Politics, God and Religion vs. Science


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Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Jun 11, 2013 - 04:39am PT
Mh2 was right, and I misspoke. "There's only a handful of us with any deep experience of the non discursive mind" was the wrong way to put it. What I should have said was, "There's only a handful of us with prolonged experience of the non discursive mind". As jogill pointed out earlier, who's to say that one experience is deeper or more profound than another?

As for the non discursive mind being the only path, Zen may claim that, but in most other schools of Buddhism more than one path is recognized. In the Indian traditions of both Hinduism and Buddhism, and many other schools of Buddhism in north Asia, four major paths or yogas are recognized. These include the yogas of wisdom and knowledge, selfless service, love and devotion, and the way of meditation. Both Hinduism and Tibetan Buddhism at least, always emphasize that the way of meditation is the fastest path but can also be a dangerous one.

The danger of the meditation path is developing the mind without the heart. Most Buddhism says full enlightenment is a union of wisdom and compassion. Personally I don't see much compassion in Zen and that's one of the reasons I never took to it. There is a reason it was the preferred form of Buddhism for the samurai class and why the majority of Japanese adhere to other forms of Buddhism. The deepest layers of Dzogchen although they may sound like Zen, are taught only after many years of compassion practices.

Spirituality without religion can be good and very freeing in one sense. It can also be as dry and ego ridden as anything the discursive mind produces. Traditionally it was the ethical and devotional teachings of religion which countered this tendency. If we aren't going to have religion in the future, than one of the first tasks of secular meditation it seems to me, needs to be a refocus on compassion.
The Chief

Climber from the Land Mongols under the Whites
Jun 11, 2013 - 08:57am PT
It can also be as dry and ego ridden as anything the discursive mind produces.

In that case it is no longer the state of total acceptance and depletion that in fact is the by product of the spiritual dimension. Ego has no place in spirituality. When ego is present, it is once again of human ideals and thus it becomes a "religion". Filled with the human concepts of expectations and failing perceptions. No longer allowing one to remain in the center of the circle in the state of total acceptance.

Throw away holiness and wisdom, and the people will be a hundred times happier.

Throw away morality and justice, and the people will do the right thing.

Throw away industry and profit, and there will be no thieves.

If these three are not enough, then stay at the center of the circle and let things take their course.

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Jun 11, 2013 - 11:42am PT
Jan's right about bringing the heart into it. This was the rub against the original approach of "Big Mind," which is a melding of Voice Dialogue and Zen. And very effective in some cases. The point is that you have to engage the entire person, not just Mind.

One could look at all of this as there being people out there who, metaphoriclly speaking, have a golden doubloon in their pocket but don't know it. Said doubloon has nothing whatsoever to do with old time religion, faith, belief, content, or stuff. The whole point is to reach into your pocket. Insted, people want to argue over what they think it is, how we are deluded to think it is gold at all, that they have already gone there and found no gold (wrong pocket?), that the doubloon is "an illusion," even though we have said all along that it is nothing but their own life. All you really have to do is reach into your pocket. But first they must know why and have some tangible reason and discursive description and they will not bow to any masters - as though we do.

Most people still associtate the doubloon with religious nuts and scripture and dogma. Or feel like someone is selling something. Not sure what but it feels like that to me. For my part, I haven't read anyting about Zen in 15 years. Maybe more. I just show up and do the practice (reach into my pocket).


Jun 11, 2013 - 12:17pm PT
I have taken the time to stare at a wall, try to calm down and consider nothingness (which I admit is very hard, and I couldn't do it).

Of course you can't.

It's not the method for this age.

Although everyone keeps trying to do the impossible ......

Jun 11, 2013 - 12:36pm PT
Dylan is pointing at yet another supreme irony in life.

Well, maybe, but I bet you can't explain a cat.

Jun 11, 2013 - 01:01pm PT
I like this thread. It's fun and thoughtful to read. Thanks to all.

I'd say the Chief knows a little something about the Tao: another intuitional approach.

As a teacher, loving my students is my first objective; content comes second. It works best that way for me.

But I've found that the love and compassion I have for my students must not be confused with what Pema Chodron calls the enemies of compassion. The far enemy (opposite) of compassion is cruelty. But the near enemy of compassion is idiot compassion, overwhelm (helplessness), or pity. These are easy to miss because they are disguised as faux compassion.

Real compassion calls for spontaneity, courage, and the openness of "skillful means." Skillful means is the ability to know what is needed and when in the moment. (Seeing one's karma is often invoked here.) Skillful means may call for mothering, cajoling, teaching, mentoring, husbanding, criticizing, listening, etc.--any activity that will push a person out of their comfort zone. (Most of us don't have access to all those skill sets.)

It's so easy to fall in a rut. Ruts are the results of reifications. Getting out of them demands remarkable, almost superhuman efforts. We often need help. We may not like it's form when we get it.

Jim gave us a story that suggests that change comes from within. (Good joke.) But if you think about it, that seems logically impossible. Either that which is sought was always there, or a proper description of anything (to include the self) is complete and utter transcendence. How can one bootstrap to that which is not within itself? How does an equation (a physicalist's viewpoint) change itself into another equation? How does any "thing" become another thing? How does an acorn become an oak? Either there is no real change at all, there is no real "thing" at all, or notions of cause-and-effect are just ways of thinking and talking. Surely, causes and conditions have appearances, seemingness, suchness, but their existence cannot be found. They are complete transcendences that defy 1:1, lockstep descriptions or transformations. There is no thing that gets transformed. All is already here and now, but with a seemingly impenetrable mountain of obstructions and obscurations in the way of our view. At their foundations, obstructions and obscurations are reifications that come from pursuing sense objects with concepts.
The Chief

Climber from the Land Mongols under the Whites
Jun 11, 2013 - 01:45pm PT
The very center of the axle does absolutely nothing. Nada. Yet it is the foundation and the strongest component of the wheel. The wheel that goes round and round and round.

Jun 11, 2013 - 01:47pm PT
"The art of art is to be as real as possible within this artificial situation."

Who said it?

Social climber
joshua tree
Jun 11, 2013 - 03:12pm PT
^ Norman Rockwell

Jun 11, 2013 - 04:28pm PT
^^ Could be. I had just heard Joni Mitchell say it in an interview with Gian Gomeshi on CBC radio.

Jun 11, 2013 - 06:15pm PT
"Do not keep saying to yourself, if you can possibly avoid it, 'but how can it be like that?' because you will get 'down the drain,' into a blind alley from which nobody has yet escaped. Nobody knows how it can be like that"
(Richard P. Feynman)

Lake Tahoe
Jun 11, 2013 - 06:41pm PT
The very center of the axle does absolutely nothing. Nada.

That begs the question.

The center of the axle has a physical length and it rotates. It is part of the whole axle.

And if the axle is hollow then it does just what the space between the walls of a house do but that empty space would not be considered a wall or the center of the wall, it is space between something.

Mumbo jumbo spiritual stuff doesn't answer anything, it just seeks to call things by different names to confuse the listener into thinking that there is more than there really is.

You might as well have said "if a tree falls in the forest..." or ":what is the sound of one hand..." or any other such nonsense. Or is that non-sense?


Hebrews 1:3
Jun 11, 2013 - 07:37pm PT
What's Your Excuse? — II, & All Access Pass
A New Beginning Radio : Greg Laurie

Matthew 22
The Parable of the Wedding Feast
22 And Jesus answered and spoke to them again by parables and said: 2 “The kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who arranged a marriage for his son, 3 and sent out his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding; and they were not willing to come. 4 Again, he sent out other servants, saying, ‘Tell those who are invited, “See, I have prepared my dinner; my oxen and fatted cattle are killed, and all things are ready. Come to the wedding.”’ 5 But they made light of it and went their ways, one to his own farm, another to his business. 6 And the rest seized his servants, treated them spitefully, and killed them. 7 But when the king heard about it, he was furious. And he sent out his armies, destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. 8 Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy. 9 Therefore go into the highways, and as many as you find, invite to the wedding.’ 10 So those servants went out into the highways and gathered together all whom they found, both bad and good. And the wedding hall was filled with guests.

11 “But when the king came in to see the guests, he saw a man there who did not have on a wedding garment. 12 So he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you come in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless. 13 Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

14 “For many are called, but few are chosen.”

...nothing is stopping you but you!
The Chief

Climber from the Land Mongols under the Whites
Jun 11, 2013 - 07:42pm PT

Obviously you are not a Bicycle OR Motorcycle Mechanic. The Center Axle/Rod is stationary. Every item that is part of the wheel rotates around the axle. Everything. The skewers (bicycle) or lock nuts on each end tighten it to the bike frame and keep the rod/axle stationary.


Jun 11, 2013 - 08:29pm PT

The God of the Old Testament is a pretty tough God.

My mother gave up reading the Old Testament when I went to Viet Nam in the 60s. Too vengeful, too righteous, too murderous. She switched to the New Testament instead. T'was easier on her and more optimistic.

So I guess the message of Matt 22 is: "suit up and show up"--or else, eh?

Hebrews 1:3
Jun 11, 2013 - 09:10pm PT
5 "But they made light of it and went their ways"

...sad but true!

P. S. Jesus paid a high price so we could have new white garments, and I wouldn't let you in this motorhome without them let alone Heaven!

The World's Most Expensive Motor Home Includes Rooftop Terrace & Bar For $3.1 Million (PHOTOS)


photo not found
Missing photo ID#306509
Dr. F.

Big Wall climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 11, 2013 - 10:11pm PT
Craig has said that every spiritual seeker from the beginning of time is full of sh#t and deluded, but that's not poor form, rather "the truth"
I said that?
No, I said that no one has proven their belief in God to the point where it can be said that their belief in God, or a spiritual dimension exists that can answer all the beliefs that have been put forward as fact.

Yes they are deluded, just like we were all deluded into thinking that the earth was flat, we are God's children, and demons cause disease, pray to the weather gods or you will get fire and brimstone!

JL takes issue with me personally about my opinion.

Why doesn't JL take issue with Go-be, BB or WB? are their opinions OK with JL,
and it's only me, Ed, base, citune, and HFCS's opinions that he takes as BS??

Is it dishonest?

Jun 11, 2013 - 10:15pm PT
"Do not keep saying to yourself, if you can possibly avoid it, 'but how can it be like that?' because you will get 'down the drain,' into a blind alley from which nobody has yet escaped. Nobody knows how it can be like that"(Richard P. Feynman)

On the peculiarities of quantum behavior. Things that exist that lie beyond our ability to describe . . . yet are quantifiable.

Nice quote.

Jun 11, 2013 - 10:25pm PT
Truth trumps proof.

Stupid proof poofers.

Gimmmie proof they demand!

You don't deserve proof yet.

You have to earn it.

Then the truth will give you proof.

Until then you're just a stupid rascal ......
Dr. F.

Big Wall climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 11, 2013 - 10:30pm PT
Truth of what WB?

tell us what is true?
or we can assume you have No truth, just dislike for us trying to find the truth

The truth can always be proven as true,
if it can't be proven as true, how can you say it's the truth?
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