View Full Version : [BRAIN HACKS]: Cognitive dissonance: Is it stopping you from achieving enlightenment?

12-12-2016, 09:47 PM
I think it's a cool idea to present some info relating to brain activity, contemplate and conceptualise a rule or set of functions that could be possible given the information, and maybe at the end postulate some form of experiment or activity we can do to test out the theory.

Okay so this is the first BRAIN HACKS post.
Cognitive dissonance is a universal part of the neurological process.
It's fundamentally the "frustration brought on by holding a set of two contradictory beliefs" (Athene, from the video below).

For example:
The sky is actually green.
You think it's blue, but really you're wrong. We're all told it's Blue, when we look at it it LOOKS blue, but this is just because it's reflecting the sea: if you go in a plane higher than the clouds it turns green (because sea reflections don't go up as high as grass reflections).

Okay, so seriously have a think about that for a moment.
The sky is green? Of course it isn't!
..like what the hell?! who does this guy think he is, right?
Obviously the sky is blue! We all know that. Who the f*ck is this guy trying to tell me otherwise?! right?
"Because sea reflections don't go up as high as grass reflections"?! that's so retarded I wanna punch that douche!

This is cognitive dissonance.
"The frustration and inability to hold contradictory beliefs."
If someone starts trying to tell you that aliens have existed for thousands of years, and have taken over the Vatican and most of the royal families of Europe, you wouldn't believe it, right?
Because your brains already got a set neural pathway stating that aliens don't exist.

Now this is really important: because there's a practical application here.
When you're trying to learn alchemy there are a set of rules, and system of knowledge you have to learn, and some of them contradict what you've already been taught.
It's also keeping you from learning the truth, because your brain doesn't want to learn something that shatters your existence.
That's why in all the movies there's that "forget what you already know" scene before their world gets turned upside down.

Here's a really cool video, I'd recommend watching the whole thing at one point or another, but for now just skip to 10:30


So it says that 'Will' is the drive to reduce dissonance between these neural pathways (we actively seek out to make things easier, smoother, and more comfortable to understand - I know that certain things are possible, and so I've spent my entire life trying to "seek out" this "magic" or "alchemy") and the left hemisphere holds our beliefs, and the right hemisphere challenges information (if we pick up an object, and our left brains know that object functions in a certain way, the right hemisphere will start thinking outside the box for new applications for this object - this is how we've managed to evolve over the past hundreds of thousands of years)

The right brain functions much faster than the left brain, and can calculate infinite amounts of information.
Part of the work is hooking up these two hemispheres, teaching us to be more "right brained"
Imagine being able to just look at a sum and instantly knowing the answer.
Being able to write a song whilst reading a letter, and remembering your favourite birthday all at once.
Or being able to speak while you mean multiple things at once.
All these things are possible when you acheive enlightenment.
(the people who go to india for a few months and spend some time at the beach, then "find themselves and come back telling you they've become "enlightened" are way off)

There is a branch of eastern philosophy within Zennism, similar to Confucianism, that works to eliminate this chemical reaction from our system. One contemplates contradictory proverbs, such as "set fire to the water" or "drink food" "eat water" etc.
Theres also a way it teaches you to mean more than one thing at once using homonyms such as "lighting", "after you", "see that" etc

Information on the eastern philosophy here (http://zennist.typepad.com/zenfiles/2011/10/the-cognitive-dissonance-of-zen.html)

In conclusion:
when someone says something you disagree with: take a second to think about whether or not you're diagreeing because it's wrong, you don't believe it, or your brains isn't LETTING you believe it.
Look into different ways to tap into your right hemisphere, and check out Zennism in the link below, to allow you to practice consonance while holding two contradictory beliefs without it causing discomfort or dissonance.

Peace and love :cool:

12-13-2016, 08:59 AM
Cognitive dissonance is a universal part of the neurological process.

Here are two threads that you might enjoy:

Paradox Power (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?3797-Paradox-Power)
Passing through the Gates of Paradox (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?4437-Passing-through-the-Gates-of-Paradox)


12-13-2016, 05:33 PM
Relevant infographic


12-13-2016, 08:23 PM
Relevant infographic

Very comprehensive.
Thanks for the post!

I think it's important to understand how our lower minds functions, so we can see how they are limiting us.

We tend to unconsciously know all the things on the infographic above with our right brain, but once we attribute words (a value) to them they become left brained, and we can bypass them by simply being aware of them and how to change them.

12-18-2016, 02:24 AM
On my Ayahuasca journeys I could not bring back any information, but I learned a trick that if I verbalised what I was experiencing I could, still not completely but to some extent.


12-18-2016, 05:08 PM
I've picked up some tricks as well for remembering deep altered states. One of them is to encapsulate the whole experience into a symbol right at the end of the trip (symbols with different colours work best).

When I meditate on the symbols, I have quite an incredible amount of memory recall. Maybe it helps, maybe not.