Politics, God and Religion vs. Science

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Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Feb 23, 2013 - 09:45pm PT
Interesting that in the recent past the mystical types were accusing the science types of sounding elitist and now that the conversation has shifted, the mystical types are accused of the same thing. My guess is that it speaks more to the nature of specialization than to any personality traits.

One thing that has always struck me about the Indo-Tibetan tradition is that those cultures had much more time on their hands than we do. Wrapped up under a blanket meditating is about all you can do in a long Tibetan winter with no electricity unless you choose the other popular alternative which is huddle up with friends and drink a lot. In India, nobody goes anywhere during the monsoon unless they have a modern paved road, and the winters are months of leisure as well.

It makes sense to me that modern Western practitioners of ancient forms of meditation would be more interested in integrating them into normal life at an earlier stage. We've had books like Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance and now it sounds like healyje could write a book on The Zen of Life. In the traditional scheme of things, integrating life with enlightenment is the highest form of development in this life, but it was thought that this shouldn't be attempted until after full enlightenment. In those cultures the pull of extended family obligations and the pressures to marry and the lack of contraception did probably mean the end of time alone. In our more individualistic and technological society, it seems we can manage both.

And finally, how refreshing to be able to discuss these topics without dragging religion into it!
healyje

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
Feb 23, 2013 - 10:20pm PT
...shouldn't be attempted until after full enlightenment...

I like to think of that as being as attainable as a sub-hour run up the Nose.
MH2

climber
Feb 24, 2013 - 01:12am PT
On spirituality and related matters, having recently seen Art of Freedom, I'm reminded how mountains and high altitude in particular sometimes lift people into a different mental state. I got dizzy just from hearing how many bivouacs they made above 8,000 meters. There were other times but it was the sunsets and fading colors up high that were most often mentioned as being unexpectedly beautiful and moving. Maybe it has a bit to do with not knowing if you will see morning.

There is a nice contrast between Kucuczka the Catholic and Kurtyka the ponderer of mountain experience. The subjects of the film all have personalities that differ in interesting ways but they all went through moments, and sometimes days, when cold, wind, and dangerous strenuous climbing in thin air nearly or fully killed them. The ones that survived the climbs usually returned for more.

Climbing is one way to experience the disappearance of the self as an observer, and to feel no separation between yourself and what is around you. It can also make you feel grateful for what there is, including other people, at least until you come down again.

High altitude seems to promote the experience.

http://www.culture.pl/web/english/pdp-full/-/eo_event_asset_publisher/HPh6/content/art-of-freedom

go-B

climber
Hebrews 1:3
Feb 24, 2013 - 04:52pm PT
We just lost our little buddy, Peanut aka Chicky to sickness!

Your family, friends and pets mean everything in the end!

The bright lights of love in our lives, giving ourselves to each other, is a gift!

I long for the day when in the perfection of heaven, we remember our sorrows no more!

photo not found
Missing photo ID#291350
jogill

climber
Colorado
Feb 24, 2013 - 05:24pm PT
RIP Peanut. These litle guys are precious gifts.
Norton

Social climber
the Wastelands
Feb 24, 2013 - 05:42pm PT
Cintune:

Falling back on the privileged elitism of secret knowledge is one of the oldest charlatan's tricks in the book

Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Feb 24, 2013 - 06:52pm PT
Well i was just about to foresake this thread to eternal hell but as usual I heard something that rang a bell. If anyone is at all still wondering what I keep blathering on about maybe this may work for you, especially seeing as it comes from a source of expertise rather than just some nail pounding blue collar fathead. Hell, it damn near makes me want to sign up for Judaism!

http://www.cbc.ca/tapestry/?cmp=keymatch

Tapestry is on every sunday P.M on CBC radio. Usually its just a bunch of the usual wishy washy hog wash but every now and then there is some Blasphemous stuff worth listening to. The whole hour is pretty good this time but the first session with the Rabbi was fascinating.... god damn his soul to hell

Sorry to hear about your peanut Go-B

edit: Get a load of this - the guy says "God is reality itself"...... So then science is as much a study of God as anything else we got going? In fact, at this point it is by far the best study of god?
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Feb 24, 2013 - 08:30pm PT
2nd, as we are all about the same age it is entirely possible that we all have equal "experience" in the matter, if not equal expertise.


Would anyone ever say the same for people studying science? That our mean age would determine our expertise and expertise in the matter? Or does science require a certain degree of rigor and natural acumen with the subject to have any meaningful expertise at all. Are you suggesting that there is no such rigor and knack per spiritual practices? That's a strange angle to take, since any discipline I've even been party to has those with natural talent for the subject, and a rigorous curriculum, and teachers, et al. From baseball, to music, to climbing to (fill in the blank). For example, I love music but I was never terrific at it. The idea that I am just as good as Josh Redman (sax) or Randy Brecker (trumpet) simply because I'm the same age is, again, a fantastic notion to someone (me) who can't get a sound out of a trumpet.

JL
Norwegian

Trad climber
the tip of god's middle finger
Feb 24, 2013 - 08:39pm PT
sweet werner,
f*#k you.

you bullhorn your existential experience;
your spiritual prowess.

dude you may have traveled proudly
upon stone.
even super, proudly you've traveled upon stone.

though it is not your entitlement to
transfer your mountain prowess upon
our community's attempt at detangling wonder.

you, werner,
are a coward.
and your immature self-proclamation of knowledge
only magnifies your core weakness.

go crawl down a ditch, punk.
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Feb 24, 2013 - 08:44pm PT
fair comment. I don't know really as I have not embarked on a disciplined study of either spirituality or science. But when we listen to Michael Brecker or Jaco or Hendrix or Bach we have all over time developed at least some half assed ability to discern what sets them apart from the american Idol line up. But then can one actually articulate the difference? Probably not but if we are going to knock it around we have to try right?

All I know is this Rabbi guy does a better job of articuating the "ideas" that I was wrestling with, which has less to do with the actual existence of spirituality so much as how it translates to political / religious dogma, or if in fact it should at all.
BLUEBLOCR

Social climber
joshua tree
Feb 24, 2013 - 09:08pm PT
Hi go-B!
i,m really sorry for your loss.. Thanks for sharing.
i can really sympethize with you brother. i just lost my bestbuddy Jake
a few months back. i was the type of owner that took my dog everywhere
i went. He followed me around for 11yrs. Remembering now what i missed most
were his eyes. Besides the different tones of his barks. He had to use his eyes to communicate with me. And boy were his eyes ever expressionary!
Right now i can recall so many of his "looks", it tickles my heart. It is a joy to go back over old pics and read his face. He was even in Climbing Magazine, and Rock&Ice. 4 full page Patagonia ads.
Anyhow, i deffinitly shared a consciencness with Jake that most people never experience with an "animal". i learned alot about him and about myself stareing into his eyes. And i have sorely missed waking up in the morning to watch his eyelids raise up, and then close. And then raise up,
and close. And with my command of "lets go" he would burst onto all fours
like his tail was on fire! And he was ready to go!
Since his eyes have now been closed permanently. i have found comfort in knowing that the Bible tells us that the "eyes are the window to the soul"
therefor i believe every pair of eyes is united with a soul. The Bible also
states, "every soul is a witness on this earth". i am thoroughly convinced
God knows all. And i like you long for the day we will be together with Him


Credit: BLUEBLOCR

Jake "Redblocr"
Jake "Redblocr"
Credit: BLUEBLOCR
i just cant wait to hear what he witnessed!
Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Feb 24, 2013 - 09:11pm PT
"God is reality itself"...... So then science is as much a study of God as anything else we got going? In fact, at this point it is by far the best study of god?


This would be part of what is called jnana yoga - the yoga of knowledge.

Traditionally it was manifested through the study of philosophy and theology but
probably in the modern world, science will become the predominant form.

Why else do the scientists and philosophers on this thread love to argue so much?
They're competing for the narrative about our reality.

When Ed talks about science, I see jnana yoga.
When Dawkins talks about religion, I see scientific theology.
Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Feb 24, 2013 - 09:17pm PT
And thank you Go-b for sharing your sad news with us.
Community is a part of any spiritual endeavor,
whatever weird and new forms it may take.
It's hard to define the soul, but I'm sure that dogs have them.
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Feb 24, 2013 - 09:35pm PT
my journey with meditation - I fully appreciate the experience and results, but in many ways I eventually found it to be just another form of separateness


I'd wager a burger that you tried to meditate by yourself, with no community and no teacher. Imagine trying to learn climbing if you had to work the whole shebang up from scratch? A skilled teacher would have had you bore into that
separateness till it morphed into something else. IME, a lot of these plateaus are things you simply have to wait out.

For instance, right now I'm recovering from a "catastrophic injury," and several times a day I get frustrated being in a wheelchair or on crutches and always having to get my foot elevated lest it baloons like crazy. My practice is continually letting go of wanting things different. I don't like it, and hate it much of the time, but I can breath into it and get back to hauling water and chopping wood.

JL
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Feb 24, 2013 - 09:48pm PT
Tom perhaps I should explain myself a bit. I like to present ideas as questions, as much because I don't know the answers, even if I suspect where the answer may ultimately lie. When I do so I hope that it is obvious that I am open to alternative ideas or even outright destruction of whatever it is I am proposing. It also gives me liscence (i think ) to really propose some out there stuff, or challenging stuff without being too outrageously disrespectful. The way I look at it is any question is an opportunity to find an answer, which I think only the less open minded would have a problem with. I suspect such an approach is anathema the more entrenched one is to authoritarian dogma, which some religious people certainly are so I do realize it isn't going to go over well with everyone!
TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
Feb 24, 2013 - 10:26pm PT
Bruce, i understand and respect your viewpoint and don't intend to criticize

the only thing that really bothers me on this thread is when someone claims a position as the only valid viewpoint worth considering, and i don't see you doing that

and there is just such a broad representation of knowledge, wisdom, and talent represented here to justify treating anyone with disrespect


MH2

climber
Feb 24, 2013 - 10:48pm PT
That's a soulful pic of Peanut/Chicky, go-B. My consolation.
MH2

climber
Feb 24, 2013 - 10:57pm PT
What Bruce said about the CBC radio program Tapestry. It doesn't worry about who is right or wrong. It is a welcoming meeting ground for religious faithful and skeptic.
Psilocyborg

climber
Feb 24, 2013 - 10:59pm PT
healyje:

I really liked your post. It is similar to the point I was trying to make.

Dr F: The imagination. Where dreams, hallucinations, and ideas reside.

Immaterial ideas do indeed change our objective world everyday. In fact I would say, it is the single most important part of human evolution. Everything man made has started life as an immaterial idea. It is then manifested in the material world. Every building, every machine, song, ect....

In this way, inside the human brain, the material and immaterial come together. They influence each other. There is a whole other non material universe inside you.

I don't think you are wrong for your pure materialist view. I think you are right. And I think Warner and the spiritualists is right also. Such is the paradox....
BLUEBLOCR

Social climber
joshua tree
Feb 25, 2013 - 01:46am PT
Largo,
I'd wager a burger that you tried to meditate by yourself, with no community and no teacher. Imagine trying to learn climbing if you had to work the whole shebang up from scratch? A skilled teacher would have had you bore into that
separateness till it morphed into something else. IME, a lot of these plateaus are things you simply have to wait out.

i,d wager a burger that some people aren't able to get past the first book of the Bible without a community and a good teacher.

several times a day I get frustrated being in a wheelchair

i bought my daughter a wheelchair from the thriftstore on X-mas. No.1 thing on her list! Really! She likes me to push her around the house, while she pretends to be old, or injured, or that she's a princess in her chariot.
When she pushes me, she giggles, cause she has the ability to direct where Daddy can and can't go. But she laughs out hestaricly when i push her around our 2ac.
yard as fast (and as long) as my leggs will go.
Over the past few weeks, i have found myself cozying up in it after some long days working framing up a house. i,ll sit down in that thing and turn on the computer, the tv. Roll into the kitchen and grab a snack. Roll it back into the livingroom drop it off. Roll outside grab some firewood.
Shoot, i,m already thinking of lowering my sinks so i could do the dishes sit'in down? And maybe a roll-in shower? Oh, wait i gotta tub..
Anyway,, i,ve been lov'in the wheelchair asof late, for it has provided me with entertainment and relaxation! Flip side of the coin, i guess??
i hope you can find some enjoyment roll'in around! i,ll bet a burger you'll
be back on your feet lickitysplit!
BB
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