The Winding Path – 152

For the context of the following comments and to reply, please click on the DATE/TIME above them.

[From the Patheos blog – Notes From An Apostate – “Why This Atheist is Patient with the Religious – Part 1 and Part 2″ – by Sincere Kriabo.]

2015-06-16 14:13

[john l. is responding to the blog post by Sincere Kirabo]

john l. – “Patience for the outragious LIES?
It’s just making lame excuses for being so INcredibly (as in NO-credibllity) brain dead from an early age, no curiosity, no rationality, no skepticism, nothing-just swallow fantasy and such blatantly obvious, in your face falsehoods and outright LIES.

AS a sentient, curious but realistic child, my first recollection of anything religious was hearing the nonsensical spiel in sunday school thinking, “what in hell is wrong with these people???

Adults, “grown-ups shoveling such obvious BS into innocent kids, worse than fictional fairy tails, simply the weirdest crap, I was embarrassed for them.

Nothing’s changed but only gotten worse, more invasive and dangerous to community, society, humanity.

It is purely child abuse for parents and other ‘adults’ to infect vulnerable young minds tuned to trust parents, adults as decent trustworthy teachers.”

It seems to me that what you are describing is a degraded form of
something else.

Do you have the same scorn for say Hopi or Navajo religious tradition
being passed on from one generation to the next?

2015-06-17 09:36

john l. – “When Hopi or Navajo religious practices and beliefs or any others, shove them unwanted up our ears and down our throats in the form of controls over society, raiding the public treasury, yes indeed I will and have when appropriate.

Believers in magic mythologies who keep it to themselves and don’t hijack others with their goofy fantasies are fine with me.

It is child abuse of the worst kind to hit defenseless children with such life changing crap before they’re old enough to defend themselves. If this stuff is so great, they will doubtlessly choose it for themselves.”

I’m curious if you have had any encounters with the religious that didn’t prime you for fight-or-flight.

So many people keep it to themselves. How can you tell what has shaped the character of any given person you meet?

I definitely wouldn’t call it [religious indoctrination] the “worst kind of child abuse. I’ve met too many victims of incest.

And frankly, the blanket disrespect thing, is no better than the myopic and proprietary declarations of an avid Bible thumper.

I’m sure you must realize that it does not represent Truth.

2015-06-17 14:40

john l. – “Religious freaks & fanatics, and their followers, are as obvious as a poke in the eye with a sharp stick.

And when you encounter truly obvious a-holes in things pertaining to humanity and life, whether the problem is ordinary loony tunes, insane political/ideological, or religious, (or as Mark Twain quipped: ‘but I repeat myself’) the result is much the same and has to be handled by a minimal of quarantine for the health and survivability of community and beyond.

Incest has obvious effects, from negligible to very serious trauma, no doubt. It is primarily physical, with very possible psychological effects. Without your indicated familiarity, I would suspect usually diminishes/fades with time. But this is far out of my pay grade.

The religious sickness, likewise usually inflicted at very young and defenseless age, most often remains for life, poisoning both individuals and society’s very humanity.

Ironically, the most effective cure seems to be the afflicted individual simply READING the bible…”

I’m going to have to let other people sort your response out.

I guess I’ve said what I know how to say.

john l. – “It understandably wasn’t much.”

brmckay – “Don’t worry, it’s not really your forte.

Read through some of your posts. You don’t actually bring anything to the table.

But like to hear yourself talk.

A regular master of vapidly grandiose scorn.”

john l. – “This typical from those dupes who have not one iota of evidence to make their case. Case? Ha.

That’s all atheists ask for, evidence. Not one bit in over 2000 years.
There’s nothing here to talk about.”

brmckay – “Plenty of evidence but not for those chronically out to lunch.

Not sure what 2000 years has to do with anything.

Maybe THAT is the problem.”

2015-06-19 11:21

john l. – “//Plenty of evidence…//

But none presented.

2000 years is how long it’s been searched for, alas none yet found. It seems there’s much you’re ‘Not Sure Of.’

Admission of ignorance is the first step in learning.
Good luck.”

I admit my ignorance of why 2000 years is in any practical way significant to what you call searching.

Searching (at least as I know it) has never NOT been. It’s counterpart is Finding.

As for evidence. Just reach for it.

2015-06-19 13:50

john l. – “Everything is NOT about you brmckay.
Evidence is unlikely to be ‘there’ despite claims from ‘day one’. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, yet not a morsel, not a crumb has yet to be found despite untiring efforts of thousands, millions?

Religions are said by many to be god-explanations to natural phenonomen. As we understand more and more the magical mythical gods recede further and further into the mist of time and ignorance.. The day is approaching when he/it/they fade completely in the light of discovery and understanding.

Perhaps THATS when your education begins.”

Since we are both obviously talking past each other. Rehearsing our separate tunes. I’ll break it up a bit.

What changes if we know how this or that works? The bits and pieces out of infinite possibility?

REALITY remains unchanged no matter how far our knowledge expands.

You want proof of some god or other, but why? What would it change?

The infinitude of ALL that IS does not approach or recede. Grow larger or smaller.

You want people to abandon their gods then abandon yours. This no-god God worshiped by the aloof, unimaginative, or over-trained.

It no more represents the TIMELESS ENTIRETY than a few hundred years of mathematical speculations or tens of thousands of years of shaman’s dreams.

Don’t call IT God if it’s against your religion, but only a fool would claim that IT is NOT.

2015-06-19 14:52

john l. – “It’s apparent few if any would object to other’s personal beliefs if kept personal and not imposed on others to the point where it impacts negatively on their freedom of choice and liberties. But when various forms of coercion from immersing defenseless children in cultish theologies through to the point of military and violent force, matters of human slavery, torture, war, and issues of life and death, it becomes a social issue to be dealt with.

Continuous and ongoing scientific investigation has brought you every tangible thing in human history Religion has fought it tooth and nail every step,of the way, determined to keep humanity in the dark of ignorance and retardation of witches, spirits and ghosts.

Your last post is the routine christian response when they run out their other childish arguments, to ‘You Do Too!’.

What can possibly be nuttier than accusing atheists of god disbelief to be their god?
This conversation has hit the bottom of the barrel. If this is your comedy gig, save yourself further embarrassment. Don’t give up your day job.”

I agree with you, but dealing with it, first requires accurate understanding of the problem.

The shotgun approach of attacking all religious expression as foolish, simply IS foolish.

There will be religion. There will be religious culture. There will be parents teaching that culture to their children.

The world, even in these times, has religions or subsets of religions, that are not cultish, or militaristic. They often are centered around the universal theme I tried to express in my last comment. The essence of Monism (a step beyond monotheism).

The Abrahamic traditions on the other hand, are prone to causing problems because of the latent dualistic emphasis. There is a “storyline”. God has a will (specifically, a will that mirrors our own).

The more science informs religion the better. But if science pits itself against the religious instincts of humans, We all just stay stupid.

Science can and will venture into the realms already explored by the Vedic Rishis, Yogis, Zen Masters, artists, savants, and generations of Shamans.

This in turn, will improve science, but only if there is an accompanying sense of humility to moderate our interpretation of what we learn.

2015-06-19 16:43

john l. – “The ‘problem’ WAS explained in some detail. Reading comprehension is your next assignment.

Few ‘attack’ all religious expression. I expressively emphasized ‘Live and let live’.

You really need to read before yapping. Determined, insistent ignorance is never excusable.

We’re clearly finished.”

Kevin Osborne responding to john l. – “//Determined, insistent ignorance is never excusable.//

But it is understandable. One has become stuck in place in a motion universe that one is dimly aware of, so latches on to some solution allowing one to continue movement. The solution, being incomplete, fails, yet has become a part of one’s identity and is cherished as such.. So the solution and the identity are held onto and not looked over or that failure would become apparent. Taking another’s viewpoint is impossilble and attempts at reasoned discussion become an onslaught defending a postiion lost long ago.
The double attack of the motion universe and one’s (determined…,etc.) is a death sentence to logic, to understanding, to personal freedom. Fortunately any who are stuck can be freed up if willing.”

[responding to john l.

“Few “attack”all religious expression. I expressively emphasized ‘Live and let live’.”

You can believe the above about yourself and your fellow atheists (at least the anti-theists). But it is not very true. (This fellow, Sincere Kirabo being a pleasant exception.)

” ‘Blanket disrespect’ is the very best religion deserves.”

“Patience for the outragious LIES?
It’s just making lame excuses for being so INcredibly (as in NO-credibllity) brain dead from an early age, no curiosity, no rationality, no skepticism, nothing-just swallow fantasy and such blatantly obvious, in your face falsehoods and outright LIES. “

You in no way, EMPHASIZE “live and let live”. Sorry, but maintaining an attitude of utter scorn that you will keep to yourself, if those morons will do likewise, is not emphasizing “live and let live”.

That would actually imply “patience”. The subject of this blog post.

You baited me back into the conversation after I first withdrew.

(Your downplaying of the trauma of incest, relative to the ravages of Religion on children’s lives, had left me speechless.)

“You really need to read before yapping. Determined, insistent ignorance is never excusable.”

I don’t know man, it’s really hard to read this stuff differently than I have. I think you back peddled a little a bit, but the cat was out of the bag.


Alms and Patronage

Posted in logs

The Winding Path – 151

For the context of the following comments and to reply, please click on the DATE/TIME  above them.

2015-06-12 15:18

[From The Patheos Blog – Notes Toward a New Chimera – “Mental Illness and the Belief in a Soul with Free Will” – by Steve Neumann.]

Steve Neumann – “Fortunately, the combination of talk therapy and mindfulness meditation eventually brought me out of my depression several months later.”

This seems to have worked, right? But, where in this statement, is there NOT the intention to get better. i.e. Will.

As with the [previous] Biblical literalism and general fundamentalist belief system that you described, your conceptualization of “Will” was inadequate.

Childish even.

Much like the half baked summation of reality, as espoused by The Center for Naturalism.

Replacing the Bible with Science has changed nothing, if you don’t get, that the Singularity of Nature, IS God.

Infinitude, the FIRST CAUSE. and Awareness, the FIRST EFFECT. i.e. Self. The same self that animates you and me.

“I and the Father are One.” as are you.

2015-06-14 09:56

kraut2 quoting from the above and commenting – “//that the Singularity of Nature, IS God.// Another one for Chopra. Meaningless drivel^2″

If your mind can’t go there, or doesn’t find it useful, why not just say that?

The “Meaningless drivel” part is something extra.

A well rehearsed secondary layer of limitation to reinforce the first.

2015-06-16 12:03

[From the Patheos blog – Notes From An Apostate – “Why This Atheist is Patient with the Religious – Part 2″ – by Sincere Kriabo.]

Religion informed by science is better religion. Science informed by better religion would be something different as well.

Raising the bar, we set the stage for a self improving holistic system, yielding Truth as well as facts.

Or so it seems to me.

2015-06-16 13:40

[Responding to basenjibrian who was responding to a comment by Geof, God of Biscuits.]

Religion can be thought of as a formalized structure contrived towards organizing, as well as elevating, certain innate impulses.

Much like the rules of baseball.

Geoff, God of Biscuits does seem a bit unhinged by antipathy.

Eager to burn the barn down because the roof leaks.

Thank you for staying clear and to the point.

2015-06-16 15:34

Bill Streifer – “‘Pure’ Atheists don’t believe that God exists. Period. “

But, this IS a belief, an absolute assertion, equivalent to any utterance by a hard core Bible thumper.

I’m assuming that you (as a pure atheist) specifically believe that God does not exist, rather than, just don’t think in terms of God.

You have had to suspend the full process of reasoning to hold this view. And your strident activism means you will likely use force of will, rather than reason, to “win” arguments.

2015-06-16 16:42

Bill Streifer – “You had me until ‘You have had to suspend the full process of reasoning to hold this view.'”

Key phrase: “…full process of reasoning…”

Bill Streifer – “My view, in fact, is the culmination of all sorts of processes: logical, evidentiary, and the disbelief in the contrary view (which is absurd to the extreme and void of any physical evidence what-so-ever).”

“culmination” i.e. The enquiry is finished? The result is known?

What is this absurd “contrary view” that is presupposed to such an extent that it is not worth considering?

Is there a single view that is absurd, or a multitude. Have all possibilities been investigated?

Actually, what is this “God” that you don’t believe exists? (Who’s idea of it are you not believing in?)

As for “physical evidence”, I would think there would be no shortage of that. If the process of reasoning had actually run to completion.

Logically, one has to consider just what “Existence” itself might be? What that missing law of physics might be?

2015-06-17 10:08

Bill Streifer – ” //’culmination’ i.e. The enquiry is finished? The result is known?//

Yes, the enquiry is finished in my mind, and the conclusion is known to me. So until someone, anyone shows me any physical evidence whatsoever, even the tiniest bit (and quoting the Bible isn’t evidence), my position will not change. I’ve waited over 50 years to date, and no one has brought me any physical evidence that God exists. … Do you have any? I’m waiting.”

The rest of my comment was intended to lead you beyond this predictable posturing around the “show me the slightest evidence of God” cliche.

But I’ll go ahead and throw something out:

Evidence of God….Your opposable thumbs.

Evidence of God….You quoting me Darwin’s Theory of Evolution.

Evidence of God…Darwins Theory of Evolution and Darwin’s opposable thumbs.

Evidence of God…The Realization that a Theory is not the thing itself.

(may be getting ahead things on that last one.)

Point being…

There is always a more integrated and holistic understanding waiting. Human beings and the evolution leading to us and beyond us, represents a continuum of enquiry that is not FINISHED.

It is about Self Discovery. The Self being discovered is the inherent Nature behind and throughout the Universe.

You will most likely at this point tell me that this is unproven bullshit. And that evolution is random (because the Theory says so), and that there is no meaning to any of it beyond the mechanics of survival.

I’m hoping that you come up with something different than that.

2015-06-16 15:52

Veronica Hamel responding to Sincere – “Clearly you do not know how to determine what is true, and what is not true. There is only one method to do this. It is called the Scientific Method.”

Sort of like, “If it ain’t in the Bible, it ain’t true”?

2015-06-17 11:13

Veronica Hamel – “So does this mean that you know of another method to determine what is true? If you do, there are thousands of scientist that would love to know what it is. Also, If you can demonstrate such a new method i know you would win a Nobel Prize. Please tell us what the method is, or is that a secret that only you know?”

Just providing some perspective.

Scientists and Bible-ists alike are fleeting ephemera, but that which is True, is simply so.

2015-06-17 12:11

Veronica Hamel – “Well, you have revealed yourself with that last comment. Things that are true may be true inherently and true weather or not anyone realizes it, but the truth of it still needs to be discovered by mankind,and that is where the Scientific Method comes into play.”

Not sure what it may be that I’ve revealed” (perhaps you just said that for dramatic effect).

Since you have basically recognized the reasonableness of my statement, I’m content.

Though I’m pretty sure that artists and Zen masters would quibble with the “proprietary” attitude per your method of choice.

2015-06-17 13:47

[This is a response to the comments of john l. to the blog posted by Sincere Kirabo. The conversation with john l. will be treated separately in The Winding Path – 152. Here it has prompted a separate exchange with Veronica Hamel.]

brmckay responding to john l. – “It seems to me that what you are describing is a degraded form of something else.

Do you have the same scorn for say Hopi or Navajo religious tradition being passed on from one generation to the next?”

Veronica Hamel – “So you deem tradition to be a ‘good thing’? Or doesn’t it matter to you if fallacies, erroneous and detrimental beliefs are passed along to your children? You are just wrong on this one.”

I used the term “degraded” to indicate my take on the situation.

And, would never universally declare “tradition” either good or bad. Are you sure that is what you are suggesting?

From other things that you have written, I think that you may actually be declaring the underlying myths that shape a culture to be, by default, “fallacies, erroneous and detrimental”.

I can’t encourage you there and am not “wrong on this one”.

If, through education and example, we improve people’s (including the children’s) comprehension of both the nature and value of myth. as well as an appreciation of reason and logic, the danger of corrupting fundamentalism is averted.

The above remedy gets subverted however, by a fanatic application of yet another fundamentalist orthodoxy.


Alms and Patronage

Posted in logs

The Winding Path – 150

For the context of the following comments and to reply, please click on the DATE/TIME above them.

2015-06-09 13:56

(Responding to a Blog Post by Caroline Fairless on Rational Doubt.)

A Divine Agency of the Christian sort, is not likely the best fit, but then the Sacredness of the Universe doesn’t require it.

It still qualifies as God.

The Deep Ecology of absolute interdependence is the kinetic surface of Divine Singularity.


Humans present as a special case in nature because of our amplified sense of abstracted self. The confusion of identity with our body’s mind-made ego.

We are only “special” if the dance runs to completion, in enlightened Self awareness.

i.e. the prodigal son returns.

God has seen itself from our eyes, and lived to know about it.

Can not help but to do so.

2015-06-09 14:16

UnumOmnia – “I assume you equate sacredness to value. If so, then what is the value in the finites ? The Sun (after devouring the planets) and the moons will disappear and All will be forgotten eventually. When that happens, no one cares what Einstein did because there wouldn’t be anyone around to care. Would you still see sacredness in leprosy (disease/sickness), disparity (rich get richer and poor get shafted, big fish eat little fish), cruelty (catastrophes/violence), etc. ? It’s easy to see sacredness when one is not poor, sick, raped, illiterate, handicapped, just to name a few, not to mention being a mosquito, skunk, or being an undesirable part (a**hole).”

Sacredness is in the absolute interconnectedness. The non difference of the parts from the whole.

It is our eyes which see the leper and a peacock.

Identification with grandeur or degradation is optional. Though, being deep asleep we must first wake up.

2015-06-09 14:28

drakvl responding to Caroline Fairless – “What you call the sacredness of creation is probably the same as what I call the beauty of nature: a vast, intricate tapestry formed from the interaction of matter according to consistent principles of physics, into which we are thorougly woven.”

Open your mind to the unifying Infinitude from which nature expresses, and you arrive at God.

No contradictions remain to feed the truncated version, unless you choose.

2015-06-10 09:37

drakvl- “Most people define God to be something with a will and an ability to act on that will; whether or not //the unifying Infinitude from which nature expresses// is describable as such will determine whether it is consistent with how most people conceive of God.”

After a certain age most people imagine their own “will” as something that they own. Something local to their personal sense of “self”.

But, getting them to show you why, what or where that sense of “self” is, that is is another story.

Can you see the assumptions?

By this, we get more tightly woven into the fabric than is necessary.

Even those with strong “belief” in God succumb to this, to the degree that God remains as Other.

2015-06-11 09:28

drakvl – “All true, but my point was that if someone defines God in such a way that God either doesn’t have a will or can’t act on that will, the person might as well just worship a mountain.”

Only if the understanding extends no further than the end of a nose.

I didn’t say God has no will, or does not act on it. But rather, that the center of that dynamic is not elsewhere, but HERE.

This opens the door (as has always been known) to intention, aligning and harmonizing. The process of tuning up.

Putting the Ego in it’s place because we know better.

The higher practices of Religion, Art, and Philosophy.

Does this include Science? You tell me.

2015-06-11 15:44

drakvl – “And you have yet to show that this notion of God describes a being which has a will and the ability to act on it.”

Fair enough. I am probably trying to telegraph the epiphany.

How important is it to you, that God decided to create a universe and then did so?

I mean, you have already excluded the concept from consideration right?

Why limit this conversation with me, to me proving something like that? I don’t even believe it.

Seems an unnecessarily primitive conception.

Whatever “will” is though, it emerges with the sense of self awareness. The “I Am”.

My premiss is that the first instance of this Awareness arises from the primordial infinitude of undivided potentiality.

I’ll suggest that primordial Will is the urge to discover and explore the ramifications of Awareness.

The echos of that awareness, and it’s animating force,”Will”, cascade throughout creation as Us.

Always seamlessly integrated with the Whole. Even in the delusion of “separateness”.

The above sketch is the best I can do at this time. Especially without knowing what resonates and what falls flat.

As for the “practical implications” of this, to you or me, I can only say that my nature, is of the contemplative sort, and therefor quite involved in…

” … aligning and harmonizing. … tuning up. Putting the Ego in it’s place…

Because of the seamless connection experienced as the sentient Here and Now, there is learning, refinement and evolution. i.e. Purpose.

2015-06-12 10:18

[note: drakvl parses out quotes from the previous comment. I’ve added the names to make it easier to track.]

brmckay – “How important is it to you, that God decided to create a universe and then did so?”

drakvl – “Not all that important. In ancient Greek belief, the gods that were actually worshipped were one or two generations removed from the beings responsible for the act of creation.”

brmckay – “Whatever ‘will’ is though, it emerges with the sense of self awareness. The ‘I Am’.”

drakvl – “I’m perfectly happy accepting the notion of God-within-us as a rather poetic expression of whatever it is that makes humans special among all the animals.”

brmckay – “Always seamlessly integrated with the Whole. Even in the delusion of ‘separateness’.”

drakvl – “And you’re losing me here.

Also: what I meant by ‘practical implications’ is that I don’t see any big difference between how ‘god-within-us’ suggests we act and how humanism suggests we act.”


And you’re losing me here.”

That’s fine. There is no need to take it further.

You may run into other sources or turn a corner in your own speculation at some point. Or not.

Also: what I meant by ‘practical implications’ is that I don’t see any big difference between how ‘god-within-us’ suggests we act and how humanism suggests we act.

I’ll just say that it is we who set the limits and the pace.

2015-06-09 15:25

(Responding to Chris Highland’s response to the post by Caroline Fairless)

Your problem with the idea of ‘Creation’ is of your own making. An artefact possibly, of not respecting “the kind” of people who use the word regularly.

The spontaneous emergence of Existence from Infinitude qualifies as “Creation”.

Even though the nature of the agent is indistinguishable from the nature of it’s manifestation. The nature of the manifestation, indistinguishable from the nature of it’s agent.

How could it be otherwise? I would think that by rights, this should be called God. Giving credit where credit is due.

You may differ. And, requiring God to be somehow “supernatural” will of course be problematic. You might want to take a look at that.

I’m pretty sure that the term “Spirituality” still has plenty of play left in it, if only to distinguish, between the conscious and the unconsciousness aspects of relating to the above mentioned Singularity (aka God).

It may not apply to you of course, but that is neither here nor there.

2015-06-10 10:57

Elizabeth – “. Although I wouldn’t use the term ‘being,’…”

To exist is to “Be”… the habit of separating “beings” out from “Being” is the Viewpoint Universe. At least it seems to me.

2015-06-10- 11:18

mason – “Humans may choose to hold nature/creation as sacred but nature does not and will not return the favour. Every living thing is expendable and eatable :)

Actually it just did “return the favour”.

Whether you realize it or not, humans are a natural phenomena.

Their abstracted sense of “self” reflects on it’s existence. The sense of “sacredness” arises. This is not separable from nature.

If an individual human transcends the “abstracted” sense of self, the sense of “sacredness” would not be apparent since the underlying suchness and sentience would be be all pervasive.

Bur really, how is that different?

2015-06-10 12:10

mason – ” …but I still find that such rhetoric is superfluous poppycock.”

You must realize that you are simply describing an attitude not a Truth. Right?

If the “attitudes” of others, that you so carefully list, were “overstated bullshit”, then surely yours would qualify in spades.

I disagree that there is any benevolent, caring, or sacred nature in the Universe. It is a childish wish IMHO.

You keep placing humans outside of the Universe. Claiming zero presence or effect. That is just not correct.

The Universe made us. So there it is. Benevolence and caring. A sense of sacredness.

There is of course also, self pity and victimization, nihilism and despair.

The question is, which of these dogs do you feed?

2015-06-13 10:10

Caroline Fairless – “It is not my desire to take the word “God” away from anyone. I’m simply no longer sure why we need it.”

It is good word. All the variations like Eskimo words for snow.

Not everybody reads widely. Some can’t read at all.

2015-06-14 13:28

Elizabeth – “Re: the sacred: Ned wrote, ‘You are describing experiences of wonderful natural phenomena'; and you responded: ‘Actually she is describing an intimate relationship with, and a sharpened comprehension of, the moment.’

I agree with Ned, brmckay, that is a helpful and fruitful comment; thank you for the food for thought!”

Ok. But, are you saying that the word “sacred”, or my elaboration upon it’s meaning, presupposes something “supernatural”? (which is the point he was making)

How about words like meditation, transcendence, communion, as well as divine?

Or, even your reference to “a continuum of One”?

2015-06-15 09:

Elizabeth – “I’m puzzling about this, brmckay… in a way, I think maybe I want to use just plain ‘tree,’ ‘witness the birth of a newborn,’ etc, and just have it understood that whatever one thinks of as ‘god’ is involved. Otherwise, it seems impossible to avoid seeming to separate out some discrete entity. But because of our Western mindset, we don’t seem to apprehend the numinous unless someone explicitly calls attention to it — which is one reason I appreciated your lifting up the distinction of Caroline’s perception of the moment.

Words, words! ‘Meditation’ should not throw anyone off track, I would think — but ‘transcendence,’ ‘communion,’ ‘spirit,’ ‘creation,’ etc., seem to inevitably bring along that ‘baggage’ that Chris writes about.

Thank you for keeping at the challenge!!”

Sometimes words serve most in their ability to generalize.

On personal, community and professional levels we get down to nuance and detail, but across the various cultural divides, we keep it broad and vague.


Alms and Patronage

Posted in logs

The Winding Path – 149

For the context of the following comments and to reply, please click on the DATE/TIME  above them.

2015-06-08 12:15

Jesus Bones – “The concept of Supreme Being is like that of the greatest possible integer, there is always one greater.”

Actually a reasonable definition of “Supreme Being” would indicate the infinitude of Singularity. Not the pseudo infinitude of an infinite set.

Maybe you can help me here. I suspect that there is a different term indicating “infinitude” as both potentiality and as all inclusive aggregate.

Or, did I get it right with “Singularity”?

2015-06-09 11:12

Jesus Bones – “If by the assertion that, ‘infinitude of singularity’ you are saying ‘Supreme Being’ is a ‘Distinct Infinity’ perhaps, but the problem it seems, is a singularity is undefinable. I must ask what do you mean by ‘pseudo infinitude’? Do mean some kind quasi infinity such as an Infinite loop or some type of Strang loop?

Do not know what you have in mind with this idea ::Maybe you can help me here. I suspect that there is a different term indicating ‘infinitude’ as both potentiality and as all inclusive aggregate::

The Singularity idea is interesting

Thanks for your thoughts”

Jesus Bones – “To me the word ‘God’ is worthless, having so many meanings to so many people!? The concept of Supreme Being is like that of the greatest possible integer, there is always one greater.”

The so many meanings of God thing, is inevitable. A limitation of our vantage point.

Illustrated by your own comparison to the next bigger integer.

That type of infinity which allows something outside of it’s “set”, is not a reasonable approximation of the nature of a “Supreme Being”. So a step deeper into the nature of Infinitude is suggested.

This being the primordial cause as well as the summation of all effect.

The term “Singularity” seems to be useful up to a point. But like you say, it may be undefinable. (at least if the above does not qualify)

More the realm of intuition and direct awareness.

I am most interested in how Scientists and Mathematicians handle this. (Though my being neither, it will have to be dumbed down some, I suppose.)


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The Winding Path – 148

For the context of the following comments and to reply, please click on the DATE/TIME  above them.

2015-05-30 10:04

John Lombard – “And if there were thousands of books written saying that gravity didn’t exist, that wouldn’t do ANYTHING to negate the reality of gravity, either.”

I don’t understand this statement.

A thousand books saying that gravity doesn’t exist don’t exist. Unless there are some written by disembodied beings living in deep space; and even then there would be an inaccuracy latent in their contention.

The real question, is where did they get the idea of “Gravity” in the first place?

Kevin Osborne – “This universe is constructed of all of the viewpoints of existence of all of it’s members.”

Jim Mulholland – “No. Absolutely not. Our universe exists
entirely independently of our ‘viewpoint’ of it, and the realities of our universe don’t change just because people perceive it differently.”

The crux of the communication problem here is in the question: Which comes first “viewpoint” or “gravity”. (or even better, are they absolutely INTERdependent?)

From that vantage point, there would need to be a more accurate way of thinking about “viewpoint” in relationship to phenomena; Such as Gravity/Time/Speed/Mass/Thought/Belief/Change.

The shift in conceptualization is not really that difficult or unreasonable.

It helps to get rid of the idea of personal ownership of the “viewpoint”. Similar to the way we currently do not think in terms of “your” or “my” gravitational field. Gravity being a universally present force rather than a bunch of little and isolated gravities. The individual field does not exist independently of the universal force.

As a final point: It is of no use to try and relegate the subjective “viewpoint” phenomena to an “alternate reality” located somewhere outside of the Universe.

There is no way around it. The term “Universe” should only refer to the Entirety of phenomena and underlying forces.

The habit of chopping it up into parts and pieces is the nature of a “viewpoint”. In terms of the BIG PICTURE, the “scientific” refinement of this is as Real as any other variation. But no-more-and-no-less.

2015-06-01 13:48

John Lombard – “But the next part you wrote really baffles me. To quote: “The crux of the communication problem here is in the question: Which comes first ‘viewpoint’ or ‘gravity’. Ummm…gravity. Always, always gravity. One’s viewpoint doesn’t somehow affect gravity, such an argument is so fundamentally ridiculous that I have no idea where it came from. “

I did say it was the “crux of the communiction problem”.

The full statement would probably help make this exercise easier to grasp.

brmckay – “The crux of the communication problem here is in the question: Which comes first ‘viewpoint’ or ‘gravity’. (or even better, are they absolutely INTERdependent?)”

The interdependence angle, (much like speed, mass, time etc.) is based on the fewest assumptions.

It’s related to a later statement:

brmckay – “As a final point: It is of no use to try and relegate the subjective ‘viewpoint’ phenomena to an ‘alternate reality’ located somewhere outside of the Universe.”

Not sure where I might of said anything like, “…science can provide all of the answers”.

There is no such thing as “all the answers” except as an infinitude. Which brings us back to my primary premise about Entirety as Singularity.

Science could bring us to an understanding of this, but of course, then it would be The Answer (in counterpoint to “all the answers”). And, as an added bonus, clarify the Universality of Viewpoint.

Hint: I have said it before. The proof that you seek is in your own Being i.e. Existence and Awareness. i.e. Viewpoint.

But, the dissecting of a Frog, does not tell us what a Frog is.

2015-06-02 11:58

John Lombard – “Second, I see no point in any further discussion, as you use patently dishonest methods of discussion.”

You NEED to get a more honest definition of honest!

“I asked you to demonstrate how viewpoint can affect gravity — you have not done so.”

That is not pertinent to the point I was making. A complete red-herring. I addressed your misconception by reiterating the original statements.

Returning the conversation to the “crux of the communication problem”.

I proposed an experimental shift in your “viewpoint” , echoing a similar proposal made by Kevin Osborne.

Made a reasonable case for it, content that I had tried my best.


For some reason this was interpreted as “making unsubstantiated claims”. And now you want me to PROVE to you something that was not even being discussed.

As for viewpoint affecting gravity. Well, try jumping up and down for a few minutes (you can flap your arms if you like).

Gravity has been modified. Not the universal force of gravity. That is a constant. But the relative instance, (the local field) has been modified by interaction with your viewpoint.

That local instance of a “viewpoint” has also been modified as well. Due to it’s interaction with gravity.


Granting a “universal force” aspect to gravity and not to “viewpoint” is unwarranted.

This then requires a shift of paradigm, (if only for the sake of understanding my meaning).

You accept, and imagine that you understand, relativity in regards to speed/mass/time/gravity etc.

That is what I mean by absolute INTERdependence. They are not really separate phenomena.

That they seem so sometimes, in certain ways, is a matter of “viewpoint”.


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The Winding Path – 147

For the context of the following comments and to reply, please click on the DATE/TIME  above them.

[The following are miscellaneous loose ends of commentary.  A little house cleaning. ]

2015-06-03 13:29

gimpi1 responding to Kevin Osborne – “I’m not aware of harboring any negative feelings about my own culpability, but they could be there, under the radar.”

Here’s one.

“I frankly stink at it (forgiving), and I don’t like that aspect of myself much.”

This issue of self forgiveness was a transformative event for me. Nothing has been the same since.

Don’t remember details other than a general sense of failure and inadequacy.

Then it dawned on me that a tree I was looking at, was exactly as it was. Created out of an incomprehensible perfection. Existing in that moment. Could be no other way. It’s nature expressing as that particular tree.

The same applied to me. The tree did not own itself. And neither did I.

2015-05-20 16:00

Elizabeth – “I have wondered whether we really can affect one another “non-locally.” Maybe it could be like some Buddhists do (if I remember correctly) — you hold someone in your good intention.”

Spooky action at a distance?


Someone you are looking at across a room or street, looks up and meets your gaze.

There are no Real boundaries, so we fabricate them.

2015-06-05 15:00

I’d say synchronicity is the baseline of normal. Nothing being insignificant or unrelated to anything else.

So it is hard to overstate it’s occurrence. However, awareness and interpretation is another thing all together.

Our habits, attachments, and expectations will most likely write the narrative.


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The Winding Path – 146

For the context of the following comments and to reply, please click on the DATE/TIME  above them.

2015-04-27 15:45

AFBooks responding to Interested Party – “Buddhism is man-centered while biblical faith is God-centered. Buddhism is atheistic, biblical faith is theistic. Notice I do not point to any tradition. Traditions do not have authority over biblical faith. Buddhism does not believe in the biblical view of sin. Buddhism does not have God-centered redemption. Buddhism does not have any semblance to biblical eschatology. Show me the ‘overlap,’ then, to use your word in each theology. You won’t find it. Do not point to a tradition but to biblical faith.”

“I and the Father are One.”
“Judge not lest you be judged.”
“Love God with all you heart, mind and soul and your neighbour as your self.”

This is Dharma.

The individual blinded by ego, entangled in the web of karmic inertia is the essence of samsara. (read as fallen from grace)

The atheism of Buddhism simply acknowledges that the Entirety of God leaves no room for other. (read there is only God. So full it is empty. Shunyata. i.e. The existence of God is moot in the best possible way.)

2015-04-28 11:45

AFBooks  responding to Robert Eckert – “These were not biblical practices, so they have no relevance to biblical faith.”

Who died and made “biblical faith” God?

2015-04-28 13:32

AFBooks – “Only the biblical faith is unique from all the rest in that it makes the distinction between the Creator and creation and that God is totally distinct and separate from His creation. “

Except that Jesus shows (by his incarnation) that this is not True.

The Buddha by his awakening, shows us that this is not True.

The god that you describe would be one among others.

If creation can exist outside of a god, then that god casts a shadow. Is that the “evil” that you refer to?

Just what is your investment in this tangle of proprietary nonsense?

2015-04-28 14:37

AFBooks – “You have not read the Bible yet. When you do, then come back and we can have a reasonable discussion rather than you spewing out all kinds of nonsense.”

It should be obvious (but in your case is not) that going directly to the Source would be indicated. Rather than secondary sources.

Muzi Cindi – “You seem adamant to make yourself right and others wrong!”

AKBooks – “Again, that is your judgment and personal assault on the messenger without addressing what is said and is not one [sic] on the merits.”

No, actually Muzi Cindi was expressing a reasonable impression of your character. This based on conduct and attitude abundantly illustrated in this “discussion”.

Not assaulting THE self proclaimed “messenger”.

AKBooks – “yawn”

Thank you for the confirmation then. And I’ll leave you to your studies. (or the tending of your camels as it were.)


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The Winding Path – 145

For the context of the following comments and to reply, please click on the DATE/TIME  above them.

2015-05-22 16:49

“Supernatural” is another term that needs defining.

” of a manifestation or event, attributed to some force beyond scientific understanding or the laws of nature.”

Does this mean something that is beyond current scientific understanding, or does it mean something that can never be understood scientifically? i.e. not of nature?

What does this mean, “not of nature”? It’s not possible. If something exists, causes to exist, or potentially exists, it is of nature. If it arises in our imagination, it is of nature.

Basically the term “supernatural” is a fuzzy term and most people seem satisfied with the ambiguity. When they aren’t, there is always the certainty of science. Something that is also of nature.

The foundation of nature though, being infinitude, means that the certainty of science isn’t all that certain.

It’s all quite ambiguous really.

2015-05-23 10:33

carolyntclark responding to ObscurelyAgnostic – “and as we know, the need to make a living is a huge factor in many,many of the unbelieving clergy crossing their fingers in the pulpit. Keeping food on the table and caring for family is no small necessity.”

Cultivating “right Livelihood” is also “no small necessity”, but the options in our current culture can be slim.

What color hat do you want white, black, blue, yellow or red?

The inertial forces of 40 hour weeks and 30 year mortgages breed habits of compromise.

But shamans and priests, now selling used cars?!

2015-05-25 15:35

carolyntclark responding to Linda_LaScola – “here, here, Linda !!The entanglements of religion are vast and we need all possible approaches .”

Here is a take on entanglements.


No sign of religion anywhere.

2015-05-29 15:01

Kevin Osborne – “Perhaps one God of creation and the rest of us cooperative gods with our understanding determining our perspective.”

Sometimes the obvious is the hardest sell of all.

Such an odd business?

Neither fear of, nor disdain for, long voyages gets the job done. And, falling over the edge remains a possibility.

2015-06-01 10:14

Nimblewill responding to  ObscurelyAgnostic – “My two cents worth………Not that you asked for it. All other teachers taught a dualism which Jesus does away with.”

Hmmm…my experience of the Monist teachings found ….. well just about everywhere; Helped me see past the dualistic legacy of the Abrahamic tradition and understand that Jesus was teaching it too.

Point being that getting un-confused about our essential non-difference from the All, is the Way. (Tao, Zen mind, Buddha nature, Brahman, Christ, Singularity … )

The return home at the end of a busy day.

2015-06-01 11:16

(Responding to louismoreaugottschalk who had been involved in a patently transparent back-and-forth.)

He’s just reacting to the reflexive, proprietary, put-their-paradigm-in-it’s place rhetoric. Many of us have had to absorb this from “Christians”.

Some are still picking at the scabs while the banter descends to mere comparison of “Tats”.

2015-06-01 11:34

Denis E. – “Mr. Corey hopes to save the Christian church in America. A stellar goal but, in my mind, not worth the effort.”

Jesus is his Guru. The church, his Sangha.

The effort is worth it, because those Christians are closer to the kind we can commune with.

We are all in a position now to teach to a more coherent Truth.

If instead, we perpetuate the someone-wins-and-some-one-looses game. The moment gets lost again and again.

louismoreaugottschalk – “geezuz brian [sic], bingo! i’ve been going over this same territory w my metal detector for eons but you went right to the place! feels so good when sombody finally articulates what i’ve been trying for! I notice the athiests must have their class of gatekeepers.

2015-06-02 09:49

Yonatan – “This is where we disagree. One follows each breath. That is all. No guru and no sangha. Everything else is a quagmire of uncertainty that drags us into its flailing arms as if to save a drowning child. We are dragged through the muck again and again and like a seesaw there are victories and defeats but the former are Pyrrhic at best.”

What warrants ignoring Guru and Sangha? Especially if it’s all still a quagmire.

From where did YOU learn about the breath?

Those that have gone before can not help but to help. And the successful sincerity of those who walk along with us, can only clear our own eyes.

There is a process, (much friendlier than we think) and nothing that is not tailored to our needs.

Victories and defeats are the ebb and flow of the journey. Born in perfection. Where’s the problem? Where’s our heart?

Pyrrhic? Seems more like a habit of expectations.

2015-06-03 08:50

Yonatan – “Instinct. One slap and I was breathing. Or rather one slap and I found myself breathing — the start of this existence.There being no guru and no sangha is about non attachment to externals such as a teacher or a congregation. Where do you find the teacher and where do you find the student?This successful, so called, sincerity is a generalization. Perchance one finds friendship where each helps to awaken the other. There is no buddha no dharma, no sangha, only this.But the journey is not about saving this sangha or this church. If so one is bound by the habit of expectations.”

Still reeks of the party line, but I do like your drift.

Yonatan – “And no party line. . .:)”

[Question for the reader: Are we just comparing “Tats”?]


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The Winding Path – 144

For the context of the following comments and to reply, please click on the DATE/TIME  above them.

2015-05-15 16:45

Kip responding to Kevin Osborne – “Kevin, you said that the scientific theory of evolution by natural selection is a ‘story’ that is ‘no more real than Hansel and Gretel’. That’s indefensible ignorance in anyone’s language. If, as you admit, you haven’t thought about it, and ‘it just isn’t important’ to you, why did you bother dismissing it as a fairy tale?

You’ve just illustrated how damaging faith is to a presumably normal brain. It’s instilled in you an illogical commitment to belief contrary to evidence and reason. But much worse, it’s given you permission to dismiss facts you find inconvenient. You are, seemingly, living proof that religion poisons everything.”

It was you that did not follow his point, but stuck stubbornly to the familiar structure of orthodox habit.

First, There is only Now. All that has passed has happened in this same moment.

All that will happen, happens only Now. There is no dimensionality to Now.

With this in mind, what makes any nuance of thought, event, phenomena or pattern of change more Real than another?

You are talking about an attachment of value based on what you are aware of. From your preferred frame of reference.

Ignoring the Bigger Picture, does not mean it has gone away. And advocating for the contemplation and realization of it does not “poison everything”. Though you imagine it to be so.

2015-05-16 08:07

Kip – “You’re right. Looking back, somewhere, somehow, this exchange morphed from me defending the scientific method to Kevin’s philosophy of time rant. Which, I readily admit, is not something I’ve contemplated or understand fully. Whatever the case, any philosophy that allows the philosopher to compare Darwin’s tome to a fairy tale should expect rebuke, methinks. Now and in the future ‘now’.

No, advocating for the contemplation and realisation of a philosophy does not ‘poison everything’. But religion, as we know it now, does poison everything. Look around you, the evidence is now overwhelming.”

Notice how using the phrase “realization of a philosophy” serves to neuter the meaning of my phrase “and realization of it (The Big Picture)”?

Is this intended or unconscious?

What do you mean by “religion as we know it now”?

The stuff that gets in the news? Or, the quiet inner workings of spiritual awakening in the lives of billions of people?

2015-05-17 08:56

[His lengthy response to the above, gives a good idea of where he is coming from.]

What is the responsibility of this demon “religion” in the existence of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons arsenals?

Gun fetishism, environmental indifference, corporate greed and aristocratic entitlement?

You are mixing your inputs and applying a personal antipathy to your assessment. It is no different that blaming Jews, liberals, blacks, gays, women, etc. for all problems.

Sorry to have to say so. But it reeks of hysteria.

2015-05-18 20:54

Kip – “Ignoring my valid concerns and questions doesn’t make them go away, Brother. And dismissing them as hysteria is a form of censorship that weakens your one-dimensional ‘quiet inner workings of spiritual awakening’ position. Remember, only bad ideas require censorship to survive.

Accusing me of blaming religion for ALL the world’s problems is utter nonsense. I’ll be the first to admit that mankind doesn’t need religion to soil itself or, indeed, destroy itself. But to use that fact to defend religion is disingenuous and/or lazy. Especially when the three great Semitic religions have OBVIOUSLY got so much to answer for in causing so much physical and psychological damage to entire populations over the centuries.

All I ask is that you put the warm and fuzzy elements of religion to the side for a moment. Now focus on the obvious negatives and ask yourself if these disparate and divisive Bronze Age mythologies and cosmic assumptions are, in the main, good for mankind. If nothing else, it’s a liberating exercise.

Peace Brother.”

There is religion and there is Religion.

Why not refine you terminology and maybe actually solve the crisis.

I don’t know what you were doing for those 30 years, but it is your own atonement needs tending not mine.

The Abrahamic line of religion is a drop in the bucket and within that stream there is a bundle of nonsense, but by no means the majority of it is foul.

You are confusing rudiments of human nature and historical forms.

The “warm and fuzzy” stuff is not your enemy.

Will you leave it to scientists and politicians?

2015-05-19 10:23

Kip – “I agree! The overwhelming majority is NOT foul. Which doesn’t make faith any less delusional or intellectually dishonest. “

I’m going to respond to this before wading into the rest of your comment. The above statement, likely being the foundation of all that follows, is therefor NOT a “digression”.

Have you got any actual experience or understanding of the full spectrum of religious thought and practice outside of the Judeo-Christian-Islamic bandwidth?

How much “belief” do you invest in your own authority to have such didactic opinion about “delusion” and “dishonesty”?

Can you show me something in your own life that qualifies as entirely free of “faith” and it’s close cousin “assumption”?

Our subjective life is nothing but abstraction and approximation. Why are you aggressively picking on religious thought? Especially such a generalized stereotype of it.

Anyway, I’ll resume reading now.

Ok… having done that…?

Could you please go find whoever it is you are talking to and run it past THEM.

In the mean time, consider that you may be off the skids and fixated in an emotional spin-out.

If you want to continue the discussion, you’ll have to figure out what it is I’m saying and address that. I can, given half a chance, show you a “reasonable” approach to the whole God thing. But it would require you to suspend this parroting of atheist rhetoric. Which frankly, you are botching anyway.

The root problem isn’t religion, but ethnocentric tribalism. Us and Them. “The Real People” and the outsiders.

Competition, nationalism, self-interest. Check with an anthropologist about this.

The solution of course is to dissolve the sense of OTHER. Check with a Zen Master about this.

Time to get real kid.

2015-05-20 09:52

[Long response to the above.  Makes his position as clear as it can get.]
 Kip – ” But, be my guest, my mind is always open; and maybe I haven’t experienced your approach before.”

Um….now I feel like the one who needs evidence.

As for proving that “a god” exists. You have yet to interpret my intention.

The whole point is that “a god existing”, implies the possibility of it’s not existing”.

These are the false gods of run-of-the-mill theists and atheists alike.

Try to step out of the DNA mandated dualism. It is not a true limitation of EXISTENCE.

Others have done so.

brmckay – “You have yet to interpret my intention.”

Kip – “Well it’s clearly not to engage in a two-way discussion. Or address my concerns about dangerous religious delusions. Or provide meaningful rebuttal to my criticism. Or answer my questions. Or tell the truth. Or exhibit basic manners. Or show me a “reasonable approach to the whole God thing” as you promised. So what, exactly, is your intention?You asked me a bunch of questions — I answered them. You said you could explain the whole god thing as long as I conformed to your conditions — I agreed.I asked you a bunch of questions — you ignored them.
What am I missing here?”

To the best of my ability I have been right there with you at every turn. It hasn’t necessarily been what you wanted but again, one has to play the hand they have.

I’ll reword a thing or two and see if it works. And if not, we should let it go.

I agree with your assessment of the “wrongness” manifesting as degraded forms of religion.

However, unlike you, I look at the root of that wrongness and see that it is not the religious impulse at fault.

But rather, the same aspect of our nature that underlies all other manifestations of “evil”; self serving, ego/ethno/religio/corporate centric ignorance.

Ignorance of what? Of our True nature. Which I don’t mind calling Divine. i.e. Not Separate from the Whole.

Entire. Rooted in, and in Truth, Infinite. Potentially as perfectly expressed as such.

Religion, philosophy, art, science. These forms are not exclusive of each other.

If I have not persuaded you by now, then feel free to consider yourself right and me the fool.


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The Winding Path – 143

For the context of the following comments and to reply, please click on the DATE/TIME  above them.

2015-05-13 12:27

wbthacker – “But atheism has already met that burden of proof by debunking every scientific claim purported to prove God exists. We know the universe wasn’t created in six days, which was the old ‘scientific’ theory, and that adding gods to cosmology creates more problems than it solves. We understand that human nature evolved, rather than being an image of God. We recognize randomness for what it is.”

What science has done is to develop a finer grain of detail to illustrate what was previously mostly intuitive and metaphorical understanding.

It is atheists (not scientists) that now interpret the intuitive and metaphorical versions as debunked.

Though the examples you present above represent a more modern and satisfying storyline, they do not actually debunk God.

Your ideas about God have not evolved along with your understanding of the mechanics of reality.

I don’t know who needs to prove what to whom. But as Kevin Osborne has been trying to say, codifying this silly list of attitudes about atheists, only serves to ramp up the “Us v.s. Them” mentality that it pretends to rise above.

Thus obscuring our inherent Freedom to actually Understand.

brmckay – “Though the examples you present above represent a more modern and satisfying storyline, they do not actually debunk God.”

wbthacker – “Correct; they only debunk the God that the creators of all modern faiths believed in. The god who created the Earth in six days, performs observable miracles, and once flooded the entire globe has been debunked.

What remains is a god who has been carefully defined to be unscientific, in response to centuries of such debunking. Being an unscientific claim, I don’t need any evidence at all to reject it, nor do I need to feign respect for it. You know this intuitively; it’s why you don’t respect Jehovah, Allah, Odin, and Zeus equally. I have as much respect for your belief in God as you have for someone’s belief in Santa Claus, and for exactly the same reason.”

Actually, I respect the effort. Knowing full well that conception of a thing is not the thing itself.

As someone who understands the process of refinement; The evolutionary nature of spiritual development. I have the sense to pick it up, look at it, put it down and move on. Trusting in reason AND intuition. Recognizing provisional attainment along the way.

That Existence is, in Truth, Infinite Singularity. This is the pole star.

brmckay – “Actually, I respect the effort.”
wbthacker – “But that’s not what I asked. I respect the effort of the people who developed the theories of phlogiston and the epicyclic orbits of the outer planets. But they were wrong, so I don’t respect the theories themselves, nor anyone who still advocates them today. So I think you’re prevaricating. Do you respect all gods equally?”
“[Actually, I respect the effort.] Knowing full well that conception of a thing is not the thing itself.”How else should I answer? I prefer not to lend credence to the idea of “gods” among other “gods”. It makes no more sense then the term “supernatural” when speaking of that which actually IS God. (or, if you like it better: Absolute and undivided Reality.)Why don’t you just tell me what we would learn if I let you back me into that false corner?Actually the term “respect” in this context seems wrongly used. These are names for people’s idea of God. The same as mine. Depending on my mood or who I’m talking to, I use different terms and names interchangeably. God, Entirety, Singularity, Reality, All, Self, Infinitude.It depends on what aspect, characteristic or path to understanding is under discussion.The main point, is that it represents a field of inquiry as valid today and tomorrow as it was for our Palaeolithic ancestors.Just because we map DNA, develop “Quantum Theory”, or whatever we get up to next, it does not make the UNIVERSE go away.

2015-05-17 09:36

brmckay – “Why don’t you just tell me what we would learn if I let you back me into that false corner?”

wbthacker – “I’m just trying to determine if you have any way of dismissing ideas as false or useless.”

On a personal level I do it all the time.

We choose moment by moment based on our evolving understanding and current quality of intention.

I have given an example above by choosing not to — lend credence to the idea of “gods” among other “gods”.

Or, in advocating an understanding of the “Bigger Picture” that does not depend on ideas of the “supernatural”.

I also choose to not go along with the obvious (to me) blindness of dismissing God from my consideration of existence and self.

So, I have been co-operating with you already.

On the other hand there is technique at work that employs cultivation of “equanimity”. As in the meditative exercises of: “Not This Not This” or “Hold no opinions for or against”.

Non-attachment (Vairagya)

This is the science of spiritual practice.

But if you are already in opposition, it will not be understood as such.

2015-05-18 10:55

brmckay – “I also choose to not go along with the obvious (to me) blindness of dismissing God from my consideration of existence and self.”

wbthacker – “And I choose not to go along with the obvious (to me) blindness of including God in my consideration of existence and self. I find fulfillment in eliminating false ideas from my weltanschauung and trying to illuminate for others the dehumanizing trap that most modern religions have become. I see it as a kind of emancipation from fraud and manipulation, which inhibits ‘our inherent Freedom to actually Understand’ as you put it.

You are clearly already free from that kind of religion. Your beliefs seem like gibberish to me, but they are clearly yours, harmless, and don’t seem to make you a puppet of anyone. So enjoy them with my best wishes.

Almost fair enough. Thanks.

Though it wouldn’t hurt my feelings if you kept the process of “gibberish” decipherment open ended.

If it is merely a matter of unfamiliarity with the genre that makes it gibberish, it would be a shame to waste the opportunity and the effort that has been expended.


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