The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby Josef » Sun Jan 15, 2012 9:19 am

catmoon wrote:
PadmaVonSamba wrote:None of the parts of the brain attain enlightenment either.


Then what attains enlightenment?

Nothing.

So you think maybe I should ditch the whole idea?
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby Sönam » Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:48 am

what idea?
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby catmoon » Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:58 am

Sönam wrote:what idea?


Huh? What? There was an idea? Hm. This conversation is goin nowhere fast. :rolling:
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Sun Jan 15, 2012 5:12 pm

Nangwa wrote:
catmoon wrote:
PadmaVonSamba wrote:None of the parts of the brain attain enlightenment either.


Then what attains enlightenment?

Nothing.

So you think maybe I should ditch the whole idea?


Probably. :rolling:
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby padma norbu » Sun Jan 15, 2012 6:30 pm

:: kills self ::

Seriously, though, great last few pages. I particularly like the breakdown of the brain constituents and molecular comparison to a rock. I've had a sense of vague unease at times when others talk about sentient beings and vegetarianism and the idea is always raised that plants are not sentient beings. I always think of the famous experiments which show some sort of reaction from plants in response to negative or positive actions in their presence (not even necessarily to the plant itself). The plants don't have a brain, but the mind isn't found in the brain. In relation to what I've learned and pondered these past couple days about energy, there is something interesting yet unknowable here...
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby Malcolm » Sun Jan 15, 2012 6:44 pm

padma norbu wrote::: kills self ::

Seriously, though, great last few pages. I particularly like the breakdown of the brain constituents and molecular comparison to a rock. I've had a sense of vague unease at times when others talk about sentient beings and vegetarianism and the idea is always raised that plants are not sentient beings. I always think of the famous experiments which show some sort of reaction from plants in response to negative or positive actions in their presence (not even necessarily to the plant itself). The plants don't have a brain, but the mind isn't found in the brain. In relation to what I've learned and pondered these past couple days about energy, there is something interesting yet unknowable here...



All living things have tsal. But while plants have a hormonal system, they lack a neural system, and while the mind is not reducible to the brain and neural system, in any thing we define as sentient there is always at least a rudimentary neural network. Also, information transfer in plants depends on hormones, while information transfer in animals depends on neurons i.e. when a plant is attacked, it communicates that by releasing hormones, when an animal is attacked, it fire neurons.
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby Josef » Sun Jan 15, 2012 6:47 pm

Nangwa wrote:So you think maybe I should ditch the whole idea?


Not quite sure what happened here but I am pretty sure I didnt put this part in my post.
It also won't let me edit my original post.
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby padma norbu » Sun Jan 15, 2012 7:26 pm

Nangwa wrote:
Nangwa wrote:So you think maybe I should ditch the whole idea?


Not quite sure what happened here but I am pretty sure I didnt put this part in my post.
It also won't let me edit my original post.


See what happens when you drink? :smile:
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby padma norbu » Sun Jan 15, 2012 7:28 pm

Namdrol wrote:
padma norbu wrote::: kills self ::

Seriously, though, great last few pages. I particularly like the breakdown of the brain constituents and molecular comparison to a rock. I've had a sense of vague unease at times when others talk about sentient beings and vegetarianism and the idea is always raised that plants are not sentient beings. I always think of the famous experiments which show some sort of reaction from plants in response to negative or positive actions in their presence (not even necessarily to the plant itself). The plants don't have a brain, but the mind isn't found in the brain. In relation to what I've learned and pondered these past couple days about energy, there is something interesting yet unknowable here...



All living things have tsal. But while plants have a hormonal system, they lack a neural system, and while the mind is not reducible to the brain and neural system, in any thing we define as sentient there is always at least a rudimentary neural network. Also, information transfer in plants depends on hormones, while information transfer in animals depends on neurons i.e. when a plant is attacked, it communicates that by releasing hormones, when an animal is attacked, it fire neurons.


Thanks. I just went for a walk and was thinking about this subject the whole time. I was thinking about Venus Flytraps and such.

This is an interesting video: http://www.ted.com/talks/stefano_mancus ... gence.html
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby Mr. G » Sun Jan 15, 2012 7:30 pm

+1 for Ted Talks :thumbsup:
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Sun Jan 15, 2012 8:13 pm

Possibly one of the most common thing you hear in Buddhist teachings is that "all beings want to be happy and free from suffering". It's the why and wherefore end-all explanation for everything we do. And in some way, although "happy" and "suffering" may not be the most accurate terms when applied to all life forms, the attraction to survival and perpetuation extends to all living things somehow.

Moths are attracted by light. Flies dodge a rolled-up newspaper. Even some tiny organisms are attracted by light or heat. Flowers face the Sun, and roots extend towards water. Whether this is by choice, instinct, or chemical reaction, there is a tendency among almost all living things to survive either individually or as a cluster.

At some point, this tendency in fact becomes a quest for happiness, to be able to rest peacefully without fear of being eaten alive, or to be wealthy or to become enlightened. All beings constantly struggle toward this goal. That struggle is termed "dukkha" and that is why the first noble truth states that existence is suffering. And because the struggle for happiness is fundamental to life, it is sometimes said that all beings are essentially buddhas, and will attain buddhahood someday.

All paths are paths toward happiness, although it might be argued by a buddhist that most paths never get all the way there. Even people who do terrible things do so precisely because they think doing so is going to benefit them.

While it might be argued that a moth doesn't intentionally think, "hey, bashing myself against an outdoor lightbulb all night long will bring me the happiness I seek", humans do conceptualize a "me" engaging in one activity or another.

As I understand things, it is actually this illusion of "me" which allows one to question one's existence and study dharma in the first place, and to be mindful of one's actions of body, speech and mind. I think all visible animals have some sort of brain. But if having a brain were all that was needed to be perfectly free from suffering, then why wouldn't beings be perfectly free from suffering? Why seek food and warmth?
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Sun Jan 15, 2012 8:21 pm

Namdrol wrote:But while plants have a hormonal system, they lack a neural system, and while the mind is not reducible to the brain and neural system, in any thing we define as sentient there is always at least a rudimentary neural network. Also, information transfer in plants depends on hormones, while information transfer in animals depends on neurons i.e. when a plant is attacked, it communicates that by releasing hormones, when an animal is attacked, it fire neurons.


And when a plant hugs another plant...
(from my garden)
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby padma norbu » Sun Jan 15, 2012 8:27 pm

PadmaVonSamba wrote:But if having a brain were all that was needed to be perfectly free from suffering, then why wouldn't beings be perfectly free from suffering? Why seek food and warmth?
.


Also, something I just remembered regarding Namdrol's point of neurons firing (sentient beings) vs. hormones (plants) is that all forms of Buddhism I am aware of consider various spirit beings as sentient beings. Pretas (ghosts) and demons, etc. have less of a body than plants (from the human perspective of being able to examine and compare, anyway). I suppose in deciding about the sentience of beings, we must defer to whatever the Buddhas have said.

I have moved on from Ted Talks about plants and am now watching the fascinating true story of the possessed boy that the Exorcist was based on and considering how it is that a demon might interact with a physical human organism... I don't believe such a spirit creature would have any neural network that we could identify...
Part 1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dDgoNlOn-hk
Part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gUVm8iK8nT4
Part 3: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mj1j0Us1CUc
Part 4: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LZ-0lPNIBC4

...and I am also considering the motivation of the possessor. As has been said numerous times in Buddhist lectures, even those behaving badly are doing so because they believe they will be getting something out of it. I wonder if demons are frustrated beings who know how crazy the universe really is.
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby padma norbu » Sun Jan 15, 2012 8:30 pm

PadmaVonSamba wrote:And when a plant hugs another plant...
(from my garden)


That's nothing. I've seen trees outright getting it on:

http://cdn.mydailyflog.com/mdf_images/3 ... 010_25.jpg
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby asunthatneversets » Sun Jan 15, 2012 9:37 pm

padma norbu wrote::: kills self ::

Seriously, though, great last few pages. I particularly like the breakdown of the brain constituents and molecular comparison to a rock. I've had a sense of vague unease at times when others talk about sentient beings and vegetarianism and the idea is always raised that plants are not sentient beings. I always think of the famous experiments which show some sort of reaction from plants in response to negative or positive actions in their presence (not even necessarily to the plant itself). The plants don't have a brain, but the mind isn't found in the brain. In relation to what I've learned and pondered these past couple days about energy, there is something interesting yet unknowable here...


That documentary is called "The Secret Life Of Plants" by the way... it's on youtube... it all started with a polygraph specialist who decided to experiment with a plant which was sitting at his desk by hooking it up to a polygraph machine to see what would happen.... and nothing happened... until he looked at the plant and thought "I'm going to light you on fire" and the polygraph machine went crazy... so he did a bunch of other experiments to follow up.

Another one he had a plant next to a contraption where there was brine shrimp in a cup of normal water right above a container of boiling water and he had a timer on the cup of brine shrimp so that it would dump them out into the boiling water. He hooked the plant up to the polygraph machine and left the building and drove a few miles away, he wanted to make sure he wasn't influencing the machine somehow. And sure enough when the cup poured out and all the brine shrimp died the polygraph machine went off again. Plant was upset!
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby Malcolm » Sun Jan 15, 2012 9:45 pm

padma norbu wrote:
PadmaVonSamba wrote:But if having a brain were all that was needed to be perfectly free from suffering, then why wouldn't beings be perfectly free from suffering? Why seek food and warmth?
.


Also, something I just remembered regarding Namdrol's point of neurons firing (sentient beings) vs. hormones (plants) is that all forms of Buddhism I am aware of consider various spirit beings as sentient beings. Pretas (ghosts) and demons, etc. have less of a body than plants (from the human perspective of being able to examine and compare, anyway). I suppose in deciding about the sentience of beings, we must defer to whatever the Buddhas have said.



I was talking about sentient beings with gross physical bodies.
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby asunthatneversets » Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:04 pm

padma norbu wrote:
PadmaVonSamba wrote:But if having a brain were all that was needed to be perfectly free from suffering, then why wouldn't beings be perfectly free from suffering? Why seek food and warmth?
.


Also, something I just remembered regarding Namdrol's point of neurons firing (sentient beings) vs. hormones (plants) is that all forms of Buddhism I am aware of consider various spirit beings as sentient beings. Pretas (ghosts) and demons, etc. have less of a body than plants (from the human perspective of being able to examine and compare, anyway). I suppose in deciding about the sentience of beings, we must defer to whatever the Buddhas have said.

I have moved on from Ted Talks about plants and am now watching the fascinating true story of the possessed boy that the Exorcist was based on and considering how it is that a demon might interact with a physical human organism... I don't believe such a spirit creature would have any neural network that we could identify...
Part 1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dDgoNlOn-hk
Part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gUVm8iK8nT4
Part 3: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mj1j0Us1CUc
Part 4: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LZ-0lPNIBC4

...and I am also considering the motivation of the possessor. As has been said numerous times in Buddhist lectures, even those behaving badly are doing so because they believe they will be getting something out of it. I wonder if demons are frustrated beings who know how crazy the universe really is.


I just saw this on tv the other day... It's a show about a team consisting of a woman(who supposedly can pick up on subtle residual energies and see ghosts and other entities) and a retired Police detective who do paranormal investigations.

But in this show there's an entity living in the basement of this building which she said would equate to a "demon" pretty much, and it seems to have influenced a murder in the past. She goes into the basement and this thing interacts with her and she describes it... she says these entities are extremely ancient and some are very powerful but they're extremely rare, they can take on any form and influence people to do things and they feed off negativity.

She also picks up on the residual energy left by the killer in the upstairs section of the building, and the killer is actually still alive in prison a few miles away. She says it's rare to pick up on energy imprints from the living but if an extremely emotional and powerful event took place in a certain area it leaves an energetic imprint. They interview the killer as well and he said that the killing was provoked but overall unplanned and spontaneous which made the woman hypothesize that he may have been under the influence of this entity.

At 7:30 she starts to talk about the demonic entity in this video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aiRnxW-8qb4

Who knows if it's true... seems to be backed up with compelling evidence... your post made me think of it though in regards to a demonic type entity influencing people.
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby padma norbu » Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:13 pm

asunthatneversets wrote:That documentary is called "The Secret Life Of Plants" by the way... it's on youtube...


I didn't mention a specific documentary, but yes I was referring to Cleve Backster and stuff like that... I think Cleve Backster believed in a something like a field of consciousness that pervaded all parts of a field of awareness or something like that. In the video below, he's measuring plant and bacteria reactions to stuff happening across the room. He called his theory "primary perception" and what it amounts to seems like a kind of "plant ESP," but of course the reactions of these plants are only observed with a special machine within a specific field of observation, so if there is anything to the theory, then human observation would have to be part of the phenomena in some way. I suppose it is similar in a way to the double slit experiment in which something appears as either a particle or a wave depending on how it is observed. Certainly, somewhere outside the room of the plant experiments not too far off other plants and yogurt cultures are being mutilated and tortured by lawn mowers and snackers enjoying some yogurt or milk or whatever. Perhaps the mind of human beings affects all living things in the general vicinity of its perception.

phpBB [video]


This guy in the Ted talk seems more scientific about it, though (although Cleve Backster was highly regarded by some pretty powerful people; he taught hypnosis techniques to the CIA, after all):
http://www.wired.com/science/discoverie ... telligence
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby padma norbu » Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:17 pm

asunthatneversets wrote:Who knows if it's true... seems to be backed up with compelling evidence... your post made me think of it though in regards to a demonic type entity influencing people.


I am not very skeptical about demons. I myself and people I trust very much have had first-hand experience with these beings. I just don't exactly understand what they are. Like, ARE they really afraid of Christian beings (God, Jesus, angels, saints)? They often appear to be. But, perhaps they are just messing with us or perhaps they are exteriorized manifestations of human beings' fears, etc. Weird stuff. But, invisible forces definitely do move furniture around for some strange reason. Pretty sure my cousin is "schizophrenic" right now but actually just being tormented by demons, btw. Couple books you could read on the subject are "Delog" by Chagdud Tulku Rinpoche's mother, who traveled in the bardos aided by White Tara, and the work of Emanuel Swedenborg.
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Re: The individual in dzogchen, independence, dharmakaya

Postby Paul » Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:40 pm

One thing worth remembering is that although Buddhism doesn't classify plants as sentient beings, there are spirits that live in plants, like some form of wood nymph.

The whole plant ESP (if real) does not definitively prove that a plant per-se is a sentient being. Just something I thought I'd throw out there...
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