First: thank you! Thank you for facing the issues.
To be rational; according to "An Introduction To Reasoning" (one of the authors is Stephen Toulmin); is "to be open to argument".
Your response indicates you are open to argument, so rational.
A word about psychiatry: the evidence collected by professor of psychiatry, Thomas Szasz; against psychiatry, is major and has not been refuted.
I suggest you explore www.szasz.com in more depth. Or read: "Insanity, The Idea and Its Consequences". Having come across Thomas Szasz's writings many years ago, I quickly recognised the truth of what he was saying.
Example: genuine physical illnesses involve genuine pathophysiology. Till quite recently; textbooks on pathophysiology ignored the alleged illnesses of psychiatry.
Why? Because they were metaphorical diseases, figments of the desire of some people to deny the existence of disputes about behaviour and values.
Psychiatric propoganda has been so pervasive in recent years, that now you do find the fake-illnesses of psychiatry appearing in some patho-physiology books. But just look at them!
They make very different reading to the genuine physical entries. It is like finding "astrology" entries in a textbook on astronomy.
Paul, who you have met on this forum; accepted my arguments on the inherent emptiness of psychiatry when I debated these issues with Yanniru. You see, if behaviours that certain people disaprove of (and misunderstand) are really physical defects in the disaproved-of-person; where is the evidence?
If there were real substance to the medical claims of psychiatry, its alleged illnesses would, for example, be part of neurology. The reality is, that any dissaproved-of behaviour these days might be pronounced as an "illness"; and any approved-of coercion or chemical cosmetic asault on a person might be labelled as a "therapy".
The scale of the force and fraud perpetrated in the name of "mental health" is appalling. Expecially appalling is the climate of abdication of personal responsibility for one's own behaviour, a cop-out that "mental health" ideology promotes.
Did you know that Benjamin Rush, the 'father' of American psychiatry; is recorded as thinking that
the black-man was sick and needed to be cured of his blackness?
Did you know that an illness, drapetomania, was invented to describe Negro slaves who tried to run away? And that the "cure" for this alleged physical illness (that supposedly made slaves try to run away); was inhalation and exhalation of good fresh air in hard labour in service of the white man?
Why be a slave, Aurino? Why not take responsibility for your conduct? I think that the strategic reason why people believe in mental health is FEAR. They are afraid of what they might find if they dig deep in themselves.
This is understandable.
As babies and children, they have been distracted from being truly conscious of themselves. They have been pressured into putting on act, an act for society.
Do you not see that people may be in the same situation as: an Iraqi or North Korean or other citizen of dictatorship; brain-washed into submisive fear of the truth?
But the truth will make you free. It is the lies you need be wary of. And a key indicator that lies are around is: censorship. This attitude of "not healthy to dig deep into ultimate reality": sure, it is NOT healthy, when health is defined as "running over the cliff of death and unconsciousness like so many lemmings".
I agree with Szasz in valuing liberty more than health. Some understandably prefer comfortable slavery to uncomfortable liberty. That's for each to choose. Those who feel they can cope with the discomforts of liberty, understandably go for liberty. I do not insist everyone dig deeper than they are comfortable with. For each their path maybe; an honest path, honest to oneself; that path thus one might think is in the freedom direction.
If you want a "comfortable life", more accurately what I might call "a comfortable death"; digging deep will not deliver such complacency.
May I quote you:
"You are fooling yourself when you think you have figured out what nobody else knows."
That is a claim you make. But where is the evidence? You apparently have not even thought through my argument. This is much the same complaint Dr. Dick makes about people. Understand and disprove my argument! But just stating as a law that "I can't be right".....is not enough.
Another thing: in your recent post about "reality as a language", you closely mirror both Chris Langan's arguments and my own. So you ARE digging deep! Thank goodness!
When I gave a word-picture version of the patterns that may match the patterns we call "gravity"; you dissapointed me by not being serious. By saying a throw-away line about "centrifugal force".
If it wasn't for the adventurous scale of your own thinking (and you made breakthroughs on Dr. Dick's work that I benefited from); I might think you were blinded by awe of the academic authorities.
"We all fantasize about making intellectual discoveries, but the fact is it's pretty damn hard to discover anything new. Most of the time all we do is play word games with ourselves."
I never denied this. I said a long time ago that if you really want to know what reality is; words have their limits.
Let real argument; not blind prejudice, decide the issue. Prove me wrong; but don't pronounce me wrong "because of an assumed law that it's really hard, so amateurs like us couldn't possibly make deep progess".
Quinn Tyler Jackson replied at a forum at www.megafoundation.com or whatever the address is) to my essay; indicating close parrallels with stuff I wrote; to a paper he had done (about type 0, type 1, type 2 grammars)(whatever they are).
His paper is undergoing peer review.
Aurino, you know more about computer programming than I do. My guess is this: your recent posts about "reality as a language" place your "digging deep into reality" very close to Chris Langan, Quinn Tyler Jackson, and me!
So please: don't dismiss me: you may be contradicting yourself!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
"Today moral values have been hijacked and are now dictated by a new priesthood of thought-policeman called psychiatrists. See www.szasz.com"
"This is ridiculous, outrageous, and absurd. Psychiatrists are serious people dealing with serious problems which cause real suffering for real people. Instead of reading this silly website, why don't you go out and talk to the parents of children with psychological problems, and ask them what they think of psychiatry and neurology."
Of course psychiatrists may be "serious people dealing with serious problems". But they are fooling themselves if they think you cannot suffer without being sick. The medicalization of behavioural and value disputes is irrational and destructive of human liberty and personal responsibility.
Szasz notes that indeed the parents of "children with psychological problems" can be the driving force behind the justificatory rhetoric of psychiatry. a rhetoric like that of Heinrich Himmler; who depicted the "Jewish problem" as a "hygeine problem".
Concerns about social comformity can be ill-informed and misguided. Parents may be easy prey to pseudo-experts.
Of course some parents want to coerce their children to behave in socially acceptable ways. The parent, failing to "break" the child; may turn to "hired thugs" to chemically rape and torture the child. I assume you do not approve of this. (Do you not see it that way?)
One therapy that got promoted was "brief doses of excruciating pain". Do you not know that torture has been medicalised and legitimised more than ever; in the name of "mental health"?
I don't want to be harsh, Aurino; but the evil logic of Heinrich Himmler is now widespread. There is also a pervasive climate of fear of the self; sponsored by "mental health" ideology; and a pervasive climate of disowning of personal responsibility.
The answer to the "suffering" that parents and psychiatrists deal with is: honesty, and liberty, and responsibility. Disputes can be mediated between equal parties; with no "forced salvation" by a drug-pushing priesthood using chemical warfare.
Strong words I know! Trying to get through to you, Aurino. open your eyes! I agree with Szasz; he writes common sense.
I suggest you read the torture scenes in Orwell's "1984"; "How many fingers do you see, Winston? 4 or 5?" That book is a warning about something worse than fascism?
Quoting: "because you would understand that no rational approach to reality can possibly unravel its mysteries."
But Aurino: that is nihilism!
To be open to argument; to be rational; to be fully open to all that Exists, thus as it were open to God (Existence); is to be open to "seeing Him face to face".
"Blessed are the pure in spirit, for they shall see GOD."
You make a valid argument that most "nuts" are not Stephen Hawking; but it doesn't alter the "nuttiness" of his apparent statement.
I have accomplished a lot by thinking. Not that I need to have official "accomplishments".
"Come on Alan, look at your own posts! Just recently you said you figured out what gravity is. "
Incorrect. I put up a model; the idea is to see whether it fits the data.
"Come on, you can't possibly be serious or sane."
Your premise is? That I cannot possibly outsmart today's leading scientists? Did patent-clerk Einstein limit himself like this? Come on!
I do not think the Creator made reality so hard to understand that only an academic elite can fathom it. I think He explained to each one of us the moment He created us as unborn babies!
"For He raises the lowly, and the haughty He knows from afar". (Quote goes something like that). Don't be afraid of being lowly!
"We have a mathematical model for reality, it's called the General Theory of Relativity. It's full of differential equations, tensors, Gaussian geometry, all in all pretty hard to understand and requires the acceptance of some very counterintuitive ideas. Are you saying you have done something better? Give me a break!"
It is quite possible that, given your "reality as a language" post; that you, I, and Chris langan, and Quinn Tyler Jackson, and Dr. Dick, have all made progress towards unravelling the simplicity beneath orthodox mathematical physics.
The proof of the pudding is in the eating. Quinn Tyler Jackson is, apparently; proof that I am on to something. Genie's positive attitude to my writing is proof too, one might think. BUT WAIT. A TRAP!
I REFUSE TO BECOME A FALSE ACADEMIC GOD FOR YOU TO BOW TO!
I am an amateur, playing with ideas. You are playing with ideas. Trust your abilities. I refuse to try to prove you should bow to my explorations because academics start accepting me. NO! Lets keep things innocent! Let the academics discover the innocence, the play, of reality.
Every baby knows his Maker. You know Him, inside.
God came into this world as a baby. Not as a warrior prince. The academics will retain all they have that they hold in truth. So will the peasants. There are no false gods you have to bow to. God gives to all who ask.
"If you do not believe I can recall when I was a newborn baby; that is understandable. Few people would be likely to accept that. But it is true nonetheless. "
"It's not that I don't believe you can recall your pre-linguistic experiences, the problem is that you don't understand there is no way to tell whether you are truly remembering things or just fooling yourself."
Can you prove this? Dr. Dick thought this, but he made an erroneous assumption. He presumed everybody had to be partly unconscious (thus have a "subconscious".) But it is logically possible for a Being to exist who has no subconscious. A being who has total recall; who has full consciousness. His arguments thus collapse. To be fully conscious is "to know the difference" between truth and reality.
Idea: Trust in Existence. You know Existence, Doors keep opening when you do not deny the existence of any phenomenon (includes existence of doubt, counter-doubt, vague-indescribable awarenesses, everything!).
"It's common knowledge that people make up memories without realizing it, how do you know the same is not happening to you?"
How do I know? Honesty. Internal gentleness; internal honesty.
"But as long as you're entertaining those ideas for the fun of it, that's all fine, I have some crazy ideas of my own."
"The problem with you is that you seem to take your crazy ideas seriously, to the point that they have an impact on your life."
Correct. 18 years ago I discovered a huge chunk of the truth about human beings. I deliberately suspended my life-plans indefinitely to pursue further consciousness. "He who loses his life for My sake, will save it". Jesus said something like this. Jesus is God is Existence. I "lost my life" for the sake of truth. But in so doing, I retain an infinitely better life. Sure I'm poor; but I have an amazing internal aliveness within that is worth so much more. But the task is not complete.
Some people choose to become monks. I made a choice like that. I do not regret it. But it remains incomplete. Work in progress!
"That is dangerous but, hey, it's your life, do with it as you please. Just don't be surprised if people don't applaud you."
But think: that post you wrote where you questioned the "sanity" of everyday life-style (buying the latest Japanese gadget etc.!): come on; you know! Who is alive? Each to his own! You can be alive many different ways. Some people make fortunes and buy gadgets; some people become monks. Each can be alive their way. A gadget buyer seems not less than a monk. How they live is what counts, surely; their essence?
I don't look for applause. I look for debate.
"Mental health means entertaining good thoughts, leading the good life, maintaining good relationships, being at peace with yourself, your family, your friends, your society, the whole universe. By that definition I have to agree with you, few people are 100% mentally healthy. I just don't think your recipe will make things better, I think they can make things far worse."
Note this: your description of "mental health" said nothing about cellular pathology! So clearly, this "mental health" is not medical, but metaphorical.
It is about morality, values, moral judgement!
"Entertaining good thoughts": and who judges what is a "good thought"? Adolf Hitler?!!!!
"Maintaining good relationships": and who pronounces the rules on what constitutes "good relationships"? Is submission to the point of lying, such submission say to coercive authority; "good relationships"?
"Being at peace with yourself": and whose definition of "peace" and "yourself"?
One's parents might think one is not at peace with the artificial "self" that they insist one becomes! As for me: I am unusually at peace; yet also not at peace, as I know more needs to be done. " Complacency"
is not the kind of peace I seek.
"your family, your friends, your society, the whole universe. "
I do not agree with lying for the sake of a fake "peace"; peace must be honest peace.
What if your society is built on lying, on fraud?
Peace with the whole universe: yes; that feels cool! I think I found some of that!
I often feel "cuddled" by the very vacuum of space, one might say. So alive is the feeling one has when one is so at peace within oneself that "baby-me" is conscious of "adult-me" and vice-versa. It is truly wonderful to have baby-sensations of harmony with the cosmos.
"I just don't think your recipe will make things better, I think they can make things far worse."
Did not Jesus say he had not come to bring peace, but a sword? I think He was referring to the stew the human race would get in when Truth interacted with it.
The sword refers to I gues the unfortunate confusion of the human race as it grapples with the meaning of His life. He is of course a peace-maker; an honest peace exposes the conflicts of dishonesty.
My recipe is: all that exists is all there Is (obviously); so bump into what exists with your eyes open; then you don't trip over what exists in the dark.
I find Harv is best when he debates hard, and pushes one to dig deep! Louis does that too.