The longer I wander through this forum, the more I think that religion is standing in the way of progress spiritually on a global scale. It's my opinion that the major religions have built a wall of doctrine that makes it difficult for the dogmatic adherents to find the exact thing they claim they are looking for.
To make it worse, I see the human consciousness as interconnected, so I think religion has held back humanity as a whole spiritually; ever since it started to lay claim to governments; by blinding large chunks of society to any deeper search. So every step they can't make forward, in some way holds all of humanity back.
Do you see religion as a stumbling block to the evolution of the collective human consciousness toward something greater?
You are assuming that
1. There is a collective human consciousness.
2. It grows.
3. It is possible to impede its growth.
4. It is possible for religion to impede its growth.
So, failing proof of 1-4, the answer is no.
And you are assuming there is a god. So, we both begin with assumptions.
For the sake of that argument, I was assuming nothing. Just pointing out the problem with your assumptions. If you can't back your argument up, that's okay.
Why is it always an argument with you?
Ok. You stated your case. Thanks for playing.
As opposed to completely agreeing with everything you say? You still didn't provide any proof.
There are some pretty good arguments for non-belief that actually have some basis.
Melissa, I do not expect people to agree with me. For goodness sake, yours is a wonderful argument. Thank you, thank you. I had no idea when I wrote that it was my opinion it would be perceived as claiming some truth that needed to be disputed. It's speculation, just like your religion is.
Again, thank you for presenting a wonderful argument. But, I'm really in search of a discussion; not here to push a view.
LMAO, I was giving you an opportunity for discussion. I stated my opinion and why. It was then your turn to answer the implied question of "This is why I believe it" Thus is how conversations work. You asked a question, I answered, now it is your turn.
You do realize you have a tendency to not discuss your opinions when questioned right? You divert to another topic. Its quite unproductive if what you are attempting is a conversation... Its a great tactic for trying to convert and also when trying to get people to agree with you to validate your own views. It's not really conversation though, as no questions are ever answered thus no information is exchanged.
I'm sorry you see it that way. I see it as your attempt to debate. To argue the point is attempting to make you see things my way. I don't want to do that, I want your opinion.if it generates a point for discussion, great. If we are at odds, then it gives cause for debate.
I don't want to debate you. End of debate.
Excuse me Melissa, but Human Consciousness is collective. It exists on some level within every person on the planet.
It does grow. It grows on an individual level. Therefore it grows on a collective level as well.
Only awareness can be impeded. And, is done so by choice.
Which it DOES impede awareness, because it teaches conflict, set values, a specific view and operates based on either closed-mindedness or narrow-mindedness.
It leaves no door for actual self growth, because it lacks responsibility to self, it ignores accountability of self to self.
Actually, the answer IS Yes!
You are absolutely Correct but...
to see religion as the error is to blind your very own eyes...
I tell you Truly you are your own worst enemy and unless you clean your own eyes you wont have eyes to see clearly......
When your eyes is cleared you would also see how religion can be used to your own god benefit.
I'm not implying there isn't good in religion, or that there isn't some grain of truth in it's core. I do see that the religious assume they have the truth. If any particular one did, it would be obvious to all.
And, I am obviously as blind as all of humanity at this point. No one has the answer yet. Anyone that claims it is deluding themselves, not those they seek to impress with their own spirituality.
What then are you going to do....?
.....for if one comes to you and said I have seen so therefore I know...
....to you that one is merely delusional....how can you or anyone one know? since all is delusional..
I am not deluded when I say to you I have seen and therefore do know...and to say differently is to be delusional......
I would so love to meet you kess. Only then could I make a judgment as to the validity of the claim. But, if it makes you feel any better, I do acknowledge my ignorance on the subject.
meeting me may actually cause you to be even more doubtful, cause in appearance i am just another regular person....
nevertheless that in itself is irrelevant...cause you already have all that it needed to know and that is the sum total of yourself....
For when a person truly know themselves, they would know that they know all things, and anything less is actually ignorance.
Yep. That's me. Ignorant
But you sell yourself short kess. Outward appearance is nothing. Look at the Christ. The son of a common laborer. No education that anyone spoke of. If someone like him showed up today, sharing profound information; the religious would scoff at him. They've made up their minds already as to what truth is. No further information required.
If I met you, I wouldn't judge by outward appearance. If you truly had found a spiritual knowledge I think it would emanate from your words. Your words would connect on a spiritual level. And one would be able to see how that knowledge had transformed your entire being.
You do talk a mystical game. Actions and some type of discernible evidence must accompany words and those, unfortunately, are lacking in an online forum.
can carnality be the judge od sprituality?
can ignorance be the judge of knowledge?
can darkness judge the light?
if and when they do such what else will they see is it not that which is their ownselves?
likewise a person can only see that which is their ownself......thus they create their own standard of judgement...
I tell you truly, though words are able to enlighten a person unto spirituality, word it and of itself is the barrier that bli ds a person from spirituality....
For spirituality begins and end with understanding...and this understanding cannot ever be encapsulated by no volume of words.
there lies the error of this world for which religion is an integral part....they battle with volumes of words thus never attaining spirituality which is understanding, which opens the door to TRUTH:
you brought up the man jesus who called himself christ.....remember many met him face to face on a daily basia and still they were not able to understand....
do you have any idea why not.....?
To answer the one question of why people didn't recognize a truly spiritual person; I always assumed that it was because they had not embarked on a spiritual journey of their own. If you don't seek, you'll not be in a position to find. Or something like that.
yep those with eyes to see will see...
it is not those who are seeking 'spirituality' that finds it..for eeveryone in some way considers themselves as spiritual....and that spirituality is merely their perception of it......
those who are truly seeking spirituality will find it...for these are able to deny his own self...these find true spirituality.
spirituality belong to those who are indeed spiritual..
the others are mere imitators who goal is merely to replicate the one who is considered spiritual by the crowd but the crowd by nature cannot ever be spiritual.
you see spirituality produces an original........not copies
What, precisely, is "progress spiritually on a global scale?" What does that mean and how is it measured?
Held humanity back from what? Blinding them from a search for what? Step forward to what, and held back from what?
I see religion as a construct that binds groups of people with a well-define set of social rules and a point of commonality. Conflict arises when societies grow and encounter other societies who, having evolved elsewhere, clearly would/and do invent a different set of myths (as any anthropologist can tell you) to explain all the inexplicable things in their world.
What you seem to be calling for is the same thing you also seem to be trying to condemn. You seem to be asking for a new religion that fits a society that is now global, since all the little pocket religions have bumped into one another and a few survived here and there but are now grown big and unwieldy, and the dogmatic conflicts within them make for great reasons (or excuses) for conflict.
Is your hope that the world will find peace if we can find a "spiritual path" that we all agree upon? (Which, the moment it gets written down in any way in the form of explanation, is officially a religion).
I don't know. I'm speculating. We can't measure it, so who knows whether it exists or not. My point is that if it does, why are we not any closer to finding it? Religion makes unrealistic statements, but the question I keep coming back to is whether or not there is some grain of truth that they've surrounded with a mountain of self serving bs.
I'm not calling for another religion, I'm suggesting that religion impedes the spiritual search, on an individual level. To look to another person, or a book, seems completely opposite of the term spiritual search, to me. To band with any one group for an inner search is an outward search. It's the opposite direction I want to go.
And no. To attempt agreement on anything inward again pulls it outward and invites others to attempt to lead. Which would bring us back to square one, I would think.
Well, that's a total flip flop of your original post, since you were talking about "progress spiritually on a global scale" and "I see the human consciousness as interconnected, so I think religion has held back humanity as a whole spiritually" at the start.
So, uh... yeah. Anyway.
I do believe that any spiritual growth attained by one could be shared with the many. Not as a religion, but an exchange of knowledge.
If you connected somehow, in a way that could be repeated at will, so you could share the knowledge as proof; it would help all of humanity.
But if you misunderstood to think I was calling for a new religion you misread my intent. Sorry for the confusion. I wouldn't join it.
Well any spiritual enterprise entered collectively or understood collectively is going to be a religion. So, I think what I and a few others are getting at, at least on that front, is that there can't be any "global" spirituality without a religion. For people to share in something, they have to know they share it, and to know they share it, they have to communicate in some way that they are sharing it or they have no way of acknowledging the commonality. The utterance or the performance of some symbolic gesture or whatever becomes the ritual and, therefore, the religion.
So while you may not intend to be arguing for religion, you are. Unless you concede the "global" and "collective" were misused in your OP. At which point, we're just having an exchange of opinions about what spirituality means and all that sort of fluffy stuff.
I believe it is simply a difference of definition of what you have labeled the 'fluffy stuff'. When I speak of consciousness I'm not speaking of what we are aware of, of anything that can be measured or has even been proven to exist. It's entirely speculation, which doesn't sound like your cup of tea.
I would go further in explanation, but I doubt you are interested in my thoughts on this. Again, the miscommunication was entirely my fault.
No, feel free. I enjoy a good ontological or epistemological argument. Make a case for something on either or both fronts, I'm down for looking at it.
Now you've put me in a bind.I'll explain to you, as I did another poster. I'm not in search of an argument. More of a discussion. I'm not one to have their mind changed online and I certainly wouldn't attempt to change yours.
That being said, I'll attempt to expand on the reason for the initial post. Religion has attempted to box in our thoughts on the topic of spirituality. Christians are saved. End of story. No further thought required. Islam is the true religion. End of their story. Etc, etc. for any religion you look at.
If any of it was of any value on a spiritual level (forget political or any other level) there would be some evidence. I simply think they've failed miserably on that front, as well as all others.
I believe that if we are ever to find out if there is even a niggle of truth at the core of any of it, then it all needs to be brushed to the side with abandon and, in so doing, if there is any truth we will be in a better position to find it.
Religion muddies the water. They all appear to be attempting to find answers in a book and close their minds to outside information. Sure, some of them do read from other sources, but it is in an attempt to validate the beliefs already in place.
I do not want to emphatically state that they are completely wrong, but if those beliefs are wrong (as I consider them to be) then it's doing nothing but further entrenching them in their preconceived notions.
I stated that they are impeding us, and I've already seen that using the word evolution was wrong; but when I use the word evolve it is more in line with the evolution of thought. Maybe I should have said something along the lines of broadening our understanding. We cannot broaden our understanding as long as so many are unwilling to step outside of their box of religion.
I just want to see, if I can get Shadesbreath and you on the same page, so please indulge my post.
Shadesbreath is talking about the evolution of thought and how it automatically becomes religion, at some point. Just like, influence becomes power at some point.
If you had everyone paying attention more to their conscious existence, increasing knowledge, increasing awareness and increasing wisdom, then it would become ritualistic. Thus, religion.
I hope that I explained that right. And, I am sure that Shadesbreath with correct me, should I be wrong. If I am wrong, then please excuse this post.
Thank you. I have no problem with you interjecting..I actually appreciate your attempt to clarify.
(I think what follows goes to the point Cags was making in his post clarifying my point ...)
While I agree with you that religion muddies the water when it becomes dogmatic (picture a bunch of mindless drones quoting scripture and following the orders of a human wearing a fancy hat and embroidered dress), I'm not ready to throw out any infant saviors with the holy water, not just yet. Here's why:
Religion can be a tool to unlocking the things you seek; what is a key but a tool? Humans use tools. The invention of tools is the thing we have that makes us unique and special (if we are special at all, which for this conversation I will assume). Had no one invented the lever or the wheel, we would not have much that we have today. Medicine, mathematics, even pilates are all tools, thought tools that help us improve or investigate facets of our experience.
Religion itself is not a bad thing. It is a tool through which people can investigate spirituality. Rituals and behavioral disciplines can focus our minds in certain ways that allow us to prod at our spiritual essence (or the thing that feels like one) and learn about it and, possibly, from it.
The various religions bring different approaches to that sort of undertaking, and wise men and women with genuine curiosity do well to try out as many as they possibly can, in earnest and over time. Only the weak-minded or incurious settle easily into one. Those are the sheep, which is fine, but often they make noise like lions while trying to pretend the only two metaphors allowed are wolves and lambs.
What ruins religions is the use of them for power. Most people are too impatient or too dim to fathom the real purpose and message of the religion's foundational myths and metaphors. Translations over time, ignorance, and all the communicative problems of language and human emotions all serve to corrupt whatever the religion's root ideas were. That can still serve to bind a community and provide a social framework that preserves order (a main purpose of religion as religion rather than tool), but eventually they degrade and are conscripted by the egotistical and power hungry and become the religion you are talking about rather than the tool they were originally meant to be. (It doesn't help that the metaphors become too dated to be relevant either... which is the problem with all the Bronze Age religions still sputtering about causing mayhem in the world.)
You got all that just from this 1 forum? Oh my....
You need to spread out more. Try other forums first before making such naive statement. You really just pointed out the fact that your opinion is based off a bunch of nothingness.
I see religion as a public means towards finding a private God. As a Catholic, your mind must be free but your body must be obedient. The attempt is to recognise the inner self. I cannot think how that would block the development of consciousness
It block one's awareness of self. It doesn't actually increase awareness of self, because it dictates a higher authority, never mind, a higher power.
The highest authority of any human, is self.
I'm not sure I follow your statement. Your body must be obedient. To the church? Or what exactly?
As to the mind, I'm not sure I see freedom of thought being acted out by a lot of the religious; but assuming there is a level of freedom, doesn't that come after the tenets of faith have been accepted as truth? So, you begin expanding on beliefs set firmly in place?
The faith itself, as a practice, makes demands that you follow certain physical rules to do with chastity and so on. But you are spiritually free, in as much as you are encouraged to educate yourself to the best of your ability and to express your own vision of the metaphysical : something which is apparent in Renaissance art and architecture. You begin with a set of tenets yes. Much in the same way as science will begin from a point of there being gravity, say.
Lizzie, I was gonna ask you a question, but I checked my "list," and...ooops...you're on it... So I won't! :
What list? Is it your black book? Did you write my name down and cross it out?
I've mentioned my "list" so many times.
But it'd be arrogant of me to think that everyone reads my "stuff."...:
In fact, I'm probably on'a lotta folks sh!t lists...
I don't doubt it at all! (and I know whose lists I'd be on.. )
Now, I don't know how that plays out on your side of the pond; but over here that's simply not true. Look at our Catholic politicians. They are denied the Holy communion if they don't toe the Catholic stance on social issues. That's not freedom of thought. That's blackmail, if you take that stuff seriously.
I have no idea how you compare belief in God to gravity. No one disputes gravity. It's a measurable force. I'm not sure I understand what you're trying to say.
To be clear, I didn't use gravity as a comparison to faith, but for the purposes of showing how in religion, as in science, you can move freely around a rigid point.
I'd be very suprised to hear of any Catholic denied communion on those grounds. A person is not supposed to receive communion in a state of sin. If they do, it is a further sin. It is a matter for their conscience. Although I think you'd agree that a good priest should point out to a parishioner where they were living a double standard and need to rectify it. What should a priest do if a known murderer say, were to continue going to Mass without having confessed or been remorseful?
I'm afraid I can't agree with your statement on the priest pushing the politician in the least. This puts them both in a position of shoving their beliefs down my throat. I would certainly respect the politician if he resigned because his beliefs were in conflict with the will of his constituency.
As to moving around the rigid point of gravity, I assume you're saying something to the effect that science stays rigidly within the natural laws and religion rigidly within the tenets of its faith? I guess that makes sense, from a christian spiritual angle. But your starting point is a bit of a problem.
I can't see how a non-Catholic need be bothered with a spat between a priest and parishioner.
But what if a politician doesn't resign? What if he keeps receiving communion when he's up to his eyeballs in corruption and there are kiddies witnessing it and getting wrong messages? I think there are times when taking a stand is justified because it threatens the salvation of others.
Now I know it's all a bit of nonsense to you, I understand and accept that but I don't think it interferes with my argument. The Catholic starting point is one God, the communion of saints, forgiveness of sins, resurrection of the body and life ever lasting. A scientific starting point is gravity, another is relativity. In that sense, both positions are not entirely free. On the other hand, they could choose complete freedom and start where no one has started before.
You could call that revolutionary, highly evolved and powerfully individual.....or you could argue that to ignore everything that has been postulated before is just conceited. I'm not sure what I would think.
I appreciate your response, but I have to tell you that this is one of the problems I suffer when trying to converse with the religious. I can't follow the train of 'logic'.
I assume we are talking apples and oranges with the priest/politician conversation. The only times I have been made aware of the church strong arming politicians is to force them to vote a certain way on abortion and reproductive issues. These stands are in direct violation of the intent of separating church from state within our government and the actions by the church offend me first and foremost on this level.
And the further you explain the religion versus science analogy the less I see how you came up with it. Except, from a christian spiritual angle. It makes no sense.
You can't ignore basic facts in science, but you can ignore one branch of christianity and be a christian. You can ignore christianity and be religious. You can ignore religion and be spiritual. Everything in that realm is unsupported by any type of proof. It's pure conjecture.
You can't ignore facts in basic science. That would be foolish. They are there for all to see. The only fact we can all agree on about religion is there are no facts. There is nothing to see. So, I see it as a form of arrogance to claim any religious or spiritual stand as truth. Why would it be arrogant to think on your own?
I suppose the truth is that the church interferes when it sees the point as being ethical rather than political. Abortion is not seen as political by Catholics, who see the attempt to make it political as a way of trying to keep the church out of a moral issue.
Perhaps it would have been more helpful to use sport rather than science as an analogy. There are the rules of a game. If you don't like them, you make up your own new one.
You could ignore the basic facts of science, (or the basic theories, to be more precise) but you would be clueless as to how the world worked. To ignore the basic tenets of Christianity or science would make you ignorant of western culture. But certainly you can be religious or spiritual without Christianity. Christianity is the point I come from, and not even in the spiritual sense, but in the natural sense. Catholicism seeks to work with natural law. Natural law dictates that monogamy is the most successful way for humans to co-exist: Christianity takes that and gives it a lawful and ceremonial context. Natural law has sex for procreation: Christianity tries to keep sex free of anything artificial to avoid it being used for anything other than that.
I don't know if I intend to use logic in my arguments. I know I have never stated my personal faith, only argued the facts of my culture. As a cradle Catholic I don't have the privilege of knowing what it feels like to discover faith for myself, but I know what it is to have a religious, albeit semi- liberal, existence in a secular world, all my life. I'm not frightened by doubt. I'm not frightened to stand on my own. It wouldn't be arrogant to think on your own, but since we can only learn from what has been and not what will be, I would be reluctant to heed a person who separated themselves from the past. I think I'm rambling a bit now and so I'll stop. My simple point is that I am not justifying the belief but the practice of it and that it is by its nature soul-searching and therefore, no impediment to the evolution of consciousness.
Where is this interconnected human consciousness located? Is it like the internet? Is it a giant cloud? What is it?
How can religion be a stumbling block to something that isn't even there?
This is a poor start on your quest for spirituality.
What makes you think it is not possible that consciousness is interconnected?
If the quest for spirituality is what has been explained so far, then it is a quest of chasing one's tail round and round.
What makes you think it is interconnected? Where do you get that idea from?
You're full of questions, but I asked first. Answer mine and I'll answer yours.
If a child asked you why a bird can fly but a hippo can't, you would probably explain something along the lines that hippos can't fly because they do not possess the same aerodynamic properties as the bird. They just don't work that way.
Does that help?
You can simply say that it is nothing you've ever allowed your mind to ponder. There's no shame in the fear of letting your mind wander through possibilities ATM. That's how radically new discoveries are made sometimes, but only by those not afraid of failure.
Do tell us what you've let your mind wander and pondered exactly how hippos will fly.
Radical discoveries. HA!
I wasn't the one talking about hippos flying. That would be foolish. That might be the problem here. Are there people who aren't capable of discerning the difference between a fool's errand and spirituality?
Hmm. I'll have to keep my eye's open and see if that's how it all pans out with you.
Yes, but you don't appear to be one of them. Flying hippos is no more or less foolish than what you've offered in terms of explaining spirituality.
You do realize you misspoke? You actually paid me a compliment, when I believe you were attempting something else. But not to worry. I got your intent.
Which brings up something I couldn't tell you about spirituality sooner. You get to laugh at yourself. You know everything sounds crazy, so you only use it to improve your outlook and it lets you take pushy atheists and religionists with a grain of salt.
I don't believe religion is holding the species back spiritually, if by this you mean that there is such a thing as spirit which is able to progress. I don't believe in the existence of spirituality as a force in the universe, but that which people call spirituality is merely one way of looking at things through the imperfect human mind.
However, I do believe religion is holding back mankind scientifically and rationally. By clinging to relgious beliefs, which have no basis in reality, people are less open to the real world, and all its complexity, and such an attitude cannot be good for scientific progress. Also religion is holding much of the world back socially and morally. By denying rights to non-believers or to women or to sexual minorities, or by teaching people to believe that the universe was created in six days, 6,000 years ago, then relgion is keeping people's minds firmly in the Dark Ages. Only by leaving such supernatural beliefs behind will humanity be able to focus on social, scientific and moral progress for the good of all.
I agree whole heartedly. And without the level of progress, as you have outlined; we can't grow as a species. Whether that growth will lead to a higher spiritual consciousness or not is not really important, in the long run. What's important is we'll learn about ourselves in the process.
I was about to respond, but you did it better'n I could have!
2 thumbs up! :
You're right, there is a reason - it is called fear. Fear of death, fear of being alone with no one to hear our prayers, fear that our life may have no real meaning other than to spread our DNA, fear that Jesus doesn't really want us for a sunbeam. I understand and share those fears, but this no longer makes me go running to find my nearest bible, or get down on my knees and beg God to spare me from my mortality, because this does not provide an answer..
Hi Mr. Mason.
What's the 2.3 %, and what's the reason? In your opinion.
Mason is referring to a statistic that I discovered some days ago, that only 2.3% of the world's population are atheists.
How would that have anything to do with the question? Odd answer. I guess he was simply baiting you.
Ah, the religious. The interesting conversations we could have if they checked their emotions before entering a thread.
No... I am simply pointing out that for a world so advanced in many ways, including spiritual, it seems the religious would have a greater claim to that advancement, than the non-religious.
I wouldn't bait you, Emile.
I would simply come out and say no I do not agree and state my case.
Advanced in many ways, including spiritual? Yes sir, hatred does fill this world and 2/3 of the world's population is religious in some manner. So, it looks like you folks, don't like others. And, even on some level, YOU see yourself better than others. Which is ALL ego. And, when you cannot see past yourself(ego), then you do more damage than good, regardless of what you do.
Right, and you do all of with your ego. So, you do for yourself. You don't do it to improve the people around you. Which the shame on your character is highlighted to those around you.
How nice of you.
I know you wouldn't. And I'll admit I was trying to bait you back in. I want to hear your thoughts.
I'm not trying to bash the religious, but maybe it can be seen as bashing religion. I simply think there are ideas that don't mesh with the concept of spirituality that were put in place to control your thoughts on the subject. If everyone stopped assuming anything was right, just because that's what their religion tells them; but instead searched from an open stance, we might come up with some interesting discoveries.
It is however one wishes to see(perceive) it. If they have conflict in them, then conflict will arise. If they have no conflict, then they are open to learning and choose peace before conflict.
It matters on one perceives self. And, many others on here will apparently jump on that statement. It appears that apparently many people have learned that a person cannot ever know themselves. Which is absurd, because if you don't know yourself, then how can you know whether or not you can accomplish anything?
The only spirituality required is love. Love is seen by all and knows it's power. Many say that love doesn't exist, because it's not tangible. Thus, making it spiritual. The word "spiritual" is about peace with self and balance. The only true balance one can have is to love self and others. That means, if you don't love yourself, then you are out of balance with self.
It's mostly a misunderstanding of one's own life, which causes all the problems.
I would definitely agree that the first step in the search is to search within yourself and to eliminate the need for conflict. Love would, of course, be the expected by product. All this is only my humble opinion.
Very well stated cagsil.
I agree a lot of religion has been structured for control of the masses. ie; thought control, etc... just like PC and the Frankfurt Schools Atheistic thought control programs and agenda.
It is not only the religious who wish to control the thoughts and actions of the lil people.
And like science, some of science, they make un-believable claims and expect the masses to accept them as fact. The world is full of people and groups who want to run your life, thoughts, beliefs and actions.
And my God tells me to test all things and hold fast to that which is true... so I as a Christian am obligated to question.
I think that gets it all Emile.
How r u 2 day?
I hope well.
It is hot as hell here, and I am thinking of getting in the river... it looks very nice out there meandering by... almost calling my name... ohhh cold water... ohhh
@Cags... how r u 2-day Cags? I hope well.
Don't speak of the river. I've been begging my husband to go canoing. He says it's too hot.
I hope you enjoy your swim. And I agree with you. The world is full of those who would attempt to enslave our thoughts. It is definitely not only religion.
I am well. Thank you for asking and hope all is well with you.
I would be interested to know what Mason means exactly by stating that the world is advanced spiritually. I live in a material world. Everything I have experience of, from the food I eat, the clothes I wear, the computer on which I am now writing is made up of matter. I have never seen, heard, touched or experienced anything in any way which could be described as spiritual. None of my deceased relations have ever come back to visit me, I have never experienced a very real God by use of my senses. So, I would love to know in what way exactly the world may be described as spiritual. And, I am assuming by "spiritual" Mason is not simply referring to religious belief, because this is evidence only of belief, not of spirit. For the world to actually be spiritual, there must be evidence that spirit exists, and I do mean evidence. Perhaps there have been some scientific experiments which have tested for the existence of spirit and proven it to exist, that I do not know about. I honestly would be very interested if this is this case.
your comments have lifted my "spirit!"
Could I entice you into joining me in joyous celebration by embibing in some intoxicating "spirit" I just brewed in my still out back?
We can sit and become filled with the "spirit!"
Amen and amen... ...oh...and HALLELUJAHHHHH!
Hello qwark. What's this? You step into a thread, say you've got moonshine and don't invite all of us? What's up with that? You think simply because the rest of us are talking crazy we've reached our limit and already had too much to drink?
Thanks for the offer, but I have already been on the cider, after a day spent weeding my garden. Unfortunately, the cider hasn't filled me with spirit, but only with gas. That after the baked beans and a high fibre vegetarian dinner has proven a little too much.
[Do you see religion as a stumbling block to the evolution of the collective human consciousness toward something greater?]
Yes. For me, religion is all about politics, war and competition. Which religious group owns which piece of land, whose religion is right, what dogma is the Truth, etc.
I agree with Sherlock that fear is a major paradigm within most religions.
As far as I know, scientists are still trying to unravel the mystery of consciousness, but the evidence so far suggests a collective human consciousness.
WE have a definition of "consciousness," but until we can figure out how the "human computer" works (and we will) we'll just have to grab hold of the definition and accept the fact that our level of "it" is, uniquely, just much greater than that of all other life.
Our level of "consciousness" is just a result of the serendipitous processes of "natural selection.
We're much too young a species to figger it out yet. :
All monotheistic thought and action is regressive.
We would be unable to figure it out if we held firmly to that line of thinking. You do realize that one of the models of the universe they think is the most likely to be correct was only calculated because the cosmologist told his team to calculate every scenario possible, continuing past any he thought would be even remotely possible?
Outside of the box, outside of the box, outside of the box. That is the only way there is any possibility that we can progress in our understanding.
There are a lot of ideas we now consider insane and foolish; but one day we'll hit upon something that will point to one of them as worthy of further research.
You can't move forward if your mind doesn't bounce around trying to find the hole in the box of your self imposed limits on reality.
"We would be unable to figure it out if we held firmly to that line of thinking."
What "line of thinking?"
That we haven't figured out how the human computer (the brain) works yet? That we're too young a species to have gained and understanding of everything? That's ALL "factual."
I don't believe I intimated that we don't have the intellectual prowess to, one day, understand just about everything.
"...but until we can figure out how the "human computer" works..."
Doesn't that quote from my last comment mention: "figure out?"
We humans didn't survive this long without an ability to "figure" things out and use what we've learned to make it to this point in our evolution.
Of course we consider every facet of possibility and even the impossible. As you say "Outside the box."
The dedicated human researcher/thinker, doesn't exist in a "box of your self imposed limits on reality." We wouldn't be here today if he did!
Evolving intellectual ability and "mucho" serendipity is why we've survived this long.
Sorry qwark. I must have read more into what you were saying than was your intent. When I saw your statement:
"until we can figure out how the "human computer" works (and we will) we'll just have to grab hold of the definition and accept the fact"
I thought you were saying be happy with what you've got.
Thank's for clarifying.
Our level of "consciousness" is just a result of the serendipitous processes of "natural selection.
oh yah, its all just random
and they say christians don't have all the answers
"Do You Think Religion Impedes the Evolution of Consciousness?" Great question on another level altogether.
Absolutely. If evolutionary consciousness is change of thinking, the religions promote belief that does not allow for change in thought. One must think in a certain dogmatic away to get the religious rewards - no exceptions allowed.
There can be no agreement of religious thought if it is an abstraction of mind, existing independent of physical reality - period. Its tenants would have to be contained in the fabric of physical reality as the possibility of the experience of everyone, to ever have a hope of any kind of agreement.
So, you're essentially saying that each person is in a fight with themselves for true control? Two separate things?
Religious thought? It a joke. It's a train of thought that only leads to conflict. If that isn't obvious, then it shows that the problems facing humankind are worse than the average perceives.
Religion is based on mysticism. Mysticism is dishonesty at it's finest.
Shame on you Ray. Religion is not BASED on Mysticism. Myth and Mystic are products of religion (based on the use of science [oft called magic] and internal energy [oft called spirituality - as in a magi, sage, yogi, guru, shaman, mystic] to induce and/or express extreme sensationalism. (example: Carlos Castaneda, Buddha, etc).
The origin of religion is Theos [the concept of supremacy and totality via theory or theo-logic]. This concept is driven by the self, of humanism, disguised as Quality [of present Life/reality].
You know James, I don't have the education you have, but I think you are purposely trying to make things more complicated than needs to actually be. I am aware, by our many conversations and it has shown me that is exactly what you are doing. Attempting to make it more?
When it's actually not as complicated as you make it out to be.
I'll agree it's driven by self, but the understanding one has of self is what matters. To know our limitations. To know what we are capable of. To absorb/discover knowledge and discern truth about our own life, with limitless wisdom.
Consciousness of the self is to indulge what already belongs to the person -knowledge. Knowledge is the limitation or better said a self imposed limitation and perhaps an slight understanding of what 'could be'. To achieve 'beyond consciousness/ beyond knowledge/ beyond belief (tongue-in-cheek there), one must -from all angles- remove the self, ego, the Theos and conditions/ deliberate applications of that knowledge. Else philos/ wisdom/ understanding cannot be itself. It becomes suppressed by necessity, by the many threads of thought, because knowledge is the processor of understanding, not the producer of it.
That makes no sense. Explain?
Again, this doesn't make sense. Humans are not perfect and cannot ever be, so there is always going to be limitations.
I find this to be untrue. I understand one must remove ego, to get to truth, but wisdom requires knowledge(learning). You cannot go beyond knowledge already received/attain/obtained. Belief is already known to be assumed true by the individual, but isn't truth. To be objective, not subjective, brings about truth, when ego is removed. One must apply what one learns(knowledge) to create purpose and meaning(why?) for one's own life.
Beyond consciousness? That you'll have to explain? There isn't anything beyond consciousness. Consciousness is the sum of all the parts in existence.
Without any knowledge, wisdom would never exist. Yet, humans have unlimited wisdom, because their understanding is limitless. Thus, leading to a universal truth, which can be known and recognized. Knowledge is a producer, it produces a result, known as discerned truth, which IS wisdom.
I think ill just add
not believing there is a God is based on denial and THAT is dishonesty at its finest.
I agree. That's the problem I see with religion. They make unsupportable claims and then expect everyone to accept them as truth. It can't be truth if it can't be verified.
I'm a nice person. Can you verify that... You would have to get on a plane and then drive over to my house, and then hopefully have a nice visit. Will that be done, i doubt it.. so you have to accept that i am, or not. There are so many things that cannot be verified in our lifetimes. The big bang theory is not verified, life stepping out of a primordial pool is not verified, all sorts of stuff is accepted on blind faith or faith that is not so blind. Most of these are beliefs. Collective consciousness is not verified, ghosts, vampires the list goes on. Verification is a human necessity not a spiritual one. It is the tendency of humans to think along the lines of "if i do this and this then i can do that", in spiritual matters pertaining to God, if i clean my life up first then i can come to God, but God says: just come to me as you are and the rest will sort itself out over a process of time.
You would certainly have to show some proof that your concept of god exists first; or, at the least, prove any form of a deity does.This has never been proven.
Everything you have built on top of that assumption serves no purpose in the conversation. I understand that you cannot understand this point; but it is what stands in the way of you having any credibility.
If the god as you imagine it, and as you present to the world by your interpretation of your scriptures, existed there would be proof. It's a simple fact.
Whatever the answer, the major religions have proven they don't have it. It's the blind leading the blind as you guys say.
I think you misunderstand the meanings of the terms proof and evidence as used by your debating opponents.
If necessary (perhaps to determine the veracity of your comments) whether you are a nice person can be verified. Evidence is available now in your many comments and further evidence could be gathered. A conclusion could be formed based on that evidence, and while it might or might not be absolute "proof" it would make a good working hypotheses.
The big bang theory is not verified in terms of "proof" but there is a great deal of evidence pointing to it - it is a good working hypotheses. Collective consciousness, ghosts, vampires, etc. all have no evidence outside of faith and thus their existence is not something to "believe" in. Every single piece of evidence that has been seriously examined as been debunked. The same holds true for the concept of God.
While the spiritual "evidence" for the existence of God is undeniable that evidence is 100% objective; it is not transferrable to another person. No one else will find the same evidence and this is why such claims are considered by unbelievers to be unsupported; what you consider to be evidence of even proof is neither to a non-believer.
When you offer such comments as "but God says: just come to me as you are and the rest will sort itself out over a process of time." the immediate reaction of the non-believer is that the imaginary God has said nothing of the sort. What you have claimed to be the voice of God is either the writings of millenia dead people claiming an unverifiable relationship with an unverifiable spiritual creature or the same conscience and sub-conscious that we all have. You can offer no evidence at all to the non-believer of anything else. Even if it is your conscience "speaking" to you well all hear the same thing but "understand" that it is our own mind and not some spiritual creature.
Or so I see it.
odd, how ever many times i heard that saying before it was never more so alive than the day i did.
Oh the water is fine, come on in.
I would be happy to enter the water to play for awhile, but never to duck under. I greatly fear I would drown in that world of emotion, faith and belief. It is foreign to me. (If I've misread your meaning, forgive me - I mean no disrespect or ridicule).
I have often been asked why I can't believe? It is so simple - just have faith and I will know and understand all. What the believer does not recognize is that to do so requires that I give up the world of reason and logic. That I trade the world of Truth and Knowledge for believing that whatever I want to be true is, in fact, true irrespective of evidence to the contrary. I cannot do it anymore than a true believer can honestly study and understand evidence that runs contrary to their core beliefs. That evidence and doubt will always rise up and overcome whatever wants I might have.
reason and logic have nothing to do with how God operates, for instance, marching around the walls of Jericho, blowing trumpets and yelling at the walls, was indeed a hard pill for the generals of the army to swallow - yet it worked. Abraham and Sarah conceiving Issac at age 100 was against the grain of how things work. Crossing the red sea, there are so many ways of God clearly demonstrating that His ways are not our ways.
I'm going to give you a little latitude on this one, just for the sake of argument. Let's say I'm willing to consider all that the Old Testament to be true.
Why, when this god was willing to stop the sun, knock walls over, part the red sea, march in front of the Israelites as a pillar of fire, burn Sodom, and perform all of the me miracles in Egypt; what happened?
Why do you think ancient history provides no corroborating evidence? Why do you think he changed his MO? Why do you believe he decided to leave the faithful high and dry? If what you say is true, your god had no problem stepping in to show himself for hundreds of years. Yet, there is no evidence other than what is written in one book. Why is that, in your opinion?
If there is a god and, as you guys keep saying, he wants everyone to believe in him; what reason would he have for hiding to the point that the only reasonable and rational conclusion one can come to is that he does not exist? Does he expect his creation to be unreasonable and irrational?
Oh and let's not forget He created light with no sun and created night and day with no planets to rotate.
Oh yah lets not forget that God needs a sun for their to be light. God is light. He doesn't need to create it. God created time without planets rotating.
I was thinkin about this yesterday and the scenario is very much like when we walk into an empty house and we look at the living room and start to see our couch there, chair there; in the dining room.. table there, stuff there and there and there.. etc. God laid the whole thing out before he actually started to place things here and there.
I am gonna have to think about this given your unteachableness. anything i say i think is gonna be argued against.
I may or may not get back to you on this.
oh well, anyway it will profit others if not you.
In the beginning God was in a burning bush (miracle 1) and said to moses you will my people out of egypt. Moses said, "who am i that they should listen to me?". God told moses to throw down his rod and it became a snake (miracle 2) then he told moses to put his hand in his tunic and when moses pulled it out it was leprous (mir 3)
and God said:
Exodus 4:8 And it shall come to pass, if they will not believe thee, neither hearken to theVOICE of the FIRST SIGN, that they will believe the voice of the latter sign.
When someone proclaims to be God we all want to see signs and wonders. Signs and wonders are what convinces us. We see all through the bible signs and wonders. Until the NT where after jesus ministry the signs and wonders decline rapidly.
Signs and wonders do not do the job. Signs and wonders do not make people amazing christians or even good christians.
People think oh if God were to show himself in a cloud in the sky and i could see him i would follow him to the ends of the earth, i would be a believer. No you wouldn't. As soon as God said, abstain from sex and 6 months went by and an opportunity presented itself, the majority of people would go for the sex. Out of sight out of mind. Humans are not by the natural conduct applied upon them in todays society - law abiding people.
and the rest is just too long and i can't be bothered
Did you not answer the questions because
A. You didn't understand the questions?
B. You don't have an answer.
C. You do know the answer and are unwilling to admit the truth?
Because, I have to say; the kindest thing anyone will get out of that answer is either A, B or C.
You can't baffle people with BS. I'm pretty sure anyone reading your posts has figured out that your responses are full of it.
"I'm not calling for another religion,"
I am and in fact am trying to write it. If the natural world is spiritual,
then science is spiritual and proves spirituality.
Agreed. All religion has caused a blockade to the true purpose, ability and action of man. Likewise, the theos of science is doing the same. Expressions like 'communications', 'study of the elements' etc are all limitations, not assists to a global progression of humanity. Dogma cannot be sustained without ritual enforcement or apathetic acceptance/numbness.
We are all connected, yes. But a universal consciousness as the theos, is just another religion. A term defined as new aged, yet is ages old. It is the humans natural ability to commune, transcend, live ever~long, without such stimulation/stimulants. But they perceive it is 'super-natural' else unnatural all together.
The human consciousness cannot evolve. It is not designed to evolve beyond itself. The human mind was genetically programmed with every single bit of information/knowledge to perform all functions without strain. Functions many assume are pseudo intellectual, else mystical/ spiritual. They appear this way because humans do not fully grasp how they were created. The energy defined as spirit is the source, the alef-tov that makes up the very fiber of their being. Exceeding the processes of consciousness is where you seem to be leaning, Emile. And should you be, then a hearty nod from me. Because humans are able to live beyond necessity/ reason/ purpose/ need-to-know/ knowledge and instantly employ logic/ wisdom/ ability/ understanding.
The Churches of Religion and Science have succeeded in fooling the masses into their corner, else into a self, or solitude corner. They have failed, because others are realizing the emptiness of their works, the lack of purity, longevity and usefulness to the greater good. In essence humanism has failed. The stasis you are suggesting cannot, repeat cannot, be achieved by those major motives, nor the effect in a -sorry to sound cliche- a quantum of solace. A complete return to that stasis is required, by the utter abandon of the aforementioned powers that be.
This statement James, I will have to disagree with.
Essentially, you are saying that there isn't a need to know "WHY" we each live because we already know why we live?
And, that isn't possible, until one actually creates a purpose. You, will most likely and have by your statement, claimed that "designed" and "programmed"? Meaning, something created them other than the parents of the individual.
I know you believe in a creator, but not "G/god", by religion. However, "creator" would be energy and the conscious intelligence you're assigning to it, seems a bit much.
Ha! You aren't the first, Ray, and certainly not the last. Twenty years ago, when I suggested this concept, a half dozen seasoned professors verbally -and if able- literally would have stoned me in the square. Likewise, even recently, a host of Theos prisoners on both ends too.
Precisely! and another one gets it. Yes and yes. Humans do know why, what, whom and how. They have just forgotten. This is what I termed the Adamic Inception. Indulgence of the consciousness/ their minds/ knowledge within, resulted in a massive bombardment of genetically provided information, that -for lack of a better word- made them go mad. Gave them a form of amnesia. Liken it to Alzheimer, in reverse of course, with exactly the same effect! Information overload.
Creating purpose without understanding purpose, its practical applications, and source 'code' so to speak, results in disaster. Ad Exemplica : humanity assumed between 250,000 or 6,550 solar cycles -- and counting.
I don't want to flood Emile's thread with this topic, but would be fun to discuss it at some point.
James. Flood away. You're thoughts are always interesting.
I dunno about big dawg. haha.
Theos (religion of technology/science or sensation) is in fact standing in the way. Note the standard replies to such a statement. Note how they say "you cannot live without it" or "you'll end up in a cave" or worse "a Hell Fire Brimstone" future else "A Fortress of Solitude forever" and lastly, " Just nothing at all after or before".
One thing I find always interesting is the constant separation condition within humans, and humanism. Spirit cannot be separated from physic anymore than wet can be separated from water. Again, the duality within the human mind is causing this condition. A simple case of amnesia.
Emile, you are right. I have often asked myself and others, if you -even a (quote, unquote) lowly human created something wonderful, would you create it any less than what you had in mind, when designing it?? Certainly not. Yet look at the human thoughts themselves. The images able to be materialized! The abilities 'dreamed of' that are either actual or jumbled groups of information designed in us already. Abilities far exceeding what we assume or can/cannot be squeezed out of humanities [ pardon my french] conscious sphincter. Humans were designed to know and even better to understand beyond the threads of knowledge in them. Understanding of exactly who, what, why, when and where. Even me, if I created something, would certainly want that creation to have full understanding so together we could be and do without hindrance. If the term unconditional love is applicable, that is precisely what the term means.
Applying that understanding, that unconditional voids every form of Theos.
great stuff for sure James, i followed until the final statement? why cannot what you desribed be a form of "Theos"? when people look at things as either good or bad, they are viewing one side of a two-sided event. all things are balanced equally constantly. recognizing the form things are in simply becomes the next step.
again, i do sincerely appreciate your thoughts processes, observations, and conclusions.
Isn't this just an assumption?
So, you are presently suggesting that humankind isn't sane?
To create a purpose, one must first understand what it means to do so and then do so.
From what you've said above, it's already known. And, it cannot be known, before creating it to begin with. You cannot understand something you do not know anything about or recognize. I understand purpose and that it only matters with regards to my life and what my actions do with regards to other people. It wasn't known for the first 30 years of my life, until I decided to create it.
I can follow how you arrived at it, but it would also mean, that every single individual possesses the ability to obtain the exact same conscious intelligence? And, that would be like we've talked before. It would leads to a conscious intelligence, which can bestow the power of creating universes, at a whim. And, it would also bestow the individual with the power to discard it's human form, for a more simplistic form of energy.
At least, that's my thoughts on it. Enjoying the discussion by the way.
Hi James. You're the spiritual big dawg, so I'm glad to read your thoughts. Evolution probably wasn't the correct word. More like a reawakening. Maybe. I do believe whatever may be, already exists and has always existed within us. We just can't reach in and grasp it yet. I think religion stands in the way of finding what it claims to be in search of, due to the organizational need to prove itself all knowing.
Religion has a different goal entirely and i dislike the word religion. Religion to me is a set of rituals designed to barter Gods approval. Spiritual relationship is what God has always wanted and this was the central topic of Jesus. Who better to know this than the Son of God. Christianity, means Christ likeness, so i will use the term Christlikeians; This Christlikeians walk that John the baptist first heralded is repentance from sin. Jesus backed this theory up, best described in the conversation with the adulterous woman - go and sin no more. What God wants is not for us all to know everything or even to search out the wisdoms of man. This is a selfish belief and only pumps the ego, which, of course is plainly the opposite of what Jesus and God wants.
Religion does stand in the way of its own important searchings. Rituals will never buy Gods favor. God has his ways and it has nothing to do with reaching way down inside to recall some lost information that we have forgotten, or tapping some unknown source within ourselves that lies dormant. Its simply, getting to know God for what God is, who he is and thereby discovering what He wants for our lives. Spirituality is a gift from God, lest we should boast of ourselves. Different path altogether.
And, I have to say, this tendency of some christians to attempt to separate themselves from the word religion is humorous, since your interpretation comes entirely from the Bible. You use a book to tell you how to act out your faith. It is religion. You might as well embrace the word because it defines organized christianity.
And who said anything about searching for the wisdoms of man? The point of the OP was that in a spiritual search what has been touted as the wisdoms of religion has been refuted by religion, itself.
The rest of your post goes back to my original response to you. Show me one iota of proof that the god you imagine exists and we'll have grounds for a meaningful dialogue. Anything that big and bad couldn't have stayed hidden for all of recorded history. There would be evidence of his existence.
If the physical world were spiritual it could not be exploited for profit. Therefore heaven must be someplace else.
Knolyourself, don't let ego catch you saying that?
But seriously, if you have eliminated your ego entirely, then you and the Father would be one. That would be something worth celebrating. But if your ego is tempting you with that idea, then... well, heaven help you!
I remember reading someplace that the great mathematician, Rene Descartes (famous for the profound "I think, therefore I am" and for Cartesian co-ordinates) once said, "Dieu en moi" (God in me). Imagine that; a scientist with a spiritual side.
The Nazarene teacher talked of the kingdom of Heaven being within you. Perhaps this is the same type of thing.
I have created a few miracles, only because I woke up for a few seconds or minutes, but the immortal slumber quickly overtook me again. (And all these pesky skeptics are pestering me for a repeat performance. Fat chance that. Proof they won't get because of their own egos. Egos don't deserve squat.)
But if you've gone the distance and awakened completely and stably, then you should be out performing miracles (not to show off, mind you), but to do good works to help people in need, especially spiritual need. Such acts would be one of stepping outside of religion and simply acting as a compassionate immortal (non-Homo sapiens).
Am I skeptical. Alas! There is some of that still in me. But putting my own skepticism aside, I'll say merely: You made it? Good! Then get busy and start using your newly re-acquired abilities.
If you mention your miracles one more time, im gonna have to think ego is getting the better of ya.
God produces miracles and only God. Miracles have nothing to do with getting rid of ego. God will allow miracles to be performed when God deems the instance acceptable. We cannot force God to do what we want just because we think we have side stepped our egos. Getting rid of ones ego is entirely dependent upon submission, something most ego abolishing beliefs do not comply with.
Doing good deeds is automatic of the Spirit of God and not acting as a compassionate immortal.. where do you get the idea of immortality?
It seems like your belief wants to do the things that God wants only without God and this is where Christiandom gets it: it is not by our works, i.e "I can be holy on my own", " I can get rid of ego and enjoy the Christ consciousness without Gods help". Even if you do, God will say He does not know you. You cannot side step the cross or ignore Gods son and work your way into heaven to wrestle a piece of property for your stay.
Yeah I have come to that realization myself the last year. I was brought up in a christian town, and the more I studied all religions, I became aware that there was things that man, and churches create in traditions and dogma, even making so many versions of bibles, and never agreeing with in their own religions on what is truth and right. It seemed when I put all the religions togther it was like a puzzle, and found that most people were missing the whole picture. We can all be right, but have the missing peice that others need in their spiritual growth.
No, I don't believe religion impedes anything. The problem is not religion or even science, but ego.
Humility is the antidote to ego.
I agree partially with Sherlock. The egotistical attachment that some religionists hold onto their own interpretations is holding things back. A 6000-year universe? That's a literal interpretation of a book that begs to be approached with humility and hard work -- not the laziness and arrogance of so many Christian Fundamentalists.
And even some scientists use ego in a similar manner. Just look at the "Clovis first" dogma debacle. Some scientists were afraid to dig below the Clovis horizon because what they might find there could jeopardize their careers. Sheesh! Science by intimidation? What will they think of next?
Again, the problem is ego, not religion or any -ism.
Have to agree with that, Ego is a big problem, and spiritual connection with God is letting go of the ego, it really is not logical.
I agree that ego is one of the primary problems. I see a great deal of ego in organized religion. But, it is also in science.
Religions may be a point of entry to understanding myths, metaphors, symbols, and archetypes, thereby gaining more self knowledge.
The problem is that those metaphors, symbols and archetypes don't need to be taken as literal truth 2,000 years later and thereby made usable to terrify and control the masses who do not know what an archetype is, or how to recognise psychosis in the written word.
The bible has become a source for post Jungian psychologists to harvest many aspects of the mass conscious, come to grips with extremes of sociopathic thought, the shadow or darker side of self, and in the case of the trinity, an aid to completing part of the process of individuation.
Religiosity is hard-wired psychologically for reasons that need to be understood if one is to grow as a human towards self knowledge.
Goddunnit is a useless thing to build one's life around, and religious indoctrination is a terrible mind numbing fate for an otherwise useful brain.
Yer invited to "imbibe" to Earn!
Bring Emile with ya...ok? She seems to know that I only brew the finest white light'nin...errr...spirits...
It's 8.55 am here mate.
OK what the hell, line one up for me buddy!
What's your poison Emile?
They've been making the heck out of Purple Passion here in the summer heat, but I'm ready to try qwark's poison. It might knock some sense into me and get me out of this crazy train of thought.
Yours was an interesting post, on the topic. I guess you probably think I lean toward a religious train of thought, from this thread. I don't think I do, but I do still believe there's more to each of us than just this physical shell, in this short span of a mortal lifetime. Or, at least I like to think so.
I agree. We certainly are complex and diverse. There are many recent discoveries coming to light about how we function. With the help of better brain imaging and other sciences, the vast understanding provided by Jung et al, we have an ever increasing knowledge of how we function.
Mental processes are better understood now than at any time in the past, and the real capacity of our minds is hinted at by the many people who have fantastic abilities that are coming to light with documentaries on savants and the like.
Exciting times to live in!
These are exciting times, and I do believe science is our best hope of unraveling the mysteries of the human psyche, and the only way we'll ever be able to lay these questions to rest.
I know some people think it's past the time, but I still wonder.
A psychologist friend makes an observation that I find interesting. He points out that man has been living while walking a razor edge always, yet we are still here, partly because of the unpredictable taking place.
Very interesting, Earnest. What constitutes your friend's "razor edge?" Is this similar to Somerset Maugham's "A Razor's Edge?"
The unpredictable challenges us and helps us to be stronger. Those who live in a shell, protected from the unpredictable, prove to be weak and incapable of surviving without their current infrastructure. I might just fit into that category, though I kinda think I might fare better than most. I have a crusty enough personality to withstand a fair amount of inconvenience.
One of the most fascinating television programs, "Connections," showed how civilization would likely crumble without the interdependent web of infrastructure supporting our daily lives. Only a few would be able to handle all of the unfamiliar unpredictability which would ensue from such a breakdown.
How would such a breakdown occur? There are many possibilities. Greed triggering financial chaos, triggering shortages, triggering squabbling for resources, triggering all-out war. Oops! Has this already started? Or religious wars (really, ego in disguise)? Misuse of antibiotics triggering resistant strains, triggering epidemics, ouch! Dependence on fossil fuels triggering global warming, triggering turbulence in climatic patterns (drought in some areas, flooding in others), triggering crop failures and loss of other resources, triggering widespread famine, triggering wars to acquire forcefully needed resources and food. Or perhaps a combination of all of the above. That indeed would be a razor's edge uncomfortable to walk.
I remember seeing a movie with Richard Widmark ("The Long Ships") which had a scene about a tall, vertical razor that an undesirable guest was invited to ride. Walking that kind of razor's edge wouldn't last long for most of us. Too many of us would be thinking of the typical consequences. That's how tough faith is to maintain. Most of us would not be able to walk that razor's edge without being cut.
Even the so-called faithful would be hard-pressed to perform such a miracle as surviving such a walk. The skeptic has even less a chance, because of the built-in bias, "doubt." If the story of Peter, walking on water is any indication, he started to sink the moment "doubt" returned.
So many skeptics have already asked me for proof of my own miracles. I'm not that good at it, yet. But even if I were, giving such proof to satisfy their ego is about as interesting as wearing pig poop. No thanks!
I look forward to learning more about your friend's "razor edge."
How odd that you claim this proof to satisfy your own ego, then proceed to attack any one who questions it as being ego-driven.
I think it is perfectly reasonable and rational to ask you to repeat this miracle you claim. What exactly is egotistical about wanting evidence before believing things that are impossible? If I claimed I could walk on water - wouldn't you ask to see? Or would you simply accept it as true?
I suppose this is why Christians are so easy to sell things to - as long as it reinforces their beliefs.
Earnest, you make some good points. Too many of the religious have far too much ego. Mindlessly following an indoctrination just because one wants to look good in the eyes of parents or peers is the very thing the Nazarene teacher was against. If there is a hell, too many Christians seem to be headed straight there because of their ego. And perhaps ego is a living hell, already. My ego certainly seems to be. I have far too much of it.
Being stuck in your body or even thinking that you are your body is a terrible waste of eternity. Brains are good and useful, but they're temporary. Take a step up from thinking 4-dimensionally (and especially 3-dimensionally).
I have rejected such indoctrination. I left my Southern Baptist grandfather's church more than 50 years ago. I had never experienced any spirituality within the church. Only since leaving it have I had the most profound spiritual experiences. Being outside of my Homo sapiens body, it's easy to see that this hunk of meat is not me. It's just my "vehicle" or "clothes" for the non-physical aspect of "me" -- and temporary at that.
That is a very good question. I am a Christian and I have often found myself considering the back breaking traditions of the churches overall. As I am a Christian I can only give a response in what I have experienced in believe.
We being both natural & spiritual beings are connect to both realities if you will. They co-exist together in harmony but when it comes to man's ideals of what is existence we find a battle being fought in our conscience. Mostly or all people search for meaning and it is 9 times out of 10 we look into some form of religious belief(s) to find out why does this battle even exist.
Well, to be honest there can be millions of answers given but I believe when we embrace the unknown by knowing the simplest form of principles of right & wrong we can simplicity found out what we are looking for. I for one believe anyone can reach spiritual awareness because we are spiritual beings as well as natural. Yet, I do not believe that it will do us any good because it will still leave us with many questions when we begin to see in our new conscious awareness. I personally have found out that when knowledge is given even more knowledge is required but when peace is given I am content in serving pure religion.
Holy Bible: James 1:27
Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world.
Religion does limit us from accessing our whole consciousness but this religion shows us our purpose and spiritual lifestyle. This being said by the humility of servitude we begin to deal with our own imperfections on various levels & secondly, by understanding that we being natural & spiritual beings we begin to realize that we already have an aware conscience. The key is that we've never looked in the mirror and realized it because we've looked at what is happening to us instead of our response that is the make-up of who we are.
I believe that pure religion is the foundation to become established in a living conscience thus a fully expressed emotion, pure & unbound servitude. I thought what I just put was a little to much but I realized that the greediest among us has a heart to help someone being unconsciously aware of it because it is outside of their nature. So think of someone who loves to do the work of charity. This person is the opposite of the other person & yet they are not living by a whole conscience either because they deal with other things that are keeping them from it. So we can see by our nature that we have lost sight of true spirituality.
The hardest thing for mankind to except is that their is an order in which we are live and this contradicts the lifestyle that we want. By nature we want to be in some forms wild and boundless in our actions so that our cravings are satisfied. Yet, we know that this would lead to the destruction of mankind as we know it. So we set laws both in religious and political arenas making our end come slowly so that we can enjoy as much as we can while we can.
Keith, the humility of which you speak is a really good thing. Too bad so many of the religious do not live up to it. And the point you made about visiting orphans and widows in their trouble, is good, but one needs to do it anonymously (not to the orphans and widows, obviously, but from your peers). To do good works publicly is an abomination, because it feeds ego, the master of this world.
And ego is what impedes progress on all fronts -- scientific, social, cultural, spiritual, etc.
The positive function of religion has been to keep alive the teachings that hold value. This is too often offset by the egotism the so-called religious express in their church-going lives.
Humility is a hard thing to do, especially for someone who wallows in ego all of the time and relishes it. I wallow in ego only every other Tuesday (I jest, but seriously I still have too much of this beast).
An artist does their best work when they let go of ego (attachments to what they've already created). Athletes find themselves in the zone more often when they let go of ego. Scientists make their biggest breakthroughs when they let go of ego, for "being right" (the domain of ego) has nothing to do with discovery. Finding spiritual truth can only be accomplished by subduing ego entirely, and this is accomplished with humility. As Earnest will attest, I have far too little of this.
I think it is a reasonable way to look at the high risk items on your list.
We really don't have a snowflakes hope in hell of surviving as a species. A common natural disaster could take us out in a heartbeat, yet somehow we have survived this long.
We have not survived very long at all in the great scheme of things. As soon as we developed agriculture we began the long slow process of destroying ourselves.
True Mark. We have only been here a short time in comparison to many other life forms yet since agriculture we have managed to screw the planet over big time in a few hundred years.
Wow, such a pessimist. How revealing.
And yet, the closeness of farming communities helped to afford us immunity to the diseases that such closeness subjected us to.
Civilization may be imperfect. Even democracy may be imperfect, but it serves a purpose. They both provide enough opportunity for creativity and philosophical discussion.
LOL I never said there was no opportunity for creativity and philosophical discussion. I see a lot of you religionists lie about what people actually said. Why is that? All it does is demonstrate that you are not capable of ethical behavior.
Of course I wouldn't expect you to be realistic - you believe in majik. Half the world is starving to death and the other half is killing itself by overeating. You spouting religious nonsense does nothing to change that.
You wouldn't understand. U R 2 busy causing conflict. Why wood U care? Innit
Causing conflict? What, because I've been brought up differently from you?
Sorry you do not understand. Oh well. I would try to explain, but that never works. Must be my inability to express myself adequately.
Even though Emily seems to be here as a troll, she does have a point that you are missing. Your religion holds you back. It prevents personal development.
It is a mistake to think that everyone who disagrees with you has a limited understanding.
My religion holds me back from what? My religion keeps me free from the slavery of the consumerist present. I don't need to feel pressure from the latest fad or scientific scare story. My house is filled with books and laughter and music. I'm not afraid of doubt, not because I've never have any, but because I have it regularly and it's part of life and learning. Secular fanaticism or religious fanaticism both come from a fear of doubt, and it is THAT which is the impediment to personal development.
Even with the misspelling, I assume the person referenced is me.
Explain yourself EG. You'd be doing me a service. I see you all calling each other trolls as soon as you have a disagreement. Now me. I'd like to know if the shoe fits.
Since you must be referencing the internet definition, this means I have elicited an emotional response. Explain to me why you are so emotional. Have I asked questions that go against your grain? Why would this bother you? Am I making statements that upset you? Why would my opinion be of any consequence to you?
And, one more question. If I have caused you any consternation, why would you not adress the issue head on?
Earnest, logically, I think you're right in most respects. I don't know who's list you're talking about (mine perhaps?), but agree with the thrust of your argument.
If religion is all about bonking each other over the head with "I'm right and you're wrong" (ego), then combined with all the other opportunities for selfishness, especially if civilization infrastructure is compromised, then yes, we're easily doomed.
SAVED BY THE WILD-CARD
But there are a few obvious things that spiritual leaders have brought to the bargaining mix that change the odds in our favor, but only if we let go of the burning need to "be right" and to "make others wrong." I know, I know. That's tough even for me. But it's possible.
Science deals with continuity. If we did not have such continuity, science would never have repeatable experiments. Thank goodness for continuity.
THE BURDEN OF CONTINUITY
But on the flip side, continuity fuels such things as blood feuds, because they are based on a very continuity-entrenched artifact -- namely, ego. Holding onto resentments is tough to break. And surprisingly that's where the better side of religion comes in handy. And I say "better side" cautiously, because religion, as you well know, has presented so many ugly and evil sides, too -- arguably, all ego-based.
Better side? I'm talking about the aspect of discontinuity (not chaos, mind you). For example, blood feuds are fueled by resentment and held in place by ego. If someone were to use the philosophy of the Nazarene teacher to "turn the other cheek" or to "walk the extra mile" for the Roman soldier, then they would be breaking with ego and the continuity to which it adheres. A simpler way of saying this is simply, "forgiveness."
Well, that word is a loaded concept, now isn't it? Too few people ever actually forgive. They don't know how. And to be completely honest, I've only been able to do it once this lifetime. We really have to pull ourselves up by our spiritual bootstraps to accomplish such discontinuity. Ego is that strong.
HOW STEEP A CHALLENGE?
Earnest, if you were faced with vertical razor to "slide" down, would you be able to retain your calm demeanor? That's how difficult it is sometimes to gain the state of mind for creating miracles. Is it possible? You bet it is. Is it likely? Not at all. It takes a great deal of effort (I guess) to stop efforting. That's the best way I can describe it in English, but even that is not entirely accurate. We don't have an adequate language for it.
Hah! I just realized that my 1977 incident was actually several miracles wrapped into one event.
True forgiveness almost never happens, because people tend to hold onto the resentment. If they continue to bitch about something (some perceived injustice), then they haven't forgiven. They're still attached to the ball and chain.
THE HEART OF THE WILD-CARD
Several months ago I realized that I had forgiven the six drivers who had almost caused accidents (Anatomy of a Miracle). I had completely forgotten their trespass. I had only love for them for participating in that grand experiment, and they were the first drivers who had moved their vehicles out of the way in that soon to be 2-mile empty stretch in the midst of bumper-to-bumper, rush hour traffic.
The realization that I had forgiven them so thoroughly took me by surprise. And that forgiveness was actually the second "miracle." The first was my taking 100% responsibility for their intrusions. A person can only be a victim if they give some responsibility to the perpetrator. Wow, and I took it all. Removing that vulnerability, even only conceptually, helped to leverage the true self to a state of temporary wakefulness -- a living source of creation.
I can't take credit for any of those miracles, because currently ego is alive and kicking. Taking credit would be an error of giving that credit to the wrong source. Ego had nothing to do with it.
DISCONTINUITY TO THE RESCUE
Earnest, that's the kind of discontinuity that could save civilization. We see this kind of discontinuity in heroes, when they risk their lives to save their fellows. Audie Murphy, the most decorated soldier in WWII (and under-age when he joined), said merely that the enemy was killing his friends. He had no other reason for risking it all, than to save his friends.
If life is only balance sheets, Newtonian action-reaction, and meat bodies, then yes, we're so totally doomed. And it is sheer dumb luck that we've lasted this long.
KINDNESS IN NOT PROVING SUCH THINGS
But you haven't been outside your Homo sapiens shell, have you Earnest? Do you still think that's all there is to you? And would it prove too traumatic, psychologically, if you were to find your true self separated from your physical body?
Some people might go crazy over such an event. I wouldn't wish that on you, or even our dear friend, E.G. That kind of proof would serve no purpose and would do more harm than anything.
I find it difficult enough just being who I am and identifying the "I am."
There are many unexplained phenomena, many human actions that are outside normal experience such as synchronicity that are difficult to understand with logic.
There are well documented "super human" feats by savants and the autistic.
There are life forms that live in the most hostile environments imaginable.
A patient of Carl Gustav Jung's used to hide the meaning of his dreams in elaborate mathematics way beyond his conscious knowledge.
Men and women have done great things that are difficult to grasp, but none of them require belief in an entity other than self to be understood.
That which is unconscious to us for the most part can leap out and display intelligence beyond our scope of understanding, but no god is required to understand the basics of the subconscious or unconscious mind's ability to create such a god.
Hey Karl, thanks for the response. I agree to what you said about people's ego but I also agree that any good work can be tainted by the misguidance of man's conception. There are many things that we can do that will help us but when it comes to our motives is where we will determine what type of gain that we want. Anything we do can give us a egotistic mentality or if we have the right motives and stay true of the reason why we are doing these things in the first place then we will not publicize ourselves in our ego. Instead, we can just have confidence in who we are.
From my perspective egoism is from people who are study trying to be better than someone else because they are unconfident in who they are and or trying to be the best at their skill. We also can't forget trying to impress someone. This is because they do not have confidence and contentment in their own ability. I am not saying that striving to be the best is a bad thing but having the right motives is the way to live a healthy, emotional and spiritual lifestyle. When all is said and done wherever we are in life we can say in sincerity that we have done our best and have no regrets.
throw logic out the window-
Divinity is awe-some
we all need religion, but we must find our own- it is the unenlightened masses that argue over the terminology we use to describe IT!
Religion/spirituality is a great thing if it offers you comfort in dealing with the unexplained. If you're going to church, however, not out of genuine spiritual fulillment but out of fear, it will likely inhibit whatever spiritual progress you are capable of. One needs to find one's own truth, because that is where one's spiritual essence exists.
You're right. I work with a woman who's world came unraveled and, even though she drives me crazy now with the christian push, it's been good for her. That community has helped her find some peace. But that type of thing isn't what I would see as a spiritual search. People who have an emotional need that drives them into the arms of religion are no more ready for a spiritual search than the one who is afraid. I wouldn't think.
Do You Think Religion Impedes the Evolution of Consciousness?
I don't think that the truthful religion impedes consciousness; rather it perfects it.
if the evolution of consciousness is inherent by design, then religion does not impede what is inherent, it simply defines it on a broad scale for the masses. One spectrum of the scale that is. The other side is balanced by the fewer. stay big in your thinking-example-the coomments of agriculture may appear to be true, but do not take in consideration that when necessity becomes the mother of invention, a likely super nutrient food source will be developed to take us all to the "next level". going back thousands of years you can see us evolve in many areas of life-not from other species mind you, within our own.
"Where is this interconnected human consciousness located?" Your living in it.
I think religion impedes thinking.
If a child is not indoctrinated their IQ has a sporting chance.
For example, when told by a classmate that god made everything, one of the twins immediately asked her "Who made God?"
She was only 5 at the time.
"How and where are they interconnected?" I see you and write back. Is that not interconnected
I'm guessin' you must be lonely then. I know you
but you don't know me.
It doesn't help me! I have been tryin to get this damn hippo to fly to days now!
I am beginning to think she lacks wingspan.
Now let's get back to the sensible religious discussion we aren't gonna have.
You can totally make hippos fly. There are people in the government and in business that are paid to make hippos fly. I also know people who have paid to make money disappear, but I dont think they do that with magic.
Do You Think Religion Impedes the Evolution of Consciousness?
No; I don't think religion impedes evolution of consiousness; it rather supports it.
Unless one sees an anomaly in the nature occuring frequently; correcting that anomaly and adjusting to the truth is the truthful religion; religion supports it.
Life isn't a religion. Religion and it's followers choose to be ignorant about learning that beliefs are never suppose to be permanently in place.
Life is ever changing and one must bend/change with the time. If not, then it becomes apparent that they don't understand themselves or the life they are living.
Are we assuming that consciousness is the "goal" or "purpose" of evolution?
What do savants teach us about access to the might of our subconscious minds?
Are we about to find out with the latest in brain imaging?
How much difference would it make to the world if you had the capacity to fly over London, then draw the whole city from memory as one savant can?
These are the questions that indicate we are ready to confront that which is of real significance in our intellectual revolution, not some ridiculous psychotic nonsense from the stone age, that was never anything more than a glimpse at the shadow aspect of the collective self.
savants - people who have mental abilities that could only be characterized as superhuman (like having photographic memory, playing music perfectly after hearing it just once, or doing complex mathematical calculations in one's head) but otherwise severely disabled in every day cognitive functions and social interaction.
I guess this shows that society around us, the world we have created, hinders intellectual capacities. One has to be separate from the world to achieve higher consciousness - isn't that what Christ taught among other things.
I would say, on the other hand, that it shows that when the power of the human mind is directed to only one thing it can transcend the efforts of those that try to do it all.
Society recognizes this and helps that individual by taking up the slack and doing the things for him that he then can't do. You must be a part of the world, and have society ready and willing to provide support, to accomplish such things. God won't do it - the savant will starve to death while playing masterpieces on the piano - but man can and does.
I am excited to discover where the new imaging processes take us.
Perhaps there is a bridge to be discovered.
As for savants and their difficulties, from what I have seen it is more our expectations than anything else.
Some people can't use parts of their body or mind, and I would respectfully submit that that use of mind limitation is amply demonstrated on these threads at times.
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