Dr. Binoy Barman's Article

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Offline Binoy

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The problem of life
« Reply #15 on: May 17, 2010, 07:13:15 PM »
Please read my article "The problem of life" published in the Star Campus on 16 May 2010, following the link:

http://www.thedailystar.net/campus/2010/05/03/last.htm

Offline shibli

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Meaning of life
« Reply #16 on: May 17, 2010, 07:40:57 PM »
Meaning and the mind - what is the connection?

Before we can tackle meaning, we have got to know what meaning is. Meaning is an intention, aim, or design. When we say we want to know what life means, we are really saying we want to know what it's for. What purpose does it serve? Well, the primary feature of life is intelligence. By intelligence we mean purposeful activity. We make decisions and do things. Parameciums make decisions and do things. Rocks do not make decisions, although they can chip a tooth. If we knew why we have intelligence, we would be a great deal closer to understanding why we do anything, including exist. To understand intelligence, we must understand the mind.

Science has given us many answers, but the one thing that science is still completely silent about is the nature of consciousness. Of course, there is more and more information every day about the connection between consciousness and the brain. Scientists, both mad and sane, are undertaking detailed research on how our minds and behavior are affected when parts of our brain are stimulated, removed, and even added. These things affect our memories, feelings, and our thought processes. However, such research still doesn't answer the question of what consciousness is.

If you built a robot that had no real understanding but did have a vast store of stock responses and some clever rules about building sentences, it might fool many people into thinking it had intelligence. Because you programmed it, however, you would know that there were no "mental images" floating around inside the circuits of that machine. It simply took input, processed it according to specific rules, and generated output. The question is, why do we have these mental images and feelings? Why aren't we biological "machines" that simply processes signals and automatically generate responses with no awareness of what's going on? Why do we have consciousness, and where did it come from?

Consciousness is something completely different from other characteristics of matter such as mass, charge, structure, etc. While our consciousness seems to depend on the matter in our brains, we cannot detect anything unusual about our brains that would indicate why consciousness is attached to it. If we agree that consciousness is in the brain as a whole, is it in a single neuron? A single atom? A single electron? Assuming that nothing exists except for interacting particles, somehow within every particle there is something that provides the basis for consciousness.

Complex conscious activity may require highly complex structures such as our brains to occur, but the basis of consciousness must be present in matter itself. Our minds are simply one manifestation of a universal phenomena. People are examples of one way to organize the consciousness in matter. Are there other ways? How can we know which types of organizations of matter yield high-level consciousness like ours, and which do not? Are there structures which support levels of consciousness higher than ours? Are doorknobs conscious?


Not only is consciousness a universal property of matter, it is the primary property of matter. In fact, it's the other way around, matter is a property of consciousness!

Yes, consciousness is primary. Matter sprang from consciousness. We cannot help it if this is starting to sound like Genesis, it's just the way it is. In the beginning was the word, and the word was pinging around the inside some sort of Mind, and it generated the physical universe. How's that for pat?

So, to summarize, the meaning of life is linked to the workings of the mind from which the universe sprang. What does that mind want, anyway?
Those who worship the natural elements enter darkness (Air, Water, Fire, etc.). Those who worship sambhuti sink deeper in darkness. [Yajurveda 40:9]; Sambhuti means created things, for example table, chair, idol, etc.

Offline shibli

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The beginning of everything
« Reply #17 on: May 17, 2010, 07:44:58 PM »
A short story about the beginning of everything

The beginning of the physical universe is a question that is really outside the boundaries of human understanding, but here is a story, a metaphor, that can answer that question on a symbolic level. In other words, this is a traditional religious document, it attempts to set down in words events that are larger than words allow.

Before the beginning of time, there was a single consciousness. That consciousness thought and dreamed an infinity of thoughts, feelings, landscapes, and worlds, an infinity of possible creations. The original consciousness observed and interacted with these inner beings as they interacted with one another, and that original consciousness begin to provide the environments required for its creations to grow and develop. All of the entities within the mind of the first longed to exist independently and grow and create as they had been created.

The first consciousness, in order to allow its progeny full freedom of expression, began to imagine the conditions that would be required for the release of these inner worlds into objective existence. As it did so, all of space, time, and matter, including our universe, exploded into being. On the highest level, this physical existence contains an infinite number of dimensions and environments that match the infinite variety of possibilities that had formed in the mind of the original consciousness.

This process continues as the progeny of that first mind grow and create new thoughts and new worlds. We are a result of that process, and our purpose is ultimately the same: to grow, to develop, and to create, in order to express all of the potentialities within ourselves. We are still in contact with the original mind because we are made of it, we sprang from it, and because time has no meaning outside of the physical universe, our past, present, and future exist together as an infinite variety of possibilities within that larger moment.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2010, 02:19:13 PM by shibli »
Those who worship the natural elements enter darkness (Air, Water, Fire, etc.). Those who worship sambhuti sink deeper in darkness. [Yajurveda 40:9]; Sambhuti means created things, for example table, chair, idol, etc.

Offline nipu

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Re: Dr. Binoy Barman's Article
« Reply #18 on: May 18, 2010, 03:13:46 AM »
 
          Really it is a nice article which make me couragious to write more and more

Offline shibli

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Re: Dr. Binoy Barman's Article
« Reply #19 on: May 18, 2010, 05:40:23 PM »
A primer on the blessings of uncertainty

Some people may know this already, but a big hole has developed in the last century in our understanding of how the physical world works. Newton invited us to a world of billiard balls bouncing off of one another with perfect mathematical precision. Einstein, Plank, Heisenberg, Bohr, and other very smart people have destroyed this comforting notion of matter with the most confusing and yet by far the most proven and completely verified theory of all time, quantum mechanics.

We cannot predict what individual particles are going to do. We cannot even know exactly where they are and how fast they are going. There is an absolute, concrete limit to the amount of information we can have about matter. This limit is stronger than the speed of light, it is stronger than time and space, it is absolute. An individual particle is fundamentally unknowable. It is also not a particle, but let's stay focused.

What this means is, particles are unpredictable. They do their own thing. We have no way of knowing what they are going to "decide" to do. Bunches of particles, on the other hand, are very predictable. Even if we can only say that 51% of the time a particle will go this way and 49% of the time it will go that way, when you have a trillion particles stuck together, as a group they will go the 51% direction every single time. That sounds like it solves the problem, right?

Well no. Our brains don't always react to big bunches of particles. Our brains, delicate instruments that they are, are sensitive to the action of single particles. One electron can jump higher or lower, and this change can be magnified through our nervous system and cause a completely different physical response. Only with the advent of chaos theory has it become so obvious that tiny changes in complex systems can totally change the system's behavior. So, our brains act like those anarchist particles. They are fundamentally unpredictable.

Here is where the leap of faith comes in. There is absolutely no scientific way to prove that the non-physical mind determines which probable action a particular particle in our brains will perform. In scientific terms, the mind doesn't exist at all. However, we are telling you here and now that this is exactly how the mind and the brain work together. The brain is an amplifier for the mind. It turns minute subatomic decisions into mental activity and physical actions. When our understanding of matter and of the brain has advanced farther, this connection will be clearer. Even today, Roger Penrose among others has made some rather intriguing guesses along these lines in his new book, Shadows of the Mind.

You might think that this is the end of the discussion on physics. After all, we have shown how the ghost in the machine (that's us) pulls the strings to operating our bodies and maneuver in the physical world. Well, that's not the half of it. Quantum mechanics has not only ripped a hole in predictability, it has also torn logic asunder.

Another big missing piece, aside from the whole probability problem, is knowing when and how quantum decisions are made. We know a particle will eventually show up either here or there, showing which decision was made. However, the theory doesn't force the particle to make the decision. In quantum mechanics, particles can be in two places at once. As we mentioned, the theory is extremely well proven, and it is a source of serious head scratching among people who worry about this sort of thing when they try to understand why we only see the particle in one place.

One good way to look at it is to say that it really is in two places. We observe it in one place, while in another quantum world other observers see it in the other place. Every quantum decision that has been made since the beginning of time has occurred in an infinite number of alternate universes, some of which resemble ours rather closely while others are completely alien. Physicists sometimes refer to this as the Everett, Wheeler, and Graham theory.

Another way to look at it is to say that it is our conscious perception that makes the decision. We choose which version of the particle to see, thus choosing how "our" reality is going to look. Physicists do not dignify this theory with anyone's name, it's too mystical for them.

Yet another way to look at it is to say that hidden factors that are outside of the physical reality that we can know make the decision. Again, this is a rather mystical notion.

Outside of these physical theories, there is the idea that the world is a shared dream, that physical reality has no more fundamental validity than a passing thought. Through the power of our shared concentration, the world holds its shape and time seems to flow from the past to the future through the present. In this scheme, our reality is truly the result of a global trance in which we all participate. There is no physical reality, there is only the idea of physical reality.

Well, all of these are true. Relating it back to our little story of the beginning, in order to actualize all of the possibilities inherent in matter, all choices are explored. So there are multiple universes, each trying out different decisions and even operating with different physical laws. No possibility goes unexpressed. Anything you choose here is chosen differently by another "you" elsewhere. Not only that, but it isn't just people who do the deciding. Every choice of every particle (whether anyone's watching it or not) is explored in some alternate world. And ultimately, it is the power of those decisions which generate the sensations we experience.

It is our mind that chooses which reality it will participate in. In fact, it is our mind, which is "hidden" from the instruments of science, that determines everything about our experience. This is a very important point:

You create your own reality.

Not metaphorically, not symbolically, but in every minute of every day we, along with the rest of the world, create the world.

Another more pragmatic way to express this thought is:

You get what you concentrate on.
Those who worship the natural elements enter darkness (Air, Water, Fire, etc.). Those who worship sambhuti sink deeper in darkness. [Yajurveda 40:9]; Sambhuti means created things, for example table, chair, idol, etc.

Offline shibli

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Re: Dr. Binoy Barman's Article
« Reply #20 on: May 19, 2010, 03:36:55 PM »
So What?

We have been given the freedom to create the reality we experience because we are supposed to learn from it.

Life is a school. We are in a protected environment. This reality is a metaphor for larger realities in which we are to eventually take part. While what we do here does not have permanent consequences, it is vital for our learning that we take it somewhat seriously. Just as school work requires serious effort but isn't supposed to be performed perfectly, we are expected to make mistakes as we try to create the world from the model that we see dimly in our minds. The mistakes we make in life, the cruel and thoughtless things we do, are really the foibles of children. Your errors do not weight eternally against your soul, and they are not put on your permanent record. Their only purpose is to teach you to improve.

Feeling guilty is worthless unless it compels you to correct the error that you have committed and reminds you to not make the same mistake again in the future. Those are the only purposes of guilt. Guilt is not to be used to berate yourself uselessly after you have done all you can do to compensate for your action. Remember, the people you hurt chose to experience that reality, although they are not usually aware of that fact.
Those who worship the natural elements enter darkness (Air, Water, Fire, etc.). Those who worship sambhuti sink deeper in darkness. [Yajurveda 40:9]; Sambhuti means created things, for example table, chair, idol, etc.

Offline Binoy

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Dr. Binoy Barman's Article
« Reply #21 on: May 31, 2010, 11:27:02 AM »
Please read my article "Aristotal" published in the Star Campus on 30 May 2010, following the link:

http://www.thedailystar.net/campus/2010/05/05/last.htm

Offline Binoy

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Dr. Binoy Barman's Article
« Reply #22 on: June 07, 2010, 12:13:00 PM »
Please read my article “How sharp is Occam’s razor?” published in the Star Campus on 06 June 2010, following the link:

http://www.thedailystar.net/campus/2010/06/01/last.htm

Offline shibli

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Re: Dr. Binoy Barman's Article
« Reply #23 on: June 13, 2010, 04:50:42 PM »
The Truth of The Life of This World

There are some phrases commonly used by people regarding the shortness of this life: "Make the most of your life while it lasts", "life is short", "one does not live forever" are phrases always referred to in definition of the nature of this world. Yet, these phrases contain an implicit attachment to this life rather than the next. They reflect the general attitude of people to life and death. Having such a strong affection for life, conversations about death are always interrupted with jokes or by raising other subjects thus attempting to alleviate the seriousness of the matter. These interruptions are always on purpose, a deliberate effort to reduce such an important subject to insignificance.

Mortality is surely a grave topic to ponder. Until this moment in his life, it may well be that the person is unaware of the significance of this reality. Yet, now that he has the chance to grasp its importance, he must reconsider his life and his expectations. It is never too late to repent to God, and to reorient all one's deeds and the conduct of one's life in submission to the will of God.

Life is short; the human soul is eternal. During this short period, one should not allow temporary passions to control one. A person should resist temptation and keep himself away from everything that will strengthen his bonds to this world. It is surely unwise to neglect the next world just for the sake of the temporary joys of this one.

Nevertheless, disbelievers who cannot comprehend this fact spend their lives in vain being forgetful of God. Moreover, they know that it is impossible to attain these desires. Such people always feel a deep dissatisfaction and want even more of what they currently possess. They have endless wishes and desires. Yet, the world is not an appropriate arena in which to satisfy these desires.

An endless search for the new and better, attaching no value to something once it has been achieved, deprecation of the old and placing all hopes in something new: these are the vicious circles that people have everywhere experienced throughout history. Yet an intelligent person should stop and ask himself for a moment: why is he chasing after temporary ambitions and has he ever gained any benefit from such pursuit? Finally, he should draw the conclusion that "there is a radical problem with this viewpoint." Yet people, lacking this kind of reasoning, continue to chase after dreams they are unlikely to achieve.

Nobody, however, knows what will happen even in the next few hours: at any time one may have an accident, be severely injured, or become disabled. Furthermore, time flies in the countdown to one's own death. Every day brings that predestined day closer. Death surely eradicates all ambitions, greed and desires for this world. Under the soil, neither possessions nor status prevail. Every possession with which we are being stingy, including the body, will also vanish and decay in the earth. Whether one is poor or wealthy, beautiful or ugly, one will be wrapped in a simple shroud one day.
Those who worship the natural elements enter darkness (Air, Water, Fire, etc.). Those who worship sambhuti sink deeper in darkness. [Yajurveda 40:9]; Sambhuti means created things, for example table, chair, idol, etc.

Offline Sakiba Munni

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Re: Dr. Binoy Barman's Article
« Reply #24 on: June 13, 2010, 05:45:50 PM »
Sir I am a good reader of your articles. I like to read them.You articles gives me both information and pleasure.Hope to read u more in future.

Offline shibli

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Re: Dr. Binoy Barman's Article
« Reply #25 on: June 14, 2010, 02:22:27 PM »
I really liked the article. Let me share its gist with all again.........

Simplicity is a virtue in human life. Occam's razor teaches us to put our food from plate to mouth directly and avoid moving it around our head. It tells us not to make water muddy before we drink it. It teaches us to be simple and direct. When we can solve a problem with a simple talk with a person, we need not call a meeting for it. If we can drink water with a glass, why need we use a pipe? But beware! Remain moral in social interactions. Don't give and take bribe to get things done easily. It is the abuse of Occam's razor. What you think 'easy' may ultimately put you in a 'difficult' situation. The prison may make you understand how sharp Occam's razor is!
Those who worship the natural elements enter darkness (Air, Water, Fire, etc.). Those who worship sambhuti sink deeper in darkness. [Yajurveda 40:9]; Sambhuti means created things, for example table, chair, idol, etc.

Offline Binoy

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Dr. Binoy Barman's Article
« Reply #26 on: June 14, 2010, 03:01:02 PM »
Please read my article “Defacing and effacing facebook” published in the Star Campus on 13 June 2010, following the link:

http://www.thedailystar.net/campus/2010/06/02/last.htm
« Last Edit: June 14, 2010, 03:14:45 PM by Binoy »

Offline Binoy

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Re: Dr. Binoy Barman's Article
« Reply #27 on: June 21, 2010, 02:07:02 PM »
Please read my article “The psychology of eve-teasing” published in the Star Campus on 20 June 2010, following the link:

http://www.thedailystar.net/campus/2010/06/03/last.htm

Offline kulsum

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Re: Dr. Binoy Barman's Article
« Reply #28 on: June 23, 2010, 10:17:48 AM »
Dear Sir,

I appreciate your shift of paradigm in Eveteasing psychology. You could read and analyze the psychology of eveteasers from socioeconomic perspective that will help the policy makers to reconsider their point of views.

Pour out more of your mind.

Regards,

Offline Shah - Al - Mamun

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Re: Dr. Binoy Barman's Article
« Reply #29 on: June 24, 2010, 11:31:59 AM »
Dear Sir,
Your essays have always inspired me. I liked the way you have analyzed the psychology of the eve-teasers.
In your essay you have suggested that social treatment is necessary for stopping eve-teasers which is true but I also have some suggestions for girls in this matter.
In your essay you pointed out that boys think they are superior than girls and are physically stronger for which they act aggressively towards girls. So i think girls have to try to be stronger too and fight back the eve-teasers.Surely those who are in power will not just give away their power. Girls have to snatch the power from them. Its mainly up to the girls whether they want to stop eve-teasing or just give up their precious lives.
(this is only my personal opinion and may vary person to person)

regards,
Shah - Al - Mamun,
Former student of English Department     
With best regards,