Contradictions

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"The tremendous greatness of Christianity", writes Simone Weil, "comes from the fact that it does not seek a supernatural remedy against suffering but a supernatural use of suffering."

Christianity in contrast to Christendom invites contradiction.

Matthew 16:

22Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. "Never, Lord!" he said. "This shall never happen to you!" 23Jesus turned and said to Peter, "Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men."


Notice Jesus doesn't tell Peter to get lost but rather to get behind. Peter provides a contradictory influence that is necessary as long as it isn't dominant. The purpose of this thread isn't to get deeply into the psychology of this but rather to admit certain basic implications.
When a contradiction is impossible to resolve except by a lie, then we know that it is really a door. Simone Weil

The value of a contradiction is in our ability to experience it which requires a quality of conscious balance. But this is precisely what is discouraged in normal secular life. We prefer the lie that avoids the unpleasant experience of the contradiction.

I noticed this with my recent mob rule experience. Instead of keeping the question open a communal violent reaction became justified, not logically, but emotionally, and this emotionalism had to be pacified at the expense of the experience of the contradiction.

The suffering Simone refers to above is the conscious experience of our contradiction normal for our "being." This of course is opposite to secular thought which seeks pacification and the calm of suppressing the contradiction as an alternative to violently reacting to it. The remarkable conscious Christian option is to stay present to it - to consciously experience it with a quality of impartial detachment. Let the light shine on the darkness.

I was struck by Inuk's recent remark in contrast to the Christian approach:

In Islam the concept is tackled as a personal struggle, or Jihad. Or this is what your local Imam will tell you on seeking his advice. Rather than just give the command to cease thinking down the road of doubt it is transformed into an obstacle to be beaten. It is a clever device. It teaches the mind to not view doubt as a valid tool of human cognition but as an enemy to be overcome. Islam is a good example in this case as it does not even attempt to disguise what it is doing.
Talk about a theological difference! According to Inuk, Islam seeks to beat what Christianity seeks to consciously experience so as to "Know Thyself." Some student of theology could write a paper on this.

Jacob Needleman writes in "Lost Christianity."
What we need to learn is that merely to look at things as they are with bare attention can be a religious act.
The principal power of the soul, which defines its real nature, is a gathered attention that is directed simultaneously toward the spirit and the body. This is attention of the heart, and this is the principal mediating, harmonizing power of the soul. The mediating attention of the heart is spontaneously activated in the state of profound self-questioning. God can only speak to the soul, Father Sylvan writes, and only when the soul exists. But the soul of man only exists for a moment, as long as it takes for the question to appear and disappear.

This self questioning is the contradiction that when experienced can lead to the door.
How we deal with contradiction becomes a fascinating question. We can suppress it and seek a calm based on avoidance. We can resolve it by taking a side and denying the other. We can resolve it through violent response. We also can make the effort to consciously experience the contradiction - the simultaneous experience of yes and no in ourselves.

Religion in so far as it is a source of consolation is a hindrance to true faith; and in this sense atheism is a purification. I have to be an atheist with that part of myself which is not made for God. Among those in whom the supernatural part of themselves has not been awakened, the atheists are right and the believers wrong.
- Simone Weil, Faiths of Meditation; Contemplation of the divine
the Simone Weil Reader, edited by George A. Panichas (David McKay Co. NY 1977) p 417

Stunning! If she is right, consolation which is a big part of Christendom defeats the purpose of Christianity by denying the conscious experience of the contradiction in favor of consolation. This results in fantasy that the atheist rightly objects to.

I can only speak for myself and recognize that some will always justify righteous indignation and complaints as well as avoidance. For me though, I can see how important it is to become able, even to a lesser degree, to become open to the conscious experience of the contradictions in my life; not to judge but simply to experience. If I can take seriously the possibility of help from above through the door created by the conscious experience of the contradiction not resolved by a lie, it is logical to try and open the door.
 
One of the biggest reasons becoming open to the experience of the contradiction is prevented is the public acceptance of skepticism especially in what is called the educated.

The poison of skepticism becomes, like alcoholism, tuberculosis, and some other diseases, much more virulent in a hitherto virgin soil." Simone Weil

How can such an intelligent person that studied critical thinking say such a thing? As I understand it, she realized that skepticism was an emotional denial that made the detachment necessary to experience the contradiction impossible. Where detachment requires conscious attention and habitual emotional freedom, skepticism negates the experience.

"There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy." Shakespeare

What good does it do to express a negative emotion of skepticism regarding this observation. In all honesty we don't know so why not just keep the question open with neither belief or skepticism.

A lot of skepticism and the inability to be willing and able to deal impartially with contradiction seems to be related to how beliefs have been imposed both in the secular world including the secularization of religion.

"In the Church, considered as a social organism, the mysteries inevitably degenerate into beliefs." Simone Weil

As usual she hits the nail on the head in an ego deflating manner. As a result of these "beliefs, over time people react with the negative emotion of skepticism.

Of course in this day and age amongst the educated, to not express the negative emotion of skepticism and political correctness is considered not caring and unenlightened. However for someone needing and willing to make the necessary effort to experience the contradiction, it requires abandoning the joy of skepticism and conditioned moral preconception. How many are capable of this? How many with such an attitude of impartiality expressing neither skepticism or feelgoodism are considered worth considering in real life? They either lack the denial of the educated or the politically correct emotionally "wonderful" responses of modern religious thought. Yet if Simone is right, all suffer from their respective acquired habits when dealing with contradiction.

"There is no detachment where there is no pain. And there is no pain endured without hatred or lying unless detachment is present too." Simone Weil

Fascinating! Where detachment can allow us to experience the contradiction, it also opens us to the pain of a negative response from our egotism like skepticism that only detachment can free us from by allowing us to see it for the artificiality it is.

It's not easy trying to become human when society encourages emotional responses such as skepticism and moral indignation that deny the necessary inner freedom to do so.
 
So we have this awkward problem. We emotionally justify the avoidance of consciously experiencing a contradiction in favor of expressing opinions. The more controversial the contradiction, the more violent are the opinions.

But does it include us? Brian wrote as it pertains to mutual responsibility as to the harm from our collective ignorance as it pertains to sex, sex, energy, and the objective value of the human body:

"IO hasn't killed anyone, hasn't condoned killing anyone, and to intimate otherwise is insulting and dishonest."

However if everything in the universe is connected as well as humanity comprising an organic whole, then the human condition we are all a part of is related to foolish and unnecessary deaths. In short, our collective being creates the problem. Is it better to admit it or deny it? The only recourse to mass lawful reaction is conscious action. But to be capable of conscious action requires first becoming able to consciously experience a contradiction.

W.B. Yeats give a meaningful description of the life of a person's life:

IX. The Four Ages of Man
He with body waged a fight,
But body won; it walks upright.

Then he struggled with the heart;
Innocence and peace depart.

Then he struggled with the mind;
His proud heart he left behind.

Now his wars on God begin;
At stroke of midnight God shall win.
How true. The heart is damaged and then we begin to BS. Finally God wins. Is there a better way?

The only better way IMO is to begin to admit the human condition both in ourselves and in the world and to strive to acquire the consciousness necessary to consciously expririence our personal contradictions without the need to cover and react but just witness them.

One of the questions discussed on Simone Weil's 100th birthday is if the world is ready for her. I don't believe so since the conscious attention she advocated is condemned in favor of flowery imagination and righteous indignation that justifies our ignorance. As a result nothing can change and everything must continue as it is in the real world regardless of the finest speeches. I hope I'm wrong but fail to see how.
 
BS? As in bull? Not really true, just a personal opinion of someone, I am guessing from "experiences" they have had to face....... And wins? Wins what? His bronze certificate?

This isn't about me but rather a concept involving the bulk of humanity. I admit that I am part of this bulk.

As Yeats describes, our lives become meaningless in the objective sense because of the human condition within which the injured heart plays a big part. The first step in healing it on the inside requires becoming able to consciously open to experience our contradictions. Unfortunately only a few have the need and the courage and prefer instead to justify our ignorance and our hurt so sacrifice our individuality to the state or secular religion that instead conditions it. As we've seen, kids die unnecessarily because we justify this ignorance and unable to communicate in a meaningful non dogmatic manner and without psychobabble, the value of values.
 
Oh, I think I get you now.... You saying most seek out religion when their heart is wounded? (at their most weak, as is their mind which then gets molded..) I can agree partly with that, although my heart was heavily wounded not so long ago.... and I loathe the idea of a god.... and constantly have thoughts where I just want to grab a god (a being to blame)by the throat and throttle the s.o.b till I collapse from an exploded blood vessle(rage) Or be like det Hartigan lets his wrath/frustration/vengance out on the yellow man..... (from Sin city) and just punch and punch and punch his skull till it's nothing but pulp as is my fists....

So not all from a wounded heart seek god for hope... Some seek him for his head....

So my wounded heart slowly heals.... My rage slowly calms and your mind reasons and you realise, there is no god...... So I do not vent but dwell... And the dwelling slowly fades, but remains a scar....... My scared heart, shows signs there is no god, and he has not won.....

It takes alsorts to make the world go round........ Heh.

Or did you mean something else? I tend to have difficulty understand your posts.. So I could be misunderstanding you.
 
Oh, I think I get you now.... You saying most seek out religion when their heart is wounded? (at their most weak, as is their mind which then gets molded..) I can agree partly with that, although my heart was heavily wounded not so long ago.... and I loathe the idea of a god.... and constantly have thoughts where I just want to grab a god (a being to blame)by the throat and throttle the s.o.b till I collapse from an exploded blood vessle(rage) Or be like det Hartigan lets his wrath/frustration/vengance out on the yellow man..... (from Sin city) and just punch and punch and punch his skull till it's nothing but pulp as is my fists....

So not all from a wounded heart seek god for hope... Some seek him for his head....

So my wounded heart slowly heals.... My rage slowly calms and your mind reasons and you realise, there is no god...... So I do not vent but dwell... And the dwelling slowly fades, but remains a scar....... My scared heart, shows signs there is no god, and he has not won.....

It takes alsorts to make the world go round........ Heh.

Or did you mean something else? I tend to have difficulty understand your posts.. So I could be misunderstanding you.

You remind me of something that happened to an old Internet friend who got into yoga for the purpose of telling off God. She knew she would be destroyed but from everything that she experienced in her life as well as the world, it was clearly wrong and she would get her last licks in. Then one evening in a fit of rage and within a meditation, all of a sudden she received the experience of divine love. It changed everything and now she is dedicated in Kriya Yoga. Her cursing was genuine and she received the response she needed.

Job learns in the book of Job that what happens in the world is separate from the God/Man conscious connection. I have the hardest time with it even though I've both studied and worked with such ideas. I want to blame and have to keep coming back to the realization that the world is the world and the more I blame just keeps me attached to the world.

So not all from a wounded heart seek god for hope... Some seek him for his head....

Though it appears to be the wounded heart seeking God, it is actually negative emotions related with egoism that is doing so. They take the place of the heart and seek justification and consolation. Egoism is an artificial construct manifesting as reaction so naturally cannot be part of a conscious connection. To get to the heart requires cutting the sh-t and getting out of our own way.

One of the purest expressions of being able to get out of ones own way is in an account I read by Bill W to Carl Jung discussing alcoholism where he hit bottom and cried out from the depths of his being. Then he was no longer an alcoholic. The psychology of being is little known now since people are into Behaviorism but this ancient idea of the necessity to get out of our own way for the purpose of the experience of "meaning" transcends anything I know of in contemporary psychology.

So strangely enough if you are really pissed off, get more pissed. Let it all out and don't hold back. Find the basic question that gets to the source of it and let er rip. Whatever is genuine gets a genuine response. I speak from personal experience here.

So my wounded heart slowly heals.... My rage slowly calms and your mind reasons and you realize, there is no god...... So I do not vent but dwell... And the dwelling slowly fades, but remains a scar....... My scared heart, shows signs there is no god, and he has not won.....
What does it mean for the heart to heal? Does it mean it dies and has no more needs so we become content as a cog in a wheel? Perhaps rage can help the heart to awaken if rage is a tool rather than the dominant aspect.

Where the intellect measures quantity, the heart measures objective quality. The fractured heart no longer does this and subjective quality takes its place. The true religious task is to heal the heart so it can function as it should and connect levels of quality or "feel" the God/Man conscious connection so that a human being can be human and not just a cog in a wheel created by all sorts of artificially created egoistic compensations.I'm not referring to a personal God but rather just a conscious connection to higher consciousness.

You don't want to believe and why should you? But if we want to be genuine, we have to be open to the realistic experience of ourselves. This requires that we cannot justify expressing all our rage and discontent. Normally society gives us two options. The first is expression of egoism and the second is suppression. However the ancient psychology of being offers a third which is simply to experience them without expressing them.

This isn't suppression but experiential self knowledge. The more we experience them for the artificiality they are and what they deprive us of, their hold lessens and the heart can begin to heal and start to function again as an indication of objective quality. This is one of the steps the ancients have referred to within awakening: awareness of objective quality normal for a healthy human heart.

It is very hard not to justify rage. I even have a hard time in a traffic jam. Somehow I feel justified in raging at standing still when I'm late. I know intellectually it is foolish but my egotism gets the upper hand. Sometimes I can experience that I am not angry but rather that anger is within me. Then I experience it for what it is. When I can do it I experience the contradiction. I feel then I have really acquired something of value.


We all have sincere questions that touch the core of our being. Never let anyone tell you that there is shame in it. If it is genuine then it is a question from the heart and that is never wrong. They are just hard to find since it is hard being inwardly naked. The ancient skill of pondering was just such an attempt to find these deep questions and experience them without our normal conditioning.

Society encourages us just to adapt to its values including all its contradictions yet the heart seeks to awaken so as to experience objective quality. Where society seeks to justify contradictions, the psychology of being seeks to intensify them through their direct conscious experience for the sake of conscious help from above to help experience for what they are. So for me I don't worry about believing but rather how to be able to experience contradictions. The more real we can be, the more we can be in touch with objective reality revealing what it will.
 
You remind me of something that happened to an old Internet friend who got into yoga for the purpose of telling off God. She knew she would be destroyed but from everything that she experienced in her life as well as the world, it was clearly wrong and she would get her last licks in. Then one evening in a fit of rage and within a meditation, all of a sudden she received the experience of divine love. It changed everything and now she is dedicated in Kriya Yoga. Her cursing was genuine and she received the response she needed.

Your friend when in rage.... Meditated? Seems... Quite a docile act for a person enraged. A being popping out of the sky or whatever... to offer me divine love wouldn't fix a thing.... (after years, and years and years and years and years..... and years of calling upon this being...) It would just awaken the rage in me more so I believe... Because I then truly would have a being to blame and not just a mythical being.... I would most likley decline the love... Because it wouldn't replace what that sob took from me.... I'd want what he took, back. Until then... I would want no part of him. I care not for pyschology terms and egoism and so on... To some it may seem nonsense to me, it is something I cannot let go of...

What did I mean by the heart healing? I meant, that it is covered in scar tissue... Which although the bleeding stops... It becomes dead tissue and numb....... It lacks feeling where the scar lies.

The tale of Job always baffles me..... Job was an idiot. To keep it simple... And his god was sadistic like a child with a magnifying glass he watched job squirm... He knows what is in the heart of man? So he knew job was a blind loyal idiot.... He need not make the man squirm and endure all that he did..... Then in like what chapter 38 or so? God finally does step in... And he has NO, no freaking understanding... He just starts banging on (and trust me he does bang on lol for like what 5 chapters of all the bs he can do... oh wow here have a f'ing medal....) as the self righteous tend to... It's all about freaking ego with them also... were you there when I did this and this, and could you do this and this... And I can do this! I can do that! I can do this! and that! and this... Oh shut up...Of course he couldn't! He's just a man... and you are meant to be a "supreme" being you child!..... Why look down at a lesser being, you arogant prick! This man has just been through a world of s***! (who cares what you can do?? What matters is what you freaking didn't do!! and that was protect you follower!! This poor guy!!) And you let it happen! Of course he is going to be pissed off!! god has understanding, does he bollocks. It is unreal... I would of been like "Oh f you..."

you telling me... that if you were this complete idiot(job) you have been the most outstanding and loyal of sheep..... You are then put through ****, and god then just comes and talks down at you...... He belittles and shows no understanding.... You would still worship this asshole?

Job 8:6 says that god will -restore- all to a good man? Doesn't his wife(s?) die(killed) and god simply replaces not restores..... Does that make things better? If I come whack your wife... and then say hey it's cool here is another woman you can have as a wife..... That make it all just go away? Doubt it...... God is one mean s.o.b....

Anyway... I need a cigarette.... alot here I'll reply to the rest later......

--EDIT--

Satan isn't trying to test Job... He's trying to help job... lol... He is showing him what an ass his god is....

This is what the book of job says to me.

Ave Satanas ;)
 
Alex

Kriya yoga is a power yoga. It is a means of harnessing our energies through the breath. Her rage against God made her want to acquire enough to go out making a statement. No man in a white beard appeared, She just experienced a quality of love she had never before which clarified for her that God was not the cause of all this but in contrast higher consciousness does what it can to free us from these cycles. We are just closed off to these influences.

The Buddhist parable of the burning House is an example of this. We are bitchin and moanin within the burning house and all this emoting does not allow us to experience the big picture which is that the house itself is burning including us in it.

Maybe the sob didn't take anything but rather everything just happens in accordance with lawful reactions. the world is a living machine of reaction serving a necessary cosmic purpose.

"How can we be so willfully blind as to look for cause in nature when nature herself is an effect?" MAISTRE

If this is true, your struggle with God is imaginary just as it was with my Internet friend. I have to see if I can locate her and get her to join and participate on this thread. We are in the reactive world so we react and even violently. Consciousness isn't necessary for this anymore then it is for reactive life in the jungle. The machine just continues as it should. The Ways teach us that this world of reactions for us can only be altered through conscious action which requires us first becoming capable of conscious action as opposed to a continual creature of reaction.

The Book of Job invites us to ponder and open ourselves to these contradictions you mention. Its purpose isn't to provide answers but rather to raise questions. Can we open ourselves to consciously experience the contradictions without judgement rather then arguing right and wrong? But this is painful. We don't want to surrender the meaning our animosity provides. You are hurt and your protests give meaning. The question is if this quality of "meaning" just covers the experience of something objectively meaningful. If it does, then the meaningful human experience cannot be experienced through fighting an imaginary sob. but being open to our inner contradictions, what produces them, and how they deny human life.

"Life is an offensive, directed against the repetitious mechanism of the universe." WHITEHEAD

This is the evolutionary purpose of conscious life. but until being willing to begin with simple attempts to consciously experience our own contradictions from a level greater then in the world, our own habitual resistance, all we are is just continuing cogs in the wheel of this mechanism we know of as the "world." Some seek more from life then just being cogs in a wheel but rather opening to the connection with non-illusory higher consciousness and human life itself.
 
Can we doubt without being skeptical? The fact that these words are so interchangeable seems for me to be part of the problem in dealing with contradictions both in ourselves and in the world.

Mark 10

13People were bringing little children to Jesus to have him touch them, but the disciples rebuked them. 14When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 15I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it." 16And he took the children in his arms, put his hands on them and blessed them.

Taking away any cutsey pooh politically correct impressions, what is the sense of this passage? It seems to me that this isn't praising gullibility but rather the ability to be emotionally open to the experience of something greater than oneself without the need to judge that is the trademark of skepticism. So can we doubt with such emotional freedom? I do believe so yet I also have come to see how far we are from this freedom. We don't truly appreciate the depth of our conditioning even to being able to distinguish good and evil.

Now you can say this long nosed broad shouldered Aries male has clearly gone off his rocker but it may not be the case.

Simone Weil is very hard to take for anyone seeking to preserve their egotism and the skepticism that is its natural expression. But for those a bit more open her following remark is personally revealing:

"Nothing is so beautiful and wonderful, nothing is so continually fresh and surprising, so full of sweet and perpetual ecstasy, as the good. No desert is so dreary, monotonous, and boring as evil. This is the truth about authentic good and evil. With fictional good and evil it is the other way round. Fictional good is boring and flat, while fictional evil is varied and intriguing, attractive, profound, and full of charm." Simone Weil From "Morality and Literature,” an essay published in Cahiers du Sud, January 1944

I know this is true intellectually but don't feel it emotionally. It just proves to me how much my emotional reactions are a product of conditioning rather than consciously verified.

Take ideas relating to virtue for example. Are they good or do they do more harm than good? Can I doubt virtue without the negative emotional judgment of skepticism? Virtue raises a contradiction in me, How do I deal with it? It is not so easy yet as human beings we should be able to do so and to put the question into a higher perspective. Yet we cannot as a whole and people die from the inability to do so - to be open to the experience of the contradiction rather then be governed by our preconceptions and skepticism. Such is the human condition.
 
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