overcome by bliss

Lunitik

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Second, the actual event is "beyond" experience, so either "there can be nothing to experience the experience" or "there is nothing (no-thing) 'in' the experience to be experienced" works

This is somewhat misleading... it is not that there is nothing to experience it, or that that there is no experience. It is that there ceases to be barriers, you do not say "tree" when there is a tree there, all is melted into each other. You are not there either, but the witness remains, it will remain until this body dies. All mystical experiences must be relative because otherwise the person cannot function - samadhi is permanent, nirvana is permanent, but these do not happen after death. This is the difference between paranirvana and normal nirvana, nirvana remains relative and paranirvana is a complete merging with the whole - the latter only happens after death.

Third, in the Whiteheadean sense (not limiting "experience" to the senses, but including reflextion or "some kind of comptemplation") "experience" can be used in lieu of "actual entity" or "event". The correction is correct, this is a rather dated sense of the term (catch the pun?).

Contemplation is only useful if it causes mind to cease, if it is possible to arrive at a point mind cannot pretend it knows the answer to. This is the idea of all Zen koans, no matter what you say as your answer, it is wrong - it is only correct when you have transcended mind, and then the master can sense it so there is no need to say.

The problem is, this can only result in kensho, brief glimpses of the ultimate. Once this is achieved, once you know that place, contemplation will not help any more. Mind knows the answer now because it has only been repressed briefly during the experience, it was still there under the surface. Now you must learn to trigger the experience by entering that space yourself, this is the purpose of meditation. Over time, kensho's will start happening again, and eventually satori's - longer glimpses, maybe months long instead of hours or minutes. Eventually, as your capacity grows, there is samadhi - as I have said, this is permanent, the final death of ego, of self.

You cannot transcend mind with mind, it is impossible because mind has created the space. It would be like a painting becoming greater than the painter, it cannot happen. You can only transcend mind by finding out how to get out of mind, for this is ultimately your prison. Every faith will say that the human mind cannot fathom the ultimate, it is perfectly right, but you are not the mind. You are consciousness, that which can watch mind, and that is as a drop in the ocean - God is the ocean, fall into that. Your concepts and conclusions right now are as friction on the leaf stopping you from falling into the ocean, the drop cannot exist when it falls and it knows it. It may even know that when it drops it will become the whole ocean instead of this limited drop, but it becomes afraid, it knows what it is like to be this drop but what will being the ocean be like? It will create doubt, and this is all mind can ever do.

This is why first religions tend to move you to functioning from heart, intuition is built up and strengthened through becoming more loving of the whole. Now, you will not function with logic, you will be utterly guided by your intuitive sense. Once you no longer rely utterly on mind, now you can melt into the whole without any friction.
 

Lunitik

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For me, this is the only distinction between man and God: man is relative, a part; god is omnipresent, the whole.

You cannot be omnipresent during life, but you can remove the barrier around you and know more of your surroundings - you can know the thoughts of all you encounter, for instance. The barrier is not real, the distinction is created by mind, it is a concept you have clung to. Your consciousness is still not distinct from the whole, it is just too much concentrated on mind and feeling and body, society has caused you to limit it and it has forgotten it can be more, that it is more.

Mysticism is essentially about returning to the state before such identifications have been made, it is about removing the barriers around your consciousness again. Body must still be supported after, it is not part of God, it will one day disintegrate back into dust from where it came. You are not that though, you are consciousness, die without realizing it and you have wasted your life imo...

Of course, there is a problem in our language that consciousness is correlated with mind, they are considered synonyms. Mind is considered the space where thoughts arise, but it is not so. Mind is the collection of all thoughts, it does not exist of itself. Consciousness is distinct from thoughts, it can watch thoughts without clinging or identifying. Mind is the ego, and neither actually exist - mind causes us to see things our own way, it is what labels the tree, the person, everything we see is filtered through mind, this is what the East calls maya.

Consciousness is a choiceless observer, and religiousness is the art of dropping the filter. It is the practice of allowing without judging, you no longer think "this person is beautiful" or " this person is intelligent", you no longer think "this person is ugly" or "this person is stupid". You simply observe without attaching anything, without modifying the world around you through mind - everything is an illusion because of these attachments, nothing is as we perceive because we have added something of ourselves to everything, we have dirtied perfection and made it something utterly disgusting.
 

Lunitik

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Oh, to clarify, at least according to Buddhists, kensho is still enlightenment. This is why they say nirvana is something higher than enlightenment, nirvana is samadhi - they highest state of enlightenment.

According to the Buddhist, there are at least two enlightened people in this thread... certainly I have not gone through samadhi though.
 

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Hi IowaGuy —

Do you think this faith which you describe differs between theistic and non-theistic religions/beliefs?
That depends on whether 'faith' fits into the system at all. It's fashionable in contemporary systems to adopt a "humanist" stance to emphasise autonomy and self-determinism above all else, and thus the empirical character of the possibilities open thereby.

Is there a difference between the "faith" in rebirth of a Buddhist that doesn't believe in deities, and the "faith" in the existence/power of the Divine that a Christian has?
Well either would say yes with regard to the other ... I would suppose the content of what that faith reveals/delivers is different.

i.e. is there a "divine influence" element to this faith you describe, which would therefore make it unattainable to a non-theist?
Yes.

Is this faith a result of being born into a particular religious path ...
No, else there would not be the fall away from religious observation.

... or can it be attained through reason and logic?
I think that depends on whether reason and logic is determined by purely empirical considerations, which is so often the case in the west. Faith does not rest on empirical data in the same way, the object of faith transcends the empirical.

From reading your posts it seems that you think following the knowledge/beliefs of Tradition is a better path than someone trying to forge their own belief system.
Absolutely, and inarguably, I would say.

It seems to me that, when viewing a religion from the outside (without being born into it), and choosing between the plethora of world religions & belief systems, a person must use some sort of reason and logic in order to make the choice that is best for them.
Yes.

But then how can they ever achieve this "faith" which you speak of?
One has to accept the possibility that there's more to this world than can be determined by empiricism.

How can one use "reason" to choose to have "faith" (which is outside the realm of reason as it cannot be falsified).
Because the object of faith is neither unreasonable nor irrational. It's not all-or-nothing either way. In my tradition we say 'faith and reason are the two wings on which the soul ascends to God'. Faith is not unreasonable, nor irrational. There are those who might argue that it is, from the standpoint of their own ignorance and prejudice, but that's immaterial, really.

Do you think it's possible for someone born outside a theistic tradition, to ever develop this level of faith which transcends forms?
Yes, but one doesn't develop it, it communicates itself to the person in a reciprocal manner (although not empirically so).

Faith is a step into the darkness, not the darkness of nothing-there, but a darkness of beyond-forms. The 'void' has resonances of this, I think.

God bless,

Thomas
 

Lunitik

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It seems to me that, when viewing a religion from the outside (without being born into it), and choosing between the plethora of world religions & belief systems, a person must use some sort of reason and logic in order to make the choice that is best for them.

This is my situation, and since I have not entered into the pursuit of religion with an already instilled bias, I think it has proven to be an advantage. Due to this lack of bias, I have simply pursued that which is similar between all faiths - I did not need to pursue which creation myth is most logical, or which set of stories is most important for me, I saw them all as irrelevant, I was not there so why choose?

I also knew instinctively that there is something to each of them which has drawn people in. I understood that language would differ because they have not developed in proximity to each other - it was very difficult to travel long distances just 200 years ago, let alone several thousand. I permitted difference in language, and sought people that had already correlated different terminology so it isn't guess work on my part. It was originally very confusing, I must admit, but gradually the picture became very clear - it was confusing mostly because it was difficult to drop all the crap and still pay attention to the important statements of each faith, it cleared up once I started seeing patterns in the statements that were left.

Eventually, once all had been correlated and I understood, something happened. Now I don't need scriptures to know anything, it is my own experience, but how to communicate it? I have to use the words and statements people are familiar with because I cannot just make up words and expect people to understand - I will have to use their words anyway to tell them what I mean. Now there is much confusion in all I discuss the topic with, because I do not restrict myself to a particular tradition at all. It happens that all the time, some will follow some statements and then I will lose them when I deviate from their understanding. They begin to reject that which they don't agree with, and often become hostile. It is because in each aspect, there is a particular concept which is most correct, so I utilize it to convey my experience. It is simply the case that no faith on earth today is 100% accurate, each seem to have focused on a particular area so when they can finally come together for all of humanity it will be truly beautiful.

The Christian has focused on grace and service.
The Hindu has focused on maya and transcendence.
The Buddhist has focused on meditation and the middle way.
The Muslim has focused on surrender.

Truth is something which marries and transcends all of the traditions of today. There are many that have communicated it, Guru Nanak has probably done it most completely, but when we identify with a particular tradition we tend to do so at the expense of all others. This is a great crime for me, do not choose because then you are basing your pursuit on ego. Not everything you encounter will rub you the right way, much you will feel yourself flatly rejecting - in fact, I would say that anything you feel yourself rejecting you should pursue with more vigor: Why has this arisen in you? What has caused you to want distance from it? Ego cannot come along, it will want to assert itself constantly and protect itself, but you should see this attempt to protect as a clue - it is not a real thing, but what does it know instinctively that you do not yet? You will feel very uncomfortable, it is a sign you are getting close.

Eventually, ego succumbs, you are not giving it any attention and it sees that every time it tries to protect itself you go deeper into that. It will become more illusive, it will stop fighting because it sees this is futile. Now it will latch on to the seeking itself, it will identify with the pursuit and this is where most people get stuck. When this is realized, you must become total in the seeking, let the ego become utterly committed to it, it will provide a great contrast. The further you let ego go into it, simply pay attention, is anything changing at all? Be honest, this whole pursuit is just an acquisition of knowledge from others, you may apply it to your life but it is not intrinsic to you at all, it is an effort. Get to a point where you see it is utterly pointless, then drop seeking as well - you have all the information necessary, you don't need more. In this utter let go - the seeking has been your life now, your only pursuit, you have been obsessed - it happens, it cannot happen otherwise.
 

Lunitik

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It is very important to understand that the ego that has succumb is merely pride turned on its head... this is the essence of what Buddha's life story teaches: first ego has committed totally to desire, then it latched fully onto asceticism. First it realized the pointlessness of luxury, then it realized the pointlessness of poverty. Ego always wants to choose, though, but what is left to choose? The middle way is a non-choosing, it is a compromise, ego doesn't like this.

It is through non-choosing that eventually ego dies, and with it the restlessness of mind - the constant clouds of thought which block your light. When you do not choose, when you do not segregate at all, what more is there for ego to do? It simply leaves you...
 

Thomas

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Then I must confess I don't understand it ...
Good! A start! Now stop right there! ;)

Please, just stop there, and listen to yourself, with the allowance that you just might be right. Because what you then go on to do is reinforce everything you've got wrong, by repeating it, as if saying it often enough makes it right.

Let me assure you, as one who knows a little on this topic, you really don't understand it.

Having no ego doesn't mean you are humble, in fact humility is a type of egoism, you are trying to be the most humble you can be because you think it is saintly.
In which case it's vanity, false piety, vainglory ... not humility.

But don't start declaring virtues, especially those necessary to true spiritual development, as a vice — that's just an excuse for not doing it.

I speak authentically and naturally...
'O would some power the giftie gie us to see ourselves as others see us.'

I am not here to learn, I am hear to participate.
Ah, that tells me a lot, foremost, that I'm wasting my time talking to you But participation without learning can only mean you have decided you know everything there is to know about everything.

It is time to synthesize everything and start teaching ...
Oh, Lord, not another one ... let me guess, we should all fall in step behind you? When will the world be rid of tyrants?

I will never support any separatist movement because my fundamental attitude is ...
Deeply fundamentalist. Dear God, do you not realise you are a separatist movement of one? There's you and the rest, for a start ...

God bless,

Thomas
 

Thomas

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Now Thomas, that one is worth contemplating don't you think?
I think so ... I am constantly being told by respondents on IO about what works and what doesn't in my tradition, even though I'm being told by people who have no real knowledge or insight into what they pass judgement on, and no argument beyond 'it doesn't suit me' ... :p

God bless,

thomas
 

Lunitik

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Good! A start! Now stop right there! ;)

Please, just stop there, and listen to yourself, with the allowance that you just might be right. Because what you then go on to do is reinforce everything you've got wrong, by repeating it, as if saying it often enough makes it right.

Let me assure you, as one who knows a little on this topic, you really don't understand it.

I have experienced it, I do not care about the subtleties of dead texts on the matter. I have dropped all of that because it is irrelevant now, it is all just a series of devices.

I do not say you have experienced anything for the simple reason you still cling. You say you have, but your words disagree.

I do not care at all what any scholarly mind says on the subject of religion, their very nature does not permit transcendence, the whole scholarly pursuit is a violence. They are attacking the text trying to decipher what it means, they are not even trying to deeply understand, they are just collecting knowledge and claiming it as their own.

For me, this is exactly what I see many on here doing, yourself included. What is more, your ego says you know more than me because you do not see me accepting what you have studied.

In which case it's vanity, false piety, vainglory ... not humility.

But don't start declaring virtues, especially those necessary to true spiritual development, as a vice — that's just an excuse for not doing it.

Humility is not authentic at all, it is practiced. You glorify this utter false-hood and are saying that if I say it is flawed I am not holy... the only virtue is that of acting out of awareness. What you call virtue is nothing but morality, and for me morality is utterly and completely false. You are simply mindlessly obeying what society has told you, there is no intelligence in it at all.

You can say whatsoever you want about this not being religious or something, that I am wrong because you cannot be holy without obeying God, and these rules of morality are passed down by him. That is fine, but understand that this is out of your clinging, your lack of knowing, not out of my lack of religiousness.

'O would some power the giftie gie us to see ourselves as others see us.'

A statement of other, why should we care how others see us? If we are grounded in our own center, there is no need to define ourselves through the perspective of others. When we are authentic to ourselves, other does not matter. Others can leave whenever, and then whatever they have said about us is irrelevant, yet we will cling to their statements.

Know yourself, your original face, and act from that - then you are a whole person. If you allow always to be pulled this way and that by others views, or your own desires, you cannot be called holistic for me.

Ah, that tells me a lot, foremost, that I'm wasting my time talking to you But participation without learning can only mean you have decided you know everything there is to know about everything.

You are, yes... because you think you can teach me something, but you are offering nothing meaningful at all. I do not know everything about everything, it is not possible, at the same time I have no interest in knowing everything. I allow what is to be, why attack it so that I can decipher its parts, why destroy it so I can possess it? Whatsoever I do to it, I have added myself to it... it is beautiful by itself.

What I am saying is that we must rejoice with existence, all is one and we are part of that whole. Most pursue through mind, then when they feel they understand something they ignore it. I am saying it is ok to not understand, it is better to know yourself, where you originate and then grow in that. Overflow with love, do not live in the head.

Oh, Lord, not another one ... let me guess, we should all fall in step behind you? When will the world be rid of tyrants?

The world will be rid of tyrants when we understand it is ok to allow individuality. The Church is a tyrant, but you are devoted to that, you are rejecting my statement out of a wish to defend the position of your accepted master. I simply say all should be a light unto themselves, there is no need to follow someone else, there is no need for leaders.

Again, you show you have not transcended though, you are simply echoing what you have been told. You are told that without leaders there will be choas, without structure there is anarchy. If all can be made conscious, more aware, crime will simply cease, people will do because it is right to do, not because they have something to gain from it. It seems idealistic, but again, no one destroys their own leg, no one allows their hands to fight one another - it is absurd to even consider. If all experience their true oneness, they will realize this is exactly the situation, though.

Deeply fundamentalist. Dear God, do you not realise you are a separatist movement of one? There's you and the rest, for a start ...

I am talking about a deep understanding of the invalid nature of separation, so you are saying I am a separatist? If you are disagreeing with this, it is because you identify with your current borders. You find a certain comfort in being guided, by being part of a group. We all die alone though, the group cannot come with us. I am saying that everyone should be utterly authentic, no one should succumb to any group. Everyone should be a light unto themselves, no one should rely on anothers light to guide them. Now you automatically avoid all fanaticism, this is a situation where you are disputing fervently because you are having to convince yourself as much as the other party - it is not your own knowledge at all. You have chosen this to be fact, so your ego is utterly committed to it, but you do not know it at all.

When we can empower entire societies to be utterly individual, then peace can come about. How can war happen when there isn't a total game of follow the leader? It is not plausible at all, everyone will act of their own accord. We will come together to protect freedom, and then depart again to enjoy it. This is true freedom, everything else is nothing but bondage. Military, for instance, is exactly a form of slavery. You are expected to not think at all, to follow instruction exactly. It happens in society as well, we are told how to consider certain things like Communism and Socialism in America, never thinking for ourselves. In the organized religions, we are supposed to accept someone else's view of how we have come to be, this is the ultimate in slavery. We give our minds unquestioningly to someone that doesn't know themselves, it is insane.
 

Lunitik

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I think so ... I am constantly being told by respondents on IO about what works and what doesn't in my tradition, even though I'm being told by people who have no real knowledge or insight into what they pass judgement on, and no argument beyond 'it doesn't suit me'

Does this differ at all from why you do not accept what others offer to you? You simply reject because you you identify utterly with the words of your faith, but others are sharing the exact same insight from another perspective.

What I, for one, am telling you is that you are over-complicating the most basic understanding there is. It is always the case though, it is most difficult to explain simplicity because the mere explanation seems conflicted. You go on pointing from a million angles, and they will all seem different. If you do not try to explain at all, though, how will anyone understand you?

This is why I go on saying that boundaries and distinctions of all kinds need to be dropped, it is not enough that we start with only Jesus and then read all the expansions on his already convoluted text. We must start with a wider array of perspectives, then we can see more clearly an over-view of it all. When we start with Jesus alone, we are now in the valley trying to find our way around with rather simplified map. It would be better to climb a mountain and just look down for ourselves, then we see that we were already close but there was a building in the way - we feel deeply stupid that we thought ourselves lost, but at least we know now.

Understand that many simply do not care what Christianity has to say, how Christianity differs, because they understand Jesus is just one of many that have known. Your differentiations are exactly your entrapment, they are utterly of the mind, they are fabricated totally.
 

Lunitik

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I am on an interfaith forum because I wish to avoid attempts at conversion, because I see the truth in all traditions. There are many Christian sites if you want to delve into that, but interfaith dialog should be a springboard for a total understanding. All traditions have valuable insights, but you will note I rarely venture into the specific forums unless it is a general idea. I am not interested in any particular tradition, I am interested in total understanding, genuine transcendence and transformation of all.

If I wanted to dispute with a Christian and change his faith, I would be on a Christian forum disputing with them all. Same with any other tradition, but I have come to an interfaith forum because I want people to understand how all faiths correlate and are in essence identical. I certainly become frustrated when, from this attempt to bring all together, I am propositioned with an elitist that wants to drag them apart again, that wants to claim they have superior understanding. It is because this is how all wars have ever happened, one side says their ideas are better, the other disagrees so they fight and the victors opinion is accepted by all.

It is an utter mess, the very nature of the dispute proves neither have any idea of truth. They are arguing about who's attachment is most warranted, but no attachment is healthy ever.
 

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Lunitik said:
This is why I go on saying that boundaries and distinctions of all kinds need to be dropped, it is not enough that we start with only Jesus and then read all the expansions on his already convoluted text.
speaking personally, i think that he who drops all boundaries and distinctions will still end up building new ones - for example, between the "enlightened" and the "unenlightened", or those who "get it" and those that don't. i'm just saying it because i've seen it over and over again and i'll tell you what the difference really is - it is between those who take responsibility for themselves and their own spiritual development and those who wish to induce others to imitate them. that is one of the basic things about the difference between proselytising / evangelical religion and non-. one requires, through its own insecurity, validation through imitation and one does not.

it is my considered opinion that thomas does not display this kind of insecurity. he studies his own tradition and he is fierce in defending it, but he does so because he deeply cares and because he wants his system to be as transcendent and blissful as the Divine he seeks. he is not blind to the shortcomings of where it is coming from, but neither is he in a rush to discard things that have demonstrated considerable value to him and his co-religionists. i have to respect that and i have come to have deep respect for his learning and compassion.

b'shalom

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Thomas

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Hi Luecy7 —

Perhaps it is a play in words, but the term 'experience' could merely mean 'witnessing', or 'sensing', or it could mean 'do-ing' or 'interacting'.
Oh, absolutely. Christianity is a 'Way', it's not an abstract or abstruse philosophical position.

I think the power of forgiveness has reach far beyond our comprehension. At this very moment in time, I would claim it's one of, if not the, single most important aspect of Christianity.

I would have thought it's certainly the case for anyone in pursuit of spiritual development. Perhaps that's why compassion, humility, detachment et al are so highly praised by mystics and sages of all traditions.

For example, witnessing or receiving someone's giving or forgiveness is one thing. Giving or forgiving is another. If a person gives or forgives then they do gain experience and gain a different perspective.
Indeed they do. I have witnessed it in action — on one occasion by the act of one person forgiving another, the other time by getting one person to forgive themselves. The latter occasion was quite something.

It seems to me the Catholic church believes it is important to experience confession.
Yes.

Witnessing a confession and confessing are two different activities.
Yes.

I'd place the term 'experience' more with the latter: do-ing, than with the former: seeing someone else do it.
So would I. The role of the confessor is for the confessee. The confession is more powerful, to the n-th degree, when witnessed.

Shamen understood this, and the Sacrament of Confession is the ultimate shamanic ritual (but then I see the Sacraments as being the acme of all rites and rituals).

The loss of the traditional 'rites of passage' in modern western culture has had a debilitating psychic effect which so far has not been recognised yet.

With that I don't think anyone can take away from those that say meditation is the path to some important, cosmic, mystical experience.
Nor would I, with the proviso that meditation is just another word for 'concentration'. It is cosmic, and indeed might be mystical in that regard, dependent upon how much the tradition supports the idea of initiation and the other (which I believe Buddhism, for example, does).

But Christianity is a metacosmic tradiition, and its Mysteries reflect that.

So I don't see wisdom in shooting down one's experience for merely being an experience or the pursuit of an experience;
It's a matter of context. Experience purely for its own sake is a form of mental masturbation.

But here I am saying two things:
1: The experience might well be nothing at all but a by-product of a more profound event, over-spilling into the sensible — such as an epileptic fit, or a trance, the near-complete cessation of normal bodily functioning.

Voices, visions, aromas, can all be nothing more than 'interference' or, perhaps more generously, a kind of harmonic resonance.

And, as we have seen, by stimulating the lower, eg creating epileptic fits, or by artificial stimulation of the so-called 'god-spot' create 'the sense of the other', the natural assumption then is the high-to-low effect is false, as this recreated low-to-high is.

2: The pursuit of the experience, which is the pursuit of a chimera, no matter how glamorous it might appear, actually takes one away from a pursuit of the real. The seeker becomes inadvertently lost in some dramatic theatre which they assume to be the point of it all, by its sheer volume and velocity ...

Lastly, in my tradition, which is a communal tradition, graces are given not for the edification of the individual, but for the benefit of the wider community.

God bless,

Thomas
 

Lunitik

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speaking personally, i think that he who drops all boundaries and distinctions will still end up building new ones - for example, between the "enlightened" and the "unenlightened", or those who "get it" and those that don't. i'm just saying it because i've seen it over and over again and i'll tell you what the difference really is - it is between those who take responsibility for themselves and their own spiritual development and those who wish to induce others to imitate them. that is one of the basic things about the difference between proselytising / evangelical religion and non-. one requires, through its own insecurity, validation through imitation and one does not.

it is my considered opinion that thomas does not display this kind of insecurity. he studies his own tradition and he is fierce in defending it, but he does so because he deeply cares and because he wants his system to be as transcendent and blissful as the Divine he seeks. he is not blind to the shortcomings of where it is coming from, but neither is he in a rush to discard things that have demonstrated considerable value to him and his co-religionists. i have to respect that and i have come to have deep respect for his learning and compassion.

You make valid points, and yet I cannot agree entirely...

From my own perspective, I am not trying to convert anyone at all because there is nothing to convert them to. I speak of the culmination of all faiths, where all faiths point, and I say lets all head for that instead of arguing about where to stop off for a rest. Nothing along the way is interesting to me, it might as well be a desert. I simply do not see how any of it can help us grow, and I know that growth is not necessary if you can transcend this second.

This is the whole problem of most faiths, everything is about something later, but time only exists in the mind - there is no requirement for any gradual process, you only need to know it is already the case. You need to remove all the clouds and obfuscations and simply look - faiths provide little but obfuscations these days.

His very method of dispute is very insecure, he is constantly insisting his understanding faiths understanding is superior. He is guarding it and saying others are incomplete for the same reason he says others tell him his faith is incomplete. I say every organized faith is incomplete because they are organized by people that do not know, these people do not know what is important and what is not.
 

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I think the power of forgiveness has reach far beyond our comprehension. At this very moment in time, I would claim it's one of, if not the, single most important aspect of Christianity.

Forgiveness is only useful in that it provides a closure for dropping the incident. It is not unlike karma, it is a way to get rid of negative collections of thoughts. What I dislike is that it is usually based in ego, people won't forgive unless the other apologizes. Why cling to the incident at all though? It has already passed, you are stuck in the past. You are causing yourself unnecessary stress. Same with repentance, it is a forgiving of yourself, simply drop the incident and it is not necessary at all.

If the ego aspects are not present, I can support forgiveness and repentance, they are beautiful in their way. I do not think it needs to be a process though, it is not that now you are angry, then there is an apology, then forgiveness. You forgive before the action has even taken place because the other is simply not perfect and will make mistakes. In this way, it is just a by-product of love, acceptance of anothers flaws.

I am very against things which are time oriented because time itself is simply not valid - it is a measurement of movement, a perception we have scheduled our lives on.

Nor would I, with the proviso that meditation is just another word for 'concentration'. It is cosmic, and indeed might be mystical in that regard, dependent upon how much the tradition supports the idea of initiation and the other (which I believe Buddhism, for example, does).

Meditation is not concentration at all, it is merely the practice of allowing existence to be. Being utterly still, not trying to project or label, not trying to possess or control. You simply watch, whatsoever happens happens - as I sit, the grass grows and the spring comes by itself - it is a let go, a ceasing of the need to assert something. Humans won't permit this though, they want always to do something, they seek any distraction from aloneness.

Why the emphasis on initiations, though? What do you think rites of passage accomplish? It is merely a confirmation that "yes, we approve of you", it is a very immature need.

I agree, society in the West needs something, since Neitzche said "God is dead" there has been a certain weight taken off peoples shoulders, but there is something very much missing - suicide and depression are increasing. It will not be found in the past though, people are moving away from the old religions because they simply do not trust the leaders and will not again. Something new must be developed, something that permits more freedom, something for a more mature society. For me, that is Osho, but I do not really care what is ultimately chosen.

How Jesus calls source, for me, is one of the most telling things about Christianity: father. It is childish, still seeking out the parents approval. I like to think society has gained from that, but now it is time to come out from under the care of the parent, to become an adult.

Lastly, in my tradition, which is a communal tradition, graces are given not for the edification of the individual, but for the benefit of the wider community.

This is amazing to me, you are pretending to know the motives of source... this is naught but human projection onto a divine event.
 

wil

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a figment of your imagination
I think so ... I am constantly being told by respondents on IO about what works and what doesn't in my tradition, even though I'm being told by people who have no real knowledge or insight into what they pass judgement on, and no argument beyond 'it doesn't suit me' ... :p

God bless,

thomas

I'm afraid I'm gonna have to call you on that. Constantly? I'll just ask for one instance.

Thomas if anyone goes on telling folks they don't know what they speak of and attempts to stand on the pedestal of the one and only truth...

Folks may say your tradition is not for them....but I'd like to see where you feel you've been constantly told something doesn't work for you.
 

Ahanu

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Thomas if anyone goes on telling folks they don't know what they speak of

I think Thomas does have a point, however.

Theology is rocket science.

Seriously!

:D
 

IowaGuy

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It seems to me that, when viewing a religion from the outside (without being born into it), and choosing between the plethora of world religions & belief systems, a person must use some sort of reason and logic in order to make the choice that is best for them.

This is my situation, and since I have not entered into the pursuit of religion with an already instilled bias, I think it has proven to be an advantage. Due to this lack of bias, I have simply pursued that which is similar between all faiths......I also knew instinctively that there is something to each of them which has drawn people in......Truth is something which marries and transcends all of the traditions of today.

Why do you feel your "Osho-like" mystical path is better for marrying the truth of different world religions than, say, Theosophy (which has a similar claim) or Unitarian Universalism (which asserts a unitary notion of "The Ultimate" while promoting social justice and compassion towards others)?

The four religions you reference in your earlier post: Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Islam; all have either heaven or rebirth in their core teachings. Why do you choose a path that neither allows for faith in a deity nor rebirth? How can your path "marry" these religions yet not incorporate their core teachings of the afterlife?

Why choose a path that doesn't incorporate a sense of belonging to a community, with shared fellowship & spiritual study with others? (Numerous studies have shown the physical and mental health benefits of being part of a religious community.)
 

radarmark

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Whenever people get involved in the first or second generation of a religious or mytical or philosophical tradition, the tradition is usually unfragmented (differences have not arisen yet) and the founder is alive or recently deceased (and either way the community clusters to the founder).

This is very parallel to what I just posted on "Higher Power and Evolution". At this early stage the followers have the very firm belief that they have the "absolute truth", which is something the rest of us do not have (we older folks can live with that because we usually realize the world is like that).

Without belief in a diety or afterlife (Rabbinically) the belief system is not a religion (see "Jew in the Lotus"). It may be a spiritual practice (a secular sufism or Kabbalah), it may be an advanced philosophy (as some claim Theosophy or Rosecutionaism are), or it may just be a good scam (similar to Jonestown or the Frankists or Millerites waiting for the end of the world).

Even the most primative groups we know of (like the burial practices of the Neaderthals) have the notion of an after life and a divine being (see primative cave and rock painting).

Pax et amore omnia vincunt
 
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