Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Replies to Previously Unanswered Comments In the post "Introduction and Conclusion to my book "Being""

Here are my replies to comments in the post "Introduction and Conclusion to my book "Being"":

1) Nirvana said...

Dear Prof. Moorty,

Congratulations on the UGK book and many thanks for keeping his memory alive (precious to some of us who met him in the early 70s and to those of us who were 'seeking' then and still do!). I referenced some material on UGK and carried a link to your blog in http://chowdaiahandparvati.blogspot.com/

It is a blog on Music carrying the memory of the great violinist Chowdiah and how his memorial in bangalore came to be. The threading to UGK is through Chowdiah-> a home "Parvathi"-> Brahmachari Shivaram Sharma.

Best Wishes,

Princeton, NJ
November 18, 2009 4:09 AM

Reply: In my attempt to figuring how to respond to your comment, I just sent you an e-mail through the link provided in your blog. Now I have adopted this method of answering. Your blog is interesting and thanks for linking my blog and articles on UG and Brahmachari Shivarama Sharma.

2) Anonymous said...

I truthfully love your own posting kind, very helpful,
don't give up and keep creating simply because it just simply good worth to follow it.
Looking forward to browse through much more of your writing, thankx :)

Reply: Thank you. I will try.

Replies to Comments on the post "Announcement"

Here are the comments posted under "Announcement" and I will reply to them as I see appropriate:

1) Oliver Harvey said...

Yes please, Moorty! I think this would be a really interesting article to read, and I very much look forward to seeing it..I check back here now and again, and it was nice to read that you're planning a book too..
I hope your arms feel better...and allow you to write!
January 30, 2009 7:03 PM

Reply: Thanks. I went through a lot of health changes in the past couple of years. I seem to be managing ok currently. The book is really a put-together of the various posts in this blog.

2) Anonymous said...

Yes please continue publishing whatever you feel like writing. anything is fine
February 5, 2009 5:47 PM
Anonymous Individual said...

Write and share whatever you can ... If you likes it ..., but do take care of your good health, friend.

Reply: Thank you. I will try.

February 14, 2009 9:37 PM

3) Anonymous said...

Dear Sir,

My name is K. Srinivasan, age 39.I hope you are doing well. I had the opportunity to "see" UG and not "meet" him when i was 21. THis happened through a friend of mine, Giridhar who was 10-12 years elder to me, when we went to see UG in Chennai, Ashok Nagar. That was the only interaction, for about an hour and it dumbfounded me as I was brought up in the most orthodox religious ways. I believe it resulted only because of my limited efforts in constant namasmarana in my life, till that time, which brought about the chance to be in the presence of UG.

Now,so much for me. Since that time, for about 18 years, his was the only path which tormented me and kept my internal attention occupied, off and on, but my own inertia did not allow the fire to catch fully. I came to know about UG's passing away only in April 2010. This greatly unsettled me because when I was interacting with Giridhar, he mentioned clearly that UG had said in one of his conversations that he would depart this physical frame at the age of 98, 7 years after JK's passing away at 91 years(though knowing UG's sense of humour he would only have been kidding)and I was in the time warp thinking I would at least get one more audience with him. But this news landed on me as if someone had ripped apart a portion of me and really destroyed the complacence that there is ample time to die. I know there is no way out of this feeling. I am thankful to you for writing about his last few days. As long as we are part of the human species we cannot but identify physically and take part in grief and joy. May all of us die sooner and live thereafter to see our demise. God Bless.
May 3, 2010 4:32 AM

Reply: You are welcome.

Replies to Previously Unanswered Comments in "Notable Travels and Visits"

Here are the comments in the post "Notable Travels and Visits" and I will reply to them as I see appropriate:

1) Tej said...

It's interesting to note that UG cried while watching the movie! The most inexplicable thing about UG, in my mind, was the phenomenon of 'affection' (being physically separated yet involved in accidents). Is there any rational/scientific way to understand this?
April 20, 2009 3:56 AM

Reply Only UG's explanation that it's because of his thymus gland being activated (during his Calamity), his organism responds automatically to what's happening in the environment. It's not compassion in the usual sense, because, as he says, 'compassion requires two'. It's more like the organism vibrating with the environment.

2) Anonymous Aadithya said...

hello, mr.murty.. although this is slightly off topic, i am curious to know as to how ug managed his expenses considering the fact that he had no source of income and he had exhausted his grandfather's property, in his own words, prior to the calamity.

May 9, 2009 1:58 AM
Narayana Moorty said...

Prior to and after his calamity, Valentine, a Swiss friend of his, took care of his needs. Before and after she died, other friends had taken care of them. He, however, never owned any property. Most of the money he took from friends beyond his needs, he either returned to them or gave it away to little girls for their education or to friends to subsidize their needs.
May 9, 2009 8:47 AM

3) Anonymous mrithyu said...

hello mr.moorthy, i just read ur 'fall out' piece. that's some fall out sir. i felt distressed as my own. nice writing ....
May 26, 2009 8:27 AM

Narayana Moorty said...

Dr. Lynn replied to my request and promised to send me his paper on the thymus gland (for me to post it on UG's website), but I haven't received any yet. Maybe one of these days, I will send him a reminder.
May 26, 2009 8:31 AM

P. S.: August 31, 2010: Paul Lynn never came through with his paper in spite of a couple of reminders from me. I gave up.

4)Pushpendra said...

Dr.Moorty, I read your blog regularly although never left any comment. Apologies for that. I have heard and read UG calling Buddha a conman. I am not challenging his opinion rather trying to understand what prompted UG to make that statement. Does he mean that Buddha was not really what he pretended (having attained nirvana) to be? or its because he created "sangha", which kind of goes against what he preached?
December 11, 2009 5:53 PM

Reply: Not just that he created the "sangha" and monasticism, but also that he and his teachings became an ideal for people to follow. "Enlightenment" is not a goal to be pursued, but Buddha and other spiritual traditions presented it as a goal.

5) Pushpendra said...

In one of the books he is quoted saying "Burn Fiercely". What does he really mean?
December 11, 2009 5:58 PM

Reply: I am not sure what you mean. You need to tell me the context or give me a reference for me to be able to respond.

6) Saseedharan said...

Sir, How the thought become so powerful even to the extent that it can control the functioning of Human organism. Is the more advanced brain turned to be a curse rather than a advantage to the human race. why Other species are not affected by thought. How the thought transmit from one generation to another. or as UG would say whether the human organism as a whole live in a thought sphere.I think even if it is possible to get rid of the stranglehold of thought many people will remain reluctant to leave their comfort zone provided by thought.
May 26, 2010 3:03 AM

Reply: I don't know, nor would UG, as to the how and why thought became so powerful that it controls the human being. All we can say is that it has decidedly provided an evolutionary advantage with its concomitant destructive consequences. I tend to agree with your last statement.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Replies to Previously Unanswered Comments in the post "Some Reflections on UG and the Scientific Approach "

Monday, August 30, 2010

These are some of the comments that haven't been answered in my previous blog. I will answer them here, so they are more prominent than in the comments page. I think they deserve being put here. I have replied to four comments yesterday, please look them up under comments:

1) David said...

"One day scientists will realize that consciousness is everywhere"

Is this what Advaita speaks of as the world arising with the mind i.e. Body is in the Self ?

Can you elaborate on your understanding of this statement?
March 13, 2010 11:12 PM

Reply: Advaita says consciousness is everything, not just everywhere. Yes, the world of appearances, according to it, arises with the mind (because of ignorance), but then the body is part of it.(Actually, the mind is part of the world of appearance.) The Self, on the other hand, is consciousness.

2) Blogger Rambondalapati said...

Dear Narayana Moorty Sir,
Happy to see you back. I have been introduced to your blog nearly 20 days back through internet search. Since you have not been active of late, I thought of sending an email. But, again I thought at your age if were well or not.
I have the following questions:
1. Quite some states in our daily experience are beyond effort. Eg:we can't go into sleep by effort since effort requires us to be conscious. similarly if we are excited either positively or negatively, then also we can not enter sleep despite our efforts. Sitting in front of my computer some times I can't stop sleep despite my best efforts. Similarly I can't become Tendulkar with pure effort without action. To learn driving after some psychological effort i need to sit in a car and learn it. Once I learn the driving, it's impossible to get the reflexes out of my system despite my conscious effort. This might be because of the reflexes operating at a subconscious level.
Is the natural state some thing similar to the above situations?

Reply: The reflexes happening at a subconscious level are still mental, i.e., products of the divisive mind or thought. I don't what the natural state consists of, but it can't be the subconscious mind.

2.Though our mind operates through images, images are two way connections to the world. If I kick the man going on the street through his image, his image kicks me back because of him. It means through images we manipulate the world and invented things like space craft etc. This is very significant. Could this be done with the help of the "thought on demand" mode in which UG was?

Reply: I am not sure what you mean by 'image' here: if it is a visual image, UG was not capable of visual images. Even if thoughts were operating in UG on demand, they are not images in that sense. If, on the other hand, you say that my perception of my kicking a man results in my perception of his kicking me back, then perhaps you are right. For UG, in other words, the world is our interpretation of it.

3.UG says for practical purposes we can use thought. But from my perspective there's no clear cut distinction between these two aspects practical, and psychological(self conscious). Does being in natural state give that clarity?

Reply: I think we can understand UG better when we hear him say that actions are in him always prompted by something outside (in the world); they are never initiated by him. Then what you call the psychological plays no role at all.

4. Planning for future is one aspect of self-consciousness. Does it not enhance our survival?

Reply: Yes, but it also is responsible for the destructive nature of man. You can't have the one without the other.

5. Has civilization enhanced our survival? While comparing the amount of casualties in the case of calamities in developed and not developed world, I get the feeling that civilization has enhanced our collective survival(in addition to individual survival) too.

Reply: To appearances it may be so; but man's destructiveness is much deeper than just numbers of people who have survived vs. those who have perished. (Look at the divisions in the world, exploitation, hunger, wars, and on and on.)While I am impressed by many of the products of civilization, I can't say I can brag about it.

6. Can the thoughtless state be a result of the every day effort man exerts? If I read a book with concentration, then I am not self conscious at the moment. My mind is filled with the subject of the book (it might be images). Though the effort I put to read the book is to fulfill some selfish goal, or because of curiosity, am I not in a state that does not have self consciousness? Similar logic applies to a football player chasing a football in the field. Though, in this case he is chasing the image locked to a real world object.

Reply: It's not true that there is no self-consciousness in being absorbed in reading a book or playing football. There is thought and there are divisions (for example, your being affected by what happens to the hero in the book or when you are keenly aware of how close or farther away you are from your goal). Those divisions are divisions of self-consciousness. It just operates in a different way, that's all

7. Telling "some thoughts result in thoughtless state and some thoughts results in further thought", is nothing but "telling through thought/effort you can realize the thoughtless state". Is it correct?

Reply: I am not sure who said that. UG couldn't have said that. But if I said it, I mean that if a thought resulted in being free from thought, it is not because of any effort (which is always seeking a goal), but the abandoning of effort. If I let everything go in a certain state of mind, I am not seeking anything. I just let it go because of the realization that all goal-seeking only resulted in duality. If that constitutes a thought, I would say it's not like other thoughts. It's sort of self-annihilating.

8.Can we realize the necessary conditions for a natural state through our efforts/actions?

Reply: Only in the sense I talked about in the previous answer.

9. This question is mainly from what J Krishnamurti says. I have striven to reach the state. Now, it's easier for you. You need not be an Edison to switch on a light. Is it because if a person reaches certain state and looks back, it looks very easy to reach that state. Has JK realized that to a layman all that he was giving was a description of a state?

Reply: He must have known that. Yet, he somehow hoped that by his "journey together" he would lead the audience into some such state.

Finally, I write some novels kind of things on net. They are here.
I'll be very happy, if you could go through them and let me know your opinion (if your health permits)

Reply: Thanks for the links and I will let you know what I think when I get to read them.
March 15, 2010 12:19 AM

3Blogger Rambondalapati said...

One more question:
If we can realize the natural state through drugs or genetic engineering, then does it mean we attain that as a result of self consciousness?

Reply Not necessarily. The drugs can be taken by yourself or administered to you by someone else with or without your knowledge. In the last scenario, there is no self-conscious; you are a mere victim (or perhaps under duress!) But at any rate I wouldn't equate such changes with a transformation of the human being.

March 15, 2010 12:22 AM

4 Anonymous said...

Hi Mr Moorty,
Subjective introspection is prone to theorizing.It's very difficult to determine if a fleeting sensation is due to theorizing or actual. If a person is fully aware of teachings of UG, and then one day he tried(pseudonym) reaching end of thought,after thinking he has reached end of thought, according to the theoretical knowledge and his wishful thinking he may have a fleeting feeling that he realized the thoughtless state. It's impossible to distinguish this state from the actual natural state. In a recent time the experiment conducted on subjective introspection by Russell T. Hurlburt’s & Eric Schwitzgebel’s deals with this method.There's some literature about this experiment in internet.

Reply: I am not sure what you mean by 'theorizing': You mean one imagines one has such and such a sensation? Perhaps one would only as to the nature of the sensation, but not the fact that one has. That may be so in some cases, but it is rash to generalize from that all introspection is unreliable.

I think your assertion that UG's natural state is only his wishful thinking that he had one is borne out of not knowing what UG in person was like. Suppose it is so, how could you say it is impossible to distinguish this state from the actual natural state. Suppose one were in the actual natural state. How would you know? Through his behavior? Well, why wouldn't you use that method to find out if UG was indeed in that state or not. If there is no distinction, on the other hand, between the two states, then your claim that it is a result of theorizing becomes meaningless (theorizing as opposed to what?).

March 21, 2010 12:33 AM
5Blogger Ganesh said...

Dear Mr. Moorty,

Thanks for this article, its refreshing to have read it.


March 25, 2010 8:28 PM

6 Anonymous Anonymous said...

You have tested it and writing form your personal experience or you find some information online?

Reply: Tested what?

July 2, 2010 7:12 PM
7Blogger Lionel said...

Hello Mister Moorty.

Thanks for this article.

I cannot but think about a paper wrote by Mahesh Bhatt called "a taste of death". Under the section called "August 4... day twenty-six" UG comments an article that Mahesh read in the Herald tribune the day before.

What amaze me is that UG says suddenly: "this new dimension which they claim they (the scientists) are now beginning to read in nature has always existed."

So in your article you quote UG saying "there is no such thing as a third or fourth dimension (if he saw Einstein - who talked about the three dimensions of space and the fourth of time - he would "shoot him on sight". As far as UG was concerned there are only two dimensions, implying that the third and the fourth dimensions are interpolations or our thought process"

Ok. Sorry there is again a contradiction with UG's statement in the Mahesh Bhatt article which was written in 1995. In 1995 science was and still is working with the concepts of 4 dimensions (even more!). If UG, commenting the article of the Herald Tribune, gives some credits to the idea that scientists begin to read in Nature a new dimension (which by the way has always existed), that implies, so to speak, a fifth dimension! - he, again, contradicts "himself" for me. I don't understand (i know, nothing is to undertand) and that irritate me. For me, this is an assumption that leads in the opposite direction than the one claiming about only
two dimensions in Nature.

What is your opinion on this contradiction ?

Thanks you for your reply.

All the best


August 14, 2010 8:30 AM


Hi Lionel:

Thanks for your comment. Please post your comments from now on at moortysblog.blogspot.com and not here. I cannot post replies on this blog any longer. They moved the old blog to the new blog site.

The Herald Tribune quote you gave does seem to contradict what UG says elsewhere. However, in this quote, he only seems to have said that about new dimension to disparage the scientists and their achievements, but not to pick a specific axe like a fourth or fifth dimension.

When he talks about two dimensions, he is mostly speaking from the point of view of his own personal experience in which he experiences the world in two dimensions and the third or fourth dimensions are mere interpolations of thought.

August 14, 2010 11:01 AM