On consciousness

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

Re: On consciousness

Postby David Quinn » Sat Apr 28, 2012 1:22 pm

Liberty Sea wrote:
David Quinn wrote:If the Creator is the ALL, then he can't reside anywhere or in anything.

By 'residing in reality', I mean "has actual Being and not simply imaginary'.
So what if the Creator of the universe is not the All but still possessed consciousness?

What about a program designer who creates a simulated universe on a computer - would he deserve the status of "God"?

As soon as we conceive of a creator God, we are automatically conceiving of a being who is infinitely diminished in the face of the endlessness of the ALL.


Or, consider this: when there is the universe, this consciousness is not the All. But when the universe is gone, he would be the All. Or before the universe-as is, the total mass- was created by him, he was the All.

This sounds confusing to me. How can the ALL cease being the ALL, even when there is a universe?

As for the ALL having consciousness when there is a universe, that is exactly what happens already. The ALL becomes conscious through us, and through sentient beings like ourselves.


Liberty Sea wrote:
David Quinn wrote:Well, it wouldn't have the faintest impact on my understanding of God, as I already fully understand the fundamental nature of God/the ALL. So if the scenario above came to pass, my natural response would be to consider this communicative being as some kind of human trick, or possibly an alien from another planet or dimension - or in other words, as just an other form within the ALL, which is all it can ever be.

1.But even if that Being is within the All, what is he was truly the creator of Earth, who created all lives out of nothingness with the power of his consciousness?
2. What is that Being truly has power over your destiny?
3. What if that Being has infinite force that can destroy the total mass in the universe in an instant?

It's irrelevant. While we might find this sort of scenario to be important from our perspective as egotistical beings on planet earth, it has no impact on the truth - namely, that a finite being, no matter how powerful, will always remain a finite being and inconsequential to the ALL.

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Re: On consciousness

Postby Kunga » Sat Apr 28, 2012 1:28 pm

"God" is just a metaphor for THE All,The Absolute, The Totality.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Liberty Sea » Sat Apr 28, 2012 1:32 pm

bluerap wrote:Even "creator God" got his creative abilities from somewhere.

What is the proof for this?
What if this creative power has always been in him?
If creation, namely the total mass, is removed, the creator God still is, and he is eternity, so how does it trump him?

David Quinn wrote:This sounds confusing to me. How can the ALL cease being the ALL, even when there is a universe?

As for the ALL having consciousness when there is a universe, that is exactly what happens already. The ALL becomes conscious through us, and through sentient beings like ourselves.

Consider this: A is the consciousness that is All there was before the universe was created. Then A created the universe with the power of A's consciousness, and A's consciousness is present in all of A's creation. And the universe-all mass and all lives - is run and sustained by A's power.
Can A be qualified as God?
Is A the All?
David Quinn wrote:It's irrelevant. While we might find this sort of scenario to be important from our perspective as egotistical beings on planet earth, it has no impact on the truth - namely, that a finite being, no matter how powerful, will always remain a finite being and inconsequential to the ALL.

But that being is still infinite in the four terms I listed in my previous post.
If life was created by him, it means life was designated with a purpose. Would we consider the purpose of our lives irrelevant?
David Quinn wrote:"God" is just a metaphor for THE All,The Absolute, The Totality.

That is just Pantheism. A theory, nothing more.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Kunga » Sat Apr 28, 2012 1:51 pm

What do you think about Emptiness ?
Nothing inherently exists.
Everything is caused [causes & conditions]
Nothing exists by itself .
Everything is dependant on something else for it's [impermanent] existence.
All things are impermanent [finite].
Only that which has no begining and no ending is Infinite.........
What is THAT [that has no begining or ending] ?
THAT is ALL there IS.
THAT is THE TOTALITY /THE ABSOLUTE.
Everything else is Illusion.
Everything else is empty.
FORM is EMPTINESS
EMPTINESS is FORM
ALL IS ONE
IT'S NON-DUAL.
IT IS/ISN'T. iSN'T IS OR ISN'T. iSN'T iSN'T IS OR ISN'T.

iT'S A THICKET OF VIEWS ISN'T IT ?

[This message was brought to you by my unenlightened/enlightened Consciousness/uncounsciousness]
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Russell » Sat Apr 28, 2012 2:04 pm

Liberty,

While it is true that referring to God as simply the ALL, or the Infinite, etc., is a matter of personal preference, it has nothing to do with theories or beliefs. It is used here as a word to describe something, not a declaration of a belief.

What you are doing is rejecting what you are erroneously perceiving to be beliefs in some sort of theory, while defending another theory that you don't even believe in yourself. It's not about comparing imaginary conceptions, its about understanding the basics of reality. Theorizing God in the way you describe is just looking for proof of something that is not provable.. the presence/absence of an invisible object. It's pointless.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Liberty Sea » Sat Apr 28, 2012 2:14 pm

bluerap wrote:Liberty,

While it is true that referring to God as simply the ALL, or the Infinite, etc., is a matter of personal preference, it has nothing to do with theories or beliefs. It is used here as a word to describe something, not a declaration of a belief.

What you are doing is rejecting what you are erroneously perceiving to be beliefs in some sort of theory, while defending another theory that you don't even believe in yourself. It's not about comparing imaginary conceptions, its about understanding the basics of reality.

Dear Bluerap,
I am not rejecting that personal preference. I am not rejecting yours. I am rejecting, or challenging the claim of the Atheist Society of Autralia founded by Kevin Solway. That claim is "having a knowledge of the nonexistence of God and an uncompromising rejection of all concepts of God, be they metaphysical or socio-political in nature. Members of this society do not adopt a non-committal, agnostic viewpoint and are therefore openly anti-religious."

And generally this claim is accepted by David Quinn himself and literally all QRS followers.
Theorizing God in the way you describe is just looking for proof of something that is not provable.. the presence/absence of an invisible object. It's pointless.

It is as pointless as our lives. Anything we do are pointless. Why do you think doing something else would have more point, or meaning, ultimately?
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Kunga » Sat Apr 28, 2012 2:23 pm

I think when we try to figure it out , it just gets more confusing, that's why they say when you conceptualize 'IT" you lose "IT".
"IT" can't be known. If you think you know.....you don't.
It's out of our [finite] mind, to comprehend the Infinite.
But at the same time, to not try to comprehend it, seems like a waste of time too.
I think it's inborn to wonder where IT all came from, and what IS IT.

Then again.....IF we ARE THE INFINITE....then we should natually just KNOW IT...because it is a natural phenomena.
Why is it so hard to see yourself ?
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Re: On consciousness

Postby David Quinn » Sat Apr 28, 2012 2:42 pm

Liberty Sea wrote:
David Quinn wrote:This sounds confusing to me. How can the ALL cease being the ALL, even when there is a universe?

As for the ALL having consciousness when there is a universe, that is exactly what happens already. The ALL becomes conscious through us, and through sentient beings like ourselves.

Consider this: A is the consciousness that is All there was before the universe was created. Then A created the universe with the power of A's consciousness, and A's consciousness is present in all of A's creation. And the universe-all mass and all lives - is run and sustained by A's power.
Can A be qualified as God?
Is A the All?

The problem here lies with the idea of the ALL being conscious in and of itself. I think that is what you are ultimately driving at with all these scenarios - the question of universal consciousness. People, or some people at least, want to believe that the ALL is conscious by default, otherwise they believe their lives to be meaningless.

What does being conscious mean? It means apprehending a finite scenario of some kind, which automatically means not apprehending anything that is not that scenario. That is how consciousness works - when you are conscious of a chair in a room, you are in that very moment entirely unconcious of everything that is not the chair in the room. In other words, consciousness is as much a process of blocking out as it of apprehending. As such, universal consciousness is a myth.


Liberty Sea wrote:
David Quinn wrote:It's irrelevant. While we might find this sort of scenario to be important from our perspective as egotistical beings on planet earth, it has no impact on the truth - namely, that a finite being, no matter how powerful, will always remain a finite being and inconsequential to the ALL.

But that being is still infinite in the four terms I listed in my previous post.
If life was created by him, it means life was designated with a purpose. Would we consider the purpose of our lives irrelevant?

I certainly would.

Let's say we found out that a pimply teenager designed the universe as we know it, that everything we experience is nothing more than a virtual reality program running on some kind of computer in a basement. Would you be content to accept the pimply teenager as God? Or would you rather use your logic to cut through to the ultimate foundations and go beyond all Gods?

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Re: On consciousness

Postby Kunga » Sat Apr 28, 2012 3:03 pm

David Quinn wrote:we found out that a pimply teenager designed the universe as we know it,


If that statement was true...then if we didn't accept it as true, we would accept a lie as being true.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby David Quinn » Sat Apr 28, 2012 3:18 pm

Kunga wrote:
David Quinn wrote:we found out that a pimply teenager designed the universe as we know it,

If that statement was true...then if we didn't accept it as true, we would accept a lie as being true.

In such a scenario, I would accept it as being true, but fundamentally insignificant. There is a reason why the Buddha treated the concept of God as irrelevant to spiritual progress.

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Re: On consciousness

Postby Kunga » Sat Apr 28, 2012 3:22 pm

David Quinn wrote:There is a reason why the Buddha treated the concept of God as irrelevant to spiritual progress.


Yes, because he grew up with with all those Gods in the Hindu religion, and all those God-believing people put all their faith in Gods and sacrificing innocent animals.....instead of taking responsibility into their own hands. They wanted Gods to fix all their problems.

Buddha wanted man to be responsible for his own suffering, and wanted to help them end suffering.....not by petitioning to a God, but to do the right thing himself, because suffering is caused by mans ignorance.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Gurrb » Sat Apr 28, 2012 5:47 pm

when's the teenager going to get bored?

would we be able to not believe it? ...but i'll leave freewill out of this

in this sense, seeing is not believing, but knowing is. how to know that we know (for sure), well, i don't know.

the common theme of infinite regression plays a role in all things, i find it hard to simply suppress.

our existence is a matryoshka doll!?
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Firefly » Sat Apr 28, 2012 5:52 pm

Liberty, how can I help you? What do you need?

You've chopped up the concept of consciousness into ridiculous tangents, you've battered about integrities thrown at you as if they are nothing more than mere concepts, and you treat existence and life as being worthless ("pointless" within the given context) while fighting to make existence and life better.

I can help, take a week off or a month if need be. Get distracted. Get laid. Play some games, got a hobbie? Get out and see the sites. Travel if you can. Forget this forum.

Come back with fresh eyes and read your posts again. Study what you have written, what they imply and where such leads you. You will be a better man for it.

Don't take my word for it, try it.

Don't forget to have fun.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Liberty Sea » Sat Apr 28, 2012 6:08 pm

David Quinn wrote:I certainly would.
Let's say we found out that a pimply teenager designed the universe as we know it, that everything we experience is nothing more than a virtual reality program running on some kind of computer in a basement. Would you be content to accept the pimply teenager as God? Or would you rather use your logic to cut through to the ultimate foundations and go beyond all Gods?
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But what if that teenager is omniscient and immortal, and can grant grant you omniscience and immortality, as is, an ever-lasting consciousness, and the likes?
Of course you could rebel against him like Dostoevsky's Ivan Karamazov and tell me "It's not God that I don't accept, Liberty, only I most respectfully return him the ticket", but personally I would be interested in knowing more the grand scheme of things through that teenager.
Ultimately, yes, I don't want to worship any consciousness. But who knows if I will change.
David Quinn wrote: As such, universal consciousness is a myth.

I can understand your point, but wouldn't that be a hasty conclusion? We can know how human consciousness work, but can we be certain about how the consciousness of an eternal, omniscient being work?
I don't think humans can achieve that consciousness by themselves because of their physical limitation. Again, the question about whether there is a consciousness that is independent of matter (that which possesses mass) still remains. Forms are constructed dependent on brain construction, so I wonder how an omniscient being perceive, if there is one. (For example, does he see the past, the present and the future simultaneously like a multi-sided crystal? Dr. Manhattan in Watchmen is an interesting case.)
I see no reason not to come up with as many scenarios as I can. I might miss something important.
Firefly wrote:You've chopped up the concept of consciousness into ridiculous tangents

I refrain from making conclusions about consciousness. I will expand my ideas on consciousness later.

Firefly wrote:you treat existence and life as being worthless ("pointless" within the given context) while fighting to make existence and life better.

Do I think that life is ultimately, viewing from a cosmic perspective? Probably. Do I want to live my life? Yes. Do I want to understand it better? Yes. Do I respect other people's life as I do mine? Yes.
I am quite happy with life being worthless. Thank you.
I think the important thing is to recognize and accept our insignificance in comparison to eternity and infinity, whatever it is. There might be no Absolute meaning or Universal meaning of life, and that is why man has to give his life a personal one. In many senses, I do identify myself with Ivan Karamazov, who does not seek comfort, but the answers for his questions.

Firefly wrote:I can help, take a week off or a month if need be. Get distracted. Get laid. Play some games, got a hobbie? Get out and see the sites. Travel if you can. Forget this forum.

I doubt that people enjoy sex as much as I enjoy thinking about life. I never get tired of it.
And I never did get attached to this forum.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby David Quinn » Sat Apr 28, 2012 7:22 pm

Liberty Sea wrote:
David Quinn wrote: As such, universal consciousness is a myth.

I can understand your point, but wouldn't that be a hasty conclusion? We can know how human consciousness work, but can we be certain about how the consciousness of an eternal, omniscient being work?

Consciousness is still consciousness, regardless of who or what possesses it. It has certain characteristics that even an omniscient being cannot bypass without cost. The term "universal consciousness" has no more meaning than, say, "universal strawberry".

An omniscient being could conceivably expand a strawberry to encompass everything there is, but he could only do so by destroying the strawberry's identity.


Liberty Sea wrote:
David Quinn wrote:I certainly would.
Let's say we found out that a pimply teenager designed the universe as we know it, that everything we experience is nothing more than a virtual reality program running on some kind of computer in a basement. Would you be content to accept the pimply teenager as God? Or would you rather use your logic to cut through to the ultimate foundations and go beyond all Gods?

But what if that teenager is omniscient and immortal, and can grant grant you omniscience and immortality, as is, an ever-lasting consciousness, and the likes?

Is this a case of trying to find my price? :)

It doesn't matter what the teenager can offer me. It will never change the fact that he is an insignificant being within the endlessness of the ALL.


Ultimately, yes, I don't want to worship any consciousness. But who knows if I will change.

What is your price?

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Re: On consciousness

Postby cousinbasil » Sat Apr 28, 2012 9:12 pm

cousinbasil: David, your notion of causality is faulty at the core - you miss the essence of things by eternally returning to cause and effect as if running for cover.
David Quinn: I'm not following you here. I agree that thoughts are caused and have effects, but I don't know how this connects to your last sentence there.

Well, the following Q&A illustrates what that sentence means:
cousinbasil wrote:Forget the uncaused causes for a second. What about causal chains that terminate? What about an effect that never becomes a cause of anything? If ideas are things as you say, then each thought must be both a cause and an effect. What effect does a man's dying thought have?
David wrote:Numerous ways. The temperature of the thought heating its immediate surroundings. The chemical interactions that produce the thought continuing to impact on other chemical interactions within the brain. The expression on the dying man's face caused by the thought making an impression on those who observe him. That this particular thought didn't mutate into a giant black hole and swallow the earth also has an effect.

First: there is no evidence that a conscious thought increases the physical temperature of anything, as compared to no thought in that same second or a different thought in that same second. Second, the chemical interactions that supposedly produce the thought are not the thought itself - what they may cause was not the question. Third - the man dies in an alley and no one ever notices his final expression; the thought may not even have caused an expression if he was a stoic or Asian, and when he fell, he fell on his face which changed the expression anyway.

All I have to do is provide a plausible counter-example, because you make the fundamental error of believing that every thought must have an effect.

By running for cover, I meant things like your final black hole argument. I know it is compelling (to you), but why is that "space-goat" belief any more compelling than the belief in a loving God?

Here again you fall back on one of these questionable, faith-based tenets of yours:
cousinbasil: What if the world were rife with uncaused causes, most of which go unnoticed because they have an ensuing effect, which then becomes cause for another effect, which vanishes without causing anything further.
David : This is like asking how do we know the world isn't rife with married bachelors and four-sided triangles. We know they don't exist because their existence is logically impossible.
I had given the example of virtual particles, spontaneously appearing into and disappearing from the physical world. Any scientific explanation is quantum mechanical in nature, and therefore fundamentally non-deterministic. That is, there is no cause and effect; an invisible and otherwise undetectable underlying field is postulated, and statistical fluctuations and the uncertainty principle then mathematically assure us these virtual particles must do their dance of being-non-being. Some will inevitably continue to exist and interact with others until annihilated. Some will have a short history of causation and spontaneously flicker out.

I am saying it seems apparent that uncaused causes happen all the time - perhaps to compensate for the dying man's last thought, which is an effect with no ensuing causes. Therefore there is balance.

Then you run for cover with the married bachelors.

I'm not so sure that's as ironclad as the square circle, at any rate. I have known a few married men for whom just a couple of drinks will have them seeing double and feeling single...
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Re: On consciousness

Postby cousinbasil » Sat Apr 28, 2012 9:47 pm

bluerap wrote:Atheism isn't the belief that there is no God, it is just the absence of the belief that there is a God (of course, here I am referring to the traditional God that most people believe in)

Not sure you are correct here, blue.
atheism - noun ▸the belief or theory that God does not exist
This is from the very first online dictionary I checked. You are confusing atheism with agnosticism.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby cousinbasil » Sat Apr 28, 2012 10:04 pm

Consciousness is still consciousness, regardless of who or what possesses it. It has certain characteristics that even an omniscient being cannot bypass without cost. The term "universal consciousness" has no more meaning than, say, "universal strawberry".

An omniscient being could conceivably expand a strawberry to encompass everything there is, but he could only do so by destroying the strawberry's identity.
Don't want to seem like I am bird-dogging you this morning, but I have seldom heard even you wax so... so egocentric.

If the term "universal consciousness" has no more meaning to you than the term "universal strawberry," then I suggest there would be few similarities between and omniscient being's consciousness and your own.

In the fourth sentence of this quote you seem to be talking suddenly of omnipotence rather than omniscience.

Yet your space goat which flies faster than light and can eat galaxies is real because it doesn't exist. It is real because it has not happened. The fact it hasn't happened is a cause of that galaxy's continued existence, a real effect; therefore it must be a real cause; since it is a real cause, it exists because it doesn't exist.

Ahem.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Dan Rowden » Sat Apr 28, 2012 10:20 pm

A thing exists if you can "find" it, right? Find consciousness. Oooops.

A thought has mass, right? Really? You can't show me my thought. Qualia, folks.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby cousinbasil » Sat Apr 28, 2012 10:25 pm

cousinbasil: Logically, if God were Infinite and Eternal, what would prevent him from "being able" to create anything, let alone something finite?
jupiviv: Precisely that fact. If God is eternal, then the notion of him creating anything is itself totally invalidated, because it applies only to finite things. So it is meaningless to ask why he would be prevented from creating something.

This point appears to be obvious to you. Merely repeating it will not make it so to me.

Let's separate the notions of Infinite and Eternal. Eternal is a special case of Infinite, as it deals with time. You have not demonstrated that space and time have always existed. If time only goes back so far - say 15 billion years or so - then any God who created space and time must somehow stand apart from - or outside - of space and time itself. This of course is beyond the imagination, but that alone does not make it a rational impossibility.

If space and time are merely dimensions, they could be be embedded in a higher-dimensional world, like a line is on the plane or a plane is withing three dimensions.

In this higher dimensional world, one of the added dimensions may or may not correspond to a temporal one.

We call God Eternal because if he created anything, then he must have created time itself in which things appear to evolve.

God is therefore not older than the Universe per se, but stands apart from what we call time, since he initiated it.

I seem to recall a short tome about the Wisdom of the Cabala. The Deity resides at one end of the tree diagram, on the other side of what is called a "ring-pass-not." Admittedly these are angels-on-the-head-of-a-pin considerations, but that's what we do at GF.

So jup: help me get why an infinite being could not have created something finite. That sounds like an assumption. Because then, I would ask - well, did a finite being create it? You are would respond that is impossible. You see - it all starts with your assumption that the Totality is infinite....
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Re: On consciousness

Postby jupiviv » Sat Apr 28, 2012 10:54 pm

Liberty Sea wrote:
jupiviv wrote:I don't know what you define physical objects to be.


That which possesses mass.


There are things that do not possess mass, like the number 1 or the past. So you aren't talking about everything, but a finite set of things. Again, if God is the All, then he cannot create finite things, since any finite thing is already a part of him. And if he is finite, then he only creates them in the sense that he causes them just like everything else that does not fall into the set of things possessing mass.

jupiviv wrote: There is also no reason to say that a specific conscious being has created them.

Yes. But there is no reason to say that they weren't created by a consciousness either.


This is like saying - "yes, there is no reason to say that squares are circles, but there is also no reason to say that squares are not circles." A specific thing is *by definition* not the sole cause of another specific thing or group of things, unless it be defined as being everything else except that specific thing or group of things.

You are assuming something to be true without providing any reason for doing so, and then claiming that because of it some other things may be true as well. This kind of skepticism isn't very helpful in the long run.

I am taking in the possibility that the Islamics did not write their scripture out of mere speculation, but prophetic visions endowed by God. As superstitious and fanatical as that sounds, to prove that it is not a possibility is another issue. Examine all that can be examined.


Here you have conceived of a God who possible exists, whereas I have already shown how it is *absolutely* impossible for a God as you are defining him, to exist. You cannot consider the possibility of something that is logically impossible without straying from logic.
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Re: On consciousness

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

cousinbasil wrote:Let's separate the notions of Infinite and Eternal.


Eternal does not mean a very long/very short duration of time, or a different ordering of time. Infinite does not mean a vast/small amount of space, or a different kind of space.

You have not demonstrated that space and time have always existed.


Space and time, whatever you define them to be, are parts of the All. That is sufficient to say that they are both eternal. Even a camel at a zoo at 5.00 pm is eternal, in that it is a part of the All.

If time only goes back so far - say 15 billion years or so - then any God who created space and time must somehow stand apart from - or outside - of space and time itself.


The only way for God to create time would be for him to exist before the creation of time, which is impossible for obvious reasons.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Liberty Sea » Sat Apr 28, 2012 11:41 pm

jupiviv wrote:There are things that do not possess mass, like the number 1 or the past. So you aren't talking about everything, but a finite set of things.

I define a physical object as that which possesses mass, so number one is not a physical object.
Again, if God is the All, then he cannot create finite things, since any finite thing is already a part of him.


He is defined to be able to create physical objects out of nothingness with his power.

David Quinn wrote:Consciousness is still consciousness, regardless of who or what possesses it.

If you are just a program, can your consciousness comparable to the programmer. A game character and his designer.

David Quinn wrote:An omniscient being could conceivably expand a strawberry to encompass everything there is, but he could only do so by destroying the strawberry's identity.

I don't think consciousness's identity work like physical object's identity.
David Quinn wrote:It doesn't matter what the teenager can offer me. It will never change the fact that he is an insignificant being within the endlessness of the ALL.

Does this mean you won't listen to him even if he is the supreme being that created all mass and could as well put you to eternal damnation in hell?
Don't you have ego-consciousness?
David Quinn wrote:What is your price?

The answers to my questions.
Even that must be justified with my intellect.
But I might change.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby jupiviv » Sun Apr 29, 2012 12:27 am

Liberty Sea wrote:
jupiviv wrote:Again, if God is the All, then he cannot create finite things, since any finite thing is already a part of him.


He is defined to be able to create physical objects out of nothingness with his power.


He already is everything, so he can't create any more things.
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Re: On consciousness

Postby Kunga » Sun Apr 29, 2012 1:51 am

oh my god.....i'm getting a headache !

none of us gods are on the same page !

so the totaLITY IS CORRUPT !
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