AF cosmology

steve g, modified 11 Years ago at 8/19/10 2:21 AM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/19/10 2:21 AM

AF cosmology

Posts: 2 Join Date: 8/16/10 Recent Posts
Im just wondering if anyone here practising AF has an opinion on richards claim that the universe is infinite and eternal? How can he possibly know this? Does anyone here hold to this view? I know a PCE is wonderful but it is still a subjective experience none the less. How can it possibly give any indication of the character and origin of the physical universe. Most respected scientists who have devoted their life to the study of physics claim that the universe had a beginning in the big bang and will have an end (big crunch?) Richards claim seems to be just another belief claim to me...

Could anyone shed light on this?
Luciano de Noeme Imoto, modified 11 Years ago at 8/19/10 9:35 AM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/19/10 9:35 AM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 75 Join Date: 6/2/10 Recent Posts
Olá Steve!

I also had some initial problems with the divorced view of 'universe' from 'nature' in AFT website two years ago...
However, regard your question, Actual Freedom and the actualism method don´t have any "cosmology" to defend.
This infinite and eternal qualities of this universe are experiential: perceived without the ego / soul interference.
Do you agree (intellectualy at last) that the stuff of this human body - and all carbon-based life - is the very self-same stuff as the stuff of this physical universe?
Do you think that the universe's inclination is to manifest itself as its best?

Luciano
Trent , modified 11 Years ago at 8/19/10 10:54 AM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/19/10 10:54 AM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 361 Join Date: 8/22/09 Recent Posts
Hi,

steve g:
Could anyone shed light on this?


Your best bet in understanding this is to reflect upon the things you've read on the AFTrust website while in a PCE. Or better yet, secure an AF and reflect upon them.

Here's an article I found a while back that I thought was interesting...not because I think the new theory stated in it is correct, but because of the criticisms cited concerning the big bang. Food for thought, I suppose.

Trent

http://www.technologyreview.com/blog/arxiv/25492/

Arxiv:
That's in stark contrast to the various models of the Universe based on the Big Bang. Since the accelerating expansion of the Universe was discovered, cosmologists have been performing some rather worrying contortions with the laws of physics to make their models work.


Arxiv:
The most commonly discussed idea is that the universe is filled with a dark energy that is forcing the universe to expand at an increasing rate. For this model to work, dark energy must make up 75 per cent of the energy-mass of the Universe and be increasing at a fantastic rate.

But there is a serious price to pay for this idea: the law of conservation of energy. The embarrassing truth is that the world's cosmologists have conveniently swept under the carpet one the of fundamental laws of physics in an attempt to square this circle.
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Daniel M Ingram, modified 11 Years ago at 8/21/10 1:39 AM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/21/10 1:39 AM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 3231 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
Just as deducing things about quantum physics is hard from examining your hand, and just as it is hard to imagine things like how far 1,000 light years is, or how long, say, 15 billion years is, or how many stars there are, just so, it seems to me that just because experience seems boundless doesn't mean that the universe is infinite, and just because things seem now and timeless doesn't mean that time has no beginning and no end or that the universe is eternal, as these are the same sorts of extrapolations about things that are vast beyond easy human understanding. There are effects at scales of size and time many orders of magnitude outside our common experience both large and small that are very surprising and wouldn't have been easily deduced from ordinary human scale experiences.

Just my two cents,

Daniel
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S Kyle, modified 11 Years ago at 8/21/10 9:55 AM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/21/10 9:55 AM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 26 Join Date: 7/25/10 Recent Posts
steve g:
Im just wondering if anyone here practising AF has an opinion on richards claim that the universe is infinite and eternal? How can he possibly know this? Does anyone here hold to this view? I know a PCE is wonderful but it is still a subjective experience none the less. How can it possibly give any indication of the character and origin of the physical universe. Most respected scientists who have devoted their life to the study of physics claim that the universe had a beginning in the big bang and will have an end (big crunch?) Richards claim seems to be just another belief claim to me...

Could anyone shed light on this?


I have absolutely no opinion about Richard's claims on the universe. Nor do I have an opinion about respected physicist's claims about the universe either.

For me, the practice of actualism is outside of "truth." For once again, the self is the intellectualizing force that seeks to either embrace or disqualify an object on the basis of a valid or invalid argument. There is a location, outside of either valid or invalid, where one can live in relation to practice.

In the context of Buddhism, I never really believed in reincarnation in the way the suttas talk about it. I believed in it scientifically--in that, matter is neither destroyed or created, the elements that we are will break down to become something else as we decompose--but did I believe I was Marie Antionette before or a goat herder or a blacksmith or whatever, that some invisible part of me was moving body to body? No. Furthermore, did I dismiss Buddhism because Ananda had to beg to the Buddha to admit women to the sangha? No.

Why not? In Buddhism too, there is a place beyond "right" and "wrong" ideology; there is something much more important to the teaching than the argumentative details. And that, of course, is the practice. The practice of meditation, regardless of whether one holds the ecumenical view on reincarnation or one approves or disapproves of the historical gender practices in Buddhism, is invaluable and life-changing. This I can verify firsthand and for a fact.

Likewise with actualism, I have not really put emphasis on examining every claim Richard makes about the universe or anything else related to matters not relevant to securing actual freedom...rather, I've put my emphasis on trying to remain in PCE's for as long as possible. I actually do not care at all about either the beginning or the end of the universe; I do, however, see the suffering everywhere that is going on, right here and right now , and I want to secure an actual freedom, as soon as possible, so as to be harmless and happy, and to contribute to peace, here on earth, at this moment, in this universe as it currently exists.

Is that too naive? Well, for those who think yes--I ask you, what is at stake? What are the consequences of practicing actualism that suggest harm?

The beauty of actualism is that it doesn't ask you to go on a hunger strike for peace, or the go to war for peace, or to torture yourself in small and large ways for peace; it doesn't suggest that to be happy that you must have discipline of body; it doesn't require you to believe any particular thing about gender, sexual identity, dietary restriction, the consumption of alcohol... (and I suppose here I should say that I am a vegetarian and I do not drink; actualism also doesn't require you to have the opposite view to the crude renunciate ideal i deconstruct elsewhere about those things, either.) you musn't believe in one true savior in order to get to heaven; you needn't produce aversion to your perhaps fortunate life circumstances nor must you blindly accept unsatisfactory life circumstances, though if you become actually free you will cease to see your circumstances in this polarized way.

What I can tell you, with my limited experience of actualism, is this: here, in the actual world, whatever I think about any given idea or concept, pales in importance to the fact that I am this body, right here, right now. There is no belief there, nothing to add, or embellish. And none of that is necessary because right now everything is excellent, perfect, a complete experience all its own. Right now I don't "know" anything much except that it is a lovely gray day outside, gray like a cat's eyes, shiny and wet...and the air is cool, so the windows are open, no A/C. I can smell the lingering wetness from the early morning rain...and everything is green, heavy, quiet, and here I am, hearing the whir of the fan, a distant barking dog, the occasional car drive by...

For anyone who has sat one of Goenka's courses, there is an apt story here. It's the story of the stone in the kheer. A mother prepares a lovely dessert for her son, kheer, and in it, he sees (or thinks he sees) a stone. His mother tells him it is not a stone, but rather a cardamon. He refuses to believe her; so she takes out the cardamon and he then eats the rest of the kheer. Goenka uses this story to argue that even if one doesn't "believe" everything about the teaching, one can do the practice of meditation and derive benefit from it.

I think that argument applies here as well; one need not have any relationship to ideology to practice actualism. One only needs to work on living in the actual world, as much as possible, regardless of whatever one "believes" about anything. I am not saying that any theory of the universe is either right or wrong; instead, I'm suggesting that figuring that out is really beside the point if what you want is to be happy.

So here is a question for you: do you need to understand the nature of the universe, exactly when it began and how, and if and when it will end, and how, in order to be happy or in order to move towards a practice that might enable you to become happy and harmless? And, to what extent are you interested in harmlessness?
mico mico, modified 11 Years ago at 8/21/10 12:22 PM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/21/10 12:22 PM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 79 Join Date: 8/13/10 Recent Posts
Guilherme  :
I then mentioned the saying "fiddling whilst Rome burns".

Foxconn manufacturing company in China is said to have installed safety nets to reduce the number of workers they lose to suicide:



The company was kind enough to bring in hired monks to see if that would help.

more

Kinda puts things into perspective.
ManZ A, modified 11 Years ago at 8/21/10 4:04 PM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/21/10 4:04 PM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 105 Join Date: 1/12/10 Recent Posts
S Kyle:
steve g:
Im just wondering if anyone here practising AF has an opinion on richards claim that the universe is infinite and eternal? How can he possibly know this? Does anyone here hold to this view? I know a PCE is wonderful but it is still a subjective experience none the less. How can it possibly give any indication of the character and origin of the physical universe. Most respected scientists who have devoted their life to the study of physics claim that the universe had a beginning in the big bang and will have an end (big crunch?) Richards claim seems to be just another belief claim to me...

Could anyone shed light on this?


I have absolutely no opinion about Richard's claims on the universe. Nor do I have an opinion about respected physicist's claims about the universe either.

For me, the practice of actualism is outside of "truth." For once again, the self is the intellectualizing force that seeks to either embrace or disqualify an object on the basis of a valid or invalid argument. There is a location, outside of either valid or invalid, where one can live in relation to practice.

In the context of Buddhism, I never really believed in reincarnation in the way the suttas talk about it. I believed in it scientifically--in that, matter is neither destroyed or created, the elements that we are will break down to become something else as we decompose--but did I believe I was Marie Antionette before or a goat herder or a blacksmith or whatever, that some invisible part of me was moving body to body? No. Furthermore, did I dismiss Buddhism because Ananda had to beg to the Buddha to admit women to the sangha? No.

Why not? In Buddhism too, there is a place beyond "right" and "wrong" ideology; there is something much more important to the teaching than the argumentative details. And that, of course, is the practice. The practice of meditation, regardless of whether one holds the ecumenical view on reincarnation or one approves or disapproves of the historical gender practices in Buddhism, is invaluable and life-changing. This I can verify firsthand and for a fact.

Likewise with actualism, I have not really put emphasis on examining every claim Richard makes about the universe or anything else related to matters not relevant to securing actual freedom...rather, I've put my emphasis on trying to remain in PCE's for as long as possible. I actually do not care at all about either the beginning or the end of the universe; I do, however, see the suffering everywhere that is going on, right here and right now , and I want to secure an actual freedom, as soon as possible, so as to be harmless and happy, and to contribute to peace, here on earth, at this moment, in this universe as it currently exists.

Is that too naive? Well, for those who think yes--I ask you, what is at stake? What are the consequences of practicing actualism that suggest harm?

The beauty of actualism is that it doesn't ask you to go on a hunger strike for peace, or the go to war for peace, or to torture yourself in small and large ways for peace; it doesn't suggest that to be happy that you must have discipline of body; it doesn't require you to believe any particular thing about gender, sexual identity, dietary restriction, the consumption of alcohol... (and I suppose here I should say that I am a vegetarian and I do not drink; actualism also doesn't require you to have the opposite view to the crude renunciate ideal i deconstruct elsewhere about those things, either.) you musn't believe in one true savior in order to get to heaven; you needn't produce aversion to your perhaps fortunate life circumstances nor must you blindly accept unsatisfactory life circumstances, though if you become actually free you will cease to see your circumstances in this polarized way.

What I can tell you, with my limited experience of actualism, is this: here, in the actual world, whatever I think about any given idea or concept, pales in importance to the fact that I am this body, right here, right now. There is no belief there, nothing to add, or embellish. And none of that is necessary because right now everything is excellent, perfect, a complete experience all its own. Right now I don't "know" anything much except that it is a lovely gray day outside, gray like a cat's eyes, shiny and wet...and the air is cool, so the windows are open, no A/C. I can smell the lingering wetness from the early morning rain...and everything is green, heavy, quiet, and here I am, hearing the whir of the fan, a distant barking dog, the occasional car drive by...

For anyone who has sat one of Goenka's courses, there is an apt story here. It's the story of the stone in the kheer. A mother prepares a lovely dessert for her son, kheer, and in it, he sees (or thinks he sees) a stone. His mother tells him it is not a stone, but rather a cardamon. He refuses to believe her; so she takes out the cardamon and he then eats the rest of the kheer. Goenka uses this story to argue that even if one doesn't "believe" everything about the teaching, one can do the practice of meditation and derive benefit from it.

I think that argument applies here as well; one need not have any relationship to ideology to practice actualism. One only needs to work on living in the actual world, as much as possible, regardless of whatever one "believes" about anything. I am not saying that any theory of the universe is either right or wrong; instead, I'm suggesting that figuring that out is really beside the point if what you want is to be happy.

So here is a question for you: do you need to understand the nature of the universe, exactly when it began and how, and if and when it will end, and how, in order to be happy or in order to move towards a practice that might enable you to become happy and harmless? And, to what extent are you interested in harmlessness?


Wonderful post! I feel the same way. The end of suffering (aka being happy and harmless) comes foremost. What you say reminds me of the simile of the poison arrow by the Buddha. emoticon

A question to Tarin, Trent, Daniel, and anyone who has experienced a PCE. Yes, yes I should do this myself and see what it's like (which I will), but I also feel like asking. From what Daniel says, it seems that you do not get any sort of experiential knowledge that the universe is infinite and time is eternal (or however it is) and that you also can't. I don't know maybe Tarin and Trent feel otherwise, do you guys share this view with Richard? Do you believe you have an experiential understanding (that the universe is infinite and eternal)? So do you think that Richard is only inferring from his experience of the actual that the universe is infinite and whatnot? Do you think this is also the case with emptiness? You know, how ultimate reality is emptiness and all that.

Hope to hear clarifications and comments.
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Steph , modified 11 Years ago at 8/21/10 5:26 PM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/21/10 5:15 PM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 669 Join Date: 3/24/10 Recent Posts
steve g:
Im just wondering if anyone here practising AF has an opinion on richards claim that the universe is infinite and eternal? How can he possibly know this? Does anyone here hold to this view? I know a PCE is wonderful but it is still a subjective experience none the less. How can it possibly give any indication of the character and origin of the physical universe. Most respected scientists who have devoted their life to the study of physics claim that the universe had a beginning in the big bang and will have an end (big crunch?) Richards claim seems to be just another belief claim to me...

Could anyone shed light on this?


Not sure Richard meant that a PCE gives an indication of the character of the physical universe on a level where every nut and bolt of the inner workings of life as we know it is all of a sudden just understood. More along the lines of just experiencing things as they occur without the unnecessary bulk of qualifying, identifying, or emoting to it in any way. Stefanie's description of the rainy day she was experiencing is a good example. Reading her description, it seems she knew it was raining and enjoyed the rain for its presentness and that's all. With regards to wondering if a PCE is supposed to be an indication of the true origin of the universe... as far as I understand of them... PCE's are a mode of experiencing what is actually happening right now, and the origin of the universe is not happening right now.
Ram Ravan, modified 11 Years ago at 8/21/10 10:06 PM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/21/10 10:06 PM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 9 Join Date: 8/12/10 Recent Posts
yana pets:
Not sure Richard meant that a PCE gives an indication of the character of the physical universe on a level where every nut and bolt of the inner workings of life as we know it is all of a sudden just understood ..<snip>.



Hmm... From the AF site

RESPONDENT: 3) Could I have a PCE and it still not be completely evident that the universe is infinite/ eternal?

RICHARD: It could indeed be not completely evident ... yes. I have the distinct advantage of the on-going experiencing of infinitude and can easily know for sure each moment again when asked ... as I sit here now typing these words I am this material universe experiencing itself as an apperceptive human being: as such it is stunningly aware of its infinitude.

And this is truly wondrous.

<snip> ... ) Precisely, how is the universe known to be infinite/ eternal?

RICHARD: Put simply: if the infinitude directly experienced in a pure consciousness experience is not the infinitude of the universe then what is it the infinitude of ... a god (using the word ‘god’ in the ‘ground of being’ sense)?

In other words if it be not a physical infinitude then it falls into the realm of being a metaphysical infinitude

<snip> ...RESPONDENT: With regard to attaining ‘actual freedom from the human condition’, does it matter whether the universe is infinite and eternal?

RICHARD: It is infinitude which makes such a freedom possible ... only that which has no opposite is peerless (hence perfect).

RESPONDENT: If time, space and matter had begun with a ‘Big Bang’, would PCE’s still be possible?

RICHARD: No ... the peerless perfection of the pure consciousness experience (PCE) would not exist.

RESPONDENT: Would ‘actual freedom’ from the human condition still be possible?

RICHARD: No ... the pristine purity of this actual world would not exist.
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Jeff Grove, modified 11 Years ago at 8/22/10 8:59 PM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/22/10 8:59 PM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 310 Join Date: 8/24/09 Recent Posts
infinite - unbounded or unlimited; boundless
eternal - having an infinite duration

Its like experiencing life between 2 movements and in that stillness there is no change, no interior. No feeler, no hearer, no thinker only the known universe

From this ongoing experience you could conclude - That which does not change is infinite and eternal.

Its interesting to note that if the universe was infinite and eternal there are a series of (logical) conclusions that could be drawn regarding intrinsic nature that is self existing and inherent, a permanent substratum underlying the world of experience. You can start to see where the many views stem from
Change A, modified 11 Years ago at 8/22/10 10:17 PM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/22/10 10:17 PM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 791 Join Date: 5/24/10 Recent Posts
Jeff Grove:
infinite - unbounded or unlimited; boundless
eternal - having an infinite duration

Its like experiencing life between 2 movements and in that stillness there is no change, no interior. No feeler, no hearer, no thinker only the known universe

From this ongoing experience you could conclude - That which does not change is infinite and eternal.

Its interesting to note that if the universe was infinite and eternal there are a series of (logical) conclusions that could be drawn regarding intrinsic nature that is self existing and inherent, a permanent substratum underlying the world of experience. You can start to see where the many views stem from


Can an actually free person also see that it is from this that their view is stemming from? Or is the attachment with sensations so great that it clouds the vision to see this?
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Jeff Grove, modified 11 Years ago at 8/22/10 10:56 PM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/22/10 10:50 PM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 310 Join Date: 8/24/09 Recent Posts
Jeff - The difference in the two statements is that one is experiential (infinite and eternal) and the other (intrinsic nature) followed a logical conclusion.

You could also question the introducing of limits (views) into something that is said to be infinite and eternal

Aman. A - Can an actually free person also see that it is from this that their view is stemming from?

Jeff - I wasn't implying this was an actually free persons view.

Aman. A - Or is the attachment with sensations so great that it clouds the vision to see this?


Jeff - isn't this contradictory to being Actually Free
Change A, modified 11 Years ago at 8/22/10 11:19 PM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/22/10 11:19 PM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 791 Join Date: 5/24/10 Recent Posts
Jeff Grove:
Jeff - The difference in the two statements is that one is experiential (infinite and eternal) and the other (intrinsic nature) followed a logical conclusion.

You could also question the introducing of limits (views) into something that is said to be infinite and eternal

Aman. A - Can an actually free person also see that it is from this that their view is stemming from?

Jeff - I wasn't implying this was an actually free persons view.


From what I understand after reading what is written by people claiming actual freedom, it appears that they don't think that this is where their view is stemming from. It seems that they take it as a given absolute reality of the universe. They don't consider it a subjective view because of their experience of universe as infinite and eternal.

Jeff Grove:


Aman. A - Or is the attachment with sensations so great that it clouds the vision to see this?

Jeff - isn't this contradictory to being Actually Free


My subjective view is that is what limits Actual Freedom. Sensations place a limit. Depending upon how one defines actual freedom, it will or will not be contradictory. If someone believes that this is the end of the road, then it is for that person though there may be something more to experience.
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Jeff Grove, modified 11 Years ago at 8/23/10 1:25 AM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/23/10 12:36 AM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 310 Join Date: 8/24/09 Recent Posts
Aman. A - "My subjective view is that is what limits Actual Freedom"

Jeff - Good investigate how it limits

Aman. A - "Sensations place a limit."

Jeff - Look at the sense of identity that believes this

Aman. A - "Depending upon how one defines actual freedom, it will or will not be contradictory"

Jeff - Actual freedom is a way of being here now in the world as it actually is stripped of the super-imposed psychic entity within the body.

Aman. A - "If someone believes that this is the end of the road, then it is for that person though there may be something more to experience."

Jeff - The definition of Actual Freedom is very precise.

Further a PCE is experiencing without the superimposed self. Persistence in practicing HAIETMOBO leads to out of control experience when there is no more affective energy/movement interrupting the PCE.

This can be verified experientially. Pure intent is required.

There is no "I" in experience
Change A, modified 11 Years ago at 8/23/10 8:58 AM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/23/10 8:58 AM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 791 Join Date: 5/24/10 Recent Posts
You didn't say anything about this:

"From what I understand after reading what is written by people claiming actual freedom, it appears that they don't think that this is where their view is stemming from. It seems that they take it as a given absolute reality of the universe. They don't consider it a subjective view because of their experience of universe as infinite and eternal."
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S Kyle, modified 11 Years ago at 8/23/10 11:00 AM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/23/10 11:00 AM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 26 Join Date: 7/25/10 Recent Posts
Aman A.:


Can an actually free person also see that it is from this that their view is stemming from? Or is the attachment with sensations so great that it clouds the vision to see this?


There is no "attachment" to "sensations" because there is no one to attach. One is the body happening, right here, right now.
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Jeff Grove, modified 11 Years ago at 8/24/10 2:25 AM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/23/10 5:48 PM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 310 Join Date: 8/24/09 Recent Posts
Aman A.:
You didn't say anything about this:

"From what I understand after reading what is written by people claiming actual freedom, it appears that they don't think that this is where their view is stemming from. It seems that they take it as a given absolute reality of the universe. They don't consider it a subjective view because of their experience of universe as infinite and eternal."





Hi,

What "I" read into what is written by people claiming actual freedom is likely cloaded by judgement or self sabatoge. "It appears" should be a good indicator of where this view is stemming from.

Thanks
Jeff
Luciano de Noeme Imoto, modified 11 Years ago at 8/24/10 11:19 AM
Created 11 Years ago at 8/24/10 11:19 AM

RE: AF cosmology

Posts: 75 Join Date: 6/2/10 Recent Posts
Hi,
Your questions in relation to Richard and actualism theory have only one answer. However, any answers from members of the AFT, Tarin and Trent or Richard himself would be welcome.
For the materialists or spiritualists on duty what exactly is the relationship between inherited and learnt behaviour?
A clue: any conditioned behaviour and belief needs something in the root to be first conditioned...
And if you are also mistaking PCE with some PGE*, you are losing your most precious treasures in life.
The actualism theory reconcile reliable evidence from neurobiology and physiology on human behaviour and pre-natal brain development (http://actualfreedom.com.au/introduction/actualfreedom1.htm)
Sincerely,
Luciano

* http://groups.yahoo.com/group/actualfreedom/message/9741