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PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 1:02 pm 
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What is "progress?" It is the overall reduction of entropy of the system. It is necessarily temporal: it represents a change of state, implying a before and an after.

Individuated Units of Consciousness “progress” insofar as they, in most cases, move from higher to lower states of entropy. And in one fractal level down, IUOCs during experience packets (in a human life) also in most cases “progress,” expanding their decision space and learning to make wiser decisions as they age from infant to child to adolescent to young person to middle-aged person to elder.

Consciousness on Earth has "progressed" insofar as the system has evolved biology: an effective platform for running consciousness which lowers its own entropy and, by extension, the entropy of the entire system. The rise of language, thought, and higher states of consciousness in human beings are evidence of this progress.

So my question is, is human society progressing? In other words, have we humans developed a system that provides, on average, more opportunity for individuals to increase their consciousness quality today than there was in the past?

Standard modernist arguments sound a resounding, "yes, and increasingly so." You know the arguments. The dismantling of feudalism and the rise of democracy leads to individual rights and the defense of those rights for more and more groups (e.g. workers, women, and, more recently, animals and gays). There are humanitarian mobilization efforts to aid in disasters; police, fire and EMS to provide instant help in emergencies. Laws regulate some aspects of civil societies, checks and balances in principle keep the powerful from stealing too much power. And of course, modern technology gives individuals unprecedented latitude to focus on self-improvement instead of survival.

New professional institutions such as psychology, social work, nursing, education, and librarianship have been added to the traditional doctors, clergy, and lawyers/judges. These professions are expressly created to help people, and they do. I recovered from alcoholism thanks to intensive professional counseling and help from support groups—these phenomena simply did not exist 100 years ago. I grow in compassion and understanding thanks to the efforts of my local library to collect information.

I know the above is somewhat idealistic and that holes can easily be poked into some of the above arguments (global inequality is increasing, governments are still corrupt, professions are motivated by wealth and power, etc.). The institutions are absolutely not perfect, but for the most part, in my opinion, more people are better able to progress today than ever before. I am therefore positing that global human society is on a "progressive" (not necessarily linear) trajectory: things have gotten better overall.

Do you share this opinion? Or is human social progress a straight line? One of the common sentiments here on this board that this world is constantly being flooded with high entropy IUOCs. It would seem then that social relations would stagnate or worsen over time—unless lower entropy IUOCs stick around and have exponentially greater power, enabling them to sustain the positive social progress that has been achieved.

Or is this a story of decline? Just because social relations have progressed does not mean they will continue to do so. MBT says that if a system is becoming unstable, it is dealt with in one of 3 ways: the system edges its way back to a formerly stable state, the system self destructs, or the system grows to a future balance. Where are we?

Thanks for reading.

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 1:29 pm 
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I personally don't think we can really know for sure. We see things from a subject perspective so one person or groups of persons cannot really give an accurate objective answer like that from within a PMR or NPMR. I want to point out that you assumed FWAUs are generally moving toward a lower entropy state; I don't think MBT says anything of that nature. It is in fact our goal to lower our entropy, but from what I understand about the MBT view is that IUOC/FWAUs tend to go up and down in entropy level, or that the entropy process is rather random, depending solely on the IUOC's choices. I think when looking at the question presented from only subjective viewpoints (like the risk/rewards you mentioned referring to the protection of rights and things of that nature provided by governments), that you are assuming all those things are ultimately beneficial to the LCS, when realistically that is very uncertain from our viewpoints.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 1:50 pm 
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Let me clarify some basic concepts. It is individuals, IUOCs, and their interactions that leads to entropy reduction. Individuals do not necessarily bounce around, up and down from incarnation to incarnation. Yes, you can go down. Most are more holding their own rather than declining in quality. It does take more time, more cycles through the process, than most think when they hear of the concept. You don't just find out about the things in MBT, achieve an intellectual understanding and then make marvelous progress and 'graduate' in this one last trip. The change that matters is at the being level, internal to the digital consciousness that is the real you, as opposed to intellectually which is more a matter of the information which you are processing and not the digital being with which you are processing it. It is that processing power within yourself as an IUOC that you are improving.

What is evidenced within society is only a reflection of the qualities of the members of that society. You only progress as an individual where it counts, within your being. There have always been exceptional members of that society. That is why there is still a 'reverence' for the Hellenistic age, for instance. That is why there have been so many religions founded by exceptional individuals in the far past and through to the relative present. Society does make progress in its institutions. The continual influx of high entropy individuals keeps the general functional level of the participants down, no matter what improvements are made in the societal institutions. Does this not make sense?

Ted


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 2:08 pm 
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Ted, I don't know if you were referring to what I said about bouncing up and down or not. If you were I want to clarify what I meant a little better(If not, this will just add to my thoughts from the last post I wrote). When I said we shouldn't assume an IUOC is always moving more towards a lower entropy state I was thinking more along the lines that every time we enter into an NPMR or PMR we have a completely different experience than the last. For instance, an FWAU might learn more about one aspect of lowering it's entropy in single PMR lifetime, and then in the next it could be subject to such a different experience that it might not know what path towards entropy reduction to take and get it wrong, in turn raising it's entropy to above the level it was at before the second incarnation, thus going up and down, or fluctuating entropy level as time progresses. If we are always moving toward a lower entropy state then IUOCs would never get "deleted".


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 11:49 am 
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Quote:
I want to point out that you assumed FWAUs are generally moving toward a lower entropy state; I don't think MBT says anything of that nature.
Yes, I’m not sure I remember the book stating this; however, I have concluded it from my own observations. The vast, overwhelming majority of people I interact with on a daily basis sincerely intend to (and do) improve themselves and extend love to their circle of friends and family and beyond. Only very seldom do I encounter a sociopath out for the destruction of relationships. Furthermore, I have also observed many cases of entropy-reduction during a single lifetime of individuals. A youth of crime and crudity to a middle-age of contributions and civility. A person learning that greed and power are not the solutions to unhappiness. Yes, I know they are probably just "catching up" to their previously achieved quality, but nonetheless it is evidence that the system works. So I think it is safe to say that this PMR “works,” i.e. it provides conditions in which the entropy of IUOCs is for the most part consistently lowering.

So I guess what I am wondering is, is there such a phenomenon as "human society," is that system evolving, and does that system work, i.e. is it a system that supports the evolution of consciousness? AUM is an evolving system, PMR is an evolving system--they self-modify into more profitable configurations. To me, human social institutions are likewise evolving systems, human society is also an evolving system, and they are, on average, evolving in the right direction.

Lumpy you may be right that it is impossible to tell from subjective viewpoints, but doesn't it seem to you that life is less brutish, nasty, and short for a good proportion of the planet? Especially when compared to the past? And much of that is owing to the systems we have devised to take care of each other.
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What is evidenced within society is only a reflection of the qualities of the members of that society.
I think that because our social institutions have evolved in a lower entropy direction, that indicates to me that there are proportionally higher quality consciousness units interacting in this PMR than there were 3000 years ago.

Therefore I am beginning to think that this is not forever destined to be a kindergarten, but it is possible that someday human society will evolve into a high school. If we have better organized (more profitable) social institutions, why would we continue to receive tons of low quality consciousness? It would be like putting a kindergartner in a higher grade--they wouldn't get much out of it and it would be annoying for the older kids.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 12:16 pm 
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It would be like putting a kindergartner in a higher grade--they wouldn't get much out of it and it would be annoying for the older kids.
I think we get exactly what we need from it and I imagine those older kids aren't annoyed with us but rather watch us flitting around the flame benevolently. I think when you're older you don't get annoyed because you understand, I believe that because I don't know it for fact. :)
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 1:42 pm 
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Quote:
Yes, I’m not sure I remember the book stating this; however, I have concluded it from my own observations. The vast, overwhelming majority of people I interact with on a daily basis sincerely intend to (and do) improve themselves and extend love to their circle of friends and family and beyond. Only very seldom do I encounter a sociopath out for the destruction of relationships. Furthermore, I have also observed many cases of entropy-reduction during a single lifetime of individuals. A youth of crime and crudity to a middle-age of contributions and civility. A person learning that greed and power are not the solutions to unhappiness. Yes, I know they are probably just "catching up" to their previously achieved quality, but nonetheless it is evidence that the system works. So I think it is safe to say that this PMR “works,” i.e. it provides conditions in which the entropy of IUOCs is for the most part consistently lowering.
Why yes, it is the nature of consciousness to be selfish (in a positive way) in lowering it's entropy.
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So I guess what I am wondering is, is there such a phenomenon as "human society," is that system evolving, and does that system work, i.e. is it a system that supports the evolution of consciousness? AUM is an evolving system, PMR is an evolving system--they self-modify into more profitable configurations. To me, human social institutions are likewise evolving systems, human society is also an evolving system, and they are, on average, evolving in the right direction.
Society is a construct of current and past players. I would say that it evolves as the percentage of players with lower entropy evolve.
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Lumpy you may be right that it is impossible to tell from subjective viewpoints, but doesn't it seem to you that life is less brutish, nasty, and short for a good proportion of the planet? Especially when compared to the past? And much of that is owing to the systems we have devised to take care of each other.
I would say it is directly less brutish than the past. Brutish/nasty in different ways. For example, a high entropy being in the past could get away with violence and criminal activities easier; Now it is harder so they might spread their negativity in different ways. How can we know that calling a name hurts someones feelings less than hitting them?(It's subjective, depending on the person) ...That kind of thing. If that makes sense.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 2:09 pm 
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I think we get exactly what we need from it and I imagine those older kids aren't annoyed with us but rather watch us flitting around the flame benevolently.
That is a good idea Bette, but after too much of this wouldn't they eventually plateau? I mean, they are definitely helping out but what about their own growth? Don't they need some higher intensity interactions than those that Earth gives?
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I would say it is directly less brutish than the past. Brutish/nasty in different ways. For example, a high entropy being in the past could get away with violence and criminal activities easier; Now it is harder so they might spread their negativity in different ways. How can we know that calling a name hurts someones feelings less than hitting them?(It's subjective, depending on the person) ...That kind of thing. If that makes sense.
Yes it quite makes sense. However I would argue that in precisely the same way people took away opportunities for a high entropy being to commit brutal crimes (e.g., neighborhood watches, responsive police, deterrent criminal justice systems, better social infrastructure to steer the person away from a life of crime), we are actively working on reducing these other insidious forms of hate. For example, raising awareness against racism and passing legislation forbidding employers from blatant racist hiring practices. Or, victims of abuse have more opportunities to recover (being part of a community of survivors, going through therapy, having a loving and supportive family unit).

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 2:34 pm 
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Yes it quite makes sense. However I would argue that in precisely the same way people took away opportunities for a high entropy being to commit brutal crimes (e.g., neighborhood watches, responsive police, deterrent criminal justice systems, better social infrastructure to steer the person away from a life of crime), we are actively working on reducing these other insidious forms of hate. For example, raising awareness against racism and passing legislation forbidding employers from blatant racist hiring practices. Or, victims of abuse have more opportunities to recover (being part of a community of survivors, going through therapy, having a loving and supportive family unit).
You cannot reduce things like racism or violence by force without limiting free will(or taking away a portion of citizens decision space). For example, banning things to stop them is just simply reducing everyone's decision space. Raising awareness against something like racism would help, but only if the people on the receiving end voluntarily comply with the message. Passing legislation is by force so it's not the same. Your victims of abuse having more opportunities to recover example would be voluntarily. You cannot lump things that are by force(against someone's free will) and voluntary in the same group.

I mean, you can do things by force, but it doesn't mean the entropy level of society is getting lower. It is an illusion.


Last edited by Lumpy on Wed Feb 15, 2012 3:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 2:59 pm 
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For example, banning things to stop them is just simply reducing everyone's decision space.
Incorrect. By forbidding Employer A from refusing service Black Man B, you are increasing the decision space of Black Man B as he is now granted the opportunity to experience something he previously would not have had. Perhaps A's entropy is not directly lowered, but B will now have new opportunities.

Furthermore, I believe that the great reduction of racism in the United States was not just due to a massive consciousness shift--the Civil Rights movement--but followed also from the movement's success in getting Johnson to pass Civil Rights Acts. Employers (and mortgage companies, and police, and city planners, and universities, and politicians) were then forbidden from openly committing acts of racism. That in itself brought awareness to the great problem of racism and led to one of the greatest shifts in history. It also gave blacks new opportunities to assert themselves and achieve accomplishments no one would have ever thought possible.

I know that racism is still of course present, but the Civil Rights Acts had a positive effect on society. You can change a society by acts of legislation (or "force" as you call it) as it requires the fortunate to reconsider the plight of the less fortunate. It also displaces the formerly powerful people who upheld the high entropy way of doing things, as their worldview is discredited.

It is about holding people accountable, not controlling everything!

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 8:11 pm 
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I was thinking more like banning an item when I said that. I don't really want to comment on the civil rights act stuff because I haven't studied it enough to know my opinion on it yet.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 9:16 pm 
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Yikes higher intensity?! This VR is plenty intense for me. ;) Yeah I imagine eventually coming back here gets old and really organized bits graduate out completely.
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Bette

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2012 6:05 pm 
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Free will ins't absolutely free will. It's free enough to support efficient evolution, but not so free as to allow high entropy beings to make all of their wishes come true at the expense of everyone else.

Free will = good is not an absolute. I believe that we've had this discussion many times, including from the perspective of whether free will exists at all.

viewtopic.php?t=32


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2012 10:00 pm 
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Free will is like a necessary ingredient. Thanks for posting that Moji Doji. Hadn't read that whole thread before. Fits in to what I have been pondering lately.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 10, 2014 4:29 am 
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I know this is a rather old thread but I have been thinking about this question a lot during the past decade.

I guess we are stuck in a huge positive feedback loop of destructive entropy and that we are not making much progress at all. (Some of us were always ahead of the game ... even 5000 years ago but other than that not much has changed fundamentally?)

One of the biggest problems is that our monetary system and our socioeconomic framework are based on fear and ego. We need to implement a love and cooperation based monetary system and socioeconomic framework from within a system and culture of fear, ego and competition. That's not going to be easy. There are a lot of people and groups trying to achieve just that but the majority will degenerate further as socioeconomic pressure builds up. 1930 is repeating itself as the same monetary system and socioeconomic framework is forcing people into unnecessary systemic poverty and anxiety again (in a time of absolute abundance that is) but we haven't learned very much from our own history ... again nationalists, racists, war mongers, etc. are on the rise.

It would be interesting to know if this phase is normal within many physical realities? Somewhere in the book Tom writes about other very bad (in terms of fear and violence) realities and so I guess that there is no "pruning threshold" at which our reality frame gets reset because entropy levels have become irreversibly high? Of course there is still a lot of potential for individuals (like me) to grow within our physical reality but shouldn't there be some threshold in terms of insanity at which the entire system is deemed counterproductive and pruned?

Anyway ... if you are interested in socioeconomic change then I recommend reading a wonderful book called "Sacred Economics" by Charles Eisenstein. He describes a way from this high entropy culture of fear and separation towards a culture of cooperation and love. You can read it for free online at http://sacred-economics.com/read-online/ ... it's one of the best books out there, most beautifully written and full of wisdom and love.

camel


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