Actual Freedom discussion, please

  • Brendan
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8 years 4 weeks ago #94041 by Brendan
Actual Freedom discussion, please was created by Brendan
Hi to all the yogis at KFD. I've been meditating for about 4 years and in the past 6 months have been making what seems to be astoundingly fast progress in Buddhist meditation. I got Stream Entry in March and have since completed at least another 6 progress of insight cycles, along with very regular daily cycling. Nowadays there seems to be no discernible sense of self in my experience, though still the sense of presence/being that's described on the Actual Freedom Trust website. To keep this brief, it's been a truly profound transformation for the better.

But having experienced many PCEs in the past 3 weeks, I'm left thinking that this is clearly the way forward, that making this state permanent would be as much a quantum leap over this enlightenment as this enlightenment is over my previous, pre-Dark Night experience. And not just in terms of my own personal wellbeing, but the wellbeing of every person I will have meaningful contact with over the rest of my life, or affect in any way. Emotions strike me as clearly being distortions of reality that have evolved to increase the chances of the individual's survival over the collective good. A PCE clearly involves no unhealthy suppression of emotion as it arises out of heightened levels of positive feeling. It is the fulfillment that all emotion is pointing us towards, however imprecisely. Developing an ever greater appreciation of the present moment strikes me as clearly being a thoroughly sane way to live life. So when Kenneth Folk writes: "pull up your pants and be a human" in [url=http://jaytek.net/KFD/KFDForumOld/kennethfolkdharma.wetpaint.com/thread/4034050/_Actual%2bFreedom_%2bwithin%2ba%2blarger%2bcontext6426.html?offset=260&maxResults=20:28uqlqod]this[/url:28uqlqod] thread (and I apologise in advance if your opinion, Kenneth, has since changed), I'm taken aback by how misguided that sounds to me.

Kenneth: Is not having a fully-fledged sense of self a fundamental part of being human? Surely to have none is making you "less than or more than human", just as you describe yourself as you resided in a PCE. I'm amazed that you would embrace your humanness in response to AF - I go to work every day and am regularly baffled by the (from my perspective) incredibly foolish, ego-motivated, selfish, and narrow-minded bickering, bullying and oneupmanship of my colleagues. How they suffer in all their humanness! And how better placed I would be as an Actually Free person to help them to live more harmoniously, being in a constant state of flow, unshackled by pity, compassion, love, sexual desire and most of the other aspects of being human that ultimately just make it harder for us to act rationally, responsibly and selflessly.

I get the impression that you've got a similar outlook to Daniel Ingram in that you believe there are multiple, and I assume you take them to be perfectly valid, axes of development post-4th path, but surely some allow the enlightened being to do more good in the world than others? And surely of those axes, living in permanent PCE mode is the most beneficial? I'm struggling to see what could possibly be more ethical than this, and especially how simply "being free in whatever arises" (as you write) could be. To use your metaphor from the post I linked to, if we take reducing the amount of suffering in the world to be our goal, and the analogy to that being getting from A to B in a city whilst minimizing financial and environmental cost, it could be worked out to a high degree of certainty which car is best at doing this.

Please explain to me why you're not advocating one particular car over another, and why Actual Freedom isn't the right car for the job. And especially, if you think this to be the case, why retaining emotion allows you to better connect with, and I'm assuming help, other human beings - the sheer strength of my engagement with the present moment in a PCE (just one of its many wonderful qualities) makes it seem a vastly superior means of doing so.

I respect your opinion and those of the other members of this forum, and I don't want to drastically alter my mental circuitry without thinking it through very carefully beforehand, so I'd love to kick off a bit of a discussion here and get as many opinions as possible, while adding my own responses, because, having read through the entire thread I linked to, I'm not convinced at all by these contentions of 'AFers are repressing their emotions', 'they're denying their humanity', 'they're deluding themselves', 'they're getting sucked into a cult', etc. Yet these are being made by very smart people (though I've met many smart people who seem to have very little 'sense', as in the ability to not cause themselves and others huge amounts of needless suffering, so that's probably not saying much).
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  • kennethfolk
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8 years 4 weeks ago #94042 by kennethfolk
Replied by kennethfolk on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
Hi Brendan,

It seems that the AF discussion has fizzled a bit in the last couple of years. I think that's because as time went by the hoped-for crop of happy, harmless, and helpful AF folks who had forever ceased to suffer did not materialize. People kept practicing in various ways, including AF practices, most of which can be found elsewhere, and people just kept on being people; to the extent that they practiced, they got better, kinder, wiser, and older. In other words, the same things happened whether people believed AF theory or whether they thought it was nonsense. The only thing that mattered was whether people actually practiced training their minds. I will not assert that all practices are the same or that they all lead to the same place. In fact, I think some practices are much more effective than others, and of course I practice and teach the ones I favor. I think some of the AF practices are useful, although the belief system that goes along with them does not appeal to me.

So, if I may, here is my suggestion; choose a practice make sense to you, commit to it, work your butt off, and see what happens. Any preconceptions you have about "permanent PCE states" are only speculation unless and until they happen. Just practice. Recognize your thoughts and hopes as thoughts and hopes. They will change over time. Understand that training your mind through hands-on exercises is not the same as believing what others say or write about a Utopian future. One is contemplative practice, the other religion. Know the difference and choose accordingly.

All best,

Kenneth
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  • Brother Pussycat
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8 years 4 weeks ago #94043 by Brother Pussycat
Replied by Brother Pussycat on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
Hey Brendan,

If you're interested in why AF is probably not The Answer, check out AF discussions on the Dharma Overground and especially posts by John Wilde and Omega Point.
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  • kennethfolk
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8 years 4 weeks ago #94044 by kennethfolk
Replied by kennethfolk on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
Thanks, Brother Pussycat. Following your tip, I just read this thread featuring John Wilde, and found it to be an excellent commentary on AF:

<!-- m --><a class="postlink" href=" www.dharmaoverground.org/web/guest/discu...ards/message/3694814 "> www.dharmaoverground.org/web/gue ... ge/3694814
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  • Brother Pussycat
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8 years 4 weeks ago #94045 by Brother Pussycat
Replied by Brother Pussycat on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
Hey Kenneth,

That thread is John Wilde's bottom line on AF, but do take the time to read his other contributions, and not only those related to AF. Ditto for Omega Point.
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  • Russell
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8 years 4 weeks ago #94046 by Russell
Replied by Russell on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
Great response Kenneth.

What I would be really interested in hearing about are Tarin, Nikolai, et al's current views on AF. They have all seemed to quiet down about it, which may actually be a good thing. Usually people quiet down when their practice deepens significantly. Regardless, it would be an interesting discussion though.
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  • beoman.claudiu
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8 years 4 weeks ago #94047 by beoman.claudiu
Replied by beoman.claudiu on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
Hey Brendan,

I'm always glad to see somebody being genuinely interested in actualism! Although it is up to you to decide which way to go forward, I'd like to say that I agree with all your points. After visiting Richard in April 2012 and verifying for myself that he is what he says he is (and that actual freedom is what he says it is) I've turned away from the meditative path I was going down and began &quot;practicing Actualism&quot; - which is to say, making enjoying my life my number one priority. The results have been great - it's certainly put a spring back in my step!

I just wanted to say that, if you continue to be interested in actualism and would like to discuss it, then I would recommend you join the actualfreedom yahoo group ( <!-- m --><a class="postlink" href=" groups.yahoo.com/group/actualfreedom "> groups.yahoo.com/group/actualfreedom ) as there is much in the way of misinformation and false impressions that go around on forums such as KFD and the DhO (the thread you linked to being one example of that).

Regardless, keep in mind that the goal of actualism is the perpetual enjoyment of being alive, and the means to that goal is to enjoy being alive as much as possible. Thus the means and the goal are the same, except that the means are an affective enjoyment (as you can't stop feeling, then the best thing to do is to feel felicitous, as that most closely approximates the PCE) and the goal is an apperceptive enjoyment (without 'being' entirely, as glimpsed in the PCE). To put it succinctly: if you're not enjoying yourself then you're not practicing actualism.

Cheers,
Claudiu

P.S. Regarding John Wilde, you guys might be interested to know that he has recently (~January 2013) changed his mind about actualism and is indeed pursuing it again. Some relevant messages from the yahoo group (free registration required):

<!-- m --><a class="postlink" href=" groups.yahoo.com/group/actualfreedom/message/12673 "> groups.yahoo.com/group/actualfre ... sage/12673
<!-- m --><a class="postlink" href=" groups.yahoo.com/group/actualfreedom/message/12841 "> groups.yahoo.com/group/actualfre ... sage/12841
<!-- m --><a class="postlink" href=" groups.yahoo.com/group/actualfreedom/message/12899 "> groups.yahoo.com/group/actualfre ... sage/12899

And basically any message he's written after those.
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  • Brendan
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8 years 3 weeks ago #94048 by Brendan
Replied by Brendan on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
Okay, just finished reading Omega Point's posts on AF...
Mother of God!! He's completely demolished it to my eyes. Tbh, I'd been so enamored with the practice that I'd completely overlooked what I now realize are very suspect claims and other details about Richard's behaviour - such as the fact that he smokes, or that he's even prepared to claim anything like 'no-one in human history has ever done this before'. What a careless, foolish thing to claim! And as Omega Point makes blindingly obvious with his 'obnoxiously bright light', this is only one of many, many other examples of willful ignorance, complete disregard for the facts and generally careless, unethical behaviour.

The only major chink in his argument I believe is that he asserts &quot;the [AF] postures themselves are identical in principle with the category of 1000s of Buddhist/Hindu/Jain/etc called dharma practice&quot; then neglects to go into detail about what those identical postures are/where they can be found. Regardless, he's convinced me to take the time to locate the original/earlier sources of these teachings and not give any more exposure to AF. Anyone have any ideas on what he's referring to??

Even for those of you with no interest in Actualism, I'd still highly recommend reading these posts - they're filled with all sorts of fascinating/useful/inspiring information. His amazing account of his experience with Dream Yoga has definitely inspired me to investigate that and try to induce a lucid dreams. When 1/3 of your life is spent sleeping, why waste the significant portion of that which is spent dreaming on dreams left forgotten and ignored?

In conclusion, it's left me feeling like he's made something of a mockery of large chunks of the Pragmatic Dharma movement. This whole business of proclaiming yourself an arahat while still experiencing craving and aversion, or indeed, as he makes clear, unpleasantness of any kind, is... a joke. When numerous traditions supported by &quot;tens of thousands&quot; of contemplatives spending the &quot;bulk of their lives&quot; in practice and study assert that arahats do not suffer, how arrogant and absurd it is to claim it's all lies! I just hope someday the real 4th path can be made just as demystified and accelerated as 1st/2nd has been for me.

Thank you Brother Pussycat for the suggestions!
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  • Brother Pussycat
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8 years 3 weeks ago #94049 by Brother Pussycat
Replied by Brother Pussycat on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
&quot;The only major chink in his argument I believe is that he asserts &quot;the [AF] postures themselves are identical in principle with the category of 1000s of Buddhist/Hindu/Jain/etc called dharma practice&quot; then neglects to go into detail about what those identical postures are/where they can be found. Regardless, he's convinced me to take the time to locate the original/earlier sources of these teachings and not give any more exposure to AF. Anyone have any ideas on what he's referring to??&quot;

FWIW it seems that the enjoyment of every moment of being alive plays a major role in at least some Zen approaches (this is based on a German Zen book I own, which places great emphasis on sensory enjoyment of all things and gives quotations from old masters in support of this approach). Quite a change from the 'all is dukkha' Mahasi approach.

Also, while Omega Point's posts are fascinating, do take the time to read John Wilde's stuff, at least the thread Kenneth linked to. All the more so because he insists on a thorough, ruthless analysis of the consequences and implications (especially moral ones) of one's practice at every step, regardless of any wonderful states and experiences this practice brings us. According to him this is something many practicioners of many different traditions (including Buddhist ones) fail at, not only AF folk.
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  • beoman.claudiu
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8 years 3 weeks ago #94050 by beoman.claudiu
Replied by beoman.claudiu on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please

&quot;Brother Pussycat&quot;:1tswjh2e wrote: Also, while Omega Point's posts are fascinating, do take the time to read John Wilde's stuff, at least the thread Kenneth linked to. All the more so because he insists on a thorough, ruthless analysis of the consequences and implications (especially moral ones) of one's practice at every step, regardless of any wonderful states and experiences this practice brings us. According to him this is something many practicioners of many different traditions (including Buddhist ones) fail at, not only AF folk.[/quote:1tswjh2e]
Sound advice! For example, the fact that Richard smokes definitely tells you something about what an actual freedom is. If that bothers you then of course you wouldn't want to pursue that. It's a question of how important morality is to you. If you want to be moral then you will have to look elsewhere. Which is not to say an actually free person is immoral - rather, they're [b:1tswjh2e]a[/b:1tswjh2e]moral, though that can seem immoral to those who are moral.

Something is a bit off about morality though, isn't it? Morality as in, right vs. wrong, good vs. evil. Hence the [b:1tswjh2e]a[/b:1tswjh2e]morality. Maybe in the process of analyzing the moral consequences of one's practice one could also analyze the practical consequences of one's morality?

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  • Bill29ish
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8 years 3 weeks ago #94051 by Bill29ish
Replied by Bill29ish on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
Something is a bit off about morality though, isn't it? Morality as in, right vs. wrong, good vs. evil. Hence the [b:lcg78i4d]a[/b:lcg78i4d]morality. Maybe in the process of analyzing the moral consequences of one's practice one could also analyze the practical consequences of one's morality?[/quote]

I would agree with you that there is something off about &quot;good vs. evil&quot;, but could you expand more on the last sentence. I'm curious as to your thoughts.
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  • Brother Pussycat
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8 years 3 weeks ago #94052 by Brother Pussycat
Replied by Brother Pussycat on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please

&quot;beoman.claudiu&quot;:24dugews wrote:
Something is a bit off about morality though, isn't it? Morality as in, right vs. wrong, good vs. evil. Hence the [b:24dugews]a[/b:24dugews]morality. Maybe in the process of analyzing the moral consequences of one's practice one could also analyze the practical consequences of one's morality?[/quote:24dugews]

Morality as in right vs. wrong, good vs. evil does indeed seem a bit off as a generalisation. Yet morality as in this vs. that is completely ok <!-- s:D --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_e_biggrin.gif" alt=":D" title="Very Happy" /><!-- s:D -->

This would cover the practical consequences of one's morality I guess - tweaking the morality to best fit the needs of a particular moment.

But to do this tweaking one needs room for maneuver first - does AF give one this room? Does 'hardcore' dharma give one this room?

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  • Bill29ish
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8 years 3 weeks ago #94053 by Bill29ish
Replied by Bill29ish on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
&quot; morality as in this vs. that is completely ok <!-- s:D --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_e_biggrin.gif" alt=":D" title="Very Happy" /><!-- s:D -->

This would cover the practical consequences of one's morality I guess - tweaking the morality to best fit the needs of a particular moment.

But to do this tweaking one needs room for maneuver first - does AF give one this room? Does 'hardcore' dharma give one this room?[/quote]

I'm still not sure what this means? And &quot;completely ok&quot; for you personally, or completely ok for everyone everywhere? Perhaps your answer will clear this up.
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  • Brother Pussycat
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8 years 2 weeks ago #94054 by Brother Pussycat
Replied by Brother Pussycat on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
Apologies for being so cryptic. These are complex issues and I simply don't have the time to write as much about them as I would want.

Basically morality is about making choices - this or that. Even the smallest choice we make is guided by the idea that it's the best possible one at that given moment. I agree that it's not always helpful to view these choices through the lens of 'right vs wrong' or 'good vs evil', often enough 'better vs worse' will suffice. If you feel a random itch and decide to scratch it, this shows that you think it's somehow better to eliminate the itch now than to let it subside in the future. Better vs. worse, this vs. that (This btw shows that there is no such thing as being amoral, as long as you're alive anyway).

If you disagree with this definition of morality, think of it as defining sensibility instead. (IMO 'morality' is simply a loaded synonym of 'sensibility'). I'm not hung up on the meanings of words.

Now we all have some set of ideas on what is and isn't sensible (~morality), but with life being so complex, we may find ourselves having to adjust this set of ideas to the needs of a particular moment, otherwise we just cause unnecessary problems (is that clear so far?)

But to do this adjusting we first have to have the necessary resources (ways of seeing and experiencing things) - does AF give one these resources? Do the dharma related approaches give one these resources? Think about the goals of each, the means they use to get to those goals, and their implications in everyday life.
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  • Bill29ish
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8 years 2 weeks ago #94055 by Bill29ish
Replied by Bill29ish on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
No need for an apology. I do appreciate you taking the time to respond. It is a big and difficult topic. I dont't know that there is really any definitives, but your answer was coherent. My own journey leads me to believe that perhaps there are not choices, or if they are, they may be going on some subconscious level. The truth is, I really don't know, neither does anyone else as far as I can tell, so I try to stay open to ideas from others and see what comes down the line. I would agree with you in so far as there is pain, it just becomes difficult in some ways to reconcile past a certain point the idea that someone could actually cause me harm, for ex. if someone says something I don't like, there's a reaction, I feel anger, and the sense is that it is coming from somewhere else, but really it is just my own projection upon the situation. I am just sort of thinking out loud, not trying to give advice, and it's something I've puzzled over before, and given up on coming to definintive conclusions about.
I like what you said about responding to each moment. That's kind of what is of interest to me anymore. I've learned that sometimes compassion is a &quot;no&quot;, sometimes it is being willing to say something which might be interpreted in a way that another person might experience &quot;anger&quot;.
The last paragraph is to big for me. It seems there's too much variation that to have a simple yes or no response seems absurdly simplistic. Thanks.

Bill
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  • cmarti
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8 years 2 weeks ago #94056 by cmarti
Replied by cmarti on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
When you talk about morality don't you need to assume free will? I'm not sure we have free will, although we think we do, from an egoistic perspective. Realistically and phenomenologically &quot;decisions&quot; appear to be the result of the same factors that produce the phenomenon we react to. There is no &quot;me&quot; in there making them because it's obvious from careful observation that this &quot;me&quot; thing is constructed later than the rest of my experience - it's always late to the game but concocts a nice story about how &quot;I&quot; decide to do this or that. Convenient, but not correct.

Sorry to interrupt but I thought it worth noting that the picture of morality is very complex phenomenologically as well as philosophically.
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  • Bill29ish
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8 years 2 weeks ago #94057 by Bill29ish
Replied by Bill29ish on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
No interruption. Thank you for your input. It is a complicated issue, and above my pay grade.
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  • cmarti
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8 years 2 weeks ago #94058 by cmarti
Replied by cmarti on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
Chicken <!-- s:D --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_e_biggrin.gif" alt=":D" title="Very Happy" /><!-- s:D -->
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  • Bill29ish
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8 years 2 weeks ago #94059 by Bill29ish
Replied by Bill29ish on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
Haha. I prefer to think of it as a healthy fear of certainty.
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  • beoman.claudiu
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8 years 2 hours ago #94060 by beoman.claudiu
Replied by beoman.claudiu on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
Oops I checked back for a few days, didn't see any replies, and stopped checking. Maybe I can subscribe to the topic - didn't mean to abandon it.

&quot;Bill29ish&quot;:3rxq1sll wrote: [quote:3rxq1sll]Something is a bit off about morality though, isn't it? Morality as in, right vs. wrong, good vs. evil. Hence the [b:3rxq1sll]a[/b:3rxq1sll]morality. Maybe in the process of analyzing the moral consequences of one's practice one could also analyze the practical consequences of one's morality?[/quote:3rxq1sll]

I would agree with you that there is something off about &quot;good vs. evil&quot;, but could you expand more on the last sentence. I'm curious as to your thoughts.[/quote:3rxq1sll]
Sure. I draw a distinction between &quot;morality&quot; and &quot;sensibility&quot;. This isn't a quibble over words - I'm just using them to define two different concepts, and I think that using the same word for both is to be blurring the line between two different things which need differentiating.

Morality at its starkest is &quot;good&quot; vs. &quot;evil&quot; - us (the 'good guys' - notice how 'we' are always the good guys) vs. them (the 'evil guys' - those darned 'othres'!). But it's also what is 'right' (proper, conforming to social norms) and 'wrong' (improper, deviant, etc). Thus it's a cultural phenomenon - each culture or religion has its own morality.

Sensibility is closer to what Brother Pussycat was saying - deciding the best thing to do in each situation. If you have an itch it's simple to determine it is better to scratch it - it is pleasant to scratch it and then it goes away. But this isn't a rule - if you scratch too much, or scratch the wrong thing, then you're in pain. So you take that into consideration as well. Sensibility is simplest when it's directly related to physical things. For example, making machines or software more efficient - it does the same thing or better, with less resources, and more quickly. Good stuff, though you still have to take into account certain things like the cost of making said improvements.

Using these two terms as above, I think morality actually *confounds* sensibility! Every major religion in history is responsible for various horrible things (this includes Buddhism - see &quot;Zen at War&quot;). In each case, people who had sufficient power and influence were able to use morality to get people to hurt or kill other people. By relying on morality you allow yourself to be manipulated - you're relying on a set of culturally-defined rules instead of using your own reasoning. Also consider the phenomenon of an extremely self-righteous person. They hold their morals to such a high ideal that they end up using them to do very non-ideal things. You could say &quot;well they're not moral, morality is really *X*&quot;, but I think that falls under the True Scotsman fallacy. And, if what you understand by morality is basically what I defined sensibility as, then that's sensibility, not morality, and to confuse the two is to open yourself to the possibility of falling under the sway of 'morals' while believing that you're actually being sensible. This might cause you to say (and behave in accordance with) things like &quot;nobody should smoke because every particle of second hand smoke causes untold damage for the next countless years&quot; when in fact there really isn't much science to back that statement up.

So, to decode my cryptic sentence &quot;Maybe in the process of analyzing the moral consequences of one's practice one could also analyze the practical consequences of one's morality?&quot; My contention is that meditation practice will lead to 'good' moral consequences - you will fall on the 'good' side of the morality spectrum, take the high road, turn the other cheek, etc. Omega Point for example seems like a very moral person. Yet this will suffer from the perils mentioned above. Thus, the practical consequences of one's morality - a morality resulting from meditation - are not ideal (not sensible). Your sensibility will be hindered by all these morals that you take up as part of the practice.

Admittedly this is not a large part of the pragmatic dharma movement, and I think that's a good thing, but it's hovering there under the surface, perhaps waiting for a champion to make it really fashionable. It will usually come out when people start talking about Compassion.

And back to actualism - it is an amoral (not immoral) practice. Thus you might do things others consider immoral - like fight back when someone attacks you, or not pretend to be nice to someone who is not being nice to you, or confront someone instead of taking the high road - but those decisions are informed by sensibility.. and hey nobody is infallible (even though the ultimate moral ideal is indeed that infallible man - such as the Buddha is taken to be (regardless of what Buddhists you talk to and how widely they disagree, they will always all agree that the Buddha was the bomb)).

Hope that was of interest!

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  • cmarti
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7 years 11 months ago #94061 by cmarti
Replied by cmarti on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
[quote:3961ubjk]&quot;Every major religion in history is responsible for various horrible things…&quot;[/quote:3961ubjk]

PEOPLE do those horrible things to each other and sometimes justify them using religion. If you are confused about the cause you will start blaming religion indiscriminately when it's not religion [i:3961ubjk]per se[/i:3961ubjk] that is the problem, but how human beings are to each other, and how they justify their behavior using religion, or philosophy, or politics, or science, or what have you.

Just a point of clarification….
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  • beoman.claudiu
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7 years 11 months ago #94062 by beoman.claudiu
Replied by beoman.claudiu on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please

&quot;cmarti&quot;:20vlhdvp wrote: [quote:20vlhdvp]&quot;Every major religion in history is responsible for various horrible things…&quot;[/quote:20vlhdvp]

PEOPLE do those horrible things to each other and sometimes justify them using religion. If you are confused about the cause you will start blaming religion indiscriminately when it's not religion [i:20vlhdvp]per se[/i:20vlhdvp] that is the problem, but how human beings are to each other, and how they justify their behavior using religion, or philosophy, or politics, or science, or what have you.

Just a point of clarification….[/quote:20vlhdvp]
Of course it is the people doing the horrible things, being manipulated by other people in the name of X, where X might be religion, philosophy, political systems, etc. There's no religion outside of people.

My point is that sensibility is the answer to people no longer doing horrible things to each other, and that an aspect of religion that cannot be separated from religion is that it confounds said sensibility in various ways, as does any other belief system. This does not mean religion is 100% bad and that it doesn't help people. Just that it's not the ultimate answer to the problem which is the reason we are all together in this business of finding out how best to live our lives in whatever way we can, be it via meditation or actualism or whatnot.

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  • cmarti
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7 years 11 months ago #94063 by cmarti
Replied by cmarti on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
&quot;… sensibility is the answer to people no longer doing horrible things to each other…&quot;

Sounds suspiciously like a belief system to me <!-- s;-) --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_e_wink.gif" alt=";-)" title="Wink" /><!-- s;-) -->
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  • beoman.claudiu
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7 years 11 months ago #94064 by beoman.claudiu
Replied by beoman.claudiu on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please

&quot;cmarti&quot;:3t7wawmf wrote: &quot;… sensibility is the answer to people no longer doing horrible things to each other…&quot;

Sounds suspiciously like a belief system to me <!-- s;-) --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_e_wink.gif" alt=";-)" title="Wink" /><!-- s;-) -->[/quote:3t7wawmf]
If being sensible is a belief system then everything is a belief system and we might as well not use the term. What makes something a belief system vs. not in your evaluation of the world?

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  • cmarti
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7 years 11 months ago #94065 by cmarti
Replied by cmarti on topic Re: Actual Freedom discussion, please
Assuming any concept can change human beings would qualify as a belief system. Which does indeed mean that pretty much everything we &quot;believe in&quot; is a belief system.
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