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ChloeB

Illusion of Separation

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I was watching a video from Joseph Campbell and he was talking about this, and he brings up a story (I'm sorry I tried to find a youtube of it, but no dice so I'll try to summarize) about a policeman that goes to save someone who fell off the side of a bridge and the policeman is falling and about to go over with the person, and it's clear if he doesn't let go, he is going with the person, but he will not let go for anything, even if he's going to die with the person, so another policeman does finally get there and saves them, but they ask the policeman that was willing to sacrifice his own life for a stranger, rather than let go to save himself, why he would do that, why he would abandon his obligations to his family and career and life all for this person he'd never met....and he said all he knew is that if he let go, he couldn't live with himself another day, that was all he could think of. Joseph Campbell talks about Schopenhauer at this point, basically what I found to quote below here, but that this person had a "metaphysical realization" at that time, that the policeman became clear that he and that person were not separate but were one, by letting go of that person, he was letting go of himself as well, because they were not separate and in these moments like these with the policeman, they have moments of clarity or a revelation and see through our world of duality, that the appearance of our separation our individuation is just a perception as a result of being in space and time. Anyway, I just thought it was kind of a cool topic, about why we here stories about strangers disregarding their own lives to save another person, what you guys think about this or any ideas why someone would do that.

(I would like to present this book excerpt because it's something I often find myself bringing up in conversation but don't always explain so clearly. This is from Joseph Campbell's superb book The Inner Reaches of Outer Space and it is a quotation from the German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer.)

[schopenhauer asks] in his celebrated essay On the Foundation of Morality, "How is it possible that suffering that is neither my own nor of my concern should immediately affect me as though it were my own, and with such force that it moves me to action?...This is something really mysterious, something for which no basis can be found in practical experience. It is nevertheless of common occurrence, and everyone has had the experience. It is not unknown even to the most hard-hearted and self-interested. Examples appear every day before our eyes of instant responses of this kind, without reflection, one person helping another, coming to his aid, even setting his own life in clear danger for someone whom he has seen for the first time, having nothing more in mind than that the other is in need and in peril of his life..."

(My favorite recent example of this was the Subway Superman Wesley Autrey risking his life to save someone who had a seizure and fell onto the subway tracks.)

Schopenhauer's answer to this question is that this immediate reaction and response represents the breakthrough of a metaphysical realization---namely (as he states the idea in Sanskrit), "tat tvam asi, thou art that."

"This presupposes," he declares, "that I have to some extent identified myself with the other and therewith removed for the moment the barrier between the 'I' and the 'Not-I'. Only then can the other's situation, his want, his need, become mine. I then no longer see him in the way of an empirical perception, as one strange to me, indifferent to me, completely other than myself; but in him I suffer, in spite of the fact that his skin does not enfold my nerves."

"Individuation is but an appearance in a field of space and time, these being the conditioning forms through which my cognitive faculties apprehend their objects. Hence the multiplicity and differences that distinguish individuals are likewise but appearances. They exist, that is to say, only in my mental representation. My own true inner being actually exists in every living creature as truly and immediately as known to my consciousness only in myself. This realization, for which the standard formula is in Sanskrit is tat tvam asi, is the ground of that compassion upon which all true, that is to say unselfish, virtue rests and whose expression is in every good deed."

http://www.abuildingroam.com/2010/09/schopenhauer-on-illusion-of-separation.html

Edited by ChloeB

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In place of a clip, here is how Campbell's words ended up in The Power of Myth, basically an edited transcript of the famous television interviews with Bill Moyers. This is from Program IV, "Sacrifice and Bliss."

CAMPBELL: There is a magnificent essay by Schopenhauer in which he asks, how is it that a human being can so participate in the peril or pain of another that without thought, spontaneously, he sacrifices his own life to the other? How can it happen that what we normally think of as the first law of nature and self-preservation is suddenly dissolved?

In Hawaii some four or five years ago there was an extraordinary event that represents this problem. There is a place there called the Pali, where the trade winds from the north come rushing through a great ridge of mountains. People like to go up there to get their hair blown about or sometimes to commit suicide -- you know, something like jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge.

One day, two policemen were driving up the Pali road when they saw, just beyond the railing that keeps the cars from rolling over, a young man preparing to jump. The police car stopped, and the policeman on the right jumped out to grab the man but caught him just as he jumped, and he was himself being pulled over when the second cop arrived in time and pulled the two of them back.

Do you realize what had suddenly happened to that policeman who had given himself to death with that unknown youth? Everything else in his life had dropped off -- his

duty to his family, his duty to his job, his duty to his own life -- all of his wishes and hopes for his lifetime had just disappeared. He was about to die.

Later, a newspaper reporter asked him, "Why didn't you let go? You would have been killed." And his reported answer was, "I couldn't let go. If I had let that young man go, I couldn't have lived another day of my life."

How come?

Schopenhauer's answer is that such a psychological crisis represents the breakthrough of a metaphysical realization, which is that you and that other are one, that

you are two aspects of the one life, and that your apparent separateness is but an effect of the way we experience forms under the conditions of space and time. Our true reality is in our identity and unity with all life. This is a metaphysical truth which may become spontaneously realized under circumstances of crisis. For it is, according to Schopenhauer, the truth of your life.

The hero is the one who has given his physical life to some order of realization of that truth. The concept of love your neighbor is to put you in tune with this fact. But whether you love your neighbor or not, when the realization grabs you, you may risk your life. That Hawaiian policeman didn't know who the young man was to whom he had given himself.

Schopenhauer declares that in small ways you can see this happening every day, all the time, moving life in the world, people doing selfless things to and for each other.

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That's it! Thank you, Eighty! :)

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Individuation

That's not a word you often see outside of Jung and commentaries on him. And in your quoted material, I think the writer meant it as "individuality" or "separateness."

But that's ironic, because to Jung, individuation is the building of a genuine Self, which would, he thought, necessarily be in touch with common humanity, in harmony with the collective unconscious.

When I think about what that could possibly mean, I imagine it might take the form of an appreciation of connectedness. Not so much, then, that separateness is a proper illusion, as that it is only part of the story, maybe one of a pair of opposites to be reconciled.

As to what happened to the policeman, I like Joe's word "breakthrough." The nearness of death cleansed the doors of perception, I think. Training explains why he reached out his hand, but something else, something big, explains why he didn't take it back.

Joe had a good eye for that sort of thing :) .

Edited by eight bits

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I was watching a video from Joseph Campbell and he was talking about this, and he brings up a story (I'm sorry I tried to find a youtube of it, but no dice so I'll try to summarize) about a policeman that goes to save someone who fell off the side of a bridge and the policeman is falling and about to go over with the person, and it's clear if he doesn't let go, he is going with the person, but he will not let go for anything, even if he's going to die with the person, so another policeman does finally get there and saves them, but they ask the policeman that was willing to sacrifice his own life for a stranger, rather than let go to save himself, why he would do that, why he would abandon his obligations to his family and career and life all for this person he'd never met....and he said all he knew is that if he let go, he couldn't live with himself another day, that was all he could think of. Joseph Campbell talks about Schopenhauer at this point, basically what I found to quote below here, but that this person had a "metaphysical realization" at that time, that the policeman became clear that he and that person were not separate but were one, by letting go of that person, he was letting go of himself as well, because they were not separate and in these moments like these with the policeman, they have moments of clarity or a revelation and see through our world of duality, that the appearance of our separation our individuation is just a perception as a result of being in space and time. Anyway, I just thought it was kind of a cool topic, about why we here stories about strangers disregarding their own lives to save another person, what you guys think about this or any ideas why someone would do that.

http://www.abuildingroam.com/2010/09/schopenhauer-on-illusion-of-separation.html

I haven't seen the show, but it seems to me that Joseph Campbell was making more about it than what it really was. It has nothing to do with a "metaphysical" one-ness, and duality is not in question. Apparently, the policeman was brought up properly. He's probably from a very devout, religious family. Besides, it's his duty to put himself on the line. They are trained that way. If your conscience and humanity are totally intact (especially if you're religious), you would do the same too, without even thinking about it. And definitely, the thought of one-ness is not even going to pop up in your brain. It's the last thing on the list. It's a tremendous schock to the system to experience something like it, and there's no time to waste. I know. I placed myself on that line before... My sentiment after the fact was exactly the same as the policeman, which is I wouldn't be able to face myself ever again if...

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.... My sentiment after the fact was exactly the same as the policeman, which is I wouldn't be able to face myself ever again if...

QED :)

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That's it! Thank you, Eighty! :)

My father has been to that place in hawahii. There are lots of stories from there. One man trying to kill himself was actually blown back over by a gust of wind.

In Complete surender we merge with god. Its a very pure form of existance.

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That's not a word you often see outside of Jung and commentaries on him. And in your quoted material, I think the writer meant it as "individuality" or "separateness."

But that's ironic, because to Jung, individuation is the building of a genuine Self, which would, he thought, necessarily be in touch with common humanity, in harmony with the collective unconscious.

When I think about what that could possibly mean, I imagine it might take the form of an appreciation of connectedness. Not so much, then, that separateness is a proper illusion, as that it is only part of the story, maybe one of a pair of opposites to be reconciled.

Yes, you're right. I didn't really think about that, you know how Jung uses that word, individuation, almost seems counter-intuitive to me for some reason, as with the word individual, I tend to think of it as the way what I quoted does, to become more separate, while Jung uses it as a process of integration. And yeah, ironically, how they used the word individuation to kind of indicate that is something the policeman had overcome, I would say, in the way Joseph Campbell is talking about it, it is more about what happened with the policeman, some breakthrough to the collective unconscious, where is where I guess we would say the idea of separation breaks down.

As to what happened to the policeman, I like Joe's word "breakthrough." The nearness of death cleansed the doors of perception, I think. Training explains why he reached out his hand, but something else, something big, explains why he didn't take it back.

Yes, see that's exactly why I liked the story, one of my favorite parts of the series, the nearness of death cleansed the doors of perception and revealed the infinite that was hid. The stories of death and rebirth, the transformation, to me it's possible the policeman experienced that, maybe just temporarily.

Joe had a good eye for that sort of thing :)

I just adore him. I love his books, but I love to listen to his lectures and interviews. He has this Morgan Freeman-like effect, his voice, just has this calming way, like something familiar to me. I keep thinking he was a voice in some old Disney films or something I saw when I was small; something just has that feel to it.

Edited by ChloeB

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My father has been to that place in hawahii. There are lots of stories from there. One man trying to kill himself was actually blown back over by a gust of wind.

In Complete surender we merge with god. Its a very pure form of existance.

Thank you, I like how you put that - complete surrender you merge. It's kind of what I have in my head, but words aren't working for me, lol. But complete surrender would be an absence of ego, that's what he did out there, the policeman. That's what is at the core of religious teachings, surrender, sacrifice - things like this enable me to understand it at a deeper level, what I think it really means.

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I haven't seen the show, but it seems to me that Joseph Campbell was making more about it than what it really was. It has nothing to do with a "metaphysical" one-ness, and duality is not in question. Apparently, the policeman was brought up properly. He's probably from a very devout, religious family. Besides, it's his duty to put himself on the line. They are trained that way. If your conscience and humanity are totally intact (especially if you're religious), you would do the same too, without even thinking about it. And definitely, the thought of one-ness is not even going to pop up in your brain. It's the last thing on the list. It's a tremendous schock to the system to experience something like it, and there's no time to waste. I know. I placed myself on that line before... My sentiment after the fact was exactly the same as the policeman, which is I wouldn't be able to face myself ever again if...

Why wouldn't you be able to face yourself again, what makes that happen though? I'd find it highly unlikely that every story we hear about someone who disregarded their own life to save another person, a stranger, is going to always be religious, very devout. I don't know, it's hard for me to think man-made constructs like duty, religious ideals, would override our instincts for self-preservation.

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Why wouldn't you be able to face yourself again, what makes that happen though? I'd find it highly unlikely that every story we hear about someone who disregarded their own life to save another person, a stranger, is going to always be religious, very devout. I don't know, it's hard for me to think man-made constructs like duty, religious ideals, would override our instincts for self-preservation.

You are right of course. If I saw a falling individual I might risk my life to an extent, but I surely would not sacrifice it for little or no chance. I think a lot of these cases are simply instincts. Then after the fact thinking. If there was before the fact thinking and knoeledge I think things might be different. Not to take anything away from heroic instincts though. I do admire people that are extended to others.

If the 911 firefighters knew the fate of the building and their own, I doubt many of them would have been in it. Again still Heros just I think "the monent" is a big part if these situations.

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I was watching a video from Joseph Campbell and he was talking about this, and he brings up a story (I'm sorry I tried to find a youtube of it, but no dice so I'll try to summarize) about a policeman that goes to save someone who fell off the side of a bridge and the policeman is falling and about to go over with the person, and it's clear if he doesn't let go, he is going with the person, but he will not let go for anything, even if he's going to die with the person, so another policeman does finally get there and saves them, but they ask the policeman that was willing to sacrifice his own life for a stranger, rather than let go to save himself, why he would do that, why he would abandon his obligations to his family and career and life all for this person he'd never met....and he said all he knew is that if he let go, he couldn't live with himself another day, that was all he could think of. Joseph Campbell talks about Schopenhauer at this point, basically what I found to quote below here, but that this person had a "metaphysical realization" at that time, that the policeman became clear that he and that person were not separate but were one, by letting go of that person, he was letting go of himself as well, because they were not separate and in these moments like these with the policeman, they have moments of clarity or a revelation and see through our world of duality, that the appearance of our separation our individuation is just a perception as a result of being in space and time. Anyway, I just thought it was kind of a cool topic, about why we here stories about strangers disregarding their own lives to save another person, what you guys think about this or any ideas why someone would do that.

http://www.abuilding...separation.html

Some rare times in life people present you with something that hits you right where you live.

"tat tvam asi, thou art that."

This is one of those moments for me, thank you Chloe and Eight Bits for finding the original interview - this is one of those moments.

I don't know who I would be in that situation, I suspect as most people would, that I would hesitate for just the wrong amount of time for fear and self preservation to rule the day. I also think on a different day the policeman would likely have done the same - but that day he didn't and a profound and simple truth was born in him because he didn't - not something by it's very definition that anyone could PLAN or EXPECT to experience - seriously just WOW.:yes:

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Some rare times in life people present you with something that hits you right where you live.

"tat tvam asi, thou art that."

This is one of those moments for me, thank you Chloe and Eight Bits for finding the original interview - this is one of those moments.

I don't know who I would be in that situation, I suspect as most people would, that I would hesitate for just the wrong amount of time for fear and self preservation to rule the day. I also think on a different day the policeman would likely have done the same - but that day he didn't and a profound and simple truth was born in him because he didn't - not something by it's very definition that anyone could PLAN or EXPECT to experience - seriously just WOW.:yes:

I have big ol' goofy grin on my face now! LOL, you're very welcome. I had the same feeling when I heard him tell it on the video. I'm glad you got that too. :)

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Why wouldn't you be able to face yourself again, what makes that happen though? I'd find it highly unlikely that every story we hear about someone who disregarded their own life to save another person, a stranger, is going to always be religious, very devout. I don't know, it's hard for me to think man-made constructs like duty, religious ideals, would override our instincts for self-preservation.

This may be of interest... http://www.scribd.com/doc/59262925/6/Sel%EF%AC%82essness-The-Struggle-with-Schopenhauer

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Why wouldn't you be able to face yourself again, what makes that happen though? I'd find it highly unlikely that every story we hear about someone who disregarded their own life to save another person, a stranger, is going to always be religious, very devout. I don't know, it's hard for me to think man-made constructs like duty, religious ideals, would override our instincts for self-preservation.

The mind is strange that way. Ingrained belief system is very hard to shake off... It's really the weight of not doing what is right (for you and you alone) is what's really in question. That particular event, to begin with, was very surreal because time seemed to have slowed down, and that thought came over me so vividly, during and after. In fact, a friend asked me, "Why help..."

Sorry if you misread my post, but I didn't say that it's "going to - always - be religious, very devout." It just happens that I came from a very devout family. On the other hand, other people ran away from the situation. It would be very interesting to find out their social configuration.

Until it actually happens to you, it would be very hard for you to think about a situation such as this, how your reaction might be, and what the construct in you made you do it. Who knows, you might even freeze up?? I highly doubt it though because it just seems to me that you have a strength in you to do something about it..., but I wouldn't discount it until it's actually proven. I've been in other situations where a so-called "tough guy" simply cried his eyes out like a baby in the midst of adversity and chaos. Was he religious? I'm not sure, but he's a church going Catholic. Interesting though that you started this thread, perhaps the universe is gearing something for you.

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Michael

Apparently, the specific essay that Campbell had in mind was "On the Foundations of Morality" (Über die Grundlage der Moral). It's not obscure, but I didn't find it in English, for free, on the web.

It seems that Campbell's first recorded use of the anecdote was in April 1974 at an academic conference in Texas. That's when he mentioned which essay. The attempted suicide would have occurred during the summer of 1971, or thereabouts, "three summers" before the conference. Unfortunately, Hawaiian newspapers from that era are not well represented on the web, as we all know from searching for the Obama birth announcement :) .

Seeker

If the 911 firefighters knew the fate of the building and their own, I doubt many of them would have been in it.

That's more like the situation of the second police officer, who grabbed his partner, thereby saving both the partner and the jumper. The favor will be returned soon enough.

A firefighter who somehow knew that he will die on his next shift may well think, "OK, if I stay home, then who dies in my place?"

Of course, in some religions, it's not only just swell but mandatory to have somebody else die in your place. But maybe that's harder to do when you know the person, and you know that if the situation was reversed, that he wouldn't call in sick.

It's heroic to stand your duty, like the second police officer, but it's a different species of heroism than what's in Campbell's story. The first officer had no duty to the jumper, but he stood anyway.

What happened was not the contraction of awareness that comes from instinct, IMO. What Campbell says the officer said was "... If I had let that young man go, I couldn't have lived another day of my life." That's not contraction of awareness, that's expansion of consciousness. The officer says that he saw the situation in a larger context, the context of his whole life, not the range of the moment decision making that drives thoughtless or instinctual reaction.

And training? Training says not to let a jumper take anyone with him, especially not you. Meh, so much for training.

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In place of a clip, here is how Campbell's words ended up in The Power of Myth, basically an edited transcript of the famous television interviews with Bill Moyers. This is from Program IV, "Sacrifice and Bliss."

[CAMPBELL: People like to go up there to...sometimes to commit suicide

There is a magnificent essay by Schopenhauer in which he asks, how is it that a human being can so participate in the peril or pain of another that without thought]

On this particular case, the place was a popular spot for suicide; therefore, the policemen were on high alert to begin with. So, there was thought in the first policeman's action, no doubt about it. He probably didn't expect, however, that by rescuing the man he would put himself on a "dangerous" spot. He miscalculated. Schopenhauer's question is irrelevant to this particular case because the policeman tried to rescue the person with "thought" already in the mix. Besides, when he said, "If I had let that young man go, I couldn't have lived another day of my life," the policeman was already holding on the man. There's plenty of "thought" going on in his brain at that time, of course. Even a short time in a heightened, heated reality is almost a lifetime. Many situations will flash through one's head, including guilt, upbringing, religious beliefs (if one is religious), past experiences, etc.

People don't just risk their lives without initial thought involved (unless you're koo koo), including my situation. Schopenhauer's theory is a failure.

Edited by momentsinlove

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Michael

Apparently, the specific essay that Campbell had in mind was "On the Foundations of Morality" (Über die Grundlage der Moral). It's not obscure, but I didn't find it in English, for free, on the web.

It seems that Campbell's first recorded use of the anecdote was in April 1974 at an academic conference in Texas. That's when he mentioned which essay. The attempted suicide would have occurred during the summer of 1971, or thereabouts, "three summers" before the conference. Unfortunately, Hawaiian newspapers from that era are not well represented on the web, as we all know from searching for the Obama birth announcement :) .

Seeker

That's more like the situation of the second police officer, who grabbed his partner, thereby saving both the partner and the jumper. The favor will be returned soon enough.

A firefighter who somehow knew that he will die on his next shift may well think, "OK, if I stay home, then who dies in my place?"

Of course, in some religions, it's not only just swell but mandatory to have somebody else die in your place. But maybe that's harder to do when you know the person, and you know that if the situation was reversed, that he wouldn't call in sick.

It's heroic to stand your duty, like the second police officer, but it's a different species of heroism than what's in Campbell's story. The first officer had no duty to the jumper, but he stood anyway.

What happened was not the contraction of awareness that comes from instinct, IMO. What Campbell says the officer said was "... If I had let that young man go, I couldn't have lived another day of my life." That's not contraction of awareness, that's expansion of consciousness. The officer says that he saw the situation in a larger context, the context of his whole life, not the range of the moment decision making that drives thoughtless or instinctual reaction.

And training? Training says not to let a jumper take anyone with him, especially not you. Meh, so much for training.

Right!!! You are right about training!!!!

Beleive me I'm all for expantion of concousness..... I just think about my own reasoning. If I were a single non parent man.... There are 10,000 things I would do for others in a heart beat. But now...... Well I look at the greater context. My life on it's own.... Has value but that value is based on what I can do for others. With children..... Three small boys. I don't mind dieing at all, but sacrificing my children's father and teacher is a whole nother issue.

Beleive it or not I think about this. Alot. Things that I would do 7 years ago have drastically decreased. Not because of cowardes..... But love for people that need me.

I have to admit...... I might die for one jumper on my own..... But I would let all jumpers jump before sacrificing my children's father.

Where does that put me on the expanded conciousness level?

Edited by Seeker79

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Right!!! You are right about training!!!!

Beleive me I'm all for expantion of concousness..... I just think about my own reasoning. If I were a single non parent man.... There are 10,000 things I would do for others in a heart beat. But now...... Well I look at the greater context. My life on it's own.... Has value but that value is based on what I can do for others. With children..... Three small boys. I don't mind dieing at all, but sacrificing my children's father and teacher is a whole nother issue.

Beleive it or not I think about this. Alot. Things that I would do 7 years ago have drastically decreased. Not because of cowardes..... But love for people that need me.

I have to admit...... I might die for one jumper on my own..... But I would let all jumpers jump before sacrificing my children's father.

Where does that put me on the expanded conciousness level?

I don't think any one of us knows what we would do in a particular situation, till the time comes, if it ever does. Plenty of people have found a heroic side they thought they lacked, in emergency situations. Mostly it is impulse, there is no time to weigh up the pros and cons. War is the stage where many such dramas are played out, even there I doubt you can train, teach, or drill people to act against self-interest. Maybe we can hope we never find out.

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momentsinlove

There are two issues here, what actually happened, and what point Campbell's story illustrates, whether or not every detail of the story as Campbell tells it happened just that way. The two may differ. As I mentioned, I have tried to research the underlying incident. It appears that I shall have to go to Hawaii to do it personally. A grant application is in the mail.

The teaching-relevant question is why the officer in the story as Campbell tells it did not let go when he could have. The only evidence about why the officer held on is what Campbell remembers a news source reported that the police officer said afterwards. Obviously, there is room for the officer's state of mind to have been different from what Campbell infers that it was.

However, what Campbell infers is an achievable state of mind. If the officer achieved it, then the question becomes whether or not the officer was in his right mind. Schopenhauer offers a hypothetical explanation in favor of right mindedness. If the police officer did not achieve that state of mind, then Schopenhauer offers instead a hypothetical explanation of those who do.

It is entirely possible that Schopenhauer's hypothetical explanation is mistaken, or that Campbell's interpretation of Schopenhauer is mistaken. Perhaps the officer made a poor decision, but was lucky enough to live to tell about it, because his partner was on the ball.

There is a certain irony to the historical aspect of this discussion, since the vast bulk of Campbell's illustrations of psychological and spiritual principles were drawn from myth, folklore and fiction. This story comfortably takes its place among those teaching examples. It simply doesn't matter whether the story completely and accurately describes a specific event in 1971, because it does completely and accurately describe a general state of mind which is accessible by human beings. Whenever it is accessed, then these same questions come up, basically, am I crazy now, or am I finally seeing things the way they really are?

Seeker79

I would let all jumpers jump before sacrificing my children's father.

Where does that put me on the expanded conciousness level?

That sounds like clear thinking to me.

Habitat

I doubt you can train, teach, or drill people to act against self-interest.

I think that's the nub. What is this self whose interest people will so reliably pursue?

A good deal of our equipment achieves more than anything else "cognitive economy." I really can't afford to go around deciding whether or not to be run over by traffic every time I cross a street. 99.99% of the time, there is no decision to be made. It would be better for everybody that I got across the street alive and continue on about my business.

A very narrow conception of my self and my interests gets the job done.

It's the 1% of 1% of the time where something I do matters. 99.99% of those occasions, no doubt, I will simply muddle through or die trying. The same very narrow conception of my self that gets me across the street will more or less get me through these crises, too.

And now we're down to the 1% of 1% of 1% of 1% of the time when what I do might matter, and against all odds, I actually become aware that that's how it is, that this it, that what I do right now makes a difference. And I actually choose what to do.

So, who is this self whose interest I pursue then? Do I make the wrong decision, based on some misguided sense of the situation, because time is short, and I'm tripping out on an adrenaline endorphin cocktail, or on the contrary, do I make the right decision because time is short and the cognitive apparatus finally kicks into gear for once and rises to the occasion?

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[However, what Campbell infers is an achievable state of mind. If the officer achieved it, then the question becomes whether or not the officer was in his right mind. Schopenhauer offers a hypothetical explanation in favor of right mindedness. If the police officer did not achieve that state of mind, then Schopenhauer offers instead a hypothetical explanation of those who do.

Perhaps the officer made a poor decision, but was lucky enough to live to tell about it, because his partner was on the ball.]

One-ness is (metaphysically) achievable, yes, but it's not a state of mind. It would be a state of being. And no, the officer did not achieve it. And yes, hypothesis is not truth.

[because his partner was on the ball.] Just like first officer, he was doing what he was supposed to do. To save lives. Again, saving is part of their training. He was there in the first place because he also knew what went on in that place, which is suicide. It's a popular spot to off yourself. No doubt, the thought of "one-ness" with the other two didn't cross his mind. He was flawlessly doing his duty. He doesn't even need a medal because it's his job. You don't applaud a guitar player just by tuning his guitar, correct?

================

[How can it happen that what we normally think of as the first law of nature and self-preservation is suddenly dissolved?]

Like I said: upbringing, religious indoctrination, status, sexual orientation, level of education, spirituality, etc., triggered my particular decision. It's not, however, my one-ness with every human being. Again, that thought didn't come up at all. Also, my parents didn't teach me about this so-called "first law of nature and self-preservation." In fact, they taught me the opposite, which is "sacrifice, for the good of your soul. The body is temporary." Old patterns and mind-control are hard to break. The uncanny thing about it is I would probably do it again if I were placed in a similar spot. The coding is so ingrained in me. That decision making is not a very pleasant experience, let me tell you.

I also mentioned that people walked away from it. Perhaps their collective truth's different from mine?? You bet. Therefore, one-ness is definitely not the great motivator. By walking away, I will also bet you that guilt didn't crawl up to their senses. I see this more and more these days. People are getting careless. A cousin of mine got his throat slit, just for 5 bucks (but he survived). Insane. One-ness in the face of adversity? I think, not. Far and away from it.

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One-ness is (metaphysically) achievable, yes, but it's not a state of mind. It would be a state of being. And no, the officer did not achieve it. And yes, hypothesis is not truth.

Campbell's interpretation of Schopenhauer is that the unseparateness of the jumper and the police officer was an accomplished and persistent fact before they met, not something which began during this incident. The police officer and the jumper wouldn't achieve Schopenhauer-unseparateness, but rather, if true, that is simply how things are among people generally.

What would change during the incident, what the police officer might fairly be said to achieve, would be to progress from unawareness of his true situation to awareness of his true situation. Awareness is a state of mind which can influence benhavior.

A hypothesis may be true or else it is false. The word makes no commitment either way. That's appropriate because I don't know whether or not Schopenhauer's metaphysics as interpreted by Campbell is true. I would like to discuss it anyway, and so to me, it is a hypothesis.

Of course, you are entitled to your views about how police should handle jumpers, and what recognition and remuneration they deserve for doing their jobs. I don't think we need to debate that here. If you claim as a fact that Hawaiian police officers in the 1970's were trained to jeopardize their own lives and their partners' lives by manhandling jumpers in flight, then I'd be delighted to look at your evidence.

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Campbell's interpretation of Schopenhauer is that the unseparateness of the jumper and the police officer was an accomplished and persistent fact before they met, not something which began during this incident. The police officer and the jumper wouldn't achieve Schopenhauer-unseparateness, but rather, if true, that is simply how things are among people generally.

What would change during the incident, what the police officer might fairly be said to achieve, would be to progress from unawareness of his true situation to awareness of his true situation. Awareness is a state of mind which can influence benhavior.

A hypothesis may be true or else it is false. The word makes no commitment either way. That's appropriate because I don't know whether or not Schopenhauer's metaphysics as interpreted by Campbell is true. I would like to discuss it anyway, and so to me, it is a hypothesis.

Of course, you are entitled to your views about how police should handle jumpers, and what recognition and remuneration they deserve for doing their jobs. I don't think we need to debate that here. If you claim as a fact that Hawaiian police officers in the 1970's were trained to jeopardize their own lives and their partners' lives by manhandling jumpers in flight, then I'd be delighted to look at your evidence.

[Campbell's interpretation of Schopenhauer is that the unseparateness of the jumper and the police officer was an accomplished and persistent fact before they met, not something which began during this incident.] Well, people could say anything they want when "metaphysical one-ness" is in the mix; however, how could one convince people who don't believe in the one-ness of the soul collective, such as Christians, etc.? For them, this C/S theory is overly stretching it.

[if true, that is simply how things are among people generally.]

If. Besides, an honest metaphysical believer would say that one wouldn't know that until one actually merges with the "Big One." Also, I've been told that spirituality is not about a theoretical past nor the unreal future. It's about the "now," the story which unfolds in every momentary present.

[if you claim as a fact that Hawaiian police officers in the 1970's were trained to jeopardize their own lives and their partners' lives by manhandling jumpers in flight, then I'd be delighted to look at your evidence.] Well, you're putting words in my mouth. I didn't say jeopardize. People in service put their lives on the line with calculated risks. Like I said, unless you're koo koo. And that's another story.

[A hypothesis may be true or else it is false.]

Not the way I see it: a hypothesis is false until proven true. Unfortunately many hypothetical statements are being passed off as true. Truth is absoute. It's either true, or it is not. No in betweens. A hypothesis is not even a viable evidence in court.

The C/S theory is a total failure because it didn't convince the unconvinced. They're preaching to the choir, so to speak. The JC & S. fans.

Edited by momentsinlove

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Well, people could say anything they want when "metaphysical one-ness" is in the mix; however, how could one convince people who don't believe in the one-ness of the soul collective, such as Christians, etc.? For them, this C/S theory is overly stretching it.

I am not an advocate of Schopenhauer, but going back to what Campbell said in The Power of Myth, quoted earlier,

The concept of love your neighbor is to put you in tune with this fact.

It seems that Campbell was trying to leverage a Biblical principle that Christians would already accept, to open the door to another possibility. You can see that Joe wasn't raised Protestant :).

But, all Nicene and Apostolic creedal Christians believe that mankind was created in the image of God, and that God is three persons, distinct but not separate. One and only one divine person walked the Earth and appeared to be a separate being, both apparently separate from God and also from any other human being. Yet, he was not separate from God.

If that appearance of separateness was misleading with respect to the constitution of God, then why is it such a stretch to think that the same appearance might also have been misleading with respect to the constitution of people? (That question isn't directed to you, but offered as an example of what might be asked of a Nicene or Apostolic creedal Chrsitian.)

If

Of course If. Nobody knows.

Speaking of the importance of the tiny word if,

Well, you're putting words in my mouth.

You furnish the rebuttal yourself. Just as you quoted from my post, I wrote that If you are claiming something, then I'll do something in consequence.

If you're not claiming that something, then fine. I didn't say differently. But if you don't claim that Hawaiian police officers of that era were trained to do what this officer did, then we are in agreement about the role of training in this incident.

Campbell does not argue that the officer trying to prevent the man from jumping was unusual. What was unusal, according to Campbell, was that the officer continued to try even after the man could no longer be prevented from jumping, because he had already jumped.

As to the word hypothesis, with luck, my explanation of how I used it resolves any difficulty topical to this thread.

-

Edited by eight bits

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I am not an advocate of Schopenhauer, but going back to what Campbell said in The Power of Myth, quoted earlier,

It seems that Campbell was trying to leverage a Biblical principle that Christians would already accept, to open the door to another possibility. You can see that Joe wasn't raised Protestant :).

But, all Nicene and Apostolic creedal Christians believe that mankind was created in the image of God, and that God is three persons, distinct but not separate. One and only one divine person walked the Earth and appeared to be a separate being, both apparently separate from God and also from any other human being. Yet, he was not separate from God.

If that appearance of separateness was misleading with respect to the constitution of God, then why is it such a stretch to think that the same appearance might also have been misleading with respect to the constitution of people? (That question isn't directed to you, but offered as an example of what might be asked of a Nicene or Apostolic creedal Chrsitian.)

Of course If. Nobody knows.

Speaking of the importance of the tiny word if,

You furnish the rebuttal yourself. Just as you quoted from my post, I wrote that If you are claiming something, then I'll do something in consequence.

If you're not claiming that something, then fine. I didn't say differently. But if you don't claim that Hawaiian police officers of that era were trained to do what this officer did, then we are in agreement about the role of training in this incident.

Campbell does not argue that the officer trying to prevent the man from jumping was unusual. What was unusal, according to Campbell, was that the officer continued to try even after the man could no longer be prevented from jumping, because he had already jumped.

As to the word hypothesis, with luck, my explanation of how I used it resolves any difficulty topical to this thread.

-

[The concept of love your neighbor is to put you in tune with this fact.]

But that's only one sentence, and by isolating it, it's not enough to prove this metaphysical one-ness, no doubt.

[You can see that Joe wasn't raised Protestant]

Who is Joe? I didn't see that name in your "07 September 2011 - 10:41 AM" post. Also, no religion was mentioned. Besides, Christians don't have a corner on "the concept of love your neighbor." I believe Campbell was speaking to every religious and spiritual and general "groupies."

[God is three persons, distinct but not separate]

I wasn't alluding to the aspects of God. I was alluding to people. Christians don't believe in merging with God after death. To become God? That's blasphemous (to them)! They believe that they're going to a heaven with their separate identities and wings intact. That ain't metaphysical one-ness.

I've never claimed that people in service would initially put their lives in jeopardy without calculating the risks; however, these two policemen knew about this suicide spot. They knew ahead of time what they're up against. Unfortunately, the first officer miscalculated about timing. He didn't expect that the jumper would actually jump (simultaneously) the moment he grabbed on to the jumper. In a way, this incident is somewhat similar to my situation because I didn't expect that the weight of the person would be that heavy... At any rate, the officer kept on holding on to him - the officer didn't just try to prevent him from jumping because the man had already moved his body (jumped) - but the reasoning behind the policeman's after-the-fact effort (why he kept holding on to the jumper) is not about one-ness. I've mentioned several reasons why the officer kept on holding on to the jumper.

Edited by momentsinlove

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