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About Sarnyn

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    Dao Bum
  1. Haiku Chain

    webbing ev'ry scale shows as above so below, weaving at the loom.
  2. Haiku Chain

    Our Intent, or chance; two names which claim fates accord, gust of wind, and sword.
  3. Haiku Chain

    "So What. Your problem Is the old human problem." Yeah but it's still mine!
  4. Haiku Chain

    If I want to leave isn't wanting left waiting? Old age, sickness, death.

    Looks like he went to Benny Hinn's school of tai chi.
  6. Buddha and a God

    Hey all, I'm just stopping in to say that I think that the doctrine of reincarnation in Buddhism should not be seen as some distant far off removed event, and actually an interpretation of reincarnation in this way would be counter to what we are taught in for instance the heart or the satipatthana suttas. Reincarnation should be viewed as a process that is constantly going on in the body, and mind states. It really doesn't make any sense to view it otherwise,as some far off removed event. Really, the concept of reincarnation could be viewed very similar to the concept of toaist cultivation. The concepts of reincarnation and cultivation (to me) seem very similar. It is no philosophy of fear that says if a Taoist fails to cultivate, he will remain uncultivated. That is just the law of karma, or cause and effect. If a Buddhist fails to purify his mind, his mind will remain un-purified. This is not fire and brimstone theology, but one of natural consequences and choices. If I exercise and eat well, the health of my body will increase. I'm not playing off anybodies fear to tell them that if they eat poorly and live a sedentary lifestyle, the health of their body will suffer. That is simply natures law, cause and effect. In other words, it doesn't make sense to equate the purification of the mind with the idea of fear, and then to turn around and advocate the philosophy of cultivation. Now, a real critique I admit, is the one others have mentioned in this thread already, the critique of the concept of ego extinction, and the braking of the link in the chain of causation at the level of desire and craving. This is an area of debate that warrants investigation at the personal level. I won't add to the flames of that fire however, because it is still burning in my own mind.
  7. Haiku Chain

    eighty grams of fat lining my skulls cavity, need a root canal!
  8. What happens when you meditate?

    thank you very much for your suggestions! I do appreciate your time and effort, and I am only probing because I am genuinely interested, but I note that Lynn McTaggert is a journalist, not a scientist, and Rick Barrett is a Sifu, also without sufficient scientific credentials. What I am looking for is more concrete... rigorous studies, hopefully in some accepted academic journals, like Nature... Scientific American, or the New Scientist for example, some peer reviewed academic periodical? Has the connection between the zero point field and consciousness been investigated by anyone with any real scientific credentials? I think it's important to be vigorous here, because otherwise it looks a little bit like when quantum physics started gaining appeal to a certain market, and suddenly you had every new age guru trying to connect quantum theory with their ideas, and usually very badly. In my mind, this not only does a disservice to science, but it does a disservice to spiritualists and genuine seekers.
  9. What happens when you meditate?

    you mentioned various studies into the relationship between ZPF and memory. Do you have any links, or can you cite any sources that I could look up? It sounds fascinating... sort of similar to the idea of the western alchemists concept of the aether, or the now unpopular concept of the lumineferous aether that was widely accepted during the late 19th century, but is now largely superseded. I understand the difference revolves around In any case I would love to read up on any serious studies being conducted into its association with memory, because I have a hard time visualizing a mechanism to explain that interaction.
  10. What happens when you meditate?

    I think you misunderstand my friend. Your link isn't about conceptualization at all. I think you are confusing "conceptual thinking" with "concentration." Conceptual thinking is not the same are concentration. The link that you have provided is about concentration techniques, which if you have read my previous post you will see I've already highlighted as an important facet of meditation practice. In fact, if you more carefully read my post, you will see that my entire argument is that the primary activity of meditation, which is concentration, causes as much neural activity in the brain as the normal thinking states. You've missed the fact that I am actually agreeing with you. I'm not sure that you fully grasp the conversation that is going on right now, probably due to your word confusion. Conceptual thinking, is the act of forming a concept, or an idea, based on a logical process of thinking, that requires the abstract visualization of logical concepts. Concentration (in meditation) is the act of focusing with the will (right effort) on any given stimuli, be it a pictorial mental image,a sound, or some other physical sensation. Outside of meditation, we usually define concentration as fixing the will or effort to some task or some occurrence. It might require concentration to perform a particularly complex maneuver of conceptual thinking, but the two are not the same thing. So when I said that meditation is usually not conceptual in nature (there are some exceptions of course, meditation on Koans, or on the Suttras can be very conceptual), that is not negating concentration as a tool in meditation. In fact, my contention, which I've already made clear in previous posts, is that concentration is ALWAYS a facet of meditation. with metta sarnyn
  11. What happens when you meditate?

    No I probably would agree with you. But I would follow that up to say then, that thinking is not the only activity which strengthens the neural network. For instance, we might debate that "concentraiting" is a form of thinking or not. But whether it is a form of thinking or not seems to be less important than whether or not concentration stimulates and strengthens the neural network. Almost all forms of meditation include some form of concentration practice, be it concentration of a sound, an image, or a sensation in the body. This act of concentration appears to stimulate the brain even more than the brain state of working or thinking. Here is a picture of brainwaves, and thier association with different states of consciousness, Now we can see from this image, that the state of conscioussness that appears to have the most activity, and this has been verified with PET scans, are states of relaxation and meditation. Here is an example, I can agree to that, because concentration definitely is not a kind of "conceptual thinking." However here again, is conceptual thinking the only activity that seems to strengthen the neural pathways? I don't think we can make that statement. Also, while I can agree with you that meditation wouldn't be classified as a form of conceptual thinking, it also is not a state of passivity, and so should not be compared to a vegetative state where a neaural network is relaxed or loosened. I also would like to take a moment to thank you for your thoughtful and kind response. You've been very gracious in your discussions here, and I've enjoyed the conversation so far. Yes finding an accomplished teacher is very difficult, but then again, they say in the way of meditation, you are your own best teacher =-) Btw I also wanted to say how I think this is a great subject of debate/conversation, I think too many religious/spiritual people accept their assumed benefits of their practices without being very rigorous in their thinking about them, and it does nothing but good to cause a person to examine why they practice what they practice.
  12. The sound of one hand clapping

    Hmmm, One Hand Clapping, That's a Tough One. by Sarnyn I know the sound of one hand fapping, I know the sound of ass cheeks clapping, I'm embraased to say that one hot day I learned the sound of a burro crapping, I even know the anxious sound of an impatient man whose tap tap tapping, but as for the sound of one hand clapping, i'd have to lose my mental trappings, I'd have to run a desperate race and find in my adversaries place it's me who tripped and skid my face, and as my fragile worlds collapsing, I'll see it's me that I've been lapping! there's none but me, no referee or band, no single child, woman or man, I'm all alone in wonderland! suddenly awake I'll find that I've been napping I'd find my mind free of wrappings, and erupting from the empty stands, I hear the sound of one hand clapping.
  13. Haiku Chain

    "what's enlightenment?" wondered the monk, deep in thought, then tripped on a stump. Then, tripped on a stump neighed a donkey on a trott, "is it all for naught?"
  14. What happens when you meditate?

    I'll bite. To me the first thing that jumped out, was your description of meditation as a state of "non-thinking." This statement deserves some heavy examination. The first thing that we should examine, is the definition of the word "thought" that you are propagating here. Typically when we describe a thought, we mean some kind of mental image, sometimes visually based, but sometimes more auditory in nature. This is typically what people are describing when they say a "thought." But this is a very limited definition, as we will see in a moment. Here is a picture of a neuron so everybody can get an idea about what we are talking, If we are going to define a thought at the level of the synaptic activity of the mind, what we have to define a thought as, is anything which produces a synaptic fire. You have claimed that meditation is the act of stopping the mind from thinking, but this would not be true given our new more appropriate definition of the word "thought" Meditators might be learning to focus on a physical sensation and thereby block auditory or symbolic visualization in the mind, but the meditator is not a vapid vegetable, rather a person engaged in meditation is very intensely experiencing the sensations in their own bodies, and often times the auditory sensations coming in from the surrounding environment, not to mention that some forms of meditation utilize visualizations or sounds as a focus. Sounds around us, the experience of the various sensations of breath, the sensation of the body and the bodies contact with its external reality are all sensations which produces neural activity, i.e. neural firing, and so for the purposes of the discussion here, must be included in our definition of a "thought" In fact, since the meditator focuses with such intensity and regularity on the doors of the senses, here a kind of neural activity and a kind of neural "thought" or experience, the neural pathways are in fact heavily engaged and the pathways made more accessible and strengthened, so that meditators often experiences heightened senses, and heightened states of physical awareness due to the practice of firing their neurons in this way repeatedly and for sustained periods of time. So your initial statement, that meditation is a state of nonthinking, first of all isn't even literally true, secondly it is irrelevant to your argument because a "thought" as we normally understand it to be, is not the only phenomenon which causes neural fire and neural activity. So, in short, while your understanding of brain mechanics seems well enough, your understanding of what actually happenes in the practice of most forms of meditation seems uniformed, and possibly ill-informed. with metta, Sarnyn