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Does meaning come before awareness?


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#1    coberst

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Posted 17 May 2009 - 10:19 AM

Does meaning come before awareness?

I imagine that somewhere way back in time sapiens came to a conclusion that was driven by their deep and strong urge to live forever.  Because sapiens are aware of their mortality and because they are driven by this great urge to stay alive they created the “disembodied mind”, it was probably christened as “soul” at that time and from that decision they put forth their conclusion into ideas similar to these words “what does it profit a man if he should gain the whole world but suffer the lose of his soul?”

Wo/man could not accept mortality and thus found a means to “live forever” in the form of the soul, or mind, or ego, or...  This conclusion has left us with the mind/body dichotomy that drives our religious, cultural, and philosophical thinking still today.  “Mind” and “body” are abstractions; they are created aspects of the organism-environment interactions that we call experience.

John Dewey informs us that situations form the very essence of our emotions.  He attempted to counteract the tendency to localize emotions as some form of private and interior subjective response that had nothing to do with our comprehension of objects in our world.  Emotions are both subjective and objective as the distant Dewey and the present Damasio informs us.  In a situation there is a comingling of what we now speak of as subject and object.  “Emotions are both in us and in the world at the same time.”

Before conscious awareness we begin a situation with an unconsciously constructed meaningfulness.  Our world “stands forth meaningfully to us at every waking instant, due primarily to the process of emotional feeling over which we have little control. And yet the situation is meaningful to us in the most important, primordial, and basic way that it can be meaningful—it shapes the basic contours of our experience.  The situation specifies what will be significant to us and what objects, events, and persons mean to us at a pre-reflective level.

While there seems to be disagreement regarding specific details among neuroscientists, they do agree on the fundamental issue that emotions “play a central role in an organism’s assessment of its internal milieu—its bodily states and processes that are tied to its ongoing interactions with its environment, thereby motivating both internal body-state adjustments and outwardly directed actions in the world.”

What is meaningful and how it is meaningful to us is a function of a continuous internal monitoring of our bodily states as we experience and act in the world.  Much of our past religious, philosophical, and pop-culture has denied this fact.  In so doing this, we have deprived our self from very important considerations regarding our world of value assessment.

SGCS (Second Generation Cognitive Science) has put forth theories that are based upon the destruction of these basic assumptions of our Western religious and philosophical tradition.

If these new theories are correct then we are left with the question.  “If there is no disembodied mind—no transcendent soul or ego—to be the source of meaning, then what things are meaningful to us and how they are meaningful must be a result of the nature of our brains, our bodies, our environments, and our social interactions, institutions, and practices.”

Quotes from The Meaning of the Body by Mark Johnson




#2    greggK

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Posted 17 May 2009 - 01:24 PM



Does meaning come before awareness?

I imagine that somewhere way back in time sapiens came to a conclusion that was driven by their deep and strong urge to live forever. Because sapiens are aware of their mortality and because they are driven by this great urge to stay alive they created the “disembodied mind”, it was probably christened as “soul” at that time and from that decision they put forth their conclusion into ideas similar to these words “what does it profit a man if he should gain the whole world but suffer the lose of his soul?”

Wo/man could not accept mortality and thus found a means to “live forever” in the form of the soul, or mind, or ego, or... This conclusion has left us with the mind/body dichotomy that drives our religious, cultural, and philosophical thinking still today. “Mind” and “body” are abstractions; they are created aspects of the organism-environment interactions that we call experience.

***********************************************

Paleontologist, Scientist, Geologist, and searchers of life outside of Sapienity all agree that there is probably a missing link between the lower centripedal species and homo sapiens.  We do not need to be looking for the what, but the why.  Sure, we use so much of the natural instinct that we observe in the lesser species, but that is all the homo sapiens have had for an example of living for all of their existence!
Watch the lower creatures and you notice the camaraderie and the caring of the infants.  We probably got our knowledge of the natural herbal remedies through observation of the animals.  I think the desire to live forever is the result of the ability to think past the moment at hand.  And that type of thinking is what has evolved.  The body has stopped evolving, but the mind has not.
Humans, homo sapiens, have demonstrated that they can reverse life by eliminating some of the physicality of the life, such as tosillectomy, appendix removal, gall bladder removal, taking a lung out, chopping off a foot or hand, putting reverse transcriptase in vaccines, etc.
The dichotomy of male/female, man/woman by homo sapiens is what is causing the problems.  The 2 must come together as 1 for the true essence of creation to be revealed.
That also depends on at what point is the dichotomy severed.  But that leads to other conclusions.

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#3    Alchera

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Posted 17 May 2009 - 09:22 PM

Awesome thread.

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#4    Virtual Particle

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Posted 17 May 2009 - 11:42 PM

The existence of a soul despite the need for comradely is still something that man is struggling with. An official response to Science by the Vatican at present? Is that when discussing the difference between Religion and Science? One needs to take into consideration the different time periods they predominated (Essentially the difference between when Moses and Darwin were alive). To me the soul exists, though not necessarily the same way others may consider it to be. But these reasons are probably not the result of a new-born human baby, born 250,000 years ago; it took more time than that. We know today that Neanderthal man ate there relatives (when they died of some cause) and in there ideology, considered such an act as a way to be closer to that relative (or perhaps to keep them closer). 2 years olds pretty much have no way to conceive of themselves as mortal (unless some life experience intervenes) hence the idea that immortal beings who make and bring presents, reasonable to children.

It is possible that the reason we think about a soul is because it exists and in some consistent way we are as one with it. This Universe is clearly capable of containing life; there can be a means to access, aspects of that Universe which are non-local.

A Worker Bee at the command of her Queen would walk into the queen’s mouth that does not mean she cannot dance......

Any thoughts?


Time is a form of communication
Consciousness transcends all states
that can be perceived as matter
Matter communicates its existence
to consciousness through time        
Man is infinite
God is more
Black Hole Creates Spectacular Light Show

#5    greggK

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Posted 19 May 2009 - 03:39 PM

Triad on May 17 2009, 06:42 PM, said:

The existence of a soul despite the need for comradely is still something that man is struggling with. An official response to Science by the Vatican at present? Is that when discussing the difference between Religion and Science? One needs to take into consideration the different time periods they predominated (Essentially the difference between when Moses and Darwin were alive). To me the soul exists, though not necessarily the same way others may consider it to be. But these reasons are probably not the result of a new-born human baby, born 250,000 years ago; it took more time than that. We know today that Neanderthal man ate there relatives (when they died of some cause) and in there ideology, considered such an act as a way to be closer to that relative (or perhaps to keep them closer). 2 years olds pretty much have no way to conceive of themselves as mortal (unless some life experience intervenes) hence the idea that immortal beings who make and bring presents, reasonable to children.

It is possible that the reason we think about a soul is because it exists and in some consistent way we are as one with it. This Universe is clearly capable of containing life; there can be a means to access, aspects of that Universe which are non-local.

A Worker Bee at the command of her Queen would walk into the queen’s mouth that does not mean she cannot dance......

Any thoughts?


A baby born into this world has absolutely no knowledge at all; none.  DNA has no brain, therefore DNA is separate from thinking.  Slowly, synapses start forming the moment the tadpole breaks forth out of the water and takes its first gulp of air.  I would guess the first synapses that are formed have to do with the bonding of the child with the mother coupled with the instinct to survive.  We do not need to bring up the past to see what is going on in the present.  The people of the past have no way to form any idea of what is going on in the present.  Moses is back there with his staff and Darwin is up there with his monkeys.  Neither one can change anything.  What they wrote describes their time and how their synapses formed in their brain as they grew.
And the past really is the only reference we have.  The past is the only example we have of life and there is a saying that if you do not know your past you are doomed to repeat it.  I'm really sorry, but I think it might be the other way around.  But, I also think we know too much to go back to a useful time when the air was pure and the waters were not contaminated with chemicals . . . oh, and Moses caused the first water pollution and insect infestation.  

Quote

It is possible that the reason we think about a soul is because it exists and in some consistent way we are as one with it. This Universe is clearly capable of containing life; there can be a means to access, aspects of that Universe which are non-local.


Being aware of a soul does not necessarily mean that there is one.  We have a book written in the past that describes a soul and says we have a soul.  But, that is all it can do.  It can not show us what a soul is and it has not shown us yet.  We believe in a soul because that is the only word we have for it.  And yet, that is the only way we know of to describe something like that and that is to write it down and throughout the generations and using the word will make the meaning stick.  And that is the only way we can learn.  I think the reason we think about a soul is because we are a soul that is thinking.  I hope the shape of those letters convey the right meaning.




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#6    Virtual Particle

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Posted 19 May 2009 - 09:49 PM

greggK on May 19 2009, 11:39 AM, said:

A baby born into this world has absolutely no knowledge at all; none.  DNA has no brain, therefore DNA is separate from thinking.  Slowly, synapses start forming the moment the tadpole breaks forth out of the water and takes its first gulp of air.  I would guess the first synapses that are formed have to do with the bonding of the child with the mother coupled with the instinct to survive.  We do not need to bring up the past to see what is going on in the present.  The people of the past have no way to form any idea of what is going on in the present.  Moses is back there with his staff and Darwin is up there with his monkeys.  Neither one can change anything.  What they wrote describes their time and how their synapses formed in their brain as they grew.
And the past really is the only reference we have.  The past is the only example we have of life and there is a saying that if you do not know your past you are doomed to repeat it.  I'm really sorry, but I think it might be the other way around.  But, I also think we know too much to go back to a useful time when the air was pure and the waters were not contaminated with chemicals . . . oh, and Moses caused the first water pollution and insect infestation.


DNA memory is a word which may relate more to instincts than anything else but baby's are really good swimmers that recognize the sound of there mothers and (probably) fathers voice.  





Quote

Being aware of a soul does not necessarily mean that there is one.  We have a book written in the past that describes a soul and says we have a soul.  But, that is all it can do.  It can not show us what a soul is and it has not shown us yet.  We believe in a soul because that is the only word we have for it.  And yet, that is the only way we know of to describe something like that and that is to write it down and throughout the generations and using the word will make the meaning stick.  And that is the only way we can learn.  I think the reason we think about a soul is because we are a soul that is thinking.  I hope the shape of those letters convey the right meaning.



I thought it was pretty good.

Any thoughts?

Time is a form of communication
Consciousness transcends all states
that can be perceived as matter
Matter communicates its existence
to consciousness through time        
Man is infinite
God is more
Black Hole Creates Spectacular Light Show

#7    greggK

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Posted 19 May 2009 - 10:48 PM

Triad on May 19 2009, 04:49 PM, said:

DNA memory is a word which may relate more to instincts than anything else but baby's are really good swimmers that recognize the sound of there mothers and (probably) fathers voice.  
Any thoughts?


Well, yeah.  Each of your cells has 6 feet of DNA.  If all of your DNA were put together end to end, it would stretch around the earth 5,000,000 times.  


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