What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

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Individual
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What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby Individual » Sun Jun 07, 2009 9:54 pm

The four great elements:
-The solid or earth-element
-The liquid or water-element
-The heat or fire-element
-The motion or wind-element

With these categories in mind...

What is a gelatin?

Image

What is a liquid crystal?

Image

And what is a plasma?

Image

One might assume that these three are some manner of "combination" of the four properties, but in what way are they separate properties which are combined, and not something altogether different?

To perhaps be more clear: What would each of the elements be in total purity, in the absence of the rest (a substance of "pure" fire or "pure" liquid)? And what makes the properties of solidity, liquidity, temperature, and kinetic energy more fundamental to the classification of rupa than chemical or atomic composition?
The best things in life aren't things.


termite
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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby termite » Mon Jun 08, 2009 2:24 am

(Just to be clear, I'm not answering from any "Abhidhammic" insight. :) )

It seems to me that those four "properties" of matter are experiential in nature, rather than theoretical.
:reading:
An old science teacher of mine once described a gelatin as "a liquid dissolved in a solid." A plasma looks an awful lot like fire to me. As for phase-changing materials, one might observe that they are whatever they are when they're whatever they are. :)

Some materials don't have a precise moment when they are either one thing or another. Glass and taffy come to mind as materials which flow more the warmer they are, while being quite stiff when cold. Hard to say when they're liquids or solids. Hit 'em with a hammer and see. :)

All right, I'm leaving now! :focus:

Individual
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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby Individual » Mon Jun 08, 2009 4:01 am

Correct theories are the underpinnings for accurate descriptions of experience and descriptions of experience themselves have theoretical implications.

If we regard these four elements as the irreducible or fundamental constituents of the experience of rupa, then by what combination are these experiences achieved? Does fire not feel differently than being shocked by a plasma -- such as a lightning bolt or electric current? Don't gelatins feel distinct experientially from both solids and liquids?

Another thing that occurs to me: What about radiation (which includes color and light, but also the kinds of radiation that can burn your skin, like microwaves, and background radiation that permeates the entire universe)? What is radiation?
The best things in life aren't things.


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tiltbillings
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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Jun 08, 2009 4:22 am

Must be a long quiet night were you are. Within the Abhidhamma the elements are meant to be used to look at one's actual experiences, not describe the "reality" out there.

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Jechbi
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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby Jechbi » Mon Jun 08, 2009 5:22 am

Eat the gelatin and find out.

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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby Dhammanando » Mon Jun 08, 2009 2:12 pm


Individual
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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby Individual » Mon Jun 08, 2009 4:38 pm

The best things in life aren't things.


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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby Dhammanando » Mon Jun 08, 2009 5:20 pm


Individual
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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby Individual » Mon Jun 08, 2009 6:07 pm

The best things in life aren't things.


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Jechbi
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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby Jechbi » Tue Jun 09, 2009 5:05 am


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Dhammanando
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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby Dhammanando » Tue Jun 09, 2009 5:51 am


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Jechbi
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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby Jechbi » Tue Jun 09, 2009 5:57 am


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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby Dhammanando » Tue Jun 09, 2009 6:26 am


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Jechbi
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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby Jechbi » Tue Jun 09, 2009 6:39 am

Thank you, Bhante. :anjali:

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Slothrop
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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby Slothrop » Wed Jun 17, 2009 2:56 am

In answering Individual's question, I perceive there was a communication breakdown. These are indeed interesting questions from Individual for which I too would like to hear answers. Perhaps there was a retreat into jargon that needs to be bridged further, since some terms have multiple meanings depending on the context, be it Buddhist or Western.

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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby Jechbi » Wed Jun 17, 2009 3:12 am


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retrofuturist
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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Jun 17, 2009 3:43 am

Greetings,

As I understand it, the elements refer to sensations that can be experienced within the nama-rupa complex.

They are experiential classifications, and provide benefit in the sense that they offer a classification system for what is felt, so that they can be rightfully known as anicca, anatta and dukkha.

They are not elementary classifications of the type found in a periodic table.

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

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serg_o
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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby serg_o » Wed Jun 17, 2009 8:58 am


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Slothrop
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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby Slothrop » Wed Jun 17, 2009 7:56 pm

So since they are experiential and not essential, then the question is not, "What is a gelatin?" but rather, "How is a gelatin experienced?" Is that right?

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retrofuturist
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Re: What's a gelatin, liquid crystal, or plasma?

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Jun 17, 2009 10:44 pm

"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine


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