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The spiritual quest

Re: The spiritual quest
April 11, 2012, 02:35:46 PM
Transix,

I'm not sure what you were responding to your most recent reply to me, but it seems the direction of my post was not related to the direction of your thought, and it is entirely possible that my first post was only a response to my thoughts and not yours. My apologies.

In retrospect, my post is completely useless, or worse than useless, as it discounts the current possibility of understanding.  Your only use for my perspective is as a counterargument to rebuff.

You break the concept of time and eternity into a series of alternatives, each having causality and location/direction/geometry as their fundamental property. It is clear to me that eternity and universe itself contains but is not contained by these concepts, although it is fully natural for a human to think so [A Priori concepts Kant/Schopenhauer]. I do not propose to know what the fundamental reality is, just that the concepts break down at certain points [the non MADGJICAKL quantum data], therefore they are not fundamental aspects of reality. [I am currently working through the physics and am in no way a guru.]

My argument will entirely fall apart if you can demonstrate a way to use the available tools to solve a very difficult question, or to demonstrate a fact related to your point. White holes may do this, although they just push the question back further.


Re: The spiritual quest
April 11, 2012, 04:21:53 PM
Quote
If it were necessary or useful to prove the Absolute, the objective and trans-personal character of the human Intellect would be a sufficient testimony, for this Intellect is the indisputable sign of a purely spiritual first Cause, a Unity infinitely central but containing all things, an Essence at once immanent and transcendent. It has been said more than once that total Truth is inscribed in an eternal script in the very substance of our spirit; what the different Revelations do is to “crystallize” and “actualize”, in different degrees according to the case, a nucleus of certitudes that not only abides forever in the divine Omniscience, but also sleeps by refraction in the “naturally supernatural” kernel of the individual, as well as in that of each ethnic or historical collectivity or the human species as a whole.
 (…) The essential function of human intelligence is discernment between the Real and the illusory or between the Permanent and the impermanent, and the essential function of the will is attachment to the Permanent or the Real. This discernment and this attachment are the quintessence of all spirituality; carried to their highest level or reduced to their purest substance, they constitute the underlying universality in every great spiritual patrimony of humanity, or what may be called the religio perennis; this is the religion to which the sages adhere, one which is always and necessarily founded upon formal elements of divine institution.

I like this, but have difficulties with the "essential functions" sentence: I'd much prefer the phrase "the false and the true" to "the Real and the illusory" or "the Permanent and the impermanent", and I don't see how the Will is incapable of detaching itself from Permanence/Reality (as it clearly does, in many cases).  Or, is "function" being used in an Aristotelian sense, to mean (effectively) "proper usage"?

Re: The spiritual quest
April 11, 2012, 04:45:12 PM
I like this, but have difficulties with the "essential functions" sentence: I'd much prefer the phrase "the false and the true" to "the Real and the illusory" or "the Permanent and the impermanent", and I don't see how the Will is incapable of detaching itself from Permanence/Reality (as it clearly does, in many cases).

That substitution is not implausible, although it would distort the meaning slightly.  All of Schuon's work is based on traditionalist metaphysics which is based on Advaita Vedanta, so the terms can be understood as referring to concepts from that school (Atma and Maya).  The Real is the unchanging principle which underlies a world which appears to be in constant flux.  The intelligence makes this distinction, the will directs the whole being towards the Real which means that every aspect of the individual is brought into harmony with it.

Or, is "function" being used in an Aristotelian sense, to mean (effectively) "proper usage"?

Yes.

Phoenix

Re: The spiritual quest
April 12, 2012, 12:25:56 AM
I hope you've learned something from this Transix, generally speaking, posting lengthy philosophical texts on forums is a waste of time.  Usually people do something like respond to the title of the thread without reading the post.  

As I said in my initial post, "I write this in order to more fully illustrate where I'm coming from in my forum exchanges with you". I was just sharing.

I appreciate your reply, and you gave me a real face-palm moment: I do need to define the word "Eternity" more clearly for the reader! I neglected this.

Re: The spiritual quest
April 29, 2012, 05:39:26 PM
Because of our ignorance (avijja) of these Noble Truths, because of our inexperience in framing the world in their terms, we remain bound to samsara, the wearisome cycle of birth, aging, illness, death, and rebirth. Craving propels this process onward, from one moment to the next and over the course of countless lifetimes, in accordance with kamma (Skt. karma), the universal law of cause and effect. According to this immutable law, every action that one performs in the present moment — whether by body, speech, or mind itself — eventually bears fruit according to its skillfulness: act in unskillful and harmful ways and unhappiness is bound to follow; act skillfully and happiness will ultimately ensue.[13] As long as one remains ignorant of this principle, one is doomed to an aimless existence: happy one moment, in despair the next; enjoying one lifetime in heaven, the next in hell.

The Buddha discovered that gaining release from samsara requires assigning to each of the Noble Truths a specific task: the first Noble Truth is to be comprehended; the second, abandoned; the third, realized; the fourth, developed. The full realization of the third Noble Truth paves the way for Awakening: the end of ignorance, craving, suffering, and kamma itself; the direct penetration to the transcendent freedom and supreme happiness that stands as the final goal of all the Buddha's teachings; the Unconditioned, the Deathless, Unbinding — Nibbana (Skt. Nirvana).

Because the roots of ignorance are so intimately entwined with the fabric of the psyche, the unawakened mind is capable of deceiving itself with breathtaking ingenuity. The solution therefore requires more than simply being kind, loving, and mindful in the present moment. The practitioner must equip him- or herself with the expertise to use a range of tools to outwit, outlast, and eventually uproot the mind's unskillful tendencies. For example, the practice of generosity (dana) erodes the heart's habitual tendencies towards craving and teaches valuable lessons about the motivations behind, and the results of, skillful action. The practice of virtue (sila) guards one against straying wildly off-course and into harm's way. The cultivation of goodwill (metta) helps to undermine anger's seductive grasp. The ten recollections offer ways to alleviate doubt, bear physical pain with composure, maintain a healthy sense of self-respect, overcome laziness and complacency, and restrain oneself from unbridled lust. And there are many more skills to learn.

The good qualities that emerge and mature from these practices not only smooth the way for the journey to Nibbana; over time they have the effect of transforming the practitioner into a more generous, loving, compassionate, peaceful, and clear-headed member of society. The individual's sincere pursuit of Awakening is thus a priceless and timely gift to a world in desperate need of help.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/bullitt/theravada.html

Re: The spiritual quest
April 29, 2012, 05:48:03 PM
Can you say that in ten words, or less?

Phoenix

Re: The spiritual quest
April 29, 2012, 07:52:35 PM
Can you say that in ten words, or less?

Of course tardocaust could, but he chose to say it in more words. Short phrases are useful, but they only point the way, they don't elaborate on it in detail. But I'll bite, I'll say it in ten words or less:

Quote
To understand the way, read tardocaust's aforementioned post.

Nice and succinct.

Re: The spiritual quest
April 30, 2012, 01:07:33 PM
I will never sign on for any religion that denies reality. Physical reality isn't just a thought, it's real. Live it or drop out. If we're lucky there's more and death is not the end, but I've never seen any conclusive proof of this or even a good reason why it exists.

Re: The spiritual quest
May 02, 2012, 04:36:09 AM
The idea is to live as-if there is continuation, after life.
Imagine living as a complete waste of space, then discovering that after death, there were continuing consequences of your wasted life.
Anyway: proof is neither here, nor there. Does an embryo require proof of life before it is born?
I have proved, to myself, and quite by accident, that there is no final death.
Ergo, I live in the certainty of what follows, following.
Not that life has much to do with the state that comes after: it is more a case of N/A.
It is very different.
And very pleasant.

Re: The spiritual quest
May 02, 2012, 12:01:42 PM
How do you know? What happened?

Re: The spiritual quest
May 02, 2012, 05:11:21 PM
I don't 'know' anything.
I've experienced pure consciousness, and observed that it lives independently of the mind and body.
Everything is imbued with it. It is, in fact, what everything is.
It is what the word 'God' alludes to.

Re: The spiritual quest
May 03, 2012, 01:18:36 AM
I agree, that is somewhat what I have  experienced myself.