April 23, 2017

The West is an express train in increasing danger of going off the rails

priyedarshi jetli Apr 22, 2017

I am afraid this is standard stuff I have heard before more or less the way you are putting it. You are not realizing that you are begging the question. Whatever you say about the cosmic consciousness and its being the first cause or final cause of thought and perhaps everything else, could be said of something else like prime matter or strings or spanda or a host of other things. What you are claiming is pure dogma. You need to demonstrate why the conjectiure of a cosmic consciousness as the final cause is an inference to the best explanation. Your stating it and restating it does not make it a reality, I am afraid.

What is the meaning of your statement "if there was not consciousness to begin with, neither there will be our existence.?' How do you support such a statement? You say it follows from what you have said above. I don't see how it follows at all. I could say that if there was not our existence, neither would there be consciousness. But I would not say that either because I have no idea what 'consciousness' the way you are using the word means or is. For me, 'consciousness' is the ordinary usage as a doctor would use, it is the proper functioning of the body.

Surely if parents did not exist then I would not have existed. This is obvious to me. But if there was no consciousness then I would not exist does not make any sense to me.

Further, you make your cosmic consciousness beyond being knowable, then how can you say that there is any such thing to begin with any more than the existence of unicorns or God which are unknowable? Furthermore, is this statement 'cosmic consciousness is not knowable' itself knowable or not. I hope you see the paradox. If it is knowable you will have to provide an explanation of how you know it  If it is not knowable then your initial statement is unsupported, a mere arbitrary conjecture.


Whit Blauvelt Apr 23, 2017
Hi Vinod,

Thank you for this detailed delineation. Certainly there are some in the West who hold that consciousness somehow emerges from the blind clash of symbols, that it is nothing but the workings of language, whether public languages or a somehow innate language of thought.

The identification with language serves social purposes. We want people to mean what they say, and to be trusted for their word. If someone has been to territory we haven't seen, and sells us a guide book, we want the book to be accurate enough that our plans based on it will succeed. So we turn to guide books about consciousness, where the East has produced a broader assortment than the West, historically, hoping to find maps to practical paths we can follow to gain rewards.

In the West, particularly in America, we have a strong pragmatic streak. We also have a tradition of exploration of the world -- the early European immigrants to America were those who self-selected to be explorers. On the West Coast of America, the explorers of the physical world met the wisdom of the East arriving over the Pacific, particularly the influences of Yogananda, Krishnamurti, the San Francisco and Los Angeles Zen Centers, Gary Snyder, Esalen ... and those traditions continue.

Being in New England, a region better known for its pragmatism, rather than among our West Coast citizens with their pursuits on the horizons of wilderness and consciousness, my concern is most with what practical lessons can be learned and shared broadly enough to improve our world's future course. From a pragmatic point of view, I want people to still strive to be true to our words. Yet I'm in a nation which recently elected a leader who is as far from that ideal as possible. His consciousness, such as it is, does not bind his thoughts to objective truth.

On the one hand, I agree with you, Vinod, that consciousness is separable from the thoughts that arise. On the other, is it not important that we bind our consciousness to our thoughts, in order to make those thoughts as true as we can, so that we are good for our word with each other, and put out trustworthy guide books for those who follow us to such places as we have

I understand the desire to bliss out; and suspect the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's people have something real in their claim that more meditators means a better society. Yet, despite the increasing Eastern influences in the West in regards especially to consciousness, the West is an express train in increasing danger of going off the rails. We need both better consciousness and better thinking. I can't help but think that the two, although not the same thing -- as you say -- benefit when they work well together.

So if the goal is, rather than separating consciousness from thought for the sake of bliss, the melding them together for the sake of practical and expressable truth, what do the Eastern wisdom traditions advise?


"Atheism" completely misses this point of view. It borrows the critique of Biblical God & applies it everywhere. Pretty ridiculous in India. https://t.co/n13tyfyS0V
Who cares about the prime mover ? It is just a hypothesis, having no relevance to my life. I care about my conscious experience.
There is no proof that time is linear. If you assume that to be the case, you need a prime mover. Otherwise, you don't need it.
Meaning is ultimately derived from human experience. Idiots do not experience a cognitive state and say that such a state does not exist.
It is also very typical of the arrogant colonial mindset to claim that words and metaphors in other cultures and languages are "gibberish".
Yes. Morons don't see that "cow" has the same etymological root as "gaia". Obvious in Sanskrit. Hence the sacredness
Tagore says that any truth that we possess is ultimately a human truth.
The truth may be glimpsed only partially & in rare moments of clarity.  But if it is not accessible to human consciousness, it is not truth.
Why not "sign" instead of "sine"? :) Sinus (pocket) was a funny mistranslation from Arabic Jiba/Jya, a term borrowed from Sanskrit (chord). https://t.co/RnvNyztvox
If a boulder is falling on my head, I have to calculate how it falls to escape it. Physics is useful. But let's separate dogma from useful. :)
Most of the work that theoretical physicists do is just nitpicking philosophy with no experimental validation. :) It is math cosplay.
We can extend this argument to within the human brain. One may lose the cauliflower of the cortex, but one cannot live without the brainstem

Savitri Era: Artistes are always alone, be loyal to your idea https://t.co/2kjsX609NT @SACACIndia @Ut_patang

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