On consciousness

Discussion of the nature of Ultimate Reality and the path to Enlightenment.

Re: On consciousness

Postby jupiviv » Sat Apr 14, 2012 1:52 am

Liberty Sea wrote:4.1.1 My ego is that vantage point ('I' is a vantage point).

4.2.1.1 My world is all that my consciousness perceives and all that is not my vantage point.

4.2.1.2 I and my world are one.


Consciousness cannot perceive all that is not itself, except as a category. And the fact that you perceive your world actually means you are separate from it, since otherwise you could not perceive it.

If a chair is 1 meter away from person A and 2 meter away from B then "The chair is 1 meter away from 'me'" is a truth for A and a falsity for B (when B says that sentence with 'me' referring to himself just as A does), but "The chair is 1 meter away from A and 2 meter from B' is truth for both.


How about this - if someone experiences a blue box on a table, does that experience become invalid from any point of space and time? You could say that someone else may say that it was hallucination of a blue box and not an actual one, or a holo-projection, but that is just a different experience. The experience of the blue box still remains valid.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby movingalways » Sat Apr 14, 2012 2:21 am

jupiviv wrote:
movingalways wrote:In essence, I am saying that if one desires to enter heaven, to be finished with identification with a cause, causes are used to move one beyond causes, one goes through the mind to go beyond the mind.


That is impossible, for obvious reasons. It's like the first cause argument.


What cause or objective trumps the reconciling causal world of "good and only good?"
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Liberty Sea » Sat Apr 14, 2012 10:32 am

jupiviv wrote:
Consciousness cannot perceive all that is not itself, except as a category.

I did not say Consciousness can perceive all that is not itself.
My vantage point is not my consciousness.
But I can only perceive that which is within my range of perception.

And the fact that you perceive your world actually means you are separate from it, since otherwise you could not perceive it.

Yes.
'I' am this vantage point.
But since this vantage point's existence is just as realistic as a geometric point, the separation between I and my world is just as realistic as the existence of a geometric point.


How about this - if someone experiences a blue box on a table, does that experience become invalid from any point of space and time? You could say that someone else may say that it was hallucination of a blue box and not an actual one, or a holo-projection, but that is just a different experience. The experience of the blue box still remains valid.

It's is a fact, yes. The fact is that "A" perceived a blue box and not a red box; and that fact doesn't change.
It's a fact that from A's vantage point the box is blue and not red.
If B validly say "What A called a blue box, I perceived it to be a red box", it's also a fact that B perceived that same object to be a red box.
It's a fact that from B's vantage point the box is red and not blue.
It's fact that "What A perceived to be a blue box, B perceived it to be a red box".
It is a fact that the color blue of the box is dependent on A's vantage point. It is a fact that the color red of the box is dependent on B's vantage point. And that doesn't change the fact that A perceived a blue box and B perceived a red box.
And it's a fact that the box by itself doesn't have any color or form without an observer.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby jupiviv » Sat Apr 14, 2012 4:51 pm

Liberty Sea wrote:My vantage point is not my consciousness.
But I can only perceive that which is within my range of perception.
'I' am this vantage point.
But since this vantage point's existence is just as realistic as a geometric point, the separation between I and my world is just as realistic as the existence of a geometric point.


So you are your vantage point but not your consciousness? This is getting really confusing. I don't think we are using the same definitions of these things. As I said before, consciousness doesn't have any separate vantage point other than itself. The consciousness of a thing is itself the vantage point from which it is perceived.

Secondly, you seem to be saying that you are one with your vantage point whilst being separate from your consciousness. This doesn't make sense to me. Also, what do you mean by "perception" - do you mean consciousness? Earlier you were talking about perceiving things within the range of consciousness. I would say there is no "range" of consciousness, since a single consciousness cannot be of two different things.

If B validly say "What A called a blue box, I perceived it to be a red box", it's also a fact that B perceived that same object to be a red box.


B perceived a different object than A, not the exact same object. It was same in the sense that it was a box, but different in the sense that red and blue are different things.

And it's a fact that the box by itself doesn't have any color or form without an observer.


Not just the observer, but everything else except the box. I would say the "box by itself" is just another experience, so it is wrong to say that it has a separate nature apart from what may be experienced. The box will be exactly as it is experienced, and the experience of the box will be exactly as it is.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Liberty Sea » Sat Apr 14, 2012 5:54 pm

jupiviv wrote:
So you are your vantage point but not your consciousness? This is getting really confusing. I don't think we are using the same definitions of these things. As I said before, consciousness doesn't have any separate vantage point other than itself. The consciousness of a thing is itself the vantage point from which it is perceived.

Secondly, you seem to be saying that you are one with your vantage point whilst being separate from your consciousness. This doesn't make sense to me. Also, what do you mean by "perception" - do you mean consciousness? Earlier you were talking about perceiving things within the range of consciousness. I would say there is no "range" of consciousness, since a single consciousness cannot be of two different things.


http://i.imgur.com/Z4J62.jpg
In a sense my vantage point is neither my consciousness nor separated from my consciousness.
B perceived a different object than A, not the exact same object. It was same in the sense that it was a box, but different in the sense that red and blue are different things.

Let say that A and B experienced a same 'thing in itself' but come off as two different phenomena.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby jupiviv » Sat Apr 14, 2012 7:50 pm

Liberty Sea wrote:http://i.imgur.com/Z4J62.jpg
In a sense my vantage point is neither my consciousness nor separated from my consciousness.


I don't understand how that is possible. If you think that it is you should be able to explain it in words instead of diagrams.

Let say that A and B experienced a same 'thing in itself' but come off as two different phenomena.


The "actual", empirical box may have been painted half red and half blue. But even this box would be just another experience.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Liberty Sea » Sat Apr 14, 2012 8:51 pm

jupiviv wrote:I don't understand how that is possible. If you think that it is you should be able to explain it in words instead of diagrams.

This ego is a bare "vantage point", an empty "point of view" like a geometrical point, from which consciousness is launched. This ego is not psychological, but phenomenological, and in truth there is no ego beyond it.
jupiviv wrote:The "actual", empirical box may have been painted half red and half blue. But even this box would be just another experience.

Let not delve into tricky situations and stick with valid problem of phenomenon.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby jupiviv » Sat Apr 14, 2012 11:28 pm

Liberty Sea wrote:This ego is a bare "vantage point", an empty "point of view" like a geometrical point, from which consciousness is launched. This ego is not psychological, but phenomenological, and in truth there is no ego beyond it.


I've already shown that consciousness cannot be launched in the way you are describing. Neither is there any reason to assume a vantage point separate from consciousness.

The "actual", empirical box may have been painted half red and half blue. But even this box would be just another experience.


Let not delve into tricky situations and stick with valid problem of phenomenon.


How is that a "tricky situation"? I was pointing out that the same thing cannot be experienced differently by different people - not even empirically.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby movingalways » Sun Apr 15, 2012 12:08 am

Consciousness seduces Itself.

She = The Point.

Incest.

Become a monk to Yourself.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Liberty Sea » Sun Apr 15, 2012 12:17 pm

jupiviv wrote:I've already shown that consciousness cannot be launched in the way you are describing. Neither is there any reason to assume a vantage point separate from consciousness.

No, you have not, and we are still discussing that. Don't bother with location. A thinking is always a thinking about something and if you don't like the word "launching" you can use the word "attending" or "paying attention to". This vantage point is like a center, as in the word 'ego-centric'. Every ordinary human is ego-centric to some extent. Whether you perceive with your eyes or imagine in your head , your consciousness always circles around this center. You always sense this center in one way or another.
How is that a "tricky situation"? I was pointing out that the same thing cannot be experienced differently by different people - not even empirically.

What you are saying is that a "thing in itself" cannot be perceived as two or more different phenomena. But I have already given example
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Re: On consciousness

Postby jupiviv » Sun Apr 15, 2012 2:01 pm

Liberty Sea wrote:A thinking is always a thinking about something and if you don't like the word "launching" you can use the word "attending" or "paying attention to".


Again, there is nothing that directs this thinking about something. Consciousness is consciousness of something, and that's the end of it.

Whether you perceive with your eyes or imagine in your head , your consciousness always circles around this center. You always sense this center in one way or another.


Either you are wrong, or you have a different definition of consciousness than I do. Consciousness, as I define it, is the awareness that a thing is itself and not other than itself. Vantage points, egos, centers - none of these are relevant to this definition.

What you are saying is that a "thing in itself" cannot be perceived as two or more different phenomena. But I have already given example


A thing-in-itself cannot even exist, the way you're defining it. A thing without any form or properties cannot be said to exist, and moreover it cannot magically gain properties whenever an observer encounters it.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Liberty Sea » Sun Apr 15, 2012 2:22 pm

Again, there is nothing that directs this thinking about something. Consciousness is consciousness of something, and that's the end of it.

Thinking is directed because it is caused. There is the directing but no director.
jupiviv wrote:
Either you are wrong, or you have a different definition of consciousness than I do. Consciousness, as I define it, is the awareness that a thing is itself and not other than itself. Vantage points, egos, centers - none of these are relevant to this definition.

So what do you think a center is and what place does it have in an individual existence?
I think the individual is this center. In some sense a person is himself the center of the world, as he perceives the world as his world, and nobody else can enter his perspective.

and moreover it cannot magically gain properties whenever an observer encounters it.

Yes.
Thing-in-itself is Nature in its constant movements. My stance is that it does have substance of its own, but does not possess absolute form, that is, forms that are independent of the observer. Note the word absolute. The construction of forms is both dependent on the point of view of the observer and the substance of the thing-in-itself, hence perceived forms are always relative forms.
Last edited by Liberty Sea on Sun Apr 15, 2012 2:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Tomas » Sun Apr 15, 2012 2:26 pm

Liberty Sea wrote:I think the individual is this center. In some sense a person is himself the center of the world, as he perceive the world as his world, and nobody else can enter his perspective.

Very good, indeed!
Don't run to your death
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Re: On consciousness

Postby jupiviv » Sun Apr 15, 2012 4:15 pm

Liberty Sea wrote:Thinking is directed because it is caused. There is the directing but no director.


I'm sorry but now you are being intellectually dishonest. When you said consciousness is directed or launched you weren't merely saying it is caused.

So what do you think a center is and what place does it have in an individual existence?


A rock is an individual existence is it not? What place does a center have in the individual existence of a rock?

Thing-in-itself is Nature in its constant movements. My stance is that it does have substance of its own, but does not possess absolute form, that is, forms that are independent of the observer. Note the word absolute. The construction of forms is both dependent on the point of view of the observer and the substance of the thing-in-itself, hence perceived forms are always relative forms.


You can define Nature/everything as a "thing-in-itself," since there is nothing else besides it. But "everything" has no substance or form of any kind. Also, the construction of forms isn't dependent on the thing-in-itself, since the forms aren't separate from the thing-in-itself.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Liberty Sea » Sun Apr 15, 2012 4:47 pm

jupiviv wrote:
I'm sorry but now you are being intellectually dishonest. When you said consciousness is directed or launched you weren't merely saying it is caused.

Beside being caused, it is also launched from a center. When I say there is no director, I mean the absence of free will.
If you can't understand this 'center', I am afraid I can be of little help.



A rock is an individual existence is it not? What place does a center have in the individual existence of a rock?

With individual existence I mean individual consciousness.
"The being that exists is man. Man alone exists. Rocks are, but they do not exist. Trees are, but they do not exist. Horses are, but they do not exist. Angels are, but they do not exist. God is, but he does not exist. The proposition "man alone exists" does not mean by any means that man alone is real being while all other beings are unreal and mere appearances or human ideas. The proposition "man exists" means: man is that being whose Being is distinguished by the open-standing standing-in in the unconcealedness of Being, from Being, in Being. The existential nature of man is the reason why man can represent beings as such, and why he can be conscious of them. All consciousness presupposes ecstatically understood existence as the essentia of man - essentia meaning that as which man is present insofar as he is man."
"What does "existence" mean in B.&T.? The word designates a mode of Being; specifically, the Being of those beings who stand open for the openness of Being in which they stand, by standing it. This "standing it," this enduring, is experienced under the name of "care." The ecstatic essence of being there is approached by way of care, and, conversely, care is experienced adequately only in its ecstatic essence. "Standing it, experienced in this manner, is the essence of the ekstasis which must be grasped by thought. The ecstatic essence of existence is therefore still understood inadequately as long as one thinks of it as merely "standing out," while interpreting the "out" as meaning "away from" the inside of an immanence of consciousness and spirit. For in this manner, existence would still be understood in terms of "subjectivity" and "substance"; while, in fact, the "out" ought to be understood in terms of the openness of Being itself. The stasis of the ecstatic consists, strange as it may sound-in standing in the "out" and "there" of unconcealedness in which Being itself is present. What is meant by "existence" in the context of an inquiry that is prompted by, and directed toward, the truth of Being, can be most beautifully designated by the word "instancy [Instandigkeit]." We must think at the same time, however, of standing in the openness of Being, of enduring and outstanding this standing-in (care), and of out-braving the utmost (Being toward death); for it is only together that they constitute the full essence of existence." - Martin Heidegger.
But "everything" has no substance or form of any kind.

Everything doesn't have an 'intrinsic' substance or form. That doesn't mean they are absolute non-being.
Also, the construction of forms isn't dependent on the thing-in-itself, since the forms aren't separate from the thing-in-itself.

Are you saying the construction of forms wholly depends on the mind?
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Re: On consciousness

Postby jupiviv » Mon Apr 16, 2012 2:51 am

Liberty Sea wrote:Beside being caused, it is also launched from a center. When I say there is no director, I mean the absence of free will.
If you can't understand this 'center', I am afraid I can be of little help.


There is no center. I don't see why a center needs to be posited at all. You don't seem to entirely understand what it is yourself.

With individual existence I mean individual consciousness.


Consciousness is finite just like everything else, and exists just like everything else. Excuse me for not reading that academic word-orgy in its entirety.

Everything doesn't have an 'intrinsic' substance or form. That doesn't mean they are absolute non-being.


Everything, that is the totality of all things, has no substance or form whatsoever, intrinsic or non-intrinsic. It is, in fact, absolute non-being(and also, by that very fact, absolute being).

jupiviv wrote:Also, the construction of forms isn't dependent on the thing-in-itself, since the forms aren't separate from the thing-in-itself.
Are you saying the construction of forms wholly depends on the mind?


No I am saying the Totality or the thing-in-itself(as you have called it) doesn't cause its parts. Rather the parts cause each other.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Gurrb » Mon Apr 16, 2012 1:01 pm

a fine display of stroking one's intellectual ego
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Liberty Sea » Mon Apr 16, 2012 1:57 pm

Okay, I will attempt to explain it again.
jupiviv wrote:If I experience that a chair is 1 meter away from me then I am also experiencing something called "me"(e.g my body).

But what is it that from which the chair is 1 meter away? Since the chair is you, is your body, what is it that the chair is 1 meter away from?
Not simply your eyes. The eyes is a mediation between your vantage point/center and the chair.
How can you sense this 1 meter distance without a center?
And when you imagine something in your head, you are always at somewhere watching that 'something'. From your your center you watch that something.
This center cannot be precisely located at all. But it is there because it is there and not because it needs to be posited.

No I am saying the Totality or the thing-in-itself(as you have called it) doesn't cause its parts. Rather the parts cause each other.

Yes, the parts are interdependent and the constructions of forms isn't wholly dependent on your mind, but also dependent on not-your-mind. That is what I was trying to say.
Finished.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby jupiviv » Mon Apr 16, 2012 2:19 pm

Liberty wrote:But what is it that from which the chair is 1 meter away? Since the chair is you, is your body, what is it that the chair is 1 meter away from?


Whatever it is that you are experiencing. It's the same whether you experience your body, your eyes, your brain or another chair.

Yes, the parts are interdependent and the constructions of forms isn't wholly dependent on your mind, but also dependent on not-your-mind. That is what I was trying to say.
Finished.


The simplest way to say this is that any form is constructed, or caused, by all the forms that are not itself.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby cousinbasil » Tue Apr 17, 2012 9:01 am

jupiviv wrote:The simplest way to say this is that any form is constructed, or caused, by all the forms that are not itself.

It may be the simplest way, but not very illuminating. Why would it be incorrect to make the same assertion, but leaving out the word all? I am saying this because to me, if you include the word all, this may be a false statement. Upon what would one base the claim that any form has a causal connection to every other form? That sounds like it requires some sort of faith.

Define form, jupiviv. Try to do so without going down the "A=A" route, because I am afraid that at GF, this has become shorthand for lazy thinking. I am well aware there are different "levels of reality" and that many discussions at GF result from people lacking this awareness. The ancient occult adage "as above, so below" covers this nicely, meaning that principles on one level have their counterparts on any other level. (Somewhat off subject, this notion was put in reverse by Jesus: what you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven.)

What I find particularly unsatisfying about your quote is that on the physical level, it is easy to demonstrate that there can be two things, or two events, which cannot have a causal relationship of any kind. I know quantum entanglement is a popular challenge to this statement, but careful consideration will show that it is not a challenge at all, in the very definite sense of information transfer.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby cousinbasil » Tue Apr 17, 2012 9:11 am

Liberty Sea wrote:But what is it that from which the chair is 1 meter away? Since the chair is you, is your body, what is it that the chair is 1 meter away from?

But the chair is not me (it's not even jupiviv.)
Not simply your eyes. The eyes is a mediation between your vantage point/center and the chair.
How can you sense this 1 meter distance without a center?

How could I sense this one meter if the chair is me? If you are saying it is all me because it is my thought that is mapping the chair, I say that is only possible because there exists something which is not me to map in the first place. This thing in itself is what we call the chair - not our idea of a chair.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby jupiviv » Thu Apr 19, 2012 4:04 pm

cousinbasil wrote:Upon what would one base the claim that any form has a causal connection to every other form?


This shows a fundamental misunderstanding of causality. A thing is necessarily caused by that which is not itself, and there's no reason to leave out anything that is not the thing from the category of "all that is not itself."

Define form, jupiviv.


Anything that exists, i.e, has boundaries, has a form.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby cousinbasil » Thu Apr 19, 2012 8:55 pm

cousinbasil: Upon what would one base the claim that any form has a causal connection to every other form?
jupiviv: This shows a fundamental misunderstanding of causality. A thing is necessarily caused by that which is not itself, and there's no reason to leave out anything that is not the thing from the category of "all that is not itself."

See, here you are simply telling me I misunderstand without saying why you think that. I happen to think you are misunderstanding reality in a fundamental way by clinging to concepts such as: "A thing is necessarily caused by that which is not itself." My question was upon what do you base this assertion, and here you are merely repeating the assertion. Of course there is no reason to leave anything out - that is, if one accepts the premise. I am not convinced of the premise. I was asking you to supply at least one reason why you are. This is because it is a false premise, IMO, and I briefly outlined why in my last post.
Anything that exists, i.e, has boundaries, has a form.

You have not done a lot of questioning, evidently. If a thing has a form, then the thing is not the form. The form is then appearance, not substance.

So you are saying that anything that doesn't appear to be a thing causes the appearance of that thing? Of what are you speaking, exactly? Things or their forms? To me, this shows a complete disregard of the definition of a causal relationship. Causal relationships are temporal relationships - they exist at the physical level. Saying something like "all that is not itself" is atemporal - it is instantaneous. And it literally includes everything else in the Universe. Actually, it doesn't include everything else in the Universe, by your definition: it includes a property of each thing, namely each thing's form. Thus a property of a thing is caused by a property of everything else. And this is assuming everything else has a boundary. Again, please state your assertion: is it that a thing is caused by every other thing, or that a form is caused by every other form? Surely you can see these are not identical claims.

If you said the form a thing depends upon, or arises from the form of things which are not itself, I could accept that. But you are saying you cannot leave anything out. There may be no reason to leave any particular thing out - but that is because once you consider it, you must include it. I am asking why you posit everything must be included, since if there is no reason to leave any particular thing out, there is equally no reason to include everything ipso facto. Have you considered everything else one by one, and therefore made your inclusions? Nonsense.

I don't mean to offend, but why would anyone believe such a thing, or want to? So my question remains - why are you asserting it? Don't say because it is true, tell me why it is true.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby jupiviv » Thu Apr 19, 2012 11:26 pm

cousinbasil wrote:I happen to think you are misunderstanding reality in a fundamental way by clinging to concepts such as: "A thing is necessarily caused by that which is not itself."


No, I'm not clinging to it. That's just what I define a cause to be. The existence of a thing would be impossible without all the things that are not it. If you have a different definition of a cause then say what it is.

Of course there is no reason to leave anything out - that is, if one accepts the premise. I am not convinced of the premise. I was asking you to supply at least one reason why you are. This is because it is a false premise, IMO, and I briefly outlined why in my last post.


You yourself said that there is no reason to leave anything out of the causes of a thing, but you remain unconvinced by the premise that a thing is caused by everything else except itself. What more do I have to convince you of?

If a thing has a form, then the thing is not the form. The form is then appearance, not substance.


I define forms and things to be identical. When I said that anything that exists has form I meant that it *is* a form. I also define appearance and substance to be identical. Again, if you are using different definitions of these things then say what they are.

Causal relationships are temporal relationships - they exist at the physical level.


According to my definition of causes, all things are causal relationships. Temporal causes are just a subset of the whole web of causality.

I am asking why you posit everything must be included, since if there is no reason to leave any particular thing out, there is equally no reason to include everything ipso facto.


That doesn't make sense. You've flatly contradicted yourself. If there is no reason to leave any particular thing in the category of "everything else" out, then eo ipso that whole category is included.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby cousinbasil » Fri Apr 20, 2012 8:06 am

That doesn't make sense. You've flatly contradicted yourself. If there is no reason to leave any particular thing in the category of "everything else" out, then eo ipso that whole category is included.

I am talking about causality - I am having difficulty with your definition, since my observation is most things do not influence most other things in any way. It may be argued, but it is quite reasonable to assume that most things cannot influence most other things. Since that is true at every second, it must have always been true. Look - I can imagine a star forming that is so far away, its light will never reach me. How do I cause this thing? How does it cause me? You have been very good at refraining from saying A=A as I asked; nonetheless, you are stating it in other words.

So here is the thing: A=A means a thing is itself; it implies there are other things; and it implies the thing is not one of them. A neat little trilogy. But you are saying any other random thing has a causal relationship on A. If A is a tiny pebble, then this logic must also be saying the tiny pebble also causes everything besides itself.

I have mentioned light cones in other threads. You are implying what is called elsewhere, the region of space-time lying outside the light-cone of an event, must be a perfect void, entirely empty of forms, because it is precisely the definition of elsewhere that it consists of all things and events which cannot influence a given event.

I do think I understand your definition - and therefore the implications you draw from it. But you seem to be ignoring the very nature of a causal relationship both between things and between events concerning things. So my point is just that I do not think your definition is very useful or descriptive of reality.
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