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May 11, 2008

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@Brian, Tao and Tucson,

I am reading Anurag Sagar -- translated by Ajaib disciple Russell Perkins. May I know your opinions on it. is it really written by Kabir or is it something else? Besides, why does RSSB not publish Anurag Sagar, though several ex-Masters praised it to the sky stating that you will never understand creation unless you read Anurag Sagar.

I found it a bit more like " My saint is holier than you saint" My GOD is greater than your God.

http://www.spiritualawakeningradio.com/anurag_01_intro.pdf

http://www.spiritualawakeningradio.com/anurag_02_creation.pdf

http://www.spiritualawakeningradio.com/anurag_03_kabir.pdf

http://www.spiritualawakeningradio.com/anurag_04_future.pdf

I agree - life is a mystery. Like how Starbucks, cellphones, plumbing crises and baseball connect with Anurag Sagar. Ah, the esoteric secrets of the America/Hindustan connection!

Brian wrote :
'We strive to find meaning in events because their unpredictability threatens our humancentric position at the center of existence. There's got to be some purpose, some master plan, some reason behind a malfunctioning water treatment system that consumes my entire afternoon, right?'

Too many words Brian.

I think maybe it was all once summed up with the expression : 'Shit happens'.

Brian wrote:

'It just was life. Stuff happens. Unpredictable stuff. Stuff with no meaning other than the need to deal with it.'

I once knew a psychologist who quoted one of his mentors,I believe an elderly Jewish lady (try to hear this in a NY Jewish accent, it`s better that way)
as having said:

Why you gotta make a story out of it?

I think it is valid to look at the why of things but a lot of them have no why attached that we will ever be able to see. There is a difference between considering whether something happened because of something I did versus obsessing on why it happened. The first can lead to a change in my behavior or reinforcement of a working strategy while the latter keeps me from functioning at all while thinking about the why.

Which part of the day was not so absolutely stunning in its structure and balance, that you thought, "well, my life today is remarkable, and I will write about it, but... all of this still falls short of being provided by a power greater than myself. Life just is, and if I am enjoying the wonder, that is the result of some dyspepsia, and nothing more"

Not everything is knowable, and there is much to doubt. But if what is immediately knowable is incredibly awesome, when should I make the decision to maintain cynicism?

Adam, along the same line, I like this poetic way of saying:

"I should be content
to look at a mountain
for what it is
and not as a comment on my life."
--David Ignatow
http://hinessight.blogs.com/church_of_the_churchless/2006/12/hope_is_the_pre.html

Brian,

It's amazing how you can turn your mundane day into another chance to share your lack of knowledge on the subject of the afterlife.

Again, I would encourage you to take a peek at some of the peer reviewed and well-documented science that's out there on the subject of consciousness survival, instead of patting yourself on the back for another zen poem of biased and agenda riddled misinformation.

BTW, did you wish your mother a happy day yesterday?

OK... I may have jumped on my high horse here a bit too early. I actually agree with the sentiment of Brian's post. In fact, I wrote about the "mystery of life" myself on another blog just two days ago.

What I wanted to respond to was the underlying sentiments that have been in many of Brian's posts that mention the afterlife in one way or another.

The question of whether there is an afterlife doesn't have to remain a mystery, at least not forever. There are scientists from Oxford, Cambridge, Harvard, Princeton and other well-respected institutions of higher learning, that are finding evidence for some type of consciousness survival.

The problem is that atheists try to equate any science on post-physical consciousness as being religiously driven, which it is not. As long as atheists and secular humanists keep the argument to a caricatured Abrahamic God, they find it easy to ridicule those with different opinions. Ask them to honestly look at the science on its own merits, and you get all kinds of back-peddling or fancy footwork around it.

OK. I'm back into my zen head. Whewwww.

Marcel,

You mentioned, in your above comment;

"The question of whether there is an afterlife doesn't have to remain a mystery, at least not forever. There are scientists from Oxford, Cambridge, Harvard, Princeton and other well-respected institutions of higher learning, that are finding evidence for some type of consciousness survival."

---Could you write another comment, describing one of the evidences for some kind of consciousness survival? Sounds interesting.

Marcel wrote the following:

"take a peek at some of the peer reviewed and well-documented science that's out there on the subject of consciousness survival"

"the question of whether there is an afterlife doesn't have to remain a mystery, at least not forever. There are scientists from Oxford, Cambridge, Harvard, Princeton and other well-respected institutions of higher learning, that are finding evidence for some type of consciousness survival."

"Ask them to honestly look at the science on its own merits"

-- If Marcel is so sure about this, then just where exactly is this "peer reviewed and well-documented science" that he speaks of?

[Note: If this so-called "well-documented science" actually exists, then the documentation would be easily accessible for Marcel to present.]


-- Since Marcel says there is actually "evidence", then just exactly who are these "scientists from Oxford, Cambridge, Harvard, Princeton and other well-respected institutions of higher learning", "that are finding evidence for some type of consciousness survival"? And just where is this hard evidence?

[Note: If there actually were or is any real solid hard evidence as to the existence of consciousness after death or beyond the functioning of the brain, then such evidence would have already been published and made very public, and would be very visible and accessible.]


-- Marcel says: "honestly look at the science on its own merits". Alright... but where exactly is this solid "science", and what are it's "merits", if any at all? Its easy for people like Marcel to say things like this, but actually showing the hard evidence is quite another thing altogether. So far, there is NO evidence that I know of. So if Marcel does actually know of some evidence, then it is his responsibility to present it. Otherwise... it's all just more hollow empty talk and theories, without any actual substance to back it up.


Roger and Tao, though I understand why you are asking me to present "the evidence" for consciousness survival, in truth it is not I who needs to convince you or anyone else of this claim.

I am "inviting" Brian to "search" for the evidence. As Brian has pointed out on many occasions, a true "skeptic" is one who questions with an open mind, withholding judgment until reason has clearly eliminated all other conclusions on a specific topic.

On the topic of survival of consciousness, those predisposed to believe that everything dies with the death of the brain, have not truly investigated the evidence with an open mind. This is not to say that there is "final scientific proof," but rather, the evidence that is out there may be currently inconclusive, but it is extremely compelling.

Let's not forget, science is a method, not a position. There is a great article in the latest volume of New Scientists that speaks to this, it's titled, "Some swans are grey".

The best and most current book that sums up the best researched, documented and replicated evidence for consciousness survival is Irreducible Mind, by Edward and Emily Kelley, two professors in psychiatry at the University of Virginia. A partial review of their work can be read here --> http://michaelprescott.typepad.com/michael_prescotts_blog/2007/03/irreducible_min.html

And for even more books on the research into consciousness survival, go here, http://astore.amazon.com/windbridge-20/104-4555125-4238366?node=6&page=1

And to truly understand the relationship of parapsychological research and the closed-mindedness of skeptics, this book is an outstanding primer of how the current materialistic paradigm in science has censor truth to assure its own world view.

http://www.parapsychologyandtheskeptics.com/

Marcel, I agree: there is evidence for the survival of consciousness after death, but not proof in a scientific sense.

I'm open-minded on the question. I hope the answer is affirmative, because I'd like my consciousness to survive after death.

Even before your suggestion, I did some Googling on this issue. Probably I'll share what I learned in my brief perusal of cyberspace info. in a post tomorrow.

I share tAo's attitude about the research. If there was hard evidence for life after death, this would be more than front page news. So far, though, the evidence is equivocal.

This was what I was trying to get at in this post. Life here on earth, with all that we know about the physical laws of nature (which is a lot) is a mystery much, if not most, of the time.

So wouldn't an afterlife, assuming it exists, be even more mysterious? If freedom, creativity, love, energy -- whatever we want to call it -- is greater there, wouldn't there be as much mystery and unpredictability there as here?

Just a question. Obviously I don't know the answer.

Great Brian. I welcome your analysis of Google, though, as I have often been warned, Google is not God, be careful of what authority you bow down to.

Also, regarding Tao's comment about "front page news," perhaps one should ask how is it that wild hypotheses about dark matter, string theories and black holes make it to the front pages of science journals, sole based on hypothetical questions, yet hard, cold, replicated statistical evidence on presentiment doesn't?

That's what I'm getting at. It is extremely difficult to get published in magazines or peer reviewed journals that are controlled by the establishment. Anything that has the potential to get wrapped up in religion gets smacked down. the establishment believes that anything to do with "consciousness survival" is a gateway to Intelligent Design or Creationism. It's not, but the fear and suspicious is entrenched.

To put it bluntly, this shuffling around by Marcel is just another similar type of BS that has been touted before by others, both here and elsewhere.

I agree with Brian. Sure, there may be evidence of the possibilty... but when I said hard evidence, I meant PROOF.

It would be really great and wonderful if there was actual undeniable scientific proof and therefore total certainty of the continuity of consciousness (either person or impersonal) after death (that means actual brain-death, and not just brief NDEs). But so far, there is still NO absolute proof. And there has not been anyone to ever come back to life after total and permanent brain-death and cardiac and respiratory arrest, to be abe to tell abou it.

You can BS about this all day, and complain about peer-review and academic establishment bias, etc... but at the end of the day, if ANYONE ever actually had one iota of real proof of the continuity of life/consciousness after real death, then the entire world would welcome it with open arms. There would be dancing in the streets... as well as in the churches and the bars.

So lets not play stupid little games and bluff about the scientific method. I am extremely well aware of what that the scientific method is, and what it entails, and so does the scientific and academic community.

I think it's also BS for Marcel to say the following:

"though I understand why you are asking me to present "the evidence" for consciousness survival, in truth it is not I who needs to convince you or anyone else of this claim."

-- It certainly IS for Marcel to "convince". If Marcel makes a claim, then it's his responsibiity to back it up with the proof.


"I am "inviting" Brian to "search" for the evidence."

-- More BS. To say "inviting to search" is clearly a cop out. You eith have the proof, or you don't. But don't go sending people off to "search" for themselves. That's BS.

" those predisposed to believe that everything dies with the death of the brain..."

-- No one here is necessarily "predisposed" at all. It's about proof. Marcel simply has NO PROOF. And we've done this merry-go-round before.

"...have not truly investigated the evidence with an open mind."

-- There are all sorts of possible "evidence", and there are "open minds"... but there is NO proof. So cut the crap and let's not waste time on this same old merry-go-round. When there is some real scientific proof, THEN there will be something to really talk about.

"This is not to say that there is final scientific proof, but rather, the evidence that is out there may be currently inconclusive"

-- Marcel finally admits that there is no "final" scientific proof. But forget "final"... there is no kind of proof. So at this point, and probably for a very long time to come, all there really is... is nothing more than speculation and conjecture.


http://www.squarecircles.com/ascenttoparadise/ascentenglish/Presentation_Files/index.html


Shazam!!! - Thanks for square circles ascent to paradise, Tao. And all I have to do is die! And my consciousness will continue on. This presentation is the undeniable proof I've waited for. And via the internet too.

tAp says:
"It would be really great and wonderful if there was actual undeniable scientific proof and therefore total certainty of the continuity of consciousness (either person or impersonal) after death (that means actual brain-death, and not just brief NDEs)."

Why would it be great and wonderful? What difference would it possibly make if consciousness continued? So the bandwidth of information could continue into eternity? So I could be chased by my earthly tormenters? I think it would unremittingly suck.

tAo says:
"but at the end of the day, if ANYONE ever actually had one iota of real proof of the continuity of life/consciousness after real death, then the entire world would welcome it with open arms. There would be dancing in the streets... as well as in the churches and the bars."

Read some about how organized religions have reacted to scientific proof of, well, anything over the past couple thousand years. That heliocentric theory is not popular with most. Organized religions have a lot of catching up to do before they even get to space flight. Dancing in the streets? Judging by the endemic superstitions running our governments and financial institutions, that will probably be the apocalyptic jig.

edward,
I love your writing style dude! Have you written books? I find myself lol after almost every one of your comments...

Marcel,

Is the study of 'consciousness survival' so difficult to understand that only the scientific and academic community is capable of understanding it? Do I need to work at Harvard to be qualified to engage in a study? Wouldn't it be nice if everyone was able to know and understand this topic on their own? Marcel, in your own words, write a commnet describing what you know regarding consciousness survival. You would be writing this response to the group here in this blog.
Thanks...Roger

Roger, I work as an afterlife research medium. Yes, Tao, a medium.

Since I work with researchers, individuals and families, the work I do cannot escape the criticisms of skeptics who claim medium research is faulted by subjective bias or experimenter bias, no matter how rigorous of a method we use. That's the shortcoming of mediumship work.

So, my knowledge of consciousness survival is a very personal one. I even did a reading for Brian, his wife and daughter, which Brian wrote about on his blog. Brian wasn't convinced, but he didn't walk away from it and say this is all BS either. He left as he came in.

Anyway, Tao, it's obvious to me you really don't know a whole lot about science and the scientific method, because if you did, you would be aware about all the controversy within the scientific community currently being debated concerning The theory of relativity, Darwinian evolution and the nature and laws of gravity.

There is hardly ever a thing a "final scientific proof". Instead of flapping your lips like the know it all atheist you are so proud of being, why not read Dean Radin's "entangled Minds". It will make you think a bit.

But the question is, is Marcel a CERTIFIED "afterlife research medium"???

Marcel wants to "escape the criticisms of skeptics", and Marcel asserts that he has "knowledge of consciousness survival".

Marcel said: "Tao, it's obvious to me you really don't know a whole lot about science and the scientific method, because if you did, you would be aware about all the controversy within the scientific community currently being debated concerning the theory of relativity, Darwinian evolution and the nature and laws of gravity."

-- Unfortunately for you Marcel, you are quite mistaken... for I AM generally AWARE of those various debates that you indicated.

However, btw, I DO "know a whole lot about science and the scientific method"... because I just happen to have earned two PhDs, doctorates in two separate scientific fields (Psychology, and also Physics & Electronic Engineering) during the late 1960s and early 1970s - one from Stanford Univ. and the other from Princeton Univ. - so don't even bother trying to say or imply that I am somehow not familiar with science... or to try to bullshit and skirt your way around this issue again Marcel. You just don't have the 'right stuff'.

So I will reflect Marcel's presumptive comment back to him by saying: It's obvious to me that YOU, Marcel, really don't know a whole heck of alot about science or the scientific method.

And so therfore, as I said before... "let's not play stupid little games and bluff about the scientific method. I AM extremely well aware of what that the scientific method is, and what it entails, and so does the scientific and academic community."

Marcel said: There is hardly ever a thing a "final scientific proof".

-- But the rather funny thing is, is that it was Marcel who was the one who first used the term "final scientific proof" in his previous post:

"This is not to say that there is "final scientific proof," but rather, the evidence that is out there may be currently inconclusive, but it is extremely compelling."
Posted by: Marcel Cairo | May 12, 2008 at 01:29 PM

-- So quit trying to pin your shit onto other folks Marcel... Instead of "flapping your lips" like the know it all "medium" that YOU are so proud of being.

And btw, and fyi, I am NOT a "know it all atheist". In fact, I am NOT an "atheist" at all. Not even close.

So... so much for your (rather poor) powers of psychic intuition Marcel, not to mention your severe lack of factual and intellectual accuracy. You would be better to remain in your psychic "medium" business, rather than venturing into scientific debates with scientifically well educated people like myself.


Edward,

You asked: "Why would it be great and wonderful? ... I think it would unremittingly suck."

-- You've made a sight misinterpretation here. I was not saying that it is actually wonderful, but only that it would be wonderful for the folks that desire there to be a continuity of consciousness beond death.

And byw, I agree that "Organized religions have a lot of catching up to do before they even get to space flight" -- as well as -- "the endemic superstitions running our governments and financial institutions". But I was not talking about religions and governments as "dancing in the streets".



A psychologist... I should have guessed. Psychologists are the ones who generally spearhead the vile that's hurled at parapsychology. A little turf war, it seems. Psychologist themselves often stand on shaky ground when it comes to science and the scientific method.

Anyway, there is an interesting interview with Chris Carter (in two parts) on the http://www.skeptiko.com podcast. Chris Carter is the author of, Parapsychology and the skeptics, and he is the one who points out the odd relationship between psychologist and psi researchers.

Here are the links to the Chris Carter interviews in case anyone is interested.

Part I: http://www.skeptiko.com/index.php?id=50

Part II:
http://www.skeptiko.com/index.php?id=52

Regarding out of body and near death experiences. I have had a number of these. When I was little, I used to occasionally "vacate" the body and float/glide about the house in very vivid fashion. As real as this seemed I can't say, even to myself who experienced it, that it proves a continuity of consciousness after death or a consciousness independent of some process in my physical brain.

All near-death experiences have been reported by people who actually did not die. I think the scientific community would be more satisfied with evidence of an afterlife from someone who, say, was put through a chipper-shredder.

-------------------------------------


Edward asked: "Why would it be great and wonderful? ... I think it would unremittingly suck."

--Don't the suicidal islamists think about this? I mean, 70 virgins is hardly enough. Figuring on one million years or so to get tired of each virgin, who by that time will certainly be infinitely more defiled than a $5 hooker , in only 70 million years the suicide martyr's supply of virgins will have dried up (sic). What's he going to do for the rest of eternity? Manually polish his well-worn pole?

Marcel wrote: "A psychologist... I should have guessed. Psychologists are the ones who generally spearhead the vile that's hurled at parapsychology. A little turf war, it seems. Psychologist themselves often stand on shaky ground when it comes to science and the scientific method."

--I was just watching Oprah and she had a psychiatrist (M.D.) named Dr. Brian L. Weiss author of "Many Lives, Many Masters" who does therapy via past life regression and was once a "left brain" scientist and tenured professor of clinical psychology at the University of Miami. Once a skeptic, he is now convinced of an enduring "soul" that lives on and has many lives. He believes in God as a living, intelligent force or power that permeates every atom of the universe.

As for me, I don't give a damn. I just want to get at them virgins an' have me a big ol' party.

Tucson,

I watched a part of the Oprah's show last night too.

--Who are the many Masters, that they mentioned?

--The mortician guy, mentioned, experiencing an energy, from the deceased persons. If this is true, how much time had passed since the time of death of that individual? Say, if a person has been deceased for a week, is this energy still present in the body?

--Hynosis, is this the only route or method of exploring the survival of consciousness?
Could there be other methods?

--Dr. Weiss, IMO, seems to be taking credit for the discovery of the unique characteristics of H2O and spirituality. I might have taken his remark in the wrong way, however, the TAO of water, reveals this information. He should have credited the TAO, when he mentioned that.

Again, no big deal. Just some questions to throw around.

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