Direction of this forum?

Newer Member, modified 6 Years ago.

Direction of this forum?

Posts: 4 Join Date: 9/15/15 Recent Posts
I've been a very active member of this forum some years ago following the board and direction of this community rather than posting actively. At that time Daniel became a practitioner of AF stating that as a more preffearable alternative to 4th path, following Tarin and Trent.

 Can somebody update me what has happened here since then and where this community is heading towards now?
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bernd the broter, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

Posts: 376 Join Date: 6/13/12 Recent Posts
Daniel is done with AF and concludes it is worthwhile but different to what AF people claim it is.
Hardly anyone practicing AF still hangs out here.

The rest of posters splits into two groups:
1) People posting long, meaningless walls of text about nothing(?).
2) People still following the basic practices of Vipassana/Shamatha/Metta/... and occasionally posting about that.
3) People who make a big fuss about where this forum is heading towards now.

These groups aren't necessarily disjoint and no one has any idea where it is heading. (However, we recently settled that threatening, insulting and screaming at people is... bad.)
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Jeff Wright, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

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bernd the broter:
Daniel is done with AF and concludes it is worthwhile but different to what AF people claim it is.
Hardly anyone practicing AF still hangs out here.

The rest of posters splits into two groups:
1) People posting long, meaningless walls of text about nothing(?).
2) People still following the basic practices of Vipassana/Shamatha/Metta/... and occasionally posting about that.
3) People who make a big fuss about where this forum is heading towards now.

These groups aren't necessarily disjoint and no one has any idea where it is heading. (However, we recently settled that threatening, insulting and screaming at people is... bad.)

Bernd, could you elaborate on that first point a bit? I was attracted to AF but it seems like a huge bite for me to chew at my early stage of practice - and plus, I really like my Metta meditation. :-)  What is different about the actual AF versus how it's advertised?
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bernd the broter, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

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No, I can't. I just summarized Daniel's giant essay about "My experiments with Actualism" or something.
My impression is that AF consists mainly of bogus. There may be something worthwhile in there, which is not contained by the Buddhist tradition, but I'm not putting in effort to find out what it might be. Not now anyway. It would mean abandoning the Metta practice which I'm not gonna do any time soon. Whatever, let's not discuss that here. Anyway, if you want to discuss that, do it with someone who has tried both approaches thoroughly. And that's not me.
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Jeff Wright, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

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Fair enough. I'm in the same boat as you...curious about it but not willing to invest the time. I got my own hands full of Metta (via TWIM) myself.

For the record, here is the link to Daniel's article.
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Noah S, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

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Bernd, could you elaborate on that first point a bit? I was attracted to AF but it seems like a huge bite for me to chew at my early stage of practice - and plus, I really like my Metta meditation. :-)  What is different about the actual AF versus how it's advertised?


I would say there is a fairly large difference between what can be read about the AF practices of various old-time DhO participants, and the actualism instruction which is contained on the AFT website.  For one, the AFT website delineates a method whose conceptual foundation is largely unrelated to that of other, independent practitioners.  Namely, enlightenment and ASC's are said to be the self-aggrandizing survival mechanism for the continuation of the individual life, while actual freedom and PCE's result from the self-immolating mechanism of altruism which favors the survival of the group.  

In terms of actual practice, actualism involves many things, but perhaps the least of them (or none at all), is any sort of special way of perceiving things.  In contrast, practices described in DhO archives reveal the continuous cultivation of a special lens on reality involving the fullness of the sensory field and other aspects.  Traditional actualist practice is much more psychological in nature, involving the examination and elimination of beliefs, as well as the cultivation of a much more normal and mundane (but continuous) happiness (i.e. just a plain good mood).  Lastly, but perhaps most importantly, traditional, actualist Pure Consciousness Experiences are rare and hard to come by.  There are many states that can be willfully made to occur that imitate them very well.  The real ones happen mostly in childhood and can not be forced.

Not that this outline was asked of me, but I felt like sharing :-D
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Noah S, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

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Gordo . .:
These are impressions that came to mind from a brief read on A/F. I don't want to debate A/F.
The psychology was taught in both mental health and drug rehabilitation institutions in Australia mid 70s?? late 80s, as a way to re-program ingrained bad or ineffective habits into good effective habits. It was mainly American and lost favor around the time Bradshaws stuff hit Australia. 
The non-harm aspect ( can't remember the A/F terms ) is also American from the 60s, then Sydney Australia, then surfers and hippies took it to northern NSW- SOUTHERN QLD with Byron Bay becoming the capital.
If you like this sort of stuff, why not take some off from your grueling Enlightenment schedule and go and hang out in Byron. Buy a surfboard, hook up with a Byron chick. ( they do have emotions).
As far as the belief system goes, just go to any local festival or market anywhere on the nNsw- sQLD and choose one.

No worries, no need to debate.  Interesting idea, I've never heard it before.  And, that sounds like a wonderful vacation.  Maybe I'll just do that emoticon   (which would totally be part of the actualist way, btw).  One thought I do have is that people spend so much time debating whether actualism is new or not.  For me, the important thing is that the method works.  Who cares whether or not its new?
Eva M Nie, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

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Noah S:

One thought I do have is that people spend so much time debating whether actualism is new or not.  For me, the important thing is that the method works.  Who cares whether or not its new?
Well I think it's just how the human mind tends to work.  We've got a guy named Richard who makes a lot of claims about his method.  Since a lot of the claims sound rather extreme but yet can't really be verified or tested since they have to do with his special method or the nature of reality, how to make a guess at the validity of those statements and if those statements and methods are worth paying more attention to?  The only clues would be to check into those things that can actually be checked into, like claims that his thing is totally new.  (instead of greatly plagiarized and then slightly altered from stuff written by others on the net as discussed in another thread)  Then if that claim does not hold up in someone's eyes, the other claims may be less likely to be true as well.  Of course this way of deciding is not 100% accurate, someone can be wrong in one thing and other things can  still be right, but it's kind of how humans have to work to figure out if new things might be accurate.  You say the method works but as I've stated, I do not know of any complete graduates of the method achieving fulltime PCE, other than maybe Richard himself (did he use his own method?).  So I am not able to say with any security as to what exactly the method can and can't accomplish.  

I mean think about the current state of Actualism, and if I have this wrong, feel free to correct me, but it seems from my impression that he is saying that you must believe all his beliefs as well as do all his tools and if you spend a lot lot of time, then you will reach a state of permanent PCE.  But there is no one that I know of that has been able to accomplish it yet using  his belief and tools even though some have tried very hard.  So it's asking a lot, certainly of me, for me to believe fully in some kind of world view without some reason to suspect it will be as he says.  Others have gone before and tried it but to my knowledge have not yet accomplished it.  All that being said, I have said I think the tools themselves can help people and some have said that that tools have helped them, just not to the state of fulltime PCE (to my knowledge). So I remain skeptical of accepting the entire package belief system and all.  (to be fair, I don't blindly accept every Buddhist writing I ever hear either like the one that you HAVE to have full faith and belief without doubt in Buddha to attain various paths, if that were the case than how  did people before Buddha do it?)

-Eva
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Psi, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

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Eva M Nie:
Noah S:

One thought I do have is that people spend so much time debating whether actualism is new or not.  For me, the important thing is that the method works.  Who cares whether or not its new?
Hi , had a thought.

Even beyond whether it is new or not, why bother whether it is called Actualism or Buddhism or any other ism.  We could call it Noahism or Evaism, for example, and sounds just a s valid as does Richardism or Siddharthaism.

It is just labels, nobody can copyright something that is a human experience available to all.  That is just Psillyism.

Psi
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Laurel Carrington, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

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Actually, slapping any kind of -ism (or -ainity, as in Christianity) causes trouble. But maybe we can say, "-ism", meaning we use the term for convenience sake, but know that it doesn't refer to any single thing.
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Psi, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

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Laurel Carrington:
Actually, slapping any kind of -ism (or -ainity, as in Christianity) causes trouble. But maybe we can say, "-ism", meaning we use the term for convenience sake, but know that it doesn't refer to any single thing.
Right, to use isms and other definitions for describing the methods, etc.  But not for the clinging to the isms, etc.  So, yeah, from Buddhism, we can let go of the raft, but still discuss the raft, the raft is the ism.

So, yes, can't go around deleteing language , haha.

Psi

Psi, what the heck is wrong with me and YouTube links lately?  I have linkism....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Ep6YVqc6Ks
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Noah S, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

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Hi , had a thought.

Even beyond whether it is new or not, why bother whether it is called Actualism or Buddhism or any other ism.  We could call it Noahism or Evaism, for example, and sounds just a s valid as does Richardism or Siddharthaism.

It is just labels, nobody can copyright something that is a human experience available to all.  That is just Psillyism.

Psi


I like the thought.  Thats actually why I don't capitalize the word actualism anymore (minor detail, but still).  Thats also why there aren't "teachers" of actualism: because it has to be a living experience, and everyone has there own unique set of beliefs that need to be dismantled through their own internal logic. 

I just think of it as 'Richards instructions to get to where he is.'
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Beoman Claudiu Dragon Emu Fire Golem, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

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Eva M Nie:
You say the method works but as I've stated, I do not know of any complete graduates of the method achieving fulltime PCE, other than maybe Richard himself (did he use his own method?).  So I am not able to say with any security as to what exactly the method can and can't accomplish.
Then you may find the following to be informative:
Richard:
In view of the public interest in experimenting with various routes – such as Srid’s current experiment with an ‘equanimity towards all physical sensations’ practice (based upon Mr. Satya Goenka’s misunderstanding of the Pali word vedāna) – it is timely to append the score thus far. Vis.:
    1. Via insanity
    0 f. & 1 m.

    2. Via direct-route
    4 f. & 1 m. (NB.: updated on 08Aug2015).

    3. Via aff practice
    0 f. & 0 m.

    4. Via love’s fusion
    0 f. & 0 m.

    5. Via equanimity
    0 f. & 0 m.

[link]
Richard is the one who succeeded via insanity (i.e. Enlightenment). I can name four of the people who succeeded via the direct-route (they have already agreed to have their first names be public knowledge): Peter, Vineeto, Pamela, and Grace. I'm not sure who the last female is.
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Noah S, modified 6 Years ago.

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Eva: 

I mean think about the current state of Actualism, and if I have this wrong, feel free to correct me, but it seems from my impression that he is saying that you must believe all his beliefs as well as do all his tools and if you spend a lot lot of time, then you will reach a state of permanent PCE.


(emphasis mine)... So I wanted to copy the most concise summary of Richard's instruction that can be found anywhere (to my knowledge).  This might shed some light on whether his directions are based on the need to be brainwashed or based on what will arise out of an experiment with certain direct results.  Of course there is the likelihood that you will continue to see things through your lens, and I through mine, but this still may help add some clarity:


1. Activate sincerity so as to make possible a pure intent to bring about peace and harmony sooner rather than later.
2. Set the standard of experiencing, each moment again, as feeling felicitous/ innocuous to whatever degree humanly possible come-what-may.
3. Where felicity/ innocuity is not occurring find out why not.
4. Seeing the silliness at having those felicitous/ innocuous feelings be usurped, by either the negative or positive feelings, for whatever reason that might be automatically restores felicity/ innocuity.
5. Repeated occurrences of the same reason for felicity/ innocuity loss alerts pre-recognition of impending dissipation which enables pre-emption and ensures a more persistent felicity/ innocuity through habituation.
6. Habitual felicity/ innocuity, and its concomitant enjoyment and appreciation, facilitates naïve sensuosity ... a consistent state of wide-eyed wonder, amazement, marvel, and delight.
7. That naiveté, in conjunction with felicitous/ innocuous sensuosity, being the nearest a ‘self’ can come to innocence, allows *the overarching benignity and benevolence* inherent to the infinitude this infinite and eternal and perpetual universe actually is *to operate more and more freely*.
8. With this intrinsic benignity and benevolence, which has nothing to do with ‘me’ and ‘my’ doings, *freely operating* one is the experiencing of what is happening ... and the magical fairy-tale-like paradise, which this verdant and azure earth actually is, is sweetly apparent in all its scintillating brilliance.
9. But refrain from possessing it and making it your own ... or else ‘twill vanish as softly as it appeared. [emphases added].



So keep in mind that this is condensing a huge amount of material and the entire course of the journey through the human psyche.  So some of these things, when looked at from afar, can be misinterpreted to be 'perceptual' changes, i.e. appreciating the fullness of the sensory field.  However, one very important point is that there is no willful way to cause apperception to occur.  It can only be automorphised by the closest possible affective-spiritual state.  In terms of the actual practice, most of it is psychological (not at all meditative) in nature, involving the examination of feeling-backed thoughts.  Which brings me to....

But there is no one that I know of that has been able to accomplish it yet using  his belief and tools even though some have tried very hard.  
 [...] Others have gone before and tried it but to my knowledge have not yet accomplished it.  



Who is it that you are talking about?  Very few people on the DhO followed Richard's instructions.  The heading for the section, after all, is 'Practices Inspired By Actualism.'  One could do this with anything in life, substituting another activity for the original one and then claiming knowledge of the original one's workings; masturbation for sex; guitar hero for acoustic guitar; strip mall tae kwon do class for an actual cage fight; babysitting for raising children from start to finish; etc.The people who followed Richard's instructions did get to where he is: Peter, Vineeto, Pamela, and others.  There are also a ton of people who are well on their way there, and are experiencing how the journey mimicks the end point, and bears many fruits along the way beyond what we talk about as 'AF.'  Many of these people have gone to visit him multiple times in Australia, which I think adds more credibility and reality to the work.  Edited: for privacy, after Claudiu's post.

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Eric B, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

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Bernd, succinctly stated. Well done!
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Daniel M. Ingram, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

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Welcome back. If you are interested in pragmatic meditation practice, exploration of what is possible, reporting experiences, getting hopefully useful feedback, supporting others in similar endeavors, trying to figure out what is possible in this lifetime, being willing to try approaches that seem to offer something useful, explaining what you think happened as a result of that, and the usual business of the DhO, debating and discussing best practices and options for reducing suffering, gaining wisdom, living a good and useful life, exploring the depths of concentration and mental modification by various techniques, that is what we are still doing here and have been since it started.

Enjoy the process and community if you wish,

Daniel
Eva M Nie, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

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Paweł K:
Everyone is holding their breath waiting for Daniel's second book. It should bring discussion closer to MCTB model. Now it seems somewhat 'diffused'.
Is discussion supposed to be closer to MCTB model?  I find it ironic that apparently Daniel's pursuit of Actualism helped him get 4th path.  Personally I think Actualism has some useful tools and methods, I just don't buy a lot of the dogma and assumptions that goes with it.  There are many things that appear to work that we can only really guess as to why and as to the exact mechanisms behind them.  In fact, I think that is basically the case for meditation and the paths in general.  There is so much unknown area that we also have tons of room for various theories and arguing.  Certain things seem to lead to certain other things, and there seems to be patterns that often appear in the order and description of them, be we seem to have little clue about the exact details and mechanisms.
-Eva
Eva M Nie, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

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Paweł K:
I find it ironic that apparently Daniel's pursuit of Actualism helped him get 4th path.

are you implying Daniel 4th path was not really 4th path?
Not in the slightest, not sure where you got that assumption from.
Is discussion supposed to be closer to MCTB model?



All I meant was that after MCTB2 comes out there will be much more MCTB-model related discussion than it is now.
Yes, I see, I hope to see some new and useful detail in the new version myself but do not feel any urge to see this place become any more MCTBcentric than it already is over the long term.  (not a big fan of dogma)
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Daniel M. Ingram, modified 6 Years ago.

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Well, for my own side, I knew nothing of actualism in the years 1996 to 2003 during my anagami phase. I, for one, am happy with the results of my experimentation, but it had nothing at all to do with paths in any obvious way that I can tell, being some different axis of development.

Further, at least from my point of view, I can think of nothing I would realistically trade for what meditation practice has done for me, and anyone who somehow thinks those results are trivial, not worth it, or in some way anything other than amazing are truly missing something, and am truly sorry if anything I have ever said or written has contributed to that terriblely deluded and disempowering view and wish that those who are so afflicted will recover rapidly and pursue meditation training in ernest.
Mark, modified 6 Years ago.

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Gordo . .:
This is not an attack on you or yours. Its not an attack. Many people question the legitimacy of the Mahasi path model. Its not you.
As regarding current enlightenment, if a person says their enlightened, job done, complete and yet have a train wreck of a personality. Then they have wasted their time. Thats my choice, my path. Its more than just insight into phenomena for me. 
Once again, nothing to do with you.

Insight into phenomena seems to be selling what Daniel presents very short. I somewhat agree with the concerns you raise. It makes me think that focusing too much on stages of insight promotes spiritual bypassing. But it seems pretty clear to me Daniel is not selling 4th path as "job done, complete". Where are you getting the idea that 4th path means job complete ? Or maybe I'm misundestanding you.

It seems to me the interest in phenomena is more as a criteria for measuring attainments than the actual objective. The objective I would say is closer to insight into subjective experience (i.e. dependent origination), which I would agree is still limiting as it places subjective experience on a pedestal. 
Eva M Nie, modified 6 Years ago.

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.Oops, yes it was my bad, I got it wrong, Daniel said he got 4th path years before he dabbled in Actualism.  I had to go back and reread it.  His account of his experience and how he thinks it helped him here: http://integrateddaniel.info/my-experiments-in-actualism/ .  I still think it's interesting though.  To clarify my attitude on Actualism.  In my mind, I think of it as two somewhat separate things, one it is a system of tools that are used that have yielded interesting and useful effects for a number of people, and two it is a belief system of why those tools work and where they will lead and what they mean about the natural of reality.  For thing one, I use the tools similarly to the way Daniel uses them in the writeup I linked.  Interestingly, I have already been doing something similar for years even though I never heard of Actualism until recently.  I do those things because I found they help me get to where I am wanting to go and I don't see any of those specific tools as any way incompatible with other dharma teachings (similar to what Daniel said). 

On the flip side, the more specific belief systems associated with Actualism tools obviously have some incompatibilities, but looking at just the tools, I don't see doing those as any obvious hindrance or hugely different channel then the paths.  I think of the paths as a general way to map out development, I think of the Actualism tools as one of various ways to assist with that development.  Richard may say Actualism is a whole different separate path but IMO, the assertion alone does not make it true.  To me the tools look a heck of a lot like various psychology and self help and mindfulness methods that I've read of before and from which I developed my own method.  I think it's ironic that I cobbled together my method from a lot of stuff I've heard of before and it came out looking a lot like Actualism tools (but not the belief system) which Richard claims is totally new and unlike anything else.

Anyway taken that perspective, you might see more clearly how I can think of Daniels experiments with Actualism tools to not in any way, IMO, mean I am trying to cast doubt on any path attainments.  Because in my mind, Actualism as a method is a system of tools whereas paths are used to mark certain general levels of development in certain areas.   Seems like different varieties of tools and methods have lead people to those markers, there is not just one way to get there, that Actualism style tools can be useful to make progress is not something I have any problem with.  (sorry Actualists if you don't agree or if it goes against what Richard said, but this is my perspective on it)  The arguements get started when people start to vehemently proclaim (without much if any evidence I might add) that their particular tools are the fastest, bestest, easiest, rightest, powerfulest, newest, oldest, clearest and most studliest (but not most humble apparently) of all the tools bar none and that they have the correctness market completely cornered and all those other guys are deluded, less developed, too old, too new, too slow, too confusing, haven't yet fixed the world or are just plain stupid.  Ah yes, that's when the arguments get started..
-Eva  
[quote=
Paweł K]I was not aware Daniel pursued actualism in period between 3rd and 4th path.
It was my impression that he generally did mostly Vipassana as taught in Theravada and after 3rd path also some practices from various of Mahayana schools but not anything AF related which is recent thing.

By saying Actualism helped him get 4th path I assumed you equate his shift/change that occurred recently (27.07.2012) as 4th path and his previous big shift as maybe 3th path or something. I would totally understand if you did as it would make more sense if you take into consideration that 2nd path does not even exist in his model as anything that have any distinctive qualities and which fact is my biggest issue with this model. Each path should be big event, imho.

http://integrateddaniel.info/my-experiments-in-actualism/:
Then, on July 27th, 2012 (which is also the same day of the year that I got second path in 1996, interestingly enough), I was driving home at 2am or so after a brief late-night post-work workout at a little 24-hour gym on my way home, and, just after I pulled out of the parking lot and onto the rural highway, it suddenly felt like this veil that I had never noticed was pulled off of my head, and suddenly the full field of experience shown in all its unbridled, direct glory, the glory I had seen in the best of the PCEs, but this time with no obvious going back, at least so far, with this being written in September of 2013. Remember how there was that thing I called the Attention Wave? It seemed totally gone, so far as I could tell. Remember the pristine clarity of field that had so called to me? It shone in everything and still does.

Instead of calling it post-4th path attainment we can scale paths so it was 4th path. If we scale things even more it could become 3rd path. Doing more so it can be called as 2nd path.
If path take so much time to complete then what next one is about would be inconceivable at its beggining and only would be known near its ending, like it was with so called 4th path which Daniel say is like completion and settling in of late 3rd and his recent shift which is like completion and settling in of his PCE experiences. Following this model at this point he should have no good idea what to do next which should clarify in next few years. With this model Daniel progress would be pretty much resembling what one would think about paths: something that takes decade(s) to attain, not single months or going under decade from A&P to Arhatship. Seeing completely through that there is no self would be then removal of 1st fetter. His faith in Buddha teachings as showing way to liberation would be 2nd fetter and dropping doing practices obsessively would be 3rd fetter. Ofcourse with that everyone paths would need to be scaled down as well so that (real) MCTB 4th became 1st and considering most people overrate themeselves almost no one here would have 1st path which would be something one would actually expect of Enlightenment by capital "E".  Wouldn't it make perfect sense? Buddha said it himself that 1st path removes most suffering leaving only handful of it. It is Enlightenment after all, just incomplete. Does MCTB 1st path defined as fruition remove most suffering with only a tiny bit of it remaining?

Just saying...

ps. I hope Daniel forgives me for bluntly reducing his paths like that. Last time I did that equating MCTB 4th with ten-fetter 1st he almost seemed upset =P
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Noah S, modified 6 Years ago.

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Eva:

(sorry Actualists if you don't agree or if it goes against what Richard said, but this is my perspective on it)  


I hear this, and admire it, and am just sharing subjective thoughts and objective information into this discussion pool: nothing more.  

For thing one, I use the tools similarly to the way Daniel uses them in the writeup I linked.  Interestingly, I have already been doing something similar for years even though I never heard of Actualism until recently.


One thing that I think people sometimes miss is that what Richard recommends to get to where he is, is simply different from what Daniel and other DhO vets did after reading about actualism.  This isn't good or bad, it just is.  Obviously if those yogis benefited from those practices, its hard to argue against them.  So, I'm not criticizing the techniques themselves, just the perception of their relationship with actualism.

The purposeful lens taken on reality which sees and appreciates the fullness of the sensory field seems to be a misinterpretation of one specific article on the AFT website.  Also, I think the HAIETMOBA technique was misinterpreted to be a way to willfully get into a state of apperception.  HAIETMOBA as Richard meant it is simply checking in to see what mood or emotions one is experiencing (which then has a further function).  

To me the tools look a heck of a lot like various psychology and self help and mindfulness methods that I've read of before and from which I developed my own method.  I think it's ironic that I cobbled together my method from a lot of stuff I've heard of before and it came out looking a lot like Actualism tools (but not the belief system) which Richard claims is totally new and unlike anything else.


The tools from actualism don't just look like various psychology and self help methods, some of them are identical with said methods!  So you are right in saying that the individual tools are not completely new.  Instead, what is new is the exact way of configuring them; the order they are employed in and the priorities or logic which guide their usage.  Also, the most unique and new thing is the overall view or perspective which is slowly gained from their proper usage.  This view or perspective is that "this moment is the only one I have for being alive, and enjoyment and appreciation (in as happy and harmless a way as possible) is the only way I wish to experience this moment."  So, this view/perspective slowly transmogrifies into a state of being.

and two it is a belief system of why those tools work and where they will lead and what they mean about the natural of reality. 


I hope my previous statements counter this thought to some degree.  The 'belief system' of actualism is one that must be authentically developed within the practitioner, over time.  Basically, it has to work with that person's logic.  For instance, I know I'm supposed to be harmless, but the truth is that I'm not ready to give up casual sex, which is an activity that can involve offending people.  So for now, I'm just going to do what is sensible for me, and pursue to this end (all things done with balance, of course).  At some later date, my belief system will be based on a further logic of seeing that I am now ready to give up casual sex, having nipped libido in the bud.  Over time, the factual assessment of reality develops organically, within the practitioner.

In summary, I would say the thing that you are identifying as a belief system or dogma is actually more of a technique or practice.

Cheers,
-Noah

P.s.- talking about actualism is a slippery slope, as language can be heavily intertwined with affect and identity.  If some of my word choices are misplaced and read by any actualists, please feel free to jump in and correct me.
Eva M Nie, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

Posts: 831 Join Date: 3/23/14 Recent Posts
Noah S:
Eva:

(sorry Actualists if you don't agree or if it goes against what Richard said, but this is my perspective on it)  


I hear this, and admire it, and am just sharing subjective thoughts and objective information into this discussion pool: nothing more.  
No problem Noah, I always appreciate your way of communicating as being exceptionally polite and respectful. 

To me the tools look a heck of a lot like various psychology and self help and mindfulness methods that I've read of before and from which I developed my own method.  I think it's ironic that I cobbled together my method from a lot of stuff I've heard of before and it came out looking a lot like Actualism tools (but not the belief system) which Richard claims is totally new and unlike anything else.


The tools from actualism don't just look like various psychology and self help methods, some of them are identical with said methods!  So you are right in saying that the individual tools are not completely new.  Instead, what is new is the exact way of configuring them; the order they are employed in and the priorities or logic which guide their usage.  Also, the most unique and new thing is the overall view or perspective which is slowly gained from their proper usage.  This view or perspective is that "this moment is the only one I have for being alive, and enjoyment and appreciation (in as happy and harmless a way as possible) is the only way I wish to experience this moment."  So, this view/perspective slowly transmogrifies into a state of being.
I guess I still don't see this as a super new thing, such has been described in the new age community for many years.  As for becoming a state of being, those who initially made the claim to have achieved it have all rescinded their claim to my knowledge.  Sounds good on paper and I've seen some results from the tools in general but not for this ultimate state that is said to be reached. 
and two it is a belief system of why those tools work and where they will lead and what they mean about the natural of reality. 


I hope my previous statements counter this thought to some degree.  The 'belief system' of actualism is one that must be authentically developed within the practitioner, over time.  
So the assertion is that you need to believe in the belief system in order for the tools to have full effect?  You can see how this could sound a bit religion like..

Basically, it has to work with that person's logic.  
Good advice IMO, trying to force a belief that you can't really accept will not work. 

For instance, I know I'm supposed to be harmless, but the truth is that I'm not ready to give up casual sex, which is an activity that can involve offending people.  
Well I'd call that more of a conflict of societal mores than a true offense but sexual mores is an area where debate could go on forever. 

So for now, I'm just going to do what is sensible for me, and pursue to this end (all things done with balance, of course).  At some later date, my belief system will be based on a further logic of seeing that I am now ready to give up casual sex, having nipped libido in the bud.  Over time, the factual assessment of reality develops organically, within the practitioner.
Well you feel you can predict your future self, I never had much luck with it at such a specific level.  Then again if you believe something strongly it can be self fullfilling, just not sure how much though. 

In summary, I would say the thing that you are identifying as a belief system or dogma is actually more of a technique or practice.
Well you could say that the two must work in tandem but the way my mind works, I'll likely continue to think of them as basically still separate. 

Cheers,
-Noah

P.s.- talking about actualism is a slippery slope, as language can be heavily intertwined with affect and identity.  If some of my word choices are misplaced and read by any actualists, please feel free to jump in and correct me.
Maybe part of the prob is if there is a belief that the belief must be in place for the method to work and with so little evidence of ultimate success that I have seen, it's going to be a hard sell to get many people to accept it on blind faith.  Hence Richard could say that even if using the tools, it's not really Actualism.   Of  course that is Richard's assertion, might be hard for him to demonstrate that Actualist tools plus belief system is clearly going to yield better results than just tools alone. 
-Eva
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Noah S, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

Posts: 1532 Join Date: 7/6/13 Recent Posts
Eva:

I guess I still don't see this as a super new thing, such has been described in the new age community for many years. 


Although I haven't looked at every new age philosophy, I have read a ton of spiritual books.  Most of them posit some sort of 'taste of the deathless' or contact with 'prakriti' or 'atman', etc.  There can be much debate that Buddhism does not do this whereas other, theistic religions do, but I would say that every system of 'spirituality' is ultimately predicated upon making contact with something steady, and gaining some benefit from it.  Actualism is a little different since it is totally materialistic; the physical world is the only thing that really exists, when the body dies, the mind disappears completely, etc.

Could you link to a new age philosophy that describes the idea of the total extirpation of the pysche as the answer?  I really am curious, and so is Richard, as I understand.  For years, he searched for others like him, apparently.  There's a ton of archived dialogue on the AFT website examining various systems that seem similar on the surface.  He's pretty good at taking a hard look into thought-systems, actually considering whether or not they are similar to actualism, and then making factual assessments.

As for becoming a state of being, those who initially made the claim to have achieved it have all rescinded their claim to my knowledge.


The problem is that those who made the claim were not practicing actualism.  This is frustrating for me because I either said this up this thread or in another thread already.  Its a really important point!  Very few people on the DhO have given Richard's real instruction a good try.  I think part of the reason is because they are not like other forms of spirituality, which is the 'comfort zone.'  Now, I know first hand how uncomfortable the spiritual process can be, but I am talking about more of a meta-comfort zone here.  Also outside of the comfort zone is the fact that you have to deeply examine all of your values slowly see through them to their core.  The only one who seemed to be following the instructions was Tarin, but even he seemed to misunderstand the concept of pure intent, which is one of the things that the whole process is based on.

Of the people who have claimed actual freedom by following Richard's advice (and bolstered by an accurate conceptual understanding), none of have rescinded their claim to actual freedom.

Sounds good on paper and I've seen some results from the tools in general but not for this ultimate state that is said to be reached.


This is where we probably hit the boundary of our discussion; agree to disagree.  

Well you feel you can predict your future self, I never had much luck with it at such a specific level.  Then again if you believe something strongly it can be self fullfilling, just not sure how much though.  


I can't predict my future self, but I can predict what will have happened if my future 'self' does turn out to be actually free: the nipping-in-the-bud of the instinctual passions.

So the assertion is that you need to believe in the belief system in order for the tools to have full effect?  You can see how this could sound a bit religion like.. 


No, not that.  See my comment below, which you seemed to agree with.  The assertion is that it has to work with one's logic.  The basic way of doing this is by taking factual assessments of the world as it actually is, outside of the psychic bubble.

Well I'd call that more of a conflict of societal mores than a true offense but sexual mores is an area where debate could go on forever.


Fair enough.

Maybe part of the prob is if there is a belief that the belief must be in place for the method to work and with so little evidence of ultimate success that I have seen, it's going to be a hard sell to get many people to accept it on blind faith.  Hence Richard could say that even if using the tools, it's not really Actualism.   Of  course that is Richard's assertion, might be hard for him to demonstrate that Actualist tools plus belief system is clearly going to yield better results than just tools alone.  
-Eva


Argh so frustrating!  Richard doesn't tell anyone to consciously do something special with their perception, anywhere!  This is what the Affists were doing.  They're totally different things.  Haha, in the end it isn't a big deal, and I am getting a kick out of our discussion, but don't you see what I'm saying?  The things you are calling 'Actualist tools' that you have seen others use on this site are completely mislabelled.  

My point is that very few people on this site have even given it a chance.

By the way, I don't think a belief has to be in place in order for it to work.  There are at least a handful of ways of approaching the method that involve immediate direct experience: bring attentiveness to emotions and see if you can nip them in the bud; uncover the beliefs that are the driving forces behind the emotions and see what happens; really, deeply rememorate a childhood PCE and experience pure intent as it effects one's outlook; etc. 
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Daniel M. Ingram, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

Posts: 3209 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
@ Eva: I perhaps am showing too much reluctance to make definitite calls on people path attainments that I don't know very well and whose practice I don't know very well, as you demonstrate a comfort with that which I consider bold. Should I adopt your methods? I wonder. There is the theory and we all have our criteria and speculations. However, it is not all so easy sometimes without really knowing the person. I still think these things are better sorted out in person, or, failing that, with person-to-person video, or, failing that, with phone calls or audio calls of some digital sort, or, failing that, careful questioning of the person over a period of time with careful inquire about their current practice.

Regardless, what I have done is remarkable, unusual, not often described, and, to my well-studied eye, meets the criteria for the level I claim. To religate it to something lesser without even knowing me would seem, well, presumptuous. Criticisms of the Mahasi models are not new, and my models don't align with his beyond 2nd path particularly well, as they are more traditional than mine, true. Still, core, essential elements remain the same. Further, it was a lineaged abbot in the tradition that was there for my achievement back in April, 2003. It is like nothing else I have done meditation wise and resolved something fundamental and that resolution has remained.

To remedy this: care to talk in person sometime? It might prove more fruitful all around than this sort of discussion, which ranges far into the speculative and grounds little in real experience and performance testing. Skype danielmingram. I am busy this next two weeks, but we can find time in there somewhere, likely.

May your theories be grounded in experience,

Daniel
Eva M Nie, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

Posts: 831 Join Date: 3/23/14 Recent Posts
Daniel M. Ingram:
@ Eva: I perhaps am showing too much reluctance to make definitite calls on people path attainments that I don't know very well and whose practice I don't know very well, as you demonstrate a comfort with that which I consider bold. Should I adopt your methods? I wonder.
I don't believe I have ever diagnosed anyone's current path attainments other than reading what they claim themselves.  In the case of your 4th path/actualism thing, I had read your Actualism story long ago and got that description confused with what I read later in MCTB, a mistake which I have already admitted too.  The truth is I don't monitor people's claims all that super carefully.   For that one, I had it incorrectly in my memory that you wrote it that way that Actualism practice was just before 4th pathf when in fact it was something else you accomplished with actualism.  I don't consider actualism tools to be incompatible with paths so there was no conflict in my mind, as I've already described on this thread.
There is the theory and we all have our criteria and speculations. However, it is not all so easy sometimes without really knowing the person. I still think these things are better sorted out in person, or, failing that, with person-to-person video, or, failing that, with phone calls or audio calls of some digital sort, or, failing that, careful questioning of the person over a period of time with careful inquire about their current practice.
Are we talking about Richard?  I have not made any assertions about what his personal mental attainments to my knowledge.  Or are we talking about someone else you are saying I diagnosed? 

Regardless, what I have done is remarkable, unusual, not often described, and, to my well-studied eye, meets the criteria for the level I claim. To religate it to something lesser without even knowing me would seem, well, presumptuous. Criticisms of the Mahasi models are not new, and my models don't align with his beyond 2nd path particularly well, as they are more traditional than mine, true. Still, core, essential elements remain the same. Further, it was a lineaged abbot in the tradition that was there for my achievement back in April, 2003. It is like nothing else I have done meditation wise and resolved something fundamental and that resolution has remained.
Wait, where is this even coming from?  What statements of mine are you responding too? 
To remedy this: care to talk in person sometime? It might prove more fruitful all around than this sort of discussion, which ranges far into the speculative and grounds little in real experience and performance testing. Skype danielmingram. I am busy this next two weeks, but we can find time in there somewhere, likely.
Well I have nothing against skyping with you but I think you have gotten me confused with something I know not what. Where is it that I questioned your claimed attainments?   If MCTB had triggered any BS alarms in my head, I probably would not have bothered posting here to start with.  It's actually not my habit to seek out environs where I think a larger percentage than normal might be full of it.  ;-P

Edited to add: Looking back on the thread, maybe you are equating to me some things that Pawel and Gordo said in the thread, statements from them that got recopied onto the end of one of my later posts, I personally have not made any comments at all about the Mahasi path model nor do I have any strong opinions on it other than that it is interesting.   
-Eva
May your theories be grounded in experience,

Daniel
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bernd the broter, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Direction of this forum?

Posts: 376 Join Date: 6/13/12 Recent Posts
Eva M Nie:
apparently Daniel's pursuit of Actualism helped him get 4th path.

Hello, your favourite bread is here to inform you that this is complete misinformation.
Both with and without the 'apparently'.

Breadcrumb