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  • in reply to: Anyone seen Genius of the Ancient World on Netflix

    Matt
    Participant

    The Epic of Gilgamesh is considered the oldest work of literature in the world. I cant find anything about denial as such, but the basic premise of the King Gilgamesh who at first fights, then becomes best friends with the ‘wild man’ Enkidu, could be seen as an intellect and instinct allegory. Im still researching….

    in reply to: Anyone seen Genius of the Ancient World on Netflix

    Matt
    Participant

    Joseph Campbell. The Hero with a Thousand Faces. A brilliant book. I am going through it with a view to this question.

    in reply to: Anyone seen Genius of the Ancient World on Netflix

    Matt
    Participant

    It would be very valuable to find a cave type analogy, referring to all of humanity living in a state of denial about ‘the imperfections of human life’, from other cultures. You would assume that such an analogy, if it existed, would have resonated, and thus been preserved; and so the fact that we don’t know about any suggests that it doesn’t exist. But there may be some buried in history, and if anyone can find one, that would be really interesting. I know the film The Matrix was based on it to some extent. But I will see what I can find from history.

    in reply to: What about passion and compassion?

    Matt
    Participant

    I am aware of its premise – that obsessive love evolved in an aquatic environment in order to maximize mating opportunities, and that this ability to obsess drove all sorts of subsequent mental developments. I don’t think it can be understood within Griffith’s framework which is that the human condition arose from our intellect’s insecurity in the face of our instinct’s criticism of its search for knowledge. Passion or lust is understood as a psychological perversion of the reproductive impulse, a reaction to innocence; while love is understood as a psychological state of longing for a human condition free existence; and our compassion is a reflection of our original all-loving instincts, developed through the love-indoctrination process. When I encounter a new author these days, the first thing I do is ask myself whether they recognize that the human condition is a psychological state, affecting everything we do. If there is an acknowledgment that it is a psychological issue, then I know that what follows might contain a modicum of truth. Unfortunately, such authors are beyond rare. Koestler is one maybe. Berdyaev who Griffith cites appears to be another, but I have not read him.


    Matt
    Participant

    So much truth in the bible! But, the key thing that Griffith has found is the scientific explanation of why consciousness and instinct were divided. Humanity needed that rational explanation to truly reconcile.

    in reply to: How to stay "transformed"?

    Matt
    Participant

    Maybe Im a bit literal in my approach to the explanation of the human condition, but I do understand it to mean that until now it has not been able to be explained, and as a result, there was no fundamental resolution possible. However I do agree with Carlos that that isnt putting anyone else down. Its a group effort to get here. I suppose people are dealing with the human condition in their own way all the time though. Just not in a fundamental, finding the rational understanding that allows its fundamental resolution, type way.

    in reply to: The increase in skull size resulting in consciounsess

    Matt
    Participant

    Regarding the definition of consciousness – I like Griffith’s, which is that something is ‘conscious’ when it can understand how cause and effect are related. So for example, chimps are on the verge of consciousness, because they can work out cause and effect to the extent that they can work out how to get peanuts out of a jar, but a dog or cat isnt conscious to that extent. Certainly they are aware and no doubt have emotions or something similar, but there is a quantum leap between humans and all other animals in terms of being conscious of, or understanding of, cause and effect.

    in reply to: The increase in skull size resulting in consciounsess

    Matt
    Participant

    I am a bit of a science nut, and do find Griffith’s writing on consciousness excellent. There is a thing known as ‘the hard problem’ in the science of consciousness, and I have always thought that the ‘hard problem’ was ridiculous. Basically the ‘hard problem’ is how to explain the subjective element of consciousness. Its all very well (they say) to be able to explain how the brain can perform tasks, but how and why do we ‘experience’ that. That is apparently the ‘hard problem’. What they are really saying, is why arent we like robots; why do we have this self-awareness. So it is this self-awareness that they think is the great mystery. And it just seems to me to be such an intellectual and esoteric question that is designed to obfuscate, not illuminate the issue of consciousness.

    And then I read Griffith’s explanation of self-awareness in chapter 7 of FREEDOM, and it is so simple. He just writes, “this journey kicks off in the infancy stage, during which the conscious mind is sufficiently aware of the relationship of events that occur through time to recognise that the individual doing the thinking is at the centre of the changing array of experiences around it. It is during infancy that the conscious individual becomes aware of the concept of ‘I’ or self, which is what bonobos and, to a lesser degree, the other great apes are capable of.”
    So simple.

    in reply to: Acceptance is key

    Matt
    Participant

    This is a really interesting issue. My initial thought is that Jeremy seems to be the most spiritual of people. The depth of sensitivity that his writing demonstrates is just incredible. And his concern for humanity as well. And he is always writing about his love of ‘soul’, which he defines as our shared, all-loving, instincts, the voice of which is our conscience. And in addition to that, his admiration (to put it lightly), for Christ and Moses is plain to see in all his writing — there is so much in Freedom about Christ and how extraordinary he was. Griffith basically says that he saved the world. And then there is Griffith’s analysis of ‘God’, which he equates to love, which he equates to the fundamental drive in the universe that physicists have called Negative Entropy. All of which to me means he is a very spiritual person. But, if I understand you rightly Kevin, and I say this with the utmost respect, for you spirituality equates to following an organised religion, and I guess, believing in a transcendent, omnipotent God??
    I suppose the other thing to consider, is that Griffith says that finding the explanation of the human condition fulfils religions – see par 1217 of Freedom. I can personally follow the logic of that, but I suspect that will be something that people who hold to the literal word of religious texts may find difficult to accept?? Interested in your thoughts Kevin…

    in reply to: The claims of this book

    Matt
    Participant

    abi I think the key for religious people is for them not to be fundamentalist. I would call myself mainstream religious, but I am not against the idea that the ideas in the Bible can be demystified. I may be in the minority, but I think you will find there are a lot of people like me around.

Viewing 10 posts - 1 through 10 (of 10 total)