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Featured The Qualities of Awareness

Discussion in 'Science and Religion' started by SalixIncendium, Dec 13, 2020.

  1. SalixIncendium

    SalixIncendium Advaita Vedantin
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    What qualities or attributes does awareness have?

    When I speak of awareness, I am speaking of that one that is aware. That one which is aware of objects of the senses, such as what is seen, heard, tasted, felt, and smelled, but is also aware of the organs of the senses; the eyes, the ears, the tongue, the skin, and the nose. That one that is aware of the functions of the body and the mind. That one which is aware of memories, of thoughts, of ideas, of knowledge, of feelings, etc.

    Can you list these qualities or attributes that awareness has?

    _____________________________________________________


     
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  2. Sunstone

    Sunstone De Diablo Del Fora
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    It seems to me the kind of awareness you are describing -- normal, everyday waking awareness -- involves a division of the world or reality into self and non-self. Or 'subject and object' as it's often called. This division seems both intrinsic to that kind of awareness and fundamental to its nature. So, in addition to all that you have listed, I would add an awareness of self and non-self.
     
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  3. Sunstone

    Sunstone De Diablo Del Fora
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    Inferior and superior. Humans tend to be aware of things in terms of their alleged superiority or inferiority to other things. But superiority and inferiority are not properties of matter or nature. Instead, they are mental constructs associated with our normal, every day, waking awareness.
     
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  4. SalixIncendium

    SalixIncendium Advaita Vedantin
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    I'm not necessarily talking exclusively about normal, everyday waking awareness. I'm talking about awareness as a whole. When one is in a dream state, one is still aware of the dream. And while I know it's not verifiable, I think even in deep sleep, awareness is still there. I see deep sleep as not an absence of awareness, but an awareness of absence.

    And you raise a good point. In order to recognize what awareness is, at its core, one has to go through a process of separating what is self and what is non-self. I find the expression of neti-neti (not this, not this) to be a good means of determining this.
     
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  5. SalixIncendium

    SalixIncendium Advaita Vedantin
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    Is one not aware if something is inferior or superior? If one is, I don't think we can necessarily name this as an attribute of awareness, but an attribute of the thought process used in making such a distinction. If one is aware of that thought or idea, then it can't be an attribute of awareness, but an attribute of that thought or idea.
     
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  6. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    In my sampradaya, awareness is likened to a little ball of light that moves around to various areas of the mind, like intellectual, emotional, instinctive, and then increasingly more specific. At any moment in time, awareness can be anywhere.

    In learning self-control, the object is to use the will to move awareness wherever you want it to go. That means separating awareness from the thing or thought that it is aware of. Once the yogi is able to do that at will, a great freedom occurs.

    A much deeper, and harder goal is to get awareness to the point where the only thing it's aware of is itself.

    Nice topic.
     
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  7. PureX

    PureX Veteran Member

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    And that seems to be based almost entirely on control. "I" am what I can control by will, alone, while "I am not" what I cannot control by will, alone, and therefor must find some other way to gain control of, or find a way to become impervious to it's ill affects. Needless to say I will venerate very highly whatever means I can find to do this: God/religion, money, science, philosophy, ...
     
    #7 PureX, Dec 13, 2020
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2020
  8. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon shunyadragon
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    I see awareness as the ability to relate objectively in terms of the universal beyond one's own cultural or religious paradigm. For the most part by far most people see our world, other beliefs and cultures through the eyes of their own cultural and religious paradigm. An analogy is comparing the awareness of one ray of the sun to the infinite rays of the sun.

    I choose to aware of the infinite rays of light as a 'follower of light.'
     
  9. Quintessence

    Quintessence Tale Weaver
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    I keep it simple - awareness is the ability of something (whether or not it is considered "alive" by humans) to sense and respond to its environment. Understanding it this way eschews the messy and problematic concept of "consciousness" and rightfully recognizes that all biological life (at a minimum) possesses awareness. It has to in order to survive and navigate its environment.
     
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  10. Heyo

    Heyo Well-Known Member

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    One attribute of awareness is "non-dual" or "continuous".
    You can be fully aware and focused on a perception over everyday awareness to barely aware. You can even let your awareness slip but tell your unconscious to alert you as soon as awareness is needed.
    (That is what sleep is, you are not aware but your unconscious will wake you at an alarming signal.)
     
  11. SalixIncendium

    SalixIncendium Advaita Vedantin
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    Thank you for the response, but I asked in the OP for attributes or qualities of awareness, not for a definition.
     
    #11 SalixIncendium, Dec 13, 2020
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2020
  12. icehorse

    icehorse Veteran Member
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    I believe that awareness can be viewed as a skill that can be improved. Meditation, asking yourself questions like "how did that situation feel?", journaling and so on can all improve one's awareness. And meditation can be taken into physical activities as well. You can notice how you're performing physically without judging..
     
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  13. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon shunyadragon
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    This was not really a definition, which is broader in scope and variations. To be aware may simply mean to acknowledge something or be awake, and capable of seeing things. I believe my post included attributes and qualities beyond the definition.

    I see awareness [the attributes of awareness] as the ability to relate objectively in terms of the universal beyond one's own cultural or religious paradigm. For the most part by far most people see our world, other beliefs and cultures through the eyes of their own cultural and religious paradigm. An analogy is comparing the awareness of one ray of the sun to the infinite rays of the sun.
     
  14. osgart

    osgart Nothing my eye, Something for sure

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    Well it's unavoidable, awareness is happening to a subject. What the subject is, is a much deeper question then merely awareness.

    By awareness the subject is known through relation to everything. If your paying attention.

    As far as I can tell awareness is the result of brain processes delivered to the subject.

    So if mere awareness is consciousness then science has a lot to say about it.

    The subject on the other hand is a complete mystery and only known self to self in relation to everything. Through effects, and affects of relation.

    Many will say subject is illusion. Subject is definitely not illusion. Thenceforth you would say where is its location. Good luck finding that!

    For me this adds a whole other intrinsic dimension to reality.

    When I watched my friend die she looked like she was still there even though she was gone. So where is awareness then? And is the subject an energy, or fueled by an energy? Once dead, where does it go? How exactly does a subject cease if it even does?

    Is awareness a complexity or is it simplicity? If things have purpose then there is another dimension. If not then everything awareness and subject is smoke and mirrors, mere illusion, but experience teaches better.
     
  15. Sunstone

    Sunstone De Diablo Del Fora
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    But aren't superior and inferior qualities that our minds project onto the physical world in somewhat the same what our minds project color onto the physical world? That is, superior and inferior seem to no more be properties of matter than are colors properties or traits of matter.

    Hm... I'd say we had a fundamentally different understanding of 'awareness'. No worries.
     
  16. Brickjectivity

    Brickjectivity Veteran Member
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    I think not, because in addition to things like 'Touch' or 'Smell' there are also numerous emergent awareness (plural) possible. For example you can combine the smell of salt and the feel of the breeze to remain aware of your proximity to the ocean, and you can train yourself to remain always aware of how close the ocean is.
     
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  17. SalixIncendium

    SalixIncendium Advaita Vedantin
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    Yes, but awareness of these interpretations renders the interpretations qualities in and of themselves, not qualities of awareness.

    The sun projects light onto objects. Those objects reflect light differently back to the sun; some brightly, some dimly. The brightness of dimness of the reflection isn't a quality of the sun, but a quality of the object reflect the light.

    Perhaps. And that's okay. Though I do wonder where the differences lie.
     
  18. Sunstone

    Sunstone De Diablo Del Fora
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    I don't see how your analogy applies here. Hence, I must remain unconvinced of your claim.


    I haven't tried to articulate them yet. Not sure I will, to be honest. The topic interests me, but perhaps not enough to put in the work.
     
  19. SalixIncendium

    SalixIncendium Advaita Vedantin
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    No worries.

    Entirely up to you. I’m good either way.
     
  20. SalixIncendium

    SalixIncendium Advaita Vedantin
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    So you're saying bias is a quality or attribute of awareness?

    If you are aware of the bias, how can it be an attribute to awareness?
     
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