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October 21, 2007

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Dear Brian,

Avery nice post indeed. Go through the following and related links to know more about mistics.
http://atimetoheal-om.net/sec%20A%20-%20articles32-darknight3.htm

Hello Brian,

That is indeed an excellent book! You may also enjoy Zen and the Brain by J Austin, if you enjoy that one? It is a lot more detailed and longer though, with a lot of scientific research etc, so be-warned if you don't like over exerting the old grey matter! :-)

“The authors of this book are both medical doctors, so they're well qualified to explain goings on in the brain, which they consider to be the source of the mind.”

Brian you may want to reflect on those paradigms. Doctors well qualified to explain the goings on in the brain? From my point of view we know very little about the source of consciousness and the brain. Many call consciousness the hard problem.

Also once we “know” the brain to be the source of the conscious mind or that we “know” consciousness is not a function of the brain, the rational intellectual mind shuts down. Paradigm paralysis sets in and we humans will defend our paradigms in spite of the evidence.

Religious, materialists, and atheists’ beliefs are classic examples of this phenomenon.

"But like the authors say, point out any human experience that occurs in the absence of a body and brain. If that were to occur, the person would be dead, incapable of pointing."

Isn't that like trying to find the radio-broadcast - inside the radio?

There is something I find interesting about the doctors interpretation of these brain effects. Surely it is an assumption to view them as a result of meditation; rather than a symptom of something else (un-measurable) occurring?

Or to put it another way - perhaps the doctors could point to a more solid link between the brain and the mind, (as opposed to consciousness and the mind)?

Fascinating topic: I have not read the books, but, correlation between recorded brain activity and human experience is perhaps one way to discover the existence or otherwise of spirituality. Just as it is possible now to map physical traits to genomes, is it possible to map and correlate the signals measured within the brain to all aspects of human experience. If this mapping can be consistently known, then it is justifiable to ask if any experience exists without corresponding brain activity. Otherwise we simply do not know what signal measured in the brain relates to a given experience. To suggest that a spiritual experience is only accorded to that state of there being no signals in the brain, is to say spiritual experience does not exist when dead because the brain is dead!
Lets be a bit more scientific and think these things through before jumping to conclusions.

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