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Spiritualism

Re: Spiritualism
September 16, 2013, 05:25:55 AM
I read a blog post, the other day, by a Christian, who informed me that Christians had decided how they wanted things to be, and so that was the way it was.
Even though what Christians wanted was absurd in the extreme, and bore no slight resemblance to the way things actually are.
That's often the result of religion.
And in that way, religion is quite similar to leftism.

Yes, that is right, religion is similar to leftism. Leftism purports itself to be a way of life as do all religions. The difference? Leftism is fundamentally unsustainable, and religion provably sustainable. It works. Man flourishes for religion and recedes without. You are wrong that this is the result of religion, this is the sign of the decay of religion; the state when lies dominate truth. Another sign is the preponderance of those who say we can do without.

Yet the argument for religion is not a pragmatic one, rather this is a hint towards its truth. Beyond religion and behind it is the same thing, only one is more long-winded.

Re: Spiritualism
September 16, 2013, 05:49:32 AM
Religion (at lest Christianity) produced leftism. If by 'leftism' we mean the completely ass-backwards conception of divinity known as 'humanism'.

Spend time with catholic or protestant people. There is no hint of trascendence outside of self-sacrifice for the poor, for your family, or for the daily grind of domestic chores. This is all well and good, but I would argue that it's an impoverished spiritualism. It's an asceticism that goes no higher than the human realm. No mysticism, no awe, no art, no beauty, no fixing of the gaze ABOVE (as opposed to beside) and beyond yourself - unless to pray for eternal life.

Christianity, as a form of spritualism (or transcendental worldview), is also lacking insofar as it has trouble equipping people with what they need - which is a form of mental strengthening, of a sort that we might think was more prevalent in other times. The reason that it struggles here is because its theory of reality, its ontology, is stuck in the dark ages....  It's hard to enjoy the genuine emotional/spiritual scaffolding that Christianity offers (assurance of afterlife, communion with God, etc) when other parts of the theology are in blatant, stupid contradiction with what is known about reality. It's simply problematic.


Re: Spiritualism
September 16, 2013, 05:55:42 AM
That's an amazing comment. Food for consideration.
Squawk!

Re: Spiritualism
September 16, 2013, 08:00:21 AM
Christianity itself was the product of Judaism and greek philosophy.

The enlightenment was born of science and a changing economic landscape. Atheism played its part - and morally self-righteous intellectuals, who were extremely sure of themselves about what exactly was real (science) and what wasn't (superstition).

From this came 'humanism'.

'Humanism' is christianity as pure moralism - without God, Christ or reality. It is christianity as not-christianity - religion that is not religion.

But is this all the fault of christianity as such? Is christianity a self-destructive religion? Jesus dying on the cross seems to say 'yes' - and his resurection seems to say 'no'.

- Some say that the resurection was a later addition to the story, though... Jesus may not have spoken as literally as some of his disciples thought.

Re: Spiritualism
September 16, 2013, 09:46:38 AM
Christianity itself was the product of Judaism and greek philosophy.

The enlightenment was born of science and a changing economic landscape. Atheism played its part - and morally self-righteous intellectuals, who were extremely sure of themselves about what exactly was real (science) and what wasn't (superstition).

Science isn't so much a label for a class of phenemona that is deemed 'real'. It's a methodology for coming to an inter-subjective consensus on what is real.

Science has played a part in de-spiritualisation, if this is what we're now talking about, but only in so far as a genuine, transcendental spiritualism is bound up with probably false notions of reality - i.e. supernatural agents like gods, spirits and ghosts, and that sort of thing.

We are not going to rid ourselves of science. It's just too successfull in modelling reality and doing shit in the world based on this knowledge (which, to people like me, is pragmatic proof of it's objectivity when compared with, say, the ontology endorsed by ancient apostles).

The question becomes: are the prospects for a genuinely upward looking spiritualism incompatible with a modern scientific ontology? I am an atheist, i guess, but feel zero affinity for the 'new-atheism' movement. So, at the very least, I don't see that atheism is necessarily tied up with humanism. I would never take the soviet union as a model for emulation, but it at least showed that atheism is not necessary tied up with humanism on the social level. (However, here some would argue that the soviet union represent the most downward, crushing, materialistic extreme imaginable - and would associate this with its atheism)

Must transcendence on any admirable social scale be attached to dubious metaphysical premises? I hope not, or we're all doomed to be watching big brother and listening to Pitbull for some time. Again, though, I question the connection - because my own advancement into 'higher realms' - of art, literature, feeling, was associated with the time in my life where my learning about the natural world was increasing.

Re: Spiritualism
September 16, 2013, 10:30:21 PM
Science has played a part in de-spiritualisation, if this is what we're now talking about, but only in so far as a genuine, transcendental spiritualism is bound up with probably false notions of reality - i.e. supernatural agents like gods, spirits and ghosts, and that sort of thing.

You are right. There is no way of classifying stuff like gods, spirits and ghosts as real by using the scientific method. But they can still be called real on some level (yes, I like Jung).

Science created a hard divide between imagination and reality, which really isn't all that realistic. I'm sure you've noticed the strikingly religious attitude of the New Atheists, which is probably why you dislike them? These people relate emotions of a highly irrational nature to science of all things. These types of frenzies used to belong to the religious sphere.

You can take the religion away - what used to keep it afloat will still be there.

I don't have anything against science as such. But it is no cure for irrationality. Science just convinced us, that we've 'progressed' to a state beyond superstition, when many are in fact still highly susceptible to boogeymen of all sorts.

The smart thing about religion is, that it channels these emotions into a system, where they become somewhat controllable (not always).

But I also think that religion in the classical sense is a dead end.

Quote
The question becomes: are the prospects for a genuinely upward looking spiritualism incompatible with a modern scientific ontology?

I don't beleive so. I just think we need some sort of reinventing of myth. Science is about cause and effect. Myth isn't. Both are (different) ways of approaching reality, which in itself is infinitely more.

Re: Spiritualism
September 17, 2013, 04:51:12 AM
Hm. What is it about Myth that is psychological/emotional/spiritual (to be metaphysically neutral :) ) viagra?

Re: Spiritualism
September 17, 2013, 02:19:22 PM
Myth is the default condition of our psyche, the way we interpret the world, the natural state of man. Whether that leads one to call it incidental or look for a deeper reason why that should be so is beyond me, but it certainly cannot be dispensed with.

Re: Spiritualism
September 17, 2013, 05:22:48 PM
I'll jump in here uninvited to add the following:

Interesting comment by Imposition on christianity, I actually read a book called Fosforos, very good occult treatise, that touches on this ( while also quoting the gospels all along the book ). But the problem is, with all the escapism and drug-offering that is available today and corrupting the youth, transcendence through sacrifice and helping the family may be the best way to go.

If not, a too-subjective "peak experience" "ecstasy", etc... is offered that may be harmful and illusory, especially if mixed with the false ecstasies of drug Abuse.

I agree with you - especially in protestant faith a more transcendental "realm" is needed - but one must be careful not to promote escapism and too much seeking for experience or ecstasy without hard work. I was in this mistake until quite some time. I still am actually, but now I'm aware of the bullshit.

I hope I made myself clear.
You're quite hostile.

I got a right to be hostile, man, my people been persecuted!

Re: Spiritualism
September 19, 2013, 05:49:37 PM
Given the right amount of focus and hard work, reality can become psychedelic in a way, that goes beyond what drugs ever could induce.

From this state, a lot of aspects (or 'powers'/'energies' if you will) of existence become apparent, that wasn't noticable before. These are the real 'objects' of mythology. They are no less real than rocks or trees, but they exist on another plane, namely in the souls of men.

Seemingly small things - the desires, wishes and dreams of the individual - are extremely powerful on the collective level. For no man ever dreams, wishes or desires alone - even though he may believe these things to belong to his own, most intimate being.

Some of these 'powers' are destructive, some productive and some are neutral. They used to be called gods, demons, devils, spirits, what have you.

A society without mythology is a society that has no concept of, how it is behaving on the grand scale. It's a society that doesn't know right from wrong, and therefore confuses the two.

Think liberalism, and it's fiercely literalistic stance on all things religious. 

Re: Spiritualism
September 21, 2013, 06:44:50 AM
A society without mythology is a society that has no concept of, how it is behaving on the grand scale. It's a society that doesn't know right from wrong, and therefore confuses the two.

Think liberalism, and it's fiercely literalistic stance on all things religious.

Myth is the default condition of our psyche, the way we interpret the world, the natural state of man. Whether that leads one to call it incidental or look for a deeper reason why that should be so is beyond me, but it certainly cannot be dispensed with.

Reasonable. Now, What is myth? What about it makes it the default condition of human experience?

What are some good books on this issue? Jung?

Re: Spiritualism
September 21, 2013, 06:47:39 AM
I'll jump in here uninvited to add the following:

Interesting comment by Imposition on christianity, I actually read a book called Fosforos, very good occult treatise, that touches on this ( while also quoting the gospels all along the book ). But the problem is, with all the escapism and drug-offering that is available today and corrupting the youth, transcendence through sacrifice and helping the family may be the best way to go.

If not, a too-subjective "peak experience" "ecstasy", etc... is offered that may be harmful and illusory, especially if mixed with the false ecstasies of drug Abuse.

I agree with you - especially in protestant faith a more transcendental "realm" is needed - but one must be careful not to promote escapism and too much seeking for experience or ecstasy without hard work. I was in this mistake until quite some time. I still am actually, but now I'm aware of the bullshit.

I hope I made myself clear.

Yep, thank you.

What is this hard work you speak of, which is required?

Re: Spiritualism
September 21, 2013, 11:15:02 AM
On the immediate level, myths are the stories we tell ourselves about that, which cannot be explained: Life and death, desire and fulfillment, emptiness, enlightenment and so on.

These stories can be interpreted in many ways, and can be said to mean many different things. But in the end, myth is irreducible. It cannot be summed up as-, or reduced to anything but what it is: A narrative of mystical origins. Stories.

There are always more things going on than what is apparent.

Take a lifestory, for example:

On the one hand I would say, that what I am writing now, the understanding and perspective that I am communicating, is caused by certain experiences, that allowed me to see things from a certain angel. These experiences unrolled in a certain order, and each played its important part in my forming of a worldview. And this worldview is the basis of what I am writing just now.

But on the other hand: What's a 'life'? There was no one specific thing that caused all of my experiences. Many different people, places, ideas, mind- and bodystates were involved, and each played their own part in making each experience exactly what it was. Without any one part, it would have been something else.

Yet I wouldn't say that my life could be summed up- or reduced to any one of the things, that made up my experiences. Each and every one thing was what it was, in order to make the whole exactly what it is - whatever the whole of life may be.

From the very same experiences, I could have told different story. And if I had arrieved at a different perspective, I would have told a different story. I would have been writing something else, communicating a different worldview.

I am not, though. For no matter how I look at it, I can't be anything but what I am. No matter what story I choose to tell. I could say it was something different, something else - but it wouldn't be. My experiences would still be my experiences, and my life would still be my life.

That's life.

The same and different for everyone. Thus in conflict with the principle of non-contradiction. Therefore it cannot be the object of science. But it's still the most important thing there is, though it is vague and hard to grasp - like a dream.

A good book for those seeking to understand myth is Jungs Dreams, memories, reflections. An 'autobiography', but not in the traditional sense. It's a recollection of life as he experienced it. As stated in the foreword: It's him telling the myth of his life. The lifestory of a man, who was a mystery to himself.

As we all are, on one level or another.

Re: Spiritualism
September 21, 2013, 03:53:17 PM
That was a pretty damned good attempt to convey the un-conveyable. Nice  :)
Squawk!

Re: Spiritualism
September 22, 2013, 08:05:31 AM
...a personality, a consciousness. It is hubris to ascribe such to ourselves but not to the existence which encompasses us
My goodness, this was an elegant insight. Never looked at it that way before. After all, just how tangible is "consciousness" in the first place? It's certainly not a physical object. It's barely definable, if at all. You certainly possess a different personality than you did ten years ago, and yet your identity remains the same - you still claim to be the same your-self.

And we keep concerning ourselves only with whether things "beneath" us, such as dogs and elephants, have consciousness... What arrogance to assume that we are the uppermost tier of being itself. Not that I think these investigations are pointless, not at all - but even asking the question displays an innate narcissism.
HE WHO REAPS STORMS, SOWS WINDS. HE WHO SOWS WINDS, REAPS STORMS.

"It is better to go to a house of mourning than to go to a house of feasting, for death is the destiny of every man; the living should take this to heart."
-Ecclesiastes 7:2