Politics, God and Religion vs. Science

Search
Go

Discussion Topic

Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
Messages 18701 - 18720 of total 22823 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
Jan

Mountain climber
Colorado, Nepal & Okinawa
Jan 7, 2014 - 02:17pm PT
I don't think it is a bad thing to be reminded every day that we are going to die. It helps us avoid procrastination at many levels. What I dislike are the cults of sin and guilt. We all make mistakes, but there is no point in dwelling on them.
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
U.N. Ambassador, Crackistan
Jan 7, 2014 - 02:21pm PT
I must say I find Jan's take on things refreshing as well.

DMT
MH2

climber
Jan 7, 2014 - 02:36pm PT
Among the attempts I have seen to distill complex experience into wisdom I like:


Our duty, however, will be, first, to examine our own selves,



then, the matters that we shall undertake,



and lastly, those for whose sake or in whose company we are undertaking them.
jgill

Boulder climber
Colorado
Jan 7, 2014 - 02:42pm PT
Fear and discursive thinking are perhaps stronger forces than gravity (JL)

I don't think anyone on this thread is "afraid" of taking the Zen path, fearing the stunning insights it ultimately provides. Why then frequently imply "fear" or the discursive mind curling up into a protective ball are deterrents to engaging in your suggested meditative journey? We're not up to a "climbing challenge", etc.?

How about it threaders: are you afraid of Zen meditation?

;>\
Malemute

Ice climber
great white north
Jan 7, 2014 - 03:34pm PT
How about it threaders: are you afraid of Zen meditation?
It sounds about as useful as knitting or stamp collecting.
moosedrool

climber
Stair climber, lost, far away from Poland
Jan 7, 2014 - 03:39pm PT
I meditate almost every day for about 15 years now. It is relaxing, but I haven't learned anything new about the Universe (yet?).
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
U.N. Ambassador, Crackistan
Jan 7, 2014 - 04:09pm PT
Why then frequently imply "fear" or the discursive mind curling up into a protective ball are deterrents to engaging in your suggested meditative journey? We're not up to a "climbing challenge", etc.?

Someday jgill you will go all-in and make the zen grade....

DMT
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Jan 7, 2014 - 04:25pm PT
The fear of Zen is simply the fear of releasing our identification with the discursive mind, backed by the discursive belief that doing so is "a waste of time." It's not a fear like, "I'm afraid of the dark," but an inborn inhibition to letting go of what seems like cognitive control.

We have seen all kinds of blowback on this thread about doing so - ranging from fear of going mad, to slipping into a passive trance with no exit, to hastening senility, to totally wasting our time, etc. This is the "fear" I am pointing out. IE, a strong aversion BEFORE invstigation per what is involved. Or merely investigating by reading as opposed to doing. You should not interpret this to mean that going into the non-discursive requires a of macho leap in the absence of which you are a manifest coward, a Nancy boy poser obsessed with monkeying with a slide rule. This is just pinging off a materialist's rigidity.

And again, if a devout materialist take on things answers the questions you have per being alive, by all means go with that. If not, join a group and start a practice of your choice. It won't be Zen. Almost nobody does that. Just remember that the greatest illusion of them all per the experiential arts is that you can do this work solo, Cowboy style. This comes from the reductionist illusion that one can streamline the practice to a mere protocol. As the man already mentioned, you start doing that and you'll simply invent your own practice and end up basically doing relaxation exercises for years. Good for the system, but that's not the business. It's not a matter of you "doing it wrong." Experiential adventures are all individual disciplines carried out in the content of a group. So unless you are doing that, you are not doing it wrong, you're not doing it at all.

JL

paul roehl

Boulder climber
california
Jan 7, 2014 - 05:06pm PT
The predicates for the majority of mythological thought are the notion that something exists beyond the forms of sensibility, and that existence itself is tainted, sorrowful, imperfect and, through a particular belief system or discipline, one can escape the imperfect and be introduced to bliss.

Why is it the case for so many mythologies that existence is defined by its faults: “I curse the ground for thy sake” – Jehovah, “All life is sorrowful,” – Buddha?

It is true that “primal” cultures tend to be more embracing of nature and existence as it is. But far and away the dominant religious or mythological tendencies in this world are based on an escape from what is. Whether it’s 72 virgins in paradise or the pearly gates or escape from the cycle of rebirths all mythologies base themselves on the sorrow of being, and an escape from that being as a reconciliation of sorts.

There is also this nearly universal mythological notion that the world is the way it is, “a thorny manifestation of original sin,” because of human action. The idea that human action, as in disobedience to God, has resulted in both natural and human evil as in “original sin.”

The thorns on a rose bush are a product of Adam and Eve’s disobedience!

That idea of human responsibility for the condition of the world continues in what might be described as the new “religion of nature,” a product of Rousseau and the Romantic movement: that human civilization is outside the parameters of nature’s activity and detrimental to it, that nature enjoys a kind of perfection with which humanity should not interfere… perhaps an equally untenable view of reality.

IMHO: It’s impossible to escape the grave and constant in life and often, though not always, a disservice to tell others that that escape is possible. The great variety of mythologies and their underlying syncretic quality coupled with the absolute certainty of their believers mediates against the reality of any one of them.
Better to embrace life in all its pain and joy, get on the tiger and ride, and lean as much as possible to the good. Not because you need to please some God, but because “good” is an inherent human tendency the pragmatic benefits of which are socially sustaining.
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Jan 7, 2014 - 05:09pm PT
something exists beyond the forms of sensibility


The experiential, as opposed to mythological or discursive approaches, do away with the "something" and deal with that.

Not easy to do or grasp.

JL
FortMentäl

Social climber
Albuquerque, NM
Jan 7, 2014 - 05:14pm PT
I meditate almost every day for about 15 years now. It is relaxing, but I haven't learned anything new about the Universe

There is no 'thing' in the 'any-thing' new of which you will not be seeking when it finds you.


....or something like that.
Ward Trotter

Trad climber
Jan 7, 2014 - 05:18pm PT
Not easy to do or grasp.

And yet , we are told, there is clearly enough substance there to offer a more or less operative,ideological contradiction to empirical, discursive culture---not an easy thing for revelations of "nothing" to accomplish.

As a matter of fact , this gets back to an earlier contention of mine that the roots of the so-called "experiential " derives its scalable tension --and makes its living-- solely by a sort of existential negation of normal modes of thought and action.
PSP also PP

Trad climber
Berkeley
Jan 7, 2014 - 08:01pm PT
I was talking to some one yesterday and alan watts came up , and he said he had listened to every tape that Watts had been recorded and was a big fan.

But in further discussion it became apparent that he didn't meditate.
It's almost as if it doesn't enter his consciousness that he could try it to experience what Watt's was talkng about. It seems he was relating to Watt's talks like watching a TV show and no idea that he could practice.

I was also thinking about why someone like DMT or JGill would not take up the challenge and sit for 30 minutes a day for a few weeks and observe the experience; just as an interesting experiment and report back.

I was thinking they probably have a strong idea that it is not for them. Similar to me and christianity. Or they just really are not that curious about it.

But then again to make strong statements about something you haven't tried makes me think they have already made up their minds that it isn't for them.

For me I was just really curious because I read some zen books and saw there was a zen master coming to town so I went to hear him speak but he wasn't there so I just did the practice for a few weeks until he came to town and then sat a 2.5 day retreat with the zen master. I found it very dynamic and really liked the set up where it was about practice and not so much ideology, very little talking and alot of sitting.

As I have said before zen is usually only tried by the very curious or those that are really suffering and are looking for relief. The rest of the people just think were weird. Similar to the way alot of people think of big wall climbers with that typical comment of "so you call that fun".

rectorsquid

climber
Lake Tahoe
Jan 7, 2014 - 08:25pm PT
But then again to make strong statements about something you haven't tried makes me think they have already made up their minds that it isn't for them.

If someone has to experience something for an extended period of time, and with a full and complete experience of it, before they can have an opinion about it, then I am totally unsure about the benefits to genocide, cutting, heavy drug use, suicide, etc., and so on.

I know that just about everyone on this site that says that I must experience something to have an opinion about it, has not sat for a decade trying out Egyptian, Greek, Roman, Aztec, Maya, religions or most any thing that they dismiss as not "correct." JL promotes meditation and says that if I don't meditate for a few years, I cannot say if it is good/bad useful/pointless, or more importantly, spiritual/physical. Maybe meditation without a complete vow of silence is pointless. Have any of you tried homosexuality to try to discover if it is right or wrong to you? Some probably have, but most have not. Nor have you tried eating glass. And fore sure, no one here as tried suicide to find out if it is an effective way to go to hell. And yet many still make the claim.

Don't make statements about how others are deficient or have no valid opinion about not trying new things, until you yourself have tried some new things.

Dave


P.S. Try being a scientist and only accepting what can be proven in a repeatable way to any number of observers.
Ward Trotter

Trad climber
Jan 7, 2014 - 08:42pm PT
As I have said before zen is usually only tried by the very curious or those that are really suffering and are looking for relief. The rest of the people just think were weird. Similar to the way alot of people think of big wall climbers with that typical comment of "so you call that fun".

Well, look, I'm really curious about a lot of things, like wilderness horseback riding, scuba diving, horticulture, canning, and home brewing---but it's likely I won't have the time or money to pursue those things. This predicament doesn't forbid me from having a useful thought or opinion about those pursuits.

And I don't consider simple meditation as weird or in any way pejorative. Garden-variety meditation is a very salubrious thing and I have provided links on this thread to that effect. Of course, the serious Zen or other advanced , lengthy and profound disciplines are a different matter. I understand the distinction. I get it.
I have other more convenient priorities than spending 30 yrs. with a Zen master, alright.
It's somewhere way down my bucket list after learning the mandolin, writing a novel, and learning the edible plants of Big Sur.

Until then the Zen world is just gonna have to be happy with me doing a lot of deep breathing right before beddy bye.
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Jan 7, 2014 - 08:59pm PT
Per the necessity of working in a group (to answer all the back-channel questions I've been getting): The old Japanese dude at the LA Zen center used to say you can build a fire with one log but you’ll spend much of your time just trying to keep it lit. Throw on some more logs and you got yourself a blaze. And we need a blaze to burn through our conditioning and the ruts of our habitual thinking.

It is widely known that we cannot create such a conflagration by ourselves – though the ego will insist that we can. Our best efforts have gotten us right where we are. To really bust through, we need a much stronger power, stoked and stirred by an expert.

To understand this, quantifiers need only look to science, and the normal-usage meaning of “force.”

A force is a push or pull upon an object resulting from the object's interaction with another object (in our case, the group and the teacher). Whenever there is an interaction between two objects, there is a force upon each of the objects. When the interaction ceases, the two objects no longer experience the force. Forces only exist as a result of an interaction.

In the case of sitting with a group, and working with experts to evoke the "force," this is just another take on the old saw that it “takes a village to raise a child.”

JL
PSP also PP

Trad climber
Berkeley
Jan 7, 2014 - 09:07pm PT
RS and WT ; you confirmed my ideas . You have other things to do and you have fairly strong reasons why your not interested . I have no problem with that .

I was more curious about J Gill's and DMT's take on why they would or would not want to try Zen practice for a month and then voice what happened.
MH2

climber
Jan 7, 2014 - 09:29pm PT
The old Japanese dude at the LA Zen center used to say you can build a fire with one log but you’ll spend much of your time just trying to keep it lit. Throw on some more logs and you got yourself a blaze. And we need a blaze to burn through our conditioning and the ruts of our habitual thinking.



MikeL might call this metonymy.


I heartily approve of JL and his practice. He has no idea what my own practice is, and I am not going to talk about it, here. I believe we need many approaches to the challenges of living, and that Nature keeps throwing things up to see what will stick. The Mayan Way had its time and other Ways will have theirs.
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
U.N. Ambassador, Crackistan
Jan 7, 2014 - 09:41pm PT
PSP P whyn't you walk in your shoes for a month and I'll walk in mine?

DMT
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Jan 7, 2014 - 09:50pm PT
He has no idea what my own practice is, and I am not going to talk about it, here.
-

Transparency is key here unless you're a 4th Way Sufiesque enneagram Daimond Path kind of dood, then it's cloak and daggers with a side-order of self-remembering.

JL
Messages 18701 - 18720 of total 22823 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
 
Our Guidebooks
Check 'em out!
SuperTopo Guidebooks


Try a free sample topo!

 
SuperTopo on the Web

Review Categories
Recent Route Beta
Recent Gear Reviews