The Buddha, Imagination and The Artistic Process

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Re: The Buddha, Imagination and The Artistic Process

Postby Kim OHara » Thu Mar 04, 2010 2:22 am

MayaRefugee, TMingyur -
"A good attitude is to learn how to use language without clinging onto meaning/conceptuality/thought too tightly," indeed, but that thought is no excuse for sloppy thinking expressed in sloppy language.
At this point I have no more patience for such thinking and such language; I can't even be bothered working out whether it is deliberate obscurantism on your part or a genuine, and therefore potentially remediable, lack of clarity.
Be well.

:namaste:
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Re: The Buddha, Imagination and The Artistic Process

Postby ground » Thu Mar 04, 2010 3:36 am

Kim O'Hara wrote:MayaRefugee, TMingyur -
"A good attitude is to learn how to use language without clinging onto meaning/conceptuality/thought too tightly," indeed, but that thought is no excuse for sloppy thinking expressed in sloppy language.
At this point I have no more patience for such thinking and such language; I can't even be bothered working out whether it is deliberate obscurantism on your part or a genuine, and therefore potentially remediable, lack of clarity.
Be well.

:namaste:
Kim


Imagination of "I" entails imagination of "mine" and "other". From imagination of "this" arises imagination of "this is" and "this is not" and the turbulence of "likes" and "dislikes" follows.

As to "sloppy thinking" I would like to refer you to the teachings of Dharmakirti on logic. A master who very well discerned sensation/immediate experience and fabrication/imagination and showed that conventional logic is fully compatible with this view.

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Re: The Buddha, Imagination and The Artistic Process

Postby MayaRefugee » Thu Mar 04, 2010 4:42 am

Kim,

It seems you think your understandings/beliefs/methods are impeccable and the things being bought up are somehow inferior to said things - if you are so knowledgable why don't you expound a bottom line on the topic so we can know this stuff as good as you do?

Your choice to offer nothing but unsubstantiated refutations does nothing to advance this thread/one trying to get to the bottom of the issues at hand.

As far as "sloppy" thinking and "sloppy" language goes, a) sloppiness is relative and b) sloppiness still conveys the gist which at the end of the day is all that matters - the internet AFAIK is not some sort of grammar/literary competition.

If you're not happy or do think you're somehow above what's going on in this thread why don't you just go away?
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Re: The Buddha, Imagination and The Artistic Process

Postby Kim OHara » Thu Mar 04, 2010 5:10 am

Both of you write commendably clearly, concisely and sensibly when you are not writing about art and imagination.
:clap:
If you could or would write just as clearly when you are on topic, we could enjoy a useful discussion.
When you do begin to write clearly about art and imagination, I may rejoin the conversation.
Bye for now,

Kim
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Re: The Buddha, Imagination and The Artistic Process

Postby ground » Thu Mar 04, 2010 6:01 am

tiltbillings wrote:Given the lovely art produced by Buddhists of any number of schools or a very long time, art has its place.

As for what the Buddha said about imagination, seem not really anything, though there instances where makes a statement of appreciation of beauty of the place he is at.

Friend, this person without blemish, who does not know, as it really is, `There is no blemish in me,' attending to an agreeable sign greed would overcome his mind, hate and delusion would overcome his mind and he would die with a defiled mind.
...
Friend, this person without blemish, who knows, as it really is, `There is no blemish in me,' attending to an agreeable sign, greed would not overcome his mind, hate and delusiosn would not overcome his mind. He would die without greed, hate and delusion, He would die with an undefiled mind.

Ananganasutta
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Re: The Buddha, Imagination and The Artistic Process

Postby MayaRefugee » Thu Mar 04, 2010 6:09 am

TMingyur,

Having established that imagination is anything we derive from/add to sensual or direct experience where can we go from here?

Do you have any thoughts on the following:

Does the first imagining influence all imaginings thereafter?
What are the intricacies pertaining to the material the imagination uses to imagine?
Being as respectful as possible, could/does a person born deaf and blind imagine?

Peace.
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Re: The Buddha, Imagination and The Artistic Process

Postby ground » Thu Mar 04, 2010 6:47 am

Hello MR

MayaRefugee wrote:TMingyur,

Having established that imagination is anything we derive from/add to sensual or direct experience where can we go from here?

Do you have any thoughts on the following:

Does the first imagining influence all imaginings thereafter?

Being aware that we are using our own power of imagination when investigating there are nevertheless - as in all cases where "time" and "location" dominate our experience - different causal aspects of one and same the underlying phenomenon of "reality" one may focus on that elucidate different effects:
Aspect 1:
"Dependent on intellect & ideas, intellect-consciousness arises. The meeting of the three is contact. With contact as a requisite condition, there is feeling. What one feels, one perceives (labels in the mind). What one perceives, one thinks about. What one thinks about, one complicates. Based on what a person complicates, the perceptions & categories of complication assail him/her with regard to past, present, & future ideas cognizable via the intellect.

Madhupindika Sutta

But also aspect 2:
All successful human action is preceded by right knowledge.
Right knowledge is twofold:
Direct and indirect (perceptive and inferential).
Direct knowledge means here neither construction (judgement) nor illusion. Construction (or judgement) implies a distinct cognition of a mental reflex which is capable of coalescing with a verbal designation. Knowledge exempt from such (construction), when it is not affected by an illusion produced by color-blindness, rapid motion, travelling on board ship, sickness or other causes, is perceptive (right) knowledge.

Nyaya-Bindu, Dharmakirti

MayaRefugee wrote:What are the intricacies pertaining to the material the imagination uses to imagine?

If we concede logical thinking being a manifestation of imagination then "pure" (i.e. logically valid) imagination is "pure" thought devoid of emotional distortions and "unconscious" habits. What prevails is the undistorted causal relationship between sensation and thought.
If we concede "art" being another manifestation of imagination then the term "authenticity" may be applied, describing the causal relationship between the subject's experience and the subject's expression.

MayaRefugee wrote:Being as respectful as possible, could/does a person born deaf and blind imagine?

Of course this is a matter of speculation and definition.
As to definition: Since I have applied the term "imagination" in the sense of comprising any form of conceptual construction which therefore is not restricted to mere verbal thought activity but includes non-visual "pattern" re-cognition as well I would tend to say that even a person born deaf and blind will apply "imagination".
As to speculation: In that sense (s. above) "imagination" seems to be a natural potential (quality) "inhering" in any "sentient being".

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Re: The Buddha, Imagination and The Artistic Process

Postby chownah » Fri Mar 05, 2010 2:07 pm

TMingyur,
Do you think your use of "imagine" has the same meaning as the word "construe" as used in the Canonical sense that the Buddha does not construe an object as being seen and does not construe a seer?
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Re: The Buddha, Imagination and The Artistic Process

Postby ground » Sat Mar 06, 2010 6:32 am

Hi chownah,

maybe, but not knowing the context of the canonical use of "construe" neither can I confirm nor can I negate. However "construe" and "imagine" seem to be mutually inclusive.
Conceptuality seems to be involved in both cases. However "conceptuality" how I understand it does not exclusively refer to "moments of thought" or a "thinking process", as in the context of "labeling", but also to the mere assigning of "meaning" on a "more intuitive", non verbal level, i.e. the mark of conceptuality is not the label itself appearing in the mind but the mark is "actively adding" concomitant with "becoming aware".
"actively" seems to be crucial since neuroscience has indicated that there may also be a "passively adding" occuring within sensation itself which is however not concomitant with "becoming aware".

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Re: The Buddha, Imagination and The Artistic Process

Postby chownah » Mon Mar 08, 2010 2:42 pm

TMingyur wrote:Hi chownah,

maybe, but not knowing the context of the canonical use of "construe" neither can I confirm nor can I negate. However "construe" and "imagine" seem to be mutually inclusive.
Conceptuality seems to be involved in both cases. However "conceptuality" how I understand it does not exclusively refer to "moments of thought" or a "thinking process", as in the context of "labeling", but also to the mere assigning of "meaning" on a "more intuitive", non verbal level, i.e. the mark of conceptuality is not the label itself appearing in the mind but the mark is "actively adding" concomitant with "becoming aware".
"actively" seems to be crucial since neuroscience has indicated that there may also be a "passively adding" occuring within sensation itself which is however not concomitant with "becoming aware".

Kind regards

TMingyur,
Here is a link to the text I was thinking of:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

and a brief quote:
"..............
"Thus, monks, the Tathagata, when seeing what is to be seen, doesn't construe an [object as] seen. He doesn't construe an unseen. He doesn't construe an [object] to-be-seen. He doesn't construe a seer.

"When hearing...

"When sensing...

"When cognizing what is to be cognized, he doesn't construe an [object as] cognized. He doesn't construe an uncognized. He doesn't construe an [object] to-be-cognized. He doesn't construe a cognizer.

Thus, monks, the Tathagata — being the same with regard to all phenomena that can be seen, heard, sensed, & cognized — is 'Such.' And I tell you: There's no other 'Such' higher or more sublime.
..............."

Also, if "construe" and "imagine" are "mutually inclusive" as you suggest does this mean that they overlap and that they both have meanings which are shared and they both have meanings which are not shared?....or does this mean that one of them is completely contained in the other(if so then which is the subset and which is the superset?)....or does this mean that they both contain the other completely resulting in them being identical? I'm just wondering how you view this so that I can better understand your ideas.

Also, are you of the view that concepts from neuroscience can be seamlessly meshed with the Buddha's teachings and thus gain a greater insight?

Also, I'm not exctly sure what a textbook definition of "conceptuality" might be but I think I uderstand what you are saying about it....to see if I'm on the right track are you saying that "conceptuality" is perhaps the first manipulation of the raw data ...the raw data here would be stimulus (sense object) contacting the sensory organ? For example: light strikes the retina causing activity in the optic nerve....for there to be any meaning to it other than just random light it must be "conceptualized"????


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Re: The Buddha, Imagination and The Artistic Process

Postby ground » Mon Mar 08, 2010 3:51 pm

Hi chownah,
chownah wrote:TMingyur,
Here is a link to the text I was thinking of:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

and a brief quote:
"..............

Yes, that "construe" in this context appears to come very close to or may even be equated with "imagine" how I am understanding it.


chownah wrote:Also, if "construe" and "imagine" are "mutually inclusive" as you suggest does this mean that they overlap and that they both have meanings which are shared and they both have meanings which are not shared?....or does this mean that one of them is completely contained in the other(if so then which is the subset and which is the superset?)....or does this mean that they both contain the other completely resulting in them being identical? I'm just wondering how you view this so that I can better understand your ideas.

Now that I have said what I have said above from my point of view these terms may be considered synonymous.

chownah wrote:Also, are you of the view that concepts from neuroscience can be seamlessly meshed with the Buddha's teachings and thus gain a greater insight?

We have to be careful here and discern the concepts of neuroscience that refer to phenomena that can be validly (conventionally) known and the concepts of neuroscience which actually are interpretations beyond what can be validly (conventionally) known.
Above I have written "neuroscience has indicated that there may be" and "may be" means "maybe". This is an important point since the result of experiments depends on the setting and design and equipment used for experiments and the setting and design and equipment used for experiments depends on the view of the experimenter.
So in terms of the variety of phenomena that can be (conventionally) known neuroscience seamlessly meshes with the Buddha's teaching like any other science does. Greater insight may be (maybe!) a consequence in the context of insight into interdependence of phenomena related to the experiencer (the subject). But I would not say that neuroscience is mandatory.

chownah wrote:Also, I'm not exctly sure what a textbook definition of "conceptuality" might be but I think I uderstand what you are saying about it....to see if I'm on the right track are you saying that "conceptuality" is perhaps the first manipulation of the raw data ...the raw data here would be stimulus (sense object) contacting the sensory organ? For example: light strikes the retina causing activity in the optic nerve....for there to be any meaning to it other than just random light it must be "conceptualized"????

[Just to be clear about that and to avoid any misunderstandings: My differentiation between "conceptuality"/"imagination" on the on hand and "sensation" on the other hand is not intended to convey the meaning of one being "good" or "true" and the other being "bad" or "false".]
Generally I would say that wherever there is "meaning" there is "conceptuality". I think we may even equate "conceptuality" with "imagination" (with "construction").
The arising of "meaning" that is extended across "units of area (or space)" and "time" IMO is the result of conceptuality. E.g. difference in brightness of colored dots may be interpreted as some dots meaning "foreground" and some meaning "background". In that sense 3-dimensional seeing is the result of early conceptuality due to the arising of "foreground" and "background" meaning. Of course this meaning is valid since everyday activity and accompanying experience validates "foreground" and "background" and supports conventionally successful action (movement). However a "meaning" of different shaded colored dots extended across "units of area" may also represent just a flat vertical plane. So the basis for interpreting sense data has to be sort of "pattern recognition" which is conceptuality. This is an example where experience in moving and grasping with one's hands actually coins the apprehension of a mere visual representation of an array of multiple colored dots.

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