quinta-feira, 6 de janeiro de 2011

quinta-feira, 23 de dezembro de 2010

Personal Realities

A few days ago I watched the movie "Shutter Island". It takes place inside a mental hospital (a rather suspicious one), where FBI agents investigate a missing patient. Actually, the place is a mental institution for violent criminals.

The investigation quickly turns into a journey through the minds of those considered crazy by general population standards and makes you wonder about the true meaning of reality and how individual it can be.

An amazing movie that gives you plenty of food for thought afterwards. Definitely worth watching.

domingo, 5 de dezembro de 2010

The power of music

I forgot to mention that I'm a music-addict. I absolutely love to listen to all sorts of quality music (watch for new music on my right-sidebar Youtube widget, nice stuff over there). And I also love to play it, be it on the guitar or on the piano. I find music fascinating, period. It has a way of transmitting emotions that goes way beyond words, it's universal. It can make you happy just as it can make you feel miserable.

Being simplistic for clarity's sake, often a Major chord is related to a happy mood and a Minor chord to a sad/mysterious mood. (there's a full-fledged rainbow of note-combinations and their respective emotions)

I have now begun to notice how not only do different chords/songs translate into emotions. It also goes the other way.

Observe your current mood. Can you think of a song that matches it? It takes some musical knowledge to do it, but can you imagine a chord that fits your mood? I can, and I feel that there's always a perfect translation from feelings into music and vice-versa. But what's that good for?

Where does the real power of music reside?

It comes up when you observe the consequences of listening to different music. There is music that has a calming, pacifying characteristic. Other music may make people more alert, active, or even anxious. Some bring joy, while others sadness and self-pity.

How can music put into use with a goal?

It can go anywhere ranging from supporting depressed people to calming crying babies. All it takes is to check what any person or gathering of people may need and to provide it to them through music. They'll absorb it through empathy. Can you think of the infinite applications of music?

The downside of it all

Music carries over emotions. It does that with all kinds of emotions, and they all affect everyone who listens to them without some degree of self-awareness and emotional control. Can you see where I'm going? Listening passively to depressing, pitiful or aggressive music will bring you those feelings. They will get you down if you're not aware of what's going on.

Responsible music-making

Creating music for real (not commercially-oriented music) means to translate emotions into sound. It is the composer's responsibility to make sure the songs he creates transmits exactly what he feels. Knowing the impact his music will cause on anyone who listens to it, he must be aware that he will be causing harm to his audience by creating music that drags people down.

In conclusion
I'm not saying here that we should all limit ourselves to listening to happy music forever. I'm just trying to make people aware of the real effects music has on all of us and how it can cause harm without us even noticing it.

When listening to music the next time, make an effort to perceive how it makes you feel inside. Happy? Depressed? Energy-drained or plugged into 220V? Learn how to stand back from music that brings you feelings you don't welcome. Listen to it from a distance, don't let it go inside you.

Now, when you feel that music brings you great feeling, feelings that make you feel happy and joyful, then turn up the volume and take the most out of it.

Spread the word!

sábado, 4 de dezembro de 2010

Regarding the giant post

I'm sorry for the extreme length of the previous post, but that's how our discussioun took place at the Astralpulse.com forums and, since I already had it all written down, I chose to copy and paste the whole discussion instead of rephrasing it all.

I'll keep it light on my next posts.


sexta-feira, 3 de dezembro de 2010

Does Freewill really exist?

Attention: giant post ahead. Beware. 

This may sound startling for a mere third post, but I've gone through this subject extensively with the people at Astralpulse and we had some nice discussions on it. I'm exposing the subject to you all now and speculating a bit further on it. 

We see many religions/philosophies talk about freewill and how it gives us the freedom of choice to do whatever we feel is the most appropriate action to take. However, when we analyse it rationally, we may come to the conclusion that freewill as it is known doesn't really exist. Here's a copy from some of my posts at the Astralpulse.com forums:

"I was talking to a friend of mine who is a fierce defender of scientific thinking (he declares himself an atheist) and another friend brought up the subject of freewill. My atheist friend promptly said there's no such thing as freewill, he said we're all programmed to respond to stimuli based on our past experiences. 
At first, I tried to defend (in my mind) my previous notion that freewill exists and gives us freedom to do whatever we choose to do. However, soon I realized I couldn't deny the fact that his ideas made sense. I mean, our actions are indeed a result of all our past experiences being put face-to-face with all stimuli our current situation presents us. 
I think there are tons of variables involved in decision making (not infinite, though, but probably dating back to when we were born), but when looking back into all I've ever done, given the circumstances involved in each of my actions, there was no way the outcome could have been any different in any of them. It's as if it was meant to happen that way. 
The thing is, there are soooo many variables involved, it is practically impossible to predict how a person is going to react to a certain set of stimuli, which creates the impression that our actions are unpredictable. However, I can't say it is, theoretically, impossible to. Can you? Doesn't that kind of take away all the joy we get from thinking we're being able to control our lives and make our own decisions?
This is quite disconcerting, for if all there is is determinism, our fates are sealed! I often catch myself wondering what it is that commands my thoughts. Are they commanded only by the external stimuli I'm subject to? What is it that injects these thoughts into my mind? Or aren't they "injected" at all, but a mere product of the environment I'm in? 
Exerting real freewill may consist of freeing your mind from the cage that being caught up in the physical loop of "conscience" may represent. Do you see the loop here? We're determined to respond to stimuli based on all we've been exposed to previously. Since our thoughts and actions are a product of previous experiences, we will keep on acquiring new experiences based on our previous ones, but exerting no real control over our actions! Think of the way pidgeons react when you feed them popcorn. We behave just like that, but in a scale thousands of times more complex! Automatically, just like a computer would! (Maybe it's better to think of the loop not as a loop, but rather as a never-ending chain of thoughts)
There is a chance that this might be what the so called "awakening of conscience" is all about. Freeing yourself from this chain of events. Awakening the commander that lies within  each of us and allowing it to take control of our minds. Now how do we do that?"

After posting that message, I had some new ideas:

"After posting here, I had a conversation at home that gave me another perspective on that. You take a child, for instance. The main difference between them and adults is the extent to which their conscious, rational mind is developed. They have their dreams, their wishes, and behave in the natural way children are known to behave. As they grow older, they tend to over-develop their rational mind and put aside that dreaming portion of it, having it buried deep inder their controlling minds. 
On other posts, I have talked about our true intentions and desires. I refered to them as being hid under the several layers of fears and conditionings made up by our rational mind. Now, however, I see those true desires ("what your heart has to say") and the rational mind as two separate things. There is the rational and the "emotional", and we tend to stick to the rational only. 
I think freewill might come down to being able to choose to live your emotions or to set them aside and stick to the rational only. It is the right balance between both, though, that provides us with an optimum experience. 

Edit: Let me put it in a different way. Think of the rational mind as if it were a computer. It receives numerous variables from its environment and ponders all of them in order to decide upon its next action. We receive different kinds of inputs that lead us, in a general way, towards the rational model or towards the "spiritual", or intuitive model. It is the influence from the environment (other people's actions we perceive) and our impressions on it that direct our behavior. My experiences have led me to these forums, where I receive a great amount of influence towards the intuitive model. I, then,  have become progressively more prone to consider that this is a path worth pursuing, as long as my experineces confirm that. I end up being caught up in a chain of thoughts that lead me to considering that leaving the rational experience behind can give place to a valuable experience. 
Eventually, I think I'll reach a point where I'll honestly think that I can let my rational mind rest for a while while I live my emotions, free of the constant analysing and judging done by the rational mind. I think that this is what the awakening of the conscience means. To be able to step outside the rational mind process and to introduce the intuitive mind into our day-to-day lives. "

Can you see now how we don't have real control over our lives? How it's all predetermined? Now let's get to my new additions to this concept. I'll be speculating on how the universe/reincarnation process work, so don't say I didn't warn you. (I like to talk about this stuff, get used to it, and remember I said on my first two posts I'd speculate a lot)

If all there was to life was this automated routine, there wouldn't be much point in living, would there? Pretty boring, right? However, I can't think of a way the rational mind can escape it. The only way for new information to be brought in would be through the unconscious mind. Where does that information come from? I say it comes from different non-physical sources, be it a entity that happens to be accompanying you, your spiritual guide or, in the ideal scenario, your higher self (I mean the ideal scenario because that's who you are, it's your true essence) 

Now take the reincarnation system: our higher selves, our true conscience, planned this incarnation of ours in order for us to go through determined experiences so that it could learn something through them. 

My idea is: When we plan our incarnations, things work much like when you create a character at a "The Sims" game (Remember that? You choose many different attributes and then throw your character into the world, controlling its actions from "above"). 

Just imagine it: your higher self created this character that is you and put it inside this world we live in under predetermined circumstances. Then, it kept watching you from above, TRYING to control you through your intuition. I say "trying" because the great majority of people are totally oblivious to its commands due to this world's rational culture which takes intuition totally for granted. 

If one trusts his intuition enough, though, I think he might feel what it is his true self wants him to do. What actions to take, decisions to make, and so on. I don't think our physical egos are supposed to evolve spiritually. I think our physical egos must trust their intuition (meaning to hear their higher selves) and behave the way they feel  they are supposed to. That way, our higher selves are the ones who will learn through controlling their physical egos' experiences. 

**** I came up with a nice analogy of how it all unfolds on a giant scale: take the whole universe and shrink it to a table-sized game board. The board contains all physical structures and creatures that exist. Your higher self walks up to the board and throws in his character after carefully assembling it. After that, all variables are set and the game begins. Your higher self will keep on trying to direct you to do what it originally meant for you to do, but it can't just push his character towards something, there's no touching the board. He will direct it through its intuition, and if his character is assembled properly and is in condition of listening to its intuition, it will behave accordingly, doing as his higher self ordered him to. That way, things will go as your higher self planned and he will learn from the experiences he is living through his character. Otherwise, his character will go on as it was programmed to and there won't be any real-time control over its actions, making its experience much poorer that it should be. ****

That represents quite well the way I think all works. Still, it's a work in progress, I'm always re-creating my theories. This is it for now, and it's quite a read already. Please post your comments on it, I'll be glad to read them. 


More details on the blog

Hello there! This is the first second post on this blog, hope it serves someone some help. In the coming posts I’ll be reporting my current thoughts on conscience and all that pertains to it. All sorts of metaphysical discussions will be carried on, feel free to use the commentary area to share your ideas. That’s one of the main purposes of this blog: to widen the range of my discussions, which have taken place, mostly, on the Astralpulse.com forums. Real nice folks over there.
See you soon!

Can you define conscience?

I can't tell for sure, but I also can't let that go unanswered. Conscience is a subject that has intrigued me for about a year or so, when I was first introduced to it. There are so many subtleties to it and it is all so subjective no one has a definitive answer on what it is made of, how it works and what it really is capable of. 
That's why I created this blog, for here I'll post my conclusions and speculations on all that concerns conscience, be it conscience itself, meditation techniques, out-of-body experiences, near-death experiences, paranormal abilities and much, much more. 
Alll I ever write here is part of my ever-changing concepts, so beware old posts may become out-dated. Hope you enjoy it.