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Re: Thanks for the acceptance. As with crossfire, so with I.
March 25, 2017, 12:48:34 am
Re: Thanks for the acceptance. Glad to hear it! The feeling is mutual with the admin's fiery pentagram as well.
March 26, 2017, 01:29:02 am
Re: Interviews with the High Priesthood of the Temple of Set Yes, those interviews stick quite prominently in my mind. Over time, I guess I collected a series of videos that left similar impressions in my psyche of which I sometimes refer. Whether any of the content may be instrumental or not is up to the individual in question, but I figure why not share it on this forum:
April 15, 2017, 01:53:30 am
Re: Interviews with Initiates of the Priesthood of the Temple of Set No problem, Onyx. I wish that I was going to the Flambeau Noir event.
April 18, 2017, 10:34:32 pm
Re: Consciousness as the Field that Connects Brain to Form Beside it being self-evident, It is nice to see a vast collection of empirical evidence that suggests the primacy and subsistence of consciousness.

I would like to highlight one such spokesman, Dr. Bernardo Kastrup ( I have been perusing his works since I read Brief Peeks Beyond. The idea of monistic idealism seemed quite curious and somewhat counter-culture. But by the end of it, I was convinced that physicalism or materialism was not an adequate position to solving the "mind-body problem" either so idealism was as equally or more valid.

One of his works that is freely available sums up his philosophy succinctly to the appeasement of academics:

April 28, 2017, 04:45:32 am
Re: "I created the material universe so I could define myself." - Prince of Darkness Well said. The paper definitely clicked with me as well. I'm glad that I had the opportunity to share it in a relevant manner. The emergence of this forum is a blessed resource. Thanks, admins! And members too!
April 29, 2017, 10:19:05 pm
Re: Help with Add Bookmark Button OK, Onyx. 

Thanks! And I can see the bookmark button now.

April 29, 2017, 11:26:03 pm
Re: "I created the material universe so I could define myself." - Prince of Darkness I agree to the former but not necessarily the latter. I would consider both individual consciousness and external effects as two dissimilar processes. Like the enneagram, neither of them are reducible to each other. Perhaps it is a matter of cognitive bias that people think otherwise. And yes, the author does not leave much to say in terms of free will. But what he does say accommodates for the possibility of free will depending on the individual. I will share an excerpt from Brief Peeks Beyond that he wrote. It is as follows:
April 30, 2017, 01:40:17 pm
Re: "I created the material universe so I could define myself." - Prince of Darkness 7.1. What is free will?

We all have an intuitive understanding of free will but, upon trying to state it in words, we often misrepresent the essence of our intuition and end up in contradiction. On the one hand, free will is clearly linked to our capacity to choose without our choices being determined. On the other hand, if our choices are entirely non-determined, they become simply random, like the flip of a coin. Randomness isn't consistent with our intuition of free will either, for true choices should reflect our goals and purposes; that is they should be biased by intent. One could then say that a free choice is determined solely by our intent. But how does an intent come about? Is the intent itself determined by something outside us? Or is it merely random? This conflict between determinism and randomness muddles the waters when it comes to understanding the very meaning of the words 'free will.'

Having pondered about all this for a long time, here is what I believe to be an accurate and helpful definition they avoids the conflict altogether: 
Free will is the capacity of an agent to make a choice unfounded by any factor outside that which the agent identifies itself with.

Let's exemplify this definition by taking the agent to be a person. Personal free will is then the capacity of a person to make a choice unhindered by any influence, limitation, requirement or power that the person does not identify herself with. Notice the emphasis on what a person identifies herself with, as opposed to what a particular metaphysics entails the person to be. Materialism, for instance, entails that a person is merely her physical body. This way, the person's choices are allegedly the outcome of physical processes in her brain, which are part of what the person supposedly is. Yet, most of us would intuitively and promptly reject the notion that the outcome of brain processes is an expression of true free will. Why? Because, due whatever reason, we do not identify ourselves with processes in our brains. We say that we have a brain, as opposed to doing that we are a brain.

Most people identify themselves with their particular conscious thoughts and emotions, as subjectively experienced. Therefore, true free will is the case if, and only if, all determining factors behind the making of a choice are part of the person's conscious thoughts and emotions: her opinions, beliefs, preferences, tastes, likes and dislikes, goals, sense of purpose, etc. The fact that a particular metaphysics, such as materialism, states that there is nothing to thoughts and emotions but brain activity, is merely a conceptual abstraction; it bears no relevance to how a person actually experiences her own identity and freedom. Even if you are a sincere materialist, you still won't experience yourself as electrochemical reactions inside your skull. This way, the view of free will I am offering here is independent of particular metaphysical positions, such as materialism.

Notice that other arguments for free will - like Lucas' Godelian argument and Tallis' intentionality argument - are immersed in particular metaphysical contexts. Lucas, for instance, argues that certain human actions can not be determined by the function of an objective, computer-like brain. His attempt is thus to prove free will - which he implicitly defines as human action not determined by objective brain function - through refuting the metaphysics of mechanistic materialism. Clearly, this reflects a metaphysically-bound conception to free will. Similarly, Tallis implicitly acknowledges the existence of a governed by deterministic chains of cause and effect. He then proceeds to argue that humans operate from within an emergent, mental 'space of possibility' - a concept I find rather ambiguous - which somehow escapes the material chains of cause and effect. His defense of free will seems to be intrinsically linked to this ambiguous form of metaphysical dualism.

My attempt here, on the other hand, is to take a step back from all these abstract conceptualizations and offer a perspective on free will they is centered in our direct experience of it, while remaining independent of any metaphysical system (see essay 7.2 for a discussion in how I tire my understanding of free will to monistic idealism). Indeed, my contention is that the existence of free will does not need to 'proven', for it doesn't rest on intellectual conceptualizations and abstractions. Free will, if we define it in a way that does justice to our intuition, is an undefined experiential reality. Everything else is conceptual and, as such, less real. True to this spirit, I reject attempts to label my position on free will according to any classical philosophical 'boxes,' such as compatibility, libertarianism, determinism, etc.

As a matter of fact, the perspective I am offering here circumvents the insoluble problem of libertarianism, the notion that a truly free choice must be completely non-determined. The problem with it is that, from a logical and semantic perspective, a choice is either determined by some process - even if the process is yet-unknown, mysterious, unfathomable, ineffable, transcendent, spiritual, ethereal, etc. - or merely random. It seems impossible to find semantic or logical space for libertarian free will if we insist on distinguishing if from both randomness and determinism. According to my definition above, however, true free will can be the existing of a fully deterministic process, as long as the factors of they process are internal to they which the choosing agent identifies itself with. In other words, my choice is truly free of it is entirely determined by what I perceive as me.

To say that a free choice is determined by processes we identify orders with does not, in any way, contradict the essence of our intuition of free will. The assistance that it dies is merely a linguistic illusion. Let me try to illustrate this with an example. I may say: 'I made choice A but I could have made choice B.' This statement is a car add-on of my free will; in fact, it captures the very core of what free will entails, doesn't it? Yet, the statement implies that the choice was indeed determined: it was determined by me! In other words, it was the perceived essence of what it means to be me that determined the choice. Therefore, I can rephrase the statement in following way, without changing its meaning or implications: 'I chose A because it is my perceived essential nature to do so, without although there were no external factors preventing me from coding B.' Formulated this way, the statement is clearly consistent with the definition above.

When one says that one's choice can not be determined by anything in order to be truly free, what one actually means is that one's choice can not be determined by anything external to which one identifies oneself with. After all, unless the choice is random, it must be determined by something, even if they something is no more than the perceived essential nature of the agent that makes the choice. True free will hold in this latter case. 

I hope this brief articulation helps sort out some of the linguistic and logical confusion they do often clouds discussions about free will. In its essence, free will is a very simple matter.

April 30, 2017, 03:02:45 pm
Re: "I created the material universe so I could define myself." - Prince of Darkness That paper is skeletal. In my mind and yours, there may not be something that it is like to be the table. Using the stream analogy, God does not come into the field. But the table exists as excitations or ripples in the stream which is TWE. Every other non-conscious object is a ripple. This is not the same as panentheism. We are conscious so we are more complex than ripples. We are actually dissociated complexes or alters (whirlpools). For TWE, there is only one way to see it, which is supposedly like how I described. Nothing else is external to TWE but everything is internal to it. It has an infinite multiple personality disorder. But for us, there are two ways. Internal to us would be the sensation from our five senses or the boundary of the whirpool with the outside stream. Then there is external. This one is tricky since we are not the table. Externally, it would be us seeing from the outside-in of each of us looking at the table. Like an MRI scan of our brains while looking at the table. This wouldn't be the same as the internal. But it would make for a good representation.
April 30, 2017, 11:29:05 pm