Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the Good

Theology, Religious Studies, religion, god, faith and other topics of a spiritual nature.

Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby Nick_A on May 5th, 2019, 12:09 pm 

Charon

After her death and when more people became attracted to her, she started to become an idol. She was spoken of s an incarnation of Joan of arc. Her brother scolded some people at a party. He told these people that his sister spent her life opposing idolatry and it would be wrong to make her an idol. Contemplate her ideas but avoid idolatry.

That is how I accept Simone. she is beyond classification. She was a highly regarded Marxist admired by Leon Trotsky and became an intellectual influence on Pope Paul Vl.

Albert Camus called her the only great mind of our times. T.S. Eliot called her a genius. Malcolm Muggeridge said “In my opinion, the most luminous intelligence of the twentieth century.

Simone lived her philosophy. When she was a marxist she served the revolution. Her intellectual honesty allowed her to see that its goals were impossible as she gradually was compelled to learn why it must be impossible.

Her writing is attractive to people because it originates at the depth of her being rather from her head as it does with modern philosophy so reaches the depth of our being. I felt the difference right away and found out later that others had had the same experience. The bottom line is that I became aware of a genuine seeker of truth beyond classification so rather than argue small stuff, I must open up to the depth and width of these ideas inspired by her love for Plato and her personal experience. If I can retain half of her intellectual honesty and respect for truth, I’ll be on the right track
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 6th, 2019, 10:39 am 

So, as I said, the real point is our own lives, not the lives of others. It's the traditional mentality to invoke heroes and heroines and they are created out of ourselves. There may be great people in the world but I don't see that as relevant, personally. They aren't you or me. Their life is their life, not ours.

Obviously we worship these heroes of our own creation because we compare. In comparison we see our own lives as insignificant, dull, mediocre, and without a lot of meaning. In comparison, that is. If we never compared or measured ourselves against the unattainable then we would see ourselves in an entirely different light.

After all, it's not the lives of others that we can change, we can only change our own. And, as I said, if there were no comparison at all, then we're merely left with the fact, the reality of what we ourselves actually are.

That's what's important. Don't say it can't be changed. Of course it can, radically, and if we want to live, enjoy, be happy, have any sense of beauty or love, then that's where we must start.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 6th, 2019, 11:17 am 

Then there's the question of what change actually means. Change isn't projecting some sort of ideal version of ourselves, or wanting to be like so-and-so, or wanting to emulate it. That's too childish and it's never going to happen anyway. That sort of thinking is rather, if I may use the word, adolescent and really gets nowhere.

But it depends on how serious one is about all this. If there were no measure, no yardstick, no ideal, no hero, then we have to look at what we are. The trick is to look without any comparative sense.

We're always and forever comparing. Everything we see is immediately compared with something else, better or worse, greater or smaller, more beautiful or ugly.

Why? Why this constant comparison? Is it the way the mind works? It may be. Maybe that's all it can do - analyse, imitate, compare, measure, always in terms of better, more, less, and so on.

Now, is that actually looking? Why is it apparently so difficult to just see a thing as it is? The worth of a thing is what it is in itself, not in comparison. The beauty of a flower or a person is destroyed when the mind looks and say 'I know a better one'. I think this is very clear.

So what is change? It isn't trying to be what one is not, and never will be, it's surely in understanding what we are. It isn't possible to understand what one is comparatively; a thing has to be seen for itself. And when one does see a thing as it is then one understands it. That is love and it's love which brings about change.

The way one looks is what one is. I don't know if that's clear. The mind that looks and compares is a small mind, a petty mind, a narrow mind. It only thinks in terms of more or less. In that there's no comprehension, no compassion. But a mind that's free of that can look without prejudice, bias, and is open to the fact before it.

Then that fact tells us what it is, not we impose on the fact. Then there is change because the fact itself changes, not we change the fact. If you look at anything without interfering with it, it changes by itself. But one has to experiment with that, try it and see.

Say I look at myself and realise that I'm, say, very lonely. The usual reaction to that is to run away to some form of comfort or consolation. But if there's none of that and I perceive my loneliness as a fact without trying to do something about it what happens to loneliness? Am I still lonely?

Unfortunately we don't think like that, we're always trying to overcome something, change it, become something else. But if one merely remains as one is then something happens, and it happens unknowingly, not as when we're expecting something to happen. Again, one has to try this, it's not a thought experiment. It is an actual fact, if one does it non-theoretically.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby Nick_A on May 6th, 2019, 9:49 pm 

charon » May 6th, 2019, 10:39 am wrote:So, as I said, the real point is our own lives, not the lives of others. It's the traditional mentality to invoke heroes and heroines and they are created out of ourselves. There may be great people in the world but I don't see that as relevant, personally. They aren't you or me. Their life is their life, not ours.

Obviously we worship these heroes of our own creation because we compare. In comparison we see our own lives as insignificant, dull, mediocre, and without a lot of meaning. In comparison, that is. If we never compared or measured ourselves against the unattainable then we would see ourselves in an entirely different light.

After all, it's not the lives of others that we can change, we can only change our own. And, as I said, if there were no comparison at all, then we're merely left with the fact, the reality of what we ourselves actually are.

That's what's important. Don't say it can't be changed. Of course it can, radically, and if we want to live, enjoy, be happy, have any sense of beauty or love, then that's where we must start.



I am a fan of ideals. For example I know I am not Mr. America. Does this mean I cannot appredite da Vinci's depiction of the Vitruvian Man.

https://www.leonardodavinci.net/the-vitruvian-man.jsp

The ideal man is a reflection in proportion of universal relationships. IYO is it a waste of time to contemplate the Vitruvuan Man or can I gain from knowing I'm not perfect?
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby Nick_A on May 6th, 2019, 10:11 pm 

charon » May 6th, 2019, 11:17 am wrote:Then there's the question of what change actually means. Change isn't projecting some sort of ideal version of ourselves, or wanting to be like so-and-so, or wanting to emulate it. That's too childish and it's never going to happen anyway. That sort of thinking is rather, if I may use the word, adolescent and really gets nowhere.

But it depends on how serious one is about all this. If there were no measure, no yardstick, no ideal, no hero, then we have to look at what we are. The trick is to look without any comparative sense.

We're always and forever comparing. Everything we see is immediately compared with something else, better or worse, greater or smaller, more beautiful or ugly.

Why? Why this constant comparison? Is it the way the mind works? It may be. Maybe that's all it can do - analyse, imitate, compare, measure, always in terms of better, more, less, and so on.

Now, is that actually looking? Why is it apparently so difficult to just see a thing as it is? The worth of a thing is what it is in itself, not in comparison. The beauty of a flower or a person is destroyed when the mind looks and say 'I know a better one'. I think this is very clear.

So what is change? It isn't trying to be what one is not, and never will be, it's surely in understanding what we are. It isn't possible to understand what one is comparatively; a thing has to be seen for itself. And when one does see a thing as it is then one understands it. That is love and it's love which brings about change.

The way one looks is what one is. I don't know if that's clear. The mind that looks and compares is a small mind, a petty mind, a narrow mind. It only thinks in terms of more or less. In that there's no comprehension, no compassion. But a mind that's free of that can look without prejudice, bias, and is open to the fact before it.

Then that fact tells us what it is, not we impose on the fact. Then there is change because the fact itself changes, not we change the fact. If you look at anything without interfering with it, it changes by itself. But one has to experiment with that, try it and see.

Say I look at myself and realise that I'm, say, very lonely. The usual reaction to that is to run away to some form of comfort or consolation. But if there's none of that and I perceive my loneliness as a fact without trying to do something about it what happens to loneliness? Am I still lonely?

Unfortunately we don't think like that, we're always trying to overcome something, change it, become something else. But if one merely remains as one is then something happens, and it happens unknowingly, not as when we're expecting something to happen. Again, one has to try this, it's not a thought experiment. It is an actual fact, if one does it non-theoretically.


This is why i don't like the word change in this context. I prefer the word "awaken." Several times you mentioned the word sleep. Suppose that is our condition. We are asleep at night in our bed. Then we say that we wake up. But suppose what we calling waking up is just living in dreams, change just means adopting different dreams? To awaken means to experience the external world with the whole of ourselves: intellect, emotion and sensation. This requires conscious attention which is our potential.

The sad reality is that only a rare few strive to awaken. The majority prefer to live in dreams and believe it to be the ideal state of human consciousness. it is what supports the Great Beast.

The world seeks to defend its beliefs through indoctrination. The Ways seek to experience objective human meaning and purpose through awakening. The best we can do is choose either indoctrination or awakening and following its path.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 6th, 2019, 11:20 pm 

Nick -

I am a fan of ideals.


And I am not. It has nothing to do with Leonardo or art. An ideal is the mind's picture of something which doesn't exist. There's nothing wrong with that per se but when we pursue ideals and idealism it indicates escapism.

or can I gain from knowing I'm not perfect?


The short answer is no. Have you not understood what I meant about comparison? This is why I wonder if you actually read these posts. I know they're occasionally long but that's what we're here for.

Leonardo drew his Man and you ascribe some dotty notion of human perfection to it because the drawing is mathematically symmetrical or something. If it was a drawing of a perfect square I don't suppose you'd bother.

However, it's a man and your strange mind conceives of a 'perfect' man. And, in comparison, naturally now you are 'not perfect'.

Do you not see what utter drivel this is? Patently not, yet you talk about the rest of humanity as being asleep, indoctrinated, and all the rest of it.

This is why I keep bringing the subject back to ourselves, our real life, not some airy-fairy nonsense. And it IS nonsense, I assure you.

The sad reality is that only a rare few strive to awaken. The majority prefer to live in dreams and believe it to be the ideal state of human consciousness. it is what supports the Great Beast.


I don't disagree with what you say. In fact I never have, but what irks me somewhat is the spirit in which it is repeated. The awakened may say such things about others, but only they. The unawakened saying these things has no meaning whatsoever.

But, and this is the great point, would the awakened say these things? If one is discussing what it means to be awake then it may be fair to say that many people are asleep in the sense conditioned by false things. But the awakened would never say it for the sake of pointing out others' failures so they may appear superior. And I suspect there are some who love to do just that.

The Ways seek to experience objective human meaning and purpose through awakening.


What is 'The Ways'? I don't know that one.

The best we can do is choose either indoctrination or awakening and following its path.


What path is that?
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby Nick_A on May 7th, 2019, 7:07 pm 

Charon

And I am not. It has nothing to do with Leonardo or art. An ideal is the mind's picture of something which doesn't exist. There's nothing wrong with that per se but when we pursue ideals and idealism it indicates escapism.


Must wonder lead to escapism.


Philosophy begins in Wonder

SOCRATES: I see, my dear Theaetetus, that Theodorus had a true insight into your nature when he said that you were a philosopher; for wonder is the feeling of a philosopher, and philosophy begins in wonder. (Plato, Theaetetus 155c-d, tr. Jowett; "wonder" in Aristotle.)


You write that the subject leads back to ourselves but must this exclude the experience that “ourselves is dual natured? We wonder about our basic contradictions

I woud agree that many in New Age movements devolve wonder into escapism. But why can’t a human being begin to know thyself and be open to the experience of wonder
"Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world, stimulating progress, giving birth to evolution."


Wonder can lead to either escapism or intuitive imagination

I don't disagree with what you say. In fact I never have, but what irks me somewhat is the spirit in which it is repeated. The awakened may say such things about others, but only they. The unawakened saying these things has no meaning whatsoever.


I am not one of the awakened ones. My advantage here is my willingness to admit I am asleep in Plato’s cave. This gets in the way of modern philosophy intent on arguing details concerning cave life. There is a big difference between being awakened and recognizing through efforts at self knowledge that one is asleep.

The millions are awake enough for physical labor; but only one in a million is awake enough for effective intellectual exertion, only one in a hundred millions to a poetic or divine life. To be awake is to be alive. I have never yet met a man who was quite awake. How could I have looked him in the face?
- Thoreau, Walden


My advantage is admitting the reality of this excerpt. It opens a door to the benefits of humility and wonder.

What is 'The Ways'? I don't know that one.


My bad. It is more correct to say the paths. The paths are the essential teachings before being secularized such as Christianity, Buddhism, and Hinduism introduced into the world by a conscious source. These paths come together at the Way and the Way is the vertical line of being which leads back to the Source.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 7th, 2019, 8:17 pm 

Nick -

Must wonder lead to escapism.


Harmless wondering, no, but idealism is a dangerous thing. Hypocrisy has a lot to do with it because one never quite matches the ideal.

When does the whole idea of an ideal happen? Why should one have an ideal at all? Let's say I have the ideal of peace or freedom.

"Wouldn't it be wonderful if everyone were free and peaceful". Yes, of course it would, but it's not the reality and it's only the reality that can be changed. So, yes, in that sense wonder is escapism because it's a movement away from the fact into a non-reality.

We wonder about our basic contradictions


We can 'wonder' about them till doomsday but it's pretty useless, wouldn't you say? Why not clear up those contradictions? Why not live in a way that is not contradictory? Isn't that more simple?

What is hypocrisy and what is dishonesty? Say one thing, do another, think something and not mean it. All that kind of thinking is dishonesty, isn't it?

It's a big subject, to do with standards and principles, social values, conformity, and so on. Another time, maybe.

My advantage here is my willingness to admit I am asleep in Plato’s cave.


How do you know you're asleep? This is a serious question. The whole thing about someone who's asleep is that they don't realise it.

When you're physically asleep do you know it? The moment you realise that you're asleep, even a little, then you're not asleep.

So how do you know you're asleep? And, if you are asleep, why do you accept it?

Look, never mind the wonderful people who are awake. It doesn't help you. It's creating the hero or the ubermensch again. They can't help you, if they exist at all.

Start where you are, not with something unreal or with things you don't know.

The paths are the essential teachings before being secularized such as Christianity, Buddhism, and Hinduism introduced into the world by a conscious source. These paths come together at the Way and the Way is the vertical line of being which leads back to the Source.


I'm stumped. There are these paths, obviously invented by someone. It's said they lead back to the source. Which supposes there is a source and it exists. All we have to do is follow the path which some person has invented... they must be delighted!

There may be a source, I'm not saying there is no source, but who can say that? Only the person who has seen can say that. And, if they have, can they lay down a means to attain it? Have they that thing in their grasp? Is it possible for anyone to lead the way to that?

We just say these things without really thinking them through. If there is a source it must be something extraordinary, holy, sacred, beyond all time and space, far beyond all the reaches of our petty minds. And that petty mind thinks all it has to do is conform to a set of principles or rules and it will get to the source which is beyond its comprehension.

It can't be sought, it can't be found. It's not within our grasp. It comes, if it comes at all, if one is lucky, that's all.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby Nick_A on May 8th, 2019, 4:42 pm 

Charon

Harmless wondering, no, but idealism is a dangerous thing. Hypocrisy has a lot to do with it because one never quite matches the ideal.

When does the whole idea of an ideal happen? Why should one have an ideal at all? Let's say I have the ideal of peace or freedom.

"Wouldn't it be wonderful if everyone were free and peaceful". Yes, of course it would, but it's not the reality and it's only the reality that can be changed. So, yes, in that sense wonder is escapism because it's a movement away from the fact into a non-reality.


IMO it begins with Plato’s world of forms. The forms are ideals that do not exist in pure form but only come into existence as devolutions of ideas.

What is the idea of a circle. We experience a virtual infinity of circles but cannot experience the idea of a perfect circle.

Peace and freedom is a concept rather than a form. Is becoming attracted to the concept necessarily harmful? No, but it often is when people are indoctrinated into believing it. Simone believed in it but gradually came to experience that it was impossible due to the human condition which denied the help of grace. It isn’t ideas which are harmful but our blind attachments to them. What can be more psychologically harmful than the attempts by progressive education to create “snowflakes” or students indoctrinated into the defense of naïve political ideas and ideals?

We can 'wonder' about them till doomsday but it's pretty useless, wouldn't you say? Why not clear up those contradictions? Why not live in a way that is not contradictory? Isn't that more simple?

What is hypocrisy and what is dishonesty? Say one thing, do another, think something and not mean it. All that kind of thinking is dishonesty, isn't it?

It's a big subject, to do with standards and principles, social values, conformity, and so on. Another time, maybe.


Easier said than done. Take the example of alcoholism. An alcoholic after a hard night makes the pledge never to have another drink by using his will. However sometimes during the day the habits and needs of the body and the emotional demands and fears makes him begin to drink again. The cycle and the struggle between (yes) represented by the will is opposed by the (no) of the body and acquired emotional responses. You can say just stop drinking and advise living a simple way free of this basic contradiction between will and habit. But until you’ve tried it, it is just wishful thinking. The will is very limited. A person needs another alternative to rise above the limitations of dualism dominant in the human condition.

How do you know you're asleep? This is a serious question. The whole thing about someone who's asleep is that they don't realise it.



That is the great value of scripture, philosophy, and nature. They allow us to experience that there is a reality beyond what we can experience as we are so are drawn to the quality of consciousness necessary to experience what we are drawn to. Einstein wrote:

Every one who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit is manifest in the laws of the Universe-a spirit vastly superior to that of man, and one in the face of which we with our modest powers must feel humble.

The scientists’ religious feeling takes the form of a rapturous amazement at the harmony of natural law, which reveals an intelligence of such superiority that, compared with it, all the systematic thinking and acting of human beings is an utterly insignificant reflection.


The beginning of awakening is experiencing that we are asleep to the actual meaning and purpose of our universe and the humility that is a natural result of genuine experience.


Start where you are, not with something unreal or with things you don't know.


But since we can experience that we are a plurality, where are we? Our will says one thing and our acquired resistance says another. Where is the quality which can reconcile this struggle so we can be more realistically human? It comes from the results of inner empiricism.

http://cogweb.ucla.edu/Abstracts/Needleman_93.html

A friend of mine told me recently that all his life he had been interested in the meaning of things and, naturally, that led him to a study of philosophy. What he found there, he said, was one of the greatest disappointments of his life. Instead of tackling the exciting questions, most philosophers seemed to be snared in the problems of dissecting language, and probing the nuances of grammar and semi¬arbitrary logic. There was no vitality in this work; it was all dry academic, intellectual gamesmanship. He was looking for philosophers who, as he said, "really care about reality"; who would apply their philosophical training to help cut through the intellectual morass, clarify methodologies, and get back to the relationship between reality and experience. He very kindly described me as one of those philosophers who "really cares about reality".
As it happens, I believe there is a growing number of younger philosophers who are interested in getting to the heart of the matter--about what we mean by "reality" and the central role of experience. What draws them, and what originally drew me, to the whole area of philosophy is a quest for meaning. I discovered that the mind by itself cannot complete the philosophic quest. As Kant decisively argued, the mind can ask questions the mind alone cannot answer. For me, this is where the juice of real philosophical investigation begins to flow. I believe it is precisely where intellect hits its limits that the important questions of philosophy start to come alive…………………...


Prof. Needleman describes what is lacking in modern philosophy. I don’t really want to argue whose momma sucks or if Trump is a svoloch. I’m more concerned with the relationship between reality and experience and what it means to know thyself in pursuit of “understanding.”

I'm stumped. There are these paths, obviously invented by someone. It's said they lead back to the source. Which supposes there is a source and it exists. All we have to do is follow the path which some person has invented... they must be delighted!


Don’t forget that I believe in perennial philosophy as a reality. From this perspective these truths weren’t invented by Man but entered into Man from higher consciousness and produced paths. Over time they began to lose their potency and become secularized. So the value for the seeker of truth drawing ideas from scripture and philosophy doesn’t come from learning anything new but from remembering what has been forgotten.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 8th, 2019, 6:21 pm 

I've made a mess of this one, the next one's the reply :-)
Last edited by charon on May 8th, 2019, 7:58 pm, edited 5 times in total.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 8th, 2019, 6:23 pm 

Nick -

IMO it begins with Plato’s world of forms.


Oh, no, it definitely doesn't. I'm asking why human beings create ideals. Nothing to do with Plato. Most of them have probably never heard of Plato. Let's keep it real.

Peace and freedom is a concept rather than a form.


It's also a possibility. We're not talking about pink unicorns. People, human beings, can live peacefully in freedom and most people know that. It's not something impossible.

is becoming attracted to the concept necessarily harmful? No, but it often is when people are indoctrinated into believing it.


It's harmful when it replaces reality. What use is the concept of food when you're hungry? Or rest when you're tired? No one is interested into believing in food when they're hungry.

it was impossible due to the human condition


That's a conclusion and a false one. If it's true we're all doomed to exist forever in misery. It isn't true. In fact, it's a stupid point of view, or a depressed point of view.

It isn’t ideas which are harmful but our blind attachments to them.


Is it? Ideas for, say, a new film or novel are one thing but ideas in the shape of divisive ideologies invite war. It's only our attachment to them, as you put it, which makes that possible. But why do they exist at all except in the minds of idiots? Only idiots consider these things with any fervour.

What can be more psychologically harmful than the attempts by progressive education to create “snowflakes” or students indoctrinated into the defence of naïve political ideas and ideals?


Obviously such education is no education at all, it is indoctrination. Real education would point out the danger of these things and hopefully produce people who never subscribed to them.

Take the example of alcoholism. An alcoholic after a hard night makes the pledge never to have another drink by using his will.


Alcoholism is a disease, it's not the same as psychological conditioning. In any case, he will soon find out - and all his friends too - that will is no answer. We've been through that one.

You can say just stop drinking and advise living a simple way free of this basic contradiction between will and habit.


Only a fool would say that. It's a disease and needs to be treated.

That is the great value of scripture, philosophy, and nature. They allow us to experience that there is a reality beyond what we can experience as we are so are drawn to the quality of consciousness necessary to experience what we are drawn to.


Sorry, that doesn't tell you you're asleep. It may offer a vision of light, a wonder away from the actual reality of life as it is, but that's not the same as you realising you're asleep.

The beginning of awakening is experiencing that we are asleep to the actual meaning and purpose of our universe and the humility that is a natural result of genuine experience


Sorry, again, no. One doesn't realise one is asleep through comparison. The person who is asleep psychologically may read these things and wonder at them but that won't wake them up.

It may sow discontent, though, although it matters what kind of discontent. There's the moaning, grumbling kind, or there's the deep, inner sense that there's something more and it's this which inspires seeking.

But since we can experience that we are a plurality, where are we? Our will says one thing and our acquired resistance says another. Where is the quality which can reconcile this struggle so we can be more realistically human?


But do we experience we are a plurality? What does that actually mean? That we are contradictory in ourselves? That one desire fights another? That we are torn between choices? That we're lost and don't know where to turn?

Are will and resistance different? When I assert my will isn't that a form of resistance? When I say 'I must, I will' isn't that resistance?

There's no quality that can reconcile these two because they're the same. Instead, find out if one can live without any resistance at all, positive or negative. That means no will.

Try it and see. If you do you'll find will is completely unnecessary. To live without force, effort, resistance... this is entirely possible. It doesn't mean giving in to the line of least resistance either. That's simply apathy or laziness.

I’m more concerned with the relationship between reality and experience and what it means to know thyself in pursuit of “understanding.”


Reality IS experience, isn't it? The reality is we're here doing this. It's raining outside now. There are things to do tomorrow... all this is experience. Life is experience.

Are we pursuing knowing ourselves? That means actually applying ourselves daily at every moment to our thoughts, feelings, actions, motives, fears, desires, and all the rest of it. If we want to know something we have to study it. We have to discover how the mind works, what the mind is, what are the limits of our thought, whether that thought is conditioned... Are we doing that or is it just a nice idea?

Don’t forget that I believe in perennial philosophy as a reality. From this perspective these truths weren’t invented by Man but entered into Man from higher consciousness and produced paths.


I understand, but do you know this or is it an image you have of them?

Let's say it were true, that they were given to man by other means. How do we know in what form they were originally given, especially if they've been secularised?

Are there any paths to truth? What do we mean by truth? Let's go very slowly and carefully. Is truth something mysterious, far off, somewhere distant? Or is it in what is now, in every action, every thought, every motive?

I don't know if you see this. Is truth apart from ourselves and 'out there'? Is it external or is it what we are, what our life is?

Is truth life itself? I know we've made a mess of it but, nevertheless, is truth different from life? Or do we see that life itself is the sacred?

In that case where is the path to it? It's right there. All that one can do is become more and more sensitive, not to oneself, but to everything in and around one - to others, to nature, to ugliness and beauty. After all, that is what living is.

Perhaps we don't see that this life is actually all we have and all we know. Our minds may be filled with all kinds of ideas but that's not the reality of life. We may believe in other worlds, other planes, all kinds of stuff, but actually we're just here, just like everybody else.

If we realised that we'd see what an utter catastrophe we've made of life and begin to rectify it. But we're shielded from all that by ideals, conceptions, dreams, escapes of various kinds, which have become the norm.

The religions help with that enormously. Don't worry about this world, they say, look at the next one where everything will be all right! And those religions have wrought such tremendous barbarity in the world.

So this life is all we have, and all there is. Now we see what we have become reduced to. That's how we know we just might be sound asleep and it's time to wake up.


(By the way, thank you, that was a good post you wrote!)
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby Nick_A on May 9th, 2019, 12:50 am 

Charon

It's also a possibility. We're not talking about pink unicorns. People, human beings, can live peacefully in freedom and most people know that. It's not something impossible.


That is what the Obligations and Rights thread is about. As we are, a society can never produce citizens capable of the voluntary obligations necessary to live in peace and freedom. Since we are as we are, everything is as it is.

That's a conclusion and a false one. If it's true we're all doomed to exist forever in misery. It isn't true. In fact, it's a stupid point of view, or a depressed point of view.


Tell that to the Buddha. The Four Noble Truths begin with:

1. All existence is dukkha. The word dukkha has been variously translated as ‘suffering’, ‘anguish’, ‘pain’, or ‘unsatisfactoriness’. The Buddha’s insight was that our lives are a struggle, and we do not find ultimate happiness or satisfaction in anything we experience. This is the problem of existence


It is the human condition as it manifests as a part of universal existence. Have you experienced anything different?

Is it? Ideas for, say, a new film or novel are one thing but ideas in the shape of divisive ideologies invite war. It's only our attachment to them, as you put it, which makes that possible. But why do they exist at all except in the minds of idiots? Only idiots consider these things with any fervour.


Yes we are idiots. What is the majority of the entertainment dollar spent on? Obviously it is the most divisive and hostile expression. It sells because of the collective need for prestige proven by the ability to be more obnoxious. That is why modern philosophy sells. A person can assert their imagined superiority by being more obnoxious. It is worth getting a degree to make this assertion. This is all the fallen human nature.

A true seeker of truth looks for the minority not content with being an idiot and practice what is necessary to become human. The seeker of truth learns from them.

Obviously such education is no education at all, it is indoctrination. Real education would point out the danger of these things and hopefully produce people who never subscribed to them.


True, but in this day and age when the goal of education is indoctrination it would be hypocritical to point out its dangers. A person aware of the problem must find an institution capable of education for the sake of their children.

Sorry, that doesn't tell you you're asleep. It may offer a vision of light, a wonder away from the actual reality of life as it is, but that's not the same as you realising you're asleep


It was with me. I used to think that life on earth is chaotic and absurd. Once I became aware that I was third force blind it became clear that the world was making perfect sense as a reaction to universal laws. I was asleep to this reality. It makes me wonder how much I am unaware of because I rely on imagination to reconcile my contradictions. Imagination is always dominant during psychological sleep. Conscious attention is the awakening quality which is why we reject it. Imagination seems much more satisfying.

But do we experience we are a plurality? What does that actually mean? That we are contradictory in ourselves? That one desire fights another? That we are torn between choices? That we're lost and don't know where to turn?


A person can begin to experience the three basic functions of thought, emotion, and sensation in themselves. Person can also begin to experience when they are emoting when they should be thinking and thinking when sensing and so on. We can experience that we live out of balance.

What does it mean to say “I feel cold”? How many are aware of the difference? To sense cold is a sensory experience while to feel cold is an emotional experience

Are will and resistance different? When I assert my will isn't that a form of resistance? When I say 'I must, I will' isn't that resistance?


Often we call a reaction to desire an act of will. It isn’t. Will is conscious action while resistance is mechanical reaction. A person practicing efforts at self knowledge becomes more aware of the difference and capable of conscious action.

Reality IS experience, isn't it? The reality is we're here doing this. It's raining outside now. There are things to do tomorrow... all this is experience. Life is experience.


Reality in this context is awareness of the potential for human being. Experience proves to us that we don’t reflect it. The seeker of truth wants to know why this is so.

Are there any paths to truth? What do we mean by truth? Let's go very slowly and carefully. Is truth something mysterious, far off, somewhere distant? Or is it in what is now, in every action, every thought, every motive?


Truth is the expression of the good. It is “what is now.” The human condition and the imagination it creates and supports rejects it as it concerns objective human meaning and purpose. The path to the experience begins with accepting the value of conscious attention in order to experience existence.

."Attention is the rarest and purest form of generosity. It is given to very few minds to notice that things and beings exist. Since my childhood I have not wanted anything else but to receive the complete revelation of this before dying." ~Simone Weil


How many know what she means much less have the need for this quality of seeing? The path to truth requires this quality of attention in which the senses, feelings, and intellect form a conscious whole. It isn’t wanted and actually I’ve experienced how much these ideas are hated and disturb the peace.

I don’t mean to be negative but it is obvious to me that our species s a whole prefers imaginary life in Plato’s cave. It is only a minority willing to awaken through developing conscious attention who can leave cave limitations and function in the world . I hope I’m wrong but do not see why anything would change.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 9th, 2019, 7:00 am 

Nick -

Since we are as we are, everything is as it is.


Undeniably so, but you understand it's not final? Otherwise Jesus was wasting his time. And so am I, come to that!

Tell that to the Buddha. The Four Noble Truths...


But the whole point of that teaching is how it can be overcome, isn't it? So he might have been wasting his time too. Are you saying that?

It is the human condition as it manifests as a part of universal existence. Have you experienced anything different?


Obviously, otherwise I wouldn't be here saying it.

Yes, it's the human condition but nothing is permanent. No condition is permanent.

We may suffer physically because the body is prone to various things but do we need to suffer inwardly? Most suffering is through ignorance. We don't need to suffer in that way. We create it ourselves because we don't understand life or ourselves.

So either figures like Christ and the Buddha were wasting their time or we have a lot to learn. I don't think they were wasting their time.

Yes we are idiots.


Well, there you are then :-)

A true seeker of truth looks for the minority not content with being an idiot and practice what is necessary to become human. The seeker of truth learns from them.


But if all life is suffering and misery what's the point in seeking truth? You see how this doom and gloom approach is not a cogent argument?

A person aware of the problem must find an institution capable of education for the sake of their children
.

Of course, that's the whole point. Are there such places? And do they work?

Conscious attention is the awakening quality which is why we reject it. Imagination seems much more satisfying.


Absolutely, that's why I keep saying 'look'. The moment one begins to look, examine, probe, inquire, there's an awakening. That's the whole point.

We can experience that we live out of balance.


What is causing that imbalance? Say you have a 3-legged stool. If the legs aren't in proportion, or one leg is longer than the others, there's imbalance. So what is it in us that's out of proportion? Why is there no harmony?

We should discuss that in detail.

Often we call a reaction to desire an act of will. It isn’t. Will is conscious action while resistance is mechanical reaction. A person practising efforts at self knowledge becomes more aware of the difference and capable of conscious action.


I think you're giving a philosophical interpretation to the word will. I'm just using it in the ordinary sense.

Reality in this context is awareness of the potential for human being
.

I don't know what that means. Reality is just what is - I'm posting this, it's stopped raining, today is Thursday, etc etc.

Truth... is “what is now.”


That's what I'm saying. But we think it's off in the clouds somewhere, which is nonsense.

It isn’t wanted and actually I’ve experienced how much these ideas are hated and disturb the peace.


Too bad, although I don't think it's that bad. Only a minority literally hate this sort of thing and they're unbalanced. Doesn't matter really. Just try not to be stuck in a room with one of them!

The path to truth requires this quality of attention in which the senses, feelings, and intellect form a conscious whole.


Also what I'm saying. At present those three are out of balance and in contradiction with each other, probably because we are not attentive to ourselves or life. So I'm saying look, look at oneself, give attention to the contradictions.

But, as I said before, we are a total being. We have, as you say, sensation, emotion and intellect. Through carelessness they've become misaligned. So through attention and care it can be put right, that's all.

But saying it is one thing and the application of it is another. It's not something to be practised as one might practice the piano. It's not a laid-out path, not a system, not an imposition. There's no leader for it, no priest, no book, no authority.

As I said before, if there's interest one will look with care, which is attention.

As the gardener gives care and attention to his plants, trees and soil, so we should give care and attention to our lives. That is love, that is what brings order, that is the good.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby Nick_A on May 9th, 2019, 9:00 pm 

Charon

N. Since we are as we are, everything is as it is.

C. Undeniably so, but you understand it's not final? Otherwise Jesus was wasting his time. And so am I, come to that!


As I understand it, where an individual is capable of conscious evolution, the great collective is incapable

The grand collective or what Plato called the Beast is limited as are any other beasts to being creatures of reaction serving nature’s laws. What Jesus brought could only be appreciated by a minority but the majority hated it as it does today. It took me a while to understand why this must be so. The more authentic the message, the more it will be hated. That is why Christendom can be accepted where Christianity cannot.

John 15:18 -19 New International Version (NIV)
The World Hates the Disciples

18 “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. 19 If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.


But the whole point of that teaching is how it can be overcome, isn't it? So he might have been wasting his time too. Are you saying that?


Yes awakening is possible but once a person realizes how easily the message is corrupted it is obvious why authentic teaching is done in private and not written down. What would be the sense of describing a terminal condition? But the world is as it is and must remain a creature of reaction. Once an individual can see what is happening, it provides the incentive to struggle with themselves with the goal of freedom from the prison of Plato’s cave.

But if all life is suffering and misery what's the point in seeking truth? You see how this doom and gloom approach is not a cogent argument?


There is meaningless suffering and meaningful suffering. Meaningful suffering from a conscious perspective provides the influence necessary for a person to realize the benefits of the conscious struggle between their higher and lower natures. Meaningful suffering serves the human potential to connect our psych with higher conscious influences and the help of grace serving the cause of awakening

Meaningless suffering is the result of imagination and only serves to support our imaginary fears and the natural result of too much pride and vanity. Much of our lives are just the results of meaningless suffering

Of course, that's the whole point. Are there such places? And do they work?


If they do exist they are hard to get into and easy to leave. The secularized teachings are easy to get into and hard to leave. They exist to make money from the needs of the gullible. There is an old expression: “when the student is ready the teacher appears.” This is often the case.


Absolutely, that's why I keep saying 'look'. The moment one begins to look, examine, probe, inquire, there's an awakening. That's the whole point.


That isn’t looking, you are describing the process of interpreting in accordance with acquired worldly standards. Looking is free of examining, probing, judging, and the rest. Looking requires the ability to consciously experience the external world from a higher conscious perspective.

What is causing that imbalance? Say you have a 3-legged stool. If the legs aren't in proportion, or one leg is longer than the others, there's imbalance. So what is it in us that's out of proportion? Why is there no harmony?

It would be meaningless without those entering the discussion to have experienced and agree that we live out of balance. Otherwise it is just the usual arguments over opinions.

But, as I said before, we are a total being. We have, as you say, sensation, emotion and intellect. Through carelessness they've become misaligned. So through attention and care it can be put right, that's all.

But saying it is one thing and the application of it is another. It's not something to be practised as one might practice the piano. It's not a laid-out path, not a system, not an imposition. There's no leader for it, no priest, no book, no authority.

As I said before, if there's interest one will look with care, which is attention.

As the gardener gives care and attention to his plants, trees and soil, so we should give care and attention to our lives. That is love, that is what brings order, that is the good.


But striving to become oneself is similar to learning how to play a piano. The stumbling block is that a person can have an egoistic motive for learning piano but what is the incentive to become oneself until they experience the title of Jacob Needleman’s book: “I Am Not I.”

Learning to play piano requires the union of the intellectual knowledge of music, the means to communicate it emotionally, the body including the hands to serve emotional and intellectual desires. When they put these three together, they can play the piano. It is the same with a person who has intellectually experienced universal laws and their purpose, their emotional quality, and have become capable of cooperating with universal purpose or what the Buddhists call dharma. Such a person is truly human.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 10th, 2019, 2:27 am 

Nick -

Your last post was rather good but this one isn't. Perhaps you're tired, or busy, or both. You're not really answering the questions, you're just repeating the usual lines about Plato, the beast, and all the rest of it. You're not thinking, you're regurgitating.

Which is exactly what you're criticising in others. That won't do.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 10th, 2019, 2:25 pm 

.

All right, I'll give you a fuller answer.

where an individual is capable of conscious evolution, the great collective is incapable


I wish you'd stop referring to others as incapable. The others are you. They are as capable as you are.

I don't quite know what you mean by conscious evolution but we've discussed that before.

The grand collective or what Plato called the Beast is limited as are any other beasts to being creatures of reaction serving nature’s laws.


That is totally wrong. Only animals function according to their needs. We are human, like you. Don't say others are like animals and say they're beast-like.

I don't know where you got that idea from but it's not becoming. If I were you I'd drop it. Maybe some other person down the road thinks he's a clever philosopher and is happily lumping you in with 'the beast' incapable of understanding anything. How would you like that?

the majority hated it


They don't hate it. There are millions and millions of Christians, Moslems, Hindus, Buddhists, and all the rest of it. They might not really live it but don't say they don't understand it at some level. And I've no doubt much more than you think.

Frankly, all this sort of thing stinks of spiritual snobbery. You may consider yourself way above the lowly mass but from what I can see by your posts you've merely got your own point of view, just as good as anybody else's.

Of course there are the cynics and sneerers but they're in the minority. Talking about religion brings it out of them. You remember the great atheist movement of a short time back. They're just rather immature and will probably get over it. And, as far as religion goes, they're not entirely wrong either.

There is meaningless suffering and meaningful suffering.


No, there isn't, there's just suffering. Either you suffer or you don't. Suffering is mostly created by ignorance. Calling it 'meaningful;' is just a clever trick. There's no meaningful suffering. Suffering is stupid.

Meaningful suffering serves the human potential to connect our psych with higher conscious influences and the help of grace serving the cause of awakening


Oh, that's an old ploy. You have to suffer to get enlightened! No, you don't. Suffering has to be understood and ended.

If they do exist they are hard to get into and easy to leave.


If you don't know whether they exist how can you say anything about them?

So what is it in us that's out of proportion? Why is there no harmony?

It would be meaningless without those entering the discussion to have experienced and agree that we live out of balance. Otherwise it is just the usual arguments over opinions.


Rubbish. Why is there no harmony is us? It has nothing to do with opinion. None of this stuff has. Why do you think there's imbalance?

We've already gone through this. Being over-intellectual is one good reason. We've discussed this before. We're obsessed with the intellect. Likewise if someone is over-emotional or overly concerned with their physical attributes.

But the intellect is the worst culprit. Look back at what I said before. The whole world is divided by things created by the mind - the beliefs, nationalities, ideologies, cultures, everything. All that is the work of the intellect, which is thought, which is knowledge.

Why does it predominate? The answer to that is not an opinion. It needs looking at. Ask yourself why it predominates. And I mean ask yourself because you're doing exactly that, aren't you?

Be honest, all these quotes from here, there and everywhere, wordy answers, conceptual reasoning... you are like them, even if you consider yourself above it all. You're not.

It is the same with a person who has intellectually experienced universal laws and their purpose, their emotional quality, and have become capable of cooperating with universal purpose or what the Buddhists call dharma.


Eh? Intellectually experience universal laws? Cooperating with universal purpose? What in god's name are you talking about?

When you get to the pearly gates, Nick, St. Peter won't ask you whether you intellectually cooperated with the universal purpose and all that blah, he'll say 'How did you live? How did you conduct your life? How did you treat people? Were you kind?'

And you will say it doesn't apply to you because you were naturally far above the common man... as you wait there in line with them :-)
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby Nick_A on May 10th, 2019, 6:33 pm 

Charon

That is totally wrong. Only animals function according to their needs. We are human, like you. Don't say others are like animals and say they're beast-like.

I don't know where you got that idea from but it's not becoming. If I were you I'd drop it. Maybe some other person down the road thinks he's a clever philosopher and is happily lumping you in with 'the beast' incapable of understanding anything. How would you like that?


This is a volatile topic and sure to disturb the peace. Perhaps it shouldn’t be discussed since it isn’t politically correct. But on the other hand those open to the idea can profit from it psychologically so maybe it is worth a few growls. I know for example how much Simone is rejected. Yet there were three times in the last two years that young women who never post but just read had read my Simone quotes and began to research her. They wanted to thank me for making them aware of this very special person.

Ideas are like that. Most often ideas which refer to the reality of what we are as a species are considered insulting by the majority. But at the same time those open to the truth should be supported. One such idea is society as a living organism. Plato referred to it as the Beast and simone Weil called it the Great Beast.

http://cimarronline.blogspot.com/2004/0 ... beast.html

………………….Weil gets the term "Great Beast" from Plato. Specifically, this passage from Book VI of his Republic (here Plato critiques those who are "wise" through their study of society):

I might compare them to a man who should study the tempers and desires of a mighty strong beast who is fed by him--he would learn how to approach and handle him, also at what times and from what causes he is dangerous or the reverse, and what is the meaning of his several cries, and by what sounds, when another utters them, he is soothed or infuriated; and you may suppose further, that when, by continually attending upon him, he has become perfect in all this, he calls his knowledge wisdom, and makes of it a system or art, which he proceeds to teach, although he has no real notion of what he means by the principles or passions of which he is speaking, but calls this honourable and that dishonourable, or good or evil, or just or unjust, all in accordance with the tastes and tempers of the great brute. Good he pronounces to be that in which the beast delights and evil to be that which he dislikes...

Society, the "mighty strong beast." There's the obvious power of many hands working together. But Plato points to a deeper, pseudo-moral power of the many, the group. Weil also describes this:

The power of the social element. Agreement between several men brings with it a feeling of reality. It brings with it also a sense of duty. Divergence, where this agreement is concerned, appears as a sin. Hence all returns to the fold are possible. The state of conformity is an imitation of grace………………………..

Society described as living organism is known. Herbert Spencer the British philosopher has written on it. It is logical when we admit the human body is a living organism. All the cells are not the same and serve different functions. It is the same with society. All the atoms of the Great Beast are not the same and serve different functions

Yes the topic is insulting but I should post it for those interested.

They don't hate it. There are millions and millions of Christians, Moslems, Hindus, Buddhists, and all the rest of it. They might not really live it but don't say they don't understand it at some level. And I've no doubt much more than you think.


There are millions of followers of secularized interpretations of the great traditions. To find a Christian is a rarity yet there are many followers of Christendom or man made Christianity.

F
rankly, all this sort of thing stinks of spiritual snobbery. You may consider yourself way above the lowly mass but from what I can see by your posts you've merely got your own point of view, just as good as anybody else's.


This is what the experts said about Socrates. Who is he to question if we know what piety is and even worse, who is he to corrupt the youth of Athens by inviting them to reason out of the box. The state already has its own gods. To question them is a sin punishable by death. Admitting one is in Plato’s cave and suggesting there is a way out is not spiritual snobbery. That category has been reserved for the spirit killers in universities killing eros in the young and leading to metaphysical repression.

No, there isn't, there's just suffering. Either you suffer or you don't. Suffering is mostly created by ignorance. Calling it 'meaningful;' is just a clever trick. There's no meaningful suffering. Suffering is stupid.


Tell that to a ballet student who suffers during practice in order to obtain bodily control. Tell the student it is just their imagination but it is best just to sop practice and just go home and play with your remote. Post their reaction. Awakening is suffering because the body doesn't want it, Only a small part of ourselves want it and this part is what has the potential for conscious evolution from animal consciousness to human consciousness..


But the intellect is the worst culprit. Look back at what I said before. The whole world is divided by things created by the mind - the beliefs, nationalities, ideologies, cultures, everything. All that is the work of the intellect, which is thought, which is knowledge.


No, the worst culprit is our fallen emotional nature. Reason has nothing to do with it. We live by emotional reactions. Do you think that road rage is an intellectual response? No it is an attractive emotional reaction. Negative emotions sell. That is why it dominates secular society It glorifies and justifies negative emotional reactions.

Eh? Intellectually experience universal laws? Cooperating with universal purpose? What in god's name are you talking about?


Before being open to the idea of objective human meaning and purpose, a person has to consider the meaning and purpose of the universe our world functions within. Human meaning and purpose is a part of universal meaning and purpose. I know it is another offensive idea for secularists who believe the need for meaning must be confined to what the world can offer. To consider our being in the context of the great chain of being is a politically incorrect idea since it suggests we are not already the ultimate expression of conscious life.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 11th, 2019, 12:56 am 

Nick -

Beast


You don't have to explain it to me, I know all about it. We all say 'the world is mad' as though we weren't part of it ourselves. Everybody does that, including me.

But there's that and there's taking a stance or an attitude that distances oneself from other people, as though one weren't like them. One is exactly like them and they are exactly like oneself.

the topic is insulting


No, it's not insulting, it's just wrong.

We're all human. We've evolved as a species to what we are now. You and I are examples of that. We didn't float here from a distant planet, we're human.

But some humans like to say 'Oh, I'm not like the rest, I'm much better than they are'. No, they're not, and one day they'll realise it, and a great day that will be.

There are millions of followers of secularized interpretations of the great traditions. To find a Christian is a rarity yet there are many followers of Christendom or man made Christianity.


Either you label yourself and hold a belief or you don't. Labelling oneself and holding a belief is probably an act of violence.

The state already has its own gods. To question them is a sin punishable by death.


The Islamic cultures are doing exactly that as we speak.

Admitting one is in Plato’s cave and suggesting there is a way out is not spiritual snobbery


I agree, it's not. Spiritual snobbery is some of the people in the cave thinking they're better than the others. Whereas they're all in the same boat.

If those people really know a way out of the cave why are they still in the cave?

Tell that to a ballet student who suffers during practice in order to obtain bodily control.


That is physical suffering. We're not talking about that. I'm talking about inward suffering, the thought that says 'Oh, poor me'.

No, the worst culprit is our fallen emotional nature. Reason has nothing to do with it. We live by emotional reactions. Do you think that road rage is an intellectual response? No it is an attractive emotional reaction. Negative emotions sell. That is why it dominates secular society It glorifies and justifies negative emotional reactions.


It's not an emotional reaction that has created the ideologies of the world. Nor the separate countries, nor the cultures, nor the religious beliefs, nor the different political ideas.

This world is hopelessly divided and consequently at war with itself. This is perfectly obvious. Those divisions are not just an emotional reaction, they're the result of our thinking, carefully considered, put together, sustained over generations.

Before being open to the idea of objective human meaning and purpose, a person has to consider the meaning and purpose of the universe our world functions within. Human meaning and purpose is a part of universal meaning and purpose. I know it is another offensive idea for secularists who believe the need for meaning must be confined to what the world can offer. To consider our being in the context of the great chain of being is a politically incorrect idea since it suggests we are not already the ultimate expression of conscious life.


A human being getting philosophical is not offensive. You could hold seminars all round the country, do TED talks, publish all the books you wanted, and nobody would bat an eye.

But what do you mean by 'human meaning and purpose'? Don't you see it's no good floating some theory or other? Someone else will come along with a better theory and off we go. Such a waste of time.

What do you say your meaning and purpose is? Seriously. Don't play with it, what is your meaning and purpose?

You can think of one and pretend you're living has a great purpose. Thousands do, I expect, but they're deluded. They don't actually know, it's just some idea their minds have cooked up and makes them feel important.

Let's say you decide your meaning and purpose is to find truth or God, call it what you will. What are you doing about it? Or is it just a lot of words while actually life just carries on the same as everybody else?

I'm asking this seriously. What is your meaning and purpose? If you asked me that question, personally I have no idea. Getting out of bed's not a bad start!
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby Nick_A on May 11th, 2019, 1:17 pm 

Charon

But there's that and there's taking a stance or an attitude that distances oneself from other people, as though one weren't like them. One is exactly like them and they are exactly like oneself.


Yes in Plato’s cave we are all alike. We are creatures of reaction responding to nature’s laws.

But some humans like to say 'Oh, I'm not like the rest, I'm much better than they are'. No, they're not, and one day they'll realise it, and a great day that will be.


True but what good is arguing who is a better prisoner in Plato’s cave? Why be proud of your prison? For some it inspires compassion.

"The difference between more or less intelligent men is like the difference between criminals condemned to life imprisonment in smaller or larger cells. The intelligent man who is proud of his intelligence is like a condemned man who is proud of his large cell. ~ Simone Weil


Either you label yourself and hold a belief or you don't. Labelling oneself and holding a belief is probably an act of violence.


That is the trouble with modern psychology. Words have lost their ability to transmit scale and relativity. People create their own reality. You are what you say you are. If you say you are an artist, you are an artist. If you say you are a Christian you are a Christian. If a man says he is a woman, he is a woman. It is the modern way but I’m not a modern man so it just seems idiotic to me.

If those people really know a way out of the cave why are they still in the cave?


But how would you know them? The first step is realizing you are asleep in Plato’s cave under the power of imagination. Until a person realizes this, what good is talking about a way out? That is the great danger of addiction to technology which lessens the attention span. A person becomes so caught up in it they don’t realize what they are losing.

This world is hopelessly divided and consequently at war with itself. This is perfectly obvious. Those divisions are not just an emotional reaction, they're the result of our thinking, carefully considered, put together, sustained over generations.


If people were thinking carefully they would understand the reality of the fallen human condition and how it has perverted the great traditions. People would strive to heal it. It is the emotional need for self justification and prestige which prevents it.
What do you say your meaning and purpose is? Seriously. Don't play with it, what is your meaning and purpose?


Does Simone Weil’s inspired observation make sense to you? Can you accept the difference between a natural necessity and a supernatural potential unnatural for animal life on earth?
“The sea is not less beautiful to our eye because we know that sometimes ships sink in it. On the contrary, it is more beautiful still. If the sea modified the movement of its waves to spare a boat, it would be a being possessing discernment and choice, and not this fluid that is perfectly obedient to all external pressures. It is this perfect obedience that is its beauty.”

“All the horrors that are produced in this world are like the folds imprinted on the waves by gravity. This is why they contain beauty. Sometimes a poem, like the Iliad, renders this beauty.”

“Man can never escape obedience to God. A creature cannot not obey. The only choice offered to man as an intelligent and free creature, is to desire obedience or not to desire it. If he does not desire it, he perpetually obeys nevertheless, as a thing subject to mechanical necessity. If he does desire obedience, he remains subject to mechanical necessity, but a new necessity is added on, a necessity constituted by the laws that are proper to supernatural things. Certain actions become impossible for him, while others happen through him, sometimes despite him.”
Excerpt from: Thoughts without order concerning the love of God, in an essay entitled L'amour de Dieu et le malheur (The Love of God and affliction). Simone Weil
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 11th, 2019, 5:24 pm 

Nick -

what good is arguing who is a better prisoner in Plato’s cave?


Ah, but that's the idiocy of the ego and there are plenty who feed off it.

You are what you say you are. If you say you are an artist, you are an artist. If you say you are a Christian you are a Christian. If a man says he is a woman, he is a woman. It is the modern way


Quite!

But how would you know them?


Only by being one of them. If they chose to display what they were, that is, which is unlikely.

The first step is realizing you are asleep in Plato’s cave under the power of imagination. Until a person realizes this, what good is talking about a way out?


Realising you're asleep is NOT to be asleep. That's good enough. It's not a real cave. Getting out after you've realised you're inside doesn't arise. Being outside is being awake.

If people were thinking carefully they would understand the reality of the fallen human condition


Which is why I keep repeating that we don't learn. How many thousands of years has this been going on? Why haven't we learnt after all this time, after all the wars, hatred, suffering, killing, that separation destroys? Tell me.

and how it has perverted the great traditions


But where in these great traditions does it say don't be separative?

Does Simone Weil’s inspired observation make sense to you?


I'm not interested in what Simone Weil thinks, Nick. I asked YOU the question, not Simone Weil. I want to know what YOU think, in YOUR words, not someone else's.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby Nick_A on May 12th, 2019, 12:24 am 

Charon

Which is why I keep repeating that we don't learn. How many thousands of years has this been going on? Why haven't we learnt after all this time, after all the wars, hatred, suffering, killing, that separation destroys? Tell me.


You assume the Great Beast has a choice. Like any other beast it reacts to natural and cosmic forces. The Great Beast on earth follows cycles one of which is war and peace. Since we are as we are, everything repeats. Learning and understanding higher values requires a quality of consciousness we only have in potential. The Great Beast rejects it so wars are inevitable. It is the individual who can consciously strive to be more than a creature of reaction and an atom of the Beast following its cycles.

I'm not interested in what Simone Weil thinks, Nick. I asked YOU the question, not Simone Weil. I want to know what YOU think, in YOUR words, not someone else's.


Sometimes you have to think of others. Some young student my be following this thread and is curious about the objective meaning and purpose of life on earth. Simone’s quote inspires some genuine contemplation.

My views are the same. Animal Man on earth serves the same purpose as all organic life on earth. It is a living machine which transforms substances through our bodily processes. That is our purpose and our objective universal meaning is defined by our relationship to the cycle of involution and evolution.

Organic life on earth serves a mechanical necessity. Conscious man not only serves an animal necessity but is also capable of serving a supernatural purpose which connects above and below: levels of reality. In this way the lower or animal level is nourished by the energy of higher consciousness and grace. The World needs this nourishment.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 12th, 2019, 1:26 am 

Nick -

You assume the Great Beast has a choice. Like any other beast it reacts to natural and cosmic forces. The Great Beast on earth follows cycles one of which is war and peace. Since we are as we are, everything repeats. Learning and understanding higher values requires a quality of consciousness we only have in potential. The Great Beast rejects it so wars are inevitable. It is the individual who can consciously strive to be more than a creature of reaction and an atom of the Beast following its cycles.


Of course mankind has a choice. You put the individual as separate from the mass. There's no difference, the mass is composed of individuals. Which means, of course, that they are not individuals at all as long as they belong to the mass. The true individual is the one who has broken free.

If those within the mass aren't aware of their own state nothing will happen but there's enough information out there to provide that choice.

How did you find all this? Luck? Accident? Or, although you profess inside knowledge, aren't you actually still very much part of the mass? So you're throwing stones from inside the glasshouse, which is no use at all.

First secure your own freedom then preach, not the other way round.

You haven't answered my questions. There are two:

1) Where in the great traditions does it say don't be separate?

2) What is your meaning and purpose? You floated and quoted this idea, not me. You talked about human meaning and purpose so I'm asking you what yours is. Or are you saying it doesn't apply to you?

You apparently have only one song to sing and you just constantly repeat the same thing without changing. Which is exactly the same as any brainwashed religious person. It does get wearing.

You now have a choice, right? You can answer truthfully or you can post more perennial philosophy which you've absorbed by reading books. Up to you.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 12th, 2019, 8:40 am 

P.S. Please don't start your reply with 'I believe my purpose is...' because anyone can invent anything. I could believe my purpose is to turn into a pumpkin or become a bit of moon dust.

I'm asking you what your actual meaning and purpose is, not what you 'believe' it is. There's a difference. After all, if your philosophy means anything you'll know the answer, right?
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby Nick_A on May 13th, 2019, 11:33 am 

Charon

If those within the mass aren't aware of their own state nothing will happen but there's enough information out there to provide that choice.


There is always awareness out there but it is head knowledge and doesn’t affect our being. Consequently everything remains te same.

Over a holiday a government agency for example will estimate that 464 people will die on the road and talk of safety. The next day we will learn that 464 or so died due to car accidents. The only choice for the individual is if they will be one of the 464. All we know is that 464 atoms of the Great Beast died without choice on the road because of both external conditions and the collective quality of our being.

First secure your own freedom then preach, not the other way round.


I am not preaching. I am beginning with a premise shared by many great philosophers. We are in the psychological prison of Plato’s cave. That is what philosophy is. It asks questions. A teacher provides answers while a philosopher pursues the great questions.

Where in the great traditions does it say don't be separate?


When a person for example begins their participation in Buddhism from the exoteric level it is best to just focus on Buddhism. It would be confusing to begin comparing it to Christianity. They may all have a common transcendent origin but what good is it to know that until one has mastered Buddhism? They must remain separated until after a person has grown in their tradition.

What is your meaning and purpose? You floated and quoted this idea, not me. You talked about human meaning and purpose so I'm asking you what yours is. Or are you saying it doesn't apply to you?


My objective purpose as animal Man is to transform substances by my bodily functions producing qualities of energy used by the earth. My objective purpose serves the meaning of life including my own conscious evolution.

My subjective meaning and purpose is provided by society. My subjective purpose is to serve society and my relationship to it. Society itself offers the subjective feeling of meaning. Can subjective meaning and purpose coexist with objective meaning and purpose? That is the question

Matthew 22:21 King James Version (KJV)
21 They say unto him, Caesar's. Then saith he unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's; and unto God the things that are God's.


Modern society has forgotten the difference so just glorifies them in the context of the sameness of secularism.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 13th, 2019, 2:46 pm 

Nick -

There is always awareness out there but it is head knowledge and doesn’t affect our being. Consequently everything remains the same.


There's some truth in that but what isn't head knowledge? Your philosophy is head knowledge. Everything in the Bible and all the books you read is head knowledge.

If a person does read it it's up to them whether they take it further and apply it. A recipe book is just a lot of words unless it's turned into a meal.

The only choice for the individual is if they will be one of the 464.


You can't be saying it's their choice to have a smash-up and die, are you?!

I am not preaching.


That's debatable. You're putting forward an explanation for why things are as they are and repeating it to every question. You're not standing in a pulpit or on a soap-box but there's not much difference.

In the last post you said maybe a young person might read your quotes and be helped to understand life better. That's no different from finding a Bible in a motel room or getting a visit from the Jehovah's Witnesses.

All these people want to 'help' others with their beliefs and answers to things. You have to decide whether they're actually helping or indoctrinating. I'd say, since, no belief has ever helped man - beliefs are divisive and create wars - that it's indoctrination. At least, it would be if the recipient was foolish enough to take it seriously.

Let's be generous and say you have an explanation. All well and good, but explanations are not sufficient. The explanations of life and its difficulties are not the understanding of life for oneself. We often think that, having accepted an explanation, that we've understood, but we haven't. The two are quite different.

I am beginning with a premise shared by many great philosophers. We are in the psychological prison of Plato’s cave. That is what philosophy is. It asks questions. A teacher provides answers while a philosopher pursues the great questions.


Agreed, but analysing the problem is easy. Where it goes horribly wrong is in the answers to it all because there are a thousand 'answers' and none of them is any use at all.

Yes, we're in psychological prison, quite right. The obvious answer to that is not to take to some belief or explanation but to see that we are. It has to be intelligently understood - what the prison is and why it is.

There are very, very, very few people who can answer that properly. Explanations about fallen angels, original sin, Adam and Eve in the garden, are just a lot of hogwash. Down the road there are a dozen other people with a better explanation. Even the psychologists and analysts don't have the answer.

Knowledge is not an answer, science is not an answer, and perhaps even education isn't a complete answer.

When a person for example begins their participation in Buddhism from the exoteric level it is best to just focus on Buddhism. It would be confusing to begin comparing it to Christianity. They may all have a common transcendent origin but what good is it to know that until one has mastered Buddhism? They must remain separated until after a person has grown in their tradition.


Sorry, that's not an answer to the question. I meant which of these traditions say don't separate yourself from others? They daren't, it would be their own undoing since they're all separate from each other.

Don't tell me that, for example, Buddhists, Christians, Hindus and Moslems aren't separate. Of course they are, they're about as separate as you can get and the effects are totally disastrous.

They may be polite to each other, or tolerate each other, or indulge in outright war, but they are separate. The only person who is not separate is he who has no label, no belief, no tradition. That's so obvious it's hardly worth discussing.

My objective purpose as animal Man is to transform substances by my bodily functions


Yes, well...! Good luck with your bodily functions. I hope they're in working order!

My subjective meaning and purpose is provided by society. My subjective purpose is to serve society and my relationship to it. Society itself offers the subjective feeling of meaning. Can subjective meaning and purpose coexist with objective meaning and purpose? That is the question.


What is society? A group of people living together sharing the same language, culture, traditions, under a government, law, and all the rest of it. Usually with a border, a flag, military forces, and so on. All separate from each other.

Why? Because they've stopped being human beings and become labels. They don't see that living in separation from others is foolish and dangerous. No one can live in isolation from others.

But there's more. Society is also a psychological state. The members of any society must fit in or they find themselves excommunicated, so they conform. They become conditioned clones of each other.

This isn't freedom. And the only way we can survive is in freedom.

I know you know all this. It's what your philosophy is saying in different words, the cave and so on. But it's a real problem, not a philosophical one. We could actually all be free tomorrow if we wanted it but I don't think we do.

The man of power isn't going to give it up, the man of belief isn't going to discard it, the traditional person will fight you tooth and nail, and the ordinary person probably isn't interested. Apparently only the few are and to most of them it's just an interesting notion.

Freedom isn't only outward, politically and so on, it begins inwardly. It means what it says, to be free - free of indoctrination, free of belief, free of anything that binds and separates. That means no identification with anything. It means no self.

Self is the problem and it can't be solved by the self; it can only be discarded. Then there's a possibility of love and intelligence. Intelligence never divides, it cooperates.

That is actually the only hope for the world, the only thing that can possibly save man. This isn't a philosophy or a belief, it's the truth.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby Nick_A on May 14th, 2019, 10:17 pm 

Charon

There's some truth in that but what isn't head knowledge? Your philosophy is head knowledge. Everything in the Bible and all the books you read is head knowledge.

If a person does read it it's up to them whether they take it further and apply it. A recipe book is just a lot of words unless it's turned into a meal.


Ideas always begin with head knowledge. The value of real art and sacred scripture is that it was created to bypass binary or dualistic thought. When the question is open it can move into a higher form of intellect and understood with the whole of oneself.

You can't be saying it's their choice to have a smash-up and die, are you?!


No, I am saying that they can decide not to be in a car on the holiday

That's debatable. You're putting forward an explanation for why things are as they are and repeating it to every question. You're not standing in a pulpit or on a soap-box but there's not much difference.


Preaching offers solutions. I am offering the premise necessary to deal with the human condition both in ourselves and in society as a whole. That isn’t preaching but just introducing a basic philosophical idea.

In the last post you said maybe a young person might read your quotes and be helped to understand life better. That's no different from finding a Bible in a motel room or getting a visit from the Jehovah's Witnesses.


Of course. What can be worse for a gifted young woman exposed to philosophy and influenced to argue women’s philosophy. She should argue about gender rights, abortion rights, equality and pop psychology etc. She knows it is bunk but what else is there for a woman? She reads one of my Simone quotes and realizes a woman doesn’t have to be so shallow. She can delve into the same questions those like Plato, Camus and Kierkegaard wrote of. Who else here can enable a female student to experience that she doesn’t have to be a slave to woman’s philosophy by introducing a woman who wasn’t a slave?

If a guy goes into a hotel room with the intent of committing suicide and reads something in this Bible he finds which changes his mind, is it really so bad?

Let's be generous and say you have an explanation. All well and good, but explanations are not sufficient. The explanations of life and its difficulties are not the understanding of life for oneself. We often think that, having accepted an explanation, that we've understood, but we haven't. The two are quite different.


I have introduced and defended the value of conscious attention and conscious contemplation. Without these abilities we become governed by imagination. This isn’t a solution but rather an explanation of a problem.

They may be polite to each other, or tolerate each other, or indulge in outright war, but they are separate. The only person who is not separate is he who has no label, no belief, no tradition. That's so obvious it's hardly worth discussing.


What is so bad about being separate? What can a person living in Plato’s cave with no beliefs or tradition to serve as grounding possibly understand about the potential for their objective meaning and purpose?

Why? Because they've stopped being human beings and become labels. They don't see that living in separation from others is foolish and dangerous. No one can live in isolation from others.


Yes people become part of collectives separated by indoctrinated beliefs

But there's more. Society is also a psychological state. The members of any society must fit in or they find themselves excommunicated, so they conform. They become conditioned clones of each other.


That is why I admire the individuals like Simone Weil. They are willing to sacrifice social acceptance in the cause of truth. She needed the freedom you wrote of that other reject

Self is the problem and it can't be solved by the self; it can only be discarded. Then there's a possibility of love and intelligence. Intelligence never divides, it cooperates.

That is actually the only hope for the world, the only thing that can possibly save man. This isn't a philosophy or a belief, it's the truth.


As I’ve written the hope for man lies in his potential to change what hse is. We prefer to argue about what to do while in reality our hypocrisy doesn’t allow doing. We eventually just express what we are.

You have spoken of love. This quality of love is actually conscious attention. Simone wrote that it is rare but why does it have to be rare? Why are we incapable of this quality of love? Admitting what we have become incapable of it is a step in the right direction. But most people prefer arguing details so who notices existence? Who can give their conscious attention to another in suffering rather than recoiling from it, turning off, and just doing the “right thing?”

."Attention is the rarest and purest form of generosity. It is given to very few minds to notice that things and beings exist. Since my childhood I have not wanted anything else but to receive the complete revelation of this before dying." ~Simone Weil
Last edited by Nick_A on May 15th, 2019, 12:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 14th, 2019, 11:38 pm 

Nick -

What is so bad about being separate?


Nothing is separate. No person is separate, nothing in nature or the universe is separate. Separateness is an illusion. When people think separately they are contradicting that fact. That's why it causes trouble.

people become part of collectives separated by indoctrinated beliefs


And what happens?

the hope for man lies in his potential to change what he is


I know, I wrote a whole post on change. One very good change would be not being separated by indoctrinated beliefs!

Why are we incapable of this quality of love?


We aren't incapable of it, quite the contrary. If you mean why is there so little of it that's simple: selfishness.

Who can give their conscious attention to another in suffering rather than recoiling from it, turning off, and just doing the “right thing?”


Actually lots of people, we just don't hear about it. Someone loving someone doesn't make the papers.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby Nick_A on May 16th, 2019, 11:44 am 

Charon

Nothing is separate. No person is separate, nothing in nature or the universe is separate. Separateness is an illusion. When people think separately they are contradicting that fact. That's why it causes trouble.


We seem to have this fundamental disagreement. As I see it we are simultaneously connected at a higher level of reality and separated into individual essences at a lower level of reality. The whole purpose of conscious Man is to connect above and below while the purpose of animal Man is to struggle for power and prestige as individuals on the animal level.

White light exists and the perception of colors or factions of the whole also exist. It isn’t one or the other. Both simultaneously exist.

I know, I wrote a whole post on change. One very good change would be not being separated by indoctrinated beliefs!


True, but the sad fact is that indoctrinated beliefs in all forms of secularism rule the day regardless if it is political or religious.

In the Church, considered as a social organism, the mysteries inevitably degenerate into beliefs. Simone Weil

The mysteries of faith are degraded if they are made into an object of affirmation and negation, when in reality they should be an object of contemplation. Simone Weil


As usual she gets it. Our species as a whole has this tendency to either express blind belief in a personal god including the Great Beast or the blind denial of higher conscious influences beginning with an ineffable source for creation. Acquiring the ability for conscious contemplation is out of the question. Under these circumstances nothing is collectively possible other than the struggle for security, power, and prestige

N. Who can give their conscious attention to another in suffering rather than recoiling from it, turning off, and just doing the “right thing?”


C. Actually lots of people, we just don't hear about it. Someone loving someone doesn't make the papers.



“The capacity to give one's attention to a sufferer is a very rare and difficult thing; it is almost a miracle; it is a miracle. Nearly all those who think they have the capacity do not possess it.” ~ Simone Weil

I’ll stick with Simone on this one as politically incorrect as it appears. We don’t realize how we psychologically block and just play a part without letting another in. Giving our attention requires letting another in. It is human nature to block and play a part.

How one slender young woman can come to understand what the majority of older pontificating “experts” are oblivious of is a worthwhile psychological study. I just know we need more of these rare ones.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby charon on May 16th, 2019, 6:40 pm 

Nick -

As I see it we are simultaneously connected at a higher level of reality and separated into individual essences at a lower level of reality. The whole purpose of conscious Man is to connect above and below while the purpose of animal Man is to struggle for power and prestige as individuals on the animal level.


Ah, you see, there we are. You divide them and then have the problem of re-joining them :-)

If separation were natural we could all live in separate divisions and all would be lovely in the garden. But it doesn't work like that as history proves.

That's the whole point really. As long as man is fragmented in himself they'll only be endless problems, wars, and all the rest of it. Plus the endless talk of peace and brotherhood.

White light exists and the perception of colors or factions of the whole also exist. It isn’t one or the other. Both simultaneously exist.


But those two aren't divided. Both exist naturally and there's no conflict between them. Man creates artificial divisions then suffers the horrors that accompany it.

the sad fact is that indoctrinated beliefs in all forms of secularism rule the day regardless if it is political or religious.


So, what then? Why don't we wake up to the danger and stop it? We're not learning!

Under these circumstances nothing is collectively possible other than the struggle for security, power, and prestige


I refuse to accept that. It can be changed, and should be. You can justify many of the iniquities of the past that way and they've all gone now, at least in the civilised world. You may as well say that slavery was inevitable. It wasn't, and isn't.

Giving our attention requires letting another in. It is human nature to block and play a part


No, it's NOT 'human nature' any more than throwing Christians to the lions was 'human nature'. It's the result of ignorance.

As I said before, we've had figures like Buddha and the Christ. Why did they bother if it was all just 'human nature'? Tell me that. I asked this before and had no response.

And tell me why your favourite, Simone Weil - whose family thought she was 'obsessed with suffering' - did what she did? Why didn't she say 'Oh, I know it's all terrible, but it's only human nature'?

Good lord!

Do you want to be deep about this? Those who see plurality will act plurally. That is, deal with immediate problems in a practical way. That means passing laws, employing the military, and all the rest of it, causing more human problems along the way. Or doing good works, which is more or less the same thing.

Those who see the unity act totally differently. They live differently, act differently, and are different. And they don't cause problems. They may upset the status quo but that's pretty well inevitable because the two views aren't the same.
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Re: Spiritual reflections on attachment, mind, ego, and the

Postby Nick_A on May 17th, 2019, 12:11 am 

Charon

That's the whole point really. As long as man is fragmented in himself they'll only be endless problems, wars, and all the rest of it. Plus the endless talk of peace and brotherhood.


Yes, that is the point. But the question is what makes fragmentation tolerable? The answer is our acquired reliance on imagination. Awakening to the cause requires conscious attention during efforts to “know thyself” or to have the impartial experience of what we are and our fragmentation. Only a minority are open to awakening. It disturbs the peace of imagination.

So, what then? Why don't we wake up to the danger and stop it? We're not learning!


Our problem is a sick horse. Plato explains it in the Chariot allegory.

https://www.artofmanliness.com/articles ... e-chariot/

In the Phaedrus, Plato (through his mouthpiece, Socrates) shares the allegory of the chariot to explain the tripartite nature of the human soul or psyche.
The chariot is pulled by two winged horses, one mortal and the other immortal.
The mortal horse is deformed and obstinate. Plato describes the horse as a “crooked lumbering animal, put together anyhow…of a dark color, with grey eyes and blood-red complexion; the mate of insolence and pride, shag-eared and deaf, hardly yielding to whip and spur.”
The immortal horse, on the other hand, is noble and game, “upright and cleanly made…his color is white, and his eyes dark; he is a lover of honor and modesty and temperance, and the follower of true glory; he needs no touch of the whip, but is guided by word and admonition only.”
In the driver’s seat is the charioteer, tasked with reining in these disparate steeds, guiding and harnessing them to propel the vehicle with strength and efficiency. The charioteer’s destination? The ridge of heaven, beyond which he may behold the Forms: essences of things like Beauty, Wisdom, Courage, Justice, Goodness — everlasting Truth and absolute Knowledge. These essences nourish the horses’ wings, keeping the chariot in flight…………………………

The white horse represents our higher nature while the dark horse represents our lower nature. The dark horse or our lower nature lives our life. Deformed as it is it cannot have a conscious connection with our higher nature. Can the charioteer create conscious connection between above and below? He must learn how but how can he learn?

N. Under these circumstances nothing is collectively possible other than the struggle for security, power, and prestige


C. I refuse to accept that. It can be changed, and should be. You can justify many of the iniquities of the past that way and they've all gone now, at least in the civilised world. You may as well say that slavery was inevitable. It wasn't, and isn't
.

It can be changed for individuals but the world doesn’t want it. Basarab Nicolescu’s organization C I R E T is a good example. It comprises intellectual people, artistic people, and people skilled in mechanics. All know they have a piece of the truth so the aim is to share so all can feel the reality they are all part of. The world isn’t ready for it but certain individuals are.

No, it's NOT 'human nature' any more than throwing Christians to the lions was 'human nature'. It's the result of ignorance.


Our fallen human nature has become an acquired attribute. It is our dark horse. It doesn’t want to be educated and the world doesn’t want to educate it. So again, it is only individuals feeling the need to awaken. Most prefer the world as it is.

As I said before, we've had figures like Buddha and the Christ. Why did they bother if it was all just 'human nature'? Tell me that. I asked this before and had no response.


Fallen human nature by definition is unnatural and sustained through imagination. The great teachers taught how to awaken in the particular part of the world they arose in. But it isn’t wanted so their teachings become interpreted into the opposite of their intent.

And tell me why your favourite, Simone Weil - whose family thought she was 'obsessed with suffering' - did what she did? Why didn't she say 'Oh, I know it's all terrible, but it's only human nature'?


Simone’s life is very instructive. Even at a very early she was obsessed with world hunger. I believe in partially developed souls which incarnte again into the world for the sake of experience. She fought too hard against world hunger for it to be natural. How can a twelve year old girl show so much passion while in hotel with her parents manage to go to the kitchen and organize the workers into a public demonstration for equal rights. That was Simone. she would put these modern day feminists to shame. However after so much effort and her need to experience the truth of the fallen human condition finally came to realize that Man, left to his own devices, is incapable of living by higher values. Man needs the help of grace to actualize higher values and the potential for unity you wrote of..
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