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Game of Egos


jcs

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Two egos dancing.

The longest, most passionate threads are arguments. Politics, religion, conspiracies, cameras, and gear. The pattern repeats. It's drama. We enjoy it. It's an addiction. Is there another way? There is, recognizing that it's all games of our egos, creating layers of illusions. The answer is so simple, you'll chuckle when you get it :) 

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I'm actually comfortable with being ignorant of information that we'll never understand. Not sure how any being in this universe is going to be able to answer the "why/how are we here?" question.

It was incredibly eloquent existential trolling, a great performance, and it gave everyone watching on E! News a reason to consider suicide  

Not opting for the reincarnation option after 54 years?  Isn't "truth" a social construct almost invariably used by one section of society as a mechanism of control, authority or influence over o

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I think saying things like "there is no me" and "It's not our world" and "we don't matter" is a way of skirting responsibility and saying "hey we're all going to die and our lives are meaningless." People have used this kind of thought for justification of a lot of terrible  and destructive things. Of course there is a "you." Just because "you" can't understand consciousness doesn't mean it doesn't exist. I think WE are the ones that put meaning in to our own lives and we have to take responsibility for it.

Carl Sagan summed it up best: "We humans are one among millions of separate species who live in a world burgeoning, overflowing with life. And yet, most species that ever were are no more. After flourishing for one hundred fifty million years, the dinosaurs became extinct. Every last one. No species is guaranteed its tenure on this planet. And humans, the first beings to devise the means for their own destruction, have been here for only several million years.

We are rare and precious because we are alive, because we can think. We are privileged to influence and perhaps control our future. We have an obligation to fight for life on Earth — not just for ourselves but for all those, humans and others, who came before us and to whom we are beholden, and for all those who, if we are wise enough, will come after. There is no cause more urgent than to survive to eliminate on a global basis the growing threats of nuclear war, environmental catastrophe, economic collapse and mass starvation. These problems were created by humans and can only be solved by humans. No social convention, no political system, no economic hypothesis, no religious dogma is more important.

The hard truth seems to be this: We live in a vast and awesome universe in which, daily, suns are made and worlds destroyed, where humanity clings to an obscure clod of rock. The significance of our lives and our fragile realm derives from our own wisdom and courage. We are the custodians of life’s meaning. We would prefer it to be otherwise, of course, but there is no compelling evidence for a cosmic Parent who will care for us and save us from ourselves. It is up to us."

@jcs Are you saying ego's are always a bad or negative thing? I'm just trying to understand your position, thanks.

9 minutes ago, Anaconda_ said:

These are his words when he has a bit more time to put into thinking about what he's trying to say. Quite amazing really. 

 

 

Meh, a lot of words were said, but not a whole lot of substance. A good bit of woo woo in there. It's like Deepak Chopra all over again or that book "The Secret." Put positive thoughts "out in to the universe" (whatever that means) and you'll get rewarded for them. However, there is absolutely no evidence of this. How self-centered does one have to be to believe that the universe even cares about our puny lives? It's like believing in astrology. How egocentric does one have to be to believe that the movements and relative positions of celestial bodies has any influence on our lives on earth? 

I'll leave it to Sagan, again: "The universe seems neither benign nor hostile, merely indifferent."

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23 minutes ago, iamoui said:

Meh, a lot of words were said, but not a whole lot of substance. A good bit of woo woo in there. It's like Deepak Chopra all over again or that book "The Secret." Put positive thoughts "out in to the universe" (whatever that means) and you'll get rewarded for them. However, there is absolutely no evidence to prove this. How self-centered does one have to be to believe that the universe even cares about our puny lives? It's like believing in astrology. How egocentric does one have to be to believe that the movements and relative positions of celestial bodies has any influence on our lives on earth? 

I think there are many more harmful ways of thinking and of treating others.  Of course, each to their own, but if more people thought like this, I can't help but imagine a nicer, friendlier world than the one we live in now. 

Sure the universe doesn't care about you personally, can it even care at all? What is the universe in this sense? Does it even matter? 

The original post, and the dodgy looks that woman gives the camera automatically puts Jim in a negative light, like he's a washed up lunatic. Good for him for not caring about a fashion week, and for not caring how he'll be portrayed, knowing full well that what he's talking about will go over the heads of the E Entertainment audience. More power to him.

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 there is no compelling evidence for a cosmic Parent who will care for us and save us from ourselves. It is up to us."

I do think you and Jim are saying similar things in different ways. I don't believe he's negating responsibility, instead trying to spread a message of oneness. We're all in this together, let's do our very best to keep this ride going. Instead of focusing on a fashion show, lets put our minds to better use.

Of course, I'm only projecting my own thoughts as I do agree with a lot of what he's saying, but he says it in a wishy-washy way, which makes it easy for the real message to become lost.

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@Anaconda_ Jim is on a path that may lead him to understanding there is even more. Jim thinks he's awoken from the Matrix. He hasn't. He's just in another one!  The Matrix, Inception, Rick & Morty (nested simulations) play on this idea.

@iamoui "there is no me" "it's not our world", it's good you see the pattern and that he's still playing the game. I don't think his intention is nihilism. We do see religions and philosophies being used as justification for selfishness and destroying life. Now that I see the power of the ego game, I'm having trouble writing anything at all. Ego is not positive or negative. No judgement. It just is. A system that filters our awareness that we are all connected, and protects us from information overload.

I don't know if it's possible to escape it, the ego game, when in human form. From what I have learned, the closest is to recognize that we can't escape it, and recognizing that even that statement may not be true! The concept of nondualism is helpful: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nondualism. I've only ever achieved this (or the illusion of it!) with deep meditation and/or by using a tool such as DMT. It's the ego that frightens people away from psychoactive tools. I've also realized that living as a human being in this reality with that level of consciousness and awareness all the time is not desirable in human form, especially when no one else is in that state of consciousness! No one understands you, and it makes sense why: you are seeing and experiencing reality in a way they cannot understand in a normal state of consciousness.

The game seems to be, that we are all God, we make up what God is, all of the universe, collectively, is God. Not the God from any religion. When we become aware of this, it can be wonderful, terrifying, or both. Collectively we are all responsible for our actions, as well as for our relationships with those around us, for our homes, neighborhoods, cities, states, countries, the planet, and the entire universe (and multiverse if it exists and whatever is beyond that!).

The mechanism of the ego seems to be to protect us from the overwhelming information of what is going on in the universe, including that we are all co-creating it together with the concept of God.

What Carl Sagan said, is what we as humans truly seem to enjoy most of the time: to be kind, to create life, and not to destroy it. I don't want to put down anyone's faith. However some religions have mechanisms which don't recognize that we are all collectively God. And that we can be forgiven no matter what terrible actions we have done, or even worse that said actions are justified as being in line with the teachings of their faith.

Being raised with Christian and Jewish influences, and later studying Buddhism, Zen, Hinduism, and Taoism (all related), I began to ask the question: "How can we unite everyone?" Is it even possible? If that was your job, how would you go about doing it? Listening to Alan Watts was tremendously helpful! Most people I refer him to can't get through the material- too hard, too long, too boring, etc. Studying Zen can seem pointless after a while: incredibly difficult and abstract. Now it all makes sense, or more appropriately, I get the point about the ego and the mind games. Yet the funny thing is that once you know the games of the ego, you can never be sure of anything! So do I really get it, or is this state another illusion!

So then the Zen answer to the question "Well, then, once you learn all this, how are you supposed to live?". When wet, seek shelter. When cold seek warmth. When hungry, eat. When bad things happen, know that it will pass. When good things happen, know that it will pass. Paddle with the stream, perhaps laterally, but not upstream. Enjoy your life as a human being. If we get attached to people or things, it will cause suffering. True Love is not attachment. Understanding that everything is connected, we are not separate from each other or our environment: we are all responsible. We enjoy it when others are kind to us and thus we are motivated to be kind to others. Understanding that our egos will play games with our minds and to remind ourselves of this when things get challenging. Let go of control whenever you can, whenever it won't cause harm. Are you speaking with joy and smiling or something else?

Thus the point seems to be after all the deep metaphysical searching, we come back to simple ideas everyone can understand and perform. Current mainstream media, movies, music etc. bombard people and overwhelm them with information that takes them away from these concepts.

A puzzle to be solved is how do we provide sufficient control of resources without competition, so that we can live on this planet and minimize suffering. The human beings who rule this planet are psychopaths/sociopaths/narcissists. It's not a judgement or negative statement, only a recognition of behavior that leads to absolute rulership of humans dominating others. Is it possible for them to learn these concepts, or can enough people who have learned them change the systems in a positive way?

And online, on forums, etc., can we have fun conversations and friendly debates, while remembering these things? :) 

 

5 minutes ago, Andrew Reid said:

It was incredibly eloquent existential trolling, a great performance, and it gave everyone watching on E! News a reason to consider suicide :) 

Do you think they'll understand what he was doing? Seems like there could be a better way. I don't know. Maybe it's a start.

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3 hours ago, jcs said:

The game seems to be, that we are all God, we make up what God is, all of the universe, collectively, is God. Not the God from any religion. When we become aware of this, it can be wonderful, terrifying, or both.

I think the evolutional purpose of human belief in God is that it's comforting...  this turns it into something absolutely terrifying and nihilistic.

Do you think the more enlightened Jim Carrey gets it the more of a suicide risk he is? It's already happened in the life of another great comic actor, Robin Williams... very sad.

I think Carrey's a superb talent, unique... not to everyone's taste, but a genuinely interesting human being.

He could be really onto the truth... he could be ultra enlightened... but there's a coldness behind his eyes, a cold stark reality to it somehow.

Or maybe he's just goofing around with it... Trolling the vacuous celebrity machine at the fashion show and an insular, materialistic reporter.

Watch the recent video on his artwork though, and it does seem he's actually living his newfound enlightenment and taking inspiration from it.

Fine line between genius and madness!

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The mechanism of the ego seems to be to protect us from the overwhelming information of what is going on in the universe, including that we are all co-creating it together with the concept of God.

Yup, I'd agree with that.

Maybe in Jim Carrey's attempt to shrink his ego, he's peered into the void.

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What Carl Sagan said, is what we as humans truly seem to enjoy most of the time: to be kind, to create life, and not to destroy it. I don't want to put down anyone's faith. However some religions have mechanisms which don't recognize that we are all collectively God. And that we can be forgiven no matter what terrible actions we have done, or even worse that said actions are justified as being in line with the teachings of their faith.

In the end it should be up to the individual to believe in what he believes... the problem is religion is too often forced on the individual from a young age or from peep pressure.

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1 hour ago, Andrew Reid said:

In the end it should be up to the individual to believe in what he believes...

Absolutely.

1 hour ago, Andrew Reid said:

the problem is religion is too often forced on the individual from a young age or from peep pressure.

Food for thought.

I think this is too anecdotal a statement, and mostly, or at least often, untrue. 

The vast majority of Christians that I know came to faith in Jesus Christ later in life, and not because of, but in spite of peer/peep pressure. 

Of course you said "religion" and not solely Christianity, so obviously my anecdotal experience varies from yours.

Also, it is not uncommon for people to clump "religion" into a category and forget that every single worldview, is exactly that... a worldview. As a public teacher for many years I witnessed countless students who had been conditioned from childhood into believing that their lives were ultimately, meaningless. And their actions were therefore, meaningless. In other words, conditioning the young is far from a monopoly held by the "religious". 

Just food for thought.

Also, Jim Carrey looks absolutely out of his mind in that video. Whether it's drugs or something else, he's definitely not lucid. Unless he's trolling. But to me it looks like he's at his wit's end desperately searching for a solution he hasn't found yet and pretending to troll in order to hide his state of desperation. 

“I think everybody should get rich and famous and do everything they ever dreamed of so they can see that it's not the answer.” - Jim Carrey

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9 minutes ago, Jonesy Jones said:

I think this is too anecdotal a statement, and mostly, or at least often, untrue. 

The vast majority of Christians that I know came to faith in Jesus Christ later in life, and not because of, but in spite of peer/peep pressure. 

Of course you said "religion" and not merely Christianity, so obviously my anecdotal experience varies from yours.

Also, it is not uncommon for people to clump "religion" into a category and forget that every single worldview, is exactly that... a worldview. As a public teacher for many years I witnessed countless students who had been conditioned from childhood into believing that their lives were ultimately, meaningless. And their actions were therefore, meaningless. In other words, conditioning the young is far from a monopoly held by the "religious". 

Just food for thought.

Proselytism is & always has been a big part of most religions, even more so in Christianity that has it in the gospel. And for many centuries if you didn't convert you most probably would end up dead, so quite the pressure I would say ;)  . And here is one modern version of a proselytism park: http://www.holylandexperience.com/

But on the second point I agree, God is yet another attraction point for wandering souls. The problem is that there is an organized path towards just that point. So if you are proselytized from young age, the likelihood of finding Christ later in your life is far greater than chance. Whether that is good or bad, is another discussion. 

9 minutes ago, Jonesy Jones said:

Also, Jim Carrey looks absolutely out of his mind in that video. Whether it's drugs or something else, he's definitely not lucid. Unless he's trolling. But to me it looks like he's at his wit's end desperately searching for a solution he hasn't found yet and pretending to troll in order to hide his state of desperation. 

Spot on. Initially I just went with trolling & drugs, but your psychoanalysis offers a deeper understanding why he might have done those things in the first place.

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35 minutes ago, Don Kotlos said:

Proselytism is & always has been a big part of most religions, even more so in Christianity that has it in the gospel.

Yes. This is true. 

35 minutes ago, Don Kotlos said:

And for many centuries if you didn't convert you most probably would end up dead, so quite the pressure I would say ;)

And for many centuries before and after that period, the EXACT OPPOSITE was true. 

Not to mention that Christianity teaches absolutely nothing of putting someone to death for not converting.

To my understanding many many people have borrowed the appearance of Christianity to do unspeakable evil including murder. But not only is this NOT a tenant of Christianity, Christ taught the exact opposite. (Love your enemies, turn the other cheek, pray for those who despise you, etc). 

My only point is that while your history is most likely accurate, history's antagonists have often inappropriately borrowed the name of Christ to do bad stuff that history has then unfairly clumped with Christ. 

I'm also not suggesting you were saying otherwise. I'm just adding it more as a 'for the record' kind of thing. :)

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4 hours ago, Andrew Reid said:

I think the evolutional purpose of human belief in God is that it's comforting...  this turns it into something absolutely terrifying and nihilistic.

Do you think the more enlightened Jim Carrey gets it the more of a suicide risk he is? It's already happened in the life of another great comic actor, Robin Williams... very sad.

I think Carrey's a superb talent, unique... not to everyone's taste, but a genuinely interesting human being.

He could be really onto the truth... he could be ultra enlightened... but there's a coldness behind his eyes, a cold stark reality to it somehow.

Or maybe he's just goofing around with it... Trolling the vacuous celebrity machine at the fashion show and an insular, materialistic reporter.

Watch the recent video on his artwork though, and it does seem he's actually living his newfound enlightenment and taking inspiration from it.

Fine line between genius and madness!

Yup, I'd agree with that.

Maybe in Jim Carrey's attempt to shrink his ego, he's peered into the void.

In the end it should be up to the individual to believe in what he believes... the problem is religion is too often forced on the individual from a young age or from peep pressure.

I had read about, how as we approach the Big Realization (note I'm not saying the Truth), our ego's get more and more clever, creating even "better simulations" so we think we've finally solved it all, that we have arrived, that we are enlightened... Hurray! And then slowly we realize that once again, we've deceived ourselves, and we're not there yet, there's still more to learn. Once we recognize that pattern, we can stop telling other's we've finally solved it all, that we know the solution, that we know the truth, that we know the Right Way, that we know anything at all.

Even what I'm writing right now it's that same pattern, so it's really impossible to get this point across in words. It's like they say, you can really only smile and nod, and recognize that we are all playing the ego game, and ultimately live kindly as humans and not try to project our individual beliefs on others. Maybe we'll talk about it, maybe we'll agree, maybe we won't.

Math and science were developed as a tools to try to reach consensus, and these tools work well enough for us to create houses, cars, roads, bridges, microwave ovens, foods, medicines, etc. The concepts of the Rule of Law have helped us to live relatively peacefully in the latest civilization (not including wars which twisted the law in order to justify war).

Once we get to the level below quantum physics nothing works anymore, so we don't really know what is going on at the deepest levels, and thus it's metaphysical. Perhaps there's a fundamental flaw in the ideas of math and physics, and it's blocking a better description of reality. There's really no point arguing about it when we realize how our egos create illusions which we then project on others.

It's kinda funny how it all seems to work! And maybe everything I've written here is just another illusion! Buddha said keep questioning everything he said- it's just what he found to work for himself, and if you find a better way, follow that. Similar to the Scientific Method: keep updating the ideas as we learn more.

What we all do seem to agree on with people who have empathy (again, psychopaths/sociopaths/narcissists probably don't have empathy), is to treat others as we'd want to be treated. Be kind, implement the Golden Rule. It seems the more we can do that, the more we can reduce suffering and be happier.

It appears Jim Carrey has been preparing to play Terrance McKenna: http://www.mckennite.com/articles/carrey. From Jim: "The deeper you go into the psychedelic dimension, the bigger it gets. I've seen things no human being has ever seen before, and no other human being will ever see again. I retreated to nature and I took five grams of dried mushrooms in order to prepare for this role". “The real message of psychedelics, I think, is to reclaim experience and to trust yourself. Your perceptions are primary. Your feelings are correct. Everything must constellate out and make sense and parse with what you know. If you don’t start from that assumption then you are off center to begin with. And the psychedelics will dissolve the cultural programming that has potentially made you a mark and restore your authenticity.”

I felt the same way for a while, then realized that what I was seeing and experiencing was not unique at all. And that the ego was once again playing the game. 5 grams of psilocybe cubensis (see Jim Carrey link) would be a sufficient dose of DMT to put most people over the threshold for 'ego death', a state of consciousness where the human filter, what defines a human as a human, a specific person, to melt away. That's when transcendental awareness or cosmic consciousness can be experienced. That's what Jim meant when he said "You don't exist, we are not important, it's not our planet" etc. However this is just the ego again, running a different awareness simulation. So that's not the end of the journey. Once we come to this realization, it's kind of an AHA moment and also a NOW WHAT? moment. How are we supposed to live? What should we do if the ego is always creating illusions? Hungry: eat, tired: sleep, curious: explore. Just be. Be a human. Be aware of attachment. Be kind. That does seem to be the simple answer. Again, I reached the same conclusion as the pioneering teachers before us, however I realize it too may be another illusion, and until something that seems to work better is understood, this feels right. Feels like truth, feels like true love.

So it's kind of recursively amusing realizing that these concepts where we become aware of the illusions of the ego, and write about them, are further examples of the illusions of the ego. So we can listen to other people's views of reality and respect them, realizing their ego is creating a specialized version of reality for them. It may be similar to our reality, and it may not. And it makes no sense to argue about it! It seems kindness and the Golden Rule are fundamental principles we'd hope all would agree to, perhaps there is an even better way, I don't know.

@Don Kotlos, @Jonesy Jones I saw patterns in what Jesus said that were so similar to what Buddha said, I figured maybe he studied Buddhism. Alan Watts also has great insite into what Jesus was really trying to say: that we are all children of God, not just him:

Recently this was published: https://www.feelguide.com/2017/01/19/bbc-doc-proves-jesus-was-a-buddhist-monk-named-issa-who-spent-16-years-in-india-tibet/. The Dalai Lama wrote about about Christianity and Buddhism: http://www.wisdompubs.org/blog/201603/dalai-lama-reflects-faith-buddhism-and-christianity. I don't know if it matters if this is true or not, it does seem he said the same things as Buddha, and that some of it was changed for political and religious reasons. I'm not sure if it will ever be possible to know. The pattern is Christianity kept splitting into more and more sects, e.g Catholics to Lutherans, to Latter Day Saints, and especially the Mennonites (there was also splitting and fragmentation of Buddhism, and in recent history when it was studied collectively, some sects had gotten the main ideas completely backwards!). It seems the splits kept happening as they got farther away from what Jesus and Buddha really said. We can look at what Buddha said and later Jesus to perhaps get a better understanding of the original concepts before politics and religion fragmented and changed them.

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9 hours ago, jcs said:

The longest, most passionate threads are arguments. Politics, religion, conspiracies, cameras, and gear. The pattern repeats. It's drama. We enjoy it. It's an addiction. Is there another way? There is, recognizing that it's all games of our egos, creating layers of illusions. The answer is so simple, you'll chuckle when you get it :) 

I couldn't disagree more.  You look at the history of human advancement and the number of discoveries, institutions, and innovations that have come out of warfare and it is ridiculous.  I read about capitalism and I read about communism.  I don't read that stuff because I like drama.  I read it because only through the struggle and competition do the best ideas get formed and come to our attention.  Yes if you watch two idiots on E! argue it is just pointless drama.  Well it is "drama" for some people.  For me it is just boring.

I have left plenty of arguments and gone and looked stuff up.  I didn't necessarily do a 180 on my opinion but there have been more than a few times my opinion has changed.  And there are plenty of online arguments that I didn't participate in but I enjoyed reading because I picked up interesting tidbits from both sides.

And it does take a certain modicum of ego to argue a point.  Just because it requires a bit of ego doesn't mean it is all about ego.  Look at president of the United States.  You have to have brass balls to ever seriously consider you would be a good president.  But being president isn't just about being an egotistical ahole... as the orange douche is learning the hard way.

 

And of course everyone likes to win the internet.  It feels good! :innocent:

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6 minutes ago, Damphousse said:

I couldn't disagree more.  You look at the history of human advancement and the number of discoveries, institutions, and innovations that have come out of warfare and it is ridiculous.  I read about capitalism and I read about communism.  I don't read that stuff because I like drama.  I read it because only through the struggle and competition do the best ideas get formed and come to our attention.  Yes if you watch two idiots on E! argue it is just pointless drama.  Well it is "drama" for some people.  For me it is just boring.

I have left plenty of arguments and gone and looked stuff up.  I didn't necessarily do a 180 on my opinion but there have been more than a few times my opinion has changed.  And there are plenty of online arguments that I didn't participate in but I enjoyed reading because I picked up interesting tidbits from both sides.

And it does take a certain modicum of ego to argue a point.  Just because it requires a bit of ego doesn't mean it is all about ego.  Look at president of the United States.  You have to have brass balls to ever seriously consider you would be a good president.  But being president isn't just about being an egotistical ahole... as the orange douche is learning the hard way.

 

And of course everyone likes to win the internet.  It feels good! :innocent:

It's totally OK that you disagree! I used to be very competitive at everything: sports (played them all in high school and college), racing cars, competing in software and business, winning lawsuits, winning arguments, however in the end it wasn't satisfying. Winning means someone else is losing, which creates resentment, and a net increase in suffering. This is especially true in personal relationships: we don't want to alienate our friends, families, or partners. In business, especially with the responsibility of a leadership position, it is especially tricky to get points across while being aware of each person's ego. Even if everyone ultimately realizes you are right, if they resent you it makes it hard to lead without drama. Thus I learned it's really important to let everyone know you really care for them, want the best for them, it's not personal, and to keep the business and/or tech debates focused on the issues vs. letting it get personal.

I don't want to "win on the internet". It was never my point to prove anyone wrong, rather I was trying to show what I believed to be true. Yet my methods ultimately made people think I was trying to prove them wrong, and thus came resentment. When I use the word 'ego' it's not simply arrogance, it's the thing in our consciousness that makes us appear separate from each other and nature. The only way I've found to not experience ego is through deep meditation and/or using DMT to turn off the individual-human-state reality filter: the ego. The ego is a truly clever thing, the ultimate deceiver sometimes, not good or bad, it helps us to survive, and when out of control causes great suffering for self and others.

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@jcs, so what I'm about to say could come across antagonistic, I don't mean it that way. Just my observations and I am phrasing them best as I can. 

Quite a few times you suggest that neither you, nor anyone else really know anything. 

1 hour ago, jcs said:

note I'm not saying the Truth

 

1 hour ago, jcs said:

Once we recognize that pattern, we can stop telling other's we've finally solved it all, that we know the solution, that we known the truth, that we know the Right Way, that we know anything at all.

 

1 hour ago, jcs said:

And maybe everything I've written here is just another illusion!

1 hour ago, jcs said:

perhaps there is an even better way, I don't know.

If I have understood you correctly, then these are self-defeating statements.

Basically you are saying, 'we don't know anything, and I know this for sure.' That's self-defeating, erroneous logic.

You seem convinced that everything you say, and apparently even Buddha, could be an illusion. Then why continue to preach? 

Don't get me wrong, I totally agree with you regarding kindness and humility and love. But to even claim these as good is an assertion of truth. And to practice them requires even more truth.

We need truth to even converse. Truth is essential. 

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4 minutes ago, Jonesy Jones said:

@jcs, so what I'm about to say could come across antagonistic, I don't mean it that way. Just my observations and I am phrasing them best as I can. 

Quite a few times you suggest that neither you, nor anyone else really know anything. 

 

 

If I have understood you correctly, then these are self-defeating statements.

Basically you are saying, 'we don't know anything, and I know this for sure.' That's self-defeating, erroneous logic.

You seem convinced that everything you say, and apparently even Buddha, could be an illusion. Then why continue to preach? 

Don't get me wrong, I totally agree with you regarding kindness and humility and love. But to even claim these as good is an assertion of truth. And to practice them requires even more truth.

We need truth to even converse. Truth is essential. 

Jonesy, my goal has been and continues to be, figuring out how to better communicate. By telling you that I am aware of the illusions created by my ego, everything I say is clearly from my own point of view, and if you disagree, it's OK. When I first read these ideas years ago, it didn't make any sense at all, especially Zen, which seemed totally crazy and pointless. Which is why many people throw around the word Zen because they think it's cool, however they have no idea what it really means. Some of the more esoteric parts of Zen and Buddhism don't seem true to me (e.g. carry-overs from Hinduism), however the concepts of ego and layers of illusion do seem very helpful in dealing with life as a human being.

So you're right, it sounds like double-talk. Buddha said the same thing, and he continued to share what he learned. Note I didn't say preach, and I hope I can learn to talk about these concepts so they don't sound like preaching at all. A funny pattern that appears is that the more I try to write in a manner that is non-argumentative, the more folks seem to want to argue.

This feels like the ego, in that it doesn't want to admit one doesn't know truth. What is truth? How do you know anything is true? Can you write things you believe to be true that most people will agree with? Maybe. Can you write things you believe to be true that everyone will agree with? Probably not. Even if you show a tautology in math, people who don't understand math won't agree. Even if you show something using the scientific method, some people will disagree and find flaws that may not exist or just simply won't believe you (this happens all the time in science, only years later are some ideas accepted as true!). If we accept that we don't know anything for sure, we keep ourselves open to learning something new, and getting closer to the truth, whatever it may be. How many times have you been absolutely certain about something, 100% certain, then later learned you were wrong? That's the point in accepting that the ego may be creating an illusion and that what one thinks, sometimes what most everyone thinks (such as the world is flat or the Earth is the center of the universe), is wrong. Newton's equations of motion are kinda true, in that they do very well to predict the motions of objects, including in the presence of gravity. However it's an incomplete model, and we need Einstein's equations of relativity on the large/fast scale and quantum physics on the small scale to better describe reality. And none of these concepts exactly describe reality since we can't unify gravity, for example, other than string/m-theory neither of which we can test yet in the real world.

When each of us believes our own thoughts are absolute truth, then we aren't open to new ideas, to seeing another person's point of view, and to learning something new. From my point of view it feels better to say these things seem right to me, what do you think? Vs. me saying these things are all true, perhaps polarizing, and not open to others points of view.

From my first short film, "Truth and Perfection exist only in Mathematics, and Mathematics cannot describe a Universe running on Infinities and Probabilities". If you disagree, it's OK, how would you show why this isn't true for you?

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9 hours ago, Snowfun said:

I thought we'd all agreed with Andrew to keep things on topic as a cinematography forum rather than a vehicle for vox pop "I've read Wikipedia" opinions about life, the universe and other trivia? 

C'est la vie.

I thought so, too. Apparently @jcs' ego couldn't help itself..

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I think thats only when the thread was started about something specifically film/gear related to stop them being derailed.

If the thread has been specifically started like this one that isn't about those things then I think Pete And Bernie's Philosophical Steakhouse is open for business.

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