Re: [KC-Midtown-FreeThinkers] Re: Are you really there, here, anywhere?

From: Kansas City Skeptic
Sent on: Monday, April 15, 2013 10:17 AM
We are here because we are not there and we can empirically prove "we are not there" . There are "many more theres, than heres" and this is quite obvious :o) A rather interesting question to ask knowing that "here" is "not there" and "there is only one here" in our way of looking at things and with the knowledge we have today. If we were able to compute with our brains on another level (quantum mechanically for example) or maybe view the world in ultra violet or infra red (a stark difference from the little tiny band of light waves we have evolved to see) we maybe already through a different way of looking at nature and new scientific paradigms understand things in a different way and who knows we'd be here and there or maybe in multiple locations at the same time if we were able to clone our bodies and consciousness or just would have become beings of pure energy (if its possible at all). Michio Kaku at some point talked about beings who could live within stars and derive energy directly from them in the most efficient manner. Or perhaps, dark energy could be harvested in a way that the pure energy beings can be traveling at speed of light from one star to another (like pioneers or pilgrims and take conscious risks of exploration in case other stars are taken up by other beings or tribes or even other civilizations?. Don't know about this but a fascinating concept. Once an energy being is copied and sent off to different locations, you can ensure that at least one of them is able to survive. Imagine if you can copy a whole "Interstellar MayFlower" ship of pure energy beings and send them off together? - biologists, nuclear physicists, cosmologists, chemists, etc? Maybe by then one being will be able to have all this scientific data in digital form traveling along with his cosmic consciousness?

One thing is clear - there and here in this case will lose relevance as we undersand now. I am reading "This Will Change Everything.it seems that most neuroscientists think that brains will be mapped (already happening), digitized, simulated and uploaded, thus opening a new era in AI and also redefine what is to be human.

Till we do, asking questions like "why are we here?"?  are an interesting yet pointless exercise. Through empirical observation and repetition we get the knowledge that is the only answer under today's conditions we know.



On Mon, Apr 15, 2013 at 9:31 AM, Bret Bolton <bretbolton@yahoo.com> wrote:
Re: Are you really there, here, anywhere?
 
The question is not whether "you" are localized in space/time or not, the question is: who or what is asking the question to begin with?
This is an eastern, philosophical perspective which is finally beginning to be understood and explained, here in the west, through discoveries in neuroscience. The professor of psychology at Rockhurst, William Stugill, seemed to touch on this idea briefly at the Community of Reason event, "The Nature of Human Nature", yesterday (04/14/13) at UMKC. Also, apparently, Sam Harris' next book will delve into this subject matter too. Another good book, which came out a couple of years ago is "Ego: The Fall of the Twin Towers and the Rise of an Enlightened Humanity". I will leave you with a quote from Albert Einstein which, I think, encapsulates the discussion quite eloquently.
 
"A human being is a part of the whole, called by us, "Universe," a part
limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and
feelings as something separated from the rest -- a kind of optical delusion
of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting
us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to
us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our
circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of
nature in its beauty. Nobody is able to achieve this completely, but the
striving for such achievement is in itself a part of the liberation and a
foundation for inner security."
 
Bret
 




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