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  • in reply to: Indirect Evidence for Gandhabba from Neurosurgery #32690

    Just listened to the first podcast; it’s really quite good!

    Here’s an interesting quote from the podcast, at 9:02, regarding Penfield’s first line of reasoning for dualism:

    … but Penfield noted that in probably hundreds of thousands of different individual stimulations, he never once stimulated the power of reason, he never stimulated the intellect, he never stimulated a person to do calculus or to think of an abstract concept, like justice or mercy. All the stimulations were concrete things—move your arm or feel a tingling or even a concrete memory like you remember your grandmother’s face or something—but there was never any abstract thought stimulated. And Penfield said: “Hey, if the brain is the source of abstract thought, then once in a while, when I’m putting electrical current on some part of the cortex, I ought to get an abstract thought.” And he never, ever did. So he said: “Well, the obvious explanation for that was that an abstract thought doesn’t come from the brain.”

    Note that despite Penfield’s perspective that this was evidence for dualism, it also supports a Buddhist perspective involving gandhabba.

    in reply to: NDE Experiences #32689

    Hi, Lal,

    According to the message displayed after clicking the link:

    As of September 1st 2020, invidio.us has closed down.

    Here is a replacement link to the YouTube channel:

    Empirische Jenseitsforschung

    Can you update the link in your post (made on behalf of Johnny_Lim) so as to avoid the middle step or is a reply, such as this one, the only way at this point?

    in reply to: Post on Five Aggregates – Introduction #32688

    Thank you for mentioning this:

    It must be noted that these details about the manomaya kaya (gandhabba) are not available in detail in the Tipitaka. – So, it is only when a Jati Sotapanna like Waharaka Thero (who had learned these details in a previous life) is born and is able to provide details, that we get to see the details. Not all Jati Sotapannas can provide such details either.
    – Those details were in the Sinhala Atthakatha (early commentaries) that have been lost.

    Despite previously looking for sutta support and additional information on gandhabba, that was to little avail thus I wondered how this could have been more extensively detailed here on this site. Knowing the origin of this lost yet reintroduction dhamma concept is edifying and makes kamma and rebirth a more convincing explanation.

    Thank you, Lal.

    in reply to: Post on Five Aggregates – Introduction #32678

    Taken in its entirety, at least the ~20 minutes of the video during which he addressed the question, he doesn’t arrive at a conclusion that would align with it all happening in the brain. In fact, he succinctly dismisses that fairly early, at 2:44 precisely:

    Is there some material, molecular basis that we can find for the phenomenon of remembrance? And the short answer is actually, no.

    It’s important to note that the structure of the talk is roughly: 1) question, 2) preface, 3) perspectives in contemporary science, 4) counter-factual evidence to contemporary science, then 4) non-local consciousness as informed by Buddhism and his own contemplations.

    Thus, when he presents perspectives in contemporary science, he’s not actually advocating them but rather presenting them as context to his later discussion. That discussion doesn’t raise the concept of manomaya kaya, granted; however, there doesn’t seem to be any discordance between the concepts presented and that. Bear in mind that the genesis of the answer was a question as to where memory is stored; he essentially arrived at an answer of nāma-lōka, with limited discussion of the interface between the brain and that realm as a necessary component of a coherent response.

    In summary, although the talk is rather Pali-lite—no doubt for the sake of a YouTube audience—the term non-local consciousness is employed, which does align with nāma-lōka (viññāṇa dhatu), especially as described in the “No Spatial Boundaries In Nāma Loka (Viññāṇa Dhātu)” section of Nāma Loka and Rupa Loka – Two Parts of Our World.


    Which suttas refer to the nāma-lōka?
    (Or even commentaries or sub-commentaries?)

    This concept of a nāma-lōka makes sense yet searching for it in the suttas, for additional, canonical reference, has been unfruitful. Most hits are to nāma-rūpa, one the 12 nidāna, yet that is not conceptualized as a “lōkaper se; whereas, the rūpa and arūpa realms are both adequately described in the cosmology.

    Perhaps nāma-lōka is a more clear and direct identifier for arūpa-lōka instead of a name that merely negates rūpa-lōka to describe this higher realm. Section 9 of the post seems to suggest this, yet it’s not evident. It seems odd that such an apt term, nāma-lōka, which ties up many loose threads, seems so elusive in the canon.

    Any canonical reference or guidance would be appreciated.

    in reply to: Post on Five Aggregates – Introduction #32640

    It seems that he is trying to explain memory in terms of stored in the brain.

    Here are some relevant time-stamps, and their corresponding quotes, from the late, Venerable Bhikkhu Samāhita’s talk, Dhamma on Air #5:

    Question 1: 1:04:

    Where is the knowledge of past lives stored in a being? How to see these past lives? And these past life memories, does it first come when the “fruit of the tree” ripens?


    There’s not much in the text—in the Tipitaka texts—about this issue. The only thing it says actually is that it’s stored in something called hadaya vatthu, but there’s scholastic disagreement what hadaya vatthu actually means. Vatthu means element and… or base, or source …and hadaya means heart… so it’s a heart element… but doesn’t say where it sits, whether it sits in the brain or in the heart or somewhere else in the body… doesn’t say… the text doesn’t say.


    So first we’ll try to… …cover the subject of the so-called {indecipherable}. In modern neurology—contemporary brain science—what does it say? Where is the information stored? Is there some material, molecular basis that we can find for the phenomenon of remembrance? And the short answer is actually, no.


    So it seems… from this point of view (Emphasis added.)… that the memory is localized to certain places in the brain. Then there’s another issue that goes against this.


    So it means that information that was somehow localized in a certain part of the brain is regenerated from somewhere else apparently.


    So this means that consciousness is not only inside the brain. It is basically everywhere.


    Information could, in principle, be stored everywhere in space, so this redefines brain as more like an antenna or, I would say, a transceiver. A transceiver is something that can receive—in this case electromagnetic radiation, radio waves—and send out radio waves, so it receives and sends out… and this is a transceiver… so the brain may work in similar… in a similar way, to process information that is coming or is everywhere present. You could say holographically stored in the entire universe, actually.


    It means that the brain could be a transceiver that sends out information and receives information from everywhere and that we are going around in a field of information—and that’s why you can remember prior lives.


    So, again, there’s three places where the information is stored: in the short-term memory—the RAM-like memory—in the brain, that’s local; in the hard-disc areas in the brain, that’s also local; and then it’s stored everywhere, in space, that’s non-local. And the non-local information is the basis of remembering past lives.

    The answer to Question 1 ends by 20:49.

    Ajahn Samāhita’s response to the question is worth listening to in its entirety. In addition to the detail, there’s helpful context and apt analogies that could aid someone in better understanding the topic of mind and memory, at least from this perspective.

    More importantly, all of the above, from Ajahn Samāhita’s talk, seems to align—remarkably closely!—with the concepts of gati, gandhabba, hadaya vatthu, and nāma-lōka presented in the various, related posts on those subjects here on this site, of which the following seem particularly germane:

    Autobiographical Memory – Preserved in Nāma Loka

    Memory Recall for Gandhabba in a Human Body

    Memory, Brain, Mind, Nama Loka, Kamma Bhava, Kamma Vipāka

    Nāma Loka and Rupa Loka – Two Parts of Our World

    Our Two Worlds: Material and Immaterial

Viewing 6 posts - 1 through 6 (of 6 total)