Two huge flaws in the CFI worldview

I am still hoping to have a serious discussion with some one (a) about the function of the right hemisphere in consciousness, and (b) about the role of trauma in the history of forming symbols of ultimate values. I have not found anybody yet.
In order to engage anyone here at the very least you are going to need to organize your thoughts and present some sort of logical idea or thesis. All you have done so far is make vague disorganized claims and then asked everyone else to go research them. I don't think you are going to get many takers with that approach.
I am still hoping to have a serious discussion with some one (a) about the function of the right hemisphere in consciousness, and (b) about the role of trauma in the history of forming symbols of ultimate values.
Well, it's yours for the discussing.
I have not found anybody yet.
Imagine for a moment… it might have something to do with your approach. I know when I want to tell people something -> it's best to say it… even if they don't like it or ignore it, at least I've given it my best effort. signed, still trying to figure out what you want us to know
Not gonna happen. Do your homework. Consult sources. (It is at least a little bit complicated.) And BTW, Douglas Adams was a humorist, not a scientist, AT ALL. (But I LOVE A Hitchhiker's Guide....)
No you do yours. We are not a class of undergraduates in a required class that has to put up with a lazy professor in order to graduate. If you don't want to present your arguments don't expect us to look into an area that doesn't interest us. We each have our areas of interests and if you want us to look into yours give us a reason. How will your per project improve the world; how will it address social and economic inequality; how will it address certain groups of humans attempts to impose their narrow provincial/religious outlooks on others as all fundies do? You need to sell the value of your position to us. That is your homework.
I am still hoping to have a serious discussion with some one (a) about the function of the right hemisphere in consciousness, and (b) about the role of trauma in the history of forming symbols of ultimate values. I have not found anybody yet.
You won't find anyone here. You apparently are not used to interacting with intelligent skeptics. Sorry, but you blew any chance you might have had to have a serious discussion here. Lois

On brain hemispheres:
The neuroscience of introspection seems to be that it is conducted by the right hemisphere of the brain. “The right hemisphere thinks in pictures and learns kinesthetically.” (Jill Bolte Taylor)
“The first appreciation of anything comes to us via the right hemisphere, and the ultimate understanding of it in context does so also. Some very subtle research by David McNeill, amongst others, confirms that thought originates in the right hemisphere, is processed for expression in speech by the left hemisphere, and the meaning integrated again by the right (which alone understands the overall meaning of a complex utterance, taking everything into account). More generally I would see the left hemisphere as having an intermediate role: it ‘unpacks’ what the right hemisphere knows, but then must hand it back to the right hemisphere for integration into the body of our knowledge and experience." (McGilchrist, The Master and His Emissary.)

On brain hemispheres: The neuroscience of introspection seems to be that it is conducted by the right hemisphere of the brain. "The right hemisphere thinks in pictures and learns kinesthetically." (Jill Bolte Taylor) “The first appreciation of anything comes to us via the right hemisphere, and the ultimate understanding of it in context does so also. Some very subtle research by David McNeill, amongst others, confirms that thought originates in the right hemisphere, is processed for expression in speech by the left hemisphere, and the meaning integrated again by the right (which alone understands the overall meaning of a complex utterance, taking everything into account). More generally I would see the left hemisphere as having an intermediate role: it ‘unpacks’ what the right hemisphere knows, but then must hand it back to the right hemisphere for integration into the body of our knowledge and experience." (McGilchrist, The Master and His Emissary.)
Notwithstanding Jill Bolte Taylor's entertaining talk in TED about her personal experience of her stroke, apparently, the latest finding is, it is not quite so simply so. From http://www.livescience.com/39373-left-brain-right-brain-myth.html
There is a misconception that everything to do with being analytical is confined to one side of the brain, and everything to do with being creative is confined to the opposite side, Anderson said. In fact, it is the connections among all brain regions that enable humans to engage in both creativity and analytical thinking. "It is not the case that the left hemisphere is associated with logic or reasoning more than the right," Anderson told LiveScience. "Also, creativity is no more processed in the right hemisphere than the left."
And from http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/nov/16/left-right-brain-distinction-myth
From self-help and business success books to job applications and smartphone apps, the theory that the different halves of the human brain govern different skills and personality traits is a popular one. No doubt at some point in your life you've been schooled on "left-brained" and "right-brained" thinking – that people who use the right side of their brains most are more creative, spontaneous and subjective, while those who tap the left side more are more logical, detail-oriented and analytical. Too bad it's not true.
In reality:
What research has yet to refute is the fact that the brain is remarkably malleable, even into late adulthood. It has an amazing ability to reorganize itself by forming new connections between brain cells, allowing us to continually learn new things and modify our behavior. Let's not underestimate our potential by allowing a simplistic myth to obscure the complexity of how our brains really work.
Bold added by me. Also, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lateralization_of_brain_function
Broad generalizations are often made in popular psychology about one side or the other having characteristic labels, such as "logical" for the left side or "creative" for the right. These labels are not supported by studies on lateralization, as lateralization does not add specialized usage from either hemisphere. Both hemispheres contribute to both kinds of processes. and experimental evidence provides little support for correlating the structural differences between the sides with such broadly-defined functional differences.
So, from a holistic perspective, both hemispheres of the brain are necessary for creativity and logical thinking. Q.E.D.? :cheese:

We’ve removed entire hemispheres of small children’s brains, and have done surgeries to remove the corpus callosum…usually to stop seizures. The children form new neural connections and learn to control their body using the remaining brain. Of course there are deficits, at least in the beginning, I don’t know how much improvement there is after they go home, but the deficits don’t follow any left/right brain pattern.

So, what is Voegelin talking about in Order and History?
“[Human] experience has a dead point from which the symbols [of ultimate values] emerge as the exegesis of its truth but which cannot become itself an object of propositional knowledge. …… Unless precautions of meditative practice are taken, the doctrinization of symbols is liable to interrupt the process of experiential reactivation and linguistic renewal.”
Eric Voegelin, Order and History, Vol IV, p. 105:

The fMRI data detects “activity” but not the kind of activity. So it doesn’t really tell us what is doing what in the brain.
And it certainly does not discredit Taylor and MCGilchrist wholesale.
Then I notice that Buddhists have always distinguished between “thinking” and awareness. This could be a hemisphere issue.
“Thinking is one of the main difficulties we encounter while learning to meditate. Most of us have lived so much of our lives in our heads that it comes as a beautiful gift to be fully aware of the vividness of internal sensations and stimuli from the external world as they impact the senses. The early Buddhist texts make a clear distinction between two principal kinds of thought. The first type of thought is called vitakka-vicâra (directed thought (vitakka) and evaluation (vicâra).) Another very different kind of thinking is papañca, “proliferation”. It is obsessive thought, strings of associations that run on and on, fantasy and concept formation that lead the mind away from things just as they are experienced. Papañca is the monkey mind of Zen imagery.
The state that is the final goal of Buddhism is beyond language, but Buddhist texts say that the careful, clear use of language - Right Speech - is indispensable along the way. Takuan’s “sound of no sound” will not be lost through a meditative investigation into the nature of thought. In fact, learning to understand the origin of those many voices which vibrate within the ear leads us back to it.”
So, introspection raises the issue of hemisphere usage. But introspection also raises the issue of trauma imprints. So I think I will start a separate topic of introspection.

Hmmm, the left brain, right brain myth?
Did a little hunting around for something simple on this topic and found this decent little video and a whole lot of links to further informative sources:

Do We Have Left or Right Brain Personalities? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yE6VTvxkhFs Published on Aug 18, 2013 Is it true that some people are more 'right brained' or 'left brained?' Certainly some people are more creative and free-thinking, while others are more logic oriented. But is this really a result of one side of the brain being more dominant than the other? Read More (with a dozen links to authoritative sources of information on this topic): Brain Mythology http://www.positscience.com/brain-resources/brain-facts-myths/brain-mythology "Some myths are based on a modicum of truth; others arise from misinterpretations or from a need for a great sound bite."
So, what is Voegelin talking about in Order and History? "[Human] experience has a dead point from which the symbols [of ultimate values] emerge as the exegesis of its truth but which cannot become itself an object of propositional knowledge. …... Unless precautions of meditative practice are taken, the doctrinization of symbols is liable to interrupt the process of experiential reactivation and linguistic renewal." Eric Voegelin, Order and History, Vol IV, p. 105:
Gibberish? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gibberish
Gibberish is a generic term in English for talking that sounds like speech, but carries no actual meaning. This meaning has also been extended to meaningless text or gobbledygook. The common theme in gibberish statements is a lack of literal sense, which can be described as a presence of nonsense.
Bold added by me. :lol:

Consider Taoist meditation?
From http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sat-hon/a-field-guide-to-taoist-m_b_875634.html

Taoist meditation is action without aim. It is an aimless, meandering meditation without technique or prefabricated notion -- fishing without a hook. In Taoism, the very nature of this existence is considered a total meditation of the cosmos. Yet, my clinging mind needs something concrete, steps and the knowhow. Thus, began my foray into the wide horizon of meditation.
However, from http://www.tao.org/mind.html Mind:
When the mind is overworked without stop, it becomes worried, and worry causes exhaustion. — Chuang Tzu
Philosophy:
While Taoist philosophical principles can help the rational individual find his way out of confusion's fog, it needs a practical means to fight off competing unhealthy thoughts instilled since birth and reinforced each day on television. Taoist principles may make logical sense, but the modern mind must battle emotions born of years following countervailing beliefs. Such ingrained patterns dog the mind with thoughts that disturb one's mental state, causing it to run amok.
Meditation:
Discipline is key. It isn't entertaining to sit in place for hours, forcing the mind to focus on specific images while preventing it from wandering to some other, competing thoughts. Indeed, meditation is focused visualization — and it is most definitely work.
An expert has made all the mistakes and learn from them after at least 10,000 hours of practice. :lol:


Ah, so. Is there a taboo on introspection in CFI culture?

Ah, so. Is there a taboo on introspection in CFI culture?
This is the modern version of the Inquisition. No more torture or banishment, just ridicule. You don't actually have an argument, you just claim that the other guy doesn't and offer that as proof of... something... we don't really know. If you are hosting guests or in a public situation where enough people agree with you, it can be effective in at least silencing your opposition. In a discussion group with intelligent people, it's just silly.
Ah, so. Is there a taboo on introspection in CFI culture?
Ah, not so. However, from http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/taoism/beliefs/gods.shtml
In Taoism the universe springs from the Tao, and the Tao impersonally guides things on their way. But the Tao itself is not God, nor is it a god, nor is it worshipped by Taoists.
So, what is the Tao? From http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/taoism/beliefs/tao.shtml 1.
The Tao is not a thing
2.
The Tao includes several concepts in one word: * the source of creation * the ultimate * the inexpressible and indefinable * the unnameable * the natural universe as a whole * the way of nature as a whole
So,
There was something undifferentiated and yet complete, Which existed before Heaven and Earth. Soundless and formless it depends on nothing and does not change. Tao Te Ching
:)

So, yes. That is good. I am familiar with that. It is one of what I would call a “family” of secular verbal renditions of “ultimate reality”. However, as only one of such renditions, it can be supplemented by others, equally authentic, that emphasize different aspects of the human situation. Daoism’s complete detachment might be compared to Buddhism’s concern with behavior and interpersonal relationships (compassion, desirelessness). And so, one enters into a world of inquiry that is not actually “thinking”. All of this language arises from Voegelin’s “dead point”. (This is “experience”, and the resulting language is “doctrine”.)
So, I think it is a useful “inquiry matrix” to look into this family of experiences. They seem to be basic and essential to the complete human experience.
Religion of course is an entirely different problem. It is, generally, doctrine divorced from authentic experience, but twisted and roiled by intervening experiences, the anxieties of particular cultural situations. E.g., the cathedrals and the Eucharist of medieval Europe being a masterful psychotropic mechanism designed to help that population recover from pandemic trauma. And, once recovery progresses, they shift gradually from being psychotropic devices to being museums (or fire stations, as in my neighborhood), and the like.
So, the contemporary issue always is, the recovery of said ultimate experience (and the recovery from trauma).

So, I think it is a useful "inquiry matrix" to look into this family of experiences. They seem to be basic and essential to the complete human experience.
And yet you ignore thoughts expressed here and continue to repeat your skeleton of a belief system.

Mapping CFI culture, investigating which ideas/experiences are acceptable/non-acceptable, to see if this is a place where I want to spend any time.
My key question is about self-inquiry. Voegelin’s “experience…which cannot become itself an object of propositional knowledge…” seems to be unacceptable. Yet V claims that across cultures and across centuries this experience is the source from which “the symbols of ultimate values emerge as the exegesis of its truth”. In taking this position V seems to agree with Daoist discipline, Buddhist “make friends with yourself”, and Buddhist “cease the chatter of the mind”. So, this kind of self-inquiry seems to be unacceptable in CFI culture.
Also, on the issue of religion being the sedative use of doctrine (without the aforementioned experience) that fits into the historic process of recovery from trauma, this seems to be unacceptable.
In this frame of reference, “secular” and “humanist” would seem to be synonymous with “recovered from trauma”, and “religious” would seem to be synonymous with “suffering from serious PTSD”. (The crusaders were the jihadists of a former age.) Religious violence would be related to fear of losing one’s fix. The intensely orthodox believer would be a kind of junkie.
“Reason” seems to be trickier. It seems to be purely “thinking”, versus “meditation”, which includes “to be fully aware of the vividness of internal sensations and stimuli from the external world as they impact the senses.” [And there are distinctly possible left-brain, right-brain correlations.]
I am a self-inquiring meditator. Do I belong here?

Also, on the issue of religion being the sedative use of doctrine (without the aforementioned experience) that fits into the historic process of recovery from trauma, this seems to be unacceptable. In this frame of reference, "secular" and "humanist" would seem to be synonymous with "recovered from trauma", and "religious" would seem to be synonymous with "suffering from serious PTSD". (The crusaders were the jihadists of a former age.) Religious violence would be related to fear of losing one's fix. The intensely orthodox believer would be a kind of junkie.
I've been watching this thread since I first saw it and chose to keep quiet and watch, but I need to say this is not a necessarily true hypothesis. There are some people, esp those leaving religion and some out for quite sometime who suffer from what Marlene Winell http://marlenewinell.net/ calls "Religious Trauma Syndrome", which includes symptoms of PTSD. There are some non-religious people who call themselves humanists or secular, who suffer from some religious trauma they grew up with as a child or experienced as an adult in religion.
I am a self-inquiring meditator. Do I belong here?
Since I did finally respond and made my presence known, I guess I should answer this too. I don't know if you belong here or not. That's something you have to decide for yourself. There might be other groups/forums that you enjoy more and can contribute to more, like maybe Marlene's Release and Reclaim group. It maybe you could benefit more from a different group/forum at this point in your life. I'm not trying to discourage you from this forum, I'm just suggesting that maybe this isn't the forum for you, at least not at this time, but another might be more in line with your current thinking. Then again, you might be able to get something out of this forum now too. It's something you need to decide for yourself and not something any of us can tell you. but gathering from some things said in this thread, you might appreciate a Buddhist, Tao, or maybe even a forum like I mentioned above. I also know of a Tao forum ( taoism.net ) that you might appreciate too (my 24 y.o. son calls himself a Tao/Zen Buddhist, so I have some interest in this, if only to learn about his chosen religion). The only answer I can give you, as to whether or not you belong in this forum is to say, if you're not happy with this forum, then you might like/appreciate another venue, in which to express your thoughts, comments, ideas, etc., but keep in mind, you might not agree with everything discussed or said in any given forum, There may still be topics/discussion that you may feel unsatisfied with even in a Taoism forum or even Marlene's group, but even so, you may feel you fit in better with such a forum. No one can tell you if you belong in a given group though. That's something you have to decide for yourself.
Please investigate the functions of the right hemisphere of the brain.
Therein lies the problem with your hypothesis. Speech, language, and hearing, for example, are not centered in just one side of the brain. The Broca and Wernicke's areas are not the only areas of the brain that for these activities. If it were, then some stroke victims and even Gabrielle Giffords (a left brain injury) would never recover their speech and/or hearing. Gabby's TBI went from back left to front left, according to WebMD: http://www.webmd.com/brain/news/20110109/gabrielle-giffords-brain-injury-faq Yet, she speaks and has made an amazing recovery, that I, who has only a BS degree in Psychology, didn't think she'd survive, but I also know TBI victims often do surprise us and make amazing recoveries.
That part of the brain controls vision, language, and the ability to move the right side of the body. All of these functions are at risk, notes Keith L. Black, MD.
It's a very, very serious wound. About 90% of people shot in the head do not survive, David Langer says.
Gabby beat the odds and is still beating the odds, in part because even the adult brain can form new connections and new cells. Then there is Phineas Gage- a very interesting very early case study of brain injury. There are various places in both sides of the brain for these activities. Not only that, we use most of our brains most of the time, and not just one side, unless, like asanta pointed out, one has a surgery either removing one side of the brain or clipping the corpus callosum and even then, the brain has an amazing way of recovering, esp in children. So even this hypothesis you've seemed to have stated doesn't hold up to research and actual case studies of TBI and granted, the two case studies of TBI I mentioned are left brain injuries, the same holds for the right side of the brain and neither side exclusively controls a given action.