaphysical conviction you have rather than conclusive evidence. 

It's not conclusive evidence, but there is more evidence than for the opposing few. You have to do some real trickery to explain away why this phenomena is not far more common and involved in the natural process.

 

18 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

Why would you assume it hasn't?

Because we cannot observe such phenomena in nature, or rather phenomena that could not otherwise be explained. Nor is the human mind capable of doing this at will.


Glory to Israel

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@Carl-Richard you're an amazing communicator in even a second language, and an obviously super intelligent individual, I cannot imagine anyone writing you off from occasionally dropping spiritualisms at opportune moments.

Edited by Devin

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3 minutes ago, Devin said:

@Carl-Richard you're an amazing communicator in even a second language, and an obviously super intelligent individual, I cannot imagine anyone writing you off from occasionally dropping spiritualisms at opportune moments.

😂 I appreciate the reassurance. I think I'll go just a little more with my gut in the future, only if I'm not hopelessly sleep deprived 😝


Intrinsic joy is revealed in the marriage of meaning and being.

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18 minutes ago, Carl-Richard said:

😂 I appreciate the reassurance. I think I'll go just a little more with my gut in the future, only if I'm not hopelessly sleep deprived 😝

It's usually best for me to say the bare minimum about anything when I'm sleep deprived.

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It's tough to decide whether to speak about reality or god to people. Everyone has an ego and egos are vicious monsters. If you prick someone's ego it may retaliate or plot against you.

"No one is hated more than he who speaks the truth."

Sometimes there is unintended "blowback" from speaking. Always remember Macbeth had a prophecy he would kill his father and sleep with his mother. In his efforts to avoid this, he ended up fulfilling the prophecy. The universe tends to work like that. The universe will awaken people on its own schedule and does not need your help or tinkering. But if you do it with love like a bodhisattva maybe it is ok. Or maybe you are a tool of the universe to awaken people.

I tend to think it is a private personal journey. The epiphany and revelation must come naturally from within. The dominoes must fall in sequence in someone's head. 

It is weird to understand this is the most important topic but then keep it a secret and never speak about it. It is a paradox and a delicate dance.

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On 22.1.2024 at 6:07 PM, Scholar said:

Jesus christ why do you have to do the snippet thing!

I like to address all your points.

 

On 22.1.2024 at 6:07 PM, Scholar said:

I don't think increase in brain activity necessarily means increase in intensity of brain states. For example, you could have a neural structure of two, which taps into the substance of pain, and have it be infinite pain vs no pain, two states.

Adding neurons might not lead to higher pain experiences, but simply to more distinctions between these states, so you can half it, quarter it and so forth. But we simply do not understand how the brain works, so we can't say anything about how these relationships in the end work.

Firstly, I don't understand what you mean by "neural structure of two" or "more distinctions between these states" or the points you're trying to make there. Secondly, what do you mean by "OBEs are just changes in the simulated reality of the brain" if you don't know what the brain does?

 

On 22.1.2024 at 6:07 PM, Scholar said:

Sure, but the brain doesn't work like a computer. It's not "more activity = more intense activity", the entire mystery is that certain structures give rise to substances, like color and so forth. We don't know what even truly constitutes brain-consciousness activity, we are just making wild guesses. Obviously this is more sophisticated than more = more.

What do you mean by "give rise to"? Again, we know that the brain correlates with certain experiences, but that's it. If you want to provide a causal mechanism, then go ahead: what is the mechanism? Again, if you don't know, then I don't see why you would invoke the brain to explain OBEs. You're invoking something you cannot explain to explain something else. It's a bit like invoking God.

 

On 22.1.2024 at 6:07 PM, Scholar said:

I'm not a physicalist so I don't subscribe to these notions. We aren't discussing intensity of experience or intelligence, but whether or not information can be gathered as if you had a second body that was floating through space.

What do you think happens, that somehow the universe makes a copy of your physicality, lets it float in space, photons reach your astral projection and you can see through your eyes like you can when you are in your body? It just makes no sense on so many levels.

I provided the goggle analogy earlier, but I actually don't have to provide a mechanism for why it happens to suggest that you haven't provided a mechanism for how the brain makes it happen. Despite the lack of alternative explanations, the experience is still evidence against the assumption that the brain causes experience. Yes, it's extremely weird how it can be possible, but it's even more weird (or in fact impossible) if it were to happen when my brain and sensory organs cause that experience.

 

On 22.1.2024 at 6:07 PM, Scholar said:

And again, we have no reason to assume this is the case, given that such experiences do not lead to information that could not have been acquired otherwise, and further problems like why evolution did not explout these mechanisms if they are so easily accessed.

The experience is the case (unless you want to claim that me and probably millions of other people are simply delusional and don't know how to report our experiences accurately). Your lack of explanation does not negate the experience.

 

On 22.1.2024 at 6:07 PM, Scholar said:

But we have a model of the brain that is explanatory of such dreams, we have hecking machine neural networks that can basically simulate dreams now. it's nothing fancy.

Again, explanatory in the sense that it correlates with dreams, or explanatory in the sense of a causal mechanism? Because that is a very important distinction as you might have guessed by now.

 

On 22.1.2024 at 6:07 PM, Scholar said:

It doesn't make sense that you could see the world as if you had a body if it is not your body. Why would you see the world in vision, if you have no "astral" eyes that can interact with photons?

The idea that we need a pair of "astral eyes" that interacts with photons is only an assumption, a physicalist one. Similarly to how brain states only correlate with certain experiences, sensory organs only correlate with certain experiences. It's tricky to see how much physicalist thinking can sneak into one's worldview even when you don't considers yourself a physicalist.

Now, what sensory organs and neural states do seem to correlate with more than other things is so-called everyday consensus reality, or "sober normie consciousness". When we're sitting here looking into our screens and typing letters and thinking abstract thoughts, the idea that sensory organs may be the cause of our experience seems to be a plausible explanation. But when you experience altered states of consciousness, it's easier to see that this may not be the case.

People like Bernado Kastrup say exactly this, that sensory organs and neural states mostly correlate with our normal egoic state of mind, or our normal state of "dissociation", i.e. the process of transpersonal consciousness individuating itself into a personalized consciousness. Now, in this model of reality, the world as we apparently see it through our sensory organs is actually "out there", but it's filtered by our current perceptual systems, which again tends to produce the "normie state". To be clear, the perceptual systems are not "in your brain", but they also just tend to correlate with some neural/sensory states.

Now, when you remove some of the filtering, you might start to break down the normie state, and you might start to lose the usual boundaries of your body or the experience of being centered inside a physical body. In this situation, the world is still really out there, but you're seeing it without the usual filtering, and you might see beyond the usual boundaries that you thought were much more firm (or just reality). Then as you move over to this astral form, a slightly different set of perceptual processes take form, with a different sense of body and localization (and "sensory physics"). On the other hand, a complete deconstruction of perceptual processes are more likely seen in states like nirvikalpa samadhi (no localization, no colors, sensations or objects, no time or space).

In other words, your sense of being inside a body right now is just a filtering of your current perceptual systems, and those systems can be altered or completely deconstructed, and you might end up losing your body. But yes, the world is still out there, evidenced by the fact that you can leave your body behind and look at it from the outside. That is what other people are doing after all (other people are just different versions of you with slightly different perceptual systems).

This is how an idealist would explain what is going on.

 

On 22.1.2024 at 6:07 PM, Scholar said:

If you go beyond your goggled sensory experience, you should be able to acquire information that you otherwise could not, and evolution should have found a mechanism to exploit such states.

Earlier, I referenced the particular experiences of the survivors of cardiac arrests, which might satisfy your question. Other than that, there are many studies on other forms of extra-sensory perception that corroborate this. In the video I linked on this page, Rupert Sheldrake mentioned some studies that have been replicated around 30 times by independent researchers, and he also goes into how some psychic phenomena may actually have evolved because they were evolutionarily beneficial.

The reason why the scientific mainstream doesn't throw themselves over these findings is because I believe their metaphysical convictions don't allow them to. Similarly to the conviction that brains cause experience, it has nothing to do with actual empirical evidence. And this stubbornness within science has been well-known since the 60s when Thomas Kuhn first wrote his famous book with many historical examples (Galileo didn't have it easy).

 

On 22.1.2024 at 6:07 PM, Scholar said:

This isn't good evidence. I have premonition type of experiences all the time, and they are incredibly strange. I am not a physicalist so I can fathom the possibility that they are mysterious, but I am not epistemically founded to make conclusions about OBE, especially if I have not recorded such an incident and clearly established that I couldn't have known.

Even if premonition is possible somehow, it does not mean OBE is possible in the way we describe it, nor are we epistemically justified to affirm it, especially in scientific context.

Well, I recommend looking into these phenomena yourself if you want a more satisfying answer. I don't expect my limited sample of experiences to convince you (it didn't really convince me either at first; it took a bit more work to finally "ungaslight" myself xD). Again, the stories from the survivors of cardiac arrest which Dr. Pim van Lommel talks about in the video I put in the hyperlink are a good start (not the Rupert Sheldrake video). Tom Campbell is someone who has actually done research on OBEs specifically, and he claims to be able to reproduce it on demand and exert a level of control over the experience.

 

On 22.1.2024 at 6:07 PM, Scholar said:

Sure, but you have no clue what this world is. Again, in the end what is going to be rational to conclude might not even fit reality, but given that you have no better alternative, that is what you are left with.

We only have our best guess, and my best guess is that physicalism is baloney :D 

 

On 22.1.2024 at 6:07 PM, Scholar said:

It's not conclusive evidence, but there is more evidence than for the opposing few. You have to do some real trickery to explain away why this phenomena is not far more common and involved in the natural process.

Again, the experiences are real; whether or not they're explained is secondary to that. And you can explain them somewhat using an idealistic framework.

These experiences are way more common than you may think. My mom talks about her precognitive experiences all the time. It's not for no reason that she went with me to see that Rupert Sheldrake debate xD. Also, that debate currently has a 3.5/1 like-to-dislike ratio at currently 580k views and rapidly climbing, and 2/3 panelists were researchers on extraordinary/psychic experiences. That could be indicative of how most people view these phenomena.

 

On 22.1.2024 at 6:07 PM, Scholar said:

Because we cannot observe such phenomena in nature, or rather phenomena that could not otherwise be explained. Nor is the human mind capable of doing this at will.

We can observe people talking about such experiences, again irrespective of our explanations of them. And again, Tom Campbell is a good example of somebody performing this at will, specifically OBEs (not that it matters though; most of my experiences were outside my will, but they're still legitimate, in my experience ;)).

 

By the way, if you don't like me going point by point, then don't make so many points. You do make a lot of them (and you sometimes repeat them as well) :) 

Edited by Carl-Richard

Intrinsic joy is revealed in the marriage of meaning and being.

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On 23.1.2024 at 0:54 AM, Soul Flight said:

It's tough to decide whether to speak about reality or god to people. Everyone has an ego and egos are vicious monsters. If you prick someone's ego it may retaliate or plot against you.

"No one is hated more than he who speaks the truth."

Sometimes there is unintended "blowback" from speaking. Always remember Macbeth had a prophecy he would kill his father and sleep with his mother. In his efforts to avoid this, he ended up fulfilling the prophecy. The universe tends to work like that. The universe will awaken people on its own schedule and does not need your help or tinkering. But if you do it with love like a bodhisattva maybe it is ok. Or maybe you are a tool of the universe to awaken people.

I tend to think it is a private personal journey. The epiphany and revelation must come naturally from within. The dominoes must fall in sequence in someone's head. 

It is weird to understand this is the most important topic but then keep it a secret and never speak about it. It is a paradox and a delicate dance.

I sometimes feel this just by talking about my general values to people, certainly some of my old friends. If I just open my mouth about why I no longer drink or why I started implementing some structure into my life, people get self-aware about their self-destructive behavior or re-awaken some of their repressed insecurities, so I try to avoid even that. Or if I talk about meaning, people become aware of how meaningless their lives are. And that's not even touching on non-duality (explicitly). And imagine if they find out this, that I think I have to essentially treat people like a baby to not shatter their reality 🤣. I wonder if there are some things that I'm oblivious to that they have to treat me like a baby for as well 🤔 (probably some of my social insecurities).

Edited by Carl-Richard

Intrinsic joy is revealed in the marriage of meaning and being.

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17 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

Firstly, I don't understand what you mean by "neural structure of two" or "more distinctions between these states" or the points you're trying to make there. Secondly, what do you mean by "OBEs are just changes in the simulated reality of the brain" if you don't know what the brain does?

You implied more brain activity might lead to higher intensity of any given substance of existence (like for example pain). This assumes that a brain with more neurological complexity would experience more pain because there are more neurons within the "pain-structure". But neurological structures might interface with consciousness in a different way, meaning if there is an experience of total pain, it would be achieved with a neurological simplicity of one.

This would mean pain would be an off and on switch, stimulating that neurological structure would just lead to total pain.

Higher neurological structure would be exploited by nature to make more distinction between total pain and non-pain. A neurological complexity of two could mean that you would have 3 states: No stimulation = no pain, stimulating 1 neuron = half of pain, stimulating 2 neurons (all neurons of that structure) = total pain.

As you increase neural complexity, you could have finer and finer steps between total pain and no pain states. You basically divide the pain-substance into different degrees of intensity by having dividing the total neurological structure that is responsible for the given substance.

 

When talking about what the brain does, I am referring to how exactly it relates to consciosuness. In general, we know many things about the brain, how it relates to our senses and so forth. We have no evidence that the brain has any access to information that fall outside of information gathered through senses.

By changes in the simulated reality of the brain I mean that the structure and activity of the brain is responsible for how the given bubble of realit (consciousness) is structured. Every single sense or impression you have of reality is a careful orchestration, hallucination. This means, your sense of time, your sense of space, your sense of location within your sense of space and so forth. I believe OBE's are likely just a change of those within the brain, similar to when you are dreaming, using already existing information, but presenting it in a new way.

 

To clarify, I am making a distinction between the brain and consciousness for clarities sake, I am not making metaphysical declarations or implying a dualism of fundamental substance.

 

 

17 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

What do you mean by "give rise to"? Again, we know that the brain correlates with certain experiences, but that's it. If you want to provide a causal mechanism, then go ahead: what is the mechanism? Again, if you don't know, then I don't see why you would invoke the brain to explain OBEs. You're invoking something you cannot explain to explain something else. It's a bit like invoking God.

I am invoking the brain because experience in general is tied to our brain, and I have seen no evidence that there is any other mechanism that would influence or alter our state of mind.

We already know the brain is related to consciousness, and it is the only thing that we know of that relates to it. OBEs are dream-like experiences, and dreams are caused due to changes in brain states. There is no evidence that we acquire information outside of what the brain processes when dreaming.

You are making the extraordinary claim here, not me. I am simply stating something we already know. If I hit you on the head real hard, it will change your state of consciousness. There is not a singular thing in the world we know of that will alter your experience other than a change in brain-activity.

 

17 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

The experience is the case (unless you want to claim that me and probably millions of other people are simply delusional and don't know how to report our experiences accurately). Your lack of explanation does not negate the experience.

Millions of people have been wrong in the past, they can be wrong now. This should be exceptionally easy to prove if it was true. Until you gather actual evidence, I see no reason to believe it is the case.

 

17 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

Again, explanatory in the sense that it correlates with dreams, or explanatory in the sense of a causal mechanism? Because that is a very important distinction as you might have guessed by now.

It is causative. Machine Neural networks cause dream-like information-processing.

 

17 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

Now, when you remove some of the filtering, you might start to break down the normie state, and you might start to lose the usual boundaries of your body or the experience of being centered inside a physical body. In this situation, the world is still really out there, but you're seeing it without the usual filtering, and you might see beyond the usual boundaries that you thought were much more firm (or just reality). Then as you move over to this astral form, a slightly different set of perceptual processes take form, with a different sense of body and localization (and "sensory physics"). On the other hand, a complete deconstruction of perceptual processes are more likely seen in states like nirvikalpa samadhi (no localization, no colors, sensations or objects, no time or space).

Your entire sense of reality is hallucinated. The world doesnt look the the way your brain hallucinates it. If I hit you on the head real hard, your sense of reality will permanently change completely. Colors might become sound, sounds might become vision. The world is not dimensional, you only hallucinate it to be that way.

We have no evidence whatsoever for what you are positing. You can make up fables all day long, you still cannot explain why evolution is not exploiting any of these mechanisms if they are this significant, if you don't even need sensory apparatuses to perceive the world.

Why do all animals in the history of evolution evolve sensory organs if the world could be perceived without them? Even plants have them, and their information is clearly limited to the information their sensory organs transmit to them.

 

This theory is so absurd, to goes contrary to everything we know, so you need to have some really good explanation for how everything we know about evolution is false.

 

17 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

Earlier, I referenced the particular experiences of the survivors of cardiac arrests, which might satisfy your question. Other than that, there are many studies on other forms of extra-sensory perception that corroborate this. In the video I linked on this page, Rupert Sheldrake mentioned some studies that have been replicated around 30 times by independent researchers, and he also goes into how some psychic phenomena may actually have evolved because they were evolutionarily beneficial.

I don't believe this to be the case. If such astral-perception was possible, most animals would have evolved this.

 

17 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

Well, I recommend looking into these phenomena yourself if you want a more satisfying answer. I don't expect my limited sample of experiences to convince you (it didn't really convince me either at first; it took a bit more work to finally "ungaslight" myself xD). Again, the stories from the survivors of cardiac arrest which Dr. Pim van Lommel talks about in the video I put in the hyperlink are a good start (not the Rupert Sheldrake video). Tom Campbell is someone who has actually done research on OBEs specifically, and he claims to be able to reproduce it on demand and exert a level of control over the experience.

I don't take such claims seriously anymore. People are fundamentally delusional, including scientists and researchers.

 

17 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

We only have our best guess, and my best guess is that physicalism is baloney :D 

Physicalism is just a framework to understand the world, people who take it as metaphysical grounding are lost.

 

17 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

Again, the experiences are real; whether or not they're explained is secondary to that. And you can explain them somewhat using an idealistic framework.

These experiences are way more common than you may think. My mom talks about her precognitive experiences all the time. It's not for no reason that she went with me to see that Rupert Sheldrake debate xD. Also, that debate currently has a 3.5/1 like-to-dislike ratio at currently 580k views and rapidly climbing, and 2/3 panelists were researchers on extraordinary/psychic experiences. That could be indicative of how most people view these phenomena.

I highly doubt these experiences are what you think they are.

 

17 hours ago, Carl-Richard said:

We can observe people talking about such experiences, again irrespective of our explanations of them. And again, Tom Campbell is a good example of somebody performing this at will, specifically OBEs (not that it matters though; most of my experiences were outside my will, but they're still legitimate, in my experience ;)).

The question is not whether or not you can engage in OBE, but whether or not OBE actually are what you claim they are, an actual stepping outside of your body and acquiring information that you didn't gain through sensory input. And I in general don't take individuals seriously in regards to this.

 

 

Edited by Scholar

Glory to Israel

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